October 28, 2008 at 11:25 pm | Posted in Minutia | 1 Comment

So as much as I have ragged on them and how they’re responsible for so much of what’s wrong with music today, MTV has officially brought back the video in a huge way.  Did they start playing music videos on air again?  Of course not, don’t be silly.  But they did throw open the vaults to their video collection and are posting a crapload of them online.  The quality is passable, it lets you rank videos, and the collection appears to be growing rapidly.  Take that YouTube!  So in celebration I bring present the following video directly from MTVMusic.com.  For those of you who haven’t seen it, you owe it to yourself.  And for those that have, enjoy the awesomeness that is Christopher Walken one more time…

Edit: Sadly it looks like the embed function doesn’t work.  So here’s the video in question…


Sound Familiar?

October 28, 2008 at 11:50 am | Posted in Life In General | Leave a comment

“The State pays for the blunders of private enterprise… Profit is private and individual. Loss is public and social.” – Salvemini, Gaetano. Under the Axe of Fascism 1936

Ripped Van Winkle

October 21, 2008 at 11:41 pm | Posted in Dear Diary | Leave a comment

“It is better to sleep on things beforehand than lie awake about them afterward.” – Baltasar Gracian

So evidently consuming chocolate covered expresso beans and then trying to sleep isn’t a good plan.  Which sucks because the car pool wakeup call is roughly 6 hours away.  And while some people can suffice with only a quarter day’s worth of rest, I could easily pass out for twice that if left to my own devices.  Alas, I love my job and would like to keep it so I don’t indulge that fancy.

Sometimes I wish I could just turn my brain off for a while.  Or multi-task that rusty gear for something that’s actually productive to the outside world.  But it’s spending far too much time these days gnawing away with quandries and enigmas that I just can’t resolve.  And it’s those darn riddles that are keeping me away from the rolling hills of sheep counting country…

Bento Tux

October 13, 2008 at 12:12 pm | Posted in Minutia | Leave a comment
Bento Tux

Bento Tux

Sushi + A Penguin = Awesome! Link credit

Meltdown (At Madame Tussaud’s)

October 10, 2008 at 4:08 pm | Posted in Minutia | Leave a comment

Joss Stone & Me

October 6, 2008 at 11:11 pm | Posted in Dear Diary | Leave a comment

So I’m finally getting settled into the new apartment and it’s starting to (almost) feel like home.  That is if I decided to decorate my home bathroom in waterstained wallpaper that’s older than I am and build a kitchen with one – that’s right one – drawer.  Sadly I am falling way behind on my unpacking one box a day plan due to an unforseen evil.  Hi-Definition television, or as the hipster kids call it HDTV.  I have found over the preceding few weeks that I will watch crap on HDTV that I would almost certainly never watch in real life.  Treks through the wilderness necessitating eating obscene wildlife – yep.  Home design shows with hosts so flambouyant Richard Simmons is frightened of them – you betcha.  National Geographic shows that show far too much detail of the naked tribespeople – what Saturday afternoon is complete without it?  Reruns of Law & Order and CSI – ah who am I kidding; I would rather gouge my eyes out with a rusty spoon before watching that.  But I have to admit I am addicted to a music channel called Palladia, even after I found out it was owned by MTV.  Don’t you just love when a corporate conglomerate controls too many media outlets? *cough* TimeWarner *cough* ClearChannel *cough* Sirrius/XM…

I’ve must say, I quite enjoyed watching Joss Stone.  In exquisite detail.  Belting out a soulful Fell In Love With A Boy cover.  While swaying to and fro.  With closed eyes and a bluesy grimace. And a British accent.  Aahhh, I have said too much.

I love music.

So Close, And Yet…

October 2, 2008 at 3:13 pm | Posted in Dear Diary | Leave a comment

From: brewers.com <feedback@lists.mlb.com>
Date: Thu, Oct 2, 2008 at 3:07 PM
Subject: Thank you for participating in the Brewers Postseason Ticket Opportunity

Thank you for registering for a chance to purchase tickets for potential 2008 N.L. Championship Series games at Miller Park. Unfortunately, your entry was not selected for this ticket offer.  But don’t forget, there’s still a chance to see the Brewers in the Postseason at Miller Park! By entering the Brewers’ Postseason Ticket Opportunity, you’ve also registered to win the chance to purchase tickets to potential 2008 World Series games at Miller Park. Drawing dates have not yet been determined, but you will receive an email to let you know if you’ve won the opportunity to purchase tickets to those exciting games!  Thank you for entering, and good luck in future Postseason Ticket Opportunity drawings!  GO BREWERS!

It’s A Start

October 1, 2008 at 8:53 pm | Posted in Dear Diary | Leave a comment
Go Brewers!

Go Brewers!

I got to do something today that I have never done before.  I took a day off from work (thanks El Jefe for granting time off) and watch a Brewers playoff game.  That’s right, the Brew Crew played in their first playoff game since I was 3 years old.  And needless to say I wasn’t old enough to care about sports at that point, let alone old enough to stay home from work to watch a game.  I would have wooted earlier about their season, but given last years nose dive immediately following my blog post, I decided to bite my tongue until it was a sure thing.  Sadly, they lost to the Phillies in a 3-1 pitching duel, but at least we’re playing past September.  Even if it is without Ben Sheets who is out for the rest of the season.

