Stampede in Iraq: 648 Dead

Good God. Guardian: At least 648 people were killed in a stampede on a bridge Wednesday when panic engulfed a Shiite religious procession amid rumors that a suicide bomber was about to attack, officials said. It was the single biggest confirmed loss of life in Iraq since the March 2003 invasion. Scores jumped or were […]

New Taiwan Typhoon

Why are hurricanes in Asia called typhoons? Got me. Nomenclature aside, a big hurricane typhoon hurri-phoon is about to lash Formosa. BBC: Schools and other public buildings in several areas of Taiwan, including the capital, were closed on Wednesday in advance of a powerful typhoon. Typhoon Talim is scheduled to hit the northern, eastern and […]

Twisty Skyscraper in Sweden

CNN: MALMO, Sweden (AP) — The Nordics’ tallest skyscraper was officially opened Saturday with prize-winning Spanish architect Santiago Calatrava surveying the view from the 54th floor. With its spectacular 90-degree twist, Turning Torso consists of nine stacked cubes, each turned slightly.

“A War to be Proud Of”

Christopher Hitchens: “The case for overthrowing Saddam was unimpeachable. Why, then, is the administration tongue-tied?” Hitchens, Iraq, war

Overheard at a Party on Saturday Night

I went to a party Saturday night* and overheard an interesting snippet of conversation. “Yeah, well,” a male voice behind me was telling his friends, “the thing is he wasn’t even all that respected in the graffiti community.” I cocked my head and perked my ears up and, yes, that’s who they were talking about: […]

AA Minus God

LA Times: Eighteen years ago, Larry B. was newly sober when he got up at an Alcoholics Anonymous meeting and said he was troubled by the 12-step program’s emphasis on God. Shortly afterward, someone slipped the San Fernando Valley man a note: “Have you tried SOS?” Larry took the stranger’s advice and sought out SOS, […]

New Truman Capote Biopic

A new Truman Capote biopic is opening on September 30th. The film tells the story of Capote investigating and writing the classic “non-fiction novel” In Cold Blood. The movie’s called “Capote,” and the trailer is promising. Philip Seymour Hoffman will play TC, and the movie also features the excellent Catherine Keener and Chris Cooper. Capote […]

Bizarre Lede of the Day

CNN: EZULWINI VALLEY, Swaziland (Reuters) — The king of Swaziland’s daughter was whipped by a palace official at a party of teenage virgins ahead of a festival where more than 50,000 maidens are available to become her father’s 13th wife, media said on Sunday. Swaziland