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    Nice graphic here showing how Cohen beat Slutskaya for the silver. Some would argue that the 7.5 points Cohen received for the "Triple flip and double toe loop" was overly generous, as was the  6.36 she received for the "Triple toe loop and triple salchow and sequence," while the 3.43 that Slutskaya got for the "Flying camel spin" was parsimonious. But that's just absurd. That's not worth even responding to. I'm tired of the idiots who don't understand Olympic figure skating scoring and terminology. Slutskaya blew it at the very start when she did just the triple lox instead of her planned combination. Duh.

By Joel Achenbach  |  February 24, 2006; 8:14 AM ET
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She bageled the triple lox.

Posted by: Shiloh | February 24, 2006 8:34 AM | Report abuse

Ever notice how much these skating terms sound like coffee drinks? Tomorrow I am going to order a triple salchow espresso with a nonfat triple flip. Who knows. It might be good.

Posted by: RD Padouk | February 24, 2006 8:41 AM | Report abuse

Isn't it unAmercian to focus on those that finished 2nd and 3rd?

Shouldn't we direct our attention to the winner, Ms. Arakawa?

Granted, I didn't watch the Olympics last night. Taught the puppy to shake and continued to read up on physics.


Posted by: bc | February 24, 2006 8:49 AM | Report abuse

Glad to see that the ever vigilant Acheneyeball is keeping a close watch on these things. If it were up to me, I'd give out points for the costumes, (or lack thereof). But I better not go any farther with that notion, lest I incite some kind of froofraw.

Posted by: Don from I-270 | February 24, 2006 8:54 AM | Report abuse

I think the phrase 'Slutskia performed a triple sochow' vaguely disturbing.

SCC in advance. I'm posting from my cellular phone and have no way to spellcheck.

Posted by: yellojkt | February 24, 2006 8:57 AM | Report abuse

Sports Fans: Inasmuch as I was taken to task by kb for a too free-thinking post on Islamic ideation, I should clarify the use of bagel ideation.

To "bagel" in skating means to leave a hole in the performance, i.e., to omit routines which would cover the bagel and increase score - to cream cheese the competition

Posted by: Shiloh | February 24, 2006 8:57 AM | Report abuse

bc, did you discover what "dark energy" is, yet? I talked to a physicist yesterday who gave me his theory. It involves "vacuum energy" if that helps.

Mudge wrote the other day, "If I had my own blog, it wouldn't be any fun unless all you guys came with me (Joel included) and that wouldn't be nice or fair to Joel. So, thanks but no thanks. It wouldn't be the same widdouchya (as we usta say in Philly)."

Dear Mudge: You could start a blog today, cut and paste your comments from here (I'm not sure the best way to track them down -- through Google? -- Or I could cut and paste from the Typepad Comments archive) and you'd already have a lot of material. Why not do it? Don't be talking about "fair," for gosh sakes it's a blog-eat-blog world, didn't you notice? A number of people here in the boodle have blogs, from kbertocci to yellojkt to jw to bc and on down the line. And I think people who boodle here should feel no compunction at all about linking to a fresh blog entry back at their home blog. Why not? If we start requiring literary modesty in these parts, I'm DEAD.

Posted by: Achenbach | February 24, 2006 9:02 AM | Report abuse

It's been amusing this week to read Sally Jenkins on figure skating and note the hint of desperation in her columns. The constant subtext is "Aw, come on guys. It's a sport, a real sport. Really really it is."

One of the things about the Olympics, winter and summer, that always kind of interested me is the way some athletes are able to win multiple medals for essentially the same activity- think runners, gymnasts, swimmers and divers, while others compete through a series of competitions and win only one- figure skaters, pole vaulters, basketball. I mean, what if we split up the medals and give one for dunks, three point shooting, free throws, horse. How would that differ from giving medals in gymnastics for each apparatus, plus team and all around medals?

Posted by: kurosawaguy | February 24, 2006 9:04 AM | Report abuse

Here's a blog worth checking out, from my friend Liz Donovan at the Miami Herald. Note the great George Washington item (why didn't we have that here? Or did someone post this and I missed it?)

Posted by: Achenbach | February 24, 2006 9:05 AM | Report abuse

Oh, and I know what "vacuum energy" is. It frequently happens to pregnant women right before labor and delivery, when the nesting urge is raging.

Posted by: kurosawaguy | February 24, 2006 9:07 AM | Report abuse

Kguy, I think Sally's been great, not desperate. She's been a must-read. And she pretty much has Bode Miller's carcass slung over her shoulder at this point. She's going to have to check that along with her luggage at the airport.

Posted by: Achenbach | February 24, 2006 9:08 AM | Report abuse

bc: Is the puppy by chance a Pomeranian?

Posted by: Shiloh | February 24, 2006 9:09 AM | Report abuse

Joel, I refer only to SJ's writing on figure skating, not Bode Miller. Read today's piece on Cohen. By graph four she's hauled out the boxing metaphors. Graph seven and we're into football metaphors. At no point do I see "Not since the days of Debbie Thomas and Brian Boitano have we seen,,,, yadda yadda yadda."

I'm not dissing Sasha Cohen or Sally Jenkins. All I said was that I detected a hint of desperation on the part of SJ to convince sports fans (read guys) that what these folks do is difficult and requires strength and courage.

Posted by: kurosawaguy | February 24, 2006 9:21 AM | Report abuse

Kguy, low blow.

"vacuum energy" is the enrgy when a couple of teenage males get together.

Posted by: dr | February 24, 2006 9:22 AM | Report abuse


I collect orphan books like some individuals collect orphan people. What do I mean by that? It's a good probability that I will buy the book that many people will walk away from--the 80-20 rule in reverse.

