Archive for June, 2006

We're on the ground in L.A.

Friday, June 30th, 2006

And Becky is pretty. :)

Harumph.

Friday, June 30th, 2006

Our flight is delayed.

P.S. This is why.

Shuttle launch tomorrow

Friday, June 30th, 2006

I’m at the Kennedy Space Center in Florida for the launch of Discovery tomorrow at 3:48 pm EDT, and took this photo at 9 pm this evening from launch pad 39-B. There’s a 60% chance that the weather will violate launch constraints. The main concern is that anvil clouds from inland thunderstorms over central Florida may be blown towards Cape Canaveral. The launch window lasts only 10 minutes, because the shuttle needs to fly while Cape Canaveral passes through the space station’s orbital plane.

Brits OK £104,000 grant for Twelfth of July as family-friendly “Orangefest” :)

Friday, June 30th, 2006

It’ll be just One Big Happy Holiday. Can’t we all Get along? :}

(Yes, gentle readers, with the annual Marching Season well underway & the Glorious Twelfth fast approaching, it’s time again for your occasional, always Eagerly-awaited ;> update on the very latest of the Durty Doings in Her Majesty’s Statelet of Norn Iron. :)

Disclaimer: now don’t Get me Wrong. Notwithstanding the True-enough grumpings of my Greenie comrades-in-Disarms :} as reflected in the Belowcited BBC article, I Like this. No really, I do. It’s a wee Creep in the right direction. :] Granted, it’ll take th’ Divil of a lot more than Pie-in-the-sky-high Hopes & £104,000 for to Get to the goal; but a journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step, as the Old Irish Saying says :}, and Gawd knows these Orangemen could use a little Chilling Out by way of a bigfat Peaceful Picnic to attract the Cultural tourists from Far & Near. (“Oh look, little Johnny, see the nice old men in their black bowler hats, playing their lovely Lambeg Drums.” :)

BBC (the which, may God Bless :) ~ internal Link added ~

A £104,000 government grant to help the Orange Order in Belfast develop the Twelfth of July as a major tourism event has received a mixed reaction.

The government said it was disappointed that the city centre was abandoned during the Twelfth period by those who were uncomfortable with parades.

Orangeman William Humphrey said the Twelfth was “one of the largest festivals in western Europe”.

…The money, to be paid over three years, will fund a development officer who will promote the day as a festival.

It is hoped it will become a family-friendly, fully-inclusive “Orangefest”.

Social Development Minister David Hanson said he hoped the money would help to regenerate Belfast.

…However, Sinn Fein assembly member Alex Maskey, a former lord mayor of Belfast, criticised the funding move.

“This is entirely the wrong decision. It is unacceptable that the British government should fund an organisation which continues to force its anti-Catholic parades through Catholic areas,” he said.

“The Twelfth of July for many nationalists in Belfast represents domination and sectarian violence.”

SDLP North Belfast assembly member Alban Maginness said the Orange Order failed “every test of inclusivity”.

“They are already helping tourism, but it is Donegal that gets the benefit every July because so many people – and not just nationalists – dislike the whole ugly atmosphere of intimidation and triumphalism,” he said.

[The County Donegal is in the far northwest corner of the Irish Republic ~ one of the three heavily-Catholic Province-of-Ulster counties ceded by PM David Lloyd George to IRA Commander Michael Collins when they partitioned off “Northern Ireland” from their newly-invented “Irish Free State” in 1922. / ~ the guestblogger ]

…The Orange Order is the largest Protestant organisation in Northern Ireland with at least 75,000 members, some of them in the Republic of Ireland.

Its origins date from the 17th century battle for supremacy between Protestantism and Catholicism. Prince William of Orange, originally of the Netherlands, led the fight against Catholic King James.

Read the Rest. Can’t we All get Along? :}

Heh.

Friday, June 30th, 2006

Casey offers a sedate, scholarly analysis of the Supreme Court’s Hamdan decision.

The Excellent Adventure begins

Friday, June 30th, 2006

Becky and I depart for L.A. at 8:30 tonight, kicking off our whirlwind tour of the West Coast. I’ll be posting occasional blog updates by cell phone, and probably by laptop-via-cell-phone too, throughout the holiday weekend. So, stay tuned!

