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Feedback.

Ok, gentle readers that use iPads and have a blog. Please tell me what program you’re using to blog from your iPad. I just had a very long, thought out and well written blog entry typed out in BlogPress and the program just ate it. Like it was being written on a PC. Remember those “Switcher” commercials Apple did in the early 00s? I believe the girl’s name was Ellen Feiss or something like that.

I was typing along and then poof! the blog entry was gone.

BlogPress devoured my blog entry. My well written, thought out, articulate blog entry. Gone.

It was a really good blog entry.

Never to return.

I’ll try again tonight, when I get home and have access to my computer.

Sigh.

– Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

Words.

The daily update on the internal website at work occasionally has some nuggets of wisdom that make me feel just a little bit better. Today is one of those days. I plan on keeping these sentiments in the forefront as we move into 2012.

12/30/2011
Once a year, we post this essay written by Ann Landers for Jan. 1, 1997. Don’t groan – take a glance at it and you may see some good thoughts for 2012. Happy New Year!

Let this coming year be better than all the others. Vow to do some of the things you’ve always wanted to do but couldn’t find the time for. Call up a forgotten friend. Drop an old grudge and replace it with some pleasant memories. Share a funny story with someone whose spirits are dragging. A good laugh can be very good medicine.

Vow not to make a promise you don’t think you can keep. Pay a debt. Give a soft answer. Free yourself of envy and malice. Encourage some youth to do his or her best. Share your experience and offer support. Young people need role models.

Make a genuine effort to stay in closer touch with family and friends. Stop magnifying small problems and shooting from the lip. Words that you have to eat can be hard to digest.

Find the time to be kind and thoughtful. All of us have the same allotment: 24 hours a day. Give a compliment. It might give someone a badly needed lift.

Think things through. Forgive an injustice. Listen more. Be kind. Apologize when you realize you are wrong. An apology never diminishes a person. It elevates him. Don’t blow your own horn. If you’ve done something praiseworthy, someone will notice eventually.

Try to understand a point of view that differs from yours. Little is all one way or another. Examine demands you make on others.

Lighten up. When you feel like blowing your top, ask yourself, “Will it matter a week from today?” Laugh the loudest when the joke is on you. The sure way to have a friend is to be one. We are all connected by your humanity, and we need each other. Avoid malcontents and pessimists. They drag you down and contribute nothing.

Don’t discourage a beginner from trying something risky. Nothing ventured means nothing gained. Be optimistic. The can-do spirit is the fuel that makes things go.

Go to war against animosity and complacency. Express your gratitude. Give credit when it’s due – and even when it isn’t. It will make you look good. Read something uplifting. Deep-six the trash. You wouldn’t eat garbage, why put it in your head? Don’t abandon your old-fashioned principles. They never go out of style. When courage is needed, ask yourself, “If not me, who? If not now, when?”

Take better care of yourself. Remember, you’re all you’ve got. Pass up that second helping. You really don’t need it. Vow to eat more sensibly. You’ll feel better and look better, too. Don’t put up with secondhand smoke. Nobody has the right to pollute your air or give you cancer. If someone says, “This is a free country,” remind him or her that the country may be free but no person is free if he has a habit he can’t control.

Return those books you borrowed. Reschedule that missed dental appointment. Clean out your closet. Take those photos out of the drawer and put them in an album. If you see litter on the sidewalk, pick it up. Give yourself a reality check. Phoniness is transparent and tiresome. Take pleasure in the beauty and the wonders of nature.

Walk tall and smile more. You’ll look 10 years younger. Don’t be afraid to say “I love you.” Say it again. They are the sweetest words in the world. If you have love in your life, it can be the best year ever.

Ritual.

My iced tea was ready and waiting when I walked in the door of Dunkin’ Donuts. One of the friendly clerks behind the counter had a smile.

“Since it’s a holiday week – do you want your cookie today or tomorrow?”

Wow, I am freakin’ predictable.

The cookie was good. Nom nom nom. I think I’ll have another one tomorrow.

– Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

Twist.

I have been struggling with an issue with one of the servers at work for a couple of months. Said server runs Linux and was setup before my arrival to this job. The folks that originally set up the server are long gone and didn’t believe in documentation, so no one really knows how the server does it’s magic, it just does magic. To fix the issue that we were having, my supervisor contacted the tech support department for the company, the ones that take care of this sort of thing, and they told us that they had no idea what we were talking about. The trouble ticket was referred to me.

