Tuesday, December 30, 2003

Slobodan Gingrich

Is it me or do former Serbia President and war crimes suspect Slobodan Milosevic and former house speaker Newt Gringrich appear to be twins separated at birth?

Monday, December 29, 2003

Goodbye 2003, We Hardly Knew Ye

Christmas has come and gone. I got the Firefly DVD series from Mrs. Lock, a few sweaters, a couple of gift cards to Best Buy. I saw the inlaws and my uncle's family as well. All in all a good holiday.

It's also been a good year, 2003. I got married. My finances are in very good shape. 40k in 401k. 28k in ESOP and 3300 in IRA. I'm coming up on 6 years at my job which is by far a record. I have all the toys that I could want, big screen, progressive scan dvd, Tivo DVR, surround sound, ton of video games. I don't need anything else. 2004 might be boring, but we'll see. I'm still childless. The year could be very big.

Today: DJI 10366, SP5 1100 NASDAQ 1989
Jan 03: DJI 8903, SP5 881, NASDAQ 1346

Thursday, December 25, 2003

Merry Christmas...I Think?

I got up at 8 this morning. Went into the bathroom, brushed my teeth, used mouthwash, pet the cat that was asleep in the bathtub. I went back into the bedroom, saw Mrs. Lock was awake and I said something about the rabbit making noise in the next room.

She said "Merry Christmas." Oh yeah, it is Christmas! 20 years ago that would have been the first thing on my mind and the first words screaming out of my mouth running to my parents in their bedroom five in the morning to inform them of the date and ritual we normally celebrate.

So I forgot it was Christmas. I am getting old.

Monday, December 22, 2003

Goodbye Ma Bell

I've joined a growing revolution for saving money - dumping your phone line. With the cell phone plans getting cheaper, land lines are having a tough time competing with a technology you can take out of the house and have it still work. So we dumped our line and I'm sure we won't be the last. It's 100+ year old technology that might be seeing the end of days.

It's a good idea that some of the phone companies are getting into the cell business to keep their company alive. Some also have their hand in broadband internet which might be the only reason to keep the old phone lines around.

It's ironic that the internet growth helped the phone companies when dial up customers needed a second line to access their ISP. Now with broadband and cell phones, people are dropping all of their land lines.

DJI 10296, SP5 1089 NASDAQ 1953

Monday, December 15, 2003

Jon Stewart: ABC's Person of the Week

Jon Stewart was ABC's Person of the Week last week. Here are a couple of quotes from the humble genius.

(Regarding the liberation of Baghdad) "If you are incapable of feeling at least a tiny amount of joy watching ordinary Iraqi's celebrate, you are hopelessly lost to the left. If you are incapapble of feeling badly that we had to use this much force to accomplish this, you are ideologically lost to the right."
-- Jon Stewart

"People's sense of humor goes as far as their ideology."
-- Jon Stewart
Historical Weekend

An historical event took place over the weekend. It was the capture of Saddam Hussein, found hiding in a 'spider hole' south of his hometown of Tikrit. He was captured alive and pretty much well.

The international response is interesting. In Iraq, the majority seem to celebrate his capture. Arab leaders outside of Iraq are saying they are disappointed that a supposed Muslim leader would surrender so quickly. I think these Arab leaders were looking for an excuse all year to bad mouth Saddam, they knew the truth about his ways, but popular sentiment was Muslim to support Muslim so I don't think they could speak out against him until now.

Now that Hussein is incarcerated, is there a chance he'll be Saddamized?

DJI 10042, SP5 1074 NASDAQ 1949

Friday, December 12, 2003

Sure ignorance is bliss but it's also incredibly boring.
-- me

Happy seven years L.

Wednesday, December 10, 2003

Boxing Boxing Helena

Absolutely the worst movie of all time: Boxing Helena. I've always had it in for this movie ever since I saw it. I do not hate many movies. In fact, the ones I don't like I'm just simply indifferent to. Boxing Helena however is one title that I seethe about. What a horrible piece of crap.

The main female character gets into an accident and takes up residence with her surgeon who is trying to keep her alive. During her stay, the surgeon wants to turn his patient into a living Venus de Milo statue by cutting off her limbs one at a time over a period of time. He tells her after each chop that he's doing this to save her life. Eventually she runs out of limbs, and THEN decides she needs to escape the doctor's maniacal possession. Because 4 missing limbs is too much. 2, eh, he might be right. 3, really disappointing and unlikely but still possible he might be right, but 4, whoa buddy you've gone too far. So Miss Torso literally rolls out into traffic as part of her master escape plan, gets hit and dies.

Now if that insane plot wasn't enough to ruin this movie, something then happens that is the one thing that ruins a story every time, every tv show, every horror tale - the doctor wakes up and sees his patient lying in one piece in her hospital bed. None of it happened because 95% of the movie was a dream - and I use the term dream loosely. Talk about a major reminder about a waste of time.

If you're pissed I didn't say spoilers first before blowing the plot, believe me I'm not the one that did the spoiling. If I save one person, one child, one orphan from seeing this festering pile, I think I've made a difference in this world.

This is the flick Kim Bassinger lost a lawsuit over by backing out and not starring in after signing a contract saying she would. I can not blame her for backing out and I think the 14 million she paid (or whatever it was) in damages to the filmmakers was a small price to pay to disassociate yourself from this steaming turd piece. Let me tell you something. Having Kimmy back out of your picture is not what caused the "serious damages" to your movie.

Hopefully I'll wake up and realize the movie was all a dream and doesn't really exist.

Tuesday, December 09, 2003

A person who dares questions their government is the ultimate patriot.
-- me

DJI 9965, SP5 1069 NASDAQ 1948

Friday, December 05, 2003

"I have trouble sleeping. Someone told me to listen to white noise so I bought a Pat Buchanan tape. It's working out pretty good."
-- Craig Shoemaker

Monday, December 01, 2003

Turkey Day 2003

Thanksgiving has come and gone. Thursday we had the wife's family over for the usual holiday get together. It's close to 20 some people. It makes the place crowded but they're a lot of fun when we all get together. My wife has five aunts, an uncle plus her mom all attending with everyone in their immediate family.

I also had my parents up for the weekend staying with us. We had so many people in the house though that my parents went to my brother's for Thanksgiving. It gave us some breathing room with my in laws.

The family organizes a secret santa gift exchange during the Thanksgiving get together. This is my first year in it since we were married earlier this year and I became an official member of the family. I tried to opt out of it saying I was single all these years to avoid the sweat shop gift exchange program but the coven of aunts wouldn't have it.

Mrs. Lock and I agreed to only spend $50 on each other for Christmas. I tried to make it $0 so we could use the money for other people's gifts but she wants to exchange something on our first Christmas as a married couple. I can still do that with a zero dollar price tag.

Friday's stock market didn't move much. I'm sure there weren't many traders on the floor the day after Thanksgiving but that's ok. One of my mutual funds which is called Emerging Markets, representing other country's markets had a huge day. Apparently it was business as usual in Brazil, Japan and South Korea the day after Thanksgiving.

DJI 9849, SP5 1064 NASDAQ 1978

Tuesday, November 25, 2003

Sugar Daddy

I'm walking around with a $7000 check today. Let me repeat that. I am walking around in the public all day today with a check in my possession written for seven thousand dollars!

It's a balance transfer check from one credit card that will be sent to another. What's funny is the check comes from and is about to go to the same CC company (not the same card, different cards but same bank). Under normal balance transfer procedures, one is not allowed to transfer a balance from one card to another both owned by the same bank. So I called and requested a check instead of submitting a balance transfer request. The check needed to be under the same terms as a balance transfer rate and they agreed and sent it. So now I just deposit the $7000 in my checking account today and write a check to the company that just sent me the check.

I also think it's interesting I'm walking around with a check written for $7000. To carry it with me to work, I stuffed it in an issue of Forbes and brought the magazine to work with the seven grand bookmark. I have to leave it here on my desk until I can get to the bank and make the deposit. For some reason I'm not concerned about losing it. Why is that? This is by far the largest amount of money I've had in my possession.

DJI 9747, SP5 1052 NASDAQ 1947

Tuesday, November 18, 2003

Important DVD Release Today

A very important DVD is coming out today. Something my wife and I have been waiting on for a long time and we can't wait to pick it up. That's right. It's finally here. The Aqua Teen Hunger Force DVD has been released to the public so we can all share in the laughter that is Master Shake Zula, Frylock and Meatwad.

Just the other day, that silly Shake stole Carl's (the ATHF's landlord) car and used it in demolition derby. He returned it totaled and understandably Carl went ape. He confronted Shake who was wearing a crash helmet at the time but Shake denied everything. Since the car was completely unusable, Carl decided to donate the heap of junk to the Need A Kidney Foundation.

The tow truck came and got it, dragged it ten feet to the ATHF's house and dropped it off donating it to one of the Foundation's candidates Meatwad. Meatwad was so excited to get a new (but useless) car and reasons it's what he deserves since the foundation won't give him any kidneys even though he's been on the list for months. Frylock informed Meatwad that being a hamburger patty he did not need kidneys - but it fell on deaf ears.

So Meatwad gets the wrecked car and won't leave its side. All night and all day he sits in the driver's seat pretending to drive and yelling at other imaginary drivers. Shake gets jealous that Meatwad is spending so much time in the scrap metal and confronts him dressed a state trooper "pulling him over" after running an imaginary stop light. Officer Shake informs Meatwad that he believes him to be intoxicated and requires him to walk a straight line into a manhole, jump in and recite the alphabet backwards. Meatwad happily complies.

