And The Hits Just Keep Coming

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Apr 042011

I had occasion to hear the Columbus Gay Men’s Chorus several times when I lived in Dayton. In fact, it seemed their Christmas Concert and that of the Cincinnati Gay Men’s Chorus were often the same weekend, so I’d do Cincinnati Saturday evening, and then go to Columbus for their Sunday afternoon concert. Both were excellent choruses, and they both had very different styles, so it was a great fun.

Here the Columbus Chorus provides a youtube for the “It Gets Better Project” with the Columbus Youth Choir. I’ll just let the music speak for itself.

Dec 282007

Tiger Attack Wrath of God
It certainly didn’t long for the krazy kristian kooks at Westboro Baptist church to blame the tiger escape at the San Fransisco Zoo on gay people. They got right out there with a press release.

Screen Shot from Westboro Baptist PDF

Man Stuck Upside Down in Septic Tank – AP
Smells are known to be very strong inducements of memories, and certainly Christmas has lots of great smells. I love the smell or real Christmas Trees…and the food. Well, poor Robert Schoff is going to have a very different scent associated with Christmas from now on. Seems he stuck his head into the opening of his septic tank on Christmas Eve, got wedged in with his feet up in the air, and it took an hour for his wife to notice.

Time Slowing Down?Wired
A group of scientists from the University of the Basque Country in Bilbao, and Spain’s University of Salamanca are attempting to explain an anomaly in the observation over a surprising phenomenon: Supernovae stars viewed at extreme distances seem to be moving away from us faster than those nearby. Most researchers have assumed that the stars have somehow accelerated – or that the rate of the expansion of the post-Big Bang universe itself has accelerated over time. This was odd given that the universe was thought to be dominated by matter, which should, through the aggregate gravitational effect of each bit pulling on the others, have led to a deaccelerating expansion, rather than the opposite.

The Spanish researchers are using a complex part of string theory to postulate that time itself might be slowing, given that when scientists view distant objects, they are actually seeing back into time. I don’t know about you, but my day to day life proves this to be a false hypothesis. Things seem to be moving faster and faster everyday.

Wife Stabs Husband for Opening Christmas Present EarlyUSA Today
Shawn Johnson of Rock Springs, WY called police early Friday morning saying his wife, Misty, stabbed him. Apparently it was the result of an argument where Misty accused him of opening a Christmas present early. No word on whether he really did peek or not.

Bluetooth Headset Foils RobberyDayton Daily News
OK, I own one and use it when driving and when hustling through airports, but I think the people that walk around with them on their heads all the time look kind of idiotic and “Borg-ish” (See Star Trek). But in this case, it foiled a robbery at a Wendy’s in Columbus, OH, when Keith Allen Strugill (a two time loser on robbery and rape charges) activated an employee’s headphone when yelling at them to not answer a call while he was waiting on a time lock safe to open. The caller was a friend working at a nearby bank, who overheard the robber yelling at everyone, so she called the police. I guess you know the rest of the story.

UK Man Racks Up $54,000 of Data ChargesWired
Ian Simpson thought he had an unlimited data plan, so when his roommate showed him how to use the cell phone as a modem, he went to town downloading music and TV shows. Unfortunately, the Vodafone contract said the data plan  was actually only for 120 megabytes per month. Lesson here…read the fine print.

Polk County Boy Solicited by Man Dressed as a
Read the papers long enough, and you’ll probably finally hear it all. Apparently a guy, dressed as a woman, pulled up alongside a boy and asked for directions (given that, I have my doubts it was really a man…men don’t ask for directions), and then offered to commit a lewd act.

Man Threatens Wife With Hoe for Not Cooking
A Lutz man threatened to put a hoe in his wife’s head because she didn’t fix him dinner. Her son intervened, and the man went outside and returned with a rubber mallet. White trash at its best.

News for the Week of Nov. 2, 2007

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Nov 022007

Fatalities in N.C. Beach FireThe New York Times
Fire engulfed a beach house at Ocean Isle Beach, North Carolina early Sunday morning. Ocean Isle is about 30 miles north of Myrtle Beach, S.C. It is unclear how many people were in the house, but the reports it was college students possibly from the University of South Carolina. Approximately six were taken to the hospital, but there were deaths from the fire.

UPDATE: It now appears about six people were injured and seven died in the fire. They were mostly USC and Clemson students.

Happy Birthday to the NYC Subway SystemSlate
This past weekend marked the 103rd anniversary of the opening of the New York City Subway system. It’s now the largest subway system in the world.

