Friday, December 08, 2006

Be Careful What You Lobby For

A group of right-wing Christians in Albemarle County ,VA, fought for and won the right to distribute fliers for a Vacation Bible School in county public schools. Soon afterward, a local Pagan church distributed its own fliers in the same school promoting “an educational program for children of all ages (and their adults), where we’ll explore the traditions of December and their origins, followed by a Pagan ritual to celebrate Yule. Come for one or both parts and bring your curiosity.”


Wednesday, December 06, 2006

To Be Read At My Funeral As Well...

Richard Dawkins posted to his blog an excerpt from Unweaving the Rainbow that he wants read at his funeral. I want it read at mine.

"We are going to die, and that makes us the lucky ones. Most people are never going to die because they are never going to be born. The potential people who could have been here in my place but who will in fact never see the light of day outnumber the sand grains of Sahara. Certainly those unborn ghosts include greater poets than Keats, scientists greater than Newton. We know this because the set of possible people allowed by our DNA so massively outnumbers the set of actual people. In the teeth of these stupefying odds it is you and I, in our ordinariness, that are here.

Here is another respect in which we are lucky. The universe is older than 100 million centuries. Within a comparable time the sun will swell to a red giant and engulf the earth. Every century of hundreds of millions has been in its time, or will be when its time comes, 'the present century.' The present moves from the past to the future, like a tiny spotlight, inching its way along a gigantic ruler of time. Everything behind the spotlight is in darkness, the darkness of the dead past. Everything ahead of the spotlight is in the darkness of the unknown future. The odds of your century's being the one in the spotlight are the same as the odds that a penny, tossed down at random, will land on a particular ant crawling somewhere along the road from New York to San Francisco. You are lucky to be alive and so am I.

We live on a planet that is all but perfect for our kind of life: not too warm and not too cold, basking in kindly sunshine, softly watered; a gently spinning, green and gold harvest-festival of a planet. Yes, and alas, there are deserts and slums; there is starvation and racking misery to be found. But take a look at the competition. Compared with most planets this is paradise, and parts of Earth are still paradise by any standards. What are the odds that a planet picked at random will have these complaisant properties? Even the most optimistic calculation will put it at less than one in a million.

Imagine a spaceship full of sleeping explorers, deep-frozen would-be colonists of some distant world. Perhaps the ship is on a forlorn mission to save the species before an unstoppable comet, like the one that killed the dinosaurs, hits the home planet. The voyagers go into the deep-freeze soberly reckoning the odds against their spaceship's ever chancing upon a planet friendly to life. If one in a million planets is suitable at best, and it takes centuries to travel from each star to the next, the spaceship is pathetically unlikely to find a tolerable, let alone safe, haven for its sleeping cargo.

But imagine that the ship's robot pilot turns out to be unthinkably lucky. After millions of years the ship does find a planet capable of sustaining life: a planet of equable temperature, bathed in warm starshine, refreshed by oxygen and water. The passengers, Rip van Winkles, wake stumbling into the light. After a million years of sleep, here is a whole new fertile globe, a lush planet of warm pastures, sparkling streams and waterfalls, a world bountiful with creatures, darting through alien green felicity. Our travellers walk entranced, stupefied, unable to believe their unaccustomed senses or their luck.

As I said, the story asks for too much luck; it would never happen. And yet, isn't it what has happened to each one of us? We have woken after hundreds of millions of years asleep, defying astronomical odds. Admittedly we didn't arrive by spaceship, we arrived by being born, and we didn't burst conscious into the world but accumulated awareness gradually through babyhood. The fact that we gradually apprehend our world, rather than suddenly discovering it, should not subtract from its wonder."


Please, PLEASE, for the love of God, baseball, and Hank Aaron...

No one sign this man.

UPDATE: The Giants just re-signed him. There is no God.

Monday, December 04, 2006

Worst President Ever

Eric Foner, DeWitt Clinton professor of history at Columbia University, says W is the worst President in US history.

In light of the seriousness of its assertion, the article is almost comically short and weak on supporting arguments, but the few points it does make are a good start to the conversation of Bush's legacy.

