Archive for December, 2005


Space: Above and Beyond on DVD

I just discovered Space: Above and Beyond was available on DVD. Though I’ve already picked it up, if you are a fan of science fiction I strongly urge you to pick up this excellent series. Like Firefly it was cancelled after one season by the idiots at Fox. Unlike Firefly, though, it didn’t get a second shot at life by being made into and excellent movie. Click on the link to check it out and buy it from!

Comments Off on Space: Above and Beyond on DVD | Catergorized: tv


Upgraded to WP-V2

I took some time tonight to upgrade the server to WordPress version 2 that was released a few days ago. The upgrade went well and so far I’m not finding anything heinously wrong. I fixed a few HTML and CSS issues and edited and fixed the link to the “About Douglas” page. Yeah, I’m not a big fan but what can you do.

This site, like the main page, will become active on the first of the year. I’m looking forward to it!

2 Comments | Catergorized: site


Answering the Challenge

So finally, just days before the end of the month, I am answering the December Blogging Challenge. It’s not good to issue a challenge and not meet it yourself! The challenge is to pick out five posts you are particularly proud of. I started digging through the whole site and gave up. There is, honestly, just too much here!

Instead I limited myself to items in the past year. This itself has proven a bit difficult, so I’m going to divide them into two groups. One is original stuff and the other is “political” in nature. Without further delay, here are the two lists:

Original Posts:
1: Happy Holidays or What? covers my gripe with everyone prepending “happy” to almost every holiday and the expectations it breeds. What a bother.
2: Hairism in America talks about a not so new prejudice that has, to my knowledge, never been addressed.
3: The Problem with Religious Conservatives in America. Actually that should be religious zealots or christian fanatics. Essentially these evangelical idiots today would kill Jesus if he were standing before them today because he doesn’t really say what they want to hear. Sad but true.
4: Prepending “Christian” to Your Business Name. I had an epiphany that if you merely put the word “christian” in front of your business name you could rake in loads of extra money. You laugh, but it would work!
5: Diagnosis In: It’s Terminal!. A rather tongue in cheek visit to the doctor based on a real visit.

“Political” Posts:
1: Open Source Voting Machines. Here I rant and rave about the ludicrous state of electronic voting and defend the proposition that open source voting machines are our best bet for fair and incorruptible electronic voting system.
2: Devising Four Pillars for the Future. This is quite a long entry dealing with establishing a simple message for the masses from the liberal POV. It’s a job that has yet to be completed to satisfaction.
3: Once Upon a Time in America. This article is an introduction to a series I started and haven’t touched in a long time. They are all about values as they should be, not as people too often think they are today. I feel it’s time we took back our values instead of letting some politicians and religious wingnuts dictate what they should be to us.
4: Who’s Afraid of the Terrorists and Newspaper Statistics. Two articles that are very closely related concerning statistics and their usage in main stream media.
5: Who’s Afraid of the Dominionist? In this post I point out who is, for me, the scariest group in modern politics. Read it; I’m sure you’ll agree.

One of my favorite terms I (think I) created this year was people pearls for kidney stones. One of the best pictures I posted was this one from the VIZ Holiday Party. And that’s it for 2005. Here’s to looking forward to 2006!

2 Comments | Catergorized: geek  site


Memoirs and Memories

I just got back from Memoirs of a Geisha. Not too bad. A bit long. I had no real desire to see it and, as is usual when my expectations are low, I ended up enjoying it. Someday, just once, I want to see Cary-hiroyuki Tagawa play a good guy. I’m sure he has at some point in his career but I’ve yet to see it.

I didn’t like the big dance scene. This was the only thing I thought was blatantly out of place and out of time. It was modern dance, big and open, but supposedly done by a geisha, who is a cultural icon of traditional Japanese close and formal culture. There was nothing terribly diminutive and refined about it.

I loved seeing the Japanese Tea Garden used in the movie, though. It was interesting to see how many different locations they used it for. I found it an interesting lesson in how to reuse space to represent different times and places. The only thing that confused me was the pagoda in the pond at the end; they must have built that specifically for the film.

It’s a pretty good film. If you don’t get around to seeing it in the theater then definitely take some time to see it when it comes out on DVD. I hear there was controversy about it, but I don’t see why. Then again, I rarely do understand the purists anyways.

4 Comments | Catergorized: movies  san francisco


We’ve Lost the Pilots

There’s nothing in the world like traveling by plane during one of the busiest travel times of the year. In a country paranoid about security. With airlines that are half a step away from (or already in) bankruptcy. Yes sir, exciting times.

