12/29/06 03:24 - 33ºF - ID#24717
I went to the Co-Op to get some beans. I totally love their selection - a nice variety of organic and 'regular' beans. My two favorites are the Organic Sumatran and the one I got today - some sort of Nicaraguan variety that I couldn't pronounce despite my decent but still feeble command of Spanish. I'm not even sure that it was a Spanish word. In any case, when you go to the Co-Op its situated on the far right plu #17520. Sad... I can remember the PLU but not the name. Anyway I like the dark roasts best but this one was a medium dark and it said on the container "one of the best coffees" - I'll be the judge of that, thanks! A little over half a pound later ($5.89, small sacrifice considering what it costs to go to Spot multiple times a day every day) I was out the door. A note - their beans are actually roasted by Spot according to the fellas at Spot.
I also got some whole wheat roman rigatoni, mushroom red sauce and some Sierra Mist. I took my blood pressure when I was home - 189 over 102!!! I couldn't believe it so I checked it again - 179 over 101. I seriously, seriously need to get back on the diaretic I took to regulate my blood pressure. On top of that, I want to commit to taking my health more seriously and being in better shape. Part of this, of course, is to commit to a better diet. I don't eat terribly bad, but a year and a half of being on the road and eating very salty, very high calorie meals at chain restaurants, drinking soda, drinking a TON of coffee - you get the idea - has taken its toll on my system and I have to fix it. I've been conscious of this one for a while but after seeing what my BP was I'm a little scared. I need to find a decaf coffee that I can live with, because I don't see myself giving up coffee ever.
In any case, I'm on a tangent. I got the wheat pasta and sauce put together then made some of this double bergamot Earl Grey tea made - man I love this tea! Brand name is "Stash" - they sell it for $2.59 for 18 bags at Wegman's. If anybody can recommend to me an earl grey that they love, please by all means recommend it!
To top it off, Airwolf is on TV. This was an 80's show based around this super secret, super high tech helicopter. The acting is second rate and the script is so contrived... but this is one of those occasions where I'm a stereotypical guy.
Speaking of sexy, I love latinas.
Weird bit of 9/11 trivia - Airwolf episode #209 is titled "Flight #093 Is Missing."
12/28/06 11:08 - 41ºF - ID#24716
12/27/06 09:13 - 31ºF - ID#24715
Nice wrinkle by the hairline there, honey!
Apparently this is caused by having the real human hair extensions, which are glued in, glued a tad too tight.
So, the lesson for celebrities - if you are going to glue someone elses hair into yours in order to improve your physical appearance, either make sure that its not so tight or don't sing, don't smile, look like a robot. Or else YOU TOO might look as gruesome as Beyonce does here.
12/26/06 12:44 - 35ºF - ID#24714
Holiday... and Wal-Mart/my job
I hope everybody are enjoying or have enjoyed the holiday time off. Today I am at work but am more or less mailing it in. Light unimportant stuff soon to be followed by a monster project that I must complete by Thursday 5pm.
(e:jason) and I enjoyed some time at home with our relatives - I got what I usually get (cash) followed by some Sabres gear and an immersion blender. I'm most excited by the blender! I like to make homemade soups and the last time I tried to blend some up I burned myself... this new kitchen toy will definitely be put into use. I'm thinking about creating a new 750 house drink based on some kind of blended froofy drink. I love the original 750 but some people do not, so perhaps its time to create a second concoction. Maybe we'll make a game of it and have (e:strip)pers participate in the selection of ingredients!
I'm trying to be mellow today but again, and I'm sorry to keep harping on Mike Niman, but to the people that have read the last Artvoice of the year - didn't you find it interesting that his article was based around the concept of a "no shopping day?" My opinion on the idea is that its ridiculous and implausible... if he believes that a no shopping day will ever gain traction I have a 'war on drugs' and a 'war on poverty' to um.... sell him. Oops.
