Random Windows Question

February 21, 2007 at 10:47 pm (computing)

I have a screen saver that didn’t come with XP.  How do I add it to the menu of screen savers in the display menu?


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In Honor of Fat Tuesday

February 20, 2007 at 6:45 pm (Beer, Benjamin Franklin, Quote of the day, Work)

Here is another quote from Mr. Franklin, about his first trip to London in his mid 20s:

At my first Admission into this Printing House, I took to working at Press, imagining I felt a Want of the Bodily Exercise I had been us’d to in America, where Presswork is mix’d with Composing. I drank only Water; the other Workmen near 50 in Number, were great Guzzlers of Beer. On occasion I carried up & down Stairs a large Form of Types in each hand, when others carried but one in both Hands. They wonder’d to see from this & several Instances that the water-American as they call’d me was stronger than themselves who drank strong Beer. We had an Alehouse Boy who attended always in the House to supply the Workmen. My Companion at the Press, drank every day a Pint before Breakfast, a Pint at Breakfast with his Bread and Cheese, a Pint between Breakfast and Dinner; a Pint at Dinner; a Pint in the Afternoon about Six O’Clock, and another when he had done his Day’s-work. I thought it a detestable Custom. But is was necessary, he suppos’d, to drink strong Beer that he might be strong to labor. I endeavor’d to convince him that the Bodily Strength afforded by Beer could only be in proportion to the Grain or Flour of the Barley dissolved in the Water of which it was made; that there was more Flour in a Penny-worth of Bread, and therefore if he would eat that with a Pint of Water, it would give him more Strength than a Quart of Beer. He drank on however, & had 4 or 5 Shillings to pay out of his Wages every Saturday Night for that muddling Liquor; an Expense I was free from. And thus these poor Devils keep themselves always under.


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Best of nominee

February 19, 2007 at 7:54 pm (Humor)

Yes, I have been hanging around on craigslist again. I just nominated this for best of. Here are some highlights, interspersed with my smarmy yet sometimes relevant comments:

Are you interested in being a co-parent?

…I would love to have kids and feel that it would be beneficial to everyone if my child had as many parents to love them as possible.

Why not ask your lesbian life partner? Oh, she doesn’t want to have kids? Doesn’t that constitute “irreconcilable differences?”

I am looking only for men who are SERIOUS about this.

Which is why I am posting it on craigslist’s “women seeking men” page…most guys are on here becuse they haven’t been able to knock some random chick up.

Someone who believes strongly in attachment style parenting, and who is willing to be an active and loving participant in a child’s life.

She had me until this line. When I have a kid, I will show them a detached indifference, occasionally shouting “you ruined my fucking life you little weasel!!” before sending them to bed hungry.

I don’t think I am looking for a 50/50 parenting relationship. I want to be a primary parent but would love to have maybe a 75/25 ratio.

My lawyer will have a heyday with this one. What happens when “scope creep” sets in, and daddy tries to teach the little bastard how to throw a baseball, but you have plans to go to Lilith Fair? Do you keep a record of time spent to ensure the agreed upon ratio of parental responsibility?

My child will not eat crap that is passed off as food, will be birthed at home and breastfed until whenever…

Ok, that’s just creepy. No baby should EVER remember being breastfed. I think Freud’s mother nursed him until he was 14.

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Missed Connections

February 19, 2007 at 6:31 pm (Random)

I just posted this on craigslist:

I was the guy sitting right behind you on Monday around 5:30. Sorry I didn’t intervene, but it was just too damn entertaining to hear Mr. Awesome Everyotherword talk about how his art is god, but “not the Christian propoganda god.” I hope that wasn’t your real phone number you gave him.

He reminded of this guy Noah I knew in college, except crazier.

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Everything happens for a reason

February 18, 2007 at 12:03 am (Personal)

A few weeks ago, I went skiing with a few friends of mine. When we rolled into Hood River to get some coffee, I realized that I had forgotten my boots. So I became a patron of the local ski shop, where I paid 10 bucks to rent boots and 15 to have my bindings readjusted. As I stewed about the shop, lamenting the 25 dollar tax that had been levied against me, for the mere crime of staggering out the door hungover at 7 in the morning, I meandered past the helmet section. I had been meaning to buy a ski helmet for some time, and this seemed to be a prime opportunity. Given a choice, I’d rather not be killed by some shithead on a snowboard. I ended up throwing down, all told, 85 dollars before I even reached the lift ticket vendor, who stiffed me for another 60 (my invalid student ID isn’t nearly as valuable as I had intended it to be for the next few years, BTW).

Fast forward a few weeks. I woke up today, and was surprised to see a 60 degree, cloudless February Saturday in Oregon. I hopped in the Jeep and headed up to Timberline, which, incidentally, is where they filmed The Shining. (click on the link, it’s funny) The problem with spring-conditions skiing is the slush. It was really slushy, and being the advanced intermediate skier that I am, when I hit a jump and landed in a pile of semi melted glacial leftovers, I sunk to my ankles, and ate it, hard. I landed on my head. It was one of the worst wipe outs I have ever had, so bad that I snapped both of my poles in half. No kidding. I would probably have a concussion or worse if I hadn’t made the equipment upgrade a few weeks prior. 85 bucks seems like a small price to pay.