Couple Arrested for DUI – Dayton Daily News
A Michigan was stopped and given a prelimary breath test which Police said read above the 0.08 limit. He had his 12 year old son in the car, so police told him to call his mother to come pick him. She arrived with the couple’s 9 year old daughter in the car, and was found to be drunk herself.

Dog Shoots HunterDayton Daily News
James Harris of Tama, Iowa was shot by his dog on opening day of Pheasant season. Harris was hunting with a group, and a bird was shot. He laid his gun on the ground to climb a fence to get the bird, and his dog stepped on the gun, causing it to discharge and put 100-140 pellets into Harris’ calf. I wonder if there’s any chance of getting this dog on any of Dick Cheney’s hunting trips?

The Sky Falls In OhioPlanetout News
Either the sky is falling or hell has frozen, but an out gay person has been appointed as a judge in Ohio. A former Dayton city commissioner is Ohio’s first openly gay judge after being appointed by Gov. Ted Strickland, the Washington Blade reported. Mary Wiseman is replacing Common Pleas Court Judge John Kessler, who retires Wednesday.

News for the Week Ending September 9, 2007

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Sep 102007

Duke Lacrosse Case
There are several items to report related to the Duke Lacrosse rape case. Mike Nifong, the prosecutor in the case, spent 24 hours in jail for lying to the court. It seems like a small penalty, but at least he got something. Also, the New York Times is reporting that the players and their families are in negotiations with the City seeking $30 million, but more important, some obviously needed changes:

The changes requested by the students and their lawyers include oversight of the police department by an independent commission, stricter procedures and videotaping of witness identifications conducted by the police, and the passage of a City Council resolution calling on the state to establish ombudsmen for district attorney’s offices and require the transcription of grand jury proceedings.

They deserve every dime of the money, but I especially like it when people are about more than the money, and force needed changes on agencies and institutions like this.

St. Pete Council Chairman Commits Suicide
According to a story in St. Petersburg Times, City Council Chairman John Bryan walked into City Hall just after 1 p.m. Friday and handed in his resignation letter. Less than five hours later, he was slumped over in a golf cart in the garage of his Floral City house, dead from carbon monoxide poisoning. He was 56.

Apparently he’d been to court the day before for the start of proceedings related to an accusation that he’d sexual abused his adopted daughters.

A Portion of the Patriot Act is Struck Down
Shining Celebi writes

U.S. District Judge Victor Marrero ruled in favor of the ACLU and struck down a portion of the revised USA PATRIOT Act this morning, forcing investigators to go through the courts to obtain approval before ordering ISPs to give up information on customers, instead of just sending them a National Security Letter. In the words of Judge Marrero, this use of National Security Letters ‘offends the fundamental constitutional principles of checks and balances and separation of powers.’

That can only be a good thing, and let’s hope this disgraceful attack on the Constitution is further taken apart.

Man Tracked with Cell phone Loses Job
By Charlie Sorrel, Wired Blogs

John Halpin, who had been working as a carpentry supervisor in New York for 21 years, was tracked by the GPS unit in the work provided phone he was given in 2005, and it turned out he was heading home early. His defense rested on the “I didn’t know I could be tracked” and “Sometimes I came to work early, too” arguments, but they didn’t wash.

That was certainly dumb enough, but according to Sorrel, the scariest thing to come out of the NY post story is that an employee can be tracked without his or her knowledge in every state except Connecticut and Delaware, where employers need to warn you before stalking you.

Shelby County Ohio Deputies Find 570 Pounds of Pot
Ben Sutherly, Dayton Daily News
Apparently during an accident investigation on I-75, a truck driver was arrested on “suspicion of drug trafficking,” when police found 570 pounds of pot in his truck.

Now I’m no legal expert, but that doesn’t sound much like “suspicion” to me.

News Roundup for Week March 3, 2007

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Mar 112007

8 Year Old Caught Selling Pot
SAGINAW, Mich. – Police said they caught an 8-year-old trying to sell marijuana to other children at a counseling center. Police were called to the Westlund Child Guidance Clinic after another boy told a teacher the 8-year-old had tried to sell pot to him. Investigators found the marijuana in a box of Lego toys belonging to the boy, television station WNEM reported.

The boy is enrolled in a program for students with disabilities, WNEM said. He was turned over to his parents. It wasn’t known if charges will be filed.

Mayan Priests to Purify Site After Bush Visit
GUATEMALA CITY – Mayan priests will purify a sacred archaeological site to eliminate “bad spirits” after President Bush visits next week, an official with close ties to the group said Thursday.

