July 30, 2004

Heartfelt Appreciation

Wind Rider officially retires from the Air Force on 1 August after more than 24 years of service.

Visit him at Bloviating Inanities or Silent Running and say thanks.

Posted by Ted at 07:55 PM | Comments (0)
Category: Links

Hey Ump, if you had one more eye you'd be a cyclops!

Everyone loves to harrass the umpires or speechifier or ballplayers or comedian or other public performer.

So what's the best heckle you've ever heard?

Idea shamelessly stolen from the excellent San Fransisco Giants blog, Waiting for Boof.

Posted by Ted at 08:02 AM | Comments (5)
Category: Links


What Hot Jets cheerleader lives in a castle (for real) and has a prehensile tail?

Ok, trick question. The answer, of course, is our newest lovely (ta dahhhh!): Lemur Girl!

I'm not positive about the tail, but she only appears in long skirts and didn't deny it when I asked. I'm earnest and forthright, not nosy and pushy thankyouverymuch. She's also added her email address to her page, which is one of the ones I commented about a few days ago.

Our latest addition brings the Hot Jets squadron to an uneven seventeen eighteen. That appeals to the non conformist in me (mental note: take shoes off next time to count). The rest of the crew:

Sarah, of Trying To Grok!
Emma, of Miss Apropos!
Lynn S., of Reflections in d minor!
Heather, of Angelweave!
Kat, of Mostly Fluff!
Nic, of Shoes, Ships, and Sealing Wax!
Susie, of Practical Penumbra!
Mookie, of MookieRiffic!
Helen, of Everyday Stranger!
Gir, of Your Moosey Fate!
Tink, of Flitting Here and There!
Stevie, of Caught In The XFire!
Jennifer, of Jennifer's History and Stuff!
Cindy, of Squipper!
Blogoline, of Blogoline's Journal!
LeeAnn, of The Cheese Stands Alone!
Denita, of Who Tends The Fires!

I wish I could claim the power to unleash the power of an Instalanch, even a mere feeble shadow of one, but I can't without your help. So go to each one of the sites listed above and enjoy the great blogging there. There's more to becoming a Hot Jets cheerleader than just the swimsuit audition. It takes brains, and these ladies have it in spades. So go visit and drop a comment on 'em.

Posted by Ted at 05:35 AM | Comments (3)
Category: Links

Queer Eye for the Queer Guy?

Coming Appearing soon on a television screen near you: LOGO. A network devoted to gays and transgendered people.

Is there really a big enough audience to make this work?

Posted by Ted at 04:46 AM | Comments (0)
Category: Links

July 29, 2004

Too sweet to be bitter

PeopleSoft is the product that put me out of my last job. You could say that I'm amused by this news: PeopleSoft profits down 70% last quarter.

But, we were told it would solve all of our problems! And after using their worthless crappola software products, I would rather have a vinegar and ground glass enema can't imagine why people aren't lined up to be bent over like we were to use their systems.

Of course they know exactly what the problem is. It's someone else's fault!

...weak demand that the business software maker blamed on distractions caused by rival Oracle’s $7.7bn takeover bid.

It couldn't possibly be your shitty software and abysmal customer support, now could it?

Posted by Ted at 04:55 PM | Comments (5)
Category: Square Pegs

There's a joke in there somewhere

Bill's pee pee is all better. Translation: his prostate infection is well on the way to being cured.

Meanwhile, news breaks that Saddam has a prostate infection.

Totally unrelated, but doesn't it make you grit your teeth to hear someone talk about their prostrate gland?

Posted by Ted at 04:42 PM | Comments (3)
Category: Links

Perhaps you've noticed...

...around and about, at various blogs (the ones with class and good looking women), a little picture for Rocket Jones and the Blogger Bowl 2004? I have, and they look goooooood.

Babes with Brains, gotta love the Hot Jets!

Denita's template-meister Eric even put together an animated version. Woot and tres cool (pardon me, my nuance is showing).

