Friday, July 29, 2005

(Insert pun about "the pits" here)

I walked over to Subway for lunch today, and ordered a sandwich with different veggies on it. When I began to eat it, I found inside a large, hard object - an olive pit! Thank goodness I didn't really bite down on it, or else I'd be in some serious dental pain right now....

5 Talked Back:

At July 29, 2005 at 10:28:00 PM CDT, Blogger Jim said...

pity it ruined your lunch.


At July 29, 2005 at 11:59:00 PM CDT, Blogger stan said...

Oh, stopit.


At July 30, 2005 at 12:38:00 AM CDT, Blogger Jim said...

that's what you get for eating in a decrepit part of town!


At July 30, 2005 at 2:03:00 AM CDT, Blogger SayUnderpants said...

Oh, now that's just brilliant work from both of you! Try and warn me next time, will ya? Hot coffee (decaf) out the nose buuuuurns...


At July 30, 2005 at 1:51:00 PM CDT, Blogger Jim said...

ouch, hope you didn't burn your pituitary gland


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The Letterhead Project update

I have received some responses to my first batch of inquiry letters in the last week. Over on the right, you'll see under Open Threads is the "count(y) me in" link to the post describing, in detail, the project and its progress. I have started a list of the characters I am writing as, so you know who's who. (I'm using characters instead of myself, because this isn't just a quest to collect letterheads, it's also a continuous exercise in creative writing.)

This weekend, I'll scan in the responses and post them on a separate blog. (Yes, another blog. You knew this was coming.)

5 Talked Back:

At July 29, 2005 at 12:16:00 PM CDT, Blogger Meagan said...

I am quite impressed with your dedication to all these blog projects. I had another blog for a while ( devoted to music stuff for my students and co-workers, but I got bored of it way too quickly. Now it's back to just the randomness of my regular one and the myspace space.

Looking forward to reading about your letterhead project!


At July 29, 2005 at 12:39:00 PM CDT, Blogger stan said...

Well, you've seen what happened to the occasionl doodl and GBM News...not to mention Joel and Steve, Joel's Movie Grabs and Steve's B'Stuff...they're not dead, but they're definitely comatose. :)


At July 29, 2005 at 2:57:00 PM CDT, Blogger Meagan said...

Oh. Good point. Well that's the wonderful thing about online projects like your blogs--if you give up you're not really wasting anything but your time and if you enjoyed the time spent on them originally then that wasn't wasted either! Oh, and if they really become comatose to the point of no return it's so easy to delete and deny any existence. Another nice thing of the internet!


At July 31, 2005 at 6:42:00 PM CDT, Blogger Jim said...

my parole officer said he'd write


At August 1, 2005 at 2:56:00 PM CDT, Blogger stan said...



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Thursday, July 28, 2005

Vote for Pedro for the Idaho State Legislature!

While typing the previous post, I Googled "liger" to see if there was an actual picture of one. The Wikipedia definition, of course, referenced Napoleon Dynamite, so I took a look at their page for the film.

One thing I learned was that the Idaho State Legislature actually passed a resolution commending the filmmakers for showcasing the state's vasious aspects of Idaho's culture and economy.


2 Talked Back:

At July 29, 2005 at 6:52:00 PM CDT, Blogger Jim said...

so it's up to me to make the obvious "Idaho's culture" oxymoron joke -- no offense to the folks in Idaho, rules are simply rules


At July 31, 2005 at 7:21:00 PM CDT, Blogger nitsuj said...

Haha, I've read about that somewhere. Also, at Creation this year they were advertising a 24-part devotional with "Unexpected Spiritual Lessons from Napoleon Dynamite". Sounds a little corny but a true fan can't go wrong for 8 bucks. Dang!


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Creditor #1: Multnomah County Library

I had jury duty in February of 2000. It wasn't very exciting, because it was just one day of sitting in a large room with a bunch of people who either a) couldn't get out of it, or b) people who had nothing else to do. I suppose that there may have been c) people who could have gotten out of it but were genuinely interested in being on a jury in order to fulfill his or her duty as an American citizen, which is what I was actually there for. But I doubt that there were very many of us, so I'll just say that there was just a) and b) there in the room with me.

What was my point here? Oh, yeah, it was about what I did while sitting in that room. There were all sorts of magazines, if one defines "all sorts" as "magazines for housewives" and "magazines for teenaged girls who want to look prettier than they are". And there was the big-screen TV, which I actually was sitting very far away from but could still hear the soap operas as though I was wearing headphones. Actually, headphones would have been a good idea, even if they were connected to nothing but the inside of my empty pants pocket, because good lord, could you turn up "The Young and the One Life to Days of our Hospital" any louder?

By noon, I was practically begging to be called to be on a jury, even if it was The Case of the Missing Bowling Shoes, just so I could get out of that dungeon.

Mercifully, they called out Lunch Break and told us that we had either an hour-and-a-half or an hour-and-45-minutes respite. Not that I was doing any work in the first place, unless you count fighting off insanity as work. (Some don't; I do.) So I got the brilliant idea that I would go up the street to the library, check out a book, and spend the rest of the day escaping into a volume of engaging fiction.

I actually checked out three books; I don't remember any of the titles. After lunch, I began one book, and kept reading it until we were released for the day (and from jury duty entirely). I took the books home and immediately lost them. Their due dates were three weeks afterward - I finally found them three months later. Not wanting to be scolded for returning late books (yes, I did see the library policeman episode of "Seinfeld"), I discreetly deposited them into the night drop box on the back side of the library building.

I have always heard that library late fees can be spendy, if the materials have been out for a long time. This is why I never inquired as to what my fees were. Furthermore, I have never checked out a book from the Multnomah County Library since that day, although I have wanted to.

Last Election Day, when I dropped off my mail-in ballot at the Clackamas Town Center branch of the Clackamas County Library, I went inside and requested a new card (it's black, with a gold drawing of a lion on it; I call it my "liger" card) for that county's system. I was hoping that they wouldn't check my history with any other counties before issuing me the card, and they didn't.

But I still wonder what I owe to the Muntnomah County Library system. Maybe when I get the winning Powerball numbers, I'll have the courage to go in and find out.

2 Talked Back:

At July 28, 2005 at 7:36:00 PM CDT, Blogger Meagan said...

Wow, that's just like me with Blockbuster late fees. Except the bastards at Blockbuster actually send you to collections!


At July 28, 2005 at 8:54:00 PM CDT, Blogger Jim said...

"The Case of the Missing Bowling Shoes" -- classic stanism!


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This Bud's for you recreational water sports

I've been seeing this billboard on the way to work for the last few weeks, and I've got to say, it's one of the most ridiculous ads I've ever seen. In case you can't make it out, it's a guy jet skiing on a wave of beer. That's right: A wave. Of beer.

The fine folks at Budweiser seem to be saying: Don't drink and boat, but boating in beer's okay, as long as you have enough to create a giant wave.

I'll bet when this guy gets off his jet ski and stands in the hot sun for a couple of minutes, his sticky skin tells him that jet skiing in beer was a bad choice.

9 Talked Back:

At July 28, 2005 at 12:49:00 PM CDT, Blogger stan said...

Sorry, Anonymous, I had to take down your comment because the length of the URL was messing up the blog design.

Here's the link to an Oregonian article about these very billboards. I guess I wasn't the only one who thought they were ridiculous.


At July 28, 2005 at 2:07:00 PM CDT, Blogger Jim said...

here in St. Louis we call that the Mississippi


At July 28, 2005 at 2:15:00 PM CDT, Blogger stan said...

That's what I figured.


At July 28, 2005 at 4:44:00 PM CDT, Blogger Meagan said...

Not to mention how much he would stink. If you're going to surf in beer, at least make it a high quality brew!


At July 28, 2005 at 4:50:00 PM CDT, Blogger Scott said...

yeah, like a mircobrew from Portland.


At July 28, 2005 at 5:24:00 PM CDT, Blogger stan said...

I think that jet skiing in any brand, style, or origin of beer would be pretty unpleasant afterwards.

