Monday, June 30, 2003

A Little Wedding

The wedding this past weekend was very nice. I'd say everything went off without a hitch, although there was one hitch involved, wink wink. I was fairly surprised to find out that duck isn't so bad meal-wise. It was smokey, but not greasy. I had to keep shoving thoughts of all those cute mallard ducks out of my head.

The wedding was slightly untraditional in that there was no dancing or the usual shenanigans of tossing bouquets and all that somewhat silly stuff. If it was nearly possible, I'd like my wedding to be like that but we all know that's impossible. Plus, Karen mentioned she was looking forward to my wedding since she'd get to see all the relatives she wasn't able to invite to hers. Funny how it all works out.

The alcohol was plenty, as proven by my aunt, uncle, and parents in their various stages of inebriation. I had to smile a little at the whole situation, but felt bad for my mom who apparently cannot hold her liquor in her advancing years. Matt and I became designated drivers to a degree. Good times despite that. I got to meet some cool people including my cousin Bill's partner, Bob, who he's been with for eleven years. I also met Kelly-Jo, a sort of cousin by marriage, and the only other person my age at the wedding. We talked about work and bemoaned the fact that comp hours are really good for naught when it comes to overtime.

Seeing Karen was very nice. Her husband seems like a good egg, even though I didn't get a chance to talk to either one very much. I'd say a successful event and trip all in all. Now I have to set down and be earnest about writing emails to all the people whose emails I acquired this weekend.

Preparing for News

ABC News inadvertently had a lot of people in the Washington DC area thinking that former President Ronald Reagan had died last week during a news drill. What the general public doesn't know is that most news organizations already have obituaries and news footage put together in the event that some public figure, whether political, entertainment, or any other well-known individual, dies. So when the news breaks, a complete story can be put on the air. Even at the small market radio station I worked at we had some files together for a couple local figures. It's a bit morbid, but it's what the public expects to a degree.

Thursday, June 26, 2003

Wil's Audblog

Wil Wheaton set up a blog featuring audblog for his trip down Route 66 with his wife. I've been curious to how bloggers would use this fancy, new tool and it sounds like it has great potential. It's also cool to hear Wil talk about stuff he's seeing. Now if we could script him...

A Marriage in Albany

Matt and I are headed to Albany tomorrow for my cousin, Karen's, wedding. When it comes to family, I must admit I've always favored Karen a bit in the cousin category. When I was in elementary school, Karen was the cousin who also read mysteries like Trixie Belden. When I was in high school, she was the cousin who had also seen Much Ado About Nothing and had heard of Kenneth Branaugh and Emma Thompson. In college, she became the woman I looked up to for her career and all that she had accomplished. She also was one of the only other Edith Wharton fans I knew. Now, I continue to look up to her as someone who is in her forties, but is still cool and independent. She may be getting married, but she hasn't lost herself in the traditionalism of the event. Karen is someone I hold in high regard and I feel honored to be included in her small gathering on Saturday for the wedding. I also appreciate the fact that her soon-to-be-husband is a tall guy. Karen is short. As am I. Matt is tall. I doubt many people can appreciate what it's like to have over a foot difference in height with your significant other.

Tuesday, June 24, 2003

New PA Law Aims to Slow Work-Zone Speeders

If you've ever driven through the state of Pennsylvania, you know that inevitably you will run into construction. While I was attending Baldwin-Wallace College in Ohio, my parents and I became convinced that there were perpeptual work crews on I-90 around Erie, PA. It became a running joke of a sort, so it was quite a surprise when on one trip back to Ohio for visit there were no work crews to be had anywhere on I-90. It seemed like a miracle! Never fear, they're back again.

Endless construction often leads to drivers casually ignoring work zone speed limits. To combat this, a law has been passed that has tougher penalties if you're caught speeding in a construction zone. This includes losing your license for 15 days if you are caught going at least 11 mph over the speed limit. However, you're given better signage in return that notifies you that you're entering a work zone. An active work zone, meaning there are crews on duty, will include a strobe light designed to flash determinedly at you, imprinting the message, "Slow Down You Fool!" into your brain.

