Tuesday, February 28, 2006

O God.. even worse ads..

so I'm an old sack of fuck..

And I'd like to look younger (but not, you know, have to diet, or work out, or anything)

I think we've all considered the question:

but this advert is an insult to anyone's intelligence (and it ran in the online Washington Post where, presumably people are critical thinkers of some kind). It's for something called hydroderm and here are the before and after pictures which reveal that hydroderm does much more than merely reduce the visible signs of aging:

Holy Cow! Hydroderm eliminates red-eye while it increases eyebrow bushiness and definition. And looky there - it also drastically increases how much you open your eye and the size of the registration point.. oh.. that's because it MAKES YOUR WHOLE EYE BIGGER! I'm not so old I can't see you made him open his eye more, photoshopped out the redeye and jacked the levels so high that an 8 pound facial tumor wouldn't look like a mole... shit.. you gave old man river more eyebrow!

I ordered some, so I'll tell you how it all works out...

Wednesday, February 22, 2006

Now I'm Just Depressed about Online Scammers..

OK.. send my your emails.. but when I click on your link (after the Mighty Eudora has warned me about 8 times that the email isn't actually from ebay) and I get this:

then I just worry even are criminals are too stupid..

dude... at least get your criminal mastermind URL correct!

Repeat 30 times... "no extra spaces!"

Tuesday, February 21, 2006

Definitions from the Political Dictionary

Epidemic [from Greek epi- meaning "skin removal" (c.f. "epilady") + demos, meaning "hysterical sheep" (c.f. "democratic party)]:

An insignificant occurence or condition that is perceived as a possible funding source by law enforcement agencies or as a way to reduce civil liberties (or, redundantly, gain votes) by politicians. The "epidemic" often mutates into a media-borne meme that infects significant portions of the larger population which are without critical thinking facilities. Epidemics can lead to illness, voting Republican, and increased deficits.

With a nod to chase from Hit and Run.

Republican Insanity Baseline: From 4% to 37% Depending on Measuring Tool

So, some time ago I came across the Republican Insanity Baseline for Illinois - it is somewhere around 37% as indicated in this relatively tightly argued piece:
John: Hey, Bush is now at 37% approval. I feel much less like Kevin McCarthy screaming in traffic. But I wonder what his base is --

Tyrone: 27%.

John: ... you said that immmediately, and with some authority.

Tyrone: Obama vs. Alan Keyes. Keyes was from out of state, so you can eliminate any established political base; both candidates were black, so you can factor out racism; and Keyes was plainly, obviously, completely crazy. Batshit crazy. Head-trauma crazy. But 27% of the population of Illinois voted for him. They put party identification, personal prejudice, whatever ahead of rational judgement. Hell, even like 5% of Democrats voted for him. That's crazy behaviour. I think you have to assume a 27% Crazification Factor in any population.
It is scary to reflect that, relatively, Illinois isn't even all that insane as this 9/05 ranking of Bush approval ratings suggests (Illinois comes in a respectable 35th with polygamous and nearly illiterate Utah predictably coming in first).

Now, we have an even more precise measure across the United States which I will call the "to crazy to be allowed to exercise their Second Amendment Rights" crazy. Here is a poll from Times Magazine:

Nearly killing a man by accident persuades 4% of the United States populace to view the VP more positively. Could have been a nice round 5% if he'd actually killed the guy!

Who are these wingnuts?

Saturday, February 18, 2006

Sweeeeet Friday...


The house is clean due to last night's frenzy, the POSSLQ is asleep and keeping the cat occupied with her body warmth, the heater is on and I have a cup of coffee with a dash of schnapps in it to keep the cold winds I see outside the window far from my soul (to write a terrible sentence).

Oh.. and it's the first day of a four-day weekend.

Could anything be sweeter?

Friday, February 17, 2006

More on Online Scams - How can People be so Foolish?

And I mean the scammers.. they go to all the trouble to develop a site that looks pretty much like the Wells Fargo site (I know because I'm not just an internet supergenious, but I'm also a customer). It starts with a page that is a dead ringer for the Wells Fargo site, if you don't notice the whacked out URL:

The site also has a realistic looking second page harvesting ATM numbers (any old password will get you there):

But the whole thing is ruined by the "sender" of the email who is listed as Wells Frago Staff.

