Thursday, October 31, 2002

  How cute is the new Bug convertible?

  This morning we carved pumpkins in our office...

Tuesday, October 29, 2002

  The Biz is back! After a long absence, Gabe and Aaron have started posting again, and they have a new contributor, Chris. Hooray!

Monday, October 28, 2002

Sunday, October 27, 2002

  This morning, I'm in Frederick, Maryland, where we spent the night after going to the protest in DC yesterday. It was great. I have lots of pictures, and I will write more about it when I get home.

Friday, October 25, 2002

  Blogger hacked!

Update: I have fixed the above link. I'm not sure if the hackers messed it up, or I did!

  Well, I didn't get the job that I put in for... But the position of the woman who did get it will now be open, and I think that have a very good chance of getting it. It is the same job, but at a different branch.

Thursday, October 24, 2002

  I'm leaving at 4pm Friday to go to Washington, D.C. for the peace demonstration. I'll tell you all about it when I get back, and I should have lots of pictures.

'And we're trying to mix it up. We're trying to use this as a powerful tool. I told my staff: "I no longer have any encyclopedias, any dictionaries, or any reference materials anywhere in my office, whatsoever, I don't need them. I've stopped using all reference materials because you don't need it. All you need is a search engine.'

Who said that? Secretary of State Colin Powell did, in remarks before President's Council of Advisers on Science and Technology, October 17th, 2002. Maybe this explains all the false information on Iraq coming out of the Bush administration these days! (link from Ross Riker)

Wednesday, October 23, 2002

  OMG. I got a B+ and an A- on the disastrous presentation that I gave a couple of weeks ago. Unbelievable. I'm telling you, it was bad. I HATE public speaking, and am not good at it at all. I wanted to apologize to the other students for them having had to suffer through my presentation.

Monday, October 21, 2002

  Todd emailed from Hawaii where he is visiting his friend Ted:
This neighbor girl has an old 80's Volkswagen that wasn't running, so I asked her if I could check it out. She said yeah, and then I asked, could I take it to Honolulu if I fixed it. She said that if I could get it running, I could use it the rest of the time I am here. I had to change the alternator belt and jump start it, but the thing ran good for several days. This morning, it died again, but I think it is as simple as a loose wire or a dirty rotor cap. I'll have to check it out later.

That is just so Todd.

  I'm a huge Boondocks fan, so this really pissed me off:

"The Boondocks." Aaron McGruder, the young cartoonist who creates "The Boondocks" comic strip, makes a living out of pushing buttons.

Readers tend to either love his work or hate it, depending on whether they think his comic strip characters are providing social/political satiric comic relief or hate-filled commentary.

In last Sunday's Comics section, one "Boondocks" character repeated a German official's recent characterization of President Bush as a modern-day Hitler. The other character replied that even he wouldn't make that comparison, but then tossed out this zinger: "Hitler was democratically elected, wasn't he?"

The strip, reprinted in newspapers around the country, prompted readers to say that this time McGruder had gone too far. I would argue that while this one pushed the limits, it didn't cross the line.

I'm not a "Boondocks" fan. But I am a fan of the First Amendment, which means McGruder has the right to make fun of the president of the United States and to make my life complicated by doing so, which he does --- often.

The controversy over this particular strip was compounded by its running in the Sunday comics pages, which are printed in advance and often are not read by news editors before being distributed. (During the week, "The Boondocks" runs inside the Living section, and editors have, in the past, tweaked its language before publication.)

As my colleague Don Wycliff of the Chicago Tribune responded to Tribune readers' complaints about the same strip, "The Boondocks" is a popular feature with many readers, who find humor, as well as interesting commentary, among its cast of characters.

It is part of a large menu of offerings the newspaper makes available to readers --- and no one is obligated to eat everything on the buffet.

Mike King
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

I find it interesting that right after saying he's a fan of the First Amendment and affirming Aaron's freedom of speech rights, he admits that they have censored him before, and probably would have done in this case, if they had caught it earlier. (Link from Tom Tomorrow via David)


I kind of laughed uncomfortably at that because my posts have been seriously lacking lately. I'm kind of caught in a catch-22 -- when I have something to blog, I don't have time, when I have time, there's usually nothing to blog. I actually have some stuff to write about (Fake British Guy), but I have been too pressed for time lately.

Sunday, October 20, 2002

Saturday, October 19, 2002

Friday, October 18, 2002

  Here are the Friday Five:

1. How many TVs do you have in your home?
Two. One is broken, the other is on it's last legs.

2. On average, how much TV do you watch in a week?
At this time, just a few hours. I don't watch tv at home anymore -- bad tvs, no cable -- so I only watch when I'm at other people's places.

3. Do you feel that television is bad for young children?
Yeah, I worry about my little nieces who are watching way too much tv...

