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User Journal

Journal Journal: Gmail should forward spam to The Man

The government of the US has set up an email address for spam: spam@uce.gov. See http://www.ftc.gov/bcp/conline/edcams/spam/index.html for more info.

It would be most excellent to be able to easily forward stuff from my spam folder to that email address at the same time I "delete forever". What I was thinking was a check box that says "report as spam to The Man" or something similar next to the "delete forever" button.

That would be awesome. Thanks for a cool tool.


User Journal

Journal Journal: What is fey-prog?

Ok, so I am listening to one of my favorite albums, A Night at the Opera by Queen on Real Rhapsody, (link to it through freeipods.com), and I read the album review:

The benchmark for all fey-prog pomp rock, this is Queen's best album ...

As I really like this album, I did a google search on fey-prog and got nothing. What is this fey-prog? and how did I miss it?

You friend and well-wisher

User Journal

Journal Journal: Magic pill for relationships

The best aphrodisiac is to remove all the anti-aphrodisiacs in the relationship. A big anti-aphrodisiac is boredom. As a marriage progresses, it naturally finds a routine. It is then easy to move from the routine to the taking each other for granted. All those tendencies combine together to create boredom and a feeling that your spouse is not grateful.

To avoid boredom, do something to break the routine and express gratitude at the same time. Surprise her and let her know how grateful you are for her. An idea of how to pleasantly surprise her is is included below.

Is this one thing going to be a magic pill you wanted? Probably not. But what comes close to the magic pill is generating a sense of closeness and appreciation with your wife by not allowing her to feel she is being taken for granted.

From Physical Evidence

"Talk is cheap" or so it has been said. In the area of romance, talk may be cheap, but it is also necessary. We all need to hear that we are loved and appreciated. And a sincere expression of gratitude is never wrong. However, hearing is just one of the senses. If you can involve the other senses in the expressions of love and gratitude it will be that much more effective and memorable.

The tip for today is to leave a short note of love and gratitude to be found at a later time, preferably when you are not around. Write the note on something other than just white paper. If possible, include some small treat. This small act will involve 4 of the 5 senses: the writing and the paper for the eyes, the feel of the paper and the act of unfolding the note for the sense of touch, the treat for both the taste and smell. When several of the senses are included, the message seems more "real". That is, it seems more sincere and it is therefore more enjoyable and memorable.

Romantic Tips for Married Couples

User Journal

Journal Journal: Firefighter Brand Products

I love America. This is such a great idea. Firefighter Brand Products are products like soda and chips. However, 25% of the profits go to support firefighters. Besides, no HCFS:


All Firefighter Brand Products are made from superior quality ingredients for great taste. "Haz-Mat Free" is the brand's response to the growing concerns regarding health and obesity in America. The company's better-for-you beverage products contain 25% less sugar versus other leading brands of soda, and they do not contain high fructose corn syrup, which has been tied to the obesity crisis in America. Likewise, the company's better-for-you chips do not contain trans fats or hydrogenated oils, which have been shown to raise harmful LDL cholesterol levels.

User Journal

Journal Journal: Corn refiners learn from the tobacco industry

In two press releases here and here the corn refiners are sounding like the tobacco industry. First they are sponsoring a breakfast to tout that HFCS ( High Fructose Corn Syrup) is not the only thing making people fat. Second, they are trying to force the people in the Dominican Republic to keep HFCS as cheap as possible. Maybe the people in the Dominican Republic are not fat enough yet.
User Journal

Journal Journal: Helping Jerry's Kids

Once, when I was but a wee lad, I went door to door around the neighborhood during the Jerry Lewis telethon to collect money for Jerry's kids. Being the adorable little angel I was, I amassed quite a wad of cash for those afflicted with muscular dystrophy. Then to my suprise, a police car pulled up beside me and a very tall, very scary policeman got out and asked me what I was doing. I showed him my money and told him what it was for. He took me home and I had to get a Jerry Lewis Telethon flyer taped to my money bucket so people would not thing I was stealing the money. Apparently, one of my generous neighbors had called the cops on me.

It was fun to go later and drop off all the money.

User Journal

Journal Journal: Write your own romantic tip or idea.

TOASTMASTER'S THEME: Write your own romantic tip or idea. Of all the relationships in life, our romantic relationships are the most important, most enduring and can bring the greatest pleasure or the worst pain of our lives. So for this week, share with the group a romantic idea. Maybe its something you have experienced or maybe its something you would like to share. Please note: Keep them in the PG realm please.

For example:

1 - Give you sweetheart a dozen real roses and one silk rose with a note that says "I will love you until the last flower fades".

2 - Buy several small candies, the one's she really likes, and hide them in various places so she will find them over the course of a week.

User Journal

Journal Journal: Topoged and phpGedView

Along with the rest of the world, I always seem to have side projects going. One of these is called topoged and it lives at http://www.topoged.com/ with a blog at http://topoged.sf.net/.