Maybe it's because my first job was a bottle counter at the grocery store, and I got all manner of disgusting empties returned to me that i couldn't avoid smelling. (I know that that's the one major reason why I never even really drank anything until I was, what, 26?)


At July 28, 2005 at 5:57:00 PM CDT, Blogger Jim said...

a bottle counter, did you live in Mayberry?


At July 28, 2005 at 6:31:00 PM CDT, Blogger stan said...

Close. Oregon City.

I don't know about Missouri or Illinois, but Oregon's one of those states that passed a Bottle Bill in the 70's, requiring that certain beverage containers were required to have a 5¢ deposit.

My first job was the lowest paying and lowest-stature job at the Danielson's Thriftway store: the bottle counter. People would come in with huge cartfuls of empty soda and beer cans and bottles, in all stages of cleanliness (from Thoughtfully Rinsed to Impromptu Toilet), and I had to count them and write a ticket for the amount of refund.

People would wait months, even years to finally clear out the 1,000 empties from their wet garden sheds or wherever, and the odor was incredibly bad. I could have been the Lysol Customer of the Year for how much of it I used.


At July 28, 2005 at 8:30:00 PM CDT, Blogger Jim said...

I lived in Iowa for a short time. They had a deposit law also, but you could not get your deposit back on a bent can, because the can crushers would not accept them.

I also worked in a grocery store in high school. It was and still is on the side of a big hill, as is its parking lot. My most famous adventure while helping a customoer to her car was tilting the cart a little too much thereby sending about two dozen little jars of baby food rolling down the hill. Those that made it to the bottom of the hill took flight at the end of the parking lot and crashed onto the driveway about six feet below. Yes, it rained jars of baby food down onto someone's Chevy that day!


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Wednesday, July 27, 2005

Lists are funny!

Since I'm caught up on all of the latest McSweeney's Reviews of New Food (see "Other Links"), I thought I'd surf around the rest of the McSweeney's site. I found a gargantuan page of lists - one of the funniest is "E-mail Addresses It Would Be Really Annoying to Give Out Over the Phone" by Michael Ward. I read through this three times, and each time it was funnier than the last. I only wish he'd thought of more than just five...

Jim, where are you?

I'm taking It's Jim off my Blogs I Read list until the actual Jim comes back with a real blog, with a new address that hasn't somehow been hijacked by someone posting NSFW content.

6 Talked Back:

At July 27, 2005 at 2:44:00 PM CDT, Blogger Meagan said...

Yeah, what's up with that craziness?! I discovered the hijacked jim site this morning and was quite confused.


At July 27, 2005 at 2:50:00 PM CDT, Blogger Jeff said...

I figured he was going through yet another site redesign until Jim revelaed himself to be a militant lesbian. Wow. And you think you know some people.


At July 27, 2005 at 3:49:00 PM CDT, Blogger Scott said...

yeah, I e-mailed him just a few minutes ago to see what was up and to see if we still alive. I too am going to take his blog off of mine til the real Jim shows up.


At July 27, 2005 at 4:11:00 PM CDT, Blogger Jim said...

I no longer control the content on -- what is on the site is not my doing -- please remove any link to ITSJIM until this can be resolved -- thanks -- Jim


At July 27, 2005 at 5:13:00 PM CDT, Blogger stan said...

Hey, Jim, I'm glad you're not dead!


At July 27, 2005 at 11:49:00 PM CDT, Blogger Jim said...

the new site is at Jim


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Tuesday, July 26, 2005

Tweaked the design again, a tiny bit

If you take a look, you'll notice that the comments are in a tinted box now, so they're easier to see. I've thought about moving the whole post footer to just underneath the post title, but I'm not sure how anyone else would like it. It'd probably look like this:

[Blog title]
posted by stan at 12:34PM 5 talked back <--[toggles show/hide coments]


add your 2.1¢

Maybe I'll try that for a day or so, starting tonight, and see how y'all like it. If you (or I) don't like it, I'll change it back. Sound good?

1 Talked Back:

At July 26, 2005 at 7:46:00 PM CDT, Blogger Scott said...

Having the comments in a tinted box does make it alot easier to read.


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Monday, July 25, 2005

dR. grAMmaR, I pResuME

I ran across an official government document today that was partially handwritten by a Ph.D., and I was amazed: the handwritten portion was a mish-mash of capital and lowercase letters, clearly grammatically incorrect.

How can a person go through so many years of school and still be unable to distinguish capitals from lowercase letters? If I ran a university, I'd have to put that as one of my minimum graduation requirements. It's like putting your pants on over your arms and shoes on your hands every morning, then wondering why your clothes don't fit and why it's so hard to type.

6 Talked Back:

At July 25, 2005 at 6:34:00 PM CDT, Blogger Scott said...

Stan, have you noticed Jim's blog is slowing coming back? Don't know what it means. Maybe he is updating his too.


At July 25, 2005 at 6:37:00 PM CDT, Blogger stan said...

Looks like there's something there but really nothing right now. Probably not a priority for him to go about the business of raising a blog from the dead...


At July 25, 2005 at 7:00:00 PM CDT, Blogger Meagan said...

Yeah! What happened to Jim? I've always got to his blog through the link from your (Stan's) blog, and for the last several days there has only been the dreaded error 404.

love meagan

p.s. I write in a mixture of capital lowercase and capitals. Some letters just look better in a certain way. That's all there is to it. Don't know a person intelligence for it!


At July 25, 2005 at 7:08:00 PM CDT, Blogger stan said...

Artistic (pr poetic) license, which you're talking about, is one thing, but there is no place for it on a federal tax document. This Ph.D. clearly has penmanship issues.


At July 25, 2005 at 7:27:00 PM CDT, Blogger Meagan said...

Wow. I just re-read my earlier comment: "Don't know a person intelligence for it".... clearly I am drinking way too much! :-) What did I mean by that??!!!! I think what I meant to say is "Don't judge a person's intelligence by that." Ha ha hah ha ha!!! Anyway, back to my students (who are practicing in the adjoining room)

love meagan.


At July 26, 2005 at 8:45:00 AM CDT, Blogger Carnealian said...

I have discovered that those with greater intellegence than the average bear are permitted to get away with just about everything. One of them includes being rude to coworkers. I recently trained a bunch of dorks from the pharmacy area where I work. Just because they get paid over $100,000 a year doesn't give them the right to be obnoxious. It's not right but it's allowed.


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Something smells fishy, part 2

Someone here at work just cooked up some fish in the microwave. I can smell it at my desk, which is at least 75 feet away from the kitchen.

That person, whoever he or she is, is now banished from the kitchen forever. Well, not really, but they ought to be. Now, if that same person ever microwaves (read: incinerates) popcorn for 5 minutes, that'll be grounds for a hangin'.

3 Talked Back:

At July 25, 2005 at 3:35:00 PM CDT, Blogger Ghost Dog said...

Heh! That happens here at CompuHyperGlobalMegaNet, too.


At July 25, 2005 at 7:03:00 PM CDT, Blogger Meagan said...


Microwaved fish? That's just gross.

Being the big fan of popcorn that I am, I'm also aware of the fact that the scent is quite permeating. I make a point of not making popcorn at least a couple hours before my first student arrives each day :-) .

love meagan


At July 26, 2005 at 11:46:00 AM CDT, Blogger stan said...

Yeah, it's the acrid stench of burned popcorn that makes everyone angry...


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Things to do before I turn 300,000 [open thread]

I've gotten different ideas of things I'd like to do with the rest of my life, and usually they're weird ideas that I'll never actually accomplish. Some of them I don't even think I'd like to do, but the accomplishment of having done them would make the effort worthwhile.

