Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Three Things Nobody is Mentioning

There is much fuss made over the pro-life/pro-abortion argument, now that we have some unabashedly anti-abortion candidates for President flapping their gums. That is fine as far as it goes, but everyone seems to be forgetting (or forgetting to mention) a few important points:

***

First, it is NOT your body. The thing growing inside a woman has an entire, 100% unique human genome all its own. The thing is effectively a parasite until removed or expelled, but it is unquestionably, inarguably, a human thing in its own right. When an ovum and a spermatozoon get together and form a cell, that cell has its own DNA. It has its own life, separate from its mother or its father. It just so happens that the mother supports the zygote/foetus/baby inside her body. Any biologist worth his salt will say with certainty that this thing inside a woman is a separate homo sapiens. It is in her body, but her body is not the one destroyed during a miscarriage or abortion. The body of that tiny, separate, immature human is destroyed, and hers is only injured somewhat. She will suffer emotionally, but it is fashionable to let her figure that out on her own, after the fact. Let us be quite clear: when a foetus us removed from a uterus, it is the ending of the life of a homo sapiens. This is beyond debate, unless you are so mentally broken that the debate would do you no good anyway.

http://www.google.com/imgres?hl=en&safe=active&gbv=2&tbm=isch&tbnid=EwEZAWMhosDK4M:&imgrefurl=http://conservativetickler.wordpress.com/is-a-fetus-a-baby-or-just-a-thing/&docid=FP6s2-aspEj7wM&imgurl=http://a1.sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-ash4/s320x320/320541_243387105708818_131948650185998_664924_791190794_n.jpg&w=320&h=274&ei=DRJPT9CfEPL0sQK-9vGlDg&zoom=1&biw=1680&bih=914

***

Second, when do its rights begin? If we call for rights for the helpless, regardless of status of having been born or not, the question is the same. Aside from drawing their own air, post-partum babies can't do anything. They will die without care from another human. Those not yet born will also die, and for the same reasons, if separated from their caregivers if born a few weeks before their due date. The maintenance of life gets slightly more complicated the farther back you go, but get this:

Babies can (we know, because it has happened) survive with extreme medical assistance after gestating for only 5 months. It is possible for such a very prematurely-born PERSON to live separate from their mother. Toddlers can (we know, again, because it has happened) continue to sustain themselves for days after the death of their custodians, if they know where food and water are to be found. There have been cases of children feeding themselves the food they could reach (like cereal) and getting at the liquids they knew how to get, and living for DAYS when their parents were decomposing in the next room. These children are obviously able to live with some limitations, entirely autonomously.

Before the child is able to be born and rushed to the NICU ward so that it can live, it is without question totally helpless. There is basically zero chance (at least, not yet) of saving a baby born, e.g., in the first trimester of gestation. They are 100% dependent on the wombs of their mothers. Before a child is able to get up and go to the pantry when Mommy just won't wake up, it is also 100% dependent on other people. They can't DO anything for themselves, and life is totally unsustainable without someone to supply their needs. To those with twisted minds, this is only a matter of degree.

At what point does a human become entitled to human rights? At the point they are self-sustaining? At the point they are medically able to be saved from death outside the hospitable uterus?

This is a debate from which our country has shied. We need to decide, as a people, what is the answer. And by the way, except as pertains to hypothetical future actions, this is entirely a State question. A person who is not born is beyond the jurisdiction of the Federal Government of the United States.

***

Third, and this is one that practically NObody wants to discuss, anywhere in any forum, is the fact that just because you are inconvenient does not mean you deserve to die. And before you read on, just remember that yes, I did go there and I mean it.

The jews, homosexuals, christians, mental defectives, etc. were considered to be inconvenient to the Race and generally a burden on the world, so the NAZIS murdered them by their millions in what became known as The Holocaust. The free people of the Ukraine were inconvenient to the Soviets, so they starved them to death by their millions in what became (less-well known) as The Holodomor. And children not yet born were inconvenient or politically incorrect at the time of their gestation, or would have raised questions and eyebrows the mothers and grandmothers didn't want raised, or god-forbid you should be sad because you didn't want to have sex in the first place (yes this even goes for rape and incest) . . . so we Americans have killed, in numbers greater than the Holocaust and Holodomor COMBINED, children whose only crime was being fertilized inside your holier-than-thou-and-hell-no-I-don't-want-this-baby uterus.

If being the cause of mental anguish is an acceptable reason to kill someone, then why does a stepchild go to jail for killing the step-parent? If causing emotional distress is enough, how is there a single mother in-law in the world? If being inconvenient will do as a reason to kill someone, why is your kid brother still alive? If a person deserves to die because they raise inconvenient questions by merely existing, then why is Vince Foster . . . oh, wait.

It does not matter why a woman is pregnant. If she is, she is the host to a separate human being who depends on her for its life. The question rather is, on what grounds to you end that life?

********

For those who honestly have to make the choice between the life of a mother and the life of her baby for medical reasons, I give both a very large amount discretion and my heartfelt condolences. This is the only case in which a mother is entitled to end the life of her child without blood guiltiness. In this case only does the "It's my body/It's my choice" argument apply.