Monday, June 23, 2003

It's Monday Quiz Time

Well, according to this, you're a snapdragon. If
these results are right, you are a fiercely
independent person and you don't care what
peoeple think. You have the potential to be
anything and everything, so long as you live up
to your goal of living every moment to the
fullest. Personally, I think that kicks ass.
Rock on.
oh yea, and dont tell the others, but you're my
favourite result :)

what non-stereotypical flower would you be (with pictures)
brought to you by Quizilla

I'm a Man! Baby! Well.. no.

You're Rufus!
Congrats, you've got a little Rufus in you! Raised
on opera and his mother's show-biz sensibility,
Rufus is a master songwriter and performer.
Though prone to excess and moodiness, his off-
kilter sense of humor and fashion and his
radiant presence make him a joy to be around.
Don't be ashamed; if this still small voice
speaks up within you (with a bit of a slur and
a lisp), listen up! He could make you a star.

Who's your inner gay man?
brought to you by Quizilla

A Move to Canada?

Even despite some of its own idiosyncrasies when it comes to red tape in government, health issues (including health care), and higher cost of living, Canada looks better some days when I look at what our current president, congress, and state government are doing to the United States.

It started with the headline I saw in the National Post while vacationing in Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island: "PM Says He's Better Than Bush". Being a Democrat, I had to put in a toony (that's a $2 coin) and find out just why Jean Chretien thought he had bragging rights. The article, alas no longer available online, made it quite clear. In just the economic area alone, I found out that Canada still has a surplus! Imagine that! And while SARS and Mad Cow disease are not the most friendly things to a country's economy, at least they could be managed and weren't brought upon the country by its leaders.

This all led to me casually, and mostly jokingly, suggesting to Matt that I wanted to move to Canada if "W" was voted into office in 2004. I don't consider it re-elected since he was more or less appointed in the first place. I figure, I'd fit in well enough where the Maritimes and the province of Ontario are concerned. My French is abysmal seeing as how I only took one semester in college. But don't be calling me Alec Baldwin yet. This is all in jest and I have high hopes that we'll be able to pull this country out of the ultra-conservative rut that it's being driven into.

Saturday, June 21, 2003


Eight and a half hours. That's over 100 pages per hour. Three years for 8 1/2 hours. That's gotta be some sort of record for me. Initial verdict? Go out and buy it and read it now! It's very dark but very awesome. I thank the lord that J.K. has already started reading writing Book 6.

Going Dark For a Day or So

"In Java.." will be going dark ala Leaky Cauldron style in order to:

1. Read Book Five

2. Clean House

3. Enjoy my last "free" weekend until August 2nd

I probably will be back whenever I finish the book and will be either be gushing waterfalls of compliments, crying in my tea, or who knows what.

Friday, June 20, 2003

Because It's Friday and I'm Lazy

in java literally
Magic Number19
JobComputer Nerd
PersonalityThe Glass Is Half-Full!
TemperamentIf I Lose It - Run
Likely To WinA Swimming Badge
Me - In A WordDitsy
Brought to you by MemeJack

Thursday, June 19, 2003

A Grown-Up Friendly Version of Harry Potter

Jenny's pre-purchase of the British Harry Potter books made me realize that I, too, must have the British version of this glorious series. After reading a suggestion in her comments, I made my way over to Amazon-UK and bought the "Adult" version of Book Five along with Adult editions of the previous four novels in paperback. It's funny to call it "adult" since they mean dust-jacket-is-less-kid-like rather than adult in the XXX-sense. Soon I'll be able to enjoy Harry Potter with all the original British coloquialisms! Oh, I also splurged a bit more an picked up the Bend It Like Beckham soundtrack (the UK version).

Another note on the UK site. It's actually cheaper, even with shipping, to buy off the UK site than the Canadian site. I was a bit surprised, but after doing the currency conversions, I would have paid the same price to buy just the 4 volume book set from the Canadian site as I paid to buy the 4 volume paperback set, book five, and the CD from the UK site.