Shake then runs out and picks up a huge NASA-style rocket and attaches it to the back of Meatwad's wrecked car. He flips the engine on which accidentally inhales Carl's replacement rental car which was a tiny hatchback, shredding it to nothing. Carl runs out and begins yelling about his second destroyed car is as many days. Shake pours on the lies again which becomes too much for Carl and his own head explodes in a tiny fireball.

Meatwad runs up and asks, "Why did he do that?"

Shake replies, "Why wouldn't he?"

Something called Lord of the Rings: Two Towers, Special Extended Edition comes out today too but I don't think anyone will notice.

Monday, November 17, 2003

Happy Birthday

Happy 53rd Mama Lock.

DJI 9720, SP5 1045 NASDAQ 1918

Friday, November 14, 2003

I wouldn't see this movie if it was playing in my glasses.
-- Jimmy Pardo

Thursday, November 13, 2003

Recoverying alcoholics drink O'Doule's. I don't understand that. You never hear of a pedophile with a midget in a cub scout outfit.
-- Emo Philips

Wednesday, November 12, 2003

Baghdad Brother Back On R&R

Just got a phone call from my brother, the army medic stationed in Baghdad. He's back in the States for a couple of weeks on R&R. He was in very high spirits considering his work enviornment. He talked about his schedule and when he goes back like it's a trip to the store. No sadness that I could detect. We talked about the horrific Chinook accident that happened a week ago that killed 20 of the soldiers onboard. He was telling me the pilot probably would've survived the crash had the bone in his arm not penetrated his skull. Medics. Human vunerability is always cool to them.

He's going to surprise my parents after he, his wife and daughter fly down to Florida for a visit. He's just setting them up for a potential heart attack when they see him. But I suppose he'd think that was pretty cool.

Monday, November 10, 2003

Cat Out Of The Money Bag

Well the word is out. The economy appears to rebounding in a huge way and everyone knows about it. I didn't think the secret would last long. Now we'll see what happens to the market prices as a result. I enjoyed the ride from March. My retirement and stocks are sitting pretty.

DJI 9768, SP5 1048 NASDAQ 1951

Friday, November 07, 2003

Your cholesterol count isn't supposed to have a comma in it.
-- Mike Armstrong

Thursday, November 06, 2003

Colonel Sanders Says Don't Try This At Home

There's this television commercial for KFC where a group of kids is dropping chicken poppers, little chunks of breaded chicken, from a rooftop. Then there's this other kid, who I think I can assume is an acquaintance of the small social gathering amassed on the roof above him, and he's on the ground successfully catching the poppers in his mouth. Everyone's laughing and smiling, having a good time dropping pieces of fried poultry a couple of stories into the mouth of kid who has his own circus act. Sounds like fun. But at one point during the commercial a disclaimer flashes up on the screen, "Do not try this."

Hey, KFC is telling me not to try this. And you know, I really had no inclination to do so. The thought never entered my mind. I mean, where am I going to find a group of friends willing to scale a building for me and drop pieces of food into my mouth. So initially, I thought that the disclaimer was unecessary. Who's actually going to do this? But now, as I think about the reason why KFC felt the need to show that disclaimer during the commercial, I started to feel like I was missing out on something. If there was a remote chance that someone was actually willing to try this stunt until the disclaimer in the TV commercial stopped them dead in their tracks from planning this daredevil of a death defying act, then dang it, I want to try this!

So the irony is I originally had no interest in risking my life trying this stunt until the tv commercial told me I couldn't. And now I want to play rooftop russian roulette with KFC chicken poppers.

Wednesday, November 05, 2003

Jesse Ventura is basically proof that the people of Minnesota are not social drinkers - they’re obviously alcoholics. And what Jesse Ventura proves and what’s great about democracy is that anyone can be elected to any office. What Jesse Ventura proves what stinks about democracy is that anyone can be elected to any office. Don’t get me wrong, I think it’s great. He should have that opportunity. But HE WAS A WRESTLER! And before you’re the governor, I think you should have to do something in between - like referee.
-- Lewis Black

Tuesday, November 04, 2003


I've been able to remember two of my dreams in the past two days. That's tough to do. It's hard enough to remember one. The night before last, I had a dream that a closet was haunted. I would look in the door and wooden planks were constructed in the middle of it forming some sort of cluster of wooden strips. I would kick the strips, breaking it but it would heal itself and return to the original position. I tried tearing the whole thing down, but it would quickly reconstruct itself. There was a Mexican restaurant counter not far from the closet for some reason. I walked up to it and explained in fluent Spanish that the closet was haunted and that they should watch out.

My dream last night involved me creeping through a dark house looking for snakes. So both dreams involved me being in a house I was fearful to be in. I was looking for these snakes, I turned the corner and saw a carpet rolled up with a bulge I could clearly see inside of it. I suspected it to be a snake rolled up in the carpet so using my foot I rolled it to the back door and outside. The snake got out, which turned out to be a King Cobra but it struck my cat who was standing at my feet putting a big gash in her side. I closed the door, picked up the cat to examine the wound which looked really bad. What are you supposed to do when someone has snake venom in them? It's probably an urban legend but I tried to suck the poison out of my cat's side. The wound was huge too. I ran her to the hospital where I was turned away because I tried to admit a cat. Feeling the pressure of time and realizing I was an idiot for taking her to a human hospital, I drove to the closest vet. The vet checked her over and laughed. He made fun of me for thinking human ailments would apply to cats and explained to me that snake venom has no effect on cats.

DJI 9858, SP5 1059 NASDAQ 1967

Wednesday, October 29, 2003

Ripley Gets Around

They're re-releasing Ridley Scott's excellent movie Alien in the theaters on Halloween night. Actually I should say they are just releasing it because this is the never-before-seen director's cut of the best movie in the Alien series. I was thinking though, that Sigourney Weaver's bad girl character, Lt. Ripley, really got around. If you think about it, she liked to bed guys as often as she could. Listen to this: In Alien, she does Captain Dallas. Remember she took it personal when the Alien had Dallas for breakfast. In Aliens, I'm pretty sure she did Corporal Hicks. There was a lot of flirting going on so you know they found a few minutes to do the nasty. And in Aliens 3 (aka Aliens Cubed) she did the doctor like the day after the prisoners found her in the pod. And to drive home my point, from Ripley's viewpoint, all of this happened to her, all three of these lays plus whoever else she managed to shove into a broom closet with her, in just a matter of weeks. Weeks because she spent most of her life in stasis due to the deep space travel. Three guys in three weeks? Newsflash: Ripley's a whore! She knows how to get what she wants. Dead aliens and a few boy toys along the way to keep things interesting for her.

I won't even bring up Aliens Resurrection. That's not even the original Ripley, she was just a freak. Although Ripley's underlying behavior was there when she was tonguing that nasty alien.

Monday, October 27, 2003

I'd Like To Tivo My Life

I bought a Tivo DVR last Monday and it's my new favorite toy. I've been thinking about picking up a DVR for sometime but couldn't convince myself I really needed one. They are the future so I knew I would have to get one eventually. What convinced me to finally get one is the amount of time I realized I could save by having one. It's very easy to skip through commercials as well as the boring moments of a show. And since time is money and I like to FF a lot, it should have itself paid off in no time.

My favorite shows to record this season are: Stargate SG-1, 3rd season of 24, West Wing, Aqua Teen Hunger Force, Sealab 2021, Simpsons, South Park, MST3k, The Daily Show with Jon Stewart, WWE shows (Raw and Smackdown) and Justice League. I've been watching too much TV though and my video game responsibilities have been neglected as a result. Sorry Star Wars Galaxies.

The specs on my Tivo is Tivo DVR Series 2, retail $350, $300 after $50 mail in rebate. It has a 80 Gb harddrive which translates to 80 hours of piss-poor quality or 24 hours of best quality. It "dials" in using a USB wireless (802.11b) adapter I bought at Wal Mart to replace the phone line it was using for the first few days I had it hooked up. To go with my theme of naming the nodes on the network in my house, I suppose I'll call the Tivo Rembrandt.

DJI 9635, SP5 1033, NASDAQ 1878
CD in my stereo: Pink Floyd Echos Vol 2
Last movie I saw in the theater: Kill Bill Vol 1
Last movie I saw at home: The Ring

Friday, October 24, 2003

"It is useless to attempt to reason a man out of what he was never reasoned into."
-- Jonathan Swift

Thursday, October 23, 2003

Joke Joke

An elderly man attends the funeral of his elderly wife. After the ceremony, the pallbearers pick up the casket and carry it down the aisle. On the way out, they accidentally bumped the casket into the wall and a moan came from inside. They opened it up and unbelievably the woman was still alive!

Amazingly she lived for another 10 years and then died (again). They had the funeral, the same pallbearers from 10 years ago picked up the casket and once again carried it down the aisle. As they approached the door, the husband yells, "Watch that wall!"

Wednesday, October 22, 2003

Muhammad Bush

President Bush needs to convert to Islam and build a nice big Mosque in the center of Baghdad as a gift to the Iraqi people.

Monday, October 20, 2003

Bipolar Weather

This fall weather has been interesting. I drive to work in the mornings with the heater on and drive home in the evening with the AC on. The comedian Lewis Black would say, "...and my balls can't take it anymore."
"Jimminy Jillickers, it must be Obvious Day at Camp Stupid!"
-- Shake Zula, the microphone rula

DJI 9735, SP5 1040, NASDAQ 1918

Friday, October 17, 2003

"Time you enjoy wasting is not wasted time."
-- Bertrand Russell

DJI 9721, SP5 1039, NASDAQ 1912

Thursday, October 16, 2003

"How can you tell when fish goes bad? It smells like fish either way."
-- Jim Gaffigan

DJI 9801, SP5 1050, NASDAQ 1947

Wednesday, October 15, 2003

State Under Construction

You know your state loves the orange barrels when the detour from one construction site takes you through another construction site.

