Wednesday, April 30, 2003

Movie News

Did you hear about the new Disney Pirates of the Carribean movie? Apparently it's not as tame as we all expected... the MPAA's ratings board said it should be rated arrrrrrrr.

Bell's Worst Invention

I asked my wife tonight "How come all phone companies suck?"

"Because they can," said Lori.

Ok, so when I decided that I had suffered enough with Earthlink, I decided it was time to get a new DSL provider. AT&T had a great offer, but I had to get local service with them. Fine, I thought. I was unhappy with Pacific Bell (SBC) anyhow and I already had AT&T Long Distance. It turned out to be a pretty sweet deal... Local, Local Toll, Long Distance, DSL, all on one bill. And not a paper bill in sight, just an email once a month with a link. Log in and see how much they'd be deducting from my credit card.

Well, that all started unraveling a few weeks ago. I got a call from some woman at AT&T confirming that I had received my letter about the cancellation of my local service. I didn't get any letter. Turns out today that I *had* gotten a letter, delivered by Airborne Express. Well, someone opened it and when they figured out it was nothing of value, they slid it under the manager's door. Thanks a lot, lousy rotten neighbors.

Basically, if I wanted to keep my DSL with AT&T, I had to switch back to SBC for my local phone service. For my trouble, AT&T was giving me a check for $200. That check arrived today. So I caved, called AT&T and said I wanted to do what they wanted me to do. So they tell me that they can't put it on my AT&T bill anymore, so they need a credit card. Fine, whatever. Gave them the same credit card they already had, the same credit card they used to charge me for my whole AT&T deal.

Then they transferred me to SBC. Now that part was pretty slick, almost to make me think collusion, in that I was on hold for less than 60 seconds from the time the AT&T guy tossed me to the time that the SBC woman picked up. So went through the whole process and now I'm back at SBC for local, local toll and long distance. For coming back, I got a $50 Visa Gift Card and for taking a survey, a check for $35. I guess you could say I made out pretty good in the whole deal.

But, couldn't they just keep all their money and not be so dumb. If the stock hadn't tanked so much and been so confusing as to the splits and spin-offs, I'd sell my AT&T stock, too. And cancel my AT&T Universal Card.
Spammers stink... but here's a cool article on researching where spam comes from...

Monday, April 28, 2003

The end of the world is coming... Microsoft, AOL and Yahoo! to work together...
Combating spam:

More people are building spaceships... how cool!

Friday, April 25, 2003

Digital Baaaa.... Sheep tracked by GPS in Ireland...

Pay or Stay Home! This is an interesting opinion piece on London's new plan to charge about US$8 to drive in certain parts of the town to relieve congestion. He doesn't make a strong push either way, but really talks about a number of different political theories in language I could understand. (from

Bobcat (not sounding like himself) killed some people on CSI:Las Vegas last night in an episode featuring a number of comedians, including Gilbert Godfried. It was weird, all seemed understated and underused, like they were just rounded up and asked to hang out.

Tuesday, April 22, 2003

Two really cool things... the first is a private company developing a space ship, I have three one talks about it in generalities, one focuses on the technology and one focuses on the red tape it will face:, and

Another is something I saw tonight. It was a digitally remastered copy of "Singin' in the Rain" and would you believe that AOL had a hand in making it better? First, some history. Color negatives were used for the first time in 1954. Prior to 1954, in order to shoot a movie in color, they had to actually shoot each of the colors (Red, Green and Blue) as separate black and white negatives and then coat the negatives with a color and then layer them all together. In order to accomplish this, Technicolor had developed a camera that had a prism right behind the lense. It had three different films running past the prism. One one side, green. On the other, blue and behind it red. I'm not sure how they were able to do red and blue at the same time, but it worked for them, so I guess I won't think about it for too long. (If you know, please tell me. No one asked during the Q&A session and I didn't want to look stupid in case everyone else understood.) One of the biggest advantage was that the black and white negatives didn't fade like the color ones used these days. So movie companies will actually take the color negatives and split them with a prism to create the three black and white separated films for archival purposes.

