Wednesday, December 28, 2005

Best of 2005: Movies I Saw

According to me (Eric).

I have to go with Serenity, because Joss Whedon is my master now. Better than Star Wars I & II certainly. Probably the best original Sci-fi movie I have seen since The Matrix. Damn Fox! DAMN THEM FOR DENYING ME MORE FIREFLY!

But Mr. & Mrs. Smith was also great (Angilina Jolie is on my five celebs I get to bang list). So was Hitch, Kingdom of Heaven, Rent, Jarhead, and Assault on Precinct 13. Even Star Wars and Batman finally turned it around this year, which given their previous track record was about as likely as Ashlee Simpson creating a song that I actually wanted to listen to.

Tuesday, December 27, 2005

Best of 2005: TV Shows

According to me (Eric).

* "How I Met Your Mother" is probably my favorite sitcom on right now. Any show that includes Neil Patrick Harris (DOUGIE!) and Alyson Hannigan is bound to be awesome, right? Sure it is campy and so similar to Friends that only the fact that the show revolves around 5 people instead of 6 lets to you tell them apart. Did I mention it includes NEIL PATRICK HARRIS?!?

* "The War at Home", along with the Simpsons, are the only redemable shows on Fox. Its always both funny and racy. That's all I ask people. Funny and racy. It's a simple formula really.

* "Scrubs" is still my favorite show on TV (can you tell I have a thing for sitcoms?). Sadly the fall season was put off until next year, which made me bitter. Well actually, it just contributes to me remaining bitter at least. Scrubs by itself can in no way explain my overall bitterness at the world.

* Sue and I discovered "Six Feet Under" this year, and while it was not always 100% awesome, the great moments are some of the most gripping and emotional I have ever seen on TV. Six Feet Under is one of those shows that can absolutely horrify you, give you a three second joke, and then go right back for the tragedy jugular. It's not a show to just watch anytime, but it's worth the ride.

* The Colbert Report - I actually think this show is better then the Daily Show. Yea, I said it. What are you going to do about it John Stewart? BIATCH! That's right.

Canada...F#$k Ya! Group sex clubs legalized in Canada

Once again, Canada proves why it is a great place to party:) First you have the drinking age at 19. Second, strippers can get completely naked. Then you have party girls letting go like only girls who have to wear eight layers of clothes most places will. And now you can end the day in a nice private club having legal sex with a stranger? What more can you want? :)

Best quote:

"Labaye, a portly and jovial 46-year-old native of France, said swingers celebrated the Supreme Court victory with a late-night party at L'Orage."

I'll bet!

Sunday, December 25, 2005

Friday, December 23, 2005

Christmas in the south

Usually this time of the year we are long gone and on our way to MI for the holidays but since I decided to work we were delayed due to my schedule and we are forced to spend the actual days of Christmas down here in the south. I gotta say that the warmth and the lack of snow and the lack of a need for a coat make me a scrouge. Bah. I can not get in the Christmas mood. I was finishing up my shopping yesterday and I was walking around with no coat in the sun with temps in the 50's. This is spring weather where I am from. Damn it! I miss the snow so much. I don't get how some people can live their entire lives without having a true winter every year. I have become such a wuss up here with the lack of cold. The funny thing is that people down here put on a coat, scarf, and mittens when it is 40 or 50.

Well, Eric and I will try to make the best of Christmas being 600 miles away from our families. We have each other and that is what is important. As long as I have him, then I am happy. Plus with my job, I know things could be worse. A lot of people are very sick in the hospital for Christmas or dying or have died. I have learned that you need to make the most of your life with the ones you love. This will conclude this rant.

Thursday, December 22, 2005

Happy birthday to Bob!

Usually we are in Michigan for bob's birthday with the snow so I thought it would be fitting to show this picture. Bob loves snow! Bob was four on the 19th but I was working hard saving lives at work ;) We love you Bob even though you cannot read human. My little pup is growing up... (tear).

Happy Birthday!!

Wednesday, December 21, 2005

WoW that's addictive

For those of you who don't know, Eric recently hooked me on WoW (World of Warcraft), which is an online roleplaying game. Yes, I know how lame roleplaying is, and [video confession time] at one point I've been into both D&D and Star Wars roleplaying. However, I'm not lame and I've roleplayed, so therefore roleplaying is not automatically lame (how do you like that logic, Socrates!)

So I figured I'd write a bit about my experiences. Feel free to flame me if you don't like boys talking about games or if your eyes glaze over when I talk gamespeak, but I'll try to keep this accessible.

It's very addictive, but not as fun as it is addictive. What I mean by that is I feel myself drawn back to the game more than the enjoyment I get from it would seem to justify. I find it... precious.

As with all video games, it brings out primal rage in me, particularly when I'm frustrated (died and have to waste time running back to my corpse). At these points I curse loudly and violently (just ask Sue). So it appeals to me because I get the thrill of having new powers and advancing and using my brain. However, it also has the frustration I feel for having to do things over (and over) again.

On a side note, I think I like it because I get attached to my character. At some level, he is me and (as you know) I get angry when I die. In addition, I like my role in the game. I am trying one of the most flexible, but challenging classes (druid). This fits me because I enjoy a challenge, but am easily bored. I play as often as possible with Sue and Eric too and I like playing the protector in that group and being able to play a game with friends 500+ miles away. At the same time, though, it's not the quality time that conversation or face2face would be (when most of our conversation is Kill That thing, Heal Me, or Eric why did you piss off every monster in the frickin room?)

Of course, the irony in all this is I now have time to play the game because I (finally) finished my dissertation on (Taaa Daaa!) Internet Addiction! Oh well, at least my dissertation wasn't totally anti-WoW, that would be hypocrisy (my least favorite -crisy).

So if I seem a little distracted lately (my bad) don't worry, it's only because I'm obsessed with a malevolent technology that dominates my life and kills my relationship and free time for 14.99/month =)

Sex Advice from Game Con Girls

My favorite quote:

Can it (video games) make me better in bed?

Yes. Video-game players are used to looking for secret hiding places, secret codes, secret toys. They're very into details.

Tuesday, December 20, 2005

Software Practices That Piss Me Off Too

R's post about software practices that piss him off was such a good idea that I feel obligated to do the same now. Thinking up original content is HARD:) Maybe if some of the other posters to this blog pulled their weight (*cough* Paul *cough*). But I digress (which is only slightly better than egressing I guess).

My top five peeves are as follows:

5) Repeating the same code over and over and over and over and over and over again throughout your code base: Pst...hey dumb ass...they solved this problem way back in the 1950s. Its called a function. Learn about them. They are your friend.

4) Curly braces: There is one and one way to use them:

//Note: This always evaluates to true, unless the Eric has managed to
//drop some sort of foul smelling sauce on her...
if (Sue.IsASexyBitch)

Any other way is wrong. Its so wrong that we had to put this in our coding standard because SOME people can't just see that it is wrong and need the Nazi-like brutality of the "PROCESS" to stop them (can you tell I have no found feelings for the "PROCESS"?).

3) Writing functions that are more than 80 lines long: I swear to you this is true. I've now seen at least three production systems fielded to the US Army that contain single functions that are FIVE PAGES LONG. Have you ever tried to wrap your brain around five pages of text at once? Try it some time. Its not a pretty picture.

2) Using Object Oriented structures like a f#$king C programmer: I've lost count of the number of times I have seen people who grew up with functional programming try to turn everything else they see into one giant function graph. This is right:

Objects = data + operations + useful abstractions

This is not:

Objects = place to put functions

If you are in camp number two, please don't work anywhere I do.

I know you are all waiting with baited breath here for #1!

1) Using code you don't understand: OMFG I hate when I see this comment in code:

//I don't know why (perhaps because I am too much a n00b
// to understand compilers, or I have a EE degree but I think
// I should be writing code), but without the next line the
// code afterwards does not work.
<Some code that makes no sense>

And believe me, I have seen this way more than I would like. In live systems. That affect safety of flight. Remember that the next time the you get on a plane.

COM was probably the worse. I swear approximately four people on earth (I was one) actually took the time to understand the problem COM was trying to solve and why it was implemented the way it was. Everyone else just blindly starting using it without any idea what the heck was going on. I've seen more butchered ATL code and code that does unbelievely bad things in COM than any other tech put together. Just the other day I saw something like the following:


Even if you know NOTHING about programming, that sort of code should look wrong to you. Very wrong. Like crashing when you have just 10kb left to download of a video of Anna Kournikova and Tina Fey kissing naked wrong. Worse is there was even a comment explaining why this clearly wrong thing to do was the right thing to do! "Because I tested it". F#$king n00bs...

