Monday, March 31, 2008


It was one of the best moments of fatherhood so far (and there have been many).

Let me set the stage for you:

I had just settled down with some pretzels and a Flat Tire to see if North Carolina would beat Louisville to keep what's left of my final four intact. After a few minutes of play, our 5-year-old daughter ambled in and climbed up on my lap.

And... ACTION:
"Is K-State playing?"

"No. Sadly the Wildcats won't be playing anymore games this year."

"So who's playing?"

"This is the North Carolina Tarheels verses Louisville."

"Which ones are the good guys."

"Well, there aren't really any good guys left since K-State isn't playing. But I'm hoping North Carolina wins this game."

"Which team is North Carolina?"

"The guys with white shirts are North Carolina. The guys with red shirts are Louisville."

"Which one is winning?"

"Well, North Carolina has 10 points and Louisville has 9 points. So North Carolina is winning by 1 point."

"One point!?"

"Yup. Oooh. There was a foul."

"What is a foul?"

"That's when you break the rules by playing too rough. See, now that guy get to try a free shot and if he makes it he gets another free shot... Now North Carolina is ahead by THREE points."
This is followed by about a minute of quiet as we watch the Tarheels stretch their lead to 14-9.

Then I get this gem of a question:

"Dad, why are those guys brown."

"What are you talking about?" I say.

"Those guys, some of them are brown. You know, like on their skin."

"Oh. Well, they just have a different color of skin. That's all. Like your friend Noah and his little sister."

"Oh. But why is it brown?"

"Well it's just a different color. You know how you have blond hair and I have brown hair? It's like that."

"Oh. Yeah... Daddy?"

"What is it kiddo."

"Can I watch a cartoon?"
End scene.

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Friday, March 28, 2008

Friday Blogthing: Gone Wild

Like most Fun Friday things, this is absolutely useless.

, don't get the wrong idea here (you furry phreak, you).

You can make your own cute cuddly completely non-sexual (Chimpo!) monster at the Wildlife Conservation Society website.

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Thursday, March 27, 2008

Friday Feast: Minimalist version

What does the color dark green make you think of?
Absolutely nothing

How many cousins do you have?
10 first cousins.

On a scale of 1 to 10 with 10 being highest, how honest are you?
I can not tell a lie, I'm a 1.

Main Course
Name something that is truly free.
Freedom's just another word for nothin' left to lose. Nothing ain't worth nothing, but it's free.

Using the letters in the word SPRING, write a sentence.
Some pranks really irk nice girls.

It was a light meal, so if your still hungry you can find additional feasts here: Logtar, H-Train, Bea, Chimpo, Shane, Nuke

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There were door prizes

It sounds a bit repetitive, but everyone seemed to have a great time last night at the big blogger meetup in KCK.

I mean how could you not have great time with cheap drinks (I drank a Flying Monkey three various Boulevard brews and bought two more for friends, and even with the food I ordered and tip factored in I still spent less that $25 on the night), great company and even a little science thrown in.

Yes, science. I met Keith Sader for the first time, and the first thing he did was offer me a free DVD all about stem cells, cloning and the like. I mentioned that it would come in handy as I build my evil clone army to take over the world.

That's why I like going to these things -- because there's always a chance to meet new and interesting people. I met A.Librarian in person for the first time, Nuke, and of course Keri Oke. And I particularly enjoyed conversations with blogging power couple Bea and her sidekick Logtar (who was bustin' my chops all night, the little scamp. I totally owe him a noogie next time I see him).

But perhaps the best conversation I had as I was leaving. I was just walking out the door when one of my favorite commenters was walking in. This guy doesn't have his own blog per se, but he spends a lot of time reading other's blogs and leaving his incredibly varied thoughts and opinions as comments.

It's kind of a meta-blogging experiment that I really admire. Anyway I had a great conversation with this guy. His online handle is "Anonymous" and we talked for maybe 15 minutes.

He mentioned how cool it was that everyone was getting together like this, but that we are all still pretty lame for getting together like this. He also said that he is totally against the war in Iraq and that everyone who doesn't hate it as much as he does is a redneck idiot. But he also said that most Liberals are American-hating communists (and really, who can argue with that).

You can read more about the big event here, here, here, and here.