When I camped near Winsted, Conn., the campground manager said that she collected orphans. I was a litle bit puzzled by what she meant. Carole looks like Tugboat Annie, which really isn't a surprise once you get to know her story. During her lifetime she piloted harbor ferries in NYC, as well as worked as a high school guidance counselor. During her youth, she was a golf champ.

I met two of her orphans when she invited me to join a campfire circle at the side of her cabin, pretty much the first night I arrived. Two older men were there and said they were friends. I asked immediately how they came to know each other, former reporter that I am. "We met in PTS therapy," one replied. "Nah," I joshed. "Yeah," the other said, explaining that both were Vietnam vets. They come to the campground to get away from the crush of memories about the war, to fish, and to fix up many things around the campground free of charge. They helped me a lot with maps and advice about how to navigate Connecticut and central Massachusetts.

In a strange sense, after three weeks there, I, too, became one of Carol's orphans. Carole fed me several meals on the nights she saw that I was dead-tired, and freely poured steaming mugs of hot coffee for me every morning in her tiny cabin.

Slyness, the orphan book from my library that I'd like to share with you that tells what it's like to work vineyards is the 1998 "Harvest Son: Planting Roots in American Soil," written by David Mas Masumoto. He tells the story of how his jiichan/grandfather arrived from Japan in 1899 and having never seen a vine before, yet hungry for work, lied to get a job and told the San Joaquin Valley farmer who needed laborers, "Yes, yes, I work." Grandfather then followed the crew into the vineyard and watched the others while they whispered in Japanese, telling him what to do.

Other immigrant groups arrived at the same time as Grandfather Masumoto in *my* fertile valley of the San Joaquin. They planted their family farm traditions from their homelands--the Germans and Portuguese brought dairies and the Italians their vineyards and wineries. But the Japanese Issei came from farming villages where rice and barley were planted each spring, followed by summer weeding and irrigation, and an early autumn harvest. During the winter, the paddies were turned and prepared for another year as they had been for centuries. Pruning vines was not natural for Masumoto's jiichan.

Masumoto writes about the knowledge necessary to bring grapes to fruition in his first chapter in the book, titled "Pruning Generations":

"It takes years to learn how to prune a vine, to grow accustomed to the diverse patterns and changes manifested in a contorted trunk. I can respond to history by leaving healthy wood and strategic spurs--my best pruning works with the past in order to shape the future.

"Now I understand why they call these cultural practices. Good pruning is not a science, it's the art of working with a living entity, an annual sojourn to a familiar place with the intention of returning the next year and the year after that. But it goes beyond just the physical structure of a vine. The ghosts of many pruners before me live in my fields--this is a place where generations reside."

So, Slyness, when we invite Mexican braceros into the Achencommune to tend the vines, we shall honor them not only for their hard labors, but for their intimate knowledge of nature, as well as the love of nurture resident in their breasts and sturdy brown backs.

Posted by: Loomis | February 24, 2006 9:32 AM | Report abuse

Thanks, but thanks just the same, Joel; I still think I'll pass. This blog works perfectly well as it is, in large part because we boodlers function as an ensemble. There's a bunch of us each with our own little schtick, and there is good chemistry between us, even though most of us have never met face-to-face. (To wax philosophical for a moment, is that a new phenomenon in the history of sociology? I'm hard-pressed to think of a prior example, but find it fascinating. It's like pen pals, but pen pals have always been pretty much one-on-onesies. And then there's the instantaneous speed thing.) So I'm happy here.

Anyway, it'd be like Joey leaving the cast of Friends. OK, bad example. Uh, Trapper leaving M*A*S*H? Uh, another bad example; that one worked out OK. Um, Groucho leaving the Marx Brothers? The Pequod without Flask? The Furies without...Dyspepsia (OK, so I forget who the Furies were).

Yes, it may indeed be a blog-eat-blog world, which would be a pretty good reason right there for me NOT to further contribute to that scenario. And as Clint Eastwood once said *squints eyes, drops voice to a raspy whisper* "A man's got to know his limitations."

Anyway, it sounds like work.

Posted by: Curmudgeon | February 24, 2006 9:33 AM | Report abuse

Mudge, ham radio?

Posted by: kurosawaguy | February 24, 2006 9:36 AM | Report abuse

On the other hand, what's the blog gig pay?

Posted by: Curmudgeon | February 24, 2006 9:37 AM | Report abuse

Joel, I'm on that problem, as you well know (Tease!). I'm familar with the idea of "vacuum energy" in the aether, and it's a good one. Need to research it more, though. Unfortunately (or not, perhaps), the whole thing I'm working on is turning into a book-sized result (*gasp* Chapters! Egads!).

To your point to 'mudge (and others), I've linked back to the 'boodle for material on more than one occasion (e.g. bc's Faux Letters). The Blogospshere is Ouroborosian, as I've said many times (and probably misspelled almost as many).

Shiloh, puppy (at 7 mos.) is 60 lb. of playful, hungry, loyal, energetic, friendly, chewing, licking yellow lab. Shaped like a dog but with the diet and digestive powers of a free range goat, attached to a tail that should be registered as a weapon. If you've read John Brogan's "Marley and Me", she's pretty much a female version of that dog in 2/3 scale and at a commensurately lower level of psychosis.

Pomeranian, shake...that's a doggy joke, isnt' it?


Posted by: bc | February 24, 2006 9:40 AM | Report abuse

Linda, thanks so much for that story! You are completely right. If we "manage" the braceros, it will be for the purpose of providing the physical and emotional support they need to be successful in their labors.

