Sunday, December 30, 2007

book review, the Golden Compass

#40 The Golden Compass Philip Pullman 1995 * * * The writing and scenes were well done, but the story didn't do anything for me. Lots of people are saying this is a great book, and it is pretty good, but it doesn't live up to all the hype. ~ December 30, 2007

Saturday, December 29, 2007

The Cris Collinsworth School of Classical Music Appreciation.

Cris Collinsworth is so annoying my daughters mentioned the annoying man talking over the football game, so we were forced to mute the television and put on classical music during the Patriots/Giants game instead of listening to that blowhard Cris Collinsworth ruin another football game. We enjoyed Wagner's "Ride of the Valkyries", Prokofiev's "Montagues and Capulets", Pachelbel's "Canon" and a host of other classics. My thanks goes out to Cris Collinsworth for an enjoyable evening with my family listening to classics so we wouldn't have to listen to you for 4+ hours being stupid.

(Contrats Pats)

I woke up at 5:00 this morning and cleaned my desk. I sent out 4 short stories, and through the miracle of electronic mail messages, or "email" as the kids like to call it, I got a reject letter the SAME DAY! A first. I re-wrote the ending to one story.

Savannah drew the most amazing bird sketches. They are suitable for framing.

Alex found 6 state quarters for our state quarters collection book.

Spoke to Barry for about an hour. Sat in front of the fire and read a book and wrote while Deb and the Girls went to baby Savannah's 2nd birthday party.

I had a root canal yesterday. Today I have vicodin :)

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Merry Christmas

Merry Christmas everybody. The presents are opened, the fire is in the fireplace, the wrapping paper is burned, and we're just chilling out at the Manning estate.

Friday, December 21, 2007

hyper realistic sculptures by ron mueck

these statues are friggin awesome. here's the link heard about it on the dawn and drew show.

i like turtles!

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

This is possibly the Greatest Video EVER!

You've got to see this video, it is the best thing I've seen on the Internet in a long time.

Monday, December 17, 2007

41 Years of Television Programming

Here's the List of Crap I've watched. It's off the top of my head and probably incomplete and inaccurate, but here it is:

Yogi Bear; Scoobie-Doo; Speed Buggy; Lost in Space; Bewitched; I Dream of Jeanie; Ultraman; Gilligan's Island; Green Acres; Leave It to Beaver; Grape Ape; Rocky & Bulwinkle; Kojack; Charlie's Angels; Brady Bunch; The Lawrence Welk Show; Dukes of Hazard; Mannix; Dr. Who; Star Trek; Sesame Street; Electric Company; Zoom; Nova; Battlestar Galactica; Twilight Zone; Night Gallery; Night Stalker; The Six Million Dollar Man; The Bionic Woman; The Incredible Hulk; Wonder Woman; The Incredible Hulk; Fantasy Island; The Price is Right; Name that Tune; Hollywood Squares; To Tell the Truth; The Gong Show; Dancing with The Stars; Sonny and Cher; Shields and Yarnell Show; Candid Camera; Cosby Show; Who's the Boss; Three's Company; All in The Family; Rhoda; Alice; Frasier; One Day At a Time; Cheers; Dallas; In Living Color; MadTV; Saturday Night Live; Austin City Limits; Second City Television (SCTV); Partridge Family; My Three Sons; Family Affair; Greatest American Hero; CSI; X-Files; Pee Wee Herman Show; Bugs Bunny Road Runner Show; Carol Burnett; Kids In the Hall; Seinfeld; Gunsmoke; The Cisco Kid; Bonanza; Kung Fu; The Simpsons; Futurama; 60 Minutes; Nightline; COPS; Survivor; American Idol; Hardy Boys; Nancy Drew; Drew Cary Show; Who's Line Is It Anyway; Reno 911; Sarah Silverman Program; Spongebob Squarepants; Dirty Jobs; Speed Racer; Charmed; 90210; Different World; Fat Albert; What's Happening; Maud; The Jeffersons; Good Times; Real World; Big Brother; The Bachelor; Joker's Wild; Who Wants to be a Millionaire?; American Gladiator; Ninja Warrior; Battle of the Network Stars; Acceptable TV; Roseanne; Flinstones; Jetsons; The Land of The Lost; Wonderful World of Disney; Mutual of Omaha's Wild Kingdom; ; Quantum Leap; Petticoat Juntion; Donnie and Marie Show; Crocodile Hunter; David Letterman; Little House on The Prairie; The Saint; Emergency; Marcus Welby, M.D.; Doogie Houser; Allie McBeal; Boston Legal; C.H.I.P.S.; Columbo; Let's Make a Deal; Tonight Show; The Daily Show; Stephen Colbert; Different Strokes; Captain Kangaroo; Bozo the Clown; Kukla, Fran, and Ollie; Wheel of Fortune; Jeopardy; $64,000 Pyramid; Starsky and Hutch; Baretta; Facts of Life; H.R. Pufnstuf, Southpark; Monty Python's Flying Circus; Young Ones; Tom and Jerry; Underdog; Mighty Mouse; The Man From Atlantis; Three Stooges; Little Rascals; Abbot and Costello; Hawaii Five-O; Dragnet; Get Smart; Lassie; Munsters; Adams Family; Johnny Quest; Batman; Superman; Superfriends; Laugh-In; The Monkees; Josie and The Pussycats; Archie; Marries . . . With Children; The Wolfman Jack Show; Grizzly Adams; Flipper; Gomer Pyle; Andy Griffith; Hogan's Heroes.

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

google this:

Treasury Enforcement Communication System

Your Government Loves You.

notes from the coffee shop

I’m in a Beaner’s Coffee Shop, and there are three young men writing some theological paper for college, something about "God gave man free will", and "Man walked away from God” etc, etc, and they are right at the next table. I want to scream, “You idiots are arguing and spending all this time about something that doesn’t exist! You might as well be arguing about Battlestar Galactica plot points!”

But I’m doing the same thing, because In the back of my mind, I think someone is going to read these words, but that “someone” may never exist.

(later . . .) These idiots are still at it. Now they’re trying to argue why Jesus was put on the cross. I’ve always imagined in my mind Christians sitting around debating how many angels can fit on the head of a pin, but I never imagined a stupider exchange of hot air in my most derisive imaginings. These two are so incredibly stupid.

(still later . . .)and now they’re parsing the word “submit” as in “wives submit to their husband.” The one guy actually says: “So I looked up the meaning of the word ‘submit’ and it doesn’t actually mean ‘submit.’”

I swear I want to strangle these stupid bastards.

Jesus F*cking Christ, will you guys stop wasting my money on this retarded sh*t?

Behold House Resolution 847, one of the many things on which these fucktards in the 110th Congre$$ are wasting time. The intrinsic retardation of this piece of shit legislation transcends satire or mockery. This bill is it's own comedy bit. The very radioactive nature of its stupidity, its disregard for the separation of Church and State, and the blatant use of a loaded issue to coerce votes boggles the mind and reaffirms my 0% hope in anything positive emerging from this cabal of worthless corporate-cock-sucking plutocrats.

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

spend $250.00 on a chance to win a doll! cripes!

So I'm listening to the local radio, usually I listen to NPR cause I like to think I'm a brainiac snob, but today I'm listening to (radio voice) Classic Rock 96.9 WLAV and they run this commercial from Woodland mall. It has two lady shoppers at the mall chatting, and they say something about "every time you spend $250.00 and be entered in an American Girl sweepstakes." and I'm thinking, who in the HELL is spending $250.00 at the mall more than once? Who are these people? So I check the website:
Spend $250 in one day in any store inside Woodland Mall between November 19 and December 16, 2007, bring your receipts to the Customer Service Desk and your receipts will be totaled, rounding to the nearest whole dollar and stamped as proof of expenditure. If your receipts total $250 or more from any store inside Woodland, you will be entered into a drawing to win an American Girl Doll with a retail value of $87. Only one prize awarded per person for any drawing.
I dunno, it just seems weird. Think I'll mention The Story of Stuff with Annie Leonard again.

Sunday, December 09, 2007

relaxo music


Do you have the Internets? Do you have headphones? Then go to this place:

and give it a listen. It's relaxo music.

Saturday, December 08, 2007

what your government is up to:

wanna be scared:

How about H.R. 1955, where they basically outlaw revolution; so you can't even talk about the government when they start really screwing up.

and H.R. 3791, where they'll hold anyone with an open wireless connection (coffee shops, bookstores, etc) responsible if someone looks at something bad on the Internets.

