August 31, 2006

Okay, I got this survey from my cousin T., via MySpace. It’s pretty interesting:

Any teenager can write a survey about their favorite class or their secret crush or how nice their car is that their parents paid for. This is the survey for the older crowd.
1. Do you have a college degree?
I’m a mere 18 credit hours away.
2. What was the amount of your last electric bill?
I think it was around $95-100. It’s been really hot and now that we have 3 cats, we’re cooling the whole house.
3. How many hours per week do you have to work?
Well, let’s be honest…I don’t really “work” the hours listed on my time sheet. Plus, does anyone really “have to” work. I just do it because daytime television sucks.
4. Have you ever attended a Toastmasters event?
Can’t say as I have.
5. Favorite place to attend Happy Hour?
I’m not sure I’ve ever attended a happy hour.
6. How many miles is your commute to work each day
1.25 miles to work….1.25 miles home. I live the good life.Oliver
7. What time do you get up every morning?
7:10 am…no, 7:24…sometimes 7:30. It really depends on my need to shave.
8. What is your definition of sleeping in late?
Since Oliver joined the family, about 8 a.m.
9. Have you found any gray hairs?
Yes, and I look fabulous with them.
10. Do you check your cholesterol on a yearly basis?
I don’t, but I think my doctor does. So far, so good.
11. How large was your first cellular phone?
It was a little larger than my current phone. I was a late-adopter to the cell phone craze.
12. Does your employer provide good health insurance?
It’s pretty good coverage. Much better than most folks. But, I rarely use it.
13. Did you use the internet to write a research paper?
14. Have you ever heard of the internet sensation …….. or visited?
What internet sensation? This internets thing is a fad. It won’t last. Cuneiform is the way to go.
15. Have you attended a high school reunion?
No. My lame ass class can’t get their shit together long enough to host one. Damn pot smokers!
16. How many jobs have you held in your professional career?
Well, if by professional you mean paid, then I’ve held 7 jobs, most of them concurrently.
17. Have you ever been fired or laid off from a job?
Yes…and I’m sure they rue the day.
18. What is your favorite well drink?
I’ve never really understood the term “well drink”, but a quick internets search (merely a fad I say) reveals that I’m good with a vodka tonic.

19. What is the most expensive bottle of wine that you have in your residence?
Well, technically if you count the plane fare, it’s the bottles we brought home from South Africa. However, if that is not a fair assessment, then it has to be the bottle we got for our wedding from Beth and Marc.
20. Have you been divorced?
No…and I’m not going to.
21. How old were you when you stopped getting IDed for alcohol/tobacco etc…?
I prefer just to flash my ID. It saves me and the clerk time from guessing at what my age could be.
22. Favorite casino?
Only having been to one casino my whole life, I guess I’d have to say Caesar’s.
23. Are you happier now than you were in high school?
Exponentially happier.
24. Did you ever have Hypercolor shirts?
I might have had one, but good lord, that was like a hundred years ago. 
25. Do you remember when Michael Jackson was black and attracted to older people?
Ah…yes. Well, sort of. Does the “Thriller” era count?
26. What music was in your cd / cassette player when you were 16?
I can assure you that it was nothing as cool as the music I listen to now. 
27. Favorite fancy / upscale restaurant?
Maido Essential Japanese…*drool*
28. How long has it been since you attended a kegger?
I think I’ve been to one kegger in my life…and that was a rush week event at the Kappa Sigma house, where I was obviously out of place. 
30. Where were you when you found out about 9-11?
I was working at my desk…story of my life.
31. When’s the last time you were at a 7-11?
Does it have to be an actual 7-11? I don’t think I’ve ever been in a real 7-11. I’ve lived such a sheltered life.

So there you have it. A survey for the end of August. More next month.

See you in the funny papers!

August 23, 2006

I love vacation. I hate coming home from vacation, but I do love the carefree lifestyle of not doing anything. It’s so freeing and relaxing. There were moments on vacation where turning on the television was more work than I wanted to do. Consequently, I took a lot of naps. Good naps too…not just quick 20 minute deals…we’re talking 2-3 hour naps. A brief synopsis follows:

  • 8/11 – Drive all night to Asheville, stay in a cheap motel
  • 8/12 – Met Elizabeth and had breakfast at the Earlygirl (highly recommended) and a brief tour of the Blue Spiral 1, drove on to Hilton Head Island.
  • 8/13 – Did nothing…shopped for a beach umbrella.
  • 8/14 – First day at the beach, shopped at the outlet malls.
  • 8/15 – More beach time, many naps.
  • 8/16 – No beach, more shopping.
  • 8/17 – Day at the beach, also some time at the pool.
  • 8/18 – Kayaking on Broad Creek,
  • 8/19 – Drive home to Louisville.

The only bad thing about vacation was that the Red Sox lost 5 straight to the Yankees which just really creases my shorts. Those rotten bastards better not screw up a postseason appearance. Could we at least get some starting pitching? Sheesh.

So we’re back. Oliver is adjusting to life in the house. And…we’d like to announce the arrival of two new cats to our home, Peach and Red. Their names may change, but they’re very different from Oliver and are still acclimating themselves to their new home. But we think they’re gonna like it here. Yes, I know…3 cats. It’s insane, but what do you do…they needed a home.

