So, I've got a blog . . . Now what?

Everyone seems to be jumping on the blog bandwagon so I thought I'd give it a go as well. Haven't really got a clue what I'm going to talk about, but that's never really stopped me from saying something, so . . .

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Name: Seitherin
Location: Lake Jackson, Texas, United States

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moon phases

The WeatherPixie

Goran Visnjic
Adopt a Celebrity

Marton Csokas
Adopt a Celebrity

Monday, January 31, 2005

'snot pretty

I wonder if anyone has ever done a study to determine how much snot is produced by the average human nose during the course of an average cold.

Sunday, January 30, 2005

Seriously sick puppy

I've spent the better part of this weekend in bed with whatever it is that keeps knocking me for loops. To say I feel like crap would probably be the understatement of the year.

Anyway, I dragged my sorry bum out of bed to check email and listen to a little bit of music before I attempt to consume something in the hope it will stay where I put it and not revolt after consumption. In email, I got a list of puns. One of them was so utterly bad I just had to share it -

"Mahatma Gandhi, as you know, walked barefoot most of the time, which produced an impressive set of calluses on his feet. He also ate very little, which made him rather frail and with his odd diet, he suffered from bad breath. This made him a super calloused fragile mystic hexed by halitosis."

I also checked my referrer log and discovered to my great amazement that my August archive page is the number one result to a Yahoo! Search on "sailor moons boob job." I'm reasonably sure that I've never addressed that particular topic. I just think it's funny.

Friday, January 28, 2005

bete noire

from of the Day

bete noire \bet-NWAHR\, noun:
Something or someone particularly detested or avoided; a bugbear.

Bête noire is French for "black beast."

Thursday, January 27, 2005

Under the weather

The Prodigal Son has been sick since Sunday and he doesn't seem to be improving. It started out just being flaky sinuses, turned into a cold, and now may be turning into an even worse cold. He's been home sick in bed all week and I've been allowed to drive myself to work. This is the most I've driven my car since I bought it.

However . . .

Now it's my turn to get sick. My sinuses have been flaky since Christmas when the hot one day cold the next weather nonsense started. This morning I woke up with the beginnings of a cold. I guess having the Prodigal Son home sick has made me susceptible to whatever it is he has. If it hits me as badly as it hit him, not only will I have a rotten weekend, but I will miss work next week and have to forgo my trip home to watch the Super Bowl with my dad. I was, and still am, looking forward to annoying my mother by watching football in the family room, which is her room, instead of the spare room, which is dad's room.


from Word of the Day

moiety \MOY-uh-tee\, noun:
1. One of two equal parts; a half.
2. An indefinite part; a small portion or share.
3. One of two basic tribal subdivisions.

Moiety comes from Old French meitiet, from Late Latin medietas, from Latin medius, "middle."


Over the shoulder boulder holder . . .

Wednesday, January 26, 2005

BBC NEWS | Science/Nature | Turin shroud 'older than thought'

BBC NEWS | Science/Nature | Lunar probe's amazing new images

The surface of the moon looks rather like a paint job gone seriously wrong.

BBC NEWS | Entertainment | US 'to raise TV indecency fines'

Damn straight! There's no reason to have nudity on TV when we can be exposed to it every time we look in a mirror after a bath and before we dress. And, by golly, why should children learn bad words from TV when they can pick them up on the playground instead?

Sci Fi Wire -- Catwoman Leads Razzie Noms

I haven't seen Catwoman yet so I can't comment on the appropriateness of the nomination. I've also not seen any of the other nominated 'genre' movies with the exception of The Chronicles of Riddick which I thought blew chunks. Looks like I missed a bunch of wonderfully bad stuff.

Wackiest warning: Toilet brush not to be used for hygiene - Jan. 6, 2005

Other top finishers this year include:

-- A scooter with the warning "This product moves when used."

-- A digital thermometer with the advice "Once used rectally, the thermometer should not be used orally."

-- An electric blender used for chopping and dicing that reminds users to "Never remove food or other items from the blades while the product is operating."

-- And a three-inch bag of air used for packaging that read "Do not use this product as a toy, pillow, or flotation device."

MSNBC - Asteroid named after Hitchhiker humorist

2001 DA42 becomes Douglasadams. I think he'd be amused.


Dear Miss know-it-all . . .

Tuesday, January 25, 2005

Version traduite de la page ...