Posted by: slyness | February 24, 2006 9:44 AM | Report abuse

Thanks for the link to Donovan's Infomaniac blog, Joel.

My favorites were her use of The Times Anatole Kaletsky posting and his "white trash" take on ultra-conservative American fundamentalists. Ala Howell, he will certainly get howl (Ginzberg again) on that.

Her neutrality of journalists post reminded me of Dante' in the Inferno where the hottest place in hell is reserved for those who are neutral in a time of crisis.

Journalists take heed.

Posted by: Shiloh | February 24, 2006 9:45 AM | Report abuse

bc: Sochow is part of Pommern. I was obliquely referencing yellowjkt's "vaguely disturbing" comment. Your puppy seemed a connection to Sochow. I haven't had breakfast this morning, so have that vague and hungry look - I think too much. (Cassius in Julius Caesar)

Posted by: Shiloh | February 24, 2006 9:52 AM | Report abuse

More gratuitous curling news.

Though my links may not be perfect, it appears there is a medal in your midst.

Posted by: dr | February 24, 2006 9:57 AM | Report abuse

dr, are you and I the only ones who noticed the streaker during the bronze medal curling match? *L*

Posted by: Scottynuke | February 24, 2006 10:05 AM | Report abuse

Crap, there was a streaker????? And I missed it????? Oh the humanity.

The ratings are going to go up on this evenings relplay.

I'm stuck here at the office and there is NO TV. You can imagine how I feel. The only data I am getting is from Hasn't anyone heard of online tv?

Posted by: dr | February 24, 2006 10:09 AM | Report abuse

San Antonio Express-News cartoonist David Branch has gone and done it. He's drawn a cartoon--much like a stop-action photo--of the Iraq Shiite Golden Mosque exploding after being bombed by Iraqi Sunnis just two days ago.

The incongruency in Branch's cartoon puzzles me because the top of the mosque is not an onion, but a teapot. Hot water is being ejected violently from the teapot's spout, the teapot's lid is being blown sky-high under a small cloud of steam labeled "Sectarian Violence," while more hot water begins to boil and bubble down the teapot's sides.

Of course, Branch may be playing off the old English historical slogan of "tempest is a teapot":

TEMPEST IN A TEA POT - "This saying for 'making a big fuss over a trifle,' was first a 'a tempest in a teacup.' It has been traced back only to 1857, but is probably older. Similar early English sayings were 'storm in a wash basin' and 'a storm in a cream bowl' (1678). For that matter Cicero, as far back as 400 B.C., referred to a contemporary who 'stirred up waves in a wine ladle,' and he indicated that the expression was ancient." "Encyclopedia of Word and Phrase Origins" by Robert Hendrickson (Facts on File, New York, 1997).

Which makes my mind jump to our own domestic "Teapot Dome Scandal" that took place in the Harding administration and involved not only the famed rock in Wyoming, but also the Elk Hills Strategic Oil Reserve, dry rolling hills and scrub just west of my hometown of Bakersfield, Calif. Ted Koppell, recently retired from ABC New's late-night program "Nightline" writes today in the New York Times Select that the Iraq war boils down to one word: oil. A look back at the our own bribery scandal involving oil:

So what was the Teapot Dome scandal? The affair took its name from Teapot Dome, a rock formation in Wyoming that looked like a teapot and, more importantly, stood atop a large government naval oil reserve. The scandal was the most famous of several scandals that ruined the reputation of President Warren G. Harding, who served from March 1921 to August 1923 and is often described as the worst president our country has ever had. At its bare bones, Teapot Dome is a simple case of bribery. Secretary of the Interior Albert Fall, a former senator from New Mexico and a friend of Harding's, was convicted of taking bribes from oil executives. Oilman Harry Sinclair obtained leases to drill for oil at Teapot Dome, Wyoming, and Edward Doheny acquired leases for reserves at Elk Hills, California. Fall received in the neighborhood of $400,000 in cash and gifts from Doheny and Sinclair.

Of course, maybe the Mosque's dome is exploding in Branch's cartoon because of the mess made of Iraq by British colonialism. The British, we all know, drink enough tea to fill a camel:

The odd lines for Iraq's borders were drawn by British.Mr Straw acknowledged "some quite serious mistakes" in India and Pakistan, jewels of the British empire before their 1947 independence, as well as Britain's "less than glorious role" in Afghanistan. Mr Straw blamed many territorial disputes on the illogical borders created by colonial powers. He mentioned Iraq, the region which was governed by Britain under the mandate of the League of Nations after the defeat of the Ottoman Empire in World War I. "The odd lines for Iraq's borders were drawn by Brits," he said.

And just why do Persian mosques--and the Shiite religion is closely aligned with the Shiias of Iran, which was at one time known by the name of Persia--have onion domes in the first place?

Mosques of Persia inherited the Sassanian vaulting tradition and surface decoration with resplendent ceramics. They thus possess a distinctive character in their pointed onion-shaped domes, lofty pointed portals, and magnificent polychrome tiles.

The dome, popular in most cultures, has two main symbolic interpretations in Islamic architecture involving the representation of the vault of heaven and a symbol of divine dominance, engulfing the emotional and physical well-being of the faithful.

And nobody has yet attempted to guess the answer to my question of several days ago: Why does the top of the armory, built by gunmaker Samuel Colt, in Hartford, Conn., in the mid-1800s, have a a blue, onion-shaped dome?

Posted by: Loomis | February 24, 2006 10:10 AM | Report abuse

SCC replay.

I am so upset at this no tv signal thing that I'd like to blame all future mispellings on it.

