I don’t even remember how it happened. Last night I was sitting at the computer, and somehow or the other I started messing around with the headers on this blog. I can’t remember if I found a cool image I wanted to use for a header, or if I found a plug-in that randomized the header or what… but one or the other set me off on a stream of consciousness search for headers that somehow related to my life.
So now the header graphic is randomized. Each time you load a page here, you’ll see a new one. Here are the header subjects so far:
Saint Etienne (2 headers of one of my favorite bands)
Emiliana Torrini (Love in the Time of Science is one of my favorite albums)
Duran Duran (my first favorite band)
This Mortal Coil (It’ll End in Tears was my teen angst album)
Madonna (from the Like a Virgin era, just because)
Beethoven (musical revolutionary)
Thomas Cranmer (religious revolutionary)
Ludwig von Mises (economic revolutionary)
Hunter S. Thompson (counterculture icon)
T.S. Eliot (my favorite poet)
Flannery O’Connor (one of my favorite authors)
Don Draper (Mad Men badass)
St. Paul’s Cathedral (home of Anglicanism)
The Tech Tower (best university in the US)
More headers will follow. I haven’t found a good Steelers image yet, and the one good (large) pic I found of The Jam was taken at an angle, so I couldn’t get all the guys in the 940×198 space needed for the header. But the search will continue.
Also, I updated the Links page this afternoon. I added one new link, deleted few dead ones, and updated a few others.
Here’s a rare acoustic performance of R.E.M.’s “Driver 8”. What makes this particular performance so interesting is that it’s supposedly from a July 1984 episode of the show “The Cutting Edge”… which was almost a year before Fablesof the Reconstruction was released.
There’s an old saying in the broadcast industry that “[he or she] has a face for radio”. The meaning of this is clear: people with broadcasting skills (but not good looks) end up in radio, whilst people with broadcasting skills and good looks end up in television. By and large, the saying is true: all the Photoshop skills in the world just won’t make Sheri Lynch, Cooper Lawrence, Randi Rhodes, Leslie Fram, Don Imus, or even Howard Stern attractive.
I might have found the one exception to the rule in Annabel Port, the sidekick of Geoff Lloyd on Absolute Radio (formerly Virgin Radio) in the UK. She’s funny, her accent is sexy… and she’s pretty cute:
A friend of mine moved to the Netherlands not too long ago. So I’ve been looking for flights over there, and I’ve been stumped as to why I can’t find one for under $700, no matter what time of year, time of day, or Saturday stayovers I choose. Then I found the problem:
So the ticket is $293 but the taxes and fees are $441? And my math might be off here, but those fees are around 148% of the ticket price?
– A University of Illinois professor has been fired… for teaching the Catholic Church’s view of homosexuality. Kenneth Howell was teaching a class called Introduction to Catholicism in which he discussed “how the theory of utilitarianism and natural law theory would judge the morality of homosexual acts”. One student decided that this amounted to “hate speech” and sent a complaint letter to the head of the religious studies department, who then fired Howell. So now you can’t even teach what the Church believes? The world as I understood it makes less and less sense every day.
– Say what you will about the British, but their soldiers are badass. Lance Corporal Luke Reeson was on patrol in Nad-e-Ali, Afghanistan when an insurgent took a shot at him. The bullet hit Reeson’s body armor and went into his mouth, shattering his jaw. Reeson spit out the bullet and calmly walked two miles back to his camp, where he was given immediate medical attention before being flown home for surgery. Oh, and he’s now back on duty in Afghanistan.
– Rion Harmon is a musician from New York who records under the name The Zax. When he found out that Heidi Montag’s latest album sold 658 physical copies, he decided that he could do better than that. And thus, helpmesellmorerecordsthanheidimontag.com was born.
– Speaking of music, the guys over at Funny or Die recently disguised pop star Jewel with a wig, prosthetic nose, fake butt, and frumpy clothes and sent her to a karaoke bar… to sing Jewel songs! Disguised as “Karen”, a woman in town for a frozen foods convention, and surrounded by “co-workers”, she put on a show… and the crowd’s reaction is priceless. Check it out here. The best part? When Jewel, discussing the prosthetic, points to her own nose and says “yes, this nose got bigger“.
– You ever pronounce a word incorrectly for years and years? Or carefully dissect a kiwifruit instead of just slicing it in half and eating it with a spoon? Or only figure out after 20 years of driving that the little notches on the flap of your gas tank cover are to hold your gas cap whilst fueling? You’re not alone. This thread over at Metafilter has hundreds of comments from people who were doing something wrong for years and years until someone corrected them. My own confession: it wasn’t until last year, while watching an episode of Good Eats, that I learned how to hold a chef’s knife properly.
A few things have been getting on my nerves lately, so I thought I’d rant about them here.
First of all, when writing out times for the United States (such as you would in an email or on a website), you have several options. You should probably just use ET for “Eastern Time” (or AT, CT, MT, PT or HT, for Atlantic Time, Central Time, Mountain Time, Pacific Time or Hawaiian Time). However, if you must be fancy and use EST or EDT (for “Eastern Standard Time” or “Eastern Daylight Time”), please get a clue and use them correctly! There is no such time as “9PM EST, July 13”, because July 13 occurs in daylight time. It’s just funny how some people go to the trouble to use “EST” instead of “ET” and then use it incorrectly.
Secondly, allow me to dispel one misconception I see popping up all the time on message boards these days: you don’t need 64-bit applications on x64 versions of Windows. For the most part, 32-bit applications work just fine. I use 32-bit versions of Firefox 3.6.6 and Office 2010 all day long on my x64 computer with vary a problem. The only thing that really needs to be x64 are antivirus apps and system utilities, and that’s more about the way they interact with the operating system than any native i386 vs. x64 issue. Those apps are also the very same ones you’d expect to update when going from Windows XP to Windows 7 anyway, so that shouldn’t surprise you. Also, 64-bit applications aren’t any “faster” on x64 operating systems, so if you think that “64-bit Firefox would be so much faster on my system than the 32-bit version” you’re sadly misinformed. While it’s true that 64-bit apps offer slightly more protection in Win7 than 32-bit ones (assuming the app’s authors take advantage of it), it’s the only benefit to running an x64 web browser. The main advantage to using x64 versions of apps is that they can address far more memory than 32-bit apps. So if you need to work with gigantic Excel spreadsheets, then x64 Excel is for you. Other than that, stick with 32-bit, OK?
A week or two ago, Time Warner robocalled the house during the day, saying that Internet and digital phone services might be disrupted that night, as they were “implementing some upgrades that will make your Internet service faster in the future”.
Our Internet service didn’t go down that week, but it did go down last night. I became curious about the outage, as it started almost exactly on the hour, and lasted almost exactly one hour. Once the service came back up, I went to Speedtest and checked my speed:
HOLY CRAP! We have basic Road Runner service, and had been getting 7Mbps/364kbps before. Now it seems that were getting almost 20Mbps down… WOW! Too bad the upload speed remains a pokey 384kbps!
So if you’re in the Charlotte area (and specifically Gaston County, which is a different TWC franchise from Meck County), check your Internet speed… it just might be a whole lot faster!