I didn’t sleep well last night. I wasn’t really looking forward to going to work this morning because quite frankly my ass was dragging. My husbear was going through his morning routine and because I know that he can be very aware of my mood in the morning, I was trying really hard to be pleasant, or at the very least, non-committal to a mood. I figured it was going to be a quiet, productive day and I’d just keep to myself to get through it. I didn’t foresee any grand moments, it would just be a utility day.

I decided to start working on the server problem this morning because I have a hard time wrapping my head around writing code first thing (the company would have such a better coder in me if they’d let me work any damn hours I wanted to instead of the regimented 8-5). I logged into the server, replicated the issue that breaks it and then started tinkering.

I had it fixed in less than ten minutes. It was a geek ‘hosanna!’ moment for me. I high-fived the person in the next cubicle. I made a small noise of elation and most importantly, I woke up.

It’s the little moments that can turn a day completely around. Thank goodness for those little moments.

– Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

Long.

Even though it’s a short week, this week feels like its dragging on forever. I don’t know if it’s because I’m anxious to get on with 2012 and leave 2011 behind or what, but I keep thinking everyday is Friday (Rebecca Black song notwithstanding) and then I realize today is only Thursday.

I’m trying to be productive at work, but it’s difficult to get things done with other departments when half of the work force is on vacation. I then wonder why I’m driving to work when I could easily telecommute and be much more productive by working in the comfort of my own office. Plus, it’d be much better for the environment.

So today is Thursday and tomorrow is Friday and apparently everything is right on schedule.

– Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

180º

So a while back I was blogging about the fact that I couldn’t take anymore about politics and news, it was simply just burning me out and all of the information, commentary and rhetoric was overflowing my brain with information that I couldn’t use anymore. Inside I had decided that I was going to be one of those typical Americans that went into the polls in November 2012 and stab blindly at the ballot box that contained the name that sounded the least menacing, or if I was familiar with the candidate, was the better looking of the choices.

Now that’s not the right thing to do.

Over the past 48 hours I have done a complete 180 degree turn when it comes to politics and the news and quite frankly, I now completely give a damn, I can’t know enough about what’s going on in the U.S. and in the world and I want to be a very informed and engaged citizens when it comes to make the important choices at the polls in November (even though it’s 11 months away).

Bored with hearing Billy Joel and Elton John on 70s on 7 and/or 80s on 8 on Sirius/XM last night, I tuned into POTUS (Not red, not blue, red, white and blue, Politics of the United States for the People of the United States) and caught the last hour of “Stand Up with Pete Dominick”. Pete’s an ok guy and show host, after all he is a native of Central New York. There are times when his show sounds like a poor-man’s “The Daily Show with Jon Stewart” but I think his schtick works 90% of the time. For a station that isn’t suppose to lean in any particular direction, Pete will admit that he leans squarely to the left in his political beliefs but he lets those that disagree with him have their say and he asks the good questions, so for the most part, I enjoy listening to his show.

Last night he had Will Cain, a political commentator frequently seen on FoxNews and LZ Granderson, a writer for ESPN who happens to be black and gay (only brought up because this was a prevalent topic in the conversation) as his guests. Like all of Pete’s shows, the format is listener participation driven. Much of the conversation had to do with what being gay or black was like in the United States and how it contributed to political campaigns.

Will Cain, who leans solidly towards the right, is a very smart man. I wish I could grab a transcript of the show because he had brilliantly worded explanations and analogies for his arguments during the conversation. His Republican-centric point of view actually made sense to me. Which is saying a lot, because the campaigns leading up to the primaries and the caucuses has been rather crazy. There is no one currently running for President that gives me a warm, fuzzy feeling. Ron Paul gets into the ball park with his Libertarian ways, but I can only buy into 80% of what he offers (when he gets into the racist stuff I become very uncomfortable). I have never been a big fan of President Obama; back in 2008 when given the choice between McCain and Obama I wanted to vote for Hillary. I still think she was a stronger choice for the Democrats and I think that the country wouldn’t be in the same spot we are in today if she was to hold the office of President (though I think we’d still be in the same ball park, just not way out in outfield somewhere). I said this back in 2008 and I stand by that today. Do I respect President Obama? Absolutely. Do I think he’s been a stellar president? No. I rate him around Jimmy Carter.

