Things that annoy me: 2004
Web sites that insist on your selecting a title - Mr. Mrs. Ms. - before you can submit your registration (e.g. Audible.com).
I am as offended by a requirement to state my gender as I would be by one to state my race.
I commend your attention to this very amusing review of Day After Tomorrow by a real live paleoclimatologist, Dr. William Hyde of Duke University. Favorite paragraph:
The characters in the movie would have to be massively deepened to be called shallow. The major conflict is that of the Quaid character, who has missed much of his son's upbringing owing to his penchant for jumping crevasses on remote ice shelves. His wife's anger at this I rate at 137 MilliPeeves, where one Peeve equals the feeling you get when the coffee shop runs out of your favourite creamer, and you have to use your second favourite. This is understated acting.[Note: review contains spoilers, as if you cared. Pointer to this humorous and successful effort to get the esteemed professor to see this film kindly provided by Mr. Jason Kottke. Additional note: my weakness for the writing and humor of those of an academic bent is evidenced by my new-found conviction that the denizens of the rec.arts.sf.written newsgroup are persons of astonishing wit and profound sexual attractiveness almost approaching paleoclimatologist levels.]
A Visit To 12 Galaxies With That 1 Guy and Lord Loves A Working Man 2004
I had a great time last night on my first visit to 12 Galaxies. It's a very nice venue. I really like two-level clubs like that. I didn't go up this time - just enjoyed looking up and watching the people along the railing watching the bands, but I will next time around. (I'll also have to look into the history of that architechtural style; 12 Galaxies is laid out basically the same as the Edinburgh Castle pub. I'd like to know the era and purpose of that layout).
The bands made me happy and my friends B.J. and Keoni danced themselves into grinning, sweaty froths.
The opener, whose name I never did catch because the vocals weren't as loud as they should have been in the mix, was a guitarist with a great voice. His style was a bit country-influenced, but I'm hard-pressed to describe his genre other than to put him in that big, vague "singer-songwriter" bucket. He'd fit in a bill with Annie Lin and Scott Andrew, but not because he sounds like either of them. The woman who joined him to provide vocal accompaniment was also good.
The headliner - wisely on second before the "dance your ass off" powers of Lord Loves A Working Man - was the triumphant return to the bay area of That 1 Guy. He's been on a national tour and it's only made his performance stronger. The crowd seemed to be a good split between people there for him and those for LLAWM, but most of the latter group were blown away by the power of Mike's Magic Pipe and I'm hopeful his CD sales were good. In any case, a new batch of people will be watching out for future shows. I got to speak to him briefly before and after the show and found him to be, as ever, one of the nicer guys you would ever want to talk to. That he also seems to have rhythm in his veins instead of blood is a pleasant bonus.
Then Lord Loves A Working Man hit the stage - finally on one big enough for them - and tore the house down as usual. Such a tight band and such a glorious sound. Apparently, Max A. Millions is the second hardest working man in show business. B.J. commented that he'd been watching and noticed that Max was conducting the band on the upswing of his guitar strumming and that when both hands were too busy he appeared to be conducting with his hair. (The keyboardist - Rob, I think - afterwards told me that when Max flings sweat on them from his curls, it's their cue to play). B.J. said the band were all watching Max except the horns who were watching their sheet music. Their hard work pays off; no sloppiness, just that sweet solid sound. They are indeed workin' men and if the lord has any sense he'll love them as much as the audience. By the way, speaking of the horns, the trumpeter filling in for Freddi Price (currently touring Europe with the Extra-Action Marching Band) did a great job. You'd never guess it was his first show with them. He's not Freddi, but it didn't feel like a hole in the sound, just a little difference. I'm hoping when Freddi's back, we might get a show with both of them. Maybe I just like brass.
I apologize for not reminding you of the show. I promise to warn you in advance of the next performances. Three times as many people could and should have fit in 12 Galaxies to hear these acts. (Also I've begun my campaign to get Lord Loves A Workin' Man into the studio. It's partly a philanthropic desire to see the band do well and have more people exposed to their music, but mostly it's a selfish need to enjoy their music between shows).
