Sunday, April 16, 2017


I wonder sometimes. Those people who say using mass transit is an economic alternative to driving. Have they ever actually used the transit system? I take the bus to work every night. And when as in my case you have to leave 2 and a half hours before you're scheduled to start to get there on time. How is that "economic sense"? Sigh. Milwaukee county transit system is horrible. Buses are never on time, drivers are rude and condescending to passengers.

Monday, November 17, 2014


I was having a conversation with a co-worker(I’ll call him George), and the MUZAK system started playing a song by Kylie Minogue called “I can’t get you out of my head” I mentioned that a former co-worker hated pop music, he would go on for hours if I’d let him about how all pop music artists were talentless hacks who owe their livelihood to auto-tune more than any real talent, with the lone exception of Kylie Minogue and the song “I Can’t Get You Out of My Head” was his favorite song and it showed that SHE had real talent.

As part of the conversation “George” said that he likes Miley Cyrus. Now I couldn't care less about what pop singer “George” likes, but I mentioned that I never willingly listened to a Miley Cyrus song, and then I had to correct myself.

Last year when the big media generated “controversy” broke about Miley Cyrus appearing nude in the video for her song “Wrecking Ball” I like millions of other people around the world sought out the aforementioned video online. Now I’m not going to give you my opinion on the song or Miley Cyrus’ talent as a singer, but I am going to tell you what I did when I watched the video.

The video opens with an extreme close-up on Cyrus’ face as she starts singing. The video was in high def and it was playing on my computer’s monitor and I’m sitting maybe 2 feet from it. Watching the video, as she’s singing I notice that she has this “thread” of saliva connecting her top and bottom teeth. It was hypnotic. My eyes stayed glued to this little strand of spit as I waited for it to break, it didn’t, ever. All the way through the video whenever they cut back to that close-up the saliva strand was still there hanging on like a trooper. As I was watching, I remember thinking why couldn't they stop and give this girl a drink of water?

So, yes I have willingly watched a Miley Cyrus video, but the whole naked swinging on a wrecking ball thing is but a blur in my memory, and all I can recall about the damn thing is that she has saliva that might possibly be used as a bungee cord.

Monday, March 10, 2014

Malaysia Airlines plane

I've been following coverage of this disappearance of this airliner and it is a real tragedy, but I can't help thinking that in the 21st century, with in flight WiFi becoming more commonplace, I think it's ridiculous that commercial airliners don't send real time position and status/condition updates to their airline's central servers. It would aid with diagnosing problems in flight and would help pinpoint an actual search location should the airliner have to ditch in the ocean(as I'm assuming this one did). With RADAR the minute the airliner falls below a certain altitude it is no longer viewable on RADAR.

Monday, February 17, 2014


It's funny how life interferes with your plans. When I started this I had planned to do a few updates a week, nothing earth shattering to be sure, I'm simply not that interesting. Ah well, I'm here now and I want to say something that's at once clever and insightful, deep and thoughtful, but instead ...

Walt Longmire.

Who? Walt Longmire!

Who? Ok, I'll tell you. Walt Longmire is a character created by Craig Johnson in his series of mystery novels with the completely original subtitle "Walt Longmire Mysteries". The series of novels, which currently stands at nine in number with a few more short stories. The novels have been adapted into a TV series on A&E entitled "Longmire". When I say "adapted" I should say that the producers took the characters and situations of the novels and completely ignored them. Well, I'm not being fair when I say that, because most of the book series is comprised of internal dialogue from Walt's perspective and by and large the reader only sees and hears what Walt sees and hears, that works great in a novel(or short story) but doesn't really work when it has to be depicted on screen with 40 or so minutes to tell the story, so changes had to be made.

As seems to happen a lot to me lately, I only "discovered" the novels after watching the TV show(the same happened with the "Dexter" series, and the "Sookie Stackhouse" series, which served as the basis for the now(pardon the pun)long in the tooth HBO series "True Blood").

I first became aware of "Longmire" the TV series through following one of its stars Katee Sackhoff on Twitter (@kateesackhoff) who I liked in Battlestar Galactica when she played Starbuck.

Longmire is the Sheriff of Absaroka County Wyoming, he and his small force of Deputies deal with all sorts of problems in the TV series, from running for re-election against one of his long time deputies, to a brash young woman Deputy from Philadelphia who has more than a few skeletons in her closet. It's a fun show to watch, strong characters and interesting plots, but like with the other two series I mentioned, the novels are so much better.

