May 3, 2013
General Oddness, Random Wibble
The typical woman’s handbag contains:
- Hand sanitizer. How did we survive before this was invented?
- Pills for all occasions
- A purse
- A white iPhone. It seems that every woman under the age of fifty has a white iPhone. For some odd reason it is usually in a pink case. The majority of women don’t use the “smart” features.
- Roll of kitchen towels
- Mop & bucket
- Receipts for every purchase of the last three months.
- Some kind of mirror.
- A HUGE bunch of keys (the typical mom has more keys than the typical jailor)
The typical man’s pockets contain:
- Loose change (unless he has children)
- Wallet or billfold
- A pocketknife. Every boy over twelve has one. Every boy under twelve wants one. It’s a mystery.
- Phone (usually a cheap one — men don’t “need to talk”) — usually belt-mounted.
- Pocket Fluff. Nobody knows where this comes from.
Now you know.
January 21, 2013
Bad Laws, Opinion, Politics, Random Wibble
“FREE” is one of the most horribly mis-used words of our time. Marketers use it incessantly, as they know that it catches people’s attention. “Buy one get one FREE” (they love to capitalize it) sounds so much catchier than “Two for the price of one”. So when I received an e-mail informing me that my company was offering free birth control, my attention was somewhat piqued.
This is actually part of The Affordable Care Act (aka “Obamacare”) that is being phased in over the next twelve months. It only applies to women, though; apparently, somewhere along the line, women became a privileged class. For all the talk about women’s rights, women’s issues and women’s reproductive freedom, there is no equivalent conversation about men’s rights/issues/reproductive freedom – mention those and women look at you as if you were speaking Swahili.
As things stand, when a woman gets pregnant, the husband/boyfriend/baby-daddy has precisely two options – watch helplessly while she “makes the choice” to have an abortion, or pay for the upkeep of the kid for the next eighteen years.
So much for equality
What about free birth control for men? Don’t make me laugh; some men were never meant to breed — and these are generally the chaps who do. And while we’re on the subject of our right to guilt-free sex, where’s my free Viagra? Ridiculous. And yet the principle – the idea that you can merrily make whoopee inside or outside of marriage without worrying about the consequences – is the same in both cases.
But wait! There’s more! This “free birth control” applies only to women who have private health insurance. No insurance? Tough – pay up. Even so, this legislative giveaway benefits over forty million women. That’s forty million co-pays that “someone else” has to pay. Who? The insurance companies. And who do you think they will pass that cost on to? That’s right – the rest of us.
Now I am old-fashioned enough to believe that sex is best enjoyed within the confines of marriage. Guilt-free, disease-free, regret-free; absolute trust and rampant lust rolled up into one delightful package. It’s the best thing on Earth – trust me on this one. But, ladies and gentlemen, sex – guilt-free or otherwise – is not a human right. It is a privilege reserved for the grown-ups. And if you can’t afford contraception, maybe sex is a luxury you can’t afford.
I have no problem with birth control – if you don’t want children, you probably shouldn’t have any. Some people weren’t meant to reproduce; I’m one of them. But seriously, folks, isn’t this whole “free-birth-control” thing sending out the wrong message to our young people?
January 15, 2013
Droid, I like it!, Random Wibble, Software
I recently upgraded my Galaxy SIII from Android 4.0.4 (“Ice Cream Sandwich”) to Android 4.1.1 (“Jelly Bean”) a week ago. For me, the problem was a little more complicated than it is for most, as I was trying to keep my phone rooted, while my cellphone carrier was trying their best to break root. It took some reading and research, but naturally I triumphed. A week later, I am able to report on the story so far.
Immediately after the upgrade, things ran slowly, but within a day or so they settled down nicely. I use Battery Widget Reborn to track battery usage, and JB is definitely more power-efficient than ICS; I get 10-12 minutes of up-time per 1% of battery life – about double that of ICS. What this means is that I have about 45-50% of battery left at the end of a typical workday, while under JB it was more like 15-20%.
