Give a man a fish and feed him for a day....Teach him to use the internet and he won't bother you for weeks!
Friday, April 28, 2006
I just picked up the latest edition of one of the corporate communications they distribute at work. A slickly produced newsletter that's supposed to infuse me with team spirit. But this one provided tons of comedy fodder as we picked it apart at dinner last night. Two tidbits to share: the original logo/mascot of the company was a rooster, or as they referred to it then "the red cock". The jokes just write themselves sometimes; I wish they had stuck with this instead of the current blandness. Trust me, this is one Google image search that I'm truly sorry that I did!
And another dubious bit of history (that I can find no verification of) is that an employee invented the tea bag. But, perhaps they were referring to this instead?
No Pants Day! May 5th, 2006 marks the annual celebration of No Pants Day! They recommend wearing "thick, appropriately modest boxer shorts" which seems to take some of the enjoyment out of it, but it still seems like a fun idea.
Sears Wishbook 1983 This is why I'm seldom an early adopter anymore. This 1983 ad featuring a Compact Digital Audio Disc Player for only $589 seems pretty funny these days in light of how cheap these have become.
My current "tech-lust" is learning towards either a new "smart" phone/pda or a Tivo type device. You would think that I would have jumped on the Tivo bandwagon long ago, but I've been afraid that it might be kinda' like a "gateway drug" that would lead me to higher levels of TV addiction. And I see that Apple is ready to introduce a Media Center which only makes my temptation and confusion even greater.
Yesterday, the papers reported the passing of Jane Jacobs, who wrote the influential "The Death and Life of Great American Cities". This book challenged some of commonly held assumptions about urban planning, and changed the way we looked at cities and their vibrancy. Although I was a big fan of her work, I really didn't have a clue about her background until reading the obituary and the tributes. The one detail that I found most fascinating was that she carried on imaginary conversations while running errands. She started this practice using Thomas Jefferson as her imaginary friend, but at one point ran out of things to say, and replaced him with Ben Franklin! I guess I'll be cutting those who talk to themselves a bit more slack from now on. Ironically, the iPod just shuffled up the 'ol Mott The Hoople classic, so I guess fate was responsible for this post's title. A few more Jane Jacobs links for 'ya: Wikipedia Bio Nominate the Best Jane Jacobs Block in NYC Flickr: Best NYC Urban Block Group Online Memorial Weblog Healthy Cities, Urban Theory, and Design
"There is a quality even meaner than outright ugliness or disorder, and this meaner quality is the dishonest mask of pretended order, achieved by ignoring or suppressing the real order that is struggling to exist and to be served." Jane Jacobs
2 Brothers Recycle Birthday Card Ever since 1964 when Everett Smith spent 15 cents to buy a birthday card and another nickel to mail it, these two brothers have been mailing the same card to each other on their birthdays. Good thing they weren't twins.
How to Stay Awake in Boring Meetings This person suggests you create a gameboard and play a game of BS Bingo. My own personal technique is copious note taking. I used to use my Palm Pilot, but that became a double whammy. I'd get accused of falling asleep AND playing games during meetings, so I've gone back to the more traditional paper notes. It has the advantage of allowing you to doodle as well. But I must fess-up that my notes are usually mindless ramblings, or repeated writings of Bart Simpson-like quotes. But it keeps me awake, or at least "looking like" I'm not dozing.
Sometimes, the internet just makes "too much information" way too easy to find. I'll give you an example. I have to go on a business trip later this week which I'm dreading for a variety of reasons. Being sort of a "home-body" I'm not looking forward to jumping on a plane to spend several days working long hours and then having to stay in a strange hotel room in a city where I know nobody. And I'm sure my access to the web will be limited or non-existant, so I risk going through internet withdrawl.
My destination and my itinerary have changed several times and today I received the most recent update via e-mail. I'm scheduled to fly out on a short hop jet that I've never heard of called the Embraer 145, which sounds way too much like "The Embalmer 145" for my taste. A Google image search brings up a picture of the plane at George Bush Intercontinental Airport. This again; not a good sign. I've always thought these commuter airlines were pretty much like a Greyhound Bus with wings, so I hope that I'm wrong on this assumption.
