[x]Blackmoor Vituperative

Thursday, 2016-11-17

Facebook is not news

Filed under: Family,Friends,Journalism,Society — bblackmoor @ 11:09

I will no longer be getting my news from Facebook. Too much of it is fabricated, and what little isn’t has been slanted and overloaded with emotion until any objective facts have been obfuscated beyond recognition. If you share a meme about this or that protest causing the death of someone, or a story about this or that person being assaulted or beaten by people because of their politics, or even the old-fashioned hoaxes like free cruises from Disney, plots to poison our food, or serial killers leaving diseased needles in vending machines, I am going to hide that post, and if you do it often enough, I will quietly “unfollow” you. (If/when this process can be automated, I will happily install an add-on that does it for me. Perhaps based on a list of fake new sites like this one.)

I have had enough of angry accusations and tragic claims made without even a token effort at verification, and that exist only to sell advertising or elicit an emotional response. I have had enough of political propaganda masquerading as news. Too many of these stories have been completely unsubstantiated, and a claim made without verification cannot be treated as true. Facts matter to me, even if they don’t matter to anyone else.

Share with me how your day went. What sort of things have happened to you today? Not a friend of a neighbour of a colleague — you. How was work? How’s your health? What movies have you seen that you liked? Books that you’ve read that you liked? (Hint: if you haven’t seen it or read it, your opinion about it means nothing. And frankly I would much rather hear about something you liked than something you hated.) Hell, I would even prefer that you share photos of your children — as repulsive as most children are, I would rather see photos of your actual child’s actual accomplishments rather than yet another photo of some anonymous child who may want “likes” for whatever reason — but who probably had nothing to do with their photo being shared.

Facebook is not a source of news. The “news” on Facebook is rumour at the best of times, and malicious lies the rest of the time. No more. Not for me.

The safest assumption on Facebook that any “news” you see is false. In my opinion, it’s no longer even worth doing the few minutes of research it takes to invalidate them: I’m more likely to find gold coins in Vixen’s litter box. If I want news, I will go to a respected mainstream news site that employs actual journalists.

P.S. So what is “real news”? My rule of thumb is that real news has a middle initial “B”: ABC, CBS, NBC, BBC, PBS. The exception is CNN, which takes the place of CBN, which is definitely not real news. (There’s always an exception.)

Friday, 2014-12-12

The three kinds of “Christmas”

Filed under: Family,Fine Living,Friends,Society — bblackmoor @ 08:58

There are really three different holidays, all known as “Christmas”. One is a religious celebration. I don’t belong to that religion, so I have nothing to say about that. The second is a business event marked by pleas for conspicuous consumption and frivolous spending. I have little interest in that event, although I sympathize with small business owners whose livelihood is dependent upon a good “Christmas season”.

The third “Christmas” is the one I celebrate: a joyous occasion when people of all creeds set aside their petty disagreements and share a sense of good will. It is a time when strangers are treated as friends, friends are treated like family, and family is given the appreciation we really should be giving them every day of the year. It is a time of generosity, kindness, and gratitude. It’s a holiday that belongs to everyone — to anyone who wishes to celebrate the best of what it means to be a part of the human race. By whatever name you wish to call it, that’s the Christmas I celebrate.

Welcome, Christmas, bring your cheer.
Cheer to all Whos far and near.
Christmas Day is in our grasp
So long as we have hands to clasp.
Christmas Day will always be
Just as long as we have we.
Welcome, Christmas, while we stand
Heart to heart, and hand in hand.

Wednesday, 2014-01-08

Pay attention, this is your life you are missing

Filed under: Fine Living,Friends — bblackmoor @ 18:57

Pay attention to the people around you. Your life is ticking away, minute by minute, and when they’re gone, you’re gone. Don’t waste your life staring at an object in your hand.

For myself, I am going to attempt to spend my time more wisely, with a greater awareness of who and what I am paying attention to.

Tuesday, 2013-12-24

The true meaning of Christmas

Filed under: Family,Friends,Television — bblackmoor @ 20:07

How the Grinch Stole ChristmasIf I had to pick one Christmas special that sums up what I consider the “true meaning of Christmas”, it would be Dr. Seuss’ How the Grinch Stole Christmas.

“Welcome, Christmas, bring your cheer. Cheer to all Whos, far and near. Christmas Day is in our grasp, so long as we have hands to clasp. Christmas Day will always be, just as long as we have we. Welcome Christmas while we stand, heart to heart, and hand in hand.”

