Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Economist: Why Bankruptcy is Better than Wall Street Bailout

This is an excellent explanation of the bailout

.Congress has balked at the Bush administration's proposed $700 billion bailout of Wall Street. Under this plan, the Treasury would have bought the "troubled assets" of financial institutions in an attempt to avoid economic meltdown. This bailout was a terrible idea. Here's why.

read more | digg story

Monday, September 29, 2008

Michigan Voters To Decide Medical Marijuana Issue

On November 4, the citizens of Michigan will decide whether to legalize the medical use of marijuana in their state. Polls are showing the measure with 67% support.

read more | digg story

Atheism on digg scares me

I'm not linking to the particular digg story on purpose.  The comments there kinda freak me out. 

Today I ran across a comic that showed God being thankful that atheists don't 'bug' him with requests, and heartache.  That, in conjunction with the comments about how atheism is so much better than religion kinda got me sick to my stomach.  Everything was riddled with ignorance; hundreds of people having no clue of what God's character is.  It actually made me sad to know that all these people lead lives of ignorance, & don't/won't know God's love or grace. 

Friday, September 26, 2008

Clarification...not a douche

Yesterday I posted my rebuttal to an article about ways to improve the romance in your relationship.  I need to clarify that many of my "psssh, that wont work for me" comments were based on personality differences between the "standard couple" and my relationship with my wife.  I had not intention to make Laura look like a douche.  Please accept my apologies for any douche-ical emphasis.

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Thursday, September 25, 2008

7 Ways To Inject Romance Into Your Relationship...uh, not for me

photo by luigi morante

Dumb Little Man has a good post about how to interject (more) romance into your relationship. I'll list them briefly, but go read the article.  They are as follows.
  1. Eye Gazing
  2. Book a romantic surprise getaway
  3. Touch your partner more often
  4. Play romantic games
  5. Write a love letter
  6. Surprise your partner with a romantic dinner
  7. Spend more time together
I love running across blog posts like these because everybody's got their opinion.  For the most part, the "experts" have a formula that works.  The problem I have is that Laura & I don't fit the mold.  The standard formulas don't apply; they need to be modified.

Eye gazing - Won't work.  About once a week I comment to my lover to come sit closer so we can gaze into each others' eyes.  She laughs in my face.  She may think I'm kidding, but I don't think that matters.  She makes comments like, "Why are you staring at me?"

Book a surprise getaway - I don't have a spare $300 minimum that is required for a day or two outside the home.  If there are cheaper options, it's rare that she'll consider them.  I have no doubt that getting out of the house for an overnight, or longer, would be beneficial to her/us.  It would be even more cool if I were to surprise her with all the details taken care of.  I won't disregard this one altogether, but for now it's not realistic.

Touch your partner more often - I'm the touchy one in the relationship.  I can relate being gently rubbed on my back, or leg, or whatever, to sitting in a hot tub.  It's very comforting to me.  For me to return the favor gets mixed results.  Sometimes she thinks I want have ulterior motives, other times she finds it downright annoying.  I tend to shy away from this behavior, and therefore keep my hands to myself, figuratively of course.

Play romantic games - Naughty films don't cut it.  We've been there before.  I think I've even tried one of those "relationship books" before...

Write a love letter - If I had any decent writing skills, and patience, I might actually try this.  Laura loves to write, and is genuinely appreciative of hand-written letters.  I consider myself a decent typist; a writer I'm not.  Shoot, when was the last time you have read a love letter?  Me too.  I don't even know what they're supposed to say, or sound like.  Maybe the content wouldn't be as important as long as it's stated 'from the heart', and of course, hand-written.  I know, I've seen the movies.  I love those sappy romantic-comedies, but that's another post.  I'll concede that this one may work.  Just don't ask me to do it on a regular basis.

Surprise your partner with a romantic dinner - The hard part with this one is more getting the kids out of the house than making the dinner.  In addition, Laura often gets stressed out when we're home when the kids are somewhere else.  It's the chronic "what needs to be done now? Laundry?" feeling voices she has.  I might be able to calm those inner-voices with a little (or a lot) of gin & tonic.  Hmm....  Let me think about this one.

Spend more time together - Well, duh!  This one is harder than it sounds.  With the constant distractions of children, Blackberries®, etc. it's hard to spend time together, other than just next to each other.   Now that it's football season, we have a whole hour to sit and chat at the park while the kids practice & play on the structure.  She, on the other hand would rather use that time to clean up the house, grocery shop, run any errands that have to be done, etc.  I can't really blame her for wanting to get things done so the voices stop (see above).  I think this one is the most important, but the hardest to accomplish.  Let's face it, it takes a shit-ton of work on both parties' part. 

Okay, so after a little reflection on each bullet point, I concede that there are a few I could try.  Some are going to be a lot of work, others I'm not even going to attempt.  I even chuckle at the thought of a couple.  I still think the easiest solution is sexytime. ;)  I'd love to hear some of your solutions/ideas...preferably free.

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Tuesday, September 23, 2008


A while back, I wrote Pandora to make some suggestions to go out with a "bang".  I realize today that I may have jumped the gun.  Obviously they don't want to dissolve, and will be doing whatever they can to avoid closing the doors.  The problem, I realize, is that I'm nervous.  I've had several of my favorite net radio stations close their doors, and I'm paranoid  that it'll happen again.

So basically, I had given up on them.  I guess I hadn't really thought about it, but that's the risk of using start-up, web2.0 companies.  You may be the only one who likes the site.

I have an HDRadio tuner for my car.  I spend probably 1/4 of my time listening to traditional/terrestrial radio.  When I actually do listen to the radio, I have 2 stations that I listen to.  One of those stations plays old hip-hop classics, & the other plays (new) dance music.  The horrific repeating of tracks still exists, but because I only listen once-in-a-while, I can live with it. 

