The Academy

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Friday, April 04, 2003
This Just Happened

I'm nervous about flying, so I sought comfort from my co-workers.

INTERIOR, The Hallway, April 4, 2003.

Mindy: I'm just really concerned. 60 Minutes says that it is really easy to shoot down commercial airliners with shoulder-mounted Stinger missiles. I know I sound crazy, but I'm really nervous about getting on a plane in a couple of hours.

Heather: Don't worry, Mindy. Those things are extremely inaccurate. Right, Ben?

Ben: In important news, I appear to have Wolverine-like healing powers.

That's More Like It

The National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers has posted links to resources explaining the legislation described below.

Thursday, April 03, 2003
Is Findlaw for Grandmas?

No offense meant to anyone's grandma -- but what the hell is this about? Edward Lazarus' sentencing guidelines article is perhaps the lamest thing I've read on the subject in years (besides, of course, the Guidelines themselves). Is there anything new revealed in this column? Is this column actually about this ominous new bill as the headline promises? In order to understand the bill, he explains, we must have some background. Then we get a kind of first-draft of the intro paragraphs to a case comment on Koon v. United States. Then we get some shrill complaints about Congress questioning Judge Rosenbaum. Then nothing. Is it just me or is this a kind of banal excuse for legal commentary?

I'm absolutely not claiming to be more qualified than most to be insightful about these topics. I have a knee-jerk reaction to these issues that usually leads to shrill complaints about Congress questioning Judge Rosenbaum, etc. That's why I look to the Findlaw Gurus -- for something a little more thoughtful than that. But I think this might be the last straw. You get more authoritative commentary on the Greedy Clerks Board, for goodness' sake.

Don't Get Me Wrong

I mean, I love Robert. But things are getting down to the wire now. And I'm losing my patience. I can no longer answer questions like "Why is Cornelius bad now?" and "Who is that guy that Willow turned into?" For the sake of our relationship, I'm posting these links to show guides for Buffy and Angel. I also post this simple rule: if a character is wearing black leather or flowy black witchy clothes, she is evil. If a character is wearing a nice pastel dress with a little white cardigan, she is good. Is this so hard to follow?

I'm also tiring of the chortles and snorts that seem to suggest Buffy and Angel are unrealistic. That kind of misses the point. Anyway, considering the state of the world right now, Angel is certainly more realistic than The West Wing.

More complaining about the Wing: did they really do an episode last night centered around Air Force One's mechanical woes? This is terrible. But, its something that happens to all great drama shows. Once every single imaginable gut-wrenching plot has been played out, we reach into the 70's disaster vault and start copying Airport 1975 and The Poseidon Adventure. As my friend Meg described this phenom in another fading NBC show, suddenly you notice that every week the promos are touting more and more outrageous plot lines: "Sharks Attack the ER!"

The "Sharks Attack" phenomenon is of course a subclass of what has been more broadly described as the "Jump The Shark" phenomenon.

Next week on The West Wing, President Bartlet is trapped in a nuclear submarine! Can CJ and Toby rescue him before it's too late?

Wednesday, April 02, 2003
Further Proof of NYC's Resilience

No smoking ban is going to stop the citizens of New York from enjoying their tobacco. I enjoyed this story so much I almost want to move back. Almost. But I can't. I'm too soft now.

Here's my favorite verse of the Judge Song:

And Even at
The very worst
If you should try to take me up
To get reversed
You'll have to get the circuit court
To hear you first
and that takes foreeeevvveeeeeerrrr....


Tuesday, April 01, 2003

But that means I have to defend Clint Black, dude!

Also -- a call to arms -- if ANYONE knows who is responsible for circulating an amazing song about being a federal district judge set to the tune of "Happy Together" by The Turtles, please send them to me. PLEASE REVEAL YOURSELF FOR THE GENIUS THAT YOU ARE.

Commies for Peace

This article proves that it is still fatal to be associated in any way with the CPUSA. This whole backlash / blacklist response to the anti-war movement truly gives me pause. Agree with the protestors or not, but please, respect the First Amendment!

There has been silence on this blog for far too long.

All I have to offer is the following scratch and sniff from NYC. Picture me, MARK, walking on the subway platform to get to my favorite little waiting spot. Now, picture me seeing a man stand up from a bench, stick his hand into the ass area of his trousers, pull his hand out as if he had just rescued a pearl from a VERY tight oyster, and SMELL HIS HAND. He didn't smell his hand quickly or with any sense of shame. He smelled it by using a broad sweeping wave-like motion. Once to the right. Pause. Once to the left. Head Shake. Again to the right. It was amazing!

What do you suppose prompted this scratching and sniffing?