Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Monday, July 30, 2007

"Fire up the colortini, sit back, relax, and watch the pictures, now, as they fly through the air."

Tom Snyder
1936 - 2007

I remember Tom Snyder mostly on radio. I was too young to see him on the Tomorrow Show but he told some of the best Tomorrow stories on the radio.

Tom was something of a goof. He wasn't the hippest cat at the shin-dig but he was a likable goof. His performances on TV were called "ego-driven" by critics but on the radio he was much more self-deprecating. I like self-deprecating humor. It shows that there's a certain absence of malice. Plus radio is a more intimate medium.

Fire up the ol' colortini, Tom, and watch the angels, now, as they fly through the air.

Monday, July 23, 2007

When it's your time…

I'm not much of a believer in anything but I can get behind this:

Live every day like it's your last.*

Exhibit A: SCUBzzzzzzA

DEERFIELD BEACH, Fla. (AP) - Lightning struck a diver's air tank as he surfaced off Florida's Atlantic coast, killing him, authorities said.

The 36-year-old man was diving with three others Sunday off a boat near Deerfield Beach, about 40 miles north of Miami. He had surfaced about 30 feet from the boat when lightning struck his tank, said Deerfield Beach Fire Chief Gary Fernaays.

the whole story at Breitbart.com: Lightning Kills Diver

Exhibit B: I Don't Think It's Playable

NORTH LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) - Tulsa Drillers coach Mike Coolbaugh died after being struck in the head by a line drive as he stood in the first-base coach's box during a game.

The Texas League game was suspended in the ninth inning Sunday after the former major leaguer was hit by a foul ball off the bat of Tino Sanchez. Coolbaugh, 35, was taken to Baptist Medical Center-North Little Rock, where he was pronounced dead.

the whole story at Breitbart.com: Line Drive Kills Minor League Coach

*except financially, I think there you are supposed to live every day like you'll be around 100 more years and will need the retirement money when you are too old to do your job and your company has dissolved your pension and Social Security will no longer pay out any money no matter how much you have contributed over the years and you can't BELIEVE the price of cat food so you can't afford that therefore you have to forage through Dumpsters to get anything to eat. More or less.

Saturday, July 21, 2007

The Godfather of Soil, part deux

So after the odd story about The Godfather of Soil, guess what happened sometime last night?

You guessed it. Some fucking plant thief stole one of the flower pots from our front walkway. He would have stolen another one but the second was evidently too heavy. The bastard moved it but couldn’t pick it up.

Sometimes I hate the living.

Friday, July 20, 2007

Keys to Kinkiness

Last Sunday started out humorous enough. It was a relatively slow morning and we had a call which struck me as funny and illustrated the lighter side of dispatch.

We received a call from a couple who, in the midst of romance, had handcuffed themselves together without the benefit of knowing exactly where their keys were.

We sent an officer to unlock their cuffs. They had obviously weighed their options before calling us because they hack-sawed the connecting chain before we had arrived and were able to answer the door fully dressed.

Interior design tip from your buddy E:

In the nightstand, and ideally under a tasteful window treatment, you should keep (perhaps in the same drawer as your ball-gag) THE HANDCUFF KEYS!

The day went drastically downhill from there but that’s for another post.

Have an exotic day!

key: Peerless

ball gag : Scott Paul Designs

Friday, July 13, 2007

What are the odds ?

They come from the same place. It makes me wonder if maybe the nuclear plants are a little leaky in Mongolia.

Worlds apart: The moment the tallest man met the shortest


In terms of height they are worlds apart.

The world's tallest man, Bao Xishun today shook hands with He Pingping who claims to be Earth's shortest.

But these two men actually hail from the same region of Inner Mongolia.

While Mr Xishun, 56, towers above everyone at an astonishing 7.9ft, 19-year-old Mr Pingping is a mere 2.4ft high.

Bao Xishun, a herdsman from Chifeng, Inner Mongolia, was recently married in a traditional ceremony to a 28-year-old saleswoman from his hometown. At 5ft 6" Xia Shujian only comes up to his elbow and is half his age.

He claims he was of normal height until he was 16 when he experienced a growth spurt and reached his present height seven years later.

Mr Xishun was confirmed as the tallest person by the Guinness Book of Records last year.

Mr Pingping was born nearby in Wulanchabu city, Inner Mongolia. His father claims he was only the size of an adult's palm at birth.

He is now seeking to be registered as the world's shortest man by the Guinness Book of Records. He could be in for a disappointment though. While Mr Pingping is 73cms tall, the current holder of the title Lin Yih-Chih was measured as 67.5cm.

