Monday, February 26, 2007

Daily YouTube: Ari Gold Super-Spectacular

Ten minutes of pure genius with Entourage's Ari Gold.

Note: Language warning of the HIGHEST order.

Good quote for a Monday

Depression is merely anger without enthusiasm.

or, if you prefer:

Honk If You've Never Seen An Uzi Fired From A Car Window.
-Double Unknown

Sunday, February 25, 2007

Friday, February 23, 2007

Daily YouTube: The Clash

Funny how time changes things. I loved The Clash back in the day, but hesitated to go see them as their shows tended to turn into the musical version of English football riots. If they were to tour today, tickets would be $150 apiece and they're be an AARP discount.

I should have nutted up, bought a set of brass knuckles, and gone to a show in 1985.

Top 5 70s kid activities

If you do the math, you quickly realize that I am a child of the 70s. That is, of course, if you’re interested in my childhood, math, or both. Which you are not. Well, maybe the math.


Since this blog is the Petey Show, it doesn’t really matter if you’re interested. As long as I am.

I digress.

So, child of the 70s. We got that far. I was reminiscing not so long ago (in fact, I believe it was in the “Deploying Windows Vista to the Desktop” session at Microsoft’s big Vista/Office 2007 Launch event at the Dallas Convention Center this past Wed) on the things I did as a little kid, and how different they are from my own kids’ activities. So, perhaps for my kids’ benefit, maybe for my own, here are the Top 5 (or so – I had to cheat again) Little Kid Activities from the 1970s:

5. Playing “Emergency” on our bicycles

The two cool kids would get to be the paramedics from Squad 51 (a little help on the names of the characters - I got nothing) the spares would be the guys from Engine 51. We’d just hang out on the front steps of someone’s house, trying to reproduce fireman-talk, until someone would honk out that annoying EEEEE-OOOOP-GAAAAAAA signal and off we’d go, pedaling our three-speed and five-speed Schwinns like lunatics, towards the scene of some made up disaster or colossal car wreck or somesuch

4. Baseball in the park

There was a drained wading pool in the park across the street, which, come to think of it, I never remember having water in it, even in the middle of the summer. That pool was a perfect infield, and, since ground-level was maybe two feet above the bottom of the pool, it was an easy jump up to the outfield. A wood bat, a baseball that had been white in the waning years of the Eisenhower Administration but was now only a slightly lighter shade of brown than the dirt, and my uncle’s glove which had been top-of-the-line when he got it in 1952 – I had all the gear. Amazingly, we needed only about three kids per team.

3. (tie) Doing anything in the basement

Our tiny little house had one huge redeeming feature – a basement. One half was unfinished and held the washer and dryer, the furnace, and dad’s tool bench. The other side was finished and was kid-land. We had a 19-inch (or so) Zenith black and white TV which got about two channels, an enormous German (WEST German, if you can remember back that far – very confusing for a kid) console hi-fi that dad had brought back from the Army days, a couple of chairs, and a table or two down there. I vaguely remember Lincoln Logs, Hot Wheels track, and a wooden train set, but it was imagination that made the place run.

3. (tie) Buying ice cream from the Good Humor man

Back in the day, the ice cream man drove a clean, white truck and was generally a clean, white guy. I’m sure half of them were child predators, but remember, this was in the days when a kid’s place was outside, away from the house, as much as possible, because there was NOTHING to be afraid of, except maybe the psycho Irish kids on the next block. Whatever. The nice, clean, white Good Humor truck (or one of the competitors, I can’t remember any of their names) would come up the street by the park, with that annoying little jingle-bell music going – it sure wasn’t annoying to a six-year-old, it was the World’s Greatest Sound – and would pull up right there by where we were doing our kid bit. As soon as you heard the music, you dropped whatever you were doing and ran your ass off to the spot where he always stopped. He’d come back to the big window on the side of the truck, wearing his nice white Good Humor uni, the white hat with the shiny black brim, the silver change dispenser clipped to his black belt, and one at a time, we’d ask (hell, scream) for our favorites. I remember Fudgsicles, Dreamsicles (orange ice with some sort of cream inside), and multi-colored rocket-pops. I’m sure there was much more to choose from, but that’s all that pops into my tired old brain now. Great stuff. No ice cream on Earth tastes like that now.

