February 16, 2015

Snowmageddon '15

Having just driven a distance of 5 miles in a bit under an hour and a half, I think that this young lady sums up the opinion of many of my fellow Virginians...


It's been coming down remarkably hard for several hours now. Predictions are for 6-12 inches of snow, which is quite a bit for us. There has been some flickering and intermittent outages, so power may not persist. 

In other news, the plumbing situation deteriorated rapidly Saturday night with the result that both bathrooms were unusable so we sent Mom to my sister's house before finally breaking down and calling a plumber. In a few moments I will get the first shower, I've had in over two days. Yay!
Mom is still in North Carolina suffering the dreadful indignity of having to watch her three year old granddaughter play in the snow. 

UPDATE: I have not as of yet had to eat my own leg...but it has been a rear run thing. 

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February 14, 2015

In Defense of Friggatriskaidekaphobia

While things have not been quite as bad as the travails of the young lady depicted above, yesterday was a fitting cap to a particularly obnoxious work week.  more...

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January 25, 2015

A Few Quick Notes

I have a fair amount of homework due this week so posting is likely to be sporadic at best, especially Tuesday. As compensation for that and the banality below the fold, here is some Kongos .


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January 01, 2015

Missed it by THAT Much

A friend kindly pointed me towards this....

Of course today is my forty FIFTH birthday.

As of today I appear to have officially wasted my life.

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December 12, 2014

Possible Achievements

...in the game Side Effects Follies

Common side effects of intravenous sulfamethoxazole and trimethoprim use include sun sensitivity, itching, head pain, rash and loss of appetite. Other possible side effects of oral sulfamethoxazole and trimethoprim use that are considered rare include abdominal or stomach pain, black tarry stools, blistering, peeling or loosening of skin, chest pain, chills, cough or hoarseness, dark urine, diarrhea, dizziness, fever, tiredness or weakness. Additional side effects associated with the oral form of sulfamethoxazole and trimethoprim are shortness of breath, changes in skin color, vomiting of blood, joint or muscle pain, loss of appetite, nausea, rash and wheezing, according to the Mayo Clinic.
Well...my skin didn't loosen or change color and I don't THINK there was blood in my vomit* so I did not get them all. Despite coming so very close to a perfect streak on the first go, I don't think I'll be continuing this as I found playability and enjoyment to be rather low.

However, the doctor assures me that I'm unlikely to die so I'll take that as a victory and move on. 

*UPDATE: Achievement unlocked!

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December 10, 2014


...I got a brief respite from Christmas Chaos at work. 

On the one hand I have the day off. On the other hand the circumstances are sub-optimal.

But enough of such things, here are some Santagirls in snow

Art by Wara

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November 29, 2014

FREE (for a day)


Ignore the stressed out Christmas help. She's exaggerating slightly. Christmas at UPS is rough on the temps...and anyway, the thing with the scorpions happened years ago. 

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November 27, 2014

First World Problems


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November 10, 2014

I Find Myself Numb From Relief

Banality lurks below the fold.  

As compensation, here is some eye candy courtesy of Tobusa.

I confess that I have no idea what this has to do with soccer. 

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November 02, 2014

This Years Flu Shot

Either it is useless, or it has saved my life.

In any event, I've got nothing, so here is something to ponder...

...just in case you've been doing it wrong. 

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October 19, 2014

Well Then....

That was....a week.

Some folks can take solace in the fact that the vast majority of people are unremarkable.

However, it is indeed true that The Force is quite strong with a few individuals.

The rest of us seem to have donated our midichlorians to those remarkable people, that they might do great deeds.

I suppose it is nice to have a purpose. 

One other thing. I've been ignoring the computer for a few days so if I haven't returned E-mails it is due to....

....GHAAAAH! Seven hundred and sixty three!?

Brickmuppet Blog will be up and running in a day or two.  

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September 27, 2014

The Good,The Bad & That's It

There is no more ugly in my world because I've removed the mirror from my room. 

Banality is below the fold. As compensation for that and a lack of respectable content, here is a piece by Fuji Choko.


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September 08, 2014

This is Dismaying

Street is river.Water rising rapidly. Garbage cans floating by. Car blocked by floating debris.

UPDATE: rain falling incredibly hard. Water still rising. Storm drains are spewing water.This could be bad. I may swim away from 800 dollars worth of textbooks.  

UPDATE 2: Now that I'm inside and not pecking away at a Blackberry....

This was taken only a block from my parent's  home....it took me 2 additional hours to get there.  

Sadly, I did not get some of the more spectacular visuals as they coincided with excitement in driving. It should be noted that, while in the great scheme of things this was a minor flash flood, it was the first time in the 29 years my folks have lived at their current address that the water rose all the way to their house. Even hurricanes did not get water this high. We got something like 9 inches in 6 hours. It actually flooded the garage, which is currently a bit of a mess. 

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September 06, 2014

16 days

This year I ordered most of my books online online as soon as the syllabi were posted. This saved me over 300 dollars and ensured that I'd have the books when classes began...well MOST of them. One book that contains my Kanji homework was to be shipped from Delaware. Alas they were out so they had their supplier send it directly to me. 

It passed through Japanese customs on the 21st of August, 16 days ago. It arrived today, with the result that I have 2 weeks of homework ahead of me this weekend. This is in addition to an English paper due Monday and sundry other homework. 

I may be scarce for another day or two so to tide you over, here is something that my friend BOB! sent me that you probably should not try at home....

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August 15, 2014

Tonari No Seki-Kun!

Tonari no Seiki-Kun! The Master of Killing Time is an odd concept for a series. Rumi Yokoi, the exasperated silver fox on the left is bothered to utter distraction by the fact that Toshinari Seki has developed elaborate methods for wasting time in class. 

