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.
brian stouder said on December 7, 2007 at 10:20 am
Your tech-speak up there sounds dangerously close to the ‘bloody leading edge’ of things. I abhor adding hardware and hardware-centric software to our computer* – as you have ONE desired end-state, and infinite possible unintended consequences.
nn.c used to carry a link to Englishgirl in Indiana http://www.englishtraveller.org/
and she (a techie at a local university) just a day ago posted a computer HORROR STORY. Read it if you dare…
*this is vicarious…actually Pam is our resident IT specialist, if anything of any sort needs added/modified/removed from the computer. My responsibilities begin and end at the power switch
nancy said on December 7, 2007 at 10:24 am
I follow Englishgirl because she lives in our old house. I love what they’ve done with the floors.
michael heaton said on December 7, 2007 at 10:26 am
did you see joan van ark on gofugyourself this week?
brian stouder said on December 7, 2007 at 10:52 am
(that green dress is FAB!)
alex said on December 7, 2007 at 11:02 am
A little off subject here, but the Oklahoma jewelry store ad isn’t rattling around in my head the last few days.
No. It’s “rock the llama’s ass” that’s eatin’ my brain.
nancy said on December 7, 2007 at 11:07 am
Of the many Ashleyisms I’ve heard over the years, that, too, is the most compelling.
I wonder if he’s inspired jihad in Bahrain yet.
Julie Robinson said on December 7, 2007 at 11:12 am
“Properties that declare themselves gun-free should be held personally liable for violence that occurs there.”
Silly me. I was thinking that if Robert Hawkins hadn’t had access to a gun, this latest tragedy could have been prevented. I’m so glad it was set straight for me.
The larger problem is that I WAS thinking. Boy did my parents raise me wrong. I know I should be letting Instapundit and Fox do it for me. It’s really so much easier that way, isn’t it?
del said on December 7, 2007 at 11:27 am
Amen Julie. Things are gettin’ curiouser and curiouser. Someone’s gotta call them (Fox, Instapundit, et al) on their utterly foolish and dangerous views.
(Nancy, loved the way you ended your mag article on the ipod “inventor.”)
sue said on December 7, 2007 at 11:38 am
The blogs I read regularly are Eric Zorn, Nancy, Iambossy, and Glenn Greenwald (Salon). I found Nancy through Eric, Bossy through Nancy, and Glenn all by myself. I lurk on a few other sites. I love the way bloggers link to other bloggers. It’s like finding friends without having to talk to anyone.
LA mary said on December 7, 2007 at 11:38 am
Beyonce’ has got to be wearing two layers of Spanx under that dress.
nancy said on December 7, 2007 at 11:44 am
I cannot think of a (straight) man alive who would (like Brian, that old goat) not want Beyoncé on his arm in that dress. Likewise, I can’t think of a woman who would steal it from her closet, either. It just looks like more trouble than it’s worth.
brian stouder said on December 7, 2007 at 12:21 pm
Regarding Beyoncé, you got that right!
As for links, englishgirl’s pops up on several sites I visit (as does NN.c, for that matter), and I have several friends who work at the same university (which is a block away from where we live)…and she writes about Formula One every so often.
Over the years (being an old goat!), I’ve more or less gotten my fill of endless internet political debate.
But last night, over dinner out with one of my (many!) bosses, and his wife, and a big customer, a remark was made (by the bosses wife) that the American Civil War was NOT about slavery….! followed by a “right?” and helpful ‘yes’ nodding directed toward me…..and after thinking over that situation for about 1.1 seconds – I opted to say “Well – I USED to think that, too…”
Potential ‘flame wars’ in the Real World almost never get much beyond a buffered bump like that. (she pressed me only a little farther, and I offered that honorable people could be found on both sides – but that it would be hard to imagine how such a horrendous Constitutional breakdown could possibly have occurred without slavery specifically in the mix…and then it was on to how delicious the food was!)
Mindy said on December 7, 2007 at 12:37 pm
Same here, Alex. I’ve been wondering about rockin’ the llama’s ass all week, even as the Ronettes continued to pass around the coffee and the PUMPkin pie. (The jewelry jingle lasted only and hour or so. Thing’s are getting worse! Thing’s are getting worse!)
beb said on December 7, 2007 at 12:43 pm
As an old SF fan I grew up hearing that Heinlein had proclaimed that “An armed society is a polite society.” This seemed like a truism until I realized that this only works if EVERYONE in that armed society was killing to murder EVERYONE who wasn’t polite, anything less becomes a THUG society where the willing killers terrorizes everyone else.
It’s Kafkaesque that when an American buys a gun the government wants to destroy any records of that sale within days but if you buy an airplane ticket they want to keep that information on file forever.
alex said on December 7, 2007 at 1:05 pm
Mindy, wish I had sound on my computer here at work. I think they denied us speakers for the express purpose of preventing us from looking at YouTube. (Actually there’s a pair of speakers on the desk of a woman who got canned recently but I’m hesitant to swipe them just yet.)
Brian, I’ve heard the it-wasn’t-about-slavery arguments before, once from a college history professor, although his take was that it was really about the economics of it all, e.g., that the south produced goods without the cost of labor, built a railway system of a different track gauge than those in the north, traded independently with other nations without abiding by federal laws and so on. I’m not sure in what context that lady (if she can be called that) brought this up, but the secession of the southern states was inarguably about slavery. And the war was about preventing the secession of those states.
When I hear stories like this I’m glad I work for attorneys. They may be all kinds of things but in general there’s one thing they’re not and that’s capital S Stupid.
Laura said on December 7, 2007 at 1:44 pm
I think that Beyonce’s dress is quite unfortunate; great color, though.
Re: faves. I can’t get through a day w/out Go Fug Yourself, Gawker or NNC. Roger Ebert and David Byrne both have sites I’d recommend. And, much to the chagrin of my HS daughter, her grades are live and online. So I spend waaaay too much time on that, too.
joodyb said on December 7, 2007 at 8:51 pm
excellent 411 on the Flip. i’m in luff! can’t wait to see more more more test drives.
it’s all Beyonce’s mom. check it. i bet she actually hurt the next day. she’s got to get a stylist to whom she is not related. i will always love her, though. and it is the most amazing green.
michaelj said on December 8, 2007 at 5:25 pm
If you (and I’m talking about Ron Paul) claim to be a Libertarian, how do you not tout your posiition on legalizing drugs? This guy mails me cardboard slick pamphets daily. They’re as full of abuse of the English language as the are of non-English speakers, like illegals flaunt US law. They may flout the law, but, please, they don’t flaunt the law. You flaunt that big diamond or your Bat Mitzvah spread. When the Lou Dobbs candidate can’t speak English, and spends a fortune to flaunt in direct mail. how am I supposed to feel?
Actually, having been raised by intelligent people, and having been predisposed to loving language, I know how to feel. And loving musical satire as I do, Randy Newman has this one. ‘Jesus what a jerk, you’re tripping over your own self now’.
Every cReepub is a total asshole. Any one of the Democratic combatants is perfectly acceptable as a sane aternative.
Sorry Nancy. I konw this isn’t political. When things get to blowing off the Constitutiom in the interest of Cheney’s cash from Halliburton, things have gotten out of hand.
There’s a pretty good question of good citizenship here.
Beyonce is Diana lite?
Reporters are standing up, for a change. The administration tried the same lies they used about Iraq. That’s obvious. World War III, you asshole? We already heard that.
John C said on December 10, 2007 at 6:33 am
I was once talking with someone who posited that the Civil War wasn’t about slavery, it was about states’ rights. You are right, I said. But it was about the rights of states to do things like, oooh, HAVE SLAVES.