So many words, so little time....

Thursday, December 28, 2006

Between Week...

No, I haven't had a time warp. This one got caught in the fun Blogger's been having putting out their new service, and even though that was last week today feels a lot the same so I decided to just hang it out there.

New news at 11. Or something like that.

I sort of slump here in my chair. It's a Wednesday, which is in the middle, of a week that is perpetually in the middle. That week between Christmas and New Year's.

It's a between time. Things don't really work right. The whole world just waiting to get to that seventh day so things can starting going back to normal. And if you're one of those who are charged with keeping things on an even keel while you're waiting it can seem very hard.

A lot of lucky people are still out there on vacation visiting family and friends (or unlucky, depending on their level of family-of-origin fun). Every morning you do this sort of Left Behind perp-walk past all the closed doors and empty chairs on the way to your desk. We'll call it the Greenbar Mile. It adds just that little bit of insult to the injury of those who do have to come in.

In some cases it's nice because you know they're not going to be bothering you. But sometimes you need these people. Nothing says "Happy Holidays!" like a pissed off customer you can't help because the accounting rep is out until next week and she's the only one in the entire world who can perform the particular function that customer needs.

Everything else has ground to a halt, too. Heaven forfend the company who does your hardware support be staffed with more than a skeleton crew of cardboard Captain Picard cutouts with company polo shirts pulled on over their paper shoulders. How they get those headsets to stay on is a mystery. This motherboard problem we're having makes my current Christmas wish a guy with a really thick accent from Bangalore. I'll promise to leave him alone during the next Dewali if he gives me this obscure undocumented jumper setting we need to get this frelling server online now.

Me and the gal who is also stuck here are doing "team development" today on this little application that updates one of our remote installations. It's supposed to be a really efficient way to work, according to all those shiny best practices magazines. In real life, what that means is she codes something, and I sit there and try it out. It barfs. Then I tell her it barfed. And then she tells me her code is perfect and it's the fault of the patch we're trying to code to. We go back and forth until she comes over here to look at the error code herself since apparantly Terminal Services is lying to her or I am. Then I tell her exactly what I did again. And she complains for several minutes about it while re-doing the same bloody steps and chasing through the logs to confirm that I in fact did the right thing while badgering me to confirm each and every step. Then she decides it was something else so I have to tell her exactly what I saw again. Then she blames my computer and we have to go through the testing steps again on another box. I go through the same thing again. And then she looks at her code and complains for several more minutes cursing whatever has suddenly decided not to send her code back the proper return code. Then she sees what's wrong in her code. She fixes something. She drops the new files. I have to reset the box to the baseline so we can test again which involves uninstalling several things and rebooting the box three times. Lather, rinse, and repeat for 11 hours now.

Home isn't over-fun either right now. The kids are in the throes of acute School Break Social Life Disorder. With my eldest's best buddy who joined the Navy on leave and back in town, and everyone else off school I've got huge drifts of sneakers and coats all over my house. There are clattering herds of house-apes stretching as far as the eye can see like bison on the prarie. If I shield my eyes carefully I can see a dim orange light on the horizon that gives me hope - school starts up again next week and the friend has to head back to Norfolk. And then all these persons from Porlock will shuffle off to their normal lives again and only hold a mock UN meeting on my front porch on Saturdays.

Monday, December 25, 2006

Power back on, Christmas Accomplished...

We're back up now and much happier for it. I've still got a bunch of stuff to deal with, but now I have the tools to do it at least.

Christmas has come and gone in a blur. Thanks to the power outage and all it's accoutrements, I had a little less than two days to get ready and it was hard to do. We did it, though. The kids helped out a lot and we cut corners in all directions but we kept the important stuff.

So I hope you all had a Happy Holiday, and I'll see you in the New Year!

Monday, December 18, 2006

Power Outage Still Going...

They still have major transformer stations down all over. About half the areas have partial power. New estimate is that my street will be out until at least Saturday, and early next week is a better bet. We're right off the major distribution lines and the one at the entrance to our place got a 2 foot thick fir tree through it which then took out the fire plug across the street. Since this feeds a bunch of other stuff they can't bring it up until they get the four major transformers downrange working right or they'll blow that up. The fireplug is already fixed, though.

So we may not have power for Christmas. Not to mention no real Christmas for something like 400 power company repair crews and a lot of other folk doing double shifts to get us through this.

Some people are being really dumb. There was this stupid bint on TV today going on about how people burning wood was messing up the air quality. WelllDUUHHHHH! However, if they had any choice that isn't what they'd be doing and besides, the rain we're supposed to start getting tomorrow or the next day will wash things clean. And have the nice side-effect of warming things up about 20 degrees and we really need that.

On the smaller scale, people are grouchy and some are just plain being idiots. Gal at the grocery store tonight was going off at the manager because they didn't have her special whatever. The power was off for long enough that they had to throw away everything in the freezers and coolers on Saturday and they're still re-stocking. But her power hadn't even gone out at all and she just couldn't understand what the problem was. Somehow it was this poor guy's personal fault they didn't have her specific special meal. It's almost like they figure if it didn't happen to them, it didn't happen.

To offset the idiocy, we had a very nice man drive by us chopping wood yesterday afternoon who stopped and got out his chainsaw and made quick work of a day's worth of firewood for us.

His help freed us up to go after some big stuff and I got about half a cord in 8' lengths back to the patio for us to saw up and then split ourselves. We've been going to a brushpile left by a road project down the street year before last and it's gorgeous seasoned pine and poplar. Almost a shame to burn some of it.

My boss told us today that we can basically use the office facilities and do whatever we need to do. Our pet rat is going to be moving into my office for the duration. Tomorrow is going to be interesting because there's a couple real winners here who are raising a fuss about him and one of the other guy's dog. Another case of idiocy. I don't know what her problem is; Scooter lives in a cage and besides he's litter trained. Maggie is the sweetest old poodle-mix. It's not like she's a puppy piddling all over the place or jumping around or something.

I finally got paid - the power outage disrupted payday last Friday, and it's been an interesting weekend. We got our servers back up Saturday and we thought we were okay. Once they got under load this morning it turns out we've got three of them with damaged motherboards. We're running on backups and a cobbled together collection of my test and dev servers.

We're up, but it's like keeping a house of cards together when someone is walking around with a fan. A few too many people show up or someone searches on "court" in the entire Eastern District of New York and fwooosh! down we go again. True one from today. It's not the first time I've seen customers do a search like that; what the HECK do they think that is going to get them!!?? If we could figure that out, I'd find some way of getting them what they want that doesn't do this to my machines. Or at least find them a good scenic route on their way to the Alternate Destination before they submit it. It's taking two people to keep us up. Tonight it's me and the guy with the dog.

