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things that just are

Wednesday, November 16, 2005

Just For the Money

From WSJ Evening Wrap:
Now Entering DISH

Lots of towns have good reasons for civic pride. Cawker City, Kan., for example, boasts of having the world's largest ball of twine. The town of Clark, Texas, (pop. 125) was looking for such a distinction, and EchoStar Communications, parent of the DISH satellite television network, had just the ticket. EchoStar recently offered free DISH service to every home in one U.S. town willing to change its name to DISH. Clark -- named for L.E. Clark, the man who founded the town just five years ago -- decided it wanted to take the challenge, and Mayor Bill Merritt successfully lobbied EchoStar for the honor of a new name. All of the town's signs have been changed and now include the motto 'Home of Free DISH Network Satellite TV.' Anybody who moves to town will get free DISH service.

'We really look at this as kind of a rebirth for our community,' Mr. Merritt told the Associated Press. 'We want everybody to come here.' L.E. Clark, who recently lost to Mr. Merritt in a mayoral race, said he would use neighboring Justin, Texas, which has the same zip code as DISH, for any future correspondence."

Tuesday, November 15, 2005

Out to Get Ali G.

From Yahoo! News:
"Kazakhstan's Foreign Ministry threatened legal action Monday against a British comedian who wins laughs by portraying the central Asian state as a country populated by drunks who enjoy cow-punching as a sport.

Sacha Baron Cohen, who portrays a spoof Kazakh television presenter Borat in his "Da Ali G Show" has won fame ridiculing Kazakhstan, the world's ninth largest country yet still little known to many in the West, on British and U.S. channels.

Cohen appears to have drawn official Kazakh ire after he hosted the annual MTV Europe Music Awards show in Lisbon earlier this month as Borat, who arrived in an Air Kazakh propeller plane controlled by a one-eyed pilot clutching a vodka bottle.

"We do not rule out that Mr. Cohen is serving someone's political order designed to present Kazakhstan and its people in a derogatory way," Kazakh Foreign Ministry spokesman Yerzhan Ashykbayev told a news briefing.

Cohen's earlier jokes about the Central Asian state include claims that the people would shoot a dog and then have a party, and that local wine was made from fermented horse urine."

Tuesday, November 08, 2005

Airport Security Update: Please Do Not Remove Your Shoes At This Time

From Gizmodo:
"People get all worked up about taking off their shoes at the airport. When I get a chance to take off my shoes and relax, I always take it. Unfortunately, GE Security now has a device that scans shoes while they are on the person. Simply place your feet on the device, and a a few seconds later you are cleared to move onto the next security checkpoint: the cavity search. I tried one of these at an airport once — must have been an unwitting beta tester because I’ve never seen it again. And my foot developed this strange fungus soon after…"

Link: Device Scans Luggage, Shoes for Bombs

Tuesday, November 01, 2005

Email Is Worse Than Pot

From Lifehacker:

Discover Magazine cites a study where two groups of people took IQ tests: one that was under the influence of marijuana and the other that was interrupted by email messages - and the potheads performed better.

Certainly, the (BING!) interruption cost of a new email message (BING!) arriving every 10 minutes throughout the day (BING!) while you work is a high one. The solution? Pull the plug. Shut down your email client while you work and open it up only when you need to send a message. Or simply set it to check for new messages only once an hour. It doesn’t matter that right this moment you’ve got mail. You’ve also got something else more important to do than buy Cialis online.

Article:E-Mail Making You Crazy?