Wednesday, August 31, 2005

I'm leaving bloomington

...well, not actually. But I have seriously thought about it. There was this job announcement that has been seriously tempting me for a couple days now, but I don't think I could do it. I mean, it would be fucking awesome to work for Long Trail, definately one of my favorite breweries ever and it would be awesome to live in Vermont, I could actually catch the powder days and it would be cool to get back in the lab again...but that would get old pretty quick, one of the reasons I quit being a biologist in the first place.

I should really stop reading the probrewer classifieds.

Tuesday, August 30, 2005

it smells like the gulf of mexico in my front yard

Actually, only kind of like the gulf of mexico. Katrina, the hurricane, has arrived here in Bloomington and it is raining...a lot. It's also 20-30 mph winds. Now this is not Gulfport-Mississippi-razing wind, but it's something. It would be a great day to go sailing, that's for sure. I'd take that Capri 14.2 out and really tear up Lake Lemon today. I think a Laser would be a little out of control today.

In other MattDunn news, I made some really good tomato sauce the other night from scratch. Mr.Dave Brodin gave me a bunch of Roma tomatoes and chile peppers from his garden last Thursday and that inspired me. I put in like 10 cloves of garlic and a whole green pepper and a whole onion though and the sauce gave me absolutely horrible gas. It was awesome. I will not make that sauce least for a while.

Unfortunately I had to supplement Dave's tomatoes with a couple store bought tomatoes. Can you tell which ones are the bland, tasteless store bought variety??

And oh has started and it is a welcome change from the lazy summer months...ha! Actually, I made significant progress on my Darwin paper yesterday...which feel very good.

Sunday, August 28, 2005

sleep walking

I went for a little dash last night in my 'sleep'.

Sleep walking is strange.

I remember feeling a very strong sense of urgency. I seem to remember thinking I had to vomit. I also seem to remember thinking that the bathroom was not the place to do it.

So I ran out the front door in only my boxers.

I rounded the corner of the house and headed for the back yard where I realized the urgency was centered in my bladder.

So I peed. A lot. Standing on the driveway, through the fence into the back yard. I hope the neighbors weren't watching.

Weird huh?

And by the way, you can now leave comments without registering. I've enabled the security thing where you identify a word in an image or some such thing.

Do you sleep walk?

Saturday, August 27, 2005

NY Times and astrology

The recent hubub about the NY Times' coverage of the Intelligent Design 'controversy' made me particularly sensitive to the article I skimmed briefly this morning around 4am after I got home from the Vid (it is the last weekend before classes start, clearly the summer has to be sealed off with an appropriate drunken bender).

Anyway, the article is about Astrology and how the discovery of a new planet might affect astrologer's work. If PZ Myers over at Pharyngula (not to mention everybody else who has a blog except me) was upset about the Times' coverage of the ID 'debate' and how it made the ID folks seem like credible scientists, this Astrology article ought to get them even more riled up.

The vast majority of the article is pretty much a summary of how Astrologers are going to handle the new discovery and how many people believe in horoscopes:

"On the contrary, astrologers seem to have reached an unspoken consensus to take a wait-and-see approach. Wait and see if there is a 10th planet. Then wait and observe its influence on human life. Astrologers have been searching the sky for centuries for clues to how the positions of stars and planets could affect life on Earth. Their celestial observations intrigued Chaucer, Shakespeare and even Galileo. The profession still thrives, supported in no small part it seems by people who say they do not really believe in it, as evidenced by the enormous popularity of horoscopes in magazines, newspapers and on the Web. Last year America Online's most popular search term was 'horoscope.'

A Gallup Poll telephone survey conducted in June found that 25 percent of Americans believe that the position of the stars and planets can affect people's lives."

"Leigh Oswald, an astrologer in London, said unknown forces may determine when scientists discover new planets. 'A planet is discovered when it's appropriate for humanity to understand it,' she said. 'In other words, when we are ready for it.'"

Yes, the article assumes a dismissive tone at times, particularly when they are dealing with what one of the Astronomer who discovered the planet thinks about the whole thing.

BUT, the articles about ID were also dismissive when they were dealing with the Evolutionary Biologist's take on ID. In other words, this article can be interpreted as supporting Astrology.

Now perhaps Astrology is so widely known to be pseudoscience and simply for entertainment purposes that everyone knows that this article is really just covering an entertainment industry or whatever. I mean, it is in the 'Fashion' section. But I really didn't get that impression from reading the article. I got the impression that the reporter was sincerely concerned with getting the Astrologer's side of the story.

If this is true, the ID debate is but one small symptom of a larger disease.

