Monday, June 30, 2008

The CS6 Numa Numa Project

This is how I spent almost ten years of my life. Things haven't changed.


Tuesday, June 24, 2008

How could I not post this? I also heard that there may be a Mr. Peabody & Sherman live-action movie in the making. We'll see!
Talking Points Memo had this article today, with a link to the original Washington Post column from Richard Cohen that explains the 'real' reason that John McCain is getting off easy. Now it all makes perfect sense! Recommended read!!
If you do head over to TPM check out the two items regarding Albania. Coincidence?

Monday, June 23, 2008

A Tribute to George Carlin

Nothing says more about the man than he did in his own words.

Always remember!

I was deeply saddened to learn earlier today of the passing of George Carlin. The man was brilliant and except for his attempts at a sitcom or two, he seemed to succeed at just about everything he did. Writer, actor, comedian.

Like most guys my age, I listened to Carlin's albums over and over until I could do entire bits by memory. Along with those of The Firesign Theatre and Cheech & Chong, the Carlin albums helped to form my adult sense of humor, as the Stooges did that of my youth.

Wherever or whenever you are, Mr. Carlin, I hope you have room for your stuff!

When I get a chance, either here or over at Shot's Shack I'll probably post some video clip in memoriam.

Thursday, June 19, 2008

This should come as no surprise, but here's the article from the New York Times discussing the oil deal being wrapped up in Iraq.

I can't even joke about this and the fact that it is one those great "no bid" contracts makes it even more obvious that this has been one of the goals all along.

Have you no shame, America? Was it worth the over 4,000 U.S. troops that lost their lives? Will cheaper oil make us safer and cheer the families of the dead?

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

I suppose it should not have been a surprise, but I was disappointed to learn that the New York Mets have fired Willie Randolph as their manager.

There were calls from fans and the NY sports press to let Willie go at the end of last season and the bad early showing of the team increased those calls. Still it seems odd that the Mets ownership would do this after the team won the last two games.

I'm sure this won't be the last we'll see of Mr. Randolph and I would like to see him bounce back, perhaps leading a NL team next season to victory over his former employers.

I also don't expect to see any manager picking up the pieces at this point and do a much better job. We'll see.

While I'm on the topic of baseball. Go Red Sox!!! If they could only play as well on the road as at Fenway there would be no stopping them.

Monday, June 16, 2008

I hope you all enjoyed your Sunday, whether you celebrated Father's Day or not. We relaxed and did some domestic stuff, then ended the day tossing some burgers on the grill. We had spent a couple of hours down at the pool on Saturday evening, but were more in the mood for air conditioning and our recliners last night.

My sympathy goes out to any of you in the mid-west who are having problems with flooding and the weather in general. I see that the mid-Atlantic is going to be hit today or tomorrow and I'm certainly glad to be missing out on that. I'm sure those of you in Iowa and other effected areas are all looking forward to G.W. flying out to tell you how he and Homeland Security are going to help out, now that he is returning from his latest overseas waste of time. Seeing video of the flooded homes and businesses immediately makes one remember New Orleans, but have our fingers crossed that things might go a bit better for you this time around.

I had to pay $4.53 the other day at the pump and I'm afraid to see what it might be Wednesday when I have to refill. Donna and I were laughing at some guy complaining about paying $4.10 somewhere, wishing we were only paying that much! We're already seeing some supermarkets raising the prices on some items, especially California tomatoes which have been declared safe.

As you can see, nothing of note to pass along, but did want to let you know I'm thinking of you!

Saturday, June 14, 2008

John McCain: No, You Can't

I enjoyed this.

I was surprised and saddened to hear the news yesterday of Tim Russert's passing. I had my problems with him at times, but you certainly couldn't argue that Meet The Press was one of those shows that news junkies had to follow. Also, if you watched NBC, MSNBC or even local NBC affiliates you saw Russert discussing the current political stories.

As many of his friends and colleagues said it will be strange not to have around during the rest of the election cycle. They guy sure loved politics.

My condolences to his family, friends and the viewers who enjoyed his broadcasts.

On a personal note, I was surprised to discover that Russert and I were the same age. It was especially strange that I heard the news as I was coming from a visit to my own doctor's office where she scheduled me for tests of my heart. My mother and both paternal grandparents suffered from heart problems and with that kind of history I probably shouldn't take chances.

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Not shocking, but still an interesting article in USA TODAY on folks in higher income brackets not paying their fair share. Right! Big surprise, huh?

Since getting told that removing our troops isn't important to John McCain, I guess he'll be focusing on his economic policy plans. A leader for change, for sure!

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

It's time to write your Congress person to get behind Dennis Kucinich on the articles of impeachment.

I don't expect anything to come of this, given the cowardice of the Democratic leadership in both Houses. However, I think an e-mail or phone call to your representative might let them know that we are not just a few out of touch Leftists.
So how was your day?

Monday, June 09, 2008

Well, the past weekend was pretty busy.

Saturday we finally got around to putting up the Thomas Kincaid print we bought at auction & had framed. It looks really nice over the loveseat. We also put up a valance over the window to the balconey, something we have talked about since we moved in but put off. Now that we have put the househunting on hold we are doing some rearranging and decorating on the apartment.

We have some more valances to put up in the guest room and I have to decide if I'm going self-frame my Speed Racer poster or have it professionally done. Considering it is signed and the price (don't ask, even at auction!) I might have somebody who knows what they are doing take care of it and not just throw it into something I pick up at Wal-Mart. :-)

Don't think I mentioned it, but our PC monitor went out after barely two years (I do not recommend Acer!), so we went to Circuit City to buy a new one. We got a nice 19" HP flat-screen, which we are happy with so far. Also, Donna got me an early Father's Day present and I returned the favor, for no reason other than we both wanted one, by buying me my first MP3 player. We went with a couple of Sansa products, with FM tuners, since it will be nice to have that as an option. As I learn more about using it I'll let you know what I think. So far, I'm happy with the FM presets, but not sure how I feel about the five 'free' songs that come already installed.

