Voting, Fireworks and a Dance-off

August 30, 2004 by  
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This time I’m not talking about the US election, but the Australian federal election. It’s been called for October 9. Bring it on.

I went to RiverFire at Southbank on Saturday night. The fireworks were pretty good. The F-111’s are always a great finale. Unfortunately I was in a spot where I was only going to get one shot at them, and they were too quick for the camera. It was more enjoyable just hanging out and experiencing it with a group of friends, and the other thousands upon thousands of people there.

Still at Southbank, we went to sit down and relax in the Piazza. The teen angst was palpable. This was definitely the place to be if you wanted to see and be seen. We took a seat and found we had chosen the best vantage point to witness the dance-off. That’s right folks, a dance-off. I was amused, impressed and privileged all at the same time. It was funny to see these guys facing off to prove themselves to each other and the very sizeable crowd that had gathered to watch. Alternating sides sent out the representatives to challenge… This went on for about 15 minutes. Some of them were really good. Some were fairly average. The whole experience was a little surreal, but kind of cool. Eventually the police came and told everyone they had to leave, but both groups had just been standing around looking at each other for five minutes by then anyway. I think they’d run out of moves.

August 30, 2004 by  
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Just chose one fireworks shot. None of them were that great. I didn’t have my tripod. Posted by Hello

August 30, 2004 by  
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The Danceoff – dueling dancers Posted by Hello

August 30, 2004 by  
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The Danceoff’s only clear shot because, yes, he just balanced there. Posted by Hello

August 30, 2004 by  
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Parko attempts a backflip after we leave the danceoff.
His feet do hit the ground first…but I can’t say he landed on them. Posted by Hello

Copy Editor in Cambodia

August 28, 2004 by  
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This job makes me want to pack my bags. It’s not the location. It’s the perks: adventure, inconvenience, making a difference in a fragile democracy and furthering a free press. I’m sold. If you think I’m joking, I assure you I’m not. Pity about university…

August 27, 2004 by  
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I’ve just signed up with Hello from Picasa, so testing it out by posting one of my favorite photos. This is looking up Monument steps, all 345 of them… Posted by Hello

To vote or not to vote

August 27, 2004 by  
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Australian readers may say, “But it’s compulsory to vote”. Yes, but I’m not talking about the Australian federal election which I wholeheartedly look forward to voting in. I’m talking about the election of the next president of the United States.

It may be the US Democrats urging expats to vote, but what if I wanted to vote Republican? I don’t, but what if I did? On visiting their site, the Democrats Abroad Australia group asks me (not require, just ask) to fill out a membership form. Hell no! You ain’t co-opting me into your database! I don’t need any stinkin’ democrat knocking on my door the next time I vote republican! I will, however, directly visit OverseasVote2004.com to fill out the form…

Argh, it’s run by the Democratic National Committee too! Oh well, they’re going to love me – Iowa’s a key state in the Electoral College isn’t it? Yay, I know not much about US politics, but will participate in my first American election. Unless of course George W. manages to invalidate absentee votes, the military, African Americans and all of Florida… then, well, I tried.

Sellout

August 27, 2004 by  
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Google/Blogger is promoting their Adsense program for blogs. Basically content-based advertising…

Because I have thousands of visitors to this site every day – thousands I tell you! – I’m thinking of selling out. Oh yes, it’s the high life for me from now on. Goodbye university. Goodbye career. Goodbye food stamps. Hello no work, lazing around and weekend jaunts to the Ba-HA-mas! Wait, that’s already my life. Except the Bahamas of course, I can only get there on long weekends at the moment…

News story written in 90 minutes and handed in this morning was not even worth mentioning really. But I just did. Now to find a real story.

I’m posting from the library at university. I have my Ethics case study outline due in 15 minutes. Yeah it’s not happening. I’m looking for three stories from Iraq to analyse. Are there still embed journos in Iraq, or are they all independent of the US Army now that the war is ‘over’ (I laugh)? What I’m looking for is reporting on the same event by an embed, independent, and Al-Jazeera journalist. Then analyse the ethics of each. Hm, maybe I’ll just go with an American, Australian and Al-Jazeera journalist.

Next time I blog, there may be advertising content seen on this site. Then again, that might involve more effort than I feel comfortable expending. hoo-roo

I’m back

August 25, 2004 by  
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And what have I learned? That I shouldn’t have a computer connected to the internet in my bedroom. It’s just too damn easy to waste time. I must admit, I cheated a little. I did check email, and read some blogs, but my computer was never connected to the internet. Anyway, I didn’t have withdrawals or anything, and I did actually get some stuff done.

So, five minutes back on the net on the computer in my bedroom (eh, things will change), what do I have for you? RSS Owl, the newsreader I occassionally use, tells me yet another update is available. While downloading that, I check out some of the feeds I never read (because I never use my newsreader), and discovered this link to Transformers, busting out the mad floor routine. Good stuff. I recommend it… and have patience if you have a slow download rate (it’s streaming), which I’m experiencing as I type this and try to watch it. Alright, it finished streaming (3min 45sec) and I watched it uninterrupted beginning to end. Truly a masterpiece. Those Transformers can dance!

