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Sunday: November 20, 2005

Help, I’m A Guacaholic!

Filed under: — site admin @ 9:55 PM GMT-0500

I’ve never thought of Virginia Postrel as a food-blogger, but this post from October 10th changed my life. In it, she quotes reader John Lanius as recommending the new vacuum-packed guacamole imported from Mexico, responsible (he says) for a recent huge increase in consumption of avocados and avocado accessories by Americans in general and his family in particular. He’s right: AvoClassic pre-made guacamole is reasonably-priced ($4 for two separately-wrapped half-pound servings, which is about what the chips to go with them cost) and tastes as good as the general run of restaurant guacamoles. Once I knew it existed, I had no trouble finding it near the must-be-refrigerated salad dressings in the produce section of my local Harris Teeter. I had resigned myself to a low-guac diet years ago, since I’m too lazy to make the stuff often, restaurants that sell high-quality guac tend to be either too expensive or too far away or both, and the previously-frozen guacamole that used to be (perhaps still is) sold in grocery stores is so loathsome that I threw away all but the first bite of the only package I ever tried.

Tragedy Of The Electronic Commons

Filed under: — site admin @ 9:21 PM GMT-0500

Spam comments on my two sites are up from 100-200 per week to over 100 just since I deleted a bunch this morning. Have the spammers stopped to think about the side-effects of their Stakhanovite productivity? No doubt they don’t mind being loathed and despised as long as they’re making money, but how much longer can they make money? If someone had asked me just two or three years ago whether I might want to play Texas Hold’em, the answer would have been yes, as long as the stakes were small and the other players congenial and not too competent. Now the very words “Texas Hold’em” make me want to either vomit, or punch someone, or perhaps punch someone and then vomit on him, as long as he’s a spammer. These urges are relatively mild so far, but they get stronger every day. Is that really the effect the gaming sites are aiming at? Obviously not, so let me rephrase: is that a side-effect that gaming sites can survive in the long run? Making “Texas Hold’em” as unattractive a phrase as “IRS audit” or “prostate exam” or “jury duty” or “root canal” or “restraining order” can’t be good for their long-term profitability.

I need to come up with a nice Graecolatinate term for ‘spamophobia’. Unfortunately, Woodhouse’s English-Greek Dictionary has no entry for the noun ‘hash’, which I suppose is the closest ancient equivalent to Spam™.

An Unintentional (I Hope) Pun

Filed under: — site admin @ 9:04 PM GMT-0500

While looking for information on Quiz Bowl tournaments for my students, I ran across a site reporting results of one such contest. One pairing was listed as “[name omitted] Christian Academy vs. Freedom”, which seemed a little rude. Surely it wouldn’t have been too much trouble to make that “Freedom HS”?

On Reading

Filed under: — site admin @ 9:01 PM GMT-0500

Sólo debemos leer para descubrir lo que debemos releer eternamente.

We ought to read only to discover what we ought to reread forever.

(Nicolás Gómez Dávila, Escolios a un Texto Implícito, 1.214)

Lector auténtico es el que lee por placer los libros que los demás sólo estudian.

The true reader is the one who reads for pleasure the books that the rest only study.