Here is a picture of me and my new fashion accessory, mere minutes before the afforementioned incident. I’m so glad I left the XL sticker on there (click pix to enlarge).


While I’m at it, here’s a picture of Mt. Jefferson, with Three Sisters in the background, from the top of Mt. Hood. I fucking love Oregon.


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Benjamin Franklin on Vegetarianism

February 15, 2007 at 5:43 pm (Benjamin Franklin, food, Quote of the day)

I am in the middle of reading what is probably my favorite book, Ben Franklin’s Autobiography. I’m not sure why I like it so much, if it is the fact that he did everything a person could possibly do in that era, if it is the 18th century writing style; probably both. Here is a snippet:

I believe I have omitted mentioning that in my first Voyage from Boston, being becalm’d off Block Island, our people set about catching Cod & haul’d up a great many. Hitherto I had stuck to my Resolution of not eating animal Food; and on this Occasion, I consider’d with my Master Tryon, the taking every Fish as a kind of unprovok’d Murder, since none of them had or ever could do us any Injury that might justify the Slaughter. All this seem’d very reasonable. But I had formerly been a great Lover of Fish, & when this came hot out of the Frying Pan, it smelled admirably well. I balanc’d some time between Principle & Inclination: till I recollected, that when the Fish were opened, I saw smaller Fish taken out of their Stomachs: Then thought I, if you eat one another, I don’t see why we mayn’t eat you. So I din’d upon Cod very heartily and continu’d to eat with other People, returning only now & then to a vegetable Diet. So convenient a thing it is to be a reasonable Creature, since it enables one to find or make a Reason for every thing one has a mind to do.

Take that, vegans.

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I need a maid

February 14, 2007 at 5:35 am (Rant)

I live alone, so I just can’t believe how much clutter I am able to generate.  I just spent 3 hours putting stuff away, dusting, doing the dishes, and laundry.  I promise I will get organized this time, until 2 weeks from now when I do it all over again.  Does anyone want to come over for one night a week and get my life in order?  I’ll pay minimum wage…and I mean real minimum wage, not this pinko commie Oregon bullcrap.

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Waste not

February 13, 2007 at 5:23 am (Environment, Health)

I have a pretty good theory about why we Americans are so wasteful. I was just taking out the garbage when it occured to me: I am getting ripped off. I take my trash out pretty frequently, so my apartment doesn’t smell any worse than it otherwise does, but I only bother lugging my can to the curb when it is full. That is about once a month. But next door, a family of ten could generate three times as much trash in a week as I do in a month, and they would be charged the same amount for pick up. I tried to get my service reduced, but was told that there is a flat fee, no discounts offered.

What kind of incentive is there to be a little bit frugal? None. The rate that I do pay is about 5 bucks a week. That seems absurdly low to me, when you factor in all the resources that are required to fuel trucks, pay collectors, sorters, operate machinery at the tipping yards, ship the trash to a landfill, build, maintain and store trash for eternity.

Me and LogJammin’ were hiking in the Columbia Gorge this weekend, and a long freight train went by, probably about a hundred flat cars, each stacked 2 high with semi-trailers. As we descended to the parking lot, we noticed the logo on the side of them , and it was Waste Management, a nationally-known garbage company. Yes, that was Portland’s trash, being shipped out of sight, out of mind, to a landfill in eastern Oregon somewhere. It was quite a sight. I wonder how many of those trains rumble out of here every day?

I remember in 2000, some British guy visited us in Philly, and he was amazed that our trash pick up was free and unrestricted (free if you ignore the 4% income tax the city levies). He remarked that there was a limit in London to one small bag, with hefty surcharges over that modest limit. And the base rate was substantial, I don’t remember what, but you have a clear economic incentive to not toss stuff away willy-nilly. A relatively small government “interference” creates a demand for less wasteful packaging, more reusable materials, and less waste from top to bottom. And the whole system works better. Germany, for example, has a law that requires life-cycle production, in which manufacturers are responsible for disposal of things like household appliances. They manufacture them with this in mind, so that parts are generally reusable. There’s a lesson there.

Is our expectation for cheap and unrestricted garbage generation a cause or symptom of our societal gluttony?

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Property wrongs

February 13, 2007 at 4:59 am (Planning, Politics)

Washingtonians should thank the Freaking Lord that Initiative 933 failed.  I wonder how many voters would have chosen to take an ideological anti-government stand if they knew it would have meant unrestricted open-pit gravel mines?

Three Measure 37 claims nearly surround Warrick’s 56-acre vineyard. The first, a 160-acre housing development, is adjacent to his property; the second, for another housing development on less than 50 acres, is directly across the road. The third claim, about three miles away, proposes a 20-acre mine for aggregate rock on the banks of the Applegate River.

Homeowner complaints could potentially shut down the winery, Warrick says. And the mine, he fears, could create traffic issues on the small, winding two-lane road that accesses the Wooldridge Winery.

As the law stands now, there is little Oregon farmers can do to protect their businesses from Measure 37 claims.

“Where do we go for compensation?” he asks.

Nowhere.  That was never the intention.  The whole charade about “property rights” was a blatant power grab by big development interests, pure and simple.  This kind of stuff makes me angry beyond words.

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Today’s post

February 12, 2007 at 7:20 am (Random)

If you have ever wondered about my thoughts on my space, please check out the blog on which I occasionally serve as guest blogger.

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