A sample of some of the good things:

  • Learn how to make wooden furniture, and sell or give the pieces to friends and family.
  • Learn how to play the piano well, but secretly, so that one day I can go somewhere with friends, or a girlfriend, or whoever, and blow them away with this skill that nobody knew I had.
  • Visit every city and town in the state of Oregon, and photograph the post office as proof. Then move on to Washington, Idaho, Nevada, etc.
  • Learn to paint in watercolor, and, you know, paint something.
  • Write a novel about a woman who doesn't know she's pregnant, then gets into a car accident which sends her into a coma for years; but the baby somehow still grows inside of her and is delivered, and when mom wakes up, she discovers she has a 5-year-old child.

And now, some of the weirder stuff:

  • Write down every number from 1 to 1,000,000. It would take years, even decades.
  • Collect a million of something. I don't know what my fascination with a million is, but if I collected a million of something that'd be pretty impressive. Unless it was a million dirt clods or something.
  • Take one picture each of every street's sign blade in Portland. Obviously, I wouldn't shoot every sign; there must be a million of them! (see above) But one per street name, that'd be sufficient.
  • Find a secluded spot on a hill in the woods somewhere, and build an underground room that I can retreat to, where I can draw, paint, write, pray, etc. Then conceal it with leaves and branches when I leave, so that nobody has any clue that it exists.

Now here's the encouraging thing. I believe that we are given certain gifts and abilities when we are born, and also the natural desires to do certain things. But oftentimes, the desires and abilities never intersect, and we go through our life on Earth having never accomplished some things we wanted to do. So why did we have the desires in the first place? Perhaps they will never be realized until we're living our eternal life in Heaven. Somewhere out there is a quadriplegic who's always wanted to build houses, but won't be able to until he passes from this life to the next, receiving his new, eternal body; then he'll build huge mansions!

Perhaps I'll never learn an instrument or make a stick of furniture while I'm I'll spend the first few hundred thousand years in Heaven learning those crafts!

1 Talked Back:

At July 25, 2005 at 8:49:00 PM CDT, Blogger Meagan said...

psst...i can teach you that secret skill of playing piano. you'd just have to travel to southern oregon once a month or so :-)

love meagan


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I'm a bit code-stumped...

Well, already I can see that there are definitely a few snags with the code for this new design. Often times, and seemingly randomly, some text gets repeated underneath one of the sidebar boxes, an on the post pages, the one sidebar box I keep there, Previous Posts, seems to do it all the time.

Also, when you click on one of the Archive month pages, most or all of the sidebars are somehow getting kicked to the bottom of the page. I'm trying to figure it out, but I'm starting to see my limitations.

So if any of you have any ideas of what I may be missing or doing wrong, let me know what I can change.

Update: I have solved the random-text problem by moving mostly everything back into one sidebar box. For some reason, the archived month-at-a-time pages are displaying the main content window wider than it is here, thus kicking the sidebar down to the bottom. I'll work on that tomorrow, probably. Also, now the banner images at the top won't show up at all in Firefox. Hmm.

4 Talked Back:

At July 25, 2005 at 11:39:00 AM CDT, Anonymous El Froggo said...

Your doing the HTML by hand?


At July 25, 2005 at 11:59:00 AM CDT, Blogger stan said...

Yes, inasmuch as I'm not using an editor. But really I've just tweaked the existing HTML/CSS/JavaScript template more and more until it's become what it is today.


At July 25, 2005 at 8:51:00 PM CDT, Blogger Meagan said...

I used to see the revolving banner images at top but now I don't. And I use firefox.

(In case that helps you...)



At July 26, 2005 at 10:06:00 AM CDT, Blogger stan said...

Okay, I don't have Firefox here at work, so I can't test it, but I went in and changed the Javascript variable names to something other than "ad", in case that might have been triggering some kind of an ad blocker.

I have a similar problem with my J&S comic site, because I have the title banner stored in a subfolder called "banner", which is one thing a blocker will search for.


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Saturday, July 23, 2005

Obviously, it's here...

Okay, so for the second straight night, I have stayed up very late to work on this new blog design. And I'm finished! At least, unless I find mistakes or other things to fine tune. There are probably a couple of snags in the thing - I know for certain that it doesn't look like I want it to in Firefox, and it may not even work right on someone else's IE browser.

But it's finished!

New features:
  • New name! Actually, it's the old name, dinglemunch, but I brought it back in line with the URL.
  • Random banner images upon reload, choice of seven nine eleven so far.
  • Nifty little graphics in the sidebar, and each section stands alone
  • Comments now revealed on the main page! Click the "_ talked back" link to toggle view/hide.
  • Another custom-made background tiled image, hopefully won't get annoying as quickly as the ugly brown thing
  • You can actually SEE a hyperlink amongst the text! It's blue now.

So please, tell me what you think! I'm going to bed now, and I don't think I'll get up until Sunday morning!

5 Talked Back:

At July 22, 2005 at 8:39:00 PM CDT, Blogger Meagan said...

Oh oh ohohohoh!! I'm so excited to see it!!!

Okay, that may have been an unnecessary amount of excitement for a template change.

Sometimes I need unnecessary excitement.

Did you know Katie's finally signed up for some online blog-type thing? I've never heard of it.


At July 23, 2005 at 11:57:00 AM CDT, Blogger nitsuj said...

nice new look! on an unrelated note, you should definitely go to creation fest this wednesday thru saturday at the gorge in good ol' george washington. kind of late notice, but i know you're into road trips and the festival would definitely be worth the journey.


At July 23, 2005 at 5:02:00 PM CDT, Blogger stan said...

Don't think I can do Creation Fest this year (gotta work and stuff), though I keep telling myself year after year that I'll go. I haven't done a music festival since Jesus Northwest from 1990-96...

Hey, are you ever gonna update your blog? (I ask hypocritically, since I hardly ever update J&S)... :)


At July 23, 2005 at 5:39:00 PM CDT, Blogger nitsuj said...

Actually, yeah, I just got inspired yesterday while catching up on the blogs of yours I had missed. I just got back from a one-week-turned-two-week-due-to-hurricanes-short-term-mission-trip in Jamaica. Maybe my first blog in forever will talk about it! Stay tuned!


At July 24, 2005 at 12:05:00 AM CDT, Blogger Nonsensical_Flounderings said...

Design looks good, I like the changing banner image.



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Friday, July 22, 2005

Full of pride...and conviction

...on the prison work-release program, picking up garbage on the shoulder of the freeway....

2 Talked Back:

At July 22, 2005 at 1:52:00 PM CDT, Blogger Jim said...

we have the same signs, my reaction was "If that's a picture of daddy, why is he wearing a dress?"


At July 22, 2005 at 7:07:00 PM CDT, Blogger Scott said...

I added a link to our crappy camera phone photos to my blog. I even added a couple of pictures.


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Thursday, July 21, 2005

Thursday is Biker Chick Commute Day

The picture quality is terrible, but if you look closely you'll see that this isn't just a young woman riding a motorcycle, but that she's doing so in high heels. You don't see that every day...

11 Talked Back:

At July 21, 2005 at 11:56:00 AM CDT, Blogger Scott said...

did you take that with your phone?


At July 21, 2005 at 12:59:00 PM CDT, Blogger stan said...

Yeah, the quality would have been better, but I can only zoom in on Low quality.


At July 21, 2005 at 1:31:00 PM CDT, Blogger Scott said...

how do you send a picture from your phone to the blog?


At July 21, 2005 at 3:07:00 PM CDT, Blogger stan said...

Blogger actually has a Mobile Blogging feature, but I don't use that.

I send my images to an online album on Verizon's website (there's an "Online Album" option on the phone itself), then from there, I save the image file locally to my hard drive. Then I re-upload it to Blogger as part of a post, and there you go.

It's more complicated than Mobile Blogging through Blogger, I know.


At July 21, 2005 at 3:47:00 PM CDT, Blogger stan said...

I'm guessing you have a camera phone? I don't remember whether you do or not...


At July 21, 2005 at 3:49:00 PM CDT, Blogger Scott said...

Yeah, but I still have T-mobile, I'm guessing you don't.


At July 21, 2005 at 4:01:00 PM CDT, Blogger stan said...

I don't think it matters what service you have, as long as your phone can send a picture to an e-mail address.