Wow! One of my pages was translated. Haven't a clue what it says as opposed to knowing what it's supposed to say. - 77th Annual Academy Awards - Nominees: Nominee List

FoxTrot by Bill Amend

Computers! What a pain!

(If the title link has gone out of date, click here for the saved image.)

Monday, January 24, 2005

Planet Twinkie - Recipe Box

Twinkie Sushi? This just takes me one step closer to having seen / heard it all . . .

US stem cell research in jeopardy | The Register

Call me George and paint me blue!

I've settled the Prodigal Son's medical claim from the auto accident in November with the insurance company. For his injuries - which consisted of bruises and strained muscles - they are paying $2000. I've already told the Prodigal Son and he's thrilled. All but $200 is going to pay off various bills and the $200 is going to be mad money since it's been a while since either of us have had any of that.

I also mailed off the Prodigal Son's income tax form this morning. Since he only worked for a few weeks last year, he's going to get all $163 he paid in taxes back. I've started work on mine, but I still don't have all the paperwork I need to file. Based on what I have so far, I will have enough of a refund that I can made a small dent in another debt.

Things are looking better this year. I'm surely glad I ate those blackeyed peas for New Year's.

BBC NEWS | Middle East | US 'terminates' Iranian website

Iran was last week cited as a "centre of tyranny" by the new US Secretary of State, Condoleezza Rice, and labelled the world's chief potential trouble-spot by Vice-President Dick Cheney.

If the morons running our government start another war they cannot finish never mind win, I am moving to Canada or to Germany or to some small unpopulated island somewhere. Are these idiots trying to start a nuclear war? Are they hell bent on bringing about Armageddon?

God, if you're talking to them, STOP!

ALA | 2005 Best Books for Young Adults

Sunday, January 23, 2005

BBC NEWS | Americas | Schwarzenegger 'damages Austria'

BBC NEWS | Americas | 'Robot soldiers' bound for Iraq

Does this mean mean we're running out of people to send to a place we shouldn't be fighting a war that should never have happened?



AdCritic Interactive

When you click the link, the "ad" plays automatically. It is about a fictitious pizza delivery order. It is frightening.

Saturday, January 22, 2005

BBC NEWS | Science/Nature | Norway to kill 25% of its wolves

Why not just kill them all and have done with?

I cannot even begin to express how angry this makes me.

BBC NEWS | Health | Alzheimer brain damage 'reversed'

BBC NEWS | Science/Nature | Hubble rescue 'will be scrapped'

BBC NEWS | Science/Nature | Rare leopard 'faces extinction'

Urban Legends Reference Pages: Computers (The Long Way Home)

This is too funny.

Thursday, January 20, 2005

The First Nonsmoking Nation - Bhutan banned tobacco. Could the rest of the world follow?

BBC NEWS | Europe | Stamp honours Jewish 'moon boy'

BBC NEWS | Americas | US right attacks SpongeBob video


From of the Day

perfunctory \pur-FUNGK-tuh-ree\, adjective:
1. Done merely to carry out a duty; performed mechanically or routinely.
2. Lacking interest, care, or enthusiasm; indifferent.

Perfunctory derives from Late Latin perfunctorius, from Latin perfungi, "to perform fully, to get done with," from per-, "through" + fungi, "to perform."

Urban Legends Reference Pages: Photo Gallery (White Cub)

This is one of those "aw!" kind of things.
Momma black bear with white cub


Sounds like an easy job!

Wednesday, January 19, 2005 is back! They're not quite 100% yet, but they're getting there. I missed my picture fix while they were down.

Monday, January 17, 2005

Urban Legends Reference Pages: Photo Gallery (Big Burger)

Take one to go and you can feed a family of four for two days.

Or one might actually fill the hollow legs of the Prodigal Son. Hmm. I wonder if they deliver . . .

TIME Magazine Cover: Space Pioneer - Dec. 8, 1952

Sunday, January 16, 2005


By Robyn Swaim

DhampirVery rarely do I set a book aside with the intent to never pick it up again. This one is one of those rare books. Aside from being badly proofread, the writing style is juvenile. I'm not sure what this book is supposed to be, but it reads like a bodice ripper without benefit of any bodices being ripped. I'm not generally big on vampire novels - I think The Vampire LeStat by Anne Rice may have been the last one I read - and this book does nothing to make me a fan.

I give it two thumbs down.

Death test

Morbid much?

