just procrastinating

Monday, February 28, 2005

I watched the Oscars last night until I went to bed at 10:30, so I probably missed the last 15 hours of it. But I did see who won this morning on the Today Show. That being said, here are some notes:

Chris Rock wasn't really funny. I think he's one of those that needs to work blue to be funny. I didn't mind him ripping into Bush, but he should have been funny.

Both my wife and I agree: Halle Berry is stunning. Perfect features, perfect skin and perfect build. And she actually seems like a nice person. How is she 38?

I'm glad that Hilary Swank won again. She's quite toothy but seems nice, and in that dress, her babies look like a million dollars.

Clint Eastwood is 74?

Friday, February 25, 2005

Political Quiz
Since I just deleted my last post because it was about the company I work for and porn, here is another lame quiz that I took.
The Moral Matrix

Your scored 1.5 on the Moral Order axis and -6 on the Moral Rules axis.


The following items best match your score:

1. System: Conservatism
2. Variation: Economic Conservatism
3. Ideologies: Conservative NeoLiberalism
4. US Parties: Republican Party
5. Presidents: Ronald Reagan (97.79%)
6. 2004 Election Candidates: George W. Bush (83.91%), John Kerry (73.39%), Ralph Nader (54.66%)
It was actually a pretty interesting quiz because it isn't about issues so much as about beliefs, and I think it was pretty accurate. Via Betsy's Page.

Thursday, February 24, 2005

Interesting article here comparing Barry Bonds and Sammy Sosa:
Sammy Sosa tries so hard to be what we want him to be that he has been branded a major phony and run out of Chicago.

Barry Bonds tries so hard not to be what we want him to be that he has become the symbol of all that is wrong with professional athletes.
I still don't think Sammy is phony. But that's not the point of this. Did you see the name of the guy who writes for the Baltimore Sun? Peter Schmuck. Is that a real name?

It is. And he has already interviewed J.J. Putz.

Tuesday, February 22, 2005

Local News
The park where I walk my dog every day after work was buzzing yesterday with stories of murder and intrigue:
Authorities are investigating the killing of a Fluvanna County man whose body was found by a woman walking her dog near Darden Towe Park early Monday.

Anthony Lorenzo Johnson, 22, of Ampthill Road in Columbia, was lying face-down near a Buick Regal parked on a pull-off between Free Bridge Lane and the Rivanna River in Albemarle County, police said. His head was bloody and his clothes were disheveled.

“There’s some blood in the car. There’s some blood on [Johnson’s] head,” county police Sgt. James Bond said. “But we can’t say for sure what the causes are.”
Murders are pretty rare in these parts, so this is a pretty big deal. My guess is that it is a drug deal gone bad. I spend a lot of my time at that park and there are only three kinds of people at the park: 1) People walking their dogs, 2) People involved in something athletic, 3) People involved in something nefarious. This generally consists of cheating on a significant other, or drug deals.

Monday, February 21, 2005

This doesn't surprise me one bit.
"Fear and Loathing" author dead at 67

Aspen - Hunter Stockton Thompson, who coined the term "gonzo journalism" to describe the unique and furiously personal approach to reportage exemplified in his 1972 book "Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas," died Sunday night of a self-inflicted gunshot wound at his Woody Creek home. He was 67, family members said.
When we did the introductions right at the start of business school everyone had to answer the question, "Who would you most like to sit next to on an airplane? Pretty much to a person the answers were boring "Bill Gates" or "Jack Welch" type answers. I had just finished reading "Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas", so my answer was, or course, Hunter S. Thompson. I've since decided that would be a bad idea, but at the time it seemed like it would have been an interesting choice.

Friday, February 18, 2005

The Arts
I love stories like these, where the creative thinking overcomes silly nanny-state lawmaking:
Strip Club Artfully Slips by Anti-Nudity Law

BOISE, Idaho (Reuters) - A strip club in Boise, Idaho has found an artful way to prance past a city law that prohibits full nudity.

On what it calls Art Club Nights, the Erotic City strip club charges customers $15 for a sketch pad, pencil, and a chance to see completely naked women dancers.

In 2001 the Boise City Council passed an ordinance banning total nudity in public unless it had "serious artistic merit" -- an exemption meant to apply to plays, dance performances and art classes.

"We have a lot of people drawing some very good pictures," said Erotic City owner Chris Teague, who has posted many of the drawings around the club.

Teague said he got the idea when a customer asked if he could get in for free to sketch the dancers. Realizing that "art classes" were exempt from the law, Teague decided to bill Mondays and Tuesdays as art nights, and let the dancers go without their G-strings and pasties.

In the two months since they began, Art Club Nights have drawn full crowds of 60 people but no police citations, he said.
I'm a big fan of the arts.