Friday, August 26, 2005

dirt camp

JennyB and I went on a camping trip and it was this big.

In the spirit of camp 'plan A', this campsite was named camp 'dirt camp'. The name makes it sound a lot shitter than it actually was. I mean, look at the view from 'dirt camp's' beach:

Here's a teaser for the sunset.

JennyB used to be a dancer you know.

Five birds.

The sunset was pretty awesome.

And there will be a video documentary of our trip to dirt camp posted here soon. 'Best keep one eye up'.

Tuesday, August 23, 2005

more Dembski

I was thinking about the Dembski stuff a bit more, namely his claim that if a 'irreducibly complex 'machine'' evolved in Lenski's E coli studies 'the issue of contamination would also arise'. I realize that this might be a joke. But probably not. Which is exciting to me because it kind of reveals, at least to me, how funny Dembski's views, and all of ID's views really are.

Anyway, the problem with ID, at least the brand of ID that requires God to actually manipulate the organic world every now and again (let alone a more deist interpretation), is that nobody really knows what one of these manipulations should look like. Therefore, there can never be any evidence for or against the hypothesis that God 'guides' evolution.

Now this is a pretty standard critique of ID. ID is not testable. It's not falsifiable in principle. There's nothing that we can imagine being observed that would force us to reject ID.

Why I find this particular case so funny is that Dembski is trying to come up with alternative, ad hoc explanations for the appearance of 'irreducibly complex' traits. Why contamination? Why not just say: well, it may appear as if the trait evolved through 'natural' causes, but really, God was nudging the nucleotides around the whole time, we just can't tell. What prohibits God from working in a lab? It's not like it's any different to God from a jungle.

The problem is that EVERY possible observation is compatible with ID, however only a very small number (relatively speaking) are compatible with evolutionary biology.

I mean, if we were out in the jungle and 'watched' an orchid evolve some complex pollination apparatus, could we really tell it was being actively designed? Sure, we might be able to use Dembski's model for 'detecting design' (I actually doubt that very much but for the sake of argument), but it wouldn't matter.

But maybe I'm jumping the gun. Maybe Dembski would really give up ID if we could show the exact sequence of changes that took place leading up to some 'irreducibly complex' trait, well, at least a snapshot of the population every 100 generations. But I doubt he'd give it up even then. I would imagine he would say, 'look, it is so unlikely that that particular sequence of events lined up just like that and led to that particular trait that each one had to be put in place by God.' (again repeating the 'low probability fallacy' as I think it should be called, i.e. not understanding that some trait only has a 'high probability' of evolving in a certain context, i.e. a wing would surely not be very likely if you didn't already have something to build on, like a forelimb)

I don't know. I guess we'll have to wait and see, because I have a very good feeling about this Lenski study. Not like it's necessary, but I just want to see how 'they' handle it.

Monday, August 22, 2005

contamination? I think not

So the NY Times published the second in a series of articles on Intelligent Design. I think they did a decent job in that they simply provided the biologist's answers to ID criticisms. Very straight forward. Except of course they do the whole 'teach the controversy' thing, but oh well. We can't have everything even if PZ Myers thinks we can. I think Myers wants every piece about ID to simply be a tirade against it. Clearly we need to explain what it is before we tear it down.

Also, it seems like maybe the more mainstream press this stuff gets, the more the mainstream press will cut it down. I hope.

Anyway, one of the more exciting parts of the article was the brief discussion of Rich Lenski's long term experimental evolution work with E. Coli. I got to meet Prof. Lenski at a meeting once and have him shoot down all my great ideas. I also worked briefly with one of his ex post docs, Cliff Zeyl, who is pretty much the fucking man. Anyway, the E. coli experiment has got to be around 30,000 generations now, and not like we need more fruit from this study, particularly to combat stupid ID, but Lenski claims there have been some 'irreducibly complex traits' evolved in the populations, something that the ID people will not like. But the best part of the aritcle was probably the last line from Lenski:

"If anyone is resting his or her faith in God on the outcome that our experiment will not produce some major biological innovation, then I humbly suggest they should rethink the distinction between science and religion."

Damn straight dude.

Anyway, Billy 'god did it' Dembski wrote on his blog that one could claim 'contamination' to explain the new trait. Here's the comment I posted in response, I wonder how long it will take him erase it?

"Actually, contamination isn't a very good ad hoc explanation of some new 'machine' being observed in the E. coli work. Not only are there control cultures, but because every 100 or so generations, cells are frozen. Therefore you can 'resurrect' (no pun intended) ancestors and see if they were indeed the ancestors of the new 'machine'.