One of the problems with combining the three separate films is that sometimes they were a little bit off. You'd get shadows or ghosts on images, or it just wasn't as clear. Well, as clear as they had the potential to be... Warner Bros. has a division that's devoted to figuring out ways to use new technologies to improve the film making process. And one of the guys there was talking to some "image scientists" as AOL. (Image scientists? I kid you not, that's what he called them.) Anyhow, together they came up with some software that would take the three separate films and match them up better than any human or mechanical means had been able to. The software worked really well, but it took 2 minutes to do a frame. (Keep in mind that there are 24 frames per second.) So the guys at AOL came back and mentioned how they have 50,000 processors that handle all of the AOL system and that when it's nighttime in the US, the computers are only running at 10-20% of their capacity. So they said that Warner Bros. could harness some of the unused power and see if that could speed up the process.

So they connected a huge bandwidth direct pipe between Burbank and Virginia, set up the software and sent a frame. Two minutes later, the completed frame was returned. So they sent 10 frames. Again, it was done in 2 minutes. So, how long for 100 frames? 2 minutes. He was getting giddy saying that they decided to really push it and sent 1,000 frames. Two minutes later, it was all done. So using the unused power of AOL, they've been able to crank through and they're working at restoring lots of movies into their archives. The resolution is higher than that of HDTV and improves the quality at every level of viewing.

They also sent the audio out to try to build Dolby 5.1 out of the original mono sound. Not sure how well it did, but the picture? So amazing. From the first time they showed a person, the quality was apparent and amazing. Probably even crisper than the movies shown today. So when Warner Bros. starts re-releasing old movies and they are advertising the quality to be better than when it was original shown in theaters, they're not lying.
This is kinda sad... but neat. This guy died and his family and friends have kept his blog alive with new posts and memories and pictures of him... There was a whole article this morning on Wired about people who had blogs and then died.,1284,58509,00.html. I think I'm going to give Lori posting rights to my blog. I hope nothing happens, and who could possibly consider this blog worth reading? I know Kevin checks it out, but I'm not sure anyone else does.

Monday, April 21, 2003

A woman bought a new Lexus, and returned the next day, complaining that the radio didn't work. The salesman explained that the radio was voice activated. "Watch this!" he said..."Nelson!" The radio replied, "Ricky or Willie?"

"Willie!" he continued....and "On The Road Again" came from the speakers.

She drove away happy, and for the next few days, every time she'd say, "Beethoven", she'd get beautiful classical music, and if she said,
"Beatles!" she'd get one of theirs.... One day, another driver ran a red light and nearly creamed her new car, but she swerved in time to avoid him.

"ASSHOLE!" she yelled..... The French National Anthem began to play.
The only guy to have never met Mr. Jablome in elementary school comes clean...

Saturday, April 19, 2003

It was once thought that a million monkeys, banging on a million typewriters, would eventually reproduce the entire works of Shakespeare.

Thanks to the Internet, we now know this is untrue.

Friday, April 18, 2003

An odd place to set up shop... this was the campaign site for Chirac when he was running for office over there in France. But he let the registration expire on March 31 and this group took over the domain legally.

Finally, giving teeth to laws... I saw a piece on TV last night about a Van Nuys woman who got fined $1,500, has to spend 200 hours doing graffiti removal and go to parenting classes... because her kid likes to spray paint on other people's houses, cars, fences, etc. It's been a law for some time, but rarely enforced. I think it's good... hold the parents accountable. And a new law in Washington State (link -- holds a retail employee accountable when they sell a violent videogame to minors. That is, instead of just a silly law no one pays much attention to and occasional stings that get stores in trouble, now if pimply Joe at the cash register lets a 16-year-old buy "Grand Theft Auto: Vice City" then Joe gets fined $500. That's a law with some real teeth and I applaud that state. Ironic for such a liberal state, but hey, good for them.

