Should Hawai’i be worried about creationists?

Of course! They’re lurking everywhere, scheming to get onto school boards and wreak havoc. I recently heard from a few people at the University of Hawaii who were shocked to see some of the responses of school board candidates there to the question, “Should public schools teach intelligent design?”—they gave answers like this:

  • Henry W. Hoeft, Jr. says Intelligent Design creationism “Should be taught side-by-side with Darwin’s Theory of Evolution and students can decide which view to accept”.

  • Brian Kessler says “Voters should decide by referendum”.

[Read more…]

Pirates and zombies, oh my

First, the Minnesota zombies invaded the lakes. Then there was some unpleasantness from the police when they took over the mall. Now there’s going to be a zombie pub crawl in Minneapolis on Saturday, September 9. But wait! There’s also going to be a pirate pub crawl on the same day! What to do, what to do…

Actually, my personal dilemma is easily resolved by the date. It is a very bad idea to do a pub crawl the evening before your wife’s birthday. Even if the possibility of a pirate-zombie war tempts you.

(via MNspeak)

Pirate Ballads, Sea Songs and Chanteys

Aye, this is a CD I shall be purchasin’.

Leering, full of menace and the threat of pain, “15 Men on a Dead Man’s Chest” is arguably the most famous pirate song ever committed to tape (and thanks to its refrain, “Yo ho ho and a bottle of rum,” it also ranks among the more pro-booze sing-alongs in the children’s section of the music store).

But as a genre, pirate music remains obscure even by musicologists’ standards. To spotlight a genre that has all but disappeared — as well as cannily promote their summer blockbuster “Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest” — Johnny Depp and director Gore Verbinski commissioned an expansive compendium of such seafarer music, “Rogue’s Gallery: Pirate Ballads, Sea Songs and Chanteys,” due Aug. 22 on Anti- Records. Its 43 tracks include contributions from Sting, Bono, Lucinda Williams, Lou Reed, Loudon Wainwright III, Van Dyke Parks and Bryan Ferry among an eclectic roster.

I need to be thinkin’ about restorin’ Pirate Mode here, too. The place is gettin’ too…lubberly.

Arrr, me hearties, it’s that time at last

Tonight is the Morris premiere of that fabulous documentary on exotic marine invertebrates and nautical history, Pirates of the Caribbean. I will be there. I will be leaving early so I can get a good seat, front and center. I shall be singing sea shanties as I walk downtown to the theater. I will be rooting for the handsome fellow with the tentacular beard. I’m certain I will have a good time.

I’ll probably also gripe heartily about the movie afterwards. We curmudgeons just aren’t truly happy unless we’ve got things to grumble about.