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User Journal

Journal Journal: Me Me Me ... Ahem ... Meme

A - Accent: Yes, you all talk funny.

B - Breakfast: Weekdays - poptart, weekend bacon and eggs (Damn the cholesterol and full speed ahead)

C - Chore you hate: Raking leaves. Note: when possible, determine this before buying a quarter acre with 25 trees. Did I mention they're all different species? "Fall" effectively runs from labor day to christmas. Ugh.

D - Dad's Name: Jay Alexander

E - Essential everyday item: C8H10N4O2.

F - Flavour ice cream: Southern Lemon Pie

G - Gold or Silver?: Titanium or Niobium

H - Hometown: 5 miles outside of a small town (pop. 8000) in the middle of freaking nowhere.

I - Insomnia: Off to an awesome start; one full night of sleep so far this year. And that's with Lunestra.:-(

J - Job Title: Senior software enginner

K - Kids: Yes please. Can I have the gravy on the side?.

L - Living arrangements: Lovely house on a wood lot where the freaking leaves fall. 2 adults (Devon & Krystaleve), 1 sulky 17-year old (Brandon), 3 dogs (Rikki - black lab/golden retriever/border collie mix {Yes, that's one dog. She just moves so fast that she looks like 3}, Kokuma - Shiba Inu, Rusty - Siberian Husky {we're fostering him for his family who've just mooved here from GA).

M - Mom's birthplace: Long GuyLand - Sooo very glad I never got that accent.

N - Number of significant others you've ever had: 2.

O - Overnight hospital stays: 1.

P - Phobia: Socialising and public speaking. I'm actually fantastic at both, I just detest doing it.

Q - Queer?: I hadn't thought of it until you asked, but you all do seem just a bit odd.

R - Religious Affiliation: Unitarian Universalist.

R - Religious Practice: Zen+Daoism+Wiccan+Shamanism.

S - Siblings: One, deceased.

T - Time you wake up: The alarm is set for 0615. Unfortunately, I generally wake up sometime between 0230 and 0610.

U - Unnatural hair colours you've worn: snow white and shaved bald

V - Vegetable you refuse to eat: Brocolli, asparagus, brussel sprouts - anything that smells like that cannot possibly be edible.

W - Worst habit: Carrying dog treats in my pocket. I've lost more pants and sweaters that way.

X - X-rays you've had: Hand, shoulder, spine, skull.

X2 - Broken bones: Left foot and T8 vertebra.

Y - Yummy: Home made chineese food. Especially, hot and sour soup, chengdu ji, and jiangbao ji ding.

Z - Zodiac sign: Cancer.
User Journal

Journal Journal: Global warming ? Or just Weird weather?

Poor Bethanie is camping out in a shopping mall while she waits for electricity to be restored after an ice storm. Meanwhile, some 600 miles north, we had some rain and now it's sunny and warm. Yes, after a few sub-20 days, mid forties is considered warm. We lost power in last week's storm, but only because a plow driver turned too sharply and took out a pole. The driver gets extra points for also taking out the cable and phone lines. A regular trifecta.

We're going with a table top tree this year because of overly exhuberant tails. My wife (Krystal) got a new service dog (Rikki) just last month. As Rikki's just turned 18 months, she's still very much a puppy. (Poor Kokuma, my 3-year old Shiba Inu, can't keep up with her.) So, the tree needed to be above tail level.

It's funny.  Laugh.

Journal Journal: Top 11 Ways a Geek Prepares for Winter 3

Prompted by KshGoddess's tale of a southern girl preparing for a Colorado winter. Credit goes to BBSpot for the list.

11. In space there are no seasons.
10. Switches over to his cold weather Linux distro.
9. Hastens plans to complete weather control device.
8. Apply for that job at the call center in steamy Bangalore.
7. Put computer outside for extra cooling.
6. Stores his nuts in an old AT form factor case.
5. Increases caffeine intake to stave off hibernation instinct.
4. Turns up monitor brightness to avoid winter depression.
3. Apply an extra layer of tin foil on the basement walls.
2. McGyver a solar heater out of AOL CDs and a cpu water cooling kit to cut down on heating costs.
1. Dresses in layers of t-shirts to fight the cold.
User Journal

Journal Journal: Oh sweet memestery of life...

