Your Feedback Is Welcome

Had a couple unrelated thoughts this afternoon after discussing a point or two with different people– interested to hear from others on either or both:

  1. Why do you think it is that couples tend to hang out with other couples?  You don’t seem to see a couple with a “third wheel” that often, or, just for example, maybe a couple with a pair of un-coupled friends.  I mean, it happens, sure, but why do you think “another couple” would be a couple’s first choice for partners at a social engagement?  What makes that better than one of these other scenarios?
  2. The way that people get information seems to shift more and more toward non-traditional means within cyberspace (pseudo-reporting/opinion pieces through blogs being one example).  I wonder if there’s any verifiable evidence that average Internet users are shying away from traditional news mediums, and, if so, I wonder if and when there will ever be a backlash where someone starts saying, “What the hell does this guy know?  That’s just an opinion…”  Maybe it comes out of time and experience, or maybe there has been a slow and steady shift, but journalism seems to be more subjective than ever.  I’m wondering, when is the backlash due to happen, and is there any way we can speed it up?

Carry on with your weekend.  I have 64 minutes to go.

33 to Go

There are a lot of things that I will not miss at all about living in this apartment.  The astronomical energy costs during the winter are probably number one.  The water that takes at least 2 or 3 minutes to heat up (and sometimes quite a bit more) is another.  There’s also this ridiculous issue of hardware with my cable.

Back in February or March I started to notice a major upload-speed issue, and I had to have a tech come out to install some signal dampening device on the modem.  Then about 2 weeks ago, my connection went down, completely, and I was only able to get back online by removing that device.  Well, today it is virtually impossible to get connected to my house.  I waited around 4 minutes for my website to load, and retrieving email is more or less impossible.

Don’t know why I’m ranting about this, since no one is going to be able to read this entry today anyway.  But yeah, I’m looking forward to living somewhere where they’ve had cable before, and probably have the whole neighborhood network regulated a bit better.

Just 33 days left til moving day…

There Has Been No Excitement

Back to work after a long weekend.  Glad that I’m only in for a half-day today…

I’ve had some inquiries, and just wanted to let any curious parties know right off the bat– nothing particularly exciting happened over the weekend.  Had a pleasant time in the Apostle Islands region and that was it.  Madeline Island is nice.  The weather was pretty good.  It rained a bit on Sunday, but wasn’t too big of a deal.  Kayaking was fun.  I’d like to do it again.

Michelle and I are going to go to the Brewers game on Wednesday; they extended that $10 outfield loge special for an extra day and we managed to get 2 seats together.

Global Warming– Debatable?

I am enjoyed this New Scientist feed, and I have to thank David Q. Schrubbe for sending me its links a number of times and getting me keyed in there…

Anyway, I read a story today about a study to investigate how knowledge about global warming effects a person’s perception of the phenomenon. The finding was that more knowledgeable Democrats were more concerned, and more knowledgeable Republicans were less concerned.

I mention it just because this echoes my experience trying to talk about the subject to a T. What I don’t understand, and what I wish some conservative die-hard could tell me is: if climate change is, as you like to believe, some sort of liberal conspiracy invented by Al Gore (much like the Internet), then… what would be the POINT of that? All these scientists doing all this research, taking all these core samples, compiling all this data– how exactly does this advance some perceived liberal agenda to trash capitalism and take away everyone’s guns?

And I realize that I might’ve mentioned this before, but no one ever came back to me with an answer.

On a completely different side note, this will likely be the last post for me until after Memorial Day. Michelle and I are headed up to Bayfield and Madeline Island for a long weekend. Hope you enjoy yours; weather’s supposed to be phenomenal in Milwaukee…


So, after the average price of gas in the Milwaukee area topped 4 frakking dollars today, I said to myself, “hey, is that new Honda hybrid rumor I heard anywhere close to fruition?”

It is!

Still haven’t found any photos or drawings of this car, so what it’s gonna look like is a bit of a mystery– but they say it’s a “futuristic five-door hatchback,” for what it’s worth.  I’m excited.  I wonder if it’s too early to get on a waiting list?