********

Tell me how we are not deserving of the worst that God could do to us, when our society allows this to happen for the convenience of the DNA donors?
I'm not sure why they have it, but greenvilleeagles.com hosts this picture.  Photobucket called a similar photo a violation of their terms of use and yanked it.  I wish Uncle Sam would say the same about what happened to make the picture possible!


23 Years Ago. Wow.

Boortz mentioned today that if you were born when the Berlin Wall fell, you would be 23 years old. That set me thinking. I was young, too young to understand what was up but old enough to realize it was a Big Deal. The televisor showed people dancing (it was a party) on top of the graffiti'd wall. Then there were people with sledge hammers, then heavy equipment cutting and pulling down gaps in the wall.

Then there were the sales of 'genuine' pieces of the wall, which may outnumber the fragments of the 'genuine' cross of our Lord.

. . . now, of course, the leftists want to erect a fiscal Berline Wall around the U.S.A., but that is another story.

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Paradigm Shift, Gimmick, or Marketing Ploy?

Time will tell, but those of you who have been wanting to share your electronics projects without e-mailing .pdfs or whatever may have a wonderful new option. CircuitLab. A schematic creator/editor, online, free, based in your browser instead of software on individual PCs . . . and your peers can view, run simulations on, and edit the schematics.

Hat tip: Slashdot

Nothing To See Here

. . . just a routine law enforcement activity. Please disregard the nine dead people and don't look forward to the next few days when over a hundred will die. Thank you for not inquiring too sharply into this matter.

Love,

Uncle Sam

Variety of Rewards in Heaven

Do some people get more/better/different rewards in Heaven?

During a conversation with a co-worker this question was raised just as we were about to head home. I typed this all up and thought about posting the e-mail but at the time I decided against it. The question has come up again in the space of a week, on an internet message board this time. For my own convenience, all of what follows is a copy/paste of the commentary I sent to my co-worker.

********

The verse that was in mind this afternoon was first corinthians chapter 3 verse 12 and the surrounding context. The Apostle Paul wrote this letter to the church at Corinth. Paul was one of the better-educated men of his day, and lots of the main doctrines of Christianity are spelled out in his letters.


1 Corinthians 3

1 And I, brethren, could not speak unto you as unto spiritual, but as unto carnal, even as unto babes in Christ.
2 I have fed you with milk, and not with meat: for hitherto ye were not able to bear it, neither yet now are ye able.
3 For ye are yet carnal: for whereas there is among you envying, and strife, and divisions, are ye not carnal, and walk as men?
4 For while one saith, I am of Paul; and another, I am of Apollos; are ye not carnal?

You guys still can't deal with the deeper theological stuff, because you still have trivial/worldly drama. This one preacher named Apollos was pretty popular, and Paul was popular, and the people were getting caught up talking about "well I go to this cat's church" instead of going on into the more important stuff...

5 Who then is Paul, and who is Apollos, but ministers by whom ye believed, even as the Lord gave to every man?
6 I have planted, Apollos watered; but God gave the increase.
7 So then neither is he that planteth any thing, neither he that watereth; but God that giveth the increase.

Preachers aren't the point...

8 Now he that planteth and he that watereth are one: and every man shall receive his own reward according to his own labour.
9 For we are labourers together with God: ye are God's husbandry, ye are God's building.
10 According to the grace of God which is given unto me, as a wise masterbuilder, I have laid the foundation, and another buildeth thereon. But let every man take heed how he buildeth thereupon.
11 For other foundation can no man lay than that is laid, which is Jesus Christ.

This is the bit I was thinking about:

12 Now if any man build upon this foundation gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, stubble;
13 Every man's work shall be made manifest: for the day shall declare it, because it shall be revealed by fire; and the fire shall try every man's work of what sort it is.

(the day = a day of judgement of the works christians did. Not go-to-Heaven/Hell judgement day)

14 If any man's work abide which he hath built thereupon, he shall receive a reward.
15 If any man's work shall be burned, he shall suffer loss: but he himself shall be saved; yet so as by fire.

You can get saved from your sins and go about doing things that don't help God's kingdom to be increased, and it will prove to have been vain in the end. Or you can go and Do the Right Thing and you will have a reward for having done so.

********

This page uses a different translation of the Bible than I prefer but it does a decent job expounding on the concept:

http://www.pleaseconvinceme.com/index/Are_There_Different_Degrees_of_Reward_in_Heaven

Monday, February 27, 2012

Tired

Did you ever find yourself doing something and then waking up, having taken a quick "microsleep" nap in the middle of your work?

Yeah, so I probably shouldn't be doing the finances tonight . . .

Sunday, February 26, 2012

Coming Soon to a Government Near You?

Man arrested at his kid's school, jailed overnight, house searched for illegal weapons . . . because a 4 year-old girl thinks of her daddy as the hero who shoots bad guys and monsters, and drew a picture of a man with a gun. In Canada.

Man fined $200 for littering . . . for pouring out warm water from his water bottle onto the street. In Australia.

This is what happens when people let their governments get out of hand. What are YOU doing to check YOUR government?

Friday, February 24, 2012

My Darling Wife Goes To Bed Before 03:00!

We spent some quality time looking at sewing techniques on Youtube to help my Darling Wife make dresses for #1. There is one video to rule them all tonight: How to Gather Fabric Fast.

