Monday, January 24, 2011

NOT his mug shot...

Most of you have heard of the shooting of US congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords and many other people during her political event in Arizona earlier in the month. Updates of the story is plentiful, and most of it (except for Rep. Giffords' amazing recovery so far) has been rather depressing, so I haven't been keen on mentioning it. One thing's been nagging at me, though. Why is it that almost everyone is still calling that psychotic skinhead shot of the gunman Jared Loughner his "mug shot"?

It is NOT the official mug shot! There has been at least 2 court drawings of Loughner released since the shooting, and both of them show him with hair (here's the latest one). Loughner still seems obviously guilty as sin.... so there is really no need to embellish. Misidentifying this strange shot and keeping on repeating the mis-identification is just overkill and will probably prejudice all potential jury members for the upcoming trial. And who does that serve, really?

Another thing that sucks about this is that now Loughner will be a big media draw. What good did he do to deserve the attention? A lot of good folks go around doing good deeds everyday without ever being offered fame. Then people like this dude (or like Timothy McVeigh and Ted Bundy, etc) go and kill a bunch of good people and all of the sudden everyone wants to hear what they have to say. I still remember how disgusted I was that some a media channel even sued the government to broadcast McVeigh's execution live. That jerk killed babies and a bunch of other innocents in search for attention... And news outlet couldn't fall over themselves fast enough to give it to him. What he deserved was to be locked up in isolation without being paid any attention to ever again.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Lost & Found Pets in Chula Vista, CA (January 2011)

Hey dog-lovers! If you live in or are visiting Chula Vista area (South San Diego), keep an eye out for these furry cuties, would ya'?

1. Chewy the French bulldog lives in Rancho del Rey area of Chula Vista and has been missing since November. If spotted, please call (619) 251-4283.

2. Jasmine the miniature Schnauzer is missing in downtown Chula Vista area. Please call (619) 309-5518 if you run into her.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Oh no... There goes my poisonous tail stinger sign!

Uncertainty isn't confined to sub-atomic particles after all...

Guess I should be glad I was always too fascinated by the telescope and the microscope to pay much attention to the horoscope else I'd be experiencing such an identity crisis right about now!

Monday, January 3, 2011

Books: Read and Looking For More

Another year already! I finally got around to updating the list of books I've read since the beginning of 2000. Back then I had this ambitious plan of reading a book a month every month. That should tally up to 12 books a year, and 120 books per decade. I started out strong enough since back in 2000 I lived across the street from a St. Louis public library, and the place was opened every day from 7AM to 10PM (5PM on Sundays). The last few years had been slow-going, though, especially since I moved out to rural Chula Vista without a library within a walking distance.

I don't know if I actually made the 132 books quota or not, but here are the books I've read in the past 11 years - some I still remember well, some not (I'm currently re-reading Rebecca West's Balkan tome, Black Lamb and Grey Falcon. The next book on my hit list is Christopher Hitchen's God Is Not Great):

ADAMSON, Joy: Born Free, Living Free, Forever Free, The Queen of Shaba, The Spotted Sphinx
ALBOM, Mitch: Tuesdays with Morrie
ALBRIGHT, Madeleine: Madam Secretary
ALEXANDER, Larry & Richard D. Winters: Biggest Brother
ALI, Tariq: Bush in Babylon, The Clash of Fundamentalisms, The Book of Saladin, Shadow of the Pomegranate Tree
AMBROSE, Stephen: Band of Brothers, Citizen Soldiers, D-Day
AMORY, Cleveland: The Cat Who Came For Christmas
ARIOSTO, Ludovico: Orlando Furioso
ARLEN, Michael J: Passage to Ararat   
ARMSTRONG, Karen: History of God
ARMSTRONG, Lance: It’s Not About The Bike, Every Second Counts
"Even if you reject everything, it is always better to know what it is you are rejecting." Tariq Ali, The Clash of Fundamentalisms