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Message Boards!

I took on the challenge of putting up a message board and serving it from my home computer, partly so my friends and I can have somewhere private and controlled to have discussions, but mostly for the nerd points.

It's probably going to be flaky until I can figure out a better way to host it, since my computer is in daily use and will probably not be 100% reliable. It's a great start though.

Monday, October 16, 2006

November Surprise

I guess it's only fair. The Democrats got the Foley scandal in the crucial weeks leading up to the mid-term elections, and it looks like Rove and the Republicans will get a verdict for Saddam Hussein on November 5th, just two days before election day.

Last time it was a new Osama bin Laden recording that urged the American people not to re-elect George Bush (the most priceless non-endorsement imaginable). Now that the GOP is doing everything it can to divert public attention away from bin Laden and accentuate the "successes" of the Iraq War, what news could be more favorable than a guilty verdict being read to Saddam Hussein and his crew?

Expect a media orgy.

I'd Wear It!

According to this article, Toshiba has come up with a way to present an individual user with a full 360-degree panoramic display. The downside? Take a look:

So you get sweet 360-degree video and audio immersion, but the tradeoff is you have to look like a freak with a television for a head. I'll take that deal any day, sign me up for two!

Wednesday, October 04, 2006


There is simply no way that an established news source gets such a simple, well known, and extremely relevant fact this wrong on accident. No way.

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

Falcons-Saints Fix Job

Beth and I watched the MNF game last night between the Falcons and the Saints. Division rivals, both 2-0 and looking to take an early division lead. Of course, the Saints had an advantage that the Falcons couldn't possibly overcome: it was their first game back in the Superdome since Hurricane Katrina. The Saints won in a blowout, 23-3. The Saints dominated from start to finish, and the Falcons looked like a bad high school team. The fans in New Orleans got their team back, got their stadium back, and the big win on the national Monday Night Football stage gave them their pride back. After the game and still today, New Orleans has been the darling of the media, and the NFL is basking in the great PR.

Fixed. Rigged. Crooked.

There is simply NO WAY that the Saints are that much better than the Falcons. The Saints moved the ball with impugnity, and the Falcons were lucky to grind out the few first downs that they got. Atlanta insisted on running the ball up the middle when it had become perfectly clear that the holes weren't there. Dunn ended up with 40-something yards, the Atlanta receivers all of a sudden got a case of the drops, and Vick was sacked 5 times. The Saints seemed to have ALL the calls go their way (I distinctly remember the refs waving off a flag for pass interference on NO... I guess the line judge didn't really see what he initially thought he saw). The Atlanta defense, which had gone the first two games without allowing a touchdown, spent the entire night in a deep zone that Brees picked apart. NO blocked a punt AND a field goal (took the punt in for a TD).

The fact that they are in the same division made it all possible. Division rivals play home-and-home, so there will be a rematch later in Atlanta. The Falcons dump this game to the Saints and the Saints can return the favor in Atlanta. That way neither team takes an advantage in the division.

It was an opportunity for positive press that the NFL could simply not turn down. The media raves about the Saints (and the league indirectly). The Saints franchise, which before the hurricane had been in serious danger of relocating, gets a HUGE boost. The league has expressed a strong desire to keep that team in New Orleans, and the owner wouldn't dare even think about moving them now. Conversely, the Saints losing that game would have greatly diminished the impact of the reopening of the Superdome, and would have deadened the press coverage of the game, the New Orleans area, and the Saints franchise.

Go ahead, call me crazy. But if I had any money, I would bet the farm on the Falcons on November 26th.

Thursday, September 21, 2006

Unlimited Nonsense

Here's the response of Army Gen. John P. Abizaid, the top U.S. military officer in the Middle East, to the question of whether the United States is winning the war in Iraq:

"Given unlimited time and unlimited support, we're winning the war."

That response crossed a threshhold of absurdity that I am having trouble fathoming. I don't know whether to laugh, cry, or break something.

Full article here.

