Today's Hathos  


Big surprise, O'reilly is involved

Inner Groove  


Courtesy of Wiki

Following the last track on the album is an extremely high-pitched
tone (15 kHz), too high-pitched for many adults to hear, but audible to
dogs, other animals, and most younger listeners. The high tone was
inserted, as was John Lennon’s intention, to irritate the listener’s
dog. The tone was only inserted on the first 5000 copies of the LP
(save for the American Capitol Records pressing), but was included on all copies of the later CD release.

The 15 kHz tone is followed by a loop of incomprehensible Beatles
studio chatter, spliced together apparently at random and with sections
playing both normally and in reverse. This lasts for two seconds and
the final three syllables were mastered into the final "run-out" groove
of vinyl LP record, creating a loop of gibberish that is repeated
‘endlessly’ on manual turntables until the listener lifts the tonearm. This coda to the Sgt. Pepper LP was included in British pressings but not originally in American pressings; it was included on the 1980 "Rarities" compilation LP, as "Sgt. Pepper Inner Groove."
The 1987 CD re-release simulates this effect, although since an
infinite loop cannot be created on compact discs, the Beatle chatter is
looped eight or nine times before fading slowly out.

the highlight of my thanksgiving  


like a segway, but stupid  


while looking for a replacement of my "signature" jacket  


i've had the same lightweight jacket since college.   people confuse it for a knicks or mets jacket b/c it's orange white and blue, but it's JUST a jacket.   it's perfectly oversized and water resistent while not enducing TOO much sweat.   anyway, it's on life support, so i started looking online for another jacket.   i came across an article titled "how to walk in the rain".   check this out:

Rain Walking Tip #1: Umbrellas

Some walking purists think that umbrellas are for standers, not for
walkers. I don't commonly carry an umbrella (and I walk in rainy
Oregon), but under some conditions I use one as the best gear for the

more palin  


child abuse?  


EVERY time I watch a game on Fox, my mind boggles  


Is there any way that Fox could make the green screen worse?

1) It's in the absolute worst position so that it ruins the image of the pitcher while he's delivering the pitch AND
1A)ruins the image of the (lefty) hitter while he swings.

2) It's about late 1980's in quality in terms of masking the fact that it's a green screen. The pitcher's head literally glows inside the ad.

3) As soon as they show the hitter walking around in the batter's box (which is about 90% of the pitches) they cut to an angle that shows that it's just a green screen.

Zero percent of the viewers are fooled into thinking this is a real banner. We all know it's just a computer generated banner on a horrible fake screen. So why pretend otherwise? Why not just put a huge ad right in the middle of the action. Sort of like a popup that moves while you try to close it.

It's a sad commentary on society that Fox is allowed to get away with this. It's beyond distracting.

an example of the "liberal" media  


Not quite "can you name a newspaper that you read", but still pretty tough

I don't think "news" means what you think it means  


"Great minds discuss ideas. Average minds discuss events. Small minds discuss people."
- Eleanor Roosevelt

Webster's dictionary defines news, just kidding. I'm tired of going to CNN and seeing a "news" story about some random person experiencing some random event. "old woman shoots herself over her mortgage"; "mother drowns kids". This is not news; these are little hits of anti-intellectual crack.

There are two key reasons why The Media lives by the mantra "If it bleeds, it leads". The first is that blood (or anything shocking) is entertaining. Most people are aware of this infotainment phenomena, so let's move on. The second reason is that The Media can waive these shiny stories in front of the sheep like dangling keys. They are very digestible...there are clearly defined roles of good and evil. While standing around the water cooler, everyone can feel comfortable agreeing that the mother (who drowned her kids) is "bad". The woman with the mortgage/foreclosure is a "sad" story, and everyone feels for her. Nice little packages of total agreement.

On the other hand, the real "news" is often complicated, controversial, and without resolution. It can't just be dangled, the news-seeker must proactively digest it. And after great struggle, the news-seeker is often left with more questions than answers.

Unfortunately, the average person doesn't have the time or the energy (never mind the intellect) to digest real news stories. And this inability, combined with the apathy, is proving deadly. Real news has a chance to directly impact the lives of people. My life will not be any different whether or not some random woman went crazy and killed her kids. I live in a world with billions of human beings. I took science and psychology classes. I'm well aware that some people are crazy and do crazy things. I will never be one of those people who clicks my tongue and says "oh my god, how could a mother kill her kids? That's so horrible!". Yes, it's horrible, but it's a natural set of outliers that exists in humanity. And it will happen again next week.

The silver lining of the the death of the newspaper industry is that they could develop the niche skill of actually reporting news. From a practical standpoint, they'll never be able to compete with the Internet or CNN in terms of delivering time-sensitive "current events" (or even the leading stories of blood). However, they could refocus their energies on reporting on real news in depth. There used to be a time where a reporter actually investigated issues. There's still a need for that in our society, and I hope and pray that we'll get back to a time where "news" means something more than a guy eating a 20 pound burger in Pennsylvania (although, did you see that story? b/c that burger was HUGE!)

If you pronounce it "moo-za-rell", please read  


I had a rant all ready to go, but the NYT covered this very topic a couple of years ago.   They hit all the major points.   So stop being fake Italian!!

Growing a Beard (really?)  