What is topoged?

I like doing genealogy,http://m0smith.freeshell.org/JosephAnthonyThomas/ and have over 10,000 names between my wife's family and my family. The problem is that genealogy programs only let you see a few people at a time and its hard to truly understand the data.

On the other hand, a topographical map presents a lot of data in a very concise way. There are lines and colors and icons all presented in a clear, easy to understand format.

Topoged is then to generate a 3D image of the genealogical data so that it can be understood better. Right now I don't know what they looks like but I have a few vague notions.

What about phpGedView?

This is an open source project, http://phpgedview.sf.net/ that manages and displays genealogical data online. I have integrated it into the topoged site and will build the 3d images based on what phpGedView provides.

User Journal

Journal Journal: gmaill invites 4

I found myself with 7 gmail invites for 7 of my cloeset friends. Are you my friend?
User Journal

Journal Journal: End of Summer 1

The end of summer

The end of summer means:
* Cramming in those last few Bar B Qs with family and friends.
* One last camping trip
* Doing all the little things we planned on doing but never got around
* Getting the kids used to going to bed and getting up so they can go
to school.
* Preparing for the beginning of fall.

User Journal

Journal Journal: Illinios Apologies to the LDS Church

HR0627 LRB093 16247 KEF 41881 r


2 WHEREAS, 138 years ago Brigham Young and more than 20,000
3 members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints were
4 expelled from the State of Illinois after the Illinois General
5 Assembly withdrew its charter for the city of Nauvoo, Illinois
6 in Hancock County in 1844; and

7 WHEREAS, During a period of seven years of Illinois
8 history, from 1839 to 1846, Latter-day Saints built and
9 developed the city of Nauvoo into the largest city in the State
10 of Illinois and the tenth largest city in the nation; and

11 WHEREAS, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints
12 was established by Joseph Smith in Fayette, New York on April
13 6, 1830; and

14 WHEREAS, The Mormon Prophet, Joseph Smith, led the
15 community of Latter-day Saints from Fayette, New York to
16 Kirtland, Ohio in 1831; and from Ohio to Independence,
17 Missouri, in 1837; and

18 WHEREAS, Joseph Smith, a strong anti-slavery advocate, led
19 his community of some 15,000 Latter-day Saints to the
20 Mississippi River town of Nauvoo, in Illinois, following their
21 expulsion from the slave State of Missouri in 1839; and

22 WHEREAS, Joseph Smith and the Latter-day Saints exercised
23 enormous industry and effort in the development and growth of
24 the town of Nauvoo, succeeding in creating a prosperous
25 community in which they drained the local swamp lands and
26 transformed them into productive agricultural and residential
27 environments; and

28 WHEREAS, Joseph Smith and the Latter-day Saints were given
29 an extraordinary charter for the powers of home-rule by the

                HR0627 - 2 - LRB093 16247 KEF 41881 r

1 Illinois General Assembly to create and preside over their own
2 court system and also to maintain their own military force,
3 second in size only to the United States Army; and

4 WHEREAS, Joseph Smith and the community of Latter-day
5 Saints exercised extensive missionary activities which drew
6 new Mormon settlers to the city Nauvoo, reaching a population
7 of some 20,000 citizens by 1844; and

8 WHEREAS, The prevailing economic conditions of the nation
9 in general, and Illinois in particular, faced a downturn in the
10 early 1840s, with the result that the rapidly growing
11 population of Nauvoo faced drastic levels of unemployment
12 without success in attracting needed industry; and

13 WHEREAS, During the period of their residency in Nauvoo,
14 Joseph Smith and his community of Latter-day Saints began as
15 political Democrats, transferring their political allegiance
16 to the Whig Party in both the elections of 1838 and 1840,
17 before once again transferring their affiliations back to the
18 Democratic Party in the election of 1842, until the
19 establishment of the Reform Party by Smith in time for the
20 election of 1844, when he began to seriously campaign for the
21 office of President of the United States; and

22 WHEREAS, The expression of political authority and power
23 within the community of Latter-day Saints was seen by many
24 citizens in Illinois as reasons for caution and concern, seeing
25 the control of local courts by Joseph Smith as autocratic, and
26 interpreting the leverage and influence of the Mormon
27 community's voting strength as an over influential forceful and
28 voting bloc; and

29 WHEREAS, Local religious customs among the Latter-day
30 Saints began to be viewed with suspicion, bias and
31 misunderstanding; and

                HR0627 - 3 - LRB093 16247 KEF 41881 r

1 WHEREAS, Following the destruction of a local anti-Mormon
2 newspaper known as the Expositor, violence against the
3 Latter-day Saint community increased; and

4 WHEREAS, The Governor of the State of Illinois, Thomas
5 Ford, called out the Illinois Militia to keep order; and

6 WHEREAS, Governor Ford had the Prophet Joseph Smith and his
7 brother, Hiram Smith, jailed, on suspicion of complicity in the
8 destruction of the Expositor, in the nearby town jail of
9 Carthage, Illinois; and