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

Funny Pic Of The Day

Steve Irwin - Man's Man? (Part 2)

Steve Irwin's posthumous status as a Man's Man, which I personally thought was an open-and-shut case, has recently been called into question by several authorities on the subject. But today the best argument yet was made in favor of his canonization in the most unexpected of ways: inadvertently, and by a Frenchman.

According to Jean-Michel Cousteau in this article, Irwin's touchy-feely approach to nature was inappropriate:

"[Irwin would] interfere with nature, jump on animals, grab them, hold them, and have this very, very spectacular, dramatic way of presenting things. Of course, it goes very well on television. It sells, it appeals to a lot people, but I think it's very misleading. You don't touch nature, you just look at it. And that's why I'm still alive. I've been diving over 61 years _ a lot many more years that he's been alive _ and I don't mess with nature."

I don't think there can be a more convincing argument than the one Mr. Sissy-Boy Frenchman just accidentally made. The stark contrast between the two men's tactics when dealing with animals that could kill them with one swift motion leaves little doubt as to each man's Manliness. If cornered by a pissed off cobra, Steve Irwin would have grabbed that sonofabitch by the throat and then kept it as a pet. Cousteau would have put his hands in the air and said "I surrender!".

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

The New McCarthyism

Canadian citizen wrongly arrested, deported, imprisoned, tortured as suspected Islamic "extremist".

Apparently this man's crime was being seen talking to another man who was under investigation for possible al-Qaeda links. Just like the Communist witch-hunt in the 50's, except that now instead of being forced to denounce your treasonous ideals and provide a list of your Communist comrades (whether you actually were Communist or not), they ship you to Syria where they beat you with electrical cords.

The authorities, both in the U.S. and in Canada, will spin, downplay, and point fingers. The liberals will foam with self-righteous outrage ("This would NEVER happen if we were in power!"). Meanwhile, this guy had his freedom and dignity taken from him without due process, and was surely beaten to a bloody stump for information he didn't have, all in the name of Homeland Security. Sorry about that. Our bad.

How easily could this have happened to me, you, or anyone else?? All you need is a single Middle Eastern acquaintance with active ties to the region, and you're on The List. Your phone calls are being recorded, your email is being read, your Internet activites are being monitored, and your bank accounts are being watched. And Allah help you if you are of Middle Eastern or Muslim descent...

I have a feeling this is going to get MUCH worse before it starts to get better...

UPDATE: According to this article, Maher Arar's questioners in Syria were successful in extracting information from him using "tough interrogation techniques"; under coersion, he confessed to having trained in Afghanistan, presumably as a Terrorist.

The problem? He had never even been to Afghanistan.

Thursday, September 14, 2006

Sounds Familiar...

The IAEA claims its findings with regard to Iran's nuclear activities were distorted in a recent Congressional report.

A "madman" Middle Eastern head of state, ultimatums, deadlines, UN sanctions, nuclear weapons inspectors, conflicting reports...

Haven't we been here before??

Bad Day

I was going to post today about Bush and his unabashed ballsiness in trying to make his administration's illegal acts legal, but f*** it, I don't have the energy to be outraged right now. I just had (and hopefully got out of) a fight with my lovely ladyfriend, so I want to post about HAPPY THINGS!!

NEW IPODS! The big iPod is the same, just with a bigger hard drive, and the Shuffle now has a smaller form-factor and a brushed metal casing with an attached clip. But the nano is where Apple really nailed it. Finally, a worthy successor to the mini! The soft plastic "look-at-it-wrong-and-it-scratches" casing is replaced with a seamless brushed metal enclosure inspired by the mini (Apple's best seller, for good reason). That's the biggest feature, and frankly it's the best decision Apple has made in a long time. The nano has always had the potential to be as big as the mini was, but it was held back by poor design. Hell, used minis have been big sellers on ebay, probably in direct competition with the last-gen nano. No more!

Nice work, Apple. It's been a long time coming, but it's good to see you were listening!

