On my way home from work last night my odometer clicked over to 4,000 miles. (Ok, "clicked over" isn't exactly correct since the thing's digital, but anyway...) My cute little Accent is one year and nine months old! I would do the math to figure out how many miles I drive a year, but that seems too much like work.
Gas still costs too much...
I don't know why this occurred to me, except that when I'm laying in bed waiting to fall asleep my mind has a tendency to wander in unusual directions. I realized that while my dad's three elder sisters always referred to their parents as "Papa" and "Mama" ("Papa taught me to drive" or "Mama painted that vase"), my father always called them "Dad" and "Mom"--or, actually "My Dad" and "My Mom" ("My Dad took me fishing there" or "My Mom scolded me for that").
I wonder if the decade between my dad and his next-oldest sister was more significant than I thought...
I read in a book that 70% of the world's population is of average intelligence or lower and I thought, "That explains it."
Well, I slept for four hours! Whoo-hoo! I think that may be because my family doctor got into the act and prescribed me antibiotics, a decongestant and an inhaler for the bronchitis, and I was coughing less and breathing more. I may have slept even longer except I'd already slept through both my pain med dose times, and when I rolled over in my sleep....ouch! But I think I must be getting better because it was merely painful, not agonizing.
My sisters have been wonderful! I'm not allowed to drive as long as I'm taking the heavy stuff, and they've been great about running around to pick up my prescriptions or a few groceries.
Now, I need to work on a ploy to get one of them to come over and do my laundry for me....
Well, I'm still poor, but now I'm re-watching movies in addition to re-reading favorite books. I popped Galaxy Quest into the VCR last night and re-lived many Star Trek favorite moments. There are some seriously great lines in Quest. I love when Sigourney Weaver says she only has one job, and it's stupid (repeating everthing the computer says), but she's going to do it!
I still can't get over how young Justin Long was, either...
I'm alive--just working 12-and-a-half-hour days and operating on autopilot. Speaking of which, I recently discovered Stephen Coonts naval aviation thrillers and am enjoying them very much (although to be honest some of the detailed how-to-fly an F14-D or A6 Intruder passages make my eyes glaze over). Reading about life on an aircraft carrier is interesting. I keep wondering which of the sailors is Harvey...
Parents need to teach their kids that life isn't fair. I've got enough to deal with at work without whiny teenagers expecting to always get their own way.
I'm the boss--I get my own way. You get to find a new job....
I just finished the newest Jack Reacher novel, Bad Luck and Trouble by Lee Child.
More! I want more!
*Thud! is one of my favorites...
The Watchman by Robert Crais: Totally awesome, I couldn't put it down. I've always been fascinated by Joe Pike, and I loved it. I hope he does some more from Pike's perspective.
Well, with temps near 40°, the blizzard of '07 is quickly turning into the flood of '07.
See, I leaned my manners young--when you can't say anything nice, talk about the weather!
Judging by the gunshots in the neighborhood last night (or perhaps it was firecrackers, or a mix of both) the Colts must have won the Super Bowl.
I'm not doing very well on my new resolve to get back to blogging regularly, am I? *sigh*
So when I got home from work last night, munu was down again. It seems some petty islamofascists have targeted My Pet Jawa
It's a group of Turkish Islamist hacker-wannabe's going after The Jawa Report. They can't actually break in, so they've settled for a Distributed Denial of Service attack which takes us offline.
Ordinarily, inability to post or to read my favorite blogs would be a major annoyance. But, under the circumstances, I feel proud to be a Munuvian rather than irritated that I've been inconvenienced.
You can judge us by our enemies....
I watched Underworld:Evolution last night. I didn't enjoy it as much as the first one, but maybe that's because my expectations were too high. The vampires and werewolves were cool, though...
Yesterday's twelve-hour day was a killer. I think I'm getting too old for this! There was so much to do, however, that the day seemed to go by rather quickly. Today is a short day--only 10 hours! Whoo-hoo!
After sleeping about 14 hours yesterday I feel a little better. I'd like to play hooky from work today, but that's not gonna happen--it's inventory day, though, so at least I have something fun to do. It must be my misanthropic personality; I enjoy office busy-work more than the other aspects of my job. I was thinking the other day that if I was just the manager, or just the projectionist, I would enjoy my job a lot more. It makes me crazy sometimes when I have to be in two places at once--if I'm upstairs threading a movie, I can't be downstairs making sure the kids go clean the theaters as they get out, and if I'm downstairs directing traffic, I can't be upstairs making sure the movies start on time.
If only business wasn't so unbearably slow! It always is in the Spring, what with proms and graduations and folks working on their lawns and getting their lake cottages open. It makes the time drag. I'd rather be playing Neopets...
One thing I hate when I read a novel is if the characters have real problems. They can be skiing down an alp escaping a crazed killer, or trying to figure out who poisoned the librarian with curare, and that's fine. But if they are struggling to make their house payments, or being sued by a guy who fell down their porch steps, or audited by the IRS, those things are all within the realm of the possible for your average person, and they bother me because they are "real" problems, and I have enough problems of my own without worrying about somebody else's, even if they are a fictional character.
If I wanted my anxiety levels raised I would stop taking my medicine.
What brought this up was a book I just started, Solomon vs. Lord. I enjoyed the first few chapters because of the witty repartee. But all of a sudden, there's the anxiety-producing dilemma: Solomon has a nephew he wants legal custody of, and the state's child welfare juggernaut has not only traumatized the child but appears to be actively malevolent in its actions. This is a "real" problem--government bureaucrats who think they have the right to control everyone else's lives--and it wrecks the whole "I read to escape" thing...
Some days, I think I'm a Libertarian at heart.
I've been reading Randy Wayne White's Doc Ford books. I like them, except that, like a lot of adventure novel heroes, Doc's something of a whore. Every book he's got a new main squeeze, sometimes because the last one got killed. He has started to remind me of Dirk Pitt in that respect, which is too bad, really--some time I'd like to read about an adventure hero who isn't afraid to commit...
I have to leave for work in twenty minutes, and I'm still sitting here at my keyboard in my nightie drinking coffee and trying to think of something to blog about. Guess I'm going to be late to work.
I buy most of my books from Amazon.com. They have good prices and fast shipping. Sometimes they will email me about a book I have purchased, requesting a customer review for their website. That's pretty cool.
There's a problem, though. They usually send the request about 3 or 4 weeks after I've gotten the book. That means I've read between 10 and 20 other books since I read the one they're interested in, and I really can't remember it well enough to review anymore!
Every silver lining has a cloud...
I broke down and read Matthew Reilly's Contest yesterday. It's kind of a cross between The Relic and The Running Man so it would probably make a good movie. The best thing about, though, was it didn't have that annoying over-use of exclamation marks that his other books seem to suffer.
Now I have to go to work. Oh, joy...
Usually I am disappointed when they make a movie from a book. It doesn't matter whether I see the movie before or after the book; usually I think the book was better. Sometimes I think they did a good job on the movie (Airport and Jurassic Park come to mind) considering all the sub-plots they always have to cut out, but I still prefer the book.
That's not the case with Sahara. The movie was so much fun that I decided to give the book a try, despite the fact that I had read other Clive Cussler books and wondered what drugs he was on (what's with the always setting the book a few years in the future? The US did not switch to the metric system in 1997!)
It took me a couple of days to finish it, which is unusual in that I can usually read a book in a day--but I had to keep putting it down and do something else for awhile before I could continue reading it.