She' d been staying up late doing frilly gathering fabric things the hard way. This is like 5 minutes to do an hour's work. Thank God for the Internet.

Thursday, February 23, 2012

What Happens When You Go to Get A Dental Crown?

This is the day for Crown #3. My memories of crowns #1 and #2 were somewhat fuzzy as I typed, but I was rested and not high on pain medication for this one. This tooth did not have a root canal filling.

Total time: 2 hours
Total cost (AFTER insurance): $881.50 That was $140 for the buildup, the rest for the "noble" white gold crown, and this is the entire cost to me from anaesthesia to final fitment and a 1-year guarantee.

I showed up early and they had me go over the patient consent and disclosure forms, because it's a new year. Then I went pee (very important, the next hours will be busy) and was escorted right back to a waiting chair.

The assistant took my blood pressure and pulse, then put some numbing gel on between the cheek and the gum by the tooth in question (#19) and left a gauze pad to cover/hold it in place. We went back to the operating suite.

The doctor came and looked at my mouth, and injected some pain killers. I was left for the medicine to numb my jaw for a few minutes. Then the assistant did a "cold test" where they spray some super-duper-duper-cold liquid on a q-tip and touch the tooth they will be working on with the cold stuff. If it hurts, you're not numb. It wasn't (it NEVER is, for me) so they left me a few more minutes. After I failed another cold sensitivity test, the doctor gave me a BUNCH more injected anaesthetic. The very worst of these was only a slight pinch, because she makes it her business to not hurt people. At one point, as she was using both hands and a lot of arm strength to inject the stuff, I felt one of my nerves go all fuzzy and that was the one that was not going numb before. A few minutes later, I was ready to go.

They took some pictures with a little digital camera the size of a toothbrush. It has little LED lights on it that are very bright, and is no-kidding shaped like an electric toothbrush.

I was made to bite down on a tray of goo that took a minute to set up. The tray was as long as all my molars and wrapped around to the incisors, and the goo was smeared liberally inside. This was the first mold, to capture the shape of my tooth before they took any of it away. It also captures a faithful mold of all the other teeth, but we just needed a mold of the one tooth. This comes in handy, later.

The assistant placed a clamp around the tooth to hold a dental dam (a rubber sheet to keep bits of teeth out of your mouth and your tongue off the dentist's fingers). The clamp pinched something and stung, so she repositioned it. The dam was installed by stretching a sheet of rubber around the clamp, then putting the corners of the sheet on a metal "U" shaped frame to hold it open. She didn't like the way it set, so she pulled it off and tried again, this time leaving the dam off. She told me "close your mouth" and put something between my teeth. I held it there for a few minutes.

The doctor came and had me open "wide, big-big wide" and the thing between my teeth turned out to be a couple of "bite this with your mouth wide open and it will stay wide open" spacers. The doctor put one on the other side of my mouth, and the mouth was comfortably held wide-open until they were pretty well done with me.

The doctor re-installed the dam and gave me some wraparound sunglasses to keep bits of old filling and whatnot from getting in my eyes, and got out The Drill. She drilled out the (big) old filling and all the cooling water spray and bits of filling were sucked into a suction tube held near the tooth by the assistante. The doctor made some clucking noises to herself and they put a marker dye in there to see if there was any decay and she drilled some more. This was the only spot of decay in my mouth at the last checkup, right beside a "leaky" old filling. The filling in this tooth was pretty deep. The doctor said she could see the pink of my nerves through a thin section of tooth at the bottom of the now-open cavity. They packed the cavity with "buildup" material and used another toothbrush shaped instrument. This was an ultraviolet curing lamp. The filling was cured and the tooth was strong enough to proceed to cut off the remnants of the natural crown.

This was a full-coverage crown instead of a partial or a filling or inlay, because the tooth had vertical fractures on all four faces. When they were getting the tooth ready to receive the crown, they had to grind down the top of the tooth to get rid of the cracked areas. One of the walls of the cavity was "eggshell thin" and it felt like dull, heavy pressure on my tooth as they ground down that fracture line. This lasted less than a minute and got better as they got past the more heavily damaged part. The spacer, dam and clamp were removed.

The crown will be a gold part, and less tooth has to be destroyed/removed for a gold crown than for a porcelain crown. They didn't have to take the margins way down, so they didn't have to cut my gums. This meant no seeping gums and no need for a followup visit to take a final impression.

The final impression is a higher-resolution goo that gets better detail on the mold. You bite down hard on what feels like silly putty. For five minutes. Your jaws get tired, then they come in and pull the stuff out. The doctor examined the mold made of my teeth, pronounced it good, and something amazing and magical happened. The first impression has come back into importance.

The assistant squeezed some tooth-colored paste out of an applicator syringe into the hole my tooth made in the first-impression mold. The mold was then put back into my mouth and I bit down on it. The paste was soon-to-be-solid temporary crown plastic material, and it was formed perfectly to what was left of my tooth by this procedure. The plastic set up, and the mold was removed. Excess plastic was picked out by the fingers and metal picks of the dentist's assistant. She then removed from my mouth and ground the excess plastic off the temporary crown (for this is what had just been made). She had me tap-tap my teeth together and listened, then put the crown on the tooth with no glue. The sound was different. Tap-tap on some marking paper, and then she pulled the crown off. A bit was ground off the crown, and she put it back on the tooth stub. Better. Some temporary adhesive was applied and the crown was glued onto the tooth.