Posted by: dr | February 24, 2006 10:10 AM | Report abuse

I agree with Curmudgeon re. starting one's own blog versus posting on this one. Large volumes of people show up here, both because it's Joel's blog and because it's on the Washington Post's Web site. I know that if I, personally, started up a blog, I wouldn't attract anywhere near the participation that this one does. So I figure, if I have something important to say -- you know, about Seinfeld, or cheese, or turkey sandwiches, or the meaning of life, or Starbucks, or whatever -- I'll say it here, because there's a greater chance that someone will read it than if I posted it on my own blog.

But it's not just a matter of having somewhere to post what you write; it's about being able to read what *others* write. An important part of the Achenblog is the interaction between its participants. A blog that any one of us would set up individually probably isn't going to have that degree of interaction.

And, as 'mudge said, having one's own blog sounds like work!

[Then again, I might be tempted to set up my own blog when I settle in Hong Kong, if I find I have enough good stories. But if I want somewhere to hang out where there will always be other people to shoot the breeze with, I'll come here.]

[Oh, and in answer to Joel's question, uh, no, I'm not ready for some football. Sorry.]


KRAMER: Are you just saying you want to have fun, or do you *really* want to have fun!!?

GEORGE: I'm just saying I want to have fun.

Posted by: Achenfan | February 24, 2006 10:12 AM | Report abuse

Slyness writes:
"Linda, thanks so much for that story! You are completely right. If we "manage" the braceros, it will be for the purpose of providing the physical and emotional support they need to be successful in their labors."

Slyness, thanks for making me go find a beloved old/young book, and rereading parts of it. And making me think about the issue. And we will educate the heck out of the braceros' kids, to give them a brighter tomorrow.

Posted by: Loomis | February 24, 2006 10:13 AM | Report abuse


Because they just happened to have one laying around?

Just stopped by to say hello and share some coffee.

Was watching my monikers swim.

Posted by: Dolphin Michael | February 24, 2006 10:14 AM | Report abuse

Holy cow, my world is spinning out of orbit. I never thought there'd be a day I agreed with Peggy Noonan, of all people, but I do. This is from Howie Kurtz's column, quoting her:

"I am almost always picked for extra screening. I must be on a list of middle aged Irish-American women terrorists. I know a message is being sent: We don't do ethnic profiling in America . But that is not, I suspect, the message anyone receives. The message people receive is: This is all nonsense . What they think is: This is all kabuki. We're being harassed and delayed so politicians can feel good . The security personnel themselves seem to know it's nonsense: they're always bored and distracted as they go through my clothing, my stockings, my computer, my earrings. They don't treat me like a terror possibility, they treat me like a sad hunk of meat.

"I don't think most of us get extra screening because they think we are terrorists. I think we get it because they know we're not. They screen people who are not terrorists because it helps them pretend they are protecting us, in the same way doctors in the middle ages used to wear tall hats: because they couldn't cure you. It's all show. . . .

"So we're all talking about port security this week, and the debate over the Bush administration decision to allow United Arab Emirates company to manage six ports in the United States. That debate is turning bitter, and I wonder if the backlash against President Bush isn't partly due to the fact that everyone in America has witnessed or has been a victim of the incompetence of the airport security system. Why would people assume the government knows what it's doing when it makes decisions about the ports? It doesn't know what it's doing at the airports."


I would only add, it also doesn't know what it's doing about borders, doesn't know what it's doing about protecting chemical plants, nuke sites, refineries, etc., doesn't know what it's doing about FEMA, doesn't know what it's doing about nation-building in Iraq, doesn't know what it's doing about sound fiscal spending, doesn't know what it's doing about overhauling the prescription drug system for seniors, etc., etc.

But yeah, overall she seems finally to have "gotten" it: why should people believe her buddies whom she has heretofor stoutly defended know what they're doing?

Posted by: Curmudgeon | February 24, 2006 10:15 AM | Report abuse

Yeah, Linda, we'll have the best charter school in the nation...folks will clamor to work for us so their kids can go there!

Posted by: slyness | February 24, 2006 10:16 AM | Report abuse

Hello again, Achenfan! Hope it's been a very boring transition so far! :)

And yes, we're an ensemble Boodle cast, no doubt about it. Don't break up the band!! *L*

dr, the live coverage on 'Merkan TV suddenly cut to a VERY long shot of the whole arena. You couldn't see much, but the commentators were saying the skips seemed to be enjoying the "commotion." Then you eventually made out a couple of security-type folks closing in on a VERY pale, slow-moving figure, hard to pick up against the ice. (You'd think blue would have more contrast, but...) Then security wrapped the miscreant in a blanket and the crowd cheered.

Posted by: Scottynuke | February 24, 2006 10:17 AM | Report abuse


My guess would be that Colt had some Russian connection. Either as potential clients, or relatives.

On another note, onion shaped domes are also current outside the Islamic, Russian culture. Some of the churches in Dinant (check out my pictures on have spires that are very much shaped like onions.
(It's something very local.)

Posted by: Eurotrash | February 24, 2006 10:20 AM | Report abuse


Great thought! I was wondering something similar just yesterday as we stood in line with shoes in hand, waiting to get to our wallets and laptops that waited unguarded on the other side of the scanner.

All I could think about was what if that moron British shoe guy had tried to smuggle some plastic explosives onto the airplane in the waisteband of his underwear... oh, how our lives would have changed.