At July 21, 2005 at 6:50:00 PM CDT, Blogger Jim said...

I use a data cable to connect the phone to the PC,and then freeware BitPim to transfer the images from the phone, I was wondering why Stan just took her feet?


At July 21, 2005 at 7:02:00 PM CDT, Blogger stan said...

If I had zoomed out, there wouldn't have been a chance at seeing the high heels. The fact that she was in the sun made shadows right over her feet, and I didn't have a chance to snap a photo in the shade (the lights were all green again).

I've gone looking at several places for data cables to download my photos from the phone, but according to everyone I've talked to, apparently all they're good for with my model is transferring the phone book and other notes...


At July 21, 2005 at 9:45:00 PM CDT, Blogger Jim said...

Stan -- check out the BitPim site -- -- it lists the phones it will work with -- if it can tranfer phonebook it should be able to transfer anything on the phone. You also have to download the drivers to setup the USB port for the connection but those are easy to find.

ps. I will send you $10 if you reverse that photo back the right way


At July 21, 2005 at 10:08:00 PM CDT, Blogger stan said...

I took a look at, but my phone model (Samsung A670) wasn't listed, as far as I could see.

You want the photo reversed? I'll do it, no charge.


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Wednesday, July 20, 2005

Something smells fishy

Everyone always says they use "only the finest ingredients" in their food. Obviously, somebody is lying.

5 Talked Back:

At July 21, 2005 at 11:49:00 AM CDT, Blogger Jim said...

since "fresh fish" actually means that it has been frozen, "finest ingredients" could mean they came from the dumpster


At July 21, 2005 at 1:02:00 PM CDT, Blogger stan said...

A thought occured to me last night. Perhaps by finest they mean smallest, that makes more sense. "We use only the [smallest] ingredients in our mini-tacos..."


At July 22, 2005 at 12:41:00 AM CDT, Blogger Jim said...

Stan, we've talked to you about taking The Big Book of Puns to bed with you, do we need to do another intervention?


At July 22, 2005 at 3:45:00 AM CDT, Blogger stan said...

Apparently not, since I couldn't come up with a good punny reply...


At July 22, 2005 at 1:54:00 PM CDT, Blogger Jim said...

thanks for switching the picture back to normal, it will make it much easier to stalk you


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A pleasant walk back

I took the train downtown at lunch today, so I could pay for next month's parking. On the way back, I forgot that MAX (the train system) has a Yellow Line spur that goes north from the Rose Quarter, when I wanted the Blue or Red Lines, which go east. But since the office is only a few blocks from the Rose Quarter, I decided to walk the rest of the way.

I used a crosswalk with a signal type I'd never seen before: when the hand symbol is flashing, there's a little digital timer just to the right of it, counting down the seconds until the crosswalk is closed. It's another one of those things that makes me wonder why it took so long for someone to think of it.

10 Talked Back:

At July 20, 2005 at 3:27:00 PM CDT, Blogger Scott said...

I've seen one of those, but can't remember where, maybe Seattle? Or maybe Portland.


At July 20, 2005 at 5:42:00 PM CDT, Blogger stan said...

Sorry, Scott, I didn't catch the train numbers on the MAX today... :)


At July 20, 2005 at 6:13:00 PM CDT, Blogger Jim said...

Houston used to have yellow lights that counted down to the red


At July 20, 2005 at 6:18:00 PM CDT, Blogger Jim said...

I am informed that Houston no longer has any, but that they are common in the Pacifc Rim


At July 20, 2005 at 6:36:00 PM CDT, Blogger stan said...

Well, that takes the guesswork out of how illegal one's red light-running is.


At July 20, 2005 at 8:17:00 PM CDT, Blogger Jim said...

stan, you put your camera on the dash of your car and took a picture of yourself?


At July 20, 2005 at 8:50:00 PM CDT, Blogger stan said...

Pretty much. I held it out in front of me, right next to the dash, and hoped for the best (it was a film camera, not a digital.)

Although I was actually in the passenger seat at the time...I reversed the image to make it look like I was driving.


At July 20, 2005 at 10:16:00 PM CDT, Blogger Jim said...

so the picture is actually The Bizarro Stan


At July 21, 2005 at 12:38:00 AM CDT, Blogger stan said...

Indeed. Also known as Nats. (NVLS)


At July 21, 2005 at 12:47:00 AM CDT, Blogger Jim said...

you could have not reversed the photo and just labeled the photo "My Vacation in England"


Okay, now it's your turn | Home

Selfish drivers

Normally, my commute to work isn't troublesome at all. Of course, there are some slow spots, which get slower the later in the hour it gets, but on the whole it's not too bad. Today, it was multiple-bad.

First, I had an extra-long Dodge Ram pickup suddenly whip in front of me, taking up 1 ½ of the two car lengths I had allowed. Not that that freaked me out or anything, it was just a surprise to see a guy do that with a larger vehicle.

Later on, when the two lanes opened up to three, traffic sped up as usual, including me. A little ways ahead of me was a green light which I suspected was going to turn yellow before I reached it. Sure enough it did, but I wasn't going to run it because a) I had plenty of time to stop, and b) there was a Ford pickup in front of me with the same idea. The drivers in the lane to my left had a totally different idea, though.

In the front of the left-lane pack were three cars: A blue Geo Metro, a reddish car I've forgotten, and a white Honda Civic. As we all approached the yellow light, my lane slowed down. The Geo (who was in front) slowed as well. But drivers of the red car and the Civic had already decided to run the yellow, so they pressed forward. Suddenly, the red car shot over into my lane in front of the Ford pickup (who, fortunately, had stopped a couple of yards short of the line). The driver of the Honda obviously hadn't seen the Geo come to a stop, because she skidded and plowed right into its rear end. Crunch! I watched as the drivers of the two cars got out, insurance papers in hand, so I knew that they weren't traumatically hurt.

Once I got up to Grand Avenue, where traffic's down to 30 mph and there's a signal every few blocks, I watched in amazement as other people who had seen the wreck ran those yellow lights. Nobody learned anything!

4 Talked Back:

At July 20, 2005 at 1:34:00 PM CDT, Blogger Jim said...

my new favorites are (1) the extra three of four cars that continues to make left turns even though their left-turn arrow is no longer green (thereby completely screwing up the number of number of cars that can legally get through the light that is green) and (2) the drivers who simply cannot comprehend two-lane left turns -- they are either in the left-most left turn lane and cut into the right lane when turning, or they are in the right-most left turn lane and cut into the left lane when turning.


At July 20, 2005 at 3:10:00 PM CDT, Blogger stan said...

I hear ya on both of those, Jim.

I also dislike it when I'm turning right, and someone from the opposing traffic is turning left, both of us onto the same street...they have their lane (the left) and I have my lane (the right), yet people always want to widen their left turn to spill them into the right lane. Honk!


At July 21, 2005 at 7:43:00 PM CDT, Blogger Sherri said...

Hope you don't mind, I just happened across your blog. I myself was rear ended only 1 week ago, my jeep is still in the shop. Damn those crazy drivers! :)


At July 22, 2005 at 11:14:00 AM CDT, Blogger stan said...

Hi, sherri, I don't mind at all!

I hope that you didn't get hurt in the wreck, but if you did, I hope you recover fully!


Okay, now it's your turn | Home

Tuesday, July 19, 2005

South Carolina, The Coughing State

The official state motto for South Carolina is "Dum Spiro Spero," which translates to "While I Breathe, I Hope." How bad is your air quality that your official state motto is a gasp for help? Let's get the EPA down there right away!

1 Talked Back:

At July 19, 2005 at 6:33:00 PM CDT, Blogger Jim said...

99% of the EPA is already in North Carolina, in the Research Triangle business park, I guess it's how they keep their funding --

we also had a "bad air day" -- they said so on the local TV news and suggested everyone reduce driving, just before they announced the various events going on in the area this evening


Okay, now it's your turn | Home

Wacky address standardization hijinx!