Also, why praise this article? Eventhough it plays the ID game of 'teach the controversy', it seems that every response biology gives to ID objection in the article is quite reasonable. I thought the discussion of clotting was particularly well done. And the MtRushmore bit. If we found a cell with the faces of four presidents on it, then biologists should certainly start looking for a designer. Or at least some schmuck on Ebay who would by the cell for thousands of dollars kind of like that tortilla with the image of Jesus on it."

Sunday, August 21, 2005

the all new SUNDAY ramble

The NY Times posted a good story today about current trends in Native American culture. It's long, but worth it.

So I was working at Black Rock Outfitters in Cherokee NC less than a mile or two from the entrance to Great Smoky Mountain National Park. The store was located on the the Cherokee Indian reservation right smack dab in the middle of a long strip of trinket-y little piece of shit tourist shops. You could get all the authentic moccasins and cowboy hats you could ever want. Or perhaps pan for gold? See a 'traditional' Indian medicine/rain/hunting dance performed by a member of the eastern band of Cherokee in full WESTERN native garb under the shade of a teepee. Big headdress and buffalo skin poncho. It's the 'chiefing' of the Cherokee.

So I was working here, amidst the trash and kitsch that is Cherokee NC, when a man just flat out asked me if I was Cherokee. Now I don't really look anything like a Native American. I'm white as white can be. I have high cheekbones, but so do a lot of people. I have brown hair with blonde highlights. And furthermore, the eastern band Cherokee are one of the more 'seriously authentic' tribes, as the article put it, in the country. The people there look like Indians. They speak Cherokee. They write Cherokee. I had a student in one of my classes I taught at Western who had me call him chief. And he looked like 'chief'. Deep red skin. Jet black hair. Large tribal tatoos on both forearms. There is a very strong and vibrant native culture.

And I certainly wasn't a part of it.

But this guy just had to ask. He was really curious.

My grandfather, on the other hand, could have easily 'passed' as native in his youth. Rather dark skin, jet black hair, high cheekbones and to be really speculative and perhaps insulting, he was aloof. Kind of out of touch. What I remember from several years ago, when he was still interacting with people regularly, that people seemed to marginalize him. They seemed to think of him as an outsider. Maybe I have this all wrong, but it made him seem that much more 'exotic'.

He tells (told) us that his grandmother was a 'full blooded' Iroquois from SW New York State where there is also a rather vibrant native culture around the Seneca Reservation where tobacco and gas are cheap cheap cheap. His grandfather was apparently a traveling salesman, 'a snakeoil salesman' if you will and it was quite authentic to have his wife sit near his wagon in full Native regalia.

So that would make me some percentage native american, which is kind of interesting I suppose. I really need to send some of my DNA off to be examined.

Saturday, August 20, 2005

Indiana invaded by ID

Intelligent Design is making in roads into the Hoosier state. Dr.Myers at Pharyngula has a nice bit about the issue here.

Then Prof. Myers posts a little piece about a cartoon printed today in the Indy Star. Here's a link to that post and a link to the cartoon.

Needless to say, I was a little peeved. Indiana being my current state of residence and all, I decided to reply to the cartoonist. Here's what I wrote:

Was your cartoon for August 20th a very subtle piece of irony? Were you trying to make fun of Intelligent Design proponents for claiming that biologists are 'Darwinists' and that they are 'ignoring the evidence' and the criticism?

I doubt this.

Rather, I think you are severly confused about the current debates regarding the teaching of evolutionary biology.

Firstly, modern evolutionary biology is not 'Darwinism'. Modern evolutionary biology is very different from Darwinism. In fact, it's very different from the evolutionary biology of the 1930s, 40s and 50s known as 'neoDarwinism'.

Secondly, your cartoon reflects another misunderstanding regarding the way in which evolutionary biologists deal with ID. While it is true that some choose to not engage with ID in a public setting, this does not mean that there is a problem with evolutionary biology as the scared looking monkeys in your cartoon seem to be suggesting.

Also, the monkey thing is a little old. It's not like only evolutionary biologists' ancestors looked like monkey's...your ancestors looked a lot like monkeys too. It's a fact. Deal with it.

Matthew Dunn
Bloomington, IN

There was also an interesting and lengthy piece published on the ID debates in today's NY Times. I think they kind of fuck it up thought because they don't really deal with the actual claims of the IDers. Although they do a good job of detailing the now rather transparent religious motivations of the Discovery Institute et al.

Thursday, August 18, 2005


Here is my first ever attempt at digital film editing. It's a little rough. No effects. But hey, it's something. It was also shot exclusively with Sony digital cameras. My favorite part might be R and Ken trying to sing tiny dancer.

It's pretty hilarious.

