Friday, December 30, 2005

Hwang, You Suck

If you haven't already heard, stem-cell "pioneer" Hwang Woo-suk was found to not only be a partial fraud, but a COMPLETE fraud. He made his entire data set up. Frankly, I'm very disappointed for several reasons. First and most obvious, I'm disappointed as a scientist. Having been forced by Hopkins to take three sets of ethics classes, including a lecture on the Ethics of Writing (where this very topic was discussed), a stunt like this hits the entire research community below the belt, so to say. Second, I'm disappointed as a writer. Being acutely familiar with the publishing process, I have to ask, "Where were the reviewers?" Science is a self-correcting subject because of the peer-review process, and the reviewers of this article have failed the community as well. Third, I'm disappointed as someone who still believes that stem cell research holds great promise, and in how Hwang has tainted the field for anyone else still in it. This will only serve to fuel the religious right's opposition to the research (an opposition that I disagree with about 90%), place even tighter restrictions on research being currently conducted, and call into question any past and future results from the field - all in all, quite a discouraging package to anyone who is considering the prospect of a future in stem cell research. Some of the future great minds might not find it worth the trouble to undertake future research because this man so severely crippled it.

Thursday, December 29, 2005

Today

Had lunch with Matt at Ruby Tuesdays.

Went to CVS for some hair stuff and new eyeliner.

I straightened my hair using the EasyStraight system. It's not as straight as I would have preferred, but it's definitely going to cut my work at least in half. I think I might give it a few extra minutes next time...I was having trouble determining the thickness of my hair, and decided to play it safe than risk going too long. So now instead of heavy kinks and curls (see photo at right), I have some loose waves in the back and at the ends. I'll have to see how it looks in a few days before deciding about a haircut...I can't wash my hair or use the straightening iron for 2 days.

I just realized that I should have taken a "before" and "after" picture, in the mirror or something. Oh well.

Watched girly movies and ate ice cream - Legally Blonde and Mona Lisa Smile, and Ben & Jerry's Half Baked, respectively.

In the process of making some enchiladas for dinner. Then who knows what?

Apparantly now we're going to Springfield tomorrow around 3:30. I need to finish my gift bags tonight, I suppose.

I wish my new clothes would get here. My stuff from Old Navy isn't slated for delivery until January 3rd. My JC Penney order *could* theoretically get to the catalogue department tomorrow for pickup, but it probably won't because I ordered one thing that had to be "transferred" from another warehouse so I'm supposed to allow an extra 1-3 business days on top of the standard 4-7 for delivery. And I'll have to wait another week before I can exchange two other shirts at Old Navy. But when all is said and done, I'll have 4 striped button down shirts (1 pink, 1 white, 2 blue), 3 long sleeved t-shirts (pink, white and red), a bright pink wrap top, two sweaters (pink and blue), a pink fleece pullover, and a blue knot-front long sleeved shirt. Along with the black long sleeved t-shirt and blue turtleneck sweater I got at Old Navy this week that actually fit, I think I'm done until summer. I love Christmas money.

Wow, my life has been boring this week.

UPDATE: You didn't really think that I was done shopping until summer, did you? :-) It's not that bad though...I only need about $225 more of clothes to complete my wardrobe. Matt said he'd buy me an iPod way back when if he won enough poker money, and now that I have an iPod I said I wanted clothes instead. He said that wasn't the deal. Booooooo!

Wednesday, December 28, 2005

New Additions

To our DVD collection, that is.

We got Legally Blonde, Mean Girls, Office Space, William Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet, Rounders, and Swordfish with our Best Buy gift cards.

Bet you can't guess which ones I picked out.

Trick question! I picked all of them out except Rounders (lest you think that I somehow ended up with more Best Buy gift cards than Matt, he also got a new FM transmitter for his iPod).

We also saw The Family Stone today. It was extremely well done, but different than what I expected (not as much of a comedy as the previews made it out to be).

I just told Matt that I was getting hungry and I either needed to make dinner or eat more ice cream. I thought it was an obvious choice, but he's making me make dinner. I suppose the ice cream will have to wait a bit.

Tuesday, December 27, 2005

Less than 5 days left

An optimist stays up until midnight to see the New Year in. A pessimist stays up to make sure the old year leaves. - Bill Vaughan

I have no idea who Bill Vaughan is, but I'm wavering between the two right now. Good riddance to bad rubbish.