Building Dinah's Character 2004
"Okay, I've bought my Bureaucracy Navigation skill up to 90%. Now I'm going to take 'Honest' as a psychological disadvantage and spend the points on my Alphabetization skills..."
This is a post from ecto 2004
I'm giving ecto a try on the assumption it's the best way to understand its capabilities.
Speaking of second chances, I've also got a post half-written about Technorati's site improvements, but they were getting hammered from all the CNN/politics.technorati.com attention so I figure I'll check back later when I have more time (and/or don't feel so much like watching movies).
One thing I can see right off the bat is that ecto will allow me to easily adjust my post dates, solving my problem with filling in my pre-October-1998 history. Go, ecto!
(And damn if I ain't impressed with the interface just in the course of writing this first post. I thought Movable Type and TypePad were good, but this is a great power user setup!)
Yes, but what does it do in general and why would I want it? 2004
I grow increasingly frustrated by having people recommend software from companies who can't seem to clearly articulate what the software or service is for and why I should download it or how I can participate. Technorati, for example, I kinda get, but only kinda and only because I already figured out trackbacks. How the hell I make easy use of it as a blog creator remains unclear as of my last visit to their site. And bear in mind that I've been doing this web content creation thing for six years and have beta tested about half the major weblogging tools. I think I'm halfway there with it, but I haven't been able to spend more than an hour trying to understand their site and get configured to participate. If I'd spent that hour and found out I understood it and knew my next steps, I wouldn't be so frustrated. As it is, I know I got started with their process for Authors but something is clearly still wrong because they think I haven't updated for 12 days. I thought they were supposed to crawl my site in addition to my being able (somehow) to ping them when I update. I'm not dumb, but I am busy enough to just say "Screw it. If the tool even survives, they'll have to learn to explain themselves better and I'll try again then."
how else would I be blogging this? Chris is working on Userspace again, so we might see two great XML-RPC tools out there, soon.Did you see something go by overhead? But it's not Jonas' job to explain it to me, it's theirs, so I go to their site. And how do they answer the question "What is ecto?"
ecto is a feature-rich desktop blogging client for MacOSX and Windows, supporting a wide range of weblog systems, such as TypePad, MovableType, WordPress, Drupal, Nucleus, Blogger, and more. ecto is the successor of the wildly popular Kung-Log, which has been in use by thousands of Mac users and which earned a 4.5 mice in the MacWorld July 2003 issue. ecto earned high ratings at VersionTracker.com, and at MacUpdate.com. The Windows version is a recent product and is being developed by Alex Hung.But those are already feature-rich blogging clients, so what does ecto do? Is it just an alternate interface? Or is "desktop" the key word? I use my desktop computer to manage my weblog in those tools without ecto. Is it that ecto doesn't require a connection to the internet for me to work on my site? Do they somehow let me work offline and then upload my changes later? If so, that'd be great - it's exactly what I need for my commute - but their description of the software doesn't make it clear, their FAQ answers questions like "I get the error message 'Encountered string encoding error' or 'failed with code '-65794' and message '\Uxxxx\Uxxxx (line x, pos x, status 3)'' when retrieving entries", and the documentation link is dead.
I suddenly feel my job as a product manager is more important than ever.
Ogre on muni 2004
Photo taken in summer 2004. Yes, those are real fingernails.
Don't Dream It, Be It 2004
I'm posting this from a Starbucks in Palo Alto from my loverly new 12" PowerBook.
oh, yes. This is going to be fun.
(Thanks to the voice of wisdom and prudence (as played by Jonas Luster), I spent about half what I expected to. Also thanks to Jonas for giving me a charged battery and his tmobile login until I can organize my own).
Thinking: I want a tiBook.
Thinking: Who do I know who still works at Apple and might have some extra discount lovin' to spread around?
Listen to your elders 2004
My wise mother sent me this and I pass it along to you. Please read it all. It isn't very long and it is very important.
