Saturday, November 10, 2007

Also, There are Dragons

My afterlife

UPDATE:I liked this so much, I gave $100 to Dresden Kodak. Because of the way my luck works, this ensures, forever and always, the comic will never update again.

Confound You!

A Physics joke

Friday, November 09, 2007


I'm kind of a jerk, and sometimes this has unexpected consequences.

I had a long web cast to set up this morning, with a lot of prep-work to do with the participants in the hour before the call. Due to timing issues, this meant getting into the office at 6:30am and opening the call about 90 minutes before the actual web cast. In our system, when anyone dials into a conference call, they have to give their name and they get announced when they come online. This is okay when the call has 4 or 5 people, but in an hour long call with 100 people, it can get very annoying. People come in and drop out during the whole thing, and every time their name gets announced into the channel and it interrupts the flow.

More on this in a minute.

Because I was the first one on and I knew that no one would hear my announcement, I said something silly to entertain the other folks in the room. The call opened, I was the first one in, no problem. I forgot about it.

There were some technical glitches getting the call set up, synchronized with the webcast and displaying the proper content, so I was very busy until we started the call. A number of folks joined, 70 or so, and we started a few minutes late. About 20 minutes in, the constant drop-ins, drop outs were annoying, so I wanted to silence them. There is a code to do this, but I couldn't remember if it was *6, *9 or *3. I asked, no one knew, but one guy thought it was *9. I thought it was something like this, so in the middle of a presentation I hit *9 on the master phone.

That was not the correct code.

Instead, in the middle of the presentation, it started listing *all* the people on the call. Starting with me. Using the recording I made hours earlier when I thought I was alone.

"THIS IS COLOSSUS! THIS IS THE VOICE OF WORLD CONTROL!!!" came blaring out of every phone on the call, at 75db. In my voice. In the middle of the EMEA Directors report.

This was followed by all the other names, and dozens of messages on IM from call participants runningthe full gamut from laughter to angry laughter.

2 mins later, the list ended.

Thankfully, my career did not.

Afterwards my manager asked me, "what did you learn from this?"
I replied, "that I could replay this accident to hilarious effect on someone else's call?"
"good man"

The line, btw, is from the Forbin Project

YouTube has the whole quote. It's more appropriate than I remembered.

Rocky, The Flying Squirrel


I definately want to try it, but I am a bit unnerved. The video doesn't show anyone actually landing and walking away....


Some people, when trapped at the bottom of a deep well, just can't help trying to dig their way out!
Wonkette provides:

New details have emerged in the generally scuzzy case of Florida legislator Bob Allen (R-McCain Campaign Co-Chairman) who was arrested after allegedly offering to both suck off some guy in a park bathroom and give the guy twenty bucks. Wonkette readers who are experts in such matters have argued that the whole thing sounds like entrapment, but today’s Orlando Sentinel offers a new excuse from Allen himself: He was just scared of a scary black guy, like anybody would be!

Closeted, racist and in over his head, I'm sure he feels he can still make a strong contribution to governing the country and ensuring the Permanent Republican Majority, or the Fourth Reich or whatever the Bushies call it these days....

Wednesday, November 07, 2007

If We Take 4 Turning Points, Have we Gone in A Circle?

Joe Lieberman yesterday:

“I’m proud to say that the tide has turned in Iraq and we’re winning that war,” Lieberman said. “And if we don’t let down our troops, they’re going to bring home a victory that will protect us here at home from today’s threat — totalitarian terrorist Islamism that’s trying to take our liberty from us.”

and in the past:

– “Overall, I would say what I see here today is progress, significant progress from the last time I was here in December. And if you can see progress in war that means you’re headed in the right direction.” [5/30/07]

– “The last two weeks…may be seen as a turning point.” [12/17/05]
– “Does America have a good plan for doing this, a strategy for victory in Iraq? Yes we do.” [11/29/05]

– “We have to stay the course in Iraq now. … If we do that, we will…have won a victory in the war on terrorism.” [1/4/04]

The rest here

Here's a Shocker!

Your Inner European is Dutch!

Open minded and tolerant.
You're up for just about anything.


Tuesday, November 06, 2007

Conversations With My Son

Me: Oh look, new research shows there's a genetic switch for sexuality. You could turn women into lesbians.
Geoff: Yes, it's called "Getting them drunk".

I Don't Know Where We are Going, But I See What We Are Coming To

No Photos on the train, dammit!

The train is a half hour west of New Haven when the conductor, having finished her original rounds, reappears. She moves down the aisle, looks, stops between our seats, faces the person taking pictures. “Sir, in the interest of national security, we do not allow pictures to be taken of or from this train.” He starts, “I…….” but, without English, his response trails off into silence. The conductor, speaking louder, forcefully: “Sir, I will confiscate that camera if you don’t put it away.” Again, little response. “Sir, this is a security matter! We cannot allow pictures.” She turns away abruptly and, as she moves down the aisle, calls over her shoulder, in a very loud voice, “Put. It. Away!” He packs his camera.

It gets worse for the guy.

There are a lot of things puzzling about the story, including the silly idea that taking pictures from a moving Amtrak train is some kind of threat to national security. I'm still trying to figure out if a) this is a TSA rule, b) this is an Amtrak rule or c) it's just the conductor being a jerk.


Monday, November 05, 2007

Batshit Crazy

But, I am glad someone is showing folks what to do.

Sunday, November 04, 2007

New Art Completed

My latest image Tourbillon is complete. Thanks to all for the feedback! Here's hoping I dont end up getting sued by Uniroyal...


Photographer Peter van Agtmael has made two trips to Iraq and one to Afghanistan in the past couple years. Among his work over that time is a series, the idea of which is eminently logical, but which I haven't seen before. To capture a more raw if performative picture of the U.S. soldier's experience, Peter photographed graffiti on the bathroom wall at a major traffic point for U.S. troops, the Al Salem Air Force Base in Kuwait.