I am in awe at the screenwriters. It must have taken them months to make some kind of sense out of the plot. They had to twist it, edit it, run it back-wards, add characters and turn it upside down, but they got it to work as a movie--and as a better story than what they started out with.
Here are just a few of the things they changed:
In the book, the search for the Texas was accidental and the real reason the NUMA boys went up the Niger was to find the cause for the red tide.
In the book, Eva and her fellow scientists (not doctors) are sent to work as slaves in a secret gold mine, and Dirk and Al escape from the gold mine in order to ensure their rescue.
In the book, people who drink the toxic water go insane and become cannibals.
In the book, there are no rebel fighters, so the climatic battle scene takes place at an abandoned French Foreign Legion fort between thousands of Malian soldiers and a handful of elite United Nations Special Forces (who rescued the slaves from the gold mine) who barely manage to hold out until Al brings Delta Force to save the day.
In the book, the poor of Mali got the gold mine profits, because the Texas had already been looted when it was found.
Overall, the movie just made more sense (in an action-movie-suspend-disbelief kind of way), especially in some little things they changed, like making Dirk and Al former SEALS (instead of former Air Force pilots) and Dirk first meeting Eva in Nigeria (instead of Egypt). And I'm really grateful they deleted the part where boys met an old American prospector in the Sahara desert--a prospector named Clive Cussler! How stupid was that?!?
For me, though, the best thing about the movie was that Matthew McConaughey made Dirk Pitt a likeable action hero. If I imagine Matt's voice when Dirk talks in the books, I can just about stand to read them...
**an elaboration on my previous post
* I may elaborate some time, if I feel chatty....
I've read everything I haven't read that I feel like reading, so I'm re-reading books I have read already. You loose something in the suspense department that way, but at least you know ahead of time that you'll enjoy it....
Yesterday I had an adventure.
In olden times, the county jury pool was drawn from registered voters, and although I have been continuously registered to vote since I was 18 years old (um--for five years, yeah, that's the ticket) I had never been summoned. Recently they changed to using the Driver's License and State ID data base, and voilà! I was called to jury duty.
Luckily (?) the summons was for my day off. Unfortunately, I did have to close the night before, so there was a lack-of-sleep issue with my arising (and ingesting enough coffee to be able to drive) in order to be at the courthouse by (gasp!) 8:30 am. Jurors are paid $15.00 to show up, or $40.00 a day if chosen to sit on the jury. Parking is not reimbursed.
I don't go downtown very much, so I parked in the garage closest to the Courthouse that I was most familiar with. Unfortunately, it was the City/County parking garage, and so had been "improved" since the last time I had been there--about forty of the parking places nearest to the exit had been designated no parking areas, and the remaining places on the ground floor were now so narrow that I had a hard time squeezing my 1988 Mercy Tracer into one. Additionally, the parking attendants had been replaced with a reverse ATM machine (more on that later). I had to walk about a block to get out of the garage, and then another block and a half to get to the Courthouse. Then I had to go around the side of the building, because the entrance had been moved.
I finally made it though the metal detectors and found the jury assembly area, where I was treated to a short film about the judicial system that had been written expressly for people who have lived in a cave in Borneo their entire lives. Seriously, is there any American citizen who does not know we have trial by jury with a judge, lawyers, and a bailiff? If so, then there's a movie made specifically for you! There were about fifty of us riveted by this exciting cinematic experience--which we had to endure without popcorn!
After the movie, we were given a ten minute break, and informed that the bailiff would be along shortly to take us upstairs to the courtroom. An hour later, we were given another break, and told that any minute now we would be called upstairs. Forty minutes after that, the bailiff showed up, took roll call, rounded up a few strays who had wandered off, and led us up the marble staircases to the third floor where he cut out twelve of our number to be first in the hot seat. The rest of us filed into the bride's side of the gallery (the groom's side had the case's witnesses and police officers).
The judge talked. The prosecutor talked. The defense attorney talked. The judge asked the jurors questions. The prosecutor asked the jurors questions. The defense attorney asked the jurors questions. After awhile I spaced out, and spent a lot of time admiring the scenery*. Then I admired the decor, which was cool--1900ish with ornate columns and gold bas reliefs of justice and a stained glass dome overhead.
Five jurors were dismissed with no dramatic music whatsoever, and five more randomly chosen to take their places. Rinse. Repeat. By the time 12 persons good and true had been chosen, there were only a dozen of us left in the gallery.
I never made it to the jury box, but that's probably just as well since the case was an armed robbery of a small business, and being a retail manager I would have been naturally sympathetic to the victims. Plus, frankly, I would've been far more likely to believe the testimony of the police officers (who were really cute) than to discount it.
It was close to 1 o'clock by the time I got back to the parking garage to pay for my parking. I was a little shocked to learn that my tab for a little over 4 hours was a whopping $6.00, but I proceeded to feed ones into the designated bill slot.
It didn't like my bills. It kept spitting them back out at me. Fortunately, the reverse ATM also took change--not my change, of course. I can understand the machine not liking a particularly crumpled or dirty bill, but it kept rejecting my quarters!!!! Finally I managed to scrape together enough currency and coins to satisfy the beast, and it released my paid voucher. I apologized to the line that had formed behind me, and trekked off to my car.
It's a darn good thing that I wasn't chosen as a juror, because I only had about $3.00 left, none of which the machine would accept anyway, and God only knows how much it would have cost me to park had I been forced to stay another 4 or 5 hours for the trial....
The good news is, I have fulfilled my obligation for two years. And if I get called again, I'll probably take a taxi. I think that would be cheaper in the long run....
*the police officers--unfortunately, there was nary a fireman to behold
First, I had the flu. Then it metamorphosed into a chest-thing (bronchitis?) and my doctor prescribed antibiotics, steroids and an inhalant. The meds each have a side-effect that, combined, make me wonder if being able to breath is really all that important after all...
On the other hand, at least I don't have to sit down at the top of the stairs and rest for five minutes to get my breath back before I start threading a projector anymore, so maybe the jitters, sleeplessness and frequent trips to the powder room are worth just to keep getting a paycheck.
Life's full of trade-offs.
... that bugged me about King Kong--if it was cold enough for a pond to be frozen hard enough to hold Kong's weight, why wasn't Ann even shivering in her sleeveless evening gown--especially when standing on top of the tallest building in the world?
Double standards--gotta love 'em! They provide so much interesting blog-fodder! And, via the blog-fadda (aka Evil Glenn) I have been reading about the Great Danish Cartoon Controversy. I particularly enjoy the way the major networks are so "sensitive" to delicate Muslim sensibilities that they refuse to air the offending cartoons--allowing their viewers to imagine how horrific the images must be, to incite all those riots and bombings.
You know, I don't think a day goes by when something doesn't offend me. For example, I am offended by the stupidity of the governor of Indiana who, in an effort to reduce abortions, has cut funding for low cost birth control. Silly me, I thought that only far-left wackos considered killing babies to be just another way of preventing pregnancy. Because, you know, eliminating free birth control pills for low-income women is going to stop people from having sex. And, of course, unprotected sex never leads to unwanted pregnancy. Certainly unwanted pregnancy has nothing to do with rates of abortion. Not to mention that increasing the number of unwanted pregnancies among women who cannot afford to raise a child anyway, and who will end up dependent on a large number of Welfare & Assistance Programs, is also a really intelligent way to be fiscally responsible.
