Three Thing Friday

1. Just Stupid – Well, today was one of my Friday’s off, which I get every other week. But, apparently, I didn’t realize this last night. First, I awoke at 4:30 am panicking thinking that it was Thursday and that I had to go into work. It actually took me a few minutes to realize that it was Friday and that I was going to be able to sleep in after all.

Yea, until my alarm went off at 4:40 am. That is when I just gave up. I just got up and started my day. It was obvious that it was just meant to be. However, I may need a nap.

2. Tying a Knot – So, this week the US Army lost a small little blimp that was tied up here in Maryland. Equipment worth billions of dollars floated away into enemy territory… Amish Territory. Ok, it just floated from here in to PA, and was chased down by two F-16 fighter jets… that could easily out pace the blimp. (Look, another left turn!)

Now, the scary part of all this is that I made a joke about that because this blimp escaped, we as army civilians would have to take mandatory training about how to tie a knot.

The sad part of all this is that the joke is very believable. I may end up with training over this whole incident.

Crap.

3. Halloween – Well, tomorrow the beggars come. Bring them on I say! Let them stuff themselves with sugar and let their parents deal with their out of control children! Let them celebrate the birth of Satan…

Wait… that’s not right. Halloween isn’t the birth of Satan. That’s just a lie that the uneducated push because they don’t like celebrations that are not of their religions.

It’s sad that Halloween being the birthday of Satan is actually being taught to children now.

It is debated if Halloween was originally a pagan holiday or has its history with Christian origins. However, it doesn’t matter where the origins. The candy companies and the costume companies have turned into a day of profits… warming up to the Christmas Season, which starts in September…
Wait…. Really?

Three Thing Friday

1. Star Wars – As soon as I saw the most recent trailer for the new Star Wars movie, I decided to go and watch the originals. Not in the order of release, and not in the order that the crazy man (George Lucas) intended, but in an order that actually makes sense. Episode IV, followed by Episode V, then Episode II, Episode III and finally Episode VI. And no, I cannot take credit for coming up with this order, it is just one I agree with.

Yes, I am skipping nothing important by missing Episode I. What do I miss? Pod racing, midiclorians, Jar-Jar, and some other minor details.

However, I am watching the Special Editions and I am disappointed. When did Boba Fett become Australian? Why was the line “You could use a good kiss” cut from Empire Strikes Back? Why does Lucas seem determined to make this a series about Anakin Skywalker and not Luke?

As bad as this series has gotten…. It is still an enjoyable series.

2. Doctor Who – We are 5 episodes into the new season, and every other episode has ended with “To be continued”. Why can’t we have stand-alone episodes anymore? Don’t get me wrong, I am a fan of two part or even three part episodes, but they should be special occasions. They shouldn’t be common.

Also, I found out that a niece of a friend of mine is dressing up as a weeping angel for Halloween. I find that awesome!

3. Sleeping in – Today one of the team leads beat me into work today. This is a surprise because usually he comes in about an hour after me. I had to know why; this is not his usual behavior. Well, it turns out that his wife needed to be at work that early.

I was surprised; I wouldn’t come in that early, even if my wife had to. She could drive herself. I would sleep in, and come in at the proper time. This may be why I am not a team leader, and it may be one of the explanations as to why I am still single.

Three Thing Friday

1. Sitting Idle – I hate sitting idle on my day off. I have to run out and get some shopping done. I could be cleaning… just not in the mood to start yet. Why am I not out getting stuff done?

Well, I ordered a gift for some friends, but I have to be home to sign for it. I actually tried to get out of the house to get some cat food, but as soon as I left my community, I saw a FedEx truck on the road. Odds were that it wasn’t carrying my package, but I just cannot take the risk. I need this stuff before tomorrow.

Damn I hate waiting…

2. Little Terror – The new kitten is driving me crazy. And I am sure that Loki has considered killing him. He loves to play, like all kittens. And he loves getting into things. Not a day goes by where I don’t pick him up off the counter or kitchen table. Loki hisses and growls at him a couple of times a day.

Rama, the kitten, wants to play. He has attacked Loki repeatedly. Loki slaps him around and walks off. I have to give Loki credit; he doesn’t want to fight Rama. He doesn’t want to play, but he doesn’t want to fight.

I hope one day that Rama will calm down. Loki… he has never been like Rama. However, I have only known him after he was past the kitten stage. Maybe he used to be like this too.

3. Chaos when there should be Order – As I wait here for the package, I have BBC America on which is currently airing Doctor Who. And frankly it is driving me nuts. They are not airing the episodes in any order. The first one I caught was one of David Tennant’s last episodes. The following episode was his first episode.

I want an order that makes sense. I want them to run in order.

