November 30, 2007

Hello Ladies

That's an old advert for some postage machine has the special feature of making males angry enough to contemplate homicide. Hilarious. Were would our civilization be without some good old fashion desire to kill? Nowhere that's where!

It's one of several images of the past from The Daily Mail in a post about what neatorama calls sexist advertising. But, isn't the term sexist advertising redundant? Most of us save ourselves the time and just say advertising or if we're really in a hurry "ads".

I just saw a hilarious video from the onion on the same theme.

November 28, 2007

The Proof is in the Pudding

Applying for graduate school has been one half mind numbing tedium, one half wide-eyed excitement, and one half a strange amalgamation of introspection, pride and regret. The whole thing is taking up a very significant amount of time. Luckily, my practice is currently at a manageable level or as I like to call it "alert level aquamarine" since the emergency situation that came up last week seems to have resolved.

One of the biggest application problems I've encountered is that I don't have a significant portion of the work that I did as an undergraduate. I had kept my work on a few 3 1/4" floppies and in some cardboard boxes and about half (this post is just full of halves) of those were destroyed in the aftermath of a big storm and flood in Phili. If I had just made use of some of this newfangled modern technology to back that work up I would be in this position but come on: it's 2008. Shouldn't we have robots walking around who automatically back up and store everything we do by now?

What really makes me feel like a bonehead though is that my girlfriend has kept almost all of her old work from college stacked away oh so neatly.

Still, I did read over some of my old essays that were only moderately water damaged and reading those essays really gave me an insight into the mind of a much younger me. For example, I learned that the 20 year old me never proof read anything that he wrote.

November 27, 2007

Animal Forms

Bears never cease to amaze me. This little one's busting out a decent San Ti Shi. I put in a picture of Chen Pan Ling for those not familiar with Xing Yi Chuan. The bear on the left is appropriately in a variation of the bear stance.

(via icanhascheezburger)

November 26, 2007

Train Wreck of Thought

It's back to the old grindstone after a cool refreshing Thanksgiving break.* My long weekend consisted primarily of taking the GRE on Tuesday, doing an emergency house call to a patient with some intense pain Tuesday evening, enjoying Thanksgiving with the girlfriends parents, and finally procrastinating all weekend.

You may have noticed that I took some time out from the blog too. My posts seem to be getting sparse lately. It's not because of a lack of things to write about that's for sure. Do you remember that movie that we had to watch in middle school about the kid who leaves the donut machine on and it fills his house with donuts? That image is an apt analogy for the brain portion of my body. Yes, filled to capacity with delicious thought donuts.

If anyone can find me the video for that movie which is imaginatively entitled "The Doughnuts", I'll Fed Ex you a Krispy Kreme.
*If by "grindstone" you mean the series of moderately pithy remarks that I call a blog and by "cool refreshing" you mean somewhat stressful and marked by long bouts of procrastination)

November 21, 2007

Last Chance for CC#2

So. It's been awhile but I'm soliciting for more entries two Caption Contest #2. Rename this candy.

Here are the entries thus far:

Candy Name: Chinese Death Balls
Catch Phrase: Import instant death for your dog
Dog: "God damn it!"
-by Diggs
Candy Name: Cracker Ass Cracker Jacks
Catch Phrase: We put the "Cracker" in Cracker Ass Cracker Jacks
Dog: I can't get this nasty taste out of my mouth, and I've been licking my ass all day.
-by KD
Candy Name: Shore Leave Ruffies
Catch Phrase: Try one pretty lady
Dog: Put some sauce in it sailor!
-by theunbeatablekid
Candy Name: DOG BALLS!
Catch phrase: Just like no one used to make
Dog: I got mine!
-by theunbeatablekid

November 18, 2007

Bar Scandal

I just heard through the grapevine that my brother passed the bar. Here's the dance that I'm doing to congratulate him.

Speaking of the bar, check out this bar scandal in South Carolina.

In other legal news, comparative bullet lead analysis, an forensic method used for decades by the FBI to connect certain weapons with certain crime scenes, has been discredited by the National Academy of Scientists. Actually, a better term for "has been discredited" would be "was discredited three years ago." The FBI then stopped using the technique two years ago. So, what happens to all the people that were convicted of crimes based on forensics testimony of FBI agents that used this technique? If you care about potentially innocent people getting stuck in jail while the guilty walk free, you're probably not going to like the answer. Here's the Washington Post article on the many problems with comparative bullet lead analysis.

November 17, 2007


Today's my parents anniversary. To them I present this anniversary gift (gif).

It's some kind of fancy pants opal gently rotating back and forth against an all black background. Splendid!

The 34th anniversary is the opal anniversary. I've been looking all over the web for historical information about why certain anniversaries involve certain gift themes but to no avail. My girlfriend jokes that since the 90th anniversary is themed after granite most people should get headstones as gifts. The 100th anniversary theme is probably the pine box.

November 14, 2007

Return of the Nerds with Glasses

Today, someone found my blog by googling "picture of a nerd with glasses". When I used those search terms, this blog was the fourth or fifth website listed on google.

