Wiki Win

A sociology student put a fake quote into the Wiki entry for French composer Maurice Jarre nearly immediatley after he died, and the quote got picked up all over the place by journalists writing Jarre’s obituary:

“The moral of this story is not that journalists should avoid Wikipedia, but that they shouldn’t use information they find there if it can’t be traced back to a reliable primary source,” said the readers’ editor at the Guardian, Siobhain Butterworth, in the May 4 column that revealed Fitzgerald as the quote author.

A Grand Dame Sort of Day

It’s my mom’s 80th birthday today, & Kate Bornstein is on her way to Lawrence to speak tonight.

I feel very thankful for the strong women who raised me and who continue to challenge and support me.

Happy Birthday, Mom. I know you said we weren’t supposed to do anything, but hopefully this doesn’t count.

Shrove Tuesday…

… might be better known as Fat Tuesday, or Mardi Gras, to those of you who weren’t raised Catholic, but it’s today. While in a Taco Bell I saw a sign that said Great Taste During Lent which listed a bunch of their vegetarian options. I grew up in one of the most Catholic cities in the world, but I have never, ever seen a sign like that. I shouldn’t be too surprised in a town that still has a “Friday Fish Fry” tradition, but okay – I was surprised. Taco Bell: where Catholicism and Vegetarianism intersect.

Since I seem to have mostly given up meat – it’s been about two months now, even if I am far from a purist about it – I’m not sure what exactly I should give up for Lent. That I should give up *something* is a no-brainer. I don’t give up anything because I’m a practicing Catholic – despite my mother’s best wishes, I am an apostate – but flexing a little self-discipline muscle isn’t particularly bad for a person. I have until midnight to make up my mind: suggestions? Is it possible to give up a negative? As in, can I give up not writing?

In the meanwhile: HAPPY MARDI GRAS! (I am so jealous of my friends who made it down to NOLA in the past week! What a party.)

Two Tune Tuesday: Gone!

There’s no one who hates Robert Plant as much as I do, but the stuff he recorded with Allison Kraus is too gorgeous, so here’s a track as part of a set of melodic antidotes to all the Valentine’s frippery we all love to hate. The other by the Violent Femmes, and honestly I think this is a recording that should have been on the Eraserhead soundtrack (yes, there was one) since it’s just that right kind of creepy.

& Please don’t try to talk me out of my dislike of Robert Plant or Led Zeppelin: deaf ears I’ve got on the subject.

Like a Sex Machine

A lovely article at has illustrations of six turn-of-the-last-century masturbatory machines. My favorite is the chair that simulates the jerkiness of train travel, since perhaps its existence explains my great love of trains.

Happy Valentine’s Day, everyone! Together or apart, single or poly, it is obvious that there is no excuse not to feel the love, or at least the pleasure. If the Victorians could create machines to meet your needs, then surely you can find something that scratches your itch. (The romantic itch is much harder to reach, so maybe it’s better to take care of the ones that are more easily scratched.)

(Thanks to Jacq Jones @ Sugar)