Susie's got one.
Nic is one of the cool kids too.
Now Gir really shines with not one, but two Rocket Jones logos and a blip. It's a good thing she likes spontaneous combustion, because she's on fire!
Squipper has the logo up! Squipper, Squipper, Squipper. That's a fun word to say!
And let's not forget:
Helen gave a hearty cheer and shout-out.
Emma, official spokeswoman for "Security Mom's for Rocket Jones".
Now Lynn is a cultured lady, so it should be no surprise that she's a Hot Jet. Cream rises.
Stevie cheers on in her own no-bull style.
Jennifer's gone missing, but before she left she gave a Hot Jet holler.
Now Mookie is a special head case. She's had the summer blahs, complicated by the fact that she's been working, planning for vacation, and doing a ton of summer homework. I don't remember having to do that much over the summer.
The lovely Blogoline lent her voice to the cheering. Yay!
Now LeeAnn is going on vacation, so her cheering is being rationed to make it last.
Heather has been busy with summery fun-ness, but not too busy to cheer.
A little bit sweet, a little bit dark. Kat.
Tink has been having a rough month, family-wise. Send good thoughts her way, she could use the well-wishes and strength.
Sarah tries to grok, which could possibly interfere with cheering, or it might mean that she understands on a deeper level what it truly means to be a Hot Jet.

I've heard from reliable sources that Jim has been recruiting cheerleaders as well. Best of luck, guy, too bad the truly great ones have already become Hot Jets!

Posted by Ted at 06:04 AM | Comments (1)
Category: Links

Do you feel better now?

Two more inbred mouth-breathers left comments on this post about Michael Moore. The DNC must have the extremists all stirred up, and I can just imagine them wrapping extra tin foil around their heads to ward off the deadly rays while they tax their googling skills.

Just to find Rocket Jones and leave comments like that.

Maybe I'm being too subtle for these nitwits, because they're sure taking it seriously.

[cheap shot at the Kennedy family removed]

On the other hand, Paul probably finds those comments refreshing. Ahhhh, balance is restored.

Posted by Ted at 05:22 AM | Comments (0)
Category: Square Pegs

This guy couldn't be more wrong

James van Allen, Regent Distinguished Professor at the University of Iowa, is the noted discoverer of radiation belts encircling Earth. His seminal finding -- labeled the Van Allen radiation belts -- stemmed from the scientist's experiment that flew on Explorer 1, Americas first satellite to successfully orbit the Earth back on January 31, 1958.
He's written an article questioning manned space flight and I'm a little ticked off about it, so I'll be petty and ask him, "what have you done lately?"
"Almost all of the space programs important advances in scientific knowledge have been accomplished by hundreds of robotic spacecraft in orbit about Earth and on missions to the distant planets Mercury, Venus, Mars, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, and Neptune," van Allen writes. Similarly, robotic exploration of comets and asteroids "has truly revolutionized our knowledge of the solar system," he adds.
Overstating the case I'd say, but there is some truth in that.
"Let us not obfuscate the issue with false analogies to Christopher Columbus, Ferdinand Magellan, and Lewis and Clark, or with visions of establishing a pleasant tourist resort on the planet Mars," van Allen suggests.
Why not? Columbus and the rest didn't explore for the sake of science. I have a lot of respect for this man, but he's got his blinders on about the benefits of exploring space. Life is more than scientific fact-finding.

He writes from the viewpoint of someone who doesn't see the point of leaving the planet. Has the scientific viewpoint dulled his imagination and spirit?

Posted by Ted at 04:34 AM | Comments (0)
Category: Space Program

July 28, 2004

Inevitable Rocketry-related Stuff

First off, Saturday begins the National Association of Rocketry Annual Meet (NARAM), which is being hosted by my club this year - NOVAAR. I'll be working the sport and high power launch ranges all weekend and through next week, so posting will probably be lighter than normal.

Besides the neat model rocket stuff that goes on all week, some new things have been added to the schedule. On Saturday evening three speakers will talk about different facets of modern rocket science, including one on the CanSat and related educational programs and another by Randy Repcheck, an aerospace engineer with the FAA who will talk about his two journeys aboard SeaLaunch. SeaLaunch is an international partnership that launches satellites from specially designed ships stationed at the equator in the Pacific Ocean.

On Wednesday evening a presentation by Bob Koenn will be given on how to prep one's rocket. In Bob's case, the rocket is NASA's Space Shuttle, because Bob works at the Kennedy Space Center.

On Thursday evening, we'll be treated to the premier of a documentary about the Little Joe program, which was a little-known series of rocket flights made to test the safety systems of the Mercury capsules. Very cool stuff for us rocket geeks.

Lastly, but not leastly, for those who live in the DC metro area, this Saturday, 7/31/04, is Goddard Community Day at the Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland (right off the beltway). Visitors can tour the Hubble Space Telescope Control Center, a super-clean filtered air room where satellite electronics are created, spacecraft testing facilities, a centriguge, and much more. Click that link for more information.

