Sunday, December 20, 2009

Jimmy Wales

Most people assume the fights are going to be the left versus the right, but it always is the reasonable versus the jerks.

Friday, November 20, 2009

Jessamyn West

A taste for irony has kept more hearts from breaking than a sense of humor, for it takes irony to appreciate the joke which is on oneself.

Sunday, September 20, 2009


Sometimes life leaves a hundred dollar bill on your dresser, and you don't realize until later that it's because it fucked you.


Friday, August 28, 2009

Emo Phillips

I used to think that the brain was the most wonderful organ in my body. Then I realized who was telling me this.

Alice Roosevelt Longworth

The secret of eternal youth is arrested development.

Anatole France

If fifty million people say a foolish thing, it is still a foolish thing.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Health Care Fit for Animals

Health care has been increasingly on my mind as of late and not just for the obvious reason it is in the news and the debate seems to have drawn out every right wing ass hat with an opinion.

Over the past month I've paid (or rather my insurance has paid for) two trips to the ER, several trips to the doctor and specialists. I am thankful that I have medical insurance that covers this but worry every day about what would happen if I didn't have it. Add to that the stories that I am hearing on a daily basis of people in a literal life and death struggle to pay for their own healthcare and I think it has become obvious that things have to change.

This NY Times OpEd piece by Nicholas D Kristof hits the nail on the head and I think final line summarizes my thoughts quite well:
What’s un-American isn’t a greater government role in health care but an existing system in which Americans without insurance get health care, if at all, in livestock pens.

Kristof is referring to an incident that helped lead to the change of heart by Wendell Potter, a former head of corporate communications for Humana and Cygna. While visiting his home town he witnessed a free healthcare care clinic put on at the county fairgrounds. People were treated out in the open in the stalls meant for livestock.

The Taste of Health Insurance

Monday, August 24, 2009

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Barney Frank

Ma'am, trying to have a conversation with you would be like trying to argue with a dining room table. I have no interest in doing it.

Friday, August 07, 2009

Bobby McFerrin Demonstrates a Pentatonic Scale

I guess I'm just in a musical mood today. I just watched this and was struck. I'm not sure if it is because he demonstrates that even though we live a very disconnected existence that we will all remain inherently connected... or if it is just that Bobby McFerrin is so damned cool. Either way, this makes me smile.

World Science Festival 2009: Bobby McFerrin Demonstrates the Power of the Pentatonic Scale from World Science Festival on Vimeo.

Ray Charles Performing Ring of Fire

Wednesday, August 05, 2009

Clinical Impression: Chest Pain and SHAAARRKKSSSS!!!!!!

This weekend I made a trip to the ER. On Sunday I was having trouble taking a deep breath and decided to go to a walk in clinic at the local pharmacy. Well, once I finally got to see the physician or nurse practitioner or physician's assistant, they made the determination that I was probably having acid reflux, but weren't willing to bet on it and decided that in order to keep their malpractice insurance they needed to send me to the ER. Well, after 3 hours in the emergency room and and EKG, chest x-ray, heart monitor and blood work, it turns out that I have... Drum-roll please!!!

Nobody knows. The diagnosis was "chest pain".

No shit. I could have saved my self a $200 ER co-pay and a lot of lost chest hair by staying home. While I was there they did manage to ensure that I didn't have something that would kill me immediately and discharged me with a referral to a cardiac specialist group. It is now Wednesday and I've still not heard back from them regarding the referral. I'm glad it wasn't urgent. Anyway, here are a few pictures of the adventure. I didn't upload the one with my shirt off showing all the EKG and heart monitor patches. There were 17 total. They were all stuck on very well. I am hairy. You do the math.

By the way. It is shark week on TV. The monitor cables were too short for me to change the channel in my room at the ER, so I had to watch two hours of people rating which shark is the worst to get ripped to shreds by as well as peoples first hand accounts of getting ripped to shreds by those very same sharks.

For the record, according to the show, the most badass shark of them all is the Bull Shark. Not only will it fuck your shit up in the open ocean, it will swim upriver in fresh water to get your sorry ass. So stay out of the water, they are coming for you.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Douglas Adams

The major difference between a thing that might go wrong and a thing that cannot possibly go wrong is that when a thing that cannot possibly go wrong goes wrong it usually turns out to be impossible to get at or repair.

