News appetizers: If Only We Could Make Them Taste Like Spinach and Artichoke Dip.

It’s Monday, one of the best days of the week! Easily in the top 10. Well, maybe not “easily.” But probably.

Lots of crap going on in the world today, and some not-crap. Let’s take a look.

More tornadoes across the Midwest. At least 37 have died. So heartbreaking. (BBC) (NYT) (CNN)

A couple of guys stole money from Girl Scouts and the girls beat up the thieves. The thieves still got away, but my favorite quote from the week came out of the story. “I hope your face hurts from where Iravia punched you, jerk, bam,” [Rachel] Johnson said in a message to the thieves. “I hope your face hurts and I hope it leaves a scar. Who steals money from Girl Scouts, I mean, really?” (CNN)

Rush Limbaugh has apologized for calling Sandra Fluke a slut, and a prostitute, and saying that she should be required to post sex videos online for payment for birth control. He’s not apologizing because he’s wrong, though, because he’s been wrong one million times, and really offensively so, and never apologized. He’s apologizing because advertisers were pulling their money. Sandra Fluke: a “prostitute” because she wanted her medicine to be covered by health insurance. Rush Limbaugh: morally A-OK, even though his opinion and offensiveness depends wholly on the highest bidder. I hope that he goes down in flames. And then steps on a Lego barefoot. (BBC) (CNN)

Obama “won’t hesitate to use force” in Iran. I hate everything. (NPR)

Mitt Romney won the Washington caucuses. My reaction? At least fucking Santorum didn’t win. (BBC) (NPR)

Oh, fuck. A munitions dump in the Congo went awry, there were explosions, at least 150 people are dead. Fuck. (BBC)


Russia’s elections were yesterday. They were totally, 140% legitimate. Just kidding. People are protesting, all sorts of inconsistencies, etc. Putin “wins.” (BBC) (NPR) (NYT)

Image courtesy

Holllly crap. Naturally conceived quadruplets were born on leap day in England. First holy crap. Quadruplets. Second, thankfully they only have to have a birthday party every four years. (BBC)

You are more likely to survive cervical cancer if you get your pap smears regularly. Although, from what I can tell from the article, “regularly” is every 3-5 years and starting at age 23, which is WAY less than what we do in America. Still, don’t forget to get pap smeared. (BBC)

Oh shit. Hackers had complete control over NASA’s computer system in 2011. Oh shit. (BBC)

Zynga is breaking away from Facebook. Related: Who wants to play against me in Words With Friends? (BBC)

SO FREAKING COOL. Researchers have developed a generator that purifies water and in the process creates electricity. Input: dirty water. Output: clean water and electricity. Amazing. (BBC)

The Red Cross is trying to get into Syria to give aid. It isn’t working. The entire situation is just so awful. (NPR) (NYT)

Wow. Pennsylvania is rethinking rules for juvenile courts after a judge was found guilty of sending kids to for-profit prisons for kickbacks. (NPR)

BP settled with private businesses and individuals. It estimates that it will pay out $7.8 billion. Not enough. I don’t know how much would be enough, really. Infinity, maybe. (NPR)

I keep seeing this on my newsfeed: pink is not really a color. The thing is, though, we don’t base our ideas of color on the rainbow, it is all a linguistic and cultural construct. In Russian, there are two words for the color blue: light blue is a completely different color than dark blue. Pink is a color because it is a quality that we can see and describe, and the lack of a band in the rainbow is meaningless. (NPR)

16 people died in a train crash in Poland, when two trains were headed toward each other on the same track. I am pretty sure I’ve been on that route on the train, and it makes me feel sick. It’s not a worse tragedy because it could have been me, but it certainly hits close to home.

In case you were wondering, gas is getting more expensive. Because I’m sure you couldn’t figure that out without the newspaper telling you. (CNN)

Why did I used to have a crush on Kirk Cameron? (CNN)

So: Rush Limbaugh is a jerk, tornadoes and trains keep killing people, the situation in Syria makes me cry, and if you’re going to have quadruplets, you might as well have them on February 29. Consider your appetite whetted.

By Susan

I am old and wise. Perhaps more old than wise, but once you're old, you don't give a shit about details anymore.

32 replies on “News appetizers: If Only We Could Make Them Taste Like Spinach and Artichoke Dip.”

The scandal in PA was much bigger than just one judge. I think it was two superior judges and a bunch of county commissioners, too.  My cousin was one of the kids that got sent away (for a fairly minor offense).  It was a pretty messed up situation. Most of the kids needed help and counseling, not kiddie jail.

I know a couple of the kids- it’s pretty groce. Also, there’s some doubt as to how the settlement money is being used- some of it is being proposed for a skate park, which doesn’t address some  of the cultural imbalences and essentially will benefit white middle class youth and create a new place to blame the rest of the kids for ruining. Hopefully this proposal will get rejected in the review process in favor of some of the community education and youth voice projects that will get proposed as well.

In all fairness on the pink thing: when talking color theory, pink has never been a color. Neither has brown, black or white. They are working from different ideas of what colors are. When you are talking linguistic color, pink is a color. So is brown, turquoise, eggplant, and any other name you can reliably relate to a certain color. When you go color theory if you go with Newton’s theory there are seven colors, if you go with Goethe there are six . Neither one allows for a pink. Newton was all about visible wavelengths and math and is great for physicists. Goethe was more experiential in his approach and it’s from him that we get the color wheel you may have learned about in art class. That color wheel explains a lot about how we obtain colors through subtractive color. And hence the primary colors of red, blue and yellow, then the secondary colors of purple, green, and orange. Everything else is either a hybrid mix of a primary and secondary (blue-green for turquoise for example) or a tint, tone, or shade of one of the big six. Pink is what you get when you add white to red and therefore is only a tint of red. Brown is orange plus black and so a shade of orange. This shit ain’t new.


Learning about intense color-wheel theory in college (I was in a costume design class) and realizing that orange is a neutral color, because it is what brown is made of was one of the happiest things that ever happened to my wardrobe.

By the logic in that article, most colors don’t exist because they aren’t single wavelengths. And pink isn’t necessarily a mix of red and violet anyway, most pink tint is made by combining red and white pigment. In the same way, purple doesn’t exist because it mixes red and blue.

One of these days I will actually get around to doing a full science post on color theory and light vs pigment. It’s pretty cool!

Do it!  I like to think about it from a linguistic point of view, because that’s my field, but there are plenty of basic colors that exist in other languages.  Russian is the one I know best, but there is no “blue” – there is dark blue and there is light blue, and you have to choose.  In English, there is dark red (red) and light red (pink) and you have to choose.  Even if scientifically they don’t exist as a wavelength.

Sometimes I love clearly shellshocked mother’s talents for understatement.

“We were really surprised.”




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