Wednesday, June 18, 2003

Some Days I Miss Radio

A prank call to Castro: Don't you wish you had thought of it first?

Dereliction of Duty

The New York Times has an editorial online regarding Homeland Security and the Bush Administration (registration required) that, while an editorial, is still pretty frightening. It's worth a read.

Living in a Blogable World

I realize that I've become a terrible correspondent since starting this blog two years ago. Emails once dutifully answered languish in my in-box or, worse, moved to the folder of the sendee where they gather digital dust. I gaze down the list every so often and think, "Gosh, if I reply to that email now, I can avoid that person saying 'Well, at least it didn't take you a year to get back to me!'"

Blogging is an easy way out. It doesn't hold me to sending individual, personalized emails to each friend, yet it lets my friends "in the know" about my blog know what I'm up to on an almost daily basis. It's a lazy man's dream. I've also innocently coerced some of my friends to start up their own blogs so I could just surf my way over during my lunch break and see what they were up to. Blogs are a very cool tool, but I wonder if my efforts of keeping in touch, at least via email, with friends is quietly being jeopardized by the quick and easy method of posting to a very public blog. I intentionally do not talk about several topics on here because I don't need the general public knowing that much about me and I also do not know who does read this blog. It's not exactly wise to rip someone up one side and down another online whether it's a friend, co-worker, or situation if it's going to cause problems later on. People have lost their jobs by doing such. They've also ruined relationships. I guess I believe if you have issues in your life, deal with them with the related people, not online where the other parties involved don't have an easy chance to respond.

My final thought is that I really should buckle down and get to answering some of those emails. Time is always an issue here. I have no concrete solutions. I've seen other friends run into the same dillema when it comes to time. One friend recently emailed me to let me know he was alive and that he was posting updates to his blog. We used to talk/email/visit quite a bit more in the past before the advent of blogs in my circle of friends. What are your thoughts?

At Each Moment of Time Around the World

I got to thinking about how people relate to each other in the world last night. Maybe it was due to being tired or too many hours at work, but I was fascinated by the thought that while I was sitting in my living room watching Good Will Hunting on Bravo! that quite a few people elsewhere were also watching it, but it was a completely different experience for them. I then started thinking about time zones and how if I was still in Nova Scotia I'd probably be in bed, while I was still awake here in New York. Then I started thinking about friends of mine from all over and the fact that we were all just doing our own thing, not even thinking about what anyone else was up to, about how the activities we were all engaged in affected other people or events, and how in turn that could somewhere down the road our simple actions in one night could affect a mutual friend. Then I started to wonder how many people die a minute around the world. I pondered if that could even be seconds and then the thought led to violent crimes. Why I was wrapping my mind around this stuff, who knows. I even started wondering if it was useful to read philosophy, view the arts, and whatnot when all that really matters is common sense and using common sense in our personal relationships. A man with no education may have better relationships with his neighbor than a man with a degree. That's not always true, but the point is that you don't need a Doctorate to be successful in your personal endeavors. I hate it when movies make me think too much and I don't quite reach coherence.

Tuesday, June 17, 2003

Things You Try To Avoid

My mom sent me a lengthy email with the following sentence imbedded in it:
"I have decided that my shower gift to you will be a trousseau. We have a start with the neglige but i will need to know what you would like in underwear, slips/camisoles, pantyhose, slippers (sizes) and honeymoon wear when you decide on where you will go."

There's just something so wrong about your mom buying you lingerie for your wedding or for any time in life for that matter. It's just not something you want to think of in the middle of *ahem* moments.

Biding My Time While Waiting for Harry

The fifth installment of the Harry Potter series by J.K. Rowling will be released at midnight on Saturday, June 21st. In the meantime, I'm trying to get my reading habits back into gear by indulging in kids books like Holes by Louis Sachar and an occassional mystery like Between a Wok and a Hard Place by Tamar Myers. If only I had time to get down to the library and pick up the two more recent mysteries by Elizabeth Peters. Ah well. It's only a few more days before I can lock myself in a room to read Book Five in one shot!

