Saturday, January 31, 2009

Quotes of the Week: Blago Edition

Quote 1:

"What? Is he actually killing people now?"

(Uttered by Kane Gwinn (age 12) upon hearing an Illinois Senator on the radio announcing that Rod Blagojevich would visit the Senate on Thursday to "stand and speak before the body."

Quote 2:
"People say Rod Blagojevich is crazy, too, but at least he never made his cat a judge or anything."

(Uttered by a sixth-grade student at Overachieving Middle School, upon learning that Nero was famous for having attempted to appoint his favorite horse to the office of Consul in the Senate of ancient Rome.)

Friday, January 30, 2009

The Potty Plan

Here's the floor plan I created with the tool at Warmly Yours tonight. The idea is that you enter your floor plan, they give you an estimate and you can order your pieces right away. I've already ordered their sample mat and their installation DVD, and I'm convinced, but at this moment their computers are telling me that my warmed area is too small. I'm thinking that means that one mat won't fit over the area without doubling some cable back over itself, which is probably a no-no. The warming cable has its resistance figured pretty precisely, so if you cut it and splice it, you're also changing the resistance if you've changed the length. At best, you're going to make it heat more or less than the thermostat shows, and I don't want that. But there has to be a way, short of having custom mats cut. I hate to say it, but I know at least one of their competitors makes smaller mats . . . but I'm going to send them an email first and see what they suggest. In the meantime, I did this one, too. This didn't solve the floor-heating problem, but it does a couple of nice things for me. First, look at all that walking room! Second, look at the tub--in this plan, I would now use a left-hand tub as I originally planned, since My Bride would not want to kneel between toilet and tub to bathe the Boy-Child III. That relocates the shower supply plumbing to an inside wall (the top and left walls are exterior; the bottom and right walls are interior.) The toilet and sink are far enough over to the south that their plumbing is not in a true exterior wall--there's a roof line running from the floor on the left to about chest height on the right corner, so their plumbing is below that roof line and therefore unlikely to freeze on me.
So why didn't I do this in the first place? Well, in its old spot the toilet was right between two joists and had a simple run for its drain that wouldn't have needed a hole in a joist. In this spot, I will probably have to drill at least one joist, and I don't know if I can put it there without placing the drain right over a joist anyway. It's also a tight spot for the shoulders, although it looks to me like it could work. You have to remember that the tub is low enough not to matter to the shoulders of a person sitting on the toilet; it just needs to leave leg room.

This room will have a forced-air vent so that the central air can reach it, but it's in the ceiling above the tub. If the floor heat works as well as they say, I may end up closing that vent off in the winter to let the other rooms have more air.

(Yes, it's that small. Yes, the tub is non-negotiable. But you'll notice I've got a nice little path built in . . . and the pocket door really helps.)

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Goodbye, Helio Gracie. Thanks for Revolutionizing Grappling and Martial Arts.

Helio Gracie is dead at 95. It's a sad day.

Don't bother telling me he didn't invent Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu all by himself. Don't bother telling me it should be spelled "jujutsu" and it's really judo anyway. Don't bother telling me the Gracies are marketing machines.

I know all that. Doesn't matter. The fact remains that Helio Gracie was a fighter in an age of jobbers. A long age of jobbers. Every submission fighter, grappler, hobbyist and fan out there owes him a debt.

(The photo is Helio grappling with his son Rickson. I used it without permission of the site where I found it, but you can get to that site by clicking the photo.)

One Down, Hundreds to Go

Rod Blagojevich has been impeached, removed from office, and prohibited from holding any elected office, anywhere in Illinois, ever again. How happy am I?

Well, I'm glad he's gone. That's a good thing. No matter what he and his apologizers try to say, "All the cool kids are doing it" is not a defense. He's still a crook, a liar, and a lizard. He never belonged in office, and we're all better off without him. But . . . .

. . . But he's not the only one. He'll be gone, and we'll still have Richard Daley, Dick Mell, Dick Durbin, Mike Madigan, Alexi Giannoulias, Rahm Emmanuel, Dan Kotowski, and a cast of thousands. These people are crooks, too, and nobody is impeaching them. Hell, Daley once shut down an airport in Chicago in open defiance of a court order, by sending in bulldozers in the middle of the night to rip giant X's out of the runways . . . and he's still there. Nobody even tried to get rid of him.