Another web site, SeatGuru, lists ratings on which seats on the plane are good or bad. According to the site, there are three good seats on this plane, but two of those are drafty. There are three that are "kind-of" OK, except that they are close to the galley, which is a downside. My seat is described as being "considered uncomfortable compared to seats on other aircrafts". Great, I'm really stoked now! But at least they say that it is more comfortable than the "two-somes" on the other side of the isle, but due to the curvature of the plane my seat has decreased leg room. Well, I always say "it could be worse."
But I never considered just how much worse it might be until I saw the article in the morning paper that Airbus is pitching the concept of selling planes configured with standing-room-only "seats."! This probably won't catch on anytime soon, but I'm sure we CAN expect slimmer, thinner seats jammed in with minimal legroom instead.
At least, they didn't book my flight on this airline which uses a motto which seems a bit too laid back, "we'll get you there somehow"!
As Alexis de Tocqueville once said: "America is great because she is good. If America ever ceases to be good, America will cease to be great."
In January 2001, with the inauguration of George W. Bush as president, America set on a path to cease being good; America became a revolutionary nation, a radical republic. If our country continues on this path, it will cease to be great - as happened to all great powers before it, without exception.
There is nothing more sure to create a craving than telling me I can't have something. This was never more true than recently, when I read a news account of a new hot dog joint called AMAZINGHOT DOG, which isn't too far away from me. They specialize in locally made, quarter pound natural casing hot dogs which are deep fried and wrapped in bacon, then topped with a variety of traditional and some not so traditional toppings. Unfortunately, after opening to rave reviews, the place experienced a fire which closed it down, But the owners didn't let this little inconvenience keep them down, and have quickly rebuilt and are shooting for a May 1st opening. I MUST try these soon, but till then, a few "weiner links" to tide me over:
Free Cone Day Tuesday, April 25th is Free Cone Day at Ben & Jerry's! Although I don't have a participating location close by, here's hoping that YOU do and can collect your freebee. But being the loser that I am, this planted the seed in my peabrain which "made me" go out and buy a carton of Cherry Garcia to satisfy the craving!
John Dean: If Past Is Prologue, George Bush Is Becoming An Increasingly Dangerous President An interesting analysis of Presidential character and style by former presidential counsel John Dean. He tells us that they break down by categories of how they pursued work (active or passive) and how they felt about the job (positive or negative). Dubya falls in the category of active/negative putting him in the company of Woodrow Wilson, Herbert Hoover, Lyndon Johnson and Richard Nixon...and we know how THOSE presidencies worked out!
Recent events provide an especially good illustration of Bush's fateful - perhaps fatal - approach. Six generals who have served under Secretary of Defense Rumsfeld have called for his resignation - making a strong substantive case as to why he should resign. And they are not alone: Editorialists have also persuasively attacked Rumsfeld on the merits.
Yet Bush's defense of Rumsfeld was entirely substance-free. Bush simply told reporters in the Rose Garden that Rumsfeld would stay because "I'm the decider and I decide what's best." He sounded much like a parent telling children how things would be: "I'm the Daddy, that's why."
This, indeed, is how Bush sees the presidency, and it is a point of view that will cause him trouble.
Bush has never understood what presidential scholar Richard Neustadt discovered many years ago: In a democracy, the only real power the presidency commands is the power to persuade. Presidents have their bully pulpit, and the full attention of the news media, 24/7. In addition, they are given the benefit of the doubt when they go to the American people to ask for their support. But as effective as this power can be, it can be equally devastating when it languishes unused - or when a president pretends not to need to use it, as Bush has done.
Apparently, Bush does not realize that to lead he must continually renew his approval with the public. He is not, as he thinks, the decider. The public is the decider.
Bush is following the classic mistaken pattern of active/negative presidents: As Barber explained, they issue order after order, without public support, until they eventually dissipate the real powers they have -- until "nothing [is] left but the shell of the office." Woodrow Wilson, Herbert Hoover, Lyndon Johnson and Richard Nixon all followed this pattern....
