silversolitaire: (Eleven)
Dunno if you guys have caught this video yet: Weezer: Pork and Beans.

Since I'm a geek, I recognized most of the references, so I figured I might as well list them here. Ehem:

00:15 One Man Band
00:19 Dramatic Look
00:23 Afro Ninja
00:31 Diet Coke and Mentos Experiment
00:38 Guy catches glasses with his face
00:38 G.I. Joe PSA
00:48 T-Shirt World Record
00:59 Chris Crocker: LEAVE BRITNEY ALONE!!!
01:04 All your Base
01:11 Miss South Carolina
01:16 Numa Numa Guy
01:24 Crank That Soldier Boy
01:27 Evolution of Dance
01:30 Tay Zonday: Chocolate Rain
01:39 K-Fed does PopoZão
01:48 Daft Hands
01:52 Daft Bodies
02:06 Best Sex Ever!!
02:09 Ask a Ninja
02:29 Kelly wants shoes
02:37 Sneezing Panda
02:37 Dancing Donald Duck
02:37 Ryan vs. Dorkman
02:43 Peanut Butter Jelly Time!!!
02:54 Will it blend?
02:56 Charlie the Unicorn

Did I miss anything?
silversolitaire: (House - romantic.)
Torchwood star's civil ceremony

John Barrowman
Barrowman's civil ceremony was held at a hotel in Cardiff

Actor John Barrowman, star of the BBC sci-fi series Torchwood, has signed a civil partnership with his partner.

Barrowman and architect Scott Gill signed the partnership at a Cardiff hotel before the actor left to star in pantomime Jack and the Beanstalk.

Barrowman, 39, who plays Captain Jack Harkness in Dr Who spin-off Torchwood, has been with Mr Gill for 16 years.

The first series of Torchwood ends on New Year's Day while a new series will be filmed in Cardiff in the spring.

'Deserve rights'

For the ceremony at Cardiff's St David's Hotel, Glasgow-born Barrowman sported a kilt.

Around 40 people attended the private ceremony at function room in the hotel.

Afterwards, Barrowman said it was important gay relationships were accepted.

Scott Gill
Scott Gill has been with the actor for 16 years

"It feels great and I think more gay men and gay women should go ahead and do it as long as they're serious about it," he said.

"It's not really recognition but it's important for people to see the normality of the entire situation and it forces people who don't agree with gay men and have to accept us.

"We deserve the rights like everybody else.

"It's been a long wait but we legitimised our relationship to each other a long time ago when we signed our mortgages together and this is just something that forces people who don't want to recognise it that they have to."

Following the morning ceremony, Barrowman headed for Cardiff's New Theatre to play Jack in afternoon and evening performances of pantomime Jack and the Beanstalk.

Barrowman said partner Mr Gill would remain at the hotel with family and friends, adding: "Scott's already seen it twice".


Dec. 21st, 2006 06:32 pm
silversolitaire: (Default)
The title of the new Harry Potter book is out. In case you're interested...

Just to be sure )

Apparently you can figure it out via J.K. Rowling's website.
silversolitaire: (huggle)
Salmon C, Symons D. "Slash fiction and human mating psychology."
     The Journal of Sex Research, 41:1, (2004): 94-100.

cut for actual article )
silversolitaire: (House - Bella notte!)
You probably have seen it already, but there's a new clip over at featuring Robert Sean Leonard and David Morse discussing the Tritter arc.

Since some people over at [ profile] hw_wilson have asked for a transcript which I have happily provided, I figured I might as well post it here for myself to keep and for others. ^^

RSL: The entrance of David Morse's character, the detective, into the show forces Wilson to deal with House in a way he hasn't dealt with him before. He forces him to make choices, you know. He's got to defend himself and in order to protect himself he's got to give up some dirt on House. Or not, it's his choice to do that. So, their friendship is tested in a way that I think it hasn't been so far in the series.