In the interest of not letting these freedom-trampling fuckers completely off the hook just because I'm having a rough day, here are the links to the stories I was going to write about:

Bush and his team pressuring Congressional Republicans to "approve greater Executive power".

"Bush's proposals would narrow the U.S. legal interpretation of the Geneva Conventions in a bid to allow tougher interrogations and shield U.S. personnel from being prosecuted for war crimes."

Senate Judiciary Committee approves bill that expands gov't ability to spy on U.S. citizens without warrants, reduces Congressional oversight.

"Specter's bill concedes the government's right to wiretap Americans without warrants, and allows the U.S. Attorney General to authorize, on his own, dragnet surveillance of Americans so long as the stated purpose of the surveillance is to monitor suspected terrorists or spies."


"Specter has moved to have his bill voted upon next week by voice vote, called a unanimous consent motion, according to the ACLU's Graves. Such a procedure would leave no record of who voted for or against the bill."

My skin is crawling.

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Stingray Rage

In hindsight, we all should have seen this coming. You can always count on a handful of dumbshit caveman-types to "cope" with tragedy in the most retarded way possible.

Stingrays killed in "revenge" for the death of Steve Irwin.

Monday, September 11, 2006

Better Off

Presenting the new Iraq, same as the old Iraq.

The only thing I can think to say about this story: At least they aren't torturing the prisoners anymore...

Friday, September 08, 2006

Useless Stat of the Century

From the (1)Ohio State vs. (2)Texas section of's Top 25 Overview for this weekend:

The past three regular-season 1 vs. 2 games have been won by the No. 2 team. But the Buckeyes are 2-0 all-time in 1 vs. 2 games.

OMG, what an incredible conflation of incongruent, meaningless, and wholly irrelevant statistical trends! Something's got to give!

Spin This!

According to a 2005 CIA report released today by the Senate Intelligence Committee, there is no evidence of a link between Saddam Hussein and al-Qaeda prior to the start of U.S. military action there in 2003. The report states that Hussein's Iraqi government "did not have a relationship, harbor, or turn a blind eye" with regard to Abu Musab al-Zarqawi or his al-Qaeda associates.

WH spokesman Tony Snow called it "nothing new" and spun it thus:

"In 2002 and 2003, members of both parties got a good look at the intelligence we had and they came to the very same conclusions about what was going on..."

Meanwhile, Senator John D. Rockefeller (D-WV) put it this way:

"[The Bush administration] exploited the deep sense of insecurity among Americans in the immediate aftermath of the Sept. 11 attacks, leading a large majority of Americans to believe _ contrary to the intelligence assessments at the time _ that Iraq had a role in the 9/11 attacks."

Predictably, we have one side claiming that everyone, not just them, bought into faulty intelligence, while the other side claims innocence and points the finger. The way I see it, both sides have something to answer for. The Democrats, out of fear of looking like unpatriotic appeasers, let themselves be swept away in the current of Rove/Cheney/Rumsfeld's efforts to parlay the momentum of the successful operation in Afghanistan into the execution of a far more questionable mission in Iraq. But in the end, it's those in power (the Republicans) who should be held to final account for the screwups of the last four years. The buck always gets passed up, not down, and the guy at the top wears red.

This brings up an interesting question to ponder: Who is more wrong, the offender or his enablers?

Just a small dose of reality to counteract the upcoming pre-election 9-11 propagandathon.

Office A**holes

I'd love to see someone conduct a study on the psychology of the type of person who fills his coffee mug, then puts the pot back on the heater bone-effing-dry and walks away.

Thursday, September 07, 2006

Fantasy Football

I'm in a fantasy football league with some of my college buddies, and it turns out that we have a FF n00b. My good friend Todd Bridges emails the group today with this message:

to be honest, i have no idea how this fantasy football thing works. i've signed up and stuff, after that it seems kind of boring, what is the big deal? sell me on why this is exciting.

