Three Examples Demonstrate a Proof

Stolen from Bill in Exile:

1. They cheered the execution of an innocent man.

2. They screamed, “Let him die” when told of a person with cancer and no insurance.

3.  They booed a United States fighting man in uniform serving in Iraq.

This is the face of the republican party today.

This who who they are and what they stand for.

And these people are not worthy of being called Americans.

They are, simply put, a disgrace.

After Seeing This…

…I was extra nice to my Barista this morning. I honestly never realized they had it so bad.

BTW, this is exactly the kind of guy I would’ve gone after when I was his age. Amazing how tastes change as you get older. Anyhow, I still think he’s cute, but from experience I know that very often under that kind of blond cuteness there lurks an unbridled propensity to break hearts, not that I’m saying he would

Check out his other videos. This boy doesn’t need Starbucks…he needs a manager and a record contract!

Personal Style

I think you reach a point in life where the obsessions of your youth are no longer quite so important as they once were. While flipping through an issue of Details this morning and seeing the article that screamed “Must Have Looks for Fall” I got to thinking how silly it all is. Fashion, like a lot of things in life, is transitory. What’s hot today is going to be considered dated tomorrow, so why worry about it? That’s why I think it’s important that people find their own sense of style. Find clothes that are comfortable, match your lifestyle, and don’t break the bank—because sooner or later all of it ends up at Goodwill or in the garbage.

For me, my personal style has been T-Shirts, Polos, and jeans for as long as I can remember. Once upon a time they were the official uniform of the clone brigade in the bars and I always felt less than properly dressed when I showed up in a polo shirt that sported an English flag instead of a green alligator.  (Even back in the day the premium paid for that little alligator was more than I could afford. Funny how things never seem to change.)

Out of habit, I still wear most shirts tucked in. After seeing some makeover show several years ago I know that alone has me teetering dangerously close to “doddering old fool” status, but I’m comfortable with it.  When my shirts aren’t tucked in, they look (to me) like they’re hanging down to my knees and it just doesn’t work on this body.  Maybe it would look better if I didn’t have the massive belly in the way. (BTW, weight is something else I no longer obsess about. I found it’s easier to just love and accept myself as I am instead of obsessing over every plus-or-minus 5 pound swing I go through. It’s sad when I read through old journals and remember that I was convinced if I could only lose 20 pounds―while easily fitting into size 33 jeans―all would be right in the world.  To my younger self I say, “Get over it. You’re perfect just the way you are.”

I never used to wear belts with my jeans. Of course, back then I had a butt that kept my pants from sliding off.

There are some things that I wore when I was younger that I won’t wear today: white jeans. Leather jackets. Anything with a “Members Only” label. Frye boots (another one-time seeming requirement for going out dancing).

What about you? Have you found a style that works for you, day in and day out?

You May Have Noticed…

…that I’ve been pretty quiet lately.

It’s been a combination of things, but mostly because after three long months in that pot-and-patchouli infused hotel, Ben and I are finally moved and settling into our own place again.

Every evening since the move last weekend has been spent sifting through the hundred or so boxes that accompanied us on this journey, unpacking and deciding what to keep out, what to put away in the apartment, what to toss or donate (yeah, we should’ve done a lot more of that before moving, but you know how that goes), and what to put into long-term storage.  We’ve made excellent headway, and the place is finally starting to look like home.  Hopefully by the end of today, all that will remain (for next weekend) is buying new fish and setting up the aquarium.

 

Apollo 18

Meh.

Saw it yesterday. It was entertaining. Neither Ben or I felt cheated for spending $5.00 on a matinee showing. We might have felt different had we paid full price.

Dark and brooding, based on the interestingif somewhat unbelievable premise that’s been floating around the dark conspiracy-ridden corners of the interwebs for years (just Google Apollo 18, 19, or 20)that the reason we’ve never been back to the moon is that we encountered something so awful there that it could never be publicly revealed.

It’s presented as “real” in the same manner as The Blair Witch Project or Cloverfield—in this case the film having been “pieced together from footage anonymously uploaded” to a website.