The Story of Stuff with Annie Leonard

The Story of Stuff with Annie Leonard I highly recommend spending twenty minutes watching this

Monday, December 03, 2007

blue moose moon zoo

blue moose moon zoo
frog toast flower dance
fish creep tickle pig
dog need wonder butt
book cake window nose
rain red monkey stuff
plant dream music big
eye boy water light
girl good summer bug
hug song yellow run

Saturday, December 01, 2007

Book Review: Pride and Prejudice

#39 Pride and Prejudice Jane Austen 1813 * * * I know this is supposed to be a girl's book, but I read it anyway for the "what's the big deal" factor, because there are so many people (women) who are really into Jane Austen. Basically, Elizabeth goes to tea and visits friends and nothing happens. Mr. Darcy is a jerk, but then turns out he isn't a jerk. Various people say things. I couldn't finish this because I guess I'm too stupid to read it, or I'm a guy. Anyway, I don't get it. ~ November 26, 2007

more awesome book reviews by me can be found here

Thursday, November 29, 2007

More than usual photoshop contest | Photoshop Contests | Are you Worthy™ | contest

smells like an army of one?

Wow, that's a career change:
The Army first reached out to parents in 2005 as part of its Army of One campaign by advertising giant Leo Burnett. These ads were directed by Samuel Bayer, who made his mark directing Nirvana’s “Smells Like Teen Spirit” video.

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Interactive Social Contract V.1.1

Interactive Social Contract V.1.1 Finally, a Interactive Social Contract for the rest of us. Read and add to this magnificent tome. Found at's blog.


Hell, why not? I can write funny stuff for talk shows. Hire me to write your funny material. How hard can it be? Half the stuff on late night isn't that funny anyway. Except the Daily Show. I don't have the moxie for that.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Monday, November 26, 2007

really long blog post about stuff

Today I did many things. I installed AV software. I exported contacts and calendars. I taught basic networking and backup procedures. I uninstalled bad software. I uninstalled bad software that had cost this company a lot of money. I replaced that software with .CSV files. The RFC dealing with Comma Separated Values is RFC 4180 and is found at this address: All of this makes me sound like a smarty-pants, but those of you in the know know better. a CSV file is a text file. Text files are cool.

Then I networked network printing goodness, which, as all of you know, makes its own gravy. Then I had two hamburgers and a regular order of fries at a new place I've discovered, McDonalds. Then I drove home. Then I went to the gym and ran on the treadmill and did some sit-ups and lifted a few weights.

Later I'm going to drink wine and watch TV with the missus. Before I do that, I'm going to work on my bestselling novel. After all that I'm probably going to go to sleep. While I'm asleep I'm probably going to dream about stuff, but I won't remember that stuff when I wake up because I rarely remember my dreams, and that's too bad, because I probably dream all kinds of cool stuff, like I have super powers or something. If I had super powers, I'd fly around and right wrongs. I'd fly around in my 2002 Ford Taurus, ending wars and bringing down a healthy can of whoop-ass on a lot of rich bastards. ("waterboarding isn't torture? then you don't mind trying it out for yourself huh?") I'd cure cancer and grow limbs back on all the people, and fuse spines and cause corn to grow in places like Darfur. I'd turn all land-mines into pumpkins and all automatic weapons into those plastic tubes you spin around, and they whistle? You know, those orange and green flexible tubes, and the only reason they are there so kids can spin them around and they whistle? The problem with those, at least when I was a kid, is that eventually we'd get bored and start wailing on each other with them, and that hurts. Almost as much as hot-wheel tracks. Ever get beat with a hot-wheel track? Those orange pieces of plastic about a yard long? That hurts like a m0thrfckr.

My friggin' dog is outside barking. Ginger is a beautiful dog, but she's the last friggin' dog we'll ever own because I'm getting semi-old and I'm sick of messing around with the dog, but of course, whenever I see her I immediately start baby-talking to her, and I'm pretty sure if anyone hears me they'll think I'm a crazy person.

I downloaded the movie NETWORK on the tivo, and I'm looking forward to seeing it. I saw this crazy paranoid video called THE ZEITGUIST on Google Video and now I'm all conspiracy theory in the head. But not really. I still don't buy the "911 was an inside job" theory, even though it is true the neocon fascists used it to invade Iraq. That's okay, I'm so tired of being outraged I'm not outraged anymore.

Well anywhoo, nothing happened today. Goodnight and good luck

Saturday, November 24, 2007

Friday, November 23, 2007

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

J a n c e e D u n n: J.C. Penney's 1975 catalog: Not Suitable For Young Children

J a n c e e D u n n: J.C. Penney's 1975 catalog: Not Suitable For Young Children


~ ~ ~

I just woke up and was thinking that word, and I thought, "damn, I bet no one has ever thought of that word." Undersimplify would mean to make things too complicated, as in, "You're undersimplifying this. It's not that hard."

But Alas, I Googled it, and yes, somebody else already thought of the word "undersimplify".

But it is a damn fine unword nonetheless.

Okay, it's 4:30ish in the morning, I'm going back to bed.

~ ~ ~

PS: Oh yeah, Google owns Blogger right? Why does the verb "Googled" trigger the spellchecker but "Google" doesn't? Andy why does "spellchecker" trigger the spellchecker? I'm supposed to make the word "spellchecker" into two words? I don't think so.

This post was posted without the use of drugs or alcohol. Really.

Monday, November 19, 2007

No, Barry Bonds never took steroids:

From the book Game of Shadows:

"Since joining the Giants, Bonds had gone from a size 42 to a size 52 jersey; from size 10 ½ to size 13 cleats; and from a size 7 1/8 to size 7 ¼ cap, even though he had taken to shaving his head.."

Full grown men don't do that. At least they're not supposed to.

Saturday, November 17, 2007

this is one reason is why network news sucks:

ABC News opening story for Friday, November 16:

Barry Bonds took steroids, and baseball has a steroids problem. How much time did they spend on this? 4:48. Almost 5 minutes on a stupid game.

The second story? A typhoon kills at least 1100 people. Time spent: 1:33. Less than two minutes on a catastrophe bigger than 9/11. Not only were those people killed, but their farms and homes were destroyed.

If every professional baseball player overdosed with steroids and died tomorrow, the world would be a better place because baseball is stupid.

That's one reason why network news sucks.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

How to Cure a Hangover - Mahalo

How to Cure a Hangover - Mahalo

Please God, send us some more water so we can waste it!

~ ~ ~

So, they're having a drought in the Southeast.
Ga. Governor Prays for Rain at Capitol

By GREG BLUESTEIN – 1 day ago

ATLANTA (AP) — Georgia Gov. Sonny Perdue stepped up to a podium outside the state Capitol on Tuesday and led a solemn crowd of several hundred people in a prayer for rain on his drought-stricken state.

"We've come together here simply for one reason and one reason only: To very reverently and respectfully pray up a storm," Perdue said after a choir provided a hymn. link
Isn't God the one holding the rain back in the first place? I mean really. And if He has a reason to send a drought down on Georgia, maybe it isn't our place to try to talk him out of it.

There are home owner's associations that won't allow people to hang out their laundry. No, that would ruin the aesthetics of the neighborhood. There are people who dig wells in their own yards so they can get past water restrictions. Not so they can save water, not so they can cut down on usage, but so they can water their lawns.

Yes, I think I know why God is causing droughts, fires, floods, and hurricanes all over the planet: God is trying to save the planet by wiping out the stupid, undeserving, fossile-fuel burning warlike primates that can't take a hint.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

the fastest car in the world

found at Mittopia, a pretty cool blog.

No, you can't have your day in court. Now shut the f**k up and pay your parking ticket.

~ ~ ~
Cities Eliminate Right to Contest Parking Tickets
Boston, Massachusetts and Washington, DC effectively eliminate the right to contest parking tickets.

In an attempt to stem the loss of revenue from motorists contesting parking tickets, cities are effectively eliminating the traditional due process rights of motorists to defend themselves at an impartial hearing. By the end of next year, Washington, DC's Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) will not allow anyone who believes he unfairly received a citation to have his day in an administrative hearing.

"DMV will complete the phase-out of in-person adjudication of parking tickets in favor of mail-in and e-mail adjudication by December 2008," the Fiscal Year 2008 DMV plan states.

The move is intended to allow automated street sweeper parking ticket machines to boost the number of infractions cited well beyond the 1.6 million currently handed out by meter maids. As one-third of those who contest citations in the city are successful, the hearings cut significantly into the $100 million in revenue tickets generate each year.

Under the DMV's plan, motorists will only be able to object to a ticket by email or letter where city employees can ignore or reject letters in bulk without affected motorists having any realistic recourse. That's not good enough for residents like Emily Miller, who told us that being able to present her case in person was essential. The Sunday school teacher was found not guilty at an administrative DMV hearing in June of driving with an open container of coffee. She was so thrilled with her victory that she decided to fight a parking ticket issued to her in a location where the parking signs were contradictory.

