Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Hey, neato, new treadmills and more of them! I hate (no hyperbole) the interface on the new treadmills, but it's endurable in exchange for new treadmills and more treadmills. My first run in months was a bear, but still felt grand. It's a principle I've learned over and over and over again and yet never seem able to take to heart: virtue is its own reward, Mike, and you consistently feel like a million bucks when you do the things you know you're supposed to do. Sloth is like pornography, it's fun, but ultimately leaves you feeling sick to your stomach. Keep running, to spite the dark bastard if for no other reason.

Perchance to Dream
I was aware of dreaming on both of the past two mornings. Yesterday, the dream was like an old eight millimeter home movie, grainy and distant; the reel consisted of randomly ordered scenes of the late, lamented Tiger lazing about the house, standing on window sills looking at the world beyond, trying her best with paws sans claws to eviscerate a feathered lure at the end of an elastic cord. It was grand, for was the first time since Tiger's death that I'd thought about her without the exercise being tinged by sadness; instead, I was just glad to see my pussycat again acting as the pussycat I loved. It was great knowing you, Tiger. I love you. Goodbye, kitty.

This morning, I dreamt an entire, original episode of Psych. Shawn and Gus; Lassiter and O'Hara; no Abigail, curse the luck. If I could remember what it was about, I'd write it up as a spec script and send it in. Alas, that's not the way with dreams, again curse the luck. Oh yeah, "my episode" featured the regular (which is not to say it's anything less than super awesome) theme song; had I any conscious control over the proceedings, I'd have inserted the special Hindi/English theme song from the episode "Bollywood Homicide" (which, curiously, didn't feature a single homicide): Hindilink.

The Rebel Black Dot Song of the Day
Paramore, "The Only Exception" from Brand New Eyes (T.L.A.M.)

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Operation AXIOM
Today is Michaelmas, the Feast Day of Saint Michael the Archangel. I've not yet devised the special means I'll use to celebrate Michaelmases hereafter, but for today I'm satisfied that I've remembered to mark the occasion. Quis ut Deus?

"Saint Michael the Archangel,
defend us in battle;
be our protection against the wickedness
and snares of the Devil.
May God rebuke him, we humbly pray:
and do thou, O Prince of the heavenly host,
by the power of God,
thrust into hell Satan and all the evil spirits
who prowl about the world seeking the ruin of souls.

The Queue
I am contemplating taking a brief (a fortnight or so) respite from books, but face the sticky wicket of lunchtime reading. I simply refuse to read academically while eating my box lunch (regular as clockwork: ham, turkey, or peanut butter & jelly sandwich; banana; apple; box of raisins), and I loathe to read magazines for the simple fact that since the Flint Journal stopped daily publication—'tis now thrice a week, Sunday, Thursday, & Friday—there's precious little else but magazines to read at dinner. I suppose I could not read while eating lunch, and instead spend the time daydreaming or, better yet, cracking the whip on my muse about Project TRITON (the original deadline, today, Michaelmas, has been pushed back to Guy Fawkes Night, 5 November). Hmm, what to do, what to do? For the nonce, more of Dame Agatha!

Agatha Christie, Cat Among the Pigeons
Karen E. Olson, The Missing Ink
Agatha Christie, Murder Is Easy

Agatha Christie, The Witness For the Prosecution and Other Stories

Agatha Christie, Crooked House
P. G. Wodehouse, Mike at Wrykyn & Mike and Psmith
Agatha Christie, Passenger to Frankfurt

The Rebel Black Dot Song of the Day
Paramore, "Misguided Ghosts" from Brand New Eyes (T.L.A.M.)

Commentary: It's an obvious bit of wordplay when a song has ghosts in the title, but "Misguided Ghosts" really is quite haunting, and beautifully so.

Monday, September 28, 2009

The latest named division of the CADMUS endeavour is Project MERCATOR, an effort to defy my nature and reap the benefits of participation in the wider world. All my old hometown chums know how often I declined invitations to social activities so that I might stay at home. I'm not denouncing the splendor of home and hearth, but neither can I deny that unless I make a concerted effort to get out of the house I spend all of my free time at home, parked in front of the television or my HAL. And more often than not, despite the disturbance to my idolatrously cherished routine, I enjoy myself far more when I venture out. And, which is more, because there is more to life than the pursuit of happiness, I find those outings enriching and stimulating.

Labor Day weekend, my mother and I took in an exhibition of Dale Chihuly's glassware at the Flint Institute of Arts (which I must resist calling the F.I.A., since to me F.I.A. now means the Fédération Internationale de l'Automobile, Formula One's Paris-based governing body). The exhibition was titled Seaforms and the glass pieces certainly evoked seashells, but as a art exhibit they left me cold. In the first place, the pieces were untitled save for purely descriptive tags like "Seaform in White with Black Lip;" untitled art is no art at all (reminder from me to me: relate the tale of Icarus to illustrate the essential role of the title). The technical mastery necessary to create the scores of glass pieces that comprised the dozens of installations itself constitutes an art form, let there be no doubt of that; the shaping of glass is a craft, the shaping of glass to an inspired purpose is an art. But were the seaforms themselves art? I found in them no inherent artist value, though again I must emphasize that the technical skill needed to form them makes any Chihuly exhibition well worth seeing.

The Flint Institute of Arts

And the chandelier that is now part of the Flint Institute of Arts's permanent collection? A work of staggering beauty.

The very next weekend, I attended the inaugural bout of the Flint City Derby Girls, our local distaff roller derby team. Holy brutality, Batman, roller derby is awesome! High speed action, girls in short skirts, and that tricky balance of controlled violence that is the hallmark of all great sports: roller derby isn't everything I love, but it's darned close. And really, the Derby Girls deserve a post all their own (which I'll add to the long list of things I just don't have the proper time to address here at The Secret Base, curse my sloth and the refusal of the days to be longer than twenty-four hours!). I am actively haranguing everyone I know ("everyone") in the Flint metropolitan area to accompany me to the next Flint City Derby Girls bout, Sunday, 11 October at Grand Blanc's own Rollhaven (which for some reason we all almost always call "Rollerhaven"). Be there… or not!

The Women's Flat Track Roller Derby Club presents the Flint City Derby Girls

And—curses, foiled again!—I must also report Project MERCATOR's first significant failure. Just today I spied a flier for a ska show right on campus, proudly proclaiming, "Mid-Michigan Ska!" Alas, 'twas for last Friday, 25 September. Right under my very nose, ska, beloved, so-hard-to-find ska, and I missed it. By Lucifer's beard! I must devise some way to be more plugged into the scene. I must!