. . . But he's a crook being impeached by a bunch of other crooks. Hearing Emil Jones, Tom Kotowski and all the rest vote "yes" to affirm the articles of impeachment really brought that home all over again. This is like having the Joker kidnapped and tied up by the Penguin and Killer Croc. Sure, it's nice to know we won't be gunned down by weirdos in clown masks for awhile, but that doesn't mean I've forgotten how sick I am of dodging umbrella-bombs and walking the long way around manhole covers.

So, yeah, thanks for getting rid of Rod Blagojevich . . . but would the last honest politician in Illinois turn out the light before you go?

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Bathroom Wiring Adventures

We just got back from my mom and dad's house, where we stuffed ourselves on crappie, bluegill, and catfish. Healthy eating it wasn't, but I've been very good for awhile now. One of the twins spent this afternoon ice fishing with my dad; the other one gets to go tomorrow, while I have to take tickets for a wrestling tournament. So what did I do today? I wired the new bathroom upstairs. Does it work? You'll have to wait until the last slide to know for sure:*

*That was a lie; you must know I have to tell you. Everything works; all the outlets, the exhaust fan, and both sets of lights. I'm feeling rather smug. I had to wire it all to an existing circuit, but when the new breaker box goes in, that junction will be broken up and everything in this bathroom will go to a breaker that doesn't affect any other circuit. Currently the wiring in this house is a spiderweb, but this makes three rooms that are wired logically and according to international code, each ready to be connected to its own breaker.

The Pervocracy: Power.

(For most people, the link is NOT SAFE FOR WORK. But it's worth a look around; Holly really puts a great deal of thought into her "sex blogging." Labrat reads it, and she's, like, ten times smarter than you. And you people should be working at work and blogrolling at home anyway. Fie on you.)
The Pervocracy: Power.
Guess who's a gun blogger now? The siren call, she is irresistible, no? Actually, now that I think about it, Holly is already writing about sex and EMS . . . so by adding guns, she has completed the trinity. That qualifies her to join the ranks of weirdos like Ambulance Driver.

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Search Terms: Peter Hamm Needs a Publicist or Something

Do you realize that this blog is the seventh-ranked Google result for "Peter Hamm?" That's weird. Even weirder: this blog is the only result on the first two pages of Google results for "Peter Hamm" that references Peter Hamm from the Brady Campaign to Steal Firearms. The rest are links for all kinds of Peter Hamms doing all kinds of things, ranging from chiropractic to appearing in exploitation movies.

Just to see if it would give me better results, I typed in "Peter Hamm gun control" and was rewarded with a page of results that do all pertain to the Peter Hamm gun owners know and love. On that page, though, this blog is the number one result. That is, the last post that mentioned Peter Hamm is the number one result--that would be the post from December 2nd of last year. They say tragedy pimpin' ain't easy, and certainly the business is cyclical, but I wonder if Peter is lying low or something.

Friday, January 16, 2009

Blago's Lawyers Quit En Masse; Millions of Taxpayers Don't Care

Governor Blagojevich's legal team has decided to quit en masse; they say the Senate's impeachment trial will be fundamentally unfair and complain, among other things, that they will not be allowed to subpoena witnesses. Millions of Illinois taxpayers are reportedly holding impromptu demonstrations in their town squares, chanting "Give Rod a chance! Give Rod a chance!" and burning special prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald in effigy . . . .

OK, that last part was a lie. I just wanted to get your attention. Is that so wrong?

Here's what I don't get--what's the point of doing this? Do they think Blagojevich can appeal his impeachment? I'm no lawyer, so maybe he can, but I don't see how. If they're not setting him up to appeal on grounds of inadequate counsel, or trying to set up a delay while he finds new lawyers, I don't see the point. It's quite possible that this comes down to Ed Genson figuring the angles and being unable to identify the one thing of absolutely key importance: the source of funding that will step forward with enough cash to pay Blagojevich's legal bills. Without that, Genson's enthusiasm must surely wane. On the one hand, this would be a great case to win as an advertisement to rich guilty people. On the other hand, he's not going to win it, so getting paid for his time is probably moving up on the list.