( ) smoked a cigarette Ugh
(x) crashed a friend's car Nah, <sigh>, just my own
( ) stolen a car
(x) been in love
(x) been dumped
( ) shoplifted - Ah, misspent youth
(x) been fired - Does laid off count? Been laid off twice, never actually fired
(x) been in a fist fight - As a 6'2", large bodied introvert I was every bully's preferred punching bag
(x) snuck out of your parent's house - All too often
(x) had feelings for someone who didn't have them back - Hasn't everyone?
( ) been arrested - I'll take the 5th
( ) gone on a blind date
(x) lied to a friend
(x) skipped school
( ) seen someone die
( ) had a crush on one of your internet friends
(x) been to Canada - Vancouver, BC - Stanley park is cool (temperate rain forest, lotsa big honkin trees).
( ) been to Mexico
(x) been on a plane
(x) purposely set a part of yourself on fire - I'm with TL on this, Bacardi 151: the only way to burn
(x) eaten sushi - Yum!
( ) been skiing - Always wanted to, though
(x) met someone from the internet
(x) been at a concert
(x) taken painkillers - Oxycontin (Beware! Evil!) - How does anyone get addicted to this crap?
(x) love someone or miss someone right now
(x) laid on your back and watched cloud shapes go by
(x) made a snow angel
( ) had a tea party
(x) flown a kite - Not in a while, despite many people telling me to
(x) built a sand castle
(x) gone puddle jumping
( ) played dress up
(x) jumped into a pile of leaves - Note: Always check for hidden fire hydrants first
(x) gone sledding
(x) cheated while playing a game
(x) been lonely
(x) fallen asleep at work/school
( ) used a fake ID - At 18 people thought I was 25. I've never been carded.
(x) watched the sun set
(x) felt an earthquake - Also had my world rocked, but that's a different question
(x) slept beneath the stars
(x) been tickled
( ) been robbed - Heh, when wearing my trench coat, I've had burly biker type cross the street to avoid me
(x) been misunderstood - Almost constantly
(x) petted a reindeer/kangaroo -
(x) won a contest -
(x) run a red light/stop sign -
( ) been suspended from school
(x) been in a car crash - Close to a dozen times, but only 2 were my fault
(x) had braces
(x) felt like an outcast/third person - Is "third person" like being beside yourself x2?
(x) eaten a whole pint of ice cream in one night
( ) had deja vu - Nope, never
( ) had deja vu - Nope, never
( ) had deja vu - Nope, never
(x) danced in the moonlight -
(x) liked the way you looked -
( ) witnessed a crime -
(x) questioned your heart -
( ) been obsessed with post-it notes -
(x) squished barefoot through the mud
(x) been lost
(x) been on the opposite side of the country
(x) swam in the ocean -
(x) felt like dying
(x) cried yourself to sleep
( ) played cops and robbers
(x) recently colored -
( ) sung karaoke -
(x) paid for a meal with only coins - Sacajawea dollars
(x) done something you told yourself you wouldn't do
(x) made prank phone calls - the evil of conference call. Mute the speaker and create a conference call between all the local Taco Bells.
(x) laughed until some kind of beverage came out of your nose
(x) caught a snowflake on your tongue
(x) danced in the rain
(x) written a letter to Santa Claus
(x) been kissed under the mistletoe
(x) watched the sun rise with someone you care about
(x) blown bubbles
( ) made a bonfire on the beach
( ) crashed a party
( ) gone rollerskating
( ) had a wish come true
( ) jumped off a bridge
( ) ate dog/cat food
( ) told a complete stranger you loved them
( ) kissed a mirror
(x) sang in the shower
(x) had a dream that you married someone
(x) glued your hand to something
( ) kissed a fish -
(x) sat on a roof top -
( ) drank on a rooftop!
(x) screamed at the top of your lungs
( ) done a one-handed cartwheel - Hmm, 230 lbs balanced on my wrists? I'll pass
( ) talked on the phone for more than 5 hours
(x) stayed up all night - Often, usually not on purpose
( ) picked and ate an apple right off the tree
( ) climbed a tree
( ) had a tree house
( ) scared to watch a scary movie alone - I've watched The Ring and I just didn't find it that scary. I have a friend who can't bring himself to watch it. I don't get it.
(x) believe in ghosts - BOO!
( ) have more than 30 pairs of shoes - Do I look like Imelda?
(x) worn a really ugly outfit to school - Ah, mothers. And that's why I let my son choose his own clothes.
(x) gone streaking
( ) gone doorbell ditching
( ) played gay chicken - Ok, never heard of this one
(x) pushed into a pool/hot tub with all your clothes on
( ) told you're hot by a complete stranger - No, <sob>
(x) broken a bone - Wrist, foot, shoulder - not all at once though
(x) been easily amused - I read /. don't I?
( ) caught a fish then ate it
(x) caught a butterfly
(x) laughed so hard you cried
( ) cried so hard you laughed
( ) cheated on a test
(x) forgotten someone's name - I'm really bad at names
(x) french braided someone's hair - Does my own count
(x) gone skinny dipping in a pool/hot tub - every chance I get
( ) been threatened to be kicked out of your house
(x) loved someone so much you would gladly die for them - Once, learned my lesson.

