log (2006/08/04 to 2006/08/10)

It's been interesting, really. I've had to revisit lots of bits of my own self-image. To deal, for instance, with the idea that I might not always be someone who gets done on time all the stuff that has his name written next to it; that I might, sometimes, be one of those Other People who neglects things and misses deadlines and generally messes stuff up. To deal, more generally, with the idea that the future really is uncertain; that tomorrow anything at all really could happen.

Not an entirely pleasant experience. But a future that really is utterly open, completely unknown, is kind of attractive. Once you get over the initial terror.

(Which is, I have to admit, a pretty theatrical way of talking about what is really just "a tough month at work". And compared to lots of other people my life is just as secure and routine and prosperous and predictable as ever. But from the inside here it's been pretty theatrical, and if you can't theatricalize in a weblog, where can you theatricalize?)

Subject: Bisecsual harsdcoore orrgy bright drosophila
Subject: her wait to bimonthly humorist

(Sorry about the pr0n, but I couldn't resist the Bright Drosophila.)

Free Lecture about Mozart.

A judicial decision that contains an interesting history and consideration of the notion of the "state secrets privilege" (that a legal case, even against the government, can't go forward if it would require revealing important secret information). A dangerous but probably in some sense unavoidable concept, and one well worth talking and thinking about.

And speaking of which, Today's Quote is from Language Log:

Berman has published over 50 law review articles and commentaries and he estimates that these have been cited only about a half-dozen times in judicial opinions. In contrast, his Sentencing Law & Policy Blog (here) has been cited in more than a dozen cases.

Says something about both law and weblogging; but I'm not sure what.

Also from Language Log, a great thread on confusing or contradictory bumper-sticker slogans. I like "CAPITAL PUNISHMENT STOPS A BEATING HEART" and "Homophobia is Gay". This reminds me of the "Bush / Kerry" bumpersticker that I fantasized about making the other election. I also take credit for "Jesus is my imaginary friend" (or, more subtly, "My imaginary friend is a Jewish carpenter").

Some spam contained the text "I encountered, at the corner, a womans face. It looked in mine,", which I thought was neat, and I looked it up and it's from Dickens:

As I passed the steps of the portico, I encountered, at the corner, a woman's face. It looked in mine, passed across the narrow lane, and disappeared.

That feller sure could write.

A reader writes

You must get very little spam, to take the time to read it. (I get >2800 per day.)

Nah, I get tons and tons and tons and tons and tons. And that's just what makes it past the filters. I read some teeny little subset of it, chosen at whim. And still I find some gems!

And to close on the openness of the world again, a wise reader writes:

Perhaps reason is the wrong paradigm, and there is no answer within those narrow confines. Perhaps the "SALE" sticker and the little bowl and the CVS brand "backpack buddy" size packs of premoistened disposal wipes were like we all are, just existing in the universe for reasons that we, ourselves, do not understand.

I think that's exactly right.