Freezer Day--School Holiday

Yesterday we were in the Chicago area just in time to wake up to air temperatures of -14 degrees Fahrenheit. That's not counting the infamous wind chill, which true winter warriors never trusted even before the infamous "they" up and changed it to make it seem warmer than it really is. Cold is cold, and -14 certainly qualifies. We were there to see family, but it wasn't a happy occasion. More on that later if I find the right words, but everyone in our household is fine and there's no one to worry about.

We're out of school today, along with just about every other school, counseling program, martial arts school, civic organization and sports league in the area, so I'm trying to put this found time to good use. This morning I've been cutting and fitting plywood to enclose the last bit of open ceiling, insulating as I go. Now that it's almost done (and not a moment too soon--the attic was warm enough to break a sweat and the rooms below are cold and breezy) I'm almost ready to finish up the wiring in the new upstairs bathroom* and then get to work running supply plumbing. I hope to have the old floor out and the new stuff going in before Monday. It's a holiday for us, but I'm already signed up to take tickets at the wrestling tournament. Still, if I can get the floor out and prepped for the new floor, I'll be very close to finishing this thing. I have all the fixtures except the tub, and the drain stack is finished, complete with an attic vent. The wiring is so close I can see it in my head, and everything that's connected works perfectly. I just need to get the switches done, add the last light fixture over the mirror, and connect the junction downstairs.

( *The wiring would be done if I hadn't made a mistake with the switches in the bathroom last week--right before I went on duty and had to quit for the night.)

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Armed and Safe: St. Louis Gun Rights Examiner

Armed and Safe: St. Louis Gun Rights Examiner

45SuperMan/KurtHofmann is everywhere you want to be . . . and now he's the new "St. Louis Gun Rights Examiner" columnist for the Examiner papers. This makes four columnists: David Codrea, who got the whole project off the ground
and is now writing the national column, Daniel White, who took over David's original gig with the Cleveland Examiner, John Longenecker, the new guy at the Los Angeles Examiner, and now Kurt Hofmann in St. Louis.

Four new gun rights columns that didn't exist a couple of months ago, one of them national . . . . what I'm wondering now is whether Codrea has any thoughts about a Chicago Examiner column. I can think of a couple of people who would make waves up there if they have the time to do the job, and Chicago is the front lines.

Friday, January 9, 2009

I Don't Get It (XARM)

Have you heard about the new craze that's not sweeping the nation? It's called XARM. It's actually a little bit dumber than it sounds, which is saying something.

One of the founders of the original Ultimate Fighting Championship (back when it was supposed to be a showcase for comparing different martial arts) was Art Davies. In those days, the idea was to put a judo man against a wrestler, a karateka against a boxer, and see which art was best with the fewest rules. There really were few rules in those days--no biting, no gouging, no fish-hooking--but Davies and his partners promoted the event as brutal, bloody stuff. That was silly, since their partners the Gracies provided their biggest star, Royce Gracie, and his whole appeal was based on the fact that he was a normal-looking 185-pounder who could submit fearsome-looking brawlers without any blood or concussions.

Now Art Davies is back, and his new idea is "XARM." I'm sure that stands for "Xtreme ArmRassling" or something else that would have been trendy in 1993, but we don't have time to wonder, because I'm dying to tell you the premise. Are you ready?

MMA arm wrestling.

They put two MMA fighters at a padded armwrestling table and tape their wrestling hands together. The fighters wear MMA gloves. They're attempting to win in the traditional armwrestling way, by pinning the back of the opponent's hand to the table, but they're allowed to punch, elbow, kick, knee and grapple while they do it. I admit to a certain bias from the beginning; I don't know who thinks it's entertaining to watch people arm wrestle, but it ain't me. I do enjoy watching a good MMA fight, but here's what makes no sense:

1. They took away the part that makes MMA great. MMA has a million ways to win and a million ways to lose. It's a chess match. Boxing has the knockout, TKO, and decisions. Wrestling has pins and points. Judo has throws, pins, and the occasional submission. BJJ has points and submissions. But MMA has all those, which means you've got to defend everything while being open to every opportunity. It's fun to watch.
XARM takes that great idea and says "Hey, let's narrow it down to putting the other guy's hand on a table!"
Let's don't and say we did, guys.