They gave me a do-it-yourself kit to reglue the crown on in case it comes loose. They set up another appointment, I made another head call, and I went to work.

I had taken ibuprofen before I went, and it wore off while I was at work. I took more. The worst pain is where the needles were poked into the gums for the anaesthesia, and there is a general soreness on that tooth as well as the teeth that were pushing for an hour against the mouth holder-opener thing that kept my mouth open. These are very slight pains, compared to a proper toothache.

The scary part, and the painful part: none. I trust these people after having dealt with them several times now, and they didn't let me down. There were a few "pinchy" moments but nothing that actually hurt.

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

You're Not Supposed To Laugh

A truck hauling sand was on the road in front of me, a motorcyclist was in the lane to my right. The biker had sunglasses and gloves, but no helmet. As I pulled alongside him, I noted that his hand was up in front of his face and I thought he might be shielding himself from the wind.

As I had pulled in behind this truck a couple miles back, I was pleasantly surprised that it was throwing off exactly ZERO rocks or sand back to my car. There was a stiff wind from left to right across the highway.

I pulled in front of the motorcyclist and realized that the sand I had expected to blow off behind the truck was blowing off to the right of the truck. The biker was keeping sand out of his mouth/nose.

You know what else keeps sand out of your nose? A full-face helmet. Those also do a handy job of keeping your brains and bits of skull out of the cracks in the highway.

If you voluntarily ride a motorcycle with no helmet in a non-emergent situation, you are an idiot.

Madness at Work

Photobucket


Seen on the bulletin board where I work

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Stupid Robots

. . . and then the computer wouldn't even boot. BSOD something about an IRQ conflict of all things. I rolled back to the last known good configuration and we're back in business. Boo.

Stupid Windows

Check the posting time: I'm not getting on the computer at all at the house, if I can avoid it today. Blah. Up till 02:00 doing OS updates.

Monday, February 20, 2012

DIY/Solved! HP C7670A Scanner Software (free from Hewlett Pacard)

We have a Hewlett Packard Scanjet, a C7670A - and a Windows XP computer. The problem: HP.com doesn't say the first word about a C7670A. I had to dig through the Internet's left pocket and come out with a fuzzy slip of paper that had been washed and dried in somebody 's pants . . .

well, it wasn't that bad, but how hard would it have been for HP to have SOmething on their website that gets you where you're going, starting from the part number on the device instead of the (unmarked) model number?

The C7670A is a 6300c in disguise. You need a 95 Megabyte file from the Hewlett Packard website. I haven't tried the document feeder yet, but at least it's got us scanning and printing without any additional fuss thanks God!

Many thanks to Jerry K, moderator at forums.driverguide.com for posting the knowledge and a working link!

Sunday, February 19, 2012

You Can Read The Bible A Hundred Times

. . . and learn something new on the hundred-and-first. The verse numbers to follow are all in the sixth chapter of the book of Judges

Prime example: me, this morning. I don't know how many times I'd read the story of Gideon delivering his people from their oppressors and I didn't get why he was called Jerubbaal. I hadn't even *noticed* that he was an Abiezrite, much less the following:

Gideon was the son of Joash, an Abiezrite in verse 11.. In verse 34, Gideon blew a trumpet and Abiezer showed up. That is, he sounded a call to arms and the men of his tribe responded. That was the start of his militia/army action. I don't know how I missed it, but I did.

Gideon's father, Joash, had a sacred grove and an altar to Baal which Gideon destroyed in verse 27. The townsmen were going to kill Gideon and Joash said 'if Baal's a god, let him contend with Gideon' and renamed Gideon in verse 32 to Jerubbaal "Baal will contend".

********
You think you know a story, and then something like this happens!

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Rule 1, Rule 3, Rule 4

You only have to break two to hurt somebody. This guy broke three and killed his daughter.

Rule 1: ALL guns are ALWAYS loaded.

Not That You Cared

I took Bad Robot in for a fresh set of tires today. She'd been a squirrely driver ever since we got the car (about 35,000 miles), but I figured it was a bad suspension setup. Maybe not. One of the tires threw a balancing weight and got us started on a round of maintenance that included a wheel bearing and a new power steering rack, and THEN. Wow. I hadn't really been paying attention to the tires, except to note that they were getting pretty low on tread. When I had to pay attention, I noted that the (only) layer of polyester on the sidewall was pretty ratty looking. Falling apart/crumbling rubber and only one layer of that between me and a blowout means it's time to get a new set of tires.

So we got some new Kumhos and let me tell you it's a different car. It actually drives better than it did when we got it. I've got Kumhos on the Hot Rod and it has surprisingly close-to-the-Hot-Rod handling now. It's still a lumbering minivan but it's soooo much better.

Oh, and P.S. the mechanic at Discount Tire said the tires were from early 2005. That means they are the 7 year-old originals, with 67,000 miles on them. Now THAT'S good tire service life.

Just thanks Jesus for not letting us have a catastrophic failure in the meantime. This doesn't make a difference in your life, but it really brightened up my day. Maybe I'll hate that car less now, since it is less like a flat-bottomed sled and more like a go-kart.

Friday, February 17, 2012

That's Too Much!

