I like stuff.

Friday, November 30, 2007

Goodbye, November.

By all means, go pester the invisble man over at Disabled Salmon
Keep each other company with Ze Frank

Go (re)discover the ORG (yes, that means you Rilla)

Thanks to the other sportsracers that joined in on this, high praise to the ones that made it through to the end, and I'll pour one out to all those that didn't make it.

See you in the nebulous future.

Thursday, November 29, 2007

National Blog Posting Month

Well, NaBloPoMo is drawing to a close, and all that is left is plunking on the keys to get through this, and finishing up tomorrow's grand finale post.

I suspect that I'll probably keep on posting with some regularity after this exercise is done, but I feel compelled to reflect for a moment on the things I've learned.

  • Don't post bare youtube clips unless there is really nothing that words can add. Even the incessant ramblings can be slightly more interesting

  • There seems to be no direct correlation between what I think is good, and what the SiteTracker suggests other people find interesting

  • No matter how thin you slice it, it's still bologna

  • I'm not making anyone read this, so who cares what I've learned

  • Don't blog about blogging.

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Wikity Wikity Wikity Wikity...

It would seem that a few hotbeds of intellectual progress that are public schools have decided to restrict wikipedia above and beyond the general criteria of "don't cite *cough*plagiarize*cough* Wikipedia for any research assignment."

Me, I generally like Wikipedia, but I view it as a starting-off point. Sure, there's plenty of subjects where I just need to get the gist of something, and for that it's pretty darn swell (even have the search form on the main page on my internal webserver). Yes, I agree that the crowdsourcing effect does not guarantee accuracy by any stretch of the imagination, and often can give mistruths due to it being "popular" rather than "correct"

But more so, I think it's wrong-headed to actually block it from school computers. Seriously, what if you wanted to do a report on such fine literary classics as Doctor Who or Batman? What then?

I'll be out tonight.

So not being sure what time I'll be back, I'm going to use this moment of soon-to-be-full-blown insomnia to write a placeholder such that I can lord over those cast aside in NaBloPoMo with such technicalities.

But seriously, aren't you glad you wasted a minute of your life reading this? Couldn't you have been doing something more productive like grooming your Chia Pet or faking your death to cash in for the insurance money?

Well, sure. But I'm glad you read it anyway. Y'all come back soon now, ya heah?

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Somedays the Internet is the best things since toast.

As some of you might know, I'm sort of a fan of absurd humor, and every once in a while , the Intarwebs provides me with a really good laugh. (such as The Flying Spaghetti Monster)

So I saw this article on BoingBoing earlier today and my heart was filled with glee.

Greenpeace put it up to a vote to name a whale, and yes, "Mr. Splashypants" is still in the lead.

Can't Write. Must Clean.

*grumble* stupid adulthood *grumble*

Monday, November 26, 2007

Things! Stuff! People! Good!

I've met someone that is at least my equal when it comes to quoting the landmark cinematic wonder that is Real Genius

It has not yet been determined if they are destined to become a future nemesis.

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Ok, maybe not.

Got nothing to say right at the moment. Oh well.

These are the words

Pouring out of my skull.

More later! Nyuk! Nyuk! Nyuk!

Saturday, November 24, 2007

Delerium / Front Line Assembly

Some years ago, one of my friends and I got the bright idea to make the "Industrial Family Tree", cataloging all of the side-projects, appearances, etc. of various industrial bands.

Granted, this never escaped the braincrack stage, but that doesn't change the fact that that scene is terribly incestuous. (Go look up Pigface on wikipedia, and you'll get an idea of what a challenge trying to map it all out would be)

But anyhow, here's a fun bit of comparison:

Bill Leeb + Rhys Fulber + Some guest vocalist (such as Sarah McLachlan, Kristy Thirsk, or Leigh Nash) = Delerium

Bill Leeb + Rhys Fulber (and no guest vocalist) = Front Line Assembly (or at least did at one point)


In case there was any doubt, here's a friendly reminder.

There may be a natural expiration date to nonconformist haircuts.

A Return to Commerce

Employee: "Hi, how can I help you?"
Me: "I need new tires. I think the rear ones are fine, but definitely the front need to be replaced."
Employee: "Let's go look."
*employee looks at tires*
Employee: "See, the back ones look OK. A few weather cracks, but not too bad. The front ones should be replaced, though. I can't just rotate them."
Me: "Yes. I need new tires."
Employee: "Yeah, you'll have to replace the front ones. I can tell just from looking at them."
Me: *facepalm*

Friday, November 23, 2007

Cluelessness: A refute.