I've talked before about the vendor address standardization that I'm doing at work. Today I feel like it's the beginning of the end, as I'm now taking on the list of directionals. I've more or less saved this until last, because I've been able to pick away at it while changing other parts of the addresses.

Most of today has been spent changing EAST to E - and I'm truly surprised at how many there are. I can't think of one time I've ever written out the word EAST on an envelope. Now a minute ago I ran across this address: 301 EAST 'A' STREET. According to the USPS, its correct standardization is: 301 E A ST, which of course looks like 301 EAST, an incomplete address. I can only imagine when the owner of this address has to give out the mailing address, and says, "No, no, it's not 301 East, it's 301 E, A, then ST. Yes, there are spaces. No, I'm not crazy. Hello? Hello?"

1 Talked Back:

At July 19, 2005 at 7:05:00 PM CDT, Blogger Jim said...

these are the ones that I got:

West E Street ==> WEST
North E Street ==> NEST

South I Street, Emergency Room ==> SISTER


Okay, now it's your turn | Home

It just looks so BLUH

I don't know, I think I'm ready to change the look of this blog. Is anyone completely annoyed by the tartan background yet? What about trying to read light text over the top of it? Ever have trouble distinguishing a link from the rest of the text? Yeah, me too, especially on my flat screen monitor at home.

I might go with something overall lighter, like my oft-neglected occasionl doodl blog, and change the font around. By the way, does anyone else see these words in Franklin Gothic Medium, or is it a different default font for you? I think I'd like to switch over to Century, a cool classic font, but I don't think very many people have it on their computers (I have it here at work, but not at home).

Y'know, just typing this is getting my creative juices flowing, and I'm beginning to see more possibilities for design coolness. But my typing fingers can't keep up, so I guess it'll have to be a surprise!

3 Talked Back:

At July 19, 2005 at 4:01:00 PM CDT, Blogger Scott said...

Speaking of creative juices flowing, are you still going to be able to draw that picture for me?


At July 19, 2005 at 4:19:00 PM CDT, Blogger stan said...

Yes. I'm glad you reminded me, because I, uh, forgot.


At July 19, 2005 at 6:37:00 PM CDT, Blogger Jim said...

hey, watch what you do with those creative fingers buddy!


Okay, now it's your turn | Home

On an unrelated note...

You know what bugs me? When I try to take the liner notes out of a CD jewel case, and the little plastic bumps that are supposed to keep the paper from falling out on its own work too well, thus holding the pages hostage until I can dig them out with my nonexistent fingernails or the end of a paper clip. I've actually broken jewel cases just trying to extract the notes from the front cover.

4 Talked Back:

At July 19, 2005 at 1:31:00 PM CDT, Blogger Scott said...

glad to see I'm not the only one that feels that way.


At July 19, 2005 at 1:37:00 PM CDT, Blogger Ghost Dog said...

I hate that, too.

I developed a marginally successful technique of pressing on the liner notes and sliding them towards the hinge of the jewel case. Most of the time, they curl just enough to pop up over the edge of the case, making them accessible.


At July 19, 2005 at 6:39:00 PM CDT, Blogger Jim said...

you folks in the northwest woods are befuddled by the oddest things, be a guy, smash the d*nm thing with a hammer


At July 19, 2005 at 7:04:00 PM CDT, Blogger stan said...

Like I said, I've broken several cases already....


Okay, now it's your turn | Home

Turning the world upside down

I wonder if people who live south of the Equator ever feel inferior because of being on the bottom of almost every map. I think if I ever lived in Australia or South America I'd hang all of my maps upside-down.

5 Talked Back:

At July 19, 2005 at 2:56:00 PM CDT, Blogger Scott said...



At July 19, 2005 at 6:40:00 PM CDT, Blogger Jim said...

would your name be spelled nats


At July 19, 2005 at 7:05:00 PM CDT, Blogger stan said...

But it'd look sort of like NVLS


At July 22, 2005 at 6:35:00 PM CDT, Blogger nitsuj said...


At July 23, 2005 at 11:52:00 AM CDT, Blogger nitsuj said...

haha, not to burst your bubble, but since they do make upside-down maps, i just realized this kinda correlates with an earlier post of yours describing how people seem to steal your ideas


Okay, now it's your turn | Home

My achin' body!

I have to stop signing off the computer at 12 midnight or later. It's killing me, especially my back.


4 Talked Back:

At July 19, 2005 at 10:55:00 AM CDT, Blogger Scott said...

Hey Stan, glad to see a new post, wondering if you were still around. Busy weekend huh? Atleast you have a life, unlike some of us who don't :)



At July 19, 2005 at 11:06:00 AM CDT, Blogger stan said...

I just had a lot of work around the house, including actually cooking things for a change. Dude, I even made deviled eggs!


At July 19, 2005 at 11:11:00 AM CDT, Blogger Scott said...

Okay, where's Stan, and what did you do with him?


At July 20, 2005 at 4:23:00 PM CDT, Blogger stan said...

I even bought a couple of books at Costco yesterday: Basic Cooking and Basic Baking...maybe that'll keep me away from Taco Bell...


Okay, now it's your turn | Home

It definitely came through in the clutch

On Sunday, I found out that my little 1991 Subaru wagon with 4WD - and 214K miles on the odometer - has the ability to push two other compact cars, bumper-to-bumper, up a small grassy incline for a few yards.

It was just like that one episode of "Knight Rider," when Michael Knight was snooping around at some fancy schmancy party, then needed to get out of there in a hurry, but KITT was blocked in by all of these other cars, so VVRROOOMMM, push the cars one way, push them the other way, and just like that, freedom.

Except that if that was my Subaru, any quiet getaway would have been compromised by the strong smell of a burning clutch for fifteen minutes afterward.

Friday, July 15, 2005

New Crest with conditioner, for that healthy shine

I was running a little late for work today, so to save time, I decided to try and brush my teeth while in the shower. Not a good idea. At least, not when I have shampoo running from my hair down my face into my mouth.

6 Talked Back:

At July 15, 2005 at 6:56:00 PM CDT, Blogger Jim said...

[sorry, too easy]


At July 16, 2005 at 11:19:00 PM CDT, Blogger Nonsensical_Flounderings said...

I tried something similar by shaving while showering, I guess battery operated shavers and water don't mix, I suppose I'm thankful it wasn't an electric shaver plugged into the wall!

I know Jim, to easy.



At July 17, 2005 at 1:44:00 AM CDT, Blogger Jim said...

M -- there has been no word from Stan all day, surely he didn't try to dry his hair in the shower (zap, crackle and poof!)


At July 18, 2005 at 10:02:00 AM CDT, Blogger stan said...

I'm alive. I'm alive.


At July 18, 2005 at 10:13:00 PM CDT, Blogger Jim said...

alive? we'll be the judges of that, no new post, same old doodle, no new comic frames!


At July 19, 2005 at 1:14:00 AM CDT, Blogger stan said...

alive but mostly busy...


Okay, now it's your turn | Home

Thursday, July 14, 2005

This stuff's delicious!

A couple of nights ago I was doing some grocery shopping, and I was looking for some good sandwich makings. I'm not normally a peanut butter eater, but I'd eat a PB&J if it was offered to me. (I think it's ridiculous that the marketplace has gotten so lazy as to demand individually-wrapped peanut butter "slices", as well as frozen, reheatable crustless PB&J pop tarts sandwiches, but I digress.)

So I was intrigued when my eyes hit the top shelf, because I saw a selection of nut butters that I thought might be worth a try. I took a chance and bought a jar of Maranatha Almond Butter. For more than $7, it was a risk, you know. Now, I've never seen a jar of peanut butter with the oil separated up to the top, but apparently almond butter is a different story. So I stirred it up, bringing it to a much thinner consistency than expected, and poured s little bit onto my bread.

Fan. Freaking. Tastic.

I kind of want to eat it by the spoonful, but that'd be both wrong and messy. But now I'll take an AB&J any day of the week!

2 Talked Back:

At July 14, 2005 at 7:15:00 PM CDT, Blogger Jim said...

