Web links related to the Back of the Book program of September 13, 2004

It's Sunday night 9/26/2004 22:03:28 and this page is done. 18 Years! Of course I'm having trouble printing, but this program is 18 years old!

The WBAI Local Station Board (LSB) will meet next on Tuesday, September 21th, at 6:30 PM, in Chelsea. The venue should be posted at wbai.org.

WBAI now has a program schedule up on its Web site. The site has gotten many of the individual program pages together to provide links and such, so check it out.

Our colleagues from Off the Hook now have both a RealAudio streaming web cast operating, and a new MP3 stream. The MP3 feed is now the preferred feed.

The Pacifica Foundation, which owns WBAI, has revamped its Web site and now has something called the Pacifica Lounge where you can post messages about Pacifica, WBAI and other Pacifica radio stations. This may be a good thing, and of course there are other, long term fora in which to participate.

WBAI also has a forum on its Web site now. You have to register to post messages, but anyone may read the messages.

Brand new is the Pacifica Internet Radio site.

This was the 18th anniversary program for Back of the Book! A lot of people never thought we'd make it this far, and we damned near didn't. We did the usual rituals, such as reading Franz Kafka's “Before the Law.” which you can read here, and we talked about the program itself a little bit.

I went to the New York city Pen Show the other day. Very interesting stuff. Another of my odd interests that you'll get to hear about. What's more odd is that I'm apparently not the only with this interest!

I bought a new fountain pen at this event. It's a cheap one, but I may take it out with me soon. I usually just use ballpoints outside the house because it's not such a big deal if they get lost or broken. But even a cheap fountain pen costs a lot more than a bunch of ordinary ballpoints.

Unfortunately, the Genesis spacecraft which was carrying particles from the Solar Wind failed to deploy its parachute upon re-entering the Earth's atmosphere and it crashed and broke open in the desert. This is really unfortunate because that's compromised a lot of the samples it was returning. Another cause for alarm is that the Stardust project is going to use the same method of re-entry!

You eukaryote you! It's not an insult, it's merely an indication that your cells have a cell nucleus. Dr. James A. Lake, a biologist at UCLA said that he and other scientists had been able to use a computer program that compared the genes of various cells and believe that they've discovered that the cells we evolved from came about from a random combining of a very ancient type of cell called an archaean and a prokaryote, which is a bacterial cell which doesn't have a cell nucleus. Interestingly, this somewhat accidental merging of two different types of cells may have happened only once in the entire history of life on Earth! It also possible that the little mechanism that makes energy in your cells, called a mitochondrion, may have been engulfed in the same incident. Talk about all of our lives, and the lives of every other living thing which we can see with the naked eye, hanging by a thin thread of happenstance!

The Autumnal Equinox will occur on Wednesday, September 22, at 12:30 PM (ET) (that's half past noon, in case you're wondering). For more about the seasons and sub-seasons look here.

We got to some mail on this program. We got some cards congratulating us on the 18th anniversary of the program and we also got to read one E-mail. It tuns out that back in August when we were trapped on the IRT for 23 minutes after the emergency brakes kicked in a listener was coming the other way, or trying to!

Subject: late again Date: Tue, 10 Aug 2004 16:56:14 EDT
From: Tim
To: rpm@glib.com

The night you were delayed on your way to WBAI for your show I was delayed going in the other direction to Flatbush Avenue. After waiting 20 minutes at President Street station for the train to move I noticed that no train had gone the other way either . It seemed likely you and Pickles might be on that train that was stuck since you have said you use that station and I felt I would not miss any of your program as a result. When the uptown train finally arrived at President St. about 12:45 am the downtown train I was on moved ahead also. Perhaps the train crew was on the roadbed checking for the reason the brakes had engaged on your train and that's why my train couldn't move for awhile. At Flatbush Avenue while awaiting the bus at about 1am I tuned in WBAI on my portable radio and your show still wasn't on and when I finally reached home about 1:15 your theme music had begun. So thanks to NYTransit I didn't miss any of your show that night. Of course, if no delay happened you would have begun on time and I would have been home to hear it begin at the normal time and the outcome would have been the same except for the loss of 15 minutes of your air time. The night you were a bit late a few months ago and called Sydney and spoke on the air via cellphone as you walked from the subway was very interesting free-form talk radio. I notice lately the north side bike path on the Manhatten Bridge is open and in use. There are paths on both sides of that bridge now. You once spoke about walking across various NYC bridges. Finally, someone named Steve Brown sends e-mails about the WBAI meetings and he described the fight in which someone named Fred attacked you. It's bad enough you were attacked but for Steve Brown to estimate that you are about 64 years old in his narrative was the real slap in the face. He meant well. Best wishes....Tim in Brooklyn

There are a lot of issues that are considered hazardous to talk about on the air at WBAI, even now that the gag rule has been lifted. However, there is the Internet! There are mailing lists which you can subscribe to and Web based message boards devoted to WBAI and Pacifica issues. Many controversial WBAI/Pacifica issues are discussed on these lists.

Probably the most popular list that's sprung up is the “NewPacifica” mailing list. This one is very lively and currently includes over 400 subscribers coast to coast.

Being lively, of course, it sometimes also gets a bit nasty. All sorts of things are happening on this list and official announcements are frequently posted there.

You can look at the NewPacifica list here, and you can join the list from that Web page too. If you subscribe to the “NewPacifica” mailing list you will receive, via E-mail, all of the messages which are sent to that list.

There is the option to receive a “digest” version of the list, which means that a bunch of messages are bundled into one E-mail and sent to you at regular intervals, this cuts down on the number of E-mails you get from the list. You will also be able to send messages to the list.

This list also has a Web based interface where you can read messages and from which you can post your own messages.

There is also the more WBAI specific “Goodlight” Web based message board. It is sometimes referred to on Back of the Book as “the bleepin' blue board,” owing to the blue background used on its Web pages. This one has many people posting anonymously and there's also an ancillary “WBAI people” board that's just totally out of hand.

When the computer in Master Control is working we sometimes have live interaction with people posting on the “Goodlight Board” during the program.

And then there is the historic “Free Pacifica!” list, which has been used to help organize resistance to Pacifica Management hijackers since the mid-90s. It's become a low volume mailing list because it's been eclipsed by some of the newer, more technologically advanced, lists. Just click on this link and follow the instructions, and you'll be subscribed. This is a mailing list only, it doesn't have a digest option nor does it have a web interface.

My voice mail number at WBAI is 212-209-2996. Leave a message.

You can also send me E-mail.

WBAI related links

Free Pacifica Web site

WBAI Listeners' Web page

WBAI Management's official Web site

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The contents of this Web page are copyright © 2004, R. Paul Martin.