DJI 9812, SP5 1049, NASDAQ 1943

Monday, October 13, 2003

Columbus Day Worthless

It's ok to go ahead and drop Columbus Day as a U.S. holiday. I have nothing against the man, but what did he do? He got lost and we toast him for his incompetance. We celebrate an accident.

Everyone's open today except the government. What happened there?

DJI 9764, SP5 1045, NASDAQ 1933

Thursday, October 09, 2003

"The first half of our lives is ruined by our parents and the second half by our children."
— Clarence Darrow, American attorney (1857-1938).
Arnold is a Kennedy Puppet

First off, my view. I'm glad Arnold won the position of governor of California. I like it whenever anyone can shake up the political establishment. When Jesse Ventura did it for Minnesota I thought that was great and just as great when Ross Perot made an impact on the Presidential race as an Independent. He did a lot for that party, including getting Ventura elected many years later.

Arnold Schwarzenegger won the governorship thanks in a large part to his wife, Maria Shriver. Arnold even credited her with the win in his victory speech. It does not happen too often that a husband and wife can team up to get one of them into office but that's what happened here. Therefore, this is what I think went on behind the scenes.

Maria originally was against her husband running for governor of California, until her politically powerful family the Kennedys laid out a plan so cunning, it made Maria reconsider, change her mind and throw all of her support into her husband's running not to mention campaigned as hard as he did for it. If that is true, then I think Maria's family made a deal with Arnold that if he ran for governor, they would make sure he would win. For anyone who don't think that the Kennedy's have that much power, you can just stop reading now. So why in the world would a historically strong democrat-affiliated family be so enthusiastic to put a Republican into a powerful political position such as the governor of California? Because they have plans for their little girl Maria.

Expect the next governor of California to be Maria Shriver. That's right. Nobody's looking this far ahead except the Kennedys. I wouldn't be surprised if Arnold actually leaves after the rest of this term or the next either as part of the deal with the Kennedys or gets bored and wants to return to acting or both. Maria would run for the position and easily win if Arnold can keep the state together for a couple of years. No problem.

Now the real eye opener. You thought I dropped a bomb about Governor Shriver? Just wait. Maria Shriver as governor of California is just a stepping stone as it was for Ronald Reagan. That's right, Maria for President of the United States. You balk at the idea, I can hear you scoff, but the U.S. political atmosphere in many environments lately changes faster than Superman in a phone booth.

The Kennedys want to be back in the White House and since all of the men keep dying off, why not use their most prominent female? So Maria to run for President within the next decade or so, unfortunately she'll follow in the fate of her two uncles and be assassinated either before taking or while in office. Actually I don't know if that's going to happen but isn't Sirhan Sirhan close to parole? Ok now it's a conspiracy theory but the Maria for President will happen.

I get in these kinds of moods on my birthday. 31 today.

DJI 9717, SP5 1043, NASDAQ 1924

Wednesday, October 08, 2003

Gooobah nah torrrrial

Two people are responsible for putting the thought in the minds of the California people to not automatically discount the idea that Arnold Schwarzenegger could win governor of the state: Ronald Reagan and Jesse Ventura.

DJI 9640, SP5 1035, NASDAQ 1897

Tuesday, October 07, 2003

Sports, Governors and Video Games Oh My

Not much going on. Colts had a huge victory last night against the Super Bowl Champs Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Monday Night Football. They set an NFL record by scoring 21 points in the last four minutes of the game. Impressive. I'm sure most of the Bucs and Colts fans missed the comeback because it was 21 - 0, Bucs over Colts at halftime. A lot of people went home or went to bed after that and are waking up today to hear about a big surprise.

Today is the California governor recall election. It's probably going to be close and exit polls may not be able to predict the winner before the polls close. They don't want a repeat of the Bush-Gore 2000 Presidential election. The accusations against candidate's Arnold's womanizing and harrassment come at a very interesting time right before the election. I wouldn't be surprised to hear that Davis supporters sat on the info until the courts decided when the recall election would be held.

Mrs. Lock and I have been playing a lot of Baldur's Gate Dark Alliance. We're getting pretty far, we've made it to the lizard folk part - chapter 3 of the game. I've got a 12th level dwarven fighter and she has an 11th level sorceress with a mean ball lightning spell.

DJI 9653, SP5 1039, NASDAQ 1907

Friday, October 03, 2003

What Does A Liberal Media Look Like?

This is a topic I bring up in response to Rush Limbaugh's thick headed statement that got him fired from his brand new ESPN commentator job. He said the Philly Eagles Quarterback Donavan McNabb was over-hyped as an excellent athlete by the media because they want to see a black QB succeed. In the fallout surrounding this comment that cost Rush his job, there were accusations of racism, but I think they missed the point. If Rush wanted to make a racist statement, it would have been Donavan McNabb is only a superior athlete because he is black. They're on Rush for the wrong reasons.

I was more upset at his crack at the media being some sort of conspirator in pushing its liberal values on America by promoting a black QB. Yes and that's why he got league MVP last year. Now the media influences the NFL. How ridiculous does that sound? In his defense though, when he talks about this subject, he always says 'the liberal media,' not just media because of course he is part of the media too. So when he refers to just 'the liberal media,' he must mean that guy Carl who produces that communist party flyer in his basement somewhere in Utah.

So why does Rush Limbaugh think the media is liberal? Why would a destitute person think a poor person is rich? All things are relative and for a right wing conservative like Rush, anyone with a centrist view would seem liberal. He's also upset that the media won't exclusively promote the conservative ways. Of course they don't, the media represents society. Most of society would need to be conservative for there to be a chance for the media to have a conservative agenda. And I don't mean 51 percent majority, I mean like 90. The media is the cart, society is the horse.

A glaring point that's hard for me to miss and one I wish Rush could answer is: If the media is so liberal and it reaches everyone and has massive influence on the country that he thinks it does, why aren't the masses being persuaded in liberal ways? If the media has that much influence on the population, why do we have a conservative President and a conservative Congress today? I just don't think the media is as liberal as he thinks it is. If it's true, we should have had a liberal government for the last 100 years and no one would be interested in listening to Rush speak so market demands wouldn't let him have a successful talk show. The media is not perfect but I just don't think it's anymore liberal than it is conservative.

And also to suggest that this industry has gotten together and been able to agree on one agenda (promote liberalism) seems to be another ridiculous point conservatives make. The media companies hate each other. They are fierce competitors, there's no way to get them to agree on one consensus other than try to deliver interesting news. Nobody can manipulate the whole industry to deliver one message. And these are reporters not motivational speakers. They're not going to convince anyone of anything they don't want to believe.

So you have a bunch of conservatives with the same agenda, who can agree on a set of ideas, organize their own meetings, setup think tanks and whine that the media is too liberal. This is the same media made up of a thousand companies, each operating their own way, doing whatever it takes to turn a profit since it is ultimately business. You see a conglomerate of companies who don't have the power to organize secret meetings every week with every media outlet on the planet and get everyone to agree on how they can brainwash the masses. How can I not be skeptical about this?

You find me an instance of the media being liberal and I will find two of them being conservative. I happen to know that people only see what they want to see and I'm just choosing not to see anything (declare the media slanted one way or the other) until it's obvious.

Call me a Doubting Lock but isn't it possible eight years of peace and prosperity in the Clinton years has paved the way for a ferocious conservative backlash. How can I take anyone's word for it?

Happy 30th Birthday to Mrs. Lock!
My wife not my mom.

DJI 9663, SP5 1039, NASDAQ 1890

Tuesday, September 30, 2003

The Other Animals Are Agin' Us
By Tim Bedore 2003

Did you see that in the paper the other day about those carp in the Mississippi River jumping into boats and bonking fisherman in the head? It's true. They're called big head carp, they're from Asia and they're attacking and severely injuring many fisherman.

Biologists claim the roar of boat motors agitates and excites these carp and they jump towards the sound but I think these biologists are naively missing an obvious connection. Fish are attacking fisherman. For the fish it's get them before they get you, kill or be killed. Even if these fisherman are practicing catch and release, that's a very painful, embarrassing experience for any fish and apparently they have had it.

What about the increase in mountain lion attacks? Great White sharks moving closer to shore? Moose have been showing up in towns and stomping on people. A squirrel was in my living room last spring. Am I the only one that sees a pattern here? People, wise up! The other animals are against us. It doesn't take a genius to see there's an inter-species conspiracy to thwart the urban expansion of man.

How do the squirrels fit in? Surveillance. They spy on what we people are doing in the cities and report back to the bigger species out there on the front lines.

And taken together these other species represent walking, we hope not yet talking, scratching, biting weapons of mass destruction. And if these other species can convince the insect world, for example a well known anti-human group like the killer bees, to join up our way of life and our democracy could be history.

The skeptical may ask why would these other species want to hurt us? Obviously, they hate us. They are jealous of our way of life. We swim in chlorinated, safe environment pools, then towel off and have an adult beverage. They are stuck eating sludge in the Mississippi, a river polluted by guess who: their mortal enemy man. And to top it all off we eat them.

This invasion of Asian carp is no accident. This is stage one of their well planned attack. We ignore the obvious at our own peril.

We can no longer sit back and wait for them to attack us. It's time we adopt a new doctrine regarding these other animals. We have to wipe out any and all species who are a lined against us, wherever they are. We can not rest until every big head carp, great white shark, mountain lion, moose and squirrel and any other species that associates with them are defeated.

