Monday, July 31, 2006

Your mission, if you choose to accept it

As flexible and malleable and dynamic as the English language is, I think I have found a circumstance which is lacking a word.

It seems lately that individuals who feel they must deny, vehemently or otherwise, that they are gay are getting bigger headlines than those people who announce that they actually are. One voice in my head is saying that the small headlines for those coming out are a sign of progress, albeit a tiny one (why does it need to be in print at all?) The voice then goes on to say that the people denying their queerness are hungering for some attention and did not put enough time into thinking about creative ways to get some press (um, repeat of last parenthetical) and that this is decidedly not progress.

So if the act of saying one is homosexual is called outing or coming out, what is the act of denying that one is homosexual called? Not tonight honey, I'm staying in. (!?!)

We'll now open the blog lines and take comments from our readers...

Sunday, July 30, 2006

Conform, conform, conform

Why can't you be a good little lemming and just behave like everybody else? Why must you think you are so-o-o-o-o different? I don't ask for much. Why can't you just do what is expected of you?

You and all your little friends make me crazy. You sleep in late, eat any food you can find without too much effort and then immediately plan your afternoon nap. Then you stay up all night doing who knows what. The most energy you put out is in getting into a more comfortable horizontal position. Your idea of exercise is staring out the window and seeing how long you can go without blinking. It is you and everyone else as similarly lounge-oriented that give your kind a bad name.

You want to be different? Well, I've got news for you: this time being different has gotten you into trouble. This is my house and I make the rules including the only one you've ever been asked to follow. You are going to stick to this singular rule or you are going to pay the price.

From now on there will be no more thinking outside the box, you grungy furball. You will not follow your dreams and squat where they lead. You will make your used food deposits in a litterbox. You've got four (4!) to choose from, for scoop's sake. Variation from this rule in the name of 'creativity' will not be tolerated. When the spirit moves you, you get your tuckus in some sand and drop the movement there. Am I making myself clear? There will be no more Jackson Pollock-ing on the rug. Stop checking the kitchen floor for level by seeing if piddle will puddle. And for the last time: you do not have to add your 'special ingredient' to the clothes in the hamper.

Now you get in that sunspot and you start purring. I do not want to tell you twice. And don't forget to purr.

Saturday, July 29, 2006

Cross Nebraska off list of vacation destinations

An article found in The Seattle Times

... The two-day event, which drew about 100,000 people last year, features live music, an art-car show, skateboard demonstrations and the famous Solstice Parade, with dozens of naked bicyclists leading the way.

It is a carnival of creative expression, with humans dressing up as animals, and animals dressing up as humans. Shortly after 11 a.m., a naked man jogged through the art-car show, his fake tail flapping in the wind. A few minutes later, a dachshund wandered down that same path in pink chaps and a pink cowboy hat.

Chris Gilbert, 20, stood by the sidelines of the parade route in a tuxedo-styled thong, the tails covering his rear end. He had flames painted all over his body. He only recently moved to the state, and it was his first time at the Fremont Fair.

"Just had to get out of Nebraska," he said. ...

I wonder how the dachshund would go over in Nebraska.

Friday, July 28, 2006

I could have bought a goat instead

A funny thing happened while I was making numerous trips around the yard, meandering behind my smart-bomb-proof lawnmower...

In my effort to be a good neighbor to both the people around me and the planet, I bought a reel lawnmower. You know, one of those featureless gadgets that will keep the socially acceptable weeds known as "grass" cut to a reasonable height. Using this mower is my somewhat muted statement against the vicious cycle of suburbia wherein the players try to keep up with each other. The second reason is that there are only so many decayed dinosaurs to go around and why should I burn a few just to keep a lawn I don't really care about looking good for people whose opinion about my yard I really don't want? This thing does a fine job and nothing I've run over yet has stopped it from working.

So there I was, iPod on, sunglasses on, reel mower only on when moving when Ima Budinski comes strolling over. This woman is a true gem. She complains about everyone else's business on the block to the city so much they know her voice at the other end of the phone. Oh, joy. What does she want?

While checking out my yard under the guise of being friendly, she offered me the use of her electric mower until I could get a real one. I said I had a reel one and then realized that homophones don't make good audio jokes.

Well, pushing this mower keeps me from having to find additional time for exercise so I'd better get to it. Last time I checked, mowing the lawn burns more calories than typing about mowing the lawn.

Addendum to this post: Aaron McGruder, the brains behind Boondocks, said it best when he put these words in Huey's mouth: Plus lawnmowing feels like one of those pointless societal distractions that keep us from focusing on matters of actual importance.

Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Don't Let Me Touch That, Part I

Just when you thought this space had become a bit static, I've returned. All I can say regarding my hiatus from my digital duties is: did I just sleep through July?

The thought for today is : Don't let me touch that.
You see, I seem to have gained a certain talent for component deconstruction and the randomization of digital bits. In an effort to keep you coming back for more, this drama shall be presented in numerous parts. Now that I've returned, I want you to keep coming back, 'k?

Scenario: there are four computers in the house all trying to print via two printers, neither of which is networkable. The fact that three of the four computers are Macs makes this process easy. The fact that the remaining computer is a PC is something I don't like to admit. My only excuse is that I do not have to soil myself by touching it very often. In fact, I only had to touch it in order to figure out how to get it to print via the network. In order for the PC interloper to play nice on the network, all the Macs must be running Tiger, the latest OS. This was not a problem for the G5, named Nirvana, or the G3 laptop, named Whitey. However, the G3 iMac, named Fruitcup, resisted accepting Tiger with every little silicon chip on its motherboard. Stop shaking your head; you know you name your stuff.

To get the Tiger OS on Fruitcup proved to be a bit of a challenge, since the OS comes on DVDs and not on CDs and Fruitcup can only read CDs. Many methods did not work. I began to think that Fruitcup had to be, er, cored and the hardrive erased back to what it was like when it rolled out of the assembly womb. In an attempt to avoid this time-consuming task, I ran a third-party application which I shall not name because it is not the creators' fault that I am an idiot.

Using this software required linking Fruitcup to Nirvana and running the program on Nirvana to tweak the innards of Fruitcup. When I restarted Nirvana like I thought I was supposed to, I saw the Mac equivalent of hari kari: the system folder with a flashing question mark. As if that was not bad enough, the beautiful blue background then went to black and green letters appeared as Nirvana's alter-ego came to the surface and asked "Do you want to play a game?" ala the WOPR computer in Wargames (1983, Matthew Broderick). Actually, what flashed on the screen was:

Still waiting for root device...

Oh, I had pulled a whopper, alright. I felt my skeletal system begin to fail. My understanding of programming does not compare to my skillz in navigating a GUI interface and I knew that questions about the root are not ones I want to ask. I had done something very very very bad to Nirvana and I wasn't sure if we would ever be on speaking terms again. While I rebooted and disconnected and wiped the sweat from my brow, I began to compose the script I would use with the helpful AppleCare customer service person whose lunch of naan and rice I would be interrupting with a panicked phone call. "What was I doing? Well, that's kind of a funny question. See, I was trying to install a second copy of the OS for which I only have one user license onto a computer that Apple does not support installing it on by using a third-party shareware program I didn't pay for. Yeah, it's a real side-splitter, ain't it?"

Needless to say, I was putting off the phonecall while I tinkered around a bit. As bad as things seemed it's still a Mac, right? Right! A few days later, all is well. Like all good Mac-doobies eventually do, I zapped the PRAM (I don't know what that means but I can do it) and trashed all the files associated with the Application of Doom. A little more first aid on Nirvana and we're humming along again.