500 years - women in western art

I saw a reddit link to this cool video, 500 years of women's faces in western art.

It's too bad it's not in chronological order (or if parts of it are, it's due to the requirements of the morphing software). Cool work though.



I was at the mall today, waiting for Sol to finish service when I saw books on sale. After a bit of browsing (controlling the urge to get everything, or at least everything I wanted), I ran across "The Elements of Lavishness" a book of the letters of Sylvia Townsend Warner and William Maxwell.

I am always on the lookout for books of good letters. Or good books of letters. When I opened the book to a random page I saw, from Warner to Maxwell,

I am thankful that Emmy is back. In her absence you do not spell as well as at other times. Does she know this? It is a delightful tribute, she should wear it in a brooch.

That made the decision. Now that I have the time to walk through it more slowly, there is, from Maxwell to Warner,

The personal correspondence of writers feeds on left-over energy. There is also the element of lavishness, of enjoying the fact that they are throwing away one of their better efforts, for the chances of any given letter's surviving is fifty-fifty, at most. And there is the element of confidence - of the relaxed backhand stroke that can place the ball anywhere that it pleases the writer to have it go.

I don't doubt that there is depth here. More of sentiment, probably, and affection, than, oh, philosophy or science. This is going to be a great source of pleasure. And after a few months of savoring, I'll give it away :-).


It's the oil. The oil.

Doug Maconis asks if the people behind the honor killing of Doa Khalil Aswad are the people the U.S. is fighting for. Clearly we live on different planets.

Honor killings, as with Doa Aswad are reprehensible. But let's be clear. The U.S. is not in Iraq to fight for Iraqis. The U.S. is in Iraq for the oil. And for the bases. The U.S. is trying to steal the only assets worth stealing there. It wants to keep giant bases in the country, browbeating the government into signing binding contracts/treaties that will allow those bases to remain even if the Iraqi government were to turn hostile to the U.S. (see Guantanamo). The U.S. is also going to push for oil contracts to go to U.S. and european companies, with huge profits (after inflated expense reports to make profits even larger) going to the foreign companies.

It's a pragmatic approach to the current and coming oil shortages. But let's be clear, there is no virtue here. It's just armed robbery. No one is fighting for democracy over there. Or if there are soldiers who actually believe that, well, they swallowed the propaganda and didn't understand the reality. They're now paying for that mistake. The question is, will the citizens of the U.S. learn their lessons, or will they continue to attack foreign nations and destroy governments, institutions and perhaps tens or hundreds of thousands of lives because they have totally bought in to propaganda.


This is not good

I've been playing Desktop tower defender for the last 5 hours or so. Productivity is going to be bad on weekends. There might even be less Reddit reading late at night.

This is super double plus ungood.