Sunday, April 29, 2007

Spotted Dogs

Thursday, April 26, 2007

The long road.

Another rental car, another highway...and according to Google Maps, 5 and a half hours from Anaheim to San Jose.
(And for the music trivia buffs out there, yes, I know the way to San Jose.)

So, just returning some hardware at Fry's, then I'm on the road.
Going to try to make it up to at least Coalinga tonite. We'll see how it goes.

TBG truckin'-
(What a long strange trip it's been.)

From the "Lessons Learned" Department

Here is wisdom:

While working on equipment racks with devices electrical within, that may or (more likely) may not be properly grounded, it would considered a Good Thing to power off said equipment and unplug or throw breakers for the same.

If you choose not to follow these words, remember that electrical cooking is a slothful process, and a technician may sizzle in his own fat for A Good Long While, before the Big Engineer in the Sky sees fit to end his suffering.

Here endeth the lesson.

TBG, singed and shaking...

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

This is new...

I'm on a Frontier Airlines flight, Dallas to Denver to Orange County.

There were about 40 people in line when I got to DFW at 4:45 this morning.
They'd been bumped last night due to the storms...

Lots of angry people, spent the night in the airport since the airline wouldn't comp hotel rooms.
The plane is full of people with a skewed sense of entitlement.

I doubt we make it to Denver before the pissed-off soccer mom 2 rows up takes a swing at the (insolent rude lazy) flight attendant.

(To paraphrase JWI: I hate a boring flight.)

TBG out-

Sunday, April 22, 2007

Saturday, April 21, 2007

Booked by 3 - In character.


The March Hare, of Keeper of The Mad Tea Party memed me again...
(I don't mind her memes, I kinda like them. They force me to think... Like this one from last August...)

So... The theme of the meme... Booked by 3...

Name up to three characters . . .

1) . . . you wish were real so you could meet them.
  • Lazarus Long (Heinlein's Methuselah's Children, Time Enough for Love et al)
  • Beowulf Schaffer (Larry Niven's Known Space Series)
  • Travis McGee (John D. MacDonald's South Florida gumshoe)

2) . . . you would like to be.
  • Jason Bourne - (Robert Ludlum's Bourne series)
  • John Carter - (Edgar Rice Burroughs Warlord of Mars series)
  • Dirk Struan - (James Clavell's Tai Pan)

3) . . . who scare you.
  • Annie Wilkes. (Stephen King's Misery)
  • Dimitri Ravenoff (Neal Stephenson's Snow Crash)
    The guy has an h-bomb attached to his motorcycle and makes Kevlar-piercing knives out of glass. Hijacked a nuclear sub singlehanded. One Scary Dude.
  • Dr. Hannibal Lecter (Thomas Harris' Silence of the Lambs, Red Dragon, et al)

Limiting choices to three is a difficulty.
Makes me really evaluate choices carefully...and still second guess my selections.

Oh well...

Happy reading.

Oh yeah-
I'm tagging Deidre at Time & Tides and James at Sarchasmic Hallucidations.
I'll try Yael at The World is MY Oyster, althought I know she is in transition now...moving from China to Germany. (Talk about culture shock!)

TBG- Packing my bags again.

My current read: South-The Story of Shackleton's Last Expedition 1914-1917 by Sir Ernest Henry Shackleton

Monday, April 16, 2007

Bay Area Newspaper Writer gets Dumbass Award.

Can you trust anything this media outlet says when they get the basic facts wrong?

Women & Guns

Women with guns a growing phenomenon
By Christine Morente, STAFF WRITER

SOUTH SAN FRANCISCO - KIMBERLY SHRUM grips a Smith & Wesson .357 Magnum revolver and aims at a target 25 yards away.
A hot shell casing hits the floor, joining hundreds of others littering the concrete at Jackson Arms Indoor Shooting Range in South San Francisco.

Shrum centers herself and aims again.

I've shot a lot of revolvers, never had one eject a shell casing.

Obviously the writer is ignorant of her subject and is writing for effect.
Was she even at the range?
Any article that starts with such a glaring error is very suspect.

And I was expecting either a rant against guns in general or a villification of 2nd Amendment rights... and I was suprised. The article was fairly balanced and informative.
Except for a decided slant toward the Gun=Power mentality...

A lot of people believe that a gun is a magic wand: If you point it at someone, they have to obey you.
Sadly, that's not the way it works. And just because you know HOW to use one, doesn't mean you will be mentally capable of using it when the time comes.

