Archive for January, 2012

Uncrossing eyes

Well. I’m spending much of my time at present looking at a file that is essentially a thread that looks like this:

Extracting /Users/sarahlee/Downloads/doclib/20090910_GAO2003MaineArizonastudy.pdf ____ 32%____ 33%_____ OK
Extracting /Users/sarahlee/Downloads/doclib/20090910_Sullivan1997PoliticalMoney.pdf ____ 33%_____ OK
Extracting /Users/sarahlee/Downloads/doclib/20090915_Berresford2005FairDocFCC.pdf ____ 33%_____ OK

And trying to break it down in some sort of usable form so if I have to re-upload missing research to the new website I’ll have a working list of what we had. As a result, my brain needs to take a minute intermittently and so, hey, I’m talking to you people. Whoever you may be.

Good news on account of the drugged-out menace to society who kicked in the neighbor’s door: My landlord is putting one of those iron gates in the vestibule that leads to my front door and a grate over the window next to the back door. I actually think that from both an aesthetic and safety perspective these are good things to do. A friend of mine broke down the numbers for me to make me feel better about the situation and it actually worked because it does kind of throw things into perspective. He’s responding to my charge that I could have been raped and/or killed had the guy decided to kick my door in as opposed to the neighbor’s. Here’s what he came up with:

Days you have lived there without incident in the immediate neighborhood: A year maybe? 1/365
Average time spent by you inside your home: Let’s say half. 1/730
Chance that someone would pick your door to kick down instead of another: Let’s say he had a choice of 4 doors in his oh shit, gotta hide moment. 1/2920
Chance that the door would actually fall in: Let’s make it 75% since he’s cracked out of his mind and this gives him super strength. 3/11680
Chance that you are caught unaware of him banging down your door and become an easy victim: Let’s make that 50% since you may be sleeping or totally rocking out to music. 3/23360

That’s about a .013% chance that what you outlined will happen to you. And that’s assuming the cops wouldn’t have followed him in. You weren’t in the middle of your scenario because those odds are so low.

So, low odds of getting raped and/or killed by a crazy naked man running through the streets of NW DC is always good news. I have to add, as a post script, that one of the work boys, when I told them what had happened, confessed that his immediate reaction was that he would have felt really sorry for the guy had he broken into my place. And he meant it. I think I need to embrace the badass that other people see in me…

We’re playing trivia again tomorrow in Arlington and I simply love the email solicitation because it’s absurd and wonderful and impossible to say no to without excellent reason. Corey, you are loved.:

Hooray for fun things. I was trying to come up with a witty story to help illustrate how fantastic a time you are going to have eating wings, drinking beverages and joining in bonding gamesmanship. Then i realized how smart all my friends are and decided that you would best understand if i used a thought provoking analogy.

Supply side economics: social and gender inequalities throughout the military industrial complex :: the geopolitical pressures of a long term sustainable energy source : if you don’t show up i am going to talk serious crap about you behind your back

I had the great joy of introducing the work boys to the film Sneakers today because I was trying to explain who David Straithairn is (because he’s in the upcoming Spielberg film on Lincoln) and was sure they’d know him from Sneakers. None of them had seen it. Tragic. It’s one of my all-time faves. Here’s a taste. If you haven’t, you should.

Here are a few pics from the walls of Black Jack. DC does have a cool music side.

There’s also these delicious treats I picked up at the newsstand/deli on the corner. I’m just getting loopy now…

Finally, the nerd-American turned me on to something new (for me). Because he’s from California and is all cool and stuff.

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Just had a great conversation with our new Tech guru Nelson (I’m, without shame, patting myself on the back for hiring this firm) about investing because apparently his stock in Apple just keeps going up. I know. Shocking. So, I’m thinking about getting into this investing game. I know my Pops has done some of this kind of thing and so I think a real conversation is in order on the subject. I know what Pops will sayL “Go ahead and start doing some research.” We didn’t get told the answers in my house. You had to figure that sh*t out for yourself. And so I’m thinking energy sector, tech sector, defense contractors…hmm…what with all the talk of colonizing outer space there’s probably some reason to look at the aerospace industry to see what kind of companies work in that sector. And so the newest quest for information begins.

Right, moving on, hooray for Corey happy hours! I have missed thee..

Also, hooray for Saturday poker games and birthday parties! I think it’s time I started taking pictures again..