3. (tie) Listening to my AM radio late at night

I got a little, white AM clock radio when I was a little kid, and the world completely changed for me. I stopped sleeping and turned into a radio junkie. I’d lie awake, turning the tuning dial and pulling in clear-channel stations from all over, catching ABA games from exotic places like Dallas and Richmond, hockey games from Madison Square Garden and the Nassau Coliseum. I discovered country music (really strange for a first grader in New Jersey), sports broadcasting, news (clearest memories: Vietnam and Northern Ireland), the wacky radio contest (I was sure I was going to win a Thanksgiving turkey on year), and all sorts of other stuff. A formative experience.

2. Playing “French Resistance” around the neighborhood

The boundaries were basically the four or five contiguous houses on our side of the street, and the rule was if you got “shot”, you had to count to 30 before you could rejoin the game. This was good for HOURS of entertainment. We’d play from morning til late late in the day, when the light got long, the green of the trees and grass got deeper, the ground got cool. By the time we quit, it would be so dark you couldn’t tell if the kid who just came around the corner of the house was on your team or not until you got 5 feet from him. The funny thing was how we’d all drop the toy guns the instant an older kid stopped by. I didn’t understand why we did that (I still don’t), but we all did without anyone having to say anything.

1. Swimming ANYWHERE

We had a pool in the yard when we moved to Texas. Before that, it could be a pool, a lake, the ocean, a deep puddle, it didn’t matter – going swimming anywhere was the coolest thing you could possibly do. It didn’t matter if you could swim or not, just being in the water was awesome (an aside: I can’t remember what adjectives we used them; “cool” was still a hippie word and we’d have needed a dictionary to tell you what “awesome” meant – I totally cannot remember what we’d call something really good). Even the backyard kiddie pool was a treat, as long as there were lots of plastic boats handy. And it was always a fight when it was time to get out.

Some other activities that pour out in a stream of consciousness:

- Flipping baseball cards
- Throwing the football with dad in the park
- Saturday morning cartoons, of course
- Trying spinach because Popeye ate it, then wondering what the hell was wrong with that insane sailor
- Bug hunts, especially for fireflies (remember those, from the days before Dursban?)
- Board games – Monopoly, Clue, and The Game of Life were biggies
- Riding my bicycle up and down the street for hours
- Bowling
- War movies
- John Wayne
- Staying up really late to watch Saturday Night Live and Don Kirshner’s Rock Concert
- Passing notes back and forth in school – IM in the pre-computer days (and the first school-related memory – what does that mean?)
- Sleeping over at friends’ houses, trying to get their family vibe down, then sneaking out at 3:00 in the morning to do some petty vandalism. The first time I stayed up all night was probably 5th grade and it almost killed me

Gordon Keith Show #2

Ol' Gordo makes the over by producing a second show. Go check it out here.

Still gay, by the way. But funny.

Protest in Burma, such as it is

At least four people were arrested for participating in one of the rarest spectacles in all of humandom: A public protest in the streets of Yangon.

About 15 placard-waving protestors took to the streets on Thurs afternoon, demanding outrageous things like lower inflation and stable supply of electricity. Those rotten subversives.

In case you didn’t know (or had forgotten), the Burmese have been under military rule since the 60s, and are one of the most repressed populaces in the world. You can pretty much tell how repressed by this story – 15 people stage a street protest and it makes BBC’s front page.

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Daily YouTube: World's most disturbing shoe commercial

Think the Euros are serious about futbol?