Americans, increasingly, are not buying his justifications for any of these positions. Yet Bush has made no effort to persuade them that his actions are sound, prudent or productive; rather, he takes offense when anyone questions his unilateral powers. He responds as if personally insulted.
And this may be his only option: With Bush's limited rhetorical skills, it would be all but impossible for him to persuade any others than his most loyal supporters of his positions. His single salient virtue - as a campaigner - was the ability to stay on-message. He effectively (though inaccurately) portrayed both Al Gore and John Kerry as wafflers, whereas he found consistency in (over)simplifying the issues. But now, he cannot absorb the fact that his message is not one Americans want to hear - that he is being questioned, severely, and that staying on-message will be his downfall.
Other Presidents - other leaders, generally - have been able to listen to critics relatively impassively, believing that there is nothing personal about a debate about how best to achieve shared goals. Some have even turned detractors into supporters - something it's virtually impossible to imagine Bush doing. But not active/negative presidents. And not likely Bush....
Boehemian Polka Conventional wisdom is that you should maintain a cohesive theme and point of view when you blog. To jump back and forth from serious topics to frivolous ones isn't recommended. Screw conventional wisdom, I'll do what I want, like linking to this funny video of a Weird Al song with cheesy amateurish animation.
Baby Cages (VIA Bifurcated Rivets) Watching the kids just too much hassle and responsibility? These caged confinement units might just be what you need. Helps teach children discipline, and keeps them out of harms' way. And their products are ONLY tested on babies born in third-world countries!
Seems like nothing is grabbing me today at least in the blogging context (or on any other level, actually). Common sense tells me just not to post, but since when have I listened to the voice of reason? So here's a slice of life which I'll rip-off from various other bloggers, where you list the first ten songs on your iPod when you do a random shuffle. Here goes 'nuttin:
Since nothing is striking my fancy today, why not look at some 'purdy pictures? Some stunning imagery is on-line at Art 166. The artist, W. J. St. Christopher describes her work as "high-impact, contemporary and neo-traditional images created in a purely digital environment" and she provides the opportunity to purchase them, as well as her unique insights into the process. I find these pictures of these large irrigation systems stunning. Perhaps, it's my emerging obsession over lawn care that's my motivation, but some really nice stuff is on display there.
O & A: Back On The Radio Finally, there's some GOOD news. It looks like I can turn the radio back on again in the morning, since the rumored return of Opie and Anthony is about to happen. Although I had bailed on Stern ages ago (who grew less and less funny after the Billy West years), when Marc Maron left the airwaves there really wasn't anything compelling to motivate me to listen to the radio. I've missed "the boys" since they were unceremoniously booted off the radio over that little "Sex For Sam" incident.
What's almost as funny as O & A is just how hypocritical CBS looks on this one, since they were "so" outrageous they "had" to be fired. But after seeing all their ratings slip away with the David Lee Roth suckfest, I guess their moral outrage was replaced by their business sense. And the Gods Of Irony must be wearing a big grin, since being able to replace and compete with Howard, getting in the media spotlight, and being able to promote THEIR satellite show will surely drive Stern crazy! Hoo-Hoo!
George W. Bush's presidency appears headed for colossal historical disgrace. Barring a cataclysmic event on the order of the terrorist attacks of September 11th, after which the public might rally around the White House once again, there seems to be little the administration can do to avoid being ranked on the lowest tier of U.S. presidents. And that may be the best-case scenario. Many historians are now wondering whether Bush, in fact, will be remembered as the very worst president in all of American history....
I'm The Decider (VIA The Huffington Post) (SUNG TO THE TUNE OF THE BEATLES 'I AM THE WALRUS') I am me and Rummy's he, Iraq is free and we are all together See the world run when Dick shoots his gun, see how I lie I'm Lying...