2. They tried to put some MMA back in--but it's weak sauce. The punches, the kicks . . . . sounds good in theory (well, no, it sounds stupid even in theory, but bear with me, I'm going somewhere here.) The problem is, while you're trying to punch and kick, you're taped to the other guy with a table between you. I'm serious about this. Why would I want to watch two guys trying to throw roundhouse kicks to the head past a table with no chance of using good technique when I can watch Georges St. Pierre throw actual roundhouse kicks to an opponent who can defend himself?

3. Based on number 2, I'm guessing that most armwrestling fans who see the XARM are going to feel the same way. I'm sure if you put in the time to learn it, there's a lot of technique and strategy hidden away in armwrestling competition, and I doubt those fans want to see their favorite moves interrupted by head slaps and knees to the ribs. But I've been wrong so, so, so many times before, so don't take my word for it.

4. They're sponsored by violent video games, and their selling angle is blood and guts. In 1993, Art Davies could maybe be excused for thinking that his target audience was beer-bloated rednecks who wanted to see people bleed and were kinda hoping somebody might git kilt in "THE OCTAGON." Now that the UFC has gone from broke to turning millions in profits by becoming a sanctioned sport with more rules, weight classes, and less "BLOODSPORT!" advertising, though, the message should be getting through. If XARM were a blood sport, most people wouldn't watch it. But since XARM not only isn't a blood sport, it's awfully tame, that over the top advertising looks even sillier now. What they've done is allow some of the offense from MMA, but in a stilted, off-balance, weak way . . . . and they've balanced that out by removing just about all of the striking defense, since you have to stand toe-to-toe and "take it like a man." They're running quotes from their "fighters" like "I think everyone here is going to the hospital" and "I came here figuring some of us were leaving in body bags."

Oh, Man, I've Been Waiting For This!

I bet you RSS users thought this was going to be about Blago being impeached, right?


No, Gun Nuts: The Next Generation is finally available on ITunes. That means I can put the episode on my Ipod and listen to it while I do something else. I use the Ipod for podcasts more than music nowadays; I like Writing Excuses (for writing advice from writers who actually sell their work for a living) and The Ultimate Podcast (for discussion of mixed martial arts competition from every possible angle.) I have a few others I cycle in and out, but those are the mainstays, aside from The Shooting Bench.

This would have been better news before I got my audio issues worked out, because back then I was still able to download podcasts and put them on the Ipod even though I couldn't listen at the computer. But I'm not complaining.

Actually, I do wonder how many people will really take advantage of this. I don't know how many listeners the show normally has, but for most of my friends, the chat is half the point, so you might as well be in front of your computer anyway. Personally, though, I plan to download the ones I missed. Tomorrow I'll listen to those while I'm working on the plumbing; that'll mask the caterwauling of My Bride's pseudo-country music station.

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Oh, Hell, Just Go Read Kass

I don't know why I bother writing about Chicago politics sometimes, with John Kass out there doing it right:

So the Chicago Way hauled off and slapped the U.S. Senate in the face—one of those backhands with the knuckles to unsuspecting lips—and guess who blinked?

It wasn't Chicago.

It was the Senate.

Get used to it, America. And it won't be the last time either.

You should, you must, you shall read the whole thing.

Hope and Change, baby. Hope and Change.

Blago Committee Recommends Impeachment, Fresh Air, Sunshine and Exercise

All solid, healthy recommendations. I concur on all counts.