Oh, and this is pretty bogus and it's not even United Airlines... So American Airlines forced the unions to vote in 15-days on whether or not to accept pay cuts. (Union rules give them 30 days, but the airline insisted the voting be done quicker.) The day after the union voting deadline, American releases its required filings with the stock market and SEC and it turns out that the 45(!!!) top management staffers' pensions would be protected, even if the airline goes bankrupt. link -- Yes, that's right. Their pensions get moved to a private trust so that it's not part of the assets of the airline. While at the same time, regular people like you and me are agreeing to salary cuts knowing that might not be enough to save their jobs. How lame! American Airlines sucks now, too, apparently. Plus, they can't even find the runway.

Tuesday, April 15, 2003

Everyday Angel Rating
(Radney Foster)

Miss Laura fed the hungry in the church house basement
After she retired from teaching school
She'd pick my son up in her arms on Sundays
To teach him all about the golden rule
I heard those stories about Selma and Tuskeegee
How she helped Martin fill the jail
All I know is she had the strength of ten grown men
Even though her hands were small and frail

She was an everyday angel,the kind without wings
Walking around in the world, just like you and me
Angel, living out love
The kind of people we could us a lot more of
Just an everyday angel,everyday angel

Marilyn was waiting outside my old man's office
Trying to hide the bruises on her face
He said,"You don't have to get knocked around anymore"
"You can come and live at our place"
I didn't know till I had kids of my own
But I learn a big lesson that day
What you do means a whole lot more
Then anything you have to say

Go be an everyday angel, the kind without wings
Walking round in this world, just like you and me
Angel, living out love
The kind of people we could use a lot more of
An everyday angel, everyday angel

Dave was gonna meet his wife at a coffee shop in Brooklyn
When he heard the alarm sing out
911,he was running up the stairs then he never got back down
Down, down

He was an everyday angel, earnin' his wings
Trying to save people who are just like you and me
Angel, living out love
The kind of people we could use a lot more of

An everyday angel, everyday angel
Everyday angel, everyday angel

Monday, April 14, 2003

I can't remember if I posted this before, but I've been carrying it around in email and I was cleaning out email and came across it again... thought it was pretty cool.

"Do not pray for easy lives;
pray to be strong people.
Do not pray for tasks equal to your powers;
pray for powers equal to your tasks.
Then the doing of your work shall be no miracle,
but you shall be a miracle.
Every day you shall wonder at the richness of life which has come to you by the grace of God."
- Phillips Brooks

Can I get in on this?
Suing AOL... (MSNBC)

In other newschannels of the 24-hour cable variety.... Over the weekend, I watched the Fox News Channel. Then on Sunday morning, the Fox News Channel was on the regular Fox station and since the upstairs TV where we were getting ready for church doesn't have DirecTV (unless you go downstairs, turn it on, then tune in the channel and then turn on the VCR and then run back upstairs), that was the most interesting thing on. I feel guilty (like when I finally tried Internet Explorer and really liked it), but I liked what Fox News Channel was doing. It was an odd mix of homey, patriotic, friendly, peppy and sexy. I can see how critics would say it's all about the female anchors' legs, but even if you were a brain-dead guy who just sat there drooling, staring at her legs, you'd still learn quite a bit. Britt Hume, who I've always liked, was on one day. Though his comments pretty much advocating an attack on Syria and N. Korea were a bit too scary for my tastes. And Oliver North, being a dopey father figure interviewing soldiers, that was pretty cool. And at one point there was a discussion going on in New York, Washington, DC and the facilitator was leading from Qatar. That was a pretty neat feat of technology. I appreciated the intelligence of the discussion, the broad coverage (including having two people from NPR who obviously -- and rightly so -- disagreed with Britt) and all the different topics they covered. Not to mention their ticker also had stuff non-war-related in it.

Sunday, April 13, 2003

Hey there... it's a nice, quiet Sunday afternoon. Lori and I spent the afternoon looking at houses. It was a depressing time. I wish we had gone and seen a movie instead.

We did see a movie Friday night... Chicago - I guess I would say "eh" to it. It's a modern day musical so I thought maybe it would be a little more like Moulin Rouge, which I liked. But I didn't much like it. I didn't like the story and I felt like what I was watching bordered on soft-core lesbian porn. Not to mention that I don't like Richard Gere and his singing double's voice was really distracting. If that was his own voice, they should have gotten someone different because Richard Gere's singing voice sucked.