Sitting on my own brain, waiting for the end of days Corporation profits, Bloody oil money I'm above the law and I'll decide what's right or wrong
I am the egg head, I'm the Commander, I'm the Decider Koo-Koo-Kachoo
Baghdad city policeman sitting pretty little targets in a row See how they die when the shrapnel flies see mothers cry I'm Lying...I'm Ly-ing...I'm Lying...I'm Ly-ing
Yellow cake plutonium, imaginary WMD's Declassifying facts, exposing secret agents Tax cuts for the wealthy leaving all the poor behind
Sitting in the White house garden talking to the Lord My thoughts would be busy busy hatching If I only had a brain
Halliburton's Immigrant Detention Centers Thanks to the good folks at Haliburton, we don't have to spend another sleepless night worrying what will happen if undocumented alien workers flood over our borders. They received a $385 million contract to build detention centers, or as Keith Olbermann described them "concentration camps". It's darned reassuring to know that we've got leadership in place who has the foresight to plan for imposing martial law.
And even more benevolent and wise decision making from our friends at the Pentagon might lead to open-air, low-yield nuclear testing in Nevada. There's some conflicting information on if it's really nuclear testing, but the terrifying thing is that this would appear to be a dry run for the attack on Iran. This can't be good for anybody. Not exactly proud moments to be an American.
For those who live in Uruguay, today is the day they commemorate "The Landing of the 33 Patriots". On this date in 1825, thirty three exiles returned and began a movement which ultimately resulted in the country gaining independence. Oddly enough in Korea they a similar national holiday where they celebrate their own 33 Patriots although they observe it on March 1st.
Women, your ability to operate extra tender springs from birth. Good machinery comes as your contents cause enjoyment. Cash, beer, a car ... rock and rolling? During "it", the general warning: "We may risk pregnancy according to old problems." Your refund from the government for alcoholic beverages? Not OK. Refund this premium, beer surgeon, because premium beer impairs taste. A drink—to the tribute of health, to the pale alcoholic. Rolling, glass tanks of beverages rock this lined mountain. Should the defects of consumption drive me ... Or you? Latrobe, Latrobe COL, CT, DE, IA, MA, NY, VT, CA, MI "33"
REM & The Muppets How can you NOT have fun with The Muppets and this upbeat song? It sure looks like REM did. But probably the best touch is that they they used a red-headed Muppet in the chorus. Before you think it's my red-head obsession raising it's ugly head again, this one is sort of a tribute to the B-52's Kate Pierson, who did the back-up vocals on the original.
An Inconvenient Truth I'm glad I'm not an "I told you so" kinda guy, since it's become apparent to most of the rest of those who didn't vote for Al Gore that they made the wrong choice. This trailer of his new film presents us with some compelling and frightening facts concerning climate change; issues that the current "leadership" isn't willing (or capable of) addressing.
Maybe it's the fact that the current Preznut has proven to be such a stumbling buffoon, but it seems like Gore has a certain presence and vigor that he was lacking in his ill-fated campaign. It would be refreshing to have someone in the White House who actually has moral values, intellectual skills, and leadership abilities, and not just someone who merely "talks the talk". Gore's stature and experience could go along way to restoring some of the goodwill we have squandered through out the world. Maybe '08 can be the "do-over" that we all deserve. I really don't see any other truly viable candidates at this point, although I know how things can change till then. But Gore-Obama doesn't have such a bad ring to it.
Sewer Cover Throw Rugs (VIA Gizmodo) The perfect addition to somewhere I'm sure, these black nylon flocked rugs are made of 100 recycled truck tires, Their design is based on manhole covers found in major US cities, and can be used either indoors or out. When you want to feel like Ed Norton, without all the annoying odors.
I may not be the most adventurous person, but when I saw The Apprentice the other night, I recoiled in horror when they rolled out the P'EatZZa sandwich that the task was built around. If you didn't catch the episode, they had to sell the new 7-Eleven sandwich which uses two slices of pepperoni pizza instead of bread. You can get them in the "Turkey & Pepperoni" or "Ham & Salami" flavors. Not being a big fan of cold pizza, this one starts out with two strikes against it. No matter how much shilling they did on the show, this culinary mess looks like something that was fished out of the dumpster. On the rare occasion when I HAVE actually purchased a sandwich there, I'd have to say that I was both really, really hungry AND desperate, but I don't think I'd ever reach the level of desperation to find myself eating one of these, except possibly at gunpoint.