I don't know whether to jump for joy or hang my head in shame. So, I choose option 3: post another picture in an attempt to boost my blog into being the #1 picture of a nerd with glasses site.

UPDATE! Well, it looks like this post jinxed it. As of 11/20/07, I seem to have regained my rightful place much farther down the nerd with glasses chain. The first mention of this blog from a google search is on page three or four.

Confusing Quote of the Day

“While I believe in the right to free speech, to me that doesn’t give anyone the right to criticize one’s leader at a foreign venue in a totally nonpolitical event,”
-Robert S. Wolff, one of the country’s pre-eminent bridge players
So, what he's saying is that having the right to do something doesn't give you the right to do that same thing.

Oh, in case you were wondering, he's talking about the incident last month in which one of the winners of the World Bridge Championship held up a sign that said "WE DID NOT VOTE FOR BUSH" at the awards ceremony. For doing so, these women face -among other things- a year long suspension from the United States Bridge Federation and associated bridge competitions (which is their livehood as professional card players). The Federation also wants them to formally apologize, preform 200 hours of community service, and accept a one year probationary period before being accepted back to competitions. Overreact much?

Our Polluting Economy

I have been known to complain about the media's hypocritical treatment of the economy of China. Several times a week, the negative effects of economic growth in East Asia hit the news stands while economic growth in the US is described as one of the greatest of common goods achievable by the human race. So, today, I finally heard a news story that mentioned how the steep decline in Michigan's industrial sector over the last ten years might be positive for the environment vis a vis a lower rate of carbon emissions.

In the comments, V points to a excellent article in Mother Jones about the hypocrisy of focusing attention on the lack of regulation in Chinese manufacturing while overlooking the lack of US oversight. Here's a quote:
Most of the stories have focused on the lack of manufacturer oversight in China. But the root of the problem is closer to home: The CPSC, created to prevent hazardous products from winding up in American homes, has been gutted by decades of manufacturer lobbying and White House interference—and the Bush administration has finally paralyzed it to the point that it can barely function.

But don't worry; Bush isn't the only one to get some blame. Reagan's in there too and Clinton doesn't end up looking that great either.

November 11, 2007

The Grande Dame of Slam

Lillian Ellison AKA the Fabulous Moolah died last week at the age of 84. She's wrestling with God now - and I meet that in the most unblasphemous way possible.

November 10, 2007

Video Work

I've been using this blog as an excuse/opportunity to fiddle with digital content and expand myself creatively. So far, that includes creating and editing images, making animated gifs, and editing web pages. In an attempt to further expand my horizons I created this video this morning. It was inspired by an offhand comment in recon's blog.

November 7, 2007

Come on People Now

A lot of people these days are wondering why there aren't any anti-war protests but I'm wondering why the anti-war protests aren't being covered. Take last week for example. Thousands of people around the US gathered together to protest the continuing occupation of Iraq. A local activist group that I'm a part of even organized buses to get people to Chicago to join in the marches there.

Unfortunately, I was in NYC attending a class all day so I couldn't go. On Sunday, I looked in vain to the NY Times for coverage of the marches. Yesterday, I heard the only real news coverage of this event on Bill Moyers.

Be sure not to miss the headline from the the NY Times' James Reston in the middle of the clip. "Everyone is a Loser." Reminds me of a shirt my friend used to wear in high school that said "Everything Sucks".

November 6, 2007

Suffering Suffragette

Today was an election day in the US albeit a minor one. Where I live, the only offices and issues up for election were city council, community college trusties and funding for public transportation. These odd year elections tend to be light affairs but I feel that they're worth my time. If you missed the election and are curious about what was on the ballot, check your county's web site.

I also wanted to make a quick (read long) comment about voting. Every other year, I hear otherwise intelligent friends and relatives saying this: "My vote doesn't count because I'm a conservative and my state is so liberal." Another favorite is "only sucker idealists throw their vote away by voting for a third party candidate." These attitudes don't make sense.

Barring election fraud (which is an entirely different issue), your vote always counts unless you don't vote. Unfortunately, people think about elections like sports or gambling. They want to vote for the candidate that wins instead of the candidate that they think deserves to win. That's the kind of jump-on-the-bandwagon attitude that gives Iowa and New Hampshire such disproportionate weight in the primaries. Your vote counts just as much no matter who you vote for.

Furthermore, think about the obvious; politicians pay attention to polls. A politician that wins by 35 points can have sex with a farm animal in a public place confident of winning the next election, while a 3 point win will keep a candidate from so much as sneezing inappropriately on camera. If your vote makes an election race tighter, you better believe that matters.

I'm not saying "Vote or Die" or "voting is a sacred political act" or anything that ridiculous. If you don't want to vote, fine. There are many legitimate reasons not to vote. What I am saying is that not voting because the candidate you like is not going to win is cowardly. Also, ignoring your choice candidate in favor of a different candidate because they are more popular and might win is self-defeating.

November 3, 2007

What Time Is It?

My favorite conspiracy theory these days is Heribert Illig's Phantom Time Hypothesis. The basic idea is that the years 614–911 AD didn't actually exist. Bold. I recommend reading the article about it in