There's my $0.02 worth.

Hey, if we give our "2 cents", and it's "a penny for you thoughts", who's getting the other penny?

Journal Journal: 419 Scams - almost good for a laugh.

I received this, er, interesting, bit of spam:


I am Dr. Abdul MADJID, the director, Auditing and Accounting unit of the Continental Bank, and the account officer to Brochem Bereau, a multi million and multi dimensional Lebanese Firm based here in Benin Republic,

It's pretty sad when things have gotten so tough that a poor spammer is forced to spam his own Ma. You would think it would be easy for poor ol' Abdul to get the money out of the country. After all, he does work for a multi dimensional firm.


Journal Journal: My new "Gotta See" TV show 3

Have you seen "Hit Me Baby, One More Time"?

No, not that Brittney crap, the new show on NBC. Groups with hits in the 70s & 80s perform their original hit, then their adaptation of a current hit. The studio audience votes and the winner gets $20,000 donated to the charity of their choice.

Here's who's been on so far, their original hit, and the current hit they played:

Episode 1:

A Flock of Seagulls - "I Ran" and Ryan Carbera's "On the Way Down"
Arrested Development - "Tennessee" and Los Lonely Boys' "Heaven"
CC Penniston - "Finally" and Faith Hill's "There You'll be"
Loverboy - "Working for the Weekend" and Enrique Iglesias' "Hero"
Tiffany - "I Think We're Alone Now" and Kelly Clarkson's "Breakaway"

Episode 2:

Haddaway - "What Is Love?" and Brittney Spears' "Toxic"
The Knack - "My Sharona" and Jet's "Are You Gonna Be My Girl?"
The Motels - "Only the Lonely" and Norah Jones' "Don't know why"
Tommy Tutone - "867-5309/Jenny" and Blink 182's "All The Small Things"
Vanilla Ice - "Ice Ice Baby" and Destiny's Child's "Survivor"

Episode 3:

Cameo - "WORD UP!" and Bowling for Soup's "1985"
Howard Jones - "No One Is To Blame" and Dido's "White Flag"
Irene Cara - "What a Feeling" and Anastacia's "I'm Outta Love"
Sophie B. Hawkins " - Damn I Wish I Was Your Lover" and Five for Fighting's "100 Years"
Wang Chung - "Everybody Have Fun Tonight" and Nelly's "Hot in Herre"


Journal Journal: On the mend 1

Wow, what a bruised and dinged bunch we make.

SW, all scraped and sprained,
TL, a bit scorched and seeing stars, and
me and my Technicolor shoulder.