Monday, June 01, 2009

Saturday, May 23, 2009

Thomas H. Huxley

Science is nothing but trained and organized common sense, differing from the latter only as a veteran may differ from a raw recruit: and its methods differ from those of common sense only as far as the guardsman's cut and thrust differ from the manner in which a savage wields his club.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Tuesday, April 07, 2009

John Goekler: The Most Dangerous Person in the World?

This article about the things that are really killing us is quite insightful. It is worth a read and is full of ammunition to use whenever you hear somebody talking about "terrorists".
Terrorism is an act of the weak. But so is walking through the airport in our socks.

We can make better choices.

Friday, March 13, 2009

John Stewart

I don't watch the Daily Show on a regular basis, but things like this make me think that John Stewart and his team deserve a Pulitzer Prize for journalism.

Thursday, March 05, 2009

Blaise Pascal

We are generally the better persuaded by the reasons we discover ourselves than by those given to us by others.

Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

To be pleased with one's limits is a wretched state.

Tuesday, March 03, 2009

Horace Walpole

The world is a tragedy to those who feel, but a comedy to those who think.

Elizabeth Taylor

The problem with people who have no vices is that generally you can be pretty sure they're going to have some pretty annoying virtues.

Marquis de la Grange

When we ask for advice, we are usually looking for an accomplice.

John Gaule

A complex system that works is invariably found to have evolved from a simple system that works.

Who was really being tested by the Binding of Isaac

In The Fall of Hyperion (a space opera science fiction novel that I am currently listening to) the author, Dan Simmons, makes an interesting claim.  In the story of the Binding of Isaac, it was not Abraham, but God who was being tested. In the classic interpretation of the bible verse it is the faith of Abraham which God wished to plumb by commanding Abraham to sacrifice Isaac. Simmons, in the novel, claims something different. He says it is God who was being tested, by Abraham, to see if he was worthy to be the god of Abraham. 

The Cult of Done Manifesto

I ran across this today and thought it was relevant to my current state of mind. Maybe it will be relevant to you...

The Cult of Done Manifesto
  1. There are three states of being. Not knowing, action and completion.
  2. Accept that everything is a draft. It helps to get it done.
  3. There is no editing stage.
  4. Pretending you know what you're doing is almost the same as knowing what you are doing, so just accept that you know what you're doing even if you don't and do it.
  5. Banish procrastination. If you wait more than a week to get an idea done, abandon it.
  6. The point of being done is not to finish but to get other things done.
  7. Once you're done you can throw it away.
  8. Laugh at perfection. It's boring and keeps you from being done.
  9. People without dirty hands are wrong. Doing something makes you right.
  10. Failure counts as done. So do mistakes.
  11. Destruction is a variant of done.
  12. If you have an idea and publish it on the internet, that counts as a ghost of done.
  13. Done is the engine of more.


I am jealous of Bre's job if not his name.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Waiting for software to install

Over the last couple of days I have been struggling to get some software installed on my machine at work. It all seems to work until I get to the end and then the installer just sits there and says "Searching for installed features". I've been reluctant to do anything else on my computer besides browse the web as it would appear that the more I do, the higher the probability of my machine crashing. Having suffered through about 4 crashes at this point I'm reluctant to do anything that might incur the wrath of the computer gods. So for now that has limited me to browsing the web and that is about it. In doing so I've had the chance to catch up on some reading. This last weekend's snowboard trip put me even further behind. I just ran across this sublime little piece of flotsam:

George Bernard Shaw

Reading made Don Quixote a gentleman. Believing what he read made him mad.

Oscar Wilde

One should absorb the colour of life, but one should never remember its details. Details are always vulgar.

Nathaniel Borenstein

The most likely way for the world to be destroyed, most experts agree, is by accident. That's where we come in; we're computer professionals. We cause accidents.

Dr. Seuss

I like nonsense, it wakes up the brain cells. Fantasy is a necessary ingredient in living, It's a way of looking at life through the wrong end of a telescope. Which is what I do, And that enables you to laugh at life's realities.

H. H. Williams

Furious activity is no substitute for understanding.

Henry Kissinger

The absence of alternatives clears the mind marvelously.

Doug Larson

If the English language made any sense, a catastrophe would be an apostrophe with fur.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009