Hiding in Plain Sight to Gain Our Affections

New Scientist has a post today about a robotic rabbit with actual fur:

Yohanan’s new robot, dubbed the Haptic Creature, is designed to recreate that touch-based communication between pet and owner to inject an element of emotion into human-robot interactions.

Remember those stories from the Civil War about families fighting on both sides?  How much harder will it be to unplug your robot pets when they turn on you?

Numbers Game

Well, here’s the facts, Jack– the baseball season is one quarter of the way done. The Crew is in last place, 7.5 games behind the Cubs. If they’re going to live up to ANYONE’S expectations for this year, including their own, they’ve got their work cut out for them. One of the positive ways to spin their current plight is to note that Chicago was, at one point, 8.5 games behind the Brewers last year and won the division. The bad side of that point is that it would take a meltdown, of, well, Milwaukeean proportions for this thing to come together…

You figure 90 victories will still win the division. Nobody’s running away at this point to make that speculation any different. With their 118 remaining games, the Brewers would have to go 70-48. No small task. Another positive to take away is that out of these first 44 games, they’ve played 25 on the road. That means 63 more home dates versus 55 more on the road, and 7 of those are coming up in the course of this week. Once they get back, they’ll have quite a bit of the home-cookin’ from here on out. But we’re still talking about maintaining an overall .600 winning percentage, and the Brewers are just 11-9 at home.

What if they split the rest of the road games (which is what you kind of need to do, at a minimum, to be a winning ballclub)? Let’s say they go 27-28 the rest of the year on the road. They’d have to be 43-20 at home, a .680 winning percentage. Phew.

Baseball involves a LOT of numbers, and you’ll find no shortage of ways to dissect everything about the sport out on the ‘tubes, the TV, or in the paper. In the end, this is just another way of saying, “It ain’t early. It’s starting to be desperate.”

Don't Be Fooled By the Fear-Mongering

The Republican Party’s best hope for winning elections ever since we invaded Iraq in 2003 is to make a certain segment of malleable voters too afraid to pick a candidate OTHER than them. It is going to be a long, long, election season, and this will not even come close to being the last you hear about it:

McCain criticizes Obama over Iran comments

McCain’s camp is counting on people hearing buzz words like “reckless” and “inexperience” and “terrorism” as a means of planting doubt about any possible course other than guns-blazing and unconditional deference to the United States. There was another very successful international superpower in world history that operated the same way– The Roman Empire. They’re not around anymore, but…

When sifting through these stories, it’s important to get all the details and sift down to the facts of the respective arguments. When Obama says he’s willing to meet with the leaders of Iran, he’s not saying that Iran is awesome, or even that they’re no threat. He’s saying that the American President should have the courage to look the leader of an adversarial nation in the face and say, “let’s settle our differences peacefully.”

It’s not going to be easy to keep standing up in the face of the constant GOP beat-down on this issue. They will do everything they possibly can to make it seem crazy, illogical, and impossible to support Obama’s position on foreign affairs.  I feel like if you really think it through, it’s easy to see that Obama is looking to be more inclusive of all nations, while remaining vigilant as to the risks.  McCain, meanwhile, is more vested in the infallibility of the United States, and conducting diplomacy through the barrel of a gun.

He's the Gov'er'nah!

L.A. resident, UW-Oshkosh alum and general chum Matt Marshall would like us all to be aware of the following video clip starring his state’s governor. You may have to crank the speakers a little bit.

Got My Magic "Dubya Bucks"

Logged in to my checking today to find a pleasant $600 surprise.  Well, it was only a mild surprise, of course, but nice to see it a little ahead of schedule anyway.  For those that might wonder what this means for YOUR rebate, be aware that I get my tax refunds by direct deposit, and the last two of my SSN are 99.

Off now to do the opposite of what the administration was hoping, and chuck this money into savings…

firing from the hip since 2002