That's it from here today. Back to your regularly scheduled lives.

Thursday, April 10, 2003

Emailed to me recently from Yahoo!News...

Thousands Back Iraq War Near Ground Zero
Thu Apr 10, 3:43 PM ET

By MICHAEL WEISSENSTEIN, Associated Press Writer

NEW YORK - Thousands of construction workers and firefighters packed a noontime rally at ground zero Thursday in support of the war in Iraq which, to many of them, began right there on Sept. 11, 2001.

The rally stretched for several blocks north from the World Trade Center site. Carpenters, electricians and firefighters carried American flags and homemade signs and chanted "USA! USA!"

Police and organizers estimated the crowd at more than 15,000. The rally was sponsored by the Building & Construction Trades Council of Greater New York.

Many speakers and participants described the war as a natural outcome of the World Trade Center attack, drawing little distinction between the terrorist group al-Qaida and Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein.

"The war started right here on Sept. 11, 2001," Gov. George Pataki said.

Fire Lt. Kenny O'Brien, whose Harlem firehouse lost two members in the attack, agreed. "This is the most appropriate spot in the world to make this statement," he said.

Like many in the crowd, carpenter Jimmy Nolan said he saw the rally as a counterpoint to anti-war demonstrations that have drawn hundreds of thousands to the city's streets and parks.

"We got tired of those protesters always arguing against the war," he said. He said he spent 11 months excavating the trade center site and repairing shattered windows in surrounding buildings.

A sea of hard hats and red-white-and-blue bandanas stretched along West Street from the trade center site.

"There's more people here than in my home state of Kansas," former Republican Sen. Bob Dole said.

Many in the crowd were veterans or relatives of service members on duty in Iraq. Some carried pictures of their family members in uniform. Others carried military banners.

"I was in Vietnam, and we never had support like this," sheet metal worker Jim Pruitt said.
Irony: [Recently] looted [in Baghdad] was the German Embassy — representing a government that had emphatically opposed the U.S. decision to go to war. (MSNBC)

Wednesday, April 09, 2003

"Have You Forgotten?"

I hear people saying we don't need this war
I say there's some things worth fighting for
What about our freedom and this piece of ground?
We didn't get to keep 'em by backing down
They say we don't realize the mess we're getting in
Before you start preaching
Let me ask you this my friend

Have you forgotten how it felt that day
To see your homeland under fire
And her people blown away?
Have you forgotten when those towers fell?
We had neighbors still inside
Going through a living hell
And you say we shouldn't worry 'bout Bin Laden
Have you forgotten?

They took all the footage off my T.V.
Said it's too disturbing for you and me
It'll just breed anger that's what the experts say
If it was up to me I'd show it every day
Some say this country's just out looking for a fight
After 9/11 man I'd have to say that's right

Have you forgotten how it felt that day
To see your homeland under fire
And her people blown away?
Have you forgotten when those towers fell?
We had neighbors still inside
Going through a living hell
And we vowed to get the ones behind Bin Laden
Have you forgotten?

I've been there with the soldiers
Who've gone away to war
And you can bet that they remember
Just what they're fighting for

Have you forgotten all the people killed?
Yes, some went down like heroes in that Pennsylvania field
Have you forgotten about our Pentagon?
All the loved ones that we lost
And those left to carry on
Don't you tell me not to worry 'bout Bin Laden
Have you forgotten?

Have you forgotten?
Have you forgotten?

Darryl Worley/Wynn Varble, 2003 EMI Blackwood Music Inc./Hatley Creek Music/Warner-Tamerlane, Publishing Corp. (BMI)
"One Last Time"
Dusty Drake

Written by UNKNOWN.
(© Unknown.)
From debut album due for release, June, 2003, © 2003, Warner.

When she picked up the telephone,
His voice came on the line.
She said: "This can't be happening,"
An' tears fell from her eyes.
She said: "What am I supposed to do?
"I can't handle losin' you."
He said: "I just had to call to say goodbye,
"One last time."