Of course… I could just put on some DVDs and stop complaining…

Three Thing Friday

1. Already Missing It – For some reason, it hit me today that I am not going back to Guadeloupe this year. Maybe it is reading the posts of what they are seeing out there this year. Maybe it is the stressful year-end I have had at work. Maybe it is just the fact that I enjoy going and seeing the Great Whites.

I do think that it is a good thing that I am not going. While I could squeeze out the money and actually afford to go, I’d rather save it this year. And while I do not think I would actually get bored of going to Guadeloupe, ever, it is still a possibility. Hell, I got bored of London. It is nice taking a year off from expensive trips, especially since I am already looking at two more trips next year.

Of course, one of those is to Guadeloupe.

And just because I don’t think I haven’t said it enough… Guadeloupe.

2. Divided Up – I spent a few minutes today talking with a co-worker about dividing up the United States. We weren’t dividing it up between us; we were dividing it up into a couple of new, smaller nations. Now, if there were ever another fracture between this nation of states, one that would actually cause a break-up, it probably wouldn’t end up how we imagined it. But it made sense to me.

Sadly… right now… dividing out country up into 5 or 6 separate countries also makes sense to me.

3. Voting for the Speaker – With all hell breaking loose in the House these last few weeks, I have learned a lot about the Speaker. More than I ever thought possible actually.

First, I have to respect the old speaker, who willingly resigned in order to get a temporary CRA passed so that I can actually work. I still don’t like him or like his politics, but the man resigned from a very powerful position.

Second, I fear that the crazy Tea Party has that much power to cause him to resign.

Third, I love that the Tea Party thinks they can get their own guy into power. I do not believe they do not have that much power. They can pick the Republican Party member they want, but the House, the whole House, votes on the Speaker. So guess what, they need all of the Republicans to vote their way. And if they don’t get that, they need some of the Democrats to vote for whom they want.

Think about that for a minute. They have a lot of power, but do they have that much power?

A little Frustrated

When I bought the townhouse that I currently live in, it came with GE appliances. Most of these have functioned perfectly fine. The washer, the dryer, and the refrigerator have given me absolutely no problems. The oven… well, I hardly use it, but I haven’t had any problems with it either. I only wish I could say the same for the dishwasher and the microwave. I bought this place new. No one else has lived here except my cats and me. So, no one else has used these appliances either. I broke them in, and apparently I just plain broke them.

The microwave didn’t last long. It is one of the microwaves that hang from the cabinets, and even though it broke about 2 years ago (and I have only lived here about 5 years), I still have not pulled it down. It will not turn on. The clock doesn’t even flash 12:00. All of this means the microwave will not cook. I replaced it with a cheap microwave that sits on the counter for about $50 and this microwave seems to keep chugging along just fine. I know that I haven’t had it as long as the GE, but I expect it last longer than the GE.

The dishwasher (which is currently running) seems to just randomly not want to work. Yes, it is a little like me in that in that aspect, but I expect more from an appliance. An appliance should not have laziness issues. Both times, it stopped working mid run. I would try a couple of things, then finally give up and just do the dishes my self. After about a week I would let the dishwasher have one last try and both times it would start running again.

I will never recommend GE appliances. I am sure that the builders used the cheapest options that they could, but both of these breaking within five years it just a tad frustrating.

The Return

It is amazing how easy it is to stop blogging. It’s not like I haven’t had a ton of topics. I’ve been thrown under the bus at work. We have comedians running for office and other comedians telling us the news, usually more accurately than actual news agencies. I have a kitten now that terrorizes Loki and Loki knows that it is all my fault.

However, I just haven’t had the motivation to write. At first, I only wanted to take a short break. Weeks later I am still not in the mood to actually write. My friend, a fellow blogger, has told me how easy it is to stop. Restarting is just as hard.

So, I am going to give it a try. I am going to start again.

At least for tonight.

Feeling Goofy

I realized why I like the sports I like. Kayaking, Skiing, and biking all have one thing in common. I can do them alone. It doesn’t matter how goofy I feel or look, no one I know ever really sees me.

I wear a bike helmet, even though I do not have to. Why? I have taken too many hits to the head not to wear something to protect my head.

I don’t wear a helmet when going skiing. Why not? Because, I just don’t like it. And skiing is what I was doing last time I took a serious blow to the head. Apparently I am not a smart man.

And kayaking, I just wear a life vest. I don’t need to bring much else. When in the ocean I may tie the paddle to the kayak, but no extra life saving devices.

So, while I will on occasion were protection, sometimes it is just easier and more comfortable not too…

Lowering Expectations

I have to admit it; my expectations at work are a little high. I expected people to actually do their job, or at least admit it when they couldn’t. Apparently, that is just too much to expect for people I deal with.

I cannot expect the budget people to be ready for the new fiscal year. I cannot expect for them to have all of the accounts in place so that my customers can fund the contact. I guess a lot of contractors will be having a few extras days of unpaid vacation.

