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January 25, 2005

A little quiz: Answers

Here we go:

1. I once dated a slightly psycho Australian girl while I was in college.
TRUE. And oh, what a disaster. I regret that one and hated the way I acted.

2. I chose Colorado over my other options for college because they had a better football team.
FALSE. (Better than what, anyway?) I chose Colorado because it was not in Okieland.

3. The only time I went bungee jumping, I couldn't let go of the handhold because my knuckles were whiter than a Klan rally.
TRUE. I'm not acrophobic, but I just couldn't jump.

4. My first dog was put down after he mauled one of my younger brothers.
FALSE. Put down, yes, but because he was big and aggressive. My parents always told us he was given to another family, not put down, because they didn't want to be traumatized. Hell, they could have told me -- I want that dog dead.

5. The strongest swear word I can muster most days is "crap."
TRUE. I just... don't.

6. The only reason I took up blogging was to learn Perl.
FALSE. I did it for a writing outlet and to pick up some web skills I wasn't learning at work. I'm awful at Perl, actually.

7. Right now I only have two pairs of jeans and two pairs of khakis that fit my too-large arse.
TRUE. And thus, back on the diet.

8. I have been sick on every Inauguration Day since 1981.
FALSE. 1981, 1997, and 2005 I was sick.

9. I wish that I could have a do-over on years 16-25.
TRUE. Sad, directionless years those were. Pretty much one giant misanthropic depression.

10. I still chew paper.
TRUE. And plastic. And rubber bands. And I have since I was little-little. I like the... fibrousness of paper.

If you scored 8 or higher, congratulations, you did better than my mother.

Posted by dylan at 08:25 PM

January 24, 2005

Three inches of partly sunny

And a hello to all the other USS Mariner readers who came by to see what sort of weirdo I am. Today Derek Zumsteg mentioned that Baseball America super-writer Alan Schwarz had written a followup column on the "stats vs. scouts" debated that's been nibbling at baseball fans like so many rabid goslins over the last few years. In his "reader reactions" section he excerpts one of my comments on the USSM site -- twice.

I think this is a good thing for me, since it means that, apparently, I'm funny, or insightful, or can just make odd comment on meteorology. I think, though, what's far better is that this means Baseball America super-writer Alan Schwarz is reading USSM. That's a credit to the fine job Derek, David, and Jason do writing USSM.

And by the way, it looks like about 30% of people with USSM referrers are using Firefox. This is supposed to be a Microsoft town, isn't it?

Posted by dylan at 07:57 PM

January 21, 2005

A little quiz

Since I'm home sick with Annabel's cold (thanks, daughter dear), I may as well post something. So, I'm plaigarizing Tara's quiz.

True or False:

1. I once dated a slightly psycho Australian girl while I was in college.
2. I chose Colorado over my other options for college because they had a better football team.
3. The only time I went bungee jumping, I couldn't let go of the handhold because my knuckles were whiter than a Klan rally.
4. My first dog was put down after he mauled one of my younger brothers.
5. The strongest swear word I can muster most days is "crap."
6. The only reason I took up blogging was to learn Perl.
7. Right now I only have two pairs of jeans and two pairs of khakis that fit my too-large arse.
8. I have been sick on every Inauguration Day since 1981.
9. I wish that I could have a do-over on years 16-25.
10. I still chew paper.

Answers Monday. Comment with your answers.

Posted by dylan at 03:28 PM | Comments (4)

January 19, 2005

Gonna be some changes made

The comment spam problem is growing at a geometric pace. Since I upgraded mt-blacklist six months ago, I've had more than 7,000 comments moderated or denied. Comment spammers now make up about 75% of the hits on this site. It's really getting... annoying.

So, I'm increasing the firepower.

All these together should curtail the spam, though with the rate of hits I'm receiving every day, I may have to look at shutting all comments down in the near future. I don't want to, but it may be the only way I can keep my sanity.

Posted by dylan at 07:01 PM | Comments (5)

Say goodbye, don't follow

The Client and Server family of sites (both of them) has jumped on the nofollow bandwagon.

Everyone with a blog should get onboard. Even you Wordpress folk have no excuse.

Back to staying home from work with a sick kid. Sigh.

Posted by dylan at 12:54 PM | Comments (1)

January 13, 2005

Losing My History

I think my brain is at capacity. Memories seem to be leaking out at the seams.

Christmas 1989. I knew what I wanted for Christmas -- a CD player. So I asked, and I did receive, in the form of a big fugly gray boombox from Garrard. It was an awful player. It had this bad tendency to just stop reading CDs and flash up all these weird LCD screen characters, like it was possessed, and required a slap on the hood to work again. Still, it was a CD player, and I was just happier than you could imagine.