Friday, December 16, 2005

A day in the life of a nurse

Well, as you all know, I am a new RN working in a big hospital. I thought that you all might enjoy knowing what exactly nurses have to deal with on a typical day. This week was a rough one for me. I work on the Respiratory Care Unit. Breathing is quite important. In nursing school and CPR you are taught the ABC's. Airway, Breathing and Cardiopulomonary are the most important in that order. Before you can fix anything else you need those things working. Your heart can't work unless there is oxygenated blood to pump and the lungs can't work unless there is an airway to get oxygen from. So where I work, number one and number two are usually what we are trying to watch and maintain.

Anyway the first thing we do in the morning, at 6:30 am, is get report from the night shift nurses. Then you look over morning labs and review all of the orders for each patient for that day. Then you go to each of your patients rooms and take morning vital signs and do morning assessments (listen to lungs, check pulses, check IV's, etc). While you are in each room you have to suction any trachs, change empty IV bags and find out who needs pain meds. You deal with all of that and then you go back and try to chart all that you did that morning. We do assessments at 8, 12 and 1600. You give meds as they are scheduled. 9:00 am is a big medicine time but some patients have meds every 1-2 hours. You also attend to any needs that the patients call you for. Sometimes your pager does not shut up. Sometimes trach patients need to be suctioned every 15 to 30 min. Sometimes people need pain medicine every 1-2 hours. Those things take time. Sometimes the patients IV stops working and you have to start a new one. There are also some patients that need dressing changes. The doctors come into the hospital throughout the day and order new things throughout the day. Sometimes you have to assist them with minor surgery at a moments notice, like the insertion of a chest tube or a indwelling IV. Fun! On those very special days you get to give an enema. You also discharge patients throughout the day and get new patients throughout the day. A good day is when you do not get new patients because they take a lot of time. You try to find time to eat lunch and then come 6:30 pm you wait for the night shift nurses to come in and you give them report again.

This week, I had two trach patients, and two end stage COPD patients that happened to both have a history of strokes, heart problems and demetia. Fun! Four patients does not seem like a lot but it is. First of all with trach patients you have to suction them if they are coughing up a lot of junk which they usually do. If you do not suction them then their trach (airway) gets plugged and you have lost their ability to breath. One of them was a 89 year old, crabby woman that was hard to please. The other trach pt was a 37 year old vegetable. At least he did not give me any trouble but it was hard to treat a person that is not there at all. He has no quality of life. He is basically a organ harvester. Still I had to suction his trach and feed him through a tube in his stomach. He had to be fed 3 times in the day on my shift. Of course in the middle of the day my old guy with COPD decided to start acting weird. He was very disoriented and did not recognize any of his family and did not know where he was or what was going on and plus he was not eating or drinking anything that day. I had to call the Dr. quick because that is a true sign that his lungs are not working properly and oxygen is not reaching the brain well. He was in bad shape according to all of the tests the doctor had me order so the doctor had me start and IV with fluids, put in a catheter, increase his oxygen and start antibiotics. This guy is not going to live much longer. He is in poor shape so I was not sure what was going to happen with him since all of his symptoms are also the same things you see when a patient is actively dying. The last patient I had that was the same way died within 12 hours. It was good to see him improved the next day. His wife was the sweetest woman ever and she hugged me and kissed my cheek when I left that day he was doing poorly and said thank-you for being so kind and for helping him. She did the same the next day when I left. That is the rewarding part. The thank-yous when you know you did some good for someone's life. Sometimes it is because it was an emergency situation and sometimes it was just because you took time to sit down and talk to a lonely patient or a stressed out family member or because you took the time to get a patient a snack or treat when they needed it or you sat with a grieving family member.

Of course throughout the day you help your fellow nurses in need. If another patient codes we all rush to that room. If another nurse's patient dies you stop for a moment and feel bad and then you move on with your busy day. If it was a patient that you have taken care of in the past then you go and tell them your condolences and give a hug or two.

Monday, December 12, 2005

CNN Rantings

I hate CNN. There was a point in my life that I loved CNN, so it really pains me to say this. But I hate CNN. I hate both the TV station and I'm still reserving judgement on Headline News and the CNN airport channel.

I can remember a time in the not too distant past when you could turn on CNN and really intelligent people would be having really intelligent debates about policy, international news, or whatever. Now, every time, and let me repeat that for emphasis, EVERY TIME I turn on CNN they have replaced the smart, intelligent news anchor with some vapid, blonde bimbo who's only skill in life is reading at a 10th grade level, applying too much lipstick, and smiling a lot


They have replaced the smart, intelligent news anchor with someone who's only skill is pissing their guest off so that we can watch smart intelligent people shout at each other.

Why? Who decided this was the "master plan to save CNN from the evils of Fox News"? Is this network run by the same people who do Survior (the same thing has happened. "Real" people have been replaced with really pretty and/or angry people as a rule)? Like we need MORE empty angry people on TV? If I want to watch empty people reading, I'd tune in to the plague that the non-stop TV/music/video/movie award shows have become. That's what they are for after all:)

Saturday, December 10, 2005

Less Serious Topic

Clearly, my previously posts have bummed everyone out, so I think it's time for something more light hearted.

I saw this article the other day for a new fan-made Japanese game, and I just had to share it: Its an all girl fighting game where, "you can't deal out damage to your opponent unless you take a picture of her panties right after you beat her up." The link above has a picture of the game in action and a link to the game's web site (neither is probably safe for work). The Japanese are a weird group of folks. Of course, if you have ever seen "Ghost in the Machine", or some of the truly sick japanime which I won't name here, you probably already know that.

Wednesday, December 07, 2005

9/11 anywhere else?

Random thought for today: If 9/11 had happened anywhere else in the world, would we have given a damn? Do ~3000 people count only when they die in the strech of land that your governing body can collect taxes from? Why DON'T we care when 3,000 people die anywhere else?

Monday, December 05, 2005

Schindler's List Thoughts

Unlike everyone of my generation, I had never seen Schindler's List before Sunday. Six million people. Jesus Christ. First off, the fact that my anscetors were mostly German made me sick to my stomach while watching that. I'm so confused, pissed, angry, sad...its like the Skittle's rainbow of emotions over here right now.

What's worse, I was talking to Paul about it right after, and he mentioned that as much as we try to forget, this sort of thing is still going on today. Look at places like Rwanda, Kosov, even Sudan and Iraq today. People wiping out entire groups of people just because their DNA differs by less than 1% or were born on the other side of some imaginary line drawn on some map.

Sigh... I guess what I am saying is that we suck. Its a good thing God does not do the whole smiting thing anymore, because a frog's terminal velocity is not something I care to experience first hand.

Thursday, December 01, 2005

Another Trip

I'm in Phoenix this week yet again for a work at the Boeing plant here. Right now I am so hopped up on the caffeine in this extra large slurpie that I am shaking in excitement. So to pass the time until I can fall asleep, I thought I might write down my random stream of conciseness.

First, I cannot believe just how many comments I got from my posts about Iraq. Apparently its a subject that brings out responses from the people:) I wonder if I can repro that with another post on a completely different topic. Doubt it.

I'm out here testing with a middle aged woman (she told me here age so it is ok that I call her that) that surprisingly, I'm getting along with swimmingly. Before we left I was imagining us staring at each other across the table and never talking the entire time. Instead, we have talked about the entire gauntlet of things that co-workers are not supposed to talk about: religion, politics, and the great pumpkin. Ok, only two of those actually.

Some how we have managed to hire at least 2 competent people at work so far this year. I'm so impressed. Our interview process sucks. We don't have people write code, which is a HUGE mistake in my book. And we focus too much on the process crap and not enough on coding skills in general. programmed in Ada 10 years ago and in C since the language was invented. Whoop de do. Too much "gut feeling" hiring and not enough qualitative measurements. So when we get good developers, its mostly a crap shoot.


Saturday, November 26, 2005


We went to see the movie of the great musical Rent Friday. It was great! I love the musical and Eric and I know the whole thing by heart since we have listened to it hundreds of times. It was very true to the musical with most of the cast being original members of the first broadway cast. I think that they did a great job with the movie and it was cool to see the musical set in the real NYC and not just the abstract set that the musical usually uses. Rosario Dawson and Taye Diggs were the two newbies for the movie and they did great. I did not know that either of them could sing. Rosario Dawson was a sexy bitch as Mimi. She has her whole stripper scene that she does really well and Eric enjoyed her ass hanging out of the little g-string shorts she was wearing. Jesse L. Martin from Law and Order kicked ass. I did not know he could sing and act like that. He was from the original cast and plays Tom Collins really well.

I think that everyone should see the musical but if they can't then they should at least see the movie. It is a great story about love, real life, living with AIDS and how much better your life is with just a few great friends that would do anything for you.

I also applaud the makers of the film for putting shots of the twin towers in. Rent is set in 1989-1990 so you can't really get away with not showing it. I am sick of movie creators and such treating America like children. If we see shots of the towers we will not crumble. You must face the past and deal with your problems dead on. Not showing it would be disgraceful to the memory of the towers, to the people that lived with it in their lives for so long and to those that perished with in it. It is a part of our history and I am sick of people taking it from pictures and movies.

