1. The hot new fashion accessory for the new school year: Bulletproof backpacks?

    23 August 2007

    I first saw this on CNN last Saturday while waiting at the car dealership while the TARDIS was undergoing its yearly inspection: A company called MJ Safety Solutions is hawking bulletproof backpacks for kids and travelers to protect them in the event that someone draws a firearm and starts shooting at people. The backpacks weigh about 1.25 pounds and are meant to either stop the wearer from being shot in the back, or they can be used to provide a measure of protection to the head and torso if the backpack is removed and used as a shield. A …

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  2. Okay, enough with the silliness.

    23 August 2007

    Or not.

    The Chinese government has decreed that - get this - they have officially banned Buddhist monks in Tibet from reincarnating without government permission.

    I can't make this stuff up, folks.

    Well, I actually could, but that's beside the point. Resuming...

    They went so far as to draft official procedures by which one could apply for permission to reincarnate on the material plane in the future. It sounds daffy, but scholars of the Buddhist path have said that this could be a move on the part of the Chinese regeime (which doesn't much like religion of any kind, not just Buddhism …

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  3. On the road again, and this time after not a bit of adventure.

    21 August 2007

    I'm in the field again on assignment, this time well south of the Mason-Dixon line. Far enough south, in fact, that people actually have accents, and truck stops are the primary means of acquiring what one needs to live, such as food, fuel, and automobile parts. It seems that my cow-orker and I didn't get the luck of the draw when it came to the hotel this time. We're staying in hotel that specializes in hosting conventions and conferences near the beach, but doesn't specialize in actually putting people up for the night. On the whole, it's not such a …

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