Wednesday, March 31, 2004

"FOOLS" Day??

April 1st is tomorrow. Traditionally it's called by some, April Fools Day. Until a few years ago I didn't give this much thought. It was a day to watch your back at work or school or where ever. Now I see that it's not all fun and games.

If you're a practical joker, use common sense and courtesy. Some people do not like to be 'punked'. Before you think, "Oh they just don't have a sense of humor," consider why they may not enjoy being pranked. Maybe they lost someone very special to them on April 1st or something tragic, such as a rape, happened on that date. How would your sense of humor be?

Keep your 'victim' in mind when you are planning your jokes. I've known guys that'll go back and forth all the time and both enjoy it. Others do not. I personally am not a fan of it, but I don't care usually. My rule is that if you're going to mess with me, mess with ME not my stuff. I've had my office rearranged, my car marked up with shoe polish and other similar things. Those things piss me off. Pull a fast one on me and I'll find it amusing, maybe.

Please consider this tomorrow. Some people find April 1st a solemn or even a sad day. Consider and respect their feelings.

Thursday, March 25, 2004

Blog anniversary

After a posting by SugarMama, I have suddenly realized that on April 6th, my blog will officially be two years old. I have had various personal websites prior to that, but not a 'blog'. I have been with Blogger from day one too. I know a lot of blogs I have read over the last two years jumped ship, and I'm sure they had perfectly valid reasons, but I think something has to be said for any product (on the Internet) that has been used successfully for 2 years by anyone. Products come and go, but Blogger is still alive.

And amazingly so is my blog. I know my readership is low and that's ok. I don't post that often and it's pretty banal when I do. I haven't posted any new art or photography in a long time either. I have some nice pictures of my cats though and a few recent pictures of some scenery but aside from that I've been focusing my time on my sweetie and school.

Anyway, it's interesting to me to go look through my archives (to the right) and read about the things I thought were important at the time. It's like an old journal I found from 1988. Man I was a wacky kid. Of course not much has changed. LOL

A special thanks to my readers who actually post comments. Thanks to the ones who don't too, but I'd love you more if you'd leave me sweet little love notes. ;) LOL Does that make me a comment whore?

Tuesday, March 23, 2004

New and Important challenge

Well I've finally decided to seriously look at becoming a home owner. I've talked about it before but I was mostly just talking the talk, but I wasn't even considering walking the walk.

It's not that I don't want to own a house, I do. I'm just scared of the whole process. I'm afraid someone will try to pull a fast one on me. Granted, I know a lot about houses thanks to many remodels with my dad. That also gives me the ability to fix up some things, but I don't have time or the interest to do a major remodel. I have no problem with the idea of changing some fixtures and the like, but I just don't want to HAVE to do months of work before it's even comfortable. I lived in too many of those homes as a kid. I don't want to as an adult.

I'm also scared of the banks. I don't like banks much and I'm not a big fan of money in general. But with a house you have to have LOTS of money. More than I've ever had. To me that is a daunting prospect. However, I have to face those fears because I'm not going to own a house any other way.

Any of my wonderful readers have any websites or advice that would be helpful please leave me a comment or send me an email. Thanks!!

Thursday, March 18, 2004

Lucky Me!

That's not sarcasm. I really feel very lucky. I'm in love, true love. I love a wonderful woman who makes me feel like I could take on the world and win. I never realized how insignificant my world was until I couldn't hold her in my arms. Now we are counting the days until we can be in each others arms again. I'm also counting the days when we'll be able to hold each other every day for the rest of our lives and through eternity.

I always thought 'soul-mate' was just a hoax. I know now that it's very real. :)

Wednesday, March 10, 2004

Dear religious zealots

This is from an email that was sent to me. I found it quite funny and an important point. Many of the 'laws' in the Bible were written for a totally different society and time. While they make for good guide lines and they should be studied, they are not the 'word of God'. So lets use some common sense people.

Thank you for doing so much to educate people regarding God's Law. I have learned a great deal here, and I try to share that knowledge with as many people as I can. When someone tries to defend the homosexual lifestyle, for example, I simply remind him that Leviticus 18:22 clearly states it to be an abomination. End of debate.

I do need some advice from you, however, regarding some of the specific laws and how to best follow them.

a) When I burn a bull on the altar as a sacrifice, I know it creates a pleasing odor for the Lord (Lev 1:9). The problem is my neighbors. They claim the odor is not pleasing to them. Should I smite them?

b) I would like to sell my daughter into slavery, as sanctioned in Exodus 21:7. In this day and age, what do you think would be a fair price for her?

c) I know that I am allowed no contact with a woman while she is in her period of menstrual uncleanliness (Lev 15:19-24). The problem is, how do I tell? I have tried asking, but most women take offense.

d) Lev. 25:44 states that I may indeed possess slaves, both male and female, provided they are purchased from neighboring nations. A friend of mine claims that this applies to Mexicans, but not Canadians. Can you clarify? Why can't I own Canadians?

e) I have a neighbor who insists on working on the Sabbath. Exodus 35:2 clearly states he should be put to death. Am I morally obligated to kill him myself?

f) A friend of mine feels that even though eating shellfish is an Abomination (Lev 11:10), it is a lesser abomination than homosexuality. I don't agree. Can you settle this?

