Archive for December, 2008

"…and Reverend Green, be glad to see you…"

December 27, 2008

“when you haven’t got a prayer….boy, you’ve got a prayer in Memphis…”
I’d guess a lot of folks, mostly younger country music fans, know that song as an album track from Lonestar’s Greatest Hits album from 2003. Still others know it as a track off Cher’s 1996 album It’s A Man’s World. But this paean to the home of the blues and the largest city on the Mississippi River was actually recorded first in 1991 by the man who wrote it, Cleveland, Ohio native Marc Cohn β€” who, ironically, had never set foot in Memphis before he wrote the tune. It was a large part of the reason Cohn took home the Grammy Award for Best New Artist that year…but even if he hadn’t won that award, “Walking in Memphis” would still have been a great song, and a great record too. To my ear his version of it is by far the best.

More guns ‘n’ politics comin’ soon, I reckon. πŸ˜‰

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More good times at work…

December 26, 2008

…brought to you by Nickelback playing on Big Dog 106 just a few minutes ago…
So I was at work the other day, and my boss asked me, “You know what I want?”
I said, “Tell me what you want…” doing my best imitation of Billy Gibbons from the song blogged about here.
Boss: “Pistolero, dude, that was about the gayest thing ever that you could have done.”
Good thing I wasn’t drinking anything right about then, ’cause I’d have spewed it all over the place as I busted out laughing. “Dude, sorry, I couldn’t help it, I was just listening to that cd!” Which was true, it had just played on the iPod. He’s a pretty smartass guy, but still I wasn’t expecting that…

"…how many dogs will die, how many more will bleed…"

December 26, 2008

From San Diego, the same old story of trigger-happy drug cops shooting another dog who apparently posed no threat to them. But even though reasonable people could argue all day long about that threat and the level thereof, that argument ultimately obscures a larger question evoked by another question asked at the Reason link: What are we going to have to do to get people to stop writing shit like that off as collateral damage in the War On Some Drugs? I’d guess there’s really not that much we CAN do, that it’s ultimately going to have to get even worse for Americans to be shaken out of their apathetic stupor. Considering the Bill of Rights β€” you know, what was supposed to have been a guarantee of protection against the predations of government β€” has also been made “collateral damage” by the War On Some Drugs that’s really the only conclusion I can reach. I wonder what the Founders are thinking as they observe this particular aspect of the decay of their Republic.

Merry Christmas, to one and all…

December 25, 2008

1. And it came to pass in those days, that there went out a decree from Caesar Augustus that all the world should be taxed.
2. (And this taxing was first made when Cyrenius was governor of Syria.)
3. And all went to be taxed, every one into his own city.
4. And Joseph also went up from Galilee, out of the city of Nazareth, into Judaea, unto the city of David, which is called Bethlehem; (because he was of the house and lineage of David:)
5. To be taxed with Mary his espoused wife, being great with child.
6. And so it was, that, while they were there, the days were accomplished that she should be delivered.
7. And she brought forth her firstborn son, and wrapped him in swaddling clothes, and laid him in a manger; because there was no room for them in the inn.
8. And there were in the same country shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night.
9. And, lo, the angel of the Lord came upon them, and the glory of the Lord shone round about them: and they were sore afraid.
10. And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people.
11. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord.

Merry Christmas, to one and all. Regular blogging will resume later.

"She fills my bed with gasoline…"

December 25, 2008

“…you’d think I would’ve noticed…”
…yeah. Another great song, from another Canadian rock band. I don’t remember the first time I heard this song, but something about it just really appealed to me. The lyrics, the delivery, the arrangement, just an all-around great package. I don’t know if Chad Kroeger could pull off a song like this, but Theory of a Deadman lead singer Tyler Connolly just nails it dead-on. Video here.
“…oh, it hurts to live…and I remember the day, when you left for Santa Monica…”

More Going Mac…

December 24, 2008

Continuing with yesterday’s riff, via Jeff at Alphecca, we have this

The Mac’s been on a roll, both due to its highly regarded Mac OS X Leopard operating system and to an unhappy reception for Microsoft’s Windows Vista. The result: For the first time in memory, the Mac’s market share has hit 9.1 percent, according to IDC data, and Windows’ market share has dipped below 90 percent. (Linux distributions make up the rest.)

But can either Mac OS X or Linux be more than a niche OS?

I suppose that’s a fair question, considering the case the writer makes for the continued viability of Windows in business applications. And even though for what most home users do the Mac OS or Linux would probably work just as well, I’d guess that the business attitude would carry over to home use. Honestly, as a Mac user I am fine with that β€” and contrary to what some might think, it’s not because of the supposed appeal of being a fan of a niche-market product. I could give two shits about niche appeal for anything, even though the flip side of that argument β€” many people like a product, therefore it must be superior β€” never made any sense to me. No, what I like about that small-market share vis-a-vis computer operating systems, is the fact that most of the viruses and such are still going to be targeted toward the software with the largest market share β€” i.e. Windows, Internet Explorer, etc. Speaking of that last one, looks like we’re getting another demonstration of the reason some call it Internet Exploder…and for the record, I blog and do everything else in Safari or Firefox on a MacBook running OS X Tiger. I know next to nothing about Linux, but I have heard nothing but good things about it, and we can add to that this comment from reader and blog-friend Ted:

Ubuntu Linux – up and running in 15 minutes.