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Wednesday, March 26, 2008

There Will Be Door Prizes

There will be door prizes to the first people who show up (after me that is, or, whatever), so you better freakin' be there or I'll... drink... your... milkshake!

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Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Casting Call

I just read The D's Awesome® post about the upcoming movie remake of The A-Team.

The D gives a great (as far as I know) suggestion for the cast of the movie:
  • Col. John "Hannibal" Smith = Bruce Willis
  • Lt. Templeton "Faceman" Peck = Matthew McConaughey
  • Capt. H.M. "Howling Mad" Murdock = Woody Harrelson
  • Bosco B.A.(Bad Attitude) Baracus = Michael Clark Duncan
  • Hot chick that needs their help (you know there has to be one) = Megan Fox
These are great picks, and I probably couldn't improve upon them. So I'll take a bit of a different approach in my casting call.

I'll pick Bloggers to play the lead roles in the film:
  • Col. John "Hannibal" Smith = The D himself (The Man, The Myth, The Legend!) He does have previous military experience, which will come in handy.
  • Lt. Templeton “Faceman” Peck = Chimpotle (changes his blog template like most people change underwear. Not me of course, since I don't wear underwear).
  • Capt. H.M. “Howling Mad” Murdock = Happy In Bag (that dood is craaazy!)
  • Bosco B.A.(Bad Attitude) Baracus = Is there anyone with a worse attitude than Xavier Onassizzle, the Hip(hop) Suburban White Guy? I think not.
  • Hot chick that needs their help (you know there has to be one) = Gotta go with Spyder, the nicest, sexiest chick out there (after my Supermodel Wife, of course).
I'll leave it up to you guys to fill in some of the minor roles, such as Col. Roderick Decker (the guy who's always trying to catch those crazy A-Team kids) and Narrator (the guy who narrates).

Okay, who are you're nominations?

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YouTube Tuesday: The best in terms of pants

Believe it or not I've had an experience very similar to this. Still, there's nothing quite as funny as a public pantsing.

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Monday, March 24, 2008

Bracket Update

Well, despite currently being tied for first place with two others in our group, it's clear that my anti-KU bias has essentially scuttled any shot I had at winning the bracket challenge.

That, and my lack of faith in #2 seed Georgetown, who I had going to the final four after beating the 'Hawks in the Round of Eight (I absolutely refuse to use the term "Elite Eight" - ah damn! I just did!).

Anyway, I wasn't too worried with Duke lost, since I figured most people had them going at least to the Round of Eight. I have UCLA beating them and then losing to Memphis.

But that's all academic. With Georgetown and Vanderbilt both eliminated, it looks like KU's toughest test will be either Wisconsin or Davidson. And even a die-hard KU hater like myself has hard time picking against the Cheathawks in that scenario.

You can click the image to enlargify.
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Friday, March 21, 2008

Friday Feast

Welcome to the 3AM Diner. Take a seat at the counter. Your waitress will be with you soon.

Given the choice, would you prefer to live in the country or in the city?
City. No contest. I grew up in "the country," and while the scenery and solitude are nice (I love visiting home), the cultural opportunities even in a small city like KC far outweigh the benefits of Small Town USA (in my humble opinion).

Who is the cutest kid you know?
My daughter, of course.

Fill in the blank: I couldn’t believe it when I heard ___________.
It's not butter.

Main Course
If you could star in a commercial for one of your favorite products, which one would you want to advertise?
I'm pretty sure I've already answered this question once, so I'll choose a different product. Hmmmm. I guess I'll go with my favorite Scotch, The Glenlivet, because I could probably work a free case out of the deal.

What type(s) of vitamins and/or supplements do you take on a regular basis?
Liquid caffeine supplements (about four cups a day).

Here are some of the other customers at the diner: Logtar, H-Train (Happy B-Day!), Bea, Chimpo, Shane, Sit Stay

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Thursday, March 20, 2008

Friday Blogthing: Mr. Personality

Submitted by Bea...

Sheesh, looking at these results, it's a wonder anyone can stand to be around me.