I was even happier to discover that my parents, by skimping on quality, gave me quantity -- $100 to build the CD collection. So day after Christmas I high-tailed it down to the Sound Warehouse at 51st and Lewis. And here is where my memory is suddenly fuzzy. I swear, upon the Bible, the complete OED, and the Baseball Encyclopedia, that I bought six CDs that day. (And yes, I was a bit of an over-the-top REM fan in those days.)

  1. Fables of the Reconstruction, REM
  2. Life's Rich Pagent, REM
  3. Dead Letter Office, REM
  4. Never Mind The Bollocks, Sex Pistols
  5. Synchronicity, Police
  6. ?
I can't remember the sixth CD, and it's really starting to bother me.

My brain is working overtime trying to solve the mystery. Did I only buy five CDs? It's possible, but a CD at Sound Warehouse was $13.99(or less... I'm a little fuzzy there), and I know I had change (because I remember taking that money and going to QuikTrip with it afterwards), but I didn't have a lot of change (that is, not more than $10), and I only bought as many CDs as I could for $100. So, at $14, that means I had to have bought 6.

What could the sixth CD have been? Well, I was a little too in to REM, so it could have been Reckoning. After all, I'd pretty much worn out that tape. It could have been Murmur, too. I've also thought it might have been New Order, but that doesn't seem as likely.

Meanwhile, the mystery keeps pestering me, eating up valuable CPU time that could be going to other, more meaningful things. Like video games.

Posted by dylan at 09:03 AM | Comments (2)

January 03, 2005

Best music of 2004

Geez, this is way overdue.

Like last year, I didn't buy all that much in the CD department. However, this year I did have iTunes and a few more radio stations on the Internets to choose from. So, my list of the best albums of 2004 (in no particular order):

Escondida, Jolie Holland
Eveningland, Hem
How to Dismantle an Atomic Bomb, U2
Van Lear Rose, Loretta Lynn
Franz Ferdinand, Franz Ferdinand
Good News For People Who Love Bad News, Modest Mouse
The Dirty South, Drive-By Truckers
Final Straw, Snow Patrol
The Gray Album, DJ Danger Mouse

Albums that disappointed me this year:
a ghost is born, Wilco -- A wholly frustrating album. Does Jeff Tweedy want to be the new Thurston Moore? Because they're a really awful Sonic Youth cover band. I gave up on them returning to their alt-country roots two albums ago, but I'm sure not liking the shoe-looking experiementation they're trying now.

Drag It Up, Old 97's -- It sounds as thrown together as it is. Just chalk this one up to experience and hope that Rhett and Co. can reclaim the cohesiveness they used to have.

And my favorite songs:

And the worst. Not as many as last year, but this is less an indication of an improvement in the quality and more an indication of a lack of quantity heard this year. And oh, I'm tired and want to finish this.

The entire works of William Hung. There's bad and campy (Shatner). There's so bad it's good (The Darkness, aka the Sons of Spinal Tap). And there's William Hung, who isn't good, lacks irony, and needs to get back to Cal soon and get a real career so that my ears will stop bleeding.

The Dog Song, Nellie McKay. I know she's getting all these glowing reviews as this acerbic, New York version of Norah Jones, but this song... annoys me. A lot. I mean, it sounds like William Hung wrote it. It's about 1/3rd the trite lyrics that Jessica Simpson could outsmart, and 2/3rds that gawdawful dog panting.

Comfortably Numb, Scissor Sisters. For as great of an homage "Take Your Mama Out" is, "Comfortably Numb" is a stark reminder that late 70s disco should not be revived, and that there should be an international treaty banning covers of Pink Floyd songs.

Posted by dylan at 12:27 AM | Comments (4)

January 01, 2005

The new year

Well, last year's resolutions were a total, utter bust. I mean, it was more a failure than Cal's "statement game" in the Holiday Bowl.

So, I'm keeping it simple this year.

  1. I will get my weight down to a healthy level.
  2. I will redesign this weblog and think about fulfilling some of these create thoughts I've had about blogging in the last two years.
  3. I will enjoy my daughter's second year alive, because soon enough she'll be 16, crashing the car, and dating some good-for-nothing named Braden or Caden or Payden.

And happy birthday to my dear wife, who has had to endure depression, impatience, incompetence, and financial bewilderment this past year... on top of whatever it is she's personally dealing with.

Posted by dylan at 10:44 AM