Palestinian statehood – Boston Globe says “I don’t think so”

Jeff Jacoby, writing in the Globe Op-Ed section, wonders “… has any population ever been less suited for statehood than the Palestinians?”

He goes on to answer his own question with a resounding “no”.

To say this piece is uncharitable towards the Palestinians is like saying PW Botha was uncharitable towards blacks. However, I think it’s pretty accurate.

The Palestinians have had a defacto state in Gaza since 2005. Are you ready to fill out the change-of-address cards and move the family there? No? Are you, perhaps, a little concerned about the non-stop Palestinian-on-Palestinian violence? Are you worried about the abject poverty and near-hopeless economic situation, despite the billions of dollars in international aid delivered to the PA over the past few years? Are you a little depressed about the seeming non-existence of a competent, rational group or individual in leadership?

Yep, those Palestinians sure are doing a great job with their state, aren’t they?

Read the whole thing!

Gas up to $3 this summer?

According to Wired’s Autopia blog, gas prices are headed for the north-of-$3-a-gallon realm again this summer. If you don’t have some of your portfolio in oil stocks by now, what are you waiting for? Exxon looks to be on their way to another record year in 2007.

We’re still paying on both of our vehicles (an Expedition and an Escape – ouch), so I’m sorta stuck vehicle-wise for the moment. However, prices at this level mean the next modes of transportation around the CIT compound are going to be selected, in large part, based on fuel source and cost.

Gas is not going to go below $2 a gallon again, at least not until the electric car powered by safe nuclear plants, wind, tide, etc are the norm.

Personally, I hope we get to this point in my lifetime. Sure, it would be great to be able to drive for fractions of pennies per mile, but that’s not really the reason I want to hang around to see it. Mostly, I want to see Iran, Saudi Arabia, Venezuela, and other oil-rich international troublemakers stuff their oil wells up their wazoos.

And, by the way, that lovely scenario will happen. It’s not “if”. It’s “when”.

Sunday, February 18, 2007

How Evil Are You?

More genius lifted from Geeding...

You Are 28% Evil

A bit of evil lurks in your heart, but you hide it well.
In some ways, you are the most dangerous kind of evil.

The Gordon Keith Show

Our favorite heavily medicated local media personality, Gordon Keith, has his own show way up there on Channel 52, every Thursday night. Since I have no idea where Channel 52 is on Time Warner, I'm glad to see the episodes are being posted on the Web.

Here's Week 1 of the Gordo Show. And here's the show's logo - maybe the gayest picture ever taken of a human.

Daily YouTube: The Lumberjack Song

More genius from the glory days of Monty Python's Flying Circus.

The Smartest Poodle in the History of Poodles

Thanks to Comedy Central:

A wealthy old lady decides to go on a photo safari in Africa, taking her poodle along for company.
One day the poodle starts chasing butterflies and before long, discovers that he's lost. Wandering about, he notices a hungry-looking leopard heading rapidly in his direction.

The poodle thinks, "Oh, oh!" Noticing some bones on the ground close by, he immediately settles down to chew on the bones with his back to the approaching cat. Just as the leopard is about to leap, the poodle exclaims loudly, "Boy, that was one delicious leopard! I wonder if there are any more around here?"

Hearing this, the leopard halts his attack in mid-strike, a look of terror comes over him and he slinks away into the trees. "Whew!", says the leopard, "That was close! That poodle nearly had me!"

Meanwhile, a monkey who had been watching the whole scene from a nearby tree, figures he can put this knowledge to good use and trade it for protection from the leopard. So off he goes, but the poodle sees him heading after the leopard with great speed, and figures that something must be up. The monkey soon catches up with the leopard, spills the beans and strikes a deal for himself with the leopard.

The leopard is furious at being made a fool of and says, "Here, monkey, hop on my back so you can watch me chew that poodle to bits!"

Now, the poodle sees the leopard coming with the monkey on his back and thinks, "What am I going to do now?", but instead of running, the dog sits down with his back to his attackers, pretending he hasn't seen them yet, and waits until they get just close enough to hear.