BACH, Richard: A Gift of Wings
von BAEYER, Hans Christian: Rainbows, Snowflakes and Quarks
BARROW, John D: The Constants of Nature
BERGER, Karen & Dan Smith: Where the Waters Divide
BERGMAN, Ingrid: My Story
de BEAUMARCHAIS, Pierre Augustin Caron: Le Marriage de Figaro, Le Barbière de Seville
BLAIR, Clay: Ridgway’s Paratroopers
BLAY, Michel: Les Raisons de l’Infiniti
BOOLE, George: The Law of Thoughts
BOROVIK, Artyom: Hidden War
BOUKREEV, Anatoly N: The Climb, Above the Clouds
BOWDEN, Mark: Black Hawk Down, Guests of the Ayatollah
BRYSON, Bill: A Walk in the Woods, In a Sunburned Country, Neither Here Nor There, Notes From A Small Island
BUCHANAN, Patrick: Where the Right Went Wrong
BUCHWALD, Art: Washington Is Leaking
BUCKLEY, William (jr): Up From Liberalism
BULGAKOV, Mikhail A: Master and Margarita, Heart of a Dog, Diaboliads, The Fatal Egg, Flight, Black Snow, The White Guards, Days of the Turbins
BURGETT, Donald R: Currahee!, The Road to Arnhem

"But people, straining to explain something to themselves or to others, are often content with mere illusion or a meaningless phrase which, although comfortable, explains nothing." Artyom Borovik, Hidden War
CALDICOTT, Helen: If You Love This Planet
CAMUS, Albert: La Mythe de Sisyphus, The Stranger, The Plague
CANTOR, Norman: In the Wake of The Plague
CARLÈS, Emilie: Une Soup Aux Herbes Souvages, A Life of Her Own
CARSON, Rachel L: The Sea Around Us
CARUS, Lucretius: The Nature of Things
CASTI, John: Complexification, Kurt Godel
CÉLINE, Louis-Ferdinand: Voyage au bout de la nuit
CHANDRASEKHAR, S: Truth and Beauty
CHAPLIN, Charlie: My Autobiography
CHAPMAN, Simon: Explorers Wanted
CHEKHOV, Anton: Uncle Vanya, the Cherry Tree
CHOMSKY, Noam: Blowbacks
CHRISTIE, Agatha: A Pocketful of Rye, Murder in the Vicarage, Miss Marple, Poirot Investigates, Murder on the Orient Express
CLANCY, Tom: The Hunt for Red October, Clear and Present Danger, Red Storm Rising, Patriot Games, The Sum of All Fear, Debt of Honor, Without Remorse, Executive Order, Rainbow Six, Red Rabbit
CLARKE, Arthur C: Report on Planet Three & Other Speculations
CLARKE, Richard A: Against All Enemies
CRÈSPIN, Regine: On Stage, Off Stage
CORELLI, Marie: The Mighty Atom, Barabbas, The Soul of Lilith
COPLAND, Aaron: What to Listen for in Music
CRICK, Francis: The Double Helix
CUNNINGHAM, Clark: The Spyglass Cup

DANTE: Divine Comedy
DAVIS, MAYHEW, MILLER: Under the Perfect Sun
DAVIS, Nuel Pharr: Lawrence & Oppenheimer
DAWKINS, Richard: The God Delusion
DEAN, WINTON: Handel’s Operas 1704-1726, Handel’s Operas 1726-1741
DICKENS, Charles: Great Expectation, A Tale of Two Cities, Our Mutual Friend, Oliver Twist
DIDEROT, Denis: Jacques le Fataliste
DINESEN, Isak: Out of Africa
DOSTOEVSKY, Fyodor: Brothers Karamazov, Crime and Punishment, The Idiot, White Night, Notes from the Underground, Diary of a Madman, A dream of a Ridiculous Man
DOYLE, Arthur Conan: The Hound of Bakerville, Adventures of Sherlock Holmes, The Sign of Four, Return of Sherlock Holmes, A Scandal in Bohemia
DUDLEY, Barbara & Eric SEABORG: American Discoveries
DUMAS, Alexandre (pere): Les Trois Musketaires, Man in the Iron Mask, Adventures in Czarist Russia
"Sleeping on a plank has one advantage - it encourages early rising." - Alexandre Dumas (père)
ECO, Umberto: Foucault’s Pendulum, The Name of the Rose
EINSTEIN, Albert: Ideas & Opinions, The World As I See It, The Theory of Relativity
ELIOT, T.S: The Old Possum’s Book of Practical Cats
ELLIS, Joseph J: Founding Brothers
ERB, Christy M: A Lifetime of Contradictions, Have Golf Swing - Will Travel