Apparantly we're not going to VA until sometime Saturday now. So I'll be sitting around the house for the next three days doing pretty much nothing. Awesome.

One of the things that bothers me most is when things deviate from the plan, especially in the 11th hour.

Pictures


The whole family - my brother Daniel, Dad, Matt, Mom, my sister Alyssa, me, my Uncle Tim.


Alyssa, Daniel, and me.


My parents' dog Emily opening her gift (bones) from Max and Roxie.


We even had a Charlie Brown Christmas Tree (tm)!

A sad day today

I found the cutest shoes online today (the pink ones). I can't find them available ANYWHERE :-( All of my google search attempts took me to the same website, zappos.com, that only had the green ones. If anyone finds me a pair, size 8, I'll love you forever!

Monday, December 26, 2005

Money Update

Budget = balanced
Laptop = ordered! I should have it no later than January 17th.

I also ordered $300 of clothes from jcpenney.com for $135.
I am so awesome.

Monies FTW, sort of

So I checked on my HP shopping cart today. It turns out that this week, the 512MB RAM and the BrightView WXGA widescreen are offered as free upgrades! And free 5-7 day shipping! Combined with the $50 mail-in rebate that's good until the end of the year, my computer is now only $838!! The crazy thing is that it's less than what this thing cost 18 months ago (I think this was about $875) . We're going to order it tonight after we balance our budget, and it's currently slated to build on January 10th. Yay!

Saving $150 on the laptop makes me feel a little less bitter about the fact that we just bumped up from the 15% to the 25% tax bracket. Hey, you make too much money - Merry Christmas from Uncle Sam. The government helped themselves to an extra $1000 from Matt's Christmas bonus. Disgusting. At least we won't be moving up to 28% for a good while, and then it's not as much of a jump anyways. 15% to 25% hurts like a mofo. 25% to 28% is just a little pinch.

Another Christmas Come and Gone

So we're back home again. Had a nice couple of days with my family. I made some yummy desserts (Christmas Cannoli Cake and Cranberry Crumb Pie) that everyone really enjoyed (including me). I got a beautiful 3-stone 0.25 carat diamond necklace and some gift cards from Matt, a scarf from my sister, Best Buy gift cards from my brother and my Uncle Tim, a laptop dock, a turtleneck sweater and puffy vest, a denim blazer, The Apprentice The Game, and little dangly silver earrings from my parents. My dad got all the cool gifts this year - a telescope and an atomic clock (from mom) and the complete Monty Python's Flying Circus DVD set (from us). My parents had gotten my brother a digital camera, so he had fun learning how to use that and taking pictures. I took a few with our camera as well; I'll put them up a little later tonight or tomorrow.

The food was, as usual, excellent. We had crabmeat-stuffed jumbo shrimp on beds of garlicky spinach for Christmas Eve, and Beef Wellington (filet mignon tenderloin rolled in mushroom-pate' paste and wrapped in puff pastry) with roasted potatoes, creamed onions, and green beans with almonds for Christmas dinner. A bunch of people came over for dessert that night, and Seth managed to make it over for a few hours as well, which was very cool. He gave me a New Mexico cookbook...is he trying to tell me something?

Matt and my dad bonded this weekend over shooting videos on the computer and talking about religion. I was pleased. It only took, what, 5 years? :-)

I managed to copy a few of my parents' classic rock CDs into iTunes before we left today. I'm currently listening to Derek and the Dominos' Layla and Other Assorted Love Songs...in reverse order (because I'm running the stereo off of my "Recently Added" playlist). Which is interesting, because supposedly the whole album is about Eric Clapton's affair and subsequent breakup with George Harrison's wife Linda. So it's now playing in reverse chronological order, going from the aftermath of the split back to the early days of their relationship. Interesting.

I have the rest of the week off...tomorrow will be spent doing laundry/cleaning and repacking for the rest of the week. Probably get some reading in as well, and finish the wrapping for our last gift exchange. We'll probably head over to Matt's grandma's or aunt's place on Wednesday and stay through Sunday night.

I think I'm done now. Hope everyone had a great Christmas!

Thursday, December 22, 2005

It doesn't feel like vacation yet...

