Posts from November 2002

Full circle: Variety reports today:*

Full circle
: Variety reports today:

* Warner Bros. (AOL) has asked Snoop Dogg to play the most famous snitch from ’70s TV. The rapper-actor has been offered the role of Huggy Bear in the big-screen version of cult series “Starsky and Hutch” opposite Ben Stiller (Starsky) and Owen Wilson (Hutch).

Now there’s irony you can sink your teeth into. Here’s a figure of the era’s black counterculture joining not just today’s pop culture but ’70s white-bread pop culture with all the baggage that brings, playing a character who, even back then — long before the age of the PC Crusades — could be called racist. Starsky is a hoot; this is certainly nothing to take too seriously. Still, a rap star plays a snitch who hands over his people to The Man? How long can it be before we read about Al Sharpton being cast in Amos ‘n’ Andy and Spike Lee being signed to lense a remake of Birth of a Nation?

How do you say, Oh,

How do you say, Oh, Hell in Spanish?
: El Pais cuts off free access to its great graphics.

Work, the Sitcom: The Office,

Work, the Sitcom
: The Office, a hit in Britain that gives work and bad management the comic treatment they deserve, may be headed for America.

: Question: I want to buy The Office DVD but it’s set for the UK region, which won’t play on US DVD players. So I can’t play it on my TV.

But can I play it on my PC? Is my PC DVD similarly encoded to stop me from traveling the world?

Creative spaces: My old office

Creative spaces
: My old office had whiteboard wallpaper and I loved it; I could draw ideas and unintelligible dribble floor to ceiling.

Now here’s magnetic wall paint — the wall as a refrigerator door, the home as a giant PostIt.

ter-ror-ism: Christopher Hitchens attempts to

ter-ror-ism
: Christopher Hitchens attempts to define terrorism at Slate and again in Elizabeth Spiers‘ report on one of his many recent New York appearances. He holds that terrorism involves asking too much: “Terrorism, then, is the tactic of demanding the impossible, and demanding it at gunpoint. ” He further argues that political groups fighting occupation with possible goals are not terrorists.

Wrong, smart boy.

I’ll pull the rhetorical trick I hate most in this world — but one that is relevant here: quoting the dictionary: “The unlawful use or threatened use of force or violence by a person or an organized group against people or property with the intention of intimidating or coercing societies or governments, often for ideological or political reasons.”

Wrong again.

The key word missing here is the object of the sentence: Innocents. Civilians. Children on a MidEast street. Workers in a New York highrise. You. Me.

Terrorism is the act of inflicting terror — whether death, threat, harm, fear, or destruction — against innocents to further a political or religious aim or orthodoxy.

Terrorism is what happened on September 11.

What bin Laden et al were or were not asking for and whether that is or is not possible is utterly irrelevant.

: Here is just the latest act of terrorism.

Shhhh: Michael Wolff writes about

Shhhh
: Michael Wolff writes about the off-the-record media-and-technology conference I attended last week. As he says, we were all pretty much amazed that you could still have such a conference, mediangst being what it is.

He describes a dinner at which the hoiest polloi were assigned to talk among themselves — like so many fourth graders in their social studies period — about the fate of the world.

Everybody was very earnest. It was like a book-club meeting or a really painful wedding. I wasn’t any less self-serious, finding myself suddenly, helplessly, from some deep wellspring of social animus and faux pas

Ain’t capitalism grand?: It brings

Ain’t capitalism grand?
: It brings us:

: The aquarium toilet.

: The rocking horse toilet.

: The personal trailer (makes fanny packs and luggage on wheels look positively heman).

: An aid to help women stand and pee. It’s even biodegradable.

Early Christmas shopping via Buzz, which is back up.

Admitted to Yale: This

yaleblogbanner.jpg

Admitted to Yale
: This Friday is the Revenge of the Blog conference at Yale Law School and by some flattering fluke, I’m on a panel about blogs and journalism and in this day at least in the august company of Glenn Reynolds, Mickey Kaus, Josh Marshall and more. It’s free and open to anyone, even shlubs like me who didn’t go to Yale.