"Where's that damn monkey?" the poodle says, "I sent him off an hour ago to bring me another leopard!"

Saturday, February 17, 2007

Daily YouTube: The Cure

Robert Smith & Co., circa early 80s. Great song, probably a somewhat cool video at the time, but we've come a long way since then.

Elephant polo: Not for the faint of heart

A Sri Lankan elephant polo game got a bit out of hand recently, as 18-year-old Abey, a veteran polo elephant, went off. He threw his Sri Lankan driver, along with the wealthy American tourist who was playing from on top of him, and went after a minibus.

Opinion seems somewhat divided over the merits of using elephants for polo as a general concept. Some feel it’s a good way to raise public awareness of elephants as domesticated, working animals. Others think it’s a good way to get killed.

Spanish polo player Inigo de Arteaga, who was present at the Sri Lankan game, summed it up pretty well when he said, “Doing any sport is always a risk. Let’s go surfing.”

Funny quote of the day

From noted comedian and cross-dresser Eddie Izzard:

I grew up in Europe. Where the history comes from.

The Norwegian doomsday vault

Here’s a nutty one: Norway is about to begin construction of a huge vault buried in a mountain in the Arctic. The vault, dug straight into the side of Spitsbergen Mountain, 600+ miles above the Arctic Circle, is designed to hold seeds for every known crop plant on Earth.

The vault is clearly designed to withstand just about any natural or man-made catastrophe imaginable. It sits 400+ feet above sea level, just in case Antarctica melts and raises the level of the oceans by 200 or so feet. The inner seed vault is in the center of the frozen mountain, where the temperature stays around 28 degrees, regardless of man-made refrigeration or outside temp. And, the most telling point, the whole thing is designed to operate with no human maintenance whatsoever.


Well, be sure to circle the Svalbard Islands on your survival map. When The End comes, you’ll want to know where to go to replant yer taters.

Sunday, February 11, 2007

Daily YouTube (sorta): Are you frickin' kidding?

Talk about hanging on for dear life - this is nearly miraculous. Or lucky as you-know-what.

Uploaded by duke92

Socialism is back, and I am most confused

Didn't everyone learn a lesson the first time around? This stuff just doesn't work. Yet the Venezuelans and the French seem hell-bent on going back to the failed days of socialism.

The latest news from France is Socialist presidential candidate Segolene Royal's release of a 100-point manifesto (never a comforting word for a Republican). This is the latest effort on the part of Ms. Royal to take back some momentum from right-wing candidate Nicolas Sarkozy in the polls.

Among her promises: Higher minimum wage, more public housing, larger pensions for poor retirees, more benefits for the unemployed, and novel concepts like citizen juries to evaluate the work of the National Assembly.

And the dough to pay for all this is going to come from...where, exactly?

The French unemployment rate has consistently been around 10% for the past several years. See anything in the Socialist Manifesto to fix that? Me neither.

Can you think of one single French product you want to buy?

The Internet version of Mr. Potato-Head

Here's a time-waste for you.

Daily YouTube: Not all laughter is cute

Kind of the counter-point to the laughing babies from a few weeks ago.

Friday, February 09, 2007

Optimism ‘R’ Us

It’s occurred to me that, recently, posts on this here silly little blog have grown a bit dark in nature. Whether it’s dastardly deeds in the men’s room or anti-Cowboy diatribes or fretting over the Middle East, I have spent way too much time focusing on bad stuff.

I’m not like that. At least, I don’t want to be like that. So, like Raffi says, I’m going to try to shake, shake, shake my sillies out and wiggle my troubles away.

