Yes, it's another one of those entries. The sort that consist of a long bullet list of nigh-unrelated items.
- A couple years ago, British composer Mike Batt "wrote" a silent piece of "music" called "A One Minute Silence," which his band the Planets included on an album. Batt listed the composer of the piece as "Batt/Cage." The John Cage Trust sued Batt for copyright infringement, claiming that he had copied the work from John Cage's 1952 silent piece "4'33"." (Eep! How does one correctly punctuate a number of seconds within quotation marks?) They ended up settling out of court for "an undisclosed six-figure sum," which Batt said he was paying out of respect for Cage. The publishers seemed to think that the idea of a silent work was copyrightable; I can't imagine that's true in the US, but maybe in the UK? Anyway, Batt noted: "Mine is a much better silent piece. I have been able to say in one minute what Cage could only say in four minutes and 33 seconds." (I'm told that part of the point of Cage's piece was that when it was performed live you could hear the audience sounds, that that was what made the "music.")
- Speaking of punctuation, even the New York Times gets it wrong sometimes. From an article today about Dean: "He spent only $227,000 on television advertisements less than his two main rivals and kept as his state director a 24-year-old yet to complete the University of Wisconsin." I'm guessing that there should be commas or dashes around "less than his two main rivals"; at first I thought it was saying that $227,000 was the difference between the amount he spent and the amount his rivals spent.
- Regarding the judge who refused to consider the stop-the-gay-marriages request due to a semicolon being used instead of the word "or": I'm still unclear on whether this was a political action (insisting on correctness despite clarity, for a political purpose) or a legal matter (an important difference in legal meaning). If the former, while I applaud the politics, I confess to being a bit bothered by the action itself; that kind of tactic can be used just as easily against anyone, and if it were used by a judge opposed to gay rights, everyone on my side of the issue would be appalled.
- On the plus side: San Francisco performed over 2600 (!!!!!) same-sex marriages from Thursday through Tuesday. Way cool.
- Amusing-to-me headline: Arnold to Mayor: Stop the Gay Weddings. I think I'm amused because I can totally imagine Arnold saying that phrase in his Terminator voice (though he apparently didn't actually say the phrase per se), and because of the photo of him looking resolute. (Btw, down at the bottom of that article it says that Kerry has said he supports amending the MA state constitution to ban same-sex marriage.)
- Be sure to check out Donald Rumsfeld's fighting technique. His kung fu is better than mine!
- Oh, back to the Times for a minute: they had an article the other day about how people listening to iPods block out the world. It's clear that most of the people in the article consider this a bad thing; the people listening to music are so caught up in their own isolated worlds that they become unaware of what's going on around them, like a clerk telling them they're next to be served. The weird part is that Apple pointed to this article in their ongoing list of cool-articles-praising-Apple-stuff.
That'll do for now.