Things learned:

  • Your surgery is scheduled for noon. It's really between 1:30 and 3:00, but we need the extra time to ask you for your name, birth date, and what procedure you are having every time we see you. I only interacted with 6 people prior to my operation: Ann, in admissions; Ji Ji and Ellen the prep nurses; Carl the orderly who rolled me to the surgical suite; Dr Connors (anesthesiologist); and Dr Odgers (orthopedic surgeon), but between them, they asked who I was over a dozen times.

    I felt like saying "No, since you were last in my room, a mere 5 minutes ago, a covert black ops team swooped in and replaced me with someone completely different."

    (I understand the need to be sure whom you are working on, but a little use of short term memory would be nice.)
  • You'll just feel a little little prick followed by much stinging and burning because we didn't wait for the alcohol to evaporate.
  • We're just giving you something to help you relax, you'll be awake for the procedure. Yeah, if the procedure only consists of giving me the sedative. I got the sedative in my IV line, right before they rolled me into the OR. The last I remember is moving from the gurney to the operating table and them beginning to strap me to the table. (I need to find out what that sedative was because I'm awfully sensitive to it.)
  • Some post surgical discomfort is to be expected. Doublespeak for: "It will feel like your shoulder is broken." Oh, and no one mentioned that my upper arm would be swollen to twice normal size or the Technicolor shades of pink, yellow, and purple.
  • I will never be addicted to Oxycontin. That's the brand name for Oxycodone, the main ingredient in Percoset. Ugh, that's some nasty stuff. It left me feeling sick, constipated, and only partially relieved the pain. I'm now back on OTC naproxen sodium and feeling much better.

On the positive side, it turned out to be a pair of bone spurs: one under the AC joint and another interfering with the biceps tendon. Thankfully nothing involving the rotator cuff. So, as long as I don't overdue it, I should be out of this sling and in PT in about 4 weeks.

And that should be just in time to rack my first lager. Yea!


Journal Journal: The first cut is the deepest 2

Gods I hope not.

In case anyone has every wondered:

Golly gee mister wizard, is it a bad thing that my shoulder goes pop and snap and hurts like a mofo?

The answer is a resounding YES.

According to the MRI, I have arthritis in my right acromioclavicular joint. This has resulted in the growth of a pointy little bone spur that is digging into the rotator cuff. And, to make things worse, that bone spur may have partially cut through the rotator cuff.

So, tomorrow I go under the knife. Well, actually the arthroscope.

The doc is going to grind off the bone spur, then take a look at the rotator cuff. If the cuff is slightly damaged, he'll trim up the ragged edges. If it's badly damaged, he will disconnect the ramaining tendon, trim it up, then reattach it.

Oh, and did I mention? I'm going to be awake through all of this!

If all he does is grind off the bone spur, I'm looking at a 1-2 hour procedure, then no use of my dominant arm for 4-6 weeks. And that's the best case.

The worst case (reattachment) is a 5-6 hour procedure. And no using my arm for 4-6 months!

So, I'm sitting here, borderline freaking out, waiting for the call that tells me what time I need to show up for the surgical prep (somewhere between 4am and 6pm) thinking of btlzu2's recent music meme. This song is just too apropos:

I Wanna Be Sedated - Ramones : Road to Ruin - track 7

Twenty - twenty - twenty four hours to go
I wanna be sedated
Nothing to do
Nowhere to go
I wanna be sedated

Just get me to the airport
And put me on a plane
Hurry hurry hurry before I go insane
I can't control my fingers
I can't control my brain
Oh no oh ho

Twenty - twenty - twenty four hours to go
I wanna be sedated
Nothing to do
Nowhere to go
I wanna be sedated
Just put me in a wheelchair
And put me on a plane
Hurry hurry hurry before I go insane
I can't control my fingers
I can't control my brain
Oh no oh ho
Twenty - twenty - twenty four hours to go
I wanna be sedated
Nothing to do
Nowhere to go
I wanna be sedated

Just put me in a wheelchair
And get me to the show
Hurry hurry hurry before I go loco
I can't control my fingers
I can't control my toes
Oh no oh ho

Twenty - twenty - twenty four hours to go
I wanna be sedated
Nothing to do
Nowhere to go
I wanna be sedated

Just put me in a wheelchair
And get me to the show
Hurry hurry hurry before I go loco
I can't control my fingers
I can't control my toes
Oh no oh ho

User Journal

Journal Journal: Election Day 2004

Well I went out and did my civic duty. Did you? If you can't get off your ass to vote, don't expect me to listen to yer bitchen when you don't like the results.