Here’s a list of things I am truly optimistic about, in no particular order:

• The formerly-Little Mavericks will win the NBA Championship.
• The Rangers are will be competitive in the AL West.
• My daughter will excel on her club soccer team.
• The Israelis will finish the wall, boot the Palestinians over it, and things will settle down to the west of it. The east side may be chaos, but the west side, greater Israel, is going to see a resurgence of economic and cultural prosperity not seen since the 1950s.
• The Stars will win at least one playoff series.
• The Catapult office in Dallas will be a smashing success and will enjoy a reputation for excellence as a service provider and employer at least equal to the rep we have in Austin.
• We will turn at least one 8-week EPM gig into a major account, with multiple resources involved in multiple efforts in multiple locations. This account will continue to employ us for at least three consecutive years.
• My wife will license the RES-Q Wedge to a distributor in a deal all parties involved feel is fair and appropriate.
• My son will learn to tie his shoes and straighten his bed.
• Blu-Ray will win the next-gen DVD format war, and I will finally feel safe buying one of the things.
• Verizon will announce a date when FIOS will be available in lovely and crime-free Frisco TX.
• The Dallas North Tollway will open its extension to State Highway 380 and my commuting life will improve dramatically.
• David Beckham will play a soccer game at Pizza Hut Park and I will finagle tickets to take my kids to see him.
• I will attend some sort of reunion with some of my friends from college.
• I will run the 8 mile Turkey Trot and/or the half at the White Rock Marathon.
• Robynne and I will go to NYC this fall and have a magical visit.

This sorta sounds like a list of New Year’s Resolutions, but I don’t view any of these as “goals”. I really think every one of them will happen and, for those things which are controllable by me or the family or the coworkers, they will happen just by staying the course.

You may notice there’s nothing in here about Iraq, terrorism, the Cowboys, our President, or energy. I’m not too terribly optimistic about any of those things, but that’s for another day.

Regardless, there is a lot to look forward to. And a lot to feel good about. And feel good, I do.

Just in case you thought I was, you know, getting grumpy.

Thursday, February 08, 2007

News you'd like to see

Hey, it's in The Onion, so it must be true, right?

And, yes, I know it's from like four years ago. It's still funny-sad, isn't it?

Celso Martinez still at it

The other day, I linked to Matt Pulle's swordfight with DISD spokesman Celso Martinez, being played out live and in color on the fantabulous Unfair Park.

Pulle says he really wants to let it go, and I believe him. The problem is Martinez keeps pushing the rewind button.

Here's the latest, and it's not too flattering for the $140,000-a-year public face of the always-embattled DISD.

Wade Effing Phillips?

The Dallas Cowboys are, apparently, all set to announce Wade Phillips as their new head coach.

This was the first thing I heard when I started the engine this morning. The Gentle Musers were, as one would expect, in heated discussion on the topic for a large part of my hour-plus drive to the current client (beating, btw). Listening to Junior criticize and Jub try to defend this decision pretty well summed up my own feelings.

My initial reaction upon hearing the news was to slump down about 6 inches in the driver’s seat and mumble inaudibly, “Wade Effing Phillips?” I could feel my life force ebb away as I considered the implications. And, with nearly two hours to digest the news, my opinion has not changed.

I know very little about Wade Phillips. I know he’s a respected, if not exactly feared, defensive coach with a lot of time in the NFL. I know he’s been a head coach for short periods in Denver and Buffalo. I know that his regular season record is not terrible – somewhere over .500 at least. I know that he is 0-3 in the playoffs. And I know that he’s generally well thought-of as an assistant, but doesn’t get many interviews for head coach jobs any longer. That’s about it.


How totally underwhelming is this?

We’ve spent the last two-plus weeks talking about all kinds of interesting scenarios, starting with Bob and Mike Stoops and ranging to a troika of Turner-Garrett-Singletary/Rivera. Over the course of the search, several combinations sounded intriguing. The Stoops Boys thing turned out to be wishful thinking pretty quickly, but Turner/Garrett/Singletary sounded like a combo I could get behind.

But, no, it is (apparently) not to be. We’re getting a retread defensive head-coach, an inexperienced offensive coordinator, and a mystery guest defensive coordinator. We have a young QB who may or may not be the real deal, a defense that grossly underachieved (or did they?), and an owner who looks to be more involved in day-to-day than ever.