Think of a 75 year-old woman on The Price Is Right telling Bob Barker "THAT'S TOO MUCH!"

That's what I think when I hear the US Postal Service is going to $0.50 stamps for first-class mail service.

This is the final straw. Half a buck pushes me over the line. This is going to kill the USPS even deader than it is already. If there was an incentive required to stop sending checks through the mails for bill payment, it's this.

So long, post office. It's been real.

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Phone Robots

. . . and I slammed the phone down and said "I didn't want to talk to you anyway!"

I have a battery backup on the computer at the house. I was right in the middle of answering an eBay bidder's question and the UPS started beeping "your power is off" and it wouldn't stop. Sometimes it will beep once when the air conditioner kicks on and then shut up again. A moment or three later, I realize the clock is off, and the lights are out in other rooms (this room was dark already). Power outage.

I called the electric company and they said to call the electric delivery company. Note that these used to be the same company but whatever, hooray capitalism right? I had to navigate the electric company phone robot for a minute just to get the number for the delivery company. I open a drawer looking for a pencil, because silly me I thought calling the number on my bill that says "call this number if yo power go out" might get me to the right place so I didn't have a pencil. The robot repeated the number twice, and said to say repeat if I needed to hear it again. I was trying to write with a broken-tipped pencil and said "repeat." It did not hear me, but it did wish me a good day as it hung up on me. I called back, crayon in hand (the pencil, of course, was broken) and got the number. Then I called the delivery company. The electric company phone robot, at least I didn't HAVE to talk to it. The delivery company phone robot you HAVE to talk to it, and it is 100% guaranteed that a phone robot will mis-hear my name and get the spelling wrong.

So I'm in round number THREE of telling it my name and the lights come back on.

. . . and I slammed the phone down and said "I didn't want to talk to you anyway!"

********

Stupid phone robots. I HATE having to TALK to a stupid phone robot. It makes me want to hit something. My Darling Wife suggested a pillow, which is useless because it doesn't help anything to hit a pillow. Then again, it doesn't hurt it if you kick a robot's ass anyway, because they have a shiny metal ass and it hurts YOU instead. They don't even care if you insult them for being stupid. They're all "and? so what, monkey, you still have to say your street name before I let you to the next step in my phone robot dance."

The really dumb part about this emotion is that I should LOVE phone robots. I'm a Capitalist and phone robots are efficient. They don't break down, they don't take piss breaks, and they never ask for a pay rise. But they just get on my nerves and piss me right off for no reason.

Oh well. /vent. I'm over it already.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

There Is Still A 100% Effective Prevention Method . . .

The CDC is raising the alarm that gonorrhea is developing resistance to the last, best antibiotics we have. Soon, the fear is that we will be unable to treat this disease.

Well let's go down and swim in the Crimea River.

You know how you treat gonorrhea? Chiefly by not getting it by having unprotected sex with strangers, then by not having unprotected sex with casual acquaintances. You know, there used to be this weird thing called a "moral standard" in our society, probably based on the Biblical prohibition of fornication. They used to say "don't go having sex out of wedlock." When you never had sex with anybody, and your new spouse never had sex with anybody, guess what? YOU DON'T HAVE SEXUALLY TRANSMITTED DISEASES!

Abstinence works 100% of the time not only against gonorrhea and pregnancy, but also all those other fun things you get from having sex with other people of unknown medical condition. Keep it zipped up, keep 'em crossed, and you have zero reason for concern about antibiotic resistant super STDs.

I'm just sayin'.

Refiew: Brita Grand Water Filter Pitcher

Cliffs: This product pwns all. This is a win and a half for Brita and all people who buy them.

This pitcher is great

Long version: We have been using a filter pitcher that took Brita filters and it was pretty cheezy - not terrible, but not the greatest. The time came to get more filters, and we had a choice to make: buy more filters and use this chumpy pitcher, or get a new pitcher with a filter included and buy more filters later? It was a tossup until I went to the grocery store and saw this filter pitcher up on the shelf. It's a color my Darling Wife likes, and I felt like getting her something nice just then so I picked it up.

We followed the preparation instructions and we've been using the pitcher for a couple of days now. I can only describe this pitcher as great. It holds "10 cups" which translates to "fill the top twice to fill the bottom once" and this is enough water to give everybody a good drank before having to fill the top again (fill the top and it filters the water, dropping the water into the bottom). The oblong shape is a nice size and doesn't take too much counter space. The handle is perfect for my size 8 hands to get a good grip. Comfort grip indeed. The filter change indicator is a gadget but at least it works as intended. The plastic is well-molded and the fitment of the parts is good, as I expect from Brita. As with other Brita filter pitchers like this, it makes the water better and does so in a pretty big hurry.

Fill it, wait a couple minutes
Pour
Done

There's no fuss, as is the case with all their other filter pitchers. This one is extra nice because it holds enough water for us all but still fits under the kitchen faucet. It's light enough, even the older children can use it. It's pretty. More importantly, it works. I paid full retail plus tax for mine and I'd do it again if something happened to this unit.

