March 31, 2004

Air America – Oy!!

Filed under: Uncategorized — Jim @ 11:00 pm

For the past thirty minutes I have been listening to “Air America,” the Liberal Talk Network. Janeane Garafolo and her co-host Sam Seder have been interviewing Dave Chappelle, the comedian.

Ms. Garafolo asked Mr. Chappelle a barely coherent question about whether terms like “partial birth abortion” and “death taxes,” which according to Ms. Garafolo, are innacurate and are employed by the members of the VRWC soley to inflame conservative “crackers,” bother Mr. Chappelle as much as they bother intellectuals like her.

Mr. Chappelle responded by telling an even more incoherent story about being hassled at an airport for not following the rules. Huh?

Now Playing…Ben Cohen, of “Ben and Jerry’s” fame, who made about as much sense as the average eight-year old.

I suppose that it is logically possible to be stupid as the day is long but still be entertaining. However, Janeane et al. are long on stupid and not the least bit entertaining. If the rest of Air America’s lineup is this dismal, it will go down in flames.

Da Button.

Filed under: Uncategorized — Jim @ 10:08 pm

Da Button …

Bush Logo small.gif


I’m gonna have a drink and a cigar.

Da Blogroll.

Filed under: Uncategorized — Jim @ 9:19 pm

Like many bloggers, I actually use my blogroll. I try to read just about every site on there every day, with a couple exceptions. I also have a long list of bookmarked sites that I go to often. When I find myself regularly seeking out one of the bookmarked sites, I put it on the blogroll, mainly for my convenience.

However, I am probably naive enough to think that others just may click on sites that appear on the blogroll on the theory that if I like them, maybe they will to. I know that I click on sites from the blogrolls of sites that I enjoy, based on that reasoning.

Guided by those two thoughts, I am reluctantly removing a few sites from the blogroll. In each case, it is because the site has been inactive for a very long time, and I would prefer to use that space for active sites. Sadly, among those being eliminated is Rachel Lucas, which brings me to the next point.

If you find that your site was one of those eliminated and I see that you have fired up your blog again, I will gladly put the site back on the blogroll.

Having made some room on the list, I will be adding a couple new sites shortly, but first things first, as this requires a trip to visit Mr. Template.

Sgt. Hook On the Ground.

Filed under: Uncategorized — Jim @ 8:27 am

Sgt. Hook has arrived in Afghanistan, and he is optimistic about being able to post with some regularity.

Stay tuned.

Sad and Eerie.

Filed under: Uncategorized — Jim @ 2:19 am

Check out Ghost Town. It is a compilation of photographs of the towns and villages surrounding Chernobyl, virtually all of which have been abandoned following the nuclear catastrophe in 1986. According to the woman who took the photos (“touring” on a motorcycle, armed only with a hand-held radiation meter), the area will be unsafe for the next 48,000 years.

The photographs of the abandoned kindergarten were particuliarly sad.

Via On The Third Hand.


Filed under: Uncategorized — Jim @ 12:37 am

I just returned home from attending an after work dinner for a good friend and colleague with whom I have spent a good deal of time (including lunch time) every workday for the past 13 years. Over the years, we laughed at everything imaginable, shared sorrows, and listened to each other’s rants. I have known for months that he would be leaving at the end of March, but I remained in steadfast denial about it. We rarely discussed it, but I knew the day would come, and so it did today.

The party was great. There was plenty to eat and drink. There were also lots of jokes, and I even brought the guitar and played and sang a goofy song that I wrote for him. At rock bottom, however, it was sad. I hate see him leave. I will miss him terribly.

Good luck, Joe.

March 29, 2004

Atlantic City – Lots of Slots.

Filed under: Uncategorized — Jim @ 6:46 pm

I’m back, and I managed to escape Atlantic City without being bloodied too badly. Although I prefer winning, getting out of there making only a modest “deposit” to the coffers of the casino is a good thing.

It has been several years since I visited Atlantic City, and I was taken by the several new gargantuan hotel-casinos that popped up in the interim. However, the contrast between the seedy city and the opulence of the hotels is still stark. I took my morning walk today on the boardwalk, and in the space of about two miles, the gambling palaces are replaced by boarded up apartment buildings and grubby looking motels. On a brighter note, I did see that numerous manufacturers’ outlets have come into the city, possibly even enticing some of the gamblers from the casinos.

The other thing that struck me was the super-sophistication of the state-of-the-art slot machines. For all practical purposes, coins are just about gone from the scene. The machines accept U.S. Currency in denominations between $5.00 and $100.00 and light up with the appropriate number of player’s “credits.”