I'm fiddling around with my new beard trimmer, and there's an attachment that I'm not exactly sure how to use.   I crack open the instruction booklet, and this is what I find:

Growing a Beard

There are three key factors that will determine which beard style is best for you:

1. The shape and dimensions of your face.
2. The natural growth of your beard.
3. The thickness of your beard.   If you are unsure about the type of beard that would most suit your face, speak with a professional hair stylist or go to:  ___________

Movie Reivew: "Trade"  


Although there were times during the movie "Trade" where I got emotional, I couldn't shake the feeling that I was being manipulated. I spent the majority of the movie trying to figure out if the director was trying to be sincere in his focus on the horrific subject material, or if he was taking shortcuts at making something emotional. And then, after I wrestled with that issue, I was unsure if that even "matters". If a movie is "important", does it not matter if it's "good"?

By movie standards, was the movie Trade "good"?


In order to push the plot along, an amazing chain of unlikely events had to occur. I could chronicle those unlikely events, but it's not important. There are about a dozen times where you sit back and go "oh come on, that's not plausible". Dove tailing from that is the ridiculous intereactions between the brother and the cop. At one point I thought I was watching a cliched buddy cop movie. They actually argued about what kind of music to listen to! If you're stealing scenes from Rush Hour, I refuse to take you seriously. Oh, and the movie ends with a huge swat team invasion.

Oh, and if you don't believe me, check out this line from Ebert:

A nasty, vile business, made more slimy because director Marco Kreuzpaintner doesn't trust the intrinsic interest of his story, and pumps it up with chase details, close calls, manufactured crises, and so many scenes of the captives being frightened and abused that they begin to seem gratuitous, even suspect.

Was I, the viewer, manipulated?


I felt like the camera lingered a little too long on crying children, or horrific scenes of abuse. You need a delicate hand to handle this type of subject material, and I don't think the director succeeded. But I'm not intelligent enough to know how or where you draw the line. A movie about the slave trade is going to have depressing scenes. The viewer is supposed to be depressed during those scenes. I would love for someone to articulate why I had a problem with the way it was done in this movie, because I'm not quite sure myself.

Is this movie important?


I guess it depends on the target audience. A big movie like Blood Diamond is important because "regular" people go and see it. I know people whose opinion on those shiny rocks has changed because of the movie. But, as best as I can tell, Trade is a smaller movie. And I really have no idea what type of person goes out of their way to see a small movie with such a sickening subject material. I fear that this movie won't have the impact that it could because of the "Rush Limbaugh effect". Rush is pretty insignificant because he only preaches to the choir. Likewise, my gut says that people who are already aware of the slave trade problem in this world (and specifically the US) are the ones going out and watching this movie. This minimizes the impact that the movie can have (especially if it's done in a mediocre way). The goal of this movie is hopefully to educate, but I wonder if it actually achieves that goal.

In the end, I suppose that, despite all of its faults, the world is a better place because this movie exists. Even if the impact isn't as maximized as it could have been, it's still a good start. And even though I was somewhat aware of the problem, it still opened my eyes a bit. As it was ending, I was bracing myself for the cliched stats that come at the end of these types of movies. But seeing 50,000 sex-slaves entering this country every year really shook me to the core. I can't even begin to understand that.

The earlier post regarding train etiquette was shooting fish in a barrel. There’s another daily event where a CotU is in their full form: the food service industry. What’s interesting in this case is that there are three distinct, yet overlapping, types of a CotU that interact with each other in this area. And when they are at their peak, it really is a site to behold.

CotU #1: The Misogynistic Server

From personal experience, it seems like the majority of food servers (whether it be deli, cafeteria, etc) seem to be male. And the majority of those male servers are misogynistic. Actually, I’m not even sure if misogynistic is the proper term. It's not a hatred of women per se (at least not on a direct level), but rather being overly infatuated with them. A guy who hits on every attractive woman he encounters isn't actually attracted to any of them. In order to be attracted to a woman you have to first acknowledge that they are a person. The type of guy who hits on every single woman he meets is actually so extreme in his objectification that he’s able to merge all women merge into a single being.

But for ease, let’s just call that objectification as misogynistic and move on. I’m not sure if the food industry has a higher percentage of this type of guy, or if the industry just provides more opportunities for them to flaunt their behavior. Whatever the case may be, these guys do not hesitate for a second to hit on every attractive girl that passes their way.

This type of server has no shame, because he’s a CotU. He can literally alternate between cold silence to faux-friendliness based on the gender of his customer. As a guy, I’m disgusted by both the objectification and the lack of subtleness involved. But more than that, I try to put myself in the mindset of a successful professional woman witnessing this while in line. I can’t imagine what it’s like to try and get through the day while being judged by these clowns. I know it’s hard to believe for these CotU’s, but maybe some women just want to get their food in a professional manner without being objectified.

It’s amazing how a person who controls food thinks they have power over someone. Moreso than any other service industry, a food server seems to be emboldened by his position of power. From the waiter who spits in food because he felt slighted, to a bartender who pays more attention to the customers who tip better, employees of the food service industry abuse their power. And for the misogynistic server, he tends to feel entitled to hit on the women without any recourse.

CotU #2: The “Customer is Always Right” Consumer

Mel Brooks once said "Tragedy is when I cut my finger. Comedy is when you walk into an open sewer and die." A CotU focus on their costs and benefits and discount those of their fellow man. Some consumers think that their dollar entitles them to the burger king experience; they want it “their way.” They incorrectly think that the fact that they are on the demand side of the equation gives them carte blanche to affect the supply side. They are wrong.