He said: "There are some things in this life,
"That are out of our control.
"Like who we fall in love with,
"And when it's time to go."
An' she said: "What about the plans we had?"
He said: "This connection's gettin' bad."
"Now c'mon baby, let me hear you smile,
"One last time."

She started to apologise,
For all the things that she'd done wrong.
She said: "I would have loved you better.
"If only I'd known."
He said: "You were the perfect wife:
"Promise me you'll go on with your life."
She said: "The boys won't understand."
He said: "Tell 'em Daddy loves 'em and, be strong, whoa."

He said: "Honey, I've gotta go."
She said: "Don't you dare hang up.
"There's so many things I need to say.
"I love you so much."
I was almost like she felt him leave.
She cried out: "Can you still hear me?"
She fell down on the kitchen floor,
When the signal died,
As the pilot tried to pull out of the dive.
One last time......

Tuesday, April 08, 2003

I've been hanging on to this for awhile. I was going through and deleting old email and thought that I ought to just post this on here so it would be saved for all eternity, or until Blogger gets tired of giving us free space. This was from my friend Kevin who I've lately been really frustrated with. But he is a really thoughtful guy, despite his views on politics which I think to be dangerous. Maybe there are parts that shouldn't be here, but I'm just going to post it verbatim so that it's saved.

Happy birthday. I'm a day late by my clock, but not by yours. I didn't forget. I wanted to write something more than the usual half-thought garbage I come up with on the fly at the internet cafe. I'm always aware as I write those things that time is tenge, and the quality and/or depth of what I write always suffers as a result. So I'm writing this one at my apartment.

It is getting colder in the city, and I'm told March is the coldest month of the year. I suppose I should be happy that we will be traveling south to a slightly warmer climate for our "All Volunteer Conference" at the end of March. I should be happy, but as usual I'm finding it difficult.

I'm doing better in the happiness category. I'm taking comfort in the little things, even thanking God for them, for whatever good that does me. The extra week and a half of vacation was nothing short of a blessing. If I would have had to deal with the Resource Center, Irina, and my school at the same time, I think a vein would have popped in my head. But I am not looking forward to the mass gathering of Americans next month. I will enjoy seeing people I haven't seen for awhile, but it will likely be the last time I ever see them. One 'given' in the Peace Corps is that we are a rag-tag group of people with nothing in common who are temporarily thrown together to share a common set of experiences. Once those experiences are complete, those Peace Corps relationships tend to end too. So I get to go act goofy with a few hundred other people acting goofy. It will be nice to speak English, but that thrill will quickly fade as I realize these people are not my true friends. Those people are still back in America. You are still back in America.

I wish I had the money, or knew people who had the money it would take to fly all my friends here for a visit. The summer months were incredible here and they will be again, and Pavlodar would be a smashing place for a party. Perfect weather, good food and a beach. But instead of that, I'll be hopping on a train for 33 hours, plus a 4 hour bus ride to a dopey village in subzero weather to listen to lectures by people I wouldn't have hired to do entry level work in television. The security coordinator, in particular, is going to hate me. My couple of gigs standing in front of Britney Spears' trailer makes me 10 times as qualified as the dippy broad they hired. I'm still waiting for confirmation of my home address (I sent her three emails two months ago demanding confirmation). Do me a favor, if God forbid something happens to me, hunt the crazy security woman down and beat the crap out of her.

Anywho, apparently Robin Gillispie was near death back in November (I knew it was a crappy month, but it's only been recently that I've learned how truly crappy it was for a great many people). The big tub of goofiness refused to email me to tell me about his troubles. Further, he refused to email any of our mutual friends until he had recovered, for fear one of them might alert me to his condition. While chatting online with me last week he said, while sitting in the hospital, all he could think about was me adding his name next to Pete's in that list of lost friends I have in my head. Now how am I supposed to react to something like that? Then there's Monica, who tells me she's pregnant before she even tells her husband. Even Jon's wife Liisa recently emailed me to tell me she wanted to fly to Tashkent to dump a pile of manure over Olga. And these are people I haven't even seen in years. No, I don't think any of the ya-hoos I met during training at the Peace Corps can compete with that.