Click Drew's head to see the video.

beer, beer, beer, blog, blog, vlogs...and dogs...and spammers

This is really a catch all post. Sorry about requiring you to register to post comments, but the spammers finally found my blog and had started posting obnoxious comments about ridiculous things. So I had to close comments. Sorry.

Ah the Germans. They sure do make some nice dogs over there. What do you think about the new frame around the pic? Leave a comment.

The interweb has been quite abuzz with juicy, beery goodness as of late, at least the portion that I keep tabs on.

Just a couple days ago, Mr. Jack Curtin, a beer writer from SE PA posted some of our correspondence on his blog, verbatim. Oh well, I just hope I was correct. He also posted a link to which is pretty cool. See the August 14th post, towards the end.

And it's really hard to mention one of these guys without the other, so here's a link to a nice interview by Lew Bryson with Troegs cofounder John Trogner. Some good perspective on the beer industry, particularly the PA beer industry, from one of the state's major players, well, major in terms of the quality of beer they produce. Good stuff.

And then there were more video blogs, aka vlogs.

My new favorite is probably Rocketboom. It might have something to do with the fact that I'm in love with Amanda Congdon, the host, but not entirely. It's just entertaining internet video. Check out the newsroom link which is apparently an entirely different site. It can keep you busy for hours.

I'm going to work on a video of my own and post it here soon. So keep your eyes peeled. Or something.

Tuesday, August 16, 2005

new piece

Here's my short piece on The Good Beer Show. There's a cool audio file of an interview I did with JeffreyT, host of the show, linked to at the end of the piece.

Check it out here, caucasoid.

And don't forget about the First Annual Kathy Yeo Extravaganza found just below this post.

Monday, August 15, 2005

more on how cool the Delaware Valley is and the 101st post

So I am endlessly fascinated with regionalism of all sorts. I find regional pronounciation and vocabulary to be particularly interesting.

Take this New York, from Wikipedia:

"The accent of Philadelphia and nearby parts of Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Delaware, and Maryland, is probably the original ancestor of General American. It is one of the few coastal accents that is rhotic, and one of the first to merge the historical [oɹ] of hoarse, mourning with the [ɔɹ] of horse, morning. It also maintains the cot-caught contrast, unlike New England and western Pennsylvania. Nevertheless there are differences between modern Philadelphia speech and General American, some of which will be outlined here."

Wikipedia has a bunch of cool stuff on regional pronounciation and vocab and I imagine it's even cooler if you understand all that weird notation. According to the Pittsburghese section, I am a hybrid Western PA/Delaware Valley speaker. I say 'jagers' for spikey plants, 'jimmies' for ice cream sprinkles and I know what city chicken is and how to make it. However, I call the night before Halloween 'mischief night' and I pronounce the word 'caught' as cawt and the word 'cot' as cot.

Also, this is my 101st post. That's something.

Also, Ryan Mills-Knapp, eventhough your accent and regional vocab isn't as cool as mine, I still love you.

Saturday, August 13, 2005

philadelphia...the 6th borough?

Well fuck you too NY Times.

The NY Times has an interesting story on Philadelphia today that kind of pissed me off. They seem to portray Philadelphia as New York's fat, cultureless, retarded little brother that is only now starting to flourish as New York hipsters are priced out of Brooklyn (after being priced out of Manhattan) and flocking to Philly in droves, bringing with them the style, culture and sophistication to make the City of Brotherly Love worth while.

Now I'm not exactly from Philadelphia. It's not like I even know Philadelphia all that well. I grew up in West Chester which is in Chester County, about 30 miles south west of Center City. But it is certainly part of the core of the Delaware Valley, a region rich with history, culture and style. Anyway, I certainly identify with Philadelphia and the greater Delaware valley as a region in general. Growing up we watched Philly news, rooted for the Eagles (Iggles), Phillies, Sixers and Flyers (in that order), traveled to the city for the restaurants, museums, history (I'm related to Betsy Ross, really) theatre etc. But we also enjoyed the Delaware Valley on a whole making frequent visits to the Brandywine River Museum in Chadds Ford, restaurant festivals in West Chester, Long Wood Gardens, Valley Forge and other sundry Revolutionary War sites etc.

Anyway, I felt like the article really gave Philly short shrift. Namely in this passage:

"Fifteen or 20 years ago, the idea of Philadelphia as a place to go for quality life would have been laughable to many people, even to Philadelphians. Sandwiched between New York and Washington, Philadelphia was a flyover city - trainover really - a place where a mayor had ordered the bombing of a neighborhood and where Eagles fans reveled in booing their own team, its chief popular exports cheese steaks and "Rocky." While Philadelphia's rich cultural history, like its art museum, its symphony orchestra and its Colonial architecture, gave the city establishment credentials, it did not produce much of an avant-garde."