Hi, my name is Courtney, and I conduct electricity like nobody's bizness.
(Hi, Courtney.)
Once, I shorted out Matt's plastic mouse just by touching it. He had to get a USB mouse because the mouse jack on his computer didn't work anymore. I shock myself getting out of the car every day - doesn't matter what the season, temperature, or humidity is. The cats run from me when I come inside with my coat on. I also shock myself on the coffee maker at work while touching nothing but a styrofoam cup (the coffee maker is also plastic). I've shocked myself on lightswitches (somehow I always manage to touch the little screw), doorknobs, faucets, and metal folding chairs - through a wool coat, no less.

All I want for Christmas is a static-free existance.

I went to 4 stores tonight for pate' for my mom.
Whole Foods Market ftw.

I don't have to work again for 11 days. Not that I was accomplishing much anyways. I do have a buttload of reading to do though. I called about my lab results, but the clinic wouldn't give them to me over the phone. Grr.

I think I have SAD. I hope my mood starts to pick up soon.

She, she screams in silence
A sullen riot penetrating through her mind
- Green Day

Sad

Elrod Hendricks Dies From Heart Attack - Elrod was the guest of honor at this year's Baltimore Heart Walk. He was at the AHA recognition dinner that I went to last week. He shook my hand.

One more life lost to heart disease.

I will be walking again next year. Please think about donating again when the time comes...or make general donation to the American Heart Association (donate before January 3rd and it will be credited to your 2005 tax return).

Last Day!

I'm printing out my holiday reading after lunch. It's about 40 articles for the background section of my proposal. w00t...or not.

Internet roundup for this morning = scary and funny.

First, a bit from an editorial written by digital security expert Bruce Schneier:
"This is indefinite dictatorial power. And I don't use that term lightly; the very definition of a dictatorship is a system that puts a ruler above the law. In the weeks after 9/11, while America and the world were grieving, Bush built a legal rationale for a dictatorship. Then he immediately started using it to avoid the law. This is, fundamentally, why this issue crossed political lines in Congress. If the president can ignore laws regulating surveillance and wiretapping, why is Congress bothering to debate reauthorizing certain provisions of the Patriot Act? Any debate over laws is predicated on the belief that the executive branch will follow the law."

Nice. TPA also got extended for 6 months, to continue to look at civil rights protections. Not that it probably mattered either way.

Next, a link to a Salon article about why Bush won't be impeached - blaming the media and the apathy of the Democrats, mostly.

And finally, something to cheer you up after all that doom and gloom: Pac-Man being chased by a ghost through the University of Michigan's library and computer lab. Requires Quicktime. Every now and then, when I see stuff like this, I get a small twinge of envy for people who went to big schools where stuff like this happens. It doesn't last for long though.

Wednesday, December 21, 2005

One more day...

Of work before the holidays, that is. Well, a day plus another hour and a half here.

I got three more songs off of iTunes today:
James Taylor - "Your Smiling Face"
Ben Folds - "Landed"
Lenny Kravitz - "Can't Get You Off My Mind"

I also made a playlist with a dozen or so songs that I remember my dad playing on the guitar way back when. I hope to be adding to that as well (I had to request two from iTunes because they weren't in the current catalogue).

"What's wrong with a homosexual priest? Aren't priests supposed to be celibate? Why does the Vatican care about what kind of sex they're NOT having? Well, the Catholic Church doesn't want women either, because priests are supposed to be like the apostles. Meaning that they must be male, olive-skinned, speak Aramaic, and live in 1st century Judea. If you don't fit those criteria, well, don't let the narthex hit ya where the good Lord split ya!"
- Heard on The Colbert Report last night.

I'm entering a Book Collection contest. I did one once, back in college, and won 1st place ($100). This one is sponsored by Hopkins, and the prizes are $1000 and $500 for 1st and 2nd. Also, the entries are divided into undergraduate and graduate students, so I won't have as much competition. I dug out my old entry and plan on brushing it up for submission in February.

Pathobiology of Cancer workshop application should be coming up soon as well.

Church concert is tonight; Matt's grandma and aunt are stopping by to see our place afterwards. Still have to wrap presents, package cookies, finish a few more ornament/gift bag packages, and pack for vacation.

That's all I got.

Ancient History

All roads lead to Rome.

No wait, that's not what I wanted to talk about. I've been reading some old LiveJournal entries of a friend of a friend of a friend (hereafter referred to as FOAF3). A Bacon Number of 3, if you will. Also, the transitive property does not apply here.

Anyway, FOAF3 was writing about breakups, and how if someone breaks up with you then it means that they don't love you and never did, because love should be enough to survive anything. Some people agreed, others disagreed - pointing out that while love is necessary, it's not sufficient and that other things like distance, conflicting schedules, changing interests/situations, changes in common goals, etc. can override the romantic notion of love surviving everything.

