Hogan's Alley

Thursday, August 12, 2010

How To Spot ATM Skimming Devices

This should be required reading for all ATM users, especially when not using a machine attached to your bank's wall.  Be sure to follow the links to the photos and then keep a sharp eye out when swiping your debit card.

Monday, August 09, 2010

Corrine Baily Rae, My Current Obsession

For the last few weeks, I haven't been able to get the songs from Corinne Bailey Rae's latest album, "The Sea" out of my head.  It didn' t help that PBS recently played her performance of most of the album on their Live From the Artist's Den series.  (See photo at right)

Do yourself a favor and get hold of this album.  It will touch your heart and rock your socks off at the same time.

During the early stages of putting this album together, Corinne's husband, Jason Rae, died of a methadone overdose.  That tragic loss informs many of the tracks and their minor keys.  At the same time, the feel of the album is a bit harder and "rockier" than her debut album.  All together, one of the great albums of the year.  Although, beware.  I am so taken by her as a performer that I may have lost my objectivity.

Judge for yourself.  Here is her video for, "I'd Do It All Again", the song that most directly references her passage through her grief.  I get chills every time I hear the pain and triumph in her voice.

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Friday, August 06, 2010

Alternate Lost Epilogue Emerges

The epilogue that is apparently the one that will appear on the full series blue ray dvd has, again apparently (one never knows with the Lost producers) found its way to the internet.  In any event the video is now embedded below:

UPDATE:  The original link was taken down within hours of this original post.  Let's leave this blank space as is in memory of that temporary jailbreak pending the arrival of the boxed set.  But I wouldn't be surprised if ABC leaked the 12 minute piece itself and then sicked their pre-positioned lawyers on YouTube and the other major sites in order to create a brief media storm and short-lived viral explosion just before the release of the major boxed set.

For my money, having seen the epilogue, I would not find this a convincing reason to shell out big bucks to replace the dvd versions I already own.  It is a major miscalculation to think that this will drive sales in a world where the difference between the upscaled dvd and the blu-ray version is, frankly, not visible to the human eye and ear.

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Wednesday, August 04, 2010

Hitch, Writer With No Topic Out of Bounds

Photo by John Huba for Vanity Fair

Christopher Hitchens has re-emerged after the announcement of his cancer.  He as given us a detailed and very personal report on the progress of the various heinous treatments necessary for a metastasized cancer.

As is his wont, he writes with skill, passion, and bravery.

Best wishes in your unsought journey.

(By the way, any who hate Hitch and his politics or person and are so venal as to wish him ill at this point are swine. Full stop.)

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Tuesday, August 03, 2010

Breakin' The Law

The FBI seal, yes, the same one famously made into a cake in "Silence of the Lambs", is now so sacred an item that they are threatening to sue Wikipedia for using the image (the same one purloined above) to illustrate their article on the Bureau.

What a silly waste of time and effort.  I guess the control freak ghost of J. Edgar still haunts the culture at the Bureau.

Look for the cake at about 2:25 in.