About Me

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Armchair theorist, poet, and occasional IT manager, Sascha B. is equipped with a Master's Degree in Middle Eastern Studies from the University of Texas, and is not afraid to use it. His work has been published by the University Press of America, Edwin Mellen Press, University of Texas Press, and a variety of small journals nationwide. He is also the proprietor and baker for 3141 Pie, of which you should eat many.

The Deal

I stopped blogging in 2013, when life overtook me. My father became ill and died shortly thereafter, and my mother was left with increasing dementia. I became the primary caregiver, and now orchestrate my mother's care and our family estate.

Now, I am coming up for air again.

Looking for the next book to read. All suggestions welcome.

My reading list is over here.

Friday, January 29, 2010

From Your Favorite "Transit First" City....

SFpark, which will begin as a pilot program in the Mission District and elsewhere in late spring, uses road sensors to send real-time information that can be accessed online, via text message or at posted electronic signs to help drivers locate vacant spots, according to the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency.
So...while searching for a parking space, cruising down the road, I should whip out my iPhone and either text or surf to SFpark to find where I can drop my jalopy? Don't I recall some recent civic outrage about distracted drivers using phones while on the go? About the rise in 'texting while driving' issues? And the prohibition of all that activity?

Doesn't this send a wickedly mixed message to drivers in the city?

At a time when we are looking at a second round of service reductions and fare increases for Muni service in SF, it looks like the city is online to screw up driving the streets yourself as well. Perhaps the message is just "Stay at home. Go nowhere. And whatever you do, don't try to cross the street."

A Plug For Bacon?

Amid all the tumultuous political news, and sad passings (JD Salinger, Howard Zinn), here's something to perk us all up. Apparently, if you believe the President of Argentina, eating pork will perk you up in more ways than one:
Cristina Fernandez promoted pork in a speech during which she not only said pork is better than Viagra, but suggested she's personally proven it.

"I didn't know that eating pork improved sexual activity," Fernandez said in a meeting with representatives of the swine industry late Wednesday. "It is much more gratifying to eat some grilled pork than to take Viagra."

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Quote Of The Day

"If everyone was protecting sunlight and not creating shadows, this wouldn't be an issue."

-David Chiu, President of the SF Board of Supervisors
Apparently, the so-called "progressives" on the Board are looking to keep any new shadows from being thrown on existing parks, condominiums, small dogs, or fire hydrants frequented by happy laughing scamps playing in the summertime.

Once again, I am appalled.

Thanks goodness someone is looking out for the rights of poor ol' sunlight. And I'm heading inside right now and hiding in a dark closet, in order to avoid casting a pernicious and community-degrading shadow.

Am I being a bit too snarky? Perhaps. But when our federal government is acting like a roomful of spoiled children, and our local government is acting like a pack of delusional wombats, how is one supposed to respond intelligently?

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

HCR Is So Yesterday

The NYT headline says it all:
Democrats Act Like Rejects From Self-Help Group Therapy Session Put Stop on Health Overhaul

WASHINGTON — With no clear path forward on major health care legislation, Democratic leaders in Congress effectively slammed the brakes on President Obama’s top domestic priority on Tuesday, saying that they no longer felt pressure to move quickly on a health bill after eight months of setting deadlines and missing them.

The Senate majority leader, Harry Reid, Democrat of Nevada, deflected questions about health care. “We’re not on health care now,” he said. “We’ve talked a lot about it in the past.
Yeah. Talked a lot about it in the past.

The disappointment that I feel in a Congress that has now not only squandered eight months of first term momentum, but also shown itself incapable of crafting an effective message and delivering it with any fervor to the people, is to say the least disheartening.