********
Yeah but the top falls off!

Some people have complained that the top falls off while pouring. I checked: my hand holds down the back edge of the top while pouring. I moved my hand down the handle to uncover the top and tilted the pitcher to 90ยบ and the top stayed put just now. I had the top fall off exactly ONCE, the second time I filled it. The top was full of unfiltered water, which makes it weigh about 1000x more than it weighs when the top is full of air; I tipped the pitcher and the full top fell off. Lesson: wait two minutes for it to filter the water before pouring! This is a non-issue for me.

Battery is non-replaceable!

Are you REALLY going to be using the same pitcher for five years? Really? Okay then, so $0.50/month is too much to save for another one. I'm pretty sure if I pried the indicator would pop off and I could replace the battery, but I'm pretty sure the Zoo will manage to destroy this thing before that happens.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Tailgaters Drive Slower

General rule: zoom up behind me and tailgate when you could as easily have passed on the right and I'm slowing down no matter what lane we're in.

One of the streets on my way to work is a four lane road at 50MPH that drops to 40 and two lanes, from 2 to 1 lane for each direction.

Today I noticed I was being tailgated SUPER close by a newish white Exploder and slowed down (let off the gas) from 55ish to under 50. We were in the #1 lane but the #2 lane was wiiiide open if they just HAD to pass and speed to the next tailgating party. After a few hundred yards they went around to the #2 lane, passed the person in front of me, went back into the "fast" lane and went to tailgate the next car in front. I went back up to the speed limit.

The car three cars in front of them went to turn left, and there is no left turning lane. Traffic backs up. The #2 lane was clear so I moved over there and passed our friend in the Explorer and the rest of the watingforturner crew. Then I went back into the #1 lane. The Exploder driver had to wait until I went by to have a clear lane on their right, then they went into the #2 lane well behind me.

The street necked down to one lane and 40MPH. I slowed down to 40MPH and here's Explorer buddy tailgating again. Okay, so I let off the gas again and we're at 38MPH and sllooooowing to a stop sign. After I stop, I'm off again like a rocket as usual and Explorer buddy has to wait for a turn to go, so they're way behind me. 1/2 mile later, and there they are tailgating me again. So I let off the gas. Again.

Bear in mind, this is a two lane undivided road with limited visibility, with solid double yellow NO PASSING ZONE stripes for several miles. Passing is not safe to do here, so what did they do? They pulled out into the OPPOSING lane of traffic and tried to hit the gas. And here I am in the Hot Rod. You want to illegal-maneuver pass me? Fine, let's see how bad you want to pass me. 5th to 3rd gear, and I floor it.

As it turns out, they didn't want to pass me any more after about 70MPH headed for a bend in the road. So they fell back behind me again and I braked a little and coasted down to speed. And slower. Until a red light, and they turned a different direction, probably fuming but you know what?

IF they had backed up to +1 safe following distance, I'd have been happy to cruise along at +10% over the speed limit this whole time - but they had to risk my life, my car, their life, and their car, as well as everyone around us by following within a car length of my back bumper.

Tailgaters drive slower - so back up!

Monday, February 13, 2012

A Healthy Tan

Your grandfather was right, and your Mother was wrong. Eat fat and meat, and go outside and get yourself some sun, son!

Fun factoid: I know a lady who had low D levels in her blood, so they put her on vitamin D3 pills and her blood D went . . . down. So they upped it to GRAMS of vitamin D per day and her blood D went . . . down. Summer came and she frikken went outside already and her D levels went . . . up! Duh?

In addition to PREVENTING the nastier forms of cancer, Vitamin D from natural sunlight also prevents dental caries. And that's just the beginning - you really suffer from a lack of D, and most of us are lacking.

hat tip Instapundit

Thick, Even For This Crowd

The B.S., that is. Let's add new spending and increase taxes to "pay for it" and call it budget cutting. Whatever happened to halving the deficit by this year, Mister President? Just another lie, I guess. I forgot for a moment there to not be surprised, but I'm over it.

Sunday, February 12, 2012

The Chances Just Got Worse

Scroll down a little and you'll see I just wrote a tease about converting a Canon FD lens to Nikon F mount and I said I'd link to it when the project was done. Well the odds of me remembering to put that link just fell a little, because now I've got another FD project lens. I was given an oily-bladed 100mm f/2.8 for zero dollars because of the material condition: the iris is STUCK open it's so oily. It was also partly disassembled (from the wrong end) probably by the previous owner trying to clean it, so I was in there and know that the iris is present, it just won't stop-down.

So: I'm going to document that disassembly/cleaning process also. Stay tuned - I'll try to remember both these teaser postings when the projects are done.

Saturday, February 11, 2012

I Wonder What This Means . . .

So you say there's an ongoing collapse in global trade, eh? Hmm. Fancy that.

(you would almost think there was a recession going on or something!)

There's Two Hours Of my Life I can Never Get Back

. . . No, I didn't go see a movei, I downloaded and played Angry Birds Rio. Hugely fun, also a huge time suck. Highly recommended, especially as they gave us 30 free rocks of crack levels to play when we bought Rio on DVD. I might actually have to BUY a game for the first time in . . .

. . . hold on, I'm thinking . . .

When did Hexen come out?