Poor Scooter has caught a cold and is utterly miserable. He started sneezing this morning. Vet saw him today says it's bacterial so nothing to do but keep him quiet and settled and wait it out just like everyone else has to and make sure he eats well and takes his vitamins. But I can't make him chicken soup like I do for them. He's not in any danger or anything as long as we stop this now. I feel awful because I should have seen this coming and done something sooner but the vet said it could be much worse - at least he's not a reptile of any sort or tropical fish or bird. It's been really bad for them.

One of the local laundromats is up and running and doing a VERY brisk business. I'll be there tomorrow.

I don't know what we're going to do about Christmas. We can get some of the decorating and stuff done without power and I can fake some of rest. But dinner is going to be tricky. And needless to say my Christmas cards and etc are going to be late. This really has me upset because this is going to be Johnathan's last Christmas home and I really did want to make it a good one. I can't think about that too hard or I just start crying.

Anyhow, I promised the kids they could go see Eregon so we're going to head out and do that now. I'll be back once I get them in the door. I should go but I really don't have the heart for it. I can use the two hours knowing they're safe and warm to get some things done for later.

Sunday, December 17, 2006

Power Still Out....

We're still out, but they got the downtown Redmond area back on at least so the grocery stores and stuff can work. Now it's hard to get gasoline and propane. There are lines down the street at the stations that have it. I'll be joining one as soon as I'm done here. Then we're off to cut more firewood.

We're all still fine. I was worried about our pet rat because while the fireplace will keep things okay for a human in a sweater, it definately wasn't in the comfort zone. He cuddled with us for most of the night but he had to get back into his cage to eat and sleep. Turned out fine - he just burrowed right into his bed and has hung in like a trooper.

No snow yet, but they're threatening it every time I turn on the car radio. It did freeze. Not what I would call a hard frost but hard enough for around here. There's ice on the puddles and these single-pane windows just breathe the cold.

My server room is still a mess, but my boss got a fan in here and we're heating the rest of the office quite nicely trying to keep it cool in there. It hasn't gotten any worse, and we got the rest of the machines up and in the right order so everything talks to each other again and everything works.

The kids are officially bored with poker and Munchkin, so I ended up reading 10 chapters of Howl's Moving Castle to them by candlelight last night. My voice is shot.

It's kind of odd. I grew up in a harsh climate and in conditions that make this look like a vacation. We've been able to take care of ourselves and help our neighbors. I have the tools (because I'm a weirdo who considers a properly maintained axe an integral part of setting up a household). I know what to do. I'm glad. But when I was growing up, there was a part of it I was missing. The constant worry. Can I take care of the kids? Can I get us what we need? When the stakes are personal, it's one thing. When the kids get into it, it's another. It really makes me think about my Mom and what she went through raising us kids. She did this with nine kids ranging from 9 on down to newborn and she did it with no running water in the house and no neighbors closer than 60 miles.

Saturday, December 16, 2006

Wind Storm in Seattle - power out all over the place...

Seattle is a beautiful place. It's green all over. The problem with all this great greenery is when Mother Nature decides to throw some wind at it, it all falls down. On top of power lines.

Between that and the rain this place is a mess. I've been out of power for two days now. Everything's pretty higgeldy piggeldy around here. They expect it to take a few more days to get things back on track.

They got the power back on in my office and that's where I'm at right now. I brought the kids in and we're hanging out until things are charged and then we head home. They brought the poker set and they're playing Texas Hold'em in the conference room. At least I can charge up my cel phone and stuff. In an ironic note, the only warm place in the building is my server room, which is about 80 degrees because the air conditioning's been off in there with all those computers blowing heat since the power came back on in here this morning. The HVAC still hasn't gotten it's ducks back in a row and I don't expect it to until next week sometime.

It looks it's trying to snow on top of all this. We're back in the freezing range and with no power that means no heat for a lot of people around here. We have a fireplace in my apartment and stuff so we're good, but it's been interesting. I haven't chopped firewood in a LOONNNGGG time and boy does my back know it.

Needless to say, this was not in the schedule for getting Christmas ready or anything else.

We're all okay. I'll be in and out as time/power permits. For the usual over-wrought news portrayals, you can go to

Monday, December 11, 2006

Forums as Writer's Training Wheels....

We should have some sort of organization for writers who cut their writing teeth on forum posting. Maybe a banner ad?

I always wrote before, but it was mostly fanfic that will NEVER see the light of day or pen-and-paper RPG stuff. I didn't ever think anyone would ever want to see anything but my code until I got sucked into a couple BBS boards back in the early 90's. I really went ape when they dogfooded Slate back in 1999 or so and my boss decided to use it as a precursor to IM because we were all spread all over creation. Then it hit the fan.

Just for kicks and giggles, I sat down here and tried to list out all the places I regularly contribute writing. And by writing I mean words in a row that are less than a third code. There were fourteen of them!

That's not counting places I read and don't actively contribute. I also have four other book-length pieces going, and some random other writing projects (usually articles on various topics for various sources). There are several other things I should be doing much more frequently than I am.

I can't say I've made a big splash. Definately nothing I need to quit my day-job over yet. But I would never have even gotten this far without the structure and lure of forum posting.

Friday, October 27, 2006

Mars Rover Beginning to Hate Mars...

See Full Text Here...

A couple choice samples:

Callas said. "Last week, however, we received three straight days of images of the same rock with the message 'HAPPY NOW?'"

or ...
"Hopefully these malfunctions will straighten themselves out," Callas said. "In the meantime, we'll simply have to try to glean what usable data we can from 'OVERPRICED SPACE-ROOMBA AWAITING MORE BULLS--- ORDERS.'"

This whole article is hysterically funny. And to add another layer of funny, CNN has started syndicating the Onion and their attempts to make sure no one mistakes this for real news are laughably over-the-top.

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Squelch! Squish! Splat!

I tried to log into Slate to answer Marylb's wonderful post about being who we are on the BOTF and I got a security certificate error and it still refuses to log me in. The system makes a sort of electronic splattery blert when it pops up an error dialog. And that's just perfect for this day.

Meeting at my son's school yet-a-frelling-gain so I get stuck in four times as much traffic as usual. And I guess just because I have to use the route, they've decided they need to install a hyperspace bypass or something so there's orange cones and reflective vested shoulder-angels lining the whole route gesturing at you to slow down. WTHeck!? I roll down the window and point out that this is stop-and-go. If I slow down any farther I'd back into the guy behind me. He laughs and shrugs and goes back to making calming gestures at cars.

