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Archive for November, 2010


Unlikely Twins, Part XXX

Tuesday, November 30th, 2010

These two writers probably spent many of their November 30th birthdays writing, but the words couldn’t have been more different…

Mark Twain,
Author of Tom Sawyer and Huck Finn
Billy Idol,
Author of Rebel Yell and White Wedding

Categories: Unlikely Twins | No Comments »

Don’t Blame Me – It was God’s Fault…

Monday, November 29th, 2010

Those who read this blog regularly know that my allegiance lies with baseball, but football is a nice diversion until Spring Training begins. So, yesterday, I’m watching the Steelers-Bills game, which goes into (sudden death) overtime, and the Bills’ receiver, Steve Johnson, does this:

My family, with whom I was watching, all commented that he probably wouldn’t get a very good night’s sleep that night (especially since the Bills eventually went on to lose the game). But today I find out that Mr. Johnson isn’t so much upset at himself, as much as he’s ticked off at the Almighty for making him drop the pass. Here’s his Tweet on the subject:


On the one hand . . . Wow. I mean, seriously. One wonders if God is most upset about the bad grammar, the idea that Steve Johnson believes that God made him drop the pass, or the fact that Steve Johnson can’t seem to find a way to learn from the whole experience.

On the other hand, we so often see the players thanking God for the game-winning catch, the walk-off homerun, or the last-minute heroics. It’s refreshing, in a pathetic sort of way, to see someone admit that every time God “helps” one team win a game, he also “helps” the other team lose the game. So if he’s going to believe that sort of thing, at least he’s internally consistent…

Categories: Sports Talk | No Comments »

Unlikely Twins, Part XXIX

Monday, November 22nd, 2010

Hard to imagine these two guys having anything in common, despite their shared November 22nd birthdays:

Charles de Gaulle,
Respected French Leader
Rodney Dangerfield,
No Respect at All, I tell ya…

Categories: Unlikely Twins | 2 Comments »

Happy Birthday to Me…

Thursday, November 18th, 2010

Today’s my birthday, which I mention only as an excuse to share what has become my kids’ favorite YouTube video:

The credits say Adam Sandler, but it sounds more like Weird Al Yankovic at the mic. Maybe Sandler wrote it and someone else sang it? Anyway, let’s hear it for me – another trip around the sun and I haven’t died yet – let’s all eat some cake!

Categories: Family Matters | 2 Comments »

Unlikely Twins, Part XXVIII

Sunday, November 14th, 2010

November 14th gave us two great artists, but I can’t imagine too many people regularly enjoy them both:

Claude Monet,
Made Water Lillies into Works of Art
Sherwood Schwartz,
Made Light-Blue Housekeepers’ Dresses into Works of Art

Categories: Unlikely Twins | No Comments »

Goodbye, White Pages…

Friday, November 12th, 2010

The 133-year tradition that is the phone book (a.k.a., the White Pages) is quietly coming to an end. According to the Associated Press, New York, Florida and Pennsylvania have all obtained approval this month to stop printing the paper-based phone book. Virginia residents have until November 19th to provide comments on a similar request.

The statistics are rather stark: only 11% of of households relied on the white pages in 2008 (down from 25% in 2005). Land line phones are being disconnected at a rate of 10% per year, as people make their cellphone, which is not listed in the white pages, their only phone. And in places where the phone companies have been allowed to offer a choice, only 2% of customers have asked for a phone book.

Technology is obviously the “killer app” here. Phone numbers are much more easily obtained via search engines, which are often available on the smart phones themselves. The smart phones also have Caller ID and electronic address books, so frequently (or even infrequently) called numbers are recorded and stored for later use, gradually creating a personalized phone book for each person. And for those Neanderthals who don’t have smart phones, the phone company can print a single, on-demand phone book just for that person, or even send them a CD-ROM. All of this, of course, leads to big cost savings for the phone company, who doesn’t have to print the (largely advertising-free) book. And, of course, there are environmental benefits as well – each book represents just over 3.5 pounds of paper.

So it seems like a win-win situation all around. The only thing left, as far as I can tell, is for Google to invent a way to prop up the leg of a wobbly table.

Categories: The Future is Now | 4 Comments »

The Wheel of Fortune One-Letter Solve

Thursday, November 11th, 2010

It’s been years since I watched Wheel of Fortune regularly, but this came across my news feed today and gave me quite a chuckle:

This, to me, addresses the true magic of the Wheel of Fortune game. If you’re looking at a puzzle and you don’t know the answer, it seems impossible that anyone else could ever figure it out. Once you solve it, though, it seems just as odd that everyone else in the world doesn’t see it too. I mean, seriously – “I’ve Got a Good Feeling About This.” What else could it be? It’s so OBVIOUS…

Categories: Primetime TV | 6 Comments »

Unlikely Twins, Part XXVII

Sunday, November 7th, 2010

I’m pretty sure that each November 7th, at least one of these guys looks at more than just their horoscope for guidance:

Billy Graham,
Preacher of Faith
Leon Trotsky,
Former Leader of Communist Russia

Categories: Unlikely Twins | No Comments »

One of the Downsides of the Holiday Season…

Sunday, November 7th, 2010

Two questions leap immediately to mind. First, can they sing better than he can? And second, will the Justin Bieber Singing & Fashion figures sell more or less than the Tickle Me, Elmo series? Somehow, having Elmo kick his ass would be strangely satisfying to me…

Categories: Random Acts of Blogging | No Comments »

Seriously, Apple? Daylight Saving Time?

Saturday, November 6th, 2010

You would think that by 2010, all of our smart phone manufacturers would have figured out Daylight Saving Time. I mean, maybe not the really old phones – the ones that were built back when sundials were still all the rage (i.e., the 1990′s), but the modern ones should be OK, right?

Turns out, a small, little-known phone manufacturer called “Apple” still hasn’t gotten it quite right:

Apple iPhone users in the United States must . . . remember to delete and then reset their phone’s alarm clock — otherwise they may be an hour late for work on Monday morning.

A glitch in the iPhone’s operating system will cause recurring weekday alarms not to ring on time on Monday morning because of the end of Daylight Saving Time, which occurs at 2 a.m. on Sunday in the United States. The phone’s alarm app doesn’t recognize the time change and will ring an hour late if users don’t go into the program and manually reset the alarms.

Users who depend on the iPhone to wake them up should create one-time alarms specifically for Monday morning, said Apple spokeswoman Natalie Harrison. “We suggest customers set non-repeating alarms for now and reset after November 7 to resolve the issue,” she told CNN.

Later this month, Apple will release an updated version of its mobile software, iOS 4.2, which will permanently fix the problem, Harrison said.

I’m not sure what’s more embarrassing – getting Daylight Saving Time wrong in your operating system, or releasing a fix for it a couple weeks after it’s needed.

Maybe the guy in charge of Daylight Saving Time was the same guy in charge of keeping the iPhone 4 prototype under wraps…

Categories: Tech Talk | 4 Comments »