Especially if you’ve boarded the plane, everyone has settled in and you don’t move. After a while someone gets on the intercom and announces, “We’re sorry for the delay but we can’t find the pilots for this plane.” OK, WTF? Are you saying you lost the pilots? Misplaced them? Are you not sure which bar they are at getting drunk and snorting cocaine in? Did you forget to collect their cell phone numbers for emergencies?

It’s bad enough I have to pay extra for the crappy food these days (I can’t wait to get charged for sodas) but now you can’t even reliably schedule someone to fly me to where I paid you to take me.

Anyways, true story. They lost the pilots. Eventually they found someone to pilot us but I don’t know if they were the regularly scheduled pilots or someone they picked up from the set of Airplane. Yar. Strange days here we are.

2 Comments | Catergorized: life


Bad Santa’s Helper

It’s XMas and once again I prove that I am simply horrible with this whole gift giving thing. I never know what to give people. I always put it off and/or simply forget until the very last minute. My list is so huge and I’m always so freaking poor at this time of year that I pretty much dig myself into a hole.

My Mom has it right. She starts looking pretty much right after XMas and starts hoarding gifts away all through the year. This isn’t so much because she’s hyper-enthusiastic about the holiday (though I’m not saying she isn’t) but because she has the ability to plan like that. I’m a horrible planner.

So today I struggle to find those gifts for people I will see in the immediate future and before I come back from the holidays I’ll struggle to find appropriate gifts for everyone else.

Meanwhile I feel I have to apologize to my nephews who I’ve neglected the most. I will have to start doing something about that…

Comments Off on Bad Santa’s Helper | Catergorized: family  life


Reality Show in Space

I know somewhere I posted about this before. I just can’t remember if it was here or on Anyways the idea is that some BBC TV station put on an elaborate hoax to trick three people into thinking they’d been put into training to go up in space, and then make them think they were actually in space. Yeah, pretty thick, but I guess they pulled it off.

I would like to think that I wouldn’t fall for such a cheap sham, but then again they wouldn’t have picked me in the first place. Just ask anyone who thinks you can have a one kilometer deep impact crater that’s only one kilometer wide.

Comments Off on Reality Show in Space | Catergorized: geek


So Far Away

I’ve been so lazy lately about writing. Sorry about that. We’ll see if I write too much more until after XMas, though. Life speeds and I feel slow.

What do you give parents who already have pretty much everything they need and want? I’m the worst gift giver ever. *sigh*

1 Comment | Catergorized: life


Senate Rejects Renewing USA Patriot Act

The Senate, in an unprecedented moment of lucidity, rejected the opportunity to renew some of the provisions of the USA PATRIOT ACT (previous coverage from this blog). Actually, while that is what most of the news is saying the truth is that the thing was filibustered and they couldn’t break the filibuster. The “nuclear option” wasn’t used because the resistance to the ACT is bipartisan and the Republican majority leadership wouldn’t want to use it on their own.

Still, in the end this is a good thing. The law will be abused (and we won’t hear about it until it’s leaked). Though the motivation behind the USA PATRIOT ACT -to help the good guys fight terrorism- was good the implementation was bad, poorly vetted, not debated, and too quickly made law.

If you do happen to be a big fan of the thing, this news does not mean it is going away. Only that some parts of it will. That is if it isn’t brought up for a vote again before the end of the year when the portions expire.

1 Comment | Catergorized: political  rights


Perhaps You’re Wrong, Mr. President

I had the “pleasure” of catching most of President Bushes speech this morning. Amongst the usual rhetoric (victory, liberty, terrorism, freedom, blah blah blah) was this quote that I just have to address because I feel it is unfair to our troops:

Finally, setting an artificial deadline would send the wrong message to the most important audience — our troops on the front line. It would tell them that America is abandoning the mission they are risking their lives to achieve, and that the sacrifice of their comrades killed in this struggle has been in vain. I make this pledge to the families of the fallen: We will carry on the fight, we will complete their mission, and we will win.

I don’t know if anyone realizes this but it wasn’t the troops fighting in Iraq that put themselves there. It is their mission because the President sent them there and Congress approved it. This is not, as you have tried to enumerate many times, Viet Nam. Our troops aren’t going to come home to a land that seems hostile to them.

It was your policy, Mr. President, that sent our troops there. Each death, as it was on each previous President that sent troops into combat, is on your shoulders. Your policy of invading Iraq, no matter the reason, is why they are under threat. Their mission is, simply put, an enactment of your policies. To say, “We will complete their mission,” implies that they are doing it of their own free will. This is not the case.

Please stop pretending that the military and our troops want to be there. They might now because yes, they do want to succeed in what they started. But don’t pretend that they wanted to be there in the first place.

Comments Off on Perhaps You’re Wrong, Mr. President | Catergorized: grrr  political
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