Motorists in many cities besides DC complain about unfair citations. So far, Baltimore, Maryland's Inspector General has uncovered 10,000 bogus parking tickets issued to innocent motorists. In Boston and other cities in Massachusetts, motorists cannot challenge a $100 parking ticket in court without first paying a $275 court fee. If found innocent, the motorist does not receive a refund of the $275.

found here

Source: FY08 Performance Plan (Washington DC Department of Motor Vehicles, 11/9/2007)

Monday, November 12, 2007

generic blog post

hi everybody.

today i stopped at 4 places and fixed computers. one of the houses was very large. i ran 4 miles and now i'm typing this. some other stuff happened.

thanks for stopping by. if more stuff happens, i'll type about it here.

Monday, November 05, 2007

gr half marathon

behold my awesomeness!

Friday, November 02, 2007

There's no "i" in "team." But there is a "m" and an "e".

The "me" in team kind of negates the entire "there's no 'i' in team" saying doesn't it? Remember folks: there's an "m" and an "e" in "team".

You have to have a little "me" time once in awhile. So this Friday, take a few more minutes on that smoke break. Take your time coming back from lunch, or don't come back at all if you can get away with it. Surf the Internets when you are supposed to be working. And while you do your actual work, don't give a 100%. Give 40%. You and I both know you're not getting paid as much as you're worth. Remember, you are the "me" in "team".

That's my motivational team-building snippit for Friday. Use it in staff meetings or at any other place where people are all like, "rah rah go team."

Thursday, November 01, 2007

I'm watching Southpark!

The following conversation took place between a 41 year old man (me) and his 12 year old daughter (Savannah)

Savannah: "Dad, can we play the Wii?"
Me: "I'm watching Southpark!"

This actually took place.

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

something useful on the Internets

Yes, I know it's hard to believe, but I can actually use this site:

live traffic cameras on a google map overlay. Sweet.

Sunday, October 28, 2007

gr half marathon

Today I ran the Grand Rapids HALF marathon. That's 13.1 miles of pure awesomeness. It was cold and DARK at 7:00 this morning. I and a couple of other runners commandeered a Metro Health VIP tent with a heater in it and waited for the start. Normally I listen to music when I run, but the website said it wasn't allowed, and I, being a rookie, didn't bring my tunes. Of course, every other person had their headphones on. I did pretty good, or at least I thought I was until I realized an 80 year old man was pretty much beating me, and on mile 9 I finally caught up with this lady who was POWER WALKING! So with no music, I decided to improvise and I sang "Working in A Coal Mine" the DEVO version. That got me in a good rhythm; good thing too. I finished in 2:26:28. The guy who won the full marathon (26.2 miles) finished about thirty seconds after I did. At least I "beat" that guy.

Anywhoo, I am awesome. Oh yeah, they had beer and food at the end. That was cool.

Friday, October 26, 2007

generic blog post

Hi, this is a generic blog post. Today I did some stuff. Some stuff happened on the news, and I'm planning on doing some stuff later. When I do some stuff, or hear about something interesting, I'll post it here. Thanks for reading.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Her arm was found near the accident still clutching a cell phone.

Woman's Arm Severed In Car Accident

A Letcher County woman suffered a horrible injury early Thursday when her arm was severed in a car crash on the Mountain Parkway in Clark County.

Jacqueline Dotson and her six-year-old daughter had to be cut out of their vehicle after the accident in which Dotson veered into the median and over-corrected, rolling her truck over the guardrail and landing upside down after flipping several times.

Several people stopped to help, and it turns out, the good samaritans may very well have saved Dotson's life. Sheila Vice, a nurse's aide, and an off-duty EMT from another county stopped to help, and put a tourniquet on Dotson's arm to stop the bleeding. Her arm was found near the accident still clutching a cell phone.

"Basically we stayed there and talked to them until the EMT drivers got there," said Vice.

Rescuers used the jaws of life to get the Dotson and her daughter out of the truck. Both were flown to hospitals, and Dotson is listed in serious condition at UK Hospital. Her daughter is not in the hospital, and sheriff's officials say they believe she's going to be fine.

Both were wearing seat belts.

thanks barry! link

guy arrested for providing LINKS to copyrighted material

The site doesn't actually host any copyrighted material. It just provided LINKS to it, the guy gets arrested anyway.

Probably the most popular video streaming site around has been busted by UK authorities.

It's a sad day for streaming video fans everywhere as news has been reported that TVLinks has been shut down and the owner, a 26yo man from Chelteham in the UK, was arrested.

Though not hosting an actual content himself, and rather merely providing links to where particular titles can be found, he was nonetheless apparently charged for the "facilitation" of copyright infringement.

"Sites such as TV Links contribute to and profit from copyright infringement by identifying, posting, organizing, and indexing links to infringing content found on the internet that users can then view on demand by visiting these illegal sites," said a spokesman for Federation Against Copyright Theft (FACT) today.

What makes the charges so odd is that he was again, only providing LINKS to pirated content, and never actually hosted anything. Can linking really be considered "facilitation?" If I link to TVLinks am I then a co-conspirator?

found here

unfrickinbelievable photo synth demonstration

found at

Monday, October 22, 2007

Thanks Mark!

This is a good one:

Sunday, October 21, 2007

Book Review: The Roald Dahl Omnibus

#38 The Roald Dahl Omnibus Roald Dahl 1993 * * * * This is a book of short stories by the author of Charlie and The Chocolate Factory, and James and the Giant Peach. But these aren't children's stories. These are stories about sex, poachers, cannibalism, murder, and a host of other adults hating or loving each other too much. The stories each have unique twists and surprise endings. These stories are entertaining and written in a way I've never seen before. ~ October 21, 2007

See all my reviews at

living life to the fullest

I love it when I'm sitting on my ass watching football and a beer commercial tells me to "Live Life to the Fullest." Hey, I am living life to the fullest! I'm watching football aren't I? I mowed the lawn earlier, and put some Liquid Plumber down the tub drain earlier. I'm living large! I have a bottle of domestic lager and a bowl of chips, the remote, and a basket of unfolded laundry nearby. I'm ignoring the phone and family, I'm watching football. I am living life to the fullest, you pompous beer commercial! Who are you to judge? Don't judge me!

Anywhoo, I'm just chillin' out today.

Monday, October 15, 2007

check out

where they morph celebrity faces on regular people's photographs. weird.

Sunday, October 14, 2007

new terms i learned:

Here are some new terms I saw on a CNN piece:

Agnorant: Someone who is simultaneously ignorant and arrogant.

Bluetool: Someone who wears their bluetooth thing in their ear all the time.

Multislacking: Slacking at multiple things at the same time.

Leave Britney Alone: If someone is bothering you, just interrupt them and say "Leave Britney Alone" and hopefully, they'll get the hint.

I dunno, I thought those were funny.

laughing german midget

Saturday, October 13, 2007

Book Review: Of Human Bondage

#37 Of Human Bondage William Somerset Maugham 1915 * * * * * Best book about a club-footed person ever! Seriously, this masterpiece captures the scope of human emotion, delves into the metaphysics while reading like a well-written tortured love story; love the meaning of life, the reason for art, the play of class and religion, the meaning of freedom. I have never read a book this boundless in its ability to move and inform the reader. This is a magnificent literary symphony of thought and emotion.
read more reviews at

We Were Civilians

~ ~ ~

We were civilians.

The war didn't rage really; there was just a steady flow of dead and dismembered soldiers whose names were on the Internet and on the news programs. The soldiers were black, Hispanic, white and Asian. Some of us paid attention and some of us didn't and some of us were devastated. If you didn't know any of the unlucky ones, then they were only statistics.

These statistics were given on the network news between the school shooting and the celebrity scandal stories. The numbers were tallied with somber patriotic video graphics. Maybe it was an American flag waving slowly, or maybe a combat boot-rifle-helmet combo. These graphics looked great on our high-def wide screen televisions. "What a shame," we said, shaking our heads. When the story about the latest breakthrough in the treatment of osteoporosis came on, we changed the channel to VH1 or ESPN and forgot all about the war.

We were civilians.

Some of us didn't think about the war at all.

With no draft, it was a voluntary thing to go to Iraq and get blown up. It was okay that those brave men and women were getting mangled because they were volunteers; no one was forcing them to enlist and reenlist.

If you could get a job and make decent money, there was no reason to go. If you came from a wealthy family, it didn't make any sense to go. And with the advent of yellow-ribbon car magnets, we had a convenient way to ease our conscience and support the troops at the same time.