Another good friend, Tom Carpenter, obliges him by explaining that it gives you a reason to watch and enjoy games that you would otherwise not care about, the lineup strategy, trades, trash-talk, etc.. Todd's classic reply:

yeah, but i don't like any of the players on my team. i enjoy the mind-numbing relaxation that is a futile meaningless NFL match-up. will any of us actually do trades? i'm really going to try to get into this, but it might take a few weeks. i thought fantasy football was a writing contest. i thought we would all write first-person narratives about how we all used to dream about being football players when we grew up. oh well.

Todd has always had a penchant for priceless off-the-cuff comments. It's really hard to make me laugh out loud through a text-based medium, but that one did it for me.

Plus he's in a kickass band called Actress.

Tuesday, September 05, 2006

Steve Irwin - A TRUE Man's Man

As everyone knows by now, Steve Irwin - The Crocodile Hunter - was killed by a stingray on Monday. Well, get ready to watch his final, dying moments on TV. Apparently, he wanted any accident that might befall him during his adventures to be captured on film for the world to see! According to this article, Irwin once said:

"My number one rule is to keep that camera rolling. Even if it's shaky or slightly out of focus, I don't give a rip. Even if a big old alligator is chewing me up I want to go down and go, 'Crikey!' just before I die. That would be the ultimate for me."

I'd like for everyone to raise their mug and salute the newest inductee to the Man's Man Hall of Fame. He was already a member anyway (the guy clowned around while holding a cobra by its tail, for f***'s sake), but that quote erases any remaining doubt.

p.s. If this does happen, we're a sizeable step closer to televised executions. I'm just saying...

Monday, September 04, 2006

Goodbye, Andre.

Watched Andre Agassi's final match at the U.S. Open on Sunday. He lost to a big-serving qualifier named Benjamin Becker (no relation). He was in visible pain throughout the match, but he fought to the last moment. When it was over, the crowd gave him a five minute standing ovation that would have brought even the most hardened, unfeeling cynic to the edge of tears. And if somehow it hadn't, his speech to the crowd surely would have.

"The scoreboard said I lost today, but what the scoreboard doesn't say is what it is I have found. And over the last 21 years, I have found loyalty. You have pulled for me on the court and also in life. I've found inspiration. You have willed me to succeed, sometimes even in my lowest moments. And I've found generosity. You have given me your shoulders to stand on to reach for my dreams, dreams I could have never reached without you.

"Over the last 21 years, I have found you and I will take you and the memory of you with me for the rest of my life. Thank you."

I tried not to let Beth see it, but that moment really got me. He's the guy I emulated as a kid. I wore the same clothes and tried to look like him when I played. I thought I had seen the ultimate in adoration from a crowd when Jimmy Connors made his famous run to the semis in 1991, but Agassi's three matches in this tournament were a farewell tour of legendary proportions. Tennis, and the U.S. Open in particular, won't be the same without him.

Friday, September 01, 2006

Diamond In The Rough

Using Blogger's "Next Blog" link, I stumbled upon a photoblog called Life In Still Mode by a guy named Levin. 99% of blogs out there are collections of self-indulgent drivel (this one certainly included), but the law of averages reassures us that every once in a while we'll come across true talent. Earlier today I put a link to his blog in my links section, but as I browsed more of his work I realized that wasn't quite enough. Here's one of his photos that I especially enjoyed.

Who's the fascist here, Rumsfeld?

A quote from Keith Olbermann's August 30th post on his blog, Bloggermann, concerning the current administration's disturbing propensity for demonizing dissent (this is Olbermann quoting Edward R. Murrow):

“We must not confuse dissent with disloyalty,” he said, in 1954. “We must remember always that accusation is not proof, and that conviction depends upon evidence and due process of law.

“We will not walk in fear, one of another. We will not be driven by fear into an age of unreason, if we dig deep in our history and our doctrine, and remember that we are not descended from fearful men, not from men who feared to write, to speak, to associate, and to defend causes that were for the moment unpopular.”

Keith Olbermann is one of my favorite journalists, going back to his ESPN days. I recommend reading Olbermann's post in its entirety. Scathing stuff, but it's all true.