The weather is a very typical Fall sort of day. It's like God decided we need to soak like beans or something and put a dismal gray lid all over everything. Back to the house for something I forgot. As I get out of the car, the carport drops half a cup of drizzle about half a degree above sleet down the back of my neck. Lovely.

When I came out, the little girl across the way is waiting for her bus. She's in kindergarden this year. She's so cute standing there in her cute little purple raincoat and her backpack. But she's staring at the drips off the front of her hood. The look on her face says that she's just done with the entire proceeding. I know that feeling. Her bus gets there. As she squelches her way across a puddle to get on she notices me and we share a big wave and a smile. Hopefully her day goes a little better. Except now I'm stuck behind her bus all the frelling way down the arterial.

The color is leeched out of everything. Even the maples look drab. The leaves don't drift down in elegant swirls. As I'm walking across the parking lot a big clump of three or four of them splat onto the blacktop next to me close enough to splatter my shoes. One of them's a really pretty red one the girls would probably like for their collection but my hands are full so I can't pick it up.

I get in, put my stuff down, and I'm greeted with this morning's Charlie Foxtrot and a cup of coffee. A sip tells me whose turn it is to keep the kitchen up this week. I know it's him because he makes what may possibly be the most average worst pot of coffee in the world. It's just bad enough you make that squinchy face when you take a swig, but not so bad you won't go ahead and finish it off just for the caffiene's sake while planning a run to the coffee stand over your lunch hour.

Reading through email, I find the project slipped a day thanks to the accounting system vendor's shenanigans, I've got a customer with a spyware problem who is certain it's all my fault, and Live's logon server just sat and sputtered until it got in the way of my work and I shut it off. So I can't answer Maryl.

I doubt I had anything that would be real helpful to say. Mostly it was a anecdotal "me too". But it would have felt nice to talk to her again.

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

There is no 11....

New Rule - do NOT listen to the new RvB episode while at work when there's a huge client meeting going on in the conference room right behind me.

Because then I laugh out loud. And then they come and see. And then they make me show it to them, too. The receptionist snarfed Rockstar out both nostrils and down my back with the "I will kill you..." part. And I have four suits giggling behind me. Only two of which have any idea what they just saw. And then I have to explain RedvsBlue to said clients.

Good news is, we still got the contract.
Bad news, now I have to code what's in the contract.

Anyone know anything about the court system organization in Israel?

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

Rainy Day Election Musings...

Somebody flipped the Winter Switch here in Seattle sometime last week. We went from a long string of golden days baking the tattered tan end of summer into the dust to three days of rain marching back and forth across the sky and hitting the pavement like the heels of polished jackboots.

I stood at the bus stop this morning with the maple tree dripping water and wet brown helicopters into my hair. The invisible residue summer's travels left on the road sparkles on the puddles and runs down the gutters in oily rainbows. That'll be gone soon and flat gray will be all that remains. What a perfect day for the serious business of pondering an election.

I'm not sure where this going to go. I'm doing my part working on the issues that matter to me, and in November we'll see where this all ends up. I see it as a mechanical system in need of some work, and the metaphor carries through this whole process.

You don't get too far tightening a bolt if you are putzing around with that hose clamp off to the left. People spent a lot of time blowing smoke about "election fraud" this last couple years, when an obvious culprit is the stupid ways partisan regulations have crept into the election system that lock people into voting specific ways. It never says it in so many words, but if you stack all the stupid rules together you effectively can't vote for anyone who isn't Republican if you declare yourself a Republican in the state of Washington. Or even better is the rules/traditions that allow an incumbent to run without opposition from his own party and to actually avoid a real primary election in many cases. If you're a member of that same party you're effectively disenfranchised. Where this really bites is where it applies to many federal elections like Senators, Representatives, and the President. I know this affected my voting patterns and I believe it's a huge factor in these close presidential elections where in order to vote for the candidate of the opposite party you literally have to not be able to vote for anyone in your current party anywhere else on the ticket. What say we stop going on about chads and supposed weakness in voting machines and fix the concrete and demonstrated problems in the election rules.

The whole system is connected so you have to be careful how your change is going to affect the rest of it. Trying to get an ordinance passed about jobs for people in low-income housing while slashing the funding for the bus system in that area and cutting funding for subsidized child care isn't going to have the effect you're hoping for. Unless all you're trying to do is shut up some vocal group and not do anything really effective.

If you don't use the right tools you can't turn it. The best you're going to get is hand-tight. And that's just not good enough for most applications. My favorite one is the people who try to tell you that there's a right to privacy in the Constitution. Or a right to education. Or any number of other indicators that they don't know what their problem is so they can't bring to bear the right effort to fix it. I have an acquaintance who is all up in arms about some of the content in the "health" book her child brought home. So she wrote a letter to her Congressman. Real helpful. You want to fix local education issues, try talking to your local school board and get on the Curiculum Committee.

If you don't even know which way to turn the wrench then you're really up a crick. I've run into a bunch of those. A bunch of absentee ballots here in my state are going to be invalidated because people didn't indicate their party affiliation on it (see that section up there with the hose clamp and the partisan election regulations). This is plainly marked on the page but they didn't follow the directions. It's not just their fault - it's hard to wade through the verbiage. I don't know how it's going to affect some races

I'm not a fatalist about it. I just know that to make real change in a system involves acting on the system itself and doing it intelligently.

Thursday, September 07, 2006

Hollywood is doing it again....

Quint over at Aint It Cool News had a great visit on set with the Transformers movie. I definately don't feel any better about the film, though.

Partway through the article he gets a quick interview with one of the key human actors.
QUINT: Which Transformer is your personal favorite?
JOSH DUHAMEL: Good question. You know what? I gotta say... I haven't seen any of the Decepticons really. I've seen Devastator, the tank... and I guess I've seen the helicopters and stuff, but I haven't seen what they look like (as robots). As far as the Autobots, I gotta go with Ironhide, the truck. I don't know what it is. Maybe it's because I own a black truck. But I was thinking... If I was a kid, if I was 10 years old, and I wanted one of these to play with the first one I'd get is probably Ironhide.
I also like Bumblbee just because he's a cool Camaro. Plus, I drive the old Camaro on LAS VEGAS, so I have a real affinity for that, too.

Except if you have even the tiniest clue about the original materials you know Ironhide is not supposed to be a big black truck, and Bumblebee is supposed to be a VW Bug. And now apparently their faces are going to work like Bionicles. And they blew up a truckload of Furbies. And apparently the token female they've added isn't all that great but the kid is.

Sigh. I've got more from other reputable sources, but it's spoilers and honestly there was enough there to make a fan cry, don't you think?