Yeah. Fifteen or twenty years ago tourists were scared shitless of walking New York streets in broad daylight let alone riding the subway. They were going to get mugged or raped or flashed or maybe fall onto a HIV laced needle. Oh, and yeah, the Giants are awesome. Or the Jets. Ooooooh, they are really great football teams with a rich tradition...that play in fucking New Jersey! New York may have us in the baseball department. I'll give them that. But hockey and basketball I really think Philly has them. Also, how alone have you ever felt in New York? I have felt absolutely worthless in that city. Just another member of the worst invasive species to ever crawl the surface of the earth. Nobody looks at you let alone talks to you. You ride the train with your head down and don't dare make eye contact with the person whose armpit your shoulder is wedged under. In Philadelphia the city feels organic, you feel like you're placed in a human context. People talk to you if it is only to remind you that you are indeed, an asshole.

Anyway, what's this about the music scene in Philly? They sort of offer some praise which I think is true, "'Philly's decidedly anti-scene, and that appeals to a lot of musicians that move there,' he said. 'They can actually do their own thing.'"

But there list of important Philly musicians is lacking: "diverse acts like the indie rockers Dr. Dog and Man Man, Beanie Sigel's State Property crew, and D.J.'s Diplo and Dave Pianka." What about the Roots? Doo Wop? The 'Philly Sound'? American Bandstand? Philadelphia Orchestra? The new Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts? Not to mention the fact that "The Heath Brothers, Dizzy Gillespie, John Coltrane, Jimmy Oliver, Clifford Brown, Benny Golson and the incomparable Philly Joe Jones were all either born, raised or professionally proven in Philly or its environs. Also part of this club are Lee Morgan, Jimmy McGriff, Shirley Scott, Trudy Pitts, Jimmy Smith and Lady Day � the great Billie Holiday." Check out this website for more on Philly music.

Now of course New York is New York and there might not be any city in the world with a more vibrant arts culture, but come on, it's not like Philly is just a 'fly over' city.

One place where the New York metro area definately cannot compete with the Delaware Valley is in beer. The Delaware Valley is definately one of the nation's best beer regions with more first class breweries and brewpubs anywhere outside of the Pacific Northwest. Not to mention a rich brewing tradition that started with the first English settlers, really hit its stride with the German influx in the mid 1800s and is finally coming back around now. Did I mention Yuengling, the nations oldest brewery, is just around the corner? How many great beer bars are there in Manhattan? Maybe two or three. One great one in Brooklyn. How many great beer bars are there in Philly alone? A city less than 1/6th the size of New York At least 4 or 5 and in the Delaware Valley, many many more, not to mention the world class breweries that dot the landscape as you head west from the city.

Anyway, I think the article was really a bunch of crap. Get off your high horse New York and realize that Philadelphia isn't exactly the new kid on the block. Sure, Philly conjours up images of cheesteaks, Twinkies and Rocky, but that just makes it all the better in my opinion.

Fuck you New York.

Next time, I defend Indianapolis. Seriously.

With all the good will and respect I can muster for the lonliest city in the world: New York, you're an asshole.

Matthew Daniel Balboa Dunn, Esq.

Friday, August 12, 2005

10th Annual Indiana Microbrewers Fest

I forgot to put this up here. My article on the Fest was posted a couple days ago at Ted Miller was not happy about it.

Thursday, August 11, 2005

the internet

I have a vague memory of something like the following:

A man sitting at a desk on the computer. It looks like he's been there a while. He's haggard, wearing boxers and slippers maybe, unshaven, lots of dishes and papers and books, just a bunch of shit piled up around his monitor. He turns off the computer, stands up, turns to camera and says, 'Well, I've done it, I've seen the entire internet'.

Now, my memory isn't very good. Perhaps this is an amalgam of a couple different memories, I don't know, but whatever, it's what I think of sometimes when I surf the internet. You know, maybe it was something Henri Mills-Knapp said at some point? I don't know. Anyway, the internet surfing has been pretty good today and yesterday.

I think I posted a link to this video a while back, but I just wanted to do it again because I really like him. His style gets a little old, but for 15 or 20 minutes he's great. And I like that he's from Sweden and sounds a lot like Van Morrison. He's got a great vocal style I think.

Nicolai Dunger

I found this pretty cool website the other day. It's Hoosier centric. I am endlessly fascinated by regionalism. And it's got some good content too.