10 WHEREAS, A violent mob stormed the Carthage jail on June
11 27, 1844, causing the deaths of Joseph and Hiram Smith; and

12 WHEREAS, Between 1844 and 1845, violent acts against the
13 community of Latter-day Saints increased in volume and
14 intensity, demonstrated in such acts as the burning of crops,
15 the destruction of homes and the threaten extermination of the
16 entire Mormon population; and

17 WHEREAS, Faced with the extremism against the community of
18 Latter-day Saints, Brigham Young, the new leader of the Nauvoo
19 community made plans to take his people out of Illinois; and

20 WHEREAS, Beginning on February 4, 1846, Brigham Young began
21 sending the community of Latter-day Saints out of their
22 homeland of Nauvoo, Illinois across the frozen waters of the
23 Mississippi River, in the largest forced migration in American
24 history; and

25 WHEREAS, Brigham Young made an exodus from the State of
26 Illinois, leading tens of thousands of men, women and children,
27 together with livestock and wagons that stretched across the
28 expansive winter horizon for miles; and

                HR0627 - 4 - LRB093 16247 KEF 41881 r

1 WHEREAS, In this Mormon exodus, Brigham Young and the
2 community of Latter-day Saints left behind their life in
3 Illinois and the shining city that they had fashioned from both
4 their faith and the hard work of their hands; and

5 WHEREAS, Brigham Young and the community of Latter-day
6 Saints set off in the midst of winter for Utah, some 1300 miles
7 to the west; and

8 WHEREAS, The severity of the winter placed on Brigham Young
9 and the community of Latter-day Saints extreme hardships,
10 trudging across the Iowa Plains to the far side of that state
11 where they made a winter camp; and

12 WHEREAS, In the Spring of 1847, Brigham Young and the
13 community of Latter-day Saints began again their journey to
14 Utah, beyond the Rocky Mountain Range, to the valley of the
15 Great Salt Lake; and

16 WHEREAS, On July 24, 1847, Brigham Young and the community
17 of Latter-day Saints arrived in that valley following a trek of
18 more than five months, journeying across the heart of the
19 American continent, from the heartbreak of events in Nauvoo,
20 Illinois to a place of far-western refuge; and

21 WHEREAS, Within 50 years of their arrival in the territory
22 of Utah, the community of Latter-day Saint became the 45th
23 state in the Union on January 4, 1896; and

24 WHEREAS, The community of Latter-day Saints grew from a
25 population of 250,000 at the end of the 19th century to a
26 population of more than 10 million people in our present day;
27 and

28 WHEREAS, The goodness, patriotism, high moral conduct, and

                HR0627 - 5 - LRB093 16247 KEF 41881 r

1 generosity of the community of Latter-day Saints has enriched
2 the landscape of the United States and the world; and

3 WHEREAS, The biases and prejudices of a less enlightened
4 age in the history of the State of Illinois caused untolled
5 hardship and trauma for the community of Latter-day Saints by
6 the distrust, violence, and inhospitable actions of a dark time
7 in our past; therefore, be it

10 acknowledge the disparity of those past actions and suspicions,
11 regretting the expulsion of the community of Latter-day Saints,
12 a people of faith and hard work; and be it further

13 RESOLVED, That we asks the pardon and forgiveness of the
14 community of Latter-day Saints for the misguided efforts of our
15 citizens, Chief Executive and the General Assembly in the
16 expulsion of their Mormon ancestors from the gleaming city of
17 Nauvoo and the State of Illinois.

User Journal

Journal Journal: Star Wars Trilogy on DVD on sale at Amazon

The Star Wars Trilogy on DVD is on sale at Amazon for $41.99. Availability: This item will be released on September 21, 2004. You may order it now and it will shipped it to you when it arrives.

This looks like a good price, $14 a movie.

From the review

Years later, George Lucas transformed his films into "special editions" by adding new scenes and special effects, which were greeted mostly by shrugs from fans. They were perfectly happy with the films they had grown up with (who cares if Greedo shot first?), and thus disappointed by Lucas's decision to make the special editions the only versions available on DVD. Still, the Star Wars trilogy was one of the last remaining DVD Holy Grails, and only the most stubborn critics won't welcome its release. --David Horiuchi

User Journal

Journal Journal: Gardening

The simple act of gardening contains within it many of the greatest lessons of life. For example, the law of the harvest simply stated as "for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap". Can there be anything simpler or easier to understand? When carrot seeds are planted, the harvest will be carrots. That is the way it works and it always works that way. Would a person really plant carrots and expect corn in the harvest?

This same law applies everywhere. Each decision is a seed planted. Sooner or later these seeds sprout and bear fruit. Just as the harvest is predetermined when the seeds are planted, so the consequences can be foretold when the decision is made.

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The first myth of management is that it exists. The second myth of management is that success equals skill. -- Robert Heller