taco shop psychic
mincing is for garlic, not words...

Thursday, December 26, 2002  

240 Parrots in the news...

MSNBC -- “You need to go for a ride with me and bring your stuff,” Muck once told a veterinarian, whom she took to see the parrot. “You need to shower before you come out.”

posted by Tacoshop | 9:57 AM

Wednesday, December 25, 2002  

239. Merry Christmas?

Hell no! Happy Dean Martin Death Day!

I so wish I could take credit for that, but alas, my clever friend Yousuf came up with that. I should mail Yousuf, I've not talked to him in awhile.

posted by Tacoshop | 2:54 PM

Tuesday, December 24, 2002  

238. So it's Christmas Eve...

...and someone is out there looking for the search term '"considered average" penis'. Of course, that brought them here.

Merry X-mas!

In other news, I have my computer. I have also 'upgraded' my girlfriend's machine to Windows XP, so the mysterious problems plaguing the network here in the house disappeared with that. I put the word 'upgrade' in quotes because that had to have been the worst OS install experience I have ever been through.

That is not a light statement. In the last ten years, I have personally installed operating systems of one flavor or another well over ten thousand times. That number -- if it's not hit six digits now probably isn't far from it. Installing operating systems -- especially Microsoft's -- is my job. And the XP upgrade was flat-out the worst.

I know the guy that used to be in charge of the Setup team in that division of Microsoft. In fact, he hired on at Veritas after I did. He was extremely good at what he did, and managing Setup for the current NT kernal-based OS is no small task. There were quite a few bugs in the code his team was responsible for -- Windows 2000's Setup was hardly bulletproof. That all being said, whomever replaced him just needs to be taken out and publicly flogged for incompetence.

So the computer I wound up with is a third-tier machine from this company, which I paid $309 for. It's one of the crappiest ATX motherboards I've seen yet, the Azza 361 BM/BS, but that can be worked around. It still burns me though that this board only has 8MB of video memory for it's onboard video card and no AGP slot with which to upgrade it's crappy video. That of course means that all of the video cards I have laying around the house that I could potentially shove in it to make it better are all worthless -- so if I want better video I have to buy a PCI video card.

It is fast though. It's running an AMD Athlon XP 1700+ with 256 Mb of RAM, 40 Gb Maxtor hard disk and a Creative 52x CD-ROM.

Time to go install the .NET framework so I can attempt to learn C#.

posted by Tacoshop | 4:34 AM

Friday, December 20, 2002  

237. Fun with numbers...

InstaPundit has a post regarding a post elsewhere about the math behind the incarceration of many, many Muslims in Southern California.

Specifically, Bigwig links to this article and through some arcane figuring on his part arrives at the number of arrested Muslims in Southern California at 116 per hundred thousand or .16%, while the national average of arrests is 3427.5 per hundred thousand.

Well, first things first -- 116/100k = .116% not .16%.

Second, from that article on Yahoo! I was unable to determine where Bigwig had gotten the number of 116. Extrapolated over six hundred thousand, 116 per 100,000 is 696. The Yahoo! article never quotes 700, but a LA Times article where the government lays out it's case does -- it estimates 500 to 700 were arrested and per 100k people, that's 83 to 116 respectively. I'm just hacking off remainders, btw.

That's all well and good, but the third thing here is that Bigwig is mixing yearly with daily stats. Using the 700 arrested in one day number, 116 arrests extrapolated over 365 days is 42,340 arrests, or 42.34%. Even the low government figure of 500 arrests on that day yields an extrapolated figure of 30,295 (30.295%). Now, I don't believe that one-third of all SoCal Muslims are arrested per annum, so that number is obviously bogus (especially considering the 600,000 Muslims we've been working with are actually 600,000 Iranians), but it shows how using flawed statistics can haunt you. A leftist with a calculator could have had a field day here.

posted by Tacoshop | 10:20 AM

Wednesday, December 18, 2002  

236. Catching up a bit...

Looks like I'm finally procuring a computer of my own to harangue you people with, rather than live on borrowed time in the middle of the night.

I either need to find a job during the month of January or Congress needs to get it's collective act together and extend UI benefits again.