As for your pale-skinned self, you have seen my darkest, saddest, and goofiest sides and still talk to me in spite of it all. I'm not really sure if I've seen your darkest or saddest sides... I'm not really sure those sides exist within you, or that they need to. I have seen your goofy side, at least Cheerios out of a pan seemed goofy at the time. You seem to have chosen well with Lori, despite the inherent dangers of forming a relationship online (you and Rush Limbaugh... trailblazers). I hope you find yourself a job that pays what you are worth so you two can settle down someplace, have a kid or three and get on with this thing we call living. If anyone deserves the brass ring in life, it's the two of you.

So that's your birthday letter, in a nutshell. Stay healthy, happy and make a lot of money. Never lose sight of what's important, and never give up. Believe it or not, if you and I were Russians, all this would merely be the preamble to a toast. You and I would have to keep our glasses raised and you'd have to listen to me until all the blood drained from my arm and I was finally forced to take a drink, thus ending the toast. At one cafe I went to, I came with a group of six people and watched a woman at the table next to us deliver a toast that continued until the six of us had eaten. She was still going when we left, and showed no signs of slowing down.

Happy birthday. Watch out for snakes.


Monday, April 07, 2003

France, which initially opposed U.S. action in Iraq but has lately expressed support for the end of Saddam's regime, remains the butt of many jokes. "There was another war-related casualty today," Leno joked in Thursday's broadcast. "The French were injured when they tried to jump on our bandwagon."

Later on "The Tonight Show" Thursday, guest Dennis Miller ridiculed celebrity anti-war activists from Natalie Maines of the Dixie Chicks to Oscar winner Michael Moore, who was booed when he criticized President Bush at the Academy Awards. "It is that stupid moron's right to be that utterly completely wrong," Miller said.

Colin Quinn's amused by the Pentagon's anxiety about killing, evidenced by their leaflet-dropping efforts to get Iraqi soldiers to surrender without a fight. "What's next?" he joked. "Pretty soon we'll be dropping comment cards. 'Would you say your country goes to war often, sometimes or never?'"
Bloom and Kelly's deaths were apparently more war related than we first thought. Kelly's Humvee was trying to avoid enemy fire when it got into the accident and Bloom spent a lot of time in bad body positions that probably led to the blood clot that killed him.">

Sunday, April 06, 2003

David Bloom, NBC reporter, died in Iraq. Not in battle, but just of a health thing. Kinda sad. I watched a lot of his coverage. MSNBC had a nice piece filled with quotes...

Saw Phone Booth today. It was ok, but I'm not sure I would recommend it. It was surely tense and I couldn't figure out how they were going to get out of it, but in the end, I'm not sure how much I liked it. It was the quietest crowd I'd ever witnessed leaving the theater. It was the middle of the day and there were people of all ages, but the minute the first name popped up on the screen, most people were on their feet, filing out with civility, in silence. I guess a lot of people were unsettled.

Saw Bringing Down the House the other night. I laughed a lot. I thought it was quite funny. Not on my all-time list, but lots of laughs.

Friday, April 04, 2003

Sad News
Michael Kelly from the Altantic Monthly became the first American journalist to die in the Iraq war. Very few details, but it sounds like it was a Humvee accident, which seems even sadder. You can stay home and get a in a car accident. But to go all that way and die like that. Don't get me wrong, I'm not suggesting to be killed in battle is a good way to die, but it seems all the more tragic. Kelly was the sixth journalist to die in this war.

Mad News
When AOL and Time Warner merged, one of the conditions was that its AOL Instant Messenger (AIM) service could not offer advanced services until it had opened up the network to its competitors and offered interoperability. That is, the ability for people on other IM networks to communicate with AOL and AIM users (provided that service created the bridge). One day, people hoped, IM would be as common as email or telephones, where anyone could talk to anyone, no matter who offered the service. Well now AOL is petitioning the FCC to drop that requirement. Bad idea.

Thursday, April 03, 2003

One of these days I'll try to post what I remeber of the dream I had recently where Glendale, California was bombed with conventional and chemical weapons and then Monrovia was hit with an electro-magnetic pulse.

