on the "squeeze", from time enough for love

October 22, 2018
[The Planet named] Blessed would not have been on my route other than for business reasons. Interstellar trade is economics stripped to basics. You can't make money by making money because money isn't money other than on its planet of issue. Most money is fiat; a ship's cargo of the stuff is wastepaper elsewhere. Bank credit is worth even less; Galactic distances are too great. Even money that jingles must be thought of as trade goods -- not money -- or you'll kid yourself into starvation.

This gives the sky merchant a grasp of economics rarely achieved by bankers or professors. He is engaged in barter and no nonsense. He pays taxes he can't evade and doesn't care whether they are called "excise" or "king's pence" or "squeeze" or straight-out bribes. It is the other kid's bat and ball and backyard, so you play by his rules -- nothing to get in a sweat about. Respect for laws is a pragmatic matter. Women know this instinctively; that's why they are all smugglers. Men often believe -- or pretend -- that the "Law" is something sacred, or at least a science -- an unfounded assumption very convenient to governments.

I've done little smuggling; it's risky, and you can wind up with money you don't dare spend where it's legal tender. I simply tried to avoid places where the squeeze was too high.

--Robert Heinlein, "Time Enough for Love". The narrator Lazarus Long is an extremely long-lived interstellar merchant, with libertarian leanings and capabilities that almost put him in an Ayn-Randian mode, but I've appreciated his resigned acceptance of the "The Squeeze" as the cost of doing business- something I read long ago that stuck with me.

October 22, 2017

JP Honk played the wedding of Lilia + Jason yesterday at the arboretum...

never let the sousaphone player alone with his horn and the rest of the champagne, tho (photo by Candace)
let the girls be funny
Justin Timberlake is going to do the superbowl halftime. Haven't been paying too much attention to the interview coverage they had, but I didn't notice them mentioning "nipplegate" so much. The nipple shield in the room, so to speak.
Because of fog they're broadcasting the Pats game with a lot of low, behind the QB angles rather than the usual high up views from the sideline... it's pretty awesome! Not only is it more visceral but you can see where the receivers are running. I wonder why NFL broadcasters don't use it more often.

October 22, 2016

via slate:

Yup pic.twitter.com/vDf6G8bRmZ

— Chris Cillizza (@TheFix) October 20, 2016

"Look at those teeth. The downturned lips. The clenching of his jaw and the rage in his stubby fingers as he rips that piece of paper out of his legal pad."
"An artist should play with your paint, be happy over it, [and] sing at your work.""
--William Merritt Chase, from the current MFA show

October 22, 2015

Paint night! I was a little "off-model"

(It's the panel that inspired this comic of mine.)

October 22, 2014

October 22, 2014
5 Research-driven Secrets to Great Relationships. Great, now I have to go skydiving on a first date?

October 22, 2013

One of my favorite works at the British Museum's Shunga: Sex and Pleasure in Japanese Art headlines this review of it. There's something about the use of that fan as central figure...
I found this "Insiders" view of Republicans really enlightening. I'm a little more sympathetic to some of the outlooks even as I disagree with almost everything in it.
http://nowiknow.com/prisencolinensinainciusol/ Gibberish meant to sound like English. Love it.
Bachelor-boy "I want to lose a few pounds and I want to graze instead of dine in the evenings" groceries: baby carrots, 3 varieties of pickles, single serve lite kettle korn, coke cherry zero, 15 calorie sugarfree popsicles.

My doctor mentioned intermittent fasting, like having 2 days a week be about 500 calories. I think I could do that, maybe.

October 22, 2012

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http://www.thisismyjam.com/kirkjerk -- Madonna's "Dick Tracy" blend of big band and playful kink
"Not my circus, not my monkeys."
--Polish saying, meaning 'Not My Problem'
"Survey.What if there was a free game where your avatar is always crying. It doesn't affect the game but you could stop it for $2. Would you?"
"6 Stages of Debugging: That can't happen. That shouldn't happen. Hmmm, weird. Why does that happen? Oh, I see. How did that ever work?"
Oh, Locke-Ober is going away. Now where will I go to pretend to be a member of the Boston Brahmin class?
This is a whale imitating the sounds of human speech.

I think the whale might be making fun of us.

the unlyrics

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October 22, 2011

--via 22words

soccer and lingerie

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October 22, 2010

OK, arguably a teensy bit exploitive, but visually captivating... those are some serious footie skills.

