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Monday, August 29, 2005

Katrina!

So as most of us know, Louisana and Mississipi (M-I-double s-i-double s-i-double p-i) are getting rocked by one of the worst storms to hit the US since Andrew. And as many people have done, I spent last night flipping back and forth between the VMA's and the ever present news coverage of Katrina on The Weather Channel, CNN, and Fox News. If you are only interested in the VMA's, you can get up to date here.

Quickly though, I realized that I was no longer watching coverage of the hurricane, but instead enjoying watching the coverage alone. Of course the The Weather Channel (or TWC, to make typing easier) is the most stoic and scientific of all coverage. It focuses mainly on the storm itself, levee information and all scientific data (pressure ratings and such) realated to forecasting. CNN steps it up a notch with refugee information, possible outcomes, and of course your happy sappy personel interest stories. And then there is Fox News, there mainly to scare the ever living bejesus out of all of us!

It was very interesting flipping back and forth between the three and seeing differences in it all. While TWC is showing a real Meteorologist talking about storm fronts and the like, Fox News is relating to us the "hellish" journey one stoner college student from LSU had to escape the horrible event. Transcript abbreviated as follows:


Newscaster: So tell us your harrowing tale.

Student: So, like we tried to get bus tickets and, like, they were all sold out, and last minute plane tickets were too expensive, so like my roommate called his sister and her and her fiance picked us up and we drove to Houston. There was, like, a little traffic, but it totally wasn't too bad.

Newscaster: Wow, what a story of triumph over adversity!

Student: Yeah, we we're really freaked out but we lit up a joint on the way and we really calmed.....

Newscaster: Oops, looks like the feed was lost. Thanks for telling us the hellish details of your journey!
(ok, so this last part was my own invention but the rest is pretty much verbatim)

As other news coverage on the other channels stayed pretty much the same, Fox News only escalated. They were the first to announce that deaths had occured... ...at 10 pm (PST) before the storm even made landfall. Apparently there was a traffic accident... IN TEXAS! I mean, that's like counting a serviceman who died in a car accident on his way to the base in America as a casulty in Iraq.

And of course Fox News was the first to have "stupid intern with high ambitions to become the next Wolf Blitzer" stuck out in the storm. There he is, standing out in 60-90 mph winds telling us how strong the winds are, as his skin is being blown off his face. I really feel bad for these newscasters, they are just trying to make their way in the industry and they get stuck on storm coverage as on the spot correspondant. Most channels will have a shot at some point of a rain drenched newsman, but this is just being reckless with someone's life. He's standing out in the wind and rain, almost horizontal leaning into the wind (I really thought it was about to pick him up) when a large piece of building lands like 3 feet from him. I was immediately reminded of Day After Tomorrow when the newsman is flattened by a billboard.

Upon waking up this morning I tuned in to the news expecting Fox to have declared that
Namor and his fellow race of underwater dwellers, has not only hit the Big Easy for a wild night of underwater drinking (not too sure on the physics of that) but has also surplanted the US government in the region and are planning on adding New Orleans to their undersea kingdom. (afterall, mermaids are topless ALL the time... atleast my imaginary version of these imaginary creatures are) ***UPDATE*** Fox made the Atlantean connection after all. Click here for more details!

I understand that in this new era of 24 hour news, it is difficult for them to find pertinent information to fill that much time, but I simply don't understand the fearmongering that Fox News insists on using. I understand that Katrina is a big deal, there is going to be a lot of loss of life and property, many people who were barely getting by as it was, now have to deal with losing everything they've ever had. But it seems like Fox is enjoying the sensationalism. Its almost like they are waiting for something to happen so they can make money off of it. Is the current incarnation of the media any better than
war profiteers?