Thursday, February 17, 2005

Call My Agent
Yes, that was me getting my hair cut at 7:40 AM on WGN's morning show. My brother's friend Brad is opening this new place on Halsted called "Guise", which is a one stop shop for guys to get their hair cut, a shave, get some clothes, etc. Kind of a neat idea, but maybe a bit too pricey for me. Anyway, the news crew was their to do a little piece on the opening and Brad needed people to be there, so I got a free haircut out of the deal. Fox news will be there tomorrow, but I'll be back home in Virginia.

Tuesday, February 15, 2005

I'll be heading to Chicago later today for a funeral tomorrow, my Uncle Jim's. Since this funeral will be held in a church...typical Uncle Jim, he won't be attending. He died in Tonga, and when you die in Tonga and aren't found for a couple of days, you pretty much stay in Tonga. But that actually seems like a pretty good place to stay.

I'll be back on Friday or so.

Monday, February 14, 2005

I watched some of the Grammys last night. I thought the opening sequence was very well done. I'm not too familiar with many of the artists these days, but that doesnt' mean that I can't have an uniformed, strongly held opinion.

I like that Alicia Keys. Whatever it is she is singing about, she really means it.

I loved that "Heaven" song by Los Lonely Boys the first time I heard it. I quickly tried to learn to play it on guitar. By the fourth or fifth time I heard it, I was bored with it. By the 20th time, I was sick of it. Now I hate it.

I liked John Mayer a lot when he first came out with that "Back to You" song. If he would have ended there, I would still like him, but he quickly became overplayed. He won last night for an insipid song called "Daughters", which not only sucks, but I think the line "girls become lovers, who turn into Mothers" is pretty insulting.

Ray Charles seemed to win big last night. Good for him. I saw Ray Charles play live fifteen years with my folks at Parents weekend at Miami University (Ohio). I actually felt bad for the guy, because after about an hour, people were so bored that they started leaving. He didn't really connect with the crowd, and maybe that's because it was parent's weekend at Miami. I was glad Ray was blind, because he didn't want to see all those people walking out on him.

Friday, February 11, 2005

Stupid Trends
There is an article here in the Washington Post about the waning days of kids wearing their pants so that they expose their underwear. It's being taken over by the even sillier trend of wearing shirts that are about 8 sizes too big. That looks really uncomfortable to me.

But anyway, that got me to thinking: I was just looking at my jeans in the elevator this morning and wondered what they would look like if I rolled up the pants leg, in what some might have called a "French cuff". At the time it made perfect sense, and it looked downright odd to just have your jeans flapping about uncuffed. But if I was walking around with my jeans cuffed like that nowadays, someone could rightfully call me an "ass clown". Sometime around 1991, people just stopped doing it and I was left with a generation of jeans that were 33W/34L and were now too long to wear.

Last night's episode confirms my suspicion: These Apprentice candidates are lightweights.

Thursday, February 10, 2005

Something I never thought I would say, but wow, these maps are f'ing awesome. Via Newmark's Door.

Wednesday, February 09, 2005

'Bout Time
I was working for a consulting firm that had HP as a client and when they decided to merge with Compaq, I said it was a bad idea. Finally, HP gets rid of Carly:
Fiorina Forced Out As Hewlett-Packard CEO

Carly Fiorina's Reign at Hewlett-Packard Co. Ends As Company's Board Forces Her Out As CEO

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) -- Carly Fiorina's nearly six-year reign at Hewlett-Packard Co. ended Wednesday as the company's board forced her out as chief executive, disappointed by her efforts to make the technology giant whose strongest business is printers more nimble and innovative. HP shares jumped more than 6 percent.

Board members said they fired Fiorina, one of corporate America's highest ranking female executives, because she failed to execute a planned strategy of slashing costs and boosting revenue as quickly as directors had hoped.

Fiorina had championed the 2002 acquisition of Compaq Computer Corp. despite fierce resistance from shareholders and directors. Critics have called the merger a drag on profits.
She should have listened to Walter Hewlett.

Tuesday, February 08, 2005

Pina Colada
This story reminded me of that Pina Colada song (Escape). Except it didn't end like the song:
Romantic problems in cyberspace

A Jordanian man divorced his wife after discovering that she was also his virtual girlfriend.

Bakr Melhem had been flirting with a women on an internet chat room for several months.

But, when they finally met up at a bus station, in Zarqa near Amman, he recognised her as his wife Sanaa.

Bakr Melhem immediately shouted the Arabic words for 'I divorce thee' three times.

The husband had assumed the online identity of Adnan, while his wife had described herself as an unmarried Muslim lady called Jamila whose cultural interests included reading.

Jordanian news agency Petra reports when the man uttered the Islamic words, effectively ending the marriage, the woman responded by calling him 'a liar' before she fainted.

Monday, February 07, 2005

Super Bowl
Wow, is it really Super Bowl XXXIX? I benchmark all of my Super Bowl's from the famous Super Bowl XX, so that's almost another full XX since then. I think I saw the Coach, the Fridge and McMahon on a stupid commercial last night.