Altogether, I'm feeling rather introspective after this morning. Overall, I think ketchup will beat the shrub. It looks like I have some company in that: the FBI apparenlt feels confident enough that shrubby's out that they're actually investigating Haliburton.

Through this election I've come to the realization that I don't fit with any of the parties. I'm a die hard moderate. I think the Republicans pander way too much to the Christian fundamentalists. Or at least they talk that way. The right wingers eat it up too. They run around screaming "the institution of marriage is under attack!" As they sit there, on their 3rd or 4th marriage, watching Desperate Housewives, and anxiously awaiting the premiere of Trading Spouses. The amendment banning gay marriage is a total waste of taxpayers money.

The Democrats aren't much better. I'd love to see them actually talk about what they plan on doing instead of opting for the easy Bush bashing. Healthcare reform sounds nice, but who pays for it? Raising taxes for that top 4% of the nation might produce enough cashflow to slow the financial hemorrhage in DC, but it's not enough to cover the cost of the Mess'O'Potamia (yeah, I do enjoy the Daily Show). Even if we're out of there in under a year, there's still the reconstruction. And there's no way those taxes will pay for all of Kerry's planned expenses.

The whole tax situation is such a boondoggle anyway. Sure, I got a cut on my Federal taxes. The Feds then cut funding to the state. Hmm, how does the state make up the difference? They cut educational funding. How do the schools make up the difference? By raising my property taxes 12.5%. My state recently ok'd slot machines as a state revenue source. The local republican candidate wants to use that money to lower property taxes (the revenue is earmarked for education). The local democrat sees it as an additional source of income and has already figured out how to spend it all.

I will be so glad when the political ads stop. I have TiVo and just the little I see them is enough to be annoying. I don't think I could stand it without TiVo. They're all hideous distortions of the truth anyway. One local ad accuses a candidate of "defending criminals including drug dealers". Hello? He worked for years in the public defender's office! That was his job! You can't be a PD and choose whom you will help.

I'm rappidly coming to the conclusion that the best chance we have is to keep the various legislatures as close to deadlocked as possible. I don't think Republican dominated legislative and executive branches have exactly done a stellar job over the last few years. However, I can't say that giving all that control to the Democrats would be any better. As long as neither side dominates, there will be compromises. When one side gets the upper hand, that's when things like the Patriot Act gets ramrodded through.

So, I've voted a mix of Republicans and Democrats. My very partisan friends will no doubt be horrified that I didn't support this person or that. But at least I feel that I've done my part to try to bring some sense of balance to this madness we call the US government.

Thanks for letting me vent. Hopefully this nightmareish election year will end tonight and not be as Comedy Central advertised tonight's Daily Show: Indecision 2004 Line - Prelude to a Recount.

User Journal

Journal Journal: Leo's book quiz 2

Nothing like a bright inspiring gem like this to start off a Monday...

You're Les Miserables!
by Victor Hugo
One of the best known people in your community, you have become something of a phenomenon. People have sung about you, danced in your honor, created all manner of art in your name. And yet your story is one of failure and despair, with a few brief exceptions. A hopeless romantic, you'll never stop hoping that more good will come from your failings than is ever possible. Beware detectives and prison guards bearing vendettas.
Take the Book Quiz at the Blue Pyramid.


Journal Journal: Smart Car

This is an interesting idea, but I'm not sure I want my car keeping an eye on me.

AMEInfo reports that "UAE University and IBM Middle East unveiled today the prototype of the world's first car safety device that can send alerts to the driver via voice technology whenever the vehicle is passing the speed limit of a particular street."

And it can issue speeding tickets on the spot. Good thing Hicham Dequiedt wasn't driving one of these!

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