That was our attitude anyway, and we went on with our lives as if nothing was wrong. Those were fascinating times, and we couldn't fit it into our busy schedules to enlist. We played newer and better video games, we surfed more rich and interactive websites on ever shinier and faster computers. If we didn't like the war, we could always say so on our blogs. We carried fancier, more feature-rich phones. We drove more technologically advanced cars, and while those cars were all built overseas, we didn't care because they had Ipod docks to give us music, GPS to give us direction, and DVD players to give us a break from the kids. Some of those vehicles got decent gas mileage, but most of them did not.

We were civilians.

Some of us drove massive pickup trucks and SUVs with shiny grills, and those things take gas. What a sense of awesome power these behemoths bestowed upon us as we moved between desk and cubicle and home and hearth. These machines carried us back and forth to work so we could pay our crazy mortgages.

We were civilians.

We didn't have time to go fight a war. Reality shows were coming up with more interesting twists. Starlets and singers were in and out of rehab. These were interesting times.

There were new drugs to keep us thin and happy. They put us to sleep at night. They calmed our restless legs and gave us everlasting erections. We had a pill for everything, so we were happy.

We were civilians.

Were other people making sacrifices? Sure, but we were willing to pay that price. Now we had a military base over the precious, sweet, life-giving Middle East oil.

With no draft, the rest of us could take it easy. There were sporting events to watch and alcohol to drink. We were civilians, and we did what our President asked us to do.

We went shopping.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Start growing it out boys and girls

“Ye shall not round the corners of your heads, neither shalt thou mar the corners of your beard,” Leviticus 19:27

Read it and weep asswipes! If you cut your hair, you aren't a Christian. Ha ha ha ha ha. The bible says it, so let it be done you heathen bastards! Start growing it out boys and girls, or you will burn in the everlasting fires of Hell. Ha!

DETROIT -- The American Civil Liberties Union of Michigan won a religious liberty lawsuit Wednesday on behalf of a ninth-grader who refused to obey a school’s dress code that required boys to maintain “closely cropped” hairstyles.

Judge Kathleen Macdonald at the Wayne County Circuit Court ruled on Wednesday that Claudius Benson cannot be expelled and will return to the public charter school, Old Redford Academy in Detroit.

Benson, 14, was enrolled in Old Redford Academy for three days when he was suspended on grounds that he was not in compliance with the hair provisions of the school’s dress code.

Benson’s mother said she strictly abides by various Old Testament provisions, including a passage in the book of Leviticus that forbids the cutting of hair: “Ye shall not round the corners of your heads, neither shalt thou mar the corners of your beard,” Leviticus 19:27

Tuesday, October 02, 2007

Monday, October 01, 2007

Mario villains scarf

Check out this awesome Nintendo themed scarf. She only made one, otherwise, it would make a great gift.

Found at

Saturday, September 22, 2007

dvd rental review

Last night Deb and I watched two DVD rentals: Hot Fuzz and Deathproof. Deathpoof, a Quentin Tarantino movie, was everything I expected; hot girls, cheesy dialog and lots of gratuitous violence. The lap-dance scene was well worth the rental. No, not his best work, but entertaining nonetheless. Hot Fuzz was another well made comedy by the same dudes who did Shaun of the Dead. Both DVDs were well worth the rental.

Thursday, September 20, 2007

snoring remedy


"Tennis ball, $2.50 for can of three
The MacGyver remedy. Or, as I like to call it, fetching with Pavlov's dog. Put a tennis ball in a sock, and then safety pin the sock to the middle of the back of a T-shirt. When you sleep in this T-shirt, it's painful to sleep on your back, so you turn on your side, where you're less likely to snore. If you sleep with the sock enough, your sleep self will supposedly associate sleeping on your back with pain, and you won't need the T-shirt anymore.

I'm not used to sleeping with a shirt on, so this—not to mention the heavy sock tugging at the back—took some getting used to. Also, it is surprisingly painful to have a Wilson jut into your back. But the remedy worked immediately. The morning after the first night, Elizabeth reported no snoring. I felt great, too. The second night, my deceitful sleep self did manage to outmaneuver the sock, swinging the tennis ball between my arm and side, allowing me to sleep on my back and snore. But the next day I adjusted the sock so that it was tighter against the shirt and could not be stretched out. For the rest of the trial, there was no snoring.

By the fifth night, I was attached to the ensemble. There was something ritualistic about putting the shirt on every night, and the thought of moving on to test another remedy made me sad. Elizabeth loved it, too. Improbably, she even found the get-up cute, which solidified this remedy's place as the clear winner."

Tuesday, September 18, 2007


we have illegal wiretapping, "free-speech zones", arrest without charges, torture, and now we can all be tasered for asking a question. Yes, here in the Land of The Free, we get to do anything we want, as long as we stay in compliance, never resist arrest, and act like sheep before a benevolent, all-powerful government. They can read your emails, listen to your phone calls, arrest you without charges, torture you, search your bags and bust down your doors. But don't worry, it's for your own good.

So sleep well America, Big Brother is watching over you.

War is Peace. Freedom is Slavery. Ignorance is Strength.

Monday, September 17, 2007

what awesome game was he playing?


Man dies after 3-day gaming binge

BEIJING, China -- A man in southern China appears to have died of exhaustion after a three-day Internet gaming binge, state media said Monday.

The 30-year-old man fainted at a cyber cafe in the city of Guangzhou Saturday afternoon after he had been playing games online for three days, the Beijing News reported.

Paramedics tried to revive him but failed and he was declared dead at the cafe, it said. The paper said that he may have died from exhaustion brought on by too many hours on the Internet.

The report did not say what the man, whose name was not given, was playing.

The report said that about 100 other Web surfers "left the cafe in fear after witnessing the man's death."

China has 140 million Internet users, second only to the U.S.. It is one of the world's biggest markets for online games, with tens of millions of players, many of whom hunker down for hours in front of PCs in public Internet cafes.

Several cities have clinics to treat what psychiatrists have dubbed "Internet addiction" in users, many of them children and teenagers, who play online games or surf the Web for days at a time.

Friday, September 14, 2007

Two Book Reviews

#35 When Will Jesus Bring The Porkchops? George Carlin 2004 * * * This book is both very good and very bad. The entire thing is just little sections of thoughts and ideas. He has parts that are fiction, and these parts are damn near unreadable. But his observations about society and language are fantastic. His non-fiction is hilarious. His fiction is atrocious. The nice thing is, you can spot the fiction and non-fiction pretty quick, so you end up skipping the horrible fake character sketches and sketch comedy scripts and focus on his take on euphemisms and observations. Well worth the half-read. ~ September 08, 2007
#36 The Communist Manifesto Karl Marx and Frederick Engels 1848 * * * The first part was great, but the last part had some crazy ideas about women. Plus, once the revolution is over, somebody's going to take the place of the bourgeoisie aren't they? ~ September 12, 2007
Read them all at my book review page

Wednesday, September 12, 2007!

This is the greatest website I've ever seen!! Go there now. It's fantastic. You can do anything there. It's hard to explain!

Saturday, September 08, 2007

When Will Jesus Bring The Pork Chops?

I just finished reading George Carlin’s When Will Jesus Bring The Pork Chops?. This book is both very good and very bad. The entire thing is just little sections of thoughts and ideas. He has parts that are fiction, and these parts are damn near unreadable. But his observations about society and language are fantastic. His non-fiction is hilarious. His fiction is atrocious. The nice thing is, you can spot the fiction and non-fiction pretty quick, so you end up skipping the horrible fake character sketches and sketch comedy scripts and focus on his take on euphemisms and observations. Well worth the half-read.

Read all my awesome book reviews by following this awesome link.

Friday, September 07, 2007

Angel Hair Pasta: The Horrible Truth

I will never eat “angel hair pasta.” I’ll tell you why: I saw a show on the Discovery channel where they explained how they harvest angel hair. Yes, angel-hair pasta is actually made out of the hair of angels.

There is a lot of preparation involved with killing an angel: First, they forge crossbow bolts from the iron collected from the wrecks of cars where teenagers have died in late-night, country-road accidents fueled by alcohol and wide-eyed innocence. Then they dip those crossbow bolts in the tears of children kept in abusive after-school child-care facilities.

After that, sexually abused adult alter-boys with questionable hygiene climb peaks in the Andes Mountains and wait. The angels, unaware that they are in danger, often fly around mountain passes playing their harps, because they are bored out of their minds from an eternity of problem-free existence, and no cable television.

Finally, the alter boys shoot the angles with their crossbows. When the angels fall to the ground, their heads are shaved and the hair is taken to the angel hair pasta factory and turned into angel hair pasta.

That’s why I will never eat angel hair pasta.

did you know the "do not call" thingy expires?

That's right.

If you registered for the national "do not call" list, it expires in 5 years.

But don't worry, you can go to and register again.