My feelings about Niman's lunacy is well documented, but this is particularly interesting to me because, of course, he had to mention Wal-Mart and that everything in the store is supposedly made at Chinese sweatshops. I was incandescent with rage after reading it. Mike Niman doesn't have a fucking clue about what he is talking about and I will explain why. I'll simply say this - nobody except for people in my/our position have the ability to make an informed comment on the subject of what goes on at the suppliers to the Big Grey Box.
Why? Because, dear readers, without breaking a series of NDAs that would ensure that my company would get in serious doo doo... lets just say that our company has been to hundreds of suppliers to the Big Grey Box throughout the world, including Guangzhou province in China. Sorry Mikey, just because you can namedrop a region in China doesn't mean that you know a fucking thing about what goes on there. We go to Guangzhou. We go to Vietnam. We go to Bangladesh. We go to Pakistan. We go to Nicaragua. We go to Honduras. You get the picture. Niman and almost all activists do not. This is why we in our industry suggest that activists are all heart and no brains - most NGOs that drive our industry have nearly zero participation in verifying what they are making unsubstantiated claims about. Are there concerns? Surely. Is what you think, hear and read about Wal-Mart true? NO. Is the movie that was released this year criticising Wal-Mart factual? Mostly, no.
Understand this - I have a special and priveliged access to see what Niman and several activists are complaining about. If I were able to I could tell you all about it, from an insiders point of view. We are bound by NDAs that prevent us from revealing what it is that we see and precisely where. I could tell you all about the major problems that exist in various parts of the world relating to production for large discount chains. I could tell you about how Wal-Mart has affected labor in the United States - while most of what you buy in Wal-Mart is manufactured overseas you would be absolutely shocked by the sheer volume of American industry that is supported SOLELY by purchases from Wal-Mart. I could tell you about the standard by which Wal-Mart forces all of its global suppliers to adhere to as a condition of doing business and how without it a factory cannot sell to Wal-Mart. I could tell you about where some of the worst factories GLOBALLY are located (here's a hint - the flag is red, white and blue).
I could tell you about what workers in other countries make, what parts of the processes for various products are outsourced and what are not, I could give you a first hand account about the effects of outsourcing and how it has affected American industry in general, I could tell you about how most of the Nimans out there are lacking so much information that when I read what he writes about Wal-Mart I laugh out loud.... and why. I could tell you about the history of the Ethical Standards program, the current size of it, how committed Wal-Mart is to its own standard, how many firms currently audit Wal-Marts suppliers globally, the strength of the W-M standard compared to other independent standards, how many products have at least some ingredients sourced from China that are produced in the USA - the list goes on and on.
Believe me, Niman and several activists out there that don't have a fucking clue about what they are talking about want to talk to a guy like me if they are interested in getting the authentic scoop. Unfortunately for them, we don't spill the beans. Knowing what we know and seeing what we've seen, I can only say that what critics of Wal-Mart suggest are mostly wrong and are based on a complete and utter lack of factual information precisely because they do not have access like I do. Is Wal-Mart deserving of criticism? Yes... but not because of what you might think.
12/22/06 11:47 - 45ºF - ID#24713
Technical question, and thanks!
Before I do that though, I would like to thank (e:ladycroft). Its always a birthday or holiday that I am always reminded about how distracted and too wrapped up into my own bullshit I can be. Not the best occasions to be sure but I have to tell you guys a story and thank a very thoughtful person.
I got up at 7am on my day off today to bring (e:jason) to work so that I could go get my check and a new tire for the car up at Uncle Wally. Seriously, they have fantastic looking pizzas and lasagnas at Wal-Mart and for a good price - I got a fresh lasagna for $6.50 today! Anyway, I digress. I have been BSing and running errands for almost 4 hours today in the rainy weather when I walk up my stairs and see a gift bag hanging by my doorknob. I'm thinking, "WTF, did my neighbor give Jay and I something? I barely see her!" I bring it in and open it, its from (e:ladycroft)!! I have no idea how that wound up on the doorknob and this is not the first time that she has managed to get a gift past the locked door into our hallway. If I ever need something stolen back for me I know who to call!
