Something is fishy at Time magazine’s “Phonies and Frauds of the
Century” survey.
NewsMax reports
that votes for Geraldo Rivera — who had been leading his nearest
competitor by a 5-to-1 margin as of September 27 — seem to have been
mysteriously recounted, such that, as of this writing, approximately
30,000 of them are gone. Subtracted. Vanished. Not there any more.
Geraldo’s 53,000 vote-count has been reduced to 22,000, placing him at
number 2 on the list.

So who’s winning now? J.R. “Bob” Dobbs, the fictional, putative
God-figure of the Church of the
, which is less a cult than a sort of obscure,
Monty-Python-esque parody of a cult, greatly favored by irony-drunken

One notable effect of the numbers cookery: with Geraldo’s figures
drastically revised downward, conservative figures Linda Tripp, Rush
Limbaugh, Kenneth Starr and Dr. Laura now appear, proportionally, to
have become significantly more competitive as contenders for the title
of Phoniest of Phonies.

The Time 100 bulletin boards host a discussion
forum on the Time polls in which, as of October 15, only a few voices
crying in the wilderness had so far tried to draw attention to the
discrepancy. You’ll have to register on the boards in order to
participate in the discussion, but the only requirement is a valid
e-mail address.

Artists, click here

On sale at premier auction site eBay this week: your own exhibition
in a Los Angeles art gallery for five days this December.
“More than 300 feet of wall space” at an unidentified self-described
“prestigious art institute,” no commission on sales, “no subject matter
too risqué,” and it sounds as if you’ll get a hip reception on the first
night as part of the deal. Another one for the “things that make you go
Hmmm” file. The auction is scheduled to conclude on October 24 at 4:08
PM, Pacific time, so get your bids in by then.

Font fetish?

This superb typography site is a cannonball dive into the sheer joy
of typefaces and letterforms. Fonts are one of those things that either
fascinate you or bore you to tears, but if you like them, you really,
really like them. The right font can subtly (or not so subtly) influence
the tenor of the message that the words convey. A business card printed
in Copperplate makes a vastly different impression from one printed in
Snell, Bodoni, or Industria. Take a look at these representative
typefaces and get an idea of what I mean. The site lets you play, moving
letter animations around, superimposing a lowercase “a” in Helvetica
upon a lowercase “a” in Univers, for example, so that you can examine
all the tiny variations. It’s gorgeous, well-designed, and just a
marvelous experience in every respect.

Beer: it’s good for the gals

I stumbled across an interesting little squib this afternoon in the
“Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism.” (I know. Don’t ask.)
It seems that hops, which are one of the major ingredients of beer,
contain potent phytoestrogens called isoflavonoids. Consuming
isoflavonoids — which are also found in soy, red wine, and dark
chocolate — is associated with “a reduced incidence of breast and
prostate cancer, cardiovascular disease and menopausal symptoms.” That
means that moderate beer intake may have health-beneficial effects,
particularly for women who are going through difficult transitions into
menopause or who are suffering from premenstrual syndrome. Here‘s
the abstract. I just thought you all would like to know.


Did you know you can order custom color mixes of M&Ms
from the company? Neither did I until this week, but it makes me very
happy to think about it. The only drawback is that you have to order 40
pounds of M&Ms at one time. (The more unrestrained chocoholics among us
may consider the 40-pound minimum more of a value-added benefit than a
drawback, of course.) The M&Ms will arrive in four 10-pound boxes, each
containing a single color. If you’re throwing a really huge millennium
party, or putting together Christmas favors for a large office, it’s a
viable proposition. Or, if you’re due to be drafted as a bridesmaid or
usher in the near future, you can secretly procure some in a tasteful
pink, white, cream and silver-gray mix for throwing at the unsuspecting
bride and groom — who might even forgive you for your deed by the end
of the honeymoon. (Note that anyone who pulls this at my wedding
will be summarily excommunicated.) For best color viewing, set the
display capabilities for your monitor to “thousands” or “millions” of
colors and use the Shockwave option.

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