g) Lev 21:20 states that I may not approach the altar of God if I have a defect in my sight. I have to admit that I wear reading glasses. Does my vision have to be 20/20, or is there some wiggle room here?

h) Most of my male friends get their hair trimmed, including the hair around their temples, even though this is expressly forbidden by Lev 19:27. How should they die?

i) I know from Lev 11:6-8 that touching the skin of a dead pig makes me unclean, but may I still play football if I wear gloves?

j) My uncle has a farm. He violates Lev 19:19 by planting two different crops in the same field, as does his wife by wearing garments made of two different kinds of thread (cotton/polyester blend). He also tends to curse and blaspheme a lot. Is it really necessary that we go to all the trouble of getting the whole town together to stone them? (Lev 24:10-16) Couldn't we just burn them to death at a private family affair like we do with people who sleep with their in-laws? (Lev. 20:14)

I know you have studied these things extensively, so I am confident you can help.

Thank you again for reminding us that God's word is eternal and unchanging.

If you don't like this, that's ok. Everyone is entitled to their beliefs as well as their opinions. So don't write me saying how I'm going to burn in hell or something like that. If hell exists, it's gonna be one hell of a party (no pun intended) because nearly everyone will be there not heaven.

Sunday, March 07, 2004

28 Days Later...

I finally watched this movie last night. It was entertaining and exhausting at the same time. If you have a weak stomach or just can't handle blood, don't watch this movie. It's violent and very bloody in certain scenes. There were times when I thought, "I really didn't need to see that."

That being said the 'infected' were quite effective in their scare factor. They were crazed, very quick and deadly. This made you feel they could pop out from anywhere at any time.

There is some brief male nudity, front and back. I personally didn't care, but some might find that 'wrong'. However, if you have a problem with nudity, then you're likely to have a problem with the violence, so you shouldn't watch this movie anyway. There were some bare female breasts too, but they were pasty zombie boobs, not all that attractive at all. I'm sure there were some necrophiliacs out there that got excited. Wierdos.

When I was through watching the movie it was close to 10:30 pm. I was wiped out from the movie. It was an emotional roller coaster. A few tender moments intertwined with the scares as well as with suspense and many other intense emotional tools. The film maker definitely succeeded in producing a movie that kept you on the edge of your seat.

I was a little disappointed with how the movie ended, but I understand it. I wanted closure for the situation that caused the infection. The movie was focused more on the people surviving it though, so in that regard there was a sense of closure. I think it still could have been a bit better, but oh well.

All in all, I wouldn't buy this movie to keep it in my collection. I would recommend it to those who enjoy a good 'zombie' movie or other similar types. Again, those who can't handle the blood and violence should stay away. There is also the threat of rape in one part of the movie. No rape actually happens, but those who have been raped might find the scenes difficult and could possible be a trigger.

My vote is 3 1/2 out of 5 stars.

Friday, March 05, 2004

Microsoft a monopoly?

The following is something I had to write for my Micro Economics class. I thought I'd share it. Mostly because it will likely get some people all worked up. hehe

Microsoft produces feature rich quality product, despite what the naysayers may claim. The competing products that are available in the market are simply not up to par with Microsoft products. Microsoft is a very aggressive competitor, that much is certain, but the products that are not as good simply don’t sell as well. BeOS and Linux are very capable products, but not at the same level as Windows. However, Microsoft recognizes that those competing operating systems, especially all the Linux varieties, are biting at their heels. Microsoft is improving and innovating in response to the growing number of Linux users, to try to keep people from switching products. There are definitely activities in Microsoft, as a company, that are a direct result of competition. They work proactively to try to stem off the losses due to competition, they are a business after all.

Does Microsoft enjoy a significant amount of market power? Most certainly they do, but I believe that despite a few unethical decisions, the company made it to where it is today with sound business practices and quality products. Windows isn’t the primary operating system today on PCs because of unethical business practices. It’s #1, because it beat out the competition and the market is such that multiple vendors aren’t the most efficient way to work. Businesses have to share files. In earlier days sharing files between companies was very difficult. Today it’s much easier due in large part to the dominance of Microsoft products.

I have used many of the competing products, such as various ‘flavors’ of Linux, Open Office (an open source, freely downloadable, office productivity suite) and a number of the various web browsers, including Netscape, Mozilla and Opera. In all cases the products were adequate, but simply not as good as the comparable Microsoft products. The one possible exception would be Mozilla, but there are still some sites that I have to go back to Internet Explorer to view them correctly.

Most computer users simply do not have the time or patients to deal with products that are not as good or compatible as Microsoft products, even when they are free or very low cost. Consumers have chosen the more expensive products, because their utility is greater. Those who cannot afford or find the utility of the ‘free’ products equal to the Microsoft products have viable alternatives. Due to their low cost or more often ‘free’ price, the companies producing them don’t have the marketing budget to push their products. This is hardly Microsoft’s fault.

Oh and by the way, I'm posting this using Mozilla FireFox. I also was a long time user of OpenOffice. I recently switched to Microsoft Office 2003 however due to the student pricing and simply better interface. Sorry OpenOffice. I'll check out v2.0, but for now I'll be using MS Office.