Friday, November 25, 2005

Some things

I have not blogged in a while so I thought I would write about some things I have been meaning to. First I would like to congratulate Paul on being a successful new part of our blogging team. Yeah! I really enjoyed reading his entries.

Eric, D, and I all went to see Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire last Friday! It ruled! It is the best movie by far and I believe it is the best book. If you have any interest in the series at all you have to see the movie. The kids have grown so much and they act really well in this one. I loved everything in the movie but they still kept Dumbledore's gay hat from the last one. Every book clearly states that he wears a tall wizard's hat and the first two movies had that. I do not know why the new director decided to keep the last director's change on that one.

I am also reading a great book right now called "A million little pieces" by James Frey. I will tell you why it appealed to me. The first part of the book is this:

I wake to the drone of an airplane engine and the feeling of something warm dripping down my chin. I lift my hand to feel my face. My front four teeth are gone, I have a hole in my cheek, my nose is broken and my eyes are swollen nearly shut. I open them and I look around and I'm in the back of a plane and there's no one near me. I look at my clothes and my clothes are covered with a colorful mixture of spit, snot, urine, vomit, and blood. I reach for the call button and I find it and I push it and I wait and thirty seconds later an Attendant arrives.
How can I help you?
Where am I going?
You don't know?
You're going to Chicago, sir.
How did I get here?
A doctor and two men brought you on.
They say anything?
They talked to the Captain, sir. We were told to let you sleep.

For more see for the rest of the excerpt. The book is about the authors addiction to pretty much every drug and alcohol and his time in rehab. His favorite drug was crack and he loved alcohol, but he did everything he could get a hold of and he was a dealer at one time. He writes in a nontraditional way and he writes everything as it happened at the time by using the journals he kept and by getting copies of his files of his time in rehab since he couldn't remember some things during detox. I also like it because he tells it like it is and does not make rehab a flower picking good time. Rehab was tough for him and he totally wrecked all of his internal organs. He went through hell during rehab and that is how he tells it. It is a great read. If you enjoy good books you will enjoy this.

Monday, November 21, 2005

This I believe…. (pt 1)

Okay because Eric is obsessed with this whole higher power/god thing and loves hearing about other people's beliefs on God, here goes. If anyone besides him finds this interesting, so much the better.

For the record I'm technically Catholic [I was confirmed Paul Istvan Luke (because he was the only apostle in Star Wars) Mikowski] and technically hell-bound (many unconfessed sins, up to and including the dreaded premarital sex).

However, my recent wedding was not religious in the slightest and I've hovered for a while between agnostic and atheist, depending on how bitter or confident I am at that moment. I was ferociously atheist in early adolesence and I can remember the moment I stopped believing. I was in Sunday school (on tuesday afternoons, go figure) and I had a nutball for a teacher. He would go on about 666 being written on the inside of every computer a bunch of times, how we were going to have a credit card chip in our hands soon and this was predicted as Satanic in Revelations, and such.

What really cheesed me off however, was that I was a hard scientist and he started going after evolution. He said that if an evolutionist astronaut found a watch on the moon, he'd say that it evolved a glass face to protect itself and a watchband to move around, while a Catholic would have the simpler (and presumably correct) conclusion that God put it there. This blew my young mind and I soon decided that even if I didn't know how the world worked, this guy *definitely* didn't.

I guess at some level I also pitied those who were unable to face the harsh reality of an uncaring cosmos and that we are just dust in the wind (gotta love that song), saw them as deluded fools. Maybe I was jealous too, of not having the comfort of having someone besides me looking after me.

I've softened in my views considerably since. I believe that faith is an admirable, necessary quality to see us through hard times (even if it can be overused). I believe that there is a higher power, although it might just be our ability to create a version of heaven on Earth through our goodness, compassion and, dare I say it, love. Don't get me wrong, I'm not an Utopian idealist (bit of a hippie, though), but I do believe in doing kindness as often as you are able in order to make your local world a bit better. At the same time, I understand that kindness is easier when your life and current situation isn't too shitty, after all, I am a psychologist....

It's a big deal though, I hope there's a heaven (and one liberal enough to let me in for good behavior, despite my non-beliefs). If not, I'll take solace in the fact that it doesn't matter if there's no heaven and, if there's a hell, in all likelihood Gandhi will be there burning with me. I think that little Indian guy would make eternal pain a whole lot more bearable.

If you read this far, you probably have no life (go WoW!), but I appreciate you sharing you lack of life with me.

"go forth and do my bidding! Uh hang on, I'm sure I'll come up with some bidding soon...."

And now, put your hands together for special guest blogger – (Dr.) Paul!!!

Hey party ppl, much love and props to y’all. There’s a new kid in town and he’s rip raring to blog on this previously Wilson-centric blog! A big thanks to my boy Eric (and my girl Sue W.) for giving me this permission.

Me even trying another person’s blog means my narcissism finally outdid my laziness (no small feat to anyone out there who’s seen my laziness – it’s vicious). Okay, that’s the introduction. Now onto the real meat, some content as inspired by Eric. Stay tuned….

(notice Lucas style 4 period ellipsis, now that’s style….)

More on Iraq

I got a very nice flame war to start with my last post on Iraq, so I think this calls for another! (Sue and I measure success of a post by how many comments we get. So if you are reading our posts and not commenting, then know that you are directly contributing to making us feel like losers).

From the comments, it's obvious that I need to clarify something here before continuing my discussion. At least for me, when I say "we", as in "we need to stay in Iraq", I mean we as a country, or as in the soldiers that are executing public policy as set forth by my democratically elected representatives. I'm not saying we should all move to Iraq and build Wal-Marts and turn all of Saddam's old palaces into really great band camps (with all the ensuing sex-ed and braces and that chick that played Willow on Buffy being get the idea).

Not speaking for anyone else, but I would be willing to tell any war-widow or war-mother out there that their husbands/sons were fighting and dying for a greater good. Invading Iraq was possibly a mistake. Let's not make it worse by running away from the mistake we made in invading. To imply that we cannot win because everyone in Iraq is a religious/cultural nut job is like saying every Republican is a religious/cultural nut job. It's just not true. I really believe that the majority of people just want to make a living and go about their lives and make life easier for their children, just like everyone in this country. Call me crazy, but I still believe most folks are rational. Rational people will look at the situtation and agree that if the current Iraqi government can provide security, then they will support it. If not, then they will support whom ever can. Democracy is great, but security is always a higher concern for man. Maslow's Hierarchy of needs for example places "safety" as the highest consideration of man after physiological needs (food, drink, air).

See, this is why history is important. Iraq is unfolding exactly like nearly every insurrection. The rebels take the tried and true strategy of hiding in the population, lashing out at high profile targets, and then trying to melt back into the population. Their goals are to try to:

(1) force the occupation to take shots at civilians in hopes of turning public support to their cause
(2) create a general feeling of "unsafety" ( woo hoo, my very own word! ) by damaging high profile targets in hopes of convincing people that the occupation cannot establish safety.

If they can achieve either goal, then the rebellion has a shot at getting the population on their side, and hence winning both politically and militarily. (1) has not occurred because the US army has show remarkable restraint with this war. It appears the US military actually took some lessons from Vietnam:

  • kill zones = bad
  • winning without local support is impossible
  • In an insurrection, the military can only buy you time for a political solution
  • building schools and roads is far more effective than dropping yet another 500 lbs bomb

(2) has occurred to an extent, but because the military has shown restraint and has done a relatively good job with their own security (not withstanding the 2000+ dead soldiers), the insurgents have resorted to more and more attacks against civilians. This is both good and bad for them. While it does further the goal of making people feel unsafe, it has the negative effect that people generally will not support those who are killing their neighbor.

I guess what all this talk boils down to is that when anyone says we should just withdrawal immediately from Iraq, what they are really saying is that the war on the ground is now unwinnable. I'm not convinced that Iraq is unwinnable. But it is a war that requires patience and persistence. If the US can prevent the insurgents from executing any really large scale attacks and keep the political process moving, I still think Iraq is winnable.

Friday, November 18, 2005


To Paul Mikowski, you may now call him Dr. Paul Mikowski!!!! He just successfully defended his thesis for his PhD in psychology. We knew you could do it! Now you shall be able to play more WoW....Excellent...

It has a nice ring to it!

This Guy is an Idiot

This blog represents the opinions of Eric only.

Hawkish Democrat Calls for Iraq Pullout

John Murtha is a complete boob. There... I said it. I feel a lot better.

Look, you can argue that Iraq was a mistake, that the occupation made one mistake after another, that we were lied to, whatever. But arguing that the Iraqi people would be better off if the only force for order they have just walked away is about as close to legally insane as you can get. From the article:

"Our military is suffering, the future of our country is at risk. We cannot continue on the present course. It is evident that continued military action in Iraq is not in the best interests of the United States of America, the Iraqi
people or the Persian Gulf region."