So, who's right - The Beatles or Patti Smyth?

From my own experience, I agree with the "love is necessary but not sufficient" arguement. Not always quite romantic, but there needs to be a balance between romance and practicality for survival. Sometimes one may outweigh the other, depending on the current situation, but both should always be there.

Case in point - my last breakup.
Love...check.
Distance...check (five times more than I had signed on for).
Conflicting schedules...check (nights vs. days).
Change in situation and comon goals...check (college vs. "uncollege" being the biggest one).
Psychological issues...check (at the time, on both sides).

Maybe I didn't do the best job, at the time or after, but I was going off of what had worked in the past. It just happened to be the one "oddball situation," out of a dozen or so, that ended up a complete mess.

All you need is love - The Beatles
Baby, sometimes love just ain't enough - Patti Smyth

Tuesday, December 20, 2005

New Computer?

So it looks like we'll be ordering a customized HP Pavilion dv1000 online next week. Configuration:
– Microsoft Windows XP Home Edition with SP2
– Intel Celeron M 380 (1.6 GHz)
– 14.0" WXGA BrightView Widescreen (1280x768)
– Intel Graphics Media Accelerator 900 - Celeron
– 512MB DDR SDRAM (2x256MB)
– 60 GB 5400 RPM Hard Drive
– DVD/CD-RW Combo Drive
– 54g 802.11b/g WLAN w/ 125HSM/SpeedBooster
– 12 Cell Lithium Ion Battery

I believe it meets all of my criteria listed below...it might be pushing the weight line a tad with the 12-cell battery, but it's still gotta be better than this 8.5lb clunker.

$992, with 2-day shipping, after mail-in rebate.

Everyone's happy (I think).

Self-Esteem Booster

Media Photoshop Retouching - a little project someone undertook to show how extensively magazine photos are retouched from the original before being published (requires Flash). You'll probably never look at magazine photos, or yourself, the same way again.

Commute debate:
-Taking 270-495-95 from G'burg to B'more is 1:15 minimum, 1:20-1:45 on a normal day, 2:00+ on a bad day. Of course, none of this is known in advance (other than that it is only 1:15 before 6am or after 11am in the morning; before 3pm or after 7pm in the evening. None of which makes for a very desirable day. Well, I wouldn't mind working 12:15-2:45, but other people might have issues with it.)
-Taking 28-198-29-32-95 is about 1:30, but frustrating because there is still a decent volume and the lights are timed very short and has a lot of left turns.
-Taking 27-a bunch of unnumbered backroads-108-100-95 is about 1:30, but not an option in bad weather. And there is little volume, but also NO place to pass so it would only take one old person to screw things up.

Went to Chili's last night. Had probably the best service we've had in months. Our orders were perfect, everything was well-timed, she was very nice and attentive (she even noticed that I had taken Matt's lemon from his water and brought out his second glass with no lemon). Matt left her a 25% tip. My faith in restaurant service is restored.

We looked at a few computers at Best Buy last night. I was having trouble navigating their website because it wouldn't let me sort by anything that was important to me, and I didn't want to look at the specs of 41 individual computers. I saw a Gateway that I liked, but everyone says not to buy Gateway. I also looked at an HP Special Edition, but I'm a little less enthused about its asthetics.

Monday, December 19, 2005

Computer Madness

So I'm shopping around for a new laptop, and then I can give this junker to Matt.

I really only have a few minimum criteria. Why is this so hard??

I just want it to be:
-less than 5.5 pounds (I carry it back and forth every day)
-reasonably fast
-512MB of RAM
-have internal wireless instead of the pop-out card
-6-cell battery or better (looking for really good battery life)

Matt wants it to be:
-less than $1100

Grumblecakes.

Party Roundup

Okay, crazy party weekend is over. I guess that's the price you pay for being popular. So here's the weekend in review (for some reason I just typed "weeding" there...I don't know why).