Doris Haddock is the woman who walked across the U.S. from California to Washington D.C. at age 89 - 90 to dramatize the public demand for campaign finance reform. She is now running for the U.S. Senate in her home state of New Hampshire. See her biography and more at http://www.grannyd.com/ As you'll see from the speech below, she remains an intelligent and highly concerned citizen. A motto of her campaign: "Think positive about our future and work like hell." [From: Doris "Granny D" Haddock for U.S. Senate]
Doris "Granny D" Haddock Speaking at the Alliance for Democracy
Convention in Boston, Wednesday, July 21, 2004
Well, Friends, here we are in a city that has known the struggle of free people against tyranny, their rise above personal self-interest, their rise during the occasions of human emergency to move forward with courage, with intelligence and a long view to the future of the people, and with great energy and a perfect concentration on victory. "We must all hang together or assuredly we shall all hang separately" is a phrase spoken in Philadelphia by a man of this city--a phrase that again has personal meaning to us.
We are not so far in time from 1776. My own life extends over 40% the way there.
There is a man working in my campaign office whose distant grandfather planned Revere's ride and roused him to it that fateful night. This descendent planned my trip here, in fact.
All of us have not so much come to this city, but come back to it. Our forefathers and mothers, whether they were free or slave, elite or servant, newcomer or native, whether they fought for human freedom at Lexington or Omaha Beach, or at a segregated lunch counter, have given us something to defend, and we now have our moment to take our part in the continuing joyful struggle that is America in its ongoing revolution against oppression and unfairness and cruelty. We rise up--the human spirit defends itself. We rise up to defend each other. It is in our genes.
So we are in Boston again--our noble and rebellious blood mixed through the generations, but still easy to boil at any danger to our independence. And we are here together, as civic friends, as true friends, and, history will record, as patriots kin to generations of patriots before us, who care nothing for safety nor for comfort when truth, love and the Constitution are at stake.
What sacrifices are we willing to make? This morning, I will speak of several necessary sacrifices. For some of you, these will be easy or no sacrifice at all. For others, they will be hard but necessary.
I come this morning to talk about John Kerry and the coming demonstrations during the two conventions.
Four years ago I looked at the poison of big business support for the major candidates and I advised my friends to vote their hearts, to let the chips fall where they might, on the theory that, even if their third party candidate lost, they would be building a constituency for such candidates in the future.
I was very wrong to suggest that party building was more important than the risks of a Bush presidency. While none of us knew how bad it would be, those of us who spoke out on the issue had an obligation to do our homework--to know more about the hidden agendas of the candidates.
I still believe we must vote our hearts, but we must inform our hearts.
I have done my homework. We all have done our homework--we know who Bush is and what he represents. We know the danger of another Bush term. We know the danger of splitting our vote.
I am for Kerry. My heart is completely dedicated to this victory.
If that is hard for some people, let me ask them to think about it this way. Imagine you knew John Kerry since the Vietnam War days. Maybe you were a fellow soldier or a nurse or a friend back home. Over the years, you have stayed in touch, exchanged long phone calls and birthday cards and kidded him about marrying well. You've ridden on the back of his motorcycle and shouted for him to slow down.
We forgive all sorts of things of our friends, so, when you argued with him about his vote on a big issue close to your heart, you were angry, but you knew him well enough to be willing to stick with your friendship.
And you might defend him in his absence, say at a dinner party. John Kerry bad on the environment? No way, you would defend. He has one of the best environmental voting records in Congress. As President, you assure them, he would be addressing the critical issues of our day, such as global climate change and the myriad issues that connect with that crisis.
Further, you might assert that his political skills would mean that his strong position on the environment would enable him to move an agenda forward, while a president like Ralph Nader might rail against Congress like an Old Testament prophet, but get nothing through. Yes, you would assure any doubter, though you have problems with some of John's votes, he would be better for the environment and better in the necessary political work ahead than Nader or anyone you can think of.
And you might say the same for John Kerry regarding health care and civil liberties and justice issues, and on, and on.
Now, our problem in America today is that not enough of us have been on the back of his motorcycle and on the receiving end of his personal friendship and loyalty.
But in this American crisis, he is indeed our best friend, and we had better be his, and do everything we can for this friend. Will I be among those who put pressure on him to take bold steps after his election? Indeed--inside or outside the Senate I will, and I will be protected in those protests and in those walks and in those utterances by the document we will have saved so that it might continue to save us: The U.S. Constitution. That will not be the case if we must protest against another Bush Administration.
Can we hang together long enough to protect our freedom?
