So Goddamn Funny

Hitler was a mass-murdering fuckhead

I dared to look for some Eddie Izzard on YouTube, and got sucked into a vortex of video.

New Theme

Now with random pictures that mean nothing

So I’m tinkering. To the extent that tinkering means “loading themes to see what they look like.” It’s about as hard as pressing play on a DVD player.

I may have to figure out how to put some really bizarre pictures into rotation.

Thoughts About Tolerance and Interference

Stop being a meddling butthole

I don’t know exactly what spurred this tonight, but I started thinking about a story I read when I was a child. (Ah, I remember. I was folding pillowcases.) I don’t know the author, or the title of the story.

It was about an old man who liked to go to bed with two pillows. He was living with his son and his daughter-in-law. When he woke up in the morning, one of his pillows would always be on the floor. His daughter-in-law said there was no sense in giving him two pillows, because he’d always throw one on the floor in the night. So she took one away. The old man made do, but his sleep was never as restful.

Eventually he was moved to a care facility. The staff was more than happy to give him two pillows, and didn’t mind at all that he would throw one on the floor.

This story has stayed with me all these years, partly because it taught me the value of letting people do what they want/need to do, and it’s no skin off your nose. I do a lot of observing. I’m an observer. I take in all these things that happen around me, and over the years I’ve seen so many people who just can’t allow others to do something that makes no sense to them. “I don’t understand what you’re doing. Stop it this very instant.”

What I want to know is “why?” Why are you so pissed off about what someone else is doing? Why do you feel the need to stop someone from living the life they choose? Why is it necessary for atheists and theists to win out over the other? Why is it necessary to prevent gay folk from marrying each other? Why do people shit all over other peoples’ beliefs or methodologies?

Honestly, who gives a fuck what other people do? If a guy likes fat, hairy Peruvian women, makes no difference to me. If a woman prefers to dress in men’s clothing, makes no difference to me. If a couple chooses to have twenty kids or no kids, what do I care? If a kid wants green hair, how does that impact my life?

Every time someone gets all mouthy about “the Muslims are taking over” or “marriage = 1 man + 1 woman” or “OMG Republicans are EEEVIL LOL”, I want to punch them in the throat and tell them to shut the fuck up. Talk to me when there’s a legitimate issue that actually has a negative effect on you and yours. And no, a Mosque doesn’t have a negative effect. A pair of fags getting married doesn’t have a negative effect. A member of the Republican party doesn’t have a negative effect. Kids with crazy-ass Fruity-Pebbles hair don’t have a negative effect.

Being a douchebag to other people does have an effect. An effect of making other people miserable.

Are you making people miserable out of some measure of useless indignation? Stop it, you douche.

Updates

None to speak of. Except my passwords, since some asshole in China managed to hack into my Gmail account.

Asshole!

Legacy

I don’t generally talk about work here. That’s often a bad idea, as it can lead to things like, oh, getting fired. So my work life is generally off-limits for blogging.

Not that I’ve been doing a lot of blogging lately. Or for months.

I digress.

Tonight I’m going to talk about work. Or more appropriately, one man who I worked with on occasion. His name was Jim Haller.

Jim passed away last week, after a protracted struggle with cancer. I could be wrong about that, as I didn’t ever delve. But I do know that he was very ill. (Addendum: he fought off lung cancer for four years, according to his obituary.) Jim was one of the cornerstone attorneys at the firm where I work. In point of fact, Jim was the person responsible for putting together the Intellectual Property group at our firm. This group is hugely successful, due in large part to Jim’s influence and mentor-ship.

Jim was also one of the nicest guys you could ever hope to meet. This is even more remarkable considering the field he was in, which consists of a not-insubstantial number of egotists, primadonnas, and outright assholes. Don’t believe me? Talk to an attorney and ask him about what kind of people are in Law. You’ll hear far more colorful invective than I just gave you. It’s not a pretty field, and the practitioners of it see the worst behavior possible on a regular basis.

That said, my firm has some of the nicest, kindest, hardest working attorneys on the planet. I’m very lucky to work in such a place, and that work environment is due to having people like Jim around. He helped maintain a corporate culture that stifles assholishness, and actually values the work of secretaries, staff, and support. Everyone is on a first-name basis. There’s none of that “Mr. Haller” type of culture. It’s “Jim.”