But apparently, the management at 7-Eleven is pursuing the quest to perfect the worst sandwich idea ever. Just in case the P'EatZZa doesn't take the title (which it should, if only for the annoyingly cutsey name) I saw the most disgusting thing being sold there today. Obsessed with the idea of pizza, their newest offering "Twistas" is a pepperoni pizza stuffed in some sort of a crusty wrap. OK, that doesn't sound half bad, right? Well, here's where it goes horribly wrong. Most promotional photography for food products seems to be an art-form, where they lovingly romance and photograph the product so it's so darned appealing, no amount of free will can prevent you from purchasing it. Well, either those guys weren't available or maybe it's just that this is the most disgusting looking thing, ever. In the signs, the "filling" is oozing out of it, but it looks pretty much like a partially digested and regurgitated pizza. The only thing that might have made it less appealing is if they had somehow worked the word "barf" into the product name. I can't wait to see what these marketing geniuses will think of next!
There's nothing in the world better than eating a good bag of chips. A close second, however, is admiring the various snack mascots that adorn the bags of many kinds of chips. The mascots designed to resemble potatoes are particularly entertaining.
Although I usually resist memes, aka_Monty just did this one, and was nice enough NOT to tag anybody, thereby making it impossible to resist playing along! "Go to Wikipedia, and type in your birth date (minus the year) in the search box. From the lists displayed, pick 3 interesting events, 2 births, and 1 death which occurred on the same day as your birthday, and show the year." Three interesting events...
1908 - A long-distance radio message is sent from the Eiffel Tower for the first time.
1966 - Batman the TV series debuts on ABC.
1969 - Super Bowl III: New York Jets upset the Baltimore Colts, 16-7. (Odd, I picked events relating to radio or TV. This is because many BAD things took place on this date) Two births...
1737 - John Hancock, American statesman (d. 1793)
1876 - Jack London, American author (d. 1916) One death...
1976 - Agatha Christie, English writer (b. 1890)
Anybody who wants to run with this, knock your socks off...
Although it's been said that imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, I guess that's a relative concept. MiniKiss is a Kiss tribute band which is comprised of "little people" (or whatever the currently politically correct term might be). But when someone starts to imitate the imitators, "big trouble" ensues.
Google Lava Lamp Ok, I like Google as much as the next guy but some of the items available at the Google Store are just a bit too geeky for my taste. The lava lamp does, as they say "ooze gooey coolness" but some of the other items like the umbrella with an illuminated Google logo seem a bit much.
Maybe the voyeur in you might be in the mood for watching a little on-line sleeze? Well, if you like it "doggy-style", this little video of a threesome on a beach just might be the spice you are looking for!
PimpMySnack (VIA MetaFilter) "PimpMySnack is a custom, banging, A1 Tip Top, jamming club fair. It's a sandwich of fun on ecstacy bread wrapped up in a big bag like disco fudge. It doesn't get any better than this."
Well, there are probably too many reasons why this isn't a good idea to list. Somethings should just be left to the professionals. Every time I read the "care label" in a wool garment I see they recommend "professional dry clean only". Yet, I've never come across anybody who lists "amateur dry-cleaning" as a hobby. Go figure.
'Happy face' crater on Mars (VIA Digg) Because, don't we need some GOOD news? These pictures of the Argyre Planitia impact basin on Mars as seen from the High Resolution Stereo Camera on board the Mars Express spacecraft looks much like the old "smiley faces". But, then again I'm the guy who sees weird things in carpet stains.
A Laptop Comes Preloaded With the Web Acer will soon be selling laptops "preloaed" with 40 gigabytes of data, meant to be an abridged version of the Web. Webaroo, the company responsible for creating this snapshot says that "there are lots of times when Internet access is inconvenient."
