Archive for June, 2003

Tonsa deals

I was in Circuit City three times last week. That’s just insane.

Day one: returning a DVD.

Day two: buying a package of 50 CD-Rs ($1.99 after two mail-in rebates) and a package of 100 CD-Rs ($15 after two mail-in rebates).

Day three: buying a 120 gig hard drive ($80 after two mail-in rebates; the offer expired Saturday).

So, after I mail in those six rebates (for three items), I’ll have made out pretty darn well.

Moderately funny story about installing the second hard drive (bringing my total capacity to 160 gigs!): I installed the drive, shut the case, and booted up the computer. The BIOS didn’t detect the new drive and it took me an hour (OK… more than an hour) to realize that I had forgotten to attach the power supply to the hard drive. Oopsie.

The new RSS?

There’s been so much battling back and forth about RSS recently, it’s felt like a political debate. I mean, c’mon, it’s a friggin’ content syndication format. How the heck could there be so much anger floating about?

I sort of tired of most of the name-calling, in-fighting, and general nastiness that surrounding timestamps and code semantics. So, I’m definitely happy to see the Echo Project taking off in such a positive way. What’s the Echo Project, you ask? A vendor-neutral, easy-to-understand, community-built weblog format that’s already getting great support from tool developers and the weblog community. What’s this mean for bloggers at large? I’m not entirely sure yet, but I have a feeling it could spark some real innovation and help foster a new sense of collaboration, even amongst competitors.

Flattery will get you a good tip

Mike asks: “So how long is it going to take to get used to wearing a wedding ring? And is it true that ladies in bars can’t resist a man wearing a wedding ring?”

I have an answer to the first question: but you have to read The Four Stages of Wearing a Wedding Ring to see it.

With regards to increased attractiveness to the opposite sex after donning a wedding band, I really don’t have much in my history that would allow me to compare the before-and-after effects, but I did get a nice compliment last night that may have been ring-related… from a young lady would is probably ten years my junior, to boot. I went out to dinner alone at a nearby Italian restaurant and paid with my credit card, a Citibank Mastercard that has my picture on it. My waitress commented, after swiping my credit card through the machine, “I hope you don’t mind me saying… but this is the nicest picture I’ve ever seen on the front of a credit card. Most people end up sending in some awful picture…” Of course, the picture is my high school senior portrait from nearly ten years ago, but still. I thanked her for the compliment. When I told Huyen, she thought the waitress was hitting on me. I think it was just the power of the wedding ring.

Shouting out

Happy bidet to Corey, who finally joins us in the 27-club. On the way to the bowling alley Saturday, Kristy referred to someone that’s 30 as “someone our age” and I quickly responded, “No. 30 is old. We’re still 27.”

Happy birthday also goes out to Barbara Fletcher, who keeps one of the best-written “introspective blogs” out there.

Condolences go out to Alex for the loss of Charlie… losing a pet is as hard as losing a relative.

Welcome back to the blogging fold, Rodeo Rob. We missed you ’round the ranch.

Jack the Hammer

Here’s a tip: if you’re having trouble waking up in the morning, all you need is a construction crew in your neighbor’s driveway, jackhammering at 7:30am. It works. Trust me.

I’ve got a woody

Overheard at a local lumberyard: “Any day’s a victory when you don’t wind up under the lumber.”

Amen, brother. Amen.

Weekend Blues

This weekend, in addition to standing in the pouring rain for 30 minutes before watching Prom Night and The Toolbox Murders with Amy and Ryder, Huyen and I got to hang out with the fam and visit with extended fam at my cousin Greg’s new condo. I also was able to identify all but two people by first and last name in my Kindergarten class picture (in that picture, I’m sitting next to the first girl I ever kissed… the deed had already been done, clearly, by the huge smile on her face).

Now it’s Monday and all I can think is, “Another weekend’s four days away…” Is that wrong?

Spam. Period.

This is in response to Chris’ assertation that spam’s not that big of a deal and doesn’t need government intervention. I figured I’d lob an opposing viewpoint over the net here rather than cluttering up his comment section.

Really, its not that big of a deal. People that think we need a government solution to spam probably should not be allowed on the Internet.

It’s not a big deal if you’re 1.) a power user 2.) with one account that has 3.) strong spam blocking and 4.) e-mail filtering.

It is a big deal if any of those four don’t apply to you.

For the average user, having an AOL account or a Juno account where 95% of e-mail is spam (even after spam blocking done on the server side), it’s a big deal.

And for the power user, it can still be a problem. I have a dozen e-mail accounts I check multiple times a day (each for different sites). They get varying amounts of spam… my main one is now averaging over 200 spams a day. Many are captured by Spamcop’s blacklist and my custom blacklist. Many more are flagged by PopFile. But quite a few still get through.

Even with a combination of blacklists, filtering, Bayesian analysis, and special hotkeys, it’s a substantial waste of my time and resources. Plus it really drives me up the wall.

Now I’m not saying that the feds getting involved in the fight against spam is the best of ideas, but as much as technology has fought spam, something needs to be done. Whether it’s a harsh federal law or SPF or permission auditing, I’m not sure, but with a 100% increase in the volume of spam I receive in less than a year, this thing is growing to epidemic proportions.

Unrelated to my argument, but have you noticed how a lot of spam now is offering you “larger balls and penis!” I picture these guys sitting behind a computer sending out e-mail thinking, “It worked for me!”

C’mon on, now, they’re so cute!

Even the most hardened, embittered amongst you have got to admit, having baby bunnies living in a flowerbed outside of your work is really cute:

Bunnies

No drought here

After so many huge storms in recent weeks, I start to wonder if George W.’s sitting in the white house thinking to himself, “Jeez… God really is pissed at me…”

Downpour