June 2007

You Go Girl.

MSNBC’s Mika Brzezinski refused to open a newscast with a lead story covering Paris Hilton’s release from prison. The whole thing can be seen on the YouTube video below.

Whether this was a planned protest or not, I found her attitude to be quite refreshing in a world of Mary Hart wannabes covering every movement of Paris’ exposed vagina.

I hate Paris Hilton. I despise everything she stands for. She is an obvious symptom of a very sick society.

By the way, 101 American soldiers have died in Iraq during the month of June. As of today, there have been 3,570 U.S. deaths since the beginning of this war, as confirmed by the Department of Defense.

And I’m suppose to care about Paris Fucking Hilton? Not on your life. That is all.

Panera Ponderings.

Before I get into this latest entry, in case you haven’t heard, Apple releases the iPhone this afternoon at 6 p.m. I don’t know if you’ve heard anything about this latest gadget as the media has been very, very quiet about this technological breakthrough so I thought I should warn you that things might be a little crazy around your local Apple and /AT&T retailers. By the way, I’m not getting one, he says rejoicefully.

I am sitting in Panera while en route to my sister’s to do the brotherly chore of mowing her lawn. Since my sister’s boyfriend is a Canadian Hockey Player, she ends up spending a lot of time north of the border in Prince Edward Island. Stateside she has a townhouse in one of those sort of snobby developments so there is much pressure to keep her lawn under control. Therefore, I must drive 100 miles round trip to do this.

This is what older brothers do.

I always find a trip to Panera to be a fascinating experience. I don’t know if it’s the effect of Baby Bush and his cast of idiots or what but there seems to have been a general dumbing down of the American public since the dawn of the 21st century. Panera does a great job of posting their menu in bold print, using words with no more than three syllables to describe what they have to offer. The prices are available to all, there’s no secret handshake required.

Can someone please tell me why almost all customers have such a difficult time ordering at Panera? To begin with, they stand 10 to 12 feet away from the counter, seemingly like they’re fearing an appearance of Barbara Eden (in the dark wig) smoking out of a jelly roll or something. Secondly, those waiting their turn at the register make no attempt to sort out what they desire prior to getting to their turn. They talk on their cell phone, scratch their nuts, leash their kids, lash out at their kids and “ooh” and “aah” over the pastries in the display case but by all that is holy they DO NOT make any decisions or try to figure out what Asiago Cheese is. Why is this?

I would bet one thin dime that they know what they want when they’re ordering a Burger Bomb by yelling into the clown’s mouth.

I don’t feel I’m unreasonable. Perhaps I expect too much from people. Is it crazy of me to wish that people stand in line, formulate their order in advance and move through the ordering process in a timely manner?

Perhaps Panera should install a clown’s mouth on the counter.

The Ride Along The Canal.

Originally uploaded by bluemarvel.
Click this image for another image
from the same area, it’s equally as powerful.

I hate graffiti. While some see beautiful artwork when observing the spray painting on a bridge or side of a building, I usually see vandalism.

On my bike ride along the Erie (Barge) Canal today, I noticed that there’s a lot of graffiti on the bridge supports for the roadways that cross the canal and trail. Most of them amounted to seemingly incomprehensible scribblings, however, two images stood out among the random symbols. This is one of them, the other is on my Flickr account, just click that image and move around my account a little bit to see it.

I also took quite a bit of video which I threw together into one piece to share. I figured out my sound issue while I was filming, so just kind of deal with the minute and half of excessive wind noise. I know better for next time.

The video is about six minutes long and requires Adobe Flash Player.

No Shame.

I wanted to try out new video software for my laptop. I’m happy with the video quality of this clip and the software I’m using.

Sweet Jesus, I need to get some sleep.


Dab of CNY: Tom Cavallo’s.


Earl and I decided to skip Saranac Thursday at the local brewery and instead enjoy each other’s company for supper out tonight. Since the hot, humid weather has left us for the time being, we enjoyed the gorgeous evening out on the deck at a favorite of our local haunts, Tom Cavallo’s in the Village of New Hartford.

Cavallo’s is a favorite amongst the locals. They’re especially known for their Italian dishes and their pizza and wings night. We each had a pasta dish chased down with a few beers.

If you’re in the area, we highly recommend it.

The Ride On The Bike.

I’m still working on how to record video and ride a bike at the same time. Cock your head to the side at the appropriate moments in the video.


Phone Etiquette.

Yesterday afternoon I was working on homework when the phone rang. I picked up the receiver and politely said “Hello”, as more normal Americans would do. Was I greeted with a pleasant voice in response? In this day and age, the answer is unsurprisingly no. In response to my pleasant greeting I received three blares of touch-tone goodness followed by a garbled recorded message ordering me to call DirecTV immediately at a toll-free number. Never one to jeopardize all things techie, including incoming satellite signals, I hung up the phone and called them right back.

Them: “Thank you for calling DirecTV, may I help you please?”

I responded by pressing several buttons on the telephone. I figured if DirecTV can greet me with touch-tone noises then I shall do the same forever and ever amen.

Them: “Is someone there?”

Me: “Hello?”

Them: “What is the name on this account?” (Ooh, a psychic, she already knows who I am.)

I gave her Earl’s name, since his name is on the account.

Them: “Is this Earl?”

Me: “Yes.” I love impersonating Earl.

Them: “How can I help you?”

Me: “I was told to call you.”

Them: “By whom?”

I responded with several blasts of the aforementioned touch-tone before I meekly said, “A recorded voice.” Having been in radio for several years I’ve always tried to be armed with a wide selection of character voices, but they all boil down to one: something that sounds like Bea Arthur constipated, so I settled for my regular voice with a meek twist.

Them: “Sir, your account is up to date. There was no reason to call.”

Me: “So this has been a waste of my time, your time and the time of anyone eavesdropping on this conversation.”

Them: “Yes.”

Me: “Goodbye.” I considered playing the first line of “Mary Had A Little Lamb” on the 3-2-1 keys of the phone but I opted to just hang up instead.

Time Consumption.

And the good times keep comin’! This week it’s all about the intermediate algebra, as I have two major tests, four homework assignments, a paper and a final all due before July 6. My desk is cluttered with scraps of paper with algebraic equations and my head is cluttered with variables dancing and passing like strangers in the night. I have noticed that my professor and the text book are both obsessed with mixing 20% acid solution with 60% acid solution to come up with 45% acid solution in varying amounts using various methods.

I don’t think I’ve ever mixed acid before.

The bright side of the week is the morning weather has been absolutely perfect for cycling. I’ve been getting myself up out of bed early enough to enjoy breakfast with Earl and then jumping on the bike for an hour or so. I’m loving the bike riding again and that’s keeping my head clear and my anxiety of acid solutions low.

Time to go study!


I have to wonder, what kind of geek gets this song stuck in his head for an entire Sunday?