DM: Really, I don't think of my character as a bully. I think it's just somebody who's been around, that he's seen it, and he's just dealing with another guy on drugs, really. And he's seen all the games. You know, he knows the tricks.

RSL: Dr. Wilson is forced into a corner by Tritter in many ways. You know, Tritter is out to get House and he wants the dirt on House and obviously Wilson is a good person to mine for that and... So yeah, he's got a lot of important choices to make once he meets Det. Tritter. 'Cause Tritter has no problem getting Wilson in trouble in order to get what he needs on House.

DM: When Det. Tritter first goes after Dr. House Tritter's pretty angry at him. Tritter's been violated by this doctor and he wants revenge. He'd be happy to see this guy go to jail, and worse. But as he meets people over time, as he starts meeting the other people in the hospital and gets a sense of who this guy really is and what he means to the hospital and to the patients.

I love how RSL just keeps repeating himself... LOL. Also, I didn't transcribe all the "uh..."s and fragments and "you know"s that both of them seem to be throwing in constantly. I like DM's analysis of his character and how his motivations might change. I think it's plausible to have him sway in his determination to utterly destroy House once he's seen that he's not just a total ass full of himself, but that he's actually got a right to be that way. I mean, he IS brilliant. Plus, Tritter got his revenge by driving that wedge between House and Wilson either way, so all is well for him, I guess.

And is it just me or did they like cut off the second half of DM's sentence there??? It seems like the sentence wasn't quite finished yet... oh well.
silversolitaire: (neener-neener-neener)
Okay, so I was watching this CSI: NY episode a couple of days ago. I totally forgot what it was called. As a matter of fact, I even forgot what the damn case was. But one thing struck me as odd. The episode opened up with some guy holding his toothbrush into the stream from the faucet. He's not looking and doesn't notice how the water that's coming out of the faucet is blood red. Scene cuts to a guy in the shower being covered with red. Cut to body floating in the water tank on the roof.

Now that struck me as odd. I doubted that a body would manage to tint the entire amount of water blood red like that. Pink tinge maybe, yeah, but not red like normal blood. So I did some mathing. Or rather, I let Tom do the math LOL. Anyway, judged by the size of the tank in relation to the actors, the water level etc. we estimated the amount of water in the tank to be around 25,000 liters (cutting short on the math here). If we assume the average body has 7 liters of blood (even though it'd be odd to think that the body would bleed out completely, let's just think it did) it would break down to about 1 ml of blood on 3.5 liters of water. Why I broke it down to that much?

So I could do this!

Caution, images featuring 1 ml of blood and a needle going into an (my) arm )
silversolitaire: (Default)
If you haven't heard about the Michael Richards incident, aka Seinfeld's Kramer, here's a quick round-up.

21 November 2006
'Seinfeld' Star Richards in Race Attack

Former Seinfeld star Michael Richards left comedy fans stunned during a Friday night performance at Los Angeles' Laugh Factory when he blasted a pair of African-American hecklers with a racist rant. The funnyman, who played quirky Cosmo Kramer in the beloved sitcom, lost his cool during a stand-up routine at the comedy club when two black audience members challenged him - and his comments were caught on camera. News website, which obtained the footage, reports the comedy show turned ugly when Richards realized his hecklers were black. He screamed at one of the men, "Fifty years ago we'd have you upside down with a f**king fork up your ass." And then, when the playful heckling continued, Richards objected further, ranting, "You can talk... you're brave now motherf**ker. Throw his ass out. He's a n**ger! He's a n**ger...! Look, there's a n**ger!" One of the hecklers then turned on Richards, shouting, "That's un-f**king called for, ain't necessary." Responding to the crowd's shock, Richards responded, "They're going to arrest me for calling a black man a n**ger." Many audience members then left the venue. One African-American audience member, Darryl Pitts, feels Richards should be reprimanded for his racist comments. He tells CNN, "I feel like something has to be done about. He threw those words around very cavalierly, he mentioned hanging upside down from a tree... It's very upsetting."