They are using tragedy and loss of life as a springboard to advertising money. Does the fact that they are not creating the tragedy, but merely sensationalizing it make it any better? I feel bad for the people who are stranded in another town looking for information on their homes, towns, and friends and family who are watching Fox News. I'm not saying the news channels should coddle their viewers by showing anything else but the truth, but this habit of blowing things way out of proportion really needs to stop. The media needs to take a step back and look at themselves to see if they are really helping provide free access to information by creating mass hysteria. (on this note, I have updated the link in my previous post to a similar story that doesn't require you to provide personal information to read free news, apologies for the original)

To end on a light note, there is a really amusing article about a small town in Austria located
here

Definitions to assist you with reading todays post:

Hurricane: A violent storm, characterized by extreme fury and sudden changes of the wind, generally accompanied by rain, thunder, and lightning; -- especially prevalent in the East and West Indies

24-hours News Coverage of Hurricanes: A news broadcast, characterized by extreme sensationalism and sudden changes of mood, generally accompanied by blowhards, frightened interns, and you pissing your pants; -- especially prevalent on Fox and MSNBC

"Welcome to the exciting world of hurricane journalism! While your highly paid colleagues on the anchor desk are broadcasting from the dry safety of a heavily fortified television studio, you and your camera crew will be out in the maw of the storm, risking your lives for no good reason." -
Carl Hiaasen

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Friday, August 26, 2005

{Heart}

***Udated Link***

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Thursday, August 25, 2005

Annoying things from the Parking Garage

These are some of the many things that bother me about the others who use the parking garage at my office. Why do you care? You don't, so why are you reading this?!?

1)That lady in the new BMW who thinks she is still in high school and drives through the garage with loud hip-hop music reverberating from her windows. Come on lady, you are atleast in your 30's and no one else in the garage wants to hear your music as you drive by or as you sit in your car with the door open to finish the song.

2)The drivers of large SUV's like the Expeditions and Excursions who think just because their car touches the inside line on both sides that its ok to park in a compact car spot. (even worse are the ones who don't care that they are over the lines)

3)That lady whose window doesn't roll down, and she has to open the door to her car to badge out of the garage, and it always creates a line like 10 cars long behind her, because she can never find her badge!

4) The people who line up at only one entrance gate into the garage, thus creating a long line that causes traffic out in the street. There are two entrances people, lets use them both.

5)The people with nice cars who deliberatley take up two spots. Are you trying to avoid getting your door dinged? Too bad it was just keyed, Asshat!

Sorry for the personal grievances, but I had to vent somewhere. There is one person I do like in the garage, she is the lady that has her badge on a stick. She is always easily in and out of the garage, and its always so cute to see the window open just a bit, and a stick with a badge on it being thrust out!

"You know, somebody actually complimented me on my driving today. They left a little note on the windscreen, it said 'Parking Fine.' " -Tommy Cooper

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Wednesday, August 24, 2005

Intelligent Design

Join the noodle craze that is sweeping the nation:

His Noodly Goodness

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Stop Living Strong, already!

So I was watching a person walk by me this morning, apparently talking to themselves. As this is someone I see in the office daily, I could only assume they had a hands free device on and were talking on their phone. But it got me thinking that it will only get harder and harder to tell which people are on the phone, and which people are merely talking to themselves.

I'm sure you've all seen a homeless person on the street talking to themselves. It happens all too often. But now, we can no longer tell whether or not said person is sane. I was going to talk about how we should provide earpieces to homeless people in a program called "Hands Free for the Homeless" (that way they would atleast look sane), then I thought that that may be tasteless, and I would add a disclaimer about how mental illness is really not a joke and I was going to provide a link to The National Mental Health Association webpage, and then I saw this.



The whole LiveStrong bracelet thing has now gone too far. I was considering taking mental illness seriously, only to find out that those who should be taking it seriously, aren't! "Check your head?!?" Seriously? Is the need for funding so great that they have been reduced to quoting Beastie Boys lyrics and making bracelets that apeal to 13 year olds? I mean, I understand that mental illness in children is a problem that often goes undetected, but is jumping on a bandwagon really going to help? I hate to break it to these folks, but the Beastie Boys, whose original album was released in 1982, are virtually unknown to the youth these days. They have no concept of the fights we had for their right to party. I'm almost positive that they wouldn't know what to do with a wiffle ball bat. And this is the first thing that comes to mind when they think of Brass Monkey...
[no longer quite as funky]


When will fundraisers realize that the thing that made the LiveStrong bracelets so popular was the fact that they were one of kind, an original. Everyone else knows that everytime you take a photocopy of a photocopy, each succesive generation goes down in quality, why can't they figure it out. They would raise a lot more money, and do a lot more for their cause, if they would spend a little extra on coming up with original ideas.