The classic example is a crowded bar. In theory, as a patron, you are entitled to order any drink on the menu. However, common decency (something a CotU doesn’t possess) dictates that you don’t want to make a bartender suffer needlessly. If you order a round of drinks, and four of your buddies want a miller light, don’t be the guy that makes the fifth a bud light. Of course, CotU’s go above and beyond that, and usually require a drink that contains three alcohols and two mixers, and specify the number of ice cubes to boot. And when you question them on their order, they’ll usually reply with “that’s their job!” or “I’m the customer, and I get to order what I want.”

For the record, bartenders don’t usually own the bar. They aren’t reaping any profits on the transaction (other than the tip). And food servers are even less invested in the profit end of the business. It’s completely unfair to make their job any harder than it has to be. If breakfast ends at 10:30, don’t try and talk them into making you something at 10:45.

The most egregious thing I’ve ever witnessed involves chicken wings. When they are on the menu, they are always in high demand and because they are cooked in front of you, the lines tend to build up. I once had the displeasure of being behind someone who wanted her wings cooked in a specific way. Instead of the usual pan fried process, she requested that they “lightly” be cooked that way, and then taken to the back to be cooked in the oven. Something about the crispiness (or lack there of) of the chicken, I’m not exactly sure.

What I am sure of is that she said no less than THREE times “don’t worry, they’ll (the people in the back) know who it’s for. So, not only was this a regular request, but this woman actually took pride in having a personal order. This poor man had to stop his regular routine of pan frying, and hand off the wings to the back of the cafeteria. And eventually, when the wings came back out, she repeated her “did you know who they were for?” question TWICE, only to finally grin “yeah, I knew you’d know they were for me.”

Well congratulations CotU, you’ve managed to usurp some extra advantage of the process. Once again you prove the thesis that the squeaky wheel get the oil. It must make you feel really important to be able to get such personal service. Of course, any jerk could make a request. The only problem is that if everyone did it, the servers would be overwhelmed and be unable to perform their job.

And that’s why the “well I’m PAYING for this” defense doesn’t work. Because the price of the wings is based on how much it costs to make them in a normal process. The manpower to make them costs a certain amount of dollars. If you start making those employees work harder, and take more time, eventually you’re going to need to increase your staff. And eventually, the prices of the wings go up.

Sure, maybe those wings taste slightly better than the normal process. But as a consumer, you have to accept that you are not in fact the center of the universe and that the food industry is a business that survives on multiple sales. If you want a higher quality product, you don’t have the right to ask for better service …go find a higher end restaurant (which will charge more).

CotU #3: The Hybrid Consumer

When you combine a misogynistic server with a “customer is always right” consumer, chaos ensues. First, a disclaimer: I’m fully aware that I have received countless benefits being a white male in this racist/sexist society. It would be impossible for me to separate, or even recognize, all of those benefits. And of course, its males who are 99% to blame for this sexist society we live in. So, for me to sit here in judgment of women who reap the micro benefits of misogynic males (while ignoring the macro harm it causes our society) teeters on the edge of hypocrisy. But all that being said, just because I’m not the best voice to discuss the issue, it doesn’t mean the argument isn’t valid.

The misogynistic server wants to flirt with the female customer. And the female customer wants special treatment when it comes to their food. So they use each other all under the false pretense of being “friendly.” Some women might actually trick themselves into thinking the server is “just being nice”, but that has to be willful ignorance. Again, how could the server be nice one minute to them, but then cold and dispondant to the male customer. Furthermore, the server isn’t actually being “generous” by giving away his boss’ food. It’s not costing him anything, and borders on stealing.

The cafeteria at lawschool was the worst. The guy at the register openly joked to the women that they paid less money for the same items. I don’t think it’s an overstatement to say that the women were literally reaping a financial benefit through their sexuality. What’s the word for that again?

The woman justifies the discount by saying “if he wants to give it to me cheaper, why should I refuse? That doesn’t benefit anyone.” But just because the costs and benefits are miniscule on a global scale does not mean that they are non existent. By accepting that benefit you are in essence telling the server “yes, objectify me”. When an attractive woman gets that benefit, she undoubtedly has a less attractive counterpart who is NOT getting that discount.

It troubles me when people judge an action on the surface without trying to figure out the motive behind it. A lot of behavior that is labeled as “nice” really isn’t. It’s usually manipulative and insincere. And by accepting the benefits, the behavior is ultimately encouraged. When a guy offers an attractive woman a seat on a bus, it’s up to that woman to realize that she, and her less attractive counterpart, is being objectified.

But getting back to food…People in line notice the dance that goes on between the server and consumer. And in the end, everyone involved looks bad. The server is exposed for the misogynist that he is. And the woman’s self centeredness is equally exposed as she chooses an extra scoop of mac and cheese over the satisfaction in refusing to be an active participant in the sexism that plagues our society.

The easy answer to all of this is to just stop judging and ignore this stuff when it goes on. Everyone has their faults, and it’s unfair for me to notice these, but ignore my own shortcomings. But it’s really hard to turn these observations off, to take the blue pill if you will. Once you start getting into the mindset of understanding WHY people act the way they do, it’s hard to go back. Watching how people interact in the food industry is a depressing endeavor. If people can be this self centered and egotistical in this minor interaction, one can only imagine how deep those characteristics run.