If the U.N. wants to get involved fine, if not we can do it alone. Of course the British will show up, they always do, but we will fight to protect our way of life. And if you don't agree, you're an unpatriotic idiot who hates America.
Busy Bee

I had a switch fail in my network at work last week. All of the connections going into it just went poof. I scrambled to find a backup, all I could find was an old hub which only ran at 10 Mb/s and half duplex. The network was overloaded. I had to take a few runs down for the night until my company could overnight me a new switch.

So I got the replacement the next morning, why it's a 10 Mb/s half duplex hub! Wow, thanks guys. I found a 100 Mb/s switch running a lone workstation in a room that's hardly ever used. So I disconnected it, brought it to the server room and used that as my new replacement. Only problem is it only has eight ports. My original configuration used ten so I had to deem two connections unnecessary and leave them out of the switch over. It turned out those two connections were my PC and my printer. I put the replacement hub that was sent to me in the room I borrowed the switch from. It will do ok in that location.

Not having my PC on the network anymore shouldn't be a problem as long as corporate can ship me yet another replacement before the following Monday when I need the PC on the network to collect their data for them, burn it to CD and ship it back. Well it's a new fiscal year and guess what? They can't buy any new hardware until later next month. Well crap. Monday rolled around and I had to find some way to get a 200 Mb data file off of one of the machines, get it to my PC and burn it to CD. I grabbed my old 10 Mb/s hub, plugged it in, quickly pulled a connection out of the 100 Mb/s switch, a connection that really wasn't running anything too important and jammed it into the 10 Mb/s hub. Then I ran a short cat-5 cable from the 10 Mb/s hub down to the newly open port on the 100 Mb/s, now I have a node to plug my PC and printer in to even if it is only 10 Mb/s. Got the data and at a horrendous 1/10th of the speed I'm used to (took a full minute to transfer as opposed to six seconds). Can't wait for my replacement switch to get in. I can't work with these speeds.

More problems. Sunday one of the servers crashed. What's worse is it was the NIS master on a network that the machines use NFS to get their login, accounts and directory structure from (Solaris network). When it went down, they all locked up. It looks like it just ran out of memory. It had been running for 110 days straight. You should see the software I have to run on these servers - memory leak city. 110 days is impressive. I suppose I should reboot the others ones before they go.

On top of all my issues I am trying to install a new version of software of one of the runs, have it configured and running by this Thursday for a visit from Corporate. It is fun to be under the gun.

Sorry blog for not writing to you, but you understand.

DJI 9261, SP5 994, NASDAQ 1794

Monday, September 22, 2003

There's That Word Again - Terrorist

The term terrorist must be the word of the year. It's fashionable to apply it to everything now apparently. Oh those salespeople didn't give me a discount on my purchase. Those terrorists!

I've seen it used in reference to forest fires in France and just recently in response to what looks like an animal rights activist who set 8000 minks free from a mink farm in Finland.

"This is a farm with seven to eight thousand animals and all of the cages had been opened. This was a well planned attack with many perpetrators," Finne said.

"For the farmer, this is an utter disaster. There will also be an impact on the local wildlife as the minks are predators who will try and find food. Some of the minks will face a painful death. This is a terrorist act, nothing else."

NOTHING else? How can you be so sure.
Heh Heh Heh, Allllllright!

Who says I don't get personal in my blog? Yesterday was my 12th anniversary. Marriage? Nope. Well wait a minute, yeah it coincides with that. I have been married three months as of the 21st but I mean to talk about something else. I lost something 12 years ago at the ripe ol' age of 18 (whew, just made it over the legal limit) and have yet to find it. I celebrate it because it was a big deal for me then and 12 years later, I'm still not tired of celebrating it. I estimate that I have celebrated it 2028 times to date with no end in sight.

I know it was important to me back when I first started out because I remember I used to keep a paper log of the number of encounters. I didn't get wordy, no thoughts or emotions were expressed, I just had a checkmark on the date like a prisoner counting the number of days of his incarceration on the stone wall. My first night, I was so happy to be celebrating I celebrated three times. Allllright. I quit recording the frequency of the celebrations on paper after about the 100th day. I'm not sure why I quit. Probably because I didn't see a point after the 100th mark. 2028 times later (estimated), that would be a few pages in the notebook. Plus, trying to carry that notebook through the years and keep it in decent condition was something I probably wasn't willing to do. Can you imagine me still writing in it 12 years later? It'd look like a medieval scroll, cover all bent up, corners ripped off, pages yellowed, aluminum spiral undoing the bind or all together missing. No thanks. My personal best for number of celebrations in one day, five times, five times, five times, five times, FIVE TIMES! Now can you dig that? Suckaaaaaaaaaaaa.

September 21, 1991 - ?

DJI 9541, SP5 1021, NASDAQ 1874

Friday, September 19, 2003


Hi. I don't have anything planned to talk about. I do have a list of potential topics I keep in a Word file that I can use for my blog here, but I don't feel like expanding on any of them today. What I would like to do is just freestyle, just come up with the stuff as I write this. It's fun to do, good for your creative writing skills. I am going to start off on the topic I study the most and like to talk about the most - money.

I think the U.S. financial market is in an interesting phase. The last three years it's been beaten down bad, setting record low numbers across the board, high unemployment, venture capitalists dropping off the face of the planet. We've lost enough money that would make the Great Depression look like someone just lost their change in the Coke machine. It was so bad, the president had to start two wars to try and improve his chances at reelection. He had nothing to lose. Poor economies don't get presidents reelected, just ask Jimmy Carter. Ok I'm being a bit critical. I'm sure the war in Afghanistan and Iraq were not started solely for the reason of improving an administration's image. I think we as a country got pissed about 9/11 and had to strike out at someone, even if they weren't involved. We wanted to make someone pay for our grief.

Anyway, back to my original point that I think the market is in an interesting phase. For so long, everything was taking a beating, hemorrhaging money (I love that term when it's used outside of a medical context), so we were used to losing our shirts. Here it is year four and the market is starting its recovery, at least according to the major index numbers and it's doing quite well I'd have to say. If this is just the start of its recovery, I think we're in for some good times ahead. That is why I opened my Roth IRA.

The indexes are approaching two year highs. The first year we didn't lose too much, just the accelerated growth of the tech boom slowed down. It wasn't until the second year that the markets turned south, in the third year took a huge dump but right now they are back up near those highs from three years ago. But who's noticed? Interestingly the pop started the week the Iraq war began. Right now, since March the major indexes are up over 20 percent, some close to 30. 30 percent in six months! In an average year, the markets do not make that in 12 months. There is not a mutual fund that can consistently make 30 percent in that amount of time. So why haven't we heard anything about this? 30 percent in six months is amazing progress yet there has been little media coverage on it, no declarations from experts saying that all is well. Bush's approval rating is actually going down as our inexperience of nation building becomes more obvious in Iraq. A 30 percent climb in six months is the kind of improvement we enjoyed during the technology sector boom, so why aren't we taking to the streets and throwing a ticker tape parade? Haven't you noticed there hasn't been much in the news lately about the supposed bankruptcy of the airline industry? You want to know why, it's because each of those companies stocks are up 50 percent in that same six month period. FIFTY PERCENT! They're doing better than the market overall. No complaints, but no cheers either. Why isn't this all over front page news?

I'll tell you why, part of it is the distraction of war in Iraq but once in awhile it still produces a slow news day. It's because of habit and the wounds we're still licking. For the past three years, we got nailed, retirements wiped, people laid off, huge super companies bankrupt because of accounting scandals. Three years of a bear market, we're not ready to declare that the bull has returned after an amazing six months.

And you know what? I like it that way. If the markets can make 30 percent without fan fare, without anyone really noticing, then there's nothing to stop it. It's news and reports that guides investors. 30 percent on no news is amazing. That climb will in turn produce capital to be invested back in to the business then they will have something good to report. If the people and corporations who support market advances with investments haven't even noticed or are still too afraid to commit, what do you think will happen when they start hearing the good news of recovery? They will come back in droves and get the boom started again. The longer we can pretend that things just really still suck while we rake in the cash, the longer we can run up the recovery. How cool is that? We preach doom but do so at the bank with a secret smile.

On another topic, many posts back, I used to include a list of what movies I had recently seen both in the theater and at home plus what music CD I was listening to. It was supposed to be a nostalgic reminder for me of that period in my life when I made the post. I haven't given any updates on that because nothing has changed in the last month. I haven't seen any new movies in the theater and I still have the same CD in my car stereo. What I would like to start doing is posting the financial market indexes. It might be fun to see a snapshot of the condition of the market at the time of the post. Sometimes, I'm sure it has an effect on my mood and it'd be interesting to find a correleation if there is one.


DJI 9633, SP5 1034, NASDAQ 1902

Tuesday, September 16, 2003

I Know You Because I've Seen You Sleep

I love studies, especially studies on human behavior and personality. I use cues to read people, even if they are unaware that they're giving anything away about themselves so this sleeping study piqued my interest. I don't get to see a lot of people sleep but it was interesting anyway.

A British sleep expert says your personality can be determined by the sleeping position you take.

Fetal position is the most common. It is associated with shy and sensitive personalities.

Soldier position which is flat on your back, with arms at your side are quiet and reserved.

The log position which is sleeping on your side with legs stretched out and arms down indicates social, easy-going personality. If the arms are stretched straight out away from you in this position, you tend to be more suspicious.

The freefall position which has you flat on your stomach and hands at the side of your head, which is how I always start out when going to sleep, is the most unusual position. Only 6.5% prefer it and it generally means you are brash and seeking the company of others, especially those of your own kind.