My Personality

Openness to Experience

You rarely get angry and it takes a lot to make you angry, however you are sensitive about what others think of you. Your concern about rejection and ridicule cause you to feel shy and uncomfortable around others. You are easily embarrassed and often feel ashamed. Your fears that others will criticize or make fun of you are exaggerated and unrealistic, but your awkwardness and discomfort may make these fears a self-fulfilling prophecy. You tend not to talk much and prefer to let others control the activities of groups. You tend not to express your emotions openly and are sometimes not even aware of your own feelings. You do not enjoy confrontation, but you will stand up for yourself or push your point if you feel it is important, however you will help others if they are in need. If people ask for too much of your time you feel that they are imposing on you. You take your time when making decisions and will deliberate on all the possible consequences and alternatives.

Take a Personality Test now or view the full Personality Report.

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Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Bracket racket

Logtar threw down the gauntlet.

I looked down at it, poked it a little with my toe, then decided to pick it up (but only with my thumb and forefinger, like it was something that might be dirty or dangerous).

I joined his NCAA Bracket group on Yahoo!.

I tend to be pretty myopic and emotional about the NCAA tourney. I'm not good at looking at teams objectively and making a cold judgment on any particular team's chances of victory over its opponent.

This perhaps explains why I have picked K-State to advance passed USC (although in my defense, I have them losing to Wisconsin), and why I can't see KU getting to the Final Four (sorry The D).

But, I'm honest with myself. I know I emotionally biased in this situation. And as a preemptive mea culpa, I'm publishing my bracket for your derision and mockery.

You can click the image to embiggen. Then fire away.
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Tuesday, March 18, 2008

YouTube Tuesday: Semi fan

As a K-State fan, I've become accustomed to heartbreak and disappointment.

I think trials and tribulations are character building for sports fans. I mean, it's easy to be a fan of a team that's always winning. It takes depth and complexity to stay a faithful fan to a team that continually disappoints.

I think this theory accounts for the extreme shallowness of all KU fans (not you, of course. You're the exception). But hey, it's just a theory.

Anyway, this is all to say good luck to K-State in their first-round matchup against USC. I'll get my hopes up, cheer loud, etc.

Those comments are just tangentially related to Will Ferrell, who appears also to be a K-State fan.

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Monday, March 17, 2008

Irish I were Drunk

To you lucky bastards who have the day off, be safe out there. If you drink, don't drive. Just stumble over to The D's house.

To you poor eejits who, like myself, are working for The Man today, join me in chorus of the Irish drinking song.

May those who love us love us.
And those that don't love us,
May God turn their hearts.
And if He doesn't turn their hearts,
May he turn their ankles,
So we'll know them by their limping.

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Friday, March 14, 2008

Thank God it's Pi Day

I had started a post about this the other day but I nearly forgot to publish it.

Can you imagine the calamity it would have caused if I would have celebrated Pi on 3/14 and all of the circles in the world suddenly had to correct the ratio of their circumference to their diameter? It would have been pandelerium I tells ya.

Thankfully, May jogged my memory and I can now happily report that my birthday is in the top 500,000 digits of Pi.

Also, I hereby challenge you all to test your Pi knowledge in the Pi triva challenge.

But first, check out this music video for a refresher course.

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Friday Feast: All you can eat

Just a reminder, the county health department requires that you use a clean plate each time you return to the buffet. Thank you.
  • Appetizer
    On a scale of 1-10 (with 10 as highest), how much do you like your own handwriting?
    Like it? Probably about a 6.5, the main problem being that it's illegible.

  • Soup
    Do you prefer baths or showers?
    Are you kidding me? Showers! I can't stand the thought of sitting in a tepid pool of my own filth.

  • Salad
    What was the last bad movie you watched?
    Blades of Glory. Will Ferrell is funny and all, he had some good one-liners ("No exaggeration, I could not love a human baby more then I love this brush."). But still, that's an hour and a half of my life that I'll never get back.

  • Main Course
    Name something you are addicted to and describe how it affects your life.
    I'm addicted to being awesome. It affects my life by the sheer about of awesomeness that I am forced to live with.

  • Dessert
    Which instrument is your favorite to listen to?
    Stan Getz' saxomophone:
Others who have bellied up to the buffet: Logtar, Bea, Shane, Chimpo, H-Train

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Friday Blogthing: Eeeeevil

I'm thinking if I grow a goatee and wear a Nehru jacket, I could ratchet up my ranking a little.