Let's recap, shall we? In order to reduce the number of abortions and use the money for something more worthwhile, Indiana no longer funds free birth control for low income women. I anxiously await Governor Daniels' next brilliant idea, which I expect to be along the line of reducing the number of speeding tickets issued in school zones (by raising the speed limit), or stopping underage drinking (by lowering the legal drinking age to 10). I am offended that a fellow Republican can't seem to strike a spark of intelligence by rubbing two thoughts together, but rather than point out the flaws in his logic, I am going to riot and burn a few embassies, since that's what the Religion of Peace apparently believes to be the correct response, and who am I to argue?
You know what else offends me? The Energizer Bunny. It's PINK!
I guess it's kind of like when an actor gets famous, and you suddenly notice them playing bit parts in old movies you're re-watching.
Speaking of movies, I finally got to see Four Brothers. I thought it was excellent. I also watched Doom, which was pretty much your standard kill-aliens-in-the-space station movie until near the end, when they did the "first person shooter" sequence, which was awesome.
Well, I need more coffee before heading into work to do the weekly inventory. And since it's payday, cross your fingers for me that my paycheck doesn't bounce again this week...
Don't you hate it when you wake up feeling like you have a hangover, but you weren't drinking the night before? It probably means you're coming down with something, and hopefully it's just a Cold and not Bird Flu or Pink Eye or Leprosy. Or maybe you feel that way because you wish you'd been drinking, since it's Pay Day today, and you aren't really that much of a gambler anymore, and lately your bank account has seemed to become intimately acquainted with the numbers on the lower side of zero when the point of having a job is to keep those numbers on the higher side whenever possible. The Company giveth and the Company taketh away, with increasingly alarming frequency.
Did I mention that on Wednesday we got a giant candy machine kiosk? It dispenses Skittles™ and M&Ms™ and other small, roundish confections for a quarter a "handful" (if your hand is the size of a two-year-old's). Now we can compete with ourselves.
This is post #1600. It calls for some kind of drum roll or commemorative post, but it's been a very strange day. Maybe tomorrow will be normaler...
I just finished Terry Pratchett's Small Gods, and it's the best I've read so far. He's the only writer I've ever read who can skewer politics, religion, and philosophy in once sentence. I'm very grateful I gave that book to myself for my birthday....
Have I mentioned I've been reading Terry Pratchett's Discworld series? The books are hilarious.
I always love it when I find a new author I like that already has 30 or so books under his (or her) belt, because it gives me something to read while waiting for the next Robert B. Parker novel. That's the downside of being able to read a book in a day or two--novels never seem to get published as fast as I can read them.
After closing Saturday I opened Sunday. Ordinarily, I work the whole of Sunday, but since we were showing the late shows last night, I got off at six and was in bed asleep by 7:30. I woke up around 5 am, then went back to bed at 8am and just now got up. I think 14 1/2 hours of sleep is a new record for me.
Yeah, I needed it.
School's back in session today...Yay!!!!
I had a terrific Christmas. My sixteen-month-old niece Megan was the entertainment portion of the event--one of my sisters gave her a doll stroller, and we all watched her push her "baby" around the house in it.
I guess you had to be there.
Driving was hairy on the way home and later to work, with an alternating mix of rain, snow and sleet making the trips stressful, but I just mentally replayed Megan's delight in her new toy, and and was full of Christmas Spirit. Even the fact that I had to stay until midnight for only six customers didn't make me as grumpy as it usually did.
One of my gifts was the PC game "Icewind Dale," so if you don't hear from me for awhile I'm probably role-playing!
The internet news headlines today say that "Saddam Claims Americans Beat, Tortured him".
The Great and Powerful Pixy Misa has fixed the trackbacks! Yay!
Too bad I don't feel like pingstorming today....
I really think it's well past time that the Arab world got serious about fanatical Muslim homicide bombers, and I believe the best way to counter the claims of the terrorist brain-washers (who promise "Paradise" for "martyrs") is by publicly and ostentatiously disposing of the bombers' remains in vats of pig's blood. Seriously--if there's enough left to do DNA tests on, there's enough left to dunk in Porky's plasma....
So I'm reading an action/adventure novel about a lost civilization underneath the Antarctic, and, like most of the genre, it requires a suspension of disbelief. That's fine. But then two minor characters get introduced. They're Navy SEALS. That's cool. Only, they both hold the rank of Major.
I can accept a lot of unlikely plot twists in this kind of book. But that kind of screw-up is as unforgivable as a character putting a new clip in his revolver.
It's Sunday, my long day at work, and I couldn't fall asleep until the birds starting their daily serenade. I hate that.
Thanks to Beth, I realize that Hurricane Katrina was a racist--she picked a predominately black area of the country to wipe out.
I'm just waiting for the lunatic fringe to claim that Katrina used to date President Bush...
Most of the folks I talk to suspect that the mayor of New Orleans and the Governor of Louisiana should rank ahead of the President and FEMA when blame for the mess in The Big Easy is assessed. There were two notable exceptions; one from a professionally unemployed couple (whose entire income is derived from disability benefits, food stamps and other welfare programs) who think the President and only the President is at fault, and the other one an employee of mine, who, when asked for specifics of the President's failures replied "I just hate him."
I think this is a microcosm of the criticism of the President that we're hearing--most of it is from people who think the government owes them a living, or who suffer from Bush Derangement Syndrome.
The man-made disaster we are now witnessing in New Orleans did not happen over four days last week. It happened over the past four decades. Hurricane Katrina merely exposed it to public view.
The man-made disaster is the welfare state.
Unfortunately, I am sure some people who read Robert Tracinski's opinion will cry "racism!" even though not a word about race, color or creed is mentioned in his article. That is because we have been taught--by the media and Black Activists--to associate poverty and crime and welfare with "urban Americans," and if there is no association implied or intended, they will find one.
The "professionally unemployed" couple I mentioned above? My "white" sister and brother-in-law.
My middle-class neighbors in my middle-class neighborhood are "black", "brown", "yellow" and "white." There is a Halal grocery a block from my house. At my work we serve African-Americans, Asian-Americans, Hispanic-Americans, Arab-Americans and European-Americans, including families that are comprised of various combinations of those ethnic origins. I have no doubt that some of our customers are welfare recipients, but I couldn't tell you which ones by looking at at them, whatever their color or ethnic origins.
I bring this up only to point out that not all poor people are black, and not all black people are poor, despite what television news would have you believe. Those who are convinced that it is the government's responsibility to provide for them, like my sister, have little inclination to help themselves, and no experience either.
I firmly believe that Mayor Nagin is at least partly responsible for his city's failure to evacuate those citizens who wanted to evacuate, and for the failure to force those who refused, and Governor Blanco was negligent as well. I myself was once a flood "refugee" due to a mandatory evacuation order by the mayor of my city. Police officers and firefighters moved door to door ensuring that everyone had gotten the word and was complying. It was several days before we were allowed to return. We were lucky--the dike held in my neighborhood, thanks to hundreds of volunteers who sandbagged under the direction of the Army Corps of Engineers, and my family returned to a water-logged basement but otherwise intact house. Other parts of my city weren't as fortunate, but there were no riots, looting or gunfights--everyone was too busy trying to save their homes...
Sometimes, the Protestant Work Ethic is a good thing...
Well, I popped a few more rentals into the DVD player yesterday. Watched Hide and Seek, Cursed and Blade Trinity. The suspense movie was scarier than the werewolf movie or the vampire movie (although the Blade films are really action flicks that just happen to have vampires for the bad guys). Luckily my expectations were low enough that I enjoyed all of them, even Cursed (which is no Dog Soldiers). I was kind of let down by the end of Hide and Seek, though....silly me, for expecting originality from Hollywood, which seems to subsist on remakes and sequels...and the beginning of Cursed was so similar to The Lost Boys that for a second I thought I'd popped the wrong DVD into the player. Maybe Wes Craven was doing "an homage". I am going to buy Blade 3, though--not just to round out my collection, but because Ryan Reynolds makes a great wise-cracking vampire hunter, and I could
admire his abs re-watch the action scenes a few more times.