According to the death test, I will live die in July, 2037, at the age of 82 of a heart attack. That's certainly nice to know. Make's financial planning so much easier.

Saturday, January 15, 2005

Cassini-Huygens: Multimedia-Images

BBC NEWS | Science/Nature | Titan probe yields fresh images

Friday, January 14, 2005

ESA - Cassini-Huygens - First images from Titan

BBC NEWS | Science/Nature | Titan data from Huygens arrives

Guardian Unlimited Politics | Special Reports | Lords debate reform of royal succession

Thursday, January 13, 2005

BBC NEWS | Science/Nature | Huygens set for Titan encounter

BBC NEWS | UK | Harry public apology 'not needed'

It was a costume worn to a costume party. If any other person at the event had come wearing that costume, we would not have heard word one about it and no one would have the satisfaction of being outraged. It is an event ONLY because of the person involved.

There is a small poll accompanying the article at the BBC news site. When I submitted my answer, these were the results:

Should Prince Harry make a personal apology over Nazi costume?

Yes 50%

No 50%

30924 Votes Cast

Results are indicative and may not reflect public opinion

The results may be indicative, but 30,924 votes goes a way toward reflecting public opinion.

'Tis the season

I spoke with Carolyn from the wildlife rescue group this morning. She's the squirrel expert. Patty is the raccoon expert and she was supposed to call me last night but she forgot. Anyway, it seems that this is the season when raccoon mommas pop out raccoon babies in people's attics. Carolyn said they have been getting several calls a day for the last two weeks or so about the 'coons. She said the instructions on their web site do drive the raccoons away. The only thing she added to the list to include is kitty poop in paper bags scattered randomly around the nesting area.

OK. I will buy a cheap little radio I can put in the attic and I will instruct the Prodigal Son to periodically pop into the attic during the day to bang pots and pans so that momma raccoon will decide to move to a quieter, darker, less pet smelling neighborhood.

And then I have to figure out how to keep the raccoons from ripping the grating out from under the overhang and getting back into the attic.



indurate \IN-dur-it; -dyur-\, adjective:
Physically or morally hardened; unfeeling; stubborn.

\IN-dur-ayt; -dyur-\, transitive verb:
1. To make hard; to harden.
2. To harden against; to make hardy; to habituate.
3. To make hardened; to make callous or stubborn.
4. To establish; to fix firmly.

intransitive verb:
1. To grow hard; to harden.
2. To become established or fixed.

Indurate is derived from the past participle of Latin indurare, from in-, intensive prefix + durare, "to harden," from durus, "hard."


Define 'curdle'.

Wednesday, January 12, 2005

Mammal Info - Gulf Coast Wildlife Rescue

Who'd've thunk they had a web site with raccoon removal instructions on it?

Anybody have a radio I can borrow for three days?

BBC NEWS | Scotland | Worker sacked over blog comments

When did exterminators

become pest control specialists? And why don't any of them think a family of raccoons squatting in my attic is a passel of pests? After calling a couple of the better known ones, I was finally referred to the local wildlife rescue league. I duly called them and left a message on their machine. I'm waiting for them to call me back.

BBC NEWS | UK | Magazine | Who owns your e-mails?

I've come up with an award for businesses who make colossally huge blunders. I call it the Aluminum Brazzie. It almost goes without saying that the first recipient of the Al Brazzie is Enron. If Bush were a business, he would be the second recipient for the hash he's made out of the War on Terror. Oh, what the heck, let him have it. He more than deserves it.

The third Al Brazzie goes to Waterstone's for terminating Joe Gordon.

And the fourth goes to Yahoo! USA for not giving a father access to his son's email account. Read the article.

Raccoon love . . . or something

Got home from work last night and heard a racket on my roof the likes of which made a cat fight sound like a night at the symphony. It seems there were two very large raccoons engaged in a heated discussion about something on the shingles above the garage. The discussion was on the verge of degenerating into fisticuffs when I shouted at the 'coons - several times - until they ceased and desisted and took their behavioral problems elsewhere. Not being a raccoon expert, my guess is that it was either some sort of male territory debate thing or a rather unsettling insight into the home life of a raccoon couple. In either event, I really wish they would move to another neighborhood.



eldritch \EL-drich\, adjective:
Strange; unearthly; weird; eerie.

