30 November 2006


Gratuitous Richard Simmons Insult of the Day

John Waters, quoted in this New York Times piece about Waters's new monologue film, "This Filthy World."
Mr. Waters runs a few threads through the monologue, the main one being, “Everybody has limits.” Yes, this famous limit-pusher has things that appall him, which he of course gleefully describes. His best-known partner in tastelessness, a certain cross-dresser, also had a threshold, he says. “Even Divine had limits,” Mr. Waters tells his audience. “The first time he met Richard Simmons, he felt homophobic.”
But seriously people, he'll be here all week.

Try the veal.

29 November 2006


Humor Trumps Sacrilege

Here. WARNING: Sacrilege to many, but funny to more!

Sing it: Y - M - C - A!

Link via that Dave Barry character. Here's hoping he'll make it big some day.

28 November 2006


Okay, I'm Game...

...but I think that explaining this, what you, the blogging reader, should do, takes some of the fun out of it.

Go. Read. You'll know what to do.

Link via Solonor.

27 November 2006


Family Losses

My Aunt Cleo, who was in her late 80s if not early 90s, passed away today. That leaves just four of the original 10 of my mom's sibblings still with us.

She was a sweet woman with a beautiful smile. I saw her earlier this year while I was in Alabama on business. She wasn't herslef.

I took the picture below two years ago at my mom's family's reunion.

Rest in peace, Aunt Cleo.

25 November 2006


Wasted, Brain-Damaged, or Both?

Heard parts of the Bill Anderson interview with Glen Campbell on the XM, both during the drive over the Jim and Sandy's for Thanksgiving Dinner, then today while out running errands. Campbell has the Ozzy thing, the Brian Wilson thing, going. Stuttering, confused, sloppy: It's hard to tell whether he's under the influence or just never came out of the anesthesia.

But what an artist!

23 November 2006


Post Thanksgiving Dinner

Just got back from a Thanksgiving dinner than couldn't be beat, provided by our friends Jim and Sandy over in Montverde. A lot of their family, including his eighty-somthing year old mom, who introduced us to all without missing a beat, was there. If only I were so good with names.

I hope each of you reading this is aware that you have much to be thankful for. I won't argue the point, regardless of your situation. I am grateful, starting with Mack and continuing with family, friends, and colleagues. You, without doubt, have as much to be thankful for, whether you realize it or not.


Happy Thanksgiving

Like the song says:
Though you may not drive a great big cadillac
Gangster whitewalls tv antenna in the back
You may not have a car at all
But just remember brothers and sisters
You can still stand tall
Just be thankful for what you've got
Though you may not drive a great big cadillac
Diamonds in the back, sunroof top, diggin the scene
With the gangster lean
For what you've got

You may not have a car at all
But just remember brothers and sisters
You can still stand tall
Just be thankful for what you've got
Diamonds in the back, sunroof top, diggin' the scene
With the gangster lean ooh ooh ooh
Though you may not drive a great big cadillac
Gangster whitewalls tv antenna in the back
You may not have a car at all
But just remember brothers and sisters
You can still stand tall
Just be thankful for what you've got
Diamonds in the back, sunroof top, diggin the scene
With the Gangster lean
Have a wonderful Thanksgiving (USA) folks.

21 November 2006


Party Playlist

Bryan T. recently wrote this about listening to old music. It made me want to share my 10-hour playlist from the party last Saturday night. Set the iTunes to Party Shuffle on this playlist and let it rip.

p.s. The party did not last ten hours!


Big Ass 50th Birthday Party!

It's my birthday; it's my birthday, etc. The big five oh. Today.

We had a big party last Saturday night. Lots of friends and co-workers. We had a blast. Only wish one or both of my brothers or some of Mack's family had been able to come.

Pictures here at Flickr. Here's a sample:

Shannon and Tamie, Tim and Mack

15 November 2006


Stimulus... Response

Unsatisfactoriness: Be happy.
Impermanence: Keep it steady.
The illusion of a self and the lack thereof: Stay open minded.

The left-hand sides come with the existence, being an evolved/designed (can't tell the difference) creature with sufficient levels of perceptual, cognitive ability, etc.

The right-hand sides come with practice. If at all.

14 November 2006


Meanwhile Back in the Jungle....

South Africa's parliament just passed a law legalizing the equivalent of gay marriage.

South Africa.

SOUTH AFRICA, where apartheid ruled, and where Botha just bit the big one.

Meanwhile, back in the States....

p.s. Yes, I know SA is an urbanized country. It's a sad joke, okay?, for anyone old enough to remember the song.


Joe. My. God's "The Goodbye Song"

Read this then tell me about why we allow, encourage even, some to withhold rights from others. And why many of the others acquiesce in such.

Rights may be a gift from beyond, but they are secured in this lifetime by the exertion of power. Power can be an appropriately chosen word to the ear just as much as it can be a bullet to the brain.

Read. Think. Act. It doesn't have to be revolutionary. An increment, a small change, a taking of the opportunity to tell someone else of the truth of our loves. Of our losses. Or to speak up for those whose loves are denied.