Today is the start of my work week, and the way things have been going I needed to indulge in a little extracurricular mayhem so I don't go postal. I hate it when the higher ups decree a new policy that I think it stupid. How can I get my employees' buy in, when my boss hasn't gotten mine? Unfortunately, when we start to lose customers, I'm sure it will be considered my fault....
I wonder if I have time to watch From Dusk til Dawn before I go into work?
...lots of dead, dying, and dismembered people when I watched Sin City last night. I'm actually grateful it was in black and white, other wise I think it would've been too gory to handle.
Mickey Roarke's acting amazed me. I haven't seen him play anything but a washed-up gangster in years, and his character of Marv was totally cool (for a berserker). I actually rented it for Bruce Willis, but his story was the one I liked the least of the three. Don't know why. I guess I would've rather he'd gone after Powers Boothe's character at the end.
I think this is one of those movies you're going to either love or hate. Me, I may just have to buy this one...
(also posted at Impractical Penumbra)
Today was my first day off in weeks where I didn't have something scheduled, so I pretty much lazed around the whole day in my jammies, reading and avoiding the chores that have been piling up. It was wonderful.
According to the news, a Denver city ordinance which goes against Colorado state law has been upheld by the state court.
The city sued the state in May 2004, arguing the law violated Denver's home rule, and in April a judge ruled for Denver, allowing the ban to be enforced.
This is great news! Because if cities can pass laws that are in direct opposition to the laws of their state, what's to prevent states from passing laws that are in opposition to the country's? A state could ban the right for women to vote, or declare federal income tax illegal. A state's "home rule" could require all citizens to own assault weapons, or make espionage legal. The possibilities are endless!
I think I'll start campaigning for Indiana to make school prayer mandatory for all children, and any child who doesn't pray will be sent for "re-education"...
Acceleration: 0 to 10 in 60 seconds (enormous risk of being rear-ended)
Braking: 30 to 0 in 1 seconds (whiplash potential)
Handling: Otherwise excellent
Not recommended for anyone over 5'7"...
For those of you who were awaiting my word on the subject before it was closed: Tom Cruise is an idiot.
Okay, you can go on about your lives now.
Some days I feel like my life is one of those old 70's sitcoms, where everything goes wrong and the studio audience roars with laughter that gets louder with each new disaster.
I got my diploma in the mail yesterday. I guess that makes it official.
They want $20 for a duplicate suitable for framing. I'm thinking I'll just stick this one in the copy machine. It's not like it's really sheepskin.
Actually, that's kinda disappointing...I was hoping that the decorative reminder that I am now 20K in debt would be a little more--decorative, I guess.
Every night on the way home from work I think of Harvey. It always happens when I pass Arby's, where the sign reads "TRY OUR NEW BREAST WRAPS".
Here I am agonizing over "See Spot Run" while he composes the Declaration of Independence. I have Prose Envy. Damn. Just, damn.
The other day I found a ladybug in my salad. It was dead, poor thing. Unfortunately, while I remember what brand of pre-packaged salad it was, I didn't keep the bag, and companies always want their secret code numbers when you lodge a complaint.
Maybe I'll just suggest a new advertising campaign: Now With Added Crunch!
I'm talking about Hollywood, of course. In my work, I see a lot of movies. Ok, I see bits of a lot of movies. Sometimes, if we have employee movie night, or if something sounds good enough to make me go into work on my day off to watch it, I see a whole movie. With sound. Otherwise, I see a few minutes at the beginning focusing it, occasional scenes in the middle when I'm checking the house, and the end. I've seen the end of every movie we've ever shown, waiting to turn up the house lights. The other day I saw Clint Eastwood murder a bed-ridden boxer-chic.
I haven't seen last year's Best Picture winner Million Dollar Baby--and now that I know it's an apology for euthanasia, I'm not going to. "But...but..." I hear some readers sputter. "It's a great movie! He did it because (insert reason here)!"
Watching a movie without sound, the viewer is forced to rely only on what the pictures show: a man inserting a liquid into the IV tube of a hospital patient whose monitors subsequently flat-line. Now, maybe the boxer chic is a serial killer who can never be prosecuted, and Clint is administering vigilante justice. Even so, it's murder. Maybe she's really a terrorist and will start blowing things up as soon as she gets out of the hospital. Still murder. And maybe she is paralyzed from the neck down but doesn't have Christopher Reeve's courage and asked Clint to kill her. It's still murder.
I suppose it's possible that there's a voice-over at the very end, telling us Clint walked into the nearest police station and confessed to the crime, and the reason Morgan Freeman is alone at the gym is because Clint's doing twenty-to-life at Sing Sing. If that's the case, somebody tell me and I'll go watch the whole movie. Otherwise, it's just one more propaganda piece from the kind of people who oppose capital punishment but want to legalize third-trimester abortions and don't see any sort of incongruity in their positions.
Hollywood would probably give a Best Picture to this movie if it were released today...
I love Wendy's new Mediterranean Chicken Salad. I didn't even know I liked feta cheese.
Everyone go read this then come back (For those of you still silly enough to be using IE, I have made the link open in a new window; those of you with real browsers can just open it in a new tab).
While I cannot dispute his words of advice (especially since some of my employees have worked at Meijer and at Wal-mart, so I've heard the stories), I think that things at the theater are pretty much the opposite of Aris's list. Let me take them point-by-point...
Don't ever let management see that you are having a good time.
I prefer that the kids enjoy what they are doing. Having fun is probably the only compensation they get for putting up with all the crap that customers dish out. Once all the patrons have been attended to and everything is clean and stocked, it's play time! ( see paragraph four). We have had hacky-sack tournaments in the lobby, not to mention the Great Bicycle Race and the Euchre Tournament. However, I will admit that I do find things for employees to clean, but only if I catch them leaning on the counters or sitting on the lobby benches looking bored or pensive. Brooding will get you a bottle of window cleaner in one hand and a roll of paper towels in the other!
Never expect your break on time.
At the theater, business comes in tidal waves. There are no set breaks, but between shows the clerks can go get ice cream, run home for a snack, do their homework, go out for a cigarette,* whatever--as long as I know where they are, and that they'll be back in time for the next set, they can have as many breaks as they want. If their errand takes less than five minutes, I don't even make them clock out.
Don't work any harder than you have to to keep from getting fired.
Believe it or not, I can tell when employees have this attitude. Sometimes I fire them. Usually I just give the most hours to the hardest workers, and when the slackers get tired of $15 paychecks while everyone else is getting $75 or $100, they either shape up or quit. Yes, the reward for hard work is more work. I am an evil capitalist oppressor!
Never date a co-worker.
While this is probably a good idea in general, I only have one rule about this--no smooching, groping, or hugging while in uniform. I currently have three "couples" among the ranks, and (knocking on virtual wood) the teenage angst levels are at the lowest they have ever been. Of course, when prom weekend rolls around, I'm screwed....
You know, if the owner ever finds out about this, I'll be in for it, since he just doesn't get that happy workers make happy customers. So don't tell him, ok?
*only if they are 18 or older
My dad was the baby of his family--his nearest sibling who survived infancy was a decade older than he, and thus I grew up influenced by relatives who not only lived during the Great Depression but actually remembered it. Nothing went to waste in my aunts' households. There was no such thing as "recycling" because the motto "use it up...wear it out...make it do--or do without" didn't require it.
