» Fear Factor writers admit it's tough to keep it fresh
“As Mr. Kunitz says, 'there are only so many things you can do with a worm.' To date, contestants have had to eat worms, sit in a coffin filled with worms, bury their head in worms and shower with syrup-covered worms. What about having people stamp on thousands of night crawlers with their bare feet and then drink the resulting brown paste from a crystal goblet? It's been done.”
So what are they gonna do? They're going turkey bowling.
After ruling out turkey tongues (too hard to obtain turkey heads) and stuffing turkeys with gross foods (too predictable), the group settled on a game called “Turkey Bowling.” The concept: Using large frozen turkeys as bowling balls, contestants try to knock down pins. For each pin left standing, the contestant has to eat a different disgusting food such as maggot-filled cheese.
Fear Factor is the #3 rated show on TV among children age 2 to 11. Sit Jimmy in front of the tube and watch him laugh as turkey bowl losers eat maggot-filled cheese. I just finished The Bean Trees, by Barbara Kingsolver. In it, she writes, “It's funny how people don't give that much thought to what kids want, as long as they're being quiet.”
» The alternate biography of Walt Whitman
Pete is a ballsy kid.
» The Cubs-Cardinals games the last two nights have been fantastic. Great pitching on both sides, close final innings, and opposing fans filling the stadium and rooting against one another are making this series live up to the rivalry. Chicago lost on friday when LaTroy Hawkins walked in the final run. That was a tough one to watch, because all four men who reached base in that 9th inning were walked. We held St. Louis to 5 hits and lost 4-3. Last night, Aramis Ramirez provided the required offense with a 3-run shot and Matt Clement pitched his 2nd outstanding game in a row. Cubs won 4-2, escpaing a scary 9th inning. JoBo Sausage is keeping my nails short.
Cubs lead the all-time series 1,098 to 1,043. Carlos Zambrano vs. Matt Morris today and Maddux faces Jason Marquis tomorrow.
» American soldiers brutalized Iraqis. How far up does the responsibility go?
One of the readings in this month's Harper's described similar happenings at Guantanamo via interviews with detainees by Human Rights Watch and Vivian White, a BBC reporter and director of Inside Guantanamo. I was talking with Dan about this before the prisoner abuse story in Iraq broke on CBS a week ago and he was shocked to hear what I had read. I've never been in combat, combat training, or anything remotely close, but I've read and heard enough to know that dehumanizing the enemy is a component to survival. I'm untrained in thinking that way and the pictures and personal stories of the abuse are chilling and impossible to witness unmoved.
I'd rather turn away and hope these are isolated incidents performed by misled soldiers. Those running this war, and any war, don't want their questionable methods to bubble to the surface. They don't want the citizens they swear to protect to identify them, the invincible warrior heroes of the country, with dehumanization and disrespect for human rights. Those are the labels we save for the enemy. Nothing explains these stories of prisoner abuse. I don't know what else to say because I don't understand. I don't have the experience to know what it is to fear for my life, hate the enemy, and pray to just get my ass home safe. I'm thankful for that and I want to believe the men and women who do have that experience are moral people even if they've been taught and trained not to be.
» Race and Place Matter for Major Chicago Area Grocers
“There are eight aldermanic wards in Chicago with no 'major player' grocery stores, and all of those wards are predominantly minority.” Interesting study on local grocery placement. Stace and I shop about 75% of the time at Clark St. Market at Clark and Wilson. They've improved quality and cleanliness since we've lived here and my only real complaint is that they don't sell cat treats.
» Creepy Olsen twins frighten me
Yeah, but the countdown to 18 is creepier. Their bulbous eyes and big heads on those tiny bodies are cartoonish. I saw the trailer for La Pucelle Tactics and that reminded me of the Olsen twins. Gabrielle Carteris (Beverly Hills 90210) is listed in the English voice credits for La Pucelle, her third video game voice job. Gabrielle aside, Olsen twins — creepy, not hot.