Wednesday, April 29, 2009

We're Back In The Universe

Attention all hands! Starbase 66 is back, baby! This week we discuss the works of Richard Matheson, the brains behind The Omega Man and I Am Legend. Find us here from now on:

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Oh, Yeah, I Almost Forgot...

On Friday, as the day was winding down, one of our seniors, I'll call her Anastasia because that's about as far from her real name as I can get at this time of the morning, came into my office with a young lady bedecked in baggy black garments, with numerous piercings and carrying a skateboard. "This is Penelope," quoth Anastasia to me as if this explained much. Alas, it did not. My blank look of befuddlement encouraged my young visitor to elucidate. "She is the president of the Pride club here on campus." Ah, methought, the plot thickens. I had been of some assistance to the Gay/Lesbian/Bi-Sexual/Transgendered club in the past, and expected to be asked to assist with the preparations for an extravaganza of some sort. "A pleasure," quoth I, "and how may I be of use to you ladies this fine day?" They then spun for me a tale of woe from the years prior. A tale of a faculty sponsor who, though enabling the club existence by affixing their name to the appropriate document, did little else, and was now departing the employ of our learned establishment, and thus was about to do even less. Would I, they implored, assume the mantle of sponsor, and by such assumption grant life to this most worthy endeavor?

"Uhhhhhh, sure." Said I.

So forms were signed, and thanks were bestowed upon me, e'en more so when I promised that I would not be the silent, invisible sponsor. This is untrod territory for your humble correspondent, and the abdominal lepidoptera flutter mercilessly when I consider the task ahead, but I am deeply honored to be asked to serve in this way, and shall endeavor to do my best.

See ya,

Monday, April 27, 2009

Netiquette Quandary

The digital age has brought with it some interesting questions of propriety, and I am faced with a few such dilemmas right now. Among the lesser posers are just how long does one keep the email addresses and blog links of someone who is deceased? It is a bittersweet moment when scrolling through bookmarks or contact lists only to come across such ephemeral mementos. But ultimately that is a personal decision, and not really apropos of this discussion. No, the real conundrum has to do with friends of those passed on. My mom was a religious Conservative, and we often had 'spirited' debates over the merits of the various peccadilloes of the Republican party, so much so that it ceased to be fun to bait her on such issues. She actually thought George W. Bush was a good president. She was also a member of an online prayer circle, but a couple of years ago her computer broke and she asked me to contact one of her online friends to pass along information. I didn't mind, but this woman has kept me in her email list and has, of late, started to send out right-wing propaganda. Today it was Newt Gingrich's newsletter. I started to send a 'please remove me from your list' email, then I wondered if that would be rude. Should I just ignore such mails? Should I ask her to stop? Should I start sending her editorials by Jeneane Garofolo and Al Franken? She seems like a nice person, and I'd hate to offend, but I really am not her target audience. What do you all think?

Sunday, April 26, 2009


I had a nice weekend. That in itself shouldn't be news, but lately my weekends have been merely pauses in between work weeks, and little else, but this was a nice weekend. It started right with the cats letting me sleep in til SEVEN AM! I know, you really envy me now, but wait, there's more. Mrs. Marius wasn't feeling well, and stayed home from work, so my plans for cleaning were put on hold. So I reloaded Diablo II on the puter for her and was getting ready to play couch spud when my phone rang. It was Duke asking if I wanted to go to a gun show with him. I've never been to one, and the missus seemed to relish the idea of a bit of solitude(such as it is with a kid and two cats) and I like guns. I don't own any, but I like shooting, plus it was a chance to hang with Duke, which is always welcome. So he picked me up and we discussed all sorts of things on the drive to, and during, and after the show. The gun show itself was remarkably low key and devoid of any obvious nut-jobbery. I saw a few shiny weapons that I wouldn't have minded owning, but my lovely lady was quite clear in her parting directive that I return no better armed than when I left, and since the .357 I had my eye on was a little over $1200 obedience wasn't that difficult. ;-) Then we picked up some burgers and beer on the way home and I fired up the grill. During the drive Duke gifted me with some really groovy toys. He gave me a toy phaser II with removable phaser I(if you don't know what that means, it won't matter to you anyway), about 10 pounds of Star Trek gaming cards, and a huge bag full of Micro Machines starships. I will be taking pics of this nerd-u-copia as soon as I can get it arranged by vessel class and affiliation. Go on, out-geek me, I dare ya! :-D

