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Category: music

09/21/06 11:44 - 51ºF - ID#37379

the gospel of judas

is founded on an interesting idea: without Judas, there'd be no betrayal, no passion and death, and no resurrection, and without that - there's not a whole lot of Christianity either. (WIKIPEDIA - Gospel of Judas) Don't think about it too much, it'll blow your mind.

The point being, I've become a bit of a closeted Bob Dylan fan lately, so I went out and bought the 'official' Royal Albert Hall concert recording (WIKIPEDIA - The Bootleg Series Vol. 4: Bob Dylan Live 1966, The "Royal Albert Hall" Concert). A watershed moment in rock music, &c., &c., of course, and I never realized that Bob Dylan could rock this hard. But if my man over here had not shouted "Judas!" at precisely the moment he did - symbolizing whatever it was he was symbolizing - and had he not been caught on tape - would anybody care about Bob Dylan's 1966 world tour?

Eh, don't worry about it. This is the most genuinely spiteful and venomous recording I have ever heard and I cannot stop listening to it.

Speaking of spite and venom, I have been feeling curmudgeonly lately. Why, just this evening I saw some lacrosse mom park her exceedingly large passenger vehicle in front of a fire hydrant on my street. Well technically she was endangering the lives of residents and a grandstand full of kids, but sometimes you gotta rephrase things in terms people actually care about. So I left a polite little note:

Deep thought of the day:
If I fire-bombed your car,
they would have to tow it
before they put it out.
Have a nice day.



OK, so I don't know what is involved in fire-bombing a car, but the point is that the school year is young and I want to discourage bad behavior in the pups before it becomes habitual. Also, I was amused by the imagery of a flaming car getting towed down the street so that they can get to the fire hydrant to put it out. I am an asshole, but I swear I use my powers for good and not for evil.

- Z

_______________
New journal music: Bob Dylan, "Like a Rolling Stone," from the "Royal Albert Hall" concert. Play it fucking loud.

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Permalink: the_gospel_of_judas.html
Words: 372
Location: Buffalo, NY


Category: work

09/19/06 11:11 - 64ºF - ID#37378

avast ye scurvy scum

Ohhh, so this is what I'm doing wrong. Good news for some, but less so for me: it looks like I'm stuck here for the forseeable future. I'll put off my existential crisis until at least this evening. [Like, how am I even a web developer? Clerical error...] I wonder how many Mac engineering jobs there are in Buffalo that don't involve working for (e:carolinian) 's manic boss.

Also, it's Talk Like a Pirate Day.

- Z
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Permalink: avast_ye_scurvy_scum.html
Words: 82
Location: Buffalo, NY


Category: work

09/12/06 11:34 - 58ºF - ID#37377

more hiring madness

Hiring me has got to be a bizarre experience, but at least I'm having fun with it. Today I put my references on notice:

Some time in the next few days, you may be asked what kind of Worker I am. If you find yourself at a loss for words, you may use any of the following: 'peerless,' 'superlative,' 'exemplary.' True though it may be, 'one of the greatest minds of the modern era' may be mistakenly construed as hyperbole.



...to which the VP of Sales at my last job replied:

You capitalized the word "worker". I fear you've become a Marxist. I shall make this known to potential employers.

I will endeavor to avoid using words such as mongoloid, dotard and ninny.



What a great guy.

- Z

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Permalink: more_hiring_madness.html
Words: 134
Location: Buffalo, NY


Category: movies

09/10/06 10:19 - 55ºF - ID#37376

man kan knarka och hångla i tv

Last night I thought- why don't we go rent a movie? And while we're at it, why don't we visit the new Mondo? Now I'd never been to Mondo before, so I was totally unprepared for the weirdness they call their New Release rack. I idly picked one up and turned it over, and from across the store the clerk goes 'You have to rent that one. It's totally insane.' And I'm like, ok. I mean, he's the boss, right?

So we get home, mix up some drinks, and pop the movie into the computer. The movie, by the way, is called 'Dünyayı kurtaran adam (The Man Who Saves the World),' otherwise known as 'Turkish Star Wars.'

OK- you know how sometimes you see a student film, or something on public access, or like, 'Evil Dead,' and the movie is so bad that it wraps around to being good again? This movie was like that, only it kept going until it was bad again, and then it kept going until it wrapped around to good again. It's not really a remake of Star Wars like I thought it was going to be - but they did lift all kinds of visual effects and that freaky bar scene. The first like fifteen minutes of the movie was some dude talking about nuclear war while two Turkish space cowboys blew stuff up with badly-transferred Star Wars scenes playing behind them in their tie fighters or something. The Death Star is a shell that earthlings built around earth to protect them from the Wizard. The two dudes crash and it's like Planet of the Apes, only with evil skeletons and mummies and bears and robots. There's also this blond babe who can't speak until they find the golden brain. It fucked my shit up.