But the overall believability was immediately diminished for me when I recognized two of the “astronauts” as being actors (Lloyd Owen and Warren Christie) I’ve seen numerous times before; Christie actually plays a regular character on SyFy’s current series Alphas

Of course, after you see how the movie ends, you immediately find yourself wondering how any of this “real” footage—a lot of it supposedly transferred from 16mm film—ever made it back to earth to begin with. When I looked at Ben and asked that, he just turned to me and raising a finger to his lips said, “Shhh!”

What Kind of Computer Should I Buy?

I can’t tell you how many times I’ve been asked that at work.  I guess people assume that since I provide hardware support I know everything about anything PC-related.  Trouble is, they never really like the answer I give them:

“Get a Mac.”

The usual response? “I meant what kind of Windows computer!”

I tell them I really can’t recommend any computer running Windows, and then relate my own story of how, after being a loyal user since Windows 2.1, I reached the end of my rope with the OS.  When pressed, I usually say, “Okay, if you have to buy a Windows box, then go with Dell or HP, but be warned you’ll be stuck with Windows 7, a ton of useless presinstalled crapware and 30-day trials that will nag you incessantly when the trial period expires if you don’t uninstall them.  The first thing I would recommend if you insist on going this route is to find someone to completely wipe the box and do a clean reinstall of the OS without all the garbage.”

“How much would you charge to do that?”

“I don’t do any outside work.”

At this point they usually get a worried expression on their face and then come the excuses (all of which I used myself at one time or another since I saw my first Mac in 1987 and when I finally made the switch in 2009) and begin with, “I’d really like to get a Mac, but…”

  • They’re too expensive.
  • I’m replacing an old computer and none of my software will work.
  • Nothing I do on a Mac will be compatible with Windows.
  • My husband/wife/partner uses Windows.

So then I explain that yes, Macs are more expensive than your average PC, but you get what you pay for: beautifully designed hardware and software that always just works

It’s true that out-of-the-box, Windows software will not run on a Mac, but you can install Parallels or BootCamp and run the bug-ridden² OS on your Mac hardware if you insist. Or, you can go out and find equivalent native Mac software that does the same thing your Windows software does.  It forces you out of the “I could never live without…” mindset. (Although after two years, I’m still missing Thumbs Plus.)

If by “nothing” compatible you mean standard word processing, spreadsheet, and presentation software, that’s totally false.  Not only does Microsoft have a fully-compatible version of Office for Mac available, Apple’s own productivity suite, iWork, both imports and exports files in Office format.

And finally, who cares if your significant other uses Windows? Do you share the same toothbrush?  If you bring home a shiny new Mac and show him/her how beautiful it is and how easy it is to do things on it, you might convert them.

And did I mention that Mac still remains (for the most part) virus-free? You can’t say that about Windows.

So what invariably happens? They go out and buy a $400 piece of shit laptop from Best Buy and wonder why it works so poorly or blows up after only a year of use.

Maybe I should start telling them to go buy an iPad. At least that way they’ll get more than a year out of a $400 investment…

¹First release of major upgrades to the operating system notwithstanding.
²Last week when I did a fresh install of Windows XP SP3 on a machine at work, there were 108 updates. ONE HUNDRED EIGHT.

Quote of the Day

“To those millions of Americans who have finally begun paying attention to politics and watched with exasperation the tragicomedy of the debt ceiling extension, it may have come as a shock that the Republican Party is so full of lunatics. To be sure, the party, like any political party on earth, has always had its share of crackpots, like Robert K. Dornan or William E. Dannemeyer. But the crackpot outliers of two decades ago have become the vital center today: Steve King, Michele Bachman (now a leading presidential candidate as well), Paul Broun, Patrick McHenry, Virginia Foxx, Louie Gohmert, Allen West. The Congressional directory now reads like a casebook of lunacy.”Mike Lofgren

My Thoughts Exactly

From Distributorcap NY:

When I went to the voting booth on November 4, 2008, I (and everybody else) knew there was no way that Barack Obama would be able to live up to all the hype and promise the media, the country and his own campaign had cast upon him during the electoral season. While I had much trepidation in voting for Obama, I was never going to vote for any Republican (more so with Lizzie Borden sitting a heartbeat away). I pulled the mechanical lever (NY still had the old machines) and actually thought that despite the over-hype and he potential let downs – Obama was someone that would bring about some change and some semblance of progressive principles to governing.