Also, I had this whole post on an ex-boyfriend and how he used to laughingly (and bitterly) recite his belief that women were essentially all harpies who would do anything to “get that man!” and how I still think he overdoes it but that there is some evidence to suggest that some young women today are taught that destroying competition is necessary to get what they seek in this regard and that I’m pretty sure fucking up other women is actually putting the focus in the wrong place when it should be on developing the relationship with the man in question and how I find it delicious when these same women are successful in “getting that man!” only to discover they’ve fought long and hard and done terrible things to win a cheap plastic trophy that breaks the first time you drop it. But that would just lead to a rambling run-on sentence so I’ll refrain. Also, feel free to mix and match gender pronoun and descriptors up there cause it works both ways.

Finally, let’s all just start sending in outrageous street views for fun.

And, on a related note, just a reminder…

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Hard to kill

So, we made a great decision to hire our newest employee at work. But let me tell you why. I took the following two pictures this morning. The first is an autograph she brought in because her brother used to pal around with the guys from the band. I know, right?! Stellar. The second is an old photograph she found in her grandmother’s attic. When she asked her grandmother about the photo her grandmother said in a stern tone, “That’s Chicken Henry. We don’t talk about him.” Susan, you fit right in with this bunch and we’re glad you found us…

Got this from the Nerd-American in an email with the subject line: “Great bill, or greatest bill?”

This article was posted by someone I know this morning and it reminded me of something: back over the summer my former landlady used to give me her old Vanity Fair magazines to read and I read this piece with interest because to that point I felt really lukewarm about Groupon. It was the next coming of Christ according to all the hipster kids but it smelled funky to me, primarily because it started to feel a lot like spam in my inbox. Their deals never appealed to me, visually or otherwise. On the contrary, I signed up for LivingSocial at the same time and they seemed to have it going on. So I was curious why Vanity Fair was all bunged up about Groupon going public. The photo spread was awesome though. I’ll say that. So, I’m glad I had a business sense that turned out to be correct. And, just to drive the point home, here’s a breakdown of the difference between the two companies. Looks like we can expect a Google version any day now. Which also reminds me: money is quite the motivator.

The Coach is all jazzed about this but I told him it’s already been done and would be hard to top. One of the best animated films I’ve ever seen. The music is transcendent.

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Hi guys,

Yesterday evening a guy high on some kind of drug and running from the cops kicked in the door of the basement apartment next to mine β€” literally four feet next to mine β€” and was quickly apprehended by the four cop cars and ambulance chasing him. All kinds of drama ensued as they had to wrestle him to a gurney and strap him down and then the owner of the apartment had to be located so they could put his door back on, etc. Needless to say, I didn’t sleep very well last night so I’m getting a slow start this morning. Will be in asap.


(Sorry for not calling you last night family but I didn’t want to worry you. Also, shoutout to my friend Bay who convinced me not to freak out by telling me the story of his mother and a .357 magnum. “She couldn’t even lift it. It was like a Dirty Harry gun.” All I needed was someone to make me laugh to back me off the ledge and you came through for me. Again. You are a good man and a good friend. There are others who could learn a few things from you. But who are we kidding? That kind of grace is innate and can’t be learned. Although Tucker Max is apparently gonna give it a try. How incredibly fitting for this scenario in ways I won’t go in to. I think Max has years of unhappiness awaiting him — maybe a lifetime because I’m not sure psychoanalysis can cure a sociopath — but I commend him for the effort. I guess. When I can be bothered to give him any consideration at all.)

All of this comes on the heels of some thinking I’ve been doing about death. I know, I know. Not trying to be a drag or anything. In the literary world they call this kind of thing “Thanatopsis.” Great poem about it here. (So live, that when thy summons comes to join/The innumerable caravan which moves/To that mysterious realm where each shall take/His chamber in the silent halls of death,/Thou go not,/like the quarry-slave at night,/Scourged by his dungeon; but, sustain’d and soothed/By an unfaltering trust, approach thy grave,/Like one who wraps the drapery of his couch/About him, and lies down to pleasant dreams.) And the reason I’ve been thinking about it because I found out a guy who was roughly my age passed away unexpectedly this month. I did not know him well. Had only had two or three proper conversations with him. He was in my master’s program and here, living in DC. He was married only recently and the last time I saw him he told me that his life was great and perfect. “Finally coming together,” I think is what he said. And now he’s gone, with people leaving him messages on his Facebook page like some morbid funeral home guestbook. I recently re-watched this film (it’s one everyone says they hate if they’ve seen it but it’s actually better than common consensus) and it poses the question: what would you do if you found out you had a week to live? So, I’ve been approaching my life with that thought in mind. It’s leading to some interesting realizations. Most revealing is the dismissal of the ridiculous advice of those who say they live this way all the time as an excuse to do whatever the hell they want (see Tucker Max above). There’s nothing of life in there. Nothing satisfying, no real joy. Just a going through the motions. So, I’m working that one around in my brain a bit…

Anyway, I’m exhausted and, speaking of moving through the motions, that is pretty much what I’m about today at work — a big week for us as we’re looking at launching our new website tomorrow and that’ll be the completion of a huge project — and I’m barely aware of my surroundings. So, in an effort to just focus on what needs to be done, I’ll leave you all to it with a few diversions. The first goes out to my sister Juli because it’s music i know she’ll dig. Can’t wait till the album drops in April. This song is phenomenal. The second was posted by my dance teacher and is so hot I blushed watching it at home by myself. Dance is the thing, people.