Eldritch perhaps derives from a Middle English word meaning "fairyland," from Middle English elf, "elf" (from Old English aelf) + riche, "kingdom" (from Old English rice).

Happy birthday, HAL!

Geek Trivia: Name the time and place

Both literary science-fiction fans and outer-space movie aficionados are today celebrating the birth of perhaps the most famous fictional computer in history—HAL 9000, the enigmatic artificial intelligence from both the book and the film, 2001: A Space Odyssey. But ask each of these respective groups what HAL's "age" is today, and you'll likely hear two different answers.

In the novel (and screenplay), HAL first came to life on Jan. 12, 1997, but on the big screen, HAL's birthday is Jan. 12, 1992. So based on the source material, HAL turns either 8 or 13 years old today.

Then again, both the book and the film debuted in 1968, so HAL could arguably be in his late 30s. Regardless of his actual age, HAL and the works of fiction that spawned him have served as cultural benchmarks for the progress of consumer technology.

Going by author Arthur C. Clarke's and director Stanley Kubrick's late-1960s estimations, we should be currently enjoying passenger space flights, stays aboard orbital luxury hotels, and careers on the surface of the moon—to say nothing of working with fully self-aware artificial intelligences capable of recognizing both voice and visual clues.

Indeed, by Kubrick's and Clarke's measure, who worked together to coauthor the film's screenplay, these activities should be so mundane, so ingrained into our daily consumer experiences that they're unworthy of narrative exposition (something notoriously sparse in the film).

It's ironic, then, that many of the consumer brand names used to underscore this point in the film were defunct by the time 2001 actually rolled around. Case in point: In one part of the film, a character makes an orbital videophone call using the Bell telephone system, famously divested in 1984.

Similarly, Pan Am appears not only as a major air carrier but also as a passenger spaceflight company, despite the fact that the real Pan American World Airways shut down in 1991. (An unaffiliated airline has since resumed use of the name.)

In one case, one product became obsolete even before the film's debut. RCA Whirlpool appears as the maker of zero-gravity food systems, despite the fact that the company dropped the RCA name from its appliance products before the film's 1968 release.

However, one significant technology brand name that appeared in several aspects of 2001 is still going strong, though its often professed connections to the HAL 9000 computer's name amount to little more than an eerie coincidence.

What famous technology brand, displayed prominently in 2001: A Space Odyssey, shares an eerily coincidental connection to the HAL 9000 computer's name?

IBM is the technology giant in question, a company often mistakenly credited as the basis for the HAL 9000's three-letter name. In the standard English alphabet, the letters H, A, and L immediately precede the letters I, B, and M, respectively.

The coincidence is so striking that many have often assumed that the HAL initials are a veiled reference to Big Blue. The fact that a number of fake IBM products appear in the film—including several monitors and a spacesuit control—only served to reinforce this assumption.

In actuality, HAL's real-world creator, Arthur C. Clarke, and his instructor in the novel, Dr. Chandra, both profess that the HAL name is shorthand for heuristic algorithm, purportedly the mathematical principle that serves as the basis for HAL 9000's artificial intelligence. Clarke has also gone on record to say that, had he noticed the IBM-HAL connection before the release of the film or novel, he would have named the computer something else.

If there's any actual connection between HAL and IBM that's intentional, it's perhaps the one most cleverly obscured. As embattled astronaut Dave Bowman slowly disconnects the HAL 9000's processors, the computer noticeably regresses in intelligence, ultimately clinging to one of its first "lessons" in human interaction—a song.

That song, "A Bicycle Built for Two," was actually the first song "sung" by any computer—a feat accomplished at Bell Laboratories in 1961 by an IBM 7094 computer. The touch is a subtle nod to computer history, if not IBM itself.

And just to hammer home the point, when Clarke penned the sequel to 2001 in 1982, 2010: Odyssey Two, he didn't name HAL's twin the HAL 9001 or the HAL 9000-B but instead chose SAL 9000. Whether that will put the HAL-IBM issue to rest is a matter of debate—and of great Geek Trivia.

Tuesday, January 11, 2005

And yet more Woolamaloo hullabaloo and Guardian Unlimited both have articles about Joe Gordon and the Woolamaloo Gazette. The Guardian Unlimited article even quotes the 'defaming' posts.

Woolamaloo hullabaloo . . .

It is growing by leaps and bounds, the Woolamaloo hullabaloo is. I've had a nice little jump in visits here thanks to folks doing a search for at Technorati.