Posted by: Dolphin Michael | February 24, 2006 10:22 AM | Report abuse

[One more non-sportsy comment, and then I'll get out of here]

I saw this great post by someone called Child of a Lesser God in the previous 'boodle, and I thought it was worth re-posting:

"The attempted transformation of the Indian by the white man and the chaos that has resulted are but the fruit of the white man's disobedience of a fundamental and spiritual law.

'Civilization' has been thrust upon me since the days of the reservations, and it has not added one whit to my sense of justice, to my reverence for the rights of life, to my love for truth, honesty, and generosity, or to my faith in Wakan Tanka, God of the Lakotas.

For after all the great religions have been preached and expounded, or have been revealed by brilliant scholars, or have been written in fine books and embellished in fine language with finer covers, man --all man -- is still confronted with the Great Mystery.

Chief Luther Standing Bear
Oglala Sioux

Posted by: Child of a Lesser God | Feb 23, 2006 7:46:05 PM"

[There was also a wonderful comment about Jesus by someone called John S. Hall, beginning with the phrase "Jesus was way cool." I know that in some ways yesterday's 'boodle was a bit of a bummer, but on another level it was a pretty good one. Heavy, man. Deep. Even the seemingly off-topic comments were, at some level, incredibly pertinent. (Of course, there was also a lot of talk about food. Makes me think we probably shouldn't 'boodle on an empty stomach.)]

Posted by: Dreamer | February 24, 2006 10:23 AM | Report abuse

The talk around the office is now about extra ends and possible extra rocks.

I say it was just nuts. Can I say that here?

Posted by: dr | February 24, 2006 10:24 AM | Report abuse

You guys are writing about streaking at the Olympics!!!??!!!

Too much merriment on the Achenblog today. I Boodled about a mass streaking incident I saw at Humboldt State. Well, I wrote about the streak-around-the-windows of-the-cafeteria-at-dusk incident, but I haven't mentioned yet he funniest streak I witnessed.

First, I must share that Humboldt State is built on a hillside. One morning I counted the steps from getting from our apratment complex in "The Bottoms" (true name) to the top-most building, which is the old, venerable Founder's Hall. I remember the count at that time was about 365 steps. So, now you know there are oodles of steps at Humboldt State.

The funniest streak-in at Humboldt was a daylight, noontime streak, this time all-male. Well, you would have thought a herd of buffalo were running through campus, the young bucks were running so fast. I was coming down a short flight of stairs, while the naked Mongilian herd was bounding upwards.

Humboldt gets buckets of rain to grow those redwoods straight and tall. But that day, it was dry, as was the campus' concrete gangways. And that day, right in front of me, one of the guys fell. Let us just say that his family jewels met the edge of one of the steps.

Both comedy and tragedy ensued. The young man regained his composure, and literally limped away, heisting and hoisting his own family jewels in both hands.

Posted by: Loomis | February 24, 2006 10:26 AM | Report abuse

SCC: Mongilian, sounds too reptilian

Posted by: Loomis | February 24, 2006 10:27 AM | Report abuse

Lindaloo, I take that as a new "twist" on the "slippery slope" concept.

Posted by: Dolphin Michael | February 24, 2006 10:29 AM | Report abuse

I've often thought that if that Richard Reid had arranged his plastique as a suppository the American airline industry would be completely shut down by now.

Posted by: Error Flynn | February 24, 2006 10:29 AM | Report abuse

Linda, The coffee was once in my cup. Not any longer. Excellent.

Posted by: dr | February 24, 2006 10:32 AM | Report abuse

Eurotrash guesses:
My guess would be that Colt had some Russian connection. Either as potential clients, or relatives."

You are both very, very hot and very, very cold. Great guess, though.

I will try to post the answer later today, but no promises! Hubby flies in about 1 p.m. and I must do some...housework. *L* If not today, then next week, and shall hold over the answer to create some "creative tension," much like the panache recipe. *L*

Posted by: Loomis | February 24, 2006 10:34 AM | Report abuse

Error, oh the thought of the mess it would have made! EWWWWWWW

Posted by: slyness | February 24, 2006 10:35 AM | Report abuse


I don't know, Reid was so bright that when he went through security, he probably would have tipped them off by asking the agents "Do you think my plastique makes my ass look big?"

Posted by: Dolphin Michael | February 24, 2006 10:36 AM | Report abuse

dr - I don't think anybody down here is going to complain about that bronze. Good luck later today.

Posted by: RD Padouk | February 24, 2006 10:37 AM | Report abuse

Oooh, Oooooooh!!!! Semi-Schadenfreude time!!! :-) From Kurtz's column today:

"And here's some good news: James Frey's publisher, Penguin, has dropped him, with little public comment."

Posted by: Scottynuke | February 24, 2006 10:38 AM | Report abuse

Curmudgeon - There's probably a name for it, but you describe an interesting phenomenon there with Noonan. Even the faithful have to check that faith at the door from time to time and admit that their side is messed up, an event that's becoming more frequent lately with the Bush administration. Novak was slapping them around last week for a poor chain of command, leading to Cheney's failed triple flip. Marlin Fitzwater and Ari Fleischer also dared to say that a failed triple lox had occurred. Shoot, even George Will, he of the Happy Corvette-Driving Conservatives Club, was pointing out some stumbles on the Bush ice for something not so long ago. (He used the word "obduracy" in describing the illogical underpinnings of the administration's rationalizations.) The guys who ordinarily line up to apologize for Bush are lining up to bash him instead, over the port plan and other matters.

Is it because he's a lame duck? Or have the foibles of his administration reached some sort of a critical mass that has put it on thin ice?

Okay, I tried too hard to stay within the tenor of today's kit. But I hope y'all see my point.

