“If people have to choose between George Bush and a crowd of furious bicyclists whose biggest claim to fame is that one of their blogs was mentioned in passing by Al Franken on that one AM radio station nobody turns on because it’s about as exciting as listening to NPR at 50% speed, they’ll either choose George Bush or they’ll choose to look away when the riot police start caving in skulls with their nightclubs.”

— SomethingAwful takes on those wacky Leftists

Nothing about 9/11


Although you have to admit, as reasons to hate the West go, half-naked pop-tarts are a more plausible explanation than most. Beats blaming it all on Bush.

Would we get off so easily?


(Via Instapundit). Florida State Attorney John Tanner tried to fly with an undeclared handgun in his luggage. He was required to buy a lock-box for the gun and take a later flight. I don’t believe for one moment that an ordinary citizen would have been treated so gently.

His excuse is that it was “his first hunting trip since security was increased at airports,” but that doesn’t wash, because it’s been a long time since you could just toss a firearm into your luggage and not mention it at check-in. Long before 9/11, you were required to put the unloaded gun into a locked case and declare it. They then attached a brightly-colored tag to the case, to make sure that baggage inspectors knew it had been declared and inspected.

Of course, as one of the Special People, it’s quite possible that he never had to obey the old regulations due to “professional courtesy,” but I’d like to think that a State Attorney would have at least a basic grasp of the law.

iTMS weekly reports


No, I didn’t buy another big batch of music from the iTunes Music Store yet, although I probably will soon, to stock up the iPod for my next road trip to Las Vegas. I have been keeping an eye on the store, though, and after corresponding with Brian Tiemann, I decided to investigate an oddity we’d both noticed: the week-by-week “Just Added” report ain’t no such thing.

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The Devil In Rachel Lucas


Psssst. Rachel’s making deviled eggs. Go thou and do likewise.

Mine are almost ready. Wish me luck.

Update: …and I saw that they were good.

I went with Alton Brown’s painless steaming method to prep the eggs, and then mixed the yolks with mayo, dry mustard, and Lone Star Steak Rub. Could have used a tad more spice rub, but they were still quite tasty. Of course, now I have to spend an hour on the cross-trainer to compensate for the calories.

Meaningless life


Is it just my copy, or is the new Meaning of Life DVD horribly choppy on most DVD players? I suspect that it will work fine on the one that supports progressive output, but all the others fall apart any time there’s any significant movement on screen. Deeply disappointing, since they all play other discs fine.

Update: I have four DVD players — seven if you count the computers — and only one can show this disc without serious tearing in almost every scene. That is, of course, the one that has progressive output, so there’s no interlacing. This is the only DVD I own that looks this bad with standard interlaced video; I don’t know what they did in the mastering process, but it sucks.

Big food


A relatively constant factor in my life is the weekend gaming/cooking session with friends. We have a large stable of entertaining games from companies like Cheapass, Steve Jackson, and (pre-Hasbro) Wizards of the Coast, and an Xbox or two. The recipes come from a variety of sources, including my still-under-construction online cookbook, built from assorted MasterCook-format archives.

This weekend was at my place, which gave me an excuse to do some massive house-cleaning and show off my newly-completed landscaping. Since I had so much cleaning work to do, I insisted that the meal should be relatively simple, which meant steaks.

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False alarm (whew!)


Bad: checking your server logs in the morning and finding 6000 refers from Fark.

Good: discovering it’s because someone in their forums deep-linked to a picture of a pretty girl, not because your entire photo library has just been Farked.

[it wouldn’t increase my hosting bill, but it would certainly slow things down for people; my bandwidth throttling is already holding the traffic at one-eighth of its old average]

Keep the day job, Hilary


Just in case anyone was wondering, her debut album provides no evidence that Hilary Duff can sing, or even that she has a voice to sing with. Generically slick production combines with blandly stupid lyrics and the most obvious electronic voice modification since Cher’s last hit, resulting in an album so forgettable that you’ll wonder what you’ve just thrown into the trash.

Fortunately she’s one of the most beautiful young women I’ve ever seen, because I think she’s the least convincing pop-tart in the business. And I like pop-tart music.

Curiously, the album photos, like many recent pictures of her, play down the fresh-faced beauty and open charm that made her a Disney Princess. I suppose they’re trying to separate Hilary-the-singer from Hilary-the-actress.

Makes sense, since only one of them has a future.

“Need a clue, take a clue,
 got a clue, leave a clue”