Q. What do you attract if you put Almond Butter in your bird feeder?
A. Cher


At July 16, 2005 at 11:17:00 PM CDT, Blogger Nonsensical_Flounderings said...

Blech, I'm not a huge fan of peanut butter and that almond stuff sounds, well, nasty.

Now off to ruminate on Jim's comment, I think I'm too short or something it went right over me!



Okay, now it's your turn | Home

It's been a while, so let's have some Bible!

James 1:19-27
My dear brothers, take note of this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry, for man's anger does not bring about the righteous life that God desires. Therefore, get rid of all moral filth and the evil that is so prevalent and humbly accept the word planted in you, which can save you.

Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says. Anyone who listens to the word but does not do what it says is like a man who looks at his face in a mirror and, after looking at himself, goes away and immediately forgets what he looks like. But the man who looks intently into the perfect law that gives freedom, and continues to do this, not forgetting what he has heard, but doing it — he will be blessed in what he does.

If anyone considers himself religious and yet does not keep a tight rein on his tongue, he deceives himself and his religion is worthless. Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world.

It's not quite like getting a short straw...

A few years ago, when I started office work, I was fitted at 17-34/35 for shirts, and it was the gold standard for a long time. Then around holiday time last year, it was correctly pointed out to me that my sleeves were too short (even though my arms haven't gotten longer), so I've had to buy a bunch of new shirts at 36/37 length (which are harder to find) as funds allow. But I still had all of these old 34/35s in the closet gathering dust, some of them with only one or two wearings...until I realized that on a low-laundry day, I can use one of those shirts with the sleeves rolled up and nobody's the wiser....

So there's another tip from your tightwad Uncle Stan.

6 Talked Back:

At July 14, 2005 at 2:09:00 PM CDT, Blogger Jim said...

Q: Where did Napoleon keep his armies?
A: Up his sleevies!

So, if your armies not be longies, why your sleevies need be biggies?


At July 14, 2005 at 3:02:00 PM CDT, Blogger stan said...

I thought that a correct sleeve length went to the base of my hand when the arms were at my side, but then when I raised them up, the sleeves rode up the arms really far (and if the cuffs were buttoned, they made it very uncomfortable when I raised my arms up).

So now the sleeves go to the base of my hand when the arms are in front of me, and my full range of motion is comfortable again.


At July 14, 2005 at 3:44:00 PM CDT, Blogger Jim said...

were you in a lot of holdup's?


At July 14, 2005 at 5:49:00 PM CDT, Blogger stan said...

No, but I am now, at least three per day, and I'm quite comfortable, thank you very much. :)


At July 14, 2005 at 11:15:00 PM CDT, Blogger Jim said...

well, old guys say everything get longer as you get older ;)


At July 15, 2005 at 8:28:00 AM CDT, Blogger stan said...

Like the amount of time it takes to do everything gets longer, especially driving from one place to another...


Okay, now it's your turn | Home

Wednesday, July 13, 2005

Count(y) me in [open thread]


My current temp-job assignment is at a major utility corporation, working on what is known as Vendor Master Cleanup. This project mainly involves poring through the records of tens of thousands of our vendors, and making sure that all of the data is up to date and standardized.

One monumental section of this project is address standardization, which as you can guess means bringing all of the vendors' addresses up to USPS specifications. There is a lot, and I mean a LOT, of abbreviation here - Street becoming ST, Plaza to PLZ, 13th Floor to FL 13, etc. And I must say, I absolutely love this work. Maybe because it's so easy. Maybe because there's so much of it that it brings a bit of job security. But by and large, it's because I'm kind of a geek when it comes to references to addresses in different cities and counties.

Lately we've (and by we I mean Jim and Ashman, etc.) been talking about the things we collect or have as hobbies. Well, I am fascinated with addresses. I had a business card collection for a while, and it held my interest because of the thrill of collecting things from other cities in the US. I also really enjoy road trips, not just because of the freedom of travel, but also because it's cool to say, "I've been to this city." I've had this idea (which isn't dead yet, though logistically it seems difficult) of collecting a photograph of every post office in the country, and maybe assembling a website or an album of these pictures with histories and generations of postmasters.

Then I got an idea last night: What if I just collected city and county letterheads? I could devise some reason for a city office to want to write a letter to me, then collect and scan the letters into a database of sorts. Well, there are so many cities in the US alone that it'd be impossible to achieve (not to mention postage-expensive) in my lifetime.

So there it is, my new idea. I'll write a letter to selected cities and counties in America, asking a dumb question or something, in order to elicit a written response, thus giving me a letterhead for the collection. With so many counties, I can be creative in my letters, funny even, and I can post the responses on a "letterhead blog".

So if anyone who reads this happens to work for a county/parish/borough/district government in the US or Canada, please send me a letter! My address is PO Box 598, Clackamas, OR 97015. (I have no problem giving that out because I don't actually live in the box!) And for the ultra-geeky who read this (see comments), here it is again:

PO BOX 598
CLACKAMAS OR 97015-0598


For my inquiries, I am posing as different fictional people in order to increase my chances of getting a response. Below is a key to the characters:

Josiah C. Kerr (JCK): An 8th grade home school student who has to send letters to cities and counties for a Social Studies summer assignment.

Stanley T. Washington (STW): A retired sign painter who lives in the backwoods southeast of Portland, and spends his retirement writing short stories and tending to his collection of 500+ autographed photos of mayors with the help of his archaeologist son.

Randy Belton (RB): An entrepreneur wanting to open some completely unfeasible and doomed-to-fail business within a city or county, but who doesn't see how obviously ridiculous his idea is. This character, whom I've used in the past for other joke letters, is mostly stolen from Ted L. Nancy.

Jess Northrup (JN): One of those guys who always has a solution to a problem that doesn't exist. An inventor at heart, he's suggested everything from "Recreational Aspirin" to installing car-wash tracks in popular Christmas-light neighborhoods. He's another character I've used before.

Helen L. Bishop (HLB): Concerned citizen who must address the highest authority about something she "just heard in the news" about their city or county. Of course, I have completely made up the problem over which she's so outraged. Another past character.

Stanley W. Kost (SWK): Just a straightforward letter requesting a reply on official letterhead, or a copy of the logo/seal itself if for some reason the letterhead does not contain it.

Sent and received (counties):
JCK r. 7/28 Cochise County, Arizona
JCK r. 7/28 Coconino County, Arizona
JCK r. 8/9 Apache County, Arizona - Received a Jr. Deputy sticker, a genuine Sherriff's patch, and a custom photo of the one motorcycle officer!

Sent and received (cities):
JCK r. 7/25 Mill Valley, California
JCK r. 8/9 Durango, Colorado - Letter from the mayor hisself!

Sent, not received:
JCK s. 7/15 Galax, Virginia
JCK s. 7/15 Le Sueur, Minnesota
JCK s. 7/15 Moscow, Tennessee
JCK s. 7/18 Union, Oregon
JCK s. 7/18 Ashland, Oregon
JCK s. 7/18 Silverthorne, Colorado
SWK s. 8/3 Baker County, Oregon
SWK s. 8/3 Benton County, Oregon
SWK s. 8/3 Clackamas County, Oregon
SWK s. 8/3 Clatsop County, Oregon
SWK s. 8/3 Columbia County, Oregon
SWK s. 8/3 Coos County, Oregon
SWK s. 8/3 Crook County, Oregon
SWK s. 8/3 Curry County, Oregon
SWK s. 8/3 Deschutes County, Oregon
SWK s. 8/3 Douglas County, Oregon
SWK s. 8/3 Gilliam County, Oregon
SWK s. 8/3 Grant County, Oregon
SWK s. 8/3 Harney County, Oregon
SWK s. 8/3 Hood River County, Oregon
SWK s. 8/3 Jackson County, Oregon
SWK s. 8/3 Jefferson County, Oregon
SWK s. 8/3 Josephine County, Oregon
SWK s. 8/3 Klamath County, Oregon
SWK s. 8/3 Lake County, Oregon
SWK s. 8/3 Lane County, Oregon

10 Talked Back:

At July 13, 2005 at 11:27:00 AM CDT, Blogger Scott said...