Check out the books and movies page. Many updates. Also, stay tuned for more about work and school as we begin a new semester.

See you in the funny papers!

August 10, 2006

In light of the news this morning, I thought I’d provide some outside perspective. For those of you who didn’t hear any news this morning…preferring instead some sort of music or, *gasp* silence, during your morning rituals…”a plot to blow up trans-Atlantic flights” was foiled at Heathrow airport this morning. Police arrested 21 people in connection with the plan “suggestive of an al-Qaeda plot.”

Now for those of you who are leaning a little to the right this morning, your first reaction was probably: “See, we told you so.” For those of you leaning a little to the left this morning, your first reaction was probably: “What? This is just the right trying to divert our attention from what’s really going on in Israel and Iraq.” For those of you who were about get on the planes to fly across theAtlantic, plot or no, we’re glad you’re safe.

So, now we’ve raised the terror-alert level to RED!It seems to me that if we had the intelligence for this in order to stop it that our terror-alert level should have been in the red a few days ago. Reminds me of the old maxim, closing the barn door after the horses have gotten out. Why raise the level when the threat has been cancelled? Is there more “intelligence” that suggests that other plans of this nature are to be carried out in days to come? Why doesn’t Homeland’s Barney Fife nip it in the bud?!

But, are we being alerted to terror for our own protection or simply to scare us into giving up more of our rights as humans? I direct your attention the following Cato institute paper by Ohio State University’s John Mueller (PDF…if you do not have the capability to read PDF, download Adobe Acrobat Reader for free, here). For those of you in a hurry, this excerpt via BoingBoing

Much of the current alarm is generated from the knowledge that many of today’s terrorists simply want to kill, and kill more or less randomly, for revenge or as an act of what they take to be The shock and tragedy of September 11 does demand a focused and dedicated program to confront international terrorism and to attempt to prevent a repeat. But it seems sensible to suggest that part of this reaction should include an effort by politicians, officials, and the media to inform the public reasonably and realistically about the terrorist context instead of playing into the hands of terrorists by frightening the public. What is needed, as one statistician suggests, is some sort of convincing, coherent, informed, and nuanced answer to a central question: “How worried should I be?” Instead, the message the nation has received so far is, as a Homeland Security official put (or caricatured) it, “Be scared; be very, very scared — but go on with your lives.” Such messages have led many people to develop what Leif Wenar of the University of Sheffield has aptly labeled “a false sense of insecurity.”

I’m bound to get email about this, and that’s fine. It would be nice to get an exchange. If you’re angry, or in agreement, I’d love to hear from you. If you’d just like to know about my red image of Bush, that would be fine too.

We’re still going to Paris in December damnit! Terrorists can bugger off!

See you in the funny papers!

August 8, 2006

Today’s my anniversary. Three years ago today, I married the most wonderful girl in the world and every day since then has been blissful. If anyone ever tells you that there’s no such thing as a happy marriage, refer them to me.


In other news, we’re keeping the cat. We’ve named him Oliver. Affectionately, “Ollie-Cat”. Although, if he wakes me up by licking my hair in the middle of the night and then bites me when I try to remove him from my pillow again…grrr! Still, he’s pretty darn cute. Pictures will be available soon…I think.

Speaking of pictures…there have been several updates to my photos page. If you click on any photo (of the 5) and then click on ConspiracyofHappiness where it gives the uploaded date, you can get to the most recent photos. They are also separated into sets to the right of the page, so you can check out only the pictures you want to see.

And now, it’s time for GOODMUSIC/badmusic

GOODMUSIC: Angel With An Attitude by The Ditty Bops
badmusic: anything by Joanna Newsom…sweet Lord, that voice!

Currently listening to: Jethro Tull on WFPK

See you in the funny papers!

August 1, 2006

And thus, it came to be, that the Dog Days of Summer were upon us. The heat of a thousand flames searing against our skin as the Star of Life drew itself to full height in the sky. We toiled in the fields of labor, according to our biblical inheritance, beneath the fiery sky god and succumbed to the desires of heat-induced hysteria.I MEAN…IT’S REALLY DAMN HOT!

Have you seen a thermometer lately? Gadzooks man! I even asked my girl to turn the AC down last night. Cripes. And all you bastards in your SUVs better have enjoyed your oil-sucking ways because this heat is all your global-warming fault! How hot is it? This morning as I was riding my bike to work, I saw a goldfinch burst into flame midflight. I got sunburnt through the vent holes in my helmet, while it was still dark out.

Okay, so I might be exaggerating a little bit. But, it’s damn hot.

In other news:

  • School approaches and I’m excited. I’ve already got my books and I’m ready to get back to the grindstone. I’m shooting for two ‘A’s this semester.
  • The Red Sox hold a one game lead over the Yankees in the East, thanks to Big Papi’s heroics.
  • We have a new kitty cat in the family. He is “as-yet-unnamed” and he is much noisy. Still, it’s fun to have a furry beast around the house again. Is Nose-Biter a good name?
  • I’m very much looking forward to vacation and I’m hoping to take more time off in the coming months as I currently have over 350 hours of vacation time available.

So check out all the other pages…I think practically everything got updated today.

Quote of the Day

Don’t knock the weather. If it didn’t change once in a while, nine out of ten people couldn’t start a conversation.
Kin Hubbard (1868 – 1930)

See you in the funny papers!