Free steampunk workout videos

Vermont, the little Holland of the United States, has been a leader in pot decriminalization, gay marriage, and socialist presidential candidates. One of the perks of living here is the annual free workout video that arrives in the mail. These elaborate DVDs go to all Vermont teachers (my wife's a librarian), paid for by the teacher's union and designed to get Vermonters through the harsh winters.

Our friends in Burlington worked extra hard this year to come up with a steampunk, time-travel theme. Props include a Tardis-like vehicle with a cockpit made from a wicker chair, fire extinguisher propulsion system, and voltmeter control panels. After a brief intro, some kind of evil time lord takes us through many sets of jumping jacks, pushups, and burpees. As goofy as the premise is, the workout is so intense I'm always praying for a Dalek invasion to end my misery.

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Senator Leahy mystified

PIPA sponsor Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vermont) can't figure out why people don't like it: "Hiding behind the black box of self-censorship does not resolve the problem that is plaguing American business and hurting American consumers." (Thanks, decius!) Read the rest

PIPA sponsor in the hotseat today at 12:00 Eastern

pziselberger sez, "Senator Lahey, sponsor of PIPA [ed: the Senate version of SOPA], will be on Vermont Public Radio's 'Vermont Edition' January 12 at noon. This is an opportunity to share your outrage over PIPA with the author of the bill." Read the rest

Vermont cop tases and tases a mentally ill homeless 59 year old woman

A cop in Barre, Vermont repeatedly tased Ann Osborn, a 59-year-old mentally ill homeless woman who was standing in a parking lot with her arms folded. "I could see that this was not getting any results so I pulled out the cartridge and went for a drive stun to Osborn's left thigh. This did have some affect and she screamed a little bit and went down on her buttocks, in the shrub area, next to the store at which time the Taser slipped off her thigh... Before Osborn could get up I was able to apply a second drive stun to her right thigh. This again kept her down and she began to scream. I advised her to roll over and place her hands behind her back, which she did and the Taser came off her leg losing contact again. Now Osborn was still screaming without the Taser being on her, and would still not put her hands behind her back. I again applied the drive stun to the back of her left thigh. Osborn finally complied, put her hands behind her back at which time I was able to get the handcuffs on her and take her into custody." (Thanks, Keyan!) Read the rest