Please. I beg you guys. Just finish the film. Don't try to tell me how much you "get it". Because you don't. And what little glimpses of getting it you have you purposely avoid acting on.

Monday, August 21, 2006

PAX is in three days...

.... though it actually hits the fan for me Thursday night. Things are starting to ramp up. Like all good things, this is going to be so so cool and such an incredible Charlie Foxtrot at the same time.

I do have a great story. My eldest son ended up as an Enforcer. I am so proud. ;)

Just so you know, "Enforcers" are what they call their staff at PAX. A friend of mine suggested that the name sounded like we are all going to out and take out Scott Kurtz's kneecaps but that's not in the job description. We're the gang who run the registration desk and all that. After last year's attendence on a press pass, I decided this year I wanted to help out so I had signed up several months ago. I let them know right away that the kids existed and wanted to help out. They've been incredibly cool about it. Several of them have kids, but they're all pretty young. I don't think they really understood what I meant when I told them their ages.

We had a work party a couple weeks ago where we assembled the swag-bags they're giving out at the registration desk. (I have several more stories about packing 10,000 convention bags in a bit over three hours, but we'll save them for later). I brought the whole gang along. The event involved everyone on the staff getting a tour of the facility to so they could see how things were setup. And they had all the kids go.

Don't get me wrong. My kids read Penny Arcade. But not religiously. And if I was pressed to make a determination, I would put them all on the lower spectrum of geeky. They have a lot of geeky symptoms, but they are too pretty and do too well with the regular social world to be true geeks. They didn't sure aren't steeped in Arcade-dom as the rest of the Enforcer crowd.

When my eldest went on his tour he was asking some good questions and came to the notice of Robert Khoo. In case you don't know, he's the business development guy. He has really helped put them on the map. He's prolly the only "marketer" you'll ever hear me discuss with unqualified praise. Neat guy. But I doubt seriously people told him anything.

So he's confronted with this kid he doesn't know from Adam's stepson. He asked him who he was. My son told him he was the Momgamer's kid and he was here to help. Robert then asked him how old he was, and when he found out he was of age to be an Enforcer in his own right he recruited him on the spot. So now my son's being dragged facedown through the archives and is studying hard.

The lesson to learn here, kids, is that if your Mom or Dad drags you to something you should probably find something out about it first.

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

Insomniac Fugue in B-flat...

The morning of the fourth day is tough. The veil between the life all around you and your own doing and being has been getting thicker and now it's almost opaque. You feel like that time when someone spiked the punch with Everclear at that office party. Everyone was suddenly much more wasted than they had planned on, and everyone was sitting around trying very hard to pretend to be sober so as not to get the boss mad at them.

You sit in your chair in the correct posture at work and you very carefully try to pretend to care about that one customer who can't get into the site, or that one project that just seems to never go completely away. Start at the top. One thing at a time, over and over. The arms of the clock above the receptionist's head sweep around in strange fits and starts to some rhythm that you can't seem to catch. You get to the end of the day's presto finally, though. It's time to go.

You walk down the street towards the parking lot, fumbling for your keys like usual. Someone catches your eye. You feel the shadow sweep over you. You were hoping to skip the scherzo on this piece but that's not going to happen. You sink a little into your shoes, knowing what's coming. Sometimes you can't even tell what it is about them that makes the connection, but sometimes you can. A flash of stance, a glance of hazel eye, those ugly khaki pants he adored. It's hard to know which is worse - you not knowing if you're crazy, or having that particular bit of him dredged up again. You want nothing more than to kneel at their feet and start to bargain. You want to beg and plead that you'll give them the world if they can somehow give you yours back.

This has happened before. You know what to do. Just set the face on the "Social Smile 3" configuration, and choose a point to aim at that's way past them. Breath carefully through the nose, so the mouth forming the words doesn't get a chance to breathe them out for the wind to play with. Just keep going. Wipe any tears once you get to the point you chose to anchor on.

Another anchor-point or two later, you can start to let the body handle the breathing again. Now comes all the recriminations. The voice that tells you how stupid this all is that you're still doing this all this time later. How he doesn't care and he probably never really did. It starts listing off all the stuff he missed and the lipstick stains on the undershorts and those emails to the other women and the things he said about you in them, but you've stopped listening. It's going to rant on like that for a while and you have to get home and get dinner on the stove. It's right, but it's been right for a long time and it's not going to get any more or less right. As long as you can keep it from bringing up the girls you'll get through the evening.

You get to the car, and by carefully reciting each step as you accomplish it you manage to get into the driver's seat. Sort of like a preflight checklist. Car key in ignition. No, that's the house key. CAR key in ignition. Check. Your phone starts to buzz where you dumped it on the console, vibrating the loose change that's been gravitating into the cup holders. You have a quick flash of annoyed thought that you need to clean this mess up again. You pick the phone up and your heart sinks. It's Aunt Cathy. You close your eyes and answer it before it starts ringing in earnest.

They're at it again. She explains the latest thing Mom won't let her do that the doctor said she was supposed to do and I ask her to hand the phone to Mom. On the third or fourth try she does. Mom gives me her side of it. Go back and forth between the two of them until they realize that they're not in Jr. High anymore. Aunt Cathy's parting shot ringing in your ears blots out the jerk shouting how stupid you are and listing flaws, so that's one blessing at any rate.

You pick your forehead up off the steering wheel where it had fallen during the soi disant conversation, finish the checklist and join the flow of metal down the street towards the house. It's not "home". You don't know where that is. You're not sure you ever really did. Adagio swells under the mundanities of accellerator pedals and gas gauges.

You arrive, but it becomes clear that the director has another movement in mind. The first few bars stomp in through the front door with a gust of cool wind and muddy footprints. The cell phone buzz on the counter rings counterpoint. You pick it up to shut it up while the allegro begins. You tread the measures, restating the themes again and again until they resolve into a single bare tone.

You find yourself back at the start again, staring at the same screen that had bounced the morning sun's glare into your eyes. Finale, you hope. Time to go see what the ceiling has to say about the matter.

Monday, July 31, 2006

Good Linkage....

It's summer vacation. This afternoon the kids are watching Naruto and dredging around on the computer. I know about Naruto because of the ear-splitting "Believe it!" that I got over the phone when the girls called and told me they were headed off to work. I know about the internet usage because they send me links to stuff.

They do this all year 'round, but in the summer there's a new breed. It's slow season for a lot of online media. All the webcomic-guys are at various conventions so their update schedules go straight into the toilet. Not a lot of new game releases. We're between seasons on RedvsBlue. This winter's movie releases are on DVD and bad summer flicks are on at the theaters. At times like this they get a little off the beaten path.