Hoosier Logic

From the NY Times: "One rainy afternoon in the Alaskan wilderness two years ago, a self-made man named Timothy Treadwell was mauled and eaten by a grizzly bear...Dr. Fallico recounts his version of the attack, a description based on his examination of the bodies and the six-minute audio record found on one of Treadwell's video cameras. (The lens cap was on the camera.) The account is graphic, gruesome and thoroughly riveting".

I'm not sure what to think of this

From the LA Times: "Take Schlenkerla Rauchbier, a German lager difficult to find on these shores and just as difficult to drink, at least by itself. An intensely smoked, oleaginous brew, it brings to mind bacon drippings served cold. But Yoon paired it with braised baby back ribs and a bean-bacon ragout. Soon hands were reaching across tables for more. The smokiness of the brew melted into meat and beans as neatly as a slab of butter rides off on a toasted baguette."

A really good beer story

And this is a pretty cool video that Dogfish Head made. I don't quite understand the end of it though. Did the case of beer defeat the catapault?

Punkin Chunkin

Monday, August 08, 2005

well, I might be screwed and the beers I've been drinking

Well, I'm more or less over my sickness. Thank the lord. I mean, who knows how much longer I could go without binge drinking? I have been enjoying a brew or two even while I'm sick though I have to admit. Here is a pic of some of the beers I've been having over the last week or so. Most of them...get this...were free. Ha. If you know anything about the second beer from the right, I think you can consider yourself a beer geek.

Anyway, the reason I might be screwed is because I posted a comment on Pharyngula about Michael Ruse. I didn't think anybody would read it, I mean, it's buried among 108 other comments and it's not like tons of philosophers read Pharyngula.

But then a link was posted on the Philosophy of Biology Blog that's administered by Ruse's students at FSU.

My comment started like this:

"Well, I have to admit that I don't really like Michael Ruse as a scholar or as a person. While he wrote a landmark book in Darwin studies in the 70s, 'Darwinian Revolution', he hasn't done a whole lot since then. And he's a very rude, center of attention sort of class bully in person. Not very enjoyable to be around I didn't think."

It then went on to DEFEND Ruse against the onslaught started by PZ Myers himself. I won't get into it here, go to Pharyngula and check it out if you want, but suffice it to say insulting one of the fathers of your academic discipline is no way to get a job down the line.

Of course I stand by what I wrote, but I should like to mention here that Ruse was also a really sweet man on several occasions during my brief interactions with him in Guelph at ISHPSSB last month. AND, while he might not have done much first rate work in HPS since 'Darwinian Revolution' (but who am I to say in my very limited experience and blissful ignorance of a mere 3rd year graduate student?) he has been a prolific writer on the ID debate and, probably more importantly, he has become an institution builder having founded one of the premiere journals in the field, 'Biology and Philosophy' and is now building a strong biology studies program at Florida State University.

Anyway, I hope I'm not screwed. But actually, more importantly, I hope I was write defending Ruse. I think Myers completely misunderstood the argument. Sure it was imprudent for Ruse to pull the Nazi card, but come on, he surely did not mean to imply that atheists are like Nazis.

Saturday, August 06, 2005

one hour photo

I watched 'One Hour Photo' today and was definately impressed and very affected. The the set design and the cinematography were awesome. The Savmart had really cool light and colors and was super hygienic.

But definately the best parts of the film were Robin Williams and the actual story. The story is so creepy and so ambiguous that it really keeps you, I won'y say entertained, because I honestly wanted to turn it off a couple times because it made me feel uncomfortable, but rather I'll say it keeps you 'moved' or 'turned on' or affected. I wasn't sure if Robin Williams' character was a child molester or a potential murderer or what. And he was just so fucking plain and simple and NOT Robin Williams. So I really wonder what it would have been like if it wasn't Robin Williams playing the lead and part of the experience was being impressed with his range of acting talent. What if I saw the movie 'just' on its own merits? I don't know if that's possible, but at least without Robin Williams?

Creepy and ambiguous are the two words I think to describe it. You're not really sure what the hell is really going on, all the details at least, but sure know it's not too fucking warm and fuzzy.

I'm sick

And that sucks. Clearly I should not have gone out on Wed. night. After a 10 day bender, I knew I needed to take Wed. night off. But Maura called me. What was I supposed to do?

Anyway, now I'm sick and it sucks. But I've been watching a lot of movies so how about some reviews eh?

The Life Aquatic: I like Wes Anderson's asthetic in general. It's weird, but I like it. The dialogue can be a little challenging, but I think it worked better in this movie than in, say, Royal Tenenbaums. The end of this movie is definately the best part. The Jaguar Shark is very cool. Rushmore is still definately the best movie made by Anderson.