I am 44% Evil Genius.
I Want to be Evil!
I want to be evil. I do evil things. But given the opportunity, and a darn good reason I may turn to the good side. Besides I am probably a miserable evil genius.

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Thursday, March 13, 2008

3AM Poll: Spitzer swallows

Every blogger and their dog has an opinion (generally a low one) of the actions of former New York Gov. Eliot Spitzer.

If only he would have checked with the Inkernetz before dropping 80-large on "personal gratification services" over the past few years. We could have helped him. All that is water under the Chappaquiddick causeway. But in the interest of helping future philanderers, this week's poll focuses on alternatives that Gov. Spitzer could have pursued.

*For you who read this in an RSS reader, you'll have to go tot he actual blog post to benefit from all of the juicy cleverness and cast your vote.

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Random photo X: In case of emergency

I snapped this pic with my crappy phone camera at the hotel in Atlanta.

It's genius.

"In case of fire, drink beer"

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Wednesday, March 12, 2008

How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love Brain-Dead Liberals

A few months ago the charming and totally hunky Xavier Onassis posted another Rambling and Utterly Pointless® (his words, not mine) rant about The Fallacy of Borders.

Of course I let it angry up my blood. I posted a few responses in his comments trying to get across that bigger governments are worse not better and the government is best that governs least (up to a point anyway) and that one of the big fallacies of so-called Liberals (or Progressives as they now like to call themselves) is that they ignore basic human nature.

I actually had planned on doing an entire post in rebuttal -- pointing out that the genius of our constitution is that it assumed politicians would be douchey and try to grab power (which, by the way, our current Legislative branch has allowed our Executive to do in recent decades, but that's a different post).

I thought it important that people accept themselves for the animals they are, holistic of all the greatness (creativity, compassion) and jerkiness (lust and greed) that entails.

Unfortunately, in the midst of formulating thoughts on this I became distracted by more urgent issues such as college basketball and Magnum PI's birthday. So the aforementioned post never materialized.

Fortunately, I read a really good essay today by New York author/playwright David Mamet titled Why I Am No Longer a 'Brain-Dead Liberal'.

Mamet touches on a lot of the same points I would have made, except as a professional writer, he does it much more eloquently.
I began to question what I actually thought and found that I do not think that people are basically good at heart; indeed, that view of human nature has both prompted and informed my writing for the last 40 years. I think that people, in circumstances of stress, can behave like swine, and that this, indeed, is not only a fit subject, but the only subject, of drama.

I'd observed that lust, greed, envy, sloth, and their pals are giving the world a good run for its money, but that nonetheless, people in general seem to get from day to day; and that we in the United States get from day to day under rather wonderful and privileged circumstances—that we are not and never have been the villains that some of the world and some of our citizens make us out to be, but that we are a confection of normal (greedy, lustful, duplicitous, corrupt, inspired—in short, human) individuals living under a spectacularly effective compact called the Constitution, and lucky to get it.

For the Constitution, rather than suggesting that all behave in a godlike manner, recognizes that, to the contrary, people are swine and will take any opportunity to subvert any agreement in order to pursue what they consider to be their proper interests.
The essay is lengthy, but so well written that is absolutely worth your lunchtime reading. You liberals should consider it an inspirational testimony to your own recovery.

Your welcome, XO.

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Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Random thoughts from the ATL

I just returned from a business trip to Atlanta. It was my first time there, and I'm sure I didn't get to see all of the kewl places but I did have some pretty good food. Here are some random thoughts from the trip:

  • What sucks more than work travel? Work travel over the weekend. I left on Friday (during work hours) and returned on Monday (during work hours), so it's like I never had a weekend. Hopefully I'll be able to take off work a little early on Friday for some well-deserved Boulevard Wheat.

  • Talk about urban sprawl! Atlanta takes urban sprawl to a whole new level. That city makes Overland Park look like downtown Manhattan.

  • I'm not a connoisseur of grits. I barely know what a grit is. My last experience with grits was in New York, and I remember it was merely okay. But even the worst grits I had in Atlanta (at the hotel restaurant) were amazing. They served them plain, with butter, or in the case of the aforementioned restaurant, with a cream and cheese sauce and jumbo shrimp. Delish!