Back in the day (1991 or so) when I owned Computer Services Inc in downtown Jacksonville, we often worked long hours preparing our systems for shipping or doing other prep work.
Since our offices were down on Union Street it was de rigeur to carry a firearm in the office after business hours. This practice started after the third break-in attempt while we were in the office.
After that, we started carrying pistols.
The Woman Who Knows Most Things had initial misgivings on this practice.
My argument:
"I can carry this gun, and if circumstances call for it, I will use it. And then we'll hire an attorney to defend my actions.
Or, I can not carry it, and instead of hiring an attorney, you can come to the morgue to identify my body and buy a nice casket."

She never said another word.

Oh well... Revolver owners- watch out for those hot casings...

TBG out (at the range)-

Seven Deadly Sins

Wow. Not good.


I'm not sure how to dress this up to make it look positive...

Discover Your Sins - Click Here

Thursday, April 12, 2007

Kurt Vonnegut

That's a helluva thing to wake up to...

Kurt Vonnegut Jr. passed away yesterday, at age 84.

He had a sharp and slightly skewed sense of humor, and his books are some of the most interesting and thought-provoking I have ever, or will ever read.
His most recent book, A Man Without a Country, I never read. Looking at the review it seemed like a book I wouldn't enjoy...too much politics, and not satiric enough to mask his leftist-ivory tower-blue state personal politics. Doesn't mean I don't enjoy his older novels- I don't hold his current politics against him... He was an excellent writer and he will be missed.

Kurt Vonnegut Jr.

I'm looking at my bookshelf in my computer room/library and I see 5 books- 4 of which I got while still in high school...
I've always been a sucker for End-of-the-World stories, and Vonnegut wrote some great ones. Cat's Cradle, Breakfast of Champions are up there, brought down every few years to be re-read, along with Welcome to the Monkey House, a great series of well-written short stories, Galapagos, and Slapstick, which was given to me by my sister back when we were in high school.
Though I have read many more of his novels, these five I keep for their ability to be entertaining and interesting to read every time I pick them up.
There should be 6 titles there... The Sirens of Titan is out on loan to a co-worker...from 8 years ago. Probably won't get that one back...
Due to limited shelf space I can only keep the very best books I read, and it's hard for me to brush aside a good book and send it off the the second-hand book store, but these, in addition to select titles from Robert Heinlein, Larry Niven, and Stephen King have permanent shelf space reserved.

An Internet urban legend, "Wear Sunscreen", a fake MIT commencement speech was attributed to him, which some people still think we was the source of.
(The entire story here)

Should you be inclined, pick up a Vonnegut book. Be entertained.
Think about his story lines.
That was his aim, that his readers should use their own brains to live their lives, not blindly follow someone else.

Just a couple Vonnegut quotes to round things out...

I want to stand as close to the edge as I can without going over. Out on the edge you see all the kinds of things you can't see from the center.

Be careful what you pretend to be because you are what you pretend to be.

And one for us bloggers to remember:

Who is more to be pitied, a writer bound and gagged by policemen or one living in perfect freedom who has nothing more to say?

TBG out-

PS- My current read? I'm still slogging through "The Gulag Archipelago" by Solzhenitsyn
It's killing me.

Saturday, April 07, 2007

It's 47 degrees in Augusta GA

I'm really starting to worry that this "Global Warming" is actually going to catch on and people are going to take it seriously.

Take these idiots in Belgium... Fighting "Global Warming" by outlawing outdoor grilling.
And they are going to enforce it by using helicopter surveillance.
(Helicopters fueled by puppy breath and wishes, no doubt.)
Brillant. (Note: This was an April Fools Joke.)

Before you swallow Ozone Al's load of baloney, please take a gander at this site, which is not as slick and pretty as Al's movie, but it has much better hard science...

The REAL Inconvenient Truth

Check this out:

(From an e-mail I received...)

Look over the descriptions of the following two houses, and see if you can tell which one belongs to an environmentalist.

HOUSE # 1:
A 20-room mansion (not including 8 bathrooms) heated by natural gas. Add on a pool (and a pool house) and a separate guest house all heated by gas. In ONE MONTH ALONE this mansion consumes more energy than the average American household in an ENTIRE YEAR. The average bill for electricity and natural gas runs over $2,400.00 per month. In natural gas alone (which last time we checked was a fossil fuel), this property consumes more than 20 times the national average for an American home. This house is not in a northern or Midwestern “snow belt,” either. It’s in the temperate South.

HOUSE # 2:
Designed by an architecture professor at a leading national university, this house incorporates every “green” feature current home construction can provide. The house contains only 4,000 square feet (4 bedrooms) and is nestled on arid high prairie in the American southwest. A central closet in the house holds geothermal heat pumps, which draw ground water through pipes sunk 300 feet into the ground. The water (usually 67 degrees F) heats the house in winter and cools it in summer. The system uses no fossil fuels such as oil or natural gas, and it consumes 25% of the electricity required for a conventional heating/cooling system. Rainwater from the roof is collected and funneled into a 25,000 gallon underground cistern. Wastewater from showers, sinks and toilets goes into underground purifying tanks and then into the cistern. The collected water then irrigates the land surrounding the house. Flowers and shrubs native to the area blend the property into the surrounding rural landscape.