Thursday, 2013-08-22

8th Annual Blackmoor Halloween Party

Filed under: Family,Friends — bblackmoor @ 20:52
Scary!

You may have been cordially invited to the 8th Annual Blackmoor Halloween Party! If so, keep reading. If not, avert your eyes!

Costumes are encouraged! Snacks, drinks, and Halloween Chili will be provided. If you have special dietary needs or are prone to complain about what is offered, bring your own.

You may bring guests and/or children, but you are responsible for their behavior.

We have abundant amounts of room, including a couple of private rooms. Regardless of where you sleep, you will need to bring your own bedding (such as a sleeping bag or inflatable mattress). You may also reserve a room at the nearby Best Western Plus Crossroads Inn & Suites.

Please RSVP, so that we can plan appropriately. Thanks!

When:
6 PM, Saturday, November 2, 2012
Let us know if you want to arrive early!

Where:
Castle Blackmoor
70 Starling Ln.
Troy, VA 22974-3278

Wednesday, 2013-07-31

Protected: Mountain Brook elections 2013

Filed under: Friends,Home — bblackmoor @ 17:15

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Wednesday, 2013-03-27

Southern good manners

Filed under: Friends,Society — bblackmoor @ 17:48

This is what being Southern is all about: standing up for what’s right and standing by your neighbors. It’s about doing the right thing and going the extra mile to help out people who need help. Some Yankees might not get it, and even some people who live in the South might not get it, but this is exactly what that rebel flag you see on cars and trucks down here means: standing up for the right of individuals to live their own lives, and stepping up to help people who need help.

Bravo to Quality Auto Paint & Body.

P.S. Susan asked if the guy from Quality Auto Paint & Body had a rebel flag tattoo or something. The answer is that I have no idea. That wasn’t my point.

Monday, 2013-03-04

Slings & Arrows

Filed under: Friends,Television — bblackmoor @ 22:41
Slings & Arrows

I have been watching Sling & Arrows, a Canadian show about the theatre. It’s like Glee, but with better writing and no musical numbers (which also makes it better than Glee). It reminds me a great deal of Smash, although it has no musical numbers (which, again, makes it better than Smash). Here’s the thing: that camaraderie the cast feels on the completion of a successful show… I have felt that. Not often. Not after the conclusion of a successful convention (I was on the staff of a local SF&F convention for most of its history). The last time I felt that esprit de corps was probably back in the late1980s, after a successful performance of Rocky Horror (in which I was a cast member for a few years). I imagine (rather, I assume) that it’s the same feeling that members of a sports team feel at the end of a good game. It’s a good feeling. Even then memory of it is a good feeling.

Friday, 2013-02-22

MystiCon 2013 schedule

Filed under: Conventions,Friends,Gaming,Travel — bblackmoor @ 11:52

Here is my MystiCon 2013 schedule, in case you are interested in that sort of thing.

Fri 8:00 PM
Ballroom D
Gaming for Beginners

Fri 9:00 PM
Ballroom E
Game Development

Sat 10:00 AM
Ballroom C
A Conversation with Steve Long (I’m interviewing him)

Sat 1:00 PM
Ballroom D
Blog Much?

Sat 10:00 PM
Boardroom 1
Ouch! You Bit Me! A Zombie Survival Guide

Sun 10:00 AM
Ballroom C
The Artistry of Gaming

Sun 12:00 PM
Ballroom E
No Shirt, No Shoes, No Entry ‐ Business Etiquette

Sun 1:00 PM
Boardroom 1
If They Came in Saucers, Why Are We Smarter?

Sunday, 2012-12-23

My favorite Christmas specials

Filed under: Family,Friends,Movies,Mythology,Television — bblackmoor @ 15:01

I am imposing a unilateral un-grimmening! No more grim tidings for at least one week. Time for Christmas cheer and good will.

As a start, here are my favorite Christmas specials and movies, in no particular order. Some are great. Some are just terrible. Some make me laugh. Some make me cry. I love them all.

How The Grinch Stole Christmas (the real one, not the Jim Carrey abomination)
Emmet Otter’s Jug Band Christmas
Santa Claus Conquers The Martians
(Mexican) Santa Claus
Gremlins
Santa Claus Is Comin’ To Town
Silent Night, Deadly Night
Elf
Bad Santa
Scrooged
Star Wars Holiday Special
Hogfather
Rudolph The Red Nosed Reindeer
Santa and the Ice Cream Bunny

Merry Christmas!

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