Project MERCATOR: if every instinct you have is wrong, the opposite must be right.

Victoria: "Who are you, George Costanza?"
George: "I'm the opposite of every man you've ever known."

The Victors
Good news, close examination (not by me, by others) reveals that the referees made the absolutely correct call near the end of Saturday's victory by the valiant Wolverines over the wily Hoosiers: Donovan Warrens's interception was indeed an interception. He caught the ball and had full possession when his knee hit the ground, even though the Indiana player got a hand back in there and tried to take the ball away. We must remind ourselves that though we have the advantage over the officials of endless television replays, we don't always have the best angle on these things. Way to go, zebras!

Go Blue!

I had an offer today to sit in a hot tub with not one, but two smoking hot blondes. Nothing would have come of it (the girls in question were The Most Dangerous Game and her even younger sister), but that's no reason not to sit in a hot tub with two smoking hot blondes. Alas, I had no swim trunks and an appointment not to miss. Drat seems so insufficient, but as the Middleman taught us, "Profanity cheapens the soul and weakens the mind." Drat!

And, no, I'm not "burying the lead." This was the most titillating thing to happen today, but by no means the most important item about which to opine and otherwise pontificate. Great Caesar's ghost, I didn't even have time to get to "This Week in Motorsport," even though the Singapore Grand Prix was fantastic!

…is dead in the water. My diet's been rubbish lately and I haven't exercised in months, but I'm going to the gym on Wednesday, come hell or high water. I've a treacherous exam on Thursday and will need the stress relief and the good night's sleep. And then again on Thursday, after said exam. And on Friday. Back to it, fatty, for once in your rotten orgy of a life exercise a modicum of self-discipline. (If you do, there's a cookie in it for you.)

Operation ÖSTERREICH is back in effect. If I don't bloggy blog about it, it's because I'm not doing it; I would ask you, dear readers, to harass me mercilessly if I falter. Though it was an awful movie, it's a funny line: run, fat boy, run!

The Rebel Black Dot Song of the Day
Mustard Plug, "Suburban Homesick Blues" from Evildoers Beware! (T.L.A.M.)

Commentary: Today's R.B.D.S.O.T.D. was inspired by a lovely confluence of events: earlier in the day I heard a radio story about Grand Rapids's ArtPrize—a reference for those in the know about M.P.—and moments ago, when discussing via I.M. chat The Sardine's late-night commute from her office on the island Manhattan to her home in Brooklyn on the island of Long Island she mentioned that she had pointy heels with which to defend herself; I replied, "evildoers beware." And there you go.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

The Victors: Michigan 36-33 Indiana
4-0, Big Ten 1-0

The valiant Wolverines of '09 are officially mathematically better than last year's squad! Hooray! The game was oftentimes horrifying—in the first half as Tate Forcier did his best Nick Sheridan impression, throughout the game as the wily Hoosier defensive line lived in our backfield—but I've often remarked that there is nothing else so thrilling as a close game in which your side prevails and 'twas certainly true in this case. I involuntarily leapt to my feet when Odoms caught the game-winning touchdown and remained upright, pacing a rut in the carpet, throughout the last minutes of the game. Yes. Yes! YES!

And while I can certainly understand the wily Hoosiers' frustration over the ultimately game-clinching interception, I would remind them that they, too, were the beneficiaries of several puzzling calls by the referees. How exactly can pass interference be called on a pass that lands out of bounds, the textbook definition of uncatchable? Live by bad officiating, die by bad officiating. Nice job on the interception, Donovan Warren!

The next challenge is significant: not only must the valiant Wolverines play their first game outside the friendly confines of Michigan Stadium, they face our ancient fratricidal rival, the dastardly Spartans of the Michigan Agricultural College, or whatever they're calling their institution this week. Yes, the dastardly Spartans have made laughingstocks of themselves with their brilliant 1-3 record, but in so doing they've backed themselves into a corner, and an animal is always deadliest when it's cornered. Even a farm animal like a goat or a chicken or a cow. Bring on the dastardly Spartans! And start dusting off the Mike Hart "little brother" comments, it's time to put that feckless bully Mark Dantonio in his place.

Go Blue!

The Explorers Club
No. CXLVIII - The iconic Gee Bee Super Sportsters: the Models Z, R-1, & R-2.

Alas, both red-and-white aircraft are replicas, as none of the three Gee Bees were long for this world (nor were most of their pilots). The fanciful sketch below is from a classic aviation blog I frequent.

Eye of the Tiger: Requiem
It has been one week and one day since Tiger met her demise, one week and one day since I buried her in the backyard. In yesterday's mail arrived two cards of condolence, one of which serves as a perfect illustration of why I requested no comments be left after the post informing you, my treasured readers, of my kitty cat's death. The offending passage from the handwritten condolence reads, "You knows, [Tiger] may be meeting Sam in cat heaven right as we speak." For pity's sake, when I am already grief-stricken over my pet having perished, the last thing I want to have to deal with is some well-meaning fool's blasphemy; there is no "cat heaven," you infuriating moron, Man is unique among all God's creatures in possessing an immortal soul. Yes, please, comfort me with ignorant and idiotic heresies! I realize that these blasphemies have at their origin a desire to help, but that doesn't make them any less blasphemous, any less offensive.

The worst part is that now courtesy demands I thank these dimwits for their well-intentioned heresies, but nuts to courtesy, I'm not going to thank anyone for attacking the Lord God and the fundamental order of His Creation.

The Rebel Black Dot Songs of the Day
The Puppini Sisters, "Could It Be Magic" from The Rise and Fall of Ruby Woo (T.L.A.M.)

Samstag, 26 September
The University of Michigan Marching Band, "Grieg Medley" from Hurrah for the Yellow and Blue (T.L.A.M.)

Commentary: "Grieg Medley" isn't the name of a proper song, but it's an apt description of the track (and the name of the track as far as the C.D. and its liner notes are concerned). The only specific tune I recognize and can name from "Grieg Medley" is "In the Hall of the Mountain King" from Peer Gynt. Neat!