I cannot expect the security office to admit it when they lose some of the documents that we have emailed to them. Just admit that you lost it, and stop throwing other people under the bus to protect your own ass.

I cannot expect my customers to get in their documentation in a timely manner. I cannot expect the contracting office to respond to emails sent asking for action on certain subjects. I cannot expect people in my chain of command to have my back.

Fuck it, it’s not that I have to lower my expectations; I have to agree with what one of my co-workers has said repeatedly. I have to stop having expectations.

Three Thing Friday

1. Ashamed of America – On this patriotic day, I felt the need to say that there are a few things that this country did that I am not proud of. And while we may not be trying to cover it up, we do seem to not talk about it.

We never seem to discuss the camp that we put loyal American citizens in order to “keep them Safe.” Bull shit. We put yanked loyal Americans into camps during WWII because they looked different. We didn’t put the Americans with German ancestry or the Americans with Italian ancestry into camps; we only put those of Japanese ancestry into camps. These loyal Americans even fought for this country, after their property was taken, and while their families were basically in a prison. And don’t tell me they were treated nice; tell me how nice it is in south Louisiana during the summer. This wasn’t taught to me when I was in school; I had to learn it elsewhere.

Then there is the tale of the SS St. Louis, the voyage of the damned. This ship left Germany, carrying 936 passengers. The first place this ship of refugees tried to dock at was Cuba, which promptly denied them entry. After Cuba, they ship turned North, and was escorted to the coast of Miami, but was once again not allow into port. After another attempt to dock in the States, they continued onto to Canada, but were finally returned to Europe. Some European countries did take in these refugees. Sadly, by the end of World War Two, 227 of those passengers were killed, mostly in the concentration camps in Germany. Most of those could have been saved if we let them into our great nation.

These are just two examples, we could cover the small pox infected blankets, the American-Indians and how we treated them throughout the years, the lies used to go invade Iraq, toppling a government that was legitimately elected because we didn’t like them (CIA and Iran cough cough…), and worst of all, the current candidates trying to become President of this nations. Damn they are embarrassing. This is the best we have?

2. Proud of America – There are so many things about this country that we should be proud of. This great nation put twelve men on the moon. This country came together after the bombing of Pearl Harbor to defeat the Axis powers during WWII. This country sent troops and a lot of money to the areas devastated by the great tsunami of 2004. The way this country came together after the attacks on September 11th is something that I am very proud of.

Maybe it takes a war or a disaster to make this country great. World War One. World War Two. The Cold War. We can be a great country, and we can be great again. We can step it up. I am not sure the current collection of politicians can make this country great, but we can be great.

3. A Nation of Acceptance – This is a country that is supposed to be accepting of others. However, we seem to have drifted away from that. We group all Muslims as terrorists. We group all people who are against gay marriage as ignorant idiots. We group all people who support gay marriage as people who are against religion and who want to take away others rights.

We are no longer tolerant. We are a country filled with hate. We lost the love we felt for each other after 11 September. And even then, how much love did we have? We are a people who killed a Buddhist because we were too stupid to realize that he was not Muslim.

We can be a great country. We should be a great country. We should stand up, and be the country that we want to be. We should take some of the refugees from the Syrian conflict, since part of that is our own fault. We should not build a wall dividing us from Mexico. I cannot fault these people for wanting a better life (plus, I don’t want my wine costs to go up). We should stand with our brothers in Europe against tyranny.

We can do this. We are that good.

Favorite Book

A few weeks ago, truthfully, a few months ago, I convinced a friend to read my favorite book. When she finally got to read it, she didn’t enjoy it as much as I did. For a while I couldn’t figure out why. The book is “Rendezvous with Rama” by Arthur C. Clarke.

The short version of the story, a short bad summary, is that an unknown object enters out solar system. It is discovered to be not natural, and turns out to be an interstellar ship. A group of astronauts are sent to intercept the ship and explore it. They are supposed to find out everything they can about the ship before what ever it’s final intent becomes known.

So, I am not going to say that this is why my friend didn’t like it, but it is my guess, and it is a reason some people didn’t like the book. It leaves a lot of questions unanswered. You never find out who sent space ship, or why they sent the ship to our solar system. It just travels through our systems, comes close to the sun, and then leaves.

But that is what the book is about. Clarke meant for this book to be science fiction, not science fantasy. Its about exploring a an alien vessel, not about who sent it.

Odds are that if an alien ship like the Rama came through our solar system, we wouldn’t know who sent it or why. In the real world, there probably would a lot of unanswered questions, even after exploration.

I actually think that is why I like this novel. It is very open ended. It ends on a cliffhanger. This, to me, is not a bad thing.

It is a shame that there is a sequel to this book… actually, three sequels.