Saturday, September 30, 2006

Another one

My question is how many of these guys is it going to take before we evolve to the point where the other half of us realize we all have impulses that need to be confronted and dealt with personally instead of hoisting a boisterous facade that holds the rest of us back because we have to deal with their hypocrisy? I know I rail against religion a lot but the problem really isn't religion so much. Those on the far right of any belief are the real threat. Not the thoughtful and truly devout who are an asset. I can only hope and pray that someday while I am still alive the faux religous of Bush's ilk will no longer hold positions of power and inluence.

Friday, September 29, 2006

More panorama fun

You may be tired of these but I am far from tired of panorama fun. The first shot is taken from the top of amphitheater at Freedom Park in Charlotte, NC. The second is the same park at the Princeton Dr. entrance. Good times.

Just a thought

You know, the funniest thing about George Bush (if it's possible for anything to be funny about an unqualified president taking a great country into war by lying) is that he is bringing the world one step closer to the cartoonish satire of the band Gwar. We are totally screwed when Gwar's music becomes eerily prescient.

Thursday, September 28, 2006

The torture never stops

"If America's leaders want to hunt terrorists while transforming dictatorships into democracies, they must recognize that torture, which includes CID, has historically been an instrument of oppression -- not an instrument of investigation or of intelligence gathering. No country needs to invent how to "legalize" torture; the problem is rather how to stop it from happening."

I recommend highly reading the full article I linked to above. This crap they are passing through congrss this week that allows Bush to interpret what is considered torture is shameful. We need a Democratic congress bad this upcoming year.

Wednesday, September 27, 2006

changes in the all-star race?

I like some of the ideas for changes in the NASCAR all-star race described in this article. Letting drivers from NASCAR's other series is a very good idea. Maybe the top two in points from the Busch and Truck series and maybe a third if that driver has had a specified number of wins at that point in the season. I'm a little worried about tweaking the racing format too much. Humpy Wheeler seems to desire the last lap on every lap. You can't have that kind of racing all the time, that causes too many wrecks. The last time Humpy tried to tweak the racing the Lowe's Motor Speedway they put grooves in the track with a grinder and literally ruined the race that followed. That still has got to be one of the biggest fiascoes in sports in recent memory. That was akin to resodding a football stadium with untested sod and then throwing the players out there and hoping for the best. He's concerned about a lull in the race. Hey, it's a race. There are lulls in every race.

I see Humpy wants to improve the race. How about getting rid of that excruciating driver introduction segment that seems to get longer and less watchable every year? It's torture. Check out the look on Mark Martin's face when he is introduced if he is ever in the all-star race again. I feel your pain, Mark. I feel your pain.

I say the best all star race you could have is a big Saturday night shoot-out type of event at Bristol and anyone with racing credentials is welcomed to join in. Established drivers would get early round by's at pole positions in their heats. Run twenty laps, take the top two and move on. Now that would be exciting.
Julian Barnes

A few months ago I wrote here how much I loved the book "Arthur and George" by Julian Barnes. If you are interested there is a nice interview with the author in the Telegraph.

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

Holy underwear, it's almost here

Troy announced on his website that it is almost time for the annual Everyman Photo Contest. It is what it says it is so you should enter this year. I know I will. I haven't won a prize now three years in a row. I missed one year and I hate that I could have lost four years in a row but I missed one year. Never again. I will win no more forever.
I totally disagree

"Some people have guessed what’s in the report and concluded that going into Iraq was a mistake," the president said. "I strongly disagree." Yeah, we know that. You've said that before. You'll probably proclaim it on your death bed. I like this part too: "Mr. Bush said today that he agreed with the intelligence report’s findings that "because of our successes against the leaders of Al Qaeda, the enemy is becoming more diffuse and independent." He said he was not surprised that enemies of the United States would use the conflict in Iraq to attract recruits to join in "their murderous ways."" If his arguments get any more circular he might screw himself into the ground one day on camera.

Monday, September 25, 2006

Not you too?

Yup, I watched that video of Chris Wallace interviewing Bill Clinton this morning on Youtube and Bubba does have a temper, don't he? I didn't see it when it was aired because I don't watch Fox News because it sucks. You got to give Clinton some kudos. It was refreshing to see a politician, even a former politician (are you ever really a former politician?) drop the rhetoric and show actual emotion. It must have had a lot to do with Chris Wallace because even I wanted to smack that annoying little smirk off his face. Is his face partially paralyzed or does he just smirk constantly? I'm glad this confrontation happened. Anything that brings into public discussion the absolute worthlessness of Fox News is good for our country.