Saturday, September 26, 2009

The Victors: Halftime
Indiana 23-21 Michigan

I freely admit that I am teetering on the verge of panic. Not because we are trailing, but because our pathetic effort on the field is giving me traumatic flashbacks to the nightmare that was last season. Shades of 2008, our offense is doing everything it can to kneecap our defense and bolster the opposing offense: turning over the ball left and right, giving the opposition a string of short fields to work with (resulting in field goals, not touchdowns, due only to the extraordinary efforts of the valiant Wolverine defense; by rights, we should be down 38-21). Shades of the devil Sheridan and the hapless Threet, Forcier is panicking each and every time he hears hoofbeats and reacting in a blind panic; unless Forcier develops a modicum of composure, Robinson will have to be relied upon as our principal quarterback. I knew we didn't deserve to vault into the Top 25, not on the strength of a win over Notre Dame, but neither did I imagine we were as fundamentally unsound a team as we've appeared in the first half.

The only silver lining is that in the preceding three games the valiant Wolverines proved themselves to be a strong second half team. Let us hope this too does not get chucked directly into the hands of a passing Hoosier by a panic-stricken Tate Forcer.

Go Blue!

This Week in Motorsport
Early rain and a wet track have given Audi the advantage over Peugeot at the Petit Le Mans, but if the track dries out, will Peugeot's straight-line speed advantage allow them to overtake the more wet weather-friendly Audi? Ten hours or one thousand miles, whichever comes first. Endurance racing!

Friday, September 25, 2009

This Week in Motorsport
I realized something when I pulled into the grocery store parking lot a couple of weeks ago: I hate Mercedes-Benz. (More properly, I hate Daimler AG, formerly DaimlerChrysler AG, formerly Daimler-Benz AG.) I looked at the Mercedes next to Lumi—by no means does this mean I hate luxury brands—and realized I hate those German bastards for what they did to Chrysler. I'm a G.M. guy, I've no particular love for the former Chrysler Corporation/current Chrysler Group, L.L.C., but those Krauts bought an American company, gutted it of everything that had ever given it any value, and then set it adrift, whining as if they were somehow the aggrieved party. What has this to do with motorsport, specifically Formula One, the main focus of "This Week in Motorsport" posts? This means that only over my dead body could I become a fan of any F1 team using Mercedes engines, currently Brawn, Force India, and McLaren (it turns out that McLaren is actually Mercedes's F1 "works" team; Mercedes doesn't just supply engines, it owns 40% of the enterprise). This dovetails nicely with the curious phenomenon that I seem to greatly dislike Brawn, but is inconvenient in that I'd enjoyed seeing Force India's massive improvement in performance over the last two grands prix. Of course, I'd largely chalk that up to generalized affection for underdogs: in their first thirty grands prix (2008-09), Force India failed to score a single point, meaning they'd never had a car finish better than ninth; then, suddenly, a Force India driver finished second(!) at the Belgian Grand Prix and another was fourth at the Italian Grand Prix, just barely missing the podium. Sorry, boys, you're in league with evil, and in the words of William Shatner & Henry Rollins, "I can't get behind that."
The Rebel Black Dot Songs of the Day
Less Than Jake, "Ask the Magic 8 Ball" from Losing Streak (T.L.A.M.)


"What the fuck, the fuck have I become?
I've become the product of the sum.
Caught in this endless circle,
I've become the stupidest man in the world."

Donnerstag, 24 September
Huey Lewis & The News, "The Power of Love" via iTunes (T.L.A.M.)


"It's strong and it's certain,
And it's cruel sometimes,
But it might just save your life."

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Eerie as all hell, sure, but this is one of the coolest things I've ever seen: Red Menace. I'll be a monkey's uncle if there aren't a gaggle of great fictional stories to be told about the Great Red Dust Storm of '09: panic, paranoia, isolation—the very sky falling down about your ears—what's not to love about life on our Red Planet?

This Week in Motorsport
Wow, there's so much to tell you that I hardly know where to start and I'm so far behind I doubt I'll ever get caught up. So, let's not worry about that.

There are going to be fourteen… er, thirteen… er, maybe only eleven… more than the current ten teams in Formula One next year! Okay, here's the way it is: the F.I.A., F1's governing body, already passed the rules necessary for thirteen teams to run in 2010's nineteen(!) grands prix, compared to ten teams in seventeen grands prix in '09. That's the current ten constructors—by points, why not: Brawn, Red Bull, Ferrari, McLaren, Toyota, Williams, B.M.W. Sauber, Renault, Force India, & Toro Rosso—plus the three new entries already announced—Team US F1, Manor, & Campos. But wait, earlier this summer B.M.W. announced their departure from F1 at the end of this season, leaving only twelve teams on the 2010 grid. Enter: Lotus, the famed British team, now owned by a public-private Malaysian consortium. Back in business with a lucky thirteen constructors! (And, like Team US, Manor, and Campos, Lotus announced that they'll be using engines supplied by Cosworth, a noted manufacturer back in the Formula One engine business after a three-year absence.)

But that's not the end of the story: the soon to be B.M.W.-less Sauber squad found a buyer, and hope to be on the grid in '10 if the F.I.A. can get the other teams to agree to allow twenty-eight cars onto the track instead of the planned twenty-six. Note that this year twenty cars race in each grand prix. Between a thirty and forty percent expansion in the number of competitors for next season's driver and constructor World Championships, holy moley!

And there will be two more grands prix on the calendar: the restored Canadian Grand Prix (welcome back to North America, Formula One!) and the inaugural Korean Grand Prix! All the hubbub about a spending cap and rumors of a breakaway championship before the agreement of the new Concorde Agreement this summer, the recession prompting the withdrawal of Honda and B.M.W. from F1 and raising doubts about other teams as well, a first-year team all but certain to win the constructor's championship, and four new teams and two new grands prix for next year, my first full F1 season. Did I pick a great time to fall in love with this sport, or what? Woot!

Still to come:
Renault's unbelievable scandal
The Belgian Grand Prix
The Italian Grand Prix
Fandom: Driver or Team?
and coming this weekend
The Singapore Grand Prix
Petit Le Mans!

The Rebel Black Dot Songs of the Day
The Atomic Fireballs, "Calypso King" from Torch This Place (T.L.A.M.)

Dienstag, 22 September
They Might Be Giants, "Why Does the Sun Shine? (The Sun Is a Mass of Incandescent Gas)" (live) from Severe Tire Damage (T.L.A.M.)

Monday, September 21, 2009

The Explorers Club
No. CXLVII - The MacRobertson Air Race, won by C. W. A. Scott (1903-46) and Tom Campbell Black (1899-1936) in the de Havilland DH.88 Grosvenor House, October 1934.