And just in case my opinion wasn't clear on this subject in my prior post and comment thereon, I think Waterstone's grossly mishandled the situation and have generated more negative press for themselves than the Woolamaloo Gazette ever could have or did . . . until now. If anyone knows of a colossal business faux pas award such as the Golden Razzies are for Hollywood, Waterstone's needs to be nominated.

PhysOrg: Spacetime wave orbits black hole: beyond Einstein's general relativity

I am such a geek! I love this stuff.

The Woolamaloo Gazette

If you haven't heard the story yet, you aren't really wired in. From all accounts, a very nice man named Joe 'publishes' the Woolamaloo Gazette. It has been around forever and he uses it to satirize whatever strikes his fancy. He also uses it to vent when something goes wrong at work. Well, it seems the manager of the establishment he worked for - Waterstone's, a UK bookseller in the ilk of Border's - took exception to the venting and fired Joe. The reason given is the satirical venting Joe did defamed Waterstone's. Given Joe's account and what I've read on other blogs, I suspect however Joe defamed Waterstone's in his blog is nothing compared to the defamation Waterstone's has brought down on its own head by firing him. Not only is Joe's story making the round of blogs - BoingBoing, Neil Gaiman - but news sites as well - Times Online, CNET. And the general consensus is that Waterstone's is in the wrong, that they have, in fact, cut off their nose to spike their face.

What do I think? I think we would all be wise not to mention work, except in the most glowing, anonymous terms, in our blogs. It probably would be wise not to speak about work, except in the most glowing, anonymous terms, to anyone. Actually, we shouldn't even think about work except in the most glowing, anonymous terms. You never know who might be eavesdropping.

Scientific American: Rats Can Tell Languages Apart

Without all of the information available and based just on what was reported in this article, it sounds more as if this was a Pavlov's Bell experiment using words for the bell, or possibly even the sound of a particular voice, than it really was an experiment in language recognition.

The rats' abilities were somewhat limited, however: when different speakers were used for each sentence, the animals encountered more difficulty telling them apart.

Scientific American: Evidence for Milky Way's Long-Theorized Stellar Graveyard Found

..::...Vores ØL...::..

Open source beer . . . I'm getting really, really close to having seen just about everything.

BBC NEWS | Science/Nature | Iapetus moon bulges at the sides

Sunday, January 09, 2005

The Great Catnip Rumble Tumble of '04

The Great Catnip Rumble Tumble of '04 is a movie the Prodigal Son shot. It is 7.38 MB in size so it will take a very long time to load on anything other than a broadband connection.

My little furry monsters, since it's been a while

Heru doing some carefree napping.
Heru napping

Rainbow inspecting the leftover catnip in her cat bed.
Rainbow contemplating the contents of the cat bed

Goblin resting in the dining room.
Goblin in repose

Mouse attempting another Alien impersonation.
Mouse working on her Alien impression

Small world

I've just had a small world experience. Someone from a mailing list I lurk on - I think I've only posted half a dozen times on the list - has just joined a message board I babble incessantly on. When you consider how many mailing lists there are and how many message boards and how many people are on the 'net, well . . . And then you factor in that he is from South Africa and I'm not . . . small world!

having children has justified my life.

Someone at a place where I participate posted that as a response to part of a thread on the joys of parenting. This is my response to her:

"Having a child has complemented my life. It has complicated my life. It has made it interesting, joyful, painful, hopeful, sorrowful. It has led to new discoveries and old memories. It has taught me patience, sympathy, empathy, anger, fear, tolerance. Having a child has done many things, but it has never been justification for my life. The sum total of me is much more than parent."

I'm never sure if I should be happy or sad that someone defines themselves as / through a single aspect of their lives. By the same token, I'm never sure there isn't something wrong with me because I don't. Are they the 'normal' ones, or am I?

the best awful

By Carrie Fisher

the best awfulJust finished the book while I was enjoying coffee at IHOP. This is the first Fisher book I've read and I'm not really sure what I was expecting, but what I got was a very passable feeling of what crazy was really like. It was well written and I enjoyed my trip into the manic end of the "shit bag mood disorder stick" as lived by the Suzanne Vale character. The other thing I got was a very sincere appreciation for "getting the short end of the shit bag mood disorder stick". After reading this book, I much prefer the short end.

