follow me on Twitter

    Tuesday, August 30, 2005

    Dog Days

    How much do you hate your dog if you are willing to do this to him? And is this really appropriate for a Weimaraner or a Dachsund? And isn't there something a little too self-referential about a dog in a Goofy costume?

    Is This Really A Shock?

    A Yahoo article on looting in News Orleans contains these lines:

    Denise Bollinger, a tourist from Philadelphia, stood outside and snapped pictures in amazement.

    "It's downtown Baghdad," the housewife said. "It's insane. I've wanted to come here for 10 years. I thought this was a sophisticated city. I guess not."

    Uhm, Denise? This is a city where women regularly flash their breastesses for beads. I don’t think sophisticated is quite the word you were looking for.

    Some New Links

    For the comic geeks.

    Okay, just for me. But still...

    Tuesday, August 23, 2005

    A Vertiable Cornucopia of Corn O'Copia

    I figured I better put something new up here before the natives got restless again. So voila! A new post.

    A new crap post.

    A new crap post because I don’t want to say anything.

    The thing is, I don’t know if you would consider it a case of writer’s block. I have things I want to say. I just lack the motivation to say them.

    I compose posts in my mind – in the shower, mowing the lawn, driving. But when I sit down to write, they’re gone. Instead, all I’ve been doing is leaving comments on much better blogs than this. Perhaps you’ve seen some.

    (Of course, that makes me sound like Troy McClure. “Hi! You may remember me from such comments sections as Kung Fu Monkey, The Poor Man, and You Are My Minions.)

    So maybe – maybe – if I throw some things together, I can get a decent post out of it. And then one step at a time I’ll be back to regular postings. It’s worth a shot.

    Random shoutout time – Good luck devil boy on the upcoming “procedure”. Remember – you’re not losing the functionality of a vital body part, you’re gaining whatever you budget each month for protection.

    Watched Sin City last night. I liked it, but I kept thinking back to the source material. There was a cheesiness to the movie that wasn’t in the comics. I don’t think it was there intentionally, mind you. But when you are trying to transplant comics panels to the screen, you have to fill in the spaces between the panels, and that, for me, is where the cheesiness occasionally crept in. For instances, when Marv jumps feet first threw the windshield of the cop car. That is a great visual, in both the comics and the film. But the comic doesn’t have to show him leaping and in mid air and hitting the car. The movie does, and it didn’t work for me. Pity, cause I wanted to love this movie and instead just liked it. Nothing wrong with that, mind you, but still a touch of a disappointment. I mean, when you finish watching a movie adaptation of anything and your first thought is “I want to go reread the original again” hasn’t the movie failed on some level?

    The new Nickel Creek cd is also somewhat disappointing. To me, the last two releases just haven’t lived up to the promise of the first two cds. Some good songs, though, and Chris Thile’s voice is marvelous.

    No such qualms about the latest Brad Paisley.

    Although it's fantasy football time again, I will not bore you with details of my various fantasy teams. I have four. Likewise, I will not bore you with details of my golf outing on Saturday. I already hit the self-indulgence border with my poker tales; I'm not going to scream and run and leap over the border with fantasy football or golf stories.

    School started yesterday. You would think it would get at least marginally easier to drop a second grader off than it is to drop a first grader or a kindergartener. And you would be right. But it’s still tough.

    It’s funny. Even if you didn’t know which group of kids was which, if you’d been around kids much, you could probably figure it out. And it’s easy to pick out the parents of kindergarteners. They’re the ones with several cameras and the ones who look the saddest. Their kids are dressed better than the kids in the older grades, and they look more nervous than the other kids as well.

    One last school thought – or at least, one last second grader thought. Last Thursday was the back to school ice cream social. Drew didn’t want to go at first. I said that was okay, but told him to tell me if he decided he wanted to go. He asked if I thought Corinne would be there. Corinne used to live by us, and was in his class in kindergarten and first grade. She is, according to Drew, his girlfriend. So I said she might be there, and we would only find out if we went. So we went.