22 November 2006
Seinfeld Upset As Audience Laughs at Richards' Apology

Funnyman Jerry Seinfeld turned serious on US TV Monday night when he urged The Late Show's live studio audience to "stop laughing" as members chuckled at pal Michael Richards. Richards was appearing on the show, hosted by David Letterman, to address the controversy following his racist rant onstage at a Los Angeles comedy club. The comedian, who played quirky Cosmo Kramer opposite Seinfeld in cult sitcom Seinfeld, stunned his audience at the Laugh Factory on Friday after turning on two African-American hecklers. But, as he attempted to apologize to America on TV last night via satellite from Hollywood, many studio audience members thought the whole stunt was a joke. Richards said, "I lost my temper onstage... I got heckled and I took it badly and went into a rage and said some pretty nasty things to some Afro-Americans." But Seinfeld, a guest in the studio in New York, took offence when some audience members found his comments funny and began laughing. He said, "Stop laughing. It's not funny." This prompted Richards to address the chuckling: "I'm hearing your audience laugh and I'm not even sure that this is where I should be addressing the situation... I'm really busted up over this."

I found a video of the incident. You can see it here. And here's Richards' apology.

I'm a little unsure on how to take this. For one, I think there's no excuse for this kind of racism. This is bad. This isn't just an insult hurled in anger, this is the most terrible comment you could possibly give IMO. This is just one inch short of telling a jew that 50 years ago he would have gone into the oven, or something. Extremely tasteless and horrible. So I really have to wonder what the hell this guy was smoking. Screaming at the top of his lungs like this, going on and on and on. He just won't stop. Freaky. I can understand that you get upset at being interrupted and heckled, especially when you already are in such a defensive position as Richards usually is, but this? Geeeeeze.

On the other hand, the heckler(s?) is also popping his cap there. It appears to me as if he realized he screwed up by interrupting the show like that and now he's saving himself into his righteous anger. What would have happened if Richards had just said "Shut the fuck up you dumb-shit asshole and get the hell out of there if you don't like my show"? Would he have continued to heckle? Would he have left? I think he realized that what he did was uncalled for as well and unfortunately Richards gave them the perfect excuse to continue the assault.

This is a very nasty situation all around and I'm annoyed that the press obviously is only reporting single-sidedly on this, marking Richards as a terrible racist and the two hecklers (confirmed this by now) are painted as the victims of a vicious racist attack. Both parties were wrong IMO. But still, Richards needs so mull things over for a bit and ask himself why this horrid insult was the first thing that sprang to mind for him.

That said, I'm fascinated at how fast T-Shirt Hell is...
silversolitaire: (banana)
Washington Explains 'Grey's Anatomy' Spat

Grey's Anatomy star Isaiah Washington has spoken out on TV for the first time after he was left disgraced following a spat on the set of the medical drama. The actor released a statement apologizing for his actions after a tirade with co-star Patrick Dempsey went public, prompting fans to fear his job was in danger - but he has yet to appear on TV to talk about the incident. Washington pulled out of a planned TV interview with Ellen DeGeneres earlier this month, but he couldn't miss out on an Oprah Winfrey set visit to Grey's Anatomy, which aired on TV in America on Friday. And when Winfrey asked him to comment on the spat, Washington opened up. He explained, "It was a combination of fatigue, pride, passion... I've been working with these beautiful men for three years now and we had an argument as brothers. It came about at a time and a place that was overwhelming for both of us and we resolved it easily. What it was not was a brawl, fisticuffs and all that stuff. I lost my cool... It was coming out of a place of trying to stay focused about the work and the one thing I understand about myself and my passion about everything I do is that the opposite of love is indifference... Out of that caring, we got ourselves into a debate that had to happen."