4. What TV shows do you absolutely HAVE to watch, and if you miss them, you're heartbroken?
There are shows that I would like to watch but don't have time, but I know that I can catch them later in reruns or syndication.

5. If you had the power to create your own television network, what would your line-up look like?
I'll have to devote an entire blog entry to answering that question...

Thursday, October 17, 2002

  I'm interviewing for the new job today...

Update: The interview lasted an hour and a half, and I felt really good about it. Now, I have to wait about a week to find out if I got it.

Monday, October 14, 2002

  One of my co-workers came back from vacation today, and when we had a few minutes alone, I caught her up on what happened while she was away, most importantly, my big blowout with the boss (see 10/6 post). When I got to the part about my boss denying that she ever said that I could work on Saturdays -- basically calling me a liar -- my co-worker said that she was there when we had that conversation, and she clearly remembers our boss saying that I could! So, I'm not crazy, and now I'm even more pissed at my supervisor for not standing up for me. God, I hope I get that other job!

Friday, October 11, 2002

  The Onion A-V Club asked a bunch of people, "Is there a God?"

  Jimmy Carter has been awarded this year's Nobel Peace Prize. I can't think of anyone more deserving of the honor.

Wednesday, October 09, 2002

Tuesday, October 08, 2002

  Tim's post about buying Gay Times magazine reminded me of when I was a bookstore clerk.
Guys would tend to pick out several porn mags, and then pick up a weekly news magazine to cover them with, U.S. News and World Report, or somesuch. It got to the point that if I saw one of those on top of a stack of magazines, I was actually surprised if there was not porn underneath. One day, I was ringing up a guy who was buying gay porn. No big woop. When I pulled away the second-to-last magazine, there was a car magazine on the bottom! Nothing like Automobile or Car and Driver, it was a magazine for guys who work on their own cars! I nearly laughed out loud in surprise. It was as if he was hiding the car magazine -- like he was embarassed to be buying it.

  A local elementary school, that has 468 students, was only allocated $146 to buy new books this year. That's 32 cents per child. Thirty-two cents.

  Frankfurt Book Fair
I love the part about the success of "cartoon novels from Japan, known as magnas." Magnas. Geez.

Sunday, October 06, 2002

  If you're looking for a present to buy me for Christmas, here's a good place to start.

  October 1st was a turning point. I decided that I'm going to take the next decent job that comes along, that I no longer will put up with the low pay and lack of respect that I'm getting, while at the same time doing lots of things that are above and beyond my job description. Our supervisor showed me exactly how little she thinks of me, and my boss didn't stick up for me at all -- just sat by silently. I owe them no more loyalty. My departure will cause them a lot of problems, and instead of feeling bad about it, I will be experiencing schadenfreude. Once I had decided, I felt so good, like a huge weight had been lifted.

Saturday, October 05, 2002

  In class the other night, we divided up into small groups to talk about how our projects are going. When it was my turn, I told them that I hadn't gotten to talk to my clients yet, but that I was thinking putting their name, logo, and a navigation bar in a small frame across the top of the pages. "So, you're going to use frames?!" one girl asked, in the same tone that you would say, "So, you're going to club a baby seal?!" She made me feel like some sort of criminal. Geez. I'm not a big fan of frames, and we're only talking about one small banner across the top of the page -- it'll be like having another toolbar.

Friday, October 04, 2002

  Are you ready to rumble?!

  Darn. It turns out that the Bush pic has been photoshopped. But this picture is for real...

Tuesday, October 01, 2002

  I should be working on homework, but there is just so much to blog about!

Andrew told me today about an incident that happened while I was gone last week.

There is a woman who works in end processing who is suffering from mental illness. If she took her medications, she might be fine, but she does not take them regularly. She could probably qualify for disability benefits, but claims that she really likes her job, and doesn't want to give it up. She is Catholic, and often writes long letters to the Pope -- we know, because she has asked people to weigh them, and tell her how much postage she needs to mail them.

In the latest staff newsletter, she read that one of the clerks in the children's area is a belly dancer, and teaches belly dancing. Well, this offended her in some way, and she called the girl's supervisor to say that the girl is a "godless heathen," and that she does not want her to come into her area to pick up materials anymore. After she finished that call, she asked an audio-visual cataloguer nearby if she had been too loud on the phone. He said no, and joked that he all he heard was the phrase "godless heathen," and that he thought that she had been talking about him, because he's an atheist. Horrifed, she backed away, and scurried back into her work area. Later on, she came out and glared at him for a while, then scurried away again when he looked at her.

It all might have ended quietly there, but she went into another department and told them about the phone call that she had made, and they reported it to the director of Human Resources. After talking to everyone involved, she decided to leave it up to the various supervisors involved as to whether the woman will be written up. Apparently the HR lady was a bit taken aback to learn about the belly dancing clerk, so we're wondering if that is going to have repercussions later.

Actually, there are quite a few bellydancing librarians.