Voted "Best Blog With No Readers", 2009 Blogspot Awards.

Monday, September 29, 2008

Tip of the Day

"Rick rolls" are more than just not funny.

They're old.

And they're not funny.

If you still get a laff from rickrolling, you're sad.

Really sad.

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Preachin' Blues

Time to get some religion. The Reverend Peyton's Big Damn Band is here to bring you a Sunday Sermon entitled "Your Cousin's on COPS".

Hang them from the Yardarm, Part II

Now the Ukrainian freighter is anchored off the African coast, with a US destroyer lurking about a mile away. What happens next? First, the US Navy will bring in some SEALS to plant explosives on the rudder or propeller to disable it in case the pirates try to move the ship.

The Russians will probably try to do the same thing. Most of the freighter's crew is Russian, so they have an interest in it as well. Naturally, the US and Russian navies won't tell each other, but they'll know what the other is up to anyways. Then they'll wait and negotiate with the pirates. Food will run out, and things will come to a head. The Russians and Americans will sort out who gets to raid the ship.

I'd place my bets on the Americans getting to do it, on account of the Ukraine being a US ally. So the ship gets raided, and whatever is left of the ship and crew heads to its original destination. You heard it here first.

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Hang Them From the Yardarm

It looks like Somali pirates (pictured above) have bitten off a little more than they can chew. This time, they captured a Ukrainian ship bound for Kenya with RPG's, Zu-23 anti-aircraft guns, T-72 tanks, and ammunition.

The good news is that the captured ship is slow and vessels from the US and Russian navies are racing to intercept it before it reaches port. The bad news is that it's been described as a "floating ammo dump". This could get messy.

The article mentions that the pirates even have a spokesman. I'd like to hear what he has to say. Probably something like, "Arrr!! Avast, ye scurvy dogs! We'll not be giving up our booty! We'll send ye all to Davy Jones' locker!!" He'd probably add "Allah willing", just to get us all confused.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

My Teeter Totter

A new Harris Teeter opened in my neighborhood this evening. It's at the foot of the "beige behemoth", one of the many high-rise condos that have sprung up in the area. I decided to walk over and check it out.

It was crowded, especially around the free samples. I didn't want to stand in line for an hour to get the kind of freebies I can get any day at Whole Foods, so I just bought some scallops and horseradish and got out of there before any more over-friendly drones could try to help me.

I did have fun looking at a cross-section of my neighbors, at least the kind of neighbors who'd go to the grand opening of a new Harris Teeter. It was just like the Census Bureau figures for the area: 75% white, 10% asian, 10% latino, 5% black, and very middle-class.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Two Hamsters, One Wheel

Meet the Dwarves. The white one is Buster, and the tan one is his wife, Maxie. They're a couple of Phodopus Campbelli, or dwarf hamsters. Somebody abandoned them on a table at the food court of the local mall, and they spent a while in the Lost and Found before I decided to adopt them.

I didn't realize just how much fun they would be. They used to play like this all the time, until they started making babies and I had to separate them. Nobody had told me they were of opposite sexes. Max was very playful, and Buster was a master of escape-fu.

They had two kids, but that's another story. They've all gone off to the great wheel in the sky, but have left me with many good memories, plus pictures and movies-- and a lot of cages, wheels, and stuff. It was fun while it lasted.

What Kind of Title is That?

Some people might not understand the idea behind this blog's name. Am I dissing my home town? What's wrong with Rockville?

Actually, the name comes from the title of an old song by REM. How old? 1984. I know a lot of people who weren't even born then. Amazingly, REM is still around and still plays the song in concert.

The story goes that Mike Mills, the band's bassist, wrote it for a female friend who was moving from REM's adopted hometown of Athens, GA back to Rockville, MD. Now that I live here, it's become something of a theme song.

Saturday, September 20, 2008

A Bad Idea

I just can't seem to find the right tool for making scrambled eggs. I started using regular stainless steel table spoons, but the problem is that the eggs stick to them, even through the dishwasher.

So I had a collection of spoons with egg stuck to them. I got an idea. I have some toilet bowl cleaner with hydrochloric acid in it. That's got to work, right? I poured the acid in a glass and dropped the spoons in. After an hour, the acid was green and had foam on top. I pulled out a spoon and sure enough, no egg. The problem is that all of the spoons are now micropitted and have lost their sheen. They don't look right and don't feel right on the tongue.

That's one of the ruined spoons on the right side. You live, you learn.

Watching the Cars Go Round

I've been a fan of auto racing for about ten years. I remember the very race: it was NASCAR Winston Cup, the night race at Bristol, 1995. I was amazed. It was total insanity and I was hooked. I guess I got lucky. If it'd been Pocono I might be writing about football instead.

Before you jump to any conclusions, let me say I'm not much of a NASCAR fan any more. I'm kind of like someone who enjoys music but the first music they discovered was The Jonas Brothers. Then they grew up and found the good stuff.

NASCAR lost me around the turn of the millennium, when they were screwing up races and upset fans were throwing beer cans on the track. That was also when the Indy Racing League was at its very best. I discovered sports cars around that time as well.

The IRL season has just ended, and the others are winding down. Maybe that's why I'm starting this blog now. I have some time to fill. I'll try to be entertaining.

A Hiccup Cure that Always Works

I remember reading it as a child, but I don't remember where.

The short version: Take nine small sips of water, with a small breath between each one.

The long version, with the benefit of years of practice: Take a deep breath and let it out. Take a small sip and swallow. Inhale a little bit. Take another sip and swallow. Inhale a little more. Repeat until you've done it nine times. If you have to exhale, you're inhaling too much. If you hiccup during the procedure, start over.

There's nothing special about the number nine. I just use nine because that's the number I read. It's always worked for me, so I stick to the formula. Is that superstition? Tradition? The placebo effect?

I'm starting to over-analyze it. I do that sometimes.

Friday, September 19, 2008

First of all...

This is where it starts.

You can expect blogs about auto racing (Indy and sports cars), books, movies, guns, hunting, women, music, and maybe even a little politics.

Your comments and suggestions are appreciated.

Reading List

  • Man Is Wolf to Man, by Janusz Bardach
  • Don't Swallow Your Gum! by Aaron Carroll & Rachel Vreeman
  • Instant Replay, by Jerry Kramer and Dick Schaap
  • New York, by Edward Rutherford
  • The Mother Tongue, by Bill Bryson

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