Saturday, September 23, 2006

Martha Gellhorn

Have any of you guys ever heard of this lady? There's a biography that came out recently that I am going to read some day. Fascinating lady. Here's an excerpt from an interview with the woman that edited a recently published book of Gellhorn's letters. "People thought of her that way a lot, and it made her very, very angry. If someone had the temerity or foolishness to bring it up, she would just get up and leave the room. She used to say, "I was with him for eight years, and married for four. I've lived a lot of other lives." I was telling someone recently I've written about Martha Gellhorn, and it seemed to draw a blank. I said, 'She was a writer and a war correspondent.' Then, with huge reluctance, I said, 'She was also married to Ernest Hemingway,' and the person said, 'Ah, of course.' And I could just see Martha sending a rope down from above."

Thursday, September 21, 2006

Hold it now

It looks like Venezuelan president, Hugo Chavez has been spending the last day or so insulting our president. It looks like even a couple of democrats have come to Bush's defense. I guess calling the American president the devil at the United Nations is a bit of a stretch, even for a president as horrible as Bush. It's obvious he's not the devil, the devil would be a much better leader and would be better at hiding his immoral agenda. What is most unfortunate about this Chavez thing is that his hyperbolic comments are going to do what that false document did when CBS did the story about Bush's questionable National Guard service. It's going to take reasonable dialogue away from a real issue. Yes, Bush sucks but with Chavez spouting off the talk is now about Chazev's goofiness, not Bush's ineptitude which should be the real issue.

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

History is going to crucify Bush

"The decision to send the loyal and the willing," Chandrasekaran writes, "instead of the best and the brightest" has had staggering consequences.

Monday, September 18, 2006

What the hell?

Sunday while watching the Panthers play the Vikings I was really starting to get my hopes up. Our jury-rigged offensive line was gaining confidence, our rookie running back was running beautifully, defensive end Julius Peppers was absolutely out of his mind and blowing up plays left and right, Keyshawn Johnson was playing his ass off and making incredible catches, and our quarterback was throwing spirals. Yeah, it was all coming together. Then came the fourth quarter and the punt return that will live in infamy. What would you do if your football team was ahead by a touchdown in the middle of the 4th quarter and your defense was dominating the opposing team and you were receiving a punt from that floundering team? If you answered, "run a trick play" then you can coach for the Panthers. My two friends and I sat in silent awe as one of the worst plays in Panther history collapsed before our eyes like a sinkhole in a retired landfill. The punt returner, Chris Gamble fielded a punt at the Panthers' forty yard line and threw a wobbly pass across the field that ended up in the hands of the Vikings. Of course the Vikings scored a touchdown a few plays later and tied the game up. The game goes to overtime and then we lose. Incredible.

I won't talk about how bad of a play call it was. There will be plenty of that all over the country. It may just have been one of the most interesting moments of sports viewing I have ever experienced. I don't recall ever being so confused by a play call in my life. I was literally stunned into silence. I had nothing to say. No joke, no swearing, just a quiet disbelief that really still has yet to leave me. Next week's game against an equally desperate 0-2 Buccaneers is going to be a heck of a game, I think. I guess that bad call has brought us one thing: a playoff intensity football game in week three.

Sunday, September 17, 2006

More panorama fun

You have got to be tired of these by now. Here we go anyway. The first one is of the circulation workroom at Morrison Regional Library. The second shot is of the library at night. Good times.

Super duper download

I really should be in bed because I am exhausted but I'm kinda dumb that way. I just wanted to write about the best download I've gotten via bit torrent recently. Today I downloaded an album called "I can't hear you people" that some mad genius put together. It's a collection of between-song banter by Paul Stanley of KISS. It's just funny funny funny and I love it. I am so looking forward to these minute-long soundbites to pop while I have the Ipod on shuffle. If you have even a small interest in KISS you should find this collection it'll slay you.

Friday, September 15, 2006

The revolution will be sarcastic

Got this from this guy again. I may just stop having a blog and link to him every day.

