Saturday, June 6, 2009


The first week of June included his wedding anniversary and the birth of his first child, but the date which most profoundly affected Dad was D-Day - June 6, 1944.

He wasn't an infantryman. As a supply sergeant in the air corps he wouldn't hit the beach until day three of the invasion, to begin his primary task of leading a salvage squad... Touring allied aircraft crash sites, identifying and removing parts that could be recycled... Ever mindful that from the first moment he hit the beach, the entire time he served in France, he was treading on sacred ground, sanctified by the blood of brothers in arms.

He died without ever revisiting the French Alps he loved, or the scenes of battles depicted on Walter Cronkite's "20th Century" documentary series, many of which he'd acknowledge simply by saying "I was there," but would never discuss in detail with his children, who laid him to rest in the veteran's section of our city cemetery, in the company of other brothers who'd made it home... But would never forget D-Day.

A President's Prayer

With the invasion well under way, President Roosevelt returned to the radio on the night of June 6, 1944, not in arrogance, or defiance, but in prayer. Here & Now spoke with Julian Zelizer, Professor of History and Public affairs at Princeton’s Woodrow Wilson School on the eve of the invasion's 65th anniversary.

Audio: BBC, PRI & WBUR's Here & Now. Host: Deborah Becker.

Listen to the prayer and read the speech

Ironically, each member of Germany's Wehrmacht wore a belt buckle inscribed with the phrase "Gott mit uns" (God with us), a carryover not only from World War One's spiked helmets, but from coat of arms of Prussian King Frederick the first... Not just the first Frederick, but Prussia's first king, 1701 - 1713.

Echoes of History

Saturn's Savior?

Monday's Outlook:

Friday's Announcement:

Roger Penske is shown during an interview with the Associated Press in Detroit with a mural of the city in the background. A person briefed on the deal says General Motors Corp. will sell its Saturn brand to former race car driver, automotive entrepreneur and dealership chain owner Roger Penske. (AP Photo/Paul Sancya, File)

Willie's Week In Review

Pubic Library?

KTNV-13, Las Vegas, June 4th.

Friday, June 5, 2009

Pants On Fire

"If there's really a liberal bias to media, then why is Liz Cheney booked on every show this side of 'Wheel of Fortune?'"
-- Keith Olbermann, 6/4/09

Cotton Candy Storm

Photographer : Daniela Edburg

Compassionate Clerk

Mohammad Sohail recounts the experience:

Audio: BBC, PRI & WBUR's Here & Now, June 4th. Host: Deborah Becker.

Police investigating the incident found the store sold glass pipes. Mr. Sohail faces a court appearance of his own on June 10th, charges of selling drug paraphenalia, and a potential fine of $30,000.


Some are outraged by this cartoon from The Oklahoman, June 2nd:

First, it's not a lynching, and I know piñatas are Mexican, not Puerto Rican... But if you think about it, there's something to the idea of the G.O.P. blindly whacking away in hopes of cracking her open.

Maybe there's something in Oklahoma's water (which might explain Senator Imhoff)... But this appeared in the Tulsa World, June 3rd:

David Carradine 1936 - 2009

As news dribbles in we are left to wonder why... Perhaps having been cast as Poon Dong, a Chinese mobster, in the action film "Crank: High Voltage" ... Maybe something else.

Current thinking by authorities in Thailand is that the man found hanging naked in a Bangkok hotel closet had snatched his pebble.

My brother Ken said:
Bummer. I remember when I was a college freshman, a guy on the floor started a ‘tradition’ where we got together in someone’s room and watched Kung Fu. We had fun with it, making jokes about the Grasshopper/mentor relationship, but the show had a good story, and a good message.

Goodbye, Grasshopper.

Radio & Records 1973 - 2009

R&R, RIPIt seemed like a good idea to founder Bob Wilson. Put together a weekly newspaper about Radio & Records... both enjoying far better fottune in 1973 than in recent times.

Record companies before MTV, in a pre-video, pre-Internet environment lined up to advertise their newest releases. Radio, far too cheap to ever be advertisers, would none the less line up in droves as subscribers, wanting to know what what was going on the air at like-minded stations in their genres as FM stations increasingly grabbed bigger chunks of audience.

It was a natural, except for one problem: Nobody told the truth.