CotU and Train Etiquette  


If you slow down and take the time to actually observe humanity,you're going to be really disappointed.  From the time I leave my apartment, all the way until I walk back in at night, I'm forced to interact with dozens of people, and observe countless more.   And the numbers aren't pretty.   In the vast majority of instances, people are driven to act by their insecurity, egoism, and down right selfishness.  

Let's just mention this for the hundredth time:  let people off the train before you get on.   There are two main reasons for this, each independently significant enough to warrant the rule:


1) Even if the order of entry/exist was arbitrary, it still makes sense to follow (example:  driving on the right side of the road) and

2) A train has finite space, while the train platform has (relatively speaking) infinite space.   If people got on the train first, it would be overcrowded and thus be difficult for the second wave of people exiting.


Thus this is a simple and effective rule.   But people choose to ignore it.   And the reason they ignore it is because they want a seat.   See, people who think they are the "Center of the Universe" (CotU),
it's vitally important that they, themselves, be able to sit down. They are the only ones in said universe who experience fatigue.   While the regular rule of "out first, then in" is good in theory, they feel the need to make an exception for themselves.


Every time I hear the conductor announce this on the loudspeaker only to have people ignore him, i cringe. 

There are two other mini areas of annoyance involving train etiquette that I'd like to address.  First, when you're waiting for a train, there are usually two options:  sit all the way back on the benches or stand in the front where the train is going to eventually be.   It SHOULD be a
question of "comfort now, or comfort later" in that suffering through the standing process should provide you first access to the opening doors.   However, in these selfish times, CotUs often choose the "comfort now AND comfort later".  They'll sit on the benches until they hear the train, at which point they'll push their way through the crowd of standing people in order to be the first ones
through the doors.   It's selfish and unacceptable, and it makes me weep for humanity.

In the opposite scenario, a train about to make its final stop, we have yet another example of selfish behavior.  Even though the distribution of bodies is comfortably spread out throughout the train, as it approaches the final stop CotUs start getting up and crowding the door.   The process actually begins at the second to last stop, so those last few minutes become painfully uncomfortable as it's artificially crowded.   CotUs are so mind-blowingly
selfish that they would rather make everyone uncomfortable just to get a few seconds of a head start on their next leg of the commute.   It's a mad dash to the escalator to shave off a little time.  I suppose these people think they are the only ones who have to be somewhere at 9 in the morning.

My letter to TBS baseball  


The contrast in quality between your broadcast and Fox's is staggering.  Your presentation is vastly superior in all areas:  pregame analysis, camera angles, in game graphics, etc. etc. etc.   The fundamental difference is that it's obvious that your company respects the game.  Imagine my shock when I realized that you guys actually show the game instead of just treating it as an excuse to "entertain" casual observers.   The lack of extreme close-ups (in an attempt to provide faux-drama), I can't even begin to provide examples of why your broadcast is 100x better.

All I can say is THANK YOU!

[oh, my one critique is that you shouldn't update the diamond on the score line while a play is happening. When a guy gets a hit, I'll quickly look up at that box to be reminded of how many are on updating too quickly, I can get confused.  It shouldn't change until the play is over.]

Live Free or Die Hard, you stupid liberals /sarcasm  


LFoDH was on last week, and the movie really annoyed me. Surprisingly, I actually enjoyed the special fx; they reached the level of absuridty (in a good way) by being so over the top and at least they were unique. What bothered me was the overt right leaning messages of the movie.

The "bad guy" was a former "good guy" who is attacking the holes in our security system to prove a point. I know it's "just a movie", but it's hard not to notice the message they are sending with this. If you question the government, you are essentially a terrorist. And let's ignore the fact that this guy was right...there are HUGE holes in our security that are the result of laziness and incompetance.

Then you have the sidekick, who is almost equally deranged. First, he "mistakenly" helped the terrorist. See, don't associate with those dangerous lefties, because they might wind up being terrorists. Then, when he's telling McCain, er McClane, about the "corporate media" he does so in a babbling, incoherent way. What he was saying was true, but it sounded like the ramblings of a madman. McClane gives him a dismissive look, and we're all supposed to idenity with this mavverick cowboy who plays by his own set of rules.

And in the end, the sidekick just wants to be like McClane, which he achieves.

Oh, and he (the sidekick) hates the song "Fortunate Son". I mean, come on!

Football is life (i.e. meaningless)  


from the onion

Pre-Game Coin Toss Makes Jacksonville Jaguars Realize Randomness Of Life

i hope i can remember why i hated shopgirl.  


Actually that's not even correct, because I didn't even
allow myself to think about it while I was watching. But now I'm
bored, so I'll think about it, and I'm going to wind up getting very

List of Cliched Characters:

  • Claire Daines's character (who we'll call Claire, because there's no way I'm going to look it up)

    • She is unhappy with her life. Why is she unhappy?
      Because there's only two things that can make a human being happy: a
      "fullfilling" job, and a mate. And she has neither. And this makes
      her sad.

  • The guy from I heart Huckabees' character (aka Huckabee)

    • Starts out "bad", but winds up "good". His bad
      qualities have to be superficial and minor or else the viewer will
      won't root for Claire to wind up with him. But if he starts out as
      "good", the viewer will dislike Claire for not choosing him originally.

  • The Steve Martin character

    • Steve is a rich older guy who kind of stalks Claire at
      the beginning, but because he's rich, it's ok. Again, he has to be
      "good" enough to not be disliked by the viewer, but empty enough so
      that the viewer doesn't get confused into rooting for him.

