Saturday, February 05, 2005


So far, thanks to my mother sacrificing all reason and purchasing a Diet Pepsi because it was the only non-Mountain Dew Pepsi product 7-11 had that had iTunes caps, I have, in fact, won 1 song out of 3 purchases.

I don't expect the trend to continue, based on my winnings last year, but you never know. Oddly enough, I wish the hourly prize was an iPod Shuffle (which I want as much for the thumb-drive-ness as the music player part) rather than an iPod Mini, which I don't really need, seeing as how I've got my nice 40G iPod already....

I suppose I could always ebay it, but since I won't actually win one anyway, this is a moot point. ;-)

Thursday, February 03, 2005


I sat here for probably 15 minutes honest-to-goodness thinking it was Friday.

Boo. :-(


Ever wanted a textbook definition of what "impulsiveness" (a word common to those who have ADD/ADHD)?

Next time you are at work and just want to scream, and a little voice says, "you'll be fired if you do that." Imagine not having that voice.

Next time you walk past a fire alarm pull and have brief thoughts of testing it, and a little voice says, "are you nuts?" Imagine not having that voice.

Next time you want to run out to your car in your bare feet and a little voice reminds you, "hey, the asphalt will hurt!" Imagine not having that voice.

I'm really, really glad I have that voice...I don't like stupid questions.

Brought to you from randomness central...'cause I've already forgotten what I was going to write anyway.

Wednesday, February 02, 2005

Same Old, Same Old

Isn't it scary when drama becomes the norm?

We had aides out all over the place, people subbing in classes they didn't know, thus messing up their break/lunch schedules (maybe I was spoiled at CHIME, know...working there -- if there was no one to cover a class, no one would dream of taking a lunch, even if it was scheduled...sometimes kids' needs come first), kids going nutty 'cause of the rain, Patrick making dinner, and going to the hospital.

All of this feels normal.

Or, I think it might be just that I'm past the point of exhaustion and am running on cruise control.

I need a mental health weekend....

I'll be less POK-mobiley tomorrow, I promise....

Tuesday, February 01, 2005


No explorer ever set off into the unknown because it was safe, but it's still sad when people pay the price for expanding our knowledge...

Memorial (words: Misty Lackey, music: "Ballad of Springhill")
When you sing of Columbia or the Eagle
And reach for the stars as your ultimate goal.
Recall who fell along the way,
For the star-road takes a fearful toll,
The star-road takes a fearful toll.

And it might have been Armstrong, Aldrin, Cernan,
Shepard, Carpenter, Cooper, or Glenn.
They all knew well the questor's fee,
And the star-road's paved with the lives of men,
The star-road's paved with the lives of men.

For the price was paid on a winter evening
When "Fire in the spacecraft!" somebody said.
In smoke and flame the shadow passed
And in Capsule Twelve three men were dead,
In Capsule Twelve three men were dead.

Forget not yet who paid the forfeit
To conquer the stars in the Eagle's flight.
"It's worth the price." they said who paid:
Grissom, Chaffee, and Edward White.
Grissom, Chaffee, and Edward White.
To the men of Apollo 1....
January 1967

2 years since Columbia; 17 years since Challenger; 38 since Apollo 1.

But we've also set up a permanently habited space station, landed on asteroids and other planets, and set foot on a surface not tied on the Earth.

And, someday, I'm sure, we'll build other Columbias, and other Challengers. I think it would be fitting if our next-generation shuttle fleet had one of each. And a Grissom ("D'oh!" she says as she realizes where that name came from...), a Chaffee, a White, a McAuliffe, and so on and so forth.

Monday, January 31, 2005


I wonder if it's only in California that the Michael Jackson case, complete with commentary from OJ prosecutor Marcia Clarke, made up the 2 top stories on the news, before news about the Iraqi election?

I meant to post about this yesterday, when the weird priorities were even more apparent since it was actually election day, but I forgot.

BTW, though, I can actually say I've driven through Santa Maria, and even been in the mall there, and it's really funny to hear people talk about it as though it's in the middle of rural Arkansas. :-)

What is Adult?

So, while being home with what appears to be a 24-hour stomach flu, I was reading Ron Moore's blog at the Sci-Fi channel's website. Amidst some interesting Q&A, he addresses the question of sexuality on the show.

He makes a good point.

Let me preface this. One of the questions involved is a fan who is upset that they can't watch with their young children because of the sexuality.

Ron Moore's response is that BSG is an adult's show. It's not meant for young kids to watch. He doesn't let his young kids watch.

To be more accurate, it is, at least, TV PG. Like most sci-fi, especially apocalyptic sci-fi, there are battles. Like her male predecessor on the original BSG, Starbuck is...well, of the randy sort.