You can’t ask for better than that, especially for something that as far as I know doesn’t come pre-installed. I’m sure most Linux users wouldn’t mind it staying the niche OS that it is for the same reasons cited by Mac users like me. I suppose there are exceptions to that, but I’d bet money that number is made out to be much, much higher than it actually is.

More Random Computer Musings…

December 23, 2008

or, another plug for Apple!
So I saw this delightful number this morning at Gerard Vanderleun’s American Digest:

Last night I had one of the most frightening dreams a man can have. I dreamt that someone, who hated me very deeply, got me a new computer for Christmas. I woke up screaming, but the dream persisted. The horror! The horror!

This Christmas puppy came loaded with Fritterware. It had Pantless OS, BrokenWindows 2010, HomelessOffice 2004, Internet Destroyer, Fretscape, Opensource Godzilla, iEverthingEverywhere and Pong. The Paperclip was back as the host of a computer training program aptly named RageMaker. When I opened the box in my nightmare my first impulse was to rip open all my other presents in hopes that someone had given me a gun so I could just shoot myself.
Nothing is worse than life itself than a fully loaded new computer, and I’ve been using them for nearly 20 years. Setting up a new computer is like getting ready to French Kiss an elephant; you know it will be a new experience, but you know it won’t taste like veal cordon blue.

*snerk* When I got home from the Apple Store in Houston with my MacBook, you know what I did? Turned it on, plugged in my Ethernet cord and off I went. And so it has gone since I’ve had it. As far as I remember there weren’t any drivers to install or anything like that. In any event it was arguably a hell of a lot better deal than was a comparably-equipped Windows laptop, even with the higher price. The only things I’ve installed on it besides AOL Desktop was Microsoft Office for Mac, the Flip4Mac Windows Media adapter and ShapeShifter, and the machine runs just as smoothly as it did when I got it out of the box. The only issues I’ve run into with the Mac OS are with third-party programs that have certain issues with the Mac OS and reputations for shitty tech support anyway. I don’t know if there’s as much freeware and such on something like a Dell that you’d order direct instead of going to Walmart, Best Buy or wherever, but either way I think a Mac is still a better deal, even (and in Microsoft’s case, especially) with the computer manufacturers drafting of customers as their guinea pigs. I’ve been using Mac OS X Leopard for a little bit and so far it seems to be just as reliable and stable as Tiger. For those in the market for a new desktop OR laptop, I honestly can do nothing but recommend the Mac if you’re looking for a low-frustration experience.

That’s me, with a capital M, that’s me ten times ten…

December 23, 2008
How to Win a Fight With a Liberal is the ultimate survival guide for political arguments

My Conservative Identity:

You are an Anti-government Gunslinger, also known as a libertarian conservative. You believe in smaller government, states’ rights, gun rights, and that, as Reagan once said, β€œThe nine most terrifying words in the English language are, β€˜I’m from the government and I’m here to help.’”

Take the quiz at www.FightLiberals.com

Found at Drumwaster’s place, and those of you who know off the top of your head where the title of this post came from, well, I salute you. πŸ˜‰

Ignorant fraud, indeed…

December 22, 2008

Would-be RNC chair Michael Steele, on gun control:

What do you need an assault weapon for, if you’re going hunting?

Never mind the whole “assault weapon” misnomer here. And we’ve all discussed, ad nauseum ad infinitum, the hunting utility of semi-auto rifles, which I am guessing is what Steele’s talking about when he says “assault rifle.” Honestly, one would think such a question would have been answered once and for all at least 16 years ago, when the Korean shopkeepers employed semi-automatic AK-47s to protect themselves from rampaging hordes of looters during the 1992 L.A. riots. One would think an exclamation point on that answer would have been the post-Katrina situation on the Louisiana and Mississippi Gulf Coast. And then, if I remember correctly, John Allen Muhammad and Lee Boyd Malvo used less than 20 rounds of .223 to do their dirty work in Washington in the fall of ’02 β€” and with the way they did it, they could have pulled it off just as easily with a bolt-action deer rifle, of the type the politicians say they don’t have a problem with. I guess it’s a testament to the ignorance of a politician that he (or she) would ask such a question in this day and age, but still it’s absolutely inexcusable. I’d like to think some education on the issue from various perspectives β€” from Katrina-type situations and what the Founding Fathers themselves had to say on the individual’s right to arms of military utility to the War On Some Drugs and the history of gun control as a tool of racist oppression β€” would alter Steele’s perspective, but then again he should have been more in tune with that anyway, considering he wants to be the chair of the party supposedly seen as the champion of that particular right. I hated to see that, really, as Steele seemed to be a promising start to the end of the days when the GOP was seen as racist, sexist or what-have-you. That particular opinion is bullshit anyway, but someone like Michael Steele in the upper ranks of the GOP would have gone a long way towards illuminating it as such.
(h/t David Codrea)

A not-so-old (to me, anyway) Christmas favorite

December 22, 2008

One day about eight years ago, when I was living in North Texas, I was listening to the radio early in the morning, 99.5 the Wolf out of Dallas, when I first heard the most outrageously funny “Christmas” song I’d ever heard in all my days on this earth. They called it “The Twelve Drinks of Christmas.” Come to find out it was actually called “The Twelve Daze of Christmas,” and it was done by jazz singer Fay McKay, who I just found out died earlier this year. And I just heard it again, this time here. Words can’t do this one justice….if you haven’t heard it, well, just listen…