  • Other female characters

    • Must be worthless so that we can really really see how
      super awesome Claire is. One empty woman seduces Steve. The other
      accidently sleeps w/ Huckabees.

Lazy Character Development

  • Claire may just be some girl in a shop, but she has big
    dreams...that involve art. The easiest and laziest way to make a
    mundane character unique is to say they are an artist. She's not
    weird, she's artsy! And oh yeah, Huckabee is an artist too! His
    medium is fonts, and he winds up getting the fonts tattooed on
    himself. He so crazy.
  • Huckabee's bad qualities are that he's messy, unkept,
    cheap, broke, un gentlemanlike. Then he spends a summer reading some
    books on relationships and improves. Seriously, that's their idea of
    deep growth. He starts out wearing indie-esque tshirts and winds up
    wearing indie-esque tshirts with a blazer over it. He owns a crappy
    car at the beginning, and drives a nice car at the end. His apartment
    is clean at the end. And when he leaves a voicemail for Claire, he
    literally reads a line from one of those relationship books. But it's
    not his fault....he is from Mars after all.
  • Some radio talk show discusses how women are happier when
    they are with someone than when they are alone...even if it's with a
    guy they don't particularly care for. Claire takes this sage advice
    and gives Huckabee a second chance.
  • Steve is a stalker who chooses Claire based solely on
    looks, but it's ok because he's rich. How long he had been watching
    her is unclear, but his first interation with her is when he buys her
    the very same gloves that she's selling. Then he finds out where
    she's living and sends them to her. Creepy. He's good at giving her
    things (a wad of cash to pay off her loans, dresses, etc.) but he's
    incapable of giving Claire himself. And since showing us his
    emotional walls would be too complex, we instead told of
    these walls by both Claire and Steve. Claire would occasionally start
    a sentence with "I know you have a hard time letting me in, but..." and
    then at the end, Steve says something about not being able to open
    himself up to her. Blah blah blah. All I saw when I watched the
    movie was a rich guy who liked the stress free lifestyle of a casual
  • But wait, the realtionship became "real" when we learn
    that Claire suffers from depression and went off her meds. Steve
    shows concern and helps her. This is what qualifies as character
    development in the movie.
  • I can't do this. She winds up becoming an artist and getting the man and being happy. The end.

KC just brought the infield in.  


Jeter's on 3rd with no outs. The Yankees have scored 6 runs so far, and have only made 3 outs. Chances are, that run's coming in. KC should NOT bring the infield in.

The Cutting Edge  


There were two sequels to this 1992 throw away movie ?!?!?

Did the WWE film the scene inside George Mason's lockeroom?  


What the heck was that? Coming back from commercial, we're taken inside George Mason's locker-room, with a dramatic zoom in of their coach, Jim Laranaga. He's going on and on about how the team went on a "magic carpet ride" last year. Then he talks about how he believes this team is magical, and points to a newspaper picture of a player dunking. "look at that, you are levitating"...wonka wonka. Then he shows a picture of the Nortre Dame Leprecon and says "let's make them disappear". He then crumbles up the paper!

I've seen scenes like this before, but they were always on Saturday Night Main Event, or Raw. And I'd shake my head in disbelief and say "my god, this is so fake, no wonder people make fun of me for watching wrestling."

I'm not exaggerating when I say that this little scene is making it less fun to watch the games tonight. It's tainted my experience.

Saul Williams sells out to Nike  


1) I love the new Nike commercial

2) I love the song in the Nike commercial

3) I looked it up, and it's a Saul Williams song

4) I remembered him as the guy who was aligned with Trent Reznor in terms of releasing albums online.

5) I had a moment of utter confusion...."Why is he selling out to Nike?"

6) blech.

Did I almost die this morning?  


It's possible that my memory of what transpired this morning is off, b/c i was half asleep, but....

My alarm clock is all the way by the foot of my bed because I need to hide it from myself. When it's too close, I wind up waking up in the middle of the night checking it to see if I've overslept. Very crippling.

Anyway, when it goes off, I immediately jump up in a violent motion because I feel guilty about waking up the people upstairs. I'm not as fluid as I used to be (in college, my bed would wind up a foot or two away from where it started, b/c my violent swing would bring the bed with me), but it's still the most athletic part of my day. I pop up, roll over and then dive towards the clock. My right arm plants at the edge of the bed while my left arm does the swipe of the clock.

This morning, I missed the edge of the bed with my plant hand. I was still half asleep, but I became terrified as the full force of my body was going off the bed. At the angle of my back/body, My face was going to smash into the wall. It seems like I could have easily broken my neck if I had face/head would either break through the wall, or snap backwards. I don't know how I did it, but i managed to take my swipe arm (the left) and push off against the wall to brace myself. I really screwed up my wrist, but I at least avoided smashing my head.

I wonder how close I came to death. How embarrassing would that be, to wind up dead in my bed. So six feet under, if you ask me. It also made me aware of just how tired I've been the past couple of weeks. It's depressing that there's 0% chance of me getting 8 hours of sleep on a given night...if even it were possible for me to fall asleep instantly.....which it's not.

ugh, why won't this SHU game end, so i can go to bed????

off balanced shots after offensive rebounds  


it's absolutely amazing what's considered an "acceptable" shot after an offensive rebound. It's like these big men get overwhelmed by the fact that they have the ball so close to the basket. falling backwards, off-balanced, they just chuck it up and waste a possession.