Care to read one of the most pointless food articles ever? (no, I don't mean this one, but I guess your mileage may vary)

I just read this article from Slate called The Case Against Thanksgiving Leftovers

It was one of the biggest piles of tripe I've seen in a while.

But before I start off on some rant, let me take a moment to agree with the one salient point the author made: Yes, the "media" (whatever medium it takes) does tend to go overboard with trying to leverage seasonal curiosities with recent trends.

And after that, everything is basically wrong-headed.

Those stringy last bits of gristle and meat that cling to your bird are better suited to the raccoons who rummage through your garbage. Do you really want to morph the centerpiece of your most ceremonial meal of the year into turkey bundles (stuffed with turkey, cream cheese, dill weed, and water chestnuts, among other things)?

Anyone worth their salt in the kitchen knows that frugality does not equate to serving up cartilage or fatty bits in the name of sparing that last possible edible matter. If you're down to that point, no amount of herbs or seasoning or fillers are going to change anything, and I think you'd be hard-pressed for me to believe that while the economy isn't looking hopeful, there's few people willing to whittle down the carcass to that point, and I strongly suspect those that would aren't exactly the dill weed and water chestnut crowd.

But that's not to say that it's useless matter. Go make stock or broth from it (the differentiation relies largely on how long you were whittling things down), and even if you've only got a few bones left, consider freezing them until you've amassed a collection that would serve worthy of stock-making. It'll taste better than anything you find in the store, freezes nicely, and there's lots of articles all over the intarwebs giving solid advice on the subject. My only addition is to remind you that fats tend to latch on to stray particles, even in the freezer, so while you can do a lot to reduce the fat content in stock, be sure to keep things as air-tight as you can if you freeze 'em.

Reading through the rest of the article, it gets bogged down in suggesting that anything other than straight leftovers is a vast ad-revenue conspiracy, and then gets distracted from that by getting into animal husbandry.

No, really. Go read it. I'm not kidding.

Me, I've got absolutely no qualms with the idea of people experimenting in the kitchen trying to figure out how to use the last of whatever. It's reasonably thrifty. It gets people trying out ideas and figuring out what they like, hopefully with the mind of altering or improving upon the ideas. Many of those recipes are healthier than saying "Oh, screw it. I'll just go back to Taco Bell for their post-holiday blow-out of CranTurkeyChalupaDillas"

I get the feeling that the author hasn't had a well-prepared turkey, harping on how it's not a terribly tasty meat, it's natural dryness, etc. (Welcome to the wonderful world of brining, the same technique that's saved pork from being indistinguishable from cardboard)

But, the imagery suggests that weeks of planning, epic travels, and a general lack of imagination are argument enough for the premise.

I would recommend to the author that perhaps next year, the ideal menu would involve Chicken McNuggets, cutting out issues like availability, quality, or boredom (they do offer a selection of dipping sauces, after all.)

Me, I'd say go look up recipes. Try them out. Play with them. Find out what you like and what you don't and work from there.

It's the first step towards food-hacking, and as far as I'm concerned, a much better goal to strive for.

Thursday, November 22, 2007

Post Holiday Public Service Announcement

When this blog started, it was intended to be a dumping ground for all of my food-related interests (heck, I only signed up for it initially because it was the only way to participate in some Q&A off some food blog), but after the GBC07 (great blog consolidation of 2007), you get all my scattered interests.

If you look back in the archives to around November of 2005, you can see the laughs that was the last time I cooked the traditional Thanksgiving spread.

But, as a public service, I know that there will be some of you out there up to your neck in leftovers in the coming days, so as a starting off point, here's a list of the food blogs I'm currently reading (in no particular order.)

(update: new things I've added since originally posting)

(update 2: this might also be a good resource)

(And as I am known for unsolicited culinary advice, anyone hard up for an idea should leave a comment on this post. Or if you find a really good recipe, or want to help give others ideas, or think there's a good blog that I've been missing)


Pop Will Eat Itself

Further ramblings from the "Music You Might Not Know" department.

I think Pop Will Eat Itself was another band I'd learned of from my brother. I don't remember the specifics, but I can recall listening to "This is the Day...This is the Hour...This is This." one late night while working on a sculpture that would've been 1995, so short of carbon dating, that's the best estimate I can give. I do recall that I snagged it out of the used bin at the now defunct Top Ten Records (remember when independent record stores thrived?)