Most machines take from one to five “coins” (credits) per pull, depending on how much the player wishes to play. However, the mondo prizes require that the maximum number of “coins” (credits) be bet. The machines make betting the maximum number of credits extremely easy by providing a button that automatically makes the maximum wager and instantly sets the wheels spinning. There is also no need to pull the handle to spin the wheels, as another button is available to do that electronically. However, most machines still have the handle as an option for gamblers who mistakenly believe that there is some sort of winning pulling technique.

If a player wins on a particular pull, coins no longer chug out of the machine and clatter satisfyingly in the metal trough. Rather, the machine electronically adds to your available credits. When you have had enough, and you are lucky enough to have credits remaining, you press the “cash out” button, and instead of getting a bunch of coins, the machine prints and delivers unto you a bar-coded voucher that can be taken to a cashier and turned into money. The good/bad news is that vouchers also can be placed into any of the machines as if they were currency.

All these bells and whistles are designed to permit rapid play (and most often rapid loss), and the replacement of coins (real money) with credits tends to make the player less conscious that real money is disappearing as the number of credits is reduced with each pull. In addition, the vouchers that are dispensed also do not have the feel of money, making it more likely that the player will pop the voucher into another machine than would be the case with real money.

The sheer number and variety of these machines is mind-boggling. Conservatively, I would estimate that the casino I was in has several thousand slot machines. What also amazed me is that I never saw a single one that was out of order, despite daily almost round-the-clock usage.

I wish the slot machine folks would go into the car business.

March 28, 2004

Road Trip.

Filed under: Uncategorized — Jim @ 1:30 pm

king of hearts.jpgThis will be it for today, as I am about to head south, on the Parkway of course, to Atlantic City (or, as we say around here, “A.C.”) to foolishly piss away some money do a little gaming and have a seriously expensive very nice dinner.

I wish you all a MAHvelous day.

March 27, 2004

Damn You, Evil Button.

Filed under: Uncategorized — Jim @ 5:06 pm

I again tangled ass with Mr. Template, trying to add a farookin’ button to the left side of the site. When I was done, the text above the button didn’t come out the way I wanted it to, the button itself looked like ca ca, and clicking it sent you nowhere.

After checking the Jimbo Code and not being able to find the error, I successfully deleted my noodling, rather than risk a hypertensive crisis. This time, I saved my work and sent it to Craig (whithout whom I would still be bogged down in BlogSpot), requesting that he “mark my paper” and tell me where I screwed up.

In return, I promised to talk to him about Business Law and Promissory Estoppel until his hair hurt.

So, that makes it:
The Button – 2
Jimbo – 0

The Fat Lady has not yet sung.

March 26, 2004

Fighting Back.

Filed under: Uncategorized — Jim @ 7:31 pm

gEEK.JPGIt’s not easy being surrounded in the blogosphere by people who can whip up a three-column page, full of bells and whistles, at the drop of a hat. They’re certainly not bad people. In fact, they are kind and often helpful to the few truly techno-challenged among us – those of us who still get stomach flutters each time we open Mr. Template to add a site to the blogroll. Still, it’s sort of like hanging around all the time with an Indy 500 pit crew and not even knowing the names of the tools, never mind what the hell to do with them.

There are lots of things in life I don’t know a damned thing about, but it doesn’t bother me one bit. Take, for example, meteorology. I don’t know from high and low pressure fronts and rising and falling barometers. I really don’t care. Certainly I would be more likely to care if I were I farmer, but I’m not, so I don’t. I can always turn on the TV or open the front door to see what the weather is doing. Even if I was to sit down with a bunch of meteorologists and they decided to talk isobars and cold air masses, it wouldn’t bother me. I would just drift off into my own mental space and wonder if I can still remember all the chords to “Misty.”

However, computer stuff (at least the HTML-computer stuff) is different. It does frost my stindeens that I am such an HTML dweeb surrounded by people who can make HTML sing. As such, I did what I have done in the past when I found myself similarly situated. I bought a book. Actually, I already have a book called HTML, A Beginner’s Guide, but I guess its usefulness “depends on what the meaning of ‘beginner’ is.” I decided that I need a stooooopider book, so off to Barnes and Nobel I went.

I checked out HTML For Dummies, and in short order, I decided that not only do I not qualify as a “beginner,” but I don’t even make it to the “Dummy” level. I then came across a book entitled, Read Less – Learn More – HTML. I found a chair in Barnes and Nobel and began flipping through the pages. YES!!! This baby has pictures of the screen and is actually written in English. Just right for the sub-dummy. Sold!!

I brought it home, and within a couple minutes, I learned what some of the mysterious hieroglyphics that appear in my template mean. And in a few more minutes…check this out…

I actually learned how to do colors.

Laugh if you will, you three-column-sharpshooters, but for me, that was a homerun. Today colors, tomorrow…..Mister Template!!! Then someday…yes someday, I just might bitch-slap the Satanic Red Triangle.

Update: Here is THE BOOK, which I neglected to mention, comes with a CD that I have not yet fired up.

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