in a perfect world of yancies: October 2005

31 October 2005

happy halloween

well, though we didn't make it out this weekend, we did go out Monday to enjoy the Halloween atmosphere

Emily as Velma!

Scott as—and this is great—the Supreme Court nominee

Haley, as a Toulouse-Lautrec can-can girl

Alito and Velma

our halloween crew--Haley, Deron ('KU parents' weekend guy'), Mimi, Scott, and Yancy (no costume, just a guy who wants a filibuster of the supreme court nominee--I mean, what is there to lose at this point? Five years of going along with Bush has just ended with more and more shit, so the democrats might as well, at this point, just say fuck it and bring the senate to a standstill--at least that would be something . . .)

ah, and one more attempt to bring the magic of fall to the small screen:

a tree near our place

29 October 2005

some fall

we've been doing our best to enjoy the season here in Lawrence

a tree by spooner hall (24.10.2005)

on KU campus, 24 October 2005

Emily spent Friday afternoon in Kansas City at the site of the original Unity headquarters, which was built in 1906
Emily says "the building is being renovated—many of the original features (maple floor, stained glass windows), luckily, still exist"

original Unity building, at 9th & tracy in KC, MO

window at original unity building, at 9th & tracy, in KC MO

later, she met me on campus for the KU soccer team's final home game, against rival Missouri

at the KU/MU fútbol game

KU vs. MU, 28 October 2005

KU's soccer team celebrates its double-overtime victory over Mizzou

27 October 2005


well, I meant for this to be a longer post about this incredibly awesome band, but instead I'll just briefly say (so that I can put it online & get back to what I should be working on) that we saw this band, Tsu Shi Ma Mi Re, the other night & they were just amazing--I spent their whole set just smiling and saying things like 'fuck! this is so good!'
I don't know how exacly to describe it--pop? metal? ska? who knows what it was, but those three Japanese girls sure can rock
& when you lead into an incredibly nutty rock song involving much head-banging by saying 'this is dancing song,' then you've got me . . .

we went to see the suicide girls live show (sorry, no link for that, I'm just not sure I can promote them (the show was a bit disappointing--of course, anything would be after seeing Tsu Shi Ma Mi Re)), and were at first disappointed to hear there were opening bands (it was Monday, after all), but this band took us completely by surprise, and completely stole the show

after their set, I called Merrica so I could have a couple of Japanese words to say to them--the drummer seemed impressed, & then responded with like 3 sentences in Japanese . . . but, anyway, I bought a t-shirt, so it all worked out

anyway, the album's not out in the US until next week, but I highly recommend it; and if you ever hear of them coming anywhere near you, you really need to go see them

their site has some sample mp3's, and some photos (I have none, since the suicide girls show had a no-photos policy)--just click on their name, Tsu Shi Ma Mi Re

okay, here's a link to (most of) a song they played the other night, called Ebihara Shinji

22 October 2005

happy birthday KJ

so the greatest radio station ever, KJHK, is 30 this week, which has led to some good fun around town--on Wednesday we heard Chuck D deliver a lecture (or 'vibe session,' if you prefer), which was pretty cool
and then, on Friday they had a free show at the Bottleneck, featuring a few local artists.
I put up a couple of photos below; there's no shot of Reach, an mc from KC, but he's also pretty cool; feel free to check out this track, The Arrival

Superargo performing for the KJHK 30th birthday party, with Skull-Face helping out with some dancing
for a good Superargo track, just click on the track name, Straight Out the Cubicle

The Harvey Girls
to check out my favorite of the Harvey Girls' songs, click on the track name, Good Morning

In any event, KJHK plays some excellent music, and has terrific variety--I promise that a look at their Now Playing page will almost always point you to a variety of interesting stuff that you and I have never heard before; there's also a link on their page to listen, so anyone regretting their lack of fun songs is advised to take a look . . .

17 October 2005


well I flew in Thursday morning--in fact my flight was cancelled due to weather & there being too many planes, but they actually got me to New York sooner, which is weird but acceptable . . .

it rained all day Thursday & Friday, so when I got to Manhattan I went inside the swanky looking Columbia U. library, where Jeremy (whom I hadn't seen in like 4 years--it was great to hang out again) met me

despite the persistent rain, I did get a couple shots of the Columbia campus:

the Journalism building at Columbia (in front is the statue of J. Pulitzer--he's tiny in the photo, but a big name in journalism, as I understand it)

the Low Library, which is now administration offices, though it still looks cool

we kept things pretty simple that night--some delicious Korean food up near Columbia (Jeremy is a grad student in journalism there, which is pretty damn cool), and a few pints of Brooklyn Lager down the street

