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April 18, 2014

Friday Night Open Thread

Worst ever avalanche on Mount Everest kills 12 guides, with four people still unaccounted for.

Why so many guides and few climbers? Well... because Sherpas are really the climbers, and every season, they prepare the climb with predeployed supplies and equipment (and checking ropes and such) for the "climbing season."

With peak season just days away [I see what you did there -- ace], Sherpas and guides are busy preparing for the trek up the highest peak in the world.

"The Sherpa guides were carrying up equipment and other necessities for climbers when the disaster happened," a spokesman for Nepal's Tourism Ministry, Mohan Krishna Sapkota, told the AFP news agency.

Before a climber begins the assent, hired Sherpas set up camps at higher altitudes and fix routes and ropes on the slopes above.

Of course climbing Mount Everest is a serious achievement for anyone.

Still, you know. It's always strange to celebrate a climber when Sherpas are going up the mountain all the time. As their day job. Let's face it, they're the climbers. The "climbers" are really the luggage.

Don't ever call them socialist, but it just so happens that David Axelrod has been hired by a socialist candidate for UK prime minister.

The British Labour Party has appointed David Axelrod as a strategic adviser to Ed Miliband's 2015 campaign. Axelrod, who went on to serve as a senior adviser to President Obama after acting as an adviser on the president's 2008 campaign, will reportedly be paid a six-figure sum for his work.

These government-connected socialists do live well, don't they?

You probably won't believe this, but Politico seems to have a crush on Hillary Clinton.

Incidentally, while the left celebrates Hillary's soon-to-be electorally-useful Grandmother Status, they also attack Drudge for the "ageist" attack of calling her a grandma.

Which is what they're doing. Oh but right, they're talking up how that will make her the Best President Ever so it's different.

Oh, and just two weeks after NBC warned the country about the dangers of billionaires spending wads of money to influence elections, Mike Bloomberg appeared on NBC to publicize his donation of $50 million to, get this, "grassroots organizations," the media calls them, to fight gun rights.

NBC forgot to ask Michael Bloomberg about the perils of billionaires buying elections.

Ah well, I'm sure it just slipped their minds.

Breaking: Obama's a nasty little prick.

@RDBrewer4 sent me this audio of Quentin Tarantino's commentary for True Romance, specifically the "Sicilian speech" scene. (Oh, yeah, he didn't direct it, but he provides commentary as the writer.) Here's the part about the Sicilian speech, but I've listened to most of the whole thing, and I think it's a very good commentary.

Tarantino is not as annoying as he usually is, and he basically uses the commentary to tell the early story of his career (he wrote, in order, True Romance, Reservoir Dogs, and Pulp Fiction within a few years). It's pretty interesting, so long as you like any of those movies.

He also makes a few interesting observations, like his idea that a movie should be so autobiographically revealing about yourself that if you watch it a few years later, you should be embarrassed at how much of yourself you've exposed. He says he did this with his fantasy/juvenile portrayal of what an awesome girlfriend would be like with the Alabama character (he had never had a girlfriend at that point, and he was 25, so his idea of a girlfriend was entirely speculative and hypothetical) and I guess the Clarence character, who is a Tarantino Mary Sue.

So, if you thought, "Gee this Alabama character sure seems like an idealized wish-fulfillment creation of a romantically-frustrated arrested-development 25-year-old juvenile who knows almost nothing about actual women," Yup. You nailed it.

Worth a listen.

By the way, speaking of Bunnies, did you know people actually put rabbits through show competitions, including agility courses?

They do. There are a lot of videos like this on YouTube.

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posted by Ace at 07:12 PM

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