Oh, and by the way, thanks to Glenn Reynolds for the link to my Britney Spears post, my 61st Instalanche (a.k.a. “InstaBoost LXI”). Glenn has concluded that this must be “blog sweeps week,” given the number of posts about various sexual topics (such as the history of the blowjob), and my post about Britney fit right in with that meme. Not like I planned that or anything… [whistles innocently]

Germany ousts Argies on PKs

Friday, June 30th, 2006

Holy cow! World Cup home team Germany just beat Argentina, Andrew’s predicted champion, in a quarterfinal thriller that was decided by a penalty-kick shootout (which I caught the tail end of, along with about a dozen other attorneys, in the attorney lounge). The Germans advance to the semifinals, where they’ll play the winner of this afternoon’s Italy-Ukraine game. Tomorrow’s quarterfinals: England vs. Portugal and Brazil vs. France.

Could an England-Germany final be in the cards? That’d be awesome. Bring on the offensive chants! :)

CNN Breaking News

Friday, June 30th, 2006

Preliminary autopsy results found no injuries, but indicated congenital heart abnormalities in a 12-year-old boy who died after a Disney ride in Florida, according to a statement from the medical examiner�s office. Visit CNN for the latest.

CNN Breaking News

Thursday, June 29th, 2006

12-year-old boy dies on Disney's Rock'n'Roller coaster at Disney-MGM studios in Orlando, Florida, officials tell CNN. Visit CNN for the latest.

CNN Breaking News

Thursday, June 29th, 2006

Iraqi police say a suicide car bomber has struck a funeral in Kirkuk, killing 17 people and wounding 50, The Associated Press reports. CNN working to confirm. Visit CNN for the latest.

Britney Spears nude — for real this time!

Thursday, June 29th, 2006

Hamdan, Shamdan. The really big news of the day is that Britney Spears posed naked — pregnant and black-haired — for the cover of a magazine!

Who needs serious, important debates about the Geneva Conventions and executive power in wartime when we can look at Britney’s boobies?

Seriously, my mental reaction upon seeing the headline on CNN’s homepage — “Britney Spears poses nude for cover” — was, literally, “HOLY CRAP!”

Fark.com has some more of the pictures, as well as some not-so-flattering commentary. (Personally, I think pregnant women are sexy, so the fat jokes don’t really do anything for me. … Well, okay, the picture of the manatee saying “Look at me! I’m an attention whore!” is pretty funny. But only because it’s Britney, not because she’s pregnant.)

Of course, you know what this means: Britney is officially one step closer to that Playboy shoot that every heterosexual male in this country has been hoping for since the …Baby One More Time video debuted in 1998 (though perhaps the hopes have become less fervent in the last couple of years). I predict it happens roughly 15 months from now, after Plan A (dumping K-Fed), Plan B (another weepy interview, this time with Barbara Walters instead of Matt Lauer), and Plan C (a torrid, well-publicized fling with Fabio) all fail to revive her career.

Incidentally — to tie this all together — I think it’s fair to say that Britney probably disagrees with the Hamdan decision, in light of her past statement that “I think we should just trust our president in every decision he makes and should just support that, you know, and be faithful in what happens.” Damn you, John Paul Stevens, why don’t you trust our president in every decision he makes?! WHY DO YOU HATE AMERICA?! ;)

P.S. Speaking of attention whores, Paris Hilton has reportedly dumped Matt Leinart — either because she wants more “me time,” or because she’s got a new guy (or two or three), depending on who you believe. Apropos of which, the modifier “attention” in the segue to this paragraph was probably unnecessary.

P.P.S. If anyone is wondering, the title of this post is a reference to this earlier post.

CNN Breaking News

Thursday, June 29th, 2006

The government says a stolen laptop containing personal information for up to 26.5 million veterans has been recovered. Visit CNN for the latest.

CNN Breaking News

Thursday, June 29th, 2006

The Supreme Court rules President Bush overstepped his authority with military war crimes trials for foreigners held at Guantanamo Bay in a case involving a former driver for Osama bin Laden. Visit CNN for the latest.

The ‘stache goes to Charlotte

Thursday, June 29th, 2006

I was totally not paying any attention to the NBA Draft yesterday (my focus was on New York state tort law), but Gonzaga superstar and facial-hair fashion disaster Adam Morrison was drafted #3 by the team partly owned by Michael Jordan, the Charlotte Bobcats (a.k.a. the third-worst team in the Eastern Conference last season).

The #1 pick was some dorky-looking guy from Italy. J.J. Redick went #11 to Orlando.

CNN Breaking News

Wednesday, June 28th, 2006

Palestinian militant group says it killed an Israeli settler kidnapped in the West Bank, AP reports. CNN working to confirm. Visit CNN for the latest.