FARRELL, Eileen: Can’t Help Singing
FERRIS, Timothy: The Whole Shebang
FEYNMAN, Richard P: Surely You’re Joking Mr Feynman, Feynman Lectures on Physics, The Characters of Physical Laws, What Do You Care What Other People Think?, The Pleasure of Finding Things Out, The Meaning of It All, Elementary Particles and the Law of Physics, Six Easy Pieces, QED
FLAGGS, Fannie: Fried Green Tomatoes at the Whistle Stop Café
FLEMING, Renee: The Inner Voice
FLETCHER, Colin: The Secret World of Colin Fletcher
FRANCE, Anatole: Thaïs, Revolts of the Angels
FRANKLIN, Benjamin: Of Liberty and Necessity
FRIEDMAN, Johanna: Molto Agitato
FRIEDMAN, Thomas L: Longitudes and Attitudes

"It is necessary to look at the results of observation objectively because you, the experimenter, might like one result better than another." - Richard P Feynman, The Meaning of It All
GAMMELGAARD, Lene: Climbing High
GAVIN, James M: On to Berlin
GEORGE, Jean Craighead: My Side of the Mountain  
GIBBON, Edward: The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire
GLADWELL, Malcolm: Blink, The Tipping Point
von GOETHE, Johann Wolfgang: Faust, The Sorrows of Young Werther, Wilhelm Meister’s Journeyman Years, Theory of Colors
GÖDEL, Kurt: On Formerly Undecidable Proposition of Principia and Related Systems
GOGOL, Nicolai V: Nevsky Prospekt, The Nose, The Overcoat
GOLDBERG, Bernard: Bias
GOODWIN, Joy: The Second Mark
GORDEEVA, Ekaterina: My Sergei
GORDON, Richard: The Alarming History of Medicine
GOSSETT, Philip: Divas and Scholars
GRANT, Michael: The World of Rome
GRASS, Guenter: Cat and Mouse
GREEN, David: A Pacific Crest Odyssey
GREENE, Brian: The Elegant Universe, The Fabric of the Cosmos
GREENLAW, Linda: The Hungry Ocean, The Shrimp Chronicles, All Fishermen Are Liars
GRIBBIN, John: Schrödinger’s Kitten and the Search for Reality, Who’s Afraid of the Schrödinger Cat?
GRISHAM, John: The Firm, The Client, The Pelican Brief, A Time to Kill, The Rainmaker, The Runaway Jury, The Innocent Man, The last Juror, The Painted House

HALL, Shirley J: Shirley and Pipsi
HARNONCOURT, Nikolaus: The Musical Dialog
HAWKING, Stephen: A Brief History of Time, The Universe in a Nutshell, The Nature of Space and Time
HEISENBERG, Werner: Physics and Philosophy, An Encounter with Einstein
HERZOG, Maurice: Anapurna
HESSE, Hermann: Märchen
HISCOCK, Eric: Sou’west in Wanderer IV, Cruising Under Sails
HOLLAND, Barbara: Secrets of the Cat
HORNE, Marilyn: The Song Continues
HOTTER, Hans: Memoir   
HUGO, Victor: Les Miserables, Notre Dame de Paris, Les Chatiments
HURWITZ, David: Getting the Most Out of Mozart: The Vocal Works
HUXLEY, Aldous: Brave New World

IBSEN, Henrik: Peer Gynt, The Wild Duck

JACKSON, Robert: Dunkirk
JENKINS, Mark: Off the Map
JENKINS, Peter: A Walk Across America
JUNGER, Sebastian: The Perfect Storm, Fire

KAFKA, Franz: Metamorphosis, Three Parables
KAKU, Michio: Beyond Einstein, Hyperspace
KAPLAN, Robert: The Nothing That Is, Balkan Ghosts
KEAN, Thomas & Lee H HAMILTON: The 9/11 Report
KENEALY, Thomas: Schindlers Liste
KENNEDY, John Fitzgerald: Profiles in Courage
KIRSHNER, Robert: Exploding Stars and the Expanding Universe
KNAPPE, Siegfried & Ted BRUSAW: Soldat
KRAKAUER, Jon: Into Thin Air
KUNSTLER, James H: A Geography to Nowhere 