The World According to Garp: Well, I read the novel a couple months ago and was super impressed by it. Irving has a real talent for complex story telling, not to mention ridiculous, graphic tragedy. Of course sometimes he stretches his characters to far following tragedy and it's hard to believe any actual human could deal with the shit he puts his characters through. This comes through even more obviously in the movie version as there isn't nearly enough time to fully develop the characters over longer periods of time. The movie, of course, misses some of the best parts of the book, the most glaring is Jenny and Garp's life in Vienna and his short story the Pensioner Grilparzer (I think is what it's called). Maybe those don't translate into movie form so well? Anyway, typical movie adaptation, too much squeezed into too little. I like The Door in the Floor a lot because it takes only one small section of an Irving novel and makes it into a movie. Really much more accessible. But still, the movie World According to Garp is very good. I cried a little bit, but not as much as when I read the book and at different times.

Comedian: a documentary about Jerry Seinfeld's 'starting from scratch' plan and Orny Adams 'coming up' story. I think I had seen it before, but I guess I forgot when I rented it. Doesn't really matter though because I like it just the same. Jerry Seinfeld is one of the most likeably people in the world and therefore a documentary about him is really easy to watch. And you get to see him interact with his wife and baby which is nice. Orny Adams on the other hand, is ridiculously difficult to watch because he is such a fucking stress case. That dude needs to lighten up. I think the theme of the movie, what it's like to be a comedian, was cool and all, but clearly comedians think they are far more special than they really are. I just kept thinking about how common their problems are in entertainment and to a lesser extent, to life in general. Get over yourself comedians.

Three Kings: I've been wanting to see this movie for some time now. I was a little dispointed. It was a bit of a meathead movie, i.e. simple, but it was enjoyable and just a little uplifting. Really unbelievable though too. And I hate Mark Wahlberg. He should not be in any movies except Boogie Nights and I hate Ice Cube. He should not be in any movies except Friday. And he should change his name. I also think they should tone down the crazy colors and visual effects. they even had a message at the start of the movie that said something like: 'colors and visual effects were modified for dramatic effect in this movie'. NO SHIT. You have to be an idiot to think that the desert is purple and that electricity travels through wires at like one foot a minute. Get over yourself.

Today I am still feeling sick and will watch One Hour Photo, a creepy looking movie starring Robin Williams and then, yes, I'm finally getting around to it, the greatest movie ever made, Citizen Cane.

I'll be the judge of that.

Matthew Daniel Dunn, invalid

Thursday, August 04, 2005

the Good Beer Show doth returneth... this blog.

The 'After Show' for my episode of the Good Beer Show has now been posted here. It's a pretty fun drunken little piece of audio. There is a lot of songs played have way through. Entertaining.

Steve (and by Steve I mean Brian), you should really listen to it as you are mentioned I think three times.

Also, if you have no idea what I'm talking about, check out the actual 'show' here.

a world class beer cellar in Muncie Indiana

I know. I can't believe it either. But one of the best beer bars I've ever been to is in Muncie Indiana.

Check out my rather rushed article on the Heorot here.

Tuesday, August 02, 2005

News flash, news flash: George Bush is still really fucking stupid (X3)

Ah yes, George Bush has gone and done it. We should teach Intelligent Design alongside evolution. Teach the controversy. Yeah good idea. As many bloggers have already pointed out, Bush's science advisor has previously come down pretty hard against ID. I guess GW's Christian fundamentalism got the better of him and trumped his just-barely-there ability to keep his administration's statements consistent for the sake of the politics. Not like I expect the dumbest world leader ever to actually think critically about the issues. I mean, if Dembski, who seems like a pretty smart guy, is blinded by his religion, how can I expect George Bush who is two fucking steps above retarded to think clearly?

What I love about the article though is that Bush is not only advocating ID, but in the same press conference he's backing Rafael Palmeiro and still defending Karl Rove. Not to mention his awfully ridiculous remarks about having no idea how John Roberts feels about abortion. Is this for real? It seems like a big dream. Or like the I'm living in the 'Truman Show' and people are just messing with me.

And Bush talked to the folks on the Space Station today. See the article here. Here's how I imagined the conversation went:

I hate George Bush.

Here's a good take on the Palmeiro stuff. It's a bit hyperbolic, but still I agree with him. How could Palmeiro accidentally take steriods? What a moron.

Oh, and I love this explanation of the first ever theory of evolution that was articulated in 1859!! First ever? 1859? I mean, who wrote this piece of shit article? 'Species surive'? 'Factors in nature'? What the fuck is a 'life organism'? They clearly know absolutely nothing about the history of biology or modern evolutionary theory.

