Saturday, May 05, 2007

World's Worst Job?

The worst job in the world has got to be being No. 2 for Al Qaeda. I don't even know what the job description is, but most jobholders don't last long enough to find out. It seems like every other day, the US armed forces are capturing or killing No. 2 somewhere in the world. The conversations in Al Qaeda's HR department must be going something like this by now:

-- "Hey, No. 7! We have a great promotion opportunity for you! Corner office, chauffered limo, big pay raise."
-- "What's the catch?"
-- "We need a new No. 2. The last one just got captured."
-- "Uh, no thanks. I, uh, I'm only good at the odd-numbered jobs. Try No. 8."

In fact, if Al Qaeda was smart they'd just leave the job vacant and delegate the duties to No. 3. After all, you never see a news story about No. 3 getting taken out.

Thursday, May 03, 2007

How To Mix The Perfect Vodka Martini

I have three basic recipes for Vodka martinis. All of these recipes require a chilled glass, dry french vermouth such as Noilly Prat and a fairly neutral russian vodka such as Moskovskaya. All are finished with a twist of lime.

Dry: Pour one measure of vermouth into a martini glass. Swish it around and pour it out. Then pour 5 measures of vodka into a completely different glass.

Very Dry: Pour 5 measures of vodka into a martini glass. Hold the vermouth bottle up and let the light pass through it and fall onto the martini glass.

Perfect: Pour 5 measures of vodka into a martini glass. Sip, slowly, while reminiscing about the taste of vermouth.

Energy Conservation

Energy conservation: it's not just a good idea, it's the law

Tuesday, May 01, 2007

Cover your eyes

This one isn't funny (yeah, yeah...) but I had to get it off my chest. All over the world, men tell women how they should dress. They have a variety of reasons -- that women's bodies offend god, or society, or inflame mens uncontrollable sexual passions -- none of which permit rational debate. And let me say straight away, this isn't a dig at any particular religion or any particular society. Sure, some examples are more obviously visible than others, and in some places the pressure applied is more subtle than the blunt threat of the law. But even in the US today there are offices where women are frowned upon for not wearing stockings; churches where it's an affront for a woman not to cover her hair; and in many supposedly liberal Western democracies it's debatable whether girls should be permitted to wear pants (trousers) to school.

And before those of you who think of yourselves as tolerant and liberated and beyond such pettiness laugh at the silliness of those social conservatives, consider this: throughout the US today, the mere sight of the shape of a woman's nipple is enough to launch the media into paroxysms. And I'm not talking here about a Janet Jackson moment: I'm just talking about the shape seen through clothing! The same is true of many of the more repressed European countries. Did you know that contestants in beauty pageants routinely put band aids over their nipples so the shape won't show through their bathing suits? How obsessive is that?

Anyway, my bottom line here is: if you think that women's bodies or hair are offensive or inflammatory...

...don't tell the women to cover their bodies. Tell the men to cover their eyes.