Wednesday, November 05, 2008

Barack Obama: Socialist

To which I say: HA!

More knowledgeable people than me have had this whole thing out over the last few weeks, so I'm not going to get into all of the reasons that I feel this is a rather large pile of crap. Also, the people who are buying into this idea generally don't seem to be willing to listen to anyone else's opinions anyway, so what would be the point? The only point I'm going to make is this: Warren Buffet backed Obama. Warren Buffet. The world's richest man. If Obama was really looking to overthrow capitalism, would Buffet be in his corner? Again: HA!

No, what I wanted to say about this whole "debate" is that 99% of the people who keep calling him a socialist probably don't even know what socialism is. If McCain and Palin hadn't trotted the word out, it wouldn't have ever come up. I've talked to a lot of people about this election over the last year or so, and I never heard the word used once until a few weeks ago. Suddenly, everyone in McCain's corner was using it. Let's see, do I think that all of these people spent some time, did some research, and came to some hard-thought conclusions? Or is it more likely that they've been blankly parroting the party line without even knowing what it means? Hell, 9 out of 10 people in this country probably couldn't even explain capitalism. Now they're all experts on socialism? Riiiiiight.

Baaaah. Keep bleating, sheep. Meanwhile, the people who really want to do something about the state this nation finds itself in will be out there doing it.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Big haps

The move is done. Mostly. There are still a few random things at my old apartment - basically some scattered stuff in the kitchen and the art on the walls in the living room. I'm not exactly stressed about being able to get that out over the next three days. Plus, Gary ended up staying in that apartment and getting new roomies, so even if I get hit by a bus tomorrow and end up in the hospital for a month, that stuff will still be there when I get out. Except for maybe some of the food. But, you know, if I get hit by a bus, I doubt I'm going to worry too much about who ate my box of Nilla Wafers.

Since my fiancée definitely does not have the space, and we also aren't real thrilled about the economy and the prospects of a home improvement loan at this point (plus, you know, there's that wholoe wedding thing to pay for), the vast majority of the books and DVDs (and all of the comics) went into storage. Which is actually cooler than it sounds, because we got a large enough unit to be able to actually set up the bookcases and DVD shelves. The storage place isn't far away from the house at all, so it's not going to be a big deal to head over there and grab some stuff. We have some empty bookshelves and such at the house, and the plan is to just rotate chunks in and out every whenever necessary. It'll work until another option makes itself more available.

Moving 14-15 bookcases worth of books down a flight of stairs is fun. No, really.

So here I am living with somebody I'm engaged to. Pretty cool. All the time I hear "why aren't you married?" and it's actually kinda hard for me to believe that I've never been engaged/married before - not because I think I'm some kinda hot property, but just because I was in two pretty serious long-term relationships before. Stef and I always talked about how neither of us thought a piece of paper would add much to things, and we were in no huge hurry and would end up doing it on a beach somewhere while we held coconuts, but I wonder how much of that was actually ourselves unconsciously recognizing that we really weren't supposed to be together. Especially considering how quickly she got married and got a baby when she did find the right guy, and how quick I was to recognize that Angela was somebody I needed to marry before she got away from me. And Mindi - well, to be honest, I'm not sure why the subject of marriage/engagement never seemed to be seriously broached. There was one memorable night when I really thought the two of us might just get in the car and head for Vegas, but that passed and then it never really seemed to come back. Over the years I've often thought that she was the one real opportunity I was ever going to get, and I went and missed it.

I was wrong.

All of this is cool as hell, but it's also a little bit odd. Not odd-bad, just odd-odd. I'm finally turning into a real live honest adult with 2 kids and a house and 2 dogs and a yard and a barbeque grill. And about six and a half months from now, I'm going to stand at the end of an aisle and watch my beautiful baby walk towards me on her father's arm. I have the feeling that everything up to this point has been prologue, and the real adventures are about to begin.

Gonna be a brave new world.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

hey nineteen, no, we can't dance together

I just found out that Jack McDevitt is 73. If you don't know who Jack McDevitt is, he's an author. He writes science fiction. Speculative fiction. Whatever. Anyway, I've been on a sci-fi kick for a long time now (really ever since I seem to have exhausted the supply of halfway talented horror writers), and while it's not all I read, it does definitely make up a majority of my reading material. He's one of those authors that I started reading relatively recently - meaning in this decade, as opposed to people like Ray Bradbury and Arthur C. Clarke and Spider Robinson and Robert Heinlein and Philip K. Dick that I've been reading ever since I was a kid. He's great, too. If you enjoy the field, give him a try if you haven't already.