  • Speaking of food, we dined at the restaurant of Iron Chef vanquisher Kevin Rathbun. You might remember when he and his brother totally flayed Bobby Flay. Anyway, I had the lobster taco with the charred corn on the side and a desert of 20-year-old Tawney port and Bailey's Crème Brulée.

    It was all excellent. Then Mr. Rathbun himself came out to our table to talk. Great guy, not at all arrogant or egotistical. Plus, he was at least 6'2" and north of 300 pounds. It's always a good sign with the chef is a big fella. It shows that he knows what he's doing when it comes to food.

  • Speaking of food again, one of the people in our group read that Taqueria Del Sol was pegged by Bon Appétit magazine as having the best tacos in the FRIGGEN' NATION! So you know we would check it out. I don't know about best in the country, but the tacos were damn good. I had a one each of the fish, brisket and carnita tacos as well as a Memphis taco ("Chopped smoked pork with a spicy jalapeños cole slaw and tequila BBQ sauce.")

  • I've decided that there are few things more dehumanizing than air travel. I was scheduled on a 11:30 a.m. flight out of Atlanta. I arrived at the check-in gate at 9 a.m. after returning my rental car. I then spent the next HOUR waiting in an unholy security line with 1,200 of my closest friends.

    It was so bad that the woman behind me actually left to see if there was a shorter security line down the concourse. She came back to report that the other three lines were worse. We let her have her place back in line because you have to do small things like that to maintain your humanity in such circumstances.

    Seriously the only difference between those of us in line and a flock of sheep being led to the slaughter was that we weren't as noisy and we smelled (slightly) better. Atlanta International is now my second least-favorite airport (nothing can be worse than Dulles).

  • I'm not sure who first coined the term "Hotlanta" but I'm pretty sure they didn't coin it on a Saturday in early March. I had checked the weather forecasts before I left on Friday, so I had packed long-sleeved shirts and even a sweater. When I woke up bright and early Saturday morning, I couldn't find the weather channel on the hotel TV.

    Luckily I realized I could open the curtain and see whether it was sunny or rainy. I was a little afraid that I had packed "too warm." Well, when I pulled the curtain back my fear was gone. It was SNOWING like crazy. It barely got above freezing the rest of the day, which sucked because we spent most of the day outside. Luckily, Sunday was much nicer.
That’s about it for now except for this bitchin' video I found (that Shane probably saw two years ago). If you've ever been to the capital of the Peach State, let's compare notes in the comments.

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YouTube Tuesday: Shine on

Normally when I hear a studio is doing a remake of a classic movie I roll my eyes and lament the lack of any real originality in Hollywood.

But when I saw this trailer for a remake of Stanley Kubrick's classic The Shining as a chick flick, I thought this is one romantic comedy I might be able to sit through without puking.

Check it out.

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Friday, March 07, 2008

Friday Blogthing: That's life in the big city

I was hoping for Florence, Italy, but I hear Barcelona pretty much kicks ass as well.

Hat tip to Janet.

You Belong in Barcelona

When it comes to Europe, you don't want to decide between culture and fun. You want art by day and a big party by night.

Barcelona is ideal for you. You can check out some Picasso, eat some tapas, take a siesta, and then dance all night!

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Wednesday, March 05, 2008

Monkee see

I'm on my third Scotch in the bar at The Palm West.

The crowd is starting to thin out a little as theater goers leave to catch The Lion King, or Chicago or Spamalot or whatever the hot new show on Broadway is tonight.

We're standing there, our group of six, talking about nothing in particular but especially not work, when a distinctive looking older gentleman walks in the door.

Not distinctive in the sense that he was distinguished. His clothes, while not shabby, didn't appear to be overly expensive. He wore a brown fedora, which was unusual for the venue, and a tan topcoat.

It was his face that was so distinctive. A mile-wide grin seemed to force his eyes into squints. The smile was quite friendly but veered close to maniacal.

I could swear I'd seen him before, but chalked the feeling up to "he must just have one of those familiar faces."

So I went back to a discussion with my work associate, Brad Pitt, about lake front real estate prices or Brooklyn microbrews or whatever. I was absorbed in a conversation about the relative merits of various male skin care products when one of my female counterparts, Lindsay Lohan, asked me if "that guy looked familiar."