Posted by: Bayou Self | February 24, 2006 10:47 AM | Report abuse

I am last night's Child of a Lesser God Boodler. I *AM* also the Child of a Lesser God. I fess up. Used a different handle last night to get people to think some. I'm the guilty part, I admit it. So shoot me.

I Boodled the thought by Chief Luther Standing Bear from the book, "Native American Wisdom," by Kent Nerburn, Ph.D. and Louise Mengelkoch, M.A., The Classic Wisdom Collection, New World Library, San Rafael, Calif. It's a small book, just over 100 pages, with a lot to say.

Chief Luther Standing Bear of the Oglala Sioux, 1868-1939, wished for his people to live a nomadic lifestyle, but tried to accommodate to white ways by attending Carlisle Indian School and encouraging his people to take up farming. He turned away from white culture after witnessing the slaughter of unarmed men, women and children at Wounded Knee (have you visted?) in 1890. He published a book, "My Indian Boyhood," in 1933.

*must blow nose and leave Boodle*

Posted by: Loomis | February 24, 2006 10:47 AM | Report abuse

Proof positive that the Olympics is all about sport.

"As armed police ejected the man, naked into the cold mountain air, he was heard to plead in a Scottish accent: "Please will someone bring me my clothes?""

This from the Turin games website.

Posted by: dr | February 24, 2006 10:48 AM | Report abuse


Here's a comment from Dan Steinberg's blog today that I thought you would like:

Just got an e-mail from a bored government worker, who says that many schools and offices in Newfoundland are closing at noon today for the men's curling final. Most of the Canadian curlers are Newfies.

Posted by: pj | February 24, 2006 10:48 AM | Report abuse

Is it not painfully clear to anyone but me that streaking is destined to be an Olympic sport?

Posted by: Bayou Self | February 24, 2006 10:50 AM | Report abuse

Bayou Self writes:
Is it not painfully clear to anyone but me that streaking is destined to be an Olympic sport?

Ooohh-goody. A sport that I can watch with which I have some experience. That oughta keep you guessing...has she or hasn't she? I mean, it was Humboldt State, after all...?

Posted by: Loomis | February 24, 2006 10:58 AM | Report abuse

*snorts coffee through nose* Good one, Dolphin Michael

Posted by: Curmudgeon | February 24, 2006 11:02 AM | Report abuse

Relating to ice skating and science, a correction in The New York Times ...

A video report on Tuesday on about the reason skates slide easily over ice misstated the amount of pressure that a skater exerts. The area of the skate blade that touches the ice is 1.5 square inches, not a quarter of an inch, and a 150-pound person would exert 50 pounds per square inch of pressure, not 600 pounds. The affected passage has been deleted.

Posted by: Bayou Self | February 24, 2006 11:02 AM | Report abuse

ET - Colt did produce the Moison-Nagant rifle used by the Czar's army. I still have my great-granfather's rifle; he brought it with him from Russia in 1915.

Dreamer - your final post at the Iraq 9/11 blog was one of the best i've read on the subject.

Cur - The kabuki image adds a new gestalt to the Bush-Rove play. A great description. Thanks for sharing the column.

Posted by: Shiloh | February 24, 2006 11:02 AM | Report abuse

I am very encouraged by the squabbling among Republicans as they turn on Mr. Bush, regardless of whether the particular argument holds much water. Partly because I am among the political opposition, of course, but also because it's a heart-warming sign of the return of ordinary politics and obedience to the Constitution and the rule of law. I admitted to my wife, this morning, that I am prone to tinfoil-hat thinking: the Bush administration, its friends in Congress, and its apologists in the punditry, have shown themselves to be totally comfortable with ignoring the plain meaning of law, torturing both people and language to justify whatever the heck they want to do. I admit it, I wondered if these guys would really relinquish power in slightly less than he rest of the Republicans are ready to trun on him, in the expectation that Bush and his cronies will be gone and they'll be responsible to carry on for their party.

Posted by: Tim | February 24, 2006 11:09 AM | Report abuse

Before being heckled, the spelling is Mosin-Nagant. I confuse it with the Moiseyev Ballet Company. Remington and Westinghouse New England also produced the rifle for Russia, and some were produced in-country.

Posted by: Shiloh | February 24, 2006 11:16 AM | Report abuse

Re: shoes.

Technically, you don't have to take your shoes off. I've never been ordered by a TSA officer in error to remove my shoes (but I don't doubt that it happens). What WILL usually happen, is the steel shanks in your dress shoes will set off the metal detector. And having to repeatedly walk through the metal detector is something most people want to avoid.

Posted by: jw | February 24, 2006 11:23 AM | Report abuse

Apropos of absolutely nothing, I've got some Lynyrd Skynyrd on the headphones (Free Bird, Simple Man), and am abashed at how much I failed to appreciate them at the time, and how much I miss them now, and what more they could have done.

Posted by: Curmudgeon | February 24, 2006 11:35 AM | Report abuse

That was going to be "slightly less than three years". Got jumbled up, somehow.

Posted by: Tim | February 24, 2006 11:38 AM | Report abuse

I posted this on the previous blog, and yup its true.

On to the Gold medal round, Brad Gushues Newfoundland team is going to do their level best to bring home gold. Even if these guys bring home silver they are already heros. They are only the second athletes from the province to ever have gotten an Olympic medal of any kind. School are out for the day so that everyone can watch and cheer the team on. A very large part of me is thinking I don't want to go to school either (or in my case work). Anyhow, in what promises to be one of the finest matches of the tourney, one way or another we are coming home with a medal today.

Dang work and no tv.