Otherwise, there’s a lot more important things to be done than write in this blog, like

  1. write at least one news story
  2. write my case study outline for journalism ethics (I’m thinking ‘war’ reporting, either Iraq or Sudan)
  3. other miscellaneous university requirements

Till next time.

My Isaac

August 18, 2004 by  
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I like the new Blogger Navbar up the top. I’ve enjoyed random blogsurfing with the “next blog” feature. At the same time, however, I’ve found it difficult to enjoy. It’s a guilty pleasure. At the back of my mind is that nagging, insisting, reminding, voice that all I’m doing is avoiding other more important responsibilities.

Nothing should ever consume so much of your time it reduces your quality of life. With this thought in mind, I’m pulling the plug on the internet for a week. A WEEK?!What emails will I miss? How will I keep up with the world? What will I do? The very fact that it’s a little daunting confirms to me that I need to cut the cord (not literally).

The one line I remember with crystal clarity from a sermon two weeks ago was, “God knows your Isaac.” The reference was to the story of God testing Abraham by asking him to sacrifice his only son Isaac. I always considered sport to be that one thing I was holding in too high regard, but I’ve gotten over my obsession for the most part. I know I can walk away from it if I have to.

The internet, however, is consuming hour upon hour of time I don’t have to waste. And so until 7.30pm next Wednesday night, or later, I bid you adieu.

Michigan sucks

August 18, 2004 by  
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Hard work and dedication does pay off! The coveted ‘Michigan sucks’ shirt from Caliblog.com arrived in the mail the other day. I wore it to university on Tuesday and received some strange looks. That’s right, that’s what it says!

Michigan may suck, but South Carolina (state of my birth, though I haven’t been there in 15 years) rules, as do Volkswagen Kombi vans and Gopher College rugby! Gopher College will take some explaining, but it’s not going to happen now. Neither are you going to get the pic that doesn’t cut out both the rugby ball and my whole head.

[singing] Lazy blogging, yeah it’s for me.

Cartoons

August 18, 2004 by  
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Jaws in 30 seconds – reenacted by bunnies.

I had to blog this. Too funny. Check out the other cartoons there also. Thanks to Dan from Surgical Strikes for the reference.

Another good site for cartoons is Weebls Stuff. Some funny cartoons, some very strange, and some quite disturbing really.

Gmail

August 17, 2004 by  
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By the way, I still have one Gmail account available to anyone who wants it.
That’s One Gig of email space… excitement.

Inform Me

August 17, 2004 by  
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Cave possibly used by John the Baptist found

“The discovery, if confirmed, would be among the most significant breakthroughs for biblical scholars in memory”.

‘Evangelical X’ianity Has Been Hijacked’: An Interview with Tony Campolo

“there’s a difference between evangelical and being a part of the Religious Right. A significant proportion of the evangelical community is part of the Religious Right. My purpose in writing the book was to communicate loud and clear that I felt that evangelical X’ianity had been hijacked.

When did it become anti-feminist? When did evangelical X’ianity become anti-gay? When did it become supportive of capital punishment? Pro-war? When did it become so negative towards other religious groups?
[…]
We ought to get out of the judging business.”

You tell ’em Tony.

And then, to turn to a completely different focus… And no, this is not being intemperate or negative towards other religious groups… or is it? You tell me, I’m just presenting the news.

Abdullah urges Muslims to restore Islam’s glory

Prime Minister Abdullah Badawi [of Malaysia] has called on Muslims to have a plan of action to restore the glory of Islam, saying that rebuilding the Islamic civilisation is their responsibility.
[…]
He added that efforts to develop a respectable lifestyle on earth by seeking out success and building an Islamic civilisation at the same time were actually part of the requirements in Islam.

Islamic expansionism?

Saudi prince declares victory in war against terrorists

‘We directly went to the heads of the snakes to cut them off, and we know the tails are a group of our sons who went astray,’ Prince Ab- dullah said. ‘We know how to deal with them and how to bring them back to the right path.’ He did not elaborate.

Perhaps it involves not funding them anymore. Too bad for the US most of the insurgents in Iraq are Iraqis, not foreign nationals, or Saudi Arabia would have the answer to global terrorism… if they chose to elaborate.

Muslim vote and Bush converts

Polls in 2000 showed Muslims favored Bush over Mr. Gore by a wide margin – some showed support in the 90 percent range
[…]
With a little work he [George W.]may break out of the single digits with Muslim-American voters [in the 2004 election].
[…]
Everyone […] knows a wavering former Bush voter […] or, worse for the administration, someone who is sure they aren’t voting for Bush this year. In the last four years he has done something that offends them or taken a stand they cannot abide.

What I find surprising is that he hasn’t done something that offends everyone in the last four years, but that’s just me.

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