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Journal Journal: Today's Dilbert Moment 1

"The Grassroots meeting today is mandatory."

I received this at work today concerning a congressional letter writing campaign on behalf of my company.

The Courts

Journal Journal: You're a mean one... 3

Man Arrested for Wearing Grinch Mask

So where do we draw the line?

A few quotes:
masks as well as dark window tinting in vehicles can pose a safety hazard to law enforcement officers

wearing a mask or hood in public is a misdemeanor under state law

Traditional Halloween masks, safety gear used in occupations, theatrical productions, civil defense or protection from bad weather also are legal.

Who decides what a "traditional Halloween mask" is? It is ok to be a ghost, but not a Grinch?

Yes, it is weird for a guy to walk down the street in a Grinch mask, but maybe he was trying to pay homage to Mr. Ravenscroft. He wasn't in a bank waving a gun, and he wasn't running away from a bank holding a bag with a large $ sign on it.

I can see the cops stopping him to ask some questions, but to arrest him because he likes to wear a mask when he walks down the street is questionable. Who is being the Grinch now? :) Maybe we aren't getting the whole story here, because I can't see cops arresting this guy only because he refused to take off his mask.

The cops can't walk up to me and force for me to raise my shirt to see if I have a particular tatoo on my chest, or even force me to open my briefcase. Why should they be able to make me take off a mask? Just because it is a non-standard piece of clothing?

Also... I can see how tinted car windows are risky for a cop to walk up to, but so is a front house window with curtains. The point is lines have to be drawn somewhere. Is wearing a mask or hood in public one of those lines?

Note: I get along fine with cops, and don't really see a great reason for being able to be masked in public, but I thought it was an interesting question. :)

Star Wars Prequels

Journal Journal: Great Movie, and how to avoid lines(successfully) 1

The lines shouldn't be too bad at all. I live in Indianapolis, and a quick check of Fandango revealed that most of the theatres in the area were having 2 midnight showings. The local news was showing the usual shots of people lined up outside in many places.

About 10:15 I called the theatre I was going to and asked when they would begin seating for the midnight showings. The helpful clerk told me that there were a lot of people in line, and they would be begin seating as soon as the other movies were done playing, and that would be about 30 minutes. So we showed up about 10:45. The line was gone, and the lobby empty. We walked right in, and found two decent seats about 2/3 to the back and about 4 seats away from center. Suprisingly we had about 5 or 6 girls sitting in the center of our row next to us that were there when we arrived. A few of the girls had on Jedi robes and homemade Star Wars shirts.

Unless you are with a large group of people I would suggest doing it that way. You don't have to stand around, and you still get decent seats. Also the theatre staff mentioned that the theatre would continue the midnight showings for about a week.

We had to wait an hour, but we were sitting in comfy chairs, and we had fun observing the antics of other Star Wars fans(hilarity ensued). Plus since it was a midnight showing everyone there was at least a teen, and there were plenty of people there older than me(27). The later you go the less rugrats you will have to contend with. :)

The movie was great, and my wife thought it was great too. Kevin Smith was right. Roger Ebert was also right. The first "romantic" scenes weren't so hot, but as the movie progressed they thankfully improved. The Wookies felt like they were forced into the movie just to have them, but other than that everything in the movie seemed to have purpose, and belonged. Even the 2 second silent cameo of Jar-Jar at the end fit in fine. Most of the humor was in the very beginning. At first it seemed like to much at once, but then I realized there wasn't much room for humor in the rest of the movie so I let it slide. There are some haunting and tragic scenes in the last half hour. I heard a couple sniffles of crying coming from the group of girls in our row.

I give this movie 3.5 lightsabers. I guess the short Yoda saber would be the .5.

Star Wars Prequels

Journal Journal: Celebrating St. Lucas day tomorrow 3

So tomorrow my wife is scheduled to receive her very first shot to raise her resistance to allergens. She is pretty much allergic to everything, and could have a very bad reaction to the shot.

We had decided to take a half day off from work so I could be with her in case something went wrong. When we realized that her appointment also coincided with St. Lucas day we thought we would make the most of it, and take the whole day off. We have two tickets to tonights midnight showing, and can sleep in after a late night out. Plus she gets to enjoy the movie before she is possibly made miserable by the attempt at allergy inoculation.

If anyone is interested I can post a quick review tomorrow morning. I'm hoping the review by Kevin Smith is right on. :)

"Revenge of the Sith" is, quite simply, fucking awesome. This is the "Star Wars" prequel the haters have been bitching for since "Menace" came out, and if they don't cop to that when they finally see it, they're lying. As dark as "Empire" was, this movie goes a thousand times darker...

How are you spending St. Lucas day?

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Journal Journal: This man speaks the truth 1

One of my favorite webcomics "Real Life" had a +5 Insightful / +5 Funny comic today about Slashdot.

Without further ado.

The funny thing is I discovered Real Life through the Funnies Slashbox on the main page...


Journal Journal: "daisy chaining" 3

Daisy Chaining. It's not just for computers anymore.

Growing numbers of teenagers are taking part in a new group sex craze known as 'daisy chaining', nurses warned yesterday.

I'm only 27, and I already feel like I am an old man. When I was in High School things weren't half as crazy as they are now. I can't believe all the things I am hearing about sexual acts being performed by teens.