Some people will continue to say that, yes, four more years of Bush would be a disaster for the entire earth, its people and its environment, but they just don't have it in them to vote for John Kerry for one reason or another. I do not see Mr. Kerry as the lesser of two evils, but some people do. For them, I say that the very definition of the mature mind, the responsible mind, is not only being able to accept the lesser evil, but to embrace it will all your heart and energy.
The disengaged and haughty intellectual who will not take part in the defense of his own city from the barbarian attack, perhaps because he never really liked the mayor, stands by as the enemy enters and ravages his fellow citizens. Is he rather like the haughty liberal who is willing to enable another Bush Administration to kill innocents abroad and imprison innocents at home so that one doesn't have to have the soil of real politics under one's manicured fingernails? Such people need to grow up emotionally, and become real men and women who will fight for justice and for their fellow human beings and for nature itself on the battleground at hand, not the ideal battleground of their musings. Such people get in the way, take up space, and hinder those who will make the hundred leaps of faith necessary to be engaged in the real world and do battle in the war between the forces of dark and light, between fear and love.
John Kerry has a long record of supporting women's and minority' rights, and of opposing discrimination based on sexual orientation. He has worked to boost fuel standards, worked to limit pollution, worked to boost alternative energy, worked to stop drilling in the Arctic Preserve, worked to protect public schools and the social security program, worked to oppose the flood of guns in our society, worked to oppose tax windfalls to the wealthy, worked against Star Wars funding, worked to provide resources to the poor. The list of what he has done is a long one, and the list of the things you might argue with him about is a short one.
Two centuries ago, there were probably Americans who didn't quite like part of the Declaration of Independence or who did think George Washington was just the right man to lead the Continental Army, or who thought there should be a few more articles to the Bill of Rights before they would sign on. They were barnacles on that Yankee Clipper that sped despite them toward liberty, and they are now less than footnotes. This is a time for action, and our man is John Kerry.
We ask our favorite leaders, as I will ask Dennis Kucinich, to serve with all their hearts, too, when the flags and banners of the Democratic Convention come down in this city next week.
With good men like him beside me, I shall be voting my heart, my whole heart, when I vote for John Kerry.
And I shall vote for him on October 12th. I think all Democrats should vote three weeks early by mailed ballots. That way, there will be a paper record of our votes. You may have suspicions about the voting machines, but I assure you that the Secretaries of State and the town and county clerks of this nation take their jobs very seriously and our paper ballots in their hands will be our best defense against any secretly rigged or otherwise malfunctioning or sabotaged machines--and the Bush Administration can stop talking about putting off the election[*], for that issue may not be as dead as we hope.
Besides, if we vote three weeks in advance, we will all be free to volunteer on the Get Out the Vote projects in the swing areas.
Now, let me say a word about one other thing we must do, which may be a sacrifice for some people and time off for good behavior for others.
Many, many Americans will decide which side they are on as they watch the national conventions on television and as they read and hear about the events.
They will look at the pretty politicians and delegates, and they will look at the people on the street. They will identify with one group or another.
Every roudy, rude, pushy person in a demonstration, whether in Boston or New York, is a vote for George Bush. Every clash with the police is another swarm of votes for Bush, and therefore clashes will be provoked.
Should we demonstrate? Yes. We should demonstrate respectfully in Boston in support of regime change. We should cheer on the Democratic Party and its candidates, for they are our best friends in this American crisis.
In New York, we should have signs that speak the truth respectfully, and signs that say why we are for Kerry and Edwards. We should look like and sound like people one would want to know, not one would want to run from.
Some people will think they have a right to express their anger and their creativity and they are right. But, is their need to express themselves a higher value to them than saving our Constitution or the environment of the earth or the lives of thousands of people?
This is a moment when people on our side are going to be fully tested for unselfishness and maturity.
If they want to move history, they have to persuade their fellow citizens. Ranting and raving will not help, and will in fact do harm. If you want to persuade your fellow citizens to follow you, you must speak and act and even dress the part of a thoughtful, respectable citizen.
"That's not who I am, Granny. I have to tell it like it is."
Yes, I hear you. It is the sound of children playing while people are dying. We are a little spoiled in this country, and we do not take seriously enough our responsible role in the world.