BBC NEWS | Entertainment | Star Wars voted top for effects

For me, the opening sequence of the first film is the definitive Star Wars moment. Sitting there in the theatre, scrunched down in the front row seat, looking up at the screen, it had an awe inspiring effect. It was as if that Corellian cruiser were flying over me.


Whch Dysfunctional Faerie are You?

You scored as A Too Lazy Faerie. You hate being active, and thats the way you like it. Waited on and totally pampered, looking beautiful without the effort. You like to watch the world circle around you and you're great for a long chat or long snooze. You prefer a more slow and peaceful way of living, but remember a little bit of exercise is good for your health, giving you more life for luxury ;-)

See All Results/Comment

A Too Lazy Faerie


A Too Sweet Faerie


A Too Astral Faerie


A Too Evil Faerie


A Too Silly Faerie


A Too Depressed Faerie


A Too Kinky Faerie


A Too Sporty Faerie


A Too Serious Faerie


Which Dysfunctional Faerie are You?
created with

Friday, January 07, 2005


Heru has developed a very bad case of it. Every time anyone opens the front door, the little son of a feline tries to sneak out. Every time. He's made it out a few times but we've always spotted him and corralled him immediately. His usual tactic is to rush out the door and then just casually stroll along. Tonight, he got out and nobody noticed. Not only did he get out, he casually wandered across several busy downtown streets to return to the house where he used to live before he became my spoiled rotten little . . . cat.

How do we knows this? Because a friend of the Prodigal Son happened to be walking down the street where Heru used to live. Heru spotted him and decided to chat him up. The friend thought this strange cat looked and acted an awful lot like Heru so he picked him up and bought him home where I was happily oblivious to all of this - playing on my computer - until the Prodigal Son stuck his head in my door and asked me if I knew what Heru had been up to.

So much for the theory that neutered males like to stay home.


Reaping the rewards

Of being a good tipper, that is. I had dinner tonight at my favorite steakhouse in town - at which I've never actually eaten steak - and I'm at the point where I'm becoming a regular to the long time wait staff there. Not only did I have dinner there, but I also placed a to go order for the Prodigal Son, with dessert to take away as well since I never have room for it when I eat there. Anyway, when I got home and unpacked everything, I found the mints the waitress had put in my bag. All 20 of them. One peppermint, two spearmint, and 17 of those lovely chocolate ones I really like. Rewards, I tell you!

Oh, wait. I have had steak there. It was a chicken fried steak and I didn't like it. I much prefer the lemon peppered chicken or pork chops. And baked potato. With sour cream and real honest to goodness bacon bits, not those plastic things that pass for bacon bits you buy in jars. And some of the best cheesecake in town. Yum!

I've decided to adopt

Goran Visnjic, that is. During some seriously mindless web cruisin' I stumbled across an adopt a celebrity thing. So I did. I'm a sucker for tall, dark, and not American.

Goran Visnjic
Adopt a Celebrity


Oscan was an Italian language spoken in much of central and south Italy. It was gradually supplanted by Latin after the absorption the area by Rome in the third century.

Bird's eye view

A bird sees everything at once in total focus. Whereas the human eye is globular and must adjust to varying distances, the bird's eye is flat and can take in everything at once in a single glance.

Riddle me this

Born Motherless and Fatherless
Into this world without a sin.
Made a loud roar as I entered
And never spoke again.
What am I?

Thursday, January 06, 2005


After several days of nice weather - sunshine and in the 70s, warm enough to run the A/c for a bit during the day - the temperature has dropped again and it's back to running the heater. The Prodigal Son has a cold and my knees and elbows are achy. It's not so much that I mind the cold, or even the heat, it's the temperature going up and down every few days that's wearing on me. I wish Mother Nature would settle on a temperature for the duration of winter.

Moon Moon


Found at Ultrablog.

Copy the list of ten authors below. Replace any that are not included in your home library with one(s) that are. Note any replacements in boldface. Reference where you found LibeMeme when you post.

1. Charles Dickens
2. Alexandre Dumas
3. Agatha Christie
4. Robin Hobb
5. CARL Hiaasen
6. Leon Uris
7. Tad Williams
8. Margaret Atwood
9. William Shakespeare
10. J. R. R. Tolkien

Hanging moon Hanging moon - Andrea Yates' conviction thrown out

Yates' appeal cited 19 trial errors, but the appeals court ruled only on the false-testimony issue, since that was enough to reverse the conviction. Writing for the appeals court, Justice Sam Nuchia agreed the state hadn't knowingly used perjured testimony but expressed concern that the jury could have been prejudiced when weighing Yates' guilt.