You know... The more I read of this the more I wonder... WHAT? They should just stand up and fucking say what this was about instead of constantly beating around the bush like that. All these half-explanations and insinuations are really only adding to the confusion and starting more rumors. "I've been working with these beautiful men"...? Wtf? LOL. What a weird way to refer to your colleagues! XD

If anyone's interested, here are the other newsbits that lead to this:

The first round about the fistfight, ensuing mockery and a surprise coming out! And the usual grovelling afterwards (as continued here).
silversolitaire: (Default)
If you go here on you can watch some interesting clips on House, such as an extended scene of the confrontation between House and the cop in the next episode. I just love how spoiler. )

The other clips are very nice, too. Lisa Edelstein is just so beautiful and sexy, I just want to ravish her whenever I see her and she's so much fun when she's talking. Totally different from her character, which is good! Awesome chick. Jesse Spencer comes a cross as a bit of a dork when he tries to summarize his character in a couple of sentences and totally sucks at it! Muahaha... Awesome stuff to watch, but takes a while. LOL at Lisa's comment on what House is like: "If ER was having a baby with CSI that would start dating the X-Files... then you'd have the show." So true! XD And of course Hugh Laurie is absolutely charming and funny. Too bad there's no Robert Sean Leonard! ;_; Why does he never get interviewed on these things? No fair!

More clips are at, including the one I already mentioned above and then another one where House breaks into a nurse's locker which conveniently happens to be the one Wilson is flirting with at the moment XD. Oh the jealousy! hehehe
silversolitaire: (World Cup is Love!)
Since I'm getting into World Cup withdrawl a bit I've started to collect info on the teams. Just so I can always remember it! ^^ I'm especially trying to find the team names, because some have really cute ones (like Socceroos for Australia :3). For starters, I'm listing the slogans and I'll add the team names to it as I find them. Some of the slogans I couldn't write down because I didn't have the fonts >.>;. If someone happens to be able to write the slogans, by all means, tell me! Also, let me know where I messed up, since I had to type them all off the website since for some reason they've made all the slogans graphics... Probably because of said font problem! LOL.

Anyway, you can see them here! :3

Angola – "Angola vai em frente a Selecçāo é a tua gente." Angola lead the way, our team is our people.
Team name: Palancas Negras (The Black Antilopes)

Argentina – "Pónganse de pie, Argentina avanza!" Get up, Argentina are on the move!
Team name: Albiceleste (The White-Skyblue Ones)

Australia – "Australia Socceroos – Bound for glory"
Team name: Socceroos

Brazil –"Veículo monitorado por 180 milhões de corações Brasileiros." Vehicle monitored by 180 million Brazilian hearts.
Team name: Os Canarinhos (The Canaries)

Costa Rica – "Nuestro ejército es la sele, nuestra arma es el balón, vamos todos al mundial a dar alma y corazón." Our army is the team, our weapon is the ball. Let's go to Germany and give it our all.
Team name: Ticos

Côte d'Ivoire - "Allez les Elephants! Gagnez la coupe du monde avec le foot élegant." Go Elephants! Win the cup in style.
Team name: Les Elephants (The Elephants)

Croatia – "S vatrom u srcu do finala." To the finals with fire in our hearts.
Team name: Vatreni (The Fiery Ones)

Czech Republic – "Budem se rvát jako lvi, pro vítězství a fanoušky." Belief and a lion's strength, for victory and our fans. (literal: We'll fight like lions, for victory and our fans)
Team name: Reprezentace (The Representation)

Ecuador – "El Ecuador mi vida, el fútbol mi pasión, copa me meta." Ecuador my life, football my passion, the cup my goal.
Team name: Los Tricolores (The Tricolored Ones)

England – "One Nation, One Trophy, Eleven Lions"
Team name: The Lions

France – "Liberté, egalité, Jules Rimet!" Liberty, Egality, Jules Rimet!
Team name: Les Bleus / L'equipe Tricolore (The Blue Ones / The Tricolored Team)

Germany – "Für Deutschland - durch Deutschland!" For Germany - through Germany!
Team name: Nationalelf (National Eleven... Nation's Eleven? LOL *dork*)