It's a fine line. Looming over all this is the horror known only as the Foamy Incident. That was a time last winter when they sent me a link off of that involved the resident over-medicated squirrel babysitting and the predictably bad results. If you're an afficianado, it was the "Medicated Baby-heads" one. A co-worker came by while I was watching it in stunned dismay and she about went up with the windowshade. Needless to say we introduced the concept of "Not Safe For Work" quick, fast, and in a hurry.

Today's links have been sheer genius so far.

Bet you can guess which one of the kids this one came from. Armor-piercing Nerf Gun. 'Nuff said on that one. But the QC guy is going down the next time he starts some smack.

YouTube links are de rigeur this year, and they found one of my favorite things ever. The Yep-Yep aliens from Sesame Street. This is the classic with the book and the phone. Jim Henson himself does the blue one.

I saved the best for last. Tatsuya Ishida over at Sinfest had a little thought go under the radar last month or so ago in his Resistance blog:
I'm thinking about starting a religion which is the exact same as Christianity, same book, same story, same rituals. Heaven, hell, sin, salvation, all that good stuff. The only difference would be that instead of the name "Jesus" I would insert the word "Dude." And instead of God it would be "Voltron." Otherwise everything else is intact. So you got Dude of Nazareth and Voltron Our Father in Heaven. Has a certain ring to it, don't it? I can imagine a Sunday sermon about Dude in the desert being tempted by Satan. What did Dude do? He resisted! Yay! Way to go, Dude! And Genesis would read: In the beginning there was Voltron. Voltron made the earth and the heavens and on the sixth day the Lord Our Voltron created man in his own image. When he saw that it was good, Voltron rested. Moses, of course, would be known as "Beavis." I think it has potential. The Church of Dude. And Voltron. We could play team basketball against the Subgenius people and the Flying Spaghetti Monster Cult. We could form our own league. Winner gets dominion over all existence.

LordGnu, what say we do a little half-court challenge against the winner of that game. I know physical exertion really isn't in the Articles of the Semi-Faithful. But I figure the Dude guys will be even more baked than our guys, and those Spagetti Monster guys are pretty much all hairy, ill-built Unix geeks. Even with me on the team we should totally pwn. And then the Great God Gnu will hold sway. Might be worth a little non-dogmatic exertion. ;)

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

Mountains and Molehills....

I saw my first real molehills today. I've heard that old saying about "turning a mountain into a molehill", and the opposite. I always just assumed it made a charming alliteration. I mean, the critter isn't that much bigger than a mouse or a shrew. How big a deal can this be?

Well, looks like about two cubic feet of big deal. Wow. Last night that was a manicured expanse of green lawn. This morning as I walked around the corner of the building, it looked like someone dumped a wheelbarrow-load of dirt out on the lawn in four piles. At first I figured it was the lawn guys chasing the wily but elusive sprinkler system again. It seems to get around a surprising amount and they're forever digging up something trying to deal with it. That's a whole nother story, though. Not so. I ran into the little old gal who works up on the fourth floor who was smoking by the door and when we exchanged our morning hellos she pointed them out and told me a story about the ones that are re-arranging her lawn at home, too. I guess her husband has been sprinkling something gross on the lawn trying to drive them away but this morning he called no joy on that.

I wanted to go over there and look and see if I can see a real live mole, but they're really sensitive to vibrations and stuff and I don't want to scare them. Silly of me, I know, but it's true. I can't stand spiders, but I feel awful if I don't kill them in one smush. That's making them suffer. I walked into the building shaking my head.

A couple hours later me and one of my coworkers went back down to geek out someplace where we won't frighten the normals and so she can smoke. The piles have since mysteriously sprouted these black metal contraptions at their base that I'm pretty sure are traps. Some of them are live cage-traps, and some of them are obviously some sort of jaw-trap.

This is fascinating to me. There are people around here protesting all sorts of trapping and what have you. They say it's inhumane. I was under the impression this wasn't allowed in Washington state. I looked it up and apparently if you pay someone else to do your dirty work, it's ok. I got the name of the service and tried to find their website. I mean, the jaw trap I was looking at was about three inches across. That's a heck of a lot of trap for something the size of my hand. Even without setting one off to see how it works I think it's safe to assume that whatever you catch in it isn't going to care anymore about what you do. But those live traps bother me. I want to find out what they do with the animals they catch in the cages.

Now I've got a referent for yet another old saying that my upbringing didn't give me a handle on. I understand the metaphorical meaning, but I think it's not as accurate as it could be. Mountains are much bigger. That's true. And the change of scale is important. But unlike mountains which are usually kept at arms reach, these things are right there where they're in the way. The actual effect of the problem is considerably bigger from the little animal vole-forming your lawn than it is from the big rock-pile so far away it looks blue.

So, I guess I've learned my one thing for the day. And may all your molehill problems become far-away mountains. ;)

Wednesday, July 05, 2006

Superman Returns; forgot to bring back Clark and the rest....

We saw it last night, and well, this is going to take a while. You all can write me off as an obsessive geek right here if you want. It won't hurt my feelings at all.

I first want to give some kudos. My hat's off to the film's title designer. Great evocation of the old films but with enough wow to bring it up to date. Actually, all the design work was excellent. They evoked those Silver Age times without loosing today. Ditto to all the special effects guys - I saw some very minor matte effects when he was flying (a couple times where he goes right to the edge of the black they drag the black into the blue when he goes back down). But overall it was beautiful work. The DVD transfer should smooth those out quite nicely and we'll be sitting pretty for my living room.

Casting was great. Kitty and that dog really stole the show. I liked Frank Langella as Perry White. And I hope poor Mr. Marsden doesn't get stuck with playing a brownish non-entity who gets left for the hero-guy for his entire career. This is getting a little ridiculous. Spacey as Luthor was amazing. He really brought out the brains as well as the crazy. The museum heist in particular was great. They cast Martha Kent perfectly. Hearing the ghost of Marlon Brando added a beautiful touch. Wasn't over-fond of the new Jimmy. I know they were trying to show that time passes with the beer but then he needs to get better at his job and learn, too.

It was better than I was afraid of, but I wasn't dazzled by Mr. Routh. I've been grumbling since those first promo pics in the new costume came out, but now that I've seen it I have some specifics to point to. It was the opposite of what I was afraid of. He handled Superman fairly well, but his portrayal of Clark Kent really repelled me. He's not supposed to be an incompetent idiot - he's supposed to be Harry Hairshirt. He needs to have enough reporter's chops to be able to keep up with Lois. That's nowhere here. His main claim to investigative skills was guessing Lois's lame-o password. Which if either him or Richard had a single braincell on speaking terms with another between them all they would have had to do was get ahold of the Daily Planet's IT department to get. I wouldn't send him to cover a high-school cotillion. He's still a scrawny git. 225 pounds my arse. Not enough Lycra and balloons in the world to deal with that. And speaking of fabric, the cape looked like one of those plastic tablecloths they get for wedding receptions - what the HECK was that all about?