It's gonna be a whole lotta heaven for me.

Posted by Ted at 07:45 AM | Comments (0)
Category: Rocketry

Don't stand too close, the heat is intense

The Hot Jets just keep getting hotter!

Welcome Helen from Everyday Stranger to the Rocket Jones Hot Jets cheerleader family. Yay!

This is significant because she's living near London, and she says:

And the Monarchs? Puh-leeze. I want real men playing real football!

Got that? Rocket Jones equals "real man playing real football". In a virtual rotisserie-league sorta way, of course (don't bother, I'm irony-impaired).

Hey, listen to the sizzle:
Susie, of Practical Penumbra!
Nic, of Shoes, Ships, and Sealing Wax!
Gir, of Your Moosey Fate!
Emma, of Miss Apropos!
Lynn S., of Reflections in d minor!
Stevie, of Caught In The XFire!
Jennifer, of Jennifer's History and Stuff!
Mookie, of MookieRiffic!
Blogoline, of Blogoline's Journal!
LeeAnn, of The Cheese Stands Alone!
Heather, of Angelweave!
Kat, of Mostly Fluff!
Tink, of Flitting Here and There!
Denita, of Who Tends The Fires!
Cindy, of Squipper!
Sarah, of Trying To Grok!

Recap: Rocket Jones - Real Man. Hot Jets - Best.

Posted by Ted at 06:41 AM | Comments (5)
Category: Links

For every action there's an equal and opposite overreaction

Seems that our beloved Mu.Nu domain has been banned in South Korea because one of our bloggers has a link to the terrorist beheading videos. Actually, it was originally on his old Blogspot site, and in an amazing show of restraint, the government of South Korea has apparently banned all access to Blogspot sites as well.

What is that they say about judging one's character by the enemies one makes?

Simon has more.

Posted by Ted at 06:25 AM | Comments (1)
Category: Links

July 27, 2004


It's bad enough when someone remakes a song and screws it up, but to do it to yourself...

Seals & Crofts have redone Summer Breeze, and call it Summer Breeze 2004. It's heavy on the synth and electro bass beat, and sounds like a bad garage dub. They must need the money.

Posted by Ted at 04:50 PM | Comments (1)
Category: Square Pegs

Spock is my God

"Contrariwise," continued Tweedledee, "if it was so, it might be; and if it were so, it would be; but as it isn't, it ain't. That's logic." -- Lewis Carroll
Posted by Ted at 01:19 PM | Comments (3)
Category: Square Pegs

Imagine, if you will...

...an ordinary day, where you do ordinary things and go to your ordinary job. But today is different - even if you don't know it yet - because when you log on, something extraordinary will happen. You won't just be gaining access to your files, today, you'll be gaining access to The Twilight Zone.

Classic television introductions! Mondo retro-hipness thanks to Fred, who also posts wicked cool Mars pictures of the day.

Posted by Ted at 05:44 AM | Comments (0)
Category: Links

July 26, 2004

Simpler explanation

The problem with the L.A. media isn't that it's dominated by liberals but that it's dominated by idiots. -- Cathy Seipp
Thanks to Rand Simberg at Transterrestrial Musings for that one.
Posted by Ted at 11:30 AM | Comments (2)
Category: Links

Missile Shield begins quietly

I didn't see a lot of hoopla over this, which is probably intentional. Last week, the first interceptor missile of our National Missile Shield was installed at Fort Greely in Alaska.

I believe in defense, and I certainly recognize the inherent difficulties in performing the mission that these interceptors have. All complex systems have growing pains, and the calls for perfection before deployment are silly and miss a key function that is already in effect: deterrence. The shield doesn't have to work all that well in reality (although if anyone can make it happen, it's the US), because as long as the other guy thinks it might, then that's a plus for our side right there. The best deterrence is never used. If it is, then it failed in its primary mission.

The footprint of these sites in the wilderness is amazingly small, and the complaining and dire warnings come from the enviros who were also wrong about the mass extinctions that would be caused by the pipeline. These are the same folks who wouldn't let Californians clear brush out of wooded areas. Mother Nature said thanks for the ready-made tinder and kindling, didn't she? They also complain about potential disaster when an accident occurs at one of these silo's. How often do you hear about missile accidents in the US? I can think of two in the last 40 years, which is a damn good percentage. Neither of those accidents resulted in widespread environmental damage.

