Silver linings

California’s Proposition 8, already the subject of such a great comment thread, looks like it’s going down to the wire, much less predictable than the presidential race. Should we start a betting pool? Meanwhile, Idaho Mormons were asked to make calls in favor of the proposition, then told not to. Are nosy, churchy Idahoans not popular in California? (Support if you can.)

The financial crisis shows no sign of letting up, but massive economic upheavals at least mean there are a few bargains around. For example, Iceland’s financial system completely collapsed a few weeks ago, but that means you can now get a hotel room in Reykjavik for $40 a night. Meet me there in January! (As a bonus, I discovered that the newest travel guide to Iceland was written by my friend, Andrew Evans.)

Sarah Palin has contributed to the American lexicon (in what respect, Charlie?), educated us about geography, and helped us all ponder what we would buy for $150,000 at Nieman Marcus. She has also prompted everyone’s favorite linguistics blog, Language Log, to run a post about moose. Which is important, you see, for informing us that among some Indian tribes the moose and the porcupine are considered friends, and that the moose is also friends with other small animals:

21 responses to “Silver linings”

  1. the moose is also friends with other small animals

    Lest we forget

  2. Rogan says:

    As long as we are not talking about ‘Mother humpin moose,’ I don’t care who they marry.

  3. Dave says:

    Okay, this blog needs perking up. How about a contest? I’ll buy a beer for the first person to identify and explain the comma error in paragraph 2.

  4. swells says:

    I can’t believe I’m falling for this Dork Detector, but . . . the phrase “my friend, Andrew Evans” should not have a comma because it makes his name an appositive, indicating that he is the only person who could be described by the phrase “my friend”–so instead it should read “my friend Andrew Evans” (which distinguishes him from, for example, “my friend Trixie Honeycups).

    LA or NY, Dave?

  5. swells says:

    Okay, me talking about grammar is the opposite of perking it up. My cousin has started an Electoral College betting pool, November Madness-style (or, guess-the-number-of-marbles-in-the-jar-style). Want to guess electoral vote numbers? What can the prize be, other than a better world and all?

  6. Rogan says:

    There is a nice piece by Joe Vogel lamenting Mormon support for Prop 8. It is worth a read for anyone with any ties to that religion.

  7. Rachel says:

    I have been getting a lot of mileage out of this recent essay by David Sedaris. On undecided voters:

    “I look at these people and can’t quite believe that they exist. Are they professional actors? I wonder. Or are they simply laymen who want a lot of attention?

    To put them in perspective, I think of being on an airplane. The flight attendant comes down the aisle with her food cart and, eventually, parks it beside my seat. “Can I interest you in the chicken?” she asks. “Or would you prefer the platter of shit with bits of broken glass in it?”

    To be undecided in this election is to pause for a moment and then ask how the chicken is cooked.

    I mean, really, what’s to be confused about?

  8. Rogan says:

    8. Broken glass has nice crunch.

  9. Dave says:

    swells, you are of course correct. I’m going to guess 375 electoral votes for the big O.

    Rachel, that passage is hilarious.

  10. 375

    Based on what combination of states? Show your work, dude. I have (a purely fanciful) Obama by 371 scenario in which he sweeps the battleground states but somehow loses Washington.

  11. Hm: apparently my understanding of how to save electoral maps in comes up short.

  12. Jeremy says:

    I just saw Sedaris read in Long Beach this past weekend, and he actually read that NYer piece. But he changed the line from “platter of shit” to “human shit.” He said the NYer edited out his original phrasing… I dunno, I think platter sounds more appetizing…

  13. Dave says:

    Your 10 was trapped in the filter, Modesto.

    375 based on some hocus-pocus by Nate Silver.

  14. On the subject of Prop. 8, have you seen Greenwald today?

  15. LP says:

    Oh. Mah. Gawd: We must not count our chickens, people! there are still seven days to go. It may sound paranoid, but this is too important for us to be complacent.

    On that note, please send this personalizable video to your friends and family in swing states:

  16. Dave says:

    Wow, that Greenwald video link is AMAZING.

    Parrish: complacency is the only thing keeping me sane this time around.

  17. LP says:

    Btw, I sent that link to a handful of great whatsiters this morning, not because I feared you wouldn’t vote but because I thought you would find it amusing.

  18. trixie says:

    swells, you can have other friends, but i would prefer it if you wouldn’t flaunt it.
    i can only be so generous.

  19. trixie says:

    p.s. can that drink be in nyc so i can see you (dave, i will buy my own beer…)

  20. LT says:

    seriously, that greenwald video? did you see how the girl’s shirt says “obey”? i. am. appalled.

    in all this collective election anxiety, one must wonder: where the hell is bryan waterman?