"We shall need compromises in the days ahead, to be sure. But these will be, or should be, compromises of issues, not of principles." John F Kennedy, Profiles in Courage
LAMONT, Lansing: Day of Trinity
LEAST HEAT MOON, William: Blue Highways
LEE, Harper: To Kill A Mockingbird
LEIGHTON, Ralph: Tuva or Bust!
LEHMANN, Lotte: My Many Lives  
LEM, Stanislaw: Solaris
LERMONTOV, Mikhail Y: A Hero of Our Time
LEOPOLD, Aldo: A Sand County Almanac
LEROUX, Gaston: The Phantom of the Opera
LINENGER, Jerry M: Off the Planet
LONDON, Jack: The Call of the Wild
LORD, Nancy: Green Alaska
LOVELL, Jim: Apollo 13
LUDLUM, Robert: Apocalypse Watch, The Bourne Identity, The Scorpios Illusion
LUDWIG, Christa: And I Wanted to Be A Prima Donna, In My Own Voice  
"Many a calm river begins as a turbulent waterfall, yet none hurtles and foams all the way to the sea." - Mikhail Lermontov, A Hero of Our Time

MACK, Burton L: Who Wrote the New Testament?
MAGRIS, Claudio: Danube
MAKINE, Andrei: Le Testament Français
MALKIN, Michelle: In Defense of Internment
MANN, Thomas: Death in Venice and Other Stories
MARKHAM, Beryl: West With the Night
MARSHALL, Catherine: Christy
MARSHALL, James: Walk About   
MATHEOPAULOS, Helena: Diva - The New Generation
MAYO, Charles W: The Mayo Clinic
McCourt, Frank: Angela’s Ashes, Mawrdew Czgowchwz
McMULLEN, James: Cry of the Panther  
MEIER, Andrew: Black Earth
MELVILLE, Herman: Moby Dick
McARTHUR, Edwin: Kirsten Flagstad
MLODINOW, Leonard: Euclid’s Window, Feynman’s Rainbow, The Drunkard’s Walk
de MONTAIGNE, Michel Eyquem: Selections from the Essays of Montaigne
MORAN, Martin: Alps 4000
MOSS, Cynthia: Portraits in the Wild
MULLIS, Kary: Dancing Naked in the Mined Field
"It is amazing what a lot of insect life goes on under your nose when you've got it an inch from the earth." - Beryl Markham, West With the Night
NABOKOV, Vladimir: Lolita
NEWMAN, Ernest: The Life of Richard Wagner
NEWTON, Isaac: Principia Mathematica
NIETZSCHE, Friedrich: Also sprach Zarathustra, Daybreak, Beyond Good and Evil, The Genealogy of Morals, Ecce Homo
NILSSON, Birgit: La Nilsson   

"You great star, what would your happiness be had you not those for whom you shine?" - Friedrich Nietzsche, Thus Spoke Zarathustra
O’REILLY, Bill: Who’s Looking Out For You?
ORSER, Lori L: Spooky Creepy North Dakota
ORWELL, George: 1984, Animal Farm
OWENS, Mark & Delia: Cry of the Kalahari, Eye of the Elephants, Secrets of the Savannah

PAINE, Thomas: Common Sense, The Age of Reason, The Rights of Man
PASTERNAK, Boris: Dr. Zhivago, Zhenya Luver’s Childhood
PELEVIN, Viktor: Omon Ra, The Yellow Arrow
PENROSE, Roger: The Road to Reality
PROUST, Marcel: Le Temp Retrouvé,
PUSHKIN, Aleksandr: Evgeni Onegin, The Queen of Spade
"The Word of God is the creation we behold, and it is in this word, which no human invention can counterfeit or alter, that god speaketh universally to man." - Thomas Paine, The Age of Reason
RAND, Ayn: Atlas Shrugged, The Fountainhead
RANDALL, Lisa: Warped Passages  
RASPUTIN, Valentin: Siberia on Fire
REMARQUE, Erich-Maria: All Quiet on the Western Front
RIDGEFIELD: The Celestine Prophecy, The Tenth Insight
RODENBACH, Georges: Bruges la Morte   
ROONEY, Andy: My War
ROSTAND, Edmond: Cyrano de Bergerac
ROUSSEAU, Jean-Jacques: The Social Contract, Confessions
ROWLING, JK: Harry Potter series (all); The Philosopher's Stone, The Chamber of Secrets, The Prisoner of Azkaban, The Goblet of Fire, The Order of the Phoenix, The Half-Blood Prince, The Deathly Hallows
RUSHDIE, Salman: The Satanic Verses, Raoun and the Sea of Stories, Step Across This Line