Our individual actions as citizens, even as non-voting age young people, have important effects in the world. People live and die, the environment thrives or dies, people are tortured or tutored, according to how we vote, and how we influence the votes of our fellow citizens.
In this moment, we must shed our differences and act as one people, one voice, one voting block. We will save our nation in these next few months, and then we will resume the hard work of fighting out our differences and moving our own issues forward. But for now, we are for Democracy, we are for justice, we are for liberty, we are for a peaceful and sustainable future, we are for the Constitution, and we are for John Kerry. [emphasis added by Dinah]
Lance Arthur is fucking brilliant (and he has a nice suit).
The addition of new songs in the Paris oeuvre encourages revisiting the earlier works.
Songs for Paris
"You’re the Prettiest Cat in the Apartment”
“Who’s the Insane Cat?”
“Meow Meow Kitty”
“Hey! You Crazy Cat!”
“That’s My Crotch”
“The Boyfriend’s Song”
“Stop Knocking (Things Off All Surfaces)”
“You With The Sharp Claws (The Exclamation Point Song)”
“The Boyfriend’s Other Song”
“The Boyfriend’s Morning Song”
Slow Saturday Morning 2004
It is Saturday isn't it? I'm a little muddled after my busy couple weeks. Many great social events. Watched some movies (Rashomon, Sexy Beast). Had some nice time with friends. Got a little behind on housework, bills, responding to email, etc. Did some catching up (including working an extra 2.5 hours last night and getting a gratifyingly big chunk of email at work answered and bug calls opened), but the house still needs sweeping, laundry still needs doing and my checkbook still needs balancing. Ah well. Was filled with joy at my friend Jay winning the Movable Type plug-in contest. Was filled with smaller scale delight at getting to try Movable Type at work to manage my enhancement list. This morning I slept in until 9:30ish and that was so very nice. I've got a trip to a hot tub this afternoon (and a nice ride on the train) to look forward to this evening.
All is pretty darn good.
What I'm Thinking:
Why haven't I been reading Dooce all along? Heather is great.
What I'm Also Thinking:
Boy am I glad I didn't read all that stuff on Dooce before I met Jon, Heather's total sweetie of a husband, (in the best suit at Derek & Heather's wedding. Sorry, Lance.) and he was so goshdarn nice to me. Bad enough I should be all squirmy and happily embarrassed at his recognition of my site. At least I wasn't thinking "coding HTML while wearing nothing but your underwear and black socks" during the entire conversation.
Heather and Derek's Wedding 2004
Photos by Robin Andersen (except the one of the two of us).
Happy so far 2004
Thanks everyone for the birthday wishes. I'm having a lovely season instead of just a day. Thursday night was Derek's bachelor party and we had great tacky tiki fun and and a phenomenal dinner at Shi Mo. Last night I went to bed early and slept well in preparation for all the other socializing this weekend.
This morning started, a bit earlier than my usual lazy Saturday, with a trip to the San Francisco Flower Mart with Judith. It was great fun. I like spending time with Judith and the Mart is beautiful. I'd never been before and I really enjoyed myself. She loaded me down with all sorts of lovely flowers and foliage and then when we'd checked off the shopping list we headed over to Janice & Jason & Evan Fraser's in Noe Valley. They have a really nice house and I am experiencing serious kitchen prep space envy.
I played "line cook" and trimmed things to soak and prepped decorative leaves while the talented Judith and Janice made pretty bouquets and corsages. To ensure utter fabulousness of the results, we all wore tiaras during the proceedings. Jason played guitar for us for a while and Evan went fishing (best results in hallway, according to his papa). It was all quite delightful and I was astounded by Janice's ability to bounce back from cancelled-flight-travel-trauma.
Around noon-something I took off and was given a birthday wrist corsage on my way out which I wore proudly with my jeans & t-shirt all the way home.