Red Sox officially surrender

The writing was on the wall, but yesterday the 2006 Boston Red Sox made a formal surrender of their once-promising season. They traded David Wells to San Diego and started Julian Tavarez in his place, with Kyle Snyder and Lenny DiNardo set to start Friday and Saturday against Ted Lilly and A.J. Burnett. Nice.

8-21 since August 2nd. A 1-game lead in the AL East at the end of July has become a 8-game deficit. David Ortiz was hospitalized with heart issues, Jason Varitek spent August on the DL, Manny Ramirez has a bad knee, and Jon Lester might have cancer. Coco Crisp has been a big letdown as a replacement for Johnny Damon, and Josh Beckett is a coinflip every time he takes the mound. Keith Foulke started the year well, but messed up his elbow in June and has pitched horribly since coming back in late August. Mike Timlin is 40 and just about done. Tim Wakefield has been hurt since mid-July. Matt Clement (remember him?) hasn't been heard from all season. Trot Nixon has been injured all of August and still can't hit lefties. Our shortstops (Alex Cora and Alex Gonzalez) can't hit anyone.

Now the good:

Jonathan Papelbon. There are no more superlatives. 35 saves and counting, 0.94 ERA as a rookie. ROY.

David Ortiz. 47 HR, 121 RBI, .287/.400/1.033, and he's not done. MVP.

Curt Schilling. Steady and reliable, although he's developed a nasty habit of giving up home runs (and passed it on to Beckett as well). Next year is his farewell tour, if previous comments are to be believed.

Kevin Youkilis. Good bat, great glove. First base is covered for a while.

Wily Mo Pena. David Ortiz's heir apparent. He's a circus act in right field, but with an offseason to get used to Fenway he should be just fine.

Infield defense, the best in baseball. Hope the trend continues.

* * * * *

Nice run, guys. The wheels really fell off there at the end, but perhaps we were overachieving in the first half. We have the foundation of something good. Let's hope the FO's "master plan" works out.

Thursday, August 31, 2006

Blogger BETA!

The Blogger gods have smiled upon me, and I'm now part of the beta of the new Blogger site! Consider this my first test case.

Wednesday, August 30, 2006


A brilliant analysis of the phrase I most despise: "It is what it is."

"It is what it is" means what it means. Depending on context, it can be a statement of resignation or of defiance, but in neither case does it connote the optimistic good humor of "It's all good." If anything, it expresses the absence of emotion, the abdication of feeling. Although it seems to imply value-neutrality, that misses the point; it's not so much that something is neither good nor bad, but rather that its quality simply isn't relevant, that it's not worth the energy to make a value judgment.

To put it another way — it doesn't matter what you think about it because you can't do anything about it anyway. It was in this spirit that Al Gore invoked the phrase after winning the popular vote and possibly the electoral tally as well: "I strongly disagreed with the Supreme Court decision and the way in which they interpreted and applied the law. But I respect the rule of law, so it is what it is."

Meanwhile, the current administration has embraced the phrase as a tautological device to preclude further inquiry. Pressed about the intentions of the US regarding the ABM treaty, a 30-year-old agreement that would seem to preclude the Star Wars-type missile defense system currently under development, a defense official told a NATO ministers' meeting, "The ABM treaty is the current ABM treaty. It is what it is."

"It is what it is" can also be an agent of insinuation, a coy refusal to spell out something that the speaker clearly thinks goes without saying. During the run-up to GW2, the administration made a lot of noise about Iraq's links with international terrorists but refrained from presenting concrete conclusions. Instead, a senior official merely said, "It is what it is. It is a series of facts. People will have to judge for themselves."

Similarly, to sound an ominous note following the discovery in February on board a freighter of North Korean Scud missiles bound for Yemen without committing to a specific response: "Obviously this was suspected by American authorities for some time and I think it is what it is," said US Deputy Secretary of State Richard Armitage.

For years, "It's all good" served as a rallying cry for the down-but-not-out, a smile as the ultimate umbrella. But there's no smile on the face of "It its what it is." This is no Yogi Berra chestnut, but a blunt recognition of power, either by those who hold it or those under its shadow, with no illusions about the ability of mere words to shape or alter frank reality. When the administration invoked a policy of proactive military action against a regime that might at some point prove threatening, Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld said: "You can call that defense, as I do, or you can call it preemptive, but it is what it is."