Lets just look at that statemnet.

Our military is suffering... I'm afraid I don't see how. Are some people unhappy they had to be dragged to the middle of the desert? You bet. But that's the deal. You sign up for the military, there is a chance you will go to war. That's why we pay for all that training and free college and all that other jazz.

...The future of our country is at risk. ??? Uh, how exactly?

We cannot continue on the present course. We can and we must in my mind.

It is evident that continued military action in Iraq is not in the best interests of the United States of America... See Reagan's decision to abandon Afghanistan in the 80's for an example of why that statement is ignorant.

...the Iraqi people or the Persian Gulf region Iraq would become Afghanistan in the late 80s and 90s. Warlords, chaos, and perfect place for terrorists to hang out and recruit. If you think Iraq is a rallying call now, just wait and see what would happen if we walked away and let it all head to shit.

Thursday, November 17, 2005

Programming Languages

DISCLAIMER: If you are not a software developer, this post is not going to make any sense to you. Sorry in advance.

R's post about compilers got me thinking about just how many different programming languages I know or used to know and which ones I liked and disliked. Lets run the list:

Basic: very first programming language. The original IBM PCs would boot to a Basic compiler if you did not insert a disk. I learned to program from a 500 sheet print out of my grandfather's custom business software. I wrote some truly hideous code on this bad boy.

  • Good memories: Learned to type. Building everything with "if" and "goto".

  • Bad memories: Building everything with "if" and "goto". Having to update the line numbers and goto statements of 20 lines of code because each line was numbered and you ran out space between while tweaking something.

C++ : My first programming classes in college all used C++ as the teaching language.

  • Good memories: Learning object oriented programming (sort of). Learning how computers and memory actually work on a PC. The joy of discovering emacs.

  • Bad memories: Being awake at 3:00am trying to figure out which F#$*ING pointer I forgot to check for null. Using "cout" as the debugger. Using vi before I found emacs.

C: I always found it a little odd that I learned C++ before C in college. It was a lot like math where you learn how to do stuff before you ever get around to the why. C was part of our computer hardware course, because decompiling C is WAY easier than decompiling C++. C sucks by the way. Unless you are writing device drivers or some other bare metal stuff, skip this one.

  • Good memories: Realizing that printf is your friend.
  • Bad memories: Realizing you don't have <stl>.

SPARC and MIPS assembly: The most useless languages I ever learned. Again, for our computer hardware course. I loved assembly, but SPARC and MIPS? x86 would be useful. Maybe even some DSP loven. But SPARC and MIPS? All this knowledge is completely gone.

  • Good memories: Realizing that I thought I knew how computers work, but that I really had no idea. Getting to use the branch delay slot for something!

  • Bad memories: Trying to write a decompiler for this stuff. Realizing that this stuff is useless.

x86 assembly: I learned this for my last job. x86 is the most fucked up assembly you will ever find on God's green earth. 30 years of patching in new instructions combined with the smallest register file around combined with having 18 ways to do the same thing mean I seriously wonder how in the world this platform ever took off like it did. That being said, I was actually pretty good with it for a short while. I could even do that thing from the Matrix where they look at a bunch of hex and see something useful (I was reading x86 stacks frames for waaaaaaay too long).

  • Good memories: Being able to figure out why the hell things like COM work the way they do. Figuring out stack traces. Figuring out calling conventions.

  • Bad memories: The pain of 4 registers.

HTML and Javascript: I know its not really a programming language, but I know a little bit of Javascript. Most of it has long and been replaced with useless knowledge about pop culture, but I keep a little around just in case.

LISP: All I remember of LISP is lots and lots of parentheses.

Prolog: All I remember about Prolog is that you can't build anything useful with Prolog.

Visual Basic: I know everyone mocks Visual Basic. I mock Visual Basic in public, but deep down I really liked it. The first real event driven, rapid development language I ever saw, VB rocked for building simple applications. VB also freed you from memory management, something it took most other languages years to figure out. If only it wasn't the most verbose language on the face of the earth.

C#: C# is fantastic. Any language that looks like C++, but frees me from having to thinking about pointers or memory is ok in my book.

Wednesday, November 16, 2005

The Wilson's take Manhattan!

This past weekend Eric and I flew out to NYC to see our good friends Paul and Sue. We had a lot of fun. Thursday we flew into LaGuardia airport separately since Eric was in Ft. Walton Beach, FL for work. The flight into LaGuardia is very cool. You circle the city over the Hudson so you see the whole city and you get to wave at lady liberty. It was about 3 in the afternoon when I flew in so I could see the city really well. After that we drove through Queens and the Bronx to get near where our friends live. On the way to their apt we stopped at what was the greatest mall ever! Inside there was every restaurant you could think of, TGIFridays, Cheeburger, Cheeburger, Qdoba, etc, a blockbuster, Home Depot, 3 level Bed bath and beyond, etc., then all of the clothing stores like GAP, and Limited etc, plus an ice rink and Ferris wheel. It was huge and awesome. Usually you have to drive to 10 separate stores for all of this stuff but there you could just walk to the stores inside. Then we went back to their place in Peekskill and played some Super munchkin and drank a lot of wine.

Friday we tried to go see Paul Van Dyk, the kick ass DJ. Paul and Sue bought tickets early and we thought we were set. We parked in Chelsea Piers in lower West Manhattan about 12:30 pm since he was going to spin from 1-6 am. It was about a 5 minute walk to the club. We stood in line and we were about to get in at 1:15 am when the fire Marshall arrived and stopped letting people in. DAMN IT! Then we stood in line for another hour thinking we would get in once the Fire Marshall left but no, then the cops arrive and tell the club that they cannot let anyone else in even though they were not at capacity. Damn NYPD! This was there official statement. They even made Van Dyk stop spinning while they did their inspection. So at about 2:45, frozen and shivering, we went back to our car and drove back to Peekskill to their apt. Eric and I have a Van Dyk curse. This is the third time we have tried to see him with bad luck. The first time emergency surgery for Van Dyk, he rescheduled on a day Eric had to go out of town for work and then this. We need to stop. At least we got our money backt his time:)

Saturday after lunch we got on the commuter train to head to NYC (Grand Central station) to try to get tickets to a Broadway show. Usually you can go the day of and get cheap tix from tkts in Times Square or at the box office. We got there and were disappointed. Most of the good shows have a 6-9 month waiting list. So we walked around Times Square for a while. By the Avenue Q box office we saw a guy that stole a cab stopped by the police. The guy in the cab got out and ran down the street and the cops chased him. Fun. I guess Eric saw some guy get roughed up outside Grand Central station after he tried to pick two Italian guys pockets. You gotta love NYC!

So Saturday after we lucked out of tickets we got on the subway, which is huge and so useful, and we headed down to Greenwich village to find a place to eat and to find a cool bar to hang out in. We walked around trying to find the square and while we were doing so we passed a fire station with a wall of memory with pictures of the guys they lost and Golden fire boots set up in a shrine that said "We will always remember". It made me stop and think for a moment and it was very real for once, not something I saw on tv.

We found a cool Italian cafe, Cafe' Riggs, there that was small and had a great ambiance. They had a sign that said it was in Zaggat's food guide. It was a coffee bar but they had great paninni's and great Milkshakes! Mmmm. Then we walked around some cool shops. We found a bar and restaurant called the Red Lion with live music so we went in to check it out. It was fun. The first guy that played was Morgan Clamp. He was cool. He had an acoustic guitar with a pick up and he had a pedal device that allowed him to record bars of music that he would set up. He would strum a little, the record himself hitting the acoustic like a drum and then once he had his back up he would play the guitar with it. He sounded like a whole band. He played a lot of covers. He played quite a bit of Radiohead (I love Radiohead!) "Fake plastic trees" from "the Bends" and "Creep" from "Pable Honey" two of the best songs! He also played some U2 and some older songs. I cannot remember all that he played since I got drunk ;) He also played some of his songs which were cool and so we bought his album. He made me happy. Plus he was pretty nice to look at... The next band was a rock band which I cannot remember since by the time they came on I was really, really drunk. They played rock songs and they rocked hard. They had a chick bass player that was hot. They also played Radiohead and other fun songs. I love NYC! It is really expensive to get drunk there. $3.00 for a beer special (Miller lite's) and $6.00 for liquor special drinks. They had a drink called a hot apple cider that had hot apple cider and Captain Morgan's in it. So good! I love cider and Captain's!!! About 1:00 am we walked drunkenly out of the bar to find a cab. We hailed a cab and took it to Grand Central. Cab rides are fun drunk... When we got outside of Grand Central Eric and Paul bought a pretzel from a vendor and it was one of the best fucking pretzels I have ever had!!! Sue and I had to wait in line for the women's rest room so we bonded with some city girl's. It was fun. Then we rode the train back to the Peekskill area and went back to their apt and crashed.