I'm kinda digressing. I've never really known too much about him, and so I vaguely assumed from the way he writes that he was a younger man than that. Not that I can really define in words the difference between a younger guy's writing and an older guy's writing, it was just a blurry subconscious impression. My mental picture of him, what there was of it, was of guy in his... oh, something like mid to late 50s. Guess the mental camera is out of focus. It probably also doesn't have enough megapixels, since I got it on the cheap.

It's not that I really care how old he is, I'm not an ageist or anything. I guess I just sort of thought that I'd be reading his books for the next 25 years or so, and now I have to adjust that number downward a goodish bit. Hopefully he'll live to be super-old and stay productive all the while.

God, that's so selfish. ^_^

While I'm at it, I'll mention that whilst wandering the intrawebs, I stumbled over a list of his Ten Favorite Science Fiction Novels. My own personal list would look different in a number of ways, but I would agree that all ten of the books he chose are excellent reads. Many of them are pretty "accessible," too. That's not exactly the word I want, but it's the one that's stuck in my brain, so I'm rolling with the punches. What I mean is that many of them are books that people who say "I don't read science fiction" would stand a good chance of enjoying anyway. So go read it and then go read them. Chop chop.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

It's Jeff Goldblum o'clock

Yay The Fly! Also yay Jeff Goldblum, although I do think he should play a character other than himself a little more often. Or even just once.

October is supposed to rock for scary movies, but so far I've been pretty disappointed. I know, I have like 200 on DVD, but part of the point of October is that there should be a plenitude of horror flicks on the tube. Props to Sci-Fi for bringing back "Tales from the Darkside," but still. I shouldn't have to dig through my DVDs to find a scary movie when Halloween is just a couple of weeks away, you know? I should be able to find Event Horizon on the Sci-Fi Network, and Phantasm on TBS, and I Know What You Did Last Summer on TNT, and one of the Halloween movies (they never play 3, and they need to more often, because it's so horrible that it's great) on FX, and maybe something like C.H.U.D. on USA.

And hey, while we're at it, I bet they could make a pretty sweet C.H.U.D. video game. Somebody needs to get on that.

Anyway. The point. Get with it, TV. I need my yearly fix.

Random Quote of the Day:
"Tina Fey has actually done more interviews about playing Sarah Palin than Sarah Palin has done about being Sarah Palin."
-Roland Martin in a column on

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Da (Duh) Bears

OK. This isn't a sports blog - well, it's my blog, and I can make it whatever I want it to be, but still. It's not meant to be just me complaining about how all of my teams seem to fall apart year after year (if they ever even get it together in the first place). But I have to say something about Sunday's game.

The debate is raging in Chicago about whether or not the squib kick with 11 seconds left and a one point lead was a good idea, whether it cost the Bears the game, etc. There are a lot of folks saying that no, the poor defense on the next play was the culprit, or that the poor defensive playcall on the next play was the culprit, or that the Bears not being able to punch it in from the 1-yard line earlier in the quarter was the culprit. They're all wrong. Yes, those factors all played a part in the outcome, but the largest mistake of all was the squib kick. Which is, in my opinion, one of the worst ideas in the NFL (right up there with the "prevent defense," which never seems to prevent a stinkin' thing). Unless you absolutely SUCK on special teams, and I mean SUCK SUCK SUCK, in that situation you HAVE to kick the ball deep.

Here's my thinking. The Bears are a point up with 11 seconds left. Since we're under two minutes to go, the clock starts when the receiving team touches the ball. If they kick it deep - let's say, just for argument's sake, that they kick it to the goal line - then the Falcons have to cover roughly 65 yards in those 11 seconds in order to get into field goal range. By squibbing it, it was picked up at about the 35, and the Falcons only had to cover 30 yards or so in those 11 seconds to get into field goal range. When you throw in the fact that the Falcons had no time outs remaining, which one of those two scenarios do you think they were hoping for? Exactly.

And then people are saying "well, yeah, but the Bears had just given up an 85-yard return on the previous kickoff." To that I say this: that return took 12 seconds off the clock. The game would have been over, no field goal try would have happened. Unless the Bears had advance knowledge that lightning would strike twice in the same place - and Jerious Norwood is no Devin Hester, nor is Lovie Smith Nostradamus - and that this time he'd take it all the way back for a TD, then that's a moot point. Which do you think happens more often in the NFL - two kickoff returns of 80+ yards by the same team in the same game, or a 30-yard passing play along the sidelines? Again, exactly.

Clock management, people. It's not just for breakfast anymore.