12 November 2006


High Def

We finally took the plunge and upgraded the video part of our home theater from Mack's 14-year-old 25" RCA to a 50" Panasonic plasma. It's a pro display, no speakers, no tuner. (In case you are curious, we paid nowhere near MSRP.)

Home Theater Upgrade

Woo -wee, am I impressed. Great saturated colors. Great blacks. Great definition. The screen's actually 1366x768 square pixels, so it's high def, even if every image format has to be interpolated to display.

We have been trying to decide among plasma direct-view and DLP and LCD rear-projection systems for some time, and we both just liked the look of plasma better. It glows! The "should we wait for 1080p plasma?" decision was there, too. We decided that for our room size, for the distance one would usually sit to watch the screen, that while 1080p would be visibly better, that waiting another year or so for 1080p plasma prices to drop into our affordability range just didn't make sense.

So far, we're impressed. The picture quality on the HD channels is so much better than standard-definition TV on all manner of programming. Movies look great -- The Star Wars movies shot in digital looked excellent -- but even more so, live sports are just fantastic. We watched FSU get crushed by Wake Forest last night, followed by the end of Kansas State beating Texas. I'm looking forward to the pro games.

The TV also has good upsampling from 480p content like DVDs. We (finally -- Darren gave us the DVD for Christmas like three years ago or something) watched The Italian Job, and it looked surprisingly good.

We've got to run to Radio Shack to pick up 4A shorty fuses for the subwoofer. They blew out while we were getting the universal remote up and operating. It was turning the receiver on and off to quickly. All the electronics -- cable box, DVD/VHS, and receiver -- are in the cabinet. Mack did a super job of mounting the TV and running the wires to it through the wall. He also did the tedious job of assembling the electronics cabinet.

I'm excited! I've wasted a lot of money over the course of my life on the latest electronics (see Quadraphonic). More recently I've managed to get involved with such in a much more considered, determined, and detached manner. It's still fun, though, to every now and then move up a step on the technology ladder.

09 November 2006


From National Review Online's The Corner

The Corner is, in my mind, the best right-wing blog to read. It's one of the few blogs where the group dynamic actually works. Would that the left-wing blogs had the infighting, the opinionating, that The Corner has maintained for quite some time now.

This letter to Jonah Goldberg is thought provoking. Excerpts follow:
Here’s what I think.

I believe good Democrats and good Republicans both believed this war was going to end if their party won on election day. The Dems believed they'd end the war through withdrawal; the GOPers believed they'd end it through victory. They're both wrong. This war is going to go on for a long, long time.

It seems to me that Americans believe wars end when we say they end. Whether we win (WWII), lose (Vietnam), or draw (Korea), our wars have ended when we said they ended. The defeated Germans, victorious North Vietnamese, or stalemated North Koreans never came after America when hostilities ended. But the jihadists are coming, no matter what happens in Iraq. Make no mistake.


With the Democrat victory, I hear a sigh of relief across the country that now we can bring this whole thing to a close. It is an illusion. Until we get into the animating texts of Islam, and do so publicly, loudly, and consistently, we will invite more violence, and abet the silence of moderate Muslims of goodwill around the world.

I believe the leadership of this debate is the most urgent task to ever face the brave staff of National Review. You already led the debate on Communism, but then you remember Communism had few real adherents in Communist countries. Radical Islam has tens of millions of true believers. This will be harder.

Thought provoking and worthy of consideration. Let's not bury our heads in the sand.

p.s. I've always been a William F. Buckley fan. Disagree with much of what he has to say, but admire his thinking and his accomplishments.


A New Readout

Flablog's Mark Lane, in this post:
Once again that dread phrase Florida recount is being spoken. But don't worry, these are touch-screen machines with no paper back-up, there won't be any meaningful recount, just a new readout of the numbers.
You heard the man, "just a new readout."

Move along, now. Nothing to see here.


An Instructive Number

From the not-a-link at the top of Drudge's site at this instant:
Preliminary: Senate Ballots cast: 31,591,495 (D) 25,054,569 (R)...
That's not even close. That's 56-44. Not a landslide, but a major victory, as evidenced in the change of control in both House and Senate. One might say the Republicans got thumped.

What? Someone already said that? Oh well.

The aggregate for the House will be more instructive, as will the red/blue county map. My guess is that the major change was in the Midwest.


For Kit

Zippy's double punishment, here.

08 November 2006


Post Scriptum

In case it seems like I've forgotten that there are crazy Islamacist yahoos out there who would like to kill Americans, I haven't. But I won't try to bullshit you that I have an answer to that problem that I find acceptable.

Maybe tomorrow.


Obligatory Post-Election Post

First, I'm glad, or course, that the Democrats won. It's been a while since I've had this kind of good feeling about an election: 1992 comes to mind. I was living in Boston at the time, and I recall standing in line for quite some time to vote for Clinton-Gore, even though it was obvious that Clinton was going to carry Massachusetts by a substantial margin. Still, it was satisfying to have Clinton and Gore win.