"It's meaningless unless your table includes sandpaper so that the user can sand down their fingers to around one quarter of their present size."
--Jobs on 7" tablets. Too bad the iPhone and iPod Touch can't exist then!
"Skywalker. Skywalker. And why do you come to walk my sky, with the sword of a Jedi knight?... I remember another Skywalker."
--Minch Yoda, http://www.wired.com/underwire/2010/10/10-things-empire-strikes-back/
http://www.asofterworld.com/ -- interesting tech thing here, you can see the "alt text" bonus by clicking, so it works on iDevices...
Yeesh. My tin ear for language means not only am I grindingly monolingual but sometimes I can't even place the language being spoken.

the loss of zelda

October 22, 2009

--from Cracked.com's Photoshop contest The Collateral Damage Video Games Never Show. I LOL'd.

young astronauts in love (4/4)

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October 22, 2008

Concluding chapter of Young Astronauts in Love!

You can see the whole thing on one page at kirkjerk.com/astro.

It's funny, I had been thinking that the original single panel comic had been inspired by the Lisa Nowak "stalker astronaut" story, except the original panel was 2002 and Nowak made news in 2007. (Heh, I had forgotten I made a commemorative Young Astronauts in Love Nowak cartoon then.)

Young Astronauts in Love

chapter 4

but just then the robot incident had left us a bit shaken

and quite a bit turned on

i kept making "robot buddies", but kept them dumb-ish, below the critical synaptic threshold

and lydia's research was deeper than ever.

for her birthday, i made her a robot pet UFO

i think she liked it

a lot. it followed her constantly!

her birthday gift to me was kind of harder to explain...

it was kind of a combination anomaly/holo of the two of us

it's unique, in a strict use of that word. i'm not sure you could make it anywhere besides the anomaly obverse!

during minibreaks, she showed me how to enjoy the planetside... nature stuff i'd never really looked at

at these times, i was happiest.

as far as i can tell, so was she.

but nothing gold can stay

she got her orders. assignment at tylon academy. the big leagues!

we took one last trip to the city

at the sodashop, we had a talk

"i don't know, jake... maybe it's the difference between you and everyone else."

"...the astronaut thing is so temporary for them..."

now, we still write and holo sometimes. she hasn't found anyone new.

so there's still a little hope. not a ton.

she left, but deployments in the federation are funny things, and the anomaly still has some unplumbed depths.

i'll say this, i learned more from lydia than all the other lab-scouts put together.

Peabody MA cop union wants 9/11 as a paid holiday http://tinyurl.com/ma911 . OK, but if it becomes "2nd Monday of Sept." I call shenanigans!
In Pac-Land the pre-eminent linguist / activist is NomNomNom Chomp-sky.
I do love Flann's, the Irish pub literally at the end of my street. A daily $5 special- often a serious bargain- and "they pour a good pint"
pentomino you should find "search" as a link cleverly hidden in the bottom of the page. (Heh, site scalability through obscurity?)

sox v. rox

October 22, 2007

I caught the last few innings of the Sox grabbing the American League championship away from the Indians last night. There were a few instances where the Tribe looked comically bad at defense... to quote the Chicago Tribune:
After J.D. Drew's run-scoring single in the eighth, the Indians seemed lost in space. Blake and shortstop Jhonny Peralta collided on a Jason Varitek pop-up, letting it bounce into the stands for a ground-rule double.
Neither guy called for it, they seem to kind of startle each other, with I think Blake covering his head and ducking down in the least dignified manner possible. Despite 3 scary looking but futile long fly balls to end the 9th (really making the Sox outfield work, and Coco's collision with the right corner of the field made you wonder) it was clear that the Indians were dispirited.

I was a total fence-sitter for the whole series. I thought Cleveland as a team and as a city needed it more -- plus there's the whole David vs. Goliath feel when it comes to smaller market teams -- but the Red Sox are my team now, so... GO RED SOX. Lets see how hot these Rockies really are.

And Indians, thanks for getting the Yankees out of the way. That series could've been ugly.

Quote of the Moment
"No... I don't think [drowning my sorrows] is possible. [...] All my sorrows are very strong swimmers."
--Shoe, via The Comics Curmudgeon. Man, that's the most melancholy bit I've seen in the Funnies since that one Arlo and Janis.

trenton makes - the world takes

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October 22, 2006

From the Acela train back from Delaware I saw the "Trenton Makes" bridge:

(Not my photo, though, I wasn't that quick.) Wikipedia mentioned that the bridge and neon sign is featured in the intro to the show "House" but I guess wasn't paying enough attention.

It was the slogan of Trenton back in the day, referring to the industrial output of the place. But it seems like such an oddly Ayn Rand-ian sentiment... it's a catchy slogan but seems to be saying the world is stealing, rather than engaging in fair commerce.