And now the answers…

HOUSE # 1 (20-room energy guzzling mansion) is outside Nashville, Tennessee. It is the abode of that renowned environmentalist (and filmmaker) Al Gore.

HOUSE # 2 (model eco-friendly house) is on a ranch near Crawford, Texas. Also known as “the Texas White House,” it is the private residence of the President of the United States, George W. Bush.

Gore's spokesmodel will yammer on and on about "Green Premium Payments" and "Carbon footprint exchanges", but in the end, he is exactly the kind of energy consuming, carbon producing prig that An Inconvenient Truth is warning us about.

Go look it up over on

There are four dogs in this fight...

  • Those that categorically reject any climate change. Very very small group. Idiots, Flat-Earthers.

  • Those that admit climate change, but see purely natural change such as the higher sunspot activity and other natural cycles as the only cause. Another pretty small group of people, Short-sighted mouthbreathing Boneheads.

  • Those that admit climate change as being caused by both naturally occuring phenomena and manmade activity. Typically they’ll believe that the manmade change is smaller than natural activity. This is the largest group... the one that I'd fall into.*

  • Those that believe that man is the cause of all evil in the world, including climate change. An interesting group: they’ll have the idiotic bumper sticker “Dissent is the highest form of patriotism” but then demand in blogs and letters to the editor that “THERE IS NO MORE DEBATE, CLIMATE CHANGE IS REAL” against anyone with differing views. I have another term for these types, assholes. They’re the same ones who seem to think that in the face of all evidence, scientists are not human and therefore infallible. As long as it agrees with their sacred views.

(*I tend to believe demonstrable science, not fringe rhetoric spouted by edgy soi-disant scientists who will publish controversial crap just to get publicity (and thus, funding). These are the same people that warned us of Nuclear Winter from the 526 Kuwaiti oil wells that got torched in the first Iraq War...
Remember in 1991 Carl Sagan telling us, with a straight face, on ABC's 20/20 that the black clouds generated by the burning wells would blanket the Earth and cause global cooling? Sagan died in 1996 of extreme embarrasment for being so badly wrong.)

If I'm going to hang my hat on a reason for global warming, I'll have to side with the Pastafarians.

1700's - Pirates roamed the seas at will. Average tempature, 14.25C
2000's - Not so many pirates. Average tempature, 15.90C

So, By Ozone Al's own logic... We need more pirates.

TBG- Quad Erat Demonstratum


My favorite Easter Bunnies

Because nothing says Religious Holiday, Ressurection and Redemption like a sugar coma.

The Usual Suspects

The Many Faces of Sombrero Night

Too much tequila will do this to you...

Amazing out-

Friday, April 06, 2007

And the hits just keep on comin'....

"Do you use any vaseline on any of your gear?"
-Berry in Scoring Control


Double wow.

Famous out-

Pretty Pictures from Augusta

...or not so pretty...

Another fine tournament week...
No rain in the forecast like last year, Which is good if you want to finish in a timely manner and get home and do laundry and the like...but it's bad of you are a golfer and mant the greens to slow down and have opportunities to make birdies and eagles. rain, but we do have frost warnings.

Not so bad for me, somewhat worse for the guys who have to go outside and work on the course.

Earlier in the week is was pretty horrible with pollen...

The steps to the trailer. Each step would drag several hunderd thousand pollen granules into thte trailer, each with the express mission to make me sneeze.

Our carts, which had sat outside for the better part of a week before we got here, were coated with a fine layer of pollen.

We did get a little rain earlier this week which finally washed away some of the pollen...So I'm no longer eating Claritin like candy...

One last picture from work-
I had intended to go the entire week without actually going out on the course.
Alas, it was not to be... I did go out and do some testing with Ed and Mark, and later I went out with Mitch to to Hole 10 to look at a laser issue.

Ed and Mark preparing to run our test.

Then there was Sombrero Night...

Nice Mugs on that guy.

Ed Keyes, stylin'.

Raising the glasses

Zack, making an ash of himself.

John, Justin and Andy the Eurotrash...

And on Monday night we all got to gether to watch the Florida / Ohio State matchup...

Jamie, with his Suburban Couch Camouflage shorts on...

So much fun...

TBG out-

Oh. My. God...

TV announcer: "The swirling wind will play havoc with anyone's balls."


TBG out-

Thursday, April 05, 2007

Yet another OOC

Day One of Tournament Play:

Hole 3: "We can't see the ball. What do we do?
Yours Truly: "Just shoot the player."
(long pause)
Hole 3: "Just a flesh wound, right?"

Film at 11.

TBG Out-