Friday, February 10, 2012

Don't Mind Me I'm Just Doing The Impossible

I spent the last couple of hours tinkering with an old FD Canon lens, trying to see if it could be internally altered to work on a Nikon DX camera. I wish I had the right parts to hand (F mount, preferably with a 50mm f/1.8 chip) so that I could have continued working. As it is, I can say it looks like the thing may be possible with stop-down metering. If I can get it done I'll post it all over the place and try to remember to put a link here. There's no link here, now, so it's probably not done.

If you want to get it done faster, send me a nikon lens that is mechanically broken but still works, preferably a 50mm f/1.8, with electronic contacts on the mount.

****

Update a week and change later: It looks increasingly possible. I'm waiting for my $9 lens mount to arrive before I do any cutting!

****

It works, kinda. It makes good pictures when properly utilized. Click here to see the first teaser shots!

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Blessings in Deep, Deep Disguise

My Darling Wife reported that Bad Robot was shaking while driving and pulling to the right. I went for a 2 minute test drive and told her it felt like a wheel out of balance, and not to worry about it. She responded that it felt just like her parents' car felt, just before something broke in the front end and she crashed . . . on the highway . . . at speed . . . and didn't drive for years because it scared her so bad. So it bothers her.

Fast forward to last Sunday and it's CRAZY. I took the slow road to church to keep speed down because the vibration was worse with speed. Turning, the wheel would slip 1x/revolution and jerk the steering wheel. Very odd, now I was thinking a tire might be flat-spotted but Bad Robot has antilock brakes and I don't think it CAN flat spot a drive wheel without doing some donuts on the highway or something.

Fast forward to today, and I just rotated the tires to see if the vibration was on a particular wheel. All of the wheels have weights on the outside, and some of them have some funky curb-checks. One of the front wheels (the one I thought might be messed up) had a spot where there obviously USED to be a wheel weight on the INSIDE of the tire. Uh-huh.

Oh, and that same corner has a bad wheel bearing, maybe 3mm of play when the wheel is rocked. So I've got an appointment to have the mechanic look at it because a) its' under warranty and b) I have an irrational hatred for working on this car.

Test drive: wheel steady as a rock, no vibration and no pulling. Hands-free driving impressed #2 enough on the way out that he requested an encore on the way back home. I did it, after making sure he knew that it was dangerous.

Where's the blessing here VFD?

If the tire hadn't thrown a weight, I might not have noticed the wheel bearing going out until it threw the WHEEL and she crashed . . . on the highway . . . at speed . . . so. Silver lining, thanks Jesus.

#2 asked what would happen if the wheel came off. I told him "absolute BEST, best case scenario, you crash." He visualized it and I think it made an impression. Good.

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

News Flash: Pets are Not People!

The 13th Amendment applies to humans but not captive animals. Duh? THIS is another fine example of why we need Loser Pays laws all over the country.

Don't laugh too hard. In other countries, animals have been granted legal status and rights theoretically equal to men's rights. God forbid that such foolishness should ever take even so much as a legal toehold here.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Newt Playin A Whole Different Game

Everybody is on Santorum's jock for winning a couple of votes tonight but you know what? Newt's the wiser. I'm seeing a trend of Gingrich not giving a hoot for any primary where there are no party delegates being committed, but he's been in the fight in most caucuses where delegates are at stake. He's going for committed delegates to the GOP convention and giving the beauty contests a cold shoulder.

****

Make that a fat, ugly cold shoulder because let's face it the man is not winning any beauty contests.

****

N.B. yet another pair of races where the Not-Romney won. That guy stinks for a candidate which is why the leftist press wants so badly for him to be the nominee. The left wants you to pick a guy, and you agree, how dumb are you?

Jensen KDC9520 AM/FM/CD/Cassette 1-1/2 DIN Car Stereo Head Unit

Sold!

This is a Jensen KDC9520 Stereo CD Receiver with an audio cassette player built in. It is 1-1/2 DIN which is great if you need it, and doesn't look like laser rocketships. It works great. There are a few very minor cosmetic blemishes you have to be looking close to find.

Please click on any picture to see it 4x higher resolution

Buy this radio!

IF you just want the face plate, I will knock ten bucks off the price and recycle the head unit for you.

Buy this radio!

This was purchased new, by me, and used only in a non-smoking (my) automobile. I pulled this radio from my Dodge when I sold it but my new car took a different size head unit. This has been sitting on a shelf in my shop. I tested it to make sure it's still working before I took the photos for this sale.

I like a radio that doesn't scream "I'm expensive and fancy, steal me!" if you want leave the face attached when you park the car. This one fills that bill, and in the dark it could pass for a normal came-with-the-car radio. It has a nice green backlight that is easy to see when you're driving without being too bright. Note the lights to show you where to insert your CD or Tape.

Buy this radio!

With the face detached:

Buy this radio!

One VERY nice feature of the wiring is that all the wires are clearly labeled and dramatically different colors. I never used the Remote turn-on or RCA outputs, but they're there if you have an external amp you want to use. The black box is a power filter. The wiring harness is removable.

Buy this radio!

The backsides look almost as clean as the front:

Buy this radio!

Buy this radio!

There are a few minor cosmetic blemishes but I was looking hard in bright light to find them so I could show you:

A couple on the body, mostly on the bottom front lip

Buy this radio!

And a few on the faceplate. There are some shallow scratches on the display, and a few scuffs elsewhere. I don't know what's up with the texture on the font of the up/down/left/right control, but I did notice it helps work the knob with just a fingertip.