The Stars My Destination
The only reason any arrival in the benighted State of Florida, second worst state in the Union, could be considered good news: ferrylink. The sooner the Discovery arrived back in Florida, the sooner preparations could begin for her next spaceflight. Again, hang the expense, this is so cool:

And an excellent reminder that it is the National Aeronautics and Space Administration.
The Victors: Michigan 45-17 Eastern Michigan
3-0, Big Ten 0-0

I awoke Saturday to the news of Tiger's death during the night, and immediately after time ran out on the victory I changed into suitable work clothes and set about my task in the backyard with gloves and a shovel; so, an understandable pall was cast over the game. Nevertheless, 'twas grand to see the valiant Wolverines dispatch their second M.A.C. foe of the year, and in especially fine style with the dominant (21-0) second half. Routine victories over schools named Geographical Michigan, just like old times. Woo and hoo.

I freely admit that I was one of those who greeted news of our entrance into the Top 25 with a groan and a vague feeling of dread. So much was taken from us last year that I've all but forgotten how to receive good news; some deeply scarred, defensive part of my brain nurses the hopelessly paranoid fear that the Maize and Blue's still-blooming return to form in '09 will be revealed as some horrible trick, that Ashton Kutcher will jump out from behind a shrubbery and reveal that Steven Threet is still our starting quarterback. *shudder* It's not that I don't believe in Rich Rod, my faith on that score in unassailable, it's just that whom gods destroy they first make proud, and I'd hate for my fellow Wolverines and I to forget too soon the horror of 2008, of 3-9. We must remember that almost unendurable pain so that we are ever wary of the complacency which might herald its baleful return.

But, those thoughts occupy only a small portion of my brain, not nearly as small as but adjacent to the aforementioned deeply scarred, defensive neighborhood. Most of me is high as a kite, agog at the feats of the valiant Wolverines' Wunderkinder, Tate Forcier and Denard Robinson. (This part of my mind is largely willing to overlook both of Robinson's ghastly interceptions, but, Fielding Yost's ghost, Robinson's passing is a grave threat to our continued success; if anything happens to Forcier—and I held my breath when he got the wind knocked out of him on Saturday—ours will become a completely one-dimensional offense.) Good times are here again! The valiant Wolverines are averaging 38 points a game! We've got a real defense again!

And here I must mention Eastern Michigan head coach, and former Michigan defensive coordinator, Ron English. I love English's attitude and ferocity, I love his fanatical love for Lloyd Carr, but when considering whether or not he should have been promoted to head coach upon Carr's retirement—keeping the Schembechler coaching tree alive instead of looking outside as we eventually did with the Rodriguez hire—I always come back to the '06 game against Ohio State. The valiant Wolverines had a brilliant campaign in '06, boasting an 11-0 record and No. 2 ranking in the polls coming into the game against the hated Buckeyes (11-0, No. 1). We lost that game, 42-39, and though there were many calls for a rematch in the national championship game, it was not to be, and both Michigan and Ohio State were decisively beaten in our bowl games. 42-39, with Ron English as our defensive coordinator. Michigan should never lose a game in which the offense scores 39 points. Never. And that's all that need be said.

But I'm afraid I've strayed too far from what's really important about Saturday's game against Eastern Michigan, blathering on like an old fool. The valiant Wolverines are 3-0 for the first time in three seasons, since 2006. In only three weeks we've equaled the win total for all of last season. Michigan is No. 23 in the A.P. poll. Say the words out loud, and know them to be true:

We're back.

"Hail! to the victors valiant!
Hail! to the conqu'ring heroes!
Hail! Hail! to Michigan!
The leaders and best!

Hail! to the victors valiant!
Hail! to the conqu'ring heroes!
Hail! Hail! to Michigan!
The champions of the West!"

Go Blue!

Believe: The Faithful Unbeliever
The Detroit Red Wings open their 2009-10 campaign in less than a fortnight, on Friday, 1 October, beginning a "home-and-home" pair of games against the Saint Louis Blues in Stockholm, Sweden. In the months since handing Lord Stanley's Cup to the knavish Pittsburgh Penguins, a gaggle of forwards have left for greener (richer) pastures, but this was expected; the club's response, however, was quite unexpected. Instead of signing a quality player, the Red Wings signed Todd Bertuzzi, the dirtiest thug is all of hockey, who once broke an opposing player's neck during a game. The Detroit Red Wings are my professional hockey club, I will never forsake them, never root for another N.H.L. club, but I cannot in good conscience bring myself to root for the Wings so long as they debase themselves by having the monster Bertuzzi on the roster. So long as he's a Red Wing, I do not want Detroit to reclaim the Stanley Cup. So long as the monster Bertuzzi is a Red Wing, I cannot believe.

Accordingly, the "Believe" title has been placed in reserve and for the duration all posts pertaining to the Detroit Red Wings will instead fall under "The Winged Wheel."

The Rebel Black Dot Songs of the Day
Sufjan Stevens, "Say Yes! to M!ch!gan!" from Michigan (T.L.A.M.)

Commentary: "Still I often think of going back." It's never too late, my expatriate friends. Return to sacred Michigan.

Sonntag, 20 September
Less Than Jake, "The State of Florida" from GNV FLA (T.L.A.M.)


"And the city's skyline hasn't looked the same
Since the boom in south Florida's real estate.
It's turning into more than I can take,
Too much too soon, too little too late."

Samstag, 19 September
The Mighty Mighty Bosstones, "Simmer Down" from Ska-core, the Devil, and More (T.L.A.M.)

Commentary: I love "Simmer Down," but the part at the beginning, reprised in the bridge, stands head and shoulders above the rest of the song. I should one day like to have the power to commission a several minutes-long instrumental piece based on the intro/bridge.

Donnerstag, 17 September
KSM, "Read Between the Lines" via iTunes, Free Single of the Week (T.L.A.M.)

Commentary: I don't download most Free Singles of the Week because, based on a thirty-second sample, I wouldn't want those songs in my library, even free of charge. But every once in a while, often if I'm in an strange humor when I open up the weekly iTunes email, a regrettable song will slip through that not-so-rigorous screening process. "Read Between the Lines" is such a case. I'm not going to delete, it's good for a laugh, but, for lack of a better word, yikes.