More on all this tech later.

Friday, June 06, 2008

Does it pay to even discuss the events of the past week? I mean the pundits and talking heads have been all over the Clinton/Obama thing since Tuesday night, so I doubt I have anything new or original to say. Not that I’ve let that stop me before. :-)

It bothers me that there are actually websites being set up by supposed Hillary supporters to urge Democrats to vote for John McCain. I know that I’ve said things in the past about not voting for her, but I know that I would NEVER vote for McCain out of spite. The man and his Party represent everything I am against culturally and philosophically. Personally, while some of these people setting up the site might actually be Dems, I think a lot of folks signing up are really Republicans hoping to keep the animosity going through November. They know that only if the Democratic Party splits will McCain win the election.

I also don’t believe the ‘campaign maps’ that the news shows are trotting out. I don’t think that there really is a huge base of support for McCain, even among Republicans. I’m sure there are a great number of people who respect him for what he did and what the media paints him as, but I don’t know that they are all waiting to see him in the White House.
Of course, I was wrong about the last two elections, so….

Thursday, June 05, 2008

Bad commute into work this morning, due to a couple of accidents. First one was on Crown Valley Parkway, which turned a five minute turn-off for gas into about fifteen minutes. Then there was an accident which tied up two lanes on the 5 and backed up everything before the 55 turnoff. I'm glad I tend to leave early everyday since I never know what I'm going to encounter.

By the way, I've all but stopped looking at the price at the pump, since it has passed the $4.13 a gallon mark for Regular. It would take longer to search for cheaper gas than to head to the AM/PM where I usually stop off. It generally has the cheaper gas in the area anyway. Heck, a gallon of gas costs more than a pack of cigarettes, which considering the taxes on that stuff here in California is up around $3.80 a pack. Glad that cigarettes aren't among my current vices!

We rearranged the living room yesterday, so that meant the folks from Cox Communication had to come out and switch on the cable. We used their visit as the final incentive to get a DVR for the one set, but haven't started playing around with it yet. According to them we can record two shows simultaneously, although we can't watch a third one at the same time. When we do start recording we would probably move to the bedroom and watch there. Of course, it is pretty rare when there are more than two shows we watch at the same time. We do like the way the 'guide' appears now, since it allows you to watch the current station while scrolling the upcoming shows. The previous version didn't allow that, so we would usually wait for commercials to check on what we wanted to see next.

Yeah, we do have pretty boring lives, don't we?

Tuesday, June 03, 2008

Back in my youth I had the opportunity to catch a number of concerts. I’ve talked about some of them before, but the death yesterday of Rock and Roll Hall of Famer Bo Diddley reminded me of the time I saw him perform.

I was stationed in Norfolk, VA at the time and a few of us decided to take in a ‘rock ‘n’ roll revival’ concert on evening. The headliner was Chuck Berry, along with Bo Diddley, ‘Chubby’ Checker and several singing groups from that era, The Dovells (“Bristol Stomp”) & The Shirelles (“Soldier Boy”).
The show was opened by a local 'fifties' group that played covers of several artists, none of them part of the show. They also played back up for some of the artists later. First The Dovells performed, followed by The Shirelles. Both were excellent, but I don't know enough about either group to be able to tell if how many, if any, of the original members of either was on stage that night. There was no mistaking Chubby Checker when he came out and performed about a half dozen songs. Doing the 'twist' for so many years, he was certainly not 'chubby' by any means and he had the crowd up and moving for his entire set.
A couple of hours before the show one of my friends (Don Ludwick, I believe) and I were sitting in front of the hall trying to decide if we wanted to grab a bit to eat. A black guy, in a wide-brimmed black hat and carrying a guitar case comes over to us and asks if we know how he can get inside. I ask him if he is in the show and he smiles, telling us that he is. We tell him that if he goes around the side of the hall that he’ll see the delivery doors and that they would probably let him in there. He thanked us and went off as we had directed.

By now of course, you know where this is going. As he walks away both of us realize that the guitar case he has is rather oddly shaped. It’s square! At the same instant we both say to each other…”That was Bo Diddley!!” Brush with greatness, indeed.
After Chubby Checker, it was time for Bo Diddley to step on stage. If Don and I had any doubt about the identity of the man before we were not disappointed to have been proven right. Not only did Bo Diddley do his own amazing set, but he later sat in on drums backing Chuck Berry. How can you forget something like that?

Rest in Peace, Ellas Otha Bates. Hey, Bo Diddley!

Monday, June 02, 2008

The big news out here has nothing to do with Presidential politics, Iraq or the economy (except in the local sense), the major story in the newspapers, on radio & television has been the fire at Universal Studios this past weekend.

It was pretty spectacular to wake up yesterday, turn on the news and see aerial shots of the New York City street, King Kong building and assorted sets & film stages going up in smoke. For close to twelve hours firefighters were trying to contain the blaze, keeping if from spreading to other studio buildings and up the hillside to private homes. Fortunately, there were only a few injuries, mostly to firefighters and those non-serious. Considering the amount of flammable material and several explosions that took place it could have been much worse.

Early reports seem to indicate that workmen may have accidentally caused the fire while working on the New York set.

Donna and I have talked about doing the tour, but have never gotten around to doing so. We have both been there in the past, she several times with Kristina and others, and I went with Elayne years ago. We both have found memories of the visits and might finally get around to doing another trip once some of the clean up has taken place.