One of the things that is missing in the TV series, is Walt's sense of humor, Walt(in the novels) is a great at observational humor and a lot of funny one liners, it helps to have the humor in the novels to break up the often dark storylines,(in the novel "As The Crow Flies" Walt and a new Cheyenne Reservation Chief of Police have to investigate the death of a young mother who plunged to her death off a high cliff while holding her 6 month old son).

Remember what I said about planning? Yeah going to have to end this for now, I hope to get back to this some time soon. In the mean time if you would like a good read to get you through those cold winter nights you could do a lot worse than "The Cold Dish", the first Walt Longmire novel written by Craig Johnson.

Friday, December 13, 2013

Kindle fire HD

I recently purchased a new Kindle Fire HD from Amazon and while it is a nice little tablet that is very quick and responsive I do have an issue that frankly I didn't expect to be an issue when I first ordered this tablet. That issue? No google play store. When I first ordered this Kindle I didn't think being limited to just the Amazon app store would be a "thing" but I didn't realize just how limited it is until I tried to find the media player that I use on my 2 year old galaxy s phone MX Player and it's codec pack doesn't exist in Amazon's little world. Sigh. I wonder  if I could root and install pure android on this thing?  Going to have to look into it.

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Enough with searching for exoplanets, let's get back to the moon!!!

I was born on the cusp of the greatest achievement in human history, landing a man on the Moon, I remember growing up in the early 1970s and playing Astronaut with my brother using an old cardboard box as our spaceship and much to my mother's chagrin using up a new roll of aluminum foil to make our "spacesuits". I devoured everything I could find about the Apollo program and space and astronomy. I remember watching the early morning launch of the first space shuttle Columbia, thinking that this was the first step of yet another great adventure.

In the end, the Shuttle Program turned out to be nothing more than a teenager taking the family car out for a joy ride and then doing nothing but driving around the block and never getting out of first gear.

I think it'll be only a matter of weeks before the news is again filled with stories of finding yet another exo-planet(a planet that orbits a star that is not our own). And as the child in me rejoices at finding another planet that may support some form of life, I can't help but thinking that all of these "achievements" are in a sense one of the greatest scientific misdirections in the history of mankind.

I am not flat Earther, I love science, but we're investing billions of dollars into this research and "explorations" that ultimately  are pointless.

Let's go back to the Moon! Let's go to Mars! Let's send a probe to Europa to find out what(if anything)is beneath that icy surface!

In the 1960s and 1970s humanity waded ankle deep in the ocean of space by going to the Moon and now what are we doing? We're standing on the beach, getting our toes wet in the surf while we toss an occasional fishing line into the water to see what's there!

We don't need to plunge heedlessly into the deep, we can again wade in, carefully and go back to the Moon and from there we can as a race go out to explore the solar system. We have the technology, we have the knowledge, all we are lacking is the will.

Yes, times are hard financially, there are sick and starving people in the world, but even the ancient Romans understood that when times were hard the people not only desired, but needed more than when times were good, a distraction from their hard daily lives.

We need to go back to the Moon not in spite of the problems we face here on Earth but because of them. We need to show Humanity that there is a future, a future that could be better.

Wednesday, June 5, 2013


I've come to the conclusion that one should never revisit a favorite TV show from childhood. All the bad acting, writing and special effects that you could ignore when you're 12 become magnified in adulthood.
When I was a kid I loved a show that was only on for a couple of years. That show was called "Project UFO" supposedly based upon the US Air Force's Project Blue Book investigations of the 60s and early 70s. I loved it, it was edgy and the stories were true to life.
As an adult...good god what in the heck was I thinking?? It was produced by Jack Webb, of "Dragnet" and "Adam-12" fame and like those shows the dialogue in "Project UFO" was stilted and so badly acted.

The problem I seem to be having with pretty much all of Jack Webb's work, "Dragnet(1960s)", "Emergency", "Adam-12" and "Project UFO" is they are a product of a time where most of the TV producers grew up and were trained in the time of radio dramas, Dragnet being an adaptation of an old 1940s era radio show, and a 1950sera TV show and it shows in their work. The actors walk on screen say their lines and walk off. The sets look worse than the displays at Ikea.