Musings from Brian J. Noggle
Friday, June 22, 2007
Found Poetry
The sad, lonely life of an unrequited lover recounted using the date due flap of an obscure academic tome as the metaphor:

A lonely book

Thursday, June 21, 2007
A Clarification and Defense of Masculinity
When my wife came home from a recent evening event, she saw that I was watching Alex & Emma on DVD. "You're watching a chick flick!" she said.

"I am not," I defended, "It's an author flick."

Allow me to justify my behavior.

Although I concede that it has all the earmarks of chick flick feminine wish fulfillment:
  • No-nonsense working woman

  • With a lot of opinions, with which she is forcefully forthcoming

  • And "quirks" identify her as high-maintenance and probably controlling when they exist in a woman in real life

  • Meets a flawed but cute man

  • Whose initial impression and silly bachelor ways she overlooks

  • And they fall in love.
Friends, I agree, those are the earmarks of a chick flick. However, this particular movie plays upon those conventions and, although they sucker women into thinking the movie is directed at them, it's not. It's every author's fantasy fulfilled:
  • An author living in a comfortable loft downtown (Boston, not St. Louis)

  • Tricks an innocent stenographer to his lair

  • Where he dictates a potboiler novel,

  • A follow-up to a wildly successful debut novel,

  • Pausing only to nail a woman who looks like Kate Hudson

  • And when he completes the draft in 30 days

  • The publisher loves it without a single jot of revision required

  • And immediately pays the author a six-figure advance.

  • Meanwhile, the author tells the stenographer he "loves" her

  • And she buys it

  • So he will get to nail her again.
You tell me who gets gratified more from this movie.

Ho Hum: Art, Curator Expect to Make Squares Uncomfortable Again
Another art exhibit exalts itself in making the hoi polloi uncomfortable. Just like the last untold number of "art" exhibits:
    A risqué, homoerotic art exhibit will open this weekend on a stretch of street in St. Louis best known as a haven for antique-seekers.

    Gallery owner Philip Hitchcock expects the "Body/Building" display to unnerve a few people, but he hopes to accomplish more by challenging the status quo.

    "If people are uncomfortable with those images, and they ask themselves, 'Why? What chord does that strike in me?' If they go that far, then as an artist and a curator, I have done my job," Hitchcock said.
I doubt I'd be uncomfortable with those images; instead, the whole concept strikes a chord of "Why bother?" in me.

I prefer art to be evocative and uplifting. That sort of thing takes insight into the human condition and talent. Shocking me only requires the artistic equivalent of a Taser. And guess which sort of thing I buy.

The More The Merrier
On the other hand, the netroots activism of the Democratic party might be better for the Republicans than expected. I mean, look at the potential Nader ponders run, calls Clinton 'coward':
    Ralph Nader says he is seriously considering running for president in 2008 because he foresees another Tweedledum-Tweedledee election that offers little real choice to voters.
Coupled with this news, it's looking like a great race:
  • Any Republican
  • Any Democrat
  • Michael Bloomberg
  • Ralph Nader
Come on, you don't think Michael Bloomberg is going to steal from the Republican votes, do you?

The only way this could be better would be if Markos Moulitas himself ran, too.

The Republicans could almost elect Mark Foley in that field.

(More on Instapundit and Outside the Beltway.)

Wednesday, June 20, 2007
Litigious Culture Imperils Doctors
The litigious nature of our society is again imperiling our access to health care and doctors: Mo. doctors to sue over midwife law:
    Legislation allowing midwives to deliver babies at home in Missouri will probably be challenged in court by doctors' groups.

    The measure was approved by lawmakers last month as part of larger health insurance bill signed June 1 by Gov. Matt Blunt. Most of the bill won't take effect until January, but the section on midwifery becomes effective in August.

    Opposition to the midwifery provision is led by the Missouri State Medical Association. The organization's lobbyist, Tom Holloway, said the group expected to file suit to block the provision next week in Cole County Circuit Court.
Oh, sorry, my fault; this is actually a bill about doctors suing to prevent access to other health care providers because the doctors know that they should be the only ones legally eligible to receive tax money for delivering babies.

Doctors suing to keep health costs up so that they can continue to receive their rates for delivery and hospital stays or whatnot.

I'm not going to argue about whether it's better to have a child in the hospital surrounded by expensive scientific instruments unneeded in most deliveries or at home, chanting in a Gaia circle with a midwife. You know, that's where freedom comes in. People can choose the stupid or the merely less ideal.

But not if this collective of Missouri doctors has its way.

Republican Party Improves Slightly
NYC mayor leaves GOP amid White House speculation:
    After some six years as a Republican, the 65-year-old former CEO announced Tuesday that he has left the Republican Party and become unaffiliated in what many believe could be a step toward entering the 2008 race for president.
Face it, Bloomberg belongs to the Bloomberg party and puts on or takes off party designation like baseball hats. He only became a Republican so he could ride Rudy's coattails into the New York Mayor's office.

Frankly, that the Republican Party would have him in spite of his political views was an early indicator of its ease of sacrificing principles just to have one more official with an (R) behind its name.

Monday, June 18, 2007
Headline Offers Cheap Psychological Evaluation
Paranoia grows over Google's power

Reuters headline writers were unavailable to surmise how people concerned about the reach of Google's data depth and related data mining actually went crazy, but Reuters headline writers did not have the time to work up a complete mental profiles. They had only time to diagnose that those people suffer from a delusional disorder or perhaps schizophrenia.

Post-Dispatch Finds A Land Developer To Dislike
The front page of the Sunday St. Louis Post-Dispatch and an Flash-enhanced online rendition finally take a land developer to task.

Well, no, not "finally," since this land developer is only guilty of urging lawmakers to pass a tax incentive package that he'll take advantage of.

The Post-Dispatch wets itself in joy whenever a developer throws citizens out of their suburban homes using eminent domain or when a developer strong arms the city into co-signing a loan from which the developer can (and often does) walk away. To say nothing of tax incentives, which the Post-Dispatch thinks is a good idea to lure any private retail, condominium, or sports endeavor to the city.

I don't know why the paper decides to unload on this developer who acquired all the properties legitimately, although not obviously. Because he's one man who's white buying land in poverty-stricken areas? Because he live in St. Charles and hasn't made the proper show of buying a downtown loft?

Who knows? All I know is that it makes all other Post-Dispatch pieces that laud crony capitalism absurd and hypocritical.

Caption Contest
Normally, I don't do this sort of thing because the paucity of responses is bad for my ego, but here's a photo begging for a quip:


Here's my best shot:

Dude, we know where your treasure's buried.

Think you can do better? Leave it in the comments. Remember, if there are no comments, I will win by default! You don't want that on your conscience, do you?

Found Lost Mysteries
Sawyer spends Father's Day grilling (for his daughter Clementine by Cassidy? For his son by Kate?)? Also, who is the mystery woman with the salad bowl, and how is she related to Sawyer?

Man, it's going to be a long year.

To say Noggle, one first must be able to say the "Nah."