It’s nice to see the new ownership invest in the team’s success rather than trading away young talent to save cash.  I’m looking at you Seilig family.  Now if only we can turn that vaunted minor league system into some pitching after Sheets and Sabathia bouce out of town this off season, we might be able to parlay this run into some long term success.

Honestly though, I did get a lot accomplished on my day off rather than just lazing around watching sports.  I got to sleep in – which was very much needed.  After which I paid my rent, tried to inquire about how to submit a maintenance request (that wallpaper has to go!) drove to Georgetown to register my car for another year, did all of my laundry (yea for clean skivees,) filled up the car for $3.38 a gallon (I remember watching Dumb & Dumber and thinking the buck plus for gas in the background of the diner scene was ridiculously expensive,) and got some grocery shopping done (wasabi, chopsticks, tons of rice, and edamame – check.)  Now it’s time to be lazy again and root on the Red Sox…

Edit: Oh yeah, and the beard finally annoyed me beyond my capacity for stubborness so it’s gone…

I’m From Wisconsin: Should I Eat It?

September 24, 2008 at 12:42 pm | Posted in Humor | Leave a comment
Wisconsin Decision Chart

Wisconsin Decision Chart

This wouldn’t be quite so funny if it wasn’t so true.  The only thing missing from my mental image of prototypical Wisconsinisms is chain smoking and satin warmup jackets. *link credit*

Staving Off The Shears

September 20, 2008 at 2:08 pm | Posted in Dear Diary | 1 Comment

Miracles and lucky charms made the girl of my dreams the girl in my arms.  Push will come to pull tonight  and I’ll have my hands full tonight and everything will be real all right because she’s coming over tonight.  I’m gonna shave off my beard and I’ll try not to act too weird.  Then I’m gonna kiss her tenderly, so don’t ask her if she’s free. She won’t be, she’ll be with me because she’s coming over tonight.  Everyone makes fun of me – they do it right in front of me.  They don’t think someone shy like me can get a girl like that to like a guy like me.  But now she’s standing at my door.  She’s who I’ve been waiting for, so don’t feel sorry for me anymore she’s coming over tonight.  We won’t tell a soul tonight cause our mouths will be full tonight and talking with your mouth full isn’t polite.

~ She’s Coming (Over Tonight) by Mr T Experience from Revenge Is Sweet & So Are You

So The Great Beard Experiment of 2008 has officially reached the stage where I get the daily urge to shave the crazy thing off because I think it looks ridiculous.  I think it just looks odd to walk around with a bald top and a hairy bottom (giggle inducing phrasing intentional.)  That and my genetic heritage means I have sparse coverage and it turns a shade of red with sun exposure.  And unlike a bad haircut that you can hide as it grows out, your stuck parading a bad beard through the world with no aesthetic salve.  But just about the time I am temped to take a razor to it, some random person will surprise me with a long deep stare followed with a “I kinda like it” while pantomiming a beard stroking.  And with that it continues for another day…

The Beard So Far...

The Beard So Far...

Update: By the way, this guy is my hero.  And I’m jealous…

Lies, Damn Lies, & Statistics

September 16, 2008 at 8:16 am | Posted in Humor | 3 Comments

A few frightening facts about bread:

1. More than 98 percent of convicted felons are bread users.
2. Fully HALF of all children who grow up in bread-consuming households score below average on standardized tests.
3. In the 18th century, when virtually all bread was baked in the home, the average life expectancy was less than 50 years; infant mortality rates were unacceptably high; many women died in childbirth; and diseases such as typhoid, yellow fever, and influenza ravaged whole nations
4. More than 90 percent of violent crimes are committed within 24 hours
of eating bread.
5. Bread is made from a substance called “dough.” It has been proven that as little as one pound of dough can be used to suffocate a mouse. The average North American eats more bread than that in one month!
6. Primitive tribal societies that have no bread exhibit a low incidence of cancer, Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s disease, and osteoporosis.
7. Bread has been proven to be addictive. Subjects deprived of bread and given only water to eat begged for bread after as little as two days.
8. Bread is often a “gateway” food item, leading the user to “harder” items such as butter, jelly, peanut butter, and even cold cuts.
9. Bread has been proven to absorb water. Since the human body is more than 90 percent water, it follows that eating bread could lead to your body being taken over by this absorptive food product, turning you into a soggy, gooey bread-pudding person.
10. Newborn babies can choke on bread.
11. Bread is baked at temperatures as high as 450 degrees! That kind of heat can kill an adult in less than one minute.
12. Most bread eaters are utterly unable to distinguish between significant scientific fact and meaningless statistical babbling.