"Yeah, you mean that guy with the hat?" I say. "I swear I've seen him somewhere before."

"Doesn't he look like that guy from The Monkees?" Lindsay Lohan said.

That's right! My mind quickly sorts through its admittedly small database of useless pop culture trivia.

"Mike? Mick? Micky! That's it, Micky something," I say.

"Micky Dolenz," Lindsay Lohan gets it.

Lindsay Lohan is a bit star struck at the pseudo-celebrity sighting. She's old enough to know who The Monkees were, but not really old enough to have really been into their music when it was new. Still, she calls her husband to tell him the exciting news.

So I ask her if she wants to get her picture taken with the former Monkee.

"I don't know," Lindsay Lohan says. "Do you think he'll mind?"

"How about I just go ask him," I say. Heck it could be the Scotch talking, but the worst that can happen is I get blown off by a Monkee, which would also be a great story.

So I amble over to the bar where Micky is talking to what looks like a friend of his. I wait for a break in the conversation before saying "Excuse me. You're Micky, right?"

He flashes his big grin and nods with a "Yes" as we shake hands.

"Hey, great. You know my friend Lindsay Lohan is a big fan of yours, and I was wondering if you would mind taking a picture with her," I say, pointing over to our table.

Micky smiles again and says "Sure!" He's very gracious, really classy about the whole thing. While I was taking the pictures with Lindsay Lohan's digital camera, one of the other women in our party, Paris Hilton, was calling her parents.

She's just out of college and has no idea who Micky Dolenz is, but she said her parents were impressed. She decided to go ahead and get a picture as well and walked up to the Mickster to ask. He was gracious and kissed her hand as she introduced herself.

You hate barging in on the personal lives of people who aren't really in the public eye anymore. Surely they just want to have a quiet night out like the rest of us.

Normally I would just shoot a surreptitious picture from my camera phone as evidence of the celebrity sighting

But Micky Dolenz was really cool about the whole incident. Like I said, a class act. I get the feeling he's happy to be recognized at this point in his career.

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Blog Post of the Day: Guinness Lamentations

This story by Eolaí at Irish KC is the best post I've read in a long time.

Nice job, Eolaí, keeping up the Irish reputation for poetry, story telling and sardonic humor.
"...Nowadays neither statistic holds but worse is another statistic of a people drinking wine instead of beer. Back in the days of the transition from non-cold Guinness to stupidly-cold Guinness, wine was something that came off a boat and came in a box. And it was free of duty. Wine didn’t have a name; it was merely red or white much as your dog was a bitch and it didn’t matter if she was a springer spaniel. Because all wines were mongrels. Or at least we thought they were..."
Srsly. Go read it now. You won't be disappointed.

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Tuesday, March 04, 2008

YouTube Tuesday: Cane Toad

No special message in today's YouTube feature, just a pretty funny (and slightly disgusting) bit of Aussie animation I came across...

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Monday, March 03, 2008

And the science gets done

Well, we can finally put all the bloggy bluster behind us.

It sure was fun while it lasted, what with the more prudish parochially minded bloggers trumping up specious accusations and calling for boycotts and whatnot. Made for some fun back and fourth.

But thankfully there are more rational, curious science-minded people in the city (probably most of them from the Kansas side) as evidenced by the weekend sellout of the Bodies Revealed exhibit at Union Station.
The exhibit about the human body had 4,700 visitors from Friday through Sunday, bringing the number of tickets already sold to more than 22,000.
The pre-opening discussion about the educational exhibit probably didn't change any minds. Those who think the human body is grotesque probably still think so.

But I'm encouraged to know that at least one local blogger, none other that Tony himself, had a change of heart. Tony has finally come to the conclusion that the dead shouldn't be exploited without their consent.

This is a great evolutionary leap for Tony, who will no longer use posts about murder victims and the victims of fatal accidents (without their consent, of course) to try to increase his page views.

I just think it's super that this exhibit has already had such a positive effect on the community.

In honor of this achievement and to commemorate the exhibit itself, I think it's appropriate to play Jonathan Coulton's Still Alive.