Trivia of the Moment
The origins of many band names. I think my favorite it still "Everything But The Girl", such a lovely note of malencholy in that even if it came from a British clothing shop ad.

Diplomacy of the Moment
"But I think there is a big possibility ... for extreme criticism and because undoubtedly there was arrogance and stupidity from the United States in Iraq,"
--Sr. State Department official Alberto Fernandez on Al-Jazeera

"I can only assume his remarks must have been mistranslated. Those comments obviously don't reflect our policy."
--a "senior Bush administration official"

That's the CNN.com headline story at the moment. It's the followup comment that amuses me... does it mean that it doesn't reflect policy for Fernandez to make comments like that, or that it's "obvious" that the USA's policy is to not be arrogant and/or stupid in terms of Iraq?


October 22, 2005

Final Doodles of the Moment

Well, that's it. I like the guy at top right. The Angriest Eggplant is a rehash. "You Make Me Feel Like A Natural Woman" was to amuse Erica during an sQ concert when the guest group was singing that song. As for the breasts...umm...well...I think I was imitating some stylized cartoon I saw somewhere, with the breast drawn with a straightish topside and roundish bottomside (in contrast to the not too inspiring twin hemispheres my unfortunate cartoon women usually end up with.)

Thus endeth the doodles. Been one of the quietest halfweeks on the kisrael comments section, so I'm gonna count this run as "not so inpspring".

he's out

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October 22, 2004

Joke of the Moment
Q. What's the difference between the Vietnam War and the Iraq War?
A. George W. Bush had a plan to get out of the Vietnam War.
--Mirek Kotisa, rec.humor.funny. Tell your friends!

Feeble Fable of the Moment
VALK: We are lost. Very lost. Before we were lost, but this is a lost of an entirely different scale. We are never going to find our way out of here. I am becoming depressed.
MARCUS: You know, this is a thought I like to think whenever I get depressed and ready to give up and just let death take over. It gives me encouragement to keep fighting.
VALK: Well, what is it?
MARCUS: You only can die once.
BRUNO: I don't get it.
VALK: Yeah. How is that supposed to give you encouragement?
MARCUS: Cause then I think I want to keep that moment as far away as possible.
BRUNO: Well, you know whud I say?
BRUNO: Rats, I forgot it, too.
VALK: Great.
MARCUS: Oh no.
VALK: What?
MARCUS: I really have to go to the bathroom.
(Blackout. Enter narrator)
NARRATOR: The simple moral to this, the second to the last fable, is this: always go to the bathroom before starting out on a long and perilous journey.
--For some reason I like the simple declarative nature of "I am becoming depressed".

Image of the Moment
--via Bill the Splut, this great image from a fark contest "Chihuahua recruits cat army to combat rat hordes. Create some propaganda for either side"

Article of the Moment
I don't usually checkout msn.com (though I do like Slate.com which has some kind of relation to it) but it's the default homepage on some of the server machines I'm working on at work, and I found this nifty little article, 10 Worthwhile Luxuries. I'm a big believer in that kind of thing. If you can afford, then not shelling out for the things that make your life distinctly better can be a false economy. Like everything else, you need to take this principle in moderation, but still...

we read the news so you don't have to

(1 comment)
October 22, 2003

Slate of the Moment
Two cool things from Slate, why the Republicans are wrong to discount the importance of the Northeast, and then a description of a medical procedure used on Roy (of Siegfried fame) where they implant a piece of skull they had to remove into his abdomen for safe keeping...really kind of interesting.

Local News of the Moment
Huh. Waltham is having a ballot initiative "Question 1", that would reduce property taxes by 25%, though quite possibly at the cost of services like non-fee-based garbage and recycling. Dale Worley has made a page analyzing the issue. Frankly, I don't put a lot of trust in citizen based tax cuts like this. I'm no fan of government waste, but I tend to prefer stronger services over lower taxes.

Quote of the Moment
"The best argument against democracy is a five-minute conversation with the average voter."
--Winston Churchill. This kind of helps explain why I'm against this general trend of more things decided by direct ballot. We're not a direct democracy, we're a democratic republic, and that old line about "democracy being two wolves and a sheep voting on what's for dinner" comes to mind.