Yeah, Blago hasn't been officially impeached yet. What happened today was that the committee investigating impeachment voted (21-0) to impeach. Now the rest of the Illinois House of Representatives has to approve it. I haven't really looked into the numbers on that, but I don't know of anyone who expects that Blago won't be impeached, even if by some miracle it doesn't happen tomorrow. I wouldn't be shocked if that were a unanimous, vote, too, but maybe there are a few who feel like they owe Blagojevich something. There might even be some districts in Chicago, dominated by Racial Reverend political organizations, where Blagojevich is still popular enough to make it worthwhile to defend him. Against that, of course, you have the prevailing opinion in the rest of the legislature, state government, state of Illinois, and United States of America. Oh, and America's First Black President wants Blago out, too, which has to provide some cover.

Blago has reportedly already made it clear that he's not resigning come what may, so it'll be a fight, but we knew that. I listened to a little of the hearings held in the Impeachment Committee today, and three things struck me:

1. Roland Burris testified today. A lot of legislators tried to get him to admit in some way that he is at least aware of the sickly pall hanging over his appointment, but he was having none of that. No story there. Others propped him up and gave him softballs so he could make speeches. One guy did a long-winded monologue about his sister watching Perry Mason reruns (I did not make that up) and comparing himself to Perry Mason before setting Burris up to make a speech about the ironclad legality of his appointment. The poor man was as mixed-up and turned around as a meth cooker trying to barbecue with his tank of ammonia; he kept trying to get to the point, but he didn't have one, and that seems to make it elusive. After a bit of that, he started asking Burris questions, but he kept telling the answer to the question himself . . . . I was imagining Burris driving a spork into his leg to keep from screaming "GET TO IT! MY TERM IS OVER IN 2010! I DON'T HAVE TIME FOR YOUR MEWLINGS!" That's what I'd have been saying.

2. Ed Genson spoke today. At the end of the hearing, Representative Curry, the Chair, was wrapping things up and explaining what would be done this evening and tomorrow. Genson interrupted her halfway through: "Madame Chairwoman, I'm sorry, does that mean we're dismissed, or . . .?"
"Yes, absolutely, you're free to go," she replied. "Off to Washington with you now." Then she finished her sentence. This gave me pause. You may remember my original theory as to why Genson seemed to be angering the electorate deliberately, in a planned and precisely calculated way: I thought Blago and Genson might be trying to drum up more outrage to put pressure on politicians and prosecutors to cut a deal in return for Blago's resignation. Now I wonder if he's not simply throwing the rudeness out there to see if he can get the other side (in this case, that's everybody) to overextend in their outrage and leave him an opening. If you think about it, the Burris appointment can look like the product of a similar strategy. Blago made it appear that he would appoint no one (through his lawyers) and let everyone relax a bit . . . then he hit them with an appointment. But his appointment was a lot cleaner than he personally was, and in attempting to bar Burris from the Senate, the Democratic leadership was really far outreaching their real power. Blago and Burris used that to their advantage, and now Blago has gotten a lot of distractions in the public eye, while Burris is about to be seated in the Senate so he can finally add that line to his mausoleum. In short, it worked like a charm. Blago was a boxer at one time, so I wonder if his competitive training resembled mine. The number one rule I was taught at every level of football was this: When you do something that works, keep doing it until the other side proves that they can stop it. If they never find a way to stop it, that's their tough luck.

3. Nothing personal, here, but a lot of the Representatives are blithering idiots. I know it was a historic event, so maybe there were some nerves, but excuses only go so far. Some of these people can barely string two sentences together. Some of them speak for two minutes or more without putting together one actual sentence, and when they're done, it still isn't clear what they meant. Often you can tell what you think they probably meant to say . . . but there's no way to be sure. A few years ago I spent one legislative term as a "reporter" for a company that kept a database of committee and floor discussions on bills of every kind. The stupidity of these people was only exceeded by the cupidity of these people back then, too, but I think time has softened my memories of them somewhat. A lot of the players are still the same, and none of them seem to have gotten smarter.
(Yes, some of them were articulate and focused . . . but they already know who they are, and I guarantee they know who the fruitcakes are, too.)