Ghana – "Black Stars Monko, Yån Wiase Mu Nsroma." Go Black Stars, the stars of our world.
Team name: The Black Stars

Iran – "?" Stars of Persia
Team name: Team Melli / Lions of Persia

Italy – "Orgoglio azzurro Italia nel cuore." Blue pride, Italy in our hearts.
Team name: Squadra Azzurra / Gli Azzurri (Team Blue / The Blue Ones)

Japan – "燃やせ、サムライ魂!" Light up your Samurai spirit!
Team name: Blue Samurai

Korea Republic – "끝나지 않은 신화, 하나되는 한국." Never-ending legend, united Korea.
Team name: Taeguk Warriors / Tiger / Red Devils

Mexico – "Selección Mexicana: pasión azteca que cubre el mondo." Aztec passion across the world.
Team name: El Tri

Netherlands – "Oranje op weg naar goud." Oranje on the road to gold.
Team name: Oranje (Orange)

Paraguay – "Del Corazón de América... ésta es la garra Guaraní." From the heart of America... this is the Guarani spirit.
Team name: Los Guaranies / Albirroja (The indegene people of Paraguay / The White-Red Ones)

Poland – "Biało-czerwoni! Waleczni i niebezpieczni!" White and red! Dangerous and brave!
Team name: Bialo-czerwoni (The White-Red Ones)

Portugal – "À janela uma Bandeira, no relvado uma nação inteira - FORÇA PORTUGAL!" With a flag in the window and a nation on the pitch. Força Portugal!
Team name: Selecçāo das Quinas

Saudi Arabia – "?" The Green Hawks cannot be stopped!
Team name: The Green Hawks (?)

Serbia and Montenegro – "Za ljubav igre." For the love of the game.
Team name: Plavi (The Blue Ones)

Spain – "España. Un país, una ilusión." Spain. One country, one goal.
Team name: La Furia Roja (The Red Fury)

Switzerland – "2006, it's Swiss o'clock"
Team name: Nati

Sweden – "Kämpa! Jobba! Visa glöd. Ni har svenska folkets stöd!" Fight! Show spirit! Come on! You have the support of everyone!
Team name: Tre Kronor / Blaagult (Three Crowns / Blue-Yellow)

Togo – "La rage de vaincre et le soif de réussir!" A passion to win and a thirst to succeed!
Team name: Les Eperviers (The Sparrows)

Trinidad and Tobago – "Here come the Soca Warriors – the Fighting Spirit of the Caribbean"
Team name: Soca Warriors

Tunisia – "Les aigles de Carthage... toujours plus haut, toujours plus fort!" The Carthage Eagles... higher and stronger than ever!
Team name: Les Aigles de Carthage (The Eagles of Carthage)

Ukraine – "Вболіваємо за наших, Україна серед кращих." With our support, Ukraine cannot fail to win!
Team name: Sbirna (The Team)

USA – "United we play, United we win!"
Team name: Sam's Army (inofficial)
silversolitaire: (hmmm)
Gita on Fighting Terrorism
By Rajiv Malhotra

In the Bhagavad Gita, God appears in human form as Krishna, to guide Arjuna in the fight/don't fight dilemma that Arjuna faces. What might this 18 chapter holiest of the Hindu scriptures teach us in the dilemma we now face concerning global terrorism? Krishna's advice fits neither of the two extremes that are presently dominating the media debate: At one end are the majority of Americans who promote revenge against the terrorists, as a notion of justice - an eye for an eye. At the other end is a minority of anti-war activists who want no violence, and instead advocate that the US should take the blame for having caused hatred against itself. The Gita's message rejects BOTH these. Its short-term message for this situation pertains to the ethics of war, and its long-term message calls for systemic changes required by both Islam and the West in order to harmonize humanity.

