Thursday, June 28, 2012

The Final Frontier, Here I Come...?

Darn it.  I was really hoping I wouldn't have to become one of those space colonists.  I don't even like to fly, and the thought of leaving behind the whole planet really just doesn't appeal-- but the way things are going down here, lately... 

You space colony organizers better get a move on.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

No, I refuse to believe it's true.

I just read something to the effect that Cameron is filming three sequels to Avatar simultaneously. 

...And my eyes bugged out-- because three

Do I correctly understand that there are going to be THREE MORE of those movies? 

No...  No no no.  Say it ain't so! 

...Ok, ok.  I know I don't have to see them if I don't want to... and maybe, by some fluke, they'll turn out more interesting than the original one was (not holding my breath, though).  It's just that we'll be hearing all the hype about them for years to come. 

Cameron says: "I think within the Avatar landscape I can say everything I need to say that I think needs to be said, in terms of the state of the world and what I think we need to be doing about it. And doing it in an entertaining way." 

And I respond:  "No offense, but I don't particularly care what you think about the state of the world-- or what you think we need to be doing about it.  Frankly, watching you preach your message (especially in a CGI world populated by blue people) sounds any but entertaining.  Thanks anyway, but I've no real interest in watching Fern Gully-- er, I mean Avatar 2, 3, and 4." 

Wednesday, June 20, 2012


(Warning:  Today I am on a grumping rampage.)

Here's the story, and here's the video:

Oh yeah, they're really concerned about the children.  I tell you one thing, if one of those kids near that shouting, angry man had been my son or daughter, I would not have been happy, and Mr. Idiot would've heard about it.  I know that if I'd been one of those kids with some big, angry stranger standing right next to me, shouting, I'd have been terrified.  (Ok, I'd still be scared, even as an adult.  Some people are crazy, and you never know what some complete stranger might be capable of doing, so small warning signs like yelling tend to make me nervous.)  Maybe he wasn't directing his comments to the kids, but to the adults behind them, but I doubt all the kids really understood what was going on.

It's disgraceful.

Also, to all those people who are so appalled to see children "used" this way for political purpose, what about this?

Or this?

And remember, the whole reason those kids were singing "God Bless the USA" at this protest was because they were banned from singing it at a graduation ceremony, because some stupid individual was afraid immigrants would be offended. (Never mind that apparently many immigrants with children in the school wanted the song to be sung.)

I'm sick to death of this bizarre idea that we should celebrate the different cultures of the world / multiculturalism in our own country but somehow simultaneously be ashamed of our own culture.  As if expressing pride in one's own country is an insult to everyone else!

You know what?  I'm not especially proud of my country-- or at least our modern, declining culture-- when I see absolute utter crap like this happening.  What's wrong with these people?

Friday, June 8, 2012

Our Backyard-- the Wonderful World of Wildlife

This has been a great day for wildlife in our yard (and nearby).

This morning, I found a black window spider in one of the dog houses.  The dogs very rarely use them, since they're usually indoors, but still-- I'm never happy to see a black widow, and especially not on our back porch.  Donald was working from home today, and between the two of us, we killed it.  Ok, so he did the actual deed, but I helped.  Anyway, the point is there was a happy ending, after all.  I saw another one near our rock pile a couple months ago, but that one got away from me before I could kill it.  (I have no mercy on black widows.  They all must die.)

I could tell you about the birds that visited our feeder today-- the sparrows and some sort of finch-like bird with a red head... the multiple sizes of doves... the bluebird... the family of cardinals (with the adults still feeding the fluttering-winged juveniles)-- but that's nothing unusual, so I guess I won't (only I just did).  ;o)

Similarly, I won't bore you about the many (comparatively slow, lazy) green anoles and (paranoid, skittery) skinks that can be seen in our yard at practically all times of the day (if you know where to look).  

