Inhuman Swill : Page 116
Why is my blog called Inhuman Swill? Because you can unscramble the pieces to make William Shunn.

Delightful site of the morning

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Yes, it's an advertisement (for a book—Schlepping Through the Alps by Sam Apple), but my adolescent, Doctor Demento–lovin' heart still found it amusing.

Happy Passover!

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A man walking down Broadway in Astoria twirling his bamboo cane like a drum major with a baton.

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Okay, I give up

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What is funky cold medina?

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Via [info]slushmaster...

Your results:
You are Spider-Man

Green Lantern
Iron Man
The Flash
Wonder Woman
You are intelligent, witty,
a bit geeky and have great
power and responsibility.

Click here to take the Superhero Personality Quiz

Being Spidey is cool, of course, but I'm more interested in the fact that my Hulk quotient is running a close second place. Hmmm.

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I began thinking about global warming again today, sparked by a posting by Christopher Bigelow—or rather, by a couple of the complacent jackasses who responded to the post. (Sorry if they're friends of yours, Chris.)

While I think it's nice that Time did finally get around to covering the story in a big way, I think the three-part New Yorker series by Elizabeth Kolbert that ran a year ago was much better and should be required reading. Before I lose them again, here are the links to the Kolbert stories:

These stories are remarkable not just for the way they build from a few telling anecdotes to inevitable conclusions of frightening scope, but for the fact that they address what realistic solutions to the problem would consist of. And those solutions are harder now than they were a year ago, and harder a year ago than they would have been a decade ago. These stories should be required reading blah blah blah, but how many people do you know who would be willing to read the equivalent of a small depresssing book about a problem that will change life on Earth in our short spans of time?

Me neither.

A "Talk of the Town" piece by Kolbert from the March 20th New Yorker continues the saga. She details the findings gleaned from two satellites nicknamed Tom and Jerry that measure changes in the earth's gravitational field, and these measurements tell us that Antarctica is losing water at an alarming rate—more than anyone suspected. She concludes:

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Pixelated fiction

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Electronic copies of two more new old stories have gone on sale at Fictionwise this week:

Cheap! Cheap! Cheap!

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For the past few days, I've thought I might smell just a dash, just a soupçon, just one wafer-thin mint's worth of natural gas in the kitchen. I would sniff, and Laura would tell me I was crazy. It happens.

Last night I thought I smelled it, and this time Laura allowed as how she might smell it too. I didn't call ConEd immediately, having a vague memory of a similar situation in my Brooklyn apartment and being made to understand by the man who came to check it out that I had been kind of silly not to know this wasn't the dangerous kind of gas smell.

So I called up ConEd very late this morning, from work. In the voicemail treet, I deliberately did not choose the emergency options. I waited for a customer service representative. I said I might have smelled a little gas in my kitchen.

"What's your address, sir?"

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ShunnCast #13

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Epidode #13 of "ShunnCast" is now available, in which I and my trainer Elder Fowler take charge of missionary work in the lonesome prairie oil town of Brooks, Alberta, and many naughty words are uttered as a result.

See also [info]shunncast.

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Mea culpa

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Sometimes you do something and you know it's wrong and you shouldn't do it as you're doing it. You know that doing it will make you look like an asshole, and that a lot of people will see you being an asshole, but you do it anyway. Why do we do this? I don't know—maybe to pay the universe back for giving us consciousness. I'm just glad that LiveJournal has a delete button. Of course, I wish your memory had one too.

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Vote early and once!

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Richard Bowes's short story "There's a Hole in the City" was very likely the best work of short fiction published on the Web in 2005. It's currently in the running, with nine other stories, for the Million Writers Award for Fiction.

Never heard of this prestigious award? Neither had I. But you can still help Rick's story win! All you have to do is vote. Few enough people have voted that your ballot will make a difference. But only vote once! The award administrators are very cranky.

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The Accidental Terrorist 30th Anniversary Sale

Signed editions
that even a
could afford.

Order yours now!

William Shunn