Six Feet Under: Season 1  


Well, I never got around to recapping the entire season, but there are a couple of points worth mentioning.

First, episode six: "The Room" is a microcosm for one of the major story arcs of the 1st season. All of the characters, but Nate in particular, feel a great guilt over losing out on their chance to get to know Nate Sr. It's a reoccurring theme during the show, but it's never more poignant than in this episode.

Nate goes on a physical quest to learn about his father, but ultimately comes up short. He's overwhelmed by the frustration in not being able to find definitive answers. The little information he does find (example: Nate Sr.'s pot connection told Nate that his father always bragged about how Nate had the guts to pack up and leave) can be interpreted in different ways (Nate Sr. mockingly suggests that he just said that to hide his embarrassment).

A less powerful show would wrap up the quest in a nice bow and give Nate peace of mind. But that's not how it works for SFU. Nate screwed up in that small window of his life where he had the chance to get to know his father. He can't get that back....ever. It's over. The best he can do is take the opportunity to get to know the other people he cares about...and to let them the chance to get to know him. It's a bittersweet realization, but it will eventual growth.

Which leads to my second, point, and possibly one of the most important scenes in SFU history. In episode 7, "Brotherhood", Nate finally breaks through David's personal wall. Sparked by a brother's mourning (coupled with pain of not "knowing" his father), Nate hugs David and tells him he loves him. The look of shock on David's face shows the confusion over the event. That's the moment where David stops resenting Nate and starts to build a new relationship with him. I love how gradual the changes take place throughout the rest of the season. In the next episode, David once again chastises Nate for not studying hard enough for the funeral director's exam. He finds Nate outside in the sun (and in shorts), but with the book in front of him. When Nate makes a comment about loosening up, David doesn't get defensive, but instead sits down next to him in the lawn chair. Sure, he's still in his suit, and he still huffs and puffs when he sits, but he does sit. And that's the breakthrough. He's willing to meet Nate in the middle, and starts to reevaluate his own life and problems. In that sense, Nate really does save David. Without that original hug, David probably never "comes out", and probably never stops with all of the self loathing.

I know I had two other points, but I can't remember them now. Maybe something about Nate saving Ruth and Brenda too. Claire's journey is a little cloudier.

I'm pretty sure that this is only the second Vitale-colored basketball game I've watched this season. I seem to remember watching a game that happened to be his first game back from some type of cancer or surgery or something. I'm pretty good at tuning him out, but I remember him saying a player reminding him of Nick the Quick Workman. The only reason that stayed in my memory is because I met Nick at one of the first basketball games I ever went to (in fact, I was able to rebound for him while he warmed up for an old timer's game at the Meadowlands). Anyway, tonight, for the second time, Vitale has referenced Nick.

I wish there was a way to find out if it was the same player both times (the big white center from UNC whose name I should know. Hansborrow, maybe?). I saw the first matchup between UNC and Duke, and I assume that was on ESPN, so it is possible.

6 dollars for an all day pass??  


apparently, the people who determine price points at the PATH think
they work for dorney park. A single fare is now 1.75. If you use a
smart link card, you can buy in bulk for an average of 1.30 per
ticket. In the alternative, you can buy "all day" passes where you
can ride the PATH an unlimited amount of times. For a 30 day "all
day" pass, the price is 54 dollars. That's 2 dollars less than the 40
trip pack. Now, the average commuter probably takes the path 43 times
in 30 days (twice a day during the week, zero times on the weekend, 4
2/7 weeks in the month). It's so close in price, that I imagine people
aren't going to take the risk on a monthly pass and instead stick with
buying individual trips. But at least it's COMPARABLE.

For the single day ticket, the cost is a whopping six dollars. My
mind litterally boggled. A person would have to ride the PATH FIVE
(ugh, i hate when emphasized-capital-letters sit side by side with
capitalized-for-regular-reason letters. the emphasis is completely
lost) times in order to make it profitbale for him. (5x1.30 = 6.50).
Seriously, how many people in the history of time have ridden the PATH
5 times in one day? Who's the target market? There are two
possible options here. First, is that the people at the PATH are
completely incompentant and just randomly picked a number out of thin
air. The second is that they are hoping to trick unsuspecting rookie
commuters who will see "single day" and mistake it for "single
trip". That's gotta be it, right? I think I'm going to have to
email the people at the PATH to see what's going on here. I forgot
to post it (but I will), but I was able to secure the removal of a
rogue, incorrect map on the PATH a month or so ago. Let's hope their
streak of good customer service continues.

win a lifetime subscription to this blog  


by answering this seemingly unanswerable question:

how the heck do i fair catch in ncaa '08 (for the 360).

also, what does it mean to push the right stick when you're passing? is it the vision cone, or is it telling the receiver where to run?

i wasted my entire sunday morning googling!!!

Dear Cablevision, please fix your picture in picture  


When I am watching TV, these are the four options I have to put my picture in picture (PIP):

There is absolutey no reason why the PIP can't be moved to here:

However, if Cablevision cared about their customers, they'd realize that there is all that wasted real estate with the SD-bars on the outside:

Now, considering those two above options aren't being used, I KNOW there is no chance of this last option, but it is the most creative AND efficient:

By sliding the main image all the way to the left, you maximize the potential to use the space for the SD bars. You can put a PIP in the upper corner, and then use the lower corner for advertisements, scrolling information/weather, etc etc.