Friday - Carly and Eric's place, Reston VA
We got to their place on time - which meant we were an hour early. I didn't get the memo on that one. Anyway, there was much appetizers and drinkage to be had. We watched A Charlie Brown Christmas while we waited for everyone else to get there. Sometime during this hour the ex came (I didn't even notice until later). I guess that's a step forward? I'll never know...the online discussion is "friends only" (and I am most definitely not considered a friend). Anyway, the holiday gift exchange was first. Matt and I ended up picking numbers toward the end of the draw - I got a gift bag of wine, a candle and a holiday tea towel. Matt stole Cranium from Randi (I was glad, because I wanted it but didn't want to be the first "steal.") After the gift exchange, the ex disappeared upstairs for the rest of the time we were there (and Josh didn't get the memo about why he would do that, and kept yelling for him to come downstairs); everyone else played holiday trivia. Eric had come up with a bunch of really hard questions, and the idea was to yell out the answers. Some of them, you really just had to yell out random stuff until you hit on something. There were Monty Python references ("A duck!"), my Friends reference ("A ghost!"), and many other amusing answers. But the best was Josh, who yelled out "Jews!" to every question. After that was a little bit of video gaming (I hate video games, but Samba de Amigo was tolerable.) We headed home around 11, and presumably the ex came downstairs after that. Good times nonetheless.

Saturday - Kim's place, Timonium MD
There were 9 of us in all (Ryan and Staci were last minute cancels; Ryan had an emergency work trip to B-burg and Staci had to take Ellie to the vet). I brought a food-ornament gift bag for Kim and Mike, and she got me an iTunes gift card. We started out watching some of Phil Gordon's commentary DVD on playing poker. Matt was taking mental notes. Potluck dinner/desserts, then we split into three teams to play Trivial Pursuit:90s Edition. Kim and Ray were on my team - we were up against Matt-Phil-Sid and Mike-Matt Sprinkle-Jim. It was close at the end...we made it to the center spot 4 times and failed before finally winning it on the 5th try. The problem was we would get it down to two answers, and argue vehemently for a few minutes. One person would inevitably not be sure of an answer, and cast the tie-breaking vote for the wrong answer. Grrrr.

Sunday - Chuck and Peggy's place, Silver Spring MD
This was a last minute addition to the party list (we got the invitation on Tuesday I think). It was a cookie exchange/dinner, so I had to add two batches of holly clusters to my baking list. My criteria for choosing my exchange cookie was "What can I make that requires me to buy the least amount of ingredients?" When we got there, everyone was watching the end of the Redskins-Cowboys game. Once that was over (like the 'Skins weren't going to win by the 4th quarter) we had dinner. Then we watched The Holiday Yule Log. Yes, that's italicized because it's a title. Of a movie. Some genius videotaped a fireplace for 45 minutes, made VHS tapes of it (in 1987) and is probably a wealthy man now. There were many jokes and "cheers" during the movie. The funniest part was that it was a bootleg tape - they had gotten a copy from someone who actually owned the original. After all that festivity was the cookie exchange. Basically, you went around the dining room table 3 or 4 times and picked up a couple of each kind of cookie each time. At the end, you have a nice assortment of 8 or so. I would have been more enthusiastic if I hadn't already had a freezer full of cookies at home, but we got a couple dozen anyways.

So...that was my weekend.

Today's commute sucked because I tried to take a backroad over to 95, missed a turn, ended up on another road that was closed, and had to backtrack. I'll give it another shot tomorrow but I'm skeptical that it will cut any time off of my commute, based on my estimate.

But I got free lunch.

Had my iron and thyroid levels checked to try to find out why I'm so damn tired all the time. Seriously, I'm in bed by 11 almost every night and I still can't get out of bed before 8am. Will find out about those Wednesday or Thursday. Driving home to my parents' on Friday. Between now and then, I have GOT to get some work done on this thesis proposal. I have no work motivation right now...I hope the holidays will fix this.

I think that's everything for now. Remember, broken cookies don't count in your weight management plan because all the calories fell out!

She's so pretty but she doesn't always act that way
Her moods are swinging on the swingset almost every day
She said to me that she's so stressed out, it's soothing
And all I said was "someone get that girl a mood ring."
-Relient K

Wednesday, December 14, 2005

Things I Hate Today

I hate being behind stuck behind a van going 10 miles under instead of 10 miles over the speed limit.

I hate when a car is making an illegal u-turn where there's no turn lane and I can't get around them because everyone behind me is pulling around them.

I hate that I could not get a green light to save my life this morning.

I hate killing myself to get here at 10am to meet someone and then they never show up.

I hate that no one in my lab answered their cell phones so I could tell someone that I was running a few minutes late.

I hate politics. I hate politicians.

