Saturday, April 29, 2006

Eject! Eject! Eject!

It is official: we are getting out of the hellhole in the hood. Two days ago we signed the papers on a small duplex rental in a nice, quiet suburban neighborhood. It's really small, only 2/1, but we won't have to worry about being knifed on our way to the mailbox, or being awakened at 2am by the Jerry Springer episode happening in the adjacent building's parking lot, complete with bass booming from a tricked out Caddy that's loud enough to interfere with submarine navigation in the frikken Pacific! We will use the next, and hopefully last, year of renting to save up for the down payment on a house of our own this time next year.

And, in a more personal and narcissitic note, I am now the answer to life, the universe, and everything. :-)

Happy birthday to me
Happy birthday to me
Happy birthday, dear Marius
Happy birthday to me.

And wow, I totally missed my one year blogging anniversary earlier this month.

Happy blogday to me
Happy blogday to me



Oh, and one more thing. If you have heard about the Star Spangled Banner being recorded in Spanish, here's my take on it. When I first heard about it I was not in favor of it. "Damn thing should be sung in English" quoth my inner Archie. But then I heard some snippets of it on the radio, and I actually like it. I still haven't heard the whole thing, but what could be more American than adding the National Anthem to the melting pot? Think about it; the first inhabitants of this land did not speak English. The first non-natives to come here were Vikings. Then Italians. Then Spaniards. And finally English folks. Yes, the 'official' language of the US is English, but where's the harm in celebrating our polyglot past by transcribing the most recognizable song in the country into any of the other languages spoken here? I'd love to hear it in French, Creole, Portuguese, Russian, German, Finnish, hell even Klingon or Pig Latin. We are a patchwork nation, and to try to deny or ignore that fact is just plain bigotry. So bueno suerte to all who would exercise their First Amendment right to mess with whatever song they wish...just please don't try another cover of Stairway to Heaven. That would be blasphemy.


Wednesday, April 26, 2006

Cats are Whores

So, when you get up in the morning, or get home from work, they're all lovey, and sweet, and 'Master loves Larry. Master feeds Larry!' So you aquiesce to their sweet, plaintive cries and big eyes. But as soon as the feline tummy is full, and you try to get some well deserved gratitude for having opposable thumbs and access to the silverware drawer it's, 'I'm sorry, peasant, do I know you?'

Just sayin. ;-)

Monday, April 24, 2006

Gay Marriage: Part II

I have posted numerous things that I consider inflammatory here at The Corner in the past, but it wasn't until I used the two words 'gay' and 'marriage' in the title that I got this comment:

wow that is really sad and that is horrible maybe when you get some proof for every one of your stupid reasons i won't think your a piece of crap

At first I deleted it, since it is obviously not from a regular reader of my little piece of the internet, but the more I thought about it, the more I realized it was a missed opportunity. Let us analyze this bit of worldly wisdom, shall we?

First of all we see that on a grammatical level this is somewhere around the third or fourth grade level. Capitalization and punctuation are non-existent, and the misuse of the word 'your', which is the possessive form of you, in place of the contraction 'you're', which means you are, indicate either less than average intelligence, or that the person feels that the substance of the argument is strong enough that the vehicle conveying said thesis is irrelevant.

Next let us look at said substance. This person feels that my stance on gay marriage is 'sad' and 'horrible'. Sad I will accept as an appropriate response, but 'horrible'? defines horror as 'An intense, painful feeling of repugnance and fear'. Does this person really find my not having a problem with gay marriage that distressing? Wow! I'm more powerful than I thought. Next he(I am assuming the poster is male, both due to the tone of the missive, and for ease of pronoun use)postulates that the reasons are both stupid, and mine. While I agree with the list, else I would not have posted it, I clearly state at the beginning of the post that I did not write it, though I wish I had. As for the stupid part, well, I will let the irony of that pronouncement speak for itself.

Lastly the commentator assumes, erroneously, that I care what he thinks of me. I love to debate contentious issues, but unless you are someone I know, and care about, I couldn't care less if you think me a 'piece of crap'. I think every one of the points listed in my previous post proves itself, so if you wish to refute them with something more than a barely intelligible string of insulting idiocies, I will happily join the fray. If all you have to say is 'you're stupid' then please don't waste my time, or yours.

Have a nice day.

Sunday, April 23, 2006

Gay Marriage

This was sent to my by one of my MySpace friends.

10 Reasons Why Gay Marriage is Wrong:

1) Being gay is not natural. Real Americans always reject unnatural things like eyeglasses, polyester, and air conditioning.