Friday got a bit more exciting--I met Jeremy's mom & her husband in the morning, then sat in the library worrying about the conference I was in town for (more on that in a sec)--in fact, I spent a good hour or so making a handout for my talk, but I was finally unable to track down a photocopier in time. In the afternoon, Jeremy smuggled me into a class in the Journalism school, which (though it may have disappointed some of the students there, used to dynamic folk like Brian Williams as they are) I found fascinating--Al Siegel, standards editor at the Times spoke & took questions for like an hour & a half. He covered the plagiarism stuff, the anonymous source stuff, presidential election coverage, and even made an attempt to defend the Times Select thing they've started . . . (for anyone who'd like more on that, I'd be happy to fill that in--just ask, baby) Perhaps a highlight was his assertion that the Times need not bring in an outsider to write about the Judith Miller/Valerie Plame to-do, since it was in the paper's own interest to be as thorough as possible, as any oversights would surely show up in other papers, causing the Times to again lose face . . . I think I can accept that reasoning: can you?

that evening was the start of the International Conference on Ancient and Medieval Philosophy at Fordham University, this giant conference covering, at least, Ancient Greek, Medieval, Islamic, and Chinese Philosophy . . .
the 'banquet' was cold-cuts and salad, but at least the people were nice & the after-dinner talks were pretty interesting

and then it was back up to Jeremy's place, where we began to celebrate his 30th birthday; mostly by 'celebrate' I mean drink lager & buy lots of it for him

Jeremy with his friend Peter (the blur on the left), deep into Jeremy's 30th b-day celebration--I think this was not long after the 'car bomb' shots . . .

So, Jeremy was kind enough to let me stay at his place, thus saving me a bunch of $, and enabling much more time to trade stories . . .

Jeremy, in his room (yes, that's all of it); you can see my 'bed' in the foreground

On Saturday, I slept in & missed the 9am session at the conference, but I did make it in time to give my paper ("Error and Eikasia: Understanding the Lowest Level of Plato's Divided Line") (I'll link that to a pdf file, if anyone's really curious . . .)
the paper seemed to go over well (& I had plenty of time to find that out, since one of the 3 presenters in my session didn't make it), though I was hoping at least one person would think that I was way wrong, since those discussions are fun
I then heard some more papers on Plato--on his Socrates' inductive method, on the duty to obey the law, and about Socrates' narrative irony--pretty good stuff

After those talks, I met up with Jeremy and some of his family & family friends at a wine bar, which was pretty fun (although the wine was from New York, which is no Napa Valley); then it was on to little italy

dinner in little italy: Doug (J's mom's husband), Jeremy, Mike and Debbie (friends of the family), and Jeremy's mom, Julie (hopefully those names are all right . . .)
I had a delicious risotto with saffron, asparagus, and shrimp . . . mmm.

after dinner, some people wanted to see Times Square

me with Jeremy in Times Square--yes, I'm small, I know . . . but what a handsome jacket!

another Times Square shot

so that Times Square might not be where my night ended, I compelled Jeremy to take me to a bar--we ended up in or near Hell's Kitchen, and got started on this economic justice vs. growth & innovation talk that kept us up until around 3:30

in the morning, I awoke at 7:30 & went back to Fordham for one last session, and I got to hear a truly beautiful talk about Plato's Philebus and Republic . . . magnificent

after some tasty Indian food, I met up with Jeremy to try to finish our debate

well, as Jeremy & I discussed economic justice outside the cathedral of St. John the Divine, in Harlem (or is it the Upper West Side? Morningside Heights? . . . in any case), this bird leapt out of the bushes . . .

a big, crazy statue outside the church. It's called the Peace Fountain, though there's no water any more. Here's a description from the travel section of the Times:
"The forces of good, embodied in the figure of the archangel Michael, triumph by decapitating Satan, whose head hangs from one side. The fountain is encircled by small, whimsical animal figures cast in bronze from pieces sculpted by children."
Notice also all the giraffes on the sculpture--I guess they're symbols of peace (?)

all told, a great visit--good philosophy, good friends, good food
and my thanks again to Jeremy, who rocks me

12 October 2005

no more bottles; parties and propositions; a building in Bloomington

the much-awaited arrival of the Sunflower Curbside Recycling truck!
finally a way to recycle our many bottles, cans, newspapers, and magazines (plus a surprisingly large number of egg cartons . . .)--and no more driving to the walmart recycling center (& no more waiting for that to re-open--already a month behind schedule . . .)
for as little as $8 per month (!), the truck will come every other week & take away both our recyclables and our consumer guilt . . .
that name again, for anyone in Lawrence feeling guilty and/or in love with the earth, is Sunflower Curbside Recycling . . . (hope you enjoy the link color . . . oh HTML . . .)

I guess part of my point is that it's been a relatively slow week . . . Emily, aka Mimi, returned from her conference having had a good time & learned a few things, but without many pictures . . .

in Bloomington

a close-up

meanwhile, I've been evaluating my TA's discussion classes, which is quite an interesting experience, having been a TA just last year . . . for the most part they're doing pretty well--one of 'em's even doing the lecture on next Wednesday--hey, even I need a break once in a while! (& it'll be a good experience for them); this week, I confess, I've just been trying to get through the classes (I am also struggling with a bit of a cold), waiting until now: the beginning of Fall Break! (more on that in a bit)

we did find time to attend an interesting party at our friend Jacque's place (yes, Jacque w/no 's')--it was a nicely catered & well-attended event, but the invite was pretty amusing; here's a bit of it:
"You can bring up to 3 people as long as none of them are from the Department of Philosophy's
Grad. Student, Faculty, Staff...." huh.