I hate the Patriot Act, and how some genius stuck an anti-meth proposition as part of the Patriot Act renewal bill. So that anyone who votes against renewing the Patriot Act will later be spun as "not taking a stand against meth."

I hate the politics of the FDA that refuse to initiate a nationwide vaccination program against cervical cancer on the flawed and unproven theory that vaccinating young women against a STD will increase promiscuity and abortions.

I hate that there aren't 26 hours in a day in December.

Monday, December 12, 2005

Ex0rant

How did I ever live without parchment paper??

I am flying through these cookies. It's awesome.

Three down, four to go.

Saturday, December 10, 2005

Okay, NOW it's Christmas

Got the tree and other various decorations up today. I figured two snows was good enough to kick off the season. Also did some christmas shopping at Lakeforest Mall - got gifts for my mom and sister, Matt's mom, sister and grandma, and our gift exchanges for the party on Friday. I also ordered Matt's christmas presents today...and accidentially sent the confirmation e-mail to his hotmail account because I didn't realize I was using his amazon.com login. I quickly corrected the error :-) Still have to shop for both our dads and my brother, and then I think that's it as far as gifts.

I hung lights on the front windows but I don't like how they are right now because I had to run the lights down one side and behind the couch to get to the outlet. I'm going to get a white extension cord at Target when I go tomorrow and then redo them.

The cats enjoy sitting under the tree again but other than that they dont seem to be making too much of a fuss about the decorations.

We reconstructed our budget this morning (Matt formatted the windows partition on his computer and accidentially forgot to back up the file). It was a pain and took over an hour, but we managed to account for everything except about $158. It should naturally correct itself in a few months, but until then we're hanging on to that money as a sort of "undesignated funds."

I love the detachable part of the wireless iPod transmitter that lets you play iTunes on your stereo.

Roxie is getting a bath tonight because she smells like poo. This should be interesting.

UPDATE: The bath was relatively painless. She didn't cry or squirm too much. And she still likes us. w00t! I think we're going to try to keep her hiney-hair trimmed to help keep her tidier.

Friday, December 09, 2005

Irrational Fears

Also known as "the heebie-jeebies."

So I was browsing around on snopes.com yesterday, and I came across one of those tales of "so-and-so went to a third world country and two weeks after they came back they got a rash and it turned out to have [insert creepy crawly here] growing in it!!!1!"

This one had a PICTURE.

Yes, I know the story is fake. Yes, I know the picture is photoshopped. It doesn't make me feel any less squeamish. Because those things look like eyes to me. And that gives me the ultimate creeps.

For more evidence, watch this movie. Same idea. As the poster on boingboing put it, "...made my stomach do one of those slow somersaults you get when you step on a turd. Something about these evinces a genuinely atavistic reaction, a whole-body squick."

As an exercise for the reader, there is also a Stephen King short story called "I Am The Doorway" that has a guy with alien eyes growing in his hands and chest.

Ewwwww.

Thursday, December 08, 2005

Christmas Awesomeness

A Christmas Story - in 30 seconds, reenacted by bunnies.

And for the rest, go here (Star Wars coming on December 16th!)

Wednesday, December 07, 2005

The Airplane Incident

I'm sure you heard about the air marshal incident at Miami-Dade Airport this afternoon. I just think it sucks that it turned out to be unnecessary for them to kill the suspect. I'm not saying they should have opened fire or not; I don't know all the circumstances. But...
1) How could he have gotten a bomb onto the plane in a carry-on? Doesn't the TSA screen for all that stuff (x-rays, dogs, bag checks, etc)?
2) His wife told the air marshals that he had a mental disorder and hadn't taken his medication that day.
3) It turns out that the guy was a missionary (in Peru).

4) They also blew up two other bags that the bomb-sniffing dogs deemed "suspicious." Sucks to be those two people. Does the TSA reimburse them or are they SOL?

Internet roundup

Global warming!! Oh wait, just kidding.

Oh Bushie, how could you? Seriously though, this doesn't bother me.

I would so not want to be this guy.

When did innocent verdicts become "setbacks" to homeland security? I think that's an extremely dangerous line of thinking.

Monday, December 05, 2005

A Monumentous Occasion



Yes, that's right. This is post #300. That's a pretty good run for me...a little over a year to get 300 posts; that's more than a post every other day. Rock on.

I bought my first song from iTunes the other day. It's the song from the new Volvo commercial that I thought was Bob Dylan, but it's not.

