Tuesday, July 25, 2006

Pat Tillman, worm dirt

A high-ranking Army officer says that the parents of Pat Tillman can't accept the official version of how the Army ranger and former pro football player died because they aren't Christians, and can't face up to the fact that their son is now "worm dirt."

"So for their son to die for nothing, and now he is no more — that is pretty hard to get your head around that. So I don't know how an atheist thinks. I can only imagine that that would be pretty tough."

It's George W. Bush's America, folks. We just live in it.

Sunday, July 23, 2006

Won't you be my neighbor?

Pittsburgh Magazine praises Brookline as one of "10 Neighborhoods You Need to Know About". (It's a good thing.) If anyone's interested, there's a few houses on my block for sale.

I was also surprised to see New Wilmington, the home of my alma mater, make the list. If you like getting to be bed by 8 o'clock every night, New Wilmington is the place for you.

Walk the walk

While heated debates rage on at this blog and others over the best means to redevelop Pittsburgh, a sprawling suburban community begins to wake up to the benefits of walkable communities. Suburban apologist Joel Kotkin--who also happens to be one of the most astute critics of modren urban redevelopment policies--wrote about this last year, and here were my thoughts then.

Friday, July 21, 2006

Man's reach should exceed his grasp

With some critics saying that hubris has sabatoged his latest film, Slate offers this appreciation of M. Night Shyamalan. In case you were wondering, I think I like "Signs" the best.

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

On the one hand...

I'm trying to decide which is more outrageous: the fact that the URA continues to buy buildings Downtown even though a developer has been named to renovate Downtown and is perfectly capable of buying--and paying for--the building itself, or the fact that the county and the state are preparing to pony up millions of dollars for a transit project we don't need, and that will cost hundreds of thousands of dollars each year to operate, merely so we don't lose the federal funds that we were given to build said project in the first place.

I'm going to go with the North Shore connector on this one, but at least there appears to be a chance that county council might balk. Whereas the Downtown deal is going down, free market be damned.

Monday, July 10, 2006

If you build them...

Is there really enough demand for Downtown housing for both this and this?

Saturday, July 08, 2006

I read so you don't have to

I distill George Packer's review of Peter Beinart's new book over at my new blog.

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Thursday, July 06, 2006

Church and state

What Obama gets right, and why Romney could have a problem. (Here's something I think Romney has done right.)

One good turn...

Copeland has a new blog that seems to be getting some attention.

Monday, July 03, 2006

As if I wasn't wasting enough time on the Internets

I've started a new blog, Dead Tree Blog, which I plan to devote entirely to discussions about books. I have no particular expertise when it comes to books; I just happen to be an avid reader. It's a work in progress, as is this blog; we'll see where it goes.

I'm Batman

I finally saw "Batman Begins", and I thoroughly enjoyed it. Christian Bale was downright menacing as the Caped Crusader, and he made a pretty good Bruce Wayne as well. The movie had a good supporting cast as well. At this stage in his life, Michael Caine looked like he was born to play Alfred, and Gary Oldman had a nice turn as the future Police Commissioner Gordon. As an actor, Oldman is something of a chameleon--he disappears into his roles, and I seem to never catch a performance in which his voice and appearance have not been altered significantly. Oldman's Gordon was a working stiff, weary yet resolute at being an honest man in a place where it carried no reward.

I think what I liked most of all is that "Batman Begins" took itself seriously. After all these years, Batman has had all the camp he can take, thank you very much.

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Saturday, July 01, 2006

If you collect antiques...

This is still for sale. Best offer.