I broke down…. Monday, Oct 15 2007 

…and registered at FaceBook.  My curiousity of what ever happened to my high school friends just overwhelmed me.  I’m just starting to get used to the site but already am intrigued about being able to touch base with these people.  When I read the shortlist of people who I could meet from the good old days I wasn’t surprised at the names.  All of them had some inkling of what a computer was back in the day.  Since most of my fellow graduates were, well, a wee bit backwoodsy I’m not surprised that only a small portion have found their way to FaceBook. 

Let the good times roll.  I’ll start looking up my university alumnists to see who went on to bigger and better things.  The high-school mix didn’t really have any famous players…at least they weren’t admitting to anything.  I can see how this site can be quite a useless black hole of mis-information.  Call it everbody’s “FaceBook” alter-ego.  Gotta make sure you lived up to other people’s expectations!

I can also see how this network can get dangerous and expose oneself to predators.  As usual, any open social network inevitably has its fair share of undesirables especially when anonimity is feasible.

Feel free to send me a friend invite.  The more the merrier.  I gotta be loved!

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Beverly Hills 90210 Tuesday, Jan 16 2007 

I didn’t want to make this public knowledge but I just had to. Besides, those who know me already suspected. I am a watcher of 90210 now that it has been revived on TV Tropolis. We recently upgraded our digital cable box with a PVR so now we (yes, someone else in the household also watches it religiously) can tape it and watch it over dinnertime.

When I watched the show the first time it was aired back in the late 80’s and early 90’s, I was a wee young lad in my late teens. I was able to ‘relate’ to the issues the gang was up against and also could look up to the admirable qualities of such respectable characters as Brandon and Andrea and to a lesser extent, good ole Steve Saunders.
I would always ’side’ with the kids whenever they were ratted out or caught by their parents doing something immoral like drinking and driving, taking drugs, sleeping with Dylan. Things were unfair or blown way out of proportion when Jim Walsh would lay down the law. Or would be thinking “Old Man, you don’t know anything” when he would try to give advice to Brandon.

My how the worm has turned. Just the other night Jim was playing a little one-on-one basketball with Brandon and having a little heart to heart about pre-marital relations. Instead of siding with the wavy haired teen idol as I’m sure I did oh those 15 years ago, I found myself agreeing with my similarly coiffed friend “Old man Jim”. You see, he was saying things like: “Be careful” and “Think first”. Which appeals greatly to me now that I have a child.

This has happened to me during several shows and now Jimbo seems like a pretty good guy instead of a deadbeat. Ouch. See what getting old will do? Watching shows I used to watch in my teens and now picking out the moral story, agreeing with it and enjoying the punishment being doled out by those in power.

Some things haven’t changed though. For example, I still think that Jim should not have been married to Cindy. What did he see in her anyway? And Dylan: what a skinnly little weasel he was. And acted out by a skinnly little weasel.

One funny note: Whenever the theme song comes on, OGD is the first to run to the TV and catch the opening credits.

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Stamps of Sincerity Thursday, Jun 8 2006 

http://mosleymeetswilcox.com/shop/shopstamps.htm

I wonder if they could make one that says:  “Xianglongshibazhang!

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Death to Sudoku! Wednesday, Jun 7 2006 

C’mon everybody give it up.  Ye simpletons need to move onto more adult puzzlers.  Diagramless crosswords are a good start.  Cryptograms are also interesting and difficult.  But the greatest of all these are Acrostics (sometimes called Crostics or Anacrostics).   Infinite enjoyment.  Solve a Bertrand Russell quote using the letters to solutions of complex crossword clues.  Although there are a set of axioms that can be applied to solving any crostic, there is no grindout solution like Sudoku.  It requires intuitiveness, vast knowledge of every aspect of life (arts, TV, history, geography, etc. etc.) and the ability to work off the quote to solve the clues and vice-versa.  In summary, you need to be smart.  Sudoku-ites need not be smart.  They need only stick-to-it-iveness and practice.  I think even a chimpanzee could solve those things (well, maybe  a thousand chimpanzees on a thousand computers).

Sudoku is to pencil puzzles as Dan Brown is to novelists.

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Geez, are we that hard up for controversy? Wednesday, Apr 26 2006 

This Britney Spears Giving Birth sculpture debacle is yet another indication that America has too much time on their hands. Can you believe that this has caused controversy with the pro-lifers? I quote from the CBC:

Pro-life advocates “thought this was degrading to their movement. And some pro-choice people were upset that this is a pro-life movement,” David Kesting, co-owner of Brooklyn’s Capla Kesting Fine Art Gallery, told AP.

So we have the pro-lifers angry for 2 reasons: 1) degrading to their movement (huh?), and 2) because the sculptor considers it a “new take on pro-life” (double huh?). I think if pro-lifers want to be considered reputable in any way, they should stay as far away from this fiasco as possible. But then again, one might be dead wrong in assuming these organizations want to be reputable.
My observations are:

  • why would a gallery take in this piece of ‘art’ except primarily for money and publicity? I find it hard to believe they would have any other motive.
  • what “artist” would create this work except for money and publicity? Again, what other motive?
  • who commissioned this endeavour (it wasn’t the model btw)?