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Party Poopers

Tom Shafer, local muckraker, gun nut, talk-show host, and all-around Renaissance man, has been attending the Blagojevich impeachment hearings since they began. At the SCRA meeting Monday night, he reported on those hearings (If you listen to Lars Larson's national show, you've probably heard Tom reporting for him, too) and shared a few glimpses of how silly life has really gotten. For one thing, he describes being searched and having his briefcase searched each time he enters the hearing room. He also told us the tale of the printed rules passed out to everyone who enters, including such paraphrased gems as:

*Do not laugh or cheer loudly during the impeachment hearings.
*Do not dance or make other physical displays during the impeachment hearings.
*Do not display signs, placards, projections or television screens during the impeachment hearings (we're looking at you here, Shafer.)

Should people really have to be told not to cheer and dance at an impeachment hearing? Well, emotions run close to the surface when it comes to Blagojevich.

In other news, it appears that I'm going to have to admit that I was wrong. I underestimated Roland Burris' desire to put his name on the list of Illinois Senators at any cost. The man is willing to throw his reputation away to get there, and that's what he's done. It looks like it's going to work. The Democratic leadership in the Senate has switched from talking about Blagojevich and his taint (hey, they said it, not me) to claiming that it's a simple paperwork matter--Burris simply doesn't have the certification he needs from Secretary of State Jesse White. Since it seems White will have to provide that sooner or later, it looks like they're laying the groundwork to say "Well, we're still not happy, but what can we do?" and let Burris take his seat.

Sunday, January 4, 2009

The Internets are Plagiarists

So, yesterday, I spent the day working at the gun show in Springfield. I was volunteering for the Sangamon County Rifle Association, and we had all kinds of information to get out. We were also passing out free copies of the Illinois pro-gun newspaper, Gun News. You can imagine my surprise when I leafed through the newest issue (I told people it was the special collector's edition, suitable for framing; the headline was "BLAGO ARRESTED!") I got to a piece that seemed oddly familiar. I knew I'd seen it somewhere before, but it said it was from the Appleseed forums, and I didn't think that was right. Before I'd finished the first column, it was clear to me--this was Marko's piece. Attributed to someone else. Again. That's right, Marko Kloos has discovered again that it's easier for someone to repost his work under a different name than it is for him to create the work in the first place.

This time, it was his "Sacred Cows" series (Synopsis: Whatever gun you like, here's why it sucks. Whatever caliber you prefer, here's why it blows.) Somebody who calls himself "MCKNBRD" thought it was funny, so he reposted it on the Appleseed forums -- without Marko's name, of course. Then Gun News, I assume, picked it up from there and published it with attribution to MCKNBRD. Of course, if it's in Gun News, it could be in a lot of other publications, too, with the same attribution.

What makes it all even worse is that Marko had these pieces sold to a small but popular national publication. I don't know what they were paying him, but I bet it paid better than being plagiarized by the internets. I've heard that doesn't generate much revenue. It sounds like this means, in the future, that Marko's just not going to blog anything that might get sold later. I can't blame him; he has to think about his own family, and the internets have shown that they can't be trusted. Way to go, internets. Thanks a lot.

Friday, January 2, 2009

See Alan Gura Speak in Springfield on Feb. 21st

A couple of days ago, I got a piece of mail from the Illinois State Rifle Association. I was sure it was probably junk, but I opened it up anyway. It was my reminder to send in my cash and get tickets to the annual ISRA meeting.

But what's this--the meeting is being held in Springfield this year? How could that make sense? Springfield is the capital of the state and located almost directly in the center. Shouldn't the meeting always be in the extreme north or south of the state?

And what's this? The keynote speaker is . . . Alan Gura? I don't say this very often, but OMIGOD HE IS DREAMY. I don't mean that in an inappropriate way; I just want to express how impressed I was with the way he handled D.C. v. Heller and suggest that it would be great if we could hang out sometime in rugged and platonic ways. We could fish, for instance, or ride awesome dirt bikes and then exchange high-fives. Or whatever; I don't have to explain myself to you people.

Anyway, if you're done derailing my post, yeah, this year I'm shelling out to go to the ISRA meeting. My wife wants to stay home with the kids, which is OK with me. Anybody else making the drive? Thirdpower, 45Superman, I'm looking in your direction?