Today I did get that cleaning done, as me wifey felt better and went back to work. Now as many of you know we're having technical difficulties with the podcast, and since I couldn't post a new one this weekend we decided not to record a show tonight to give me a chance to catch up on my editing. But we got together via Skype anyway, just cause we like talking with each other, and talked for nearly three hours. Granted thirty minutes or so of that was recorded for Kennedy's solo podcast, Weather Station 3, where we talked about the nature of Internet friendships. And now it's 11:34pm, and I'm listening to Simon and Garfunkle and telling you wonderful people about my very nice weekend.

And there was much rejoicing.


Peace, y'all,

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Think Up Your Own Clever Title

So I was going to start this post with the usual 'I suck for not posting in so many days' but I'm sure you're getting as tired of hearing it as I am of saying it. There just really hasn't been that much going on to comment about. I could bitch about the Conservatives who seem to think that this year's taxes have anything to do with the Obama administration, but that would just be boring, and Jon Stewart did it so much better. I could talk about how boring things are at work, but someone whinging about how boring things are at work is just...well, y'know, boring. I could tell you how I was kidnapped at gunpoint on Wednesday while making a withdrawal at the bank, and was forced to drive my car in a high-speed chase through downtown St. Pete with dozens of cop cars following until I managed to pull an awesome fish-tail crash into a telephone pole disabling the bank robber and earning myself the undying gratitude of both the police and the electric company, but that would just be lying. In reality I've been doing a lot of navel gazing and lamenting not having more to do. I mean, I have a lot to do, i.e. podcast editing, project grading, theatre maintenance, but mostly what I do is stare at this screen and laugh at other people's work. And I'm getting sick of it. Yesterday was the benefits fair at work. We had to go and collect our forms to affirm our benefits for the coming year, and there was a health assessment being done by Blue Cross. They checked my blood pressure, and took a bit of blood for analysis. I also filled out a questionnaire. On many levels I'm doing well, but my cholesterol and fat-assedness are not so good. So I need to get myself into a better routine of eating and exercise. So yesterday when I got home I went for a bike ride. Today we bought some shrubbery to put in front of our house to appease the Knights of Ni, which I planted and then went for a bike ride, then I caught up on Daily Shows, Colbert Reports, and Jeopardies. Even telling you about my life is boring the shit out of me. So now that the wife has her own wheels, and I'm getting sick of staring at the inside of this house, maybe things will get a bit more interesting soon. On the up side, I did buy my tickets for Star Trek(the new movie) last night. I'm actually getting excited about this film...but JJ Abrams will need to constantly look over his shoulder if it sucks.

And now, it's time for me to make dinner. wheeeee.

Love y'all,

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Episode 14: Religion in Star Trek

Howdy, Folks! Episode 14 of Starbase 66 is now online. This week we talk about the role religion has played in Star Trek and Science Fiction.

Friday, April 10, 2009

Good(?) Friday

I'm not quite sure how this qualifies as good, but then there is a cavalier attitude to the whole crucifixion thing on the part of many Christians that just weirds me out. In any case, I don't know the proper salutation for the day, but if you are affected by Good Friday, may it be whatever it's supposed to be for you.

Agnostically yours,

Thursday, April 09, 2009

A$$holier Than Thou

It would seem that assholes are running rampant lately, but there are two extreme sphincters I'd like to bring to your attention today. The first member of the 'See You Next Tuesday' club is Republican Texas Representative Betty Brown. This lovely lady has actually suggested that Asian Americans should change their names to something that isn't so hard to 'deal with'. “Rather than everyone here having to learn Chinese — I understand it’s a rather difficult language — do you think that it would behoove you and your citizens to adopt a name that we could deal with more readily here?” The reason for this is her attempt to address concerns by Chinese-American groups because often their names don't appear the same on any two pieces of identification. This leads to voting problems. So, of course, this is the citizen's problem, not the government's. What a twat! You can see the full story here.