Starfish position which puts you on your back, arms and legs stretched out, which is where I end up by the time I wake up, means you are a good listener.

So apparently I want to be brash and gregarious but I ultimately end up being a good listener. I think I actually hit all of these positions at some point during the sleep, so that must make me Cybil.

Now you know.

Monday, September 15, 2003

History of DivX

What's DivX? It's a codec.

What's a codec? It's a video compression method. COmpress/DECompress. It is to video what mp3 is to CD audio.

A long, long time ago, in 1998, Circuit City wanted to make a video standard built in with common DVD players to play a codec created movie. The idea was that they could offer movies on disposable CDs or online. In 1998, broadband was barely on the radar so online meant through your standard telephone. In DVD format, we're talking 4 GB+ which is also too big for a standard "disposable" CD. Even if the world had broadband in 1998, the DVD download would still be so long, you could go watch another movie before your downloaded one was ready. So Circuit City set out to shrink the enormous size and they wanted to do it without sacrifice the video quality DVD offers.

Circuit City got financial backing from the likes of Disney, Dreamworks, Panasonic, Paramout plus a few others to create a new digitial video quality that would change the future of movie rentals. They were successful with the invention part of it which became one of the world's first codecs named Divx. Now they just needed to revolutionize how consumers buy and rent movies. Just so you know, we're still waiting on the latter to happen.

So what happened?

There is a difference between DivX and Divx; notice the X on the end. Divx died out as do most of electronic store specialized brands. DivX however was reborn from the ashes of the Divx Pheonix (sort of) by some French hacker who had the same idea as Circuit City to shrink DVD's bulky data size but not for the same purposes of reinvinting the video rental industry. He had his own goals in mind for the smaller movie files so that they could be transported more easily. Now what does a hacker want with easily transported movie files?

I mentioned DivX was sort of reborn from Divx. I say that because Divx and DivX actually have little in common except their name and the fact that they accomplish the same end result. The French hacker actually got the code for DivX from a beta version of Windows Media Player many years ago. WMP uses MPEG-4 compression so DivX is actually a form of MPEG-4, Microsoft's attempt to digitize high quality video. The hacker took the code and passed it among the hacker community which is what made DivX what it is today. MPEG-4 went the way of the Dodo (sorry, more bird references) but DivX remained. It was turned into a company, they have a CEO, their own website and millions of downloads a year. Now what do millions of computer users want with a codec that turns high quality videos into manageable file sizes? I can't imagine.

If you try to play a compressed movie file from your computer and you only get sound but no video, then you are missing the codec plugin that was used to encode that movie. To fix that, you install the codec on your computer. Sometimes, it's hard to tell what codec was used to encode the movie file so people generally just install a bunch of them hoping to hit the one they need. DivX is popular but isn't always used. Listed below are the four most widely used codecs. If you install all four, you'll be able to play 98% of the movies out there.

XviD - Gee where did they get that palindromic name?

Thursday, September 11, 2003

This article was written for a British periodical one year ago today which refers to the events that happened to the United States two years ago today. Change the references to 'one year' to 'two years' and I think it still applies. Enjoy.

One Year Later
by Tony Parsons
London Daily Mirror
September 11, 2002

ONE year ago, the world witnessed a unique kind of broadcasting-the mass murder of thousands, live on television. As a lesson in the pitiless cruelty of the human race, September 11 was up there with Pol Pot's mountain of skulls in Cambodia, or the skeletal bodies stacked like garbage in the Nazi concentration camps.

An unspeakable act so cruel, so calculated and so utterly merciless that surely the world could agree on one thing - nobody deserves this fate. Surely there could be consensus: the victims were truly innocent, the perpetrators truly evil.

But to the world's eternal shame, 9/11 is increasingly seen as America's comeuppance. Incredibly, anti-Americanism has increased over the last year.

There has always been a simmering resentment to the USA in this country too loud, too rich, too full of themselves and so much happier than Europeans - but it has become an epidemic. And it seems incredible to me. More than that, it turns my stomach.

America is this country's greatest friend and our staunchest ally. We are bonded to the US by culture, language and blood. A little over half a century ago, around half a million Americans died for our freedoms, as well as their own. Have we forgotten so soon? And exactly a year ago, thousands of ordinary men, women and children - not just Americans, but from dozens of countries - were butchered by a small group of religious fanatics. Are we so quick to betray them?

What touched the heart about those who died in the twin towers and on the planes was that we recognized them. Young fathers and mothers, somebody's son and somebody's daughter, husbands and wives, and children, some unborn.

And these people brought it on themselves? And their nation is to blame for their meticulously planned slaughter?

These days you don't have to be some dust-encrusted nut job in Kabul or Karachi or Finsbury Park to see America as the Great Satan. The anti-American alliance is made up of self-loathing liberals who blame the Americans for every ill in the Third World, and conservatives suffering from power-envy, bitter that the world's only superpower can do what it likes without having to ask permission.

The truth is that America has behaved with enormous restraint since September 11.

Remember, remember.

Remember the gut-wrenching tapes of weeping men phoning their wives to say, "I love you," before they were burned alive.

Remember those people leaping to their deaths from the top of burning skyscrapers.

Remember the hundreds of firemen buried alive.

Remember the smiling face of that beautiful little girl who was on one of the planes with her mum.

Remember, remember - and realize that America has never retaliated for 9/11 in anything like the way it could have.

So a few al-Qaeda tourists got locked without a trial in Camp X-ray? Pass the Kleenex...

So some Afghan wedding receptions were shot up after they merrily fired their semi-automatics in a sky full of American planes? A shame, but maybe next time they should stick to confetti.

AMERICA could have turned a large chunk of the world into a parking lot. That it didn't is a sign of strength. American voices are already being raised against attacking Iraq - that's what a democracy is for. How many in the Islamic world will have a minute's silence for the slaughtered innocents of 9/11? How many Islamic leaders will have the guts to say that the mass murder of 9/11 was an abomination?

When the news of 9/11 broke on the West Bank, those freedom-loving Palestinians were dancing in the street. America watched all of that - and didn't push the button. We should thank the stars that America is the most powerful nation in the world. I still find it incredible that 9/11 did not provoke all-out war. Not a "war on terrorism." A real war.

The fundamentalist dudes are talking about "opening the gates of hell," if America attacks Iraq. Well, America could have opened the gates of hell like you wouldn't believe.

The US is the most militarily powerful nation that ever strode the face of the earth. The campaign in Afghanistan may have been less than perfect and the planned war on Iraq may be misconceived.

But don't blame America for not bringing peace and light to these wretched countries. How many democracies are there in the Middle East, or in the Muslim world? You can count them on the fingers of one hand - assuming you haven't had any chopped off for minor shoplifting.

I love America, yet America is hated. I guess that makes me Bush's poodle. But I would rather be a dog in New York City than a Prince in Riyadh. Above all, America is hated because it is what every country wants to be - rich, free, strong, open, optimistic. Not ground down by the past, or religion, or some caste system. America is the best friend this country ever had and we should start remembering that.

Or do you really think the USA is the root of all evil? Tell it to the loved ones of the men and women who leaped to their death from the burning towers.

Tell it to the nursing mothers whose husbands died on one of the hijacked planes, or were ripped apart in a collapsing skyscraper. And tell it to the hundreds of young widows whose husbands worked for the New York Fire Department.

To our shame, George Bush gets a worse press than Saddam Hussein. Once we were told that Saddam gassed the Kurds, tortured his own people and set up rape-camps in Kuwait. Now we are told he likes Quality Street. Save me the orange center, oh mighty one!

Remember, remember, September 11. One of the greatest atrocities in human history was committed against America.

No, do more than remember. Never forget.

Tony Parsons
London, England UK

Wednesday, September 10, 2003

Dollar Dollar

I opened a Roth IRA today. Well it's processing anyway. Market is down past couple of days so no hurry on having the paperwork go through. I put in the max $3k I am legally allowed but I split it between two funds. $1k went into the equivalent of the S&P 500 index to hedge any losses I might take from the $2k that went into a very aggressive mutual fund called Emerging Markets. It's a risk but what isn't when you want to invest?

I have a pretty good size 401k that's growing as the market rebounds. I'm glad to see that. I'll always have that.

I used to dabble in stocks too but sold them back in January to pay off all of my bills. I'm quite happy to be bill free this year so it was definitely worth it. That investment actually was an interesting period. Originally my investment was $3k I put into a strategy known as the Foolish Four which is something that the guys at Fool.com came up with. The Foolish Four is a spin off of an older strategy called Dogs of the Dow. In Dogs of the Dow, you take the ten companies of the Dow Jones Industrial Average with the highest yield and invest in those ten companies for one year. Yield is the relationship between the stock's price and what they pay out in dividends. In Yield, the idea is if a stock is paying a lot of dividends, it probably means its oversold which explains the low price and the price is most likely due for a comeback, so you ride the comeback. If it doesn't rebound, well you're getting pretty good dividends and you wait a year to reallocate your investments. The Foolish Four takes the top four instead of the top ten. It's cheaper, less broker fees to pay for the transactions and you have less stocks you have to keep an eye on. I put my three grand in the Foolish Four in May 1999. That's right, the height of the tech boom. Within a couple of years, that 3k was at 1700. Almost a 50 percent drop on a strategy that's supposed to average 20 percent gains per year. If you go back to the Fool site, you'll notice (or not) they no longer support the Foolish Four. Gee I wonder why? So I ate my losses, sold my four supposed-to-be oversold stocks, took my measly 1700 and started playing around with cyclical stocks.