I guess I should give some information, since it's not on the ISRA website yet:
For $40 per person, you get into the reception on Friday evening and the full day Saturday. Saturday's events include workshops on the Personal Protection program and a Legislative Update session, the annual Members Meeting, Board of Directors meeting, and the banquet, at which Alan Gura will be the keynote speaker.

The event will be held at the Crowne Plaza hotel in Springfield. If you're coming south on I55, take the Stevenson Drive exit. You'll actually see the hotel on your right before you see the exit; it's bigger than anything near it. If you pass the big power plant, you've gone too far. Once you take the exit, turn right onto Stevenson Drive, and then almost immediately right again on Dirksen. From there you have less than a mile to go before you see the hotel right there on your right. You've basically made a big u-turn to come back to it by making two right turns, if that makes sense.

If you're coming from the South, the directions are the same, the exit is the same, but you will see the the power plant before you get there. When I55 splits and you have the choice of taking 6th Street or 55/72, go to the right and make sure you're in the right-hand lane. People are going to merge with you from the left and then the left lane is going to end; it's a good place to get whacked.

Thursday, January 1, 2009

Thanks, Ogre

I'm not in the habit of thanking people for linking, and I don't really link a lot of others, either. In fact, I kind of fell in love with the "Blog List" at right, where RSS is used to give people a preview of the last post on the blogs linked--and blogs with newer content are listed closer to the top. But I was just thinking about the flaw in that plan today as I read The View From North Central Idaho. That's Joe Huffman's blog (he of BoomerShoot fame) and it's good reading. I got to meet Joe at the Blackwater blogger weekend, and that cat's got a story for every occasion. But he's not on my list at right, and I was trying to remember why. I think it was because there was no RSS feed. Luckily, nobody is depending on my linkage to keep the stats high. :)

Anyway, another guy who has fallen off my radar a little is Mad Ogre. Again, without an RSS feed, I can't put him in my techno-wonder list over there, so he languishes down in the link list. If you've been reading this blog since the beginning, you might even recall that I launched this project with a series of attacks on established bloggers, starting with Ogre. I figured that the tried and true secret to success on the internet was to make yourself look like a big man by tearing others down, so I figured I'd start things off right . . . . but I digress. The point is, today I had an extra moment and I checked in on Ogre. Look what I found:

WTF is this. The Armed School Teacher isn't linked? The guy that out Ogred my majestic Ogreness? Wow. WTF is wrong with me? Okay, he's linked and he's near the top now. Forgive me, Don. Dude – you don't need to pull an Ogre, if you can pull of Jayne Cobb's cunning hat. I wouldn't even DARE try that. Okay, now to clarify something. I did get shot in the chest with a .45. But it did not go through my chest. It was stopped by my vest and I still have the bullet. It's on the keyring to my green full sized Bronco, aka, Brutus. Had it penetrated, I would probably lost 3 out of 4 ventricles in my heart. Thanks to the vest, I'm still here, married to my achingly beautiful, non-ogrish, healthy chested, libertarian, dancing goddess, wife and we have six boys. No, I am not green. I'm too Scots/Irish to be anything but pale and reddish. I've turned greenish tint on occasion, but some Pepto helped that. I turned yellowish once, lots of water and antibiotics helped that... and every year I turn brown... but then I peel and I'm back to the paleness that would rival the Vampire Edward from Twilight... I'm so pale my belly looks like a trout. It glimmers in direct sunlight too. So do my legs, even at night – they are that pale. Don Gwinn – AKA: GwinnyThePooh. Good guy. Smart and full of snark. If you have not bookmarked him yet, your doing it wrong. How THE HELL has Don not been linked? WTF?

He's not fooling me for a second. I see exactly what he's up to here. He's pulling the oldest trick in the book. I attacked him and dragged him down in order to make myself feel like a big man and attract readers; he has responded with the classic defense, which is to be the bigger man and make me feel foolish for lashing out. What he may not realize is that I have no shame. Well, that and a wandering digression culminating in a description of his shimmering vampire fish-belly . . . . if you understood what that was all about, hey, you tell me.