"We conclude that there is a reasonable likelihood that Dr. Dietz's false testimony could have affected the judgment of the jury,'' the court ruled. "We further conclude that Dr. Dietz's false testimony affected the substantial rights of appellant.''

Curry said today that if the appellate judges reject prosecutors' motion to reconsider their decision, prosecutors can appeal to the Court of Criminal Appeals, the state's highest court.

Despite the false testimony, Yates received a fair trial and was convicted because the jury believed she knew what she was doing and she knew it was wrong, Curry said.

Sleep tight

Early mattresses were filled with straw and held up with a rope stretched across the bed frame. If the rope was tight, sleep was comfortable. Hence the phrase, "sleep tight."

Scientific American: Voracious Black Hole Generates Most Powerful Explosion Known

BBC NEWS | Entertainment | US sees growth in CD sales market


Gee, don't these people know that P2P illegal music sharing is crushing the recording industry? Where do they get off paying for music?


Tuesday, January 04, 2005

Winter Rose

by Patricia A. McKillip

Winter RoseI just finished the book. I was obviously not in the right frame of mind to read this book since I didn't enjoy it and I have yet to read anything by McKillip that I didn't enjoy. Instead of finding it lyrical, as the critics would have it, I thought it was overblown and wordy and took much too long to get to the point.

BBC NEWS | Health | Parkinson's damage repaired

BBC NEWS | Health | Tobacco smoke dulls child brains

And what did they use to get here?

Of the 2004 visits, three times as many unique visits were made with a Mozilla flavored browser than with an Internet Explorer flavor.

Of the OS types, Windows made up 73.01% of the visits, Linux made up 24.91%, MacOS made up 1.87%, and BSD made up 0.22%.

And where did they come from?

Aside from the expected .com, .net, .org, .edu, and .gov visitors I had in 2004, I also had hits from these other top level domains:

.de - Germany
.au - Australia
.us - United States of America
.nz - New Zealand
.nl - Netherlands (Kingdom of)
.ca - Canada
.sg - Singapore (Republic of)
.at - Austria
.jp - Japan
.be - Belgium
.fr - France
.uk - United Kingdom
.za - South Africa (Republic of)
.dk - Denmark
.il - Israel (State of)
.tt - Trinidad and Tobago
.ae - United Arab Emirates
.ch - Switzerland (Confederation of)
.cl - Chile
.fi - Finland
.in - India (Republic of)
.is - Iceland
.it - Italy
.pt - Portugal
.uy - Uruguay (Eastern Republic of)

Keep a blog and they will come

In the 4 1/2 months of 2004 that existed, it had

1,064 unique visits in August,

3,087 unique visits in September,

3,207 unique visits in October,

3,097 unique visits in November, and

4,652 unique visits in December.

Mommy, why is the sky green?

A green flash is sometimes seen just as the sun sets or rises. This occurs because green light is bent most strongly by the atmosphere. So the green is seen before other colors at sunrise, and after the other colors have vanished at sunset.

Monday, January 03, 2005


We found her body. We have buried her in the front yard.


Update: I've ordered a memorial stone for her. I should have it in about six weeks.

New Year's Resolutions

How could I forget?!?

Quite easily. I gave them up for Lent so I don't make any. I discovered years ago there was no point in making them because I never intended to keep any of the ones I made. I was just jumping on the bandwagon because it was expected. And I really hate doing something just because it's expected. And when I discovered that not making resolutions really annoyed some of the people I knew, well . . . What more could I ask for? Guilt free and a pain in the ass. Almost perfection!

Pirate Smiley Angel Smiley

Sunday, January 02, 2005

The Time Traveler's Wife

The Time Traveler's WifeI just finished reading this. I know a lot of people think it is a wonderful love story, and it is, but I found some of it to be just a bit creepy. I'm not sure I can articulate what disturbed me about the book, which I truly did like very much. Some of it has to do with the nonchalant brutality that Henry displays albeit very infrequently. Some of it has to do with the fact Clare marries a Henry she doesn't really know to wait for him to become the Henry she does know. A small quibble, I know, but it did bother me.

All that aside, I recommend the book. I give it two thumbs up.

Saturday, January 01, 2005


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