Archive for Miscellany

Travellin’ Man. Same cast, new show, new stage.

[ music | Steve Winwood – Valerie ]

You know, I’ve moved quite a few times in my life. I think I’m currently at move number 24. Most were within a small radius as a kid. A couple were across town, a couple were around 75 miles, and now I’ve finished my third move of 500+ miles. That’s not counting travel; I’ve never been overseas, but I’ve been to Mexico once, and Canada three times (four if you count veering into the Canadian side of Lake Erie, but that was an accident), and 28 states. Also, I hate lines, I much prefer pacing. Apparently I’m not one for standing around, neither metaphorically nor literally.

So that brings me back to the third 500+ mile move (I’m going to gloss over the first two). Technically I’m counting road miles and not as-the-crow-flies partly because it sounds more impressive and partly because I’m not a crow. From north western PA (a cultural desert, if I may say so (and I may, I was born in Pittsburgh, I can get away with insulting the crappy parts of PA, so bugger off)) to south eastern Virginia. I packed my car up, and hit the road. It’s fun driving on the freeway with a table strapped to the roof of your car, you should try it.

And you know what? For the first time in my life, I have absolutely not a single ounce of regret or homesickness. It’s fabulous here. I arrived a bit ago and never got around to blogging about it until now. The fact that it’s so flat here is starting to sink in, but other than that, it’s great. And I never thought I’d wind up in The South. Granted, Virginia isn’t exactly on the equator, but it’s below the Mason-Dixon line, and it’s a place I never imagined myself until last November.

And tonight I went to a “tweet up”. What’s a tweet up? It’s like a meet-up but for Twitter people. What’s Twitter? It’s like crack for the ADD crowd; tell the world what you’re doing in 140 characters. Yes, I have a Twitter page too. It’s a lot harder for me to use though. I’ve written a ream of short fiction and two books with a third in process. For me to say anything in 140 characters is like packing a dozen clowns in one of those little cars. I’m most assuredly 10 pounds of manure, and Twitter is a 10 ounce bag. But the tweet-up was awesome. There was a whopping 6 people tonight, and I’m quite sure I talked enough that none will ever come to another one, but I had a blast. I forgot how much fun I have jumping into the deep end feet first.

So here I am. New town, new home, a whole new smorgasbord of opportunities, and I feel 20 again. I don’t look 20, but I sure feel it. Of course, I didn’t look 20 when I was 20, so that’s nothing new. One person at the tweet up was a quite ambitious, hard working, impressive, and beautiful young woman who was a touch older than me, but looked easily ten years younger than she is, and mentioned her husband is about that much older than her. This told me two things: one, that he is a VERY lucky man, and two, there might actually be hope for me yet. If a guy who is that much older can land a beautiful and amazingly talented woman like that, a guy like me who just looks it still has a chance. 😉 Hidden Egg

All in all, I’m glad to be here. Stay tuned, it’s the same old me, but this is going to be a whole new show. and you bet your sweet bippy it’ll be even more interesting.

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Stop complaining, Warner’s fumble WAS reviewed!

[ music | Aqua – Be a Man ]

Many people are complaining that Kurt Warner didn’t really fumble, that it was an incomplete pass because there was forward motion and he retained control. They say the play should have been reviewed, even if it was a fumble. I can probably agree with that last part, if for no other reason than to put doubt to rest. But it turns out it was reviewed. Thanks to the play reset time and now the extra minute of discussion by the refs for the unsportsmanlike conduct call on Woodley, the guy in the booth, Bob McGrath, had about a minute and a half to review the play. He didn’t phone down and let the refs review it too, but he didn’t feel there was a need. Even after the game it was reviewed and found a legit call. Hindsight is 20/20 and I’m sure McGrath wishes he had talked to the refs, but in the end it wouldn’t have changed anything.

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Pittsburgh Steelers – 6 time Superbowl champs

[ music | Queen – We Are The Champions ]

No team has ever won 6 Superbowls until now. One for the other thumb.

No team has ever won 6 Superbowls until now. One for the other thumb.

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Seven things you don’t care about

[ music | Dido – Me ]

Blame Daniel Glazman, it’s his fault. 😉

  1. Link to your original tagger(s) and list these rules in your post.
  2. Share seven facts about yourself in the post.
  3. Tag seven people at the end of your post by leaving their names and the links to their blogs.
  4. Let them know they’ve been tagged.

Let the self indulgence begin!