Another result of the upgrade was Google’s much-ballyhooed “Project Butter”, an initiative to make the User Interface (“UI”) smoother. I was skeptical, but I have to admit that JB does, in fact feel smoother than its predecessor.
The final area in which I noticed a massive improvement was in stability. My previous phone (a Droid X2 Running 2.2 Froyo then 2.3 Gingerbread) was notoriously unstable, requiring two or three reboots daily. In addition it had an annoying habit of spontaneously rebooting, particularly when GPS was playing up. Nothing as annoying as suddenly losing GPS navigation on a strange road on a dark night. ICS on the SIII was a massive improvement, but even so I found myself rebooting daily. But JB takes stability to the next level; there is simply no reason to reboot. If you want proof, check out the screen shot.
More than eleven and a half days of up-time without a reboot.
Yes folks, Android is now officially more stable than Windows.
There are a few things that Jelly Bean is missing, in my opinion, but they are minor cosmetic issues. I would rather have a fast, stable, secure operating system than one that just looks pretty (I’m looking at you, Microsoft). But that list – along with my solution – is another story for another time.
January 11, 2013
Yesterday I ran half a mile first thing in the morning.
I took 10,000 units of Vitamin D
I ate THREE oranges.
I had a fabulous day.
Today I woke up feeling ill.
January 5, 2013
News, Opinion, Random Wibble
This just in: The “Tinley Park Five” have been sentenced to up to seven years in jail (more information here and here).
These five were part of a gang of up to 18 people who, armed with hammers and clubs, descended on the Ashford House Restaurant in Tinley Park, Illinois, on 5/19/2012 and basically trashed the place. They were part of an Anti-Nazi group, and had been informed that a bunch of White Supremacists were meeting at the restaurant. Afterwards, they fled the scene in several vehicles.
One car, carrying five of them, was stopped by an off-duty cop. They were detained and charged. Finally, they pled guilty (against the advice of their lawyers) in exchange for leniency.
It is true that a gathering of white men, claiming to be an Irish Heritage group, were eating there at the time. But they were not troubling anyone at the time. To make matters worse, the marauders also assaulted others, including the owner of the restaurant and several other patrons.
These bozos have done something I never thought possible; they actually made white supremacists look good. Their claim to being “Anti-Nazis” is belied by the fact that they also attacked three other patrons of the restaurant who had nothing to do with the white supremacists/Irish Heritage group, along with the owner of the restaurant.
So why is this important to me? My wife was having lunch in the restaurant at the time. But for the courageous action of a cousin, she would probably been injured, if not killed.
As my mother once said: When you fight fire with fire, you just end up with a bigger blaze“
August 6, 2012
General Oddness, Random Wibble, Wally of the Week
I have often remarked – mostly in jest – that Hoosiers can’t drive. Like most generalizations, it is mostly untrue; some of my best friends hail from the great state of Indiana.
On a recent road trip, however, I stopped at a service station to fill up, and snapped a couple of pictures. Five vehicles, all with Indiana plates (anonymized for privacy), not one of whom could get their vehicles between the lines.
April 25, 2012
General Oddness, Random Wibble, The Other Side
- The top 1% pay 38% of Federal Income taxes
- The top 5% pay 59% of the taxes and make 30% of the income
- The top 10% pay 70% of the taxes
- The top 25% pay 86% of the taxes
- The top 50% pay 97% of the taxes
- The bottom 47% of taxpayers pay no Federal Income Tax.
- About half of them get money back from the Government – a “refund” on taxes they did not pay.
- 70% of donations to charities come from 10% of taxpayers (Indiana + Syracuse University study)
February 29, 2012
I like it!, Random Wibble
A band of storms swept through town this morning.
When I set out for work the storms had just passed. As I closed the front door, the birds were singing.
I took a breath; the air was sweet. Sweeter than I can remember. It was not a sweetness borne of any identifiable smell. It was a sweetness that comes from the absence of pollution, dust, irritants. It was the smell of the wilderness.
Storms are never easy or pleasant. But that is how God cleans house.
It is good to be alive.