Thursday, September 14, 2006

The only thing we have to fear is our fear mongering president

From the Nation:

"As I watched the celebration of Washington's WWII memorial just two years after 9/11, I was reminded of how, during the despair of World War II, a greater threat to the existence of our country than what we face today, President Roosevelt gave America a vision of hope--not fear. Just a decade earlier, during the Great Depression, another grave threat to the country's spirit and unity, Roosevelt told a fearful nation that we had nothing to fear but fear itself. Today, we have a President and his team working overtime to convince the American people--through a barrage of historically inaccurate analogies--that there is nothing to fear but the
end of fear itself".

Dang commercials

I'd like to thank NBC for ruining the last 100 laps of the Richmond race this last weekend. For the last hour there was a couple of times where they returned to the race for literally three to five minutes and then returned to a commercial break. For a race that they advertised was so important for the final playoff run they sure short changed their viewers by not allowing us to feel the rhythm of the race's final laps. It was a joke. If you are going to assault us with commercial do it earlier, NBC. The last 100 laps at Richmond are always exciting. This race may have had an exciting lat 100 laps but I couldn't tell because you botched the coverage. I was swearing so much my neighbors probably thought the president was giving a speech.

Learnin' Learnin' Learnin'

Yesterday I taught a class called "Selling your garbage on eBay." Seven people showed up and it was a challenge because the seven ran the gamut from a woman who had a seller's account ready to go to a Vietnamese couple who could barely use a computer. It took about half an hour to get everyone on the same page and off we went. When I prepare a class from scratch it's always a leap of faith. I'm never sure if what I have ready is enough or too much. I can't anticipate all the questions I am going to get. Well, on that note, if I teach it again I'll probably get another set of questions unrelated to what I got yesterday. I also run across things I omitted that I will need to add if I do it again. Sometimes it's the simplest item that I can't believe I overlooked. The classes we teach are scheduled for two hours. I always figure I prepared well if we are still rolling along with instruction and questions with fifteen minutes left. Yesterday that happened.

Teaching these classes is very hard for me. I get very nervous beforehand. Nervous enough to almost wish my car won't start in the morning. But each time it starts and things go well it becomes very rewarding. It's a cliche but it is fun to watch people get excited about learning a new skill. Now there are seven new eBay sellers out there. I sure hope they don't get ripped off.

Monday, September 11, 2006

Bush sucking through history

Here's a fun new feature on Google. It's a google news archive. Now we can see just how long Bush presidents have sucked.

Friday, September 08, 2006

More Panorama Fun

Are you tired of these yet? This is hole 4 at the Revolution Golf Course in Charlotte. Today was fun. It was one of those nice days where I felt I was improving my golf game. My neighbor Bobby, who works on the grounds there and teaches golf, gave me some tips when he saw us on the course and that helped a lot.

Wednesday, September 06, 2006

OK, I'm in.

At least Steve Irwin, AKA The Crocodile Hunter, died doing what he loved: harassing animals in the wild.

Sunday, September 03, 2006

More panorama fun

Tonight after work I tried to do a panorama of the library's parking lot. For the first time I used more than one level of sight. This view includes 16 seperate photographs. I tooke the rough copy provided by autostitch and then cropped the picture so it looked better.

I still cannot believe how smooth the stitching is in this program. It impresses me every time I use it. Its simplicity is shocking sometimes.

Fun with Panoramas

Today I took a quick jaunt down to Freedom Park. I wanted to attempt a panorama shot. I took this. I need to work on what I'm doing but this turned out pretty good.

Saturday, September 02, 2006

What the hey?

I think the real problem here is that Bill O'Reilly watched the Emmys. Who in the hell even watches the Emmys? Let alone watch and then get angry about the show. It's an award show. They all suck. All they are is an industry rubbing itself in a pleasurable manner. Getting your panties in a wad over an award show is just sad. Almost as sad as a blog entry about Bill O'Reilly.
You can't make this up

Bush interview with Williams from NBC:

WILLIAMS: Do you have any moments of doubt that we fought a wrong war? Or that there's something wrong with the perception of America overseas?

BUSH: Well those are two different questions, did we fight the wrong war, and absolutely -- I have no doubt -- the war came to our shores, remember that. We had a foreign policy that basically said, let's hope calm works. And we were attacked.

WILLIAMS: But those weren't Iraqis.

BUSH : They weren’t, no, I agree, they weren't Iraqis, nor did I ever say Iraq ordered that attack, but they're a part of, Iraq is part of the struggle against the terrorists.

Wow, if that spiral was wound any tighter he'd fallen over trying to follow it.