Monday, April 21, 2008


Even though I don't trumpet it from the highest hill, I happen to be a big fan of 'net neutrality. Maybe it's because I'm from Minnesota* but I always find myself rooting against the big dominating powers regardless of whether it's in football or internet-related business models.

That said, I don't really do a whole lot about it because frankly what I do doesn't really matter. Sure, I wrote an email to my congressional delegation, but other than that I don't really have a whole lot to offer in terms of persuasion.

Tania Derveaux, on the other hand, is somewhat more creative in her approach. She has set up a website** where she states "I will make love with every virgin who defends the internet". Apparently, she is soliciting virgins to defend 'net neutrality via "a printout of a forum post or a link to a v[ideo b]log". Yeah, because those are ironclad guarantees of the effort someone's put into defending the internet.

I can't help but believe that this is all some sort of scam or "viral marketing" effort. Here's why:
  • Tania looks like she's totally hot, but she's apparently not good at math. She states that she will only have sex with virgins because she "doesn't want to have to turn people away". But doesn't she realize how many virgins are out there? Who are also on the internet?
  • The "Terms of Service" section describes how she's perfectly willing to let the virgin's friends come along and watch the act, or to videotape it. She also offers to pay for all travel to come to said virgin. No actual woman does that.
  • She's apparently from Belgium. Maybe she thinks this will limit the number of virgins who will take her up on the offer. She clearly doesn't understand how many virgins are playing World of Warcraft right now with nothing else to do but fly to Belgium.
  • The URL of her website is also a pretty big clue:
I'm betting we've got about a week before the rest of the movie trailers start hitting the web. Then prepare for the pitiful keening wail of millions of virgins all over the world bemoaning the non-refundable tickets to Belgium they just bought.

* And therefore all my sports teams have been (at best) underdogs.
** Note, the website itself is not too pervy. A few pictures of Tania, but everything's covered. Still, *I* sure wouldn't want to be seen viewing it at work.

Quickie - My blood is a precious resource

All right Lifesource. I am just guessing that I'm up for donations again because you've called me - literally* - SIX times since I got into work this morning. You know, maybe I'd actually pick up the phone if you would stop harassing me.

Or at least limit your calls to one per day.
Or even just leaving a voice mail reminder that "it's time to donate!"

As it is, you're just annoying me.

* And yes, grammar geeks, I *do* mean "literally".

Sunday, April 20, 2008

Quickie - I never knew! Thanks, random angry sign!

We saw this sign on the offramp from the Kennedy Expressway onto Damen Avenue. I have no idea what the point is but frankly I think it's hella funny.

"Honey, look! I'm an asshole! HA!"

Still, I wonder how IDOT knows so much about my assholeness...hmmm....
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This morning the GF and I got up early in order to go see "The Spindle" in Berwyn. While (apparently) many of the residents of that community consider it an eyesore, for most folks in my generation it is an iconic sculpture forever associated with cars, driving, and "gotta moosh, gotta moosh, can you do the fandango". We had to go this weekend because it's probably going to get torn down any day now to make room for a new Walgreens. Because lord knows if there's anything we don't have enough here in Chicago - it's Walgreens locations.

Here's the thing though, it's obviously been over 15 years since Wayne's World was made, and like a lot of things left outside in the elements for 15 years, the Spindle hasn't held up well. The colors have mostly faded and there's a lot of bird poop, and rust is taking it's toll. But it's still pretty cool:

The thing that struck me is how it's not really all that tall, particularly from a distance:

Apparently, the area including the parking lot of Cermak Plaza Shopping Center used to be a center of avant guard contemporary art. But that was a long time ago, and none of it had been taken care of very well. For instance, there used to be four signs explaining the spindle surrounding the piece, but of the original four, two had disappeared entirely and the other two were degraded almost to the point of unreadibility. This one was the "best":

Obviously, you can see the need to tear it down in order to put in the new Walgreens. I mean, it's not like that parking lot has any extra space to spare...

Finally, one artsy shot because dammit, some day I want my kids to see that Dad did something useful with his time on earth - documenting greater Chicagoland's kitchy landmarks before they got torn down.

Sunday, April 13, 2008

Retail Adventures - Part I

Running errands after work on Friday, I stopped by Walgreens to pick up some personal effects and noticed that they've already got their decor up for Mother's Day. I guess this is what happens when easter is so early in the season. After all, what could a store base it's decor on if not an upcoming holiday? Even when it's over two months away.