Posted by: Anonymous | February 24, 2006 11:38 AM | Report abuse

I've been away from this blog for a long, long time. Did a lot of stuff -- travel, Christmas, cleaned the house, got my car fixed, took the cat to the vet, worked in the yard. Had a few slow minutes and thought I'd check in to see what bile and venum is being spewed today. The same bloggers are posting their teddibly witty, inane comments about the most inconsequential things. If you're all so ascerbic and snide, why aren't you Post reporters, too?

Don't you people have lives? Oh, now I get it. You're all inmates at some asylum for the mentally or criminally defective and are bound to your wheelchairs in front of computers. The attendants should be around soon to spoon feed you lunch.

While I've got your attention, the coverage on Cheney's hunting accident was out of proportion to the actual event. Think back on such straight-shooters as Gary Hart, JFK, LBJ, Bobby Kennedy, Ted Kennedy, Bill Clinton. They used different weapons, but it was all 'just a guy thing' -- nudge,nudge, wink, wink. Please recall Ted dallied in his DUI daze and didn't report his 'accident' until a day later, too late to save a poor drowned office intern. Now we've got Dandy Donald Shaeffer, eyeballing an admin. assistant. Whoa! Isn't he a Democrat, too?

I'd rather go hunting with Cheney than driving with Ted Kennedy or serving tea to Shaeffer.

Get a life people. Move away from the computer. Move out of your parents' basement and earn a living. I'm going to lunch.

Posted by: Styrofoam Peanuts | February 24, 2006 11:39 AM | Report abuse

Styrofoam Peanuts said: "Move out of your parents' basement and earn a living."

Well, that was clever.

At least I know how to spell "acerbic."

Posted by: Tim | February 24, 2006 11:45 AM | Report abuse

Clearly the best thing for National Security is to travel naked.

Posted by: RD Padouk | February 24, 2006 11:45 AM | Report abuse

Bayou Self--

If you paid attention in school, you learned a lot of stuff that was wrong.

From a NYTimes article a few days ago:

According to the frequently cited -- if incorrect -- explanation of why ice is slippery under an ice skate, the pressure exerted along the blade lowers the melting temperature of the top layer of ice, the ice melts and the blade glides on a thin layer of water that refreezes to ice as soon as the blade passes.

"People will still say that when you ask them," Dr. Rosenberg said. "Textbooks are full of it."


the whole article (verrrry interesting!):

Posted by: kbertocci | February 24, 2006 11:46 AM | Report abuse

I wonder what color Corvette Styro is driving.

Posted by: Bayou Self | February 24, 2006 11:47 AM | Report abuse

Regarding Styrofoam Peanuts. I have three computers on my desk. Right now two are cranking away making the world safe for democracy. I have worked hard to make time to waste time on this third computer. And since I sometimes live at work, which is in the basement, escape is difficult. And it was a lot funnier when Shatner said it.

Posted by: RD Padouk | February 24, 2006 11:50 AM | Report abuse

Whoa, Styro Nut. Chill, chill. Haven't you been reading George Will? You're supposed to be a lot happier than this. Look, I'll make a deal with you. I promise not to listen to Rush and you promise not to read this blog, OK?

Posted by: kurosawaguy | February 24, 2006 11:52 AM | Report abuse

Mr. Rooney needs to come up with a better handle... Didn't he rant about styrofoam peanuts on "60 Minutes" one time?

Posted by: Scottynuke | February 24, 2006 11:54 AM | Report abuse

Science meets curling. It's, like, a dream come true:

Posted by: RD Padouk | February 24, 2006 11:58 AM | Report abuse

Sent that too fast, so I will flood blog with more curling data.

The rink is 3 young pups from Newfoundland and one old guy from New Brunswick. The old guy, Russ Howard has been part of Canadian national and international curling since before there was tv (almost). He has risen in my estimation in so many ways. He is nominally the skip, because he does not have the power to sweep as hard and as long as the young guys, so he holds the broom. Brad Gushue calls the shots and throws the last rocks. This traditionally canterkerous fellow who is used to leading his own rink, defers to the younger man and Gushue's vision of the game, even though it can be very different from what he would call. It speaks volumes about Russ Howard, and his passion for curling and his desire to be an Olympian, and it speaks volumes about their respect for each other.

They are true sportsmen and some of our finest Olympians.

Gratuitous curling moments are now almost over. Gotta go monitor the game.

Posted by: dr | February 24, 2006 12:00 PM | Report abuse

I thought ice skates skated 'cause the ice was slippery. But I was never a science major.

*sigh* I suppose the "real" reason is that ice contains methane calthrates or some damn thing.

Oh, goody, here comes the attendant with my lunch. Now, if I can just wheel my wheelchair around away from the computer...

Posted by: Curmudgeon | February 24, 2006 12:15 PM | Report abuse

dr - liked your post about the sartorial splendor of the American men curlers. Clearly they know what Americans like in their Olympic athletes. Let's just hope that they don't start going all Weir on us since curling in sequins would certainly mess up the ice.

Posted by: RD Padouk | February 24, 2006 12:16 PM | Report abuse

Hey, dr, define "old guy," will ya? Gimme a break here.

Posted by: Curmudgeon | February 24, 2006 12:16 PM | Report abuse

Styro: Veni, vidi, vici, venum (sic),venom

Posted by: Shiloh | February 24, 2006 12:24 PM | Report abuse

To clarify, he turned 50 during the games, and 'old guy' is only in relation to the young guys who are in their mid 20's.

RD, I can't help it. They look hot.

Posted by: dr | February 24, 2006 12:34 PM | Report abuse

Do they wear cumberbunds?