The website, being a government website, doesn't have the word RENEW anywhere, because that would be way too easy.

There is a VERIFY button, and a REGISTER button, but of course, no RENEW button anywhere.

I used the VERIFY button to see that my number would drop off the list in June of '08.

I just REGISTERED, and now it doesn't drop off until 2012.

That is my public service announcement for this week. May each and every one of you have a somewhat satisfying day.

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

reading and running for the betterment of humanity . . .

4100 pages in 45 days equals about 91 pages a day. That’s where I’ve been, reading the entire seven books in the Harry Potter series. I am a dweeb. The story moved, except for the last book which was about three-hundred pages too long, and it really dragged in the middle. I’m glad I’m through with it.

You can read all about the awesomeness of my reading at: dan's book reviews.

Other than that, I’ve been fixing computers and setting up networks. And I’ve been running and or jogging. Lots and lots of running: for me anyway. I’m running 4 miles three times a week. Yes, that’s it, I’m bragging, and I’m not ashamed to admit it!

You can see the awesomeness of my running at:

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

smoking rocks!

that's the funniest thing I've seen in awhile

Saturday, August 25, 2007

New Baby!

Congratulations to Brian and Ann: they had a baby girl, Audrey.

Today I did yard work, yard work, and yard work. I weeded, thatched, mowed fertilized, and planted mums. Yes, that’s right. I planted mums. That doesn’t make me gay.

I also ran 4 miles.

And I read about two hundred pages of the fifth Harry Potter book.

Monday, August 20, 2007

No animals were harmed in the posting of this blog-post.

Hi. This is Ginger the dog and Lilly the cat. Ginger did not ingest the cat when this was taken. They play once in awhile, that's all.


That is all.
Posted by Picasa

Monday, August 13, 2007

the Harry Potter movie marathon

Today I fixed a scan.msi problem, some HP printer update jagged up a computer in a law office. Then I showed them how to do a backup, since the last backup they had was dated somewhere in 2005.

After that, a new Vista laptop with docking station. I hate docking stations. A docking station on a laptop is like an airplane drink-cart duct-taped to an Olympic sprinter. It’s a big, stupid Steven-Hawking-Wheelchair on a ballet dancer. They are stupid, I hate them, and that’s all there is to it. But I will gladly set them up for money.

And then we enjoyed the Harry Potter movie marathon. We got the last two DVDs in today, and we watched them both, back to back. Those movies are LOOOOONG.

Oh yeah, and Karl Rove quit today. That fat bastard.

Sunday, August 12, 2007

iPod + washing machine = sadness

Today after my run I managed to wash my iPod in the washer, ruining it. I am sad. I cleaned the bedroom, straightened out my desk, took down the pool (some more) and swept the porch.

I went to my writer’s group, but only one other person showed up. We talked about nothing for fifteen minutes and then I went across the street and got another iPod. I’ll try not to wash this one this time.

Saturday, August 11, 2007

My toe really hurts.

I walked to Speedway and got gas for the lawn mower. I started out just getting ready to mow the lawn, but instead I started picking weeds. I put my iPod on and listened to podcasts. 4 hours later, the lawn was weed-free. I took down the pool. I got stung by a bee. I mowed the lawn. Because the weeds were about a fifth of the lawn surface, I got some topsoil and grass seed and did a little patchwork. I also bought a new $5.00 sprinkler. I entered a bad poetry contest at

I figured out some new running routs with the gmaps pedometer (thanks bri!) and I’m going to run somewhere beside around the block tomorrow morning.

My toe really hurts.

Thursday, August 09, 2007

Cowden Lake

Today kicked ass. We all went to Cowden Lake, which is in Coral, Michigan. Someone Deb works with, her parents own this cottage on the lake. We jet-skied, inner-tubed behind a speedboat, and rode the paddle boat. The water was perfect, we were the only ones on the lake, and the weather was fantastic. Not too hot. Deb and I can’t seem to get on a jet-ski at the same time. Savannah and I paddled out across the lake in inflatable rafts and looked at fish and stuff. I ran 3 miles this morning, and I’m beat.

Wednesday, August 08, 2007

after having a thrombo . . .

Today I installed a wireless network at an accounting office downtown, dropped an ancient HP pavilion with windows 98 goodness off at a welding shop, fixed a PC in a JCPenny’s heating and ventilation area (you wouldn’t believe the air-handling units they need at a mall anchor store), the guy at the Apple store told my my mac-mini is pretty much crashed, when I got home I managed to crash my bench server with a client’s files on it, recovered same files after having a thrombo, put the files back on the client’s laptop, and returned it no problem. I cut the weeds and grass growing between the cracks on the driveway, rebuilt my bench server with an additional HD to back up the backups and now I’m trying to unwind.

Tuesday, August 07, 2007

generic blog post

Yesterday our Mac Mini crashed. I guess Macs aren’t supernaturally reliable after all. I golfed. I ran. I picked up two machines to reformat. I scheduled two calls for tomorrow. I am tired. Goodnight.

Sunday, August 05, 2007

the blog post I posted Sunday

Saturday morning I golfed with Brian and Tom. I did Okay, Brian and Tom did better. Took the kids to The Simpson’s Movie. I picked up a new game for the Wii: Mario Strikers. It is awesome. It’s a cross between soccer and a video game, with all the Nintendo Mario characters. You can play it across the Internets against other people, or your friends.

I’ve been plotting my book out, mulling it over and planning before I set one word down in the first draft. Planning. What a concept huh?

I’m running again, and I’m losing some weight. My gut has no chance against my awesomeness now.

I bought the movie 300, the violence is a work of pure art.

Talked to Barry on the phone, cleaned the toilet, reformatted a couple of machines, cleaned the pool, put up a tire swing, cut my toenails, drank some tea, read a book, read another book, watched television, ate a grapefruit, went to some garage sales, stopped smoking, etcetera and so forth.

Thursday, August 02, 2007

I saw this on a tee-shirt . . . really.


The belief that some cosmic Jewish Zombie can make you live forever if you symbolically eat his flesh and telepathically tell him that you accept him as your master, so he can remove an evil force from your soul that is present in humanity because a rib-woman was convinced by a talking snake to eat from a magical tree.

Makes perfect sense.

Sunday, July 29, 2007

generic blog post I posted Sunday

I golfed Tuesday and shot horribly. I did hit a lot of fairways, but couldn't chip to save my life. I painted yesterday, up on a ladder; I painted the highest reaches of our sprawling estate. I went to my writer’s club today. That was pretty cool. I sent a story to the “Air Out My Shorts” podcast. They read short-short 800 word stories there. They’ve already read one of mine in episode #46, so maybe they’ll read another one.

I’m plotting out a new bestselling novel. I’ve found a way to plot it all out first so it doesn’t go to shit in the first couple of chapters.

I’ve slept on my neck wrong for two days in a row, and it’s pissing me off, because it is like having a hangover, but I haven’t had any beer. What a rip!

Saturday, July 28, 2007

the moon

best viewed with headphones.

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

What the F**k is Lindsay Lohan's Problem?

Get a friggin' chauffeur. She can't afford to hire a driver? Duh. Rich people are so friggin' stupid. But sometimes they pull off some stunning mug shots . . .

Saturday, July 21, 2007

really short book review, Witches of Eastwick.

The Witches of Eastwick John Updike 1984 * * * The first three-quarters were great. The last part, boring. Updike can really describe stuff. ~ July 21, 2007

Friday, July 20, 2007

Hey everybody,

Check out Don's new podcast, Marathon Minute. He's on the radio and everything. Inspirational messages, even if you don't run.

Thursday, July 19, 2007

Tammy Faye Messner is the friggin' Crypt Keeper

if you look like this:

Please don't put yourself in front of a camera. And shame on CNN and Larry King for exploiting this poor, dying, terrifying walking corpse. Jeez.

Harry Potter Line (queue?) already forming at bookstore.

While Savannah and I were at the bookstore at about 8 PM, a kid was setting up a tent for the Midnight release of the 7th Harry Potter book. That’s only 28 hours away. Good luck kid!

Savannah and I saw the latest Harry Potter movie. It was pretty dark and action packed. It was pretty good.

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

homer rules!

Hi kids,

Nothing to report, but I found this funny story:,,2128300,00.html

May you have a nice day.

Friday, July 13, 2007


I have tried. I understand that the rest of the world loves soccer. I’ve made an honest effort to watch soccer. I even watched the world cup. David Beckham has joined some team in LA, and everyone is speculating that it will make Americans watch soccer. I don’t think so. I once watched the movie “Bend it Like Beckham,” because I thought my daughters might like it, but it was boring, and when I rented it, I had no idea who David Beckham was. At least Keira Knightley was in the movie, she’s smoking hot.