Their attitudes influenced me. And the fact that I am a pack rat was brought home strongly to me in my blog-wandering today, via a pair of posts from fellow Munuvians Stephen Macklin and S. Faolán Wolf. S. wrote about her (his?) tendency to give away or dispose of excess (and sometimes not-so-excess) clothing and furniture, while Stephen's post about throwing the baby out with the bathwater starting me thinking about how often most people just buy a new whatever when something breaks.
I personally combine the worst of both worlds. When the DVD player on my combination DVD/VCR broke, I got a new one--but I kept the broken one. My preference would have been to have the original one repaired. Unfortunately, the part that needed to be replaced cost more than an entirely new one, and that wasn't even considering the labor estimate. But the original one wasn't "worn out"--the VCR part of the combo still works--so I still have it, taking up valuable closet space, because I was raised to squeeze every last opportunity for usage out of every scrap of aluminum foil and every old, unmatched sock.
While there is a touch of OCD in my tendency to save, oh, the old sound card that came out of my computer when I upgraded, I don't want you to get the impression that my house is a rabbit warren of neatly-folded and ceiling-high piled back-issues of Field & Stream--I'm not that bad...yet. But I do have a surprisingly large collection of pencil stubs, and I cannot bear to throw away a still-functional paperclip. As for clothing, well...tie-dye did come back, didn't it?
Somehow, Earth Day passed by without my participation. I only became aware of that when I stumbled across a few posts offering suggestions on how best to observe it. Citizen Grim over at Right Hand of God had some great suggestions that I'm gonna try and copy next year.
In the meantime, I can rejoice in the fact that the bank my company uses is a responsible corporate citizen--they practice "supplier diversity" as well as supporting "community development." They also instituted a new policy for businesses making deposits, and it was just in time for Earth Day.
Beginning last week, my theater was "encouraged" to change the way we package our deposits for the night drop. The encouragement came in the form of massive service charges if we didn't change. Makes sense--tax the behavior you want to discourage. And so to avoid the expensive penalties, we switched over; now, instead of dropping our deposit every night in zipped cloth bags that we would pick up from the bank every few days to reuse, we now must employ plastic, tamper-evident (must be destroyed to be opened) bags. Since plastic is a petroleum-based product, we are doing our part to use up the planet's scarce resources, and because the bags are single-use, we are contributing to the non-biodegradable refuse clogging our landfills. I'm pretty sure there's some environmental pollution thrown in there, too, in the production of the bags, so it's a trifecta!
I came up with a slogan for them....
5/3 Bank: Doing Our Part For The Environment, One Deposit At A Time
Now that I'm done with school I have a little more time for other stuff, like resuming my Alliance Membership Chairwoman duties. It's been a venture fraught with intrigue and danger, let me tell you! Because as long as I'm trying a new membership roster script to replace the Bear's, I've been prunig the dead wood. Thank goodness it's 50¢ day at work! I could use the recovery time....
...when you sit down at the computer in your nightie to catch up on your blog reading, and when you get up for a ginger ale you realize that all the curtains are open and it's gotten dark outside?
I read the most shocking news headline! "Laws Let Parents Attend Kids' School Events." Outrageous! To think that the government is actually going to permit parents to observe their children in their educational environment! Why, that's a blow to the very foundations of government
Oh. Wait. Some parent wants a law so she can take off from work to watch her kid in the school play.
Headline writers must have an IQ of about 37.
It was my long day at work today; I'm still not well, tired as hell, and I'm headed to bed. Maybe I'll be bloggeriffic tomorrow.....
Well, I was hoping that when I got home from work tonight I would have a winner in the "Be Susie's 4000th Commenter" Contest, but, alas, we are still shy of the magic number. It looks like the lucky winner is going to be the title character in a short story. You guys hate me, don't you?
I'm trying to remain calm about the groundhog's prediction that Spring is not just around the corner.
It's pouring snow here--and we have a flood warning.
Well, I thought I was going to be The Pokey Little Puppy in my accounting class, but since in our first assignment one of the students didn't count labor as an expense and determined profit only by the cost of the goods, and another added labor as a resource instead of subtracting it as an expense, I think I may do okay....
I'm doin' stuff before I go into work, so I don't really have the inclination to blog. Perhaps when I get home tonight...
I now know what people mean when they say a house looks like Christmas threw up on it.
I'm not talking about that house where every available eave, awning, tree and shrub is festooned with blinking multi-colored lights. Nope, the house I saw tonight that clarified that statement for me only had one string of tasteful white lights across the front gutter. Unfortunately, that was not sufficiently festive for this homeowner. The lights were augmented by a least a dozen brightly lit inflated Holiday figures, all crowded into a front lawn about the size of a king-sized comforter. There was an eight-foot tall snowman, giant candy canes, a few reindeer, Santa Claus and at least one elf.
"Oh my God!" I exclaimed aloud to myself, before slowing down to rubber neck and then driving on. Of course, once I started laughing I couldn't stop, and I suspect other drivers who encountered me at traffic lights gave me wide berth. I wish I'd had a camera....
For the next two weeks you may imagine me beginnig every day with Bill Murray's mantra from What About Bob?: "I feel good... I feel great... I feel wonderful..."
Don't forget to imagine the temple-rubbing, either. That's an important part of the ritual....
I can't believe it's almost December--where the heck did the year go? Although I would have preferred to spend it on a lush tropical isle with scantily-clad cabana boys at my beck and call (Raoul--another Mai Tai! Roberto, my left
breast shoulder needs more sunscreen!), it certainly could have been a worse year than it was. The fact that the loony left and Hollywood half-wits are going to be out of power for at least four more years is enough to make it a banner year on its own, despite the lack of cabana boys. Now we just need Buck the Marine to mop up the remaining "insurgents" by New Years....
Well, Turkey Day is hurtling toward us, and since today is my only day off this week (yes, I will be working on Thanksgiving) I thought I would make a list of things for which I am thankful.
~I'm thankful that I have a large, wonderful, funny, generous, normal Dysfunctional American family.
~I'm thankful that I have a job that, when it isn't making me suicidal, is actually kind of fun.
~I'm thankful I have a car that runs and a roof over my head.
~I'm thankful that I discovered blogging as a creative outlet because it's a lot cheaper than psychotherapy.
~I'm thankful for the Master of Munuvia, the amazingly brilliant yet incredibly unselfish Pixy Misa, who rescued me from the Slough of Despond (aka Blogger).
~I'm thankful for the thoughtful insights of Frank J.
~I'm thankful for the Zen-like innuendo and amoral rectitude of Harvey.
~I'm thankful for the inspiration from dozens of other bloggers too numerous to link. (They're all in my blogroll anyway).
~I'm thankful the Pilgrims served turkey and not raccoon.
~I am profoundly thankful to be an American.
I'm really sick of the press trying to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory. In the interest of "balance" they scramble to find anything remotely negative they can slip into the middle of a usually unrelated story.
Vivacious internet "blogger" --short for "Web logger"-- Susie announced today that she has the day off from work, and intends to finish a 3 to 5 page paper due tomorrow for her Business Technology class.
Fourteen years ago, Susie allegedly voted for a Republican congressman in the off-year election. Critics claim this is part of a larger trend toward Republican voting that puts her at odds with the higher education establishment, casting doubts on her ability to attain her Master's degree without compromising her political stance.
