Praise God and pass your

Praise God and pass your headsets to the aisle
- Airport chapels are seeing a boom: “Business travelers in the habit of making a beeline for the cocktail bar closest to their departure gate now may be more likely to seek spiritual refreshment in the airport chapel. Stressed-out, often sleep-deprived travelers are generally more vulnerable to ‘anticipatory anxiety’ in the times after September 11 that psychologists have labeled ‘the new normalcy.’ Indeed, since the destruction of New York’s World Trade Center claimed victims from 86 nations around the world, a new lexicon of psych-speak has intruded into our daily lives. Another term gaining currency, they say, is ‘the God factor.’ ‘I’ve noticed a considerable increase in the number of people looking for the chapel and coming in to say a prayer. I’d say it’s almost double,’ said Father James Devine, of Our Lady of the Skies, the Catholic chapel inside New York JFK International Airport’s Terminal 4. ‘I’ve seen business travelers here. I’ve talked to them after the service and they’ve appreciated the opportunity to say a prayer before they fly out.’ ” [Reuters via Orbitz [via Holy Web Log via Relapsed Catholic]

Tabloid heaven
- New York Post headline today on the Superdoofus, traitor John Walker: ” ‘ Poor Fellow’ or traitor? Looks like a rat. Talks like a rat. Smells like a rat. Hides like a rat. IT IS A RAT”

Nuke 101
- The ABCs of building a dirty radioactive bomb, from the Washington Post.

He’s our dork-in-chief, damnit
- Grumpster Michael Wolff in New York takes on his own gut reaction to Bush: “To get the willies from George W. Bush, to distrust the man, to have your stomach roll a bit when you hear him speak, is to feel like the most churlish and sullen of adolescents. He’s the unappealing uncle — with his cold eye on you — whose house you’re stuck at this holiday season. While you’re trying to shut out his existence, everybody else is sucking up to him. If you knew it was just pretend, just a holiday bit — everybody being phony and polite — you could handle it; the problem is in thinking that all this affability, this undisaffected appreciation for the guy, is honest feeling on everyone else’s part. What if 85 percent of the American people actually, deep in their hearts, approve of him — dig him? What does that say about you and where you fit in?” OK, I don’t disagree. Bush is a dork. He’s a dork who grins inappropriately and repeats himself too much. But he’s our dork, damnit. He is the dork-in-chief. I amaze myself with my ability to ignore his dorkiness. That is wartime; he’s the boss. The truth is that I’m refreshed with the relative lack of politics and personality in war; we have a goal and we’re going to get there together. America today feels like an Internet startup back in the go-go days: all teamwork and goal-orientation and oomph. It’s about winning, no matter who’s in charge.

Bigger than IT
- This may seem off-topic but it really is an illustration of what makes America great. The other day, I ended up wandering in the Newport Mall in Jersey City (aka Terror Town!), NJ, a lower demographic shopping experience, and I came across a new operation that makes me want to give up my dreams of getting a Jerky Hut franchise. It’s called Aqua Massage and it looks like a cross between a tanning bed and an iron lung: You lie down, face down, clothed, and water jets massage you through a thick plastic that covers you and keeps you dry and all the while, people stand there in the mall gawking at you — $7 for 5 minutes and the units are working full time. Two people are making a decent living off this; the people in the machines are enjoying some sort of bliss; the mall rats are entertained; America is great. This is capitalism; this is choice; this is about creating good fortune out of mere inventiveness; this is what makes us great. Meanwhile, the Taliban sits in caves.

Kinda evil
- Franklin Graham backpedals on his assertion that Islam is evil.