Murat: Begin your famous whistle which no women can resist.
Ali: [whistles]
Murat: You whistled wrong.
Ali: Why?
Murat: Skeletons came instead of women.

Eventually we learned that you can defeat the Wizard with your brain, or a spiky golden sword, or the Koran. Maybe you need all of them, but we didn't find out because the DVD froze just as he was melting the sword into a pair of gloves.

(e:dragonlady7) says it's like they saw Star Wars without subtitles and remade it. I think it's like the cinematic equivalent of a dance remix of Star Wars, Planet of the Apes, and Flash Gordon. Either way- if 'Dünyayı kurtaran adam' is representative of a Westernized Middle Eastern culture [and I pray to any gods that will listen that it isn't] we have no hope of ever understanding anything that happens there. Mondo also has Turkish Star Trek, Turkish E.T., and Turkish Wizard of Oz.

- Z
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Permalink: man_kan_knarka_och_h_ngla_i_tv.html
Words: 488
Location: Buffalo, NY


Category: links

09/08/06 03:23 - 76ºF - ID#37375

i'm ok again

I found this cool website [click 'view the clock']. After I got home all crabby yesterday I stared at it for a couple hours and for some reason everything was ok again. People have submitted some very clever photos.

We can add to the body count around here:
- the arts editor who quit last week to pursue her grantwriting business
- one of the ad sales reps may have found a sugarmama to sponsor the publishing of the children's books she writes and illustrates
- the editor is reserving the right to leave in April

Things are going to be Different around here in a couple months, and I don't think Pizza Fridays are going to improve matters any.

- Z
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Permalink: i_m_ok_again.html
Words: 125
Location: Buffalo, NY


09/07/06 04:54 - 72ºF - ID#37374

recentering

Buff State has asked for my college transcripts. I requested that the RIT registrar mail them over. I told my contact at BSC that it may take a week to process, but that I can save her the suspense by telling her up front that my grades were awful and my graduation can only be chalked up to 'statistical anomaly.' She assured me they needed to have them, but weren't actually interested in reading them. I took this as a good sign.

In other news, I have overextended my professional commitments, and it is giving me The Stress. If I do manage to get this job at Buff State, I fear that my replacement will curse me the rest of my days. If I do not manage to get this job at Buff State, I fear that I will curse myself the rest of my days.

I decided I needed to recenter myself. I took a deep breath and a walk around the block. I came back to my desk and read Google News and immediately The Stress returned. I have never listened to talk radio. I stopped watching TV news in 2001 when I moved to New Jersey without my television. I stopped reading the newspaper after I moved back to Buffalo. I work for a newspaper now but all I read is News of the Weird. And this afternoon I deleted Google News from my homepage, thus severing my last tenuous contact with current events. 'An informed citizenry is the bulwark of democracy,' but all I ever got from the news was The Stress. So, fuck it - the partisan hacks and celebrities can have the media if they want it, but they will not get any more of my time, my aggravation, or my mind. Ignorance is bliss - selfish, peaceful bliss, and I intend to enjoy it.

I also made peace with my expanding workload. The problem is not myself, but rather that a newspaper of our size really ought to have an actual web department. I think this is all the website that you can reasonably hope to expect for $20,000 a year. I am not griping, but rather stating that technology is expensive, and impressive technology is impressively expensive.

There is a certain photographer who has been seriously cutting into my progress at work (e:zobar,101) - I am annoyed less because it is more for me to do than I am because she doesn't actually do any work for us. A meeting with the Boss Man has 'deprioritized' her project. Oddly enough, I am loath to tell her that; I would, however, have little difficulty in saying I'm outta here, deal with my replacement.

You may be wondering how I can complain about my workload by posting to (e:strip) when I should be working. It is a valid point. I politely suggest that part of my 'recentering' was updating the movies section after weeks of neglect, which was not trivial, and I feel Accomplished. You may accept or reject this justification as you see fit.

- Z
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Permalink: recentering.html
Words: 515
Location: Buffalo, NY


Category: work

09/06/06 02:00 - 72ºF - ID#37373

well, shit

Out of 22 full-time employees in our office, eight have quit since I started working here [not including one who quit and came back] and one new position was created. Today I found out two more will be leaving in a couple of weeks to go see America.

The whole point of this story is: I got a callback on that web app developer position at Buff State . Seems I didn't completely fuck up my chances of being hired yet and, despite not having exactly the experience they're looking for [cf: Appendix I] it seems they still want me to have a short 3-hour chat with the search committee, the web team, and the web administration director. Privately I am shitting minibricks because the main reason I applied for the job was because it would be idiotic not to [double my salary, plus benefits, government job, &c.]. I was not really looking for a job. It's more like Laff in the Dark. I'm just cruising along in my uncomfortable little car with, like, bats in my face or something, and then it's like BAM! motherfucker! send us your resume. And then I fall right off the end of the extended metaphor into some kind of Search Committee asking me for references.