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Vehicular Mayhem Most Fowl

** If you are an animal lover and are particularly tender-hearted (like my dear wife), this is not the story for you. Please check back for a story more suitable to your sensibilities. You've been warned. **

The scene: Potter Marsh, a wet land adjacent to the Seward Highway, just south of where the highway goes from 4 lane divided highway to 2 lane rural highway. Goggle Earth "Potter Marsh, Anchorage, AK" if you want to see the layout.

The time: 1030am Saturday July 7, 2007 (7-7-7 to numbers freaks).

It was a nice clear morning that Saturday. Vehicle A (I don't remember if it was a car or a truck. It's Alaska so it's safe to picture it in your mind as an SUV) traveled along the Seward Highway by Potter Marsh when the driver saw a group of ducks crossing the road.

Ducks walking in a row is always cute. Mom and her children just flip-flopping their way from hither to yon. Or from yon to hither. It's hard it tell.

Driver A stopped his vehicle so the ducks could make safe passage. Stopped his vehicle in the middle of the road. Just so I'm perfectly clear, the road is a highway and the speed limit is 55 mph. Driver A was at this point going 0 mph. Which is great for the ducks. The ducks successfully got to the other side of the road.

Enter Driver B, presumably traveling 50-70mph. Driver B was driving an RV pulling a boat on a trailer. In terms of braking power, an RV with a boat trailer attached is a little like a train. Driver B was probably planning a weekend of fishing or camping. He was evidently not planning for a car to be stopped in the middle of the highway. Driver B did not take in the whole situation until he was too close to stop his vehicle in the traditional manner.

Faced with this situation Driver B has three choices. 1) He can swerve into oncoming traffic and thereby endanger himself and the cars in the other lane. There are plenty of fatality head-on collisions on the Seward Higway. 2) He can lay on the brakes and strike Driver A's vehicle, which could also cause a serious if not fatal accident (as well as potentially involve the other lane of traffic as well). Luckily he chose 3) brake like the dickens and hit the ditch to the right of Driver A.

Oh, and he plowed into the family of ducks, killing most of them.

Let's recap, shall we?

Guy stops for wee little duckies. Other guy doesn’t expect the first guy to stop (on a highway) and has to maneuver quickly. The safest path was through the original wee duckies.

It took a tow truck to get the RV and boat out of the ditch but what stuck me was the sheer amount of twisted irony along the side of that road.

Duck Photo: http://www.rfbd.org/Ducks.jpg

Monday, July 09, 2007

The Godfather of Soil

Some government employees get quoted sounding like total goobs.

Vegetation vandal strikes

Trees, flowers dug up and stolen from lush garden in Airport Heights

Someone who swiped trees and flowers from a lush East Anchorage garden last week has neighbors scratching their heads.

Is a plant thief on the prowl? Or is someone targeting Ray Ward, a James Brown impersonator who sometimes tends his garden until the early morning hours?

After all, colorful flower baskets still hang undisturbed outside other homes on Norene Street. And it was the second time this summer someone sabotaged Ward's landscaping.

The first time, they dug up some flowers and stole hanging plants, Ward said. This time, it was much worse.

"They took almost everything," Ward said glumly, sweeping his hands across a grassy lawn pocked with holes where trees and flowers once grew.

An apple tree sapling, trunk snapped, lay in the yard. Scores of plucked daisies filled a nearby garbage can. Single flowers survived here and there, a bloom of snapdragons, a yellow poppy.

The garden was the best display on the block, especially the colorful stretch framing the chain-link fence, Ward's neighbors said Saturday. Purple wildflowers, gold begonias, pink petunias, daisies, dahlias, geraniums, tulips -- all added life and beauty to the neighborhood.

"You'd drive by and say, 'Oh, it's summer,' " said Lisa Schober. "Now I drive by and it looks like winter again."

"It's the kind of thing that shocks your sensibilities," said Ken Hudson, another neighbor. "There's way worse things, but this is just a sad statement."

The plants were stolen sometime Wednesday night, Ward said. He went to bed early after serving the homeless at a Fourth of July picnic in Mountain View.

When he awoke early the next morning, petals littered his driveway, reminding him of the first incident a month ago.

"I said, 'Oh no,' " he said, touching his chest. "My heart just was broken, just shattered."

George Thompson, a neighbor smoking on his porch across the street Saturday, said he saw a "crazed-looking" man walking repeatedly around the block the same night the plants were stolen. When Thompson approached the man to see what he was doing, the guy ran.

Thompson's nephews had been playing outside and said they saw the same man digging up Ward's garden, according to Thompson.