Contacted for comment, her first grade teacher, Mrs. Smith, was discovered to have passed away last year at the age of 75. Smith's surviving children denied all knowledge of the student in question. Susie has not been questioned by police in the teacher's death.
This is Susie's second-to-last class for her Master's degree.
Hey, look! I can be a "balanced" reporter, too!
I've noticed that there are basically three different ways mystery writers deliver their story. One is to give the readers information that the detective doesn't have. Another is to keep information from the reader so the detective can go 'ta da!'. And the third is equal revelation--the reader finds out as the detective finds out. I like the second one the least.
France has acted unilaterally to attack the Ivory Coast. Don't they need a world mandate to protect themselves? Shouldn't the U.N.'s approval have been sought before France began this racist genocide? Jacques-strap Chirac is Hitler!
No blood for cocoa!
Too much time, too little to say....
Kerry should just suck it up and concede already. Sheesh, what crybabies those liberals are!
Meanwhile, I hope somebody's keeping track of those extra 400,000 ballots Milwaukee got, and that the federal government investigates Chicago's disenfranchisement of registered Republicans. I honestly don't think that the election was as close as it seems, because if you purged all the dead who miraculously voted in strong Democratic areas, and required a picture ID with correct address to reduce voter fraud, the President's true margin of victory would be much greater....
Well, I just got back from doing my civic duty, and I guess I was wrong about the low voter turnout. I had to wait 35 minutes, but that was partly due to a bus load of Seniors from a nearby retirement home having arrived shortly before I did. They may take only the allotted two minutes in the booth, but there's no time limit on how long it takes them to get into and out of it. By the time I got my turn it was moving a little more briskly, so I figure the folks behind me probably only had a 15 minute wait.
On the way out I had a cigarette with a Kerry voter who was on her way in. We agreed that we both want a decisive victory one way or the other, with none of those Florida shenanigans.
Now, the waiting begins....
It seems Osama Bin Laden has released a new tape endorsing John Kerry. Looks like I'm going to have to change my vote--not!
UPDATE: I just realized that this is doubtless another of Karl Rove's plots to undermine Democracy! Osama is secretly in American custody, and was forced to read that speech by his American oppressors in order to swing the election to Bush. That tricksy Rove!
I guess it's a good thing I have beal, otherwise I might be kind of frustrated that munu's been down and I couldn't blog all day.
Rumor has it that the server was invaded by rabid chipmunks, although reliable sources have reported that static electricity from John Edwards' hair was the real culprit. More as it becomes available....
A while back our newspaper reprinted an article from the Los Angeles Times. The headline was "Conservatives 'Team' up against puppet show." The article, a little pre-release publicity for "Team America," stated that conservative commentators, including "conservative internet gossip columnist Matt Drudge," have begun "lining up to denounce Team America:World Police..."
You see how it is? Conservatives condemn a movie before they've even seen it! I wonder if the Los Angeles times will run an update now that liberals are "condemning" it? I'm sure it will point out that conservatives have "flip-flopped" on this "issue"...
This is very interesting. Summary for those too lazy to click: John Kerry's Navy discharge papers are dated February 16, 1978, when his committment should have terminated in 1972.
Mr. Carter's first act as president was a general amnesty for draft dodgers and other war protesters. Less than an hour after his inauguration on January 21, 1977, while still in the Capitol building, Mr. Carter signed Executive Order 4483 empowering it. By the time it became a directive from the Defense Department in March 1977 it had been expanded to include other offenders who may have had general, bad conduct, dishonorable discharges, and any other discharge or sentence with negative effect on military records. In those cases the directive outlined a procedure for appeal on a case by case basis before a board of officers. A satisfactory appeal would result in an improvement of discharge status or an honorable discharge.
There are a number of categories of discharges besides honorable. There are general discharges, medical discharges, bad conduct discharges, as well as other than honorable and dishonorable discharges. There is one odd coincidence that gives some weight to the possibility that Mr. Kerry was dishonorably discharged. Mr. Kerry has claimed that he lost his medal certificates and that is why he asked that they be reissued. But when a dishonorable discharge is issued, all pay benefits, and allowances, and all medals and honors are revoked as well. And five months after Mr. Kerry joined the U.S. Senate in 1985, on one single day, June 4, all of Mr. Kerry's medals were reissued.
Perhaps that explains why "Mr. Kerry has repeatedly refused to sign Standard Form 180, which would allow the release of all his military records."
The Puppy Blender pointed me to this story.
He said so at least thirteen times during tonight's town hall debate. Of course, he never said what it was, except that it was better than the President's. I guess we're supposed to take his word on that. He also knows a lot more famous people than the President does, and he even told us their names--all their names. Now that I know Senator Kerry knows Michael J. Fox and Superman, all my doubts about his ability to act as our Commander-in-Chief have been laid to rest---not!
(Do you think he's over-due for his botox booster? He looked really droopy tonight).
I noticed that the Senator has added some sites to his dance card (remember him to Treblinka Square!)--he went to the Security Council and he was in Kyoto. No word yet on whether either of these trips were imaginary, like Christmas in Cambodia....
I also would have liked to ask Mr. Kerry to explain some of the statistics he tossed out, such as that in Missouri there are 62,000 people without health insurance, but 96,000 Missourians have lost their insurance under the President. ? I repeat: ?
He also said there would be no draft, but he was going to increase our military by 40,000. Maybe with this?
Oh, well--at least he has a plan!
Well, that was refreshing! I really enjoyed seeing Dick Cheney mop the floor with John Edwards! Of course, the online polls have already been skewed by Terry McAuliffe's storm troops, but those of us who watched the debate know the truth. Edwards looked like a spoiled twelve year old, smirking in embarassment because his folks found out he'd lied about who put the frog in his sister's bra.
In a way, it was sad that Pretty Boy Edwards was so out-classed by the V.P. that all he could do was parrot, verbatim, Kerry's talking points from the last debate. That and say "We have a plan" every five minutes. No wonder there's only one Vice Presidential debate--darn it! Edwards was like a featherweight thrust into the ring with the Heavyweight Champ, and I could watch Cheney hammer Pretty Boy again and again.
Unfortunately, I have to work during the next two debates. But this was a keeper, folks. Into the history books it goes: Cheney with a K.O.
I don't watch tv. I suppose if I had cable it would be different, but the point is that I get my news, sports and weather from the internet. I form my opinions based on my research of topics that interest me, not what someone else tells me it is important to have an opinion on. Stem cell research? no opinion. Nanotechnology? no opinion. John F Kerry? a liberal in moderate's clothing who can't recall where he's supposed to stand on any issue for longer than a day. Not the kind of guy I want in the White House.
Then I read Unfit for Command. And one thing struck me harder than any of the stories about his "combat" or his later testimony against the war.
Yes, John F Kerry is honored by the Vietnamese Communists for helping them win the Vietnam war.
I don't know about you, but this just makes me feel ill. Maybe the electorate should start caring about what happened 30 years ago--starting with what Kerry really did and didn't do during his four months in Vietnam...
It's October? October???? I must work too much.
I have a paper due tomorrow. I plan to watch the debate tonight. One of my sisters needs help packing her china because her family is moving to a new house. There's an ice cream social I'm supposed to go to this evening. I emailed my CBS affiliate that I am unhappy with their network, but haven't heard back yet. I need to go buy batteries because the tv remote died.
My life is just way too exciting. I think I'll go take a nap....
...regarding the Palestinians kidnapping a CNN producer:
A statement on the Hamas Web site called for Ali's release, saying that journalists "are playing an important role to help the Palestinian cause."