Hey look, an interview clip:

This is the Day is still my favorite of their albums that I've heard. How can you not appreciate lyrics like this:

This isn't love
It's just cheap entertainment,
The stains on the sheet and the crap on the pavement

(Preaching to the Perverted)

Anyhow, they eventually went downhill. Some say it was because after they signed to Nothing Records, Trent got too heavy-handed in producing them. Some say they were just introducing too many new elements in their sound. Some say their time had come and gone. Either way, "Dos Dedos Mis Amigos!", their final album was easily the least interesting to me, with a few good moments sprinkled in here or there, but not enough to recommend to anyone.

Here's one of their videos from the This is the Day years:

Clint Mansell (who you see in both the interview clip and the video) does a lot of film score now, and you might've heard of some of his work in films like Pi, Requiem for a Dream, The Fountain, Smokin' Aces, and yes, Doom (though I don't think anyone watched that last one)

Buy Nothing Day

Yeah, it's that time again.

So for those not familiar, Adbusters runs Buy Nothing Day every year the day after Thanksgiving (day after that for the international version).

So that'd be tomorrow for us Amurrricuns.

All you have to do to participate is buy nothing. As in, nothing. Don't spend money. That is all.

Consumatron covered Buy Nothing Day way better than I did. Go check it out.


Hey, before it's too late, consider reading this handy guide of things not to say at the Thanksgiving table

If nothing else, you can use it as a guide in case things start getting kinda slow and you want to spice up conversation.

Happy Holiday.

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Further conflict in the Acronym War.

As I will sometimes do, I was listening to NPR this morning as I got ready for work, and the bored, soothing voice that is the hallmark of NPR copyreaders was talking about Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs) and I swear that he slipped at least once and said IUD.

This illustrates two concepts to me.
1) The Three Letter Acronym (TLA) namespace is clearly saturated and should be avoided at all costs.
2) I'll giggle like a little girl at just about anything.

Either way, I'm still banned from naming anything at work because I kept suggesting names like the "Computer Language Integrated Technology Operational Readiness Information System" and whatnot.


I would just like to thank the authors of all the technology and gadget blogs to give me something other than the iPhone to hate this year. I thought it'd be tough after six months of complete saturation of articles speculating upon it, squealing over the release, and reminding us all that it is within all of our power to spend hundreds of dollars on a rather evolutionary technology upgrade, with the added joy of being bound to a single carrier (or dealing with mixed and often temporary results in your scramble to give anyone money for your shiny little toy)

So I'd like to pause and recognize an achievement I had believed was simply not possible. Thanks to your breathless rapture over this week's chosen must-have product, I think I can now safely say that the video game "Rock Band" now generates at least as much of my personal ire.

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

damn people!

I got a call at work today.

Wrong number.

They then proceeded to argue with me if it was the wrong number or not.

Er. uh. Hm. Yeah.

I know I've been trying to add more explanatory text with these things, but this is a case where I'm just out of my element. Maybe it has something to do with spending the better part of the evening reading the archives of The Impulsive Buy

Thanks to Dave for the link. Well, credit to Dave anyhow. Somebody tell Dave that if he continues to refuse to have a website that I can link to, next time I'm linking his stinkin' email address.

Monday, November 19, 2007

It's like a heatwave...burning through my skull.

Information Overload.

I use Google Reader as my primary RSS reader. Part of it has to do with accessing it over multiple machines. Part of it has to do with the frustrations I spent maintaining my own homegrown RSS aggregator (nearly a decade ago now. Yikes.)

My basic strategy is this: I'm currently watching 92 different RSS feeds, and I get through them whenever they start to pile up by taking a once-over pass at marking the ones that I think are worth reading ("starring them", in parlance)

Occasionally, I'll hit the share button if I think something's really worth reading, and you can see that collection here or the most recent in that fancy little widget in the sidebar.

I think this has some merit where individuals act as a combination of filter and promoter, and I heartily encourage all of you to consider that if you had your way, how you'd like to see the dissemination of information to go down.

Oh, the humanity!

With the holiday season fast approaching, I call upon all of you to remember the Lutefisk Riots and vow to never let such a travesty happen again.

The boomerang birds are back.

It seems I am completely inept when it comes to using the postal system.

This is the second attempt I've made at sending a friend a package, and after a three week jaunt has been returned.

Previously was a transcription error on my part.

This time, some kind soul overwrote part of the zip code. Possibly another person wrote "Unknown" on the box, it got stamped "ATTEMPTED NOT KNOWN" and returned to me.

Time to go find another box. Blech.

Oh, cynicism

I read this and hope things are getting better.