Now it seems that Canada's military is thinking that maybe they should get under the umbrella. From an editorial in the Montreal Gazette:

Few Canadians know that the NORAD deputy commander in chief at the Colorado headquarters, by treaty agreement, is a Canadian. This is not tokenism: we do have a presence and a say in the design and administration of the defence of North America. We shall be no better off, and arguably worse off, if we relinquish our role just because continental defence is evolving as time goes by.

And in Europe, the Czechs and Poles are enthusiatically embracing the shield.
As well as radar sites, the Poles say they want to host a missile interceptor site. Such a site in Poland would be the first outside America and the only one in Europe.

In the Czech Republic, too, the proposed radar site, extending to 100 square kilometres, could be declared extra-territorial and a sovereign US base.

Japan already wants in, as does South Korea, England and Australia.

If they're needed for real, then I hope they work well. I fervently hope that we never have to find out how well they work, and to those who say we're escalating tensions by defending ourselves, well, I believe in self-defense, whereas you believe in trusting to the altruism of others. You're living in dreamland, because we already know that the world is full of bad guys who would love nothing more than to sucker-punch the US.

As for the argument that we should be worried more about rental trucks/container ships/boxcars/your-scary-potentiality-here, my answer is yes and no. We should be worried about those things, but that doesn't mean we should ignore the historic threats. There are many countries out there who possess missiles capable of hitting North America. There are more countries who are close to obtaining that ability. We made the mistake of being too focused on the "big" threats and watched 3000 people die. Let's not make the same mistake and focus too much on the unconventional threats, because ignoring the "big" threats is just as big a mistake.

China has been whining about the shield for quite a while now. Good. If they're forced to expend resources on ways to limit it's impact on their military, then those are resources that they can't use somewhere else on weapons of their choice. We've taken that much initiative away from them and they're reacting to us instead of the other way around.

It's a little thing, but yeah, we are a bit safer for that one missile in Alaska.

Posted by Ted at 06:17 AM | Comments (2)
Category: Military

Pray that you drown before she starts singing "The Morning After"

It's a standard Hollywood special effect: the towering wall of water bearing down on the ship. Such 'rogue waves' do exist and have been documented, but until recent studies by satellites in orbit, scientists didn't realize that they're far more common than thought.

"Two large ships sink every week on average, but the cause is never studied to the same detail as an air crash," says Wolfgang Rosenthal of the GKSS Forschungszentrum GmbH research center in Germany. "It simply gets put down to bad weather."
Huh? Two a week? Wow, I never realized. Imagine the hell raised if two airliners a week crashed mid-flight.
A significant handful of these sunken ships -- about 200 over the past two decades -- are supertankers or large container ships, according to a statement explaining Rosenthal's new research.

The cause for most of the mishaps is a mystery, but so-called rogue waves as tall as 10-story buildings are believed to be the major culprit in many cases.

Now I'm wondering about the Bermuda Triangle. How often do these beasties slosh around in that little basin? You'd think that with the relatively high number of spotters and island inhabitants, that something like this would be noticed.
The data were collected by the European Space Agency's twin spacecraft ERS-1 and 2, which employ a technique called synthetic aperture radar to measure wave height.

In the three weeks of satellite data, researchers found 10 waves in various parts of the world that were more than 82 feet (25 meters) high. That added a global perspective to information collected from various oil platforms. (A radar device on the North Sea's Goma oilfield counted 466 rogue waves over 12 years.)

Yet there's never one around when you really need one. When I think of all those years of The Love Boat...

Posted by Ted at 06:11 AM | Comments (5)
Category: SciTech

So it's not what you'd call *great* photography

But still, I really like this picture.

(in the extended entry - no nudity, but use your own judgement concerning your workplace)

Found at Kimochi-ii!!!, which definitely isn't work-safe.


Posted by Ted at 04:39 AM | Comments (2)
Category: Links

July 25, 2004

How un-PC of me

I received an email asking why only the ladies were invited to join the Hot Jets cheerleaders, and all I could do was grunt, scratch and ponder.

Ok guys, there's your invitation. Wanna be a cheerleader for the Blogger Bowl 2004 team with the bestest lady cheerleaders? Just email me (address on the right bar) and you're all set. See how easy that is? Just because the ladies went through an excruciatingly detailed personal history questionaire - Susie fogged up my glasses twice - which was followed by an extensive background check (and secret photos too! but I'm not sharing those). Y'all are just guys, you just have to sign up.