“That a person like (Bush), with the persecution of our migrant brothers in the United States, with the wars he has provoked, is going to walk in our sacred lands, is an offense for the Mayan people and their culture,” Juan Tiney, the director of a Mayan nongovernmental organization with close ties to Mayan religious and political leaders, said Thursday.

Tiney said the “spirit guides of the Mayan community” decided it would be necessary to cleanse the sacred site of “bad spirits” after Bush’s visit so that their ancestors could rest in peace.

BASE Jumper Lands in Trouble
TAMPA – William “Wild Bill” Stroup peered over the top of the future SkyPoint condominiums in downtown as wind whipped against a video camera’s microphone.

It was about 3:45 a.m. Tuesday atop the high-rise construction site, under a nearly full moon. Thirty-two stories separated Stroup from his target: a fenced-in plot on North Franklin Street where the Maas Bros. building once stood.

As Stroup floated to the ground, a man in a truck southbound on Tampa Street looked up.

“I noticed something come over my head,” Kenneth Glumm, 37, said on a taped 911 call to Tampa police. “It’s a guy with a kind of parachute kind of thing.”

“You didn’t see me. Don’t tell anybody you saw me,” Stroup said, according to Glumm. “That set off alarms,” Glumm said, recalling the fires on North Franklin Street he had heard about earlier that evening. He dialed 911. “With everything going on in the world, you never know. I thought some fool could’ve jumped out of a plane.” (So the fear mongering by the Bush Administration worked…Poor Mr. Glumm is just a scared little rabbit.)

Jailed Man Exonorated After Ski Mask Tested for DNA
West Palm Beach — A man who spent four months in prison on robbery charges was exonerated on DNA evidence, authorities said.

Cody Davis, 22, who was convicted in October of robbery and sentenced to three years in prison, spent more than four months incarcerated, but on Friday he walked out of Charlotte Correctional Institution a free man, the South Florida Sun-Sentinel reported.

Two witnesses to the robbery identified Davis, and a jury convicted him. DNA testing on a ski mask found at the scene was not done immediately because it was not worn by the burglar during the crime, Chief Assistant State Attorney Al Johnson said. Test results came back with DNA matching another man in the DNA database, and a Palm Beach County sheriff’s detective noticed Davis and the other man had similar characteristics.

Convicted Representative Still House Member

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Oct 162006

Denny Hastert and the other members of the House Leadership like to claim they are the ones that kicked Mark Foley out of the House for misconduct. Never mind they knew for years what was going on and did nothing, and that actually, Foley checked into rehad so fast once the e-mails were released they didn’t have time to ask him to resign.

Now Ohio Representative Bob Ney has plead guilty to multiple counts of accepting brides, yet he remains an illustrious member of U.S. House of Representatives. Of course, once that became public, they all started saying how they would demand his resignation, “once they come back into session after Election day.”

The FBI’s been investigating the guy for a couple of years now. The House Ethics Committee has issued not a peep. Ney even signed papers attesting to his misconduct over two weeks, but even that wasn’t enough to get the Leadership to call for his resignation. It seems the party of personal responsibility just can’t bring themselves to hold each to account.

The Reddest Red State?

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Sep 072006

I’m having some trouble deciding which state best reflects America’s red state values.

Who’s ahead in promoting Tom DeLay’s market-based legislative techniques? Is it Ohio’s Bob Ney, Bob Taft and Ken Blackwell, or is Florida whack-job Kathering Harris leading the way?

Is Florida the reddest of states because they first implemented the GOP’s White American Voting Preference Initiative, or does Ohio win because they perfected it?

Is Florida’s recently passed law that let’s you shoot someone that scares you (and ask questions later) more red than Ohio’s recently enacted rule that allows county prosecutors, the state attorney general, or, as a last resort, alleged victims to ask judges to civilly declare someone to be a sex offender even when there has been no criminal verdict or successful lawsuit the reddest of values.

The rules spell out how the untried process would work. It would largely treat a person placed on the civil registry the same way a convicted sex offender is treated under Ohio’s so-called Megan’s Law.

The person’s name, address, and photograph would be placed on a new Internet database and the person would be subjected to the same registration and community notification requirements and restrictions on where he could live.

A civilly declared offender, however, could petition the court to have the person’s name removed from the new list after six years if there have been no new problems and the judge believes the person is unlikely to abuse again.

I’ve created a poll so you can help me decide.