Wednesday, January 02, 2008

Cue That Weird Al Song! You Know the One.

Thason's going to be on Jeopardy Thursday night, right before the Orange Bowl. Good luck (all) Hokies!

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Tuesday, January 01, 2008

Happy New Year!

What does the future hold? Why not ask people from the past?


Sunday, December 30, 2007

Time to Go!

A song for this expensive and hurried holiday season (to the tune of "Let It Snow!")

Oh, the traffic outside is frightful.
But the deals are so delightful.
The prices cut way down low,
Time to go, time to go, time to go!

All the time I’ve spent shopping
While the stores are still price dropping,
Left me without much dough,
Time to go, time to go, time to go!

When I finally get back home,
I find better deals are online.
Should I take out a loan,
Or wait in the store’s return line?

Now my credit card’s been declined,
To my debt, I have resigned.
Can’t even buy hot cocoa!
Time to go, time to go, time to go!

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Outsourcing Birth

Some people are not physically capable of carrying a child to term, so they get a surrogate to do it for them. This is why you hear stories of women giving birth to their own grandchildren and whatnot. Apparently, surrogacy is a growing business in India, where women carry babies for perfect strangers in exchange for housing, medical care, and an amount of money that is large to them but relatively small for the families who want a child.

The group that the article's author talked to says that they screen families based on need and counsel the surrogates after the birth. But the article speculates that some people may decide that using a surrogate is just easier than giving birth themselves, leading to perfectly healthy people to decide to use surrogates. Somehow, though, I don't see this becoming common place. Sure, there are women who are concerned about being out of work or worry about their figure, but I think enough women would prefer to have that first bond with their child if they could. Assuming that some very old instincts will somehow fall away for the sake of convenience or cosmetics in a large enough segment of the population for it to a have an effect on the market is, I think, stretching the limits plausibility. (David Levy should take notes here, though if his speculations come true, then surrogates for fertile women will probably become necessary).

Of course, despite this, my sci-fi brain went into over driver. I imagined a young woman in the future telling her family that she wants to have a child. They are excited until she mentions that she wants to carry it herself. What about your career? What about the side effects? You really should leave that to professionals! And then I thought of all of the sci-fi stories with three-gendered species. Is this where that would lead? Could we create an entire class of incubators? It's scary stuff.

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Dark Knight Trailer

I hear the latest trailer for the sequel to Batman Begins is playing in front of Will Smith's I Am Legend, but I haven't been to a movie in months, so I just watched it online. The Joker looks like a freakin' zombie (but who wouldn't after falling into a vat of acid?). I think I'm more and more on board with Heath Ledger as the Joker. He's got the tonal switch down. "[sinister] Everyone thinks you're freak... [cheery] Like me!" But what does it say about me that my biggest "squee!" moment was upon seeing Morgan Freeman as Lucius Fox again?

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