A stiff apology is a second insult… The injured party does not want to be compensated because he has been wronged; he wants to be healed because he has been hurt.
———– G. K. Chesterton
A mangy looking guy who goes into a bar and orders a drink. The bartender says: “No way. I don’t think you can pay for it.” The guy says, “You’re right. I don’t have any money, but if I show you something you haven’t seen before, will you give me a drink?”
The bartender says, “Only if what you show me ain’t risque.” “Deal!” says the guy and reaches into his coat pocket and pulls out a hamster. He puts the hamster on the bar and it runs to the end of the bar, down the bar, across the room, up the piano, jumps on the key board and starts playing Gershwin songs. And the hamster is really good.
The bartender says, “You’re right. I’ve never seen anything like that before. That hamster is truly good on the piano.” The guy downs the drink and asks the bartender for another.
“Money or another miracle else no drink”, says the bartender. The guy reaches into his coat again and pulls out a frog. He puts the frog on the bar, and the frog starts to sing. He has a marvelous voice and great pitch. A fine singer. A stranger from the other end of the bar runs over to the guy and offers him $300 for the frog.
The guy says “It’s a deal.” He takes the three hundred and gives the stranger the frog. The stranger runs out of the bar. The bartender says to the guy “Are you some kind of nut? You sold a singing frog for $300? It must have been worth millions. You must be crazy.”
“Nope”, says the guy. “The hamster is also a ventriloquist.”
A great many people think they are thinking when they are merely rearranging their prejudices.
——— William James
It’s now clear that Maj. Nidal Hasan was someone who went Jihadi, and showed plenty of warning signs. And yet those signs were ignored. And in the aftermath, we were treated to this weird display of anything but jihadism.
Over and over, we we are told not to even paint at all lest we paint with too broad a brush. If somebody puts on a hockey mask, revs up a chain saw, and threatens people, do I dismiss it because Jason is, after all, only a fictional character? Or do I respect the person enough to take them at their word and take action? I vote for taking action. Clearly others vote for dismissing it as fiction.
You want answers? You can’t handle the truth!”
——– Col. Nathan Jessup
I think Leonard Pitts gives the reason away in his column where he commits one of the fallacies I hate worst – pick the most extreme view and paint it as the entirety of your opponents views. He tells us, if we tell you the truth America, you’ll put moslems into internment camps or hang them from the nearest lightpost, because that’s who you are.
How else do you interpret the statement:
And it ought to leave you impatient with the shrill, intolerant voices who would have us believe Nidal Malik Hasan is every Muslim in America.
For what it’s worth, those same voices sang out when Japanese-American soldiers left internment camps to fight for freedom. And when African-American soldiers went abroad to defend democracy, then came home and were lynched still wearing their uniforms.
It leaves me impatient with shrill, intolerant voices who would have me believe a couple of quotes off the internet is representative of every American.
I think we see this again and again from certain people on the left – we can’t tell the truth, or America will go medieval on some minority group’s heiney like we always have in the past. And that’s what makes them self-loathing Americans. America is always wrong, and can never be trusted to do the right thing, or learn from past mistakes. The irony that they are the ones painting with too broad a brush is, of course, completely lost on them.
Actually, Leonard et al, we can handle the truth, what drives people crazy is being lied to. If you lie to people, don’t complain when they become paranoid.
“Religious liberty might be supposed to mean that everybody is free to discuss religion. In practice it means that hardly anybody is allowed to mention it.”
———– G. K. Chesterton
A programmer and an engineer are sitting next to each other on a long flight from Los Angeles to New York. The programmer leans over to the engineer and asks if he would like to play a fun game. The engineer just wants to take a nap, so he politely declines and rolls over to the window to catch a few winks.
The programmer persists and explains that the game is real easy and is a lot of fun. He explains “I ask you a question, and if you don’t know the answer, you pay me $5. Then you ask me a question, and if I don’t know the answer, I’ll pay you $5.”
Again, the engineer politely declines and tries to get to sleep. The programmer, now somewhat agitated, says, “OK, if you don’t know the answer you pay me $5, and if I don’t know the answer, I’ll pay you $100!”
This catches the engineer’s attention, and he sees no end to this torment unless he plays, so he agrees to the game.
The programmer asks the first question. “What’s the distance from the earth to the moon?” The engineer doesn’t say a word, but reaches into his wallet, pulls out a five dollar bill and hands it to the programmer.
Now, it’s the engineer’s turn. He asks the programmer “What goes up a hill with three legs, and comes down on four?” The programmer looks up at him with a puzzled look. He takes out his laptop computer and searches all of his references. He searches the net and the Library of Congress with the onboard wifi. Frustrated, he sends e-mail to his co-workers — all to no avail.
After about an hour, he wakes the Engineer and hands him $100. The engineer politely takes the $100 and turns away to try to get back to sleep. The programmer, more than a little miffed, shakes the engineer and asks “Well, so what’s the answer?” Without a word, the engineer reaches into his wallet, hands the programmer $5, and turns away to go back to sleep.
Maintenance Free: When it breaks, it can’t be fixed.