This is supposed to excite Cowboy fans? This is supposed to sell tickets in the Jerry Dome?

I may very well be wrong, and Wade Phillips may turn out to be Bear Bryant with less personality, but I have to say I am not impressed.

My three biggest problems with the Cowboys last year were, in order of importance:

- The arrogance and condescension of the Pear Shaped Football Genius.
- The wildly out-of-whack bang-to-hype ratio of TO Owens.
- The arrogance and greed of Bondo-Face.

This off-season took care of the biggest of my problems. I was actually at a point where I would live with the other two and attempt to get back on the bandwagon. A bold move in naming a new head coach would have won me over – I was hoping for it and, truthfully, expecting it.

I should have known better.

Bondo Face chickened out. He went safe. And by “safe”, I mean “uninspired”, “boring”, and, I fear, “doomed to fail”.

Are you excited about this? Does this fill you with hope for the future? Do you really think Wade Phillips, at 60 years old, is suddenly going to find the magic touch?

Or do you, like me, think we’re headed right back for the bad old days of disgruntled fans, testy owner, bland and excuse-filled head coach, bored players, and general franchise-wide malaise? Do you, like me, think we’re headed back to the days of 8-8 and sliding fast?

How sad. How disappointing. I am still on the Dark Side, with no plans to return ye

Wednesday, February 07, 2007

Daily YouTube: I am insane now

This ought to set your therapy back a few years.

Random, depressing thought of the day

Does electing a competent President in 2008 increase the likelihood of more terrorist operations in the US?

I think it does.

AQ and their fellow travelers have been content to watch GWB dig his own political grave. He hasn’t needed much help from them. In fact, I think they’re smart enough to know that another spectacular attack on US soil probably gives Bush all kinds of support and makes his job significantly easier in many ways.

When there’s someone new in the White House, however, I think they’re likely to try some shenanigans again. They’ll want to turn the pressure up on the new guy (or gal – I’m not saying it’s what I want, but it’s certainly possible) quickly. Moreso if the new guy/gal shows signs of making sense, disengaging from Iraq, and moving the country towards energy independence.

We damn well better be ready. From a security perspective, I doubt we are. From a public and political will perspective, I know we are not.

Sorry to be depressing…

HD-DVD will lose the format war

David Carnoy, Executive Editor at CNET, predicts HD-DVD will lose the high-def format war to Blu-Ray, and do so in fairly short order. David boldly predicts the HD-DVD camp will throw in the towel by Sept of this year.

As we’ve been saying for some time around here, we think Blu-Ray is the superior product, so this is good news around the CIT Compound. We’ll believe it when we see it, and we’re not rushing out to buy a player quite yet, but we hope David’s crystal ball is receiving in true 1080p.

Stay tuned.

"Lost" is back – good news or bad news?

Oh dear. I see in today’s DMN TV Section that "Lost" is back at 9:00 Central on good old Channel 8 HD. After a pause of several months, we’ve got 16 weeks of non-stop new episodes along with the promise of the producers to GET THINGS MOVING.

When we left the Mystery Islands (there are at least two, if you will recall) back in Oct or whenever it was, Jack was letting the bug-eyed dude (Ben? I can’t remember) bleed on the operating table and demanding Kate and Sawyer be let go. This, about 3 seconds before Sawyer was going to be on the receiving end of Excedrin Headache #357. Good timing. We had met Juliet, whose motives are somewhat murky and whose cheekbones look like they would deflect armor-piercing rounds. And we learned some of the Others have major anger-management issues.

We found out Sun is an exceptional liar, and is preggo with the bald, dead dude’s baby, not Jin’s. No miracle there. Desmond appears to be able to predict the future – I wonder who he likes in the AL West this year? Locke has his spiritual legs back under him, if you’ll allow me at least 3 bad jokes in one sentence. And, by my count, Bernard is the only Tailie still on this end of the daisies, assuming Cindy and the others who got nabbed by the Others (the real Others, if you will, as opposed to the other others – God this is confusing) are expired other other Others, or somesuch.