Oh yea, that makes sense. It's getting so tough these days to get connected to the internet, so give me a preselected, non-interactive alternative clogging up hard-drive space. Now if you want to give me answers to the "really inconvenient" problems like how to pay my bills without bothering to go to work, then maybe we can talk.
The Worst Superhero Costumes Of All Time! "While Batman struck fear into the hearts of criminals by looking like a bat, Nighthawk apparently hopes to subdue evil doers by making them double over in laughter when they see him."
"But he wouldn't do that." That sentiment is what made it possible for President Bush to stampede America into the Iraq war and to fend off hard questions about the reasons for that war until after the 2004 election. Many people just didn't want to believe that an American president would deliberately mislead the nation on matters of war and peace....(snip)
"But he wouldn't do that," say people who think they're being sensible. Given what we now know about the origins of the Iraq war, however, discounting the possibility that Mr. Bush will start another ill-conceived and unnecessary war isn't sensible. It's wishful thinking.
As it happens, rumors of a new war coincide with the emergence of evidence that appears to confirm our worst suspicions about the war we're already in....(snip)
Why might Mr. Bush want another war? For one thing, Mr. Bush, whose presidency is increasingly defined by the quagmire in Iraq, may believe that he can redeem himself with a new Mission Accomplished moment.
And it's not just Mr. Bush's legacy that's at risk. Current polls suggest that the Democrats could take one or both houses of Congress this November, acquiring the ability to launch investigations backed by subpoena power. This could blow the lid off multiple Bush administration scandals. Political analysts openly suggest that an attack on Iran offers Mr. Bush a way to head off this danger, that an appropriately timed military strike could change the domestic political dynamics.
Does this sound far-fetched? It shouldn't. Given the combination of recklessness and dishonesty Mr. Bush displayed in launching the Iraq war, why should we assume that he wouldn't do it again?
"Have you all forgotten that the evidence on Iraq was spectacularly wrong? Have you all ignored the fact that it was fabricated? Why then are we going down the exact same road of stage managed, fabricated pseudo-evidence and wild-ass hysteria?
What is wrong with you people?
This entire crisis has been manufactured, and has been years in the making...."
Internet Crime Archives Home of the mass murdering serial killer. After spending some time viewing these mass murderers, serial killers, and cult crazies it may just make the bad news on the front pages of todays' newspapers look just a little better. Probably not, but a bizarre look at the darker side of life and death nonetheless.
A government consultant with close ties to the civilian leadership in the Pentagon said that Bush was "absolutely convinced that Iran is going to get the bomb" if it is not stopped. He said that the President believes that he must do "what no Democrat or Republican, if elected in the future, would have the courage to do," and "that saving Iran is going to be his legacy."
One former defense official, who still deals with sensitive issues for the Bush Administration, told me that the military planning was premised on a belief that "a sustained bombing campaign in Iran will humiliate the religious leadership and lead the public to rise up and overthrow the government." He added, "I was shocked when I heard it, and asked myself, 'What are they smoking?' "
And the most disturbing thing might just possibly be the assumption that tactical "newkler" weapons can be safely used as "bunker busters", although there is plenty of other troubling stuff in this article as well. More bad decisions from the folks who told us that we'd be welcomed in Iraq with flowers and chocolates. This didn't work the last time, but this deluded group of neo-con goons want to try it again, and hope we get different results. But if left unchecked, they are just going to keep doing what they do best...F' things up even worse and take us down the road to the next World War...or worse!
"In my lifetime, I have never felt more ashamed of my leadership in Washington. And I would hope from time to time that you have the humility and grace to be ashamed of yourself." Harry Taylor (Thank you....Join the national thank you event on April 15th)
The Arctic Bird Giant Seeing Pulp Fiction again the other day reminded me just how many little details I had forgotten about the movie. One of my favorite moments is in the flashback where Butch gets the watch, and he is viewing Clutch Cargo on TV. Thanks to this recent You Tube offering, we can all be reminded just how lame this series really was.
And speaking of repeats, I've speculated about Clutch being separated at birth in the past.