It’s good to see that art does reflect reality: Money makes the world go round.

It is re-assuring that the gallery will be hiring extra security while the display is on because who knows what could happen to it.

Final thought: why did they put Ashley Judd’s head on the body of a pregnant Britney Spears?

BBC Wikipedia

Domain-squatting and Typo-squatting Wednesday, Mar 15 2006 

Domainsquatting is the act of buying up domains that other people may want to use (like microsoft.com) and then selling it to an interested party for a fee.  People have made millions of dollars building up portfolios of domains and then selling them off.  The problem is that many of the obvious names are already purchased or in use.  You would need to be pretty creative to figure out what names could be of value down the road. 

Typosquatting is the act of buying up domains that are misspellings of real websites (like www.mikrosoft.com) and then adding a bunch of ads and links that make the person money when clicking on them.  Again, many of the obvious misspellings of many legit sites are already in use.  Quite often, the site looks like a search results page where there are links to many of the intended destinations.  Each click provides $$ into the pocket of the owner of the typo-site.

Not a very admirable or honourable way of making a living.  But it sure would be easy coin.

Without even looking too hard, here are a few examples:

www.gqbush.com – maybe somebody will mistakenly hit the q instead of the w.

www.canadaliberals.com – hmm, this one might be worthwhile.

www.canadandp.com or www.canada-ndp.com – probably not much interest there anyway ;)

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Bizarre weather – if you lived anywhere else but in Canada Tuesday, Mar 14 2006 

Ok, so a little over a week ago, I was skiing in a winter wonderland.  -5C with a good snow base at Horseshoe Valley.  7 days later, there’s no snow to be found, just the expected plethora of bottles, bags, and various garbage items that are hidden from view during the winter months but appear after the melt.  I was ribfesting in 10C on Sat and yesterday, it made it up to about 18C. 

Then, the wind came in.  Strong 80km gusting winds overnight and still going strong now.  And, here comes the heavy snow.  From 18C to 0C (-8C with windchill) in the span of about 8 hrs.  Strange.  Yet not uncommon for this neck of the woods.

I was going to start whining and complaining about the outrageous weather we get here.  But then I realized that maybe I shouldn’t complain afterall:  the US has some pretty crazy weather phenomena that puts them head and shoulders above us.   With respect to dramatic temperature changes, the southwest takes the cake there.  For example, on January 22 (not sure of the year):

In Spearfish, SD, the temperature rose 49 degrees in 2 minutes (-4 to +45 degrees). Later in the day, the temperature fell from the +56 degrees to –4 degrees in 27 minutes.

So, the little temperature shift we had over night?  Not so impressive after all.

How about the strong winds?  Well, over the weekend, through the infamous “Tornado Alley” there were reports of over 100 twisters touching down (see here)!   So, can’t complain there either.  And what about this snow that’s going to hit us?  Well, talk to my friend Chris if you want to really know what it means to be hit by snow.

Well, can’t complain I guess…..except that since I am a Canadian, my favourite past-time is to complain so here goes:

“%&$*, I hate this cold weather!   When’s it going to end?  Why does it have to always snow?  Freakin’ wind!  I hate it when we get teased with nice weather and then get nailed well into April with this crap!  I heard it’s going to be a ‘cold’ spring this year while the East Coast gets to enjoy a mild spring.  Why do they deserve to have the good weather?  Oh, and don’t get me started about our summers.  Summer is not a season up here — it’s a day!  Why did man decide to live here?  When can I move to Phoenix?”

If it’s a cool summer I’m going to have to complain some more…..just you wait.

Oh, and one more thing, why is the Prime Minister in Afghanistan?  Quit wasting my money on meaningless trips!  Couldn’t you do this goodwill stuff over the phone?  C’mon!  Get crackin’ on the things you promised (for good or bad) to do here before the next election. 

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Oh Moldy Bread, why must you hurt me so? Tuesday, Feb 28 2006 

I ate some moldy bread last night.

Oh, how it hurt me.

I ate some moldy bread last night.

Oh, how it hurt me.

It hurt me in the morning about the hour of 6

It hurt me in the noontime sitting at my desk

I ate some moldy bread last night.

Oh, how it hurt me.

I ate some moldy bread last night.

Oh, how it hurt me.

It also hurt at 2 today, and once again at 3

What more must I do to get it out of me?

I ate some moldy bread last night,

OH, HOW IT HURT ME!

BBC Wikipedia

May the Lurve be with you Tuesday, Feb 14 2006 

Happy Valentine’s Day!

aarrrgggg

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Mmmm…..M30402457 Friday, Feb 10 2006 

You keep going oh Mathematical Gods.  Find ye the largest prime number.  Even nerds need to have a goal.

BBC Wikipedia

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