September 15, 2006

The haiku frolics in the sidebar comments have raised a point I find interesting, is "growl" one syllable or two? I guess it varies by dialect, though Miller claims that it's lacking the requisite vowel (but I think back to "a e i o u, and sometimes y and w"... I learned it "sometimes y" but I have heard that "and w" thrown in there since.) Still, for me, "growl" is a perfect rhyme for "towel" and, appropriately enough, "vowel". Though I guess those words might all be, say, 1 1/2 syllables.

Of course than I start thinking about parts of the country where "fire" is one syllable and then I need to go lie down for a bit.

Image Toy of the Moment

--FoSO sent a link to this official seal generator. The UI isn't super dynamic but it's still cool. (Hint: the "Emblem" caption is a link taking you to a browser, rather than making you pick from a text list.)

Passage of the Moment
Please ensure that your seat belt is fastened, your seat back is upright and your tray-table is stowed. At Veritas Airways, your safety is our first priority. Actually, that is not quite true: if it were, our seats would be rear-facing, like those in military aircraft, since they are safer in the event of an emergency landing. But then hardly anybody would buy our tickets and we would go bust. [...] Your life-jacket can be found under your seat, but please do not remove it now. In fact, do not bother to look for it at all. In the event of a landing on water, an unprecedented miracle will have occurred, because in the history of aviation the number of wide-bodied aircraft that have made successful landings on water is zero.
--Making the rounds, the Economist on truthful preflight announcements. Just in time for next week's trip to Seattle!

column of the Moment
We have no more troops to send to Iraq. We have, or had, the army to win any war, but (mercifully?) we are no great shakes at being an occupying force.

Thank goodness it has struck such a blow against terrorism, huh?
As the Post paraphrased the Marine Corps chief of intelligence for Iraq: "al-Qaeda has become the province's most significant political force." In other words, the prediction some began making a year ago—that Anbar would become a new and enduring sanctuary for al-Qaida—has come true.
Of course, until and unless there's a major terrorist incident in the USA, it's difficult to absolutely criticize our ham-fisted Middle East policy, but on the other hand, until there's a clearer demonstration of how Iraq ties into that, and how removing Saddam unambiguosly helped, it's hard to know that it's worth the expense.

Of course, no new taxes to support the war, that might start people counting the cost in other ways as well...