The second waste of human flesh is that infamous lunatic and supposed musician, Billy Bob Thornton. Billy Bob is currently the singer/drummer for a band called The Boxmasters. They are enjoying a bit of success, and are currently on tour opening for Willy Nelson. When appearing on a Canadian radio show the host introduced him as an "Oscar-winning screenwriter/actor/director" and then proceeded to talk only about the band. Billy Bob pouted, and then acted like a petulant twelve-year-old refusing to answer questions. Finally it was mentioned that the interviewer was not supposed to ask questions about Thornton's film career, and Billy Bob was pissed because of the quick mention of said accomplishments. The interviewer, a man named Jian Ghomeshi(don't ask me to pronounce it), was flustered and agog, but remained a professional and eventually talked the sulking ass into actually giving the interview he was brought in for. Now I don't like Billy Bob Thornton as an actor, and I couldn't care less about him as a director, and now I really wouldn't shed a tear if he fell into a volcano tomorrow. I recommend you give the interview a listen as I don't think I'm doing his douchbaggery justice. And my thanks to Weathereye for bringing to light this tale of yet another self-important asshole circling the drain of his own relevance. You can read more, and hear the interview here.

In local news we have a three day weekend coming up, and I'm really looking forward to it. I was going to go south to the homeland, but the COA is away at her grandparent's and the missus and I get so little time together when we are both A. alone, and B. awake, that I decided to postpone the trip and spend some quality time at home.

And now, dear friends, I bid you adieu. Have a groovy Easter.


Sunday, April 05, 2009

Friday, April 03, 2009

Blah, Blah, Blah...

On Saturday I flew up to Connecticut. Usually the experience of flying is a blog-worthy event, but this trip was remarkably unremarkable. Southwest Airlines are a class act, and check in was a breeze. Security didn't find me noteworthy, and while the flights were a bit bumpy, they were nothing horrible. Even the fact that they don't have reserved seating was not the ordeal I expected. They line everyone up according to the letter and number on your boarding pass, then you just go aboard and pick your seat. It was completely civilized and pleasant. In other words...boring.

The time spent in CT was, given the reason for the journey, quite nice. I stayed with my cousin Patty, who is my female counterpart in my uncle's family. She has a nice house, with a couple of very friendly(if somewhat neurotic) dogs. She also lives within minutes of my grandfather, so I got to spend a good bit of time with him. My brother also came up for the funeral, and Gramp told us many times how much it meant to him that we were there. The funeral itself was, um, lovely I guess you'd say. There was the traditional viewing, and the morticians did a good job making Gram look good. I'm not a fan of such things, but I guess some people need to actually see the deceased to accept the reality. Personally I could get by just fine without that, but what can you do? Many of Gram's family, most of whom I had not seen in a couple of decades, turned out for the Monday morning service, which seemed to please Gramp. My brother and I were honored to be pall bearers, which mainly consisted of putting the casket in the hearse, and taking it out again at the cemetary, but it was still good to have an active role. After the service we all adjourned to my younger cousin Pam's house were there was much food and pleasant visitation. One of the more surreal moments of the day happened shortly after a lot of us older 'kids' finished looking at pics from family gatherings past. We had just put away the photos of us as children when the eight or nine actual children gathered for a similar picture. Being as I live so far from my family, such meta-events are rare for me. Many email addresses were exchanged, and I now even have some of the family on my Facebook. And we all agreed that we should try to get together more often, next time sans tragedy.

The trip home was even less eventful. I landed in Tampa at 1:30, and was at work by 4:00. The show went smoothly in my absence, and everything is more or less back to normal.

I'd like to share something cool with you all. Allison, who is the first lady of Simply Syndicated, and who has never met any of us in person, created the Starbase 66 crew in The Sims. I think she did a great job, don't you?

And speaking of the starbase, episode 12 in which we discuss Watchmen and the Battlestar Galactica finale is now on line here.

And that's all for now. Peace, y'all.