Monday, February 23, 2009

My solution to the economic crisis

I've started unpacking some of the boxes we brought to the condo on Saturday... and while I was unpacking I made a discovery: I own approximately one trillion plastic clothes hangers.

I don't need anywhere close to the number of hangers I brought with me, so I've decided to inject the remainder of the hangers back into our economy. I'd say each hanger is worth around 30 cents; hopefully this extra $300 billion will help things move along on the financial front.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

The Most Ironic Disease Ever


Last night I learned, thanks to NTN, that this is the name for the fear of long words. Somebody out there has a sense of humor!

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Blog renovations (maybe) done

Ahh, much better. The bubbles no longer overlap the text, and I decided to add them down the right hand side as well. I may still change them to be non-scrolling, but I haven't decided yet.


Blog renovation, cont.

My eyes! It buuuuurns!

I was dropping something off at my parents' place this afternoon, and wanted to show Dad the video I posted earlier about the musical line graphs. I fired up my blog on his laptop, which has a much lower screen resolution setting than mine does... and it looked awful! The retro circles on the left hand side, which look soooo cool on my screen, were horrible on his. They were HUGE, taking up nearly a third of the horizontal real estate. The two brown lines I added, intending them as a border, were going through the middle of the text area.

Clearly, it has been a while since I did any web design.

More changes to follow.

Marriage Equality

I had kind of an eye-opening moment not long ago when I was showing my Mom Courage Campaign's "Please Don't Divorce Us" video which I've posted here in my blog. It got us talking about Prop 8 and marriage rights in general, and I was a little taken aback at how much she didn't know. She had heard of Prop 8, and had some idea that it had to do with gay rights in California, but that was about it.

So, I took the opportunity to do a little education. We talked about the fact that the courts in Cali had granted gay people the right to get married back in May, how Prop 8 got added to the ballot and just barely passed through pressure and funding in large part from the Mormon Church, how the measure actively sought to take rights away from people, and what it meant for gay people going forward. Then we got to chatting about gay civil rights here in Canada, and she really blew me out of the water: my Mom had no idea that equal marriage rights were already granted by law in our country. So again, I explained how Paul Martin's Liberal government had granted the right back in 2005 with the passing of Bill C-38.

Anyway, I guess I was a little shocked by the ignorance that my Mom --liberal at heart, mother to a gay son-- showed in matters that were near to my heart and deeply affect my own life. And I place the blame here squarely on my own shoulders.

I came out to my family about five years ago and they accepted it pretty easily. Mom was shocked for all of two minutes; it took Dad a little longer but but he came around pretty quickly. My family has always been close and we stayed that way through the process of my coming out. But even though we're still very close, the issue of my sexuality doesn't really get discussed a lot. Again, this is mostly my own fault; I've always been a pretty private person, a fact that often drives my mother nuts.

My point --and I do have one-- is that I feel I've been a little derelict in my duties here. I have a willing audience in the form of my very accepting family, but except for a few rare instances I've never taken the initiative to discuss GLBT issues with them. I'm going to endeavor to take that initiative from now on whenever the opportunity arises.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Blog renovations

When I started the blog, I chose the minimalist theme: black text on a white background, grey borders. I've been thinking that it could use a little sprucing up, so I added some retro graphics to the left hand side and changed up the color scheme.

Too much? Let me know what you think.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Bye bye, Ubuntu

I've been running Ubuntu Linux as the primary OS on my laptop for about a year and a half now. The current release, Ubuntu 8.10 (Intrepid Ibex) was fantastically easy to install: it completely walked me through the installation, and I didn't have to hunt around for any drivers at all. It recognized and configured all the hardware in my HP nw8240, including the built in wireless and the built in media card reader, without any work on my part. It was also fantasticly easy to use after installation... Firefox was installed as the default browser, and was the default office suite. In general, I've been very happy with it, and excited that Linux development has progressed as far as it has. I would totally recommend Ubuntu to the average Joe who basically uses their computer for email, web browsing, and office work. I especially think it's suited well for the surge of netbooks that is hitting the market.

Now that I'm moving in with Aaron, though, I've been looking for ways to to reduce the amount of clutter in my life. One of the things that will probably be going is my desktop PC; I'll be using my laptop as my main computer. And I'm sorry to say, there are too many things that Linux still has a hard time with to keep it as my laptop's OS.

My hugest disappointment is that there isn't a port of IrfanView for Linux, or even a very good replacement. I've been using IrfanView since its first release, and it is by far the best program out there for viewing and doing simple modifications to graphics files. GThumb was the best replacement I could find, but it's not nearly as fast, and the interface is much clunkier.

Second on the list was compatibility between and Microsoft Office. I found OOO to be a great, fully-featured office suite, and I think it would be a good replacement for MS Office if everyone was using it. Most people are still using MS Office, however, and while the OOO suite is able to open MS Office files, I found that the conversion was somewhat lacking.

So, I've spent the last couple days installing Windows XP and all my regular Windows apps, and getting everything configured the way I like it. I'm looking forward to the day that I can go back to Ubuntu and say goodbye to Microsoft for good, but that day isn't here yet.

Sunday, February 8, 2009

An experiment in hair

My boyfriend is in the bathroom cutting his own hair. He's no Crawford Mackenzie, but so far it looks like it's turning out OK. Oh, I'm being called in to clean up the back a little, be right back.


Not bad at all! I think it's just a little short around the sides, but he says he likes it that way. He's got bigger cojones than I do, there's no way I'd cut my own hair. That's $30 I spend for peace of mind. Also I like being tipped back into those big hair-washing sinks and having my scalp massaged. :oP

After a shower, he's decided that it "looks almost exactly the same as my last haircut, only I didn't pay 25, no 30 dollars for it, and my neck didn't get raped."

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Videos from the Blogosphere

More often than not, I skip over the videos in my RSS feeds. One of the perks of (temporary!) unemployment, though, is that you have a little extra time to do some of the things you normally wouldn't get to.

I came across three videos today that I absolutely loved, and had to share:

The first, which I found via Towleroad, takes Microsoft Soundsmith and uses it to create music based on real world data in the form of line graphs. Artist Johannes Kreidler used economic and political data points to make some misleadingly upbeat and fun music!

Video number two, also via Towleroad, is a mashup of Christian Bale's recent rant and a typically hot-tempered diatribe from Bill O'Reilly. Brilliant!

The last video is from Joe.My.God. He's posted the result of Courage Campaign's recent "Please Don't Divorce Us" campaign. It really does break my heart, not to mention bring a tear to my eye.

"Fidelity": Don't Divorce... from Courage Campaign on Vimeo.

Sunday, February 1, 2009

It's Boss Time!

Bruce Springsteen may be past his Glory Days, but he still knows how to put on a helluva show. The E-Street Band was in fine form and Bruce fuckin' rocked it out!

Go Steelers!