I’ve moved my domain to a new host and switched blogging platforms, but I’m getting the old blog back together. Yes, the outcry has been so overwhelming that after a year away I’m ready.
It’s hard to make a comeback when you haven’t been anywhere.
And what a year it’s been. Hope has given way to disappointment, I’m busier than ever, and blogging may be out of fashion what with Twitter and Facebook.
An optimist is someone who tells you to cheer up when things are going their way.
So bear with me as I try to get back into the groove, rebuild the blog (thanks Gate for eating my database and backup) and resume what started Christmas newsletter in August over ten years ago.
I finally got my head together, now my body is falling apart.
In the early 90s I persuaded my wife that by getting a modem, I could avoid working late or on weekends because I could work from home. When she tried the same thing, the insurer she worked for thought that was a huge security risk, unlike the defense contractor I worked for. I could also log into a little thing called GEnie, which was a pre-web online service.
I tried to get a life once, but they were out of stock.
From there I went to this other service, America Online because it had a much more Mac-like interface and that appealed to me and my SE. And they started this thing called Hometown when the World Wide Web came along – I still remember my brother asking if I’d heard of this thing called mosaic.
It was all so different before everything changed.
So when I got this one particular wild hair to do desktop publishing and send out a Christmas letter, a good non-bragging, witty Christmas letter. That was in July. In August I actually created and mailed a full color Christmas letter. I can state with certainty it wasn’t obnoxiously braggy.
I started out with Nothing … and I still have most of it.
And then I got a second wild hair, and that was to put the Christmas letter on the web (back then the web was not synonymous with the internet, it was just one little part of it. I think more people saw it in their mail than online.
The only time the world beats a path to your door is when you’re in the bathroom.
But I kept adding to it, and I got to the point I often hand tagged instead of using Pagespinner. And I kept adding until one day I started a blog using Greymatter. And so I moved off AOL and bought my own domain.
A closed mouth gathers no feet.
October 3, 2002 was the day. Three posts that day. I haven’t had a three post day in …
Funny, I don’t remember being absent minded.
And I blogged for years, years, without pause. I can remember if I missed a few days I figured I had to have a really good post the next time I posted so that missing a few days would be worth it.
I was going to procrastinate, but I put it off.
At some point Greymatter was no longer supported, so I made the change to Movable Type, which all the cool cats were using. And I didn’t have any trouble porting over.
Experience is a wonderful thing. It let’s you recognize a mistake when you make it again.
Then I started having trouble with my provider. Posting could be agonizingly slow. Settings would somehow change and I’d have to contact them to get them reset. And one of the support guys admitted that they pretty much ignored email but hey I could always call. And wait on hold.
All reports are in. Life is now officially unfair.
Then one day my database stopped working. At all. So foolish me I un-checked the mySQL setting, waited, and re-checked. Yes, I backed up the database. And then I fooled around some more, and finally got through. Hey presto, they claimed that while they didn’t know why it stopped working, they had it working again.
If at first you do succeed, try not to look too astonished.
So I figured I’d take this opportunity to switch from MT 2.x to MT 4.1. So I made another backup (because you can’t be too careful) and installed MT 4.1. And then I discovered the awful truth – my database had been purged when I un-checked mySQL (which they didn’t warn you about). And when I made that can’t be too careful back up, well, you can be, because now I had a null backup.
Shin: A device for finding furniture in the dark
At least I still have all the original files, which you can visit in their unformatted glory. And now, after a hiatus far too long, I’m back blogging again, with a beautiful WordPress installation (it’s the default at my new host). Go Me!
Many people have the gift of gab. Some just don’t know how to wrap it up.
he wife and I got up at the usual time and went straight to the polls – well, almost, I took a shower, which just goes to show I do have some regard for my fellow man. Still, we were there about 15 minutes before the polls opened – early enough to beat those poor canvassers standing outside handing out literature. But there were oh, about 75 people in line in front of us, but at least we were indoors, unlike a lot of my coworkers.
A good chunk of the neighborhood was there, so while I held her spot my wife would wander off to chat with the neighbors or even see the baby twins one family brought. I got stuck with the talkative older lady who doesn’t seem to get out much. Eventually we made our way in to vote where we passed up the fancy touch screen systems and went for the paper ballots. I’ve never actually voted beside my wife before, and we were a bit chatty while voting. It took about an hour for us to vote – not too bad, but it did seem longer than it has in a while (I remember the Clinton-Bush-Perot vote as particularly lengthy).
I live in a purple neighborhood in a purple state (Missouri), although I noticed only 1 family with both an Obama and a McCain sign in the front yard – one of those mixed marriages. I keep hearing about the enthusiasm gap and all, but I think McCain voters turned out too – in part because we’re getting more polarized – and I don’t see either outcome of this election changing that one bit, Palin helped provide some enthusiasm (certainly here in Missouri), and just to show the media and the pundits they’re not as smart as they think they are – a reason the media never seems to pick up on, let alone report, but an important one, nevertheless.
You know, while we all say we like to vote for the person, people sure seem to be just as enthusiastic to vote against the other person.