A tip the the young ladies of the band KSM: if in your lyrics you repeatedly say "I'm not stupid," it leads to the impression that you are probably quite stupid. Truly non-stupid people rarely find it necessary to proclaim repeatedly, "I'm not stupid." Just a tip, from a man of admittedly only moderate intelligence.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Eye of the Tiger
My father came downstairs this morning to find Tiger dead, immobile and unblinking in the precise spot where four and a half years hence Sam laid down to die before we gently ferried him to the vet to be poisoned. That spot is where cats go when they know it's time to give up the ghost. I have not seen her yet, I'll save that trauma for when I bury her in the backyard later this afternoon. One week ago she was absolutely fine; when her behavior changed, we thought she was just sick. Later we learned she had a chronic but manageable condition, and overnight she slipped away. Though she was eleven, we only had her for three years, not long enough, not nearly long enough. I love you, Tiger.

Tiger Little Wilson
March 1998-September 19, 2009

Please do not leave any comments.

The Rebel Black Dot Song of Mourning
Elvis Costello, "God Give Me Strength" from The Very Best of Elvis Costello (T.L.A.M.)

Friday, September 18, 2009

The Girls of September '79
Our ultimate Girl of September '79, and the only one of the bunch not to be espoused, The Watergirl, stands as proof positive of the old saw: you're only as old as you feel. As the undeniably youthful spunk of The Watergirl attests, though I've teased the Girls of September '79 about getting old through the R.B.D.S.O.T.D., they're only now entering their prime, and the best is yet to come. Cheers! Happy birthday, Katie!

The Rebel Black Dot Song of the Day
Lenka, "We Will Not Grow Old" from Lenka (T.L.A.M.)

Thursday, September 17, 2009

I thought about temporizing, but 'twould be exactly the brand of dishonesty so deftly practiced our charlatan president: President Obama has abandoned purely defensive missile interception technology, and I blame every single one of you who voted for him. I love so many of you, yet at the same time I hate your guts and wish you ill. Death from abovelink. There will be blood as a direct result of President Obama's retreat in the face of Russian truculence, and it will be on your hands. Curse you people for your moral turpitude and cowardice, a pox upon your feeble minds. May your dreams come to dust, your families be torn asunder, and may misfortune stalk you for the rest of your days.

Eye of the Tiger
The news isn't as good as was first thought, we're received the results of the bloodwork stemming from Tuesday's trip to the vet and Tiger has a thyroid problem. The upside is that she's had it for a while and now she'll finally be treated. She's going to hate taking her medicine, but that's hard cheese, Tiger, it's a necessary evil.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Eye of the Tiger
The good news is that Tiger appears to be suffering from the pussycat version of the dreadful sick. Upon veterinary examination, she was revealed to be dehydrated, hardly surprising given her refusal to drink water, as well as running a fever. All that seems a strange kind of good news, I know, but there was absolutely no sign of renal failure, fear of which was the principal reason I insisted she be taken to the vet. An antibiotic was administered and Tiger appears to be, ever so slowly, on the mend; she's drinking water again, though I still haven't seen her eat, and she's ambling around the house more frequently and more swiftly than on Saturday, Sunday, or Monday. Come on, Tiger, I can't wait 'til you're back to your old self again.

Ill-mannered as befits Felis catus, I would like to extend on Tiger's behalf thanks to all those who expressed well-wishes. I credit the intercession on Tiger's behalf of Saint Francis of Assisi, whose aid I requested Monday night and for which I prayed the Rosary. Catholicism WOW!

The Rebel Black Dot Song of the Day
The Bar-Kays, "Too Hot to Stop" from Superbad: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack (T.L.A.M.)

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

The Girls of September '79
It's no surprise to me in Mrs. Skeeter's turning thirty, she didn't really seem like she was fifteen when I met her at age fifteen. Skeet doesn't seem old, but she's never seemed young. She's cynical in a way that makes the rest of us look like babes in the woods, it's no wonder she ended up as both an attorney and a New Yorker. But not so cynical she doesn't enjoy birthday cake. Happy birthday, Julie!

The Rebel Black Dot Song of the Day
Me First and the Gimme Gimmes, "Much Too Young (To Feel This Damn Old)" from Love Their Country (T.L.A.M.)

Monday, September 14, 2009

Eye of the Tiger
It's bad news, I'm afraid, Tiger appears to be quite ill. She has eaten next to nothing over the last two or three days, her litter box is untouched since I cleaned it yesterday, and this evening she peed in my room. The damnable thing about it is that this has come on so suddenly. She was absolutely fine, quickly accustomed to her daily supplement of tuna—and aggressively vocal in demanding it as soon as my mom returns home in the evening—and I took her to the vet less than a fortnight ago, for a routine yearly shot, and she was given a clean bill of health for a geriatric cat (she's eleven-and-a-half years-old). What the heck? I do not mean to be overly pessimistic, and Dad is taking her to the vet tomorrow, but I cannot help but be reminded of Sam's declining years, replete as they were with failing kidneys. Come on, Tiger, please just be under the weather, please just be suffering from a nasty but passing bug.

The Stars My Destination
Please forgive the delay, home are the heroes: Discoverylink. And I know landing in California and being ferried back to Florida atop the Shuttle Carrier Aircraft is cumbersome and expensive, but it looks so cool!

Also, woo hoo, the Desert R.A.T.S. are at it again: analoglink. Rings of Saturn, please don't let President Obama fulfill his campaign pledge to cancel Project Constellation. Oh please, oh please, oh please. Flyby missions are not enough, men must set foot again upon the Moon, and upon Mars, and beyond! Which had a bigger impact, the Apollo 8, 9, & 10 flybys or the Apollo 11 landing? If the president truly wants to encourage Americans to dream and to recommit themselves to education and self-improvement, nothing would do more to advance that cause than a return to the Moon and the first steps upon the Red Planet.

The Rebel Black Dot Song of the Day
R.E.M., "It's the End of the World As We Know It (And I Feel Fine)" via iTunes (T.L.A.M.)

Sunday, September 13, 2009

The Explorers Club
No. CXLVI - The aviatrix Diana Barnato Walker (1918-2008).

In the eyes of this beholder a girl is never more beautiful than when she's wearing an old-fashioned leather flying cap.