    There were a lot of people there. We found his room, and in checking the class list saw that none of his good friends, including Corinne, were in the same class. We also looked around everywhere for Corinne, but couldn’t find her. So we left the building, got some ice cream, ate it, and started walking to the car.

    Which is when we saw Corinne and her mother coming towards us. Drew jumped up and down excitedly, Corinne jumped around excitedly, and when they were finally face to face they

    did and said nothing.


    Even though he had talked all night about Corinne. Even though ever since he got back from spending the summer at his dad’s he had talked about seeing Corinne. Even though Corinne usually runs up and hugs him when she sees him. They said and did nothing.


    So Corinne’s mom and I made small talk for a bit, then we all went our merry ways. And after we got in the car, Drew could talk about nothing but how great it was to see Corinne.

    So it’s nice to see that the opposite sex can even paralyze a second grader.

    Well, that’s it. I’ve primed the pump, and now…

    Heh. Heh. I said primed the pump….

    Wednesday, August 17, 2005

    So, Last Night

    I made it to the final table of the 9:00 tournament at Full Tilt. Of the 900 people who started, I made it to the final nine.

    And I made it in pretty good shape, too. There were four people with over 200,000 in chips. There were four people with under 60,000 in chips. And there was me with about 120,000 in chips. A nice, solid fifth place.

    I was really happy with my play the whole night. I was aggressive, but not too aggressive. I folded some winners, and played out some losers, but overall I was really happy with my selection. There are only two hands along the way to the final table that stand out as hands I should have done differently. In the first, I mucked aQ-6 offsuit in the small blind. I was tempted to play it, but the guy in the big blind had been raising pre-flop all night, and while I thought it was worth half the big blind to call, I didn't want to call only to have him raise. Of course, the flop went 6-Q-3, the turn another 6, and I would have picked up a nice pot. The other hand I called an all-in I shouldn't have called. In that hand the river gave me a straight, but it also was the third diamond to show on the board. I thought there was a chance that the guy who went all in had the flush, but considering how the betting had gone, I decided that he wouldn't have hung in with just a flush draw. But he had. That one cost me 30,000 in chips.

    But those didn't matter, because I made the final table. The final table!

    One hand at the final table. Sheesh.

    The blinds were 2,000/4,000 with a 1,000 ante. I get dealt Q-10 clubs in the big blind. Three people call the blind, the small blind also calls, and I check. So, before the flop, there is 29,000 in the pot.

    The flop goes 2-10-3. I've got top pair, and not a bad kicker. The small blind checks and I bet the pot. One player calls - he's at around 300,000 in chips - the others muck. The turn is another 2. I go all in - about 90,000 in chips.

    This is the stupidest thing I've done all night in four hours of tournament play. I can't justify it at all, no matter how hard I try. At the time I figured that even if he had a 10 himself, he wouldn't call. The all-in after the 2 would have said to me that I made a set. And it took him a long time to call. A long time. You are on a clock at Full Tilt, and your avatar starts to blink as a warning that your time to act is ending. His avatar was blinking, and time had almost run out when he called.

    And showed pocket Ks.

    So there he is with two pair, Ks over 2s. And there I am with two pair, 10s over 2s. The only card that helps me is another 10. Did I get it? Of course not. To add insult to injury, the river is a third K.


    But I made the final table!

    Tuesday, August 16, 2005

    Random Funnies

    Some funny stuff courtesy of various blogs. From the Poor Man we have badgers and these interviews with various action figures. From Cardnilly we have this listing of Major League Baseball Teams and Simpson characters. (Hint. The Yankees are Mr. Burns.)