I know that this isn't the first reincarnation of the Lance Armstrong bracelet...

But lets hope that it is the last!

"Fads are the kiss of death. When the fad goes away, you go with it. " -Conway Twitty (cuz when am I gonna get another chance to quote Conway Twitty)


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Tuesday, August 23, 2005

Pink Eye 2: Electric Boogaloo

Ok, so this has been driving me crazy lately. I vaguely remember watching a movie sometime in the 80's about conjunctivitis (aka Pink Eye). There was a guy who had pink eye who worked at a Pizza Parlor, he would rub his eyes, and then make pizza, and a huge pink eye epidemic spread around town. I could've sworn it was Scott Baio (thus the whole South Park, "Scott Baio gave me Pink Eye" reference) but I could be wrong, as the movie is not listed on his IMDB.com page.

Its possible I dreamed this, or maybe it was an episode of Joani loves Chachi, or maybe even just a public service announcement, all I really remember is the sinister music playing as he would rub his eye and make pizza.

Does anyone remember anything along these lines... or have I finally lost my mind?!?

"Well, I was standing out in a field, and I had this huge satellite dish stickin' outa my butt. Then there was hundreds of cows and aliens, and then I went up on their ship and Scott Baio gave me pink eye." -Eric Cartman


***UPDATE*** I have contacted the premier resource on movies from the 80's (and probably the only person reading this who got the whole Electric Boogaloo reference) and its starting to look like I am probably just losing my mind. But if anyone can restore my sanity, please do!

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Sadly, yes.

“Have we really gotten to the point in this country where people are so afraid of each other and so ashamed of their own bodies that they can’t let a 3-year-old run around naked without freaking out?”

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Monday, August 22, 2005

Expect the Expected


As you can see from the picture below, Thursday's Tie Day, went off without a hitch (faces of the innocent have been pixelated for their protection).



[As you can see, I have taken to pretending I'm on an album cover when I take pictures, it makes the whole thing a lot more fun]

This was a great weekend for me, I hope the rest of you enjoyed your time off. Friday night started off slow with happy hour, but ended on high note with 40 Year Old Virgin, which was the funniest movie I have seen in a while.


Saturday morning started off with what may become my new Saturday morning ritual of French Toast and TV. But everything picked up as I joined my friends for a birthday celebration in "the City" at a nice restaurant called Sauce. It was a small intimate location, (read "call ahead for a reservation") and had many highlights to the menu, the main three would be the Cilantro Chicken "Beggars Purse" to start, the Bacon Wrapped "Meatloaf" (who knew you could make Meatloaf better!) and for desert I would have to stick with the sponge cake made to taste like PB&J. Magnifique! The whole experience in general was good for me. I rarely get out into the city and frankly have developed a phobia about driving over there. But I think I might have conquered that fear (with the help of Google Maps) as I was able to get there with no problems, and find a parking spot within a block of the restaurant! (which anyone out here knows is simply a miracle)

Then to top everything off we went to a BBQ in the Lake Merritt area on Sunday afternoon. Another place I have never been to, and frequently avoid for no reason is Oakland (O-town to no one). Oakland always gets a bad rap about crime and violence, which is partly true, but there are some really nice parts of Oakland, Lake Merrit being one of those. I just found out that I have some friends from college that live out here, and they just moved to a really nice house like a block from the lake. It was really good to get out and meet new people, and to get re-acquainted with some old ones... ...plus there were three kinds of salsa, made by a Texan who knows what good salsa is supposed to taste like. We brought a beautifully arranged fruit salad served in a hollowed out watermelon. Everyone just loved it! (Thanks dear!)

