Tuesday, June 16, 2009

A million tweets = One big roar

Slug trap Thanks to those who mentioned beer traps for garden slugs. I have two just like this. The slugs smell the beer in the wells, crawl up that little slope, and fall into the beer and drown. (At least they die happy!) They work amazingly well, and after a couple of days, the trap will be crammed with slugs. It's disgusting. What was even more disgusting was one year when I dumped the trap by where the marsh starts, and when I went out the next day...something had eaten them all. Ewwww! Anyhoo, yes, beer traps really work! I didn't need to use them this year, because I didn't plant lettuce, and that seems to be what they really go after here.

It rained most of the day here, although Ken was able to get the lawn mowed. I'm actually happy to see a good, soaking rain, because it's giving the garden a drink! We'll be leaving for Detroit tomorrow afternoon, and returning on Saturday. I think I'll take my laptop, so I should get an update or two in there somewhere. We'll be meeting up with our pal Mark of Stars Like Grains of Sand in My Pocket and attending the Star Trek exhibit at the Detroit Science Center, plus seeing the new "Star Trek" movie. Mark hasn't seen it yet, so I know he'll enjoy it! I anticipate a dinner somewhere that will include lots of talk about his plans, our lives here at Nutwood, and we should be able to solve a world problem or two while we're at it. [grin] On Friday, we'll travel to Monroe to meet our friends Bill and Mary Sue. Ken used to work with Bill when Ken lived in Michigan. They're such nice people, and even came down for our wedding in 2001. That meant a lot to both of us, and we're looking forward to seeing them again. We'll have plenty to catch up on, believe me! I think they will be quite stunned to hear about some of the things that have happened since we last met up.

Wish we could see some of our other peeps in the Detroit area--Alaina, Tawnya, Linda...did I miss anyone? This is a short trip, though, so we might have to save that for the next one! I'm looking forward to visiting Detroit. I've never been there before, only to Dearborn many years ago.

Iran election Like many of you, I've been following the protests that are taking place in Iran following the election. It's pretty obvious that Ahmadinejad stole the election, but I think it's unlikely that anything will be overturned. What is remarkable is to see the thousands of people that have mobilized to showed their support for the opposition, and displeasure with the current regime. It's also frightening to see the violence and rioting, and the pictures of state police beating protesters. I ask again: does anyone really want to see that in our own country? We need to strive for peaceful change, not violent revolution. Take a look at some of these pictures. If you're like me, you will get a feeling of gratitude that we live where we do, as well as a profound respect for those Iranians who are protesting the regime that they find oppressive and backward. I salute them and hope that there will be no more deaths at the hands of the state police.

Twitter logo The other amazing element in this story is what a huge part the Net has played. As explained in this piece, the Iran government clamped down on media and Net access...but they forgot about Twitter. Although they've tried to shut that down, too, the unique nature of Twitter (from what I understand, it's highly configurable, and user-generated content is a large part of it) means that people found "work-arounds" in order to tweet about the conditions on the ground in Iran. I was stunned to pull up #iranelection and see the thousands of tweets. Just in the time it took me to read a few--perhaps all of a minute--there were over one thousand additional tweets. It was awesome to me, in the truest sense of the word. I've never seen anything like it.

At the 1968 Democratic convention in Chicago, protesters shouted "The whole world is watching!" as the protests became violent, and TV cameras beamed the images around the world. The 2009 protests in Iran will go down in history as an almost participatory worldwide protest. I couldn't do much, but I changed my time setting on Twitter to show that of Tehran, in order to make it harder for the Iranian government to try to track down those who are tweeting "illegally" in the country. Something that the oppressive government there--and in other countries around the world--has yet to learn is that the world has moved on. Cell phones, digital cameras, and pocket video recorders mean an almost instantaneous update, a real-time, front row seat of the event. Does anyone else find this amazing, or is it just me?

How about a little music from The Only Band That Matters (I think there are plenty of others, but in their heyday...yeah, they pretty much were THE band), The Clash? Here is "Clampdown." Still relevant, isn't it?

Kick over the wall, cause governments to fall
How can you refuse it?
Let fury have the hour, anger can be power
D'you know how you can use it?


  1. Just testing to see if your blog is accepting my comments yet. This problem is weird. Nevertheless, I'm still reading, if not commenting.

  2. Well, this time it worked. Therefore, I'll try once again because I wanted to tell you how really wonderful yesterday's blog was. Your statements about hatred in America were spot on, and it should be published in every newspaper in the country.

    Have a great time in the Motor City!

  3. Wow, I didn't know that about the slugs!

  4. have a safe trip! if i drive by downtown i will wave in the direction of the science center. i am actually going up north with mr. mischief for a wedding (his sis is getting hitched).


    ps i keep thinking the beer-drowned slugs are like olives from a martin and laughing my ass off!!!!

  5. Such an appropriate song! But I wonder how this is going to effect a striving nuclear power in the future ... will it effect real change, or will the Mullahs find a workable solution as the communists have in China.

    Can't wait to see you guys!! I am as excited as can be!!!

  6. The slugs are gross. Emptying the trap would be nightmarish!

  7. Great stuff, and how perfect was the song from The Clash?

  8. All right, I skipped way down and fast, keeping my eye's half closed! Hopefully I didn't miss anything I can't live without. As for the Iran and twitter. I only got on twitter today and saw what was going on. There are SOOO many people who have changed their profile pics to a green hue to signify whats going on and support. Pretty amazing what they have all done. (see, you SHOULD twitter more!!)

  9. Those pics of the streets in Tehran... WOW!!! You're just a regular news reporter, aren't you... Good Post!!

  10. Looking forward to our mini-vac and meeting Mark and seeing B and MS :o)

  11. A brief thought of my neighbor came to mind when you talked about slugs and beer traps. Only thing is , I don't think he will ever be sober enough to make it to the traps and he is already full of beer so guess he would just empty the beer and eat the slugs.

  12. Watching the situation in Iran is fascinating. It's harder for demonic dictators to have their way these days - there are too many people watching. I'm with you - I admire the protesters and hope they're able to cause a revolution without violence.

  13. The Twitter aspect of the Iran situation is amazing to me. And thank you for reminding me that I needed to change my settings to Tehran time.


  14. Beer traps? Did you "catch" any guys that way, along with the slugs? I'm picturing looking out the window one morning at your lovely Nutwood, and finding a drunken man farm. Maybe you could dress up as an Oktoberfest Barmaid.

    And I heard about the Iran-Twitter connection. So hanging head in shame, I''m sorry that I don't tweet because it hits me as sort of ADD & childish. Obviously not when it comes to the topical issues in Iran. I'm getting some of my info from Amelia whose bf's family still lives in Iran.
    Have a safe trip. ~Mary

  15. So does this mean if you put # in front of a subject you can read all the tweets about it? No wonder I don't "get" twitter..I thought you only got the tweets of people you followed and it seemed like such an arduous process to follow so many.


I'm funny how, I mean funny like I'm a clown, I amuse you?