    Monday, August 15, 2005

    Linkage Tweakage

    I've done some linkage tweakage. If you'll notice in the daily reading section, I've removed the links to the big time blogs - Kos, Atrios, Tbogg, TPM. I figure anyone who is remotely interested in those already knows about them. I've replaced them with a bunch of people who are less well known, but who should be better known. I don't agree with all of them, but I read and respect the opinions of all of them, and I think you should too. Especially Kung Fu Monkey. There are a lot of people who consider themselves writers here, so you particularly should be reading Kung Fu Monkey. I'll make it easy. Here is a post where he indexes all of his posts. Scroll down to the section headed writing, and start working through them. You'll thank me later. And here are two funnies from Kung Fu Monkey - Lost: "You Uncurious Motherf*ckers" and Top Ten John Wayne Movies That Could Also Be Porn Titles. And for Wheezy and Kimmah, here's a post titled I Miss Republicans.

    In case you hadn't noticed, I really like Kung Fu Monkey.

    I've beefed up the baseball links, added a section of spoiler and comic book links. I don't have a full section of OT links because, well, Goth does such a great job of capturing them, though I have a couple he doesn't have. But if you aren't there it isn't personal, it's just that I don't want a list of links that goes all the way down the page. Plus, I hate you.

    So there. Linkage Tweakage.

    Thursday, August 11, 2005

    You Don't Care But

    Chris "Jesus" Ferguson is entered in tonight's 2,500-150 chip tournament at Full Tilt. I'm not too surprised - he is one of the founders of Full Tilt. I looked around, and he's playing at a couple of the cash tables and entered in a couple of the cash tournaments. I hope I end up at a table with him - it would be nice to win a hand against one of the world's greatest poker players. Hell, it would be nice to get knocked out of the tourney by one of the world's greatest poker players.

    It must be pro night at Full Tilt. Clonie Gowen, one of the top female players and another Full Tilt founder, is entered in one of the cash tourneys. Even her avatar is hot.

    Wednesday, August 10, 2005

    So Now I Am In Blue

    Except for that at the top of the page. Anyone figure out where I need to put a #0038A8 in to change that?

    (Thanks Pantone conversion chart!)

    UPDATE: Figured out how to get the top blue by myself. Now having trouble with the little bar that separates the top from the body.

    Of the blog.

    UPDATE THE SECOND: Thanks to the incomparable Toots for showing me how to remove the gif bar. So what do you folks thing of the new look?

    Okay, This Is Cool

    Nice to know you can do this in blogger - so much easier than posting pictures other ways.

    Also cool? PostSecret...

    I wonder if you can post two pictures at once though.

    Yes. Yes you can.

    Thanks to incomparable Toots for the tips and the incomparable Ice Cat for the pictures.

    Tuesday, August 09, 2005

    I Just Realized

    How much the green color on this blog looks like the color of the water that comes out of the pool backflush after cleaning the pool.

    Perhaps it is time to look for another template...

    Did We Really Need This Headline

    The front page of Yahoo news proclaims:

    NASA Relieved After Discovery Lands Safely

    Shouldn’t that have been a given? Wouldn't "NASA Loses Billions Betting On Astronaut Fireworks" have been more newsworthy?

    On the plus side, the article contains several uses of the phrase “Smooth re-entry”. Here's how you use it properly:

    "Hey baby, if you let me land my shuttle, I promise a smooth re-entry..."

    Please Tell Me I'm Not The Only One

    Whose first thought, upon seeing a bag of home-grown cucumbers in the break room with a sign on them that said "Help Yourself - Enjoy!", was extremely rude.

    Thursday, August 04, 2005

    Corn O'Copia is your safe place in an unsafe world!

    New blog slogan courtesy of the Sloganizer. It was either that or "Halleluja, it's a Dweeze."


    I’m going to pimp Kung Fu Monkey again, or at least this post from yesterday regarding Bush’s support for Intelligent Design. Read it. Any post that includes the following sentences

    If you don't understand that there's absolutely no contradiction between believing in God and evolution, then frankly I'm not going to waste the time trying to jam a rhetorical screwdriver into your pineal gland's butterfly valve and crank up the air flow.