"It was pretty weird," he said.

Ward, when he's not doing his James Brown performance, is an intern for a company that helps low income people get back on their feet. He figures he invested about $3,000 in his garden.

He has no enemies he knows of, he said.

Police are investigating. Plant theft happens, but not often, said Eric Anderson, acting dispatch supervisor with the Anchorage Police Department.

He hears reports of potted flowers that get swiped outside houses a couple of times a year.

"People are crazy," he said. "What kind of strange criminal mind steals plants?"

Okay. So goob or not I stand behind my assessment.

But consider this: A man who gets his plants stolen AND is a James Brown impersonator IN ALASKA is just too bizarre. Carl Hiaasen would say: "na'ah, too far fetched for fiction."

Surely he is the only James Brown impersonator in Los Anchorage.

It certainly feels like a one-Brown town.

Sunday, July 08, 2007

Another reason to RSVP "no, thank you"

Dinner guest finds host's

wife, son in freezer

Sat Jul 7, 2007 10:28PM EDT

BRUSSELS (Reuters) - A Belgian man appeared in court on Friday after a woman at his dinner party found the bodies of his wife and stepson in the freezer as she put away the leftovers, prosecutors said.

The woman went to the police after discovering the 46-year-old woman and her 11-year-old son and officers arrested the man in the town of Verviers, near Liege in east Belgium, on Wednesday.

"She went to the freezer and that is what she saw. She then alerted the police," said Georges Lahaye of the local public prosecutors' office. Prosecutors want the suspect, aged 43, to be remanded in custody to allow more time for an investigation into the deaths.

Lahaye said the suspect had not made a confession.

He added that the couple argued a lot.

the couple argued a lot... ya'think?

Saturday, July 07, 2007

Accentuate The Positive #5 Sing

Chicagoist journalist and blogger Smussyolay tagged me with a meme of 5 things I do to stay positive. While writing it I discovered I needed to write it in more than one post.
Here's the fifth thing:


Like the Bloodhound Gang's Jimmy Pop, I sing like an amputee: can't hold a note, can't carry a tune. Yet...

I love to sing along with the car stereo when driving alone. At work I can break into a Richard Cheese-esque bad lounge version of a popular song or do my very poor Bob Dylan impression singing rap songs. It's like karaoke night without alcohol.

I learned from Terri not to care about singing the wrong words.

I still sing “She’s like a one winged dove, sings a song sounds like she’s screamin’ ooh-ooh-ooh,” (because if I was a dove, and I lost a wing, I’d be screaming too).

I don’t know what the hell those Manfred Mann characters were smoking but evidently they were “wrapped up like a douche in the aroma of the night,” as far as I’m concerned.

Kelli and I do goofy duets. Just for us. Just for fun. Just because it's positive expression.

Accentuate The Positive #4 Write

Chicagoist journalist and blogger Smussyolay tagged me with a meme of 5 things I do to stay positive. While writing it I discovered I needed to write it in more than one post.
Here's the fourth thing:

Usually I don’t know how I feel about something until I write it out. Being forced to chose my words carefully forces me to chose the words which best convey my thoughts. Parsing and editing focuses my meaning. Sometimes it opens up a whole new series of questions.

Working it out gives me perspective and perspective leads to positive things.

Accentuate The Positive #3 Remember

Chicagoist journalist and blogger Smussyolay tagged me with a meme of 5 things I do to stay positive. While writing it I discovered I needed to write it in more than one post. Here's the third thing:

12 hrs a day (16hrs one day last week) I hear from / about people in crisis. Heck, I have coworkers and friends and family in crisis every so often too.

Yet I live in relative affluence, in a free country
(okay, it's getting a little dicey right now but we'll pull out of it).

I'm very happily married. I have a great job. I have a great family and wonderful friends (some might suggest better than I deserve).

Comparatively I have no problems. I'd be a whiny little shit to have all of what I have and still complain.

