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Archive for October 2006

Early voting rocks!

I went and voted today. Early voting started a few days ago and runs up until the election. I used a touch screen machine and had no problems. Even the 4,000 year old woman running it had no problems.

It stacked the candidates in the races so one was on top of the other and I would have liked it better if they had been in separate columns, but that would have made the ballot considerably longer and it was already pretty hefty at six “pages”. It was most painless.

I was a bit disappointed though, because none of the Democratic candidates were liberal enough for me, but I wasn’t willing to vote Green or independent because that would increase the chance that a Republican would win when the “third-party” candidates don’t really have a shot. Kind of sad, too, when you consider that the candidate that most matches my beliefs was the Green Party candidate.

The Republican candidates, though, were too, well, evil works for me. They’re pretty much the same bigoted person across the board. “Keep our guns!” Yes. That’s what we need, more guns. More guns that kids can take and accidentally (or purposefully) shoot their siblings or more guns that troubled kids can take to school and kill their classmates with.

“Stop Illegal Immigration!” Sure. You go work in the fields for low pay a few weeks and we’ll see how long it takes before you backtrack and go out and scout for illegals to work the farms.

And then there are the “Stop Homosexual Parenting” idiots and the supporters of the “Marriage Protection Amendment” bigots. Pretty much all of the Republican candidates in the field espouse the same narrow, bigoted beliefs in this realm.

Sad thing is that many of the Democrats do, too. DINOs the lot of them. But at least on most issues aside from GLBT civil rights they “score” better.

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Written by Jeff

Friday, October 27, 2006 at 2:57 am

Worst Storyline Ever!

The most hated storyline that I’ve ever had the misfortune to have to sit through is anything and everything to do with Abby Lockhart‘s family on ER. It’s SO tedious. First her mother storms into the ER in the middle of a manic episode, then her brother gets into the mix culminating in his fall into Carter‘s grandmother’s grave.

Every time I hear of them or see them I just have to let out a dejected sigh. The only time that Abby’s mother was bearable in the least was in the season opener this year when Abby gave birth to her premature child. And even then it was touch-and-go.

Second-worst? Luka_Kovač. I wish they’d killed him off when he went to the Congo.

While I’m on the topic of ER, I also hate when networks move the commercial breaks around in television shows. It’s really prominent, and annoying, when they string together two segments that were previously separated by commercials causing a momentary fade to black followed by a restoration. It’s even worse when the network decides to cut to commercial and the scene just ends. It’s too abrupt. It’s too annoying. And here’s another dejected sigh.

Written by Jeff

Friday, October 27, 2006 at 12:58 am

Sad Day: Jane Wyatt dies

Jane Wyatt as Amanda in 1986News came today that Jane Wyatt has passed away. Best known for her work on television’s Father Knows Best, what I most remember her for is her portrayal of Spock’s mother in the original Star Trek series and in Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home.

She died peacefully in her sleep at age 96.

ABC News: ‘Father Knows Best’ Actress Wyatt Dies

Jane Wyatt at Memory Alpha

Written by Jeff

Sunday, October 22, 2006 at 11:46 pm

Hamburger Helper Microwave Singles: Where’s the Beef?

Hamburger Helper Microwave SinglesOkay.  Hamburger Helper has this new microwaveable singles thing and, well, I’ve always enjoyed some Hamburger Helper so I tried it out.  It includes everything you need, including the beef, apparently.

I’m not entirely sure how that works, since you normally have to refrigerate meat, but whatever.  The box says “just add water” and it’s as simple as that.  The thing that makes this worthy of mention is that when you open the pouch and pour the  noodles and the sauce into the bowl, there’s no meat to be seen.  It’s just some powder and some noodles.  That provoked the reaction of, “WTF?  Where’s the beef?!”  Yeah, I really did say that out loud.  Anyway, I decided that I’d go ahead and mix the stuff up anyway and as soon as I added the hot water, the meat appeared.  It started floating around at the top of the bowl.   This kind of disturbed me, but I went ahead and ate the stuff and it tasted sort of like real ground beef, but not quite.  It’s odd to say the least.

New Hamburger Helper® Microwave Singles: Great On-The-Go, Between Meal Option

Written by Jeff

Thursday, October 19, 2006 at 8:46 am

Posted in General

I like newspapers.

Okay, odd way to title an entry, but I do. I like them. I know I can get the same information faster through the Internet, but there’s something about having the actual paper in my hand and sorting through it that appeals to me.

Take USATODAY for instance. I can get almost every story in the paper as soon as its published through its RSS feed and I can select which parts of the “paper” that I want to read thus eliminating sections that I won’t bother with like the Sports section*. I’m hardly ever interested in that part. But I can do the same thing with the actual paper, too. I can just pull that section out and toss it aside.

The same is true for magazines. I can get probably 90% of magazine content online at no cost. But for a lot of magazines, Macworld in particular, I just like having it in my hand.

RSS feeds are convenient, I can get what I want, faster than they can print it, but an actual newspaper or magazine is a different kind of convenient: I can reade it any time, anywhere.

*That’s the beauty of USATODAY’s RSS feeds. They have a separate feed for not only each section of the paper, but it’s broken down into a myriad of subcategories. The thing that really makes me love their feeds is that they don’t mix the sports headlines in with the real news. I don’t care much for it and it makes me happy that they leave it out. Other sites, like BBCNews have separate feeds, but they still mix in sports with all of the rest of them. It’s just annoying. If I want sports “news”, I’ll got to either a dedicated feed or to a site that specializes in sports “news”.

Written by Jeff

Thursday, October 12, 2006 at 4:58 am

Why did they save those chat transcripts?

Andrew Sullivan asks the question: Why did these teens save transcripts of their exchanges with Rep. Foley?

It seems clear that the teens themselves recorded and saved the IM exchanges between Foley and the pages. Why? There’s a variety of possible answers. Because they were a) freaked out; b) wanted a record if anything later emerged that might impugn them; c) wanted to share the grossness among themselves and warn others; or even d) as leverage over a Congressman with influence or power.

How about e) none of the above: Their chat application automatically saves transcripts. iChat did that when I first bought my Mac. It automatically saved chat transcripts to a folder on my hard drive. Other apps do that too, though you might need to check a box to make it do so.

Why would you check the box? Why would you want to save the conversations? That’s an easy one. You want to save them in case you need to reference them later.

ImaGirl (12:01): I told you about it on the 12th of September, see:

ImaGirl (12:02): ImaGirl (14:43): You need to pick that up before 5:00PM on the 20th or you won't get it in time.
ImaForgetfulGuy (14:45): Okay, I'll go by and get it tomorrow.

See, it’s not my fault we don’t have it.

ImaForgetfulGuy (12:05): Oh, sorry. Oops.

Aside from the proper grammar and spelling, that’s a typical use of a saved chat transcript.

Saving instant messaging conversations is a pretty standard thing. I do it all the time to go back and see when or even if I told someone about something. Anyone who does a lot of instant messaging probably does the same.

Written by Jeff

Tuesday, October 3, 2006 at 3:41 pm

October is National Breast Awareness Month!

October is National Breast Cancer Awareness Month. Learn more at http://nbcam.org.

My grandmother had breast cancer twice. Twice she had a mastectomy. That was many years ago, though. My aunts and mother are what I consider to be a higher risk because of my grandmother’s cancer. My mother hasn’t ever had a mammogram. I wish she would.

Written by Jeff

Sunday, October 1, 2006 at 7:12 pm