    Never mind voting Democrat: if my choice were between these cowards who would turn back the Enlightenment and anal-probing yet intellectually honest Martians, I would grit my teeth, vote for the Martians and learn to visualize my Happy Place during my Probe-Center appointments.

    shouldn’t be missed. Here are a few more key graffs. But please. Read the whole thing.

    Am I reading too much into this statement? Am I making too big a deal of this? In one word, fuckno. This is just a symptom of what is, to me, the most destructive thing to occur in America in twenty years.

    Even if your kids aren't directly taught ID or aren't in one of the new Bible Class districts, the overarching cultural damage has already been done. Through this group of RadicalRighties' constant rhetoric, they consistently strip away the idea that there is indeed a rigorous scientific process through which certain non-negotiable physical truths can be ascertained. They have suffused the county with with an intellectual laziness and a terrifying narcissism. Opinion has been enshrined as superior to fact. No longer need a person take into account the way the world works when forming their worldview -- they can instead hunt down "facts" and "theories" which support their own comfort zone, and what's worse, we can NO LONGER CALL BULLSHIT. Because if our leaders -- pardon me, your leaders -- don't call bullshit, who will? They have undermined the very process by which we know WHEN to call bullshit!

    . . .

    Look my conservative pals, we have our agreements and disagreements but on this one, you've got to just take the hit. Don't ever look me in the eye again and try to play the cynicism-dressed-as-realism card again. Seriously. There's no high ground left here whatsoever. The ultimate representative of your political party, standing on the limitless future's shrouded shores, has decided he needs no compass, no maps, no guides, no stars with which to plot his course. Just a shrug and a chuckle before he casts off, eyes closed, into the darkness.

    You wouldn't trust your children to an airplane pilot who did that, or a Scoutmaster. If your doctor said "You know what, we're going to blow off all the currently available research and treat your child's cancer with a completely untested, never scientifically proven bit of guesswork which, however, reinforces my world-view. Because what does science really know?" you'd be pulling out of the parking lot before he finished the sentence. But when it's public policy, it's OKAY?

    Sure, it's just my opinion. But this is bigger than budgets, or how to fight wars, or how to manage our environment or resources, because where we stand on facts, reason, science, that informs every other decision we make in all those fields and every other. This is what determines whether societies live or die.

    Again, our motto at Kung Fu Monkey: "Everybody who wants to live in the 21st century over here. Everybody who wants to live in the 1800's over there. Good. Thanks. Good luck with that."

    News Updates

    No body in the pool. Oh well. So much for the stuff of cheap mystery novels.

    In other Iowa news, a cow that was suspected of having mad cow disease was cleared. According to the researchers who did the testing, the cow was "not mad - just a little peeved".

    Wednesday, August 03, 2005

    Are You Reading

    Alien Loves Predator? You should be. Kung Fu Monkey (who you also should be reading - check out this and this from yesterday on writng in general and screenwriting in particular as a profession) says it "captures the real spirit of living in New York better than every episode of Seinfeld.Ever.Combined." It won’t take long to go through the archive, and it's well worth it.

    Tuesday, August 02, 2005

    Body Heat

    There’s a story out of Dubuque today concerning the destruction of an area motel, specifically the motel pool. Apparently, the pool has long been rumored to be the final resting place of a young woman who disappeared in the early 70s. The woman was last seen walking out of a bar on her way to a party in the company of two men. Her path would have led her past the motel, which was then under construction. She was never seen again, and in the late 70s rumors began spreading that she was buried under the pool. Now the motel is closed and being torn down so a bigger, fancier hotel can be built on the spot. The pool is being taken out today, and Dubuque police are going to be onsite in case a body is discovered.

    I suppose it will be somewhat interesting if they find her body. But you know what would be really cool? If they found the bodies of two men, the men she was supposedly walking with. That, my friends, would be a great first chapter to a mystery novel.

    UPDATE: They are digging today. Don't know if there was a change in plans or the radio story I heard yesterday was wrong.