Friday, July 06, 2007

Anarchy = Idiocy

Someone has been messing with the National Weather Service.
Read this Chicagoist article. 
Go ahead, I'll wait.
All done? Good.
Now explain to me the reason anyone would submit fake weather reports.
My second, most cynical, thought was that it had to be someone whose
budget would increase due to severe weather condition statistics.
This follows the same reason why some forest fires are started by fire fighters.
Create your own clients and it's like legally printing your own money, right?
My third thought was that it was part of the Meteorlogical Mafia,
the Low-Pressure La Cosa Nostra.
But my first thought was it was some older teen or young adult trying to
express their angst by raging against the machine.
I can understand this to some extent. If you are young and idealistic and have
more energy than
knowledge, it's nice to stick it to The Man.
But the National Weather Service?  Of all the services government provides,
weather information is one of the most useful and equally distributed.
Dear Mr Weather Spammer (because I’ll bet you a qwattah it’s not a female),
You are an idiot.  
What, the internet isn’t entertaining enough for you? Haven’t you heard of porn?
Online gaming? Even blogs, for goodness sake. Get a hobby.
I’d suggest polymer clay but I’m afraid the Xacto knives would be too dangerous
for you.
Perhaps Play-doh is more your speed.
Love the government, hate the government but participate in the government.  
America, you’re allowed to do so. Anarchy is for losers.

Accentuate The Positive #2 Clay

Chicagoist journalist and blogger Smussyolay tagged me with a meme of 5 things I do to stay positive. While writing it I discovered I needed to write it in more than one post. Here's the second thing:


I’m not all that good at it (yet) but it’s something I have to use my full attention to do. It frees my mind from thinking – thinking – thinking. Plus when something works out well there’s a feeling of accomplishment.


And I have given almost everything decent away to someone, so there’s the joy of giving. Which reminds me. I have a cross to put in the mail.

Oh, the indecent things - Auto-erotic Asphyxia Gumby, for example. I keep for myself.


Accentuate the Positive #1 Pause

Chicagoist journalist and blogger Smussyolay tagged me with a meme of 5 things I do to stay positive. While writing it I discovered I needed to write it in more than one post. So here's the first thing:


After my initial anxiety / panic / agoraphobia thing I met with a therapist twice.

I have no interest in Freudian / Jungian talk therapy so I was reluctant to go. There's also a stigma about therapy (at least in law enforcement). I was surprised and happy that instead of asking me about my relationship with my parents (which is just fine) he filled me in on tricks to manage panic attacks and stress in general. Tune up. Come back if you need me but otherwise have a nice life. Good deal.

The best piece of advice he gave me was this:

If you rushing along in traffic and the light turns red, it's easy to get all angry and frustrated about being delayed. Instead, take it as a forced opportunity to pause and look around.

I can certainly get all worked up about things like getting stuck in traffic or being late or whatever but to what purpose? It makes no difference. The light is going to be red for as long as the light is going to be red.

Add to this the fact that every juggling trick I know involves a pause. Right throw, left throw, right throw, left throw, High Right Throw (creating a pause in the flow), do something flashy, left throw, right throw. Lather, rinse, repeat. It works every time.

Being pause-itive makes my outlook so much more positive.

Photos: pause = me
Red Light

Thursday, July 05, 2007

The Ability Doesn’t Give You The Right

This would be as if I used the special Po-Po computers to look up friends, neighbors, etc. Or if someone cut me off in traffic and I use the DMV records to track them down. Bad, bad, bad. And improper. And possibly illegal. And I wouldn't do such a thing.

I will note that the ability vs. right comment refers to the adultery too, but this is mostly a stained underwear story.

Scientist Tests Husband's DNA, Fidelity

(found at Guardian UK via the Drudge Report)

Wednesday July 4, 2007 1:46 AM

Associated Press Writer

LANSING, Mich. (AP) - A state forensics scientist who said she tested DNA in her husband's underwear to find out whether he was cheating could be disciplined if investigators determine she violated the use of state equipment.

Ann Chamberlain-Gordon of Okemos testified in a March 7 divorce hearing that she ran the test in September on the underwear of Charles Gordon Jr. Asked by his attorney what she found, she answered: ``Another female. It wasn't me.''

She also said during a May 25 hearing in Ingham County Family Court that she

ran the test on her own time with chemicals that were set to be thrown away.
Michigan State Police, which oversees the Lansing forensics lab where Chamberlain-Gordon works, started to investigate her after her husband's attorney wrote to authorities and media outlets questioning how many times DNA tests have been improperly run.

Investigators expect to decide by next week what they found. Her duties have not been restricted during the investigation, state police spokeswoman Shanon Akans said Tuesday.

``We don't know exactly what was or wasn't done,'' Akans said.
State police policies on the care and use of property say ``department supplies, materials or equipment shall not be used for any non-duty or non-department purpose.''

A request for comment was left Tuesday with Chamberlain-Gordon.
Charles Gordon's attorney, Michael Maddaloni, said Tuesday that his client disputed his wife's testimony that he acknowledged a sexual encounter with another woman
after she found the female DNA on his underwear...


Note: this entry was posted from a computer I own, not one owned by the government.

photos: Stains
Toxic fumes