2) Gay marriage will encourage people to be gay, in the same way that hanging around tall people will make you tall.

3) Gay marriage will change the foundation of society; we could never adapt to new social norms. Just like we haven't adapted to cars, the service-sector economy, or longer life spans.

4) Straight marriage has been around a long time and hasn't changed at all; women are still property, blacks still can't marry whites, and divorce is still illegal.

5) Straight marriage will be less meaningful if gay marriage were allowed; the sanctity of Brittany Spears' 55-hour just-for-fun marriage would be destroyed.

6) Straight marriages are valid because they produce children. Gay couples, infertile couples, and old people shouldn't be allowed to marry because our orphanages aren't full yet, and the world needs more children.

7) Obviously gay parents will raise gay children, since straight parents only raise straight children.

8) Gay marriage is not supported by religion. In a theocracy like ours, the values of one religion are imposed on the entire country. That's why we have only one religion in America.

9) Children can never succeed without a male and a female role model at home. That's why we as a society expressly forbid single parents to raise children.

10) Legalizing gay marriage will open the door to all kinds of crazy behavior. People may even wish to marry their pets because a dog has legal standing and can sign a marriage contract.

(one of the saddest parts about our society is that these arguments, before the humorous common sense, are the real reasons why people can't accept gay marriages.)

Friday, April 21, 2006

Hillarious Web Site

Y'all have got to check out Alien Loves Predator. This is some f@#&ed up sh@t!!

Wednesday, April 19, 2006

Tuesday, April 18, 2006

No Statistically Significant Child Left Behind

Dammit! Dubya seems to be the Anti-Midas. Everything he touches turns to crap. Apparently there is a big loophole in his misbegotten No Child Left Behind program that allow schools to disregard minority scores if there are less than a 'statistically significant' number of them. For those of you unfamiliar with this plan, all children in the US in third grade and higher are now tested annually on their reading and math skills. All grades are reported, and the school's overall grade determines such things as further funding, and whether administrators get to keep their jobs. In theory this is too ensure that all schools provide quality fact it just means that teachers now waste a good part of the school year teaching kids how to pass these tests. But now it appears that there is yet another problem. The grades are also broken down by race, poverty, migrant status, English proficiency and special education. But if such groups are not statistically significant, i.e. too few in number, schools are allowed to omit their scores in order to preserve their anonymity. However, statistically significant means different things to different people. In Tennessee, if there are 45 or fewer students of a given minority at a school, their grades are disregarded. More than 20 states have asked for larger and larger exemptions, some disregarding groups as large as fifty students! While I'm sure that there are a very few schools where this means a handful of white kids' grades are thrown out, the vast majority of the ignored are Black, or Hispanic, or Asian, or Native American. The Associated Press estimates that 1.9 million students across the country are having their grades ignored, and very few of these are white students.

Now I'll be the first to admit that the American educational system is more screwed up than Keith Richards at Mardi Gras, but No Child Left Behind isn't the fix it needs. What it needs is better teacher training and pay, smaller class sizes, and more parental involvement. Stop wasting everyone's time with standardized tests that prove nothing other than that schools can teach a test, and give educators the resources to educate. Our elementary school teachers are some of the most overworked, underpaid, and abused people in our country, and rather than foisting on them some useless test with a federally approved catch phrase attached to it, how about we funnel some of the money going to tear up the Arctic, or various Middle Eastern countries, to the schools,and truly leave no child behind.

If you can read this, thank a teacher. :-)


Saturday, April 15, 2006

Felis Librum

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In Your Easter Bonnet, Rummy!

Oh, sweet mystery of life, at last I've found you!!!! Several retired generals, no longer under the fear of reprisals, have recently spoken quite candidly about our dear, beloved, bat-shit crazy Secretary of Defense. Pray, attend:

"We went to war with a flawed plan that didn't account for the hard work to build the peace after we took down the regime. We also served under a secretary of defense who didn't understand leadership, who was abusive, who was arrogant, who didn't build a strong team." Retired Army Maj. Gen. John Batiste.

"We grow up in a culture where accountability, learning to accept responsibility, admitting mistakes and learning from them was critical to us. When we don't see that happening it worries us. Poor military judgment has been used throughout this mission." Retired Marine Gen. Anthony Zinni, former chief of U.S. Central Command."

"My sincere view is that the commitment of our forces to this fight was done with a casualness and swagger that are the special province of those who have never had to execute these missions or bury the results." Retired Marine Lt. Gen. Gregory Newbold.