Dharmic War

Krishna scolds Arjuna for his initial attitude of abandonment, saying that there is a global evil that must be dealt with; Arjuna is the best qualified one to fight this evil given his training, capabilities, and position. This is God's work and not his own. By analogy, one could argue that the US must play Arjuna's role, being positioned as the only superpower and having the resources to carry this out. In Hindu dharma, a ruler has the obligation to protect the public from such menaces, and to abandon this role would be irresponsible. God's advice to Arjuna is: "Engage in battle with equanimity and without getting overwhelmed by the extremes of joy and sorrow, gain and loss, and thus you won't incur sin."

A just war ("dharma-yudh" = war-as-duty) should not be for revenge but for the prevention of terrorism in the future. The Hindu idea of justice is in the form of karmic consequence; but these consequences are for God to take care of, whenever and however he chooses. The Gita emphasizes one's rightful action, but always letting God take care of the fruits. Therefore, from President Bush down to the pilots making the strikes, the attitude should be one of doing duty for the sake of ridding society of evil, and not for revenge.

Furthermore, the response has to be relevant and proportional. The Gita does not condone indiscriminate "carpet bombing". Since karma is individual and merit based, there cannot be racial profiling against anyone.

It is also made clear in the Gita that Arjuna has nothing personal to gain from winning. He does not seek power, wealth, fame or glory. Hence, it is not an act to be carried out by the ego and must be free of selfish motives. Applying this to the present dilemma, there are some implications:
  • The US should not be motivated for the sake of securing its oil supply, as that would be a selfish act.

  • The US should not focus on ending only the terrorism that is against the US, but rather, it should deal equally with all terrorism that hurts anyone in the world, including remote corners where the US does not perceive a direct selfish interest at this time. Everything is totally interconnected as per Indian cosmogony, and there is no morality in segregating the US's selfish interests from the interests of humanity at large. Unfortunately, Senator Kerry, head of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, amongst other policymakers, has defined the area of US interests to be from Afghanistan to Saudi Arabia, which means that the Indian subcontinent's Islamic terrorism remains a blind spot.

  • The US cannot aid terrorists one year by classifying them as freedom fighters against a US enemy, and fight them the next year when they turn sour.
Arjuna is required to act in a sattvic mode (i.e. in an attitude of purity) even while carrying out a violent attack against evil. The US must note that collusion with evil cannot be sattvic, and that in the end such collusion cannot expect to result in lasting good, as the deed itself gets tainted by the affiliation. The Gita requires us to repudiate even the actions of our friends, if wrong. Have we, as the United States, had the courage to repudiate 'friends' who are clearly part of the problem? To have a sattvic activity, we must re-examine two countries we call friends, one that financed terrorists and the other that trained them:
  • For decades, Saudi Arabia has sponsored Wahhabi Islam, a fundamentalist variety of Islam, and funded 'madrassas' (religious schools) to expand the market share of Islam in poor countries. Madrassas often teach Islamic extremism and triumphalism, and then some of the youth advance into the hands of jihad preachers who are linked to some madrassas if not in charge of them. Yet, given their importance to the US oil supply, the Saudis have not been taken to task.

  • Pakistan created the Taliban, with US funding and weapons, to fight a jihad against the Soviets. This is not emphasized today by the US media, as it might embarrass prior presidencies and some of the senior cabinet members today who played a role in those governments. We must also ask whether strengthening the dictatorial Army rule in Pakistan, and thus subverting democracy, is in the best interests of Pakistan's citizens. US media has stated that 15% to 20% of Pakistanis are Talibanized, and given its population of 140 million, that is larger than the total population of Afghanistan. Pakistan has openly hosted Bin Laden's operating bases to attack civilian targets in India, killing more Indians than any other nationality from terrorism over the past five years.
Saudi's oil and Pakistan's geography give them unique value to the US short-term tactics at the expense of the long term vision. The Gita does not recommend such collusion with forces that are themselves responsible for the evil to be fought. Any such war would be a stop gap solution at best, and eventually the US would be playing into the hands of the very evil forces it seeks to eradicate. The US must encourage liberal Islamic scholars at the expense of totalitarian Islamic rulers; it must actively discourage Islamic triumphalism that drives many Islamic organizations.