35 odd years and 4 owners later, the same company that owns Billboard owns R&R, and decided in the face of declining revenues from Record Companies and declining subscriptions from Radio - who took what they wanted from the web for free - decided the two publications were redundant and chose Billboard as the survivor, in part because their website requires a paid subscription to access anything relevant to decision making.

Fittingly, executives kept the spirit alive to the end in explaining the rationale for the action on their websites: Nobody told the truth.

Thursday, June 4, 2009

20 Years Ago Today


Audio: BBC, PRI & WBUR's Here & Now. Host: Robin Young.

Tanks A Lot

More photos at link below.

The city of Saitama, Japan went to great lengths, and depths, to avoid typhoon season flooding. They built an extremely large and impressive storm sewer system starting in 1992. It's composed of giant concrete silos (65m tall, 32m wide) connected by 6.4km of underground tunnels 50m below the surface. It also has a giant tank: 25.4m tall, 177m long and 78 wide, with 59 concrete columns.

Via: Just Whatever blog

Mitt Happens

In A Boy's Dream

It's a website for Spike TV watchers... Or guys with two TV's in the same room watching hardcore action movies on one screen, and something softcore on the other. is just that. Explosions & Boobs. That's it... One random photo of each... Every time you visit.

Geekologie thinks it's the best ever... That's why they're geeks.

Take Me To The Bridge

Mid Hudson (FDR) Bridge By: Roy Samech (2003)

Composer Joseph Bertolozzi had an idea: To use New York’s Franklin Delano Roosevelt Bridge as a musical instrument — with mallets, steel pellets, and even a large log, he created music from the bridge’s guard rails, suspender cables, and girders. He’s just released a CD of his work: “Bridge Music” and beginning June 6th, visitors will be able to hear Bertolozzi's creations at the bridge itself.

Audio: BBC, PRI & WBUR's Here & Now. Host: Robin Young.

Rhythm Of Life

It's a Scientology video, but you can dance to it.

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Big Scam - Phony Fauxtos

I'm often surprised by what people are willing to believe from the spam they get, and how many will pass it on as true.

So a hoax of any kind has a pretty long half life. Take this photo:

My source had mailed it (without the identifying copyright) to 45 recipients, claiming it was a picture of a 7' 4" Dutch woman - the tallest woman in the world.

The truth is she's not... not 7' 4", not Dutch, not the record holder.

Spam marches on... and on... and on. This piece is now in it's 8th year according to fact checking site

Parliament's Expense Scandal Reaches Cabinet

Learn more about the scandal.
Learn more about the office of Home Secretary.

The Woman Behind UK Expenses Scandal

Heather Brooke was the first to file a freedom of information request for the expenses that British lawmakers got reimbursed by taxpayers. That request back in 2005 led to the embarrassing revelations coming out now in Britain.

Audio: BBC, PRI & WGBH's The World, May 21st - Host: Lisa Mullins.

Halfway Off The Hook

Boston's relationship with Shepherd Fairey is slightly schizophrenic.

While the street artist, and creator of the 2008 Obama "Hope" poster, is being celebrated with an exhibition of his works at the Institute of Contemporary Art, he was also charged, in February, with nearly 30 counts of vandalism in various municipal courts for instances of his posters and stickers being attached to public utility poles and junction boxes.

About half the charges were dropped Tuesday, June 2nd, by one of the three jurisdictions involved.

Chick Magnet Myth

Cars have less to do with getting dates than you think!

A survey of 100 women by Las Vegas City Life (newspaper) found while it's true that some women are more attracted to certain vehicles than to others, it's not for the reasons guys might think.

Twists And Turns

The ad's not as "wrong" as getting screwed by your mobile carrier.

Via: Adfreak blog

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Odometer Day

Obama Man

Canadian comedian Greg Morton weighs in on the current financial crisis and how President Obama plans to get us out of it.

The Bob & Tom radio show frequently hosts touring comedians, and is recapped weeknights on WGN America on cable tv.

Wall Paper

Can you go if someone's watching?

Don't ask what's in the stalls.

Photo: Daily Ha Ha, May 23rd.

But Wait, There's More

Shaving Lessons

The ever helpful folks at Gillette have posted a series of instructional shaving videos on YouTube, one of which states "When there's no underbrush, the tree looks taller."

Via Adfreak blog May 27th

Nature's Revenge

Via: Just Whatever Blog