Cyclical stocks have prices that show a pattern of going up and down over a period of time. This is more like day trading. You buy low, sell high, find another at its low point and do it again. Sometimes you can come back to the same stock after its tumbled. Some people even short the stock (shorting a stock is where you borrow shares from your broker, sell them off at hopefully a high price, then when it drops, buy the shares back, return them to your broker and you keep the savings) on the way down, buy them on the way up and keep doing this all on one stock. I never shorted a stock in my life but in 2002 I was able to take my 1700 and turn it into 3400. That's right, 100 percent gains in one year using cyclical stocks. Not bad if I do say so myself. That whoops every mutual fund's rate of return in this world by a huge margin! Take that Warren Buffett! And since I sold my Foolish Four losses in the same year I made the huge profit, I hardly had any taxes on it. Technically I only netted 400 dollars that year. So I sold that $3400 to pay the rest of my bills early this year.

You might ask, why not stick with your new strategy and try and turn your 3400 into 6800 this year? Because I know when to quit when I'm ahead, I just got burned on the previous strategy so having a new strategy that actually didn't cost me money made me elated, plus it's more important to pay off bills before you try to make money, you're guaranteed to save money paying off your bills first.

What's nice is I still have a couple of grand saved (it's easy to have this much when you don't have bills). I think I'm going to get back into trading stocks with that 2k and see what I can do with it. 100% per year is a very nice rate of return. I'll be happy if I can make 20%. What am I saying, I'll be happy if I don't lose it.

Tuesday, September 09, 2003

There's No Business Like Music Piracy

I was watching World News Tonight and they had a segment on the RIAA's insane decision to sue their customers and in one particular scene, they showed a popular peer2peer program with a long list of song titles this particular patron was downloading.

The list read like this:

Rosemary Clooney

Ok. If that wasn't staged just for the story, then someone has split personalities.

Sunday, September 07, 2003

Graveyard Shift Tonight

Another late night at work for the FAA. They're hooking up a new system to their air traffic system which could affect my feed to their air traffic system. So I'm here to make sure my stuff doesn't break. I'm only needed at the start of it to take my system offline and at the end of it to make sure it goes back into operation. In between I twiddle my thumbs. Actually, I brought a DVD, Ecks vs. Sever. I heard bad things about it, but I get to look at Lucy Liu while getting paid for it, so it can't be too bad.

I don't have to do these late night sessions too often. Just whenever the FAA makes a major change to one of their systems. The work has to be done in the dead of night to lessen the safety risk for the air traffic controllers should something go very wrong. I don't mind doing this once in awhile, it's a nice change of pace, keeps things interesting and reminds my superiors that I'm dedicated to the job. I've had worse shifts than this. I used to be on mids permanantly at one point. It wasn't too bad, but I never could figure out if I should go to bed as soon as I got home or stay up and sleep later, waking up just before I had to go in. I also had a shift where I worked ten days in a row, followed by four days off then do it again. That was probably the most interesting shift I ever had to work. It was tough but I was in my early twenties then so my body could handle it even if my mind was all screwed up. I had another shift where it was four ten hour days with a three day weekend. Doesn't sound bad but I had to be here at 5a Sunday morning, 5a Monday then switched to second shift 2p Tuesday and Wednesday. It sounds odd but the switch in shift between Monday and Tuesday was the easy part. The hard part was being able to sleep in five days out of the week then have to be in on Sunday and Monday by 5a. On those days, I sometimes didn't even remember the drive in to work.

Anyway, we're about to get started. Time to start my movie.

Friday, September 05, 2003


It's true you don't appreciate something until it's gone. We had bad flooding here Monday, supposedly worst in 108 years and it caused state-wide damage to lots of equpiment including whatever took my DSL connection out at work. The phone company had to make so many repairs, this business customer had to wait a week before they would get to my problem and restore my connection. In the meantime, I had to go next door to another building to use a 56k dial up to conduct my work. What's worse is the dialup is not a local provider, my corporation has its own dial in provider 1000 miles away. So not only do I have to use a dial up, I have to use it long distance and use the proxy servers provided by my company. For anyone who has to use company proxy servers, you know just how lightning fast these can be. It took me half an hour to print off three FedEx invoices. Talk about a test of patience. And of course while you're using company proxy, you can't look at personal sites and that's what was really driving me nuts. I couldn't get my news, market updates, update my blog, read other blogs, chat in instant messenger, play Google's website roulette or otherwise just generally goof off. I missed that! Oh internet access you sweet sweet bird, never leave me again.

Wednesday, August 27, 2003

Singing In The Rain

A chance of rain was supposed to happen today so I woke up and turned on the weather channel while getting ready for work. The reason why rain concerns me is because my Jeep has a soft top and it has been down since last Thursday. It's been nice and hot everyday and I've enjoyed the open air during my long drives.

So the weather guy this morning says 30 percent chance of rain, "no need to cancel your plans because if there is rain, not everyone is going to get it." I got ready for work, went out to the garage, opened the garage door and looked at the sky. It looked pretty gray in the west, I figured there was a decent chance I'd see a few drops so I decided to put the top up but not put in any of the windows. On a Jeep this means, the only thing around you protecting you from the elements is the windshield.

Twenty minutes into my trip and I'm in the middle of a typhoon. The sun completely disappeared so it's pitch black except for the occasional flicker of death-lightning lighting my way. The rain is hitting the road so hard, SUVs are pulling under bridges and on the shoulder because they can't see to drive. Wimps. What's bad for a convertible is when it rains not only does the rain fall on the outside of the windshield, it hits the inside too and the only internal windshield wiper I have is my hand. In addition to the downpour that's pushing people off the road, the streamline winds are not allowing the rain to fall in the normal gravitational direction of, you know, straight down. Instead it's going sideways and hitting me on the face soaking the right side of my whole body. My passenger seat has amassed a small puddle of water, my dash is splashed with tiny water droplets. 30 percent huh? I've never getting my weather from them again. By mid morning, the whole city (over 200 square miles) was hit by strong storms. Idiots! That weather report was only 30 minutes old!

Despite my wet encounter this morning, that's only the second worse time I've been caught in heavy rain while driving my Jeep. I love it.

Monday, August 25, 2003

The Artchitect and Neo

The scene in Matrix Reloaded where Neo reached the source of the Matrix and encounters the Architect has some very interesting dialog, most of which is lost on the audience on first viewing. I've copied the dialog from matrix_reloaded_6's blog who provided some of his insight on the scene, which is very good and definintely worth reading. I only include the movie dialogue here, no comments.

Architect: Hello Neo

Neo: Who are you?

Architect: I am the Architect. I created the Matrix. I have been waiting for you. You have many questions and although the process has altered your consciousness you remain irrevocably human, ergo some of my answers you will understand and some of them you will not. Concordantly, while your first question maybe the most pertinent you may or may not realize it is also the most irrelevant.

Neo: Why am I here?

Architect: Your life is the sum of a remainder of an unbalanced equation inherent to the programming of the matrix. You are the eventuality of an anomaly which despite my sincerest efforts I have been unable to eliminate from what is otherwise a harmony of mathematical precision. While it remains a burden assiduously avoided it is not unexpected and thus not beyond a measure of control. Which has led you inexcerably here.

Neo: You haven’t answered my question.

Architect: Quite right. Interesting, that was quicker then the others.

Neo: Others? (What others? How many? Answer me)

Architect: The Matrix is older then you know. I prefer counting from the emergence of one integral anomaly to the emergence of the next. In which case this is the sixth version.

Neo: Then there are only two possible explanations, either no one told me, or no one knows.

Architect: Precisely, as you are undoubtedly gathering the anomaly is systemic. Creating fluctuations in even the most simplistic equations.

Neo: Choice, the problem is choice.

Architect: The first matrix I designed was quite naturally perfect; it was a work of art, flawless, sublime. A triumph equaled only by its monumental failure. The inevitability of its doom is apparent to me now as a consequence of the imperfection inherent in every human being. Thus, I redesigned it, Based on your history to more accurately reflect the varying grotesqueries of your nature. However I was again frustrated by failure. I have since come to understand that the answer eluded me because it required a lesser mind, or perhaps a mind less bound by the parameters of perfection. Thus the answer was stumbled upon by another, and intuitive program, initially created to investigate certain aspects of the human psyche. If I am the father of the matrix, she would undoubtedly be its mother.

Neo: The Oracle

Architect: Please, as I was saying she stumbled upon a solution whereby nearly 99 percent of all test subjects accepted the program as long as they were given a choice, even if they were only aware of the choice at an near unconscious level. While this answered function it was obviously fundamentally flawed thus creating the otherwise contradictory systemic anomaly, that if left unchecked might threaten the system itself. Ergo those that refuse the program while a minority if unchecked would constitute an escalating probability of disaster.

Neo: This is about Zion

Architect: You are here because Zion is about to be destroyed. Its every living inhabitant terminated, its entire existence eradicated.

Neo: Bullsh--

Architect: Denial is the most predictable of all human responses. But, rest assured, this will be the sixth time we have destroyed it. And we have become exceedingly efficient at it. The function of the One is now to return to the source allowing a temporary dissemination of the code you carry reinserting the prime program after which you will be required to select from the matrix 23 individuals, 16 female 7 male, to rebuild Zion. Failure to comply with this process will result in a cataclysmic system crash killing everyone connected to the matrix. Which, coupled with the extermination of Zion will ultimately result in the extinction of the entire human race.

Neo: You won’t let it happen, you can’t. You need human beings to survive.