I'm not at the same level as Bill, but can I milk a concept or what?

Posted by Ted at 09:23 AM | Comments (6)
Category: Square Pegs

Hot Jets and Cool Competition

Time to call in the big guns, literally! Get yer mind outta the gutter, because I'm talking about Sarah, who has a picture on Trying To Grok of herself in a tank. Woohoo! Ya know, it never hurts to have a little armor support.

She graciously accepted, and mentioned that she's already been recognized for her cheerleading - check this out. Actually, don't bother, unless you want to deal with a bunch of annoying popups, and then read some lame anti-intelligence (in the literal sense, not in the "spy" kinda way) nitwittery. It's a hate site, and Sarah's been named to their Hall of Infamy for being a true supporter of the US military. At least they mention that she writes well and interestingly, they just don't like her opinions.

Anyways, welcome to the Hot Jets Sarah!

That little banner is starting to crop up in other places...

The Hot Jets are:
Stevie, of Caught In The XFire!
Jennifer, of Jennifer's History and Stuff!
Mookie, of MookieRiffic!
Emma, of Miss Apropos!
Blogoline, of Blogoline's Journal!
LeeAnn, of The Cheese Stands Alone!
Gir, of Your Moosey Fate!
Heather, of Angelweave!
Kat, of Mostly Fluff!
Lynn S., of Reflections in d minor!
Tink, of Flitting Here and There!
Denita, of Who Tends The Fires!
Cindy, of Squipper!
Susie, of Practical Penumbra!
Nic, of Shoes, Ships, and Sealing Wax!

Pick a sweetie, any sweetie. In fact, go visit them all.

Posted by Ted at 09:04 AM | Comments (1)
Category: Links

July 24, 2004

Something rarely seen around here

Velociman did this one a while back, and I meant to, but never got around to it. My results are in the extended entry.

Which Childish Practical Joke Are You?

Aside to Velociman: you've been comment spammed on the post with some rather rude links. Just lettin' ya know.

You are HEAD NOOGIES !!!

I don't do a lot of quizzes (heh, what a funny word: quizzes), and this one keeps the streak alive because you make it up yourself. Yepper, it's not a real quiz!

Posted by Ted at 02:11 PM | Comments (2)
Category: Links

Beats Beal

So I'm putzing around the rocket workshop today, taking care of some items on the ol' to-do list, when I remember an old post idea I wanted to do. Jot it down and come back to it later, and when I do I googled up a few things to research. And I found this page, which has nothing to do with what I was looking for - honest! - but with a title like Bikini Karate Babes, how could I not investigate, eh?

In the interview with the creator, he has this to say:

Bikini Karate Babes is a fun and silly game. If you're looking for the greatest fighting game since Tekken... you won't find it here. But if you're looking for something unique with solid gameplay and high replay value, then this game is for you!

BKB uses actual video images of real women. You can control these women in real time. It is by far the best example of interactive video controlled in real time ever made. The animation is excellent, not choppy like so many 'other' games using video images. The full range of motion is captured for every punch, kick, and jiggle!

I don't play computer games, but if I did I suspect that this would be on my list of favorite games. There's pictures too at the link.

Posted by Ted at 01:45 PM | Comments (1)
Category: Links

Andromeda Strain

I'm not going to do a regular review of this 1971 flick (adapted from the book by Michael Crichton), but I will say a couple of things about it.

First, if you haven't seen it lately, do yourself a favor and watch it again. If you've never seen it, you should. It's very much in the techno-science style of Fantastic Voyage.

Secondly, one of the most frightening scenes I've ever seen in any film is when they're testing for the whatever-it-is, and you watch the first rhesus monkey die from exposure to it. Absolutely chilling.

Posted by Ted at 12:22 AM | Comments (0)
Category: Cult Flicks

July 23, 2004

It's Never A Bad Time To Be Polite

Tombstone Generator thanks to LeeAnn, Susie and others...

Posted by Ted at 11:07 PM | Comments (1)
Category: Links

Money Quote

"The enemy is not just 'terrorism'. It is the threat posed specifically by Islamic terrorism."
[emphasis theirs]

-- Final Report of the 9/11 Commission, as reported by the Wall Street Journal

Posted by Ted at 09:10 AM | Comments (0)
Category: Square Pegs

Not Lemmy, Lemming!

I found a spam in my email this morning that tickled my funny bone. The subject was:

Qcute Teen Girl Sexed Up Inertially

I'm going to type random letters now and go spam the Ukraine.