Sunday we slept late, played a long game of Munchkin blender with Munchkin bites and Super Munchkin combined which was lots of fun until we had to go to the airport for our 7 pm flight.

We had a great weekend in the end even with the mishaps :) I love NYC! I wouldn't mind living near the city one day. I just have to convince Eric...

Monday, November 14, 2005

Every man's dream

My buddy Paul mentioned this story to me, but if I had not found this story on there is no way I would have believed that I live in a world where this could actually happen in anything other than porn:

Panthers cheerleaders arrested in bar sex incident

The story is that two cheerleaders with the Carolina Panthers were having sex in the bathroom of a bar with each other. Go ahead. Take a minute and enjoy that thought. I'll wait. That's all of the story that I really managed to read. After that it is all a blur. I do recall something about a patron complaining the girls were too loud and taking too long. Lets all take another minute and enjoy that thought.

Update: Gave props to my initial source for this story.
Update 2: Removed spelling, punctuation, and various other annoying errors.

Tuesday, November 08, 2005

A weekend in Hotlanta...

This past weekend Eric and I went to visit my best friend from high school, Mo, and her husband, Tim, near Atlanta. We had a great weekend and saw a lot of great things.

Friday night we got into Lagrange, GA, near where they live, and we all decided to go to a movie. We went and saw Jarhead. It was really good. It was directed by Sam Mendes the same guy that did American Beauty. Jake Gyllenhaal and Jamie Foxx starred in it. It was a good marine film that was about the actual life of a soldier without battle scenes. It is about a soldiers life through training and being deployed to the first gulf war in the 90's . It shows how his life is affected by being a marine and how the lives of the other people in his life are affected. It was really funny and the story line was well written. We all thoroughly enjoyed it! The movie is actually based off of the memoir of Marine Anthony Swofford. Now I really want to read his book to see what was not in the movie. We saw the preview for the new movie "Walk the line" about Johnny Cash's life which looks really good. You gotta love Johnny Cash.

Saturday night we all went to see Angie Aparo. I had never heard of him before but my best friend from high school loves his music and invited us to join her and her husband to go to his concert. We listened to some of his music Saturday during the day and on our way to Atlanta to the show. He is pretty cool. His music is progressive rock. It is a different sound that I enjoy. He also does some covers of some cool songs. He does a great version of Champagne Supernova by Oasis which is a great song to begin with. He talked a lot in between the songs he played and he was pretty funny. There was also some audience participation involved which made it more fun. The theater, Earthlink Live, was cool. The ambiance was a new-age, hippy type, rave chill room feel. It was a great little venue. One of my favorite songs he sings is called "Hush" and you can listen to it on his web site as well as other songs he sings. I am definitely going to get some of his discs.

There were two very talented, hot chicks that opened for Angie Aparo. The first was Heather Luttrell. She is a got red head with an amazing voice. Eric and I wondered after the first song she sang why she did not have a big music contract. She was amazing. She plays acoustic guitar and has a band of men to back her up. This was the only sample I could find and it is not that long and does not do her justice. If you have I-tunes you can sample her new disc "Grits n pulp". It is very good. She is hard to describe but she is a little like Sheryl Crow, Fiona Apple, Sarah Mclaughlin and Faith Hill with a pinch of DMB mixed to make this unique great sound. I was very impressed by her. I will also be buying this CD. My fave song on this CD is "Anything but me".

The second chick that opened for Angie Aparo was Plumb. She has a few CD's out. She will have a new album, "Chaotic Resolve" out this February and it will be a good album. She sang some of the songs from it at the show. Her website has some samples of her cds and the new CD that is coming out. Amazon also has some samples of her older discs. She was more of a rocker chick with a great voice. I thoroughly enjoyed her too! I cannot wait for her new disc. The song "Better" has a great sound and it plays on her website. She sings with such emotion and when she performs you can really see her putting all of that emotion into the songs she sings.

I was so glad to see that there are still some original, very talented musicians out there. We were delightfully surprised to find all three of these artists this past Saturday.

After the concert we went to Buckhead in Atlanta to find some good bars. We tried to avoid all of the "hip hop" clubs and found a bar that had a live band. The band was awesome and the bar served until 3 am! Woot! I cannot remember the name of the band. They played a lot of good covers including "Sweet home Alabama" and "The devil went down to Georgia". That is all I can remember. They did play a lot of good rock tunes too. We later found out that this was the Angie Aparo after party. What luck! Buckhead has changed quite a bit. We have not been there in about 2 years and the area is a little more rough and a lot of the clus and bars have changed. It was interesting but at least we had a kick ass, cool ride to arrive in. Tim owns a Dodge SRT-4. Mmmm, Susie likes and wants... 2.4-liter turbocharged 16-valve double overhead camshaft (DOHC) engine, 230 horsepower, 250 lb-ft of torque, Zero to 60 in under 6 seconds. Oh how I loved riding in this car. He could really drive it too. We hit totally beat a Mustang ont he freeway in a little drag since the Mustang driver was being a dick. The Mustang did not stand a chance. The SRT-4 handles so well and when that turbo kicks in, it kicks ass! I must learn how to drive a manual! Why didn't my family teach me this skill!?!?!

Monday, November 07, 2005

Freakiest Optical Illusion

This is one of the freakiest optical illusions I have ever seen. Perhaps there really are Dancing Machine Elves creating all of reality.

Thursday, November 03, 2005

Week in review

Fuck this week so far:

1) First, I flew to Tucson on Sunday. Well, actually, I was supposed to fly to Tucson on Sunday, but my plane to Dallas was three hours late. So I had to sit in Huntsville airport for three hours making small talk with my customer, with whom we are currently fighting with...Can you say "awkward"? I knew you could.

2) I literally got to watch the plane I was supposed to be leaving Dallas on taxi away from the terminal while we waited for a crew to be assigned to pull us in.

3) Amazingly, when an airline is required to give you a free hotel room, they don't exactly spring for a Four Seasons type stay.

4) Got up at 5am, flew to Phoenix, and drove to Tucson. By the time I got there, I might as well have just flown in that morning. I would have gotten there about the same time. Damn American Airlines.

5) After all of that, a quick round of testing confirmed that the fix I had e-mailed before coming out there worked perfectly. Man, this job would be great if it weren't for the fucking customers.

6) And finally, just to make this the worst week in quite a while, I lost my wedding band on the way home from Tucson. GOD DAMN IT!!!! CAN THIS WEEK GET ANY WORSE?

Wait, don't answer that. Of course it can.

Thursday, October 27, 2005

Flags at Half Mast

I noticed today that flags throughout Huntsville are flying at half mast. Does anyone know why? Did someone important die that I didn't read about?

Tuesday, October 25, 2005

The Dark Tower

I just finished book seven of The Dark Tower series this afternoon (the last book), and I am here to tell you that I officially hate Stephen King. HATE HIM! Hate him with a passion that I had previously reserved only for Shawn Hannity, Michael Savage, Evangelicals, Jack Thompson, and Fear Factor.

I don't want to ruin the books for anyone else, but let me just say that if you are reading a Stephen King book and he tells you that the important point of the story is over and you want to stop reading even though there are only 5 pages left, that the point of a story is the journey, not the ending, blah, blah, blah, you should put the book down and step away from it slowly. In fact, tear those last five pages out and burn them so it will no longer be able to tempt you to just read them. Because otherwise you are going to finish that last page and do what I did:

Scream at the top of your lungs, "NOOOOOOOO!!! YOU CANNOT FUCKING END IT THAT WAY!!!!!! FUCK YOU STEPHEN KING!!!"

And then you will hear a voice that I can only assume is Stephen King's whispering in your ear saying, "See? I told you so."

Monday, October 24, 2005

Another Classic Quote

Another soon to be classic quote from OverheadInTheOffice:

"I am a guacamole of knowledge into which you may dip the nacho of need."

Saturday, October 22, 2005


Today is Eric's 27th birthday! I hope that you have a great day today Eric! I love you!

Thursday, October 20, 2005

9 Years

I know it is wrong to kiss and tell, but it was 9 years ago today that Sue and I had our first kiss at the little waterfall on the Red Cedar River just south of the Administration building on the Michigan State University campus.

Just wanted to tell her in a public forum that I was so glad she said "yes" to both my first question there ("Would it be alright if I kissed you?") and my second question exactly 3 years later ("Will you marry me?").

MSU Campus

Wednesday, October 19, 2005

Girls of Geek

Just because R asked for it:

Not sure I believe these girls are all geeks, but it is nice to dream. And the calendar might be a nice present for that single geek you know.