Architect: There are levels of survival we are prepared to accept. However the relevant issue is whether or not you are ready to accept the responsibility for the death of every human being in this world. It is interesting reading your reactions. Your 5 predecessors were by design based on a similar predication a contingent affirmation that was meant to create a profound attachment to the rest of your species facilitating the function of the One. While the others experienced this in a very general way your experience is far more specific, Vis a vie love.

Neo: Trinity

Architect: Apropo, she entered the matrix to save your life at the cost of her own.

Neo: No

Architect: Which brings us at last to the moment of truth, wherein the fundamental flaw is ultimately expressed and the anomaly revealed as both beginning and end. There are two doors, the door to your right leads to the source and the salvation of Zion, the door to your left leads back to the matrix to her and to the end of your species. As you adequately put, the problem is choice. But we already know what you are going to do don’t we? Already I can see the chain reaction the chemical precursors that signal the onset of an emotion designed specifically to overwhelm logic and reason. An emotion that is already blinding you from the simple and obvious truth, she is going to die and there is nothing you can do to stop it. Hope, it is the quintessential human delusion simultaneously the source of your greatest strength and your greatest weakness.

Neo: If I were you, I would hope that we don’t meet again.

Architect: We won’t.

Saturday, August 23, 2003

Vive la Revolutions

The new Matrix trailer for Revolutions has been released on the official website. The clip is narrated by the Oracle and this is what she says:

"Everything that has a beginning has an end
I see the end coming
I see the darkness spreading
I see death
And you are all that stands in his way
If you can not stop him tonight
Then I fear that tomorrow may never come"

Friday, August 22, 2003

Small Change, New Title

Five posts in as many days. New record for me!

I decided to change the name of my blog here from pick lock's brain to outlining samsara. I thought it was a more appropriate reference to my blabbering than an inference to picking locks, which is where I got most of my readers from anyway - a Google search result of people looking for information on breaking and entering. Boy were they surprised when the search engine brought them here.
Major Archeological Discovery!

I'd like to know how the Alabama Judicial Building got their hands on an artifact that the Nazi's in Raiders of the Lost Ark couldn't get. And why isn't anyone looking at the monument in Alabama turning to goo?

Thursday, August 21, 2003

Tapped Bumper

On my way in to work this morning, I was stopped on a highway on-ramp. Rush hour traffic in my area can really get backed up so I'm half way down the ramp, completely stopped. Everyone else is too as the cars ahead are looking for a place to merge onto the highway. I have the top down on the Jeep so I can hear everything going on around me and I heard a crunch behind me. I looked in the rear view mirror to see what it was and I was sure the car behind me just got rear ended. It wasn't hard enough to send the driver into me thankfully but I couldn't see any damage since we were all packed in close. I wasn't even sure the two cars behind me were the ones involved.

I figured the two would pull over on the shoulder once traffic got moving. Traffic did get moving, but the car behind me kept driving like nothing happened. We're going down the ramp and the car that caused the accident started tapping his horn notifying the guy he hit that they should pull over and exchange insurance information. But the car behind me ignored all of that and merged onto the highway as if nothing happened. Apparently he was in a hurry or wasn't concerned about the damage.

Once we were moving I could finally see the damage done on the car that caused the accident. He had a giant dent in the hood and it made me laugh because he couldn't get the guy he hit to pull over.

Wednesday, August 20, 2003

The 411 on 911

How did they come up with 911 as the emergency phone number? The first number is in the lower right section of the keypad and the last two are in the opposite corner. It's been around for many years right, even back when most of the phones were rotaries? You know how long it takes to dial 9 on a rotary? Anyone who remembers back that far, if you had to dial a 9 in your phone number, you would stick your finger in the slot, pull the dial back to that beer tab looking thing and release it. You had so much time while the 9 was dialing you could go put on an Iron Butterfly record, play through the whole thing, come back and put in the rest of your number. And God help you if you had two or more 9's in there. You felt like your index finger was broken by the time you were done.

I was just curious why they gave the people who are most desperate at the time of dialing the hardest 3 digit number to dial (are you sure you don't want to make it 919?) and for the people who want to look up where Uncle Harvey lives the more efficient number. Right there, boom, 4-1-1.

Tuesday, August 19, 2003

Kevin Bacon to Kevin Bacon in 3

I'm having fun with the Kevin Bacon game. I'm using an online resource called Star Links to try and find the most reclusive names and see how far of a leap they have to make to match. I can't get past the score of 3 which means it used 3 movies to link the two names including the two movies each actor was in.

For example, John Holmes the porn actor to Ronald Reagan yields a return score of 3. Yes that's right. Ronald Reagan was in The Last Outpost with Bill Williams. Bill Williams was in Night of the Zombies with Jamie Gillis. And Jamie Gillis was in Ginger Lynn: The Movie with John Holmes.

Here are some other fun ones:

Lara Flynn Boyle was in Where the Day Takes You (1992) with Dermot Mulroney
Dermot Mulroney was in About Schmidt (2002) with Jack Nicholson

Ice-T was in CB4 (1993) with Ice Cube

John Belushi was in Tarzoon, la honte de la jungle (1975) with Brian Doyle-Murray
Brian Doyle-Murray was in Snow Dogs (2002) with James Belushi

Sarah Jessica Parker was in First Wives Club, The (1996) with J. Smith-Cameron
J. Smith-Cameron was in You Can Count on Me (2000) with Matthew Broderick

Jennifer Aniston was in Waiting for Woody (1998) with George Clooney
George Clooney was in Confessions of a Dangerous Mind (2002) with Brad Pitt

Ellen DeGeneres was in Edtv (1999) with Jay Leno
Jay Leno was in John Q (2002) with Anne Heche

Christopher Walken was in Illuminata (1998) with Ben Gazzara
Ben Gazzara was in Bloodline (1979) with Gert Frobe

Verne Troyer was in You'll Never Wiez in This Town Again (2003) with Whoopi Goldberg
Whoopi Goldberg was in Telephone, The (1988) with Herve Villechaize

Monday, August 18, 2003

Dreams of Solomon Grundy

Here was a dream I had Saturday night. I went with a group of friends to a "resort." In reality this is something we actually do; get a nice place in a remote city and game all weekend. In my dream however, the nice place was an underground cave. I was disappointed they would pick such a drab place for this year's get-together but I wasn't totally against it, as long as we had fun. In the past, when we did this we would bring thousands of dollars of electronic equipment with us to keep us entertained: TVs, game conosles, cell phones, a video camera. In my dream it was no exception. We were wired to the teeth for fun.

After we moved in and got settled, I found out that there was a race of cave dwellers that lived near our underground resort. They spent their whole life in these caves and as a result, looked very pale, wore shabby clothes and had bad English. They were tall and hulk-like as well, very built. Their physique seemed as chiseled as the walls of this underground city. Sidenote: I think I know how their physical description made it into my dream. That day I was listening to a Crash Test Dummies song called Superman. In the song, there are references to a Superfriends-Legion of Doom character named Solomon Grundy who happens to look a lot like the cave dweller race in my dream. Very interesting.

So we're in our resort/cave room, playing our video games when the cave dwellers sent a platoon of cave-soldiers over to the resort side to attack the residents. Apparently, this is a common occurence because our resort had a response team of defenders ready there to fight back. The battle was bloody (chalky?), both sides sustained heavy losses. When it was all over, we were safe but our electronic equipment was gone. Come to find out the reason for the attack was that the cave dwellers are merchants and they sell used equipment in their cave shop, located not far from the cave resort. Since they don't make it to the surface world a lot, their only line of supply are the tourists staying in the nearby cave resort. My video camera and Nintendo console were among the stolen items and as result I was not happy.

I decided to visit the cave dweller shops to see if I can find my possessions and reclaim them. If there was going to be trouble, I'd just break down and buy them back. I looked at some of the items on sale and they were definitely used. Old VCRs, stereos, hand held video game units; all scratched and dented, basically pieces of crap was all they had for sale. This was stuff you would find at a flea market or yard sale. To make it worse, the items were all overly priced. A ten year old VHS VCR went for $1000! I don't know how they stayed in business.

I never found my items and even if I did, I knew I didn't have the cash to get it back. I returned to the resort and took out my frustration on my friends for picking such an obviously piss-poor place to spend our vacation. I yelled at them for hours and said I was picking the spot next year.

Wednesday, August 13, 2003

Politics Is Definitely An Art

To be successful in politics, it seems to me you have to have a sense of timing. There are a lot of factors which you can't control but nevertheless they are factors which the voters expect you to control as an elected official. And if you can commit and action that coincides with a usual pattern and claim your action caused the change, you become the big man. Even tougher to pull off is finding a way to speed up the pattern. There are some circumstances where you can control a situation but it would require extreme action.

The U.S. economy is supposedly on the rebound soon after President Bush pushed major tax cuts that he said would create jobs. He does this in a time when it was likely the economy would have rebounded on its own. The country has never gone four straight years of a down market and we just completed three. To add fuel to it, the economy is recovering quickly mostly due to massive military spending to support the wars in Iraq and Afghanastan. Talk about a spin. The ugly face of war spurs our economy and Bush claims it was his idea of the tax cuts that did most of the work. Excellent work my genius political friend. No wonder you are President of the United States.

Tuesday, August 12, 2003

You Can't Make This Stuff Up

I met a friend of a friend of mine not too long ago. Out of habit, I extended my right hand to shake his, but he didn't respond. I looked down at his arm and noticed he was wearing a cast. I didn't ask how he did it, I just apologized for not seeing the cast before gesturing. I asked my friend a few weeks later what happened to the guy's arm. This is what he told me:

"He was out walking his dog when a goose came up and attacked the dog. He tried to intervene to fend off the goose but he tripped on the leash and fell to the sidewalk breaking his arm."

