Wednesday, January 31, 2007


White House Quietly Retracts Entire State Of The Union Address

WASHINGTON, DC—In a brief statement faxed to major media outlets at approximately 11:50 p.m. Friday, the White House retracted the entire 5,600-word State of the Union address delivered by President Bush last Tuesday. "This includes all components of the address, and is not limited to the president's congratulations to Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi or his plan to give more Americans affordable health care through tax cuts, which has since been deemed infeasible," the statement read in part. "Furthermore, the president's urge for bipartisanship as well as his final statement about the state of the union being 'strong' are hereby stricken from the public record." Like the State of the Union address itself, the White House's retraction has not yet become a significant national news story.

Friday, January 26, 2007

Whence Oscar?

Oscar nominee Marky Mark. Who knew, right?

I've gotten a couple of e-mails asking me why I haven't commented on this week's Oscar noms. The simple answer is that I haven't seen any of this year's top contenders, so the news didn't elicit much of anything from me (although I'm hoping to catch The Departed and Letters From Iwo Jima sooner rather than later).

Seeing as how I have no horse in any of the big races, and without someone like Jon Stewart hosting the festivities this year (it's gonna be Ellen Degeneres, whose comedy I guess I just don't "get"), I have a feeling that, for the first time in more than a decade-and-a-half, I'm gonna skip this Oscar-cast.

(That said, I would love nothing more than to see Al Gore take the documentary prize for An Inconvenient Truth, for the sure-to-be-interesting acceptance speech, if nothing else.)

Recommended Reading

Joe Conason on this week's State of the Union address. More specifically...why it didn't matter:

In this moment, as in so many others since Bush first took the oath of office, his distinguishing characteristic is the squandered opportunity. After 9/11, he could have brought the country together, and instead decided to aggrandize his party and his own power. He could have brought the world together to confront civilization's enemies, from Osama bin Laden to Saddam Hussein, and chose instead to ruin traditional alliances in an aggressive, illegal and unnecessary war.

Had he not made those stupid choices, and were he not blinded by his arrogance, then today he might be able to take advantage of crucial opportunities to improve the future of the United States and planet Earth.

Of course you are.

Bush: 'I'm the decision-maker' on Iraq

Oy, we know, we know...

Of course it does.

Gates: Iraq resolution 'emboldens' enemy

What doesn't these days, right?

Seems like the folks in the junta would be a whole lot happier if they could just run their "democracy" without the inconvenience of "other people" and their differing "opinions" sticking their noses in and ruining everything. Know what I "mean"?

Sunday, January 21, 2007


Yesterday's big news was that, to the suprise of no one (and the great delight, I'm sure, of those on the far right) Hilary Clinton was throwing her hat into the ring of presidential primary politicking. There's any number of good reasons why Mrs. Clinton shouldn't be president, but Peter David does a nice job of boiling it down to three.

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Meanwhile, at the Hall of Justice...

3 dorks + Photoshop =

That's Brian on the left, Sean on the right, and me, King Dork, in the middle.

What kind of week did YOU have?

Well, it's been a bit of a stretch since my last post, but believe it or not, I have a pretty decent explanation for my extended absence (which I'm guessing you can probably glean from the picture).

First up though, as mentioned last time, I did indeed have the final defense for my thesis last Tuesday. No need for the electrodes, it turns out. Although nerve-wracking, I ended up passing. That doesn't mean I'm done-done, but it gets me pretty darn close, and that's a big relief. You can tell already the kind of week I had, where passing my thesis defense was NOT the highlight.

As it happens, the timing for the defense couldn't have been better, as the following day my wife's water broke, and by Thursday morning we welcomed the little man up top into the world. Say hello to Hamza Syed Hasan. Not sure who he looks like, mom or dad, but so far it seems like he definitely inherited his old man's love of sleep.

But wait, there's more. As it happens, the baby wasn't due for another three weeks, and because my wife had decided she wanted a bigger place before he arrived, we were scheduled to move this past week. Naturally, I was the voice of reason in this whole thing saying we should wait 'till after the baby because, y'know, the last thing we'd want is for the baby to come right when we're in the process of moving. But, of c0urse, that would never happen, right?

Ultimately, all's well that ends well, thanks to some help from a lot of friends who came through in a pinch (including my compatriots from Team Boy, who drove up from La-La Land to help me move), but I'm still standing here basking in the warm glow of vindication, and it feels pretty good.

All this, plus I also started a new teaching job at a local junior college last week. No rest for the weary!

Saturday, January 06, 2007

The Cinema Year That Was (Last Year)

Zaki's Flick Picks: '06

Well, it took a little while to get here, and a more appropriate time to do this may well have been, y'know, during 2006, with everyone else's lists, but what can I tell ya, I've never been one to go with the pack. With thesis business occupying the majority of my thoughts for most of last month, this particular annual tradition had to wait until such time as I saw fit. Well, I've handed in my final draft, my defense is coming up on Tuesday, so with nothing to do but wait, I figured I'd unwind a little by finally giving up my movie picks for 2006.

(And yes, I unwind from writing by...writing. Shut up.)