Monday, October 17, 2005

Programmer Truisms

From the Un-Dynamics of Software Development

  1. It is still the Wild, Wild West out here and anything goes.

  2. You are the best programmer.

  3. Many programmers are intellectual bullies and egomaniacs.

  4. The mean time between the time you start speaking and someone flipping the bozo bit (the bit that a programmer flips in their head to stop listening to someone they feel is an idiot) on you is ten seconds.

  5. When someone says the schedule is going to be missed, they are never lying.

  6. Change is a constant, but people will seldom thank you for changing their code.

  7. A lot of bad software is being written by people who don't read.

  8. People believe too much of what they read.

  9. Authors are not smarter than the rest of us; they just read more.

  10. Managers should not make technical decisions, but do.

  11. If a manager says I am not technical, be prepared to spend a lot of time explaining things to them so they can make decisions they shouldn't be making.

  12. Managers hire experts and ignore them all the time.

  13. Messengers get shot more often than not.

  14. Leaders have to lead; sometimes you will look behind you and find that someone is actually following.

  15. Programmers hate to read another programmer's code; if they volunteer to review your code, it is not to do you a favor.

  16. There really are programmers ten times faster than everyone else.

  17. Every man is in some way my superior, as long as he doesn't keep reminding me.

  18. Programmers are emotionally attached to their code, but never say this out loud.

  19. Everyone talks about constructive tension but doesn't want you disagreeing with them.

  20. Benevolent dictators build the best software.

  21. Decisions are, more often than not, emotional.

Wednesday, October 12, 2005

Tucson Hiking

I finally got my pictures developed from my hiking adventure to Tucson. This
is the best one of the bunch:


If you look closely, you might even notice that I was in the picture. Now, I know what you are thinking. You're thinking, "That Eric is REALLY short". Either that or you are thinking, "That is one big cactus". The second thought is correct. For those who thought the first're an idiot and I'm sorry.

Here another:

big cactus

That there sure is one giant cactus I'm standing next to at the start of the trail.

<Austin Powers voice>Does that make you horny baby?</Austin Powers voice>

Saturday, October 08, 2005

Sexiest woman alive?!?! C'mon!

Um, I am not sure who voted but Esquire magazine named Jessica Biel the "Sexiest woman alive." Eric and I agree that someone was drunk and high when they thought of this or else the magazine was turned down by the real sexy women. I would have to say that Angelina Jolie or Jennifer Garner (pre-pregnancy that is) are the sexiest women alive. If I were a lesbian or bi, I would love to get some of the Angelina action... ;) Those big tasty lips, and that long hair, not to mention the buliging bust... but, I digress ( you are welcome Eric). We do not think Jessica Biel is that hot. She has no boobs! There are many other women that are hotter. I guess we think women are sexy if they are strong, muscular, have big boobs (natural, none of that fake crap that never moves, EWWW) and beautiful. Jessica Simpson, Brittany Spears, Catherine Zeta Jones, Eliza Dushku, etc. What about these Jay and Silent Bob strike back ladies?

Thursday, October 06, 2005

Sick Dog

[Currently listening to: Green Day - American Idiot]

Poor Bob. Our dog has some sort of skin bacterial infection that makes him scratch and bite at his skin almost constantly. It is so bad that he has started biting out chunks of hair from his front paws. It makes him look like the undead, as the following picture clearly shows:

Undead Bob

On the plus side, Bob spaced out on Benadryl is pretty funny to watch.

Wednesday, October 05, 2005

Some Trance Links

[Currently listening to: Nine Inch Nails - The Downward Spiral]

Thanks to my pal Sebastian (via Paul. Got to give props for the intro), I've discovered several new sites for downloading some really good hard trance. This makes me a happy developer at work and a happy gamer at home (I tend to kill the background music for most games and pump in whatever trance I'm listening to instead. It makes WoW or Civilizations III a whole new game:) ). Check out: - I especially like the first Paul Van Dyke set on this page. - Thanks to Paul and Sebastian, I'm a huge fan of the sets by "Preacher" on this site. They are really good stuff. - A female DJ from Toronto that I really dig. I don't remember where I found her, which seems odd. Her music is very hard trance/jungle. Actually, if you have ever seen that Strong Bad email on techno, it describes pretty much what her music sounds like (including the obligatory old movie quotes). - One of my co-workers swears by this guy as "software developer friendly" trance. His sets have names like "memory leak" and "exception handler". Not my sound, but whatever.

Monday, October 03, 2005

What's Wrong with these people?

Alabama State Sen. Hank Erwin, R-Montevallo, recently called Hurricane Katrina a punishment from God, saying New Orleans and the Mississippi Gulf Coast "have always been known for gambling, sin and wickedness. It is the kind of behavior that ultimately brings the judgment of God."

So the damage to your fine state of Alabama means what exactly? How about the thousands of people who live in that area but don't support gambling, sin, and wickedness? How about that other hurricane that hit the oh so red state of Texas the other day? Apparently God's aim sucks. Look, if God wanted to punish the gay folks, he would just blast them with a lightening bolt or cause all of their penises to drop off. This "natural disasters as an act of God" horse shit make me think we are still living in a time when we thought lightning was thrown by Zeus from a mountain. Stop being such pretentious ass holes and assuming that you know the will of God.

Of course, its an issue that all Christians have trouble with. How do you reconcile the idea that God is all knowing, all powerful, and loves everyone with any natural disaster? Surely God could have built a world where thousands don't die for no reason greater than warm water in a spin cycle. Its a difficult question. True evil is something that you can perhaps explain as human nature running against God will, but how does one justify natural disasters?

Sunday, October 02, 2005

Nothing to Write About

MSU LOST to UofM! BOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO! I knew that the whole "our defense sucks but we run up more points that you" stategy was going to fail sooner or later.

I just noticed it has been more than week since our last post, and I still don't really have anything to talk about. I've been insanely busy at work the last couple of days trying to teach our customer how to use our code base so that they can get rid of us without actually telling them how to use our code base. Its stressful and annoying and I hate it. But since I write almost all of my blogs while I am at work reading the news, it effects my output.

Friday, September 23, 2005

Thank God its Friday

I was surfing around at work doing anything but actual work when I ran across the following from Overheard in the Office:

"It's about time to not come to work for a couple of days."

Ramen sister. Ramen.

Today has been just one of those days. First, its casual Friday for everyone but me. Why just me you say? Because I had to deliver our program's monthly review today to our Major, which means dressing in above average business casual. Any day that I am denied dressing like a slacker pisses me off right off the bat. Second, I did not know that I would be delivering said presentation until I got to work this morning, which meant I had to drive back home, change into something presentable, then drive back to work. With my Jeep that mean about $3:). Third, said meeting was 2 hours long of which I spoke for about 10 minutes. The rest was spent spinning my ID badge in various yo-yo like manners and trying my best not to think of anyone naked (engineers...<shudder>)

That's combined to put me in a sour mode that makes work rough. Bah. Just keep telling yourself, "One more hour and I am out of here...59 minutes 50 seconds and I am out of here...".

Tuesday, September 20, 2005


OK, I'm clearly slipping to have missed such a hilarious parody on the internet for so long. The first time Sue and I read the description of this yesterday we laughed so hard that we cried a little.

Anyways, for those who don't want to go through the trouble of reading the entire site, I'll sum up. In response to the Kanas City school board allowing intelligent Design, a physics student made up his own religion and demanded that Kansas City school board also teach this system. The main tenets are a follows:

  • The Universe was created by an invisible and undetectable Flying Spaghetti Monster. All evidence pointing towards evolution was intentionally planted by this being.

  • According to the pastafarians, the monster created the world starting with a mountain, trees and a midget and continues to guide human affairs with his "noodly appendage." Heaven is depicted as having a stripper factory and a beer volcano.

  • They refuse to use the word "evolution". Instead, they say things like "logical conjecture based on overwhelming observable evidence".

  • Their prayers to "Him" are typically ended by "Ramen", instead of "Amen". For example, one of their chants is: "Flying Spaghetti Monster, Pie Saucus Domine, Ramen"

  • They believe it is disrespectful to teach beliefs in Flying Spaghetti Monsterism without wearing His chosen outfit, which of course is full pirate regalia

  • Global warming, earthquakes, hurricanes, and other natural disasters are a direct consequence of the decline in numbers of pirates since the 1800s. The graph below showing the inverse correlation between the pirates and global temperatures proves it!

Sunday, September 18, 2005

Napolean Gates

Bill Gates Goes to College

The video is a litte grainy and the sound sucks in places since it is a hand held video taping a projector at Microsoft's developer conference, but it is hilarious if you like Napolean Dynamite.

Saturday, September 17, 2005

Slurpee turns 40 The Slurpee at 40

Why must I read articles like this when I am living 300 miles from the nearest 7-11?!?!? Why God! Why?!?! How I miss that rush of completely empty sugar calories, caffeine, brain freeze that only a Coke slurpee can deliver...