In light of these frightening statistics, we propose the following bread restrictions:

1. No sale of bread to minors
2. A nationwide “Just Say No To Toast” campaign, complete celebrity TV spots and bumper stickers.
3. A 300 percent federal tax on all bread to pay for all the societal ills we might associate with bread.
4. No animal or human images, nor any primary colors (which may appeal to children) may be used to promote bread usage.
5. The establishment of “Bread-free” zones around schools.

From Chris Erret via a newsgroup on the internets.

Politics Schmolitics

September 15, 2008 at 10:48 pm | Posted in Minutia | Leave a comment

Polite convention dictates there are a few things that you don’t discuss with strangers – politics and religion leading the list.  Since I’ve never been one to keep my mouth shut, I’ll try to keep this brief.

I was raised, and in many ways still am, a religious conservative.  And since the mid 80s, that has meant that there has been a considerable social pressure to vote Republican (thank you Ralph Reed.)  But in my few years on earth, I am growing more and more convinced that you can’t legislate morality, no matter how hard the moral majority may try.  It doesn’t really matter how strong your conviction – if people want to do something you are diametrically opposed to, no amount of shame or threat will stop them.  It’s called free will – even the staunchest protestant or evangelical has to have some passing familiarity with the concept.  If God gives us the ability to ignore Himself if we choose, how silly do we have to be to think that we can impose human will on others.  As such, it really doesn’t make a whole lot of sense (for me at least) to vote on morality.  It has been a waste for the better part of 100 years now.

Which leaves me asking, what is the point of government?  I would proffer that it is for the good of the people as a whole.  That’s right – not the good of the majority, not for the minority, and certainly not for the good of the top 1/10 of one percent.  Call it socialism if you want, but I think it is the social expectation for those with means to care for those without.  I might even go so far as to point out some dude named Jesus had a bit of a thing about caring for the poor as well, but I digress…

So perhaps appealing to your ideals isn’t your cup of tea.  You say ideology shouldn’t be a part of the discourse?  Fair enough, how about taxes?  In that case who you support probably boils down to how much money you make.  Guess what people – I’m poor.  And chances are (statistically speaking) so are you.  Don’t take my word for it, check out this little table.  How about leadership?  Would you rather the guy that missed 45% of the decisions he was asked to weigh in on?  Or would you prefer the guy that missed 64% of his?  Perhaps you’re more issues oriented?

Me – I’m brushing up on my French and Spanish so I can move to one of those crazy “communist” countries when I retire.  Woot for socialized medicine!

How Long?

September 13, 2008 at 10:36 am | Posted in Dear Diary | Leave a comment

I’ll tip my hat to the new constitution, take a bow for the new revolution, smile and grin at the change all round, pick up my guitar and play just like yesterday.  Then I’ll get on my knees and pray we don’t get fooled again.  The change, it had to come – we knew it all along.  We were liberated from the fold, that’s all.  And the world looks just the same and history ain’t changed ’cause the banners, they were all flown in the last war.

~ Won’t Get Fooled Again by The Who from Who’s Next

So I was driving home from dinner the other night and passed this huge American flag.  And by huge I mean about 30 feet tall – we love ridiculously big stuff here in Texas.  For the life of me I could figure out why it was flying at half mast until my dinner companion pointed out that it was September 11th.  And now I can’t help but wonder how much longer it will be before such a dark day is lost in the shuffle of our daily lives, faded by the inexorable march of time, and drowned in the incessant dirge of this “war on terror.”  I’m not trying to be flippant – nobody I knew or was close with died that day, but I can’t say the same for the ensuing skimishes that have followed.  And it makes me ill to think that all this time, effort, money, and human capital is almost assuredly going to be boiled down and perverted into some gradious patriotic event – hopefully sans some kitchy Hallmark commemoration.

It almost seems that we will have entirely missed that a good portion of the rest of the world thinks poorly of us because of some misguided nationalistic narcissism.  When have we forgotten that successful foreign relations, dare I say life itself, is predicated on getting along with the other parties rather than imposing our will?  In short, 9/11 makes me sad for all the wrong reasons…

What A Relief

September 13, 2008 at 10:07 am | Posted in In The News | Leave a comment
Hurricane Ike

Hurricane Ike

My buddy Perry’s getting married today in San Antonio, which means I’ve spent all week worried about driving straight into the path of Hurricane Ike.  And it’s a bit nerve racking to drive against the flow of an evacuation traffic jam.  But thankfully, Ike’s taken a sharper turn to the east than anyone expected and it looks like the Austin and San Antonio areas are going to dodge a bullet and at worst get some stiff wind gusts and a lot of rain.  Thanks to all the friends who dropped a line wishing safe keeping and a lack of drowning.  Now, on with the hitching!

Facebook Profile Link

September 10, 2008 at 6:04 pm | Posted in How-To | Leave a comment

Ever wanted to send a link of your Facebook profile to someone but were unable to find a URL that worked?  Me too!  Luckily a little searching led me to a handy little article from Dave Taylor.  All you have to do is use the following link http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=XXXX where XXXX is your profile number.  For example mine is http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=610170366.  Pretty cool, huh?  Now you can spam the dickens out of your friends and enemies with you profile link.  Enjoy!

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