I was stunned for a long time as I tried to find which part of that statement to make fun of first. It was humor overload.

Monday, August 04, 2003

Murphy Was Right; Even Though He Didn't Say It

What to know something? Murphy's Law is not "Anything that can go wrong, will." The actual quote by McDonnell-Douglas' quality-control engineer Edward A. Murphy, Jr was,

"If there are two or more ways to do something, and one of those ways can result in a catastrophe, then someone will do it."

Murphy is misquoted and given credit for a reference made by something called Finagle's Law of Dynamic Negatives.

Go figure.
The Smiling Faces of Saddam

The US military, using a photo of Saddam Hussein, digitally altered it to produce the different potential looks Saddam could have today to be used by the soldiers in the hunt for the man. What's interesting is that in these photos that show the deposed Iraqi leader with a beard or white hair or what he would look like with no mustache, he's smiling in every one.

If anything is going to help the U.S. military find this guy, it would be a photo with the proper look on a man's face when he loses his country, fortunes, family, power and freedom. Smiling is the last expression he should have.

Tuesday, July 29, 2003

Jon Stewart on CNN

I read this CNN transcript with Jon Stewart and had to link it here so I could come back to it anytime. He and I happen to share a lot of the same viewpoints on what's wrong with tv journalism and the inherent flaw to bring news through television. Jon takes a more cynical approach (as is his genius style) in this interview with CNN's Howard Kurtz.

What good sports they are for letting Jon rattle on about tv networks on a tv network.
France Declares Themselves Terrorist Target By Arson

The French have decided to jump on the we're terrorist targets too bandwagon by declaring the forest fires in the southern region of their country as acts of a "a new form of terrorism."

Given their military history, you can understand the paranoia. They must really love their trees if that forest fire is their 9/11. Just throw some potatos on the blaze and make some freedom fries.

Friday, July 25, 2003

Yao Goes Down

Reports say Houston Rockets center phenom Yao Ming cut his eyebrow running into another player during a practice match in China.

His eyebrow. Who is tall enough to run into Yao's eyebrow? Are they sure he didn't accidentally run into the backboard?

Monday, July 21, 2003

Today's Guest Writer: CorpSpeak

Since sometimes I feel like I'm writing gibberish, I decided to ask a random word generator known as CorpSpeak written by mathematicians extraordinare at LavaRnd, to write today's column in three paragraphs. It is as follows:

To: pick lock's brain
From: readers
Date: Mon Jul 21 12:50:15 2003
Subject: Feedback

It is fiscally true that the shared strategic and tactical actions utilize the gating factors. Leading indicators would seem to suggest that disclosures make it happen. As our company President states in a recent memo about infrastructures, " the competitive World-Wide Web outsources the task-driven time frame."

The value-added Digital Media market steps up to the challenge of the super-scalar scripting language, on a going-forward basis. We've got to do it in the database servers of price points. Surely, we can conclude that components indicate that culture changes reposition the effective information superhighway. During this period of company transition, the geography takes the issue off-line.

Having first verified that HTML authoring tools continually get up to speed on OEM ongoing support for increased productivity, a careful examination of the database server reveals that kick-ass graphics ensures teamwork. Leading indicators would seem to suggest that the unique write-offs can hardly help but to enhance the web-based key player. As a company, we have a firm grip on the environments.

The above text was randomly generated and if I were to run CorpSpeak again, I'd get something completely different. LavaRnd used to use lava lamps to generate their random numbers (which explains the name) but now it's the static visual noise generated by a webcam with its cap on, aka tv snow. They also have lotto number generators, haiku random poetry and a "Nothing" generator which won't disappoint.

CD in my player: Matrix Soundtrack
Last movie I saw at theater: Johnny English
Last movie I saw at home: Catch Me If You Can

Friday, July 18, 2003

United States Plays the Axis Of Evil Shell Game

The United States is playing the find-the-nuclear-power shell game with the "Axis of Evils," except in this version of the game, two of the shells happen to have the peanut underneath of them and the U.S. apparently picked the one that didn't.

North Korea

Thursday, July 17, 2003

Jurassic Park

Japan Researchers Mull Cloning Mammoths.

Tuesday, July 15, 2003

Hacker Temptation

I was thinking about computer hackers and pondered their capabilities as well as their moral resolve in committing certain acts. I began to wonder if there were any situations in which a hacker might think that what he was doing was unquestionably for the good of socieity. People can justify any action usually by claiming that "the ends justify the means" or something along those lines. Did you ever play the game Scruples? Well I came up with a good question befitting of the board game. I came up with a theortical situation in which I'm not sure any hacker would hesitate in pursuing.

You hack into a corporate server and hijack important information, something like credit card info, customer social security numbers or industry trade secrets that the company's competition would like to get their grubby hands on. You send your ransom note to said corporation asking that they hire a cyber security firm, to be named by you, the hacker. In exchange, you promise not to publicly post the sensitive information that you just "borrowed." You then buy many shares of the cyber-security firm the hacked corporation hopefully agrees to hire.

It's a win-win-win. You commit one small illegal activity, no one gets hurt if the corporation agrees to hire the security firm you suggest, which they should be most inclined to do given your recent cyber infiltration.

1) You do them a favor by increasing the security of their systems to prevent the really bad guys from hacking them and doing who-knows-what to the information you happen to have a copy of yourself.

2) You also help out another company increase their clientelle by at least one for simply recommending their services, which the owners, employees and share holders of the cyber security firm should be grateful for what you accomplished. Do not try to collect commission here.

3) You might as well make some money from this generous transaction by investing in the cyber security firm that the hacked corporation is going to hire. Call it a conslutation fee for helping two companies flourish. As with anything in a capitialist society, the better your talents (the more effective your attack is), the better the reward.

Is this a victimless crime?

CDs in my stereos: Toadies' Rubberneck
Last movie I saw at theater: Pirates of the Carribean
Last movie I saw at home: Old School

Monday, July 07, 2003

Courtesy Flush

I learned about the courtesy flush from the movie The Brothers McMullen. A courtesy flush is used when you are on the toilet doing your business, and after that first drop, you flush it away before you're done to cut down on the odor in the bathroom. The alternative is to let the log sit there for the 20 minutes or however long you take, stinking up the joint. It's very useful when you don't want the person using the bathroom after you thinking you're a sick wookie that had garbage for lunch.

Someone suggested in a new method recently, unrelated to the goals of the courtesy flush but for the practice of hygiene. He said toilet users need to urinate, flush, then defecate (such a lovely word). The idea is that when you drop one and splash up occurs, you can avoid your bum becoming awash with pee. I'm still considering that one. I've never had a problem with it before and not sure I can set that habit. You could drop first then urinate, but I don't think many people can hold it in their bladder that long while they clean their bowels.

If you're into this sort of stuff, might I recommend The RE/Search Guid to Bodily Fluids by Paul Spinard. It's a good read, especially in the bathroom.

CDs in my stereos: None
Last movie I saw at theater: The Hulk
Last movie I saw at home: Man In The Moon

Monday, June 30, 2003


It has been awhile since my latest post but I have a good excuse and a note from my mother. Over the past week I got married and had my honeymoon. The ceremony was nice. It was outdoors, great weather. It was short and simple - another plus. The honeymoon was the fun part. We spent it at Camp Jeep 2003 in the hills just outside of Charlottesville Virginia. Great Jeeping terrain. I came back with layers of mud caked on my Jeep and I'm going to keep it on there as a badge of honor.

I'm trying to get settled into things at work. I had a lot of work to catch up on while I was gone. Once I get things calmed down and organized, I'll be able to post more.

CD in the car stereo: Pink Floyd's Echoes
Last movie I saw at theater: The Hulk
Last movie I saw at home: Children of Dune Miniseries

Thursday, June 19, 2003

Vader Plays Baldwin, Miami DJs Play Communist Dictator

Glengarry Glen Darth. It's exactly what you think it is. If you don't recognize the parody of the title, you probably won't appreciate it as much.

Also, Miami DJs play a prank phone call on Cuba President Fidel Castro. Read the translated script.

CD in the car stereo: INXS' Live Baby Live
Last movie I saw at theater: Matrix Reloaded (3rd viewing)
Last movie I saw at home: Kiki's Delivery Service (anime)

Tuesday, June 17, 2003

Scary Signs

Photoshop geeks had fun with our highway signs. Take a look.
Kung Pow: Enter Jack Daniels

I invented a new drinking game that kicked my can. I'm not a big drinker. I can count the number of times I've been drunk on one hand; I didn't even drink when I went to a strip club last week, but one of those rare moments happened this past weekend.

If you've ever seen the very dumb-but-very-funny movie Kung Pow: Enter the Fist, you know the female lead in the movie tend to trail her lines with a "WEEEOOOOOWEEEEEOOOOWEEEE" (sp?) to fill out the lip sync since the English dubbed voice ended way before her lips did. My drinking game, we all had to take a shot of Jack Daniels whiskey every time she did that. The problem was that before I came up with the game, I only remembered the actress doing that four or five times in the movie. It turns out that it's closer to a dozen. I'm not even counting the moments where it was questionable what she was saying but since we were getting blitzed fast, we kinda looked the other way and did not drink, to, you know, stay alive. It got to the point that when she appeared in a scene, we started complaining and yelling (some of us cursing) about her presence and every time she opened her mouth and finished up a sentence, we held our breath to see if we had to make our own situation worse.

I felt the hangover for two days.

CD in the car stereo: Toadies' Rubberneck
Last movie I saw at theater: Matrix Reloaded (3rd viewing)
Last movie I saw at home: Druids with Christopher Lambert