Monday, February 28, 2011


I dig Rhapsody's "radio channel" function, collections of music by type or theme. I'm trying out the comedy channel this week, playing it in my car when I'm on errands. So many things I'm learning. John Leguizamo does stand-up comedy as well as all that TV and movie acting. Bobcat Goldthwait was fired from Hollywood Squares because contestants weren't choosing him (even avoiding him on one occasion when he was "X" to win the game). I'd never heard of Patton Oswalt, but he's a very sharp stand-up comedian and voiced the character Remy in Ratatouille.

Sunday, February 27, 2011

Driver's Ed

Is there any good reason to teach a child to drive a stick-shift if there isn't one lying around nearby?

Friday, February 25, 2011


God, this is silly, but I'm laughing so hard it hurts.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Connection Speed

I've been testing the speed of our computer connection to the Internet, using four different sources (here, here, here, and here). They come in fairly consistently at 6.8 Mb/s for download and 0.3 Mb/s for upload. The UK source download result is slower, but I imagine that's a distance issue.

I don't know whether these numbers are "normal" or "good" or "whatever." If your results vary greatly, do let me know.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Wireless Router

Anyone need a wireless router? I've upgraded our network, so our old router is looking for a home. It never failed us once. It's a Belkin G wireless router with all the manuals, software, and cables that came with it. Do let me know.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Tax Time

It's 5 pm. I'm sitting here at the kitchen table with my laptop, using TurboTax online to do the taxes, and over in the right frame they show various popular questions being knocked around in the knowledge base forums. Moments ago, this appeared:


Funny! Even funnier is that the answer can be 'yes,' if the person is not the taxpayer's qualifying child, lived with the taxpayer all year, earned less than $3,650, and the taxpayer provided more than half the person's total support for the year.

Surely this qualifies many a boyfriend.

Monday, February 21, 2011

Friday, February 18, 2011


While it would greatly please me if you would stop saying "ekcetera," I've come to realize that will probably never happen. I would do well, rather, to try to change my reaction to your habit. This shall be most difficult for me, as I would much prefer to strangle you. But I will give it my best effort.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Middle School Erudition

I was flipping through some old notes this morning and stumbled across some material from my days teaching history to seventh and eighth graders. A handful of sentences from their essay tests (this was in the mid 90s).

Pope John Paul II started the Crusades.

The fourteenth Dalai Llama [sic] is the current emperor of Japan.

Lenin got a lot of his ideas by reading the works of Boris Yeltsin.

The caste system also includes the untouchables, and they could not touch anything.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011


I'm sure Jimmy Kimmel is on TV past my bed time, so I have to get by with funny funny video clips like this and this and this and this.

Monday, February 14, 2011


In the car today Emma asked "How do they get deer to cross right at the deer crossing sign?" I did not yell "Oh my God, that is adorable!" No, I explained things with a very straight face. But it was adorable.

Friday, February 11, 2011


This New Yorker article on Scientology is very (very) long, but if you know nothing about that "religion" (as I didn't), it's a captivating read.


I like real headlines that have the ring of something from The Onion. Here's one:

Man Calls Durham 911 Center 5 Times, Claims He's Dracula

Wednesday, February 9, 2011


The situation in Egypt has finally been clearly explained.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Video Time

Enough of real life! It's time for cute animal videos. Take that and that and that.

Monday, February 7, 2011

This American Life

I recommend this week's free MP3 download of This American Life. The first segment is about The Onion writers and their process for deciding which headlines go in that week's paper. They tear through hundreds of them before deciding on the final 16, so during the audio, there are all these deadpan deliveries of short headlines, some of which are stupid and some of which had me pausing the player so I could laugh for two minutes. The few I remember:

Cardinal Teaches Pope To Make Church By Interlocking His Fingers
Ghost Just Dropped By To Say "Boo"
Star Of David To Add Seventh Point

Saturday, February 5, 2011

School Board

I confess I haven't been as closely following the Durham school board as I used to, but holy moly, there's a highly embarrassing member on the board right now. If the Herald-Sun article I read is accurate, this Fredrick Davis fellow has no business as a public servant. (I'm thinking of his comments referenced near the bottom of the article.)


Ooo, cool 360-view thing of Bruges, Belgium. Made me a bit dizzy, but pretty nifty.

Thursday, February 3, 2011


Math these days. The girls bring home math assignments and ask me to help, which I can usually do, except when the school is using some new procedure for doing basic functions. "No, not like that, Daddy. We're supposed to do it using shizzle grouping (or whatever the term is)." At which point, they're on their own. I can solve the problem and show them how to do it, but I don't know how to "shizzle group."

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Shopping Time

I already have black slacks, so now I'm in the market for a black suit coat. Sears has only one that costs $150, and Target ($70) doesn't have my size. If you know where else I might sniff around, do tell.

Tuesday, February 1, 2011