I must give credit where it is due, though. For all his issues with Clark and the costume, he did handle super-ness fairly well. He had a bit of dash in the whole thing. And he carried off that kiss-curl and the cleft chin and that says a lot.

Didn't much like Lois, either, for a lot of the same reasons. They shorted her investigative skills and her headstrong ways. She seemed so weak and whiny. Lois should have taken Perry's orders and then done exactly as she pleased from the moment she walked out his office door, just like she always has. And who the HECK brings their kid to an investigation of a strange place!? Especially something serious like those blackouts. "Just gonna ask a couple questions" should go right up there with "I'm from the government and I'm here to help". They did have a flash of the right stuff with the fax thing, but using the boy as a distraction like that really didn't sit well with me. If the bad guy had enough brains to see lightning and hear thunder after he unplugged the machine he would have gone for the kid rather than dragging her across that desk by her hair and that's not a risk I'd have been willing to take without any weapons to protect him. Oh, and ditto to Richard for going back into the storm with the kid on the plane!

My biggest problem was the addition of the tawdrier elements. I'm sorry, but him stalking her to her house and the pulling that Peeping Tom on her and her family creeped me out. And him scamming on her on the roof totally took the shine off their flying scene for me. I mean, they made sure to show the engagement ring, for crying out loud. I was so angry I cried. The scene was absolutely beautiful, well played by both of them, and completely cut off at the knees before she took her shoes off. Superman is not supposed to be the sort of skeeze who would do those things.

Not to mention the entire concept of the boy. Who even if he is Superman's son (I won't bore you with several thousand words of geeking on the improbablity of that) and his powers are active then he wouldn't be able to be taking the blood tests that would be going on with his list of medical issues - the asthma and allergies in particular - because they wouldn't be able to pierce his skin. Someone would have noticed she'd been keeping a bard in the closet on that one PDQ. Can't have it both ways, guys. Either he waits for puberty like the comics, or the Kryptonian powers and characteristics are there from the cradle like the other films and you've got to ride that horse. Especially since you showed the whole IV thing in the hospital scene. Looks like they tried to pull the "he's half human so we can do whatever the heck we want" card. Which is cheap.

I do need to get up on a high-horse here. I am sick to death of everyone saying that they're making all these comic movies for comic geeks. If they were, they would not be doing this to them. X-men, Spiderman, Daredevil, Elecktra, the Hulk, what they're doing to Ghost Rider. I'm not even touching the Fantastic Four. You name the IP, and I'll show you signifigant departures from the core materials that affect the story. No, these aren't for geeks. They're making them for the masses and hoping like hell they've waited long enough that the average Joe doesn't remember from his own childhood reading under the covers what it was supposed to be.

I'll do my level best to keep it separate from the other materials in my own mind and just try to enjoy it on it's own merits. Which are considerable. The kids liked it a great deal more than I did. We'll be buying it on DVD. But I'll mourn a bit for what it came so close to being. Maybe a bonfire effigy of Jon Peters is in order.....

Thursday, June 01, 2006

Things you CAN'T do during an RPG....

Long list, but well worth it to get all the way through. Just make sure you're not drinking anything as you go. Here's a few of my favorites:

15. Plan B is not automatically twice as much gunpowder as Plan A.
48. The elf is restricted to decaf for the rest of the adventure.
57. In the middle of a black op I cannot ask a guard to validate parking.
68. Bring him back intact includes redundant organs.
92. The name of the weapon shop is not "Bloodbath and Beyond"
99. Not allowed to see if Jedi can parry a shotgun blast with their lightsaber.
111. I did not pick up the garrote skill last week from my grandmother.
122. The paladin's alignment is not Lawful Anal.
134. The King's Guards official name is not "The Royal Order of the Red Shirt"
148. There is no Gnomish Deathgrip, and even if there was, it wouldn't involve tongs.
167. I was not recruited by Star League for any reason.
168. I was also not recruited by 12 dwarves and a wizard to rob a dragon.
176. I cannot make called shots to the plectrum, anvil, stirrup, hammer or Isle of Langerhans.
204. I am not 'too sexy for the elf, too sexy for the elf, so sexy myself.'
213. I am not the patron saint of common sense.
231. I am not allowed to do anything that would make a Sith Lord cry.
249. If a black op requires me to impersonate an employee, I cannot bill the target for overtime.
259. I am not allowed to take any part off of a Starfighter for use in character-to-character combat.
262. I am not allowed to use Smite Evil on any form of supporting architecture, no matter how evil it appears.
264. "Buddy Armor" does not offer any form of cover or protection.
294. Halflings are niether delicious or nutritious, nor do they taste even remotely like chicken
297. Even if she fails her saving throw, it is impossible to get the princess to answer to "Sweetcheeks"
298. And no, a failed saving throw is nowhere near enough to get her to even consider wearing princess Leia's slave outfit.
300. No matter how well you explain the situation, the assault cannon is not concealable in a trenchcoat.

I think I'm going to make a t-shirt of that first one. ;)

Monday, May 15, 2006

A Net Nanny That Really Works...

This guy doesn't even have kids and he's figured it out. If you think your kid needs protection from something, you don't wait until the government steps in. You get off your duff and take care of it. Why is that so complicated when it comes to the Internet? Here is the current best-of-class kid protection on the market today.

From Eric Burns, over on
"So, as a good citizen of my town, state, nation and world, I would like to give you all the super secret method to protect your children from the dangers and images on the internet. From pornography and predation. From immorality and immodesty. From distraction and diseased minds. It is not 100% accurate, but it is vastly closer than any law, any technology, and any censorship that has yet to be developed.

And it is free.

First. Go into your son or daughter's room.

Second. Disconnect the computer. Be careful to note where the cables connect, if you're not familiar with them.

Third. Bring the computer downstairs.

Fourth. Go back to your son or daughter's room. Take the desk the computer was on.

Fifth. Set the computer and desk up in your living room. It should be angled so that wherever you sit when you're watching television, you have a view of the screen. Make certain the child cannot easily block the screen with their body."

He goes on to describe some very good advice for parents for enforcement.

Funny thing is, on his blog he's got a whole lot of comments from people calling this intrusive. Moving their computer into the living room is intrusive!? I find that hysterically funny. So the pervy classmate (or even the pervy adult) making lewd suggestions to your 14-year-old isn't?

