Feed for August 2005

One of Bill’s friends reports that the water has “reached the curbtops and is rising” in the French Quarter, the highest part of the city. It’s hard to conceive of New Orleans simply not existing, but could it possibly be economical to drain and rebuild an entire city that size?

“We have whitecaps on Canal Street.” Katrina may not have been the direct hit that everyone feared, but the news is still catastrophic: Lake Pontchartrain is flooding into New Orleans through a levee breach two blocks wide. According to some reports, the French Quarter is underwater. It looks like this really is the worst-case scenario. [Update: Not sure about the French Quarter; some reports say it’s okay. I guess it depends whether they can plug the leak.]

That’s enough Editing. Ed. “Think for a moment of another kind of culture, where nothing is edited. A culture where we’re all so logorrheaic we haven’t time for each other’s words or books or blogs, where everything goes into the ether—and there’s no sign that anyone reads it all. A culture that doesn’t care about editing is a culture that doesn’t care about writing. And that has to be bad.”

Elvis the Robot Cat. First Pinky, now this. It's the Year of the Cat.

“The west Siberian bog alone contains some 70 billion tonnes of methane, a quarter of all the methane stored on the land surface worldwide. ... In May this year, Katey Walter of the University of Alaska Fairbanks told a meeting ... that she had found methane hotspots in eastern Siberia, where the gas was bubbling from thawing permafrost so fast it was preventing the surface from freezing, even in the midst of winter.”

A Rocket to Nowhere. I loved the shuttle when I was a kid, but everything I’ve read about it as an adult confirms this. [Via The Null Device.]

Adam Cadre. A MeFi thread about the 2005 Bulwer-Lytton winners pointed to his Lyttle Lytton contest, and I ended up exploring the entire site. Finding a good personal site with multiple sections and a few years’ worth of archives is a rare pleasure. Cadre’s reviews branch off in all sorts of interesting directions (see, for example, his long string of reviews of the complete works of Mark Twain), and it’s not just reviews: his letter to a young artist is as good an explanation of the value of creating for small audiences as any, and the Girl Guide badges are great. I’m also sorely tempted to rip off the layout of his calendar page for the next incarnation of Speedysnail...

Free music from the NME. Free music from You Am I. A free single from Sing-Sing, offshoot of ’90s shoegazers Lush.

Feed for July 2005