"I really believe that we need a new secretary of defense because Secretary Rumsfeld carries way too much baggage with him. ... I think we need senior military leaders who understand the principles of war and apply them ruthlessly, and when the time comes, they need to call it like it is." Retired Army Maj. Gen. Charles Swannack.

"They only need the military advice when it satisfies their agenda. I think that's a mistake, and that's why I think he should resign." Retired Army Maj. Gen. John Riggs.

"He has shown himself incompetent strategically, operationally and tactically, and is far more than anyone responsible for what has happened to our important mission in Iraq. ... Mr. Rumsfeld must step down." Retired Army Maj. Gen. Paul Eaton.

Of course Dubya disagrees. "Secretary Rumsfeld's energetic and steady leadership is exactly what is needed at this critical period. He has my full support and deepest appreciation," But, to paraphrase Jon Stewart, given this administration's tendency to reward incompetence with higher offices, Rumsfeld could walk into a cabinet meeting, fling his own feces around the room, and Bush would name a state after him. Rumsfeld himself has said,"Out of thousands and thousands of admirals and generals, if every time two or three people disagreed we changed the secretary of defense of the United States it would be like a merry-go-round,". Let me point out something here. These quotes come from six generals whose ranks range from two to four stars. These are not two or three people disagreeing. Rumsfeld is an incompetent, dangerous, borderline insane dictator wannabe who needs to be retired now before he gets more of our people killed unnecessarily. I've been saying this for years, but I'm nobody. Here are six significant 'somebodys' who, at least in part, seem to agree. Now that's a wonderful egg to find.

Happy Easter!

source: AP via Yahoo News

Thursday, April 13, 2006

Relay for Life

My Friends,
A very dear friend of mine (some of you know her too) is raising money for the American Cancer Society. Her goal is modest, but very important, so if you can, please go to this site and help.

If you are one of the lucky few who has not lost a loved one to this horrible class of diseases, count your blessings and give a few dollars. If, like me, you have seen the ravages of cancer first hand, give a few more. Every little bit helps.

With lots of love,

Wednesday, April 12, 2006

Vote Now!!

Not too long ago I told you, dear ones, about It is a video blog, or vlog, that has taken the internet, and yours truly, by storm. Well, the internet has its own version of the Oscars called The Webbys. RB is nominated for 2 Webbys, and if you think about the millions, if not billions of web sites out there it is quite an honor. I voted for them, and for a few other sites I am fond of that are also nominated. So if you are weary of the Sisyphusian struggle with current events of great import, take a break from the vital and give a bit of your support to some folks who work hard to keep us informed, and entertained.

Thanks. :-)


Friday, April 07, 2006

What Muppet are You?

You Are Dr. Bunsen Honeydew

You take the title "mad scientist" to the extreme -with very scary things coming out of your lab.
And you've invented some pretty cool things, from a banana sharpener to a robot politician.
But while you're busy turning gold into cottage cheese, you need to watch out for poor little Beaker!
"Oh, that's very naughty, Beaker! Now you eat these paper clips this minute."

Thursday, April 06, 2006


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Credit: Roberto Macchiarelli, Université de Poitiers

If you think going to the dentist is an exercise in agony, you ain't heard nothing yet. Anthropologists digging in a neolithic cemetary in Pakistan have found evidence that Stone Age 'dentists' used flint tipped drills to relieve pain in people's teeth. Several examples, from 7 different bodies, showed evidence of holes drilled in infected molars. The holes all were worn, indicating that they were made before the patient died. The investigators recreated the flint drill(see pic) and found that they could make similar holes in teeth in about a minute. Doesn't sound like much time, but take a clothespin and put it on your lip and leave it there for a minute. Now imagine that you are a prehistoric person with a terrible absess, and nothing, not even whiskey, to dull the pain. The local shaman tells you to lie down, open your mouth, and then proceeds to grind a hole in your aching tooth with a rock on a stick! It makes me cringe just thinking about it.

So the next time you feel the urge to complain about that 'painful' novocain needle, just thank your lucky stars that you weren't born 8,000 years ago.

Now if you'll excuse me, I'm going to floss...for the next hour or so.


Tuesday, April 04, 2006

Justice DeLayed

Poor Tom is daid, poor Tom D. is daid...politically anyway. Remember that grinning, arrogant mug shot of former Republican majority leader Tom DeLay, and his stalwart vow to be back to work in no time? DeLay left Congress a few months ago, supposedly on a temporary absence, after an indictment in Texas for illegal campaign finance practices that he claimed was false. Then Jack Abramoff, the Boris Badanov look-alike who has most of Capitol Hill scrambling to find alibis, went down faster than Courtney love at a heroin club, and suddenly our over confident hero isn't so sure. The Republicans announced today that DeLay will be leaving his post this Spring, and settling down in Virginia.