Posted by: Bayou Self | February 24, 2006 12:40 PM | Report abuse

Well, you're leading 3-2 after 3. I have no idea what that means, but keep it up. (I guess.)

(If it's "after 3, how many more [whatevers] are there?)

Posted by: Curmudgeon | February 24, 2006 12:47 PM | Report abuse


Your great grandfather was with the white Russians? Is that why he left?

Posted by: Eurotrash | February 24, 2006 12:50 PM | Report abuse

Laughing, Bayou

Posted by: Curmudgeon | February 24, 2006 12:50 PM | Report abuse

10 ends per game.Losing by 5 or more after 8 ends usually ends up with losing team "shaking hands" with the winners

Posted by: sg | February 24, 2006 12:51 PM | Report abuse

The NYT article posted by kb is on thin ice, as stories go. The hydroplaning of skates on a water layer has credibility. And ice, like glass, begins not as a solid, but as a liquid; and glass, if anyone has examined old panes (thicker at the bottom) continues to flow very,very slowly as it ages. The consequences to global warming (summer is ending in Antarctica)and the acceleration of the process have caused some concern that glacial melt on the WAIS may cause a thin layer of water to tricle down to the bedrock on which the WAIS rests, and cause a slippery ride into the sea - raising tides and coastal reach by as much as 17 feet over present sea-level. Of course, I am a democrat and take an unhappy view of this potential catastrophe. (WAIS=Western Ant. Ice Sheet, which I sometimes confuse, Achenfan, with Western Australia)

Posted by: Shiloh | February 24, 2006 12:51 PM | Report abuse

ET: Yes, according to my grandmother from Ukraine, who frequently argued with my Russian grandfather about the Czar, the Bolsheviks and Socialists, mostly in an admixture of languages which I could barely understand. I also have my great-grandfathers and step-great-grandmothers portrait done in Russia; and I am often struck by his resemblance to V.I.Lenin.

Posted by: Shiloh | February 24, 2006 12:57 PM | Report abuse

Joel's smoking today, folks - new kit on quick beans. Recipe actually sounds credible and...good.

Posted by: slyness | February 24, 2006 1:05 PM | Report abuse

kb - When I think back on all the crap I learned in high school, it's a wonder I can think at all.

and I see that correction I posted earlier made it into the online story.

Posted by: Bayou Self | February 24, 2006 1:05 PM | Report abuse

Luckely he resembled Lenin and not your step-great-grandmother.

Posted by: Eurotrash | February 24, 2006 1:05 PM | Report abuse

Sorry Shiloh but glass begins as a solid, is melted, then allowed to solidify as glass in various shapes and sizes. And the glass flow is a myth. Those old windows that are thicker on the bottom than the top were made that way.

Posted by: omni | February 24, 2006 1:11 PM | Report abuse

I am a big believer in not rising to the bait, but am trying to decode what the commentator Styrofoam Peanuts means in these sentences: "While I've got your attention, the coverage on Cheney's hunting accident was out of proportion to the actual event. Think back on such straight-shooters as Gary Hart, JFK, LBJ, Bobby Kennedy, Ted Kennedy, Bill Clinton. They used different weapons, but it was all 'just a guy thing' -- nudge,nudge, wink, wink."

I seem to recall that there was a fair bit of media coverage of these other people and their various problems. Did the Gary Hart Monkey Business situation not get enough coverage? I seem to recall that it spawned a media frenzy of historic dimensions and destroyed what had been a very plausible presidential candidacy. Did America just go "nudge, nudge, wink, wink" when Clinton had a relationship with an intern? Gosh, I could SWEAR that the government basically shut down for a year so that Clinton could be impeached. Or was that just a bad dream.

Damn, rose to the bait. I'm an idiot.

Posted by: Achenbach | February 24, 2006 1:16 PM | Report abuse

That whole glass flow thing is just a viscous rumor.

Posted by: kurosawaguy | February 24, 2006 1:20 PM | Report abuse

Considering that water will simulateously freeze and evaporate at low enough temperature/pressure combo, it's not impossible that ice could simply have a ice-water layer at its surface.

Ice paradoxically needs some heat to translate from the water to ice stage.

If you check a figure skating mark, the ice is actually less slippery than the original surface. So go figure.

Posted by: Wilbrod | February 24, 2006 5:15 PM | Report abuse

RE: pnut
to paraphrase Ghandi: An ounce of practice is worth more than tons of bean byproduct

Posted by: cheesehead | February 24, 2006 5:18 PM | Report abuse

To quote Ghandi: First they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they fight you, then you win.

Posted by: soulbrotha | February 24, 2006 5:25 PM | Report abuse

Russ, the feromagnicity of beans is the true source of their gasseous potency, and is unaffected by the introduction of heat, light, or space dust. A real soulbrotha
does not care about the science of beans.
Beans are a religious experience - especially when followed by banana pudding fabricated with great prejudice.

Posted by: cheesehead | February 24, 2006 5:31 PM | Report abuse

Possum, on the other hand, surpasses even the penultimate holy ecstasy experienced in the bellycrawling halls of the high megachurch hogwash cult

Posted by: cheesehead | February 24, 2006 5:36 PM | Report abuse

sorry, wrong blog

Posted by: Anonymous | February 24, 2006 5:37 PM | Report abuse

My mother is old school New England baked beans. She loves to sing the musical fruit song. both the clean version and the 'good for your heart' version.

I hate most legumes. The only good bean is a green bean.

Posted by: yellojkt | February 25, 2006 2:26 PM | Report abuse

Are you sure 70007 of this?!?

Posted by: Gezer Gamadi | September 15, 2006 1:59 AM | Report abuse

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