"The theory of evolution, first articulated by British naturalist Charles Darwin in 1859, is based on the idea that life organisms developed over time through random mutations and factors in nature that favored certain traits that helped species survive."

Monday, August 01, 2005

holy shit I'm a slacker and my understanding of Indianapolis is still fucking iron-clad bitches

Well, I've been kind of busy and kind of just really lazy these last couple days. My house is a fucking mess, I need to do laundry and I am broke as a joke. Yet I will go see Foghorn String Band tonight at the Second Story if it kills me. Jenny B is back in town and she says they are good. Jenny B has never steered me wrong musically, so I need to go.

I also went sailing today. I bought the $35 month long membership so I can go sailing on Lake Lemon whenever I want for as long as I want for the next month which is pretty sweet.

SO...Saturday was the big beer thinger in Indy, the Brewer's of Indiana Guild's 10th Annual Microbrewers Fest (what an awkward title huh?). It was in Broad Ripple, which I was led to believe was much cooler than it actually is, but again, I need to remember that this is Indianapolis. I mean, it was pretty cool, but downtown is cooler in my book. The Rathskellar and MacNivans etc., that area is really nice. I need to go back there and hang out some more, maybe with Bobby Mack, the coolest dude at World Class Beverage by far. Well, that's not true, but he is the fucking man and we seem to get along real good like. Anywho, I just drank a large cup of coffee and I'm fucking wired and seem to be just rambling on here. So let's cut to the chase.

But first, this: "This is a damned nice Wheat beer, friends. Bright, refreshing and very quaffable at an abv just shy of 5%. In fact, in the heat of this torrid mid-summer, it seemed about as perfect as any I've ever had. I consumed most of the growler under my big shade tree late yesterday afternoon, saving a pint to have, in lieu of my usual second Cappuccino, with this morning's breakfast of grilled sausages and fresh-cut Basil scrambled eggs with Salsa Verde.

Hey, living well is the best revenge and all that, plus the only way you know it's the weekend sometimes is having a beer with, or before, breakfast. Really."

This is from Jack Curtin's Liquid Diet Online. He is a great writer and apparently the token curmudgeon of the SE PA beer scene.

So oh yeah, about Indy. My understanding of Indy is pretty much this: it's the easiest big city to get around ever. I have never had a major problem getting around Indy nor have I ever gotten lost there. Parking is abundant and most parts are pretty residential and easy to navigate. No crazy one way curvy streets or dead end type things. I drove with Bob Mack to the Rathskellar which is pretty much downtown on Friday at like 4:30pm and there was parking a plenty and like no traffic. It blew my mind. Then getting to Broad Ripple on Saturday for the fest was so easy and there was also abundant parking. It also blew my mind. I'll tell you what, it's good incentive to hang out in Indy more. There seems to be some cool places to check out so I'll need to do that.

Ok, enough with the small talk, let's get down to brass tacks here chumps. I'm going to post a couple pictures from the beer fest on Saturday that won't make it into my story that I'm (eventually) going to write for

So here is a picture of Stan Stephans, the owner of the Heorot in Muncie, one of the best beer bars in the country. He is a wild man and really fucking burly. I wouldn't fuck with him, let's just put it that way. Except now he's all messed up what with the shoulder surgery and all so maybe I could take him, but probably not actually.

This is a picture of four of the folks from the Good Beer Show. They are a bunch of fun but disappeared from Brugge Brasserie (which kind of sucked actually but I can't say that in any official capacity) without a trace after the fest. Apparently they tried to steal Mark Schiess' wallet. Seriously. He came back from giving them some of his C.I.B.A.S. stuff, which is really cool, and was like 'those girls tried to pickpocket me but I'm too smart for them I knew what was up'. He seemed hammered so maybe that had something to do with it.

Here is one of the several lovely ladies that JeffreyT has under lock and key and lets out only to record the Good Beer Show and to make public appearances with him. That dude is a stud.

Here is Mark Schiess, the king of Indiana Homebrew (he won 783 medals this year at the state fair, but more on him in the piece) shaking Mark Mahon's hand immediately before participating in the keg toss competition. He was pretty drunk.

Here is Matt, the winner of the keg toss competition. He was a really cool guy too which made Grant and I feel better about him being the winner. He won a fucking Kayak. He participates in Scottish games and stuff. He was really cool except for the House of Pain shirt.

And last but not least, Dr. Grant Goodrich quaffing a Best Bitter from the handpull at Broad Ripple Brewpub post fest.

Until next time, don't poke your eye out.

really tweaked out on caffeine,
your's truly,
Matthew Daniel Walter Dunn