I did, however, notice one thing about some of the decorations. Can you see it?

Yup, that is exactly the same little girl in both pictures. If you click it, you can see in better detail that she is missing the same tooth in both. Not to mention that she's wearing the same shirt and has the same face. Apparently, this little girl has two lesbian mommies.

I never really thought Walgreens would be that progressive, particularly in a very Mexican (and therefore presumably catholic) neighborhood. Yay, Walgreens*!

* Yes, I realize it was probably unintentional, but what if it wasn't?

Quickie - HEAD HUNGRY!

Remember back in the mid-90s when computer games like Myst came out without any obvious storyline or direction*? Well I just found a totally fun minigame called "Feed the Head" and it is exactly what it sounds like - a game where you feed a head!

And pull off its nose...among other things.

Anyway, it's super fun and doesn't take terribly long to play. Check it out!

[Edit: If you're wondering, if you haven't fed the fish, you're not done yet]

* I know Glacierman does. =)

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Maybe it means both the weather and traffic are bad...

I know that the weather here in Chicago has been a little lousy lately (it's been raining most of the past week which has served only to aggravate those gullible residents who believed last weekend's 60+ degree days were the new norm). But come on Chicago Sun-Times, why do you have to be such a Debbie Downer?

Yep, that's the actual headline at the top of their webpage right now...

Monday, April 07, 2008

Not insomnia, just not sleepy

All right, I'm back and my circadian rhythm is completely messed up. I have no idea what time it is and am not tired at all. Thank goodness for the internet*!

  • This is sooo trippy! Seriously, it took me watching it intently for an entire cycle before I figured out what the pattern was and how it worked. And then I still watched fact, it's still playing right now in another tab...
  • How much do you wish you could have been a part of this? Of course, it would have been way better to have it done to me while *I* was in little league it was the Reagan era and kids were taught that they were nothing special unless we were grown up and fighting communists or C.O.B.R.A. so we didn't need Jim Gray and NBC sports showing up to show us that we were cool and that we had fans and that we'd all get girlfriends someday... Nope, didn't need that at all...
* And the fact that I'll be waking up at the same time for the rest of the week to force myself to get tired on time again...grrr...

Quickie - I miss sleep

Boy, you know normally I don't mind traveling for work. But being on my third time zone in as many days is really a drag.

Needless to say I'm really glad that I'm done traveling for a few months after today.

Gotta go pack up!

Friday, April 04, 2008

The Barbies! They're WATCHIN' me!

I'm in Los Angeles for most of this week on a business trip. While that in itself isn't that bad, I am staying in a different hotel every night because I'm covering a fair amount of territory. Wednesday night, for instance, I was staying in El Segundo - across the street from the Mattel factory. Not exactly the hippest neighborhood to hang out but it was neat to see the place where all my Hot Wheels were probably made when I was a little kid. Although I tried not to think about all the in-process disembodied Barbie heads staring at me out the windows...creepy...

Yesterday after my morning meeting I had some time to kill so I went down to the beach to watch the waves. It was a gorgeous day and I pretty much had the beach all to myself because all the natives think 62 degrees is only a few degrees above freezing and stayed indoors under blankets. It was gorgeous:

Of course, even though I wasn't out there for very long, I managed to get a little sunburn on the top of my head. Although because my post-shave moisturizer that I use on my face has an SPF of 15, there's an unusual pattern on top of my head where the part that was covered bordered the part that wasn't. Oh well.

Naturally, whenever I'm staying in any hotel, I always steer clear of using the glasses in the rooms. I've seen all the news exposes about how they are never actually washed so I'm not going to be caught giving myself cancer by using an unwashed glass. So needless to say it was really reassuring when I checked in last night to find my classes covered with little paper covers*:

In case you can't read that label, it says "...this glass has been sanitized and carefully packaged for your personal use". Well...*that* sure makes me feel better! I mean, "sanitized" obviously means it as run through a dishwasher, right? And what could possibly circumvent the sanitary protection of a paper bag? Thanks, Courtyard by Marriott!

*Like tea cozies, but made of paper

After all, Elmo seems equally disinterested in both...

I have a hard time believing that Elmo was traumatized by Katy Perry's decollatage after discovering that he had already "been arou...