The weirdest part of the evening though was the fact that I went to a small college in Texas of only about 1200 students, and here, half a continent away, I was at a party where a majority (or atleast half) of the people were Alumni. "

And the evening was topped off with a viewing of Guess Who.I had my apprehensions about this movie as well, thinking it was merely a crappy remake of a crappy remake of a classic movie. But it turned out surprisingly good. I guess that pretty much sums up the whole weekend for me... I didn't expect anything and got a lot in return! Buddha would be so proud...

"Expect nothing. Live frugally on surprise." ~Alice Walker


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Friday, August 19, 2005

Time Travel Business Solutions

So this is something I've been thinking about for a long time... Practical applications for time travel, once it is discovered.

The Temporal Microwave:
This fantastic device will cook your food the old fashioned way, but your food will be ready instantly. You simply put your raw food in the microwave, hit the button, and your food is sent back in time, where it is prepared by world class chefs, then sent back in time to the instant you pressed the button. BAM! Your food is not only ready sooner, but you've just cooked the best Thanksgiving dinner you've ever "warped" in record time!

Timewave Pizza:
You call in your order, and your pizza is at the door before you can even hang up the phone, perfect for late nite munchies.

Old World Washing Machine:
You simply put your laundry in the washing machine, select the wash cycle (including dry cleaning) and your laundry is sent back into the past to be delicately washed, dried and pressed by an old Chinese couple in the 1920's who know what quality is all about and it immediately shows up in your dryer, folded or on hangers.

Whenever Antique Store:
Can't find that Louis XIV end table to complete your living room? Having a hard time getting the original Star Wars Action Figures? No luck in locating an original Chinese Terra Cotta Soldier? Wish you still had Grandma's antique necklace? No problem for Whenever antiques, we employ only the best thiefs, grifters, and "temporal relocators" in the business. We'll send one of our qualified agents back in time to beg, borrow or steal whatever item you have lost or need. Why go to the hassle of sneaking through old castles, hiding from guards yourself, when for a small fee our experts will do it for you. Quality and authenticity 100% guaranteed!

Procastinators Inc:
Saved studying for that test to the last minute? Wish you had read the entire book instead of just a snippet? Haven't finished your work presentation and the meeting is in five minutes? No problem, simply use one of our patented Last Minute Nooks and not only will we give you the time you need, but you also get to choose the place. How about reading your book in Yosemite valley before even the Native Americans discovered it. Perhaps you think better on a deserted island at the dawn of time. Have a test on Ancient Rome? We'll send you to ancient Rome, and you can study there. So remember, if you like putting things off till the last minute, call Procastinators Incorporated! We'll give you the time you need. (Disclaimer: All travel relating to tests must be completed before you have actually sat down for the test!)

Any other ideas for practical Time Travel applications? Let me know.

"There's no future in time travel." -Anonymous

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Thursday, August 18, 2005

Thursday's are tie days

So going back to a posting I wrote back in February, I recently decided to adopt Thursday's as tie days. I've got all these ties I never really get a chance to wear, so I decided that once a week, I would wear a tie to work.

Why Thursday, you ask? Well, Friday's are casual days, and it would just look weird to wear one then, Monday's are crap, why make them worse, and Tuesday and Wednesday are right out! Thursday's mean the week is almost over, and what better way to announce that, than by wearing a tie!

So, I encourage all of you out there who work in a business casual environment, spice things up on Thursdays and wear a tie. Everyone at work will give you weird looks, "where are you going?" "who are you interviewing with?" and many other wonderful things will be said to you. So go out there and wear a tie. It makes you feel so much more professional, even though you are not!

In case you are confused, let me explain:
These are ties:

This is how you tie it: (I prefer the Half Windsor, the full Windsor always seems to be overdoing it, and the Four in hand makes it hang below my belt)

The things we, guys go through to look nice for you ladies!