News of the Past Moment
Huh, I didn't hear that much about the guy who went over Niagra Falls...mostly just references to it happening.

fragment from a future that never was

October 22, 2002
Link of a non-Moment
Amazing Mac/typewriter hybrid, straight outta the movie Brazil. Be sure to check out the mock-Ads made for it, trying to capture the spirit of the HP Lovecraft universe circa 1926. (via boingboing)

"The Pathology in the Politics"
George W. Bush as a "Dry Drunk". It sounded kind of corny, but after reading the article, I think is might explain nearly everything...it certainly seems to fit his patterns of speech and action. (On the other hand, doesn't some of his "speech" come from professional speechwriters? Do they make his catchphrases, or get them from him? ...And I guess you can't use this excuse for most of the rest of his administration...) But a lot of his mannerisms when he's trying to be serious and stately, they are a bit like a drunk guy trying to pretend he's not.

Random Observation of the Moment
The headphones that I use at work have a little volume control on the wire itself. Just today I noticed that there's a Mono/Stereo switch on it. I was curious to see if it meant the sound was balanced between the two speakers, or just came out of one (ok, kind of dumb.) But I learned that the default Windows 'bell' sound has an odd stereophonic back-and-forth to it that I had never noticed before (until, of course, I switched my headphones to 'mono' where it became a single simple sound.)

Now you know. Carry on.

Political Web Toy of the Moment
Ranjit passed on a link that Mo had sent me a while back, Make Your Own Bush Speech. A little limited because you can only use each phrase once, but still, you can make some amusing stuff.

Poetry of the Moment
when you face old age and its natural conclusion
your courage will still be shown in the little ways,
each spring will be a sword you'll sharpen,
those you love will live in a fever of love,
and you'll bargain with the calendar
and at the last moment
when death opens the back door
you'll put on your carpet slippers
and stride out.
--from Courage, by Anne Sexton. From a collection of poetry selected by Garrison Keillor titled Good Poems that lives up to its name.

to dream an impossible dream

October 22, 2001

Yay! Another one of my dreams has been turned into a four panel cartoon by Jesse Reklaw at Slow Wave! This one doesn't have quite the narrative punch as the first one he did but still I'm very happy with it. He got the Yak people down very well.

One dream that didn't make it was where I'm dealing with an orangutan-- kind of like King Louie from the Jungle Book-- and another friend of mine is eating this brown pellet. The other friend says "hmm, these taste funny, what are they, chocolate covered banana beans?" and the orangutan gets this sheepish/sly expression and says "yeah, that's what they are, banana beans" and I realize he's looking like that because it's actually his droppings, but he doesn't want to mention it.

Link of the Moment
An arguably very useful link for a change! 70 Things to Say When You're Losing a Technical Argument. The first one is probably the best: "That won't scale".

KHftCEA 1999-10.3 October

A man walks into a bar. He has a few drinks and chats with the bartender.
Later that night, he goes home and reflects on the poor decisons he's made in life.

Why did the chicken cross the road?
Because the chicken lacks any reasoning or decision-making capabilities, it seems unlikely that the chicken's action was spurred by any particular motivation.
--The Newest Jokes From Jokeland, http://www.mcsweeneys.net
"There's nothing horrible in any of them. You know, there's nothing like, 'Wasn't it fantastic when you bent me over the sofa?' Not that I ever did that."
--The late Princess Diana's ex-lover James Hewitt, defending his decision to publish Diana's love letters despite her wishes.
"I'll never make that mistake again, reading the experts' opinions. Of course, you only live one life, and you make all your mistakes, and learn what not to do, and that's the end of you."
--Richard Feynman, "Surely You're Joking, Mr. Feynman!"
What *I* got out of that story was something still very new to me: I understood at last what art is really for, at least in certain respects. It gives somebody, individually, pleasure. You can make something that somebody likes *so much* that they're depressed, or they're happy, on account of that damn thing you made! In science, it's sort of general and large: You don't know the individuals who have appreciated it directly.
 I understood that to sell a drawing is not to make money, but to be sure that it's in the home of someone who really wants it; someone who would feel bad if they didn't have it. This was interesting.
--Richard Feynman, "Surely You're Joking, Mr. Feynman!"
"Oral sex combines a man's two favorite activities. Sex ... and not moving, at all."
--Richard Jennie
"Our company newsletter has reports of bizarre workplace crimes. I've never thought of these crimes before, but now I have an urge to be a copycat. Thank goodness my parents raised me to be lazy."
--Wally (from Dilbert, October 14, 1999)
Idea for web project: put the KHftCEA online, but with an index (like the kind a regular book might have.)  Talk about introspective- I'm at risk of curling up into my own navel, kind of like an Escher piece.

KHftCEA 1997-10 October

Are *you* prepared
to suck God's Mighty Cock?
97-10-22 (after listening to anti-feminist Xtian talk radio)
How bad a culture can this be, with hot showers virtually on demand?