But tonight I have a different topic. I'm having a small crisis. In college my two best friends were Kevin and Allison. Allison and I saw eye-to-eye on a lot of things, especially politics. Kevin was my roommate for three years. Our politics were always opposite, but that was fine because we had a lot of other things in common.

I sent them the note I posted below. I thought it was funny. But you would not believe the responses I got back from the two of them. I really didn't read too much of either, just enough to get the point that I had really ticked both of them on.

And it's really disappointing because I like both of them. They are both really good writers and I have often looked up to them, if not envied their writing ability. But with Kevin in Kazakhstan and Allison in Seattle, the only way I have to communicate with them is by email. And things to talk about has severely shrunk over time. What's left?

Let's get down to brass tacks. Whenever I hear sirens, I immediately panic. I remember sitting on the couch the morning of my second anniversary watching people leap to their deaths before the trade center towers fell. On my last birthday I stood in our room at the Aladdin watching the space shuttle disintegrate. I'm not saying this is about me, but I want it to go back to the way it was. I want the scrolling tickers to go away from the TV news. I want CNN and ABC News panicking so much they're considering merging. I want to be able to sleep through police and fire sirens.

But that world is gone, gone for good. And when Lori and I are thinking about what bringing a child into this world might mean, I desperately want the old, safe world back. But it's gone, gone for good. We are older, wiser, and scared. It's only a matter of time before suicide bombers strike here.

(This is not announcement of our being pregnant or anything, it's just something we've been thinking about.)

Kevin and Allison are well intentioned people. Decent, honest, hardworking people. But I don't think they think about things like that. When Saddam Hussein is building many, many $90 million dollar bunkers under the streets of Baghdad while the Iraqis starve, that's not right. When he's offering money to the families of suicide bombers who kill people, that's not right. With much deliveration and prayer, the leadership of this country went to Iraq to liberate the people from this mad man and I just really don't see how you can make a logical, informed decision that opposes what we're doing.

I can appreciate the idea that war is wrong. I agree, I don't quite understand how war makes any sort of sense, but I think that we had to do what we're doing.

Wednesday, April 02, 2003


All the rhetoric on whether or not we should go to war against Iraq has got my insane little brain spinning like a roulette wheel. I enjoy reading opinions from both sides, but I have detected a hint of confusion from some of you.

As I was reading the paper recently, I was reminded of the best advice someone ever gave me. He told me about the KISS method ("Keep it Simple, Stupid"). So, with this as a theme, I'd like to apply this theory for those who don't quite get it. My hope is that we can simplify things a bit and recognize a few important facts.

Here are 10 things to consider when voicing an opinion on this important issue:

1) President Bush and Saddam Hussein.....Hussein is the bad guy.

2) If you have faith in the United Nations to do the right thing, keep this in mind. They have Libya heading the Committee on Human Rights and Iraq heading the Global Disarmament Committee. Do your own math here.

3) If you use Google Search and type in "French Military Victories," your reply will be "Did you mean French Military Defeats?"*

4) If your only anti-war slogan is "No war for oil," sue your school district for allowing you to slip through the cracks and robbing you of the education you deserve.

5) Saddam and Bin Laden will not seek United Nations approval before they try to kill us.

6) Despite what some seem to believe, Martin Sheen is NOT the President. He plays one on T.V.

7) Even if you are anti-war, you are still an "Infidel" and Bin Laden wants you dead, too.

8) If you believe in a "vast right-wing conspiracy," but not in the danger that Hussein poses, quit hanging out with the Dell computer dude.

9) We are trying to liberate them.

10) Whether you are for military action, or against it, our young men and women overseas are fighting for us to defend our right to speak out. We all need to support them without reservation.**

* Not true as if 4/01/03. But here's a link:
** Anti-war is ok, but anti-troops is just plain lame. These are our brothers, sisters, moms, dad, sons, daughters, cousins and neighbors doing their job.
Happy Day... SBC decides not to bid for DirecTV

Tuesday, April 01, 2003

What do a French Romance and Military Alliance have in common?
Both are brief, sordid, and absolutely meaningless.