According to the article, "Here in the United States the drink is most beloved in Detroit...". Wikipedia also points out that more Slurpees are consumed per year in Detroit then anywhere else in the USA. I think both of these articles must have been based on older data. I'd be willing to wager there was a significant drop in total consumption in that region right around the time Sue and I left:)

Friday, September 09, 2005

University Research Into Stupidity

Backpack designed to generate power from walking

I happen to see this article on Yahoo News about this backpack that researchers at the University of Pennsylvania that can generate electricity just from the act of walking with it. Cool I thought. I could use something like that for my IPod, or my cell phone at just the right moment. But then I got to this:

"Humping along just under 85 pounds (38 kg) of weight in the backpack can produce up to 7 watts of electricity"

85 pounds? 85 POUNDS? Are you kidding? Do you know how many batteries I can carry around and still be under 85 pounds? What ivory tower dumb ass thought this one up? Oh right...University of Pennsylvania ivory tower dumb asses.

Thursday, September 08, 2005

Don't forget about the pets.

I love pets! I love my dogs. They are like family. Katrina was a horrific storm and it caused a lot of physical and emotional pain. The humans that stayed down there were just plain stupid. They should have all left. They had four days to get the hell out of dodge. I feel for the pets. They had no choice. They were abandoned and betrayed. Their owners stayed during the hurricane and were able to leave after, if they survived, but the government did not let anyone take pets with them on buses to leave the area. So after the hurricane there were poor, innocent dogs just wandering the disgusting waters of New Orleans looking for a familiar face or for a meal. Pets were drowning in the water because they could not make it to a safe area or they were trapped in homes or tied up by chains. It angers me and it saddens me. All those pets and animals did not need to suffer in this way. The Humane Society is trying it's best to find and rescue as many abandoned pets and animals that they can. Please donate if you can. I commend the Humane society for all of it's work. Adopt a pet if you can to help save some of these animals that need a home and want nothing more than a chance at life and love. I would adopt more dogs if Eric would let me. I think everyone's life would be better with a pet. They love unconditionally and they make you smile at least 1000 times a day.

Monday, September 05, 2005

Labor Day is Confusing

Every year I have the exact same thought on Labor Day:

This is supposed to be the day that we celebrate the labor of all the hard working individuals of this country. How exactly are we "celebrating" labor by all sleeping in and having the day off? :)

Friday, September 02, 2005

We are all 3 days away from total starvation

Is anyone else but me severely traumatized by the whole situation in New Orleans? For the love of God. 3 days. Apparently all it takes is three days without power and a shower and all of society will collapse. It is like we are watching the Lord of the Flies played out in real life. All I can hope is that it is specific to New Orleans. I mean, they lost power in New York and Michigan for up to a week last year and those folks did not riot, loot, or shoot at people who were attempting to rescue them.

What's worse is I can almost understand it: I had to fight the urge to horde gasoline yesterday. Looking at prices of gas on the way home ($3.25 a gallon was not uncommon in Huntsville), I'm not sure fighting that urge was the best idea. The only thing that stopped me is knowing that a rush for gas will only make a gas supply crunch worst. The reality is that gas stations do not have enough gas for everyone to fill up at the same time even when there is no crimp in the supply. That's just not the way the system works.

And folks I work with are starting to get on my nerves. I swear if one more person comes into my office and breaks my concentration in order to tell me something else horrible that happened in New Orleans, I am just going to have beat them to death with my computer speakers.

Wednesday, August 31, 2005

We're Fine

Just in case any of the out of state readers of this blog are wondering about the welfare of your favorite bloggers in the wake of the current hurricane mania, Sue and I are fine. We were ready to hunker down on Monday night with new surge protectors, batteries, radios, blankets, candles, and a bunch of interior walls to entertain us, but in the end nothing much happened and we slept in our beds all through the night. For those folks who's Alabama geography is a little rusty, Huntsville is roughly as far north in Alabama as you can get and still legally sleep with your sister;) So all we had to contend with was some wind and some rain. We didn't even lose power in the end (which is incredible because I swear we lose power in my neighborhood every time a cow pees in the wrong direction).

Monday, August 29, 2005

And I thought I was Geeky

I thought I knew the definition of geeky, but I had no idea until I saw this video today that a couple of Microsoft interns made: (It's even safe for viewing at work)

I bow to the superior geek-ness of these folks.

Sunday, August 28, 2005

Irony in Best Buy

Sue and I were perusing the computer game selves of the local Best But today, when I notice the box for the new NHL 2005. Yeah... How do you have a new game when there wasn't a season? I didn't read the back of the box, but I imagine the text was something like the follow:

Enter the exciting world of pro sport contact negotiations. Play as either the greedy team owners, or the greedy NHL players in a exciting, high stake game of chicken. Can you save the 2005 hockey season from being cancelled? Can you understand the complexities of salary caps, revenue sharing, and the economics of a sport with too many teams and not enough money?

Features include:

* Listen in to AM sport programs blather on for hours about why each side's demands are insane

* Visit the mansions of both players or owners to try and understand why each side demands so much of the pie.

* Sit through 100% realistic all night negotiations where both sides will agree to everything except the things they disagreed about in the last meeting.

NHL 2005: not letting a hockey strike ruin our chance to sell basically the same game we released last year.

Saturday, August 27, 2005

Now these are cars!

I saw this article and had to put up my two sense. Call me what you want, but I must say that I do not get the choices the youth of today pick for "cool"cars. To me they are ugly. When people pimp out the Ford Focus, Neon, some hatchback (basically any car on the game Need for Speed) or just buy a Mazda, Mitsibushi or Toyota sports car I don't get it. I really do not get the new convertible version of the PT Cruiser. We saw one the other day and they suck. I also do not get the color choices. Cars should come in only red, black, or blue. I don't get why a hetero man would get a purple or yellow car. That is just not right.

I love going to the car shows and seeing all of the old muscle cars. Now I have always been a lover of cars and when I see the brand new Mustang, I just want to run up to it and roll all over it... I druel just thinking about it. I love the look, the horsepower and the history behind it. Just thinking about 300 horsepower makes me hot. It is the king of cool cars and has been for a long time. The model just before the most recent upgrade of the mustang was pretty ugly so I am glad they went back to the basic look of the old car! I also love the older versions of the cars. I had an ex that I stayed with a little longer because he and his dad were rebuilding old GTO's. They were hot! The guy became annoying but I sure loved his car ;) What can I say, I was only 16? He also liked my car. My first car was an '83 Ford Thunderbird. It had 3.8L V6 engine (druel) and I loved it. I lived out on country roads so at 2 in the morning I would get that baby up to 120 or 130. What can I say, I was a wild child ;) All the guys would fix it for free because they just loved the car. I did not mind. It gave me a reason to talk to the hottest guy in school who had the same car. That car lasted me a long time. Ahh the memories. My best friend and I would kidnap her boyfriend, drive to Canada at midnight, get drunk (drinking age is 19 in Canada), sober up in Tim Horton's and come back the next morning. We went to Canada a lot along with other road trips.

Where did that tradition go? The hot looking muscle cars are a great american custom that the Asian market really has not grasped. Those ugly handle looking spoilers they put on their sports cars. Ugh!

I also do not get how a person can buy a new mustang, corvette, or GTO and drive it like a pussy. I will go on the freeway and they are going 5-15 under the speed limit. WTF? I do not like slow drivers to begin with but if you own a muscle car and you are driving slow, then you need to buy a new car...

Friday, August 26, 2005

Caffeine Overdose is the same as Sex

So I was reading a FAQ on Caffeine this morning when I came across this description for the effects of Caffeine overdose.

Caffeine-Induced Organic Mental Disorder (Caffeine Intoxication or Overdose)

1) Recent consumption of caffeine, usually in excess of 250 mg.
2) At least five of the following signs:

  • restlessness

  • nervousness

  • excitement

  • insomnia

  • flushed face

  • diuresis

  • gastrointestinal disturbance

  • muscle twitching

  • rambling flow of thought and speech

  • tachycardia or cardiac arrhythmia

  • periods of inexhaustibility

  • psychomotor agitation

3) Not due to any physical or other mental disorder, such as an Anxiety Disorder.

My very first thought is that Sex and a Caffeine overdose are basically the same. Let run the list:

  • restlessness - Clearly I don't want to sleep during sex.

  • nervousness - early on, sure. I'm nervous I am going to fuck it up and not get sex.

  • excitement - Hells ya!

  • insomnia - See restlessness

  • flushed face - If we are doing it right:)

  • diuresis - well, ok, maybe not this one. Although don't you find you always have to pee at the worst possible moments?

  • gastrointestinal disturbance - all that shaking CAN make you feel a little car sick at times.

  • muscle twitching - Do I even need to say anything here?

  • rambling flow of thought and speech - Pretty much all I am capable of is grunting and the occasional epitaph spoken in happiness.