Instead, I'll tell you that Donald saw what must have been a hognose snake on the easement, today.  From his description-- mean/dangerous-looking, hissing, flattened out like a cobra-- there's little doubt that it was another hognose.  I'm glad it wasn't something worse (like the moccasin Molly found a month or so ago). 

Finally, do you remember that time (not quite two years ago) that Trixie discovered a headless rabbit in our yard, first thing in the morning?  Back then, she came right in when called, like a good doggy.  Well, this time she wasn't so well-behaved after finding another headless rabbit (this time with the front legs missing as well).  Instead of coming when called, she decided that it was a clear case of Finders Keepers.  She was basically a brat about the whole thing, ate goodness knows how much of her prize, growled at Donald when he tried to get her to leave it, and stubbornly ignored even the most tempting of our Emergency Squeaky Toys.  Donald finally managed to put a large leaf rake over the rabbit so that she couldn't get to it, and while she was distracted, he got it out of the yard.  (Molly didn't see what it was, so we got her back inside fairly easily.  Otherwise, there's no telling what might have happened...)

So.  Such is life in the Great Wilderness of Southwestern Alabama.  Trixie has a wild streak of vicious wolf hidden just below the deceptive surface of silky-softness, intelligence, and faithful companionability.  And something needs to stop making a habit of leaving headless animals in our yard.  (Please?  Why not take it home with you for later?)

Saturday, June 2, 2012

Dear Milk Ad...

Dear Milk Ad on the Side of My Cereal Box,

I don't understand why you're there, extolling the healthy benefits of having milk with cereal.   I've already bought the cereal (or if I'm seeing the ad at all, I'm obviously at least in the market for cereal of some kind).  That means it's pretty much a done deal that I'm going to buy milk, too.  How many people eat a whole box of cereal dry, I ask you?  And what else might I pour over my cereal?  Ok, I guess that these days they have all sorts of fancy non-cow's-milk milks to choose from, but most of us are loyal to Real Milk.

I'm just sort of baffled by your existence... Actually, come to think of it, why are there advertisements for milk at all?  It's weird.  Milk's one of those things you either drink or you don't.  If you drink it, you'll almost always have it automatically on your shopping list (or you won't need to bother writing it down, since you have a special ability to remember exactly how much milk is in the fridge).  If you don't drink it, there's probably a definite reason why you don't (health issue, don't like the taste), and you are unlikely to be swayed by an advertisement.  And it's not like milk's a new product that everyone needs to be made aware of... ("New in stores, it's MILK!" or "Look for our newest flavors-- "Chocolate" and "Plain Moo-Juice"-- in your local grocery store today!!")

...Just a few things you might want to consider.


P.S. ...You're not wasting tax-payer funded subsidy money on this sort of thing, are you?

Friday, June 1, 2012

Just Because...

Just because I never want to forget that (apparently) making someone drink Ensure is torture, I'm posting this:

(For the future, when the embedded video no longer works, Leslie Stahl refers to sleep deprivation and "dietary manipulation"-- in this case, the practice of giving detainees Ensure to drink-- as "Orwellian stuff".)

I wonder if it's "Orwellian stuff" when parents "manipulate" a child's diet by requiring him to eat his meat and vegetables before he's allowed to have a cookie...

"Sesame Street Songs Used to Torture Guantanamo Detainees, Al Jazeera Reports"

The man who composed music for the show for many years is upset by this report.  In the article linked, he is quoted as referring to "the horror of music being perverted to serve evil purposes".  Ha!  Look, man, music's been used for evil purposes plenty of times over the course of history.  (Propaganda, anyone?)  And anyway, making someone uncomfortable with loud (annoying, mind-numbing) music in order to persuade him to give up potentially life-saving information hardly seems "evil"-- especially when you compare it to the sorts of things these same people were/are so eager to do to as many Americans as possible.

(Evidently, music from Barney has been used similarly in the past.  I don't know what the guy who wrote that music thinks about it, but I'll be sure to blog about it as soon as I find out. ;o))