Sunday, January 25, 2004

Potentially unacceptable consequences

I must interrupt the flow of insightful political analysis to talk about something really important: hot chocolate.

A few years ago, potato chip companies started putting fewer chips into the same size bag, but now it’s everywhere. Have you noticed that many brands of ice cream’s half gallon size is now slightly smaller than a half gallon? And toilet paper rolls contains the same number of squares, but they’re smaller (according to my mother). So I just bought a box of hot chocolate, and as I was putting the last packet from the old box in the new one (same brand), I realized that the new ones were smaller, 1/4 smaller according to the box. And the instructions (who reads instructions on hot chocolate?) recommend 6 ounces of water. If you have no life like me, you will immediately measure 6 ounces of water into your favorite mug and find that it doesn’t even come close to filling it.

They are fucking with my hot chocolate, and not one of the presidential candidates is addressing this issue.

An article on the new words of 2003: embeds, pre-emptive self-defense, metrosexual, manscaping, freedom fries, transfer tubes (body bags)...

Alarming story of the day, from the AP: “Amarillo, Texas, area workers dismantling an aging nuclear weapon improperly secured broken pieces of a highly explosive component by taping them together, federal investigators found. An explosion could have occurred, they said.” Also, “Last fall, workers taking apart another old warhead accidentally drilled into the warhead's radioactive core, forcing evacuation of the facility.” The chairman of the Defense Nuclear Facilities Safety Board said of the first incident that if dropped, there could be a violent reaction which could have, “potentially unacceptable consequences.” Depending on what you think of Amarillo, I suppose.

Penguin cricket. In a funny foreign language, but if I can figure out how it works, you can. My best score is 588.3.

Dave Barry is in NH now. He describes Dean’s little outburst (now available for answering machines, I’m guessing) as “a pitch-perfect imitation of a small-hipped woman giving birth to an upright piano. It was a heartfelt scream, no question about it, and it has received far more attention in this race than, say, Iraq. But somehow it did not come across as presidential. (``Four score and seven years ago, YEEEAAAAAARGGH.'')”

Also amusing campaign trail coverage here.

Excellent article on the evolution of the nominating process, and why primaries aren’t necessarily more democratic than smoke-filled rooms.

Article on the inevitable Screaming Howard Dean action figure. The silent version is, oddly enough, cheaper.

Colin Powell admits that Iraq may not have had WMD-RPAs. “But we had questions that needed to be answered. What was it: 500 tons, 100 tons or zero tons? Was it so many liters of anthrax, 10 times that amount, or nothing? What we demanded of Iraq was that they account for all of this and they prove the negative of our hypothesis.” The interviewer did not ask Powell how one proves a negative, which is just as well, because that’s the sort of thing we go to war over. The “All Thebans are liar” paradox could result in World War III with these guys.

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