And now Jim is gone. I had many conversations with him over the years. I helped him wrangle his various PDAs and smart-phones. He was never very comfortable with them, but he didn’t let that stop him from using them. He was grateful for my assistance, and always gracious. I am grateful for the opportunity to meet him, work with him, and help him with all that pesky technology. I hope I helped make his difficult job a bit easier.

The firm actually lost two attorneys last week. The second was John Byron, one of the namesakes of the firm, who retired before I joined. While I never met John, I have heard many stories about how strongly he influenced the firm, and created the culture that was maintained by Jim and his colleagues. So there’s a lot of sadness among my coworkers right now. In fact, the firm will be closed tomorrow morning, in memory of John and Jim. I plan to spend some of that time counting my blessings, and thinking about how I can be a positive influence on the world around me. Both of them dedicated their lives to that. It would be disrespectful for me to not help continue that legacy.

Rest in peace, Jim and John. We won’t forget you.

Toy Story

Mr. Pricklepants may be the greatest character name ever

Yesterday, Fred and I saw Toy Story 3. Rather than write a lengthy, well-thought-out review, I’ll just blurt out some stuff.

Great movie. Ken was awesome. Mr. Pricklepants, Buttercup and Trixie were awesome. Lotso was awesome, and smelled like strawberries. Spanish Buzz was unbelievably funny. Slinky Dog still sounds like Slinky Dog, which made me feel very good inside. It’s odd to realize how much I’m in love with these fictional, virtual characters. Don Rickles is a national treasure, despite looking more and more like his character. The ending is amazingly bittersweet, and made my eyes go all teary. Did I mention that Ken was awesome? He has issues. He also has a fantastic wardrobe to go with his issues. You will see that Barbie has a dark side. You will see Mr. Potato Head do something that is freakish and weird beyond all measure. I’m not kidding. You will also find the cymbal-playing monkey to be even creepier than you thought. It’s those eyes. If you’re like me, you’ll be delighted to see the Fisher-Price Popcorn Popper. You’ll not recognize the majority of the new voices, despite many of them being well-known actors. That’s a great thing. You will also never look at baby dolls the same way again.

Loved this movie. Loved it. Pixar hit another one out of the park.

Update on Surgery Boy

Still here.

Fred is healing up like a madman. A sane one. You know what I mean.

He’s out of his arm immobilizer/sling, and his shoulder is healing nicely. He’s still got a long way to go, but he’ll get there. Diligently doing his exercises twice a day. He’s regained a lot of flexibility, though he’s still not allowed to put any weight on that arm. The physician’s assistant has instructed him that he’s to lift nothing heavier than a cup of coffee with that arm.

This is of course driving him crazy. I occasionally have to remind him to NOT use that arm.

He’s got a checkup coming in July, and we’re hopeful that he’ll be able to lift weight then, which will mean that he can go back to driving his Ranger. (Can’t work a stick right now.) He’s been driving my Ram for two months, and it’s just not his favorite thing to drive. He misses his pickup terribly. We ran out to Buffalo in it yesterday, and he was so happy to ride in it.

And of course, he’s wearing out my pickup. Had to have a new water pump installed yesterday. Dammit.

O Glorious Spring

Let’s go with the word Sublime.

The past three days have been spent mostly outdoors. No Playstation, no Warcraft. Precious little television. (Okay, maybe a movie or two.) There’s nothing in the house as compelling as what’s outside the house.

Tonight I realized a few things.

1. This year I became a Process Gardener. All my previous gardening efforts have been dedicated to Product, not Process. I wanted flowers, so I planted flowers. I wanted strawberries for Fred, so I planted strawberries. And so on. This evening I realized that I was taking a perverse pleasure in weeding. This is a first. Totally confused me when I realized it. I have never ever enjoyed weeding before. The sudden recognition that I was weeding and enjoying it was like finding that I really enjoy reading up on tax codes.

2. Point 1 happened partially because of a confluence of factors. I’m now a homebody. I bought a pickup last year. I got a new garden cart, which is far superior to the previous cart. I finally found a comfortable hat that keeps the sun off my head and neck. The weather is spectacular this year. The combination of all those small factors added up to a big shift in perception. I’m way more comfortable this year than I’ve been in previous years. That comfort tracks into enjoyable gardening. You wouldn’t think it, but it all comes together and creates an environmental change that’s massively conducive to me doing dumb-ass things like weeding for fun.