well, here's a shot of me w/Jacque:

much of my night ended up spent in a very interesting discussion with Nathan Cox, a Phil grad student (& the TA giving Wednesday's lecture in my large intro class), about the possibility of non-propositional knowledge, i.e., the possibility of a sort of knowledge not expressible in a sentence (my example was knowledge of how to juggle, or ride a bike--I'll leave it to my readers' intuitions, I guess, whether those should count or not) . . . now Nathan thinks anything that's knowledge should have to be propositional, whereas I'm not so sure . . . why no picture of Nathan? guess I was too caught up in the debate . . .in any case, that kept at least the 2 of us entertained for a good while

finally, now that it's fall break, I'm heading out tomorrow morning for New York, where I'll give a paper on Plato; hear perhaps as many as ten or so other papers on Ancient, Medieval, or Islamic philosophy; and hang out in Manhattan w/Jeremy Hartley, whom I haven't seen for a number of years . . . should be awesome; unfortunately, I can't bring Emily along, but I will bring the camera, so please feel free to look forward to some fun photos from nyc

01 October 2005

Oh FEMA . . .; and a few days of Yancy

okay, thanks to google I've gotten a copy of this chart from the FEMA website, featured on the daily show earlier this week (for video, please follow the link over on the right & look for 'new video').
so here's the chart, from a page titled 'What We Do':

notice where the process ends . . . so, to paraphrase Jon Stewart, everything seems to be going according to plan
oh, and as proof that the image is really FEMA's, here's a link to the page I took it from: click here
though I suppose they may not keep it up forever . . .
damn funny either way

on an unrelated note:

having provided a glimpse into Emily's world, I thought perhaps I'd offer some words about mine (no pictures, though--Emily has the camera with her in Indiana, as she attends an archivists conference: hopefully we'll have pictures of that soon!)

most weekdays begin--after some coffee over the Lawrence Journal World, an okay paper if ever there was one--with me teaching my Ancient Philosophy class: Friday, we started looking at Plato, which basically meant that I talked for nearly an hour about Plato's biography, about the difficulty in seeing a 'historical Socrates' in Plato's works, and about the fact that Plato claimed never to have written about the things he took most seriously (for that, please see his 7th Letter, at 341b-c). (that link, by the by, is to the Perseus website, a fabulous source for classical texts, with the originals & translations . . .) I can only hope my students enjoyed it half as much as I did.

then, it's on to the honors intro. to phil. class, which is really quite fun (except for the 9-minute walk it takes to get there, leaving me 1 minute to stop in my office & get the textbook), since the class is nice and small (20 students) & they are almost always ready for a good discussion

& then, on Mondays & Wednesdays, I lecture to between 100 & 250 students (this Wednesday, after giving an exam Monday, it was much closer to the first #, unfortunately), whcih is actually pretty fun--although I have to say there's nothing quite like trying to make a joke in front of 200 people & having no one laugh . . . oh well, as long as they learn something I suppose the job's been done; right now, we're about to begin studying just why David Hume was quite sure that no one can have knowledge of unobserved events (for example, I cannot right now know that the kitchen of our apartment has not become a casino while I've been upstairs writing this)--good stuff

I've alse been sitting in on a class on Plato's Theaetetus, which has a philosophy day & a Greek translation day--& as much as I like the philosophy, I must confess it's the Greek that seems most challenging to me lately . . .
In addition, I've been trying to get myself to work on a couple of papers--one on Aristotle's Metaphysics (yes, the same one I mentioned over the summer . . .), and one on Democritus, the ancient atomist (who thought reality was made up of very small, indivisible atoms) and his ethical theory . . .
the goal, such as it is, is to get at least some of this research done before the job hunt kicks into gear, which should happen early this month; most schools want applications for next year by the end of Nov., and it looks like I may be spending some of late December in New York City, where many schools will hold preliminary interviews . . . which is cool if it'll land me a good job, but sort of too bad, since that would be 2 or 3 less days I might see Merrica, who'll be back from Japan for the 1st time in like a year and a half

anyway, one last near-weekly activity: I went back to the brainville trivia thing with the lovely Deron Lee and the lovely Haley Harrison this Thursday, and though we didn't win we did have some fun mocking the hosts, the 'two Scotts' (no really, they're both named Scott . . .); they, by the by, have a brainville trivia blog now, so if you're interesting in final questions or location issues, please click here or on the name of the show, brainville trivia . . .

and, lastly, Emily returns tonight from her conference, so look forward to some pictures of Indiana (?) and a fitter, happier Yancy

oh, ps, I heard Stanley Lombardo, professor of classics, do a fabulous reading (w/a drum & everything!) of his new Aeneid translation yesterday, which makes me think it'd be fun to a) recommend that book to anyone who likes good books, and b) put a link here to him reading, in Ancient Greek, book one of the Iliad, which just sounds so beautiful that it's well worth a listen, so click here for Stanley Lombardo reading Iliad I [I see that the links to the reading may not be working right now . . . but trust me, it's pretty cool . . .]