All this is a long, confusing way of saying I have no idea WHAT is going on. I’m still in – I’ve invested a significant amount of time in this mess and can’t just bail. But, with that said, this show is on VERY thin ice with me. Something MAJOR has to happen in about the first 10 minutes tonight for me to stick with it.

Anyone really believe that? No? Me either. It sounded good, though, didn’t it? Time to program the DVR again. Dang it. I wish I had some will power.

Tuesday, February 06, 2007

Daily YouTube: Hansen is not very subtle

Wow, I thought I was happy when Parcells quit. Dale Hansen was positively giddy.

Iranian “diplomat” seized in Baghdad

Someone or another has apparently grabbed Jalal Sharafi, the second secretary at the Iranian Embassy in Baghdad.

I wonder if “second secretary” is like “cultural attaché”, which was the cover always taken by KGB agents in spy literature.

Regardless, I think we all know the Iranians are up to nefarious deeds in Iraq these days. More nefarious than the US? I don’t know about that. Certainly they are acting more quietly and deniably. Those two attributes probably mean a higher degree of nefariosity (on, like that’s not a word!) and, let’s face it, if you’re a supporter of Israel, then Iran is pretty much guilty until proven innocent.

So, was Sharafi merely an unsuspecting, uninvolved pigeon? Or is/was he something more? And who nabbed him? Iraqis working for the US? Iraqis working for their own govt? Iraqis working for Iran who wanted an excuse for something yet to come? Penny-ante crooks looking to score a Rolex and a nice ride? Will we ever know? How do we know if we know?

Ah, yes. The “wilderness of mirrors” is back. The bad guys drink tea instead of vodka now, they’re probably better funded, and they’re certainly more motivated, but it’s the same game. And, as long as we’re basically stuck in Iraq and Afghanistan, they’ve got us by the nose.

The Super Bowl is still a beating

I saw nothing in this year’s overblown extravaganza to change my mind from last year. While it was nice to see Peyton Manning finally nut up and earn his rep, it was still WAYYYYY too much hype, offset by very little bang.

I may boycott the damn thing next year. Really

Spaced-out astronaut (HI-YO!!!!)

In the craziest story you’ll hear this afternoon, 43 year old Navy captain and astronaut Lisa Marie Nowak completely lost her mind recently, donning a wig, a trench-coat, and diapers to confront an unsuspecting fellow astronaut and maybe romantic rival over the object of both of their affections.

I can’t for the life of me figure out which part of the amazing run-on sentence above is the most shocking. Navy captain? Astronaut? Diapers? Take your pick.

The story, as briefly as I can explain it: Astronaut and Navy Commander Bill Oefelein, who is not married, has apparently been an item with Patrick AFB employee Colleen Shipman, also single, for some time. Unbeknownst to either of them, apparently, Cpt. Nowak, who is married and has three children, has had a rather significant crush on Oefelein and saw Shipman as a rival.

Upon hearing Shipman was flying from Houston to Orlando, Nowak drove the 900 miles to confront her. So determined was Nowak to make the trip as quickly as possible, she donned diapers so she wouldn’t have to stop to go wee wee. That’s some motivated cadet, right?

At any rate, Nowak made it on time and tailed Shipman to her car in the long-term parking lot. Now disguised in a wig and trench-coat, Nowak tried to get Shipman to give her a ride. Shipman, who had spotted the disguised Nowak running towards her car, was having none of it, locking her doors and refusing to open them. She did, however, roll the window down a bit when Nowak started crying. As soon as the window opened, Nowak hosed Shipman down with pepper spray and started beating on the windows. Shipman managed to drive to the parking-lot attendant’s booth and scream for the attendant to call police.