The problem is that the alternatives are weak. What bugs me most about the current Republican folks trying to win the primary is the hypocrisy. Mitt Romney, who will most likely get the nomination, wants the government out of our personal affairs (unless you’re gay). Rick Perry wants to guarantee the “pursuit of happiness” as decreed by the Declaration of Independence (unless you’re gay). Michelle Bachmann is such a mess it’s hard to tell where that woman stands, but I know she said something about gas being $1.79 a gallon within three months of her taking office and her husband has more chiffon coming out of his mouth than Charles Nelson Riley (no offense to Chuck intended) so I don’t know why she is so angry towards the gays.

I feel like the choices that have been handed to us, even this early in the game, are “none of the above”. And that’s why I have to get myself educated. Voting for the next president is not a clear, cut choice for me. None of them really tailor to my Libertarian beliefs; some of them want to spend so much money that quite frankly it makes me fearful for the solvency of future generations of Americans, others want to practically give soldiers the right to “shoot to kill” as they patrol the U.S.-Mexican border and yet others want to just get rid of those pesky gays to the best of their ability.

I grew up in a Republican family with steadfast beliefs on the individual responsibility each of us to contribute to our society and to not be a burden on it. This is where my core political beliefs are fueled – small government, fiscal responsibility, respect the rights of others and contribute to the greater good.

It’s not a difficult concept. And I’m going to do my part to make sure that I know everything I can do to make sure we are headed in the right direction.

– Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

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Listen.

I’m curious as to how many people started listening to satellite radio (Sirius/XM here in the states) this week because they received a new radio as a gift this past weekend. I know that Scott was very excited about his new satellite radio that he will be having installed in his Jeep. Tech toys are fun.

The folks on Sirius/XM 70s on 7 are saying that there are “thousands and thousands” of new satellite subscribers already. I find this interesting. I have satellite radio in my Jeep and I have to say that around 80% of the time it makes my radio listening on the commute better. There are times that satellite radio is really no different than cable television; a bunch of channels that are spewing out crap. A while back I was flipping around the dial when I landed on Martha Stewart’s channel. While the famed handiwoman wasn’t on her own station at the time, there was another woman who had one of the most annoying voices I have heard in a while going on and on about her private parts. I found this a little bit surprising because I didn’t think that a woman going on and on about her private parts and how they work really fit how I thought a Martha Stewart channel would sound like; I thought there’d be things like how to decorate cookies and grow plants and make a killing in the stock market. I don’t know who the woman was but she was very annoying.

If you listen to some of the music channels you’ll start to realize that they’re not really that different from the terrestrial counterparts, aside from the fact that they don’t have commercials (which is a really big plus). They like to play the same songs over and over again, though. The 80s on 8 channel is in love with Billy Joel. The 70s on 7 channel is torn between Billy Joel and Elton John. The Studio 54 channel plays 12-inch disco mixes of songs from the day in their entirety. I say you just can’t get enough marimba, even if you must listen to all 12 minutes and 32 seconds of France Joli’s “Come To Me”. As a former club DJ, I know that playing a 12-inch disco mix in it’s entirety is bad form and people in a club get cranky when the same song goes on for 12 minutes and 32 seconds.

So I’m curious as to how many people are actually avid satellite subscribers and enjoy it thoroughly. It seems to me that the services like Pandora, Spotify, Last.Fm and Rdio would be cutting into the satellite service revenue, but what do I know. I feel bad for terrestrial radio though, that’s just embarrassing these days.

I was approached a few months ago about designing and building a dance-based internet radio station. I met with the internet radio company and everything, but something didn’t feel quite right. I didn’t feel that I had the proper time and energy to spend on such a project, especially since it would be a side job type of thing until it made some serious cash. Truth of the matter is, I’m not really big on the latest and greatest in the way of current music. The use of auto-tune deprives the listener of any sort of heart, soul or feeling of a song. It’s reduced to a purely mechanical experience, one that is meant to generate revenue and nothing more. That’s one of the reasons I left radio in the first place; it became a bland, money hungry, computerized venture with no connection to the listener. Generic solutions to metrics and equations. I’m not going to put my blood, sweat and tears into something that gives no emotion back. A classic dance station would be a different story, something between the disco era and the auto-tune era. That might be interesting. Maybe someday.

Perhaps I could sell the concept to Sirius/XM for all their thousands and thousands of new subscribers. Let them bring the heart and soul and connection back via satellite.

– Posted using BlogPress from my iPad