Creature of Habit

I keep a stash of dog biscuits in my car, and each morning, as I leave for work, each of my buddies gets a treat. This morning, I reached in and pulled out three biscuits, and my system needed a manual override to put the third back in the bag.

Umm … Was that Intentional?

Speaking of Wired News, another of their headlines made me do a double take this morning. They had an interesting article about how Viagra has helped the endangered species population by reducing the demand for animal parts used in traditional aphrodisiac recipes. I was somewhat amused by their headline: \"Viagra Swells Scarce Animal Count\", along with the text in the email summary I received: \"Viagra sales have contributed to a softer market for traditional Chinese impotence remedies\". Viagra … swells … softer … okaaaay….which word doesn\’t fit?

All Wired Up With No Place to "Go"

“Wardriving”, for those not up on the latest geek buzzwords, is a popular pursuit of wireless computing junkies. They drive around with their laptops, looking for insecure wireless networks that (usually unintentionally) provide free internet access, and possibly sensitive information, to the wardrivers. According to this Wired News article, participants in the WorldWide WarDrive discovered an interesting bit of tourist information about New York:

“There’s something just plain wrong about a city where you can find 100 open wireless networks in a half hour and not one public bathroom,” grumbled Ken Fandello, New York network consultant, occasional WarDriver, and owner of a set of weak kidneys.

As someone who makes a living in the IT field but is baffled by the urgent need some people seem to have to be constantly connected, I couldn’t agree more.

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Celebrity Endorsements

Today I got a flyer in the mail from Charlton Heston, and a telephone message from \"NASCAR champion Darrell Waltrip.\" It\’s a good thing Darrell told me why he was famous, or I wouldn\’t have known. Anyway, both of my good buddies were urging me to vote for Mitch McConnell in the upcoming Senate election, in order to preserve our Second Amendment right to bear arms. Since neither one of them is from Kentucky, I suppose it\’s not surprising that they don\’t really have a firm grasp of the issues in this race. Mitch\’s opponent, Lois Weinberg, doesn\’t seem to support gun control any more than Mitch does. It\’s the First Amendment she wants to repeal, not the Second. But I don\’t suppose Charlton and Darrell want to open that can of worms. They probably think supporting free speech is unpatriotic too. What really perplexes me is why Mitch thinks that someone\’s ability to drive a car in circles real fast would make me likely to be swayed by his political analysis.

Farewell, Faithful Friend Frodo

Two days of rain doesn’t make very good gravedigging conditions.
But this morning, there was no doubt that it was time to say goodbye to
Frodo.
Although he had been showing minor signs of age for some time, he was still full of energy and life
until last night, when he was having difficulty standing and showed no interest in food.
This morning he was worse, and it was obvious he didn’t have much time left, and there would be no
joy in what little time he did have, so delaying the inevitable wouldn’t be pleasant for either of us.
There’s some comfort in the thought that his rapid decline meant that he suffered very little,
and it also made my decision a no-brainer with no agonizing about whether it was the right time.
I’ll miss him, but life is temporary, and he gave me a good eleven years.

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Justice or Bloodthirst

I see that prosecutors in VA, MD, AL, and the US DOJ are arguing over who gets to fry the DC snipers. I think this is a reflection of our violent, vengeful, vindictive society. Certainly these guys, especially the older one, need to do some serious time somewhere, maybe life (I don\’t support state-sanctioned killing). But that\’s going to happen regardless of jurisdiction. I think if I lived in one of the states where they\’d been murdering people, I\’d be happy to see some other state bear the cost of trying and imprisoning them. This trial is going to be expensive and disruptive. It needs to happen. But it\’s not the kind of thing that anybody should take pleasure in. It\’s an ugly job that needs to be done. I just don\’t understand everybody clamoring to be the one who gets to do it.

Spooky Season

I can’t help but wonder if somebody’s twisted sense of humor was the reason for Halloween and Election Day being so close together.
There’s a lot to ponder this season. The news is full of the tragic death of Senator Paul Wellstone and several members of his family and staff. Everyone who knew anything about him seems to agree that he was a rare species, a successful politician with a conscience.

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It’s Monday morning, do you know where your horses are?

As I pulled out of the driveway to go to work this morning, I noticed my three horses in a section of pasture where they didn’t belong. (I split up the pasture into smaller sections with electric polywire for rotation). There wasn’t really a problem with that, except if they weren’t smart enough to go back where they came from, they had no water supply. It’s a cool day, they’re eating wet grass, they’ll last until tonight … Naaah .. I better go straighten things out. Turn around and drive back in, and wander out to the pasture.

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Doonesbury Does Blogs

I guess I shouldn’t be surprised to see Doonesbury lampoon this fad right after I get sucked into it.
Here’s Monday’s strip; I suspect we’re in for a week of this. I searched briefly for a forgotten quote from Hunter Thompson about Garry Trudeau (in reference to the Duke character), but couldn’t find it. That’s a pity, because I like Doonesbury so much that I’d rather quote someone else’s profanities about Trudeau than utter them myself in tacit admission that he’s hit a nerve.

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Monday Morning Wonders

Ah … what a way to start the week. A couple hours late to work, after dealing with an equine event at home that deserves its own chapter, when I get around to it.
Don’t even get the office door unlocked before I get hit with the latest TSM problem.
Nothing that needs immediate attention, just another long-term headache. I shouldn’t be surprised.
Get in the office, and don’t have enough sense to start the coffeepot before I try to listen to the voicemail that my phone display says is waiting.
I’m sure it’s not good news, but if it hasn’t fixed itself by now, I guess I have to deal with it.
Push the wrong button, the phone beeps and the display says “Do Not Disturb”. I’m tempted to leave it like that, but I guess I need to uncloak.
Start trying to figure out what sequence of buttons I need to push to make me phonable again.
Ooops .. that wasn’t it … that makes the display say “Music Off”.
Music? Phones do music? What happens if I do this?
Display says “Music On”. Phone starts playing “God Blessed Texas”. Cool!
Whoever installed this phone system tuned its music system to K-93, one of the local country stations.
I guess even the new high-tech phone installations are still being done by the old guard “telephone men” in the Comms/Network group,
instead of the network geeks who would have probably selected some kind of punk or hiphop.

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