[cut, read the rest here]

* * * * * * * *

Discuss? *g*

Well, my points are these. First off, we mustn't forget that this article was written in late 2001, so there is no direct reference to the Iraq war yet. However, it's still scary how well it fits, isn't it? This article doesn't condone Bush's actions, but rather relates when they would by justifyable. And why they're not.

Perhaps a little bit about the background of the Gita would be helpful.

Arjuna fought a battle he was obliged to fight in order to save his people and reinstall order and justice. He, being one of the five Pandu princes, was banished and expelled from his land by his cousin Duryodhana who was the eldest of one-hundred brothers. Seeing the hardship and pain inflicted on his people by this unfair treatment, Arjuna and his four brothers returned to the land of the Kuru to fight for what was rightfully his and save his people from further prosecution. At the dawn of the battle, Arjuna asks Lord Krishna, who has become his friend and companion as a reward for his fortitude and nobility of character, to drive his war chariot to a position where he may witness the two contending parties. Upon surveying the raging battle between dear ones on both sides, Arjuna is overcome with horror and refuses to engage in such a fratricidal war. He throws down his weapons and declares that he would rather die than shed the blood of his kinsmen on the other side.

Lord Krishna then explains to him in the epic that is known as the Bhagavad-Gita the importance of performing one's duty in accordance with ones nature, the existence of the hidden self and the omnipresence of God. He relates to Arjuna such basic concepts as the nature of our existence, the nature of our true self, our true relationship with God, the truth about action and inaction, the correct meaning of knowledge and ignorance, the inborn qualities of man and how they bind him to the mortal world, the meaning of true devotion, the right attitude towards the external world, and so on. Thus enlightened Arjuna is able to partake in the battle and reclaim his people's position.

* * * * * * * *

The difference here is that Arjuna recognizes his duty and acts accordingly. He does not desire power, fame or wealth, he merely does what is necessary. Bush's motives are questionable, at best. He claims that he is too accepting his duty as defender of the world. However, the target of his warfare isn't the evil he is seeking to extinguish, but innocent people who have no relation to the ones he is fighting. If Bush was targetting specifically camps of Bin-Laden and other terrorist groups directly and evidently related to acts of terrorism against the United States, I doubt a lot of people would object. But he's not. He's carpet-bombing an area where there might be something bad going on but we're not really sure and we just think they're terrorists because, well. Because. This is where all his good intentions are inevitably annihilated.

Furthermore, even if everything Bush did was justified and supported, his motivations are essentially selfish. He does this to protect himself and his allies whereas such an act would only then be excuseable if the desire to protect was extended to allies, strangers and even non-supporters. Not to mention the obvious hypocrisy involved, born from the notion of "My enemy's enemies are my friends" and "Who isn't with me is against me".

I think the Bhagavad-Gita is pretty clear about this. So, in the light of this sacred text it is safe to say the Bush is heading the wrong way. You mustn't oppose all fighting either, because sometimes it is necessary to fight for what needs to be preserved, but fashioning these justifications after your own selfish desires is wrong.

Okay, that's just my two cents. Any input?
silversolitaire: (Default)
Article on Snapefans.

Professor Severus Snape

"Mr. Potter, our new … celebrity."

Messenger owls, flying Snitches, three-headed dogs, moving staircases — all that was secondary to these five words, intoned maliciously by Alan Rickman in the second Harry Potter trailer. The way his voice rises into caustic incredulity on the last three syllables of "celebrity." The way his stringy black hair moves jerkily into his eyes. You could watch it over and over again. All right, I could watch it over and over again. Because I've had a crush on Rickman's character, the invariably-described-as-sinister Potions teacher Severus Snape, ever since he first glared at the boy wizard on page 126 of "Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone."