  1. Building on Dan’s medical theme
    • As a child I had some severe migraine headaches. They’d last for days, and I’d just sleep the whole time, but they’d also be accompanied by incredibly high fevers above 105°F. I’m told by doctors it’s a miracle it didn’t cause any brain damage.  I’m told by friends it most certainly did.
    • In 2006 I got to enjoy the agony of gallstones. I mentioned that, and the subsequent removal of said gall bladder. I have a rather high tolerance for pain, you see. My major attack in October had been increasing in discomfort and pain for about 18 hours before I finally went to the ER. I thought it was bad gas or indigestion. This had happened twice before and passed long before it felt this bad. I was crossing the street, and nearly passed out, so I grabbed a cab home and called 911 (I was still caring for my mother at home and wanted her in the ambulance with me so she didn’t worry, here’s why). Turns out I had developed acute pancreatitis and was in shock. Apparently shooting pains throughout your abdomen is a bad sign, and you should get help. Lesson learned!
  2. I used to run a Mozilla news site called Mozilla News. It’s gone now, the domain lapsed, but you can read our old stuff via Internet Archive. I broke some news a time or two that some people weren’t happy about, but over all, I think we did a lot of good for the community. Also, we had the first animated favicon ever.
  3. I was engaged once.
  4. I got to meet and shake hands with Bill Clinton during his 1996 campaign. He came to Pittsburgh in August and had a rally in the Sewall Center at Robert Morris College (now Robert Morris University). Amazing guy.
  5. My first computer was a TRS 80 Model 100 (I had the printer too!). I loved that computer. It was very light and incredibly portable, ran on 4 AA batteries, and had a built in 300 baud modem. Once I bought the modem cable and started checking out local BBSes, my entire world changed forever. I bought a second one, cut off one modular connector and attached alligator clips, and went phreaking. Some of the best times of my life.
  6. About a decade or so ago, I got hit by my own car. I was at a motel and someone tried to steal my car. I heard it start up, ran out, and stood in the middle of the parking lot. He drove right into me, and I rolled up the hood, over the windshield, and off the side. I hurt my back, but no broken bones or cuts.
  7. I’m a published author. I’ve been published in a couple poetry reviews, a technical book, and most recently tech-edited a book for Wiley, HTML, XHTML, and CSS: Your visual blueprint. I’m also about 170+ pages into a novel, but that’s another story. (Get it? Another STORY? Ha-ha! (that one’s for dolske))

So, now I need to harass seven other people about this.

  1. Justin Dolske because he’s a punny guy.
  2. Chris Thomas because he’s a really smart guy.
  3. Josh Soref because he’s a genuinely nice guy.
  4. Jeff Walden because is hard to find.
  5. J. Boriss because I’m still looking for Natasha.
  6. Sean Umphlet who is a good guy and will not give you up nor let you down.
  7. Tim De Pauw who is my favorite waffle (and a good musician).

Fin.

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The Algebra of Failure

[ music | Eels – Novocaine for the Soul ]

Previously.

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Is this mean?

Am I being too harsh?

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Good morning, America.

It’s a damn fine morning indeed.

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Remember to vote!

It’s November 4, folks, so it’s time to go out and vote. I don’t care who you vote for, just vote!

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A Strong Candidate

A Strong Candidate

A Strong Candidate

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How do people this dumb make it into newspapers?

[ music | Four Non Blondes – What’s Going On ]

Tom shared this gem of an article at the Telegraph. Wow. I can’t believe this article made it past a fact checker, or an editor, or anyone without an extreme eco-agenda. Don’t get me wrong, I am pro-environmental activism, but this is just crazy.

First all, if you pay to pollute, then the stigma of polluting is gone. There is no incentive not to pollute.

First all, wrong. This would only be correct if money was infinite. This statement is blatantly incorrect in that carbon credit purchasing/trading make pollution a fiscal issue, rather than purely an environmental or moral issue. Pollution now directly affects the bottom line.

Imagine that someone came up with a plan for you to cheat on your spouse, say by paying someone else not to cheat on their spouse!

Again, wrong. Cheating on your spouse is binary, either you’re cheating or you’re not. Polluting is binary, either you are or you’re not, but the point is to pollute less. I doubt anyone’s husband or wife will be happy that their spouse now only cheats three times a week rather than four times a week, but I think everyone would be happy if we could reduce emissions of power generation plants by 25%.

Do they ever mention that the only trees that make a difference are the ones planted inside the tropics? Or that some trees actually increase the amount of carbon in the atmosphere? Or that mass tree planting to satisfy our ravenous energy appetites reduces biodiversity, displaces people and causes social disruption.

No, no one ever mentions that because it’s not true. Apparently this gentleman has never heard of temperate rain-forests, for example. I haven’t the faintest idea what his second statement is based upon. I’ve never heard of trees increasing atmospheric carbon without burning them. Also, planting trees does nothing to biodeversity because forests aren’t usually made up of thousands of different types of trees, there’s usually a few dominant species in various stands, and a number of different stands. Trees aren’t planted in places people currently live, so there’s no displacement, and certainly not more displacement than would occur if sea levels rise by only a single meter. And when is the last time a tree disrupted anyone doing anything? That one’s just absurd.

And do any of them guarantee that they will actually plant that tree on your behalf? Do they send you a picture of the thing? Can they guarantee you that the tree in question will live long enough to absorb the carbon you dumped in the atmosphere, you naughty boy, before being chopped down?

Actually, reputable ones do just that. They promise a minimum lifespan for the trees, and yes you can ever see the stands they create.

I have no clue how articles like this can make it into a newspaper with any intelligent people behind it. Apparently the standards for the Telegraph have dropped dramatically in recent times. This kind of nonsense isn’t even fit for “letters to the editors” pages.

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