  • tachycardia or cardiac arrhythmia - All that pumping is hard!:)

  • periods of inexhaustibility - F#$k ya. Just ask Sue.

  • psychomotor agitation - Everyone know that I shake when I am happy:)

Guess you know what this means. Time to get an espresso machine!

Thursday, August 25, 2005

Look, it's a BatHook!

New machine allows soldiers to hurdle buildings.

At long last, my dream of owning some of the coolest equipment that Batman had can finally be lived out. According to this article, the Pentagon has procurded a new handheld system that can "raise or lower a load of up to 145 kg (320 lb) at the rate of one meter (yard) per second...the operator would shoot a rope attached to a grappling hook to the top of the building and then attach the rope to a harness-like device which hauls them up."

And they have a civilian version in the works.

America: Fuck Ya.

Wednesday, August 24, 2005

Talk Nerdy to Me

This blog is a co-production of Eric and Sue.

Since being geek has become so cool (metrosexuals are SOOOO 2004), Sue and I have created a list of 0x10 things for you non-techie women to say to your geek in bed:

1) These 6" heels add +15 to my stamina
2) Would you like to touch my software?
3) Can I play with your hard drive?
4) Two words: golden bikini
5) Is that a light saber in your pocket or are you just happy to see me?
6) I dance naked in the auction house of WoW.
7) Put Yoda back in my hut.
8) Boldly go where no man has gone before.
9) DING! (This one is for R)
A) If you want me, come a claim me!
B) <as she gazes at your penis> my precious...
C) I love to role play.
D) Be gentle. I'm a n00b.

Tuesday, August 23, 2005

Puppies rule!

Just to put up a new blog, here are some new pics of Bob and Bella. Eric and I just have not come up with anything interesting to say lately ;)

Bella loves to play ball. She goes nuts for the ball she is holding. How cute...

And beware of Darth Bob...Dun dun dun dun dun dun dun dun dun!

Thursday, August 18, 2005

The words are like poetry...

I am a fan of poetry, ecspecially musical poetry. I just love when songs have lyrics that are poetic and actually have meaning. I love music because of the words and the spirit and the soul that the music can pass onto the listener. This is why I love DMB and Evanescence. One of my current faves is Kelly Clarkston. Her first cds were whatever the idol people made her do and this current one just seems like the music she wants to do. I love the mix of pop and punk, but more importantly the words in some of her songs. In her words: "I've had some pretty crappy people and things happen to me, but I've learned something from each one of those crappy things." One song in particular really spoke to me and I can relate to it's words:

Because Of You

I will not make the same mistakes that you did
I will not let myself cause my heart so much misery
I will not break, the way you did, you fell so hard
I’ve learned the hard way to never let it get that far

Because of you
I never strayed to far from the sidewalk
Because of you I learned to play on the safe side so I don’t get hurt
Because of you I find it hard to find it hard to trust, not only me,
but everyone around me, Because of you, I am afraid

I lose my way, and its not too long before you point it out
I cannot cry, because I know that’s weakness in your eyes
I’m forced to fake a smile, a laugh, every day of my life
My heart can’t possibly break, when it wasn’t even whole to start with


I watched you die, I heard you cry, every night in your sleep.
I was so young, you should have known better than to lean on me.
You never thought of anyone else you just saw your pain.
And now I cry in the middle of the night, doin the same damn thing

(chorus, but slightly different)
Because of you I never strayed to far from the sidewalk
Because of you I learned to play on the safe side so I don’t get hurt
Because of you I try my hardest just to forget everything
Because of you I don’t know how to let anyone else in

Because of you I’m ashamed of my life, because its empty
Because of you, I am afraid

Because of you…

Because of you…

In her words on her website: "I've had some pretty crappy people and things happen to me, but I've learned something from each one of those crappy things."

Hey, these are Southwestern Toppings!!!

I'm in Tucson on TDY for the next couple of days working on yet another helicopter loader. I give Tucson credit: this place is really beautiful. It's one of the few times I wish I had a small camera phone or something like that to take pictures with. Even the view out of my room is nice. Mountains and scrub and empty land as far as the eye can see. It's even better than Phoenix, at least the parts of Phoenix I am used to (too much smog there hides some of the really great views).

It is so empty that the Pentagon parks all the moth balled aircraft of the Air Force and Navy at an air base here. I actually went and visited it today for kicks. It's surreal. You almost get that weird feeling you get whenever you enter a graveyard. Here's a picture I found that does it pretty good justice:

Sunday, August 14, 2005

Must be a Slow news day

You know it is a slow news day when Bushes hire first woman as White House head chef is a AP headline... Sigh...

I don't care. I DON'T CARE! Seriously, this is the sort of headline I would expect the Onion to post. What's next? "President names first gay hispanic as the janitor of the White House"?

Saturday, August 13, 2005

Ramblings of Eric: Part 7 - Current Beliefs

Now that I have waited long enough to ensure that you have all forgotten the contents of my last rambling post, it's time to delve into some REALLY personal stuff. First up: disclaimers.

- The views in this blog are mine. They don't necessarily reflect what Sue or anyone else for that matter believes. They are mine and mine alone.

- I'm not trying to convince anyone that my beliefs are right. That would be a ridiculous waste of all our times.

- If you are just going to post some sort of comment about how my beliefs are wrong because such and such book says so, save us all some time, go away, and get a life while you are at it.

OK, lets start with the big thing right up front: I do think there is some higher power. Some thing beyond just you and me. Don't ask me who or what or where. Just...some thing. But that is about as far as I am willing to commit to right now. I often wonder what it must be like to be so FUCKING sure that your religion is right. My brother (and my parents and grandparents ) would tell you that they are Missouri Synod Lutheran (what I grew up with). Not just Christian. Not even just "Lutheran". I can't figure out whether the Hindus or Buddhists or the whatever have it right, and yet my family members are 100% sure that their particular little sect has it 100% correct. It just pisses me off. I WANT to be that sure. It would so much easier to not question it. Just go with the flow.

But I can't. I just can't anymore. I've learned too much. I've seen too much history of people doing horrible, unspeakable things in the name of religion to be able to just blindly say that the Bible (or whatever spiritual text you are interested in) is 100% accurate. Even my brother would admit that the earliest copy we have is at least 200 AD or so.

How ARE they so sure? What I hate even more than the fact that they (not just my family. I mean the conservative right in general) are so sure is that they confuse my unwillingness to commit to their particular belief to be the equivalent of me saying that they are wrong. I'm not saying they are wrong. If you believe in the Christian God, I 100% support your right and your desire to do so. Just don't make me commit to it. I'm not there. I'm not ready. I've been there, seen it, and said to myself that I'm not sure. There it is again. That FUCKING confusion that permeates everything about this topic.

I've rambled enough for now. I actually feel worse after spilling this one out. Less sure of myself. Fuck it. I'm going to bed.

Friday, August 12, 2005

I want to blog...

Sue has been mad crazy with posting, and I am feeling left out. So I thought I would write about...some thing. Sadly, I got nothing today. No news to mock. No movies that I have seen that I would recommend. Nothing.

Anyone have any ideas for posts? I've got 42 cents that I will share with someone who comes up with something for me to blog about (why 42? Because I thought, (1) no one would help me for a measly 41 cents, and (2) its the secret to the life, the universe, and everything).

Wednesday, August 10, 2005

Eric's sugar daddy days are numbered...

I am employed!! I start at the end of August! I accepted a position at the big hospital down here (Huntsville people know what I mean) in the Respiratory unit. It is a good place to get my start and I know that the doctors are nice and laid back. It makes me less nervous! Just wanted to let everyone know!

Monday, August 08, 2005

Another couple off the market

Congratulations Paul and Sue!!

Eric and I are home again after flying off to NY last Wednesday for the SuePaul wedding extravaganza! We had tons of fun and we are so glad that we were able to share that special day with two of our greatest friends. Their ceremony was unique and very special and I enjoyed it immensely. It is nice to see a wedding that is different from all of the usual boring stuff. Their ceremony really showed the love they shared ;)

Eric and I are very tired since our flights were severely screwed up (damn Atlanta airport!) and we did not get back to our house until 1:30 am this morning. Eric had work and I had an interview so we had to wake up early this morning. After already being sleep deprived due to tons of partying this weekend, this morning was rough. I hate Delta airlines since they use Atlanta airport as their hub and I am going to try really hard to avoid them from now on. Every flight I have gone on or that my family has gone on has been delayed in Atlanta airport. They suck at it! UGH! Anywho, I think a nap is calling and my brain is not ready to think and write any more!

As a side note, I finished the 6th Harry Potter book during our flights this weekend and if any of you out there have done the same email or call me since I need to discuss the end of this book with someone!!! What a suprise and emotional ending!! I will not spoil the end to anyone so call me if you finished it!!