SAGAN, Carl: The Demon-Haunted World
SANDERS, Lawrence: McNally’s Secret, The Fourth Deadly Sin
SASSER, Charles W: Smoke Jumpers
SASTRE, Jean-Paul: La Nausee, No Exit
SCHILLER, Friedrich: Wilhelm Tell, The Visit
SCHRÖDINGER, Erwin: What Is Life?
SEAMANS, Arthur: The Dead One Touched Me From The Past
SHAFFER, Earl V: Walking With Spring
SHALAMOV, Valam: Kolyma Tales
SHAKESPEARE, William: Much Ado About Nothing, Henry IV, Othello, Julius Caesar, The Merchant of Venice
SMITH, Hedrik: The New Russians
SMULLYAN, Raymond: The Riddles of Scheherazade and Other Amazing Puzzles
SPAETHLING, Robert: Mozart’s Letter, Mozart’s Life
SOLZHENITSYN, Aleksandr I: Gulag Archipelago, Cancer Ward, One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich, August 1914
SPONG, John Shelby: Why Christianity Must Change or Die
STASSINOPOULOS, Arianna (Huffington): Maria Callas
STENDHAL: Life of Rossini
STOSSEL, John: Give Me A Break
SZILARD, Leo: The Voice of the Dolphins

"Even if we accept as the basis tenet of true democracy that one moron is equal to one genius, is it necessary to go a further step and hold that two morons are better than one genius?" - Leo Szilard, The Voice of the Dolphins
TASKER, Joe: Savage Arena
TAYLOR, Jeffrey: Siberian Dawn, Facing the Congo
TEALE, Edwin W: Wandering Through Winter
THATCHER, Margaret: The Downing Street Years
THOMAS, Lewis: Late Night Thoughts on Listening to Mahler’s Ninth Symphony, The Lives of a Cell, The Medusa and the Snail
THUBRON, Colin: The Lost Heart of Asia, Among the Russians, Jerusalem
TOLKIEN, Christopher: The Return of the Shadow, The War of the Rings, The Treason of Isengard
TOLKIEN, JRR: The Hobbit, Lord of the Rings, The Simarillions, The Books of Lost Tales I & II, Tales from the Perilous Realms, Unfinished Tales, The Adventures of Tom Bombadil
TOLSTAYA, Tatiana: Sleepwalker in a Fog, On Golden Porch, Sweet Shura
TOLSTOY, Alexandra: The Last Secrets of the Silk Road
TOLSTOY, Leo: Anna Karenina, War and Peace, Death of Ivan Ilych, Kreutzer Sonata
TREFIL, James: The Unexpected Vista, Meditations at Sunset
TUCHMAN, Barbara: The Guns of August, The March of Folly, The Proud Towers, The Distant Mirror, The Zimmerman Telegram, Practicing History
TURGENEV, Ivan: Father and Son, Torrents of Spring

USTINOV, Peter: My Russia

VARNAY, Astrid: 55 Years in 5 Acts  
VISHNEVSKAYA, Galina: Galina   
VOINOVICH, Vladimir: Monumental Propaganda
VOLTAIRE: Candide ou l’obtisme, Du Juste et de l’injuste, L’Ingenu
"From too much love of living,
From hope and fear set free,
We thank with brief thanksgiving,
Whatever gods may be,
That no life lives forever,
That dead men rise up never,
That even the weariest river
   winds somewhere safe to sea."
- A.C. Schwinburne, The Garden of Proserpine
WALSH, David: From Lance to Landis
WEST, Rebecca: Black Lamb and Grey Falcon
WHITING, Charles: The Battle of the Bulge
WHITE, Margaret Burke: The Taste of War
WHITMAN, Walt: Leaves of Grass
WILDE, Oscar: A Woman of No Importance, An Ideal Husband
WILLIAMS, Tennessee: The Glass Menagerie
WINCHESTER, Simon: Krakatoa
WOODWARD, Bob: All The President’s Men, Plan of Attack
WOOLF, Virginia: Mrs. Dalloway, The Common Reader
WRIGHT, Sam: Koviashurik

ZHUKOV, Georgi: Marshall Zhukov’s Greatest Battles
ZOLA, Emile: Germinal, J’accuse
ZOSCHENKO, Mikhail: Before Sunrise