"He has served our nation with integrity and honor." Thus spake current Majority Leader John Boehner, R-Ohio. Hmm, an interesting epitaph to a career that ends suddenly with litigation and scandal. Where is that grinning, cocksure boy we all loved oh so long ago?

Democrats, for once, were quick to act on this.
"DeLay's decision to leave Congress is just the latest piece of evidence that the Republican Party is a party in disarray, a party out of ideas and out of energy," said Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee spokesman Bill Burton.

While I am loving every moment of watching the Republicans feed scapegoat after scapegoat into the wood-chipper of history, I fear that the Democrats lack the strong leadership and vision to take advantage of the missteps of the blue-bloods in charge of D.C. For once I cannot tell what direction this will all go. The Bush administration is coming apart at the seams, but the Republican party, in the only truly definitive action being taken, is very quickly distancing themselves from Dubya and his elitist, government bloating, caged bird shooting cronies. Democrats, on the other hand, just seem to be pointing their fingers and, Nelson like, going "Ha,ha!" If ever there was a time for a strong third party candidate it is now. The elephant is exhausted, and the donkey is leaderless. We have now been through 3 1/2 presidential terms where all that really happened was constant, escalating partisan slap fighting. Congress has become more and more about stopping 'them', and less and less about leading the country. This must stop now!! We are supposed to be a country of the people, by the people, and for the people, not of the Party, by the Party, and for the Party. I am sure that most of you who read this don't miss a chance to vote, but we must encourage all people to give voice to their dissatisfaction. Republican, Democrat, Green, Independent, or whatever party affiliation you have, or don't have, get out there to the polls and vote in anger. Complacency is killing this country. The extremists on both sides are yelling so loud that the vast majority of people who are in the middle are being drowned out in the cacophony. It's time we took our country back from the CEO's and career politicians. Government should be about us, not about itself, and it's high time we took the government back. So the next time you hear someone complain that their one vote doesn't matter, don't quote some trite 'people died for your right to vote' claptrap. That doesn't work any more than 'there are people starving in India' will get your kid to eat her spinach. Point out that all that tax money they give up every month is going to feed these bloated ticks in Washington, and if they want to keep shoveling their hard earned shekels into the maw of political ambition, then just go ahead and stay home on election day.

And if that doesn't work, kick 'em in the groin.


Monday, April 03, 2006

Mea Culpa

Ok, most of you know by now that I am not going to Alaska. It was an April fool's joke. I put the 'April Fool' on the comment page, but not everyone looked there. So, if I you think it was a splendid jape, thanks for playing. If, on the other hand, you want to nad me just for the principal of the thing(Tink), I apolgize. ;-)

And while I'm fessing up and grovelling here, I'd like to say I'm sorry for whining about the whole needing glasses thing. I'm getting over it, but it really did bum me out for a couple of days, which is a lot longer than things usually get to me. And if any of you had the misfortune to actually speak to me this weekend...sorry.

On a happier note, for any Dr. Who fans out there, the new series on the Sci-Fi channel is a lot of fun. The new Doctor(Christopher Eccleston) took me a little while to warm up to, being a die-hard Tom Baker fan, but his portrayal of the homeless Time Lord has just the right balance of child-like wonder, childish mischief, and absolute seriousness that the character needs. And his new sidekick, Rose(Billie Piper)is clever, witty, and not the least bit subservient to the Doctor. She's also drop dead gorgeous, but then who isn't in television?

Ok, that's all for now. Ta ta. Don't forget to tip your waitperson. :-)


Saturday, April 01, 2006

Take Off, To The Great White North.

Well, folks, this is it. Many of you know that science has always been a fascination, and sort of hobby of mine, and I'm finally going to get to do something with it. The University of Alaska campus at Ketchikan ( has offered me a job as the director of their theatre program, plus a part time position as field assistant on their Minke Whale study project. Mrs. Marius will be working in the local elementary school as the Drama teacher. Most of the students are Inuit or Kanatak, with a smattering of children belonging to the multi-national scientists and faculty of the university, so the young'n will get to learn about all kinds of stuff she would never otherwise see. I am totally psyched about this, if a bit nervous. Not to mention our aversion to the cold, but this is just too groovy an opportunity to pass up. I'll post more details as I get them, but we will be looking to move sometime this Summer. Who knows, maybe soon I'll have pictures of Starbuck chasing off caribou or something. ;-)

Frigidly yours,