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You think you’re all mad and stuff and then someone goes and posts something like this and you realize you really never had a chance. The wookie was surprising and delightful. Also, look for the Ewok. Which reminds me, the boys at work like to imagine the star wars movies from the perspective that the Empire was the good guys. I know…it makes me uncomfortable, too…but it’s kinda funny.

And, while we’re at it and if you have a few hours:

So, I’ve been thinking…Pavlov was right. If you treat an animal (or person. ahem.) a certain way for long enough, they come to see certain cues as having certain meaning. That’s not really the fault of the poor wretched beast that’s being experimented on, right?

Because you gave me a twitter virus, I’m stealing this picture and posting it without your express consent. Because it’s hilarious…

From Facebook:

“Stephen Colbert threw Herman Cain’s hat into the audience. Guess who caught it? β€” at Mt. Pleasant, SC.”

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Black Bar Here

So the story for today dear friends is the whole internet blackout thing in protest of some legislation that is both being pushed bi-partisanly and being rejected bi-partisanly. Which is sort of historic if you think about it. Dig it. We’ve been tossing the story around at work and I’m pretty sure that the whole rotten deal is just a way to float the proverbial trial balloon to see just what the public will digest because God knows we can’t keep the internet free and unfettered when there’s some money to be made. Glad to see Paul Ryan is no fan. And the Coach had some words of advice:

“While it warms my icy libertarian heart to see so many people opposing government regulation of the internet, I would just like to point out: The same people that you don’t trust to regulate the internet are the same people in charge of our education system, our energy policy, a significant portion of our health care system, our military, our tax laws, and various other things that impact our daily lives. Just something to keep in mind.”

Anyway, that’s all I’ve got for today. I’m thinking I might go hang out and have a beer with a bunch of libertarians at Redline in Chinatown after work. It’ll be a total nerd hangout. With beer. And when I have a little more time I’m going to write about critical thinking versus getting help with your homework and how I think that’s the true cause of the brain drain. But not today lovelies. Instead, I give you some new music I’ve just been exposed to via Ali P., an amazing video where animals sound like cockney barkeeps, and an apology to my Twitter peeps. I was haxored. I just got this in an email:

Twitter believes that your account may have been compromised by a website or service not associated with Twitter. We’ve reset your password to prevent others from accessing your account. You’ll need to create a new password for your Twitter account.

Done. Screw you and your magic weight loss program Power Slim.

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I found out today at lunch why Pabst Blue Ribbon is considered some kind of awesome imported delicacy in China (according to this old Newser story it’s even compared to Scotch. Hipsters everywhere are celebrating carefully in their skinny jeans). Because Sapporo tastes exactly like it. Yes, I realize China and Japan are two totally different places. But I figure maybe they drink Sapporo there due to geographic proximity and have developed a taste for watery, overly carbonized beer. I know I have. Nothing better than a really cold PBR. And no, I wasn’t drinking at lunch. Just had a sip. But clarity was perfect and pure.

I was gonna get all useless and long-winded but instead, I’m just going to give you Friday music (the first is number 3 in my Top 5 favorite songs of all time and the second because one of the work boys reminded me of this song because he asked if i was “gathering my chi”) and ask that you enjoy the holiday weekend. Peace.

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Taking a minute to write about Romney because I was greeted this morning by the Coach’s sigh of relief on Facebook:

“For the first time I can remember, Mitt Romney said something last night that actually made me want to applaud. And what’s more, I feel like he actually MEANT it: “President Obama wants to put free enterprise on trial. In the last few days, we have seen some desperate Republicans join forces with him. This is such a mistake for our Party and for our nation. This country already has a leader who divides us with the bitter politics of envy. We must offer an alternative vision. I stand ready to lead us down a different path, where we are lifted up by our desire to succeed, not dragged down by a resentment of success.”

Amen to that. Envy shouldn’t be used as a driver of social policy. It’s the only one of the seven deadly sins that doesn’t feel good, even for a little while.”