The Victors: Michigan 38-34 Notre Dame
2-0, Big Ten 0-0

Fielding Yost's ghost, I could hardly believe my eyes as the valiant Wolverines drove down the field for the game-winning touchdown! I give the vile Fighting Irish a lot of credit, they are greatly improved over the team against which we self-sabotaged our way to defeat last season; it doubted it was even possible, but there it was on the field, a halfway decent Charlie Weis-coached team. The valiant Wolverines faced a frankly superior team and triumphed! The execution was far from perfect—there were too many penalties, we committed too many infractions that weren't flagged but surely will be in the future, and Space Emperor (of Space) Zoltan Mesko picked a crummy time to forget how to punt—but those miscues should lead no one to a false conclusion, this was far from a fluke victory. The conqu'ring heroes of the defense did just enough to overcome a phenomenally improved Notre Dame O-line to pressure Jimmy Clausen into several errant throws, and disrupted just enough catches by the plainly superior Notre Dame receiving corps; the victors valiant of the offense, with a handy assist from the special teams, came through when the chips were down and found a way to put point on the board. Call me a foolish optimist, but I'm beginning not to panic every time a Michigan player goes back to field a punt. In every facet of the game, the gentlemen who wear the immortal winged helmet are beginning to display the basic competence that was always taken for granted with a Michigan team; and, bit by bit, they are evidencing the strength of character that is the true driving force behind Bo's promise, "Those who stay will be champions."

There is much work ahead, the season's only two games old, after all, and we won't win every game. Not every team will be as obliging as the vile Fighting Irish. By the end of this year's campaign, we may well have accrued enough defeats to qualify the season as a disappointment in the fat years of the Lloyd Carr era. But you can take this to the bank, my friends and fellow Wolverines, the embarrassing ineptitude of 3-9 is a thing of the past, and we shall not see its like again. Whether experiencing the thrill of victory or the agony of defeat, it's always great to be a Michigan Wolverine, but boy howdy, you've got to love that thrill of victory!

Go Blue!

The Rebel Black Dot Songs of the Day
MxPx, "Rock & Roll Girl" from Ten Years and Running (T.L.A.M.)

Samstag, 12 September
The University of Michigan Marching Band, "The Yellow and Blue" from Hurrah for the Yellow and Blue (T.L.A.M.)

Commentary-cum-The Victors: I've never been a big fan of my alma mater's alma mater, not least because it misnames the school's colors of Maize and Blue. However, I could not help but think of "The Yellow and Blue" during the most delightful moment of yesterday's T.V. broadcast, and by that I exempt the game itself and seek for anything unique to the game-watching experience that was added by that particular broadcast team. It—the broadcast—was mostly a sorry affair, marred by Matt Millen's maddening insistence on not committing suicide, but at one point play-by-play announcer Sean McDonough said something very much like, "It's a 'Maize Out' here at the stadium, where Tate Forcier has been amazin' (a-maize-in)." I could not help but think of Amazin' Blue, which in turn eventually lead to "The Yellow and Blue."


Freitag, 11 September
Trey Parker, "Freedom Isn't Free" from Team America: World Police—Music From the Motion Picture (T.L.A.M.)

Commentary-cum-Operation AXIOM: I commemorated the eighth anniversary of the 9/11 attacks on my FaceSpace page, but not here at the much more significant Secret Base for one simple reason: according to public opinion polls, which I freely admit are universally flawed and might be inaccurate, a majority of Americans regard the ongoing war to prevent Afghanistan from falling back under the sway of the Taliban as not worth fighting, not worth the continued investment of American blood and treasure. So, most Americans would like us to abandon Afghanistan, leaving it to the tender mercies of the Taliban, who would once again provide safe haven for their fellow travelers in al Qaeda. Exactly the conditions under which al Qaeda conceived, plotted, and launched the awful events of 11 September 2001.

"Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it." I would add a corollary to Santayana's famous maxim: those who cannot remember the past deserve to be condemned to repeat it.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

The Victors: Halftime
Notre Dame 20-17 Michigan

Okay, wow, the vile Fighting Irish are greatly improved from last year, when even against our paltry pass rush Jimmy Clausen was barely hanging on for dear life. Crumbs! But, the valiant Wolverines are still hanging in there against what I think we can all agree is a superior team; so, yeah, moral victory in the first half. Is the game still winnable? Hell yeah! Second half, here we go, let's go Blue!

Go Blue!
The Victors
The only way to test oneself is to compete against the best; beating up on lesser opponents demonstrates naught. The sad reality is that in 2008 Michigan played no lesser opponents, we were on an equal footing with or underdogs to every single team we played, such was our ineptitude. Today the valiant Wolverines face the vile Fighting Irish of the University of Notre Dame, one of our three traditional rivals. Under their curious long-tenured coach, The Whale, the vile Irish have lived in a purgatory that makes our '08 seem like a stroll through parkland. But just as the valiant Wolverines seem much improved in '09, so do the vile Fighting Irish. The aren't the best, but this will still be a vital test of hos much of '09's improvement is real and how much is the product of smoke and mirrors. And no matter how inept The Whale has proven to be, this is still the Notre Dame game. Let's go, Wolverines, make Jimmy Clausen's mother cry!

Go Blue!

Thursday, September 10, 2009

It's here, it's finally here! Run, don't walk, to your personal HAL, open up iTunes, and buy CODENAME: Koala, the sophomore album by Real Can of Yams! Literally years in the making, CODENAME: Koala is the album the world's been waiting for since 2001's Good or Suck! Remember, that's CODENAME: Koala by Real Can of Yam. Accept no substitute!

In all seriousness, kind readers, K. Steeze has been working on CODENAME: Koala since 2006, doing yeoman's work, almost all by his lonesome. He's shelled out a good many of him hard-earned bucks on the professional-quality mixing and editing machinery and software needed to make CODENAME: Koala the thoroughly professional album it is. I say this not just because my alter ego The Last Angry Man is a a member of Real Can of Yams, CODENAME: Koala is a phenomenal album, by turns heartfelt and whimsical. Buy it today, only on iTunes!

CODENAME: Koala by Real Can of Yams

12 Tracks of Awesome!
"Carpe Diem"
"The Lando System"
"The Cowboy, the Indian, and the Cyborg"
"Late Night Swim"
"A Cold Night in December"
"Teddy's First Night in the Drunk Tank"
"It's Your Turn, Part II"
"Our Best Song Ever!"
"Shiver Me Timbers"
"Love In the Time of Scurvy"
"Girls Are Better Than Electronics… Most of the Time"
"Carpe Noctem"

Check out CODENAME: Koala on MySpace

That's CODENAME: Koala, ask for it by name!

