Friday, April 18, 2003

Dr. Stanton..... Dr. Stanton, please call the OR-- Dr. Stanton....

House is empty with landlord away--


Got to go set up for the party! ;-)
My landlords' cat is evil-- when the dog is in, he sits on the second floor stairs just out of the arthritic retriever's reach and stares down at him. I've often had to physically shoo each other away from their face-off. When I let him (the dog) outside, the cat comes up to the french doors and bats at the window, driving poor dog crazy.

And did I mention that he does everything he can to get at your dinner (sometimes jumping up onto the table) and complains vociferously if he doesn't get his extra treat of tuna and half and half when he wants it.

I'm tempted to not intervene one of these days--

Ah well, he's a _lot_ better behaved than some humans I have known.

On a completely different note, shock therapy in Poland has opened up a market for all those out of work Russian spies out there who still want to listen to the Polish news in Esperanto.

More to come...

Thursday, April 17, 2003

I spent a few hours yesterday with an interesting guy and a few lawyers :-)

Actually, I had a good time-- even if it was switching from proscecutor to referee to who knows what.

Lesson of the day: Never leave home without a copy of Ginsburg's Howl. You never know when it might come in handy.

Oh, and keep a file on a certain author.

Seriously, I have been intrigued by the nature of the few Blog meetups I have experienced. I could also use some computer troubleshooting advice from someone who is neither cat nor computer.

In other news, life has gone back to imitating satire. I just have to get past Doc Daneeka....

We even have an updated version of war profiteering....

The Financial Times (U.K.) reports that
perhaps the surest sign that the campaign in Iraq has shifted from a
military to a commercial footing is a conference to be held in Washington
next month. Participants from business, government and the non-profit
sector are to gather on May 5 for the first Iraqi reconstruction

"You are invited to participate in the most important reconstruction
event of the year," the invitation reads. "The Iraqi Reconstruction
Conference will provide the latest information on reconstruction programs
and funding." For $595 (there is a $100 discount for early
registration), corporate executives are promised "networking opportunities with top
government officials" and an "exclusive directory" of agencies and
organizations involved in the process.

Excerpted from Today's (041703) Global Development Briefing.

US policies has also given other countries' economies a boost-- Take the furniture business in Colombia.

New York Police stumbled onto one of the most inventive methods of smuggling heroin I've ever seen. Mary Lou Finlay (of the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation's news magazine As It Happens) did a very good interview with Lt. William Waters of the Queens Narcotics Unit.

Late last week, NYPD busted a suspected drug lab only to find--- furniture. Apparently, some Colombian craftsman mixed the pure heroin with resin, making a malleable substance that was then molded to look like ornamental woodwork on the various pieces of a bedroom set. Apparently, it was very difficult to differentiate them from actual headboards and dressers. That is, when it was solid. The smugglers had the furniture delivered to the apartment in question, where they proceeded to grind down each piece of furniture to a pile of sawdust and chemically extract the heroin.

It appears invention might actually be a bastard child.

More soon.

Wednesday, April 16, 2003

Since many government orgs and private firms are under public disclosure regulations, I make it a point to scan the Washington Post Want Ads a couple times a week. I've occasionally found some interesting stuff, but this time I came across a listing that I thought y'all should see:

Crime Pays It's alarming that 14% have it and 100% want it. We have the highest closing percentage of any home product. Proven Manager-Closer needed to ignite our sales force. Salary, bonus, benfits, 401k, vacation, and more. Mr. Stevens 1-800-321-HOME.

Talk about gibberish. Though it would be interesting to ignite the sales staff.

Tuesday, April 15, 2003

So many conservative talking heads complain that people are always criticizing or "sniping" at them, apparently for no reason but their (liberals') own malevolence. It never occurs to them that they may do things that merit that treatment.

The Unfunny Factor Washington Post 041503 (excerpts)

While Emceeing a gala for "Best Friends," a charity benefiting inner-city schoolchildren, O'Reilly had to fill time during a delay.

