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Colleges exploring mixed-gender roommates

Just roommates - The Boston Globe

Now, some colleges are crossing the final threshold, allowing men and women to share rooms. At the urging of student activists, more than 30 campuses across the country have adopted what colleges call gender-neutral rooming assignments, almost half of them within the past two years. Once limited to such socially liberal bastions as Hampshire College, Wesleyan University, and Oberlin College, mixed-gender housing has edged into the mainstream, although only a small fraction of students have taken advantage of the new policies so far. Clark and Dartmouth universities introduced mixed-gender rooms last fall, and Brown and Brandeis announced plans last month to follow suit.

The University of Pennsylvania, Skidmore and Ithaca colleges, and Oregon State University also allow roommates of different genders. Students at New York, Harvard, and Stanford universities, among many others, are calling for gender-blind dormitory rooms.

Protests shutdown Olympic torch relay

Protests halt Paris torch relay early - Yahoo! News

PARIS - Organizers canceled the final leg of the Olympic run through Paris after chaotic protests Monday, snuffing out the torch and putting it aboard a bus in a humiliating concession to protesters decrying China's human rights record.

Worried officials extinguished the torch and placed it on the bus five times throughout the day as protesters tried to grab the torch and block the relay. At least two activists got almost an arm's length away before they were seized by police.

Another protester threw water at the torch but failed to put it out before being taken away.

And in San Francisco, where the torch is due to arrive Wednesday, three protesters wearing harnesses and helmets climbed up the Golden Gate Bridge and tied the Tibetan flag and two banners to its cables. The banners read "One World One Dream. Free Tibet" and "Free Tibet."

Charlton Heston has died

Charlton Heston, 84; actor, Oscar winner, played grand figures - Los Angeles Times

Charlton Heston, the Oscar-winning actor who achieved stardom playing larger-than-life figures including Moses, Michelangelo and Andrew Jackson and went on to become an unapologetic gun advocate and darling of conservative causes, has died. He was 84.

Heston died Saturday at his Beverly Hills home, said family spokesman Bill Powers. In 2002, he had been diagnosed with symptoms similar to those of Alzheimer's disease.

He may have been a right-wing lunatic, but the man made soem damn fine movies.

April 06, 2008

On the shortsightedness of suburban planning

Calculated Risk: Maricopa: Do It For the Children

Ideally, a growing city will negotiate with developers to reduce the impact that new residents will have on the area; it might offer the builder smaller setbacks from the road in exchange for providing space for a school or widening roads. But at the beginning of Maricopa’s growth, the city was unincorporated, and all these negotiations were made by a three-person county board of supervisors that was working from rural zoning codes dating back to 1962. As a result, in those early years, decisions about Maricopa were driven by the concerns of developers, who left little space in their plans for business or commerce — just lots and lots of houses. They created blocks of identical homes, because it was more efficient to build with as little variation as possible. They built sidewalks on only one side of the street to save money. They happily left space in subdivisions for playgrounds and five new elementary schools, which they thought would help bring in the young families they were targeting, but they did not leave space for parks for older kids or for a high school. . . .

By the time Maricopa became a city, though, almost half of its land was owned by developers. In 2005, the local school district appointed a superintendent, John Flores, who began pleading with the developers for space for a high school (for a while, Maricopa schools were admitting 300 new students every month). But it was to no avail. Amy Haberbosch, Maricopa’s former director of planning, told me that developers believed high schools lowered property values; she said one developer told her he’d rather build a jail on his property than a high school. . . .

"Motherfucker was crazy. It was the drugs."

via | jzw | Sex Machine
James Brown:
"Motherfucker was crazy," says Gloria Daniel, a girlfriend he kept on the side for forty years. "It was the drugs." One night in the summer of 2001, after he'd slathered her in Vaseline ("He liked you all greased up," she says. "Like a porkchop") and wore her out trying to come, he gave up and left the room, and Gloria dozed off. When she woke up, Mr. Brown was standing at the foot of the bed in a full-length mink coat over his bare chest, a black cowboy hat, and silk pajama pants with one leg tucked into a cowboy boot and the other hanging out. He had a shotgun over his shoulder and a white stripe of Noxzema under each eye. "I'm an Indian tonight, baby," he announced. "C'mon, let's let 'em have it." Then he dumped a pickle jar of change on the floor, told her to get a machete, and went out to the garage. He took the Rolls, drove ten miles to Augusta, weaving all over the road, clipping mailboxes, smoking more dope, and screaming about being an Indian. Gloria kept thinking she should flag down a cop, say she'd been kidnapped.
As Unca Warren put it: Awe. Mr. James Joseph Brown, Jr., 1933-2006 |