This was a triumph
I'm making a note here: huge success
It's hard to overstate my satisfaction
Aperture Science
We do what we must because we can
For the good of all of us
Except the ones who are dead
But there's no sense crying over every mistake
You just keep on trying till you run out of cake
And the science gets done and you make a neat gun
For the people who are still alive

I'm not even angry
I'm being so sincere right now
Even though you broke my heart and killed me
And tore me to pieces
And threw every piece into a fire
As they burned it hurt because
I was so happy for you
Now these points of data make a beautiful line
And we're out of beta, we're releasing on time
So I'm glad I got burned, think of all the things we learned
For the people who are still alive

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Lost Tales of 3AM, Part II: Phone Home

The Midwest Express Boeing 717 was on its way down the tarmac, lining up for takeoff. I had already placed my stewardess in her original upright and locked position, and my carry-on luggage was safely placed under the seat in front of me.

As we lifted off out of KCI (MCI for those pilots out there), I went through the process of turning off and stowing all my portable electronic devices. That's when it hit me: I still need to turn off my phone. But where is my phone? Not in my shirt pocket. Not in my pants pocket. Not in any of the pockets of my coat.

Panic sets it. I left it at the boarding gate at the airport. Crap. I specifically remember using it to check messaging just before the final boarding call came. I must have set it down on the seat next to me while I packed up my Toshiba Tecra POS craptop that I'd been using for some last-minute emailing/porn surfing.

I flag down the flight attendant to see if there’s any chance of getting a message back to the gate. Unfortunately, we’re in the air and “out of range” so I’ll just have to wait until we land in New York.

So I’ve got two and a half hours to fret about my phone.

Now, you have to understand that I have a kick-ass phone. It’s wafer thin but still has a 2MB camera and enough processor power to allow me to watch TV, get Gmail, Google calendar and read all your blogs while waiting in line at the Korean massage parlor.

But still, what worries me most is the loss of all of the data and contacts I’ve collected over the past six years. If I have to get a new phone, it would be a pain in the ass to input the numbers to all of my business contacts, family, friends and lawyer/bondsman/bookie.

My first stop when I get to La Guardia is at Midwest gate. I explain the situation to the gate agent who looks at me like I just asked him to donate a kidney. With a great deal of effort, he somehow manages to pick up the phone and dial the Midwest gate in KC.

With a great deal of additional effort, he explains my situation to the party on the other end of the phone and then sets about the task of waiting on hold. I could tell by his increasingly labored breathing that he was having a difficult time staying on hold, and he finally hands me the receiver, allowing me to take over.

After a minute or two a voice answers from KC.

“I’m sorry but I haven’t been able to reach the gate agent that was working when you left. Can you give me a number to call in case your phone turns up?”

Defeated, I give her my Supermodel Wife’s cell phone number. At this point I know that I’ll probably never see the phone again.

I arrive at my hotel on Times Square. From my room I dial up the SMW to let her know that she might get a call from Midwest.

“Hey,” she says when she answers. “I just got a call from Midwest saying that they have your phone.”When I finish my happy dance, I ask my SMW to get me the number for my business associate, Angelina Jolie, who is scheduled to join me in NYC for a conference the next day.

“Hey Angelina Jolie, it’s Emawkc…”

“Hey Emawkc! Guess what… I have your phone!”
It turns out that while I was reading about Harry Potter’s wand (ewe) in SkyMall, one of my NYC business associates, Brad Pitt, had called my phone. The Midwest gate agent had answered and told Brad Pitt that my phone had been left at the gate mere minutes earlier.

This news set off an avalanche of email within my company which eventually ended in the in-box of Angelina Jolie, who was at KCI early enough to stop by the Lost And Found desk near baggage claim and pick up my phone for me.

So after all of the fretting, phone calling and emailing, all that was left for me to do was head up to the hotel lounge and sip Glenlivet while watching the activity on Times Square and waiting for my phone to arrive a few hours later.

I love it when things work out.

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Still here

Don't worry. I'm still here. Just been a little snowed under (metaphorically speaking) after a business trip last week.

I'll have a couple of posts about that, but in the meantime thanks to my regular reader(s) -- and especially you underwear perverts out there -- for keeping the traffic numbers up.

New post coming soon.

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