In 2000, when Bush was appointed king by Sandra Day O’Connor, we all knew what we were getting – an inarticulate, brainless simpleton who would pick up a lot of brush and carry out the orders of his billionaire check-writers and born-again disciples. In 2008, I thought as I cast that ballot that we were at least potentially getting rid of 8 years of Republican idiocracy and the enormous amount of destruction the Bush-Cheney reign of terror wreaked upon the planet.

I could not have been more wrong.

By the fact this country did not elect a Republican in 2008 – we should all just lay back and heave a big sigh of relief that no right-wing damage was not imposed on the country for the past 3 years. Stuff like:

Extending the Bush tax cuts for the wealthy. Keeping Guantanamo open. Backing down on the debt deal. Gutting environmental legislation. Pulling the public option off the table before it even got there. Putting Social Security and Medicare on the table. Failing to prosecute Wall Street crooks. Failing to prosecute war criminals. Failing to repeal telecom immunity. Expanding the wars in Iraq, Afghanistan and adding Libya. Giving up on green jobs and high-speed rail. Approving more oil pipelines and offshore drilling. Slashing the safety net. And letting the Republicans completely control the narrative despite their minority status and deep distrust among the populace.

Was I dreaming or did none of that happen?

I gave up on Obama when he caved on the Bush tax cuts last December. After that I thought he would go from being some minor spark of change to a benign and hapless speech giver that would at least prevent a total Republican steam roller.

Yesterday between the speech-gate and smog-gate, I guess I was wrong there too.

This President is a nothing more than Richard Lugar or Chuck Hagel or John Warner – a somewhat moderate 80’s Republican.  He is no progressive and I don’t think he is much of Democrat.  In fact I don’t think of much of Obama at all anymore.

In the back of my mind I have been trying to justify sticking with him, but the complete collapse on something as little as a speech date – and then a total cave-in to the GOP on the EPA rules – that is it for me.

He’s gone from being benign to actually enhancing the rightwing talking point machine. He is Rush’s biggest wet dream. I never thought a Democrat could cause so much damage to the very people who backed him –  he is actually setting back progressive principles decades. I truly never thought I’d get to this point and I can no longer kid myself.

People can bash me all they want for harshly criticizing a Democratic President.  The Democratic party can call me all they want for money – not one nickel for any candidate that does not speak out against the President’s current policies.  The Barack Obama party doesn’t need me or any other individuals for that matter – the endless Citizens United money stream coming from corporate America should be more than enough to pay for his 2012 campaign.

Lion, Tamed

I love Apple. Don’t get me wrong. But over the past couple weeks, I’ve become increasingly disenchanted with Lion, aka OS X 10.7.  The dropped wireless connections were the worst part of it, but the spinning beach balls and the never-ending stream of “The application has quit unexpectedly” messages were really getting to be a pain in the ass.  I never had the spinning beach balls under Snow Leopard like I’ve had under Lion.

A couple days ago I resolved to return to Snow Leopard (aka OS X 10.6.), where I knew that everything would work.  Once again I performed due diligence, not only having a complete Time Machine backup on hand, but I’d also manually transferred my profile onto a different external drive…just in case.

I wiped the drive, reinstalled Snow Leopard, and applied all the patches.  Everything transferred from my backups except my emails.

Seriously, Apple?

I tried importing through Mail.  I’d get back all my folders, but they’d all be empty.  I tried transferring them manually.  Same issue.  Did Apple change their mail format?  I don’t know, but after a couple hours of this nonsense I said fuck it, and wiped the drive a second time, in preparation for doing a fresh install (not an upgrade) of Lion, hoping this would also solve the other, myriad problems I’d been having.

I knew full well I’d probably lose the ability to use my Verizon air card, but at this point it was either that or my emails.  I chose to lose the air card.

The install was fairly painless, and everything (including iTunes) transferred back from my manual backup without incident.  I had tried to use the Migration Assistant, but apparently you can’t overwrite an existing profile with one of the same name. Seriously, Apple?

Whatever.  I got everything back.

On a lark, I plugged in the Verizon modem.  It worked.  Fuck me in high heels and call me Sally, the proprietary software wasn’t even needed.  Good thing, too, because they still haven’t gotten an update out for Lion.

If I’d known this when Lion came out I would’ve done a clean install from the very beginning.

Since Ben is having the same wireless issues, I’m now trying to talk him into doing the same thing…