I just took an “office safety” online course for work. The course linked off to a YouTube video from Ready Houston on dealing with an “active shooter” situation. After that, the course talked about bomb threats.

While I was on the Tube, I noticed the sheer amount of active shooter advice videos in the related video column.

I also noticed that the Ready Houston video was in part funded by Homeland Security. I wondered: “So, the government will spend money to make videos on surviving attacks, but they won’t actually do anything to prevent the attacks from actually happening.”

Modern American life is weird. It also makes me kinda queasy.

Conservative ideology, as Perlstein persuasively argues, is particularly vulnerable to grifters because of its faith in the goodness of business and its concomitant hostility toward regulation—which makes it easy for true believers to buy into the notion that some modern Edison has a miraculous new invention that the Washington elite is conniving to suppress. In Perlstein’s words, “The strategic alliance of snake-oil vendors and conservative true believers points up evidence of another successful long march, of tactics designed to corral fleeceable multitudes all in one place—and the formation of a cast of mind that makes it hard for either them or us to discern where the ideological con ended and the money con began.”


I’ve been listening to a lot of film scores lately, and I guess I’m a dork but Shore’s “hobbit themes” — wood flutes, fiddles, guitars — from the LotR movies always make me feel incredibly homesick, despite being neither a hobbit nor a Kiwi.* Seriously, they make me want to run home and hug my son.

* As far as I know.


“When a man lies, he murders some part of the world.”

Yes! Last night I totally got to pass on this wisdom to my son in an appropriate context. Totally worth the thirty-year wait.

(Granted, he;’s 18 months, so it’s not like he understood me, but I’m still counting it.)


I blather on about the ways many games discourage me from playing (which I suppose may be a good thing given how many games I still manage to play.) Today: First Impressions. I give examples of good and bad; spoiler: if you’re seeing a thumbnail of Lady Blackbird, it’s in the “good” category.

How to discourage me from playing your game – Part 1