Anyway thank you (e:ladycroft) - you are an incredibly thoughtful person and you make me realize that at times I need to do more thoughtful things for people. (e:jason) cannot have the hat, and it is going to pain him not to know what I'm talking about until he comes home. I sincerely hope that this brings you at least a little bit of pleasure! Hahahaha. ITS MINE JASON!
I have a technical question to ask the compunerds around here. Cutting to the chase, this is what I want to know - is there a way to take a java applet based document and convert it into a format that I can either turn into a pdf, or otherwise make it so that I can at least cut and paste the text? We are putting together a package at work and instead of having to manually copy and retype everything manually I want to know if there is a way to do this easier.
12/21/06 05:30 - 40ºF - ID#24712
Stars of Track and Field
12/19/06 04:17 - 36ºF - ID#24711
12/15/06 02:43 - 45ºF - ID#24710
They are selling it for $24.99 at New World, but I'll spare you spending the cash. Don't bother. Its an Aphex Twin retread and as a massive Radiohead fan I'm thrilled that Thom is getting this utter garbage out of his system, therefore sparing his main band from having to turn down this dreadful direction.
I'm ultra critical as a music buff, especially so regarding the bands that I love. Radiohead is no exception here. I'm convinced that anybody that thinks this is even remotely brilliant is simply paying lip service.
Anybody have any recommendations on some new and unheard stuff out there?
12/14/06 08:56 - 42ºF - ID#24709
Still though, the reason why they are giving the key chains out is because they are opening their 3,000th store today. Can you believe it - 3,000 stores? I am fairly savvy about these kinds of things but I would have never guessed that there are 3,000 Timmy stores out there, especially considering that most of them are essentially in Canada and border areas.
They have a strawberry banana coconut doughnut now - its pink. Its amazing how people freak out over the doughnuts in that store. (e:jason) and I have a weekend ritual of getting up early enough for one of us to get coffee and snacks for us to wolf down while we watch football (soccer for you American types) and wake n' bake. I go to the newish Timmy on Delaware Ave. across from Gordon's, and that place is just obscenely busy if you stop there at noon on Saturdays.
Anyway, if you are a diehard Tim Horton's fanatic and want a keychain, allegedly they are giving these things away everywhere today.
EDIT: Two quick news stories that I found interesting today.
1. This is absolutely amazing. A former employee of IBM is suing them for wrongful termination and accusing them of causing his Internet addiction. $5 million in damages. He was fired for discussing a sex act in a chat room while at work. Sorry pal, life doesn't work that way. You fucked up, got fired for a clear breach of their Internet use policy and now you are out in the cold. Claiming that IBM is at fault because of your irresponsibility is laughable, and I'm certain that your case will be thrown out. This is one of the reasons why I feel that our legal system is at times an absolute farce with all of these frivolous cases. Anyway, here is the article -
2. A NYT article is highlighting a clinical trial that showed that circumcising African men may cut their risk of AIDS by 50%! This is a whopping and drastic decline... even modern medicine isn't as effective as putting the manhood 'under the knife.'
12/11/06 12:36 - 42ºF - ID#24708
Cow 'Emissions' > Car Exhaust
A United Nations report has singled out cattle as the world's number one threat to climate, forests and wildlife - more than cars, more than anything else. The most startling thing about the report is that livestock produce more than 2/3s of the worlds ammonia, one of the main causes of acid rain.
So what are we to do now, kill all the cows?
EDIT - I saw saw (e:Peter)'s pictures. Can I skip the nice guy routine and just put it to you ladies in a stereotypical 'guy' way for once?
MY GAWD did you girls look sexy on Saturday! I'm talking stunner sexy. I wish I would have been there to pay out some compliments in person. (e:imk2) I have no idea who would possibly be that rude but to put it bluntly... well I thought about it and I'm not sure I can say what I want to say without it sounding or reading like an article out of Hustler. I'll just say that I can't respect a guy who would gasp before he would consider grabbing at 'em.
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