YOU WOULDN'T RECOGNIZE A CUNNING PLOT IF IT PAINTED ITSELF BLUE AND DANCED ON THE TABLE SINGING "CUNNING PLOTS ARE HERE AGAIN!" Hilarious what-not-to-do "Batman" takedown by Sean Collins. Plot-oriented writers should read this one.In other comicsy news, that Lying in the Gutters link below has "New X-Men" rumors that intrigue me. Scott Summers is by far my favorite X-character, and I got into NXM in large part because so far Grant Morrison has totally had Scott's number but good. (The first … [Read more...]

DEATH AND THE EUCHARISTIC PRAYER. Characteristically powerful post from Dappled Things. This (death) will be the subject of the next short story I blog. I'm not sure which one it will be--there are two I'm choosing between--but both of them are about a) mortality and b) death. (Not quite the same things--a condition and an experience.) I would say I don't know why this subject came up twice in the stuff I've been working on lately, except that I kind of do. … [Read more...]

ARE YOU IN OR NEAR TAMPA, FLORIDA? Have you got bones? (Like, your own?)Via Lying in the Gutters, ultimately via Journalista!:"A young child needs bone marrow transplant urgently, and it's been very difficult to find a match. ..."Maybe you can help. The full press release is reprinted below. Find out more about the crisis at E-mail Tony at And if you're in the area, there's a drive for marrow donors scheduled for Tuesday the 30th from 11am to … [Read more...]

I SHOULD READ THE FREE COPIES OF THE WASHINGTON POST LYING AROUND IN THE COFFEESHOP MORE OFTEN. Those "Iraqis want to love us and hug us and squeeze us and name us George" polls aren't all they're cracked up to be.And North Carolina is paying reparations to the "unfit" people sterilized at the command of the state up through the 1970s. … [Read more...]

Blogwatch on the streets of London, Blogwatch on the streets of Humberside...Riverbend Blog: Anybody got more info on this?: "This media free-for-all [in Iraq] lasted for about two months. Then, some newspapers were ‘warned’ that some of their political content was unacceptable- especially when discussing occupation forces. One or two papers were actually shut down, while others were made to retract some of what they had written. The news channels followed suit. The CPA came out with a list of … [Read more...]

"WHAT IF THERE IS SOMETHING GOING ON IN THERE?": "Daniel Rios is 24 years old, with wavy black hair, a thick mustache and a glassy stare that seems to look both at you and through you. One day almost four years ago, while he was taking a shower, a blood vessel ruptured in his brain, and he collapsed on the bathroom floor. After emergency surgery, he lay in a coma for three weeks. When he finally opened his eyes, he could not speak or move his body; his head simply lolled. In the months that … [Read more...]

"In the [John] Adams formulation, aristocracies were to society as the passions were to the individual personality, permanent fixtures susceptible to disciplined containment and artful channeling, but never altogether removable." --Founding Brothers … [Read more...]