In the chilly hours and minutes
Of uncertainty, I want to be
In the warm hold of your loving mind.

To feel you all around me
And to take your hand, along the sand
Ah, but I may as well try and catch the wind.

When sundown pales the sky
I want to hide a while, behind your smile
And everywhere I'd look, your eyes I'd find.

For me to love you now
Would be the sweetest thing, 'twould make me sing
Ah, but I may as well try and catch the wind.

When rain has hung the leaves with tears
I want you near, to kill my fears
To help me to leave all my blues behind.

For standin' in your heart
Is where I want to be, and long to be
Ah, but I may as well try and catch the wind.
Ah, but I may as well try and catch the wind.

-Donovan, Catch the Wind

I don't know if I ever posted this link of the interview with Tony Campolo, but it's a good one. I want to read his book.

That's all I got. I have to give a presentation at lab meeting tomorrow that I haven't started yet. Yay for procrastination!

Sunday, December 04, 2005

Weekend Update

After much frustration, I (and Matt after I gave up) have my new IPod and ITunes set up.
IPod fully loaded with CD collection and mp3s = check.
(ERROR: I have 10.2G available on my IPod and only 8.1G available on my laptop hard drive.)
(Half an hour later: I got it up to 9.6G. I could free up another 600MB but I have to ask before i uninstall some stuff. I think I could get rid of several things that seem to be duplicates. Like the 4 older versions of Java runtime environment - seriously, is it not uninstalling the old one when it updates?)

Matt's holiday party was really nice, as usual. And the punk won a 15" flatscreen TV in the door prize drawing. We're going to get a wall shelf and put it in our bedroom - one more thing competing for our time :-)

Kim and Mike finally got engaged. Yay! I'm a bridesmaid. Yay! Stressed-out bridesmaids killing bridezillas is an acceptable insanity defense in thirteen states. Yay! I totally just made that last part up...or did I? Kim better behave herself :-)
-----
Holidays:
10 Dozen truffles (chocolate, almond, coconut, and vanilla eggnog) made = check.

One holiday party down, three to go. Did I mention that those three parties are all in THE SAME WEEK?

Still to do: finish ornaments, assemble gift bags, bake cookies, shopping and wrapping, put up the tree, mail packages and christmas cards.

Bring it on.

Saturday, December 03, 2005

Places where politics do not belong

Congressman says BCS 'deeply flawed' - Why does Congress care about the BCS?

Are we surprised that a Texas Republican is the one calling for congressional hearings?

Friday, December 02, 2005

Merry Christmas to me!

I just got a concert ticket to see Virginia Coalition at the 9:30 club on January 6th.

For their live CD/DVD recording concert.

(grins)

Oh, and Phil's coming with me :-)

35 days...

Sometimes I say funny things

Me: That's not snow. It's...crispy rain.
Matt: Snow is crispy rain!!

Me: That's ininterpretable.
Matt: What? INinterpretable? You don't say inindivisible, you say divisible.
Me: Fine, "terpretable."

Phil: Yeah, I had that problem a few versions ago.
Me: Well, Matt just put it on my computer like, two weeks ago, so unless they're going through versions like Paris Hilton goes through shoes, I've got the newest version.

And over IM:
Seth: pretty much, the only ones [webpages] with content are yours, carly's, eric's and liz's
Me: <---highfives self, pokes self in eye
Seth: good job!
Seth: you better post that

Thursday, December 01, 2005

Why I *really* got married

So Matt was up in Abingdon today for the Microsoft new software launch. I kept wanting to say Aberdeen. He stayed late past the conference and ate dinner up there to avoid the traffic coming home. I had two cheddar biscuits and several handfuls of shredded coconut (I was making coconut truffles tonight) for dinner.

Vindication

I did a few google searches tonight, on some of the "popular" people from my high school. Turns out that there's not much out there in cyberspace on most of them. Ah, the sweet smell of success. It smells like chocolate.

Open up your eyes and see the wonder that is me

I always thought ebola was cool. For a while I wanted to be a field epidemiologist (hence my minor in anthropology). So I enjoyed reading that, after almost 30 years, researchers finally found the animal reservoir of the virus (that means the animal that carries the virus in nature but doesn't display symptoms) - it's three species of fruit bats. Lesson here: don't eat fruit bats.

ps - read The Hot Zone, if you haven't already. And then read The Cobra Effect - fiction, but scarier.