Sometimes, you crave something just because you can't have it. A few years ago when I first hear of Pepsi Kona, it was long after they had pulled the plug on this coffee/cola blend. My reaction was one of profound disappointment, since for some reason I thought combining these two flavors sounded intriguing....or sounded like a very BAD idea, and I wanted to try it so I could objectively decide which was the case. But alas, I never ran across any of the other coffee-colas that are out there so the craving passed.
Recently, with the announcement of the introduction of Coca-Cola BlaK, I had these dormant cravings stirred-up again. They promised "a carbonated beverage that fuses Coke effervescence with coffee essence". My initial reaction was that this is too good to be true; anything that sounds that good will probably lead to a big disappointment but I was still determined to "get me some" and try it for myself. All week long, I've had my eyes peeled looking for it when I've gone in various stores, only to find giant piles of "Black Cherry Vanilla Coke" under the "NEW" banner, and not a drop of BlaK. I almost picked up some of that to drown my frustration, but I decided against it. Since Cherry Coke was such a disappointment (anybody who remembers a true "fountain" cherry Coke will know what I'm talking about, and YES..I'm that old), and since Vanilla Coke was so gawd awful horrible, why would mixing them together be any better?
So today, I'm strolling through Target and again, no BlaK in sight. But there happens to be a guy pushing a pallet of Coke products through the store, and I flag him down and ask him where this "holy grail" of sodas might be. He tells me, "Oh yea, it just came in. Ya 'wanna come back in an hour, I'm gonna build an endcap of it." Ah, no I don't. You've made it clear that it's too much trouble to just go in the back and get me some, but he sees my look of disappointment, and I think he's going to cave in and do the right thing. Ah, no. "Dude, it's everywhere now. Where have you been that they didn't have it?" I proceed to go down the list of the stores I've been to that didn't have it, only to have him concede "Oh yea, I haven't been there yet". This is not going well. He then ticks off the area grocery stores that he HAS stocked, and luckily one of them is the next planned stop on my trip so off I go. But when I get there, I find out that he was a lying sack of crap, and this store didn't have it either. But one more stop has me acquiring the object of my desire; cola-wise, that is.
After all this frustration, this stuff had better be good. And here's the news: it really is good! I truly had been prepared for a big letdown, but I was pleasantly surprised at just how much I liked it. It has a very pleasant mouth feel, largely due to it being so lightly carbonated. Just enough cola fizz to make it interesting. They call it a "carbonated fusion beverage" but let's be clear, coffee wins the battle of the flavors which isn't such a bad thing. It is sweet, but not too sweet thanks to the use of artificial sweeteners which keeps the calorie count down to 45 per serving. It somehow has an almost "creamy" feel, making it a nice alternative to a Frappuccino which comes in at 190 calories per bottle.
The novelty will probably wear off, but for now this is one of my new favorites. I don't see myself guzzling it in mass quantities, but it's a pleasant change from plain old soda. You may want to get yours now, since I don't see this doing big bucks business, which may lead to a short life span like Vanilla Coke. But then again, I predicted I wouldn't like it, so what do I know?
Modern bottled beverages come in a plethora of flavors… cherry, vanilla, chocolate, lemon, lime, and turkey & gravy to name but a few. Most of those drinks are available in diet and regular versions, each of which may or may not have a caffeine-free variety. As if our teeth weren't already cringing at the thought of rotting away in a brutal shower of carbonated high-fructose corn syrup, many companies are now multiplying our diabetes-inducing pleasure with zany flavor combinations. But recently the Innovation Team (exclamation point) at Ipifini has introduced their Programmable Liquid Container technology, a drink packaging concept which should make flavor fusions such as "black cherry vanilla" look downright pedestrian in comparison...
Robot B9 (VIA Gizmodo) Man, I SO want one of these!! Having grown up watching "Lost In Space" that's just a natural reaction. But I'm just too darned cheap to pony up the $18,000 it would cost to get one. You DO get plenty of kool stuff to justify the purchase price: built-in stereo sound system, an iPod input, a 500 track vocal repertoire featuring the voice of the original actor, a keychain remote allowing you to control the robot, and a functional soil sampler! When you turn it off, the robot cries "aaghhhh..." just like it did on TV! I think I'd rather have one of these than a new car, but trying to explain it to the wife might be a tough conversation!