Rhapsody in Blue  


All week I've been trying to find out the name of a song I saw performed as I flipped by the Grammys. Let's ignore the fact that they actually flashed the title after it was over, because otherwise this will become a post about how bad my memory is getting, and that will just depress me. Instead, let me just say that the entire week I was thinking "oh man, I think the only reason I know this song is because it's in a commercial, and for some reason, I'm picturing an airlines".

Well, after finally finding a live blog about the grammys I relearned that the name of the song is "Rhapsody In Blue" and it is in fact the theme song of Unite Airlines. I was, however, SHOCKED to learn that one of the guys performing the song was Herbie Hancock. And then DOUBLE shocked to look him up and see that he was black!

And I have one of his cds somewhere too!

wait, is ticketmaster actually worse than I thought?  


could that be possible? here's a blurb from a article:

As many states have repealed laws banning ticket scalping and buyers
like Nadeau seem immune to sticker shock, corporate America is jumping
on the bandwagon in a big way. One of StubHub's competitors,
TicketsNow, is being acquired for $265 million by Ticketmaster, owned
by IAC/InterActiveCorp, the New York-based Internet conglomerate
controlled by media mogul Barry Diller.

Ugh, why can't i get un-quoted for this part of the text. a;sdlfkasdf. Anyway, if i'm reading this correctly, ticketmaster not only controls tickets when they first are issued, but now also own a company for reselling/scalping? Gee, I wonder if they're going to create a system that slides their tickets to that secondary company w/o giving regular people the chance to purchase them at face.


Six Feet Under 1-1 "Pilot"  


Six Feet Under 1-1 "Pilot"

No Loitering.

To keep me from sinking into a serious depression, I'm going to have to engage in a one person dialogue as I re-watch this show. At this point, The Wire may have surpassed SFU as the greatest show of all time, but this re-viewing will be the ultimate judge. Watching the pilot after already knowing all of the characters is very interesting. Even though these characters (no. "people" is a better term than characters) are more complex than most people I meet in real life, you get a nice slice of each one's personalty if you look hard enough. The tension that David possesses in his opening scene (where Ruth makes an offhand comment about homosexuality), the self centered way Nate dismisses Claire's drug-inducedfreak-out. It's all there. And it's all painful to relive for me.

From a stylistic perspective, SFU is beautiful. The camera angles, imagery, and yes, even the mini dream sequences, all add layers and textures.

The irony of life and death is never more evident than in Nate Sr's death. As his wife nags him about health related issues (smoking, blood pressure pills, etc), we're shown people who fear death, but don't really contemplate its power. Even if you could prepare for it (which you can't), there's no telling when it will strike. Our subconscious fear of death is always tugging at us, which Brenda aptly points out in her first real discussion with Nate. He dismisses her comment aspsychobabble, but his life has clearly been one long "run" away from the inevitable. As the ghost of Nate Sr. states, "Nobody Escapes".

In a nice little touch of continuity, not only are David's aspirations of Law School mentioned, but Billy's only scene is of him weeping (and wearing a sweater that would make an appearance years later!).

This show screams at us, in a hushed whisper, to stop loitering.


ESPN (via AP) recaps the Seattle/Washington game "memento style"  


Seahawks 7, Redskins 0

{1st quarter score!!}

SEATTLE (AP) -- Todd Collins used a no-huddle offense to complete seven of nine passes, including a 7-yard touchdown throw to Antwaan Randle El on the first play of the fourth quarter, as the Washington Redskins trailed the Seattle Seahawks 13-7 early in the final period of the wild-card game Saturday.

{A description of a drive that started late in the third quarter, and then completed on the first play of the 4th quarter. Please note that this is the worst opening paragraph ever written in the history of the AP}

Before Washington's revival, a dominant Seattle defense was protecting Leonard Weaver's 17-yard touchdown run one play after a successful replay challenge of what had been ruled a lost fumble, plus two field goals by Josh Brown.
In case you didn’t follow that, let’s look at the timeline of what happened in this paragraph:
1) 4th quarter TD by Washington
2) 1st – 3rd quarters : Seattle’s defense protects lead
3) 1st quarter TD by Seattle {Let the time that this happened be represented by T}
4) 1st quarter’s coach’s challenge being successful at “T-1”
5) 1st quarter play that was originally ruled a fumble at “T-2”
6) 2nd quarter field goal
7) 3rd quarter field goal

Washington had been the conference's hottest team, with four consecutive wins since the team attended the funeral of defensive star Sean Taylor following Taylor's slaying in his home during a robbery attempt in late November. But that surge for Taylor met a Seahawks defense that harassed Collins as much as he'd been bothered in a decade.

Naturally (sarcasm), the next paragraph then talks about the regular season streak for the Redskins.
8) Four wins to end the season
9) Taylor’s death which immediately preceded those four wins.
10) back to the game and Seattle’s defense.

Collins, making his fifth consecutive start after 10 years without one, was sacked twice and hurried into throws five other times while completing 17 of 30 passes for 147 yards through three quarters. But then the Redskins' offense finally got into rhythm by using no-huddle, shotgun sets at the end of the third quarter.

11) Collins current 5 start streak
12) 10 years immediately preceding those 5 starts.
13) Quarters 1-3 of THIS game.