I think Romney is a good candidate. He is a shrewd businessman, our economy is in the crapper, and we need someone who knows how to get us started down a path of something like fiscal responsibility. Also, I think he can win. And I’m ready to have this “progressive” (most laughable misnomer ever) mindset wielding a little less control. Because your version of progress leads to a future I’d prefer not to inhabit. Talk about Idiocracy…

So, let me get back to it. Here are a few diversions:

This is why David Brooks is misguided. It’s pretty offensive to suggest that all women care about is the “size of a man’s wallet.” Look, goldiggers are out there, on both sides of the gender divide. But some of us still believe in that old-fashioned ridiculousness known as love. You know, borne of mutual interest, values, life purpose. When I meet people like Brooks and realize that to them this makes perfect sense, I try really, really hard not to laugh. Or cry. Because I think misery is a hard thing to predict and I’m pretty sure rich people still commit suicide…And, Mr. Brooks, if this was all suggested to point out how absurd Santorum is for believing in the societal benefits of strong marriage unions, you even more misguided than I thought.

Excellent advice.

My friend Lynnsey posted this and I think it’s a nice primer as we move into the Lenten season here shortly. She and I are thinking of going to New Orleans — she wants to hit Mardi Gras but I’m more partial to Jazzfest. We shall see. Either way, this book is homework.

This is also homework. I’m not sure why, but wine seems to be becoming a hobby lately. Grandpa would be proud.

Anytime I can post a clip from the British version of The Office, I will. And it’s timely. I love Gareth.

Finally, today’s jam. Take note, cause it’s true.:

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Okay now don’t be jealous but I’m working on a Saturday morning. I know…but I made the decision yesterday to put something away and get a pair of fresh eyes on it this morning. I’ll send it for review before dance class at 1:30 so I have to get on it because I’m taking a friend out tonight downtown and that’s just how it is. In any event, in the course of working I came across this brilliant piece by Mark Steyn, someone I am thrilled to say I agree with because I don’t think I could argue an opposing point with him and win. He’s a bit of Canadian genius. But this piece is just inspiring really. Not because I find Santorum all that appealing as a candidate (I don’t, for the same reasons Steyn says he might take issue with the man’s positions), nor because it’s an amazing bit of writing (but it most certainly is). Rather, it inspires me because I have pretty well had it with self-satisfied cruelty masked as empathy and people whose only recourse for their pathetic frustrations is to spin yarns of other people’s “weirdness” to — i guess? I really don’t claim to understand your pathology…– take the focus off how insignificant they are and how very little they have to actually offer. There’s only so much usefulness to be had in the game of “everything’s a competition and I MUST WIN by any means possible, even the puerile (do you need me to define this one for you?) and vicious.”

The best is the knowledge that, since it’s all about “sides” with you fucking people, our side has Mark Steyn. And yours? Alan Colmes.

Money quote: “I was a callow pup in my early twenties, with no paternal instincts and no great empathetic capacity. But I understood that I was in the presence of someone who had undergone a profound and harrowing experience, one which it would be insanely arrogant for those of us not so ill-starred to judge.

There but for the grace of God go I, as we used to say.”

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I got zip people. Except that Sunday should be a good football day (Rise up dirty/angry birds!!!), I’m starting to finally feel like a dancer again (I can hold my releve without falling), and I watched these two dudes on the metro this morning who were both exceedingly handsome but had that weird mask of cruelty on their faces that was only thinly hiding their insecurity. I hate that look. Especially on men.

Anyway, I’m over being angry at everyone today because I forgot to pay a friend the $3 I owe her and it made me realize we all can suck. I guess I just don’t want to be tied to the damn whipping post anymore, by anyone. I’m sorry you’re sad. Let’s talk about it. I’ll buy you a beer. But if you try to hurt me I will not hesitate to bring the hammer. You should know this going forward.

We got our first coaches email for softball so, in that grand tradition, here it is for you. They really do make the season that much better. I never had a chance of even approaching their brilliance as the flag football coach. And I’m comfortable with that.


Yes, it hasn’t been above freezing for much of the last 48 hours, and the sun has been setting before you leave work for months now. But the vast machinations of CAN softball have started churning, building inertia like that giant ball in the Temple of Doom. It’ll be trampling our livers before we know it.

Anyway, the higher ups are soliciting input from the general CAN public for the first time in a few years, so here’s your opportunity to anonymously speak your mind: [redacted]

That’s all I have for now. Practices are still two months away, so look for more e-mails then. In the meantime, keep up your off season training. I don’t want anyone showing up to camp flabby.

Thanks and Go Dawgs

And, for no reason at all except that I recently re-watched Role Models, here’s Beth by Kiss for your Friday music. Enjoy your weekend rockstars.

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