What does the replacement of "It's all good" with "It is what it is" mean? What does it say about the tenor of our times, the popular outlook, our existential commonwealth?

It is what it is.

Excerpted from this article.

Like I said... brilliant.


This can't do much for a 49-year-old lady's self-esteem.

Couric, who was made aware of the picture's alteration yesterday, joked that she liked the original better.

"There's more of me to love," she quipped.

She took it surprisingly well, I think.

It's OVER.

Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Funny pic

Does she really speak for Florida??

Katherine Harris is either a panderer or a zealot.

Just a few nuggets from her interview with Florida Baptist Witness:

"You know we’re covered with, our sins are covered with His blood and so we are blameless before Him. We are as white as snow."

"I have a 100 percent voting record with the Christian Coalition. I have a 100 percent voting record with the traditional values groups."

"...we have to have the faithful in government and over time, that lie we have been told, the separation of church and state, people have internalized, thinking that they needed to avoid politics and that is so wrong because God is the one who chooses our rulers."

"...I do not support any civil rights actions with regard to homosexuality."

"Clearly I would only, from a public policy standpoint, I would limit abortion to rape and life of the mother and incest, but for my personal standpoint, I would not have an abortion for any of those cases."

Those are good, but they're nothing compared to this gem:

"If you are not electing Christians, tried and true, under public scrutiny and pressure, if you’re not electing Christians then in essence you are going to legislate sin. They can legislate sin."


Replace "God", "Chistian", and "church" with "Allah", "Muslim", and "mosque", and all of a sudden you're looking at an al Qaeda press release. We have a U.S. congresswoman who espouses these views, but we have the gall to call them fanatics??

Monday, August 28, 2006

Thanks, Continental!

I guess I was overdue for some airline-induced stress. Until yesterday, air travel had been surprisingly painless.

Went to see my dad in Cleveland, OH, and I had a 4:50pm flight home to Atlanta on Continental (flight 2464, I'll not soon forget that number). I got to the terminal around 3:30. At about 3:50 the lady (Kristen... she was cool, and just as frustrated by the day's events as anyone) announces that the flight has been delayed to 5:35 due to mechanical problems with the plane in Richmond, VA. No big deal, more time to play Civ 4!

But then about every 20 minutes Kristen would announce another delay... 5:55.... 6:45..... 7:30..... at this point, she starts offering to put us on standby for the 8:55 Atlanta flight (which Lu was booked on for his trip home!). Then, a moment of hope... Kristen announces that the plane is finally fixed, boarded, and about to take off from Richmond! I'm going to make it home!

Just kidding. Kristen gets on the PA, just minutes after she had made our day, and kicks us all right in the nuts: Continental has cancelled the flight. Those on the standby list for the 8:55 flight can hang around to see if they make it, but the rest will have to catch a 6:30am Delta flight the next morning. Needless to say, I didn't make the 8:55. I watched Lu board and fly home, and I was left to deal with grouchy customer service ladies who, when I asked them for a hotel room for the night (the least they could do, right?), asked me where I had stayed the night before and why I couldn't just stay there again. Lady, with all due respect, please shut the **** up and book me a hotel room.

So now I had to catch the hotel shuttle, but first I had to go to baggage claim to pick up the bag that I had checked. The Continental lady had sent for it to be pulled out for me, but it was nowhere to be found. Upon further investigation, I learned that they decided to put my bag on the 8:55 plane to Atlanta (the one I was hoping to get on standby), even though they decided not to put ME on it. My toothbrush, deodorant, and "product" (the essentials) were in there.....