Collins' five consecutive completions moved Washington from its 16 to a fourth-and-1 at the Seahawks 27. Collins then threw down the sideline to Mike Sellers, who was a step ahead of Brian Russell before Seattle's safety pulled him down with his right arm for a pass-interference penalty to the Seahawks 11.
One completion later, Collins waited and found Randle El at the 2. Randle El leaned in from there to make it a game again.

14) End of the 3rd, beginning of the 4th quarter

The game's lone touchdown through three quarters came after Shaun Alexander, who hasn't had a 100-yard rushing game since Week 3, spun and ran 13 yards during Seattle's second drive. Alexander lost the ball after both knees hit the ground at the Redskins 17 on a tackle by Marcus Washington, but officials allowed the play to continue. Fred Smoot picked up the fumble and returned it to the Washington 33 before Seattle coach Mike Holmgren's challenge led to the reversed call.

15) Back to talking about the 1st quarter touch down again!!!
13) Week three!
14) TD, after a play that was a fumble, but wasn’t really b/c of the coach’s challenge. In other words, #3, then #5, then #4 from above.
In case you’ve already forgotten, the proper order of those events are 5, 4, 3. He fumbles, then it’s challenged, then Seattle gets the td. Instead of trying to wax poetic about the game, this writer should just be giving us the information of the game. In fact, he shouldn’t even be a “writer” in the first place. His job is to convey information to his readers. If he wants to write Casey at the Bat for this meaningless wild card game, he should do it on his own time.

On the next play, Weaver ran past five Redskins on his first career postseason carry before bulling through Reed Doughty and the pylon for his touchdown with 3:45 left in the opening quarter.

15) back to talking about the 1st quarter TD again.

Seattle made it 10-0 six minutes into the second quarter on Brown's 50-yard field goal into a moderate wind. Brown tied a franchise postseason record for longest field goal, set by Todd Peterson against Miami on Jan. 9, 2000. Matt Hasselbeck set up Brown's strong kick when he beat one of Washington's few early blitzes with a 25-yard lob pass down the sideline to Nate Burleson.

16) 2nd quarter field goal
17) Boring postseason records, with the meaningless date of said meaningless record tossed in there, b/c following the timeline of this mess isn’t quite hard enough.
18) Before the field goal, there was a nice play. But since we’re apparently watching Memento here, we need this information AFTER learning about the field goal.

Hasselbeck's perfect pass to D.J. Hackett, who was well covered on a fly route by Shawn Springs, for a 25-yard gain led to Brown's 33-yard field goal with 4:30 remaining in the third quarter.

19) Now we’re getting it. A nice pass play led to another field goal in the third quarter. Gold star!

Hasselbeck was 15-for-24 passing for 154 yards through three quarters. He had a scary moment with 5 1/2 minutes left in the second quarter on one of the only times he was harried in the half. He fell on his right wrist as Chris Wilson sacked him and forced a third-down fumble that Seattle center Chris Spencer recovered at the Seahawks 12. But Hasselbeck walked off the field apparently without pain and played on.

20) QB’s stats for three quarters
21) Said QB was hurt in the 2nd quarter.
22) Harried?
23) A full description of a play in the 2nd quarter. All the way down here.

He landed on that same throwing wrist last weekend at Atlanta and was wearing a brace and ice on it after he left that game. He practiced with it sore all week.

24) Last weekend?

Seattle, staying with the approach that propelled its season from mediocrity in November to a fourth consecutive NFC West title, threw on 13 of its first 19 plays.

25) November
26) First 19 plays of the game today.

Washington's best chance to score came 3 1/2 minutes into the second quarter when Santana Moss was five yards in the clear down the middle of the field at the Seahawks 30. But just as Collins was about to throw to Moss for a touchdown, Howard Green slammed into Collins' chest. The fluttering pass fell far short of the frustrated Moss.

27) Early 2nd quarter (mind you, 3.5 minutes into the 2nd quarter means that this happened BEFORE the stuff in the 2nd quarter that was discussed a couple of paragraphs above.

Head linesman Tony Veteri had to leave the game after Seattle's Lance Laury was blocked into Veteri's left leg on the sideline at the end of Burleson's 20-yard punt return, which set up Weaver's score. Trainers helped Veteri to Seattle's bench for observation as alternate official Rob Vernatchi replaced him.

28) Back to the 1st quarter. Ref leaves the game after he got hurt on a play….a play that preceded the touchdown run.

Washington showed no early problems with the continuous roar of sold-out Qwest Field, which was louder than usual after comments this week from Sellers. The native of Lacey, Wash., mused that Seattle's home field is so loud the noise must be artificially enhanced.

29) Perfect way to bring the article on home. Discuss how Washington looked early in the game….
30) followed by comments made earlier this week about noise level.

disturbing images from "The Wire"  


The violent scenes don't phase me, but I cringe in horror when the criminals toss their "burners" in the street or people dump stuff in the harbor. There's no chance of humans being able to curb global warming. For every ounce that a good person contributes to decreasing their carbon footprint, you a wireless company that produce THROW AWAY cell phones.


extra horror for when the g/f of the guy in charge of picking up the phones was walking to her car and just tossed her empty bag of chips into the street. Howard went on a side rant on thursday (it started as a rant against irresponsible dog owners and manifested into a rant against all of humanity) about how disrespectful people are to property and the things around them. I don't understand how a human can be so disinterested in his fellow man that he would just toss something in the street instead of the garbage pail right next to him. every time i see someone do that, i die a little inside.