But there's a lot of complications yet to be overcome.

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Someday, I hope people realize...

That educational comics are the worst.

Zen and the Art of Garbage Disposal Repair

So on Friday, the leasing office left a notice on everyone's door indicating how to deal with most maintenance issues that might come up during the holidays (I especially like the guilt trip near the end: "If you do need us during the holiday we will have someone available to postpone their celebration to make sure your celebration continues.")

Anyhow, I read through the tips, and got to the section on how to reset your garbage disposal. Considering that my disposal hasn't worked in six months and I keep forgetting to call in a work order, I said "Hey, why not?"

It seems there is a small red button on the bottom of most (if not all) garbage disposals that works much like a thermal circuit breaker. I've had a garbage disposal on and off throughout life and I've never heard of such a thing. Is there a manual somewhere that I was supposed to read?

So I pressed the button (it was clearly in the "tripped" state). Turned on the water. Flipped the switch.


Well, it's a start. Before it did nothing.

So I consulted my good chum the Internet and found a PDF of basic apartment care instructions for student housing somewhere, and it actually had a section for "But what if I pressed the red button and now my disposal only sits there humming?" (Holy cow, those red buttons must be universal in the realm of disposal anatomy!) Seems there's another trick that involves an allen wrench (some call 'em hex wrenches) that will let you manipulate the drive assembly from outside the unit. I went and dug out my socket kit (heretofore used mostly for disassembling things for comedic purpose) and behold, there was a hex port on the bottom of the unit. Some struggling, some profanity, some grinding noises and some very tired arms later, the bond that had fused the inner mechanics together was broken and the disposal breathed new life.

I'm sitting here asking myself: Is this stuff common knowledge? Did I miss out on that life lesson?

Do you have a garbage disposal? Are you aware of the standard maintenance features?


In case you didn't know, one of the coolest people around makes the best infographics EVAR.

She recently moved her blog, so if you've not been dutifully reading it, perhaps it's time to start: Viscous Platypus

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Carter USM

So I was having a conversation with an internet friend last night ridiculously early this morning about the recent change in youtube embedding strategy (his angle was add more content), and combined with a comment a bit ago asking why I post these things, I figure a little explanation is in order.

I post things that I find interesting or like for one reason or another, and want to share with other people. I got wrapped around the axle for a bit trying to think of how to make this supremely effective, but then I remembered that having a blog isn't a commercial opportunity for me (note that no matter how hard google/blogger pushes them, I've not signed up to stick ads on here), but just a chance to sort of randomly babble at anyone that cares to listen (which as many will attest is basically the hallmark of my interpersonal communication stylings.)

So, a little story.

I first heard of Carter the Unstoppable Sex Machine (aka Carter USM) in the mid-90s while sitting in a Taco Bell talking with my brother about some of the music I'd been plinking out with my computer.

Brother: "It has a very Carter USM sound to it."
Me: "Who?"

I think he tried to explain something about them coming from the same sort of scene that gave us Renegade Soundwave, Pop Will Eat Itself, Ned's Atomic Dustbin, Jesus Jones, etc. and I did my best as a little brother and promptly forgot about them.

Until a year or so later when I was perusing the used cd section at some now-defunct chain record store, and stumbled upon a cd single for "The Only Living Boy in New Cross" At the budget rate of 99c, I figured it couldn't be too horrible, yeah?

Picked up a few albums in physical form over the years, and with that whole emusic thing, grabbed a few more.

To the point where I went for a two-month period last year where I listened to Carter and nothing but. (Those of you that suffered through my Tub Ring obsession earlier this year will be familiar with this phenomenon.)

Anyhow, I went searching for a sample to share with you nice people earlier, and discovered that they finally played their "last" show at the beginning of this month, so there's live footage all over youtube of that. Me, I can only watch so much cell-phone-camera bootleg footage, so I'd rather suggest this:

Star Wars: The Hills Have Eyes

Found while browsing Blip.tv:

Richard D. James : Aphex Twin

Friday, November 16, 2007

I have strange friends.

So I feel compelled to prove I can be stranger.

But what does it mean?

These are words, comprised of letters, which are formed by pixels made up of electrons.

But do the clusters of sub-atomic particles which form representative glyphs actually mean anything?

While I go sort that out, watch this video from GOOD magazine

Thursday, November 15, 2007

What have I wrought?

Apparently it's Eurodance week at mmmm....donut

Courtesy of Mein Bruder

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Tutti Frutti Summer Love

Matt over at Independent Creator has apparently decided that I don't get enough Eurodance in my life, so he sent me this.