More or less, if terresterial radio dissappeared tomorrow, I wouldn't shed a tear.  Now, if internet radio left us, I would be very upset.

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Top 10 80’s Cartoons

Okay, so the title isn't entirely accurate. It's close enough for me. Make sure you click on the digg link, because the thread is awesome (as always) with links to other shows & videos!Oh the 80’s. The decade that gave us the Wonder Years, Who’s the Boss, great video games and a flippant hairstyle as high as a skyriser. What else could the 80’s be known for? What about all the great cartoons that came out in the 80’s? In this list, we will go through what we think are the top 10 cartoons from the 80’s.

read more | digg story

Friday, September 19, 2008


Avast! Happy Talk Like a Pirate Day!

Ye should be visiten' http://www.talklikeapirateday.com/
for more info, savvy?

Music video games (aka Guitar Hero): family friendly?

I was reading a good point-counterpoint over at AnandTech: Parenting And Rock Band 2: Why I'm Not Getting The Game.  Although the wife had some valid points, I still ended up siding with the father. 

For me deciding to buy Guitar Hero III was a no-brainer.  Heck, I didn't even consider the kids until I saw the scantily-clad girl (character) with her thong sticking out of her pants.  Buying the alternate outfit, to cover up the bra-for-a-top, for said character was one of the first things I did.  (I still haven't "unlocked" the devil character for obvious reasons). 

One of the counter-points of the article was about language.  I know, for the most part, they censor the swear words (as a parent, I applaud; as a grown-up, I cringe).  But it's the other words and their respective contexts that I hadn't really thought about.  In fact, even though I had heard 90% of all the songs before, I never payed any attention to the words; heck, I still don't.  So, without dragging this topic on, here's my stance: I'm way too busy trying to hit the notes to pay attention to the words.  I think my kids are the same way.  I'm not worried.

For me Guitar Hero III (and soon to be World Tour) is, or at least should be, part of our homeschool curriculum; hear me out.  I place a great importance on music and film with repsect to our culture.  It is important to me that kids know who Led Zeppelin, Metallica, Rolling Stones, The Doors, Aerosmith, etc, etc, etc are.  Guitar Hero does a pretty good job at exposing my kids to musical culture.  Caveat: I know that there are many, many more genres of music; that's a whole other post. 

So, the bottom line, is that I'm going to let, and even encourage my children to play Guitar Hero Rock Band, et. al.

[Photo by Vracing]

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Monday, September 15, 2008

Can 365 Nights Of Sex Bolster A Marriage?

When Their Marriages Fell Into The Doldrums, Two Long-Married Couples Took Action. Hit the read link for more.

read more | digg story

Amazon.com to stop post-order price guarantee

As of September 1, 2008 Amazon.com will stop giving refunds if the item you purchased drops in price within 30 days. I used this 'feature' all the time. I will no longer consider Amazon like I used to. That sucks...for them.

read more | digg story

Transferred balance to 0% int. card

I recently transferred my huge credit card balance to a 0% interest credit card. I think I get like 9mos to pay it off. In theory, this shouldn’t be a problem. The problem is, my car(s) have a bunch of servicing that needs to be done.

At least it’s a step in the right direction!

I knew there was justification for my many hours spent looking at pictures!

TWIP » Improve Your Images - TWIP
Here’s How To Improve Your Photography - Look at lots of pictures!

It all makes sense. The more pictures you study, the better pictures you take.  I am very selective when I favorite photos on Flickr.  I only press that little star when I really like an image.  The suggestion over on TWiP is to not only view, but study tons of images.  This way you can better understand what you like and what you don't; and how it's achieved. 

This is an image by one of my favorite photographers on Flickr.  There's so much about this picture that speaks to me: perfectly sharp eyes; math on the hand; smirk underneath the hand; the framing that puts her eyes toward the top right, her hand toward the middle, and just enough shoulder as to not over-power the shot.  I'm not the only one.  There's ~119 comments on this image alone.  (Her profile says she's 15; I think that might be an old bio.)

Photo by *Zara

If you haven't already, make sure you check out the This Week in Photography podcast. It always has useful information for all skill levels of photography.  It's run by some professional photographers, but is dumbed-down for the amateur like me.

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Friday, September 12, 2008

I am a f*cking idiot

I am a f*cking idiot, originally uploaded by gmr2048.

Don't freak out, this isn't *my* lens. It's not something you really think about until it happens to you. His story about this has mirrored a story of mine (with the exception of anything broken). Time to maybe stitch a "quick clip" on my backpack to (hopefully) prevent these types of accidents.

Friday, September 5, 2008

Not the first time

Pandora Radio - Listen to Free Internet Radio, Find New Music

I don't know what it is, but why is it that music always sounds better through headphones here at work? Normally, I am sick & tired of "classic rock". I grew up on that stuff, and now I'm pretty much over it. For some reason though, I put on the headphones and listen to my Led Zeppelin station, and off I go...peace.

So was sitting there at my desk thinking about ho much better the music sounded. I envisioned listening to the same awesome tunes of the 70s in my car, or the stereo at home. Nuthin'. No thanks. It's not the same! I can't put my finger on it. I think there's something about being 'stuck' in front of the computer; you're forced to listen. Even if you're busy at work...

More than one time my mind was thinking, "MAN, this is good sh*t!" <head groove>, <head groove>

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Shoot, I have to wait. >:o|

Welp, I think I've decided that I need to wait probably at least 6 months before I can buy a (new) car. I realized today that I need to dig myself out of debt before I plunge into more debt. It's like ripping the bandaid(r) off. I know it's going to hurt, I sure as hell don't want to do it, but I know it needs to be done. It doesn't help when I see events like this going on:

Capture by AmateurX on Zooomr