Even if Keira Knightley, and a bunch of other equally hot girls formed a soccer league and played in bikinis, I’d probably only watch a couple of times. . . no wait, I might tune in to that program more than once, but that’s about the only way I’d watch soccer. And then only if at the end, they mud-wrestled.

Because soccer is boring. I know that we Americans should join in the international sport, so that a global sense of fellowship and some kind of common spirit would traverse the globe, eventually resulting in international peace and goodwill.

But really, the only time soccer is interesting is when there is a big drunken riot, and then only when the good parts of the riots are condensed into a four minute montage on one of those “Shocking Video” shows you see on the spike channel.

And oh yeah, when that one dude head-butted that other dude. That was cool.

So, I know the LA Whatchamacallits are banking on Beckham drawing a crowd to American soccer. I understand that he’s the Michael Jordan of soccer and all that, but the coolest thing about him, to me at least, is that he’s tagging Posh Spice. That means he’s cool. That fact that he’s good at soccer? Meh, whatever.

So good luck American Soccer people. When Beckham shows up on “The Surreal Life” with a pot-belly and a drinking problem with Lance Armstrong and Maria Sharapova, then we’ll know he’s really made it.

Sunday, July 08, 2007

~ B O O K R E V I E W ~

The Razor’s Edge by W. Somerset Maugham has everything a novel should have. Fantastic characters, death, marriages, romance, jealousy, deceit, and a story that moves. There is Larry the mystic, Elliot the lovable snob, Isabel the socialite. Every character is distinct. The stock market crashes in ’29 at just the right point. This work is a masterpiece, and everybody should read it. Right now!

Wednesday, July 04, 2007

~~ M U S I C R E V I E W ~~

Donnie Iris’s “Ah Leah” is a great friggin’ song. The vocals are awesome. The simple base line and sonic wave of sound, especially in a good set of earphones, rocks. The guitar solo, probably sixteen notes long, is simple, yet it would peel the paint off the wall if cranked up enough.

Tuesday, July 03, 2007


if you are bad in this life, you will re-incarnate into this chair after you die.

Sunday, July 01, 2007


Why no blog posts lately? Well, my life has been smooth and uneventful. Today I joined a writer’s group, and it was actually pretty nice. I’m motivated to write. Plus, people read my writing, and that makes me happy. This week I mowed the lawn. I fixed several computers. I pulled about a million mulberries from our pool. I went to the Firehouse Open, thrown each year by some friends of mine, and I had many Bloody Marys. I golfed okay, I suppose. I’m working on a book idea, but so far, it sucks ass.

My fascination with everything Paris Hilton is finally wearing off. For awhile there, I had to know what she was doing every minute of every day, and I had no shortage of "news" outlets that were more than willing to give me everything I wanted. Actually, I'm being sarcastic. Sort of. London is getting attacked by terrorists. I’m already sick of all the presidential candidates on both sides.

I’m watering my lawn. I’m going to have a rum-and-club-soda-with-lime in a few minutes. I’m reading The Razor’s Edge by W. Somerset Maugham. I looked this edition up on the Internets, and somebody’s selling one for $350.00 bucks. This book has the following stamped on the backside of the title page:


I think they must have been rationing paper or something for the war? It came out in 1944.

Anywhoo, Deb and the girls are visiting her mom today, so I got the place to myself. I’m going to have a drink, a smoke, and a sit on the porch, and I’m going to read.

I’ve been trying to catch my secret crush Maria Sharapova at the Wimbledon, but I keep missing it. I keep catching the guys playing tennis, and who wants to watch that crap? That's almost as pointless as watching men's beach volleyball. Makes no sense whatsoever.

Sunday, June 17, 2007

book review, Lolita

Lolita by Vladimir Nabokov, (1955)

A book about a pedophile obsessed with fucking twelve-year-old girls. I got half-way through. The first half was about him trying to get the girl, actually marrying Lolita's mother in order to get near the girl. That part was okay. But once he got the girl, well, it got boring after that. No, there weren't any sex scenes, but it was depressing enough as it is. While it was well written, the last half really sucked ass as it becomes a dismal tour of American tourist traps and motels.

see more reviews at

Sunday, June 10, 2007


Lennon's Last Words

Yoko breaks silence to reveal Lennon's last words
By Andrew Johnson
Published: 10 June 2007

For 40 years Yoko Ono has kept a silent dignity in the face of global vilification meted out by legions of Beatles fans.

But today, in an emotional interview, she reveals the last words her husband John Lennon uttered moments before he was gunned down on a New York street in 1980 by Mark Chapman.

"I said 'shall we go and have dinner before we go home?' and John said 'No, let's go home because I want to see Sean before he goes to sleep'," Ono, 73, told Kirsty Young on 'Desert Island Discs'.

Young then asked Ono if Lennon had said anything after he was shot, to which she replied in almost a whisper: "No."

Ono, a conceptual artist, admitted that she would never be more than "the wife of an ex-Beatle".

Choosing Edith Piaf's "Je Ne Regrette Rien" as one of her discs, she added: "I regret nothing, too."

found here

Thursday, June 07, 2007


Today I spent the morning fixing many things at a new business customer. It went well. I don’t know if you’ve seen those Bacardi mojito recipe commercials, where everybody’s real cool and everything, and there are lots of hot women dancing around all sexy-like. Anyhoo, I made one of those drinks, and they are pretty tasty. A forbidden Lambada style dance party didn’t erupt in my house, but it is a cool drink on a hot day.

Otherwise, I have nothing to report.

Oh, did you see this?

Friday, June 01, 2007

new video camera=new videos

I made two videos:

One of the dog.

One of the girls running with streamers

nothing to report here. have a good weekend.

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

the post I posted today

I read in the paper this morning that there hasn’t been a new oil refinery built in the U.S. since 1976. One reason given for the high price of gas is the lack of refining facilities. Oil companies are restricted by government red-tape and profit margins from making building more oil refineries, because it costs billions to build an oil refinery.

So suck up that gas, and happy driving!

Today I got paid to set up a Nintendo Wii. :)

Thursday, May 24, 2007

at least I wasn't water-boarded. . .

Today I got a call and spent over two hours extracting Norton Internet Security Evil from a PC. The entire time, the woman to whom the PC belonged asked me personal questions to which I gave one-word answers. (When I say personal questions, I mean questions like, “How old are your kids,” and “What are you and your family doing for Memorial Day weekend,” and “How long were you in the Military,” and “Did you grow up in Michigan.”) She was nosy, but she also handles the checks for the company, so I answered her questions, while we listened to her PC grind furiously, trying to void itself of Norton Internet Security, which had rendered the machine useless.

Finally, after forty minutes, NIS failed to uninstall and I had to download the “Norton Removal Tool.” From Norton’s site. It really says something when software is so bloated that the software’s website has to offer a special tool to perform an exorcism in order to rid a machine of the very software they spewed in the first place.

After that, another half-hour removing Norton System Works, another work of pure genius.

When everything was done, the machine running again and I had endured 2 hours of mind-numbing interrogation.

I dropped off a PC to a nice couple with a pit-bull. They said it wasn’t a pit bull, but I think it was.

Otherwise, I worked on my short story, which is finally coming together, what with a satanic pregnancy, a talking wall mural, and a reclusive artist with an effeminate man-servant.

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

book review

A People's History of The United States Howard Zinn 2003 * * * * * Probably the most eye-opening book I've every read. Forget the bullshit history they taught you in school. This is the real deal. You wouldn't believe some of the shit we've pulled. Read this book only if you want the wool away from your eyes. ~ May 23, 2007

read all my book reviews at my book review page.

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Generic Tuesday Blog Post.

fixed PC in Grand Haven. Walked to the end of pier. Went golfing with Deb in the afternoon. Actually, she watched and drove the cart, I golfed. Savannah had a band concert. Deb and I played cribbage. Sent out some post-cards.

Savannah's class went first at the band concert, and I enjoyed that because she was up there, and she sounded great. Then the other class performed, and usually, when my child isn't up on stage, it is really boring, but they played THE THEME FROM STAR WARS and that made it somewhat bearable.

Monday, May 21, 2007

baby chimps probably taste like chicken . . .

I’m finishing up A People’s History of The United States by Howard Zinn. If you haven’t read it yet, I suggest you do so right away. It doesn’t paint a rosy picture of American foreign policy and its treatment of the least among us. This country is a good country, but it isn’t a perfect country, and we’ve had our own self-interest in mind from start to finish. I don’t mind that. I just wish they wouldn’t sugar-coat it in the history books they have the kids read in school. I grew up thinking we were the end-all to beat-all people on earth; the greatest country civilization has ever produced. But we’re not. We’re a great country, but we have been cruel, and murderous, and treacherous, just like every other country. Our politicians are just as ruthless and hypocritical as the politicians in any other country.