Got to the hotel (the Airport Holiday Inn!!), ate a grade-C chicken Ceasar salad in the dumpy hotel lounge, then hit the sack. 4:30am wakeup call, 5:00am airport shuttle, terrorist-level security check, a stale Cinnabon, and all of a sudden I was finally on a plane and on my way home to Atlanta. Of course, I had left my car in long-term parking at the Brookhaven MARTA station, so there was the 30 minute train ride, then 20 minutes to drive the rest of the way home to find my beautiful girlfriend waiting for me..... frantic because she has a chunk of mascara stuck in her eye.

What a trip.

Sunday, August 27, 2006


Goddammit. I had a decent-sized post typed out and then tried to post a picture. Google toolbar killed the subsequent popup, so I told Google toolbar to allow popups and it reloaded the page. Adios post.


Sitting at the Cleveland airport and my flight home has been delayed, two hours and counting. Good thing I have my trusty rusty laptop to entertain me (see baby?!? I told you I needed it! :) ) I wonder how my PSP ebay auction is going...... it's up to $112.50 with just under 7 hours to go. Looks good to meet the reserve price.

There are birds flying around in the terminal.

This is the worst post I've ever made here. :)

UPDATE: The PSP auction ended at $193.50, but the winner was some clown in Ireland with ZERO feedback. Predictably, the next day his/her account was deleted. I've since offered it to the second-place guy at his highest bid ($191), and he has 3 days to respond. I'm not holding my breath.

Saturday, August 26, 2006

A random thought at the airport...

Picture a moving sidewalk at a busy airport, full of passengers from one end to the other, and they're all walking at a brisk pace. What would it look like to an observer standing about 50 feet away if the moving sidewalk all of a sudden stopped moving? I think it would look really funny.

Wednesday, August 23, 2006


I had a conversation with a coworker today in which she was telling me about the negative experience of living with an old boyfriend. She said she lived with him for over 3 years, and that she ended up leaving him because they turned out to be completely incompatible. Then she ended the thought by saying something that stuck in my head: "That's why I'll never live with a man again until I'm married."

I admit that it's counter-intuitive, but couldn't you look at that entire experience and say that the system worked perfectly for her? To me, the major purpose of moving in with a girlfriend/boyfriend is to determine whether or not a relationship can work through the day to day issues of life as a married couple. A dry-run, if you will. The failure of a relationship to survive cohabitation is as sure a sign as any that it would also not survive marriage. Although surely painful, wouldn't we all want such a sign as early as possible? Of course we would all like for things to work out, but why is it that some consider it a mistake when it doesn't?

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

PSP for sale!

I'm selling a PSP with 2 games and a hard case, if anyone's interested...

Monday, August 21, 2006

To Linux or not to Linux...

Just got a brand new laptop over the weekend. I've never had one and I've always wanted one, so this is kind of a big deal... plus it caused a gloves-off, relationship-redefining fight with the ladyfriend, so now it will always carry even more significance. Anyhow, I'm thinking about dual-booting it (Windows MCE and some flavor of Linux), but I can't get one question out of my mind:


Other than the obvious and ever-present geek answer "Because I can!", I'm struggling to come up with one solid reason why I should invest the time, effort and hard drive space. What would Linux allow me to do that I can't do in Windows? Under what circumstances would I choose to boot into Linux rather than Windows? I've had desktop computers since the beginning of time, and I've never felt the need to dual-boot those, so why now? If I install and configure Linux and then never use it, I'm going to curse the time I wasted and long for my hard drive space back.

Please, someone sell me on this. My inner geek wants to do it, but I don't exactly have scads of free time these days.

Sunday, August 20, 2006

For my baby...

The only time that all my troubles seem to go away is when you're with me..... or when I have my bottle :)

Seriously though, I'm a happy guy and I owe that to you. Thanks for bearing with me while I try to become a man that is worthy of the attention of a lady like you. I love you!

Thursday, August 17, 2006

Ahead of its time

Marathon Lives!

How much does it say about how f***ing great a game was that a decade later the fans are still carrying the torch? How much MORE does it say that it was a Mac-only FPS?!?


It's still here! After almost 2 years without posting, I'm back!

I'm getting a huge kick out of my bitch-fest "the Red Sox can't do anything right" posts from 2004... the year they won the World Series! Ah, hindsight...