I stopped off at Friendly Spirits to buy myself some birthday presents for my growing collection of single-malts. (These join the Genmorangie Port Wood Finish 12 year, Dalwhinnie 15 year, and Balvenie Doublewood 12 year). From my mum (thanks, Mum!) a bottle of 10-year-old Edradour, "Scotland's Smallest Distillery". Edradour is the name of a cat I used to have and I've always wanted to sample the stuff. So, since I can do whatever I damn well please today, I had a tasting at 2pm. Okay, so it was half an ounce, but still, 86 proof! I'm a hooligan! Anyhow, lovely lovely nose on it. Very odd main flavor which I can't put a description to yet, nice long finish. I think this one wants a bigger longer tasting and a bit of water to open it up. Great for smelling, though, when you don't actually want to drink anything and you just want to give your senses something complicated to enjoy.
Aside: I concluded after the bachelor party that though the sake at dinner was excellent (must consult the name on that gigantic bottle which Derek ended up with...) and my two tacky mai tai's were fun, I prefer quality over quantity. I'd rather have one glass of good scotch whisky than 3 of any other drink. And, since I almost never drink more than three drinks, that makes entertaining myself very cost-effective. The big present, though, was something I've wanted to add to the collection for a while: the 18-year Macallan. This is one of the best, referred to by the folks over at single-malt.com as "The Wet Dream of Malts" and/or "the Special Occasion Malt". I've had it before and it is damn good. This one is for special occasions and discerning friends. Not sure how long I'll be able to resist at least opening it to smell, though.
Now it's time to relax for a while before showering and dolling myself up for early dinner at Buca di Beppo to wish my former co-worker Matt and his sweetie John good fortune as they move on to new adventures. After dinner my friend Fil is taking me to see Movin' On (Billy Joel music, Twyla Tharp dance thang). Should be a very fun evening. I have a suspicion some sort of drinks & or dessert may be on the plan for afterwards.
Tomorrow is Heather & Derek's wedding, so I'll be busy helping that special day go smooth as silk. Hope you all are having a lovely weekend and finding your happiness all the places you can.
Hey! I resemble that remark! 2004
Matt said "In my experience Mac users tend to be total browser flirts, and have every browser you’ve ever heard of installed."
Okay, yes, you could call us slutty, but we prefer to think of it as an open relationship.
lovely old building decoration 2004
Wish I could remember the motto on the plaque.
Building the new Bay Bridge 2004
(The great thing about riding the bus is that there's lots of time to look at things and you're way up high so you have a good view.)
Note to self: sort through the frickin' goatloads of email you receive faster, dammit. 2004
I just discovered that last night I missed the farewell party for Extra Action Marching Band before they head out to Europe for their goodwill tour. It was at the Odeon and I'm sure there was all kinds of porntastic fun, but when the EAMB is around that only seems appropriate. Well, I hope they got the proper send-off they need. They're doing good work for us all:
The marching band is going on tour in Europe. Whoa.
Lets think about this for a moment: we're talking about 40 people. 40 people. Some of which are the biggest idiots I've ever met. Some of them are the rudest, loudest, drunken douchebags yet... god bless their black little hearts... some of them are the most productive, sweet and musically talented folks around. Together they are a powerful unit. They also are the best thing to come out of San Francisco. Period. They have consistently rocked the paint off the walls of every venue they have graced with their presence, even if they stole the toilet paper and fucked your girlfriend. And they did all this while having no chance of getting a record contract, a reality show made about them or any advancement what-so-ever. They just do their thing. And that thing is good.
I for one am proud to have them act as ambassador to this great nation we were blessed to be born in. No longer will people of Serbia, Germany, Austria, Vienna, Kosovo and Russia only have the Television with images of Bush bla bla bla-ing to use as their ruler in which to measure the opinions of America. Now this independent group will represent all of us and attempt to elevate the rest of the worlds opinion of us. They will do this by drinking ALL the beer. They will inseminate every hole. They will rock out with their collective cock out. They will laugh loud and snore louder. They are going to have an amazing time.
- uncredited author of the Extra Faction email thingy
Well, who didn't see this coming? " U.S. Mulling How to Delay Nov. Vote in Case of Attack"
Impeachment looks more attractive every day.
(Thanks to Uncle Larry for the link)
"September 11th was not an attack on America's values or America's democracy or America's wealth. It was an attack on American foreign policy"
- Chalmers Johnson interviewed by David Ross
(Thanks to Cousin Bob N. for the link)
interesting window gables 2004
Anyone know what era these are from? They're in San Francisco, on the low avenues just off Clement, I think.