....LMB: "Bad Luck Brevity"....

April 04, 2004

Although I recently promised to write an interesting story about my lousy week, I find myself bored with the writing of it. I think I told the story out loud too many times already. So you get the short version.

On Wednesday afternoon, my car was stolen from a strip mall parking lot in Burbank. This was really poor timing, as I needed to be at a concert venue to help set up for a benefit show (for the non-profit I work for, Axis of Justice) in just a few hours.

Wednesday night, the police call me, they've found my car, it's at a towing yard in North Hollywood. The car seems none the worse for wear, the thief (apparently a paranoid, joy-riding teen) is in jail.

Our benefit show has a surprise appearance by mega-popular Zappa-esque metal band System of a Down. They usually play stadiums, our show is at tiny 500+ person club The Troubadour.

Real late Wednesday night, I get home and discover that I have jury duty the next morning. Actually, in four hours. With no car, I take the subway. With no sleep, I doze off about 53,000 times in the jury waiting room.

The people in the back of the jury room watch The People's Court on TV.

I luck out, and they don't ever call my name, so my jury service is considered served.

My friend Jeremy drives me to the towing yard that evening, where I am given the privilege of paying $196 to get my own car back. When Jeremy asks "why didn't they just leave it parked on the side of the street?" A guy behind the counter says "cuz that'd be too close to right." $53 of that 196 is a "city fee", in what is clearly a kickback system to the cops.

Car is okay, after I fix a few minor things the thief did under the hood (presumably while unhooking the battery, to disable the car alarm I don't have). Most of my CDs are missing, a jacket is gone, but it looks as though the guy actually had to clean the inside of the car a little in his search for items of value.

Funniest story of the whole adventure:

The cop who took my police report spent most of his time in his car, with the engine running. When he finished asking me questions, I thanked him, and walked over to thank two of the security guards from the Target store who'd helped me out earlier. The cop joined us a moment later, to tell us that hes "just going to go inside to check on the price of the radios." He started to enter the story, but then walked back out, saying "better lock up the car."

Yes, the police officer was going to leave his car outside

- with the doors unlocked
- with the windows rolled down
- with the keys in the ignition
- with the engine running
- after just filling out a police report about a car theft in that exact parking lot.


So it looks like everything turned out okay, it just cost me some money and time that I'd rather have back.

Posted by Jake at 10:30 PM | TrackBack (0)

It's a good thing he thought about it and came back out. hehe. Sad but amusing.

Posted by: margaret at April 5, 2004 11:29 AM

that rots, rough day at the office, jake.

Posted by: lcw at April 5, 2004 09:14 PM
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Lying Media Bastards is both a radio show and website. The show airs Mondays 2-4pm PST on KillRadio.org, and couples excellent music with angry news commentary. And the website, well, you're looking at it.

Both projects focus on our media-marinated world, political lies, corporate tyranny, and the folks fighting the good fight against these monsters.

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Media News

November 16, 2004

Tales of Media Woe

Senate May Ram Copyright Bill- one of the most depressing stories of the day that didn't involve death or bombs. It's the music and movie industries' wet dream. It criminalizes peer-to-peer software makers, allows the government to file civil lawsuits on behalf of these media industries, and eliminates fair use. Fair use is the idea that I can use a snippet of a copyrighted work for educational, political, or satirical purposes, without getting permission from the copyright-holder first.

And most tellingly, the bill legalizes technology that would automatically skip over "obejctionable content" (i.e. sex and violence) in a DVD, but bans devices that would automatically skip over commericals. This is a blatant, blatant, blatant gift to the movie industry. Fuck the movie industry, fuck the music industry, fuck the Senate.

Music industry aims to send in radio cops- the recording industry says that you're not allowed to record songs off the radio, be it real radio or internet radio. And now they're working on preventing you from recording songs off internet radio through a mixture of law and technological repression (although I imagine their techno-fixes will get hacked pretty quickly).

The shocking truth about the FCC: Censorship by the tyranny of the few- blogger Jeff Jarvis discovers that the recent $1.2 million FCC fine against a sex scene in Fox's "Married By America" TV show was not levied because hundreds of people wrote the FCC and complained. It was not because 159 people wrote in and complained (which is the FCC's current rationale). No, thanks to Jarvis' FOIA request, we find that only 23 people (of the show's several million viewers) wrote in and complained. On top of that, he finds that 21 of those letters were just copy-and-paste email jobs that some people attached their names to. Jarvis then spins this a bit by saying that "only 3" people actually wrote letters to the FCC, which is misleading but technically true. So somewhere between 3 and 23 angry people can determine what you can't see on television. Good to know.

Reuters Union Considers Striking Over Layoffs- will a strike by such a major newswire service impact the rest of the world's media?

Pentagon Starts Work On War Internet- the US military is talking about the creation of a global, wireless, satellite-aided computer network for use in battle. I think I saw a movie about this once...

Conservative host returns to the air after week suspension for using racial slur- Houston radio talk show host (and somtime Rush Limbaugh substitute) Mark Belling referred to Mexican-Americans as "wetbacks" on his show. He was suspended for a couple of weeks, and then submitted a written apology for the racial slur to a local newspaper. But he seems to be using the slur and its surrounding controversy to boost his conservative cred with his listeners.

Stay Tuned for Nudes- Cleveland TV news anchor Sharon Reed aired a story about artist Spencer Tunick, who uses large numbers of naked volunteers in his installations and photographs. The news report will be unique in that it will not blur or black-out the usual naughty bits. The story will air late at night, when it's allegedly okay with the FCC if you broadcast "indecent" material. The author of this article doesn't seem to notice that Reed first claims that this report is a publicity stunt, but then claims it's a protest against FCC repression. I'd like to think it's the latter, but I'm not that much of a sucker.

Posted by Jake at 04:02 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)
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