Which brings me to another, premature point- anyone want to be a web applications developer here? It involves Macs and Adobe Creative Suite and dealing with weirdoes and PostgreSQL and Zope ... lots and lots of Zope.

Also I saw (e:enknot) and (e:paul) at Cafe 59 at lunch today. We discussed the merits of a column in my paper about extremely dorky things that nobody would ever understand. We think it's a great idea, but I'm not convinced that the public is Ready for that kind of nerdiness.

- Z


_______________
Appendix I: They are seeking a web applications developer with custom CMS development experience [this is something I have been doing for several years]. They also want a few years of PHP and Oracle experience. I've used PHP extensively and I was allowed to fiddle with Oracle a little at school, but I have almost nothing to show for either. I've always been of the opinion that the stuff you do is what's important and the language you use is kind of an implementation detail. Employers rarely share this opinion.
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Permalink: well_shit.html
Words: 393
Location: Buffalo, NY


Category: rhetorical question

08/31/06 06:25 - 68ºF - ID#37372

know what's really weird?

In the United States, we pledge allegiance first to our flag and only secondly to the republic for which it stands. What happens if the flag no longer stands for what it once stood for? If someone draped themselves in the flag while dismantling the republic, would we defend the flag or the power of the people?

- Z
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Permalink: know_what_s_really_weird_.html
Words: 59
Location: Buffalo, NY


Category: food

08/29/06 06:47 - 67ºF - ID#37371

dear sirs

Correspondence with [former staffer] has piqued my interest in the Web Applications Developer position listed on Buffalo State's Human Resources website. I have spent more waking hours of my life developing, maintaining, and updating high-volume and high-readership custom document production and content management systems than I am proud to admit . . .

- - -

Last night we went to Condrell's for improbably enormous sundaes. I decided that if I ever ran my own soda shop, there would be an inscrutable item on the menu labeled:

UNSPEAKABLE ICE CREAM CATASTROPHE . . . . . . . . . . $9.50

It would probably be in small letters jammed in between two sections somewhere, where nobody would find it. And though one must not speak of the Unspeakable Ice Cream Catastrophe, we came up with some sugar-fueled ideas for what would happen when someone ordered it.

The Unspeakable Ice Cream Catastrophe:
[list]
would require a waiver
would require proof of age
would be on the news
would drip out of the ductwork in the ceiling
would come flying at your head from the kitchen
would be a Friendly's cone-head with a butter knife through it
would be different every time
would be served on a Reuben
would be accompanied by shrieks and loud banging from the kitchen
would not necessarily taste awful
would be topped with jagermeister
would be served in a totalled Tonka truck
would involve flaming marshmallows
would somehow degenerate while you were eating it
would look like any other sundae until the ninjas came rappelling in through the window
would somehow pass health inspection
would have a tire track through it
would be like dinner theater
would involve pop rocks
would require goggles and a poncho
would require counseling
[/list]

- Z
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Permalink: dear_sirs.html
Words: 282
Location: Buffalo, NY


Category: wheels

08/28/06 09:30 - 68ºF - ID#37370

wheels

(e:dragonlady7) and I missed the (e:mike) & (e:terry) partysplosion this weekend because we took our wheels to Toronto instead [cf: ]. We had a wonderful time, and perhaps I will write about it in more detail later [but, more likely, I will forget].

This afternoon, we got eight more wheels each and tooled around the neighborhood a little [cf: ]. I am less likely to write about them later; suffice it to say that this is a very nice pair of roller skates, and I plan to pick up my old habit of roller skating around the park again [cf: ].

This weekend I got an email from a former editorial assistant informing me that Buffalo State College is seeking a Web Applications Developer . On the one hand, I like doing what I'm doing now - people programming - and, while I'm not exactly upwardly mobile, my department has no choice but to grow.

But when you get a call from a photographer who has not appeared in your publication since longer than you've been working there and whose skills at annoyance and coercion are second only to her skill at photography, blaming a recently-departed coworker for fucking her over, quote and unquote, and that she will have to miss fashion week because she can no longer fool the appropriate authorities into believing that someone publishes her photos [which are actually very good an publishable if only she could find a periodical that actually, say, has a fashion section] - and all this can be avoided if I could sift through somewhere around 4000 of her photos from the last two seasons and put them on our website within the next couple weeks [oh and by the way she just lost her baby and the world hates her] - well, it kinda makes me think that maybe doubling my salary and getting benefits for a cushy and less dramatic government job might not be as bad an idea as it may sound.

Any other disgruntled Web developers want in on this? We can show up for our interviews at the same time and freak out HR by talking trash at each other in the waiting room. We could make the interviewer uncomfortable by offering to 'do this Thunderdome-style.'

- Z
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Permalink: wheels.html
Words: 401
Location: Buffalo, NY


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