Now come on, you've got to try harder than that. Misspelling Wells Fargo isn't going to avoid you any jail time if you get caught is it? I wonder if this is some kind of workaround for Spam-filters? If so, what does Wells Fargo do? Anyway, the text of the email is also poorly written:
Wells Fargo is constantly working to increase security for all Online Banking users. To ensure the integrity of our online payment system, we periodically review accounts.

Your account might be place on restricted status. Restricted accounts continue to receive payments, but they are limited in their ability to send or withdraw funds.

To lift up this restriction, you need to login into your account (with your username or SSN and your password), then you have to complete our verification process. You must confirm your credit card details and your billing information as well. All restricted accounts have their billing information unconfirmed, meaning that you may no longer send money from your account until you have updated your billing information on file.
To initiate the billing update confirmation process, please follow the link bellow and fill in the necessary fields:

Who gets fooled by something like that?

Two Great New Spammer Names

Husker G. Xenakis

Which is likely to appeal to me because it has part of Husker Du's name in it, and;

Consoles L. Platooning

which is merely ok but since I got two in one day after weeks of spammer name tedium I thought I'd throw in...

Tuesday, February 14, 2006

OK.. so if I Were a Parent I Might be Concerned

I'm on Google looking for sound clips to use in a DVD I'm making for a friend. So I do a search for "birthday sound clips" and I get something quite understandable:

but that doesn't quite get me what I want, so I narrow the search down just a bit and do a search for "cartoon birthday sound clips" because I want some Deputy Dawg, some Bugs Bunny, or some Elmer Fudd. To my dismay, the closest thing I get is "Spiderman Hentai" but that's about the best of it. Here's a screenshot:

Holy Canoli Batman! I just got anal sex, midget hardcore, and public fingering! All fine in their time and place, I suppose, and possibly even together, but not in a search for anything having to do with cartoons or birthdays. If I were a mom and came across this "feature" I'd flip my wig.

So, in an effort to clean things up, and focus even more, I added "Simpsons" to the mix. You know, that wholesome cartoon family that pokes good-hearted fun and the foibles of the American Family and Homocidal Corporat Capitalism? And I I got this:

I uh.. I'm not sure what to say...

except I've lost my interest in sound clips for the moment....

and I can see why a mom would be pissed.

Monday, February 13, 2006

Costa Rica Takes Tainted Win from Noble Koreans!

On Saturday I went up to Oaktown (I understand they have "they mack down.") to watch a "world cup class" soccer match between the ROK Reds and the Costa Rican Los Ticos. I guess "world cup class" with respect to soccer means something like "luxury class" when talking about a Yugo. It's a bit of a marketing dodge.

In any case, I was with my Korean friends which pretty much ensured a party. A party which, it developed, they had been celebrating since the night before, and at least one of our party party ("party squared" to you mathematicians... and you squares) was already severely damaged by the time they all got to my house. We drank a few Coronas while she sucked down pain killers.

On the way up the women slept in the back, and Ox and I chatted when he wasn't fighting the pretty cruddy traffic.

The game was at the Oakland Coliseum (the name of which changes as corporations ebb and flow, or alter their marketing strategies) and we go there just a bit before the game, but late enough so that our $50 tickets only allowed us to find seats in the $30 areas. No big deal, it was warm and sunny and we were surrounded by celebrating Koreans. It threw me back to my recent stay in Seoul as I was the only white guy in some distance. No big deal in some ways though, as many of my section-mates were 2nd generation Koreans who spoke 15 fewer Korean words than I do (I know this to be true because they spoke none and I have 15) and some who had no idea what the rules of soccer are.

The Costa Ricans weren't nearly as much in evidence and I must say, from a purely male chauvinist pig, check out the hotties attitude? Korean female soccer fans are much cuter than Costa Rican female soccer fans. Part of it was probably demographic as the Costa Rican fan base seemed much older than the Korean one. With that piggery in the past... ;-)

The game was good... Korea started slowly and Costa Rica made some nice long runs in the first half. Costa Rica finally scored on a marginal call which lead to a penalty kick. The Costa Rican team was the master of that soccer trick the "I was fouled ohmigod my shin is fractured in 18 places i must roll around until someone gives me morphine or shoots me, the pain is too great I can no longer live I... oh.. no penalty call? I'd better hope right back up on this broken shin and start playing soccer again."

I hate that.