That's pretty much it. 

Amazingly however, at 7 minutes an episode, it almost always works. I'm 7 episodes in and 6 have been quite solid. Tonari no Seki-Kun does not lend itself to extended marathons, being a one joke show, but it is cute, clever and quite enjoyable in its intended format.

I've really liked this so far. 

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Car Eating Ants (and Other Sundry Annoyances)

Ants have eaten my car. The spoiler tags on the previous post are all wonky. I did my GPA no favors with this most recent class. I've used up all my personal holidays at work for the year and it looks like I'll have to move very soon, Finally, I spent 10 minutes trying to find the ampersand on my Blackberry. 

Some of that may warrant elaboration, but for those already worn down by that fusillade of first world problems, here is Hanako playing billiards. 


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August 11, 2014

A Slight Detour

Yesterday, I got up and zipped off towards the west with the intention of going to the mountains. However, there was a monstrous traffic jam in Newport News and I decided it was prudent to exit the interstate, make my way to Yorktown, drive up the Colonial Parkway and  get on the interstate up near Williamsburg, some thirty miles on. When I noted that the on ramp was backed up because I-64 was STILL a parking lot that far west I decided to take drastic measures and headed all the way to Jamestown, where I took the CF Pocahontas across the James River to Scotland. 

I keep hearing about how Scotland is trying to break away and form their own country, but I don't think they're going to be able to make a go of it. Built on a steep embankment they only have a dozen or so houses, a ferry pier , some fishing boats and no place at all to pull over and take pictures. But hey, if Sealand can make a go of it, who am I to judge?

I continued down State Route 31 with the intention of taking it to Route 460 and via that highway, heading west.  Where routes 31 and 10 meet there is a stoplight. This is the center of Surry, the capital of Surry county.

I stopped at a small grocery and  purchased an iced coffee from a pleasant south asian gentleman and zipped off down the road. 

After some time I encountered a small cluster of churches around a large Fire station and out the corner of my eye spied the word MUSEUM. 

The word museum was attached to the word Dendron which is usually attached to a neuron, so I determined that it was advisable to examine the place more closely and do some disambiguation. 

It turns out that the town of Dendron, is, like the postsynaptic branch of a neuron, named after the Greek word for tree. Also, the aforementioned nerve thingy is actually called a dendrite so my confusion was quite inexcusable and no disambiguation was, in fact, needed. 

The little museum contained an eclectic collection of artifacts including a list of the 12 men from this tiny town that died in the war that began 100 years ago this month.

The museum also solved a mystery of my youth. In my childhood days I lived in a little town called Zuni, some 40 or 50 miles to the southeast of this place. Wandering through the swamps there I had encountered a set of odd very narrow gauge railroad tracks that disappeared into the Blackwater river. It turns out that there had once been a lumber mill in Dendron that had micro gauge rail lines for hauling trees from tree farms as far as 100miles away.  The Lumber mIll had closed up shop in 1929 and taken with it the fire station they had provided, to the town. In 1931 the town burned down, leaving the churches the post office and one small grocery. Now there is also a hardware store and a few other buildings including a very large 4 bay corrugated steel fire house. 

Among the churches was this one, the oldest in the town having been built before 1890. 

Now a Methodist church, it was originally non-denominational and was unusual for many years in that it was a nonsegregated church. The other churches were all built much later. 

Thus edified I proceeded on my way finally reaching a town called Wakefield. Wakefield located on RT 460 (between Disputanta and Ivor if you were wondering)describes itself as "The Peanut Capital of the World" this may or may not be true, but the town is home to the Virginia Diner, which has the best peanut soup and ham biscuits in the entire solar system. 

They had just run out of peanut soup but I got a plate of their exquisite, heavenly, ham biscuits  and partook of the buffet where, it seems,  the beets and the meatballs, both being red spheres, somehow got confused. For a brief moment EVERYONE in the restaurant was made very aware of this most vexatious calamity at the moment it befell a hapless but quite vocal young diner. One horrified shriek notwithstanding, the dining experience was superb. As I left, I observed this theological conundrum across the street. 

"The Shrine of the Infant Jesus of Prague" Wait. WHAT!?

I then proceeded to my car and noted that my muffler had broken off and was hanging by a single clasp.

Thus ended my journey to the west. I turned east down 460 and headed back towards  home via Suffolk. Along the way I stopped in my old home town of Zuni and discovered that most of it had been washed away during Hurricane Floyd, but the grain elevator (the explosion of which had blown windows out 11 miles away in my youth) still had the lift machinery dangling precariously after 33 years. 

Shortly thereafter the passenger side of my car began filling up with water. I soon realized that the AC drain was somehow diverting water into the passenger compartment. I arrived home last night an\d have spent the day flitting between car repair shops. 

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August 10, 2014

Bumbling Along

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July 22, 2014


After some introspection and consideration, I have come to the conclusion that I dislike them with substantial ardor.

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July 14, 2014

Dear Japanese Spammers

Neither I, nor my few readers are your target audience. We're just not.

Your business plan is, therefore, flawed. 
I hope this helps. 

In other news, I've been a tad under the weather lately and it came to a head today as I left work, when I was afforded the rare oppertunity to examine everything I'd eaten (but not fully digested) over the last two days. 

After spending the day in bed, this evening I staggered up and went to the gas station...where I had my card declined...subsequent investigation revealed that someone had purchased all manner of stuff including an Amazon Prime membership with my card number until they emptied my account.

What, pray-tell, is someone going to DO with an Amazon Prime membership bought from a stolen card number? Seriously...

Anyway... since you just sat through all that...Here is a catgirl.

Chen by Pirou Ikeda

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