This is how you look in a tie:

This is how you look without a tie:

Any Questions?

Be sure to check out A Full and Rhyming History of the Necktie

"An old suit, a battered hat, a perfect tie, and a good collar, that's what makes a well dressed man." -Baron de Meyer - a 1930 international style expert

"A well tied tie is the first serious step in life." -Oscar Wilde - wit, poet, dramatist 1854-1900 -- he tied his first tie at the age of two while wearing a smoking jacket


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Wednesday, August 17, 2005

New look and feel

So I've decided to update the look and feel of my blog. I liked the old look, but was getting tired of looking at it all the time.

I hope you enjoy the changes. I plan to update the picture on the left (some Easter Island type thing) from time to time as I take long skinny pictures that will fit in.
***UPDATE***The picture is now a chimney I found in my grandad's (now my mom's) field. It's always been one of my favorites, cuz, why is there a chimney in the middle of a field?

Don't worry, all posts will still reflect the same sense of... well "tim" that you've been accustomed to. Feel free to comment on the changes, I would enjoy your feedback.

"Everyone thinks of changing the world, but no one thinks of changing himself." -Leo Tolstoy

"Change is inevitable - except from a vending machine." -Robert C. Gallagher

"They must often change, who would be constant in happiness or wisdom." -Confucius

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Monday, August 15, 2005

...and I'm out!

So let's just count this as lesson learned!

Today, for some reason, I was craving chips and salsa. There's a little taqueria near my house which I, for some reason, have a fond memory of eating at with my roommate. My past recollections of the place were that is was ok, and semi-authentic. Well no more!

I had already resigned myself to the fact that I wasn't going to get a carne sauce with my cheese enchiladas, so it wasn't that. After perusing the menu choices, (sorry dear, no queso) I had two options if I wanted enchiladas, one was enchiladas a la carte, the other was a combination plate with a choice of enchiladas. When I told the lady what I wanted I said, "I'll have the cheese enchilada plate" assuming she would know I wanted the combination plate that included the rice and beans.

After waiting what seemed like forever, (and after my co-worker was almost done with her meal) I went up to the counter to see what the hold up was. "It'll be right up" I was assured. A few minutes later that fellow that assured me of this was at my table asking for my receipt to see what I had ordered. Apparently, his idea and my idea of "right up" are world's apart. I'm typically a congenial guy, I understood that sometimes mistakes are made and I was sure my food would be ready promptly. When they called my number I went up to the counter to get my food only to discover that its just the enchiladas, no rice, no beans. I explain politely that I ordered the combination plate, he confers with the register lady, long story short, rice and beans are put on my plate.

I heave a sigh of relief. Its been a long ordeal, but I finally got what I asked for and I'm ready to eat. I cut into the enchilada... its not cheese, its steak! So frustrated with the entire ordeal, I take my food back up to the counter, request my money back, and return to work, hungry, angry, and full of spit and vinegar (and not much else).

I wonder if the Taqueria in Walnut Creek reads my blog, and knew that I had dealt the mexican food industry in California a major blow with my last scathing review. Probably not, its probably much bigger than that. I'm sure the Taqueria Mafia is laughing in their sombreros right now and daring me to try and eat Mexican food out here again!

So no more mexican food for me... unless I'm back in Texas, I think they still like me!

If I'm not careful I may wake up with a Chihuahua's head in my bed.

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Monday, August 08, 2005

Kitten Cannon

I'm pretty sure there is something wrong with me...


And I probably need to see a therapist....


...But I cannot stop shooting this
Kitten out of this cannon...



...I'm sure I'll pay for this someday.

Current best distance 1,980. What you got?!?


/No wonder Garfield hates mondays

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Fish or cut bait?