Members of the "Best Men," as the sixth-to-eighth-grade boys in the program are called, were delayed getting onstage to perform a lip-synced rendition of the Four Tops' standard "Reach Out (I'll be There)." O'Reilly ad-libbed: "Does anyone know where the Best Men are? I hope they're not in the parking lot stealing our hubcaps."

Best Friends founder Elayne Bennett.... told [the columnist] "I didn't hear it, but it was absolutely a throwaway line."

That's pretty egregious.
Beware the ides of April! The taxman cometh!

Also beware of Texans in togas:

"I came to bury Saddam, not to praise him."

Monday, April 14, 2003

I'm happy I chose to go to TRASHIONALS instead of setting myself up for being both at the dealing and receiving ends of the Bush administration's dangerous and confused policies. Not only would I be buffeted by the stuff coming down the bureaucratic pike, I would also have to deal with the world's (often angry) reaction to each of them on a very personal level.

Instead I had fun at a trash tournament where I actually had a shot at answering questions. Thank you whoever wrote those packets and avoided the mire of obscure '70s sitcom pilots and lists of the 1995 Sul Ross State baseball team. Though, I was disappointed with the incredible amount of questions on very minor hockey leagues. I was half expecting questions on the Newfoundland Hockey League's Carribean expansion teams. But there was enough of a normal-person to savant questions.

As I like to determine a person's temperament by blending the contents of their refrigerators, I wonder how that would work on my answers over the weekend. A jackelope, Kim Jong Il, Inuit Cinema, potato chips, and tongue forking would come out to be pretty strange but then I'm hardly normal.

Thanks to Edmund, Tricia, Drew, Tim and everyone else who let me come along for the ride. It was nice to see Allison, Josh, the assembled Dartmouth undergrad team, and other College Bowl luminaries. But even beyond that, it was great to see my good friends (and Dartmouth grads) Brian and Michael!!! It has been a long time and it was great to connect with them and see that they were doing well. Four of us oddball Dartmouth alums in one place! I guess we could have formed a team if we wanted to, but there was more than enough talent and competition out there.

The mostly GWU team "So Much for Shock and Awe" tolerated Mr. "Gin Rummy" Rumsfeld's only occasional contributions to our score. In the end, we got packets of British royalty trading cards as champions of the O'Leary bracket. I haven't opened them since I don't want to lose the papparazzi (sp?). Tricia also got a special award. Talk to her if you want to know what it was, but make sure you ask about the King of Hearts ;-)

More importantly, I want to publicly congratulate Tricia and Drew for their incredible skill and nerves of steel driving around Kafkaville (I mean greater Boston). I owe them a sizeable debt of gratitude--especially Tricia since she had to be squished in the back of our rollerskate car made worse by my occasional creaking and groaning. Not to mention the angle that I was wedged into the seat.

OK-- I'm still recovering from the weekend but I'll mention a few quick things:

Having never read the Wheel of Time series, I haven't the faintest idea what an Ajah is. But I've come out as at least three different colors all with equally accurate answers: brown (caring absent-minded professor), white (hyperlogical sarcastic vulcan) and blue (expert political manipulator). Though I wonder about the people who truthfully come out as green (passionate nymphomaniac with superhuman stamina). There are also a couple of small blind spots in how the questions come out.....Maybe some of you out there might be able to shed some light on this? Thanks to Tricia for pointing me in this direction.

What's your Ajah?
brought to you by Quizilla

I have also set up an appropriately messed-up country in the QB Alliance of the world of Nation States . Check outDezzar, where the forests are really deserts, the people breed faster than rabbits, and a war is raging across the Tavril Sea. Don't let our friendly exterior fool you, I'm going to shake things up pretty soon.

I've been taking part in Tim's Jukebox from Hell (shudder!!) to come up with the truly worst song put out by the often masochistic music industry. Tim's New England State test has also told me that my character is best embodied by the state of Vermont. Emphasis on education, socially liberal, and pro-agriculture. Who'd a thunk it?

It's time to head home.