And I suppose it has to be this way, because we are simply primates. I saw a show on television once where one band of chimpanzees raided another band that was encroaching on their turf. They just bum-rushed the other group and the other group scrambled, but one baby chimp was too slow and the aggressors ate that baby chimp. And we all know how cute baby chimps are. . . It was a show of force to grab territory.

We're like, one chromosome away from being chimps.

And that’s how we are. So everything we do makes sense. And every stupid conflict you see on television makes sense. We’re a bunch of chimps that will stop at nothing to advance our group and crush the other group, no matter what.

And on that pleasant note, I wish you all a good night.

Thursday, May 17, 2007

an exceedingly unsatisfactory level of “accomplishment feeling"

The last few days have been a hodge-podge of lackluster events and/or happenings that have barely been able to meet or slightly exceed expectations. While I have consistently met goals and benchmarks despite routine challenges, these last few days have left me somehow unfulfilled, with an exceedingly unsatisfactory level of “accomplishment feeling."

Tuesday's league of golf was disappointingly dampened by rain. My golf was marred by my own lack of performance, which was written almost entirely in the passive tense. Mistakes were made. The resultant chill from damp clothes gave me that "not so fresh" feeling and I was deeply saddened.

My recent failure to correct a Gateway PC turned into what can only be described as an ongoing investigation, about which I would rather not comment.

Overall this week has been routine.

My daughter's birthday, with her annual allotment of non-political gifts was a bright spot. The birthday festivities, coming on the heels of Mother's Day, reminded me of my commitment to family values, and the sanctity of life, as long as that sanctity does and/or does not infringe on a woman's constitutional right to choose or un-choose, despite my own personal feelings on the matter.

I am looking forward to answering all of your questions via email, and I am cautiously optimistic about the next looming crisis that we will undoubtedly face in the coming weeks, months, and/or years. Working together in a bipartisan fashion, I believe we will meet these challenges, probably in the only way we know how, with overwhelming air superiority.

And to those of you out there who question my resolve; I leave you with this final thought: I will continue to make blog posts, despite the grinding existential banality I am faced with. I will continue to mock my fellow man, while glossing over my own shortcomings. I will ignore my own faults and simultaneously point out those same imperfections in others. And while my uninteresting lameness may initially seem like a weakness, while my generic ordinary condition may scream out for my resignation as an aging loser with a blog, I will not be deterred.

And while the stale unresponsiveness of my blog may compel others to declare it dead, and to argue that it is time to pull its feeding tube, I am not ready to declare it dead; for I still have hope. I still believe interesting things can and will happen, and when they do, I believe I will write those things down in the form of proud, freedom-loving words. And with vigilance, I will be proud to cut and paste those words here, and hopefully, you will waste at least one minute of your day reading those same words, shake your head in solemn disappointment, and then close your browser wistfully, and wonder why you bothered in the first place. And I would like to echo that question now: Why bother?

In conclusion, I'd like to wish all of you a happy (and wholesome) Upcoming Weekend, and remind you to drink responsibly, drive carefully, but don't do those two activities at the same time because that would be not only illegal, but dangerous.

Thank you, good night, and may God bless these United States.

Sunday, May 13, 2007

Sunday bla bla

We went to Meijer and got stuff to make breakfast in bed for Deb ; the girls picked out a necklace for Deb. Mother’s day is traditionally breakfast in bed, but since Deb worked last night, and she’s working tonight, she slept most of the day. She got up around four and we made her breakfast in bed. Her weekend to work usually doesn’t land on Mother’s Day, but there you have it.

I mowed the lawn yesterday. The moles are dead; the poison I bought at Lowes seems to work. I did a reformat; I picked it up yesterday and delivered it this morning.

I’ve been reading Howard Zinn’s A People’s History of the United States and it is a real eye-opener. I suggest every single one of you read this book. There is a lot of history I didn’t know about.

Friday, May 11, 2007

wanna see something funny?

Nothing new to report today . . . however, I was watching rocketboom, and they featured the film "Naked Swim" from It's a funny story and wicked-weird animation. Check it out. (server might be slow today cause it was on rocketboom)

Thursday, May 10, 2007


This morning I used my TIVO to fast-forward through a commercial for TIVO.

Wednesday, May 09, 2007

the letter I sent to my congressman

This is what I wrote to my Congressman:

May 9, 2007

Congressman Vernon J. Ehlers
1714 Longworth House Office Building
Washington, DC 20515-2203

Subject: Habeas Corpus

The Military Commissions Act cancelled habeas corpus. (I know that’s an oversimplification, but I’m a simple taxpayer.)

Could you please talk to Congressman Jerrold Nadler and find out what he’s doing to restore habeas corpus and help him do it? It will make you look like one of the good guys.

Can’t the USA go through one crisis without shredding the Constitution? Please don’t sit back and let our rights be chipped away every time we’re faced with a difficult patch.

How about sending a real letter back instead of a form letter? This is kind of important.


. . . .
Hey kids: Don't know who your congressman is? Simply Google this: "congressman for 12345" where 12345 is your zip code. Then find out what the f*ck is going on and write a letter. You'll get a form letter back, because YOU aren't a big-time lobbyist for an big corporate interest.

wednesday bla bla

Yesterday I got a parking $10.00 parking ticket. It’s a long, boring story. I went into the bank barefooted and made a deposit. I golfed. Poorly. Today it took me FOUR trips to the Secretary of State office to get some paperwork done. I wasn’t happy. I had to re-do a client’s PC cause the hard-drive I put in there crashed a week later. Dammit. Otherwise, I am in a surly mood. I don’t have time to type at you right now.

Sunday, May 06, 2007

R.I.P. DanOfGrandR (2005-2007)

So I started playing World of Warcraft again. But only for about a week and a half this time. I told myself I’d play in moderation, but that shit never works. Today I sold all my level 60 warrior’s crap, donated the money to my guild, and signed off forever. And I deleted Danofgrandr off the face of the virtual planet. And I uninstalled the software. I swear, I never learn . . .

Black Rose and the Disciples of Funk

So. Tonight, Deb was at work, the girls were staying over at a friend's house, so I went to the Hideout Brewing Company. It was Ken's 2nd anniversary being open, and the band was Black Rose and the Disciples of Funk. They kick ass. They did classics, from Cream, Grateful Dead, and some original jams that sounded like Pink Floyd, except it was some original shit.

Anywhoo, if you get a chance to see them, see them.

Wednesday, May 02, 2007

wednesday bla bla

What a difference a couple of weeks make. I was worried about it being SLOW, and now I’m changing motherboards, hard-drives, operating systems, networks, cutting off Internet access, cleaning out computer junk, and being busy. I finally have an evening with no PCs on the bench, and I’m too tired to do anything.

Not complaining; work is work, and that’s a good thing. It looks like a giant robot threw up in my office, there are computer parts strewn everywhere. I have to do some cleaning soon.

I spent the weekend cutting firewood, and that's about all I did. It is stacked so nicely. Sometimes I just go out back and gaze at my ultimate firewood stacks.

Friday, April 27, 2007


Savannah's mask is awesome!
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Wednesday, April 25, 2007

ten most common passwords

from PC magazine, (who got it from

ten most common passwords:

1. password
2. 123456
3. qwerty
4. abc123
5. letmein
6. monkey
7. myspace1
8. password1
9. blink182
10. (your first name)

See yours in here? Might wanna change it.

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Thus went Tuesday.

Today I finally got some work. I fixed email format insensibilities. I set up remote access for an expectant father who will be working from home. I surveyed the data backup requirements for backing up required files.

I came home and Lo, for in the East there I beheld a sign: FREE FIREWOOD. I went forth, and did take a cart around the corner, where many cubits of cherry wood awaited me so that I might take rightful possession. Then with the cart did I take the wood to the backyard, where I stacked it in accordance with the Laws of Gravity. And Lo, my back did hurteth. And so did I use the Saw of Chains to reduce it, and I did stack it according to the laws of Stacking.

And I revealed unto my Wife that which I had lay hidden for a fortnight: The World of Warcraft installation CD, purchased for 2 American dollars. And Yea did she allow it to be Installed, on the grounds that it would perish within another fortnight, for it is the Software of Trials.

Verily, a message came from the Sky Tower, and another customer forsooth must needs me to fix the Accursed Norton, which forbade the new Vista to speak with the Network Server.

Thus went Tuesday.