Maybe my opinion is a bit skewed. I'm a bona-fide internet Nazi. My kids have lived with something considerably stricter than this since they figured out what QWERTY meant. They have never had a computer in their room, and only recently have they had game consoles.

Not only do I reserve the right to look over their shoulders, I have logging software on their computer that keeps track of everything they do. I have passwords to all their email and IM accounts. I can't say it's been perfect, but they abide by it for the most part for several reasons:
  • Before I put this into place, we did some research together so they could see what the heck was going on. They understand the risks and they agree that this is stuff they want no part of

  • They grew up with this. I didn't just magically come up with this after they got into something they shouldn't. This has been in place since the girls were six, and the guys were 8 and 9.

  • It has a defined end - when they graduate from high school and buy their own hardware. It's turning out the second half of that requirement is far more defining.

  • They have ready access in other venues to real information on all those topics other kids learn from still other kids, a pr0n site, or a bathroom wall. They don't feel the burning need to go and do this stuff because they can get the info legitimately.

  • There is no Sherlock Hemlock guess-work here. If I decide something needs to be addressed, I have your number down to the IP address of the site you went to and the images you downloaded even if you've deleted them. I have dates and times and I know which kid did it.

  • I don't try to police other people's houses. But my kids know the rules and they understand why they have them and they like having the freedom they do have. They're far more likely go to AirSofting behind my back than go hit pr0n.

And unlike most of the NetNanny type of stuff out there, they have total freedom until they screw up. There are no controls on their internet access other than to keep pages that have rated themselves as "adult" behind my administrator's password. I don't sit there and mull over their logs every night. I have some very simple reports I run that happen automatically and are emailed to me if the things I have set as issues come up. Then I can take a look and decide what action this stuff warrants. We've had warnings and some discussions, but I've only had to shut their internet accesses down to kiddie-rated pages for infractions only twice and both of those were back in jr high.

Don't freak out. This is truly important. If you run into something that concerns you, you talk to the kid and calmly apply the consequence for these actions. You do not scream. You do not have a cow. And the consequence needs to be congruent with the severity of the offense. I do not pull their internet access back to Yahooligans for using the "F" word in IM with their buddies. If this starts to come up all the time we talk about it, and if it doesn't clean up within the agreed upon interval and stay that way I drop an email to the gang included in the conversation asking them to keep it a bit cleaner. Since I know their friends and they know me they're cool with it. Only had to do that once.

Here's a simple concept for all those people who are having a cow about this limitation. If you don't want to loose the priveledge, then DON'T SCREW UP. If you want to be trusted, then be worthy of it. Don't go to those sites. Don't hang out online with people who talk about that stuff. Don't put personally identifiable information in a IM window. You would be amazed at how many people of all ages never even consider that as an option. If you don't want to be treated like a baby in a playpen, the don't act like one.

It's not like I'm doing this for kicks because I have nothing else to do. This is serious stuff. You can ask my daughter's 15-year-old friend who was sexually assaulted by a 23-year-old because she didn't think this could really happen and she went off to meet him and her parents weren't paying attention.

You're not missing out as much as you think. It's not like all this sort of thing is going out of style or something. All that garbage will be waiting for when you're 18 and more ready to handle the bad side of it. And by then hopefully you'll have learned how little you really need it.

Wednesday, May 10, 2006

Crazy going slowly am I....

Now that we're playing the High School Graduation game from the other side, I have come to the conclusion that GED's might just be a viable option after all. Things are a bit different here and now. What a ghymkhana!

Been trying to catch up on things and a Dork Tower a couple comics back just made me spit coffee all over my monitor. "Bibgy's Grasping Purple Nurple" indeed!

Bravo, Kovalic.

Friday, April 14, 2006

Sephiroth Killed my PS2!

I have been trying to beat his sorry butt, and he has that one move that just ticks me off where he steals all your MP and all but a tiny sliver of your health at random intervals. And then he pulls a big aerial combo on you. The girls had been working on their game after school, and then Stephen got in there on the Gummi Ships. And then I got in there and that was the straw that broke the camel's back.

Well, maybe the several thousand hours of gameplay before this might have had something to do with it.

But the fact remains the poor thing gave up under the strain last night. It will still load a game, but only if you press down on the top hard enough to warp the case in a specific spot. I am going to pick up a new one tonight.

So le Roi Est Mort! Vive le Roi!

And I am going to have that chibi jerk's pelt on my wall before this night is out!

Tuesday, March 28, 2006

I have a Rent-a-Zilla and it's all MINE!

We had SakuraCon here in Seattle last weekend. I was a little put out by that. Because I had planned to go but thanks to a guy here at work who was trying to develop a sense of humor I couldn't. He really sucks at it. He scheduled a huge project to go live on April 1st. Yep. That's as good as it gets, folks.

I was at youth group, fighting with the bloody projector and kind of bumming because a bunch of the girls were bragging and planning their assault on the place. One of them noticed and asked me what character I would want on a sketch if I got to go. I was touched, and a little flabberghasted. Looking down at my TPCD t-shirt, I pulled "Rent-a-Zilla" off the top of my head. They all giggled, and said they should have known.

Came back with all sorts of stories. You can always tell who's been to one of these things; Pocky-scented breath is a dead giveaway. They had a great time. I can't imagine the guys who were there did, though. Some mental midget scheduled Fred Gallagher to sign autographs for SIX HOURS straight. The poor guy was a trooper, but come on gang.

But for me that's not the best part. Sunday, the flock tracked me down in the hallway and present me with an envelope. I open it up, and it's a signed sketch of Rent-a-Zilla, just for me. I was totally floored. I never would have expected it. They stood in that insane line twice to get it. She's said it was for "a friend". I think that touched me even more.

Thanks guys. I really needed that. And thanks Fred, for not thinking she'd lost her mind and helping those girls totally make my day for at least the next month. I've got it framed and sitting on my desk right now and I've already sent it out after a customer I have to deal with already this morning.

Must remember to add "pork-rinds" as a budget line-item. This is going to start costing me, I fear. ;)

Monday, March 20, 2006

Pollyanna's Teaparty....

The Easter Bunny is on his way, but it's coming in an odd direction this year. Several of my friends have kids who are of a certain age. That age where the world finally rubs enough of it's grime into their eyes that they start to loose their belief in magic. Santa Claus, the Tooth Fairy, and several other mythical figures have been set up and then knocked down. They've lost something, and the parents feel like they have, too.

I deal with a lot of teenagers, too. Between my four and the roving bands of their friends I see and hear a lot of what's going on in their lives. A lot of them have lost any belief in anything at all - God, parents, the world in general. It's part and parcel of the growing process, I guess, but it also seems so much harder than it should be.

