Random geography and other writer’s notes

Yes, the Thursday night writer’s group is still going, and I have been able to attend most of the meetings, despite my neglect of just about everything else that didn’t have money attached to it for the past six months.

Dolce Expresso closed, and we were sad – and homeless.

Restaurants make poor meeting places for writer’s groups.

1) the wait staff will interrupt the read-aloud without remorse – because they don’t know.

2) A large party tends to be put in a booth – which is troublesome.

3) You will baffle or annoy those around you.


4) (and most importantly) if you’re going to tie up a chair for two hours, you’ll need to spend $10+. A cup of coffee only buys you about 45 minutes.

Also, the particular restauraunt we chose slapped an 18% gratuity on all of our checks because we were more than six butts.

So now we meet at Urban Beans – and life is much better.

For those who attended – and those who enjoy random, out-fo-context facts:

There are two Kashkars – one in Kyrgyzstan (Kara-Kashkar), and one in Chines Turkestan (aka Kashgan). The latter was on the Silk Road and is at least 2000 years old in one form or another.

More famous than either one – at least according to Google – is Cafe Kashkar, your source for Uzebek cuisine in times square.

Novosibirsk, Siberia, is actually a big place, and lloaded with all the culture and class you would expect from Siberia. Actually, it odes contain a major university and the State Opera Academy.

Add this to your try before you die list: Absolut Pepper vodka









By-the-wind jellyfish (above) are properly called Velella Vellella.

And Ace Carson is not Buck Rogers. Really.

This is Buck Rogers:

(Yes, that’s Gil Gerard and Erin Grey – the stars of the late 70’s movie and TV series.)

Now You know


Tne Energy Revolution [9/13/08]

I decided to actually title these posts. I may go back to just using dates. We’ll see. I’m trying to avoid a lot of hard/fast policies with this blog. I do it for fun, you see.

My synergy from the Sunday talk shows: the energy revolution is real, and its coming and its going to redistribute wealth like a hurricane redistributes boats and trailers. That’s my opinion, but my most articulate source is Thomas Friedman and his inteview on CNN’s GPS.

Of course, Friedman mentions several times that he goes into this in some detail in his new book(which I’ll likely read, but find it yerself). But his premise was that those who innovate are going to win big, and those who dig i with fossil fuels are going to perish. But it will take a while.

The central difference between this and other technological revolutions is that the old technology is pre-existing and cheaper. For now.

Here’s a fact I know in that regard. To replace my water heater with a standard gas heater runs about $800. To replace t with a solar heater – even after rebates – runs about $1500. That pays for itself over a couple of years, but if you have only a thousand to spend in the first place – that’s still not a choice at all.

But yet the world keeps heating, and the oil fields keep shrinking.

Those tax rebates have yet to be renewed by Congress.

GPS, BTW, is the Sunday talk show for true wonks. There are no campaign surrogates exchanging sound bytes. Fareed Zakaria interviews actual experts about things going on in the world.

(I mean, really, how difficult is it to determine where Senator Boxer (D-CA) stands on abortion? Do I really need Wolf Blitzer to ask that question for me?)

Buck Roger’s actual first name is Anthony in the original novellas, but was William in the 1980’s movies and TV series.