Posted by Ted at 07:32 AM | Comments (4)
Category: Square Pegs

No Particular Place To Go

That was a Chuck Berry song, wasn't it?

Yesterday morning, I'm flying down the interstate on my way to work - and believe me, at 5:15am there ain't no traffic and you fly! - and I've got Chicago II cranked on the CD player. And Hello Sunshine came on, triggering a whole rush of memories.

I was in the Guinness Book of World Records once, for one edition. Actually, it was my entire high school band, and we held the record for longest continuous performance, which at the time was something like 80 or 90 hours.

I believe we started on a Friday morning, and played straight through until Monday afternoon. One five-minute break every hour, and fifteen minutes every six hours for food. We turned it into a big fund-raiser, and local restaurants donated food and drinks to keep us going.

Things got silly as we got more and more tired, and after a while you get loopy. Not to mention the swelling. You want to know what bee-stung lips are? Try playing the trombone for four freakin' days. The whole bottom part of my face was numb for a week.

And parents would show up in the middle of the night to cheer us on, and donate money for requests. And every couple of hours, we'd play a medley by Chicago that always got us fired up again. It started with Hello Sunshine, and we'd stand up in the back row and just let it ring.

The school was heavily into music of all types. Band, orchestra, jazz band, chorus - both men and women, mixed choir, plus various small combos and groups, our school was known for it's music program. And the band was dominated by the trombone section.

I was playing fourth trombone that year, all by myself. I'd transferred in as a sophomore from another school, and rather than futz with the dynamics of the section, I just took the bottom end and enjoyed myself. There were three seniors playing first part that year, and they were all very good. Next year, I'd take over first chair, so I could afford to be patient. Besides, we all got along just fine, so there was no jealousy or looking down on anyone.

I may have told this part before, but on my first day at the school, in the first band class, all the new people had to introduce themselves. All freshmen, and me. The band teacher explained that I was transferring from the east side, and you could hear the collective 'ooooo' at that. The east side was the 'bad' side of town, and I'm sure they thought I'd pull a switchblade on someone eventually. So after the introductions were made, all the freshmen had to play the school fight song together. They'd gotten the music the year before and practiced all summer for this moment. I just stood there, because I didn't know the song. When they got done, someone said I should play something, so I did.

My first performance at school was the Budweiser theme song. Remember that one? "When you say Bud..." Perfect music for trombone, and I really got into it.

Back to the band marathon. We loved to play anything brass: Chicago, Earth, Wind & Fire, Tower of Power, Average White Band, Wild Cherry, Ohio Players, plus the standard classical and folk tunes included in the curriculum. And when one of 'our' songs came on, we'd drag ourselves out of our comfy chairs (we'd brought beanbags and other seating rather than spend days on those metal folding chairs), and be energized for an hour afterwards.

We also traded instruments, and it was the first time I'd gotten up the nerve to talk to the owner of the finest ass I've ever seen in my life. To this day, I measure all female tushie against hers, and have yet to find her equal, although some have come close. She was Japanese, she played the flute, and she sat right in front of me in the front row (three rows, I was in the far back). For an hour she sat by me and showed me some flute basics, and I helped her play a little trombone. I was in heaven.

So we set the record, and made lots of money for new band uniforms, and got into the Book, and lost the record to another school a few months later. Que sera sera.

"...with no particular place to go..."

Posted by Ted at 06:03 AM | Comments (1)
Category: Boring Stories

"Rain Some Doom, Rocket!"

Title courtesy of the spirited Gir. How can you not love someone who quotes Invader Zim?

Well, using my pitiful Paint Shop Pro skills, I've come up with a banner for the Hot Jets.


Feel free to add it to your template, or post it once up, or ignore it altogether. I'm easy.

Posted by Ted at 04:56 AM | Comments (3)
Category: Links

July 22, 2004

Mosquito in the room

Must be, what else could be whining like that?

I mean, Victor mentions bad juju because his girlfriend, Nic, becomes a Hot Jet cheerleader for Rocket Jones. Did she pick me over Victor? Of course not, it's all in the timing, and I notice now that Victor has formed a team in the league as well. Rats of Chaos, eh? Good name, Victor. Strong juju.

Then there's Nick, who suspects coercion. Don't forget the bribes Nick. Dig deep and find evidence for bribes too. :) It couldn't possibly be that I just emailed each and every lady individually, asked nicely, and said 'please'? "Hired", indeed.