(Really, in a situation like that, I would expect many people to go a little carnally crazy, so to speak -- certainly, to be overcome with fatalism and chuck society's rules out the window...with the "what does it really matter" point of view intact as well. Really...what chances for survival do they really have? And what would you do if you suspected you wouldn't survive the next year? But that's beside the point -- and, besides, I'm not a sci-fi anthropologist.)

He also makes an even better point.

Why on Earth, except through the weirdness of America's puritanical culture that thinks nothing of showing exploding car bombs on the 4:00 news but fines people for brief wardrobe malfunctions during the SuperBowl halftime show (not known as a bastion of high-class entertainment, anyway), would we be more concerned about Baltar gets it on with the Hot Bad Girl (TM) than about the complete (save 150,000 or so survivors in the caravan) destruction of 12 freaking planets of people?

Full-on, billions-killed genocide.

On TV.

Mushroom clouds, shooting, and "much dying."

And we get bent out of shape 'cause of the sex.


Or, more to the point, what makes one more inherently bad -- or, inappropriate for younger viewers -- than another?

It's like the people that took their kids to see The Passion of the Christ...many of whom also stridently protested Janet Jackson'


Now, don't go getting all religious on me. Understanding Jesus' sacrifice and all that.

Possibly a bad example...though I certainly don't recall learning how horrible, exactly, a death crucifixion was during my first grade religion class. We were taught it was Bad. It hurt A Lot. It wasn't until 6th grade or so that we went into some details...suffocation, and the like. It wasn't until high school, at least, that we learned some of the gory I still don't necessarily buy it that very young children needed to -- or even should have been -- exposed to that.

Not to mention the fact that the whole thing is subtitled, and the poor little guys probably couldn't keep up with half of what was going on.

But I digress....

To get back on topic, and way from religion, here, the same could be said of The Lord of the Rings. Why is it okay to see Boromir riddled with bullets, Frodo's finger bitten off, thousands of people die during both the battles of Helms Deep and Minas Tirith, and so forth?

There were tons of little kids when I saw both The Two Towers and Return of the King in theaters (I didn't see FOTR in the theaters 'cause I didn't think I'd like it)...not so much at the special screenings of the Extended Editions at the Cineramadome, but anyway....

Would the same people have taken their kids if we'd seen Arwen and Aragorn do it? If we'd seen Rosie and Sam go at it? If we'd seen Faramir and Eowyn consummate their marriage?

All of this happened, though not explicitly, in the books. Arwen and Aragorn have children, after all, as do Sam and Rosie. I'm not certain about Faramir and Eowyn, but they do marry, and one would imagine they weren't celibate.

I think it just points out exactly the duality Ron Moore talks about. BSG gets flack for sexuality but not for genocide. In either case, it's not something for little kids. Most sci-fi isn't, really.

That said, I watched sci-fi from the time I was very young...but that was the original Star Trek, which isn't quite the same.

Imzadi, by Peter David, (who has a great blog, by the way) depicts sexual acts (the phrase "impressions that would puzzle future geologists" still makes me giggle), and I read that when it first came out.

I was, probably, about 12.

Did it scar me? Well, no.

Would it scar another kid? Who knows? But that's up to the parents.

It always comes down to that, doesn't it? If you think your kid can handle the sexual images (or, you know, the genocide), go for it. If you don't...record it...TiVo it...whatever...and save it until your sci-fi-ally inclined child is ready for it.

Parental responsibility...what a concept.

Sunday, January 30, 2005

I Love Google

Or, more specifically, -- without which, I couldn't have had "Mayflower" as a classroom vocabulary word for this week for my 6th graders, who are learning US History. :-)

Didn't get as much done as I wanted to today, and tomorrow starts another week...but maybe I'll at least get to watch "Act of Contrition" tonight before I go to bed...I know it's a cliffhanger, but I kinda know what happens anyway, thanks to, so I'll probably watch it...and then spend all week waiting for Friday, but oh well.

Grandma seemed a bit better today, but they have to keep her slightly sedated to keep her heart pumping at a reasonable level. See, you don't so much die from emphysema, as from complications of emphysema -- rather like diabetes. It's not that it keeps destroying your lung tissue until literally none is left (although, I suppose, that could happen if you never checked into a hospital where they could keep you from smoking) -- it's that your heart has to work so much harder to pump oxygenated blood to your body...or, that your organs start to suffer from lack of oxygen.

In some ways, it's a mixed blessing, but so far, grandma's heart has seemed's handled upwards of 160 beats a minute without...well, skipping a beat, if you'll pardon the pun. On the sedatives, it's about 110, so...we'll see.

You never know, really...I learned that with my dad and my grandpa. My cousin Jason is getting married in May, though, so hopefully that'll give her something to stick around for.

Ironically, people were wondering if she'd make it to my cousin's bar mitzvah in 2001...and then to my other cousin's bat mitzvah in, like I said, who knows, right?