Monday, April 23, 2007

The Shiny 3mm bullet that liberated Ernest Hemingway from Ernest Hemingway;

No calls today. Deb and I walked to the library and back. We took Ginger, who walked with us. I read books, wrote, tweaked my website, entered a 750 word story in a writing contest, and that’s about it. I’m reading McSweeney’s Enchanted Chamber of Astonishing Stories (2004, Vintage Books, New York) and one story contains this gem: "The Shiny 3mm bullet that liberated Ernest Hemingway from Ernest Hemingway;"

Saturday, April 21, 2007

Thursday, April 19, 2007

Cho Seung-Hui, Rock Star . . .

Dear News Media,

Oh Media, I can't avoid you; I have an unhealthy urge to know what's going on. That's why I can't avoid noticing your absolute obsession with Cho Seung-Hui. He's on the TV news, news websites, and the papers. I suppose he'll grace the covers of TIME and NEWSWEEK. He's mugging into the camera, pointing his guns, making crazy speeches. I can't see how it is news. OK, we get it, he was a wacko.

How many copycats are out there thinking, "yeah, I could do that, I could be famous." How much has this wall-to-wall coverage of The Cho Show are you guys going to air? When does the DVD come out? When is the made for TV movie?

By giving Cho his moment in the sun, postmortem, you're just giving the next wacko more motivation to get famous. By declaring it, even on the day it happened the "Deadliest shooting in U.S. History," or "Deadliest shooting rampage in U.S. history," and "Deadliest mass shooting in U.S. history," you're setting a mark for the next crazy guy with a gun: "Can you break this record crazy people? The score to beat is 32!"

Report the news. I don't need to know Cho Seung-Hui's shoe size. By "glamorizing" this insane person, you're just egging on the next guy. Report that he left a goofy manifesto and some lame videos, but don't plaster his videos up everywhere for ratings. Don't worry, we'll sit through your damn commercials. . . .

Sunday, April 15, 2007

Sunday, Most Holy Day of Sloth . . .

Today I tamped down fresh mole tunnels with my bare feet. I took a lawn chair out to the driveway and sat in it. A strange, bright light was in the sky. I forget what it is called. Everything was warm. I read a book and soaked up the rays of this strange, unfamiliar ball of fire. I’ll call it, “the sun.”

I thought about taking a run, but didn’t. I watched 5 episodes of “Frasier.” I spoke to Barry on the phone. I spread fertilizer on my lawn. I spoke to the neighbor, Sharon briefly about how to kill moles.

I played tug-of-war with the dog. I read some more. I watched some more television. I played catch with my daughter.

I got a headache, and realized I had forgotten to drink coffee. I drank coffee.

I updated my blog.

Saturday, April 14, 2007

Are mobile phones wiping out our bees? - Independent Online Edition > Wildlife

Are mobile phones wiping out our bees? - Independent Online Edition > Wildlife

[Scientists] . . . are putting forward the theory that radiation given off by mobile phones and other hi-tech gadgets is a possible answer to one of the more bizarre mysteries ever to happen in the natural world - the abrupt disappearance of the bees that pollinate crops. Late last week, some bee-keepers claimed that the phenomenon - which started in the US, then spread to continental Europe - was beginning to hit Britain as well.

The implications of the spread are alarming. Most of the world's crops depend on pollination by bees. Albert Einstein once said that if the bees disappeared, "man would have only four years of life left".

Thursday, April 12, 2007

who said the bible wasn't funny?

Ezekiel 23:20 says, "There she lusted after her lovers, whose genitals were like those of donkeys and whose emission was like that of horses." <------ Now that's some soul-savin' stuff right there!

a poem

April showers
Bring may flowers
But when it snows
It friggin' blows.

Today's rocketboom was kick-ass.


The Vagaries of Human Existence.

#1: The Neighbors

Here’s an example: Let’s say you have a neighbor, let’s call him Bob. You might loan him a wrench, or watch football with him, or borrow a book, or marry his son/daughter. Whatever. You and Bob live next door to each other and you are friends.

Why is Bob your neighbor? What random set of circumstances caused Bob to live next door to you?

A realtor is involved in most home purchases. Some random realtor showed Bob a random set of houses that were available at the time, and he picked one. The same goes for you. You probably bought your house using a realtor. If you didn’t, just play along anyway. This is a hypothetical.

Had you (or Bob) picked a different realtor or a different house or a different time to move, Bob wouldn’t be Bob at all. He’d be someone else entirely.

Let’s say living next door to Bob results in you getting married. (You stole his wife, or you married his son or daughter, or you met someone at a cookout or party Bob throws one evening.) You get married and have kids. Your kids grow up and have kids. (This is all hypothetical, play along here folks)

The existence of your children and your grandchildren hinges on the lives and careers of two realtors, people who have probably been long forgotten.

What if you had bought from a different realtor? What if you had purchased a different home? What life choices did that realtor make to put him in your town at the time when your career and life put you in the position to buy a home?

Your entire life could hinge on when you called the realtor’s office. Let’s say at 9:06 AM Realtor #1 takes a bathroom break, and is away from his desk. You call at 9:06 and 30 seconds. Realtor #2 picks up your call, because Realtor #1 is in the bathroom, away from his desk. Normally Realtor #1 would have gotten this call, but not this time.

You chat with Realtor #2 and decide she’ll show you some available houses. She shows you a different set of houses, or maybe the same set of houses, only in a different order. Bob does not become your next-door neighbor. You never meet the spouse you would have had Realtor #1 simply skipped that second cup of coffee before coming to work.

Your entire life forks to a different future because a realtor you will never meet has an extra cup of coffee and has to go to the restroom to pee.

And this single detail is only rendered after your parents’ choices, your teachers’ influences, your education, your career path, your boss’s career path, traffic accidents, weather patterns, political events, social changes, stock market, and the economy have set everything up.

#2: Why “you” are even “you” in the first place.

And didn’t your parents and their parents end up creating YOU because of a set of random circumstances? How did they meet? Why did they meet? Ask them.
“Oh, I was planning to stay home that night but so and so had a cold so I went . . .”

“I was in line at the DMV when I look over and see this beautiful girl . . .”

“He was going through a difficult divorce, and I just happen to . . .”

#3: What We Can and Can’t Influence

We are responsible for our actions, we are responsible for our choices, but we are powerless over the set of choices we have at any point in time.

We can, however, try to influence our set of choices in the future, by bettering ourselves and building our careers (or by slacking off). We are not powerless in that. But we are completely at the whim of chance regarding our past set of choices and circumstances.

You cannot choose your parents. You cannot choose your grandparents. You cannot choose the subset of humans you have to pick from when choosing a mate. You cannot choose the subset of humans you can pick as friends.

You can choose from the subset. You can’t choose the subset itself.

#4: Yeah, that would be fantastic, but . . .

It would be great if there was a god. It would be nice if we were here for a purpose. I wish there were some intrinsic meaning to our lives. It would be nice if we carried on after we die. It would even be nice if there were such a thing as “luck.” But there’s not. Get that through your head now, and things will make sense a lot quicker.

It would be nice if these things existed, but they don’t; it is delusional to think that these things exist. God, spirits, ghosts, Santa Clause, the Tooth Fairy, and the Holy Spirit: All of these things are fantasies.

This is the world and everything in it: We are a bunch of primates riding on a speck of dust hurtling through the universe for no reason whatsoever.

Oh, and by the way, stop crapping on Atheists. You don’t choose not to believe in God any more that you choose not to believe in Superman. You just know it’s a load of bullshit.

#5: Religion: I believe in the Power of Vaginas

What is religion? What is belief? Let me ask you this: What is the difference between a religion and a cult? What if the Chinese instead of the Europeans had discovered North America and taken it from the Native Americans? Would Christianity be practices in the United States? A United States that doesn’t exist?

Why do you practice the faith you practice? Is it the same faith as your parents? I hate to break this to you believers, but the set of beliefs you hold is not a function of faith, it is a function of which vagina you came out of, and nothing more. Is it a coincidence that most Christians have Christian parents? I think not.

#6: Death: When you’re dead, that’s it.

One choice leads to another leads to another. And then you die.

Here’s what happens when you die: Nothing.

You stop functioning, your body starts to decompose, and hopefully, somebody puts you in the ground. That’s it.

The world keeps turning, but you’re no longer around to know it. People get up for work, they fight wars, make babies, whatever.

Your family and friends get together; they put you in the ground, cry, and get on with making their choices and living their lives. Until it’s their turn.

#7: It isn’t all doom and gloom . . .

If there’s meaning, you make it yourself. You have the warm sun, family, and friends. There are a lot of things to enjoy in this life. Be good to one another, stop fighting, listen to music, watch a movie, and read a good book once in awhile. Have a beer. Enjoy this life now, because, well, see #6.

About Me

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I am the author of 5 books: Android Down, Firewood for Cannibals, The Cubicles of Madness, Robot Stories, and most recently, Various Meats and Cheeses. I live and write in Michigan. My website is at