Upon arriving at the scene, police apprehended Nowak and retrieved what appears to have been a BTK Killer-autograph-model kidnapping and torture kit – length of rubber hose, a couple of knives, a BB gun, and assorted other tools of the trade.

This sort of thing probably happens 5 times a week around the US. But not involving a senior office in the US Navy, an Academy grad, and astronaut who happens to be married with three kids.
Nowak has been charged with a whole slew of felonies, capped off with attempted first-degree murder. I sorta think NASA is going to ask for the space suit back as we

A little love for cousin Rick

My cousin Rick is an outstanding craftsman. I haven't seen any of his new stuff in person, but his previous work (mostly in ceramics) is outstanding.

Give his new site a check-out. Tell him CIT sent you.

Monday, February 05, 2007

New U2 video

Another bit of genius from the boys.

Unfair Park in a p***ing contest w/ DISD

If you haven't already done so, you probably want to hoof it over to Unfair Park to check out Matt Pulle's flame war with DISD spokesperson Celso Martinez. Why Martinez has seen fit to pick a fight with a journalist of some (yes, some) renown is a puzzler - DISD hardly needs one tiny little iota of additional bad press - but why should anything done in Official Dallas surprise us anymore.

It's entertaining reading, and no end appears to be in sight.

Go Matt!

Daily YouTube: Nolan Ryan's 5,000th K

Since we have no post-season glory to revel in, Ranger fans are left with moments like this to smile about wistfully.

Count the luminaries in this one: Ryan (of course), Ricky Henderson, pre-steroids Rafael Palmerio, Bobby V., Rueben Sierra, and George W. Bush back in the days when the biggest thing he could screw up was the AL West.

Mike Irvin - Hall of Famer

In some rather dated news, CIT's own Michael Irvin was elected to the Pro Football Hall of Fame this past weekend. This move is, of course, not without some controversy. However, longtime readers of this blog (Dad, I think that's you) know where I come down on Mike's greatness.

Irvin was the heart and soul of the great Cowboy teams of the 90s. On a team full of perennial Pro Bowlers, a few guys who are going to wind up in the Hall of Fame with him, and a whole sackful of great (and I mean GREAT) players and coaches, Mike may well have been the most important cog in the machine. Not the most talented, not the most physically gifted guy on the field, ever, Mike was the glue that held it all together, the fuel that made it run. He was the one guy on the entire roster who could get in anyone's face, from the rookie kick returner to Charles Haley to Emmit Smith to the nearly omniscient Jimmy himself. And when you HAD to have eight yards, you called #88. Everyone, from the guy selling hot dogs in the upper deck to the truck driver listening to the game on the radio at 75 mph on I-40 to Auntie Vo in Vientiane to the defensive back across the line from him knew the ball was going in Mike's direction. And no one could stop him.

How great is that?
It's Hall of Fame great, brother.

Was Mike a scumbag off the field? Yep. Sure was. He contributed significantly to my disillusionment with pro athletes. Is he still a scumbag? Weeellllll, maybe I'm naive, but I don't think so. That's partially based on his staying out of trouble for a few years now as well as a personal conversation I had with him. I really think he's cleaned it up.

I will say that I loved his speech. He doesn't shy away from where he's been. There are worse traits a guy can have.

I guess it comes down to this - I was a HUGE fan of the guy when he was playing. He disappointed me (and I actually got the chance to tell him that), but he appears to be trying. And I'll give just about anyone a second chance.

Yay, Mike. I hope I run into you again some day and I get the chance to tell you that in person too.

Reports of my death have been greatly exaggerated

Contrary to popular opinion, I am not dead. Believe me, you, the faithful CIT reader, would be the first invited to the funeral.

I'm not much for excuses - I've been busy and have had very little to say. That, my friends, is a combination sure to quash blogging, at least temporarily.

At any rate, I'm back now. Not sure how long it will last, but let's ride the wave whilst we can, shall we? Onward!