Monday, March 27, 2006

For All You Simpsons Fans... Updated!

The live action Simpsons intro that's been floating around the net recently was used as the actual intro on last night's very funny episode (where the family appear on a Trading Spouses-like show called Flippin' Wives.) The only difference between the online version and the one used used last night is that they flipped the shots of "Maggie" and "Marge" in the car because the original clip, being of British origin, had Marge driving in the right-hand seat.

Thursday, March 23, 2006

New Words for 2006: Essential additions for the workplace vocabulary

BLAMESTORMING: Sitting around in a group, discussing why a deadline was missed or a project failed, and who was responsible.
SEAGULL MANAGER: A manager who flies in, makes a lot of noise, craps on everything, and then leaves.
ASSMOSIS: The process by which some people seem to absorb success and advancement by kissing up to the boss rather than working hard.
SALMON DAY: The experience of spending an entire day swimming upstream only to get screwed and die in the end.
CUBE FARM: An office filled with cubicles.
PRAIRIE DOGGING: When someone yells or drops something loudly in a cube farm, and people's heads pop up over the walls to see what's going on.
MOUSE POTATO: The on-line, wired generation's answer to the couch potato.
SITCOMs: Single Income, Two Children, Oppressive Mortgage. What yuppies turn into when they have children and one of them stops working to stay home with the kids.
STRESS PUPPY: A person who seems to thrive on being stressed out and whiney.
SWIPEOUT: An ATM or credit card that has been rendered useless because the magnetic strip is worn away from extensive use.
XEROX SUBSIDY: Euphemism for swiping free photocopies from one's workplace.
IRRITAINMENT: Entertainment and media spectacles that are annoying but you find yourself unable to stop watching them. The O.J. trials were a prime example.
PERCUSSIVE MAINTENANCE: The fine art of whacking the crap out of an electronic device to get it to work again.
ADMINISPHERE: The rarefied organizational layers beginning just above the rank and file. Decisions that fall from the adminisphere are often profoundly inappropriate or irrelevant to the problems they were designed to solve.
404: Someone who's clueless. From the World Wide Web error message "404 Not Found," meaning that the requested document could not be located.
GENERICA: Features of the American (Canadian!!) landscape that are exactly the same no matter where one is, such as fast food joints, strip malls, subdivisions.
OHNOSECOND: That minuscule fraction of time in which you realize that you've just made a BIG mistake.
WOOFYS: Well Off Older Folks.
CROP DUSTING: Surreptitiously farting while passing thru a cube farm, then enjoying the sounds of dismay and disgust; leads to PRAIRIE DOGGING

Friday, March 10, 2006

Luna, c.1999 - March 10, 2006

Luna the Killer whale has died.
Luna was just a whale being a whale. We were trespassing on its turf. But again nature has encountered man, nature has lost, and we are all the worse off for it.

Reunite Luna website

American Cetacean Society Luna Page

Fisheries and Oceans Backgrounder

Wednesday, March 08, 2006

Is It Too Late Already...?

This BBC story reports that The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change will report that only greenhouse gas emissions can explain the worldwide freak weather patterns we are experiencing. Further, the report goes on to state that CO2 emissions will have doubled by the mid part of the century, resulting in a temperature increase of perhaps 4.5c or even higher.
We're fucked, kids. We need rapid change in our industrial habits and our personal lives right now. This, of course, would require leadership and backbone from our leaders like Bush, Blair and Harper.
Ha. Fat chance. They are too busy playing their little war games to notice that the real battle has already passed them by.

Sunday, March 05, 2006

In Praise of Slow

Just finished Carl Honoré's In Praise of Slow: How a Worldwide Movement is challenging the Cult of Speed.
I read it in three hours.

Saturday, March 04, 2006

Linus Health Update #6

Linus went for another blood pressure check and has passed with flying colours. His BP is in the 150-160 range, right where it should be. The vet doesn't want to see Linus until sometime in May, good news for my Visa card!
Also, Linus wasn't liking the new liquid formula for his bp meds. Basically, a small amount of liquid in a syringe is squirted into Linus's mouth. Linus thought I was drowning him, of course.
Now I've switched to trans-dermal formulation that is rubbed in his ears. It still comes out of a syringe, but now Linus is a lot happier because he thinks he's gotten away with something: "That dopey person of mine keeps missing my mouth and getting it in my ear. Well, I'm not going to tell him!"

Thursday, March 02, 2006

The Bicycle Diaries: Ride Like The Wind

It's been very windy out here on the We(s)t Coast for the last couple of weeks, and I've noticed something very strange about it.
Maybe it's just me, but when I ride in the wind, the wind is always blowing in my face, slowing me down and making it a much more difficult ride.
When I ride to work, it's in my face.
When I ride home, it's in my face.
Riding home, I go west, then north for a while, then turn west again, and finish up with a couple of blocks of south. Every time I change direction, the wind is in my face.
The only time the wind is not in my face is when I'm stopped at a red light. The weather gods taunt me with a moment of placid calm, before the winds whip up in a frenzy. It's like trying to ride through a solid brick wall when the light turns green.
There's some strange meteorological effect going on here, like I'm being followed by my own personal microburst.
I should be flattered that the gods take such a personal interest in me. If only they would pay the same sort of attention to my lottery ticket numbers.

Wednesday, March 01, 2006

The Cookie Test

A few days ago, my co-worker Linda brought in a box of Peak Frean assorted cookies to share with others in the office. I snarfed up a couple of favourites, the Garden Creams, and others dove into the Fruit Creams and the Bourbons. The only ones left were a couple of round ones (whose name I don't know, alas). Linda offered them to me to finish off.
"No thanks," I said, "I don't like those kind."
She stared at me blankly. "What do you mean? They're all the same."
"No, they're not," I replied. "Those round ones are sort of lemony and I don't like them as much as the others."
"But they're all the same," she insisted.
"Well, you'll just have to get some more and we'll do a taste test."
The next day, she brought in another box and crumbled up some cookies and fed them to me. (Your tax dollars at work.)
"That's my favourite, the Garden Cream," I said as I munched the first sample. Next came "the Fruit Cream. You didn't put any of the fruit filling in the sample so I can't tell you which flavour of Fruit Cream it is. But it's clearly a Fruit Cream."
Finally was the "round lemony one that I don't like."
Linda was amazed. "I can't believe it. No hesitation at all. Dead on everytime. Wow. I'm in awe. I thought for sure they were all the same. Well, here, I guess you better finish off the rest of those cookies that I took the samples from."
Once again, science called and I responded in triumph. It was certainly not a cheap ploy on my behalf to get more cookies.