I'm not a lone wacko. There are many other wackos like me. Yahoo Groups alone hosts six Snape discussion groups, the largest of which comprises 398 members. Snape fan sites abound on the Web. But try finding a site devoted to, say, Hogwarts' eccentric elderly headmaster Albus Dumbledore. Not a one. That's because Snape is sexy.

I mean, you didn't think all those Snape fans were really just interested in discussing the curative properties of wormwood, did you? These women (and they are almost all women) rarely venture into the academic aspects of Snape's character. They've got other things on their minds. Like what he wears under those black robes. Whether he would ever permit a lover, in a moment of abandon, to shorten his first name to "Sevvie." Whether it's appropriate to write fan fiction in which he hooks up with 17-year-old students.

Consent laws aside, why would they — or, really, we — be so taken with this guy in the first place? He's not much to look at. Rowling first describes him as "a teacher with greasy black hair, a hooked nose, and sallow skin." Later discoveries do little to improve on that; we learn that he also has yellow teeth and an unfortunate habit of spitting when he's angry. And as a teacher, he probably won't garner any Dead Poets Society comparisons. Not only does he take every opportunity to try to get Harry expelled from Hogwarts, he also mercilessly berates the hapless Neville Longbottom and makes a cutting remark about brainy-girl Hermione's oversized teeth. "I can teach you how to bottle fame, brew glory, even stopper death — if you aren't as big a bunch of dunderheads as I usually have to teach," he tells Harry's class on the first day.

But Snape is, well, sinister. He speaks sarcastic putdowns in a tone that Rowling describes as "silky." He's powerful, taking charge after countless crises. He has a mysterious past — he's in his late thirties in Sorcerer's Stone, and no one's really sure what he was up to right before starting at Hogwarts. He's a loner, ever since his own school days when Harry's father's group of friends excluded and mistreated him. And he's honorable, saving Harry's life on more than one occasion. He's brilliant and lonely and complex and no one understands him except me and the other 397 members of "Snapefans."

So we reinterpret or even distort the character. He doesn't have oily hair and a hooked nose — it's really just sort of messy hair and a noble, aquiline nose. After all, the description is probably from Harry's perspective, and an eleven-year-old boy can't be expected to appreciate Snape's unconventional beauty. And the casting of Rickman hasn't done much to discourage Snape-obsessives from seeing their flawed hero as a barely-disguised hunk.

His crotchety, even cruel behavior must be mischaracterized too. He's nasty to the students in Harry's house because of a failed love affair, or a dark secret, or because he wants to convince the students in his own house, Slytherin, that he's on the dark side so he can become a spy later.

The last theory is probably the most convincing, but, not surprisingly, it's the failed-love-affair one that's gotten the most electronic ink. And most often, it's Harry's own mother, Lily, whom Snape fans like to cast in the role of love interest. After all, she's just about the only woman mentioned in the book who definitely went to school with Snape. As you'll find out on any Snape discussion list, we know from a Rowling interview that Lily's birth name was Evans, and "Severus Snape" anagrams to — PERSEUS EVANS! Significant, no? OK, no. But he could have fallen madly in love with her and watched helplessly as she went off and married his nemesis James Potter. It would certainly explain why he hates Harry so much.

Of course, all we know about Lily is that she was very good-looking, sweet and maternal. Not very interesting, really. Could she satisfy a complicated man like Snape? Other theories expanded in fan fiction involving compliant students and Potions assistants don't really do much in the way of explanation either.

But what if a new teacher, maybe a Defense Against the Dark Arts teacher, shows up one day and catches Snape's eye? She's just been laid off from a journalism job and is doing a little Web writing on the side for an independent magazine. After a little chat over some pumpkin juice, she finds out that Snape is a huge Velvet Underground fan, just like her. Snape's never met anyone quite like this at Hogwarts.

I've got to go write some fan fiction.

Julia Lipman

Comment: I find it amusing how the author refers so some Snape ML with a meager 300-something member count as the largest whereas Snapeslash has over 500! hehehe

Comment 2: Sis! Ann Arbor! The author! o.o


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February 2009

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