Seems like these days people have lost the ability to believe. With the certainties of death and taxes and all the dour solidities, if you can't measure with a yardstick or whack them with a mallet they can't or won't cope. Even faith itself is now measured by how much of it can be proven in real life. I find it kind of funny. To me "Intelligent Design" and "faith" are just about as much of an oxymoron as "military" and "intelligence". If you believe in the Creation as laid out in Genesis, then why the heck do you base your philosophy on about what can be concretely proven in this world? I'm sure God's up there wondering where he can find a mustard seed or two.

There are things in this world that need to be believed in. Facts have absolutely nothing to do with them.
  • I believe that there is good in everybody. That's Ehv-reee-bohd-eeeee.

  • I believe that justice can and will prevail. Maybe not right now, but it will one day.

  • I believe that things can really suck, and sometimes there doesn't seem to be much to fix them. But if you don't try, they damned skippy for sure won't get fixed.

  • I believe that might does not make right, and neither do lies or evasion.

  • I believe that hard work really does help.

  • I believe that sunlight cleanses more than dirty linens.

  • I believe that one person really can make a difference on both the big and the small scales.

  • I believe beauty exists in this world, on both the big and small scales.

  • I believe that being child-like is a goal, not something to run from.

It helps in the real world. With this in mind, cubicle walls do not a prison make. Bad coffee can be improved by a good line in the funny papers someone hung up on the cork-board in the breakroom. Believing babies do really smile even when all convention wisdom says it's just gas makes changing them after the rest of the process takes it's course a bit less daunting. I believe that muddy footprints all over your freshly cleaned carpet can be improved dramatically by an enthusiastic telling of the really cool maneuver that caused them. And being able to enjoy catching your kids playing some tough street-savvy car racing game to the soundtrack of the movie "Curious George" is a necessary part of living gracefully here in Hormone Hall.

There are figures to the contrary on all these counts if you look at it through the hard cold lens of fact. The preponderance of evidence is clearly against me. And I loose track of this, sometimes. But I don't care. I will hold onto it when I can. The alternative is watching my soul being sucked into the world's wood-chipper one day's worth at a time.

Sometimes when people hear about how my life works, they say something like, "I don't know how you do it." Well, this is it. If you stack enough little pieces of good together, it can add up. Some days it's just sand-sized bits. But enough of those can derail the most determined bad day if you apply them in the right spot.

Give it a try. You might be surprised. Pollyanna and I have a lovely tea planned for tomorrow under the blooming cherry trees by my drive. We'll be there rain or shine. And if the world is a little too with you, maybe you could come hold down a corner of the blanket and have a cuppa in your mind.

Friday, March 17, 2006

Hollywood Squares...

Those of us old enough to remember the original Hollywood Squares
Game will appreciate these. These are from the old Hollywood
Squares show in the 70's when responses were truly spontaneous.


Q: If you're going to make a parachute jump, you should be at least how high?
A: Charley Weaver: Three days of steady drinking should do it.

Q: True or false...a pea can last as long as 5,000 years.
A: George Gobel: Boy it sure seems that way sometimes...

Q: According to Cosmo, if you meet a stranger at a party and you think he's really attractive, is it okay to come out directly and ask him if he's married?
A: Rose Marie: No, wait until morning.

Q: Which of your five senses tends to diminish as you get older?
A: Charley Weaver: My sense of decency.

Q: In Hawaiian, does it take more than three words to say "I love you"
A: Vincent Price: No, you can say it with a pineapple and a twenty.

Q: As you grow older, do you tend to gesture more or less with your hands while you are talking?
A: Rose Marie: You ask me one more growing older question, Peter...and I'll give you a gesture you'll never forget!

Q: Paul, why do Hell's Angels wear leather?
A: Paul Lynde: Because chiffon wrinkles too easily.

Q: Charley, you've just decided to grow strawberries. Are you going to get any during your first year?
A: Charley Weaver: Of course not, Peter. I'm too busy growing strawberries!

Q: In bowling, what's a perfect score?
A: Rose Marie: Ralph, the pin boy.

Q: It is considered in bad taste to discuss two subjects at nudist camps. One is politics. What is the other?
A: Paul Lynde: Tape measures.

Q: Can boys join the Camp Fire Girls?
A: Marty Allen: Only after lights out.

Q: When you pat a dog on its head he will usually wag his tail. What will a goose do?
A: Paul Lynde: Make him bark

Q: According to Ann Landers, is their anything wrong with getting into the habit of kissing a lot of people?
A: Charley Weaver: It got me out of the army!

Q: Back in the old days, when Great Grandpa put horseradish on his head, what was he trying to do?
A: George Gobel: Get it in his mouth.

Q: Who stays pregnant for a longer period of time, your wife or your elephant?
A: Paul Lynde: Who told you about my elephant?

Q: Jackie Gleason recently revealed that he firmly believes in them and
has actually seen them on at least two occasions. What are they?
A: Charley Weaver: His feet.

Q: Do female frogs croak?
A: Paul Lynde: If you hold their little heads under water long enough.

Wednesday, March 08, 2006

Dear Dribbling Little Junkmonkey....

Yes, I mean you. The foul mouthed heathen who skews the typographical heirarchy of the English language due to the high incidence of usage of the letter "F".

I know you got a sniper round right where the sun don't shine. That doesn't mean you need to discuss the procreative habits of several sorts of small mammals that loudly for the rest of the game. If you don't want her to do that again, next time you're driving the Warthog please remember that "clearance" isn't just for secret agents. Yes it's an ATV but it's still captive to the laws of physics. That way when you drive up the hill you might actually avoid the 4' high boulders strewn about by the game to make that more interesting and not get yourself high-centered like that. Once you do that, you're sniper-bait.

If you decide for whatever reason to do this again, I recommend that you LEAVE THE WARTHOG. You might be able to flip it off the rock. If you sit there with your thumb in your ear like you did this time you're liable to get caught in the crossfire between two Ghosts who are merrily trying to knock each other out of the sky. This is also unhealthy. When you get hit, your discussion about the sexual habits and probable skin color of the pilots is not going to help you respawn any faster.

The Nazi B$&@() Driving the Ghost Who Turned off Voice Chat and Gave You That Negative Feedback

P.S. We're playing in the Recreation Zone. That means we're all supposed to keep it clean and not get quite so up tight about it. If you want heavy competition hit the Professional Zone, you mouthbreathing smacktard. Of course, that would also mean you should have some skills. So either zip your filthy howling screamer or learn to hit the broad side of a barn from the inside. Your choice.