Friday, October 29, 2004

Ken Layne says Eminem might throw the election. Here's the video.
I mentioned this on a post I just wrote for Fistful of Euros, but I think it's strange enough to point out twice. According to Deutsche Welle's European press review:

Rome's Il Messagero wrote that "it doesn't take much to understand that in the end, Europe will have to pay dearly for this crisis which most likely won't be resolved without some blood shed".
Come again? The Italians readying an invasion of the Rhineland? Will they face stiff Strasbourgian resistance? (And is Strasbourg even considered part of the Rhineland?)

Anyway, here's what I did today: Another Day, Another EU Crisis. Il Messagero's panic attack notwithstanding, it's, like, so true. (Doh! This article's on the front page of Google News just now. Wicked.)


Just noticed something. For the first time since I began checking daily, both Slate and Electoral-Vote.com put Kerry ahead. Slate says Wisconsin has gone Kerry, tipping the election his way; EV moves Ohio into the Kerry slot and Michigan from Bush to tied, giving Kerry the lead. And that's not counting the challenger's advantage with those still undecided. My layman's prediction of how it's going to go on Monday night, for whatever it's worth, is located here.

Thursday, October 28, 2004

Surely the Second Coming is at hand! Last night I watched the Big Game with the same two guys I mentioned in last year's post. I walked into the bar and they there were.

Wednesday, October 27, 2004

Today one Tulip's Bulgarian-Turkish cooks, who has picked up English faster than I ever thought humanly possible, asked me the English equivalent of the Czech word "vubec." I was stumped.
Small world. Josh Marshall, my favorite famous blogger dude, is looking for an update from Rick Jervis of the Chicago Tribune on a story Jervis wrote Sept. 30 about Iraqi insurgents using weapons and ammo looted from the now famous Al Qa Qaa complex.

Funny that, because Jervis ate at Tulip Cafe on Sunday on his way back to the U.S. from Iraq. Unfortunately, there was some brunch madness going on, with one especially short-tempered waiter having a total meltdown in front of the customers. So I didn't get a chance to partake in small talk about piddly stuff like Iraqi insurgents and looted weapons caches.

By the way, how do you pronounce Qa Qaa? Because it looks a lot like "caca," as in doo-doo. My guess is that it's an iambic foot, giving Al Qa Qaa the same metric rhythm as "Al Capone."
Not sure if I've seen this before. I might have, and simply forgotten. It's quite an in-depth response to an off-hand comment I made earlier this year.

I'd buy a beer for anybody that could recommend, for instance, some interesting commentary about the killing of Sheikh Ahmed Yassin or the non-capture of Ayman Al-Zawahiri or the non-killing of Herat's Ismail Khan. I'd buy a whole dinner for somebody who can link it all to the Peace of Westphalia.
And Shannon the Knitting Ninja does just that. (Really, it's a blog mostly about knitting!) Shannon, you have a free dinner waiting for you at Tulip Cafe.

Tuesday, October 26, 2004

I'm seeing a rather nightmarish week unfolding ahead of me.

First things first. I totally admit it: I'm a fair-weather Red Sox fan. Heck, I couldn't even name five current members of the team, although for whatever it's worth, I could easily tell you 90% of the 1986 roster. But if the Red Sox stand stand a chance of winning the World Series, there's absolutely no way in hell I'm going to miss that game. Doing anything else would betray the 12-year-old Scott, who is just now passing admonishing notes scribbled on 7th-grade notepads to me through teseracts.

So here's my worse-goes-to-worst prediction. Red Sox win again on Tuesday. I am thus forced to stay up until 6 a.m. on Wednesday, Thursday, Saturday and Sunday to watch them lose four successive games to the Cardinals. (Did I mention I live in Europe?)

Come now, that's sooooo unlikely, you say. Almost unprecedented in baseball history! Such a thing hasn't happened since... last week.

So. I figured it'll take all days Monday and Tuesday to recover. Then on Tuesday night I'll be up until daybreak again, this time waiting for some godforsaken TV network in some godforsaken land to call an election in Wisconsin or Ohio or whichever godforsaken state is supposed to decide the presidency this year.


I just went off on a nostalgic web-surfing tangent, admiring how entertaining my blog used to be.

Monday, October 25, 2004

Building a safer world, and a more hopeful America. I read this twice:

VIENNA, Austria (CNN) -- The International Atomic Energy Agency says 380 tons of powerful conventional explosives are missing from the Al Qaqaa facility south of Baghdad that was supposed to be under American military control.
I had to go back and read it a third time before I realized it didn't say "the Al Qaeda facility south of Baghdad." Wonder if I'm alone, paranoid, or dyslexic.

Sunday, October 24, 2004

Red Sox up one? This is really happening? I avert my gaze.

Matt Welch is seeking endorsements for the presidential election. Not for himself, foolio. I mean he's asking us to say who we're voting for and why. Naturally it should come as no shock that I'm leaning strongly toward the Senator from Massachusetts, and no, it's not just because he's a Democrat, although let's get real -- that by itself would probably be enough. (Yes, I could imagine voting for a Republican, maybe, but I'd find it pretty hard to vote for a Republican who endorsed Bush in 2004.) That's not a very interesting reason, anyway.

OK, if you want the "good reasons" in a couple of sentences, I've boiled it down to this: I believe in the war on terror and the democratization of the Middle East. Bush is doing nothing for these causes. Judged on his own terms, he's a failure and a fraud. Even if I were a hawkish conservative Republican, I don't think I'd be fooled by his swagger. And Kerry has voiced at least 80% of my complaints, which is a good score.