The only "daisy chaining" I did in HS involved hard drives. We were happy to get to second base, and every kid out there these days hits a grand slam. What upset the balance? I don't have any kids yet, but at the rate things are going I am going to have to explain STD's to my kids before they go to kindergarten.

I remember hearing somebody say this generation would be more responsible than us Gen X'ers.
Hmmm... maybe not.

Wow. I really do sound like an old man :)

It's funny.  Laugh.

Journal Journal: Funny Flames

It is funny, and flamebait for mac users. You can't go wrong with that. I laughed even more when I saw it was modded as Insightful.

Gotta love Mods with humor.

First Person Shooters (Games)

Journal Journal: 500K targets 3

From here.
Nearly 500,000 pro-Syrian protesters waved flags and chanted anti-American slogans in a central Beirut square Tuesday, answering a nationwide call by the militant Shiite Muslim Hezbollah group for a demonstration to counter weeks of massive rallies demanding Syrian forces leave Lebanon.

It is a good thing that America is nothing like what Hezbollah makes it out to be. Otherwise, one MOAB today could have solved 500,000 problems.

First Person Shooters (Games)

Journal Journal: A weapon with pep!

Pulsed Energy Projectile (PEP)

People are already crying that this could be used for torture. Clearly it is meant to disable enemy combatants without killing them. Maybe the people worried that this will be used for torture would prefer we disable enemy forces the old fashioned way. Bullets and bombs.

Reminds me of my BattleTech days.

User Journal

Journal Journal: Painting with words

Tycho, the wordsmith from PA, had quite a commentary on Suprnova, and filesharing in general today. A little more polish, and he will have a manifesto on his hands. Whether you agree with him or not you have to admit he paints a vivid picture in a readers mind.

Quote shamelessly ripped and pasted below.

Suprnova - a site which acted as a kind of torrent aggregator, at least, when it was up long enough to aggregate torrents - is apparently down for the count. Given its past performance, you may not know right away. Eventually you will come to crave some vulgar new pop single and you will have to go without. That is, until you go to another site which aggregates torrents and your larcenous rampage continues unabated, and perhaps even intensifies because you have gone without for a brief period and have begun to "feen" in earnest.

Let us turn to Bop-A-Mole as a means of exploring this problem. The moles come up, and then the moles are struck with mallets. In this case, the people striking the moles have hired teams of people to suppress these creatures, and they have even invented an unwieldy "Meta-mallet" that can bop even theoretical moles. It is their firm belief in this and other matters that bopping is the mathematically optimal response. Diverging from the metaphor somewhat, as a practical matter these "moles" have become ever more sophisticated and clandestine as a response. This would have happened anyway of course, but just as the injudicious use of antibiotics creates devastating and unstoppable pathogens these applications will reach a true apex of distributed power, jamming a spigot into the very heart of pay media.

There are conversations to be had about the morality of file sharing, but until those stern words are able to project a "morality field" that causes those in their radius to behave honorably such dialogues fall into the "adorable but irrelevant" category. The muscular responses to the phenomenon have made it worse, and greater consumer throughput has put movies and television on the menu. The Internet represents a user definable broadcast spectrum that makes the notion of a "television network" almost incoherent. That is the actual issue obscured by this site going down or that service going under: the ice age has arrived for massive conglomerates. They can adapt to this shift, or they can become museum exhibits. Up to them.


Journal Journal: Now that is interesting 2

I see the poll asking "Are You Better Off Now Than You Were Four Years Ago?" was pulled after only a few hours of being up. I guess too many people on slashdot were optimistic.

It has now been replaced with a new poll more suitable to /. Or should I say \. :)


Journal Journal: Just had a thought

A light bulb just turned on in my head. I'm sure this light may have already turned on for some of you, but to me it is currently a blinding light.

Imagine this:
We have the Germans, the French, and the Russians behind us. NATO gave us the full go ahead and said "God speed". The whole world (except for those who want to kill us) is cheering us on. Yet we still have over 1,000 of our own soldiers that have died freeing the Iraqi people.

Bush would be winning by a landslide, and Kerry wouldn't have a leg to stand on. And why? Not because having those things make our actions any more right, or just. They only make our actions more popular.

What is so wrong with some Americans that they cower at the thought of doing the right thing just because somebody disapproves?

Bush is the guy who knocks a bully on his ass when he sees a girl getting beat by the bully. Even though he knows he could get suspended for fighting.

Kerry is the guy who runs to get a teacher, and hopes the girl isn't beat to a pulp by the time he gets back. But hey, at least he didn't have to worry about getting suspended for fighting.

Lord of the Rings

Journal Journal: Ordered a Tungsten ring / Wedding band 3

I am getting married! Again! :)

I wanted to get a much cooler ring this time around so I found a nice company on the web selling tungsten rings. I went with the 'ascent' style, size 9.25, 8mm wide, and polished finish.

I was leaning toward titanium at first, but decided on tungsten since it is on average 50% heavier than steel. Plus tungsten rings are extremely durable, and very hard to scratch. I had a vision in my head of Gandalf dropping the ring on the floor, and hearing a nice thud.

Once I receive the shipment I will post another journal entry to let you know how it turned out if anyone is interested.

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"Only a brain-damaged operating system would support task switching and not make the simple next step of supporting multitasking." -- George McFry