Darn mosquito. Probably irate that he didn't think of it first.

It's annika I fear, because she's already doing research. Unless one of us lucks out and the fourteenth best wide reciever available in the draft has an absolutely monster year, she might stomp us all. On the field, that is, because on the sidelines, you all might as well change your names to Jacques.

More classy, sassy, bold and brassy Hot Jets on the squad. Say hello to:

Emma, of Miss Apropos!
Blogoline, of Blogoline's Journal!
Kat, of Mostly Fluff!
Lynn S., of Reflections in d minor!
Tink, of Flitting Here and There!

...to go along with the original batch o'lovelies:

Denita, of Who Tends The Fires!
Cindy, of Squipper!
Susie, of Practical Penumbra!
Nic, of Shoes, Ships, and Sealing Wax!
LeeAnn, of The Cheese Stands Alone!
Gir, of Your Moosey Fate!
Heather, of Angelweave!
Stevie, of Caught In The XFire!
Jennifer, of Jennifer's History and Stuff!
Mookie, of MookieRiffic!

What color are your helmets, toast-boy? I hope they match that lovely shade of green I see hear.

Posted by Ted at 05:46 PM | Comments (2)
Category: Links

Too funny

Major thanks to QandO for pointing this one out (via Wizbang). Scroll down, read the last paragraph, and remember Rule Number 1: never piss off the people who make you look good.

Posted by Ted at 01:04 PM | Comments (0)
Category: Links

Ignore the headline and understand the article

Bigger Breasts Offered as Perk to Soldiers.

Key quote:

"the surgeons have to have someone to practice on."

And that's the bottom line. Military surgeons have to deal with wounds and situations that most civilian doctors rarely or never see (other than maybe urban ER staff). The cosmetic side of the procedures is something you don't normally think about. A friend of mine in Germany went into the hospital with a hot appendix. That night, the surgeon on duty was a plastic surgeon, and since it was a slow night he took the extra time to do whatever they do to reduce the scar left behind. You almost couldn't tell that a cut had been made. It was beautifully done, and some day those same skills could be used to reduce the visual impact of a healed shrapnel wound.

It's frivolous in the same way that running around shooting blanks at each other in simulated combat situations is frivolous.

Posted by Ted at 09:44 AM | Comments (1)
Category: Military

Fashion tip

In Ted's Universe, when the ladies are walking to work and they're wearing a nice skirt, and instead of heels or strappy shoes they're wearing white sneakers and socks (for comfort I guess), well, I like that.

Posted by Ted at 06:48 AM | Comments (1)
Category: Square Pegs

Commitment to Excellence

And the desperation sets in. Annika has already purchased a fantasy football draft guide, and I've heard rumors that one of the other teams is trying to hire Bill Walsh as a draft consultant.

But while secret (and not-so-secret) plans are being laid for future success, Rocket Jones is already whupping the competition. That's right folks, it is my privilege to introduce, for the first second time ever, the Hot Jets, cheerleaders for the Rockets! Give it up for the classiest and sassiest group of ladies to ever shake a pom-pom.

In no particular order (how could you ever put one above another?);

Heather, of Angelweave!
Stevie, of Caught In The XFire!
Susie, of Practical Penumbra!
Nic, of Shoes, Ships, and Sealing Wax!
LeeAnn, of The Cheese Stands Alone!
Gir, of Your Moosey Fate!
Denita, of Who Tends The Fires!
Cindy, of Squipper!
Jennifer, of Jennifer's History and Stuff!
Mookie, of MookieRiffic!

Spirits are high, tryouts continue, and I expect the squad will grow.

For those wondering (humor me), team colors are black, white and red. The reason for that is that NASA and the military did visibility studies to determine the best colors to paint a rocket. Large swaths of - you guessed it - black, white and red, alternated for contrast works best. For extra visibility, we often add sparkly and shiny bits, so they'll catch the light on the way down and make it easier to follow. Come to think of it, that's what we do with cheerleaders too.

Posted by Ted at 06:39 AM | Comments (3)
Category: Links

My daughters are nicer, they don't throw sharp kitchen implements at me

I had Vietnamese food yesterday for lunch, which was a first. Remember that scene in the original Carrie where Piper Laurie is telling Sissy Spacek about sinful, evil sex with her drunken husband? She got that creepy wild smile and said, "and I liked it!" Yep, that was my reaction.

No momma, please. Not the closet...

