Boinging

June 1st, 2009

Despite my resolution of last night, there has been some unavoidable poddling around, in part because I left Boing Boing on my RSS feed.

Boing Boing is a double edged sword by its very nature, one day bringing a surfeit of internet riches, while the next plunging you into boredom when one of the posters has an ax to grind. Mind you, I am not saying that they don’t grind good axes, almost all of their causes are ones that more people should be getting very angry about, many of which involve attempting to counter powerful lobbying efforts regarding copyright. But sometimes I just can’t take the sheer weight of how much big media is bearing down on things like that.

Today has been a good day though. It would be a good day if there were only two posts, the first two posts I saw.

One post links to this LA Weekly blog post with video of a loop of Shatner’s famous “Khaaan!” dissected and reassembled into a film that lets you examine every twitch of the face. It is nothing short of amazing, and I wish I could see the whole thing.

The other was this post linking a post on plagiarism by the president of Jacksonville State University. The Wikipedia article seems to imply that the scandal has passed, but I take that with a grain of salt where plagiarism is implied. Sadly, with cases of plagiarism, it is often not the gatekeepers, but the victim that must police the crime. Because the amount of text out there is so large, I’m fairly certain that large portions of the plagiarism that goes on these days goes uncaught. My father once found someone having plagiarized a part of his dissertation, and got the person’s degree revoked, but it was mere chance that he happened upon it. He saw it in a list of dissertations and thought it would be interesting to see what it had to say about a topic related to the book he had written. Part way through he felt it seemed familiar. A little farther he realized that it was using part of an interview he had used (I think with Norman Mailer? Not his own interview, but sighted.) with all of the pronouns and names changed.

When I was younger, I was always worried that I would somehow accidentally plagiarize something. Then I read Pierre Menard, Author of the Quixote I calmed down a bit.

Not Dead

May 11th, 2009

Two semesters down, and four to go. I’m starting to work on picking up the balls I dropped over the past nine months. Hopefully a little fiction writing over the summer, some camping, and some interesting legal work.

<a href="http://youtube.com/watch?v=1vxQs84FMWQ&#8221;">http://youtube.com/watch?v=1vxQs84FMWQ&#8221;</a>

Smack

July 12th, 2007

I don’t check The Valve often enough. I know this because I almost missed their link to this brief rant, in which Le Guin borrows Cormac McCarthy’s fibrous cock to slap Ruth Franklin for the opening of her Slate review of The Yiddish Policeman’s Union.

Oh, and by the way…

October 6th, 2006

After you bend the meritocracy over a chair and make it your bitch have a care to take good notes. You never know when they might come in handy.

That first post I linked reminded me of a class I took in college on the publishing industry. In the class, the instructor, who had worked in the industry for some time, and was an alum, was asked about reaching the upper tiers of editing, where you actually get to choose what gets published and what doesn’t. “Well,” he said, and this was a while ago, so I’m not going to get it quite right, “you aren’t at an Ivy League school. So you should probably just give up on that.” It was one of the most resigned moments I’ve ever seen. I could practically taste the crushed ambition in the room.

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