I didn't really care who won last night and the commercials weren't so good. The best one for me was a Budweiser commercial where they showed some troops coming home in an airport and people started applauding. That got me a little choked up.

I was telling my wife that I did have something to do with the Patriot's victory. Here is the connection: Rodney Harrison's interception sealed the Patriot's win. Rodney Harrison went to my high school. It's possible that Rodney Harrison saw my interception in Sept. of 1986 vs. TF North, and decided to base his entire game off that moment. Therefore, I played a huge role in this game. See, that makes perfect sense.

Saturday, February 05, 2005

Ossie Davis
Joe Versus The Volcano is on tonight, which is a movie I've always liked. One of my favorite parts of the movie are the scenes with Tom Hanks and Ossie Davis, who died on Thursday. Ossie plays Marshall, Joe's driver for the day, who helps him buy some clothes for his trip to Waponi Woo. Initially Marshall is reluctant to help Joe, because "clothes make the man" and since Joe doesn't know what kind of clothes he wants, Marshall doesn't know enough about Joe to tell him what kind of man he is. They work that out and end up at the Armani store. It's a nice scene and it's memorable, mostly because of Ossie.

Anyway, that's how I'll remember him and for his line "Do the Right Thing". In my head, I'll often what he said to Mookie: "Always do the right thing".

Friday, February 04, 2005

Would the Bears ever trade Payton? Did the Bulls even think of trading Jordan? Then why this? Why God, why?

Well actually...no I won't even think it.

Thanks to Tony for the pic. And really, I've got a better chance of getting to a Orioles game than a Cubs game these days.

Shooting People
I think I understand where this came from but he could probably have found a better way of phrasing it:
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - A senior U.S. Marine Corps general who said it was "fun to shoot some people" should have chosen his words more carefully but will not be disciplined, military officials said on Thursday.

Lt. Gen. James Mattis, who commanded troops in Iraq and Afghanistan and is slated to be portrayed by star actor Harrison Ford in an upcoming Hollywood movie, made the comments at a conference on Tuesday in San Diego, California.

"Actually it's quite fun to fight 'em, you know. It's a hell of a hoot. It's fun to shoot some people. I'll be right up front with you, I like brawling," Mattis said.

"You go into Afghanistan, you got guys who slap women around for five years because they didn't wear a veil," Mattis said during a panel discussion. "You know, guys like that ain't got no manhood left anyway. So it's a hell of a lot of fun to shoot them."
I mean really, this guy is a soldier. His job is to shoot bad guys before they shoot him. If you like your job, then it stands to reason that you get some satisfaction out of shooting the bad guys.

Thursday, February 03, 2005

Don't Try This At Home
This headline isn't something you come across everyday:
Woman Accused of Giving Lethal Sherry Enema

HOUSTON (Reuters) - A Texas woman has been indicted for criminally negligent homicide for causing her husband's death by giving him a sherry enema, a police detective said on Wednesday.

Tammy Jean Warner, 42, gave Michael Warner two large bottles of sherry on May 21, which raised his blood alcohol level to 0.47 percent, or nearly six times the level considered legally drunk in Texas, police detective Robert Turner in Lake Jackson, Texas, told the Houston Chronicle.

"We're not talking about little bottles here," Turner said. "These were at least 1.5-liter bottles."

Warner, 58, was said to have an alcohol problem and received the wine enema because a throat ailment left him unable to drink the sherry, Turner told the newspaper.
That's someone with an actual drinking problem, not just an alcoholic.

Wednesday, February 02, 2005

Groundhog Day
Interesting article here about Groundhog Day, both the movie and the origins of the day. I liked the movie, but I never suspected this:
A 1993 romantic comedy starring Bill Murray and Andie MacDowell is being hailed by religious leaders as the most spiritual film of all time.
It's sunny here, so six more weeks of winter, which is also true by definition.

Work Stuff
My company has been in the news recently, since we are up for sale. I also see the LA market is looking for new revenues. That oughta help our margins.

Tuesday, February 01, 2005

Blame Canada
I knew they were trying to keep us down:
GDP to Be Revised Due to Canada Error-BEA

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. economic growth will be revised because of a miscalculation by Canadian officials, but revisions will not be revealed until the next scheduled report on Feb. 25, the Commerce Department said on Monday.

The correction to trade data by Statistics Canada is expected to boost fourth-quarter U.S. gross domestic product by as much as half a percentage point, nudging economic growth up from the disappointing 3.1 percent annual pace reported on Friday, analysts said.
I knew things felt better last quarter.

So the media has quickly sidestepped the Iraqi elections and is moving straight to the Michael Jackson trial.

Who? Why does anyone care about this guy anymore? They showed some video of him arriving at court yesterday and for some odd reason there was still a gaggle of fans screaming when he walked by. I'm not sure what hole you have to have lived in for the past decade to think that Michael still is someone to swoon over, but hey, everybody's got their thing I guess. I imagine if I saw Michael I would be screaming too, but for other reasons.

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