No media bias, nope, not at all...move along, nothing to see here....
I have blogger's block. It's not as bad as beal, thank goodness. Beal is way more apathetic, for one thing. I want to blog, I just can't seem to find a topic I feel like discussing.
Hmmm....maybe it is beal....
Got a comment on an old post today:
As one of the persons you choose to single out and post my comments here, let me say this, now 10 months later. It has been determined that there absolutely were no WMDs. It has been proven there is NO al-qaeda link. Bush's invasion has provided a spawning ground now for new terrorists to unite and train. Republicans are now turning on Bush's decision to go in. The 12 yr old mass murders were all financed and approved by the US 1029 US men have been killed, 7000+ maimed. For WHAT? To get rid of an impotent dictator? It is people like you, who have the blood of our men and 10,000+ Iraqi women and children on your hands! You would back this War mongering President no matter what comes out of this. MAY YOU HAVE THE GRACE TO FEEL SHAME !
Posted by: Pam Bergren at September 21, 2004 09:37 AM
My response would basically be "Someone's been watching too much Dan Rather," except for one little gem she tried to slip in under the radar. Can you spot it, there in the middle? I know, your eyes glazed over before you got that far. Let me help:
The 12 yr old mass murders were all financed and approved by the US
That's a new one to me. I wonder how they got it past the Budget Office. Miscellaneous Expenses, perhaps?
Another point you may have missed is where she calls Saddam "an impotent dictator." Does this mean that the folks at the DU keep track of the sexual potency of all the world's leaders? I wish I'd known sooner--I could have forwarded him all that V1agra spam I've been getting for years!
Sorry, Pam, no shame from me--not as long as the checks from the VRWC keep rolling in....
UPDATE: Thanks to Jacqui for this link which debunks two of Pam's assertions...However, I suspect Pam wants to believe
The Queen of the Space Unicorns Dan Rather, and no amount of factual information will change the way she "feels"...
The problem is, they don't seem accept--or are unwilling to admit--that what really misled them was the political partisanship of Mary Mapes and Dan Rather. They wanted the story to be true so badly that they dismissed the doubts of the experts they consulted and built their house of cards on a slinky. One tap and it's been downhill ever since.
So much for journalistic integrity.
I've said it before, and now I'm saying it again. The problem with the health care system in the US in not that some people don't have health insurance, but that too many people do--it insulates the entire medical industry from the market forces that come to bear on every other business.
For example, yesterday I decided to get a haircut. I called a local salon to make an appointment, and asked what they charged. The amount seemed reasonable to me, so I went ahead and booked an appointment. Had the price seemed outlandish, I could have called another salon, or decided to skip it.
Regular readers know I was sick a few days ago. Well, it happened that my stomache pain was so bad over the weekend that I went to the emergency room. After the usual indignities, I was told it could be an ulcer, my gallbladder, or a virus. They sent me home with a prescription for Protonix ($33 for 7 pills!) and instructions to book a gallbladder ultrasound.
Beginning early Monday morning, I attempted to get someone--anyone--to tell me how much this procedure was going to cost. Booking transferred me to patient accounting. Patient accounting took my name and number and said they'd call me back. When I hadn't heard from them by the next day, I called again and was informed that it takes 24 to 48 hours for a price quote.
"There are variables," I was told. "Variables? What kind of variables?" I wondered. "Well, variables!" was the response. I pointed out that if I were to call and ask Jiffy Lube the cost of an oil change, they would have a price for me immediately. "But I can't just give you a price when there are variables!" she insisted.
My cynical sister believes that the "variables" are how much your insurance is willing to pay. Since I don't have insurance, that probably needed to be taken into account as well.
Eventually they called me back with a price--equal to one week's gross pay, not including the charges from the radiologist who reads the results. Since my stomach is now back to normal, I have decide to skip the ultrasound for now--especially since that same sister pointed out that ultrasounds don't detect sludge in the gallbladder, just gallstones, and sludge has been the culprit in the gallbladder problems of three of my siblings....
I think health insurance should be done away with, certainly for routine office visits and medicines. As long as consumers are insulated from the real costs, the medical community can charge what they want with impunity, not unlike AT&T shifting local telephone costs to long distance customers before the break-up. There should be no such thing as secret prices, or "variables," with health care costs....
Now I get to sit back and wait for the ER visit bills to trickle in....
As interesting as following the adventures of the Queen of the Space Unicorns has been, it's gotten to the Networkesque point where people are tuning in to CBS just to watch
Howard Beale Dan Rather spiral into psychosis on the evening news. Life imitates art. Again.
Well everybody's all over Dan Rather and the forged documents, and I think someone needs to come to the defense of the lowly typewriter. Mono fonts, manually set margins, a straight apostrophe--those were the good old days! When I wrote my college term papers, I could make the margins as wide or as narrow as I wanted (depending on how many pages the paper had to be, and how much space I need to waste)! And there were only two fonts available to me--pica and elite. Bigger and littler. And I had to use two different typewriters to get them! Plus, if I wanted superscript for footnotes, I just turned the carriage a little to get it. Now it takes a degree in rocket science to figure out how to format a paper in Word. I still can't figure out how to do footnotes. Lucky for me my papers use the APA format, which includes the citations in parentheses in the text.
I miss my typewriter. It even had correction tape!
Don't you hate it when your work-week starts without there having been a day or two off to set it apart from the previous work-week? Me too.
I got an email from my brother this morning--he wrote:
I found your blog-page at random. Therefore, please update my Netflix account information and register me for the Pimp My Ride MTV show.
He cracks me up....
For my last birthday, one of my nieces gave me a book. It was by an individual of whom I had heard, but never read, and so it had sat in my reading pile for six months or so, until I had read just about everything I have to hand, and I picked it up last evening.
Oh. my. God.
The first page alone was pretty bad, but I forced myself to plow through the entire first chapter before slamming it shut in disbelief.
I guess I just don't get it. I really think there should have been a disclaimer on the cover: Abandon all logic, ye who enter here. It was like reading a book based entirely on the premise that space aliens are sending spam emails to seduce earth women, and everyone knows it, but some people just aren't ready to admit it. It was like reading a nutritional guide based on the assumption that purple cows give purple milk--all humans know this to be true, after all, so no empirical proof is necessary of the purpleness of some cows and all of their milk--we'll just start right in on how bad purple milk is and how anyone who drinks it is just evil....purple cows are apparently so logical and so pervasive to this author that he doesn't even bother to include a picture for those of us who doubt the existence of purple cows; just because we can't see that our cereal has purple milk on it doesn't mean he's wrong--it means we are silly to just not accept it when he says the milk is purple (because everyone else knows it) and go from there.
Since I do not accept that premise, and I refuse to accept it, and I fail to understand how anyone sentient could write an entire book based on that premise, I find it rather scary...imagine finding an actual published work grounded entirely in the belief that purple cows exist and roam freely on our plains--in the non-fiction section of your favorite bookseller.
Only the premise that this book seems to be based on is that the United States of America is EVIL...evil to the core!
It is called Hegemony or Survival and its author is Noam Chomsky.
I had heard of Chomsky, of course--usually unflattering things, given the circles I frequent, but I had no real opinion of my own until I attempted to read his
babbling book. This book is the Weekly World News for the liberal elite. "Did you see that Bat Boy married Britney Spears?" they ask each other earnestly. Only their version must be "Did you see that Bush is going to bring an end to the world by blocking UN efforts to ban the militarizaton of space?" If it was in the Weekly World News/latest Chomsky book, it must be true....This book was written for people who think the Day After Tomorrow is a documentary showing the future.