Being that I was with Koreans, halftime was an orgy of cell-ulosity

In the second half Korea was extremely aggresive, playing in Costa Rica's end, but always managing to bollix up its excellent scoring opportunities. The Korean strikers seemed to have a reversed sense of which way to put spin on the ball to bend it. They routinely bent shots on goal back towards the field of play and unless this is some brilliant oriental scheme whose genius will reveal itself in the days to come? I call suckology.

So Korea lost, but we all had fun and on the way out I took this quick snapshot of a typical Korean fan:

On the way back the women slept again.


When not saving orphanages from evil billionaires, leaping tall piles of laundry in a single bound, or waking up in my own vomit, I ponder the human condition. Which depresses me.

But two things have come into my life in the last year that make me accept, at least, the concept of perfectability. The I-pod and the Swiffer.

The I-pod is a thing of beauty in form and function. Compact, effective, well integrated to the web (gotta love the intarweb database of CDs that autonames your albums and tracks!). Plus it costs a lot so just the fact that I own one makes me better than people who don't. ;-)

And the idea of the playlist as infinitely controllable and mutable? Brilliant, fucking brilliant. Creating a mix is no longer an agonizing process of figuring out what fits "just so" on a CD or tape, rather it is building an environment for life. It allows you to try to balance ideas like "every once in a while I would like to hear a song by the Outlaws" with "I must hear the Dead Boys every day."

And you get to struggle towards the perfect mix. Every song lies in the balance and everything is a possibility. The "hootenany" cover of Snoop? Classic, gotta stay. "Beautiful Disaster" by 311? Takes up space for now.. space I have. Someday it will go.. and my playlist will get that much closer to perfect. When it is perfect?

I will commit suicide in some way that leaves my ears untouched.

You can bury me in an open casket with my I-pod blaring.

The Swiffer? It just cleans dust. Sure.. Procter and Gamble won't tell you what's in the thing (proprietary, don't you know) but they are pretty much willing to guarantee that it won't kill your dog. So that's good. Well, if you have a dog. And you can trust Procter and Gamble cause they're way past that Satan thing.


But it does pick up dust in nooks and crannies that only Old Nick himself could get into (hey. wait...!). And if that's gonna take a few years of my life for any reason?

It's worth it to die clean enough to wear my I-pod into the lack of afterworld.

Saturday, February 11, 2006

The Conservation of Misery Theory - Implications

The conservation of energy is a fundamental concept of physics along with the conservation of mass and the conservation of momentum. To this I add the "conservation of misery" theory which adds another powder-filled ball to the canon. In short, the "conservation of misery" theory proposes that within some problem domain, the amount of misery remains constant and misery is neither created nor destroyed.

In other words, all misery can be is shifted around, not destroyed. And like the other laws of physics, my theory explains a lot about life. This is partly because, as I said above, it functions at any convenient domain level.


• The COM theory explains the notion of schedenfreude the German word that is used to describe "taking pleasure in other people's misery." We aren't being insensitive, it is just that in the local domain the balance of misery has shifted away from us and therefore we are happier.

• The COM theory also explains why, when you feel miserable, it feels as though the world is "piling on." The fact is that the world is piling on - it is completely natural to expect everyone to attempt to minimize misery (just as in philosophy we speak about maximizing common good or in economics of maximizing profit).

• It is ridiculous to attempt to "cheer someone up" as the COM theory suggests that if you are in the same domain as that person, you will suffer if they are cheered.

• "Commiseration" is exactly as miserable as it sounds. If you attempt to cheer someone up by pretending to understand that they are miserable you just might succeed and then, as the COM theory suggests, you might well end up miserable. Which you would deserve. For being a commiserator.

Now, of course, just as I am pursuing this ground-breaking line of thought my miserable POSSLQ is attempting to shift misery (TurboTax cuts off the right margin on an archaic Win98 system) to me by taking my brand spanking new G5 and reducing it to an income tax processor.

Doesn't matter anyway, I googled my theory and apparently someone had it before, as indicated by this graphic:

Thursday, February 02, 2006

You Know i Rarely Make Fun... ;-)

but fer Gawds sake... if your list of things to do starts with File Unemployment?

and your next six look like this:

2. make zombie scrapbook
3. finish work paperwork and send
4. clean room
5. clean computer room
6. drop junk off at salvation army

Perhaps it's time to rethink your approach?