Do you still the P.O. box at the 7th Ave Post Office? Just wondering. This way I can change your P.O. Box # in my address book.



At July 13, 2005 at 11:48:00 AM CDT, Blogger stan said...

Not anymore. I got the Clackamas one last year when I realized how out of the way the Portland one was getting to it's like 1/4 the rental fee, because it's considered "rural" (which is why it starts with 970 rather than 972...good lord, I'm a geek!) $24 for a year is pretty darn good, plus the box section of the post office is open 24/7...


At July 13, 2005 at 12:46:00 PM CDT, Blogger Jim said...

your readers might not realize that they have an "official" post office address -- anyone interested can find their's by going to the ZipCode lookup box on the USPS site:

Oh Stan! You made a mistake in the address that you gave in the post -- in Standard Format there should not be a comma after Clackamas (because the OR is a postal code and not an abbreviation) -- have I out geeked you?


At July 13, 2005 at 1:58:00 PM CDT, Blogger stan said...

If you are writing it in sentence form, I believe that a comma is acceptable; whereas if it is on the front of an envelope, it is not. GEEK'D!

You may have noticed that I had linked that ZIP code finder site in the original post as well. It's also the first of my "favorites" in Internet Explorer at work... :)


At July 13, 2005 at 2:21:00 PM CDT, Blogger stan said...

See Rule #7.


At July 13, 2005 at 4:01:00 PM CDT, Blogger Jim said...

Postal codes have no place in a sentence, the accepted state abbreviation should be used. The first example should be written: "We live at 923 Cuckoo Lane, #313, in Virginia, Minn. The ZIP code is 55792." The example as provided in the linked site is recursive since Minnesota is implicit in both "MN" and "55792."

If information is being given for mailing purposes, it should be in correct format. This is a courtesy so it can be easily copied and pasted to word-processing or label software. With this in mind, the sentence should read "Our mailing address is 923 Cuckoo Lane, #313, Virginia MN 55792."

GEEK'D! :)


At July 13, 2005 at 7:06:00 PM CDT, Blogger Meagan said...

man i love you guys!



At July 17, 2005 at 10:20:00 PM CDT, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I can't and YET I can believe how long these comments went on... You are funny!!!


At July 31, 2005 at 7:16:00 PM CDT, Blogger nitsuj said...

Hey Dingly-
Just a quick question: How do you decide which cities/counties to write to? It may be explained already somewheres but I can't find it. Gracias.


At August 1, 2005 at 12:02:00 PM CDT, Blogger stan said...

It's pretty random. I started a list of which states had the most/fewest counties, and I was just going to do all of the counties in the fewest-county states (Delaware [3], Hawaii [4], Rhode Island [5], etc.) and work my way up until I hit the most-county states (Virginia [136], Georgia [159], Texas[254]), but that was far too "scientific". So I just started with random ones.

Cities are chosen partially because I dig their names - Galax (VA) sounds alien, doesn't it?


Okay, now it's your turn | Home

Monday, July 11, 2005


I suppose that there are certain ideas that are bound to be repeated in the course of imagination and creativity. For example, I wonder how many other people who hadn't heard of Edison came up with the idea for the light bulb. Once in a while I'll get an idea for something, only to find out later on that someone else either thought of it first or marketed it first. I once had the idea that using the same technology that makes Transition lenses go dark when you go outside could be applied to contact lenses, so that you wouldn't have to put anything on in order to have shaded vision. But someone told me it was already done somewhere, so I chalked it up to coincidence.

Then I was reading the comics in yesterday's paper, and I came across one of my favorites, Foxtrot. When I got to the punchline, I knew that another one of my ideas had been imagined by somebody else. Take a look for yourself.

Foxtrot, July 10, 2005

My short-lived comic, The Green Sheet Chronicles,
drawn and posted May 26, 2003

Strange, eh?

22 Talked Back:

At July 11, 2005 at 3:40:00 PM CDT, Blogger Scott said...

Maybe when it comes to comics, great minds think alike.


At July 11, 2005 at 3:53:00 PM CDT, Blogger Jim said...

sue the b*astards! Edison had to defend his patents, his company became GE. You could become Marvel Comics!

(When I moved to St. Louis, the first week that I was here I heard a radio commercial that I had written for a company in West Texas. It was word-for-word, except for the name of the company. Being plagiarized is an awful, helpless feeling.)


At July 11, 2005 at 4:24:00 PM CDT, Blogger stan said...

I like how you used an asterisk to mask the word bastards, but still used the 'a' it was supposed to replace :)

As for plagiarism, although I know that the copyright laws cover any work once it's in tangible form, I don't necessarily have any way of proving that I created mine first, or more importantly, that I was the first person to create it.

I'm 100% confident that Bill Amend independently thought of this gag, and I don't think a suit be worth pursuing. It may get me a little (very little) press, but other than that it'd be written off a coincidence. Like Scott says, maybe great minds think alike. If I was a professional cartoonist, I'm sure I'd take a different stance, but for now, it's just interesting to observe.

Of course, if next week's comic has Jason flying around in a roller coaster with a steering wheel, I'm gonna soak that ba*sta*rd for millions :)


At July 11, 2005 at 4:49:00 PM CDT, Blogger Jim said...

if you will the millions, remember that I am your best friend, and that ashman has never really liked you


At July 11, 2005 at 6:06:00 PM CDT, Blogger Scott said...

Jim- heynow :)

Stan- I would come down this week if it wasn't for our quarterly meeting that we have to go to, which is tomorrow on my day off. Plus I need to do a little work on the Nova before I make that drive. I promise soon!!!


At July 11, 2005 at 6:36:00 PM CDT, Blogger stan said...

I'd probably need millions to pay ashman back for all of the rides he gave me to work years ago... because gas ain't cheap when you drive a Nova...


At July 11, 2005 at 6:38:00 PM CDT, Blogger stan said...

If I get millions, Jim, I'll fly to St. Louis and hire you as my personal tour guide, you can show me the way to the Arch Monolith, and take me on a McDonald's tour.


At July 11, 2005 at 6:47:00 PM CDT, Blogger Scott said...

Stan- why do I miss working at A.P. back when we work there?

You owe me NOTHING for giving you a lift to work all those years ago, but when you make it big, remember me :)


At July 11, 2005 at 7:12:00 PM CDT, Blogger Jim said...

what's a Nova?


At July 11, 2005 at 7:20:00 PM CDT, Blogger Scott said...

Jim- What's a Nova?? That hurts. It's a Chevy. Mine is a 1973 Chevy Nova SS.


At July 11, 2005 at 8:28:00 PM CDT, Blogger Meagan said...

Hi Stan.

I just noticed you have Imago Dei linked on your blog. Are you going to that church now? I am very impressed with their design.

love meagan


At July 11, 2005 at 8:47:00 PM CDT, Blogger stan said...

I've gone there on a few Sunday nights lately.


At July 11, 2005 at 8:51:00 PM CDT, Blogger stan said...

This is a Nova, Jim.

Ha Ha, Scott! :)


At July 11, 2005 at 8:56:00 PM CDT, Blogger Jim said...

don't pick on Scott, he's my friend, I'm flying up this weekend to see him and his Nova -- whatever A.P. was, it sure must not have paid very good if he's driving a 32 yr old car -- do you really collect business cards?


At July 12, 2005 at 12:30:00 AM CDT, Blogger stan said...

You must have googled my name...I collected them about 6 years ago, and it was written up in the paper, which made me realize how weird it was, which led me to dump all 3,000 cards into a trash bag and try to forget about it.


At July 12, 2005 at 12:48:00 AM CDT, Blogger Jim said...

actually, if you follow enough links for KOST (LA) radio, you eventually get to Stan Kost who collects business cards for radio and TV stations -- this happens when it's a rare rainy day in July


At July 12, 2005 at 10:06:00 AM CDT, Blogger stan said...