Ask most people what the "worst movie ever made" was and the likely answer would be Plan 9 From Outer Space. But a serious contender for that title has to be the never released Jerry Lewis film The Day the Clown Cried (VIA growabrain). It tells the story of a circus clown who is sent to a Nazi concentration camp during WWII. In the camp, he befriends the children and then leads a Pied Piper like procession to the gas chambers! How could this possibly go wrong?
"With most of these kinds of things, you find that the anticipation, or the concept, is better than the thing itself. But seeing this film was really awe-inspiring, in that you are rarely in the presense of a perfect object. This was a perfect object. This movie is so drastically wrong, its pathos and its comedy are so wildly misplaced, that you could not, in your fantasy of what it might be like, improve on what it really is. Oh My God! - thats all you can say. "
edIT - LTLP "Post-apocalyptic remnants of consumerism" is how the originator of this video describes it, which is pretty accurate. An artsy, well edited tour of a dead mall done up in the style of a music video would be another. The link is from one of my favorite "shopping nostalgia" sites Malls of America, which has a ton of vintage pictures and memorabilia from shopping centers throughout the country. Although I've probably liked to them before, some other good places that allow you to relive sights and stories of retail establishments of the past include: deadmalls DOT com Groceteria: Did You Bring Bottles? (supermarket history and architecture from the 20's through the 70's) Not Fooling Anybody (a chronicle of bad storefront conversions) The Weis Project (a study of architectural styles used by a Pennsylvania grocery store that I grew up with) Modern Ruins (not retail related, but a series of stunning photographs of abandoned industrial and commercial sites)
Custom Sign Generator If the Chinese Restaurant Sign generator didn't float your boat, then this site just might have something you will like. Allows you to manipulate signs, book-covers, logos, cartoons and too many others to begin to describe. Sure to bring out the twelve year old in all of us.
The "Brief Safe" (VIA TechEBlog) Now you can have a safe haven for cash and valuables as you travel. The "Brief Safe" gives you a place to stash small items right under the noses of thieves in a secret 4" x 10" velcro pocket. Even the most hardened criminal will "skid" to a dead halt once they get a load of these! And for an added measure of protection, you can give them authentic smell by ordering the optional "doo drops".
It was certainly good news to see the beta release of Boot Camp, which will allow you to dual boot the new Intel Macs. For those of us who can't commit, or those who need to use apps from both worlds, this potentially simplifies things.
The wife has been a big Mac proponent for years, since she uses them at work. She's been quite the Apple ambassador, and finally got me to overcome my resistance when we bough the last laptop, and I've been loving the iBook ever since. But as I've considered retiring the other aging Windows machines around the house, I just couldn't let go completely and make it an Apple based household. This makes it easy; or harder, depending on how you want to look at it.
Now, if only Apple could help us make some of the REALLY tough decisions, like who has to do the dishes, what color pavers should we use for the patio, or who has to get up at 2:30 in the morning when the dog decides she has to relieve herself. Anything you can do to help out with those choices would be greatly appreciated.
GRASS ARMCHAIR (VIA Utterly Boring) Although I plan to re-do the back yard, I don't see incorporating this "chia chair" into the plans. An interesting idea, though, where you build the corrugated cardboard frame and then bury it with soil. Seed it, water it, and watch it grow. Once it's grown in, you can then trim it down, then kick back and relax. Just don't try to move it.
Harry Truman was always known for his neat appearance. When he became president, his everyday garments became more fashionable and care was taken to adopt "appropriate" dress for the leader of a nation. His recognizable double-breasted suit, Stetson hat and spectator shoes were his trademark. Faced with more scrutiny over his clothing than he had experienced as senator or vice president, he took few risks with the exception of a splashy tie now and then. That is, until he started vacationing in Key West ....