As should be obvious from my remarks here and there, my video-camera problem has been solved. My dear friend J.C. Burns sent me his Canon GL1 on extended loan-with-option-to-buy, and my new Flip, aka “the second unit,” can go places the Canon can’t. So I’m hoping to have some video up here within a few weeks, as soon as I can suss out the complexities of getting everyone talking to everyone else, as well as the new version of iMovie, which is a pain in the ass.
However, it appears the real genius piece of gear in all of this is my new Gorillapod, which I strongly recommend to anyone who likes to fool around with cameras. Yesterday I used a long drive to Northville (a distant suburb that was, frankly, not worth the tire rubber) to do some video note-taking for an upcoming feature, working title “Let’s Go Drivin’ in the D with Nance.” I splayed the Gorillapod on the dashboard, affixed the Flip, and prepared for the usual freeway mayhem. The disappointment was that motorists were unusually well-behaved; I was only passed on the right at 85 mph by one or two cell-phone yakkers. But the G’pod was a revelation. It shifted not a millimeter, stayed steady on corners and exit ramps, and together with the Flip took up no more space than a dash-mounted GPS system, which is what it looked like.
Trust me: It’s the best $20 you’ll spend for good pictures. There’s even a Flickr group dedicated to its wonders.
After the Virginia Tech shooting, in which a few bold conservatives took a new step down the yea-guns road by blaming the victims for their own death (because they failed to “rush the guy” while he was reloading), I could hardly wait to see what would be said in the bullshitosphere after the next mass shooting — the brush had been cleared, after all. It didn’t take long: now Instapundit, who declares himself a libertarian, is suggesting that properties that declare themselves gun-free should be held personally liable for violence that occurs there: Perhaps we need legislation. If it saves just one life, it’s worth it.
Roy Edroso points out what you might suspect: That the rootin’, tootin’ western state of Nebraska has no effective restraints on long-barreled firearms, although it does restrict carrying concealed weapons. You need a permit to purchase a handgun, but not to own one. The “gun-free zone” that the right-wingers are all up in arms about is likely the legal opt-out that private-property owners employ these days. When I was in Minnesota a few years back, you saw signs everywhere declaring this or that building gun-free. It wasn’t enforced with metal detectors or anything; I suspect it was a liability dodge, or maybe a corporate bumper sticker, or something. So the mall in Omaha had these signs, and now a leading libertarian is suggesting some legislation to, what? Outlaw gun-free zones? Allow victims to sue?
I have a libertarian proposition for you: Let some savvy, pistol-packin’ real-estate developer open the OK Corral Mall down the street from this one. Go ahead and scratch up some tenants, and proudly display a sign: Everyone’s packin’ a peacemaker. Enter at your own risk. Let’s let the market sort it out!
Just speaking for myself, having a heavily armed populace just next door in Detroit makes me feel extra-safe there.
It occurs to me from my recent linkage there, some might think Roy’s is the only blog I read. If only. But I am trying to cut down, at least on the political stuff. Roy’s niche is arts, culture and calling out wingnuts. Works for me. But if you’re wondering, I also read TBogg; Lawyers, Guns and Money and a few others. Lately I’ve been reading more non-politics sites, like Bossy and, of course, the Fug Girls, even though they were way too tough on Beyoncé this week, if you ask me. That green dress does make her look a little like one of the guppies in my fish tank, but a very sexy one.
I’m adding a new tag here: Metro mayhem, for stories like this. Why do men beat their wives? (Answer, at least in this case: Because he was drunk.) Bonus: Two 911 recordings that demonstrate just how horrible 911 operators are around here.
OK, paying work awaits. Have a great day.