Buy this radio!

The data plate/wiring legend:

Buy this radio!

When you first start the car, the volume setting is displayed both with a number and on the graph on the right side. This prevented me blasting myself out many, many many times because you can turn it down while the radio is waking up. It beeps when you push a button. I mostly tuned this out except when I was operating the radio while looking at the road, in which case it is a nice feature.

The manual for this head unit is available free, from voxxsupport.com (click here for .pdf file)

What's included in this sale:
  • Jensen KDC9520 head unit
  • Wiring harness (shown)
  • Detachable face plate for KDC9520
  • Soft carry/storage pouchfor the face

Monday, February 6, 2012

What Goes Up, Dead Cat Edition

Long-time readers will recall that the current state of our national economy is described by experts* as "in the middle of a Dead Cat Bounce." It can be hard to make that point to people when the President is cheerleading a falling unemployment rate** but here it is in chart form:

Gasoline, that people use to get to work and back, is statistically off a cliff.



Yeah, and?

Some people might say the reason people use less gas in this extreme is that people are losing their jobs and/or stopping working in huge numbers . . . regardless of the unemployment rate published by somebody looking to get re-elected this year.

********

* that would be me
**fewer workers in the labor force = lower unemployment rate. More people by tens of millions but fewer counted "workers" than there were a decade ago. Lower unemployment just like that.

Sunday, February 5, 2012

I Sometimes Wonder (as I wander)

If our first parents (Adam/Eve) had obeyed the only rule they were given, would it hurt when a baby's first set of teeth came through the gums? If our mouths were not about to spend a lifetime of speaking vanities against our Creator, would it hurt as they were forming teeth?

Down With The Sickness

In addition to pushing at least 6 teeth at one time, #4 is also down with a yellowboogers cold, too, I think. #3 is also pretty stuffed up; I stayed home from church with both of them.

I think they got it from me and I felt better a couple days after the one worst day so here's hoping.

Thanks God for over the counter meds.

P.S., parenting pro tip: if it's almost nap time and benadryl is starting to kick in and your baby suddenly starts acting tired . . . put him to bed! Don't wait for the moment to pass. They'll be up and out of sorts for a while after they perk up again.

Saturday, February 4, 2012

Ignorance Is Bliss

I know a guy who just bought a new $1k+ camera. He handed it to a guy who started making a rapid series of snapshots of nothing in particular, and freaked out a little bit. Didn't this other guy know? These cameras are like your heart: they work only so many times, and then they stop. The number of times they will work is so long something else will probably happen before it stops, so most people never worry about it. It works out to cost something like a dime every time you make a photograph, if the shutter on this new camera lives up to its rated life - and most live at least that long. Well this guy with the new camera squeezes all the blood out of even the smallest turnip - and he was not amused at this waste of shutter life!

I was going through the photos on our new camera just now. It is an older version of the same type of camera, and also has a limited (large) number of exposures it will be able to make before dying. I noticed a bunch of shots in a row were all blurred and overexposed, and asked my Darling Wife about them. She had no idea how the camera was set, she was just being silly snapping away at the Zoo. Not a care in the world about camera life, but having a good time making pictures - no matter how they came out.

Sometimes it is amazing to consider the variety of people one knows, even in little details like this which mean basically nothing in the Big Picture.

Friday, February 3, 2012

Not that there's anything wrong with that!

Everybody knows (or should) that one of the main risk factors for "getting AIDS" is being a homersexual. One of the fun side effects of AIDS is affectionately referred to by cancer doctors as Oral Plasmablastic Lymphoma. It's cancer, your MOUTH, that pretty much is a death sentence within 6 months.

Let's see, what do queers do with their mouths that might call for some specific judgement from God . . . hmmm . . .

. . .nope, can't think of anything! Oh well, nevermind then.

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Madness at Work: Halfway Cute, Not All There . . .

We have a new cleaning crew at work to replace Cleaning Buddy. They are all just as fat as CB, except one girl on the crew who is about normal-sized (NS). I was on the way to the restroom to drain the lizard when . . .

NS (standing 2 feet from restroom door)
IT Buddy (goes from his office, around NS, into restroom
NS (waits a few seconds, pushes open bathroom door, sees ITB's back, exits bathroom)
NS (sees VFD, smiles sheepishly)
VFD (goes into restroom, into 2nd stall, commences to piss like a racehorse into the toilet)
ITB (finishes business, washes up, exits)
NS (enters bathroom)
VFD (still sounding like a fire hose down there)
NS (replaces urinal cake in 1st stall, flushes urinal, turns off lights)
VFD: Hey! Hello!
NS (exits)
VFD: Hello?
VFD (finishes business, exits restroom in the frikken dark already)


WTH?

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Dead . . . over SOCCER?

In Egypt, apparently it is bad for your health to go see a soccer match. A THOUSAND or so people got a little sideways and started whipping up on each other after a game. The dead included some of the police that tried to get the crowd to stop fighting.

Of all the things not worth getting killed (or even upset) over . . . soccer is high on my list. Fail, people. Fail.

Huge Victory for Human Rights

Indiana just became the latest state to stop requiring people to pay to join an organization that is not aligned with them politically and from which they derive no direct benefit, just to get a job.

Good.