I laugh heartily.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007


I'm craving really bad mexican fast food.

Stupid brain.

Already had fast food once this week...I don't suppose Taco Bell could be justified seeing as nobody in their right mind would classify it as "food", right?


As a lad, I recall a lot of waiting. Waiting for summer. Waiting for christmas. Waiting to be done with school.

Waiting, and having something to look forward to.

I think one of the greatest disappointments of being an adult is realizing that I don't have much to wait for anymore.

Monday, November 12, 2007

Blixa Bargeld : Einsturzende Neubauten


I get a lot of crap email at work on the company email lists (like Company News Now and whatnot), most of which I don't even bother reading. So it wasn't until this morning that I got around to reading the SPECIAL VETERAN'S DAY MESSAGE FROM COMPANY VICE PRESIDENT WHOSITS that was sent out on friday.

Something to the effect of "This Sunday, we will take time to remember the men and women of the armed forces..."

Ok, I get it. You don't want to give us a paid holiday. Just don't pretend that the holiday isn't observed on monday to do so.

Sunday, November 11, 2007

Mike Patton

Mindless Link Propogation

Sorry. Got nothing interesting to say today. So here's some stuff I've read that I thought was interesting.

Saturday, November 10, 2007

Rob Wright: No Means No.

hey hey

So as a step towards ditching the constant youtube embedding, let me refine it a little.

Some artist I like. An interview and an example. See where this goes.



So one of the projects I contribute to is called Picture/Date/Place (p/d/p), where every month a bunch of sportsracers take a picture at the same time, typically on some theme. So at 10am this morning, I crawled out of my hole, took my picture, and then went back to bed. The theme for this month was "Faces"

Rules and information over at Disabled Salmon. Look for the Photography section.


Friday, November 09, 2007

Writers and stuff

Link sent to me by Pilot

Oh, good news..

The closest fire to me from all them fires two and a half weeks ago?

It's finally contained

Maybe they'll even get it put out soon.


All things in moderation

Like comments.

It's not that I get that many on here, but in comparison, the amount of spam and other crapfloods are worse.

And I'm usually pretty good at staying on top of going through them.

Thursday, November 08, 2007

Self Restraint

Self-Restraint: exhibiting restraint imposed on the self; an effective temperateness in debate.

Usage: Not going to Wal-Mart and asking in my creepiest voice "Hey, you still got any of them date rape toys?"

I swear I did not make this up.


every once in a while it probably makes sense to reflect a little...

So I was thinking about it a bit ago, and I came across a question I couldn't answer:

For all the things I've gained, can I say the things I might've given up were worth it? For those that balance unfavorably, are the things lost gone forever, or just lurking in a forgotten corner?

a curiosity, indeed...

Wednesday, November 07, 2007


so many stinkin' ideas, so little motivation to make any of 'em happen.

off to go work off the project list. maybe I'll have something worth posting before the weekend?

Tuesday, November 06, 2007

Batter Blaster.

Yup, just another slow night with the Batter Blaster

Monday, November 05, 2007

Is it safe?

Thanks, Squeak



Not planning on being online the rest of the day, so here's a hearty "Hello!" to the usual friends, completion of the NaBloPoMo requirement for the day, and whatever else I could've said that would sound poignant or profound.

Happy day!

Sunday, November 04, 2007

Happy Best Day of the Year

Stupid daylight savings time. Good riddance.

I go watch tv and probably go back to sleep.

Saturday, November 03, 2007


I was told that I wussed out on my earlier blog post, so let me pester you, gentle reader, with further things scraped for the zero-content zone.

Fallout Intros 1 & 2, courtesy of youtube.

Fallout 3 Teaser:

And now I'm going to go back to playing Wasteland, as soon as I write a new auto-save script. I'm thinking I'll use CVS again.

OMG! Did you hear?!?

Amish purple potatoes are $1.00 per pound at Sparrow's!

Friday, November 02, 2007


Short blog post tonight so I can go play with this

Thursday, November 01, 2007

The Jecka Situation

Still November 1st in my time zone, still counts.

And for you NaBloPoMo types, go wish her a happy birthday on her blog

And so it begins...

(cue Rocky theme music)
da na na da na na da na NA na na
da Na Na da Na Na DA NA NA NA NA

what, you thought I'd give up my A-material in the first half hour? Crap, I've got to stretch this stuff out!

Ok, fine. I'll try to post again later. And take it seriously.

(you people have no sense of humor)