My beloved Pixy Misa is writing a treatise on philosophy, and he hasn't gotten to Chomsky (who is, frighteningly, a professor of philosophy at MIT) yet, but so far I would think Chomsky suffers from Berkeley's Demon:
This was Berkeley's Demon: He thought that not only was his theory the common understanding of reality, he thought that his case was proven and unassailable.
I think I may write a book. I will base it on the premise that everyone knows that wearing socks with sandals is a sign of vampirism....
You all do know that, right? I thought so....
Since Harvey begged so nicely (and offered sexual favors, which was the clincher), here is the short version of Clarke & Hardy's investigation into ties between Michael Moore and Osama bin Laden:
The bin Laden family heavily invests in the Carlyle group...the Carlyle group bailed out Euro Disney, a subsidiary of Disney...which is the parent company of Miramax... which underwrote Farvegnugen 666 (or whatever the fat one's current movie is called). So obviously there is a connection here between Moore and the bin Laden family if you just follow the money....
For the full, unvarnished innuendo you'll have to buy their book.
by David T. Hardy and Jason Clarke was a worthwhile read. It could have been better--a lot of it was repetitive, the same points being made over and over, but that was partly because it included a number of different essays by folks such as Andrew Sullivan and Tim Blair, among others, that covered similar ground. But I did learn a few things about the fat one.
First, he's a liar. Now I know most of my readers won't find that revelation to be shocking. But what's interesting is that he has lied about where he's from. Michael Moore was born and raised and was graduated from high school in Davison, Michigan--not Flint!! From what I understand, this is similar to someone from Long Island claiming to be from Hell's Kitchen. According to the authors (who, unlike Mikey, provide footnotes citing their sources when making allegations)
While Davison is near Flint, proximity doesn't translate to similarity between the two towns. Davison is the wealthy, white "bedroom town" of the area, largely inhabited by management, not labor. Davison's median household income is one and a half times that of Flint, and its median house value is just over twice that of Flint's. Davison's 2000 unemployment rate was a minuscule 4.6 percent, a third of Flint's, and its poverty rate was half the national average. Davison is also lily-white to a staggering degree: African-Americans make up only one-half of one percent of its population. (p.18)So the Great Spokesman for the little guy, Joe Average, Mr. Blue Collar, is not only a millionaire today, he never had the working-class upbringing in Flint he's been touting all these years.
Next, he seems to suffer from Narcissistic Personality Disorder. I guess this is really no surprise to anyone who has followed Mikey's antics in the press, but the authors present a compelling point-by-point diagnosis that's almost frightening in its accuracy. Mikey is one messed up dude!
And the third interesting thing I learned is that Michael Moore could have ties to Osama bin Laden! Using the same recipe for conspiracy theories that Mikey uses himself, the authors connect the dots between these two celebrities.
Irrefutable proof? Maybe not, but these are questions people should be asking....
I took my car over to get the muffler fixed, and the reason it suddenly got so loud yesterday was the tailpipe fell off. I hope no cars behind me got into an accident swerving to avoid it. Of course, it was probably so rusty they could drive over it and it would collapse into dust.
I'm on 6 to midnight today, and noon to midnight tomorrow, so if I don't blog, don't start worrying about me until Tuesday....
I have no idea why I seem to be under the impression that that blogosphere will fall down go boom if one day passes without my posting.
I think LeeAnn has the truth of it--I just want to see the day's date on the calender change color....
If I were married, we would have to have his-and-hers coffee makers. That's assuming he drank coffee. If he didn't he would have to at least drink beer, or the wedding's off.
I should have known there was a full moon--our ice making machine died. With the new faucet for the mop room, that makes two break-downs. I'm hoping the fact that the roof was leaking again from the rain we had over the weekend completes the trilogy, but I'm not holding my breath....
(Repeat after me: Dear God, don't let the next one be a projector!)
The Bestofme Symphony is up for your reading enjoyment at goldie's. I submitted my beal post, which is rather appropriate since I seem to have school-related beal--I am avoiding my homework already, and it's only the second week of classes!
Why, I wonder, can't they make text books that are interesting? Would that be an oxymoron or something? I shudder to think of the torture this current text must be to someone who doesn't enjoy reading. It's as if the authors went to the Henry James School of Sentence Construction with graduate work at the William F. Buckley Vocabulary-Building Academy. Every sentence is an exercise in convoluted structure enhanced by obfuscatory jargon. I managed to slog through the first chapter and have absolutely no recollection of what I read (yet I can recount the plots and high points of the other four books I've read this week). I forsee a long semester....
Last night's assortment of leftover children numbered seven, but as these were all high-school-aged I mercilessly kicked them out into the cold to wait for their rides. Today is another 11am to midnight for me, after all, and a girl's got to get her beauty sleep...
Sometimes, between movies, I am struck with insights of great moment. Just last night it occurred to me that when the facts don't support your thesis, you can "interpret" the facts until they do. I'm pretty sure Reuters does this already, however, so there may not be any commercial application to my discovery....
Well, my system for picking basketball teams has failed me, and I'm pretty much out of the playoffs. Looks like very few cute mascots will make it to the final four this year. Guess I'll have to be satisfied with having Harvey on top of me...
Life is what happens when you had planned something else. I hurt my back the other day (I coughed and strained a muscle; my uncle-by-marriage once said that his family was known for strong backs and weak minds, and our family was known for strong minds and weak backs...my dad, siblings and I have thrown out our backs sneezing, coughing, sitting too long, standing too long, reaching too far, and of course lifting too much weight incorrectly), and because I had to go into work early yesterday to let painters into the theater, by 7 I could barely get up the stairs to thread. Ass. Man. agreed to come in to relieve me, thank goodness, so it was only 8pm instead of midnight when my car died a quarter of the way home.
Unlike my 17 year old employees, I do not have a cell phone. So I had to hobble half a mile to find a phone to call a tow truck. Then hobble half a mile back because I hadn't left the keys with the car (otherwise I could have paid by credit card over the phone and called my brother or niece to pick me up from the church that was fortuitously having a potluck supper). The tow truck driver was very nice and dropped me off at my front door before taking my car to my mechanic's, where by a strange coincidence I had a 9 am appointment to have my brakes worked on. My mechanic suspects it's the alternator. Considering that it's original (read "old enough to get a driver's liscense in most states") he's probably right.
Luckily I got a decent tax refund, so I should be able to afford repairs as long as they don't exceed twice the Blue Book value...
I slept late. I had to pour out my first pot of coffee because it tasted like bleach (aside: am I the only one whose mother cannot be left unattended because she will clean things to within an inch of their lives?). I woke up with a sore throat and a cough, which I fear means I am getting sick again. Today is my Friday, so if I am getting sick, there goes another weekend! I still have this week's homework hanging over my head, and my car is due for an oil change.
Because, you see, my 3-Ware RAID card wouldn't fit in my Lian Li case, and Linux doesn't recognise the extra IDE channels on my Gigabyte 7N400Pro2 so I had to use a PCI IDE card, which only allows me a total of 8 drives (4 from the motherboard, 4 from the card), so I couldn't put my 9 120GB drives in and had to use the 200GB SATA drive which I'd planned to put in my Windows box in the Linux box instead, and put my old 80GB IDE drive and the two left-over 120GB drives in the Windows box, which only leaves me with one IDE channel left instead of all four the way I had originally planned, and if I install the PCI IDE controller I bought to fix that the machine no longer boots at all.
Did I mention that the Bonfire is crackling merrily?