I'm still working on a large essay regarding the political spectrum. I've done more political/historical reading in the last three weeks than I have in the years since I graduated high school.

Took my bro to the airport so that he could fly out on Asiana to Korea. Wes, you're fairly tuned into what's happening on the peninsula. Should you hear of a thin, bespectacled, long-haired American college student rampaging through the streets of Itaewon koshing Koreans in a drunken rage, let me know, would ya? Bet you wish you could send your brother to Korea...

posted by Tacoshop | 6:08 AM

Thursday, December 12, 2002  

235. You think he wonders how he got busted?

Here's an interesting article. Here's the guy's webpage. Get a load of that boat!

posted by Tacoshop | 4:36 AM

Friday, December 06, 2002  

234. Belated Tuesday Too, 'Put the Led Away', and 'Why Are You?'

Tuesday Too..

By the way, if you've not read jf's entry for today, it really is quite something. I'll be thinking over that post for awhile -- but that's become somewhat customary with what she writes.

1.) Have you, a friend or relative ever been without health insurance? For how long? Did you/they suffer any consequences?

Since I left the military I have been without insurance more often that with it. I am currently without insurance. No consequences yet.

2.) Tell us what's really "under your bed"?

Literally: concrete floor. Figuratively: money issues, not finding job issues, (soon to be ex-)signifigant other issues, best friend issues.

3.) What's the message in your fortune cookie?

From the Meiwah Restaurant fortune cookie generator, "[v]olunteer activities begin to payoff". I sure hope so.

Put the Led Away.

Michele is getting a lot of grief over a post she made regarding Led Zeppelin.

Now as many of you know, I grew up in Frankfurt. As some of you know, I am very verbally-oriented. Several people will never go to IKEA with me again because of the penchant I have for playing wordgames with the names of the products at IKEA.

"If it's called a Not light, does that mean it's broken? Why are they selling defective merchandise?"

"Why call a light a 'Non' light? Shouldn't that be a 'Dark'?"

"Why am I at IKEA today? Because I lack a black Lack table."
And on. And on. And on. The throw pillows are called 'Toss' there, and yes, I will toss them all over the store, at my shopping companions, the poor hapless clerks...

Anyhow, Frankfurt is just north of the town of Zeppelinheim. Zeppelinheim is, naturally, next to the Frankfurt Flughafen (airport) and that was co-located with Rhein-Main Air Base. When I went to RMAB for any reason, I would catch the S12 down to Zeppelinheim and walk. Invariably, everytime I saw a sign that read 'Zeppelinheim', my thoughts would run like this: "Zeppelinheim...Led Zeppelin...oh, uck"

Now granted, I was not prone to listen to the class of music that Led Zeppelin fell into at the time, but that changed as I aged. I still can't stand them. Every cover of every Zep tune I have ever heard has been better than the original in my opinion. I can agree that the music is catchy, but in my mind the lyrics are there for a reason. If you are going to put out a tune with lyrics, make them worthwhile. Led Zeppelin, Nirvana, Metallica -- all with catchy music, and lousy lyrics. Likewise, a song cannot be just lyrics. Cacophony generally sucks.

In my mind, artists that have really done a much better job at the whole musical alchemy process have been Pink Floyd, The Offspring and AC/DC. They're understandable. The tunes are catchy. Their music just works.

But all of that, naturally, is just my opinion.

Why Are You?

So in my research for this piece I'm assembling, something hit me early on about it. Let me ask you, are you left or right in your politics? What makes you left or right? What makes the left the left and the right the right? Do you know where that all comes from and why?

posted by Tacoshop | 5:23 AM

Monday, December 02, 2002  

233. Apologia.

Sorry for the lack of posting over the last few days. I had to run down to Portland this weekend and that took a good chunk out of me for Saturday and Sunday. I'm also researching a piece I'm writing that contrasts various classic political ideologies with each other and the modern notions of left and right political influences. Probably dull stuff to most of you, but I know at least one other person besides me who will be interested in it.

My girlfriend asked me yesterday, "You're an ex-Marine, so how come you're not the Green Lantern?" Too much Cartoon Network, methinks.

posted by Tacoshop | 2:04 PM