The Stars My Destination
There's good news and there's bad news. Or, more accurately, there's great news, good news, and more-neutral-than-bad news. The great news is that the Hubble Space Telescope continues to be the best thing since sliced bread: Hubblelink. These pictures are majestic almost beyond imagining.

The good news is that the Ares I rocket is one concrete step closer to breaking the bonds of gravity and ferrying our brave astronauts to the Moon and beyond: and

The not-so-great, but not-so-bad news is that the crew of the Discovery haven't been able to come home yet thanks to the lousy Florida weather: N.A.S.A.link2 and B.B.C.link2.

Elsewhere, is anyone really surprised that instead of sending men into space, the Japanese have sent a robot: space trucklink. I tease because I love the Japanese, they are so unabashedly weird. I will be fascinating in the years ahead to watch the European A.T.V. and Japanese H.T.V. unmanned cargo craft keep the astronauts and cosmonauts aboard the International Space Station fat and happy in the lamentable pause in American spaceflight between the retirement of the shuttle fleet and the full activation of the Orion spacecraft.

Speaking of the years ahead, space is the one sphere of activity in which I openly admire the Russians and their glorious persistence: foreverlink. Even if they have to keep a space station in orbit with shoelaces and chewing gum, those magnificent bastards just don't have an ounce of quit in them!

So, what do you think, Obama voters? Will your man go ahead and fulfill his campaign promise to put an end to nearly fifty years of American manned spaceflight? Hyperlink of Doom! Is the end of manned space flight the change you believed in? Because it's certainly the change you voted for, curse you.

Concluding today's survey of the latest happenings in outer space on a high note, I've just discovered yet another facet of the endlessly fascinating B.B.B. News site: Jonathan Amos, Spaceman! Enjoy.

This Week in Motorsport
I remain undecided, if I will even pick a team and/or driver to whom to pledge my loyalty as a fan, much less to which team and/or driver, but the image below makes a compelling case for Manor Grand Prix, one of the three brand-new teams scheduled to compete for the 2010 World Championship. 'Tis a HAL-generated image, not a photograph of Manor's '10 car, but I am entranced by the idea of such a black-liveried F1 car (though of course the real car will be defaced—in the technical, not derogatory, sense—with various sponsorship logos).

The Queue
Francie Lin, The Foreigner
Agatha Christie, Cat Among the Pigeons
Karen E. Olson, The Missing Ink

Agatha Christie, Murder Is Easy

Agatha Christie, Witness For the Prosecution and Other Stories
Agatha Christie, Crooked House
P. G. Wodehouse, Mike at Wrykyn & Mike and Psmith
The Girls of September '79
The reason for my first journey to the Golden State, in '03, was to visit Mrs. Sacramento (née Never Girl). I was thunderstruck that the Pacific Ocean didn't have the same ocean scent as the Atlantic; no matter how many times I've been back to California (thrice, always for B.T.Wackiness), that never stops being weird and wrong. By Neptune, the ocean is supposed to smell like the ocean! But I digress. Happy birthday, Lindsay!

The Rebel Black Dot Song of the Day
Dance Hall Crashers, "Old and Grey" from The Old Record (1989-1992) (T.L.A.M.)


"Sometimes I think that my life has just begun,
And some day I'll have my time in the Sun.
But the best days of my life have passed,
And they went by so very fast."

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

The Girls of September '79
Those sylphic beauties, the Girls of September '79, are turning thirty. And I've decided to mark the occasion with playful cruelty, reminding each in her turn that youth has passed her by. What can I say in my defense? Naught but that I turned thirty back in the summer, and it seems I've become a mean old cuss. Happiest birthday wishes to Mrs. Blinky (née Ham 'n' Eggs), whom I've known since elementary school. Happy birthday, Emma!

The Rebel Black Dot Song of the Day
They Might Be Giants, "Older" from Mink Car (T.L.A.M.)


"You're older than you've ever been,
And now you're even older,
And now you're even older,
And now you're even older,
You're older than you've ever been,
And now you're even older,
And now you're older still."

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

The Explorers Club
No. CXLV - Samuel Pierpont Langley (1834-1906) and his fabulous not-so-flying machines.

The Rebel Black Dot Song of the Day
Lenka, "Trouble Is a Friend" from Lenka (T.L.A.M.)

Commentary: I don't know if trouble is a friend of mine, but it was startling to me when I realized several years ago that unless I watch myself very carefully, I will almost always go out of my way to make things more difficult than they need to be.

But that's neither here nor there, "Trouble Is a Friend" is a phenomenal song.

"He's there in the dark,
He's there in my heart,
He waits in the wings,
He's got to play a part.
Trouble is a friend,
Yeah, trouble is a friend of mine.
So now don't be alarmed
If he takes you by the arm,
I won't let him win,
But I'm a sucker for his charm.
Trouble is a friend,
Yeah, trouble is a friend of mine."

Monday, September 7, 2009

The Victors: Michigan 31-7 Western Michigan
1-0, Big Ten 0-0

A commanding victory by the valiant Wolverines over a M.A.C. opponent is not supposed to be cause for celebration—until last season we were undefeated against the Mid-American Conference, despite nearly yearly contests—but so traumatic was the '08 season that I joined all my fellow Wolverines in celebrating Saturday's 31-7 triumph like it was the Capital One Bowl win over Tim Tebow and the filthy Gators. 'Twas only one game, and there is yet much more work to be done to restore the glory that is University of Michigan football, but for the first time in a very long time there's more than just faith to backup the unwavering support many of us have had for Rich Rod: In Rod we trust.

Rich Rodriguez is a Michigan man, not by birth or education, but, like Bo before him, by choice. That's what the "reporters" behind the Detroit Free Press's hatchet job, themselves U. of M. grads, failed to see in their blind hatred.

I can't resist one dig at the hapless Nick Sheridan. Do you think Sheridan works for the Free Press? I only ask because it seem as if his goal in life is to destroy the valiant Wolverines.

Go Blue!

The Rebel Black Dot Songs of the Day
Potshot, "End of the Long Summer" from Potshot A Go Go (T.L.A.M.)

Commentary: It wasn't a long summer, not in the least, but it is at an end all the same. And now, the Fall.

Sonntag, 6 September
The Ataris, "The Boys of Summer" from So Long, Astoria (T.L.A.M.)

Samstag, 5 September
The Aquabats!, "Hot Summer Nights (Won't Last Forever)!" from Charge!! Special One Year Anniversary Edition (T.L.A.M.)