By November 1994, I was living in Tennessee. I remember election night that year, being at The Pipeline, a gay bar in Memphis, with others depressed about the Republican wave sweeping the nation. It was a night that I knew was coming, likely as many of my Republican and conservative friends knew deep in their hearts that last night was coming. It stinks when you know that the heart and soul of your party has been lost: That the party's leadership, even rank and file, are corrupt, either legal or spiritually. That the pursuit of power had become the be all and end all, in respect to the needs of the nation and its people.

I understand many of my friends' concerns about the balance between left and right within the Democratic party. Their concerns about security. Their concerns about immigration. But the vast majority of Democrats, like the vast majority of all Americans, Republican or Democrat, are devoted to the security of their fellow citizens, physically, economically, and socially.

I don't trust -- have never trusted -- the leadership of the Republican party. I believe they are, by and large, more concerned with their own economic well being and slice of the pie than they are with the nation's citizens as a whole. I have long been skeptical of their cynical abuse of the religious. The way in which they have exploited the nation's fears has seemed to me to be at the least distastful, and at the most borderline treasonous. I look forward to the Congressional investigations to come. That's entirely appropriate and entirely in line with the Congressional role defined in the US Constitution and consistent with Congressional oversight as practiced in US history. Should it turn out that we went to war only to secure the re-election of the President: Well, that would be treason.

I supported the war. The Baathist regime in Iraq had refused to obey the resolutions of the UN Security Council for what seemed like time immemorial, and it was necessary for the US to step in do what the UN had said that it would do. But the conduct of the war has been near criminally negligent. Letting the Iraqi army run away. Not securing Baghdad after the fall of the Baathist regime. Letting documents that would've illustrated the corrupt relationship between Saddam and each of France and Russia be destroyed by rioters. Letting the treasure of Iraq be destroyed by looters. Not securing civil order. Not restoring, or building for once, a decent Iraqi infrastructure.

These were terrible, terrible, failures, and it is entirely appropriate that the American electorate punished those who are responsible for them. Now, we have to move forward, working to build security for ourselves and our allies; working to protect our resources, human, physical, and financial; working to build a better world where religious extremists of whatever stripe are unable to effect the kind of disproportionate influence they've yielded recently. They ought to have next to none.

A good night last night; a good day today. But the hard work continues, as it always does. Embrace it. Contribute to the success of the nation.


Rumsfield Rumsfeld Resigns...

...presumably to give him more time to testify before Congress.

Update: I leave the misspelling so that I can continue to get search hits on "Rumsfield"!

07 November 2006


Poll Report

I voted. Took about 8 minutes, which was not bad, although it was substantially longer than it's taken me to vote previously at my current precinct (Volusia Co. precinct 305). Previously was almost instantaneous.

No read on the crowd: Didn't see any political bumper stickers on the cars in the full parking lot beyond my "Had Enough? Vote Democratic" one.

Heard callers on the Republican line on C-SPAN saying they were voting Democratic this time; didn't hear any Democrats or Independents saying they were voting Republican.

I'm encouraged. Cautiously optimistic.

Don't forget: VOTE!!!!

06 November 2006


"Grow a Pair"

Some people that I like and respect, instead of instructing the Democrats who've been out there trying to win this election to "grow a pair," need to shut the fuck up and grow a pair themselves. Similarly, some other people I like and respect need to shut the fuck up about "why the Democrats lose" and start working, even tonight, to see that the Democrats win. And while they're finally deciding to vote Democratic themselves, they need to encourage their friends to vote Democratic (even at this late point), and quit respecting the bullies and cheats who've taken over the Republican party.

One doesn't have to get down in the mud, one doesn't have to be like them to win. And if one does, one can't govern effectively, as the Republican experience of the last six years ought to be evidence enough of.

So, my friends, get your heads out of your asses, quit echoing Republican talking points about Democratic leftists and wimps, quit whining about Democrats whining, and get you and your loved ones and friends out there tomorrow and vote Democratic. Have some respect for yourself and your communities instead of being such power-envying pussies with the delusion that the Republicans, by being bullies, can keep you safer. Grow your own pair before instructing others to do so.

04 November 2006



Remember, Tuesday, 7 November, is election day in the USA. Just about every election boils down to one of two slogans: "You never had it so good," or "time for a change."

Yes, the incumbent party in Congress tries tries tries to use fear -- fear of terrorists, fear of taxes, fear of people who aren't white -- to keep people from seeing the choice between "you never had it so good" and "time for a change." They have done this with some measure of success over the last few years because, after all, people have legitimate issues about security, taxation, immigration, and other issues that can be spun into "Democrats scary, Republicans safe."

Don't buy it. Don't buy a bit of it.

As my friend Joe Fineman put it (and I don't know where he got it): "Hold your nose and vote the straight Democratic ticket." Even if you're a died-in-the-wool Republican, do it so you get a chance to reclaim your party and its principles from those who have stolen them. If you're a Republican, ask yourself, what would Goldwater do? It's time to fire the bastards. We can't fire them all, but we can at least fire the Congress and bring some kind of accountability to the governing process.

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?