3. Fred and I really do live in one of the most beautiful places in the world. As I was sitting in front of the house, the evening light was filtering through the trees. Everything was green and gold. The stately Oaks and beautiful Ash trees were full of leaves and absolutely magnificent. The sky was a rich blue, with little skiffs of cloud laced through it, like pond ripples. Doves and sparrows were zooming by, as were bees. The street in front of our house was being used for walking, biking, skating, running, dog-walking, socializing, and fun. I could smell a neighbor’s charcoal grill, and I’d also catch little whiffs of our Lilac tree, which is just starting to bloom. The Catalpa was covered in big chartreuse leaves and hundreds of flower buds getting ready to bust open. Impact sprinklers were tick-tick-ticking. Boats were going up and down the river.

Fred and I really do have a wonderful life.

Logs

Slept for two hours after I got home. Groggy and irritable now.

D’oh!

The Sun is Out

It’s like actual Spring out there. I’m waiting for something horrible to happen and louse it up.

It’ll probably involve radioactive monsters and government intervention.

Fred Update

Feisty as ever

It’s been two days since Fred’s Rotator Cuff surgery. So far, everything is going swimmingly.

We took the bandages off today. He’s got three small incisions, with a total of eight stitches all round. So the external healing is minimal, and frankly is nearly done. It’s the innards that will take time.

I also pulled his IV. He had an anesthetic pump pushing drugs directly into the surgery site. It was pretty weepy/dribbly, with lots of plasma and blood oozing out. (The doctor said this was normal.) The pump was completely deflated, so it had done its work. So I pulled a good eight to ten inches of plastic tubing out of his shoulder. Gross.

So all of the surgery bandages and tubes have been replaced with four bandaids. He had his first careful shower this morning, followed by bacon and eggs. We also got his arm immobilizer put on over a shirt, which has made him far more comfortable. The past two days he’s been wearing my t-shirts like a muu-muu. Not the most comfortable way to dress.

Also, we got a recliner yesterday. The sleeping is a lot easier in that. So the bed is pushed over, and the recliner is in our bedroom. (We sleep better together than apart.)

We’re both exhausted. Fred from heavy meds and healing, and me from moving furniture and taking over all his chores and worrying over him. But everything is going good.

No Kidding

In other news, beef comes from cows

So Ricky Martin finally announced that he’s gay. Upon hearing this news, I immediately thought of this:

My favorite line: “Well, you’re the last to know.”

Cripes

Life keeps happening. For instance:

1. Fred needs rotator cuff surgery.
2. Nephew’s Father has died.
3. Brother had skin cancer. (Cured)
4. Fred’s business moved.
5. I spent much of last week resurrecting my firm’s internet firewall.
6. I spent much of last week resurrecting Fred’s pc.
7. I spent much of last week resurrecting Brother’s lost mac files.
8. I spent much of last week with the blankets over my head.

Back off, life.

Holy Shit

He’s still alive

Just found this. One of the funniest things I’ve seen in quite some time. (Watch all the way through the credits.)

Rifftrax Live

Snark by the barrel, delivered in easy installments

Fred and I went to Rifftrax Live tonight. The Rifftrax guys (Mike Nelson, Kevin Murphy and Bill Corbett from Mystery Science Theater 3000,) did a live performance in San Diego which was simulcast to movie theaters all over the country. (The simulcast was carried by Fathom Events, who do this sort of thing.)

The evening was (mostly) dedicated to bizarre little Christmas films, most of them with an air of surreal incompetence. One of the few that didn’t hew to the Christmas theme was a strange promotional film about pork, full of three-part harmony about the wonders of meals prepared with said pork. I cannot adequately describe how strange it was; it can only be experienced.

I thought I was going to laugh myself to the point of rupture. This stuff is exactly my kind of humor and had me gasping for breath.

Fred was mostly horrified by the films. Oh, there were some dark, twisted visions of Santa, and some genuinely weird bits of animation. The term “nightmare fuel” definitely applies. Freakish and strange.

They will be rebroadcasting the event tomorrow night as well. If you’re near a theater that does Fathom Events, consider going. Super fun.

Music That I Like – Freddie Mercury Edition

For Suzette, who has great taste in music

Here’s some Queen for y’all.

I love Queen, especially Seventies Queen. They had an awesome sound, and lots of presence on stage, mostly thanks to Freddie Mercury. Fantastic shows, and crazy-ass sounds.

This is from their first album, recorded during studio time that Paul McCartney had reserved, and then never shown up for. (He apparently did that a lot; they got a lot of free studio time because of that.)

Holy crap, look at those pants

Holy crap, look at those pants

Queen - Keep Yourself Alive