So I found out this weekend that my girlfriend's mom reads my blog (her blog too). After a quick scrambling on both our parts through our blogs to make sure all postings were family friendly (not that there is anything to hide) we took a sigh of relief and discussed the subject for awhile. (though I did delete the post I had written on that wild weekend we spent with the 8 hot strippers and the midget dressed as a clown aboard that yacht in the Pacific)

I began to think about how I would feel if my own mother were reading this. Like I said, its not like my posts are racy or obscene or any thing along those lines, but its almost like your parents reading your diary. Granted, its an online diary that is available to read by anyone who googles Tim, but those are random people who I will never have to meet or take accountabitily for my own typing with.

So I thought to myself, is it time to find a new site for my blog, maybe one I tell no one about and is my own little secret hide-a-way for my thoughts and junk. But then I thought, who would read that crap... who reads this crap as it is anyway?

And then I decided that I might as well not worry about it. Its just another adoring fan to add to my list, and when it comes right down to it, if she can't take the full and unbridled (ok, maybe a little bridled) Tim, then she wouldn't like the toned down Tim either.

After all, I'm not 18 anymore and blogging about the cute girl in my math class (she was cute though, let me tell you!). This is just a workspace for my thoughts to create themselves anyway, and I'm pretty sure she'll be bored with this just as quickly as the rest of my friends.

So read on d's mom. (just try to ignore the misspellings and bad grammar ) Enjoy for as long as you like, maybe you will start a blog of your own for us to read. Who knows, maybe I'll even send a link to my own mother for her to read as well... ok, well, probably not.

"The public will believe anything, so long as it is not founded on truth." -Edith Sitwell

"Love truth, and pardon error." Voltaire

"I have been truthfull all along the way. The truth is more interesting, and if you tell the truth you never have to cover your tracks." -RealLivePreacher.com Weblog, 1/4/04

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Thursday, August 04, 2005

Team Building... with Dolphins!

So, I know I rarely fume about work on here, but since this is my outlet, you will just have to bear with me.

Recently our team won some money for some great accomplishment that we did (or something) and now we have to decide as a team where we want to go with this money.

Right off, someone suggested
Six Flags Marine World, and boy was I pumped. As a six year old boy at heart, I have been wanting to go to Marine World since I moved out here! In fact, I had made plans with the girls who tried to steal my car months ago, but of course, that fell through! So when I heard that not only would I get to go and not pay for it, but I would also get to miss a day of work for it, I almost peed myself!

But of course, we have a couple of old
biddies on our team who have to ruin it for everyone. "I don't wanna spend all day out in the hot sun" "I'm too old to have fun" Which is really frustrating because they are a minority on the team and everyone else wants to go!

I know, I know, we all won the money, and we should all find something we can all do to have fun, but I don't care! Timmy wants!

Our last team build was to
Winchester Mystery House, which was fun, but its not something I would normally choose for a day off work. I know, I shouldn't complain, it is a free day off. And now they are talking about doing the wine train, which would be fun, but some of them are anti-drinking, and I know they aren't willing to be DD's. So we'll end up riding a train in Napa, and not drinking, or paying for our own drinking, all the while I'll be thinking about whales and roller coasters.

FYI: If anyone is wondering what would be the perfect birthday, Christmas, or "just because" gift for the ol' Timmer, you can always keep this in mind:
Timmy Wants! {Aside to himself Maybe I should set up a paypal account so my readers can donate towards the "Send Tim to the dolphins" Fund... ...we'll see!}
UPDATE: Upon further reading it appears that you don't actually get to swim with the dolphins, only wear a wetsuit and sit near them for, according to the website, "30 minutes of in-water touchy-feely" time. Which is the same thing that got our neighborhood swim coach in trouble, all those years ago. So, nix the Marine World dolphin "touch feely", I'll just have to wait until I'm in Hawaii or something.

"To be stupid, selfish, and have good health are three requirements for happiness, though if stupidity is lacking, all is lost. " -Gustave Flaubert French realist novelist (1821-1880)

"SELFISH, adj. Devoid of consideration for the selfishness of others. " -Ambrose Bierce

"Next to the very young, the very old are the most selfish." -William Makepeace Thackery

and one more...

"The man who lives by himself and for himself is likely to be corrupted by the company he keeps. " -Joaquin Miller

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