Monday, June 16, 2003

Welcoming the Family Over

I just realized that I invited my Uncle, Aunt, two cousins, and my Aunt's mother over for dinner sometime during the Fourth Of July holiday weekend. That's a lot of people! And I don't even cook, really! And the house is a "disaster" AKA mail, political stuff, vacation stuff, and whatnot all over the place and the dishes need to be done. Again. I guess I just got so excited that I'm going to have family in town that I didn't think of the ramifications of having them over *grins* Ah well. The house needed a good sorting out anyway. I just hope Matt doesn't have a coniption over this!

Webby Awards and Such

Woah.. I just logged on to post for the first time in a couple days and Blogger got around to migrating my blog over to their new system or something. A whole new "Edit Your Blog" page. It's cool though.

I just got caught up on this year's Webby Awards. I like these awards since it gives me a bunch of new links to try out when I want to research, look up news, plan a trip, have a laugh, etc.

Thursday, June 12, 2003

Raining On Forever

It seems when we are just breathing a sigh of relief that we won't have a drought season then we have to start worrying about flooding. Our county is under a flood watch, which isn't much, but I can't help but think of those poor farmers who can do nought while the rain falls and falls. I became accustomed to the gray, fog, and drizzle after experiencing that most of the days of my vacation. I suppose it was quite like England in that respect. Our nicest day was the last full day of vacation in Portland, Maine where it was so warm that we were able to wear shorts for the first time. The trip was quite nice and if I have bits of time I will begin uploading pictures to ImageStation. I have over 125 pictures so far, with at least another 25 on the way once I finish my current roll of film. There's almost too much to relay on here, but it was a lovely time.

Wednesday, June 11, 2003

Hail To The Thief

I picked up Radiohead's latest album last night while buying Father's Day cards. The Buffalo News had a review in yesterday's paper. From what I've heard so far, it's promising. I need to really set aside an hour to hear the album in its entirety. It's definitely an improvement over Kid A and Amnesia.

Next on my wishing and hoping list: the new Liz Phair album.

Tuesday, June 10, 2003

I'm Back

I'm back in the lovely county of Chautauqua. I'm appreciating the two weeks I was away even more now that I've come back to utter craziness. I'm taking it in stride though and plowing through all the work that needs to be done. Blog updates will come when possible, but it's a major election season for us here so updates will be more sporadic than regular. *grins* Watch me prove myself wrong.

A Month and Two Weeks Before We're Smoke-Free

New York State will be smokefree in the workplace, including bars and restaurants, starting on July 24th. There are a lot of opponents, mostly bar owners, to this new law and they keep saying that they'll lose business and it will be bad for the economy. Joe Cherner, president of SmokeFree Educational Services, Inc, wrote an article with substantial bibliography regarding this (Full Article Here):

"Four states (CA, DE, NY, and CT) have enacted smokefree workplace legislation for ALL workers (including office, restaurant, bar, bingo, bowling, casino, tavern, pub, and nightclub workers). Three states (ME, RI, and MA) are expected to join them shortly.

California was the first state to enact smokefree workplace legislation, and it is the only state whose law has been in effect long enough to have meaningful sales tax data. Other smokefree state laws have been in effect less than a year, and it usually takes about two years before sales tax data is available. Tobacco interests know that they can make unsubstantiated claims about lost revenue until sales tax data is available. Then the truth is known.

In California, which eliminated tobacco smoke in restaurants in 1995 and bars in 1998, those industries have continued to grow according to state statistics. By the end of 2001, revenues from restaurants and bars in California had jumped to $36.8 billion, up from $25.5 billion in 1995, according to the California fiscal agency which tracks taxable transactions. Also at the end of that five-year period, more restaurants and bars were operating in California than before smokefree laws-- 140 more bars existed in 2001 than in 1997, right before the smokefree law took effect for bars and taverns."

Away, Away

We're on a mini-vaca in an area where they're experiencing forest fires (thanks asshole arsonist). It's an area that makes Clift...