Saturday, September 5, 2009

The Victors: The Most Wonderful Time of the Year
From now to the New Year, come Saturn's Day, ask not to where the menfolk have disappeared, they've all gone back to the wars. The thrill of victory, the agony of defeat, and introspection about the vicarious virtues and vices of the spectator's vagaries. College football has returned, hooray!

Go Blue!

The Stars My Destination
Behold, the crews of the Space Shuttle Discovery (red shirts) and Expedition 20 to the International Space Station (blue shirts).

There's no room for triskaidekaphobia in manned space flight. *thumbs up* Confused because there are seven astronauts/cosmonauts in blue golf shirts and yet you know the I.S.S.'s crew capacity is six? The shuttle is just living up to that title; a new member of the Expedition 20 crew was ferried up aboard the Discovery, and another will be ferried home that way. It's like a space bus!

Spacewalk tonight!

Friday, September 4, 2009

Happy Birthday!
Wishes for the happiest of birthdays to The Secret Base's favorite sawbones, Doctor Hee Haw! I had the funniest conversation of my life with the good doctor, standing on a street corner in Ann Arbor, laughing and laughing until both my sides ached. And I mean ached literally; I laughed 'til it hurt, and then laughed some more. And it is from that very conversation, and of course his chosen profession, that Doc's Secret Base codename was derived. Happy birthday, Seth!

The Rebel Black Dot Song of the Day
The Hippos, "Summertime" from The Hippos (T.L.A.M.)


"When summertime is here,
There's nothing left to fear.
Yeah, summertime is here
And I'm so happy!"

Thursday, September 3, 2009

The Explorers Club
No. CXLIV - Sir George Cayley (1773-1857), the father of aerodynamics, and his magnificent flying machines.

I was introduced to Cayley through an episode of MythBusters, in which Adam constructed and flew a small glider of Cayley's design, albeit a glider made of concrete.

The Queue
There was an event today on campus, a welcome for freshmen and transfer students, and I did my bit for the Econ Club in the pitiless light of the the Accursed Sun. One twerp who approached the table gestured to my tattoo, the skull-and-crossbones on my left forearm, and asked, "Is that real?" No, genius, it's an elaborate illusion. Note that I am indeed a jerk, because I'm still making fun of him even though after I answered his question, "Yes," he replied earnestly, "That's cool."

And now, without segue, here's a neato manipulated picture I found last night that tickled my fancy:

What has any of this to do with books, the usual subject of "The Queue," you ask, and quite rightly? The Missing Ink is the first in what is called the Tattoo Shop Mystery series; so, impressionable lad that I know myself to be, tattoos have been on my mind more than usual the last few days.

Right hand: G R O W
Left hand: or D I E

The Rebel Black Dot Song of the Day
The Ataris, "How I Spent My Summer Vacation" from End is Forever (T.L.A.M.)

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

The Queue
Oh, right, I never got around to savaging The Foreigner. The novel 'tis one of those tiresome attempts to be both a literary novel and a crime novel, succeeding at neither ambition. Within the narrative there are large chunks of time that are simply absent. I understand that part of the tedium of real life is that we cannot simply skip to "the good bits," and one of the joys of fiction is the ability to avoid the mundane, but in The Foreigner, vital plot development happens during the missing time: information is conveyed and interactions take place, information and interactions that are then briefly breezed over in internal monologue (the book's in first person). And here we come to the worst of it; the book's in first person and yet the main character, Emerson Chang, is useless. Emerson's not merely feckless, no, no, it's much worse than that, he's uninteresting. He's passionless, but not in an intriguingly stoic way. He's lazy, but just when that might become interesting, when you start to think he's a mediation on inaction, he suddenly erupts into purposeless and preposterous frenzy. He contradicts himself constantly—on average about every other sentence—and he lacks completely the courage of his few professed convictions, but neither in an interesting manner. He's quite frankly the dullest character I can recall encountering in fiction. Emerson Chang just isn't worth hating.

And neither is Francie Lin, but for all that I'll never read another book of hers. The Foreigner was only her first novel and she might get better ('twould be hard not to improve), but I cannot justify giving her a second chance. There are simply too many books I'll never find the time to read to spend any more time giving her another opportunity to make a good impression. So, harkening back to the last installment of "The Queue," in the case of The Foreigner judging a book by its cover failed utterly. (It's not a good system and I never claimed otherwise, my point is that its no worse than any other sorting process.) The only way really to judge a book is to have read it. I've read Francie Lin's The Foreigner, and it's no good.

Agatha Christie, Cards on the Table
Francie Lin, The Foreigner
Agatha Christie, Cat Among the Pigeons

Karen E. Olson, The Missing Ink

Agatha Christie, Murder Is Easy
Agatha Christie, Witness For the Prosecution and Other Stories
Agatha Christie, Crooked House

The Rebel Black Dot Song of the Day
Me First and the Gimme Gimmes, "Summertime" from Are a Drag (T.L.A.M.)

Commentary: A surf rock cover of the Gershwin classic, possibly influenced by Sublime's quotation of "Summertime"'s lyrics in their own "Doin' Time," but that's just a supposition.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Operation AXIOM
Seventy years ago to the day, 1 September 1939, Nazi Germany and the Soviet Union jointly invaded Poland, sparking the Second World War. In the years before, the evil had been apparent, the threat imminent, and yet the free world turned a blind eye to the clear and present danger of totalitarian warmongering. Before all was said and done, there would be fighting across Europe, Asia, and Africa, and the Pacific, Atlantic, and Indian Oceans, as well as innumerable seas; empires rose and fell, murder was industrialized and perfected, and the terrible power of the atom was unleashed. 70,000,000 perished. Nihilism followed, for in a world drowning in blood who discerns right from wrong? Three score and four years after the war's end, the world's psyche has not fully recovered, can never fully recover. Commemorationlink.

Though more usually associated with the Great War, the four years of madness and mass slaughter that made the Second World War not quite inevitable but all but, the line that follows has all too terrible relevance on this seventieth anniversary:

Lest we forget.

But, unlike that First World War, the Second World War was not all for naught; the world that crawled from the rubble had a greater dedication to liberty and justice than at any other time since the rise of civilization. Lest we forget that the world is full of not just woe, but wonder. Endless wonder, to borrow Warehouse 13's phrase.

The Rebel Black Dot Song of the Day
Fountains of Wayne, "It Must Be Summer" from Utopia Parkway (T.L.A.M.)

Commentary: "And it must be summer, 'cause I'm fallin' apart."