So you got my rain, huh? I sent it to you the other day...the postage was terribly high, luckily I just won a multimillion dollar lawsuit against the makers of Joel and Steve Toothpaste :)


At July 12, 2005 at 2:47:00 PM CDT, Blogger Jim said...

even more rain today, courtesy of Hurricane Dennis --

-- At your suggestion, I did Google you last night -- read the background on Joel and Steve, wow do you have an imagination, I hope you get to use it at work!


At July 13, 2005 at 11:05:00 AM CDT, Blogger Scott said...

I too Google your name (I was bored) and came across Rick Emerson's site, he said you did a "Simpson caricature" for him. Looks like it was some years back, do you still have a copy of it? I don't think I ever saw it. If you do, could you post it?


At July 13, 2005 at 11:23:00 AM CDT, Blogger stan said...

Yeah, I'll upload it and link to it when I'm on the home computer, tonight or tomorrow...


At July 13, 2005 at 6:14:00 PM CDT, Blogger Scott said...

Stan, so are basically done with updates with your comic? I find it's the only online comic I read.



At July 13, 2005 at 7:00:00 PM CDT, Blogger stan said...

I just don't know. I wrote months and months worth of "scripts" for the thing, but I find that I just don't want to sit down and draw them out anymore. I want to start working on the "new" strip, the one that will be tailor-made for newspapers and syndicate submission, but something tells me that I need to finish the current storylines up first. That's the big speedbump I need to get over.

You should start reading Superosity, White Ninja, and Beaver and Steve, at the very least. Those are really good ones. They're all linked on the right side of this blog.


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Friday, July 08, 2005

They're finally back!

In an hour or two I'm going to drive over to Hood River to see The Clumsy Lovers. Then tomorrow night, I'll see them again in Portland! How cool is that, back to back CD release/tour nights. It's been a few years since the last time they did that.

If you ever get a chance, see this band. You'll have a hard time staying seated, because they're so energetic.

6 Talked Back:

At July 10, 2005 at 12:16:00 PM CDT, Blogger Jim said...

are those your roommates?


At July 11, 2005 at 10:07:00 AM CDT, Blogger stan said...

No, but in a way, I wish that they were. I've thought it would be a blast to be a roadie or merchandise guy for one of their tours, especially this one, since Friday's show was the first of a six-week national tour.


At July 11, 2005 at 3:42:00 PM CDT, Blogger Jim said...

I knew a guy who was a roadie for a famous rocker, except for the sex and drugs he hated it.


At July 11, 2005 at 7:06:00 PM CDT, Blogger Scott said...

I wish they would come to this area, somewhere in Kitsap County.


At July 11, 2005 at 8:53:00 PM CDT, Blogger stan said...

The Clumsy Lovers are genuinely nice people, though, and I highly doubt that they're the hard-partyin', drug-injectin', hotel-room-crashin' type...


At July 12, 2005 at 1:06:00 PM CDT, Blogger stan said...


They'll be at the Olalla (WA) Bluegrass & Beyond Festival on Sat. Aug. 20, and in Tacoma on Fri-Sat. Aug. 26-27. They'll also be in Seattle on Fri-Sat. Oct. 7-8.

Too bad they're all on those weekend nights...maybe you'll be working other days by then or can take a night off...I'm thinking that I'll probably make a road trip up for one or more of those shows, lord knows when they'll be in Portland next.

Here's their calendar


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Water, water, everywhere

In our fridge is a Brita water pitcher. It's the larger kind with the tap at the bottom, which is really necessary considering the amount of water we all drink. The only problem with this is that when you close the fridge door, it bumps into the tap, if the pitcher is not pushed back on the shelf. The tap opens, and water starts spilling all over the place inside the closed fridge. Then it runs through the door and puddles up on the floor, the puddle sometimes stretching onto the hardwood living room floor. It also runs into the lower left vegetable drawer, which is where my now-soaked food happens to be stored. It becomes a total mess, and it's totally preventable.

Well, earlier this week we had a roommate meeting, and this was brought up. We all vowed to be diligent in pushing the pitcher back on the shelf when we were done using it. But yesterday when I came home from work, I saw the largest puddle to date. The drawer had almost half an inch deep lake inside of it, ruining most of my food. So I did what anyone else would do when nobody's home to complain to: I wrote a sticky note in big black letters that read PUSH IT BACK IN!!! and stuck it to the front of the Brita. I also salvaged what food I could and put it all into Ziploc bags.

Did that help? Did anyone notice? Apparently not, because when I got to the kitchen this morning (I'm always the last one to leave), there again was a massive puddle on the floor. Well, at least my food didn't get any wetter. I cleaned up the mess, wrote an even BIGGER note on a sheet of printer paper, and taped it to the front of the Brita so it overhangs the tap, and now it cannot be ignored.

If it happens again, I'm going to take the Brita out of the fridge and replace it with a roll of paper towels.

Update: The person who forgot to push it back this morning just called me to apologize. I just hope that we all still remember in the future, though.

3 Talked Back:

At July 8, 2005 at 11:13:00 AM CDT, Blogger Jim said...

what a fun game of "let's annoy Stan" -- did they also short-sheet your bed? Stan, you're a guy, hammer + Brita water pitcher = no more problem


At July 13, 2005 at 11:19:00 AM CDT, Blogger stan said...

Except that I use the pitcher just as much as anyone, maybe even more...


At July 13, 2005 at 11:37:00 PM CDT, Blogger Walking,Talking,Poison said...

Been there and done that, pay the extra $10 for the PUR filter that goes straight onto your tap. You also then dont have to wait a year for the water to trickle down thru that Brita filter and I found I had to change the PUR filters less so actually, the extra $10 saves money in the end <3


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Thursday, July 07, 2005

I'm a flippin' insomniac, GOSH!

Look, it's Napoleon Dynamite in a sleep research print ad (click the pic):

Thanks to Ken Sakamoto of Haiku Circus for the news and image.

2 Talked Back:

At July 7, 2005 at 9:42:00 PM CDT, Blogger Jim said...

the link to Napoleon Dynamite will open in IE but not Firefox, and yes I am that bored


At July 7, 2005 at 10:03:00 PM CDT, Blogger stan said...

Blame Fox Pictures for that, I guess. You could try the IMDb site here, or rent the movie... :)


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Friday, July 01, 2005

"...and the Gamberi Fra Diavolo tastes like bird droppings"

I was looking at an online menu for a little Italian restaurant in Whitefish, Montana called Mambo Italiano, and something struck me as odd. Next to a few items on the menu is a little symbol that looks like a red sprig of something. At the top of the page, I read that the sprig represents Mambo Recommendations.

So I'm wondering, if Mambo makes every item on the menu, why do they only recommend a few? Do they not care about the other dishes? What happens when a customer asks about the Sun Dried Tomato Penne, or the Linguini Alla Carbonara? "Oh no, sir, we don't recommend that one at all, it's disgusting."

4 Talked Back:

At July 1, 2005 at 10:57:00 PM CDT, Blogger Jim said...

To quote: "I was looking at an online menu for a little Italian restaurant in Whitefish, Montana called Mambo Italiano, and something struck me as odd." Stan, are you planning on ordering out? The Pappa Biagio Bolognese is going to be a little cool by the time it gets to you. :)


At July 2, 2005 at 1:07:00 PM CDT, Blogger stan said...

I was actually remembering the time I took the train to Whitefish, stayed in the area for a few days, and explored Glacier National Park. At Mambo Italiano, I ordered the Fettuccine Alla Lulubella, and liked it so much that I ordered a double portion to go, for the train ride home.

And yes, it was cold when I got here, because of the small cooler I brought :)


At July 2, 2005 at 7:24:00 PM CDT, Blogger Jim said...

oh, well then, it makes perfect sense that you were spending your afternoon looking at their online menu -- Happy 4th


At July 6, 2005 at 5:42:00 PM CDT, Blogger Scott said...

Hey Stan,

I finally started my own blog.



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