Posted by Ted at 06:23 AM | Comments (1)
Category: Square Pegs

July 21, 2004


A lot of people don't have contact email addresses on their blogs. Lots of folks who do, have outdated or broken ones. Just something I've noticed lately.

Posted by Ted at 07:28 PM | Comments (5)
Category: Square Pegs

Remembering Jimmy Hatlo

(in the extended entry)

wpe97922 hatlo.jpg

Posted by Ted at 06:42 PM | Comments (0)
Category: Square Pegs

Win one for the Phipper

Sorry about the title, I couldn't resist.

I'm signed up for Blogger Bowl 2004, yet another foray into the world of fantasy sports. Football this time, in a league that looks to be mostly Munuvian. Thanks to Nick for the invite.

Now, some of you may think you're too inexperienced to join. Poppycock! Sign on up and we'll help you out, because we love fresh meat we're all friends and nice people. Right?

This will be an auto-draft, which means that Yahoo will determine the draft order, and then dole out players based on who's left that's best. In other words, when it's your pick, you'll get the best player left at that position at that time. Based on my fantasy hockey experiences, it's fair.

Now what you might not know is that you can "elevate" players to increase your odds of picking him up. For instance, say you absolutely must have Kelly Ripa at quarterback (or is that Jim Kelly? I get them confused), then you can go into Yahoo and - following their pretty good directions - bump that players' value up so that when it's your turn and he's available, you'll get him. Cool!

Specific tips for my opponents:

1. Mike Ditka is not running for office. Mike Ditka is one of the greatest Tight Ends in history. Put 'em together and you'll notice that he's available!!! Head over to Yahoo and put Mike Ditka as your first draft pick for Tight End.

2. This one is kind of a longshot, but if you draft Howie Long high enough, you'll probably lure him out of retirement. Worth a shot.

3. Gale Sayers was the one who didn't die in Brian's Song, so he's still available. Get thee to Yahoo now! Not convinced? Gale Sayer's didn't die twice!!! Obviously a winner, and someone you'd want on your team.

4. Don't be like the New York Giants, and accidentally draft a dead player. Live players will generally score more points for you than dead ones.

5. Kickers can be the difference between success and failure, and nothing is worse than losing because your kicker was on a bye week. Think creatively, and draft outside the box. Freddy Adeu has no NFL bye weeks, and he's one heck of a kicker.

6. Team names are important. You should spend hours if not days agonizing over yours. For instance, Rockets implies grace and speed, while using muscle and raw power to get it done. If you decide to call your team the Twinkly Fairies, they better be tough. Sometimes you can go for the humorous monicker, like Altoona Fish or Tijuana Lapdancers. The key here is to agonize, because angst makes for very good football.

7. Everyone else in the league is in it for one thing only - to win. Myself, on the other hand, am in it for the fun. And we all know that it's more fun if everyone's having fun. So if I offer you a trade, don't look at it too closely, just rest easy knowing that anything I propose is good for everybody equally. Just click "approve" and we'll all be happier.

8. This is fantasy football, so it's ok to have your weird superstitions. You wanna wear the same lucky underwear all season without washing them? Go right ahead, I don't mind a bit. Oh, and if you believe that the 'fantasy' part means you start having homoerotic daydreams about your players, well, I don't want to hear about it. Not that there's anything wrong with that, of course.

8. Yep, I typed eight again, just to see who's still paying attention.

I'm sure there's more...

Posted by Ted at 05:44 AM | Comments (1)
Category: Links

July 20, 2004

New scam to double my hits

This link is absolutely not safe for work, so you'll have to come back this evening to check it out. And believe you me, it's worth it.

As Wegglywoo says:

thank gaia! someone finally found a way to combine breasts, phonecams, and the web!

That's right, it's Cleavage!

What? You don't visit Wegglywoo? For shame.

[her] head and stomach were in revolt against the alcohol in her system even before we got home, and she complained that i was driving in circles. i told her i knew where i was going, and that i was going quite straight. she explained that she meant vertical circles, like a ferris wheel.

She's witty and wise, and celebrates both Thong Thursday and Tits Out Tuesday. Now how can you argue with that?

As final evidence that she's a classy lady, Rocket Jones is prominently absent from her blogroll.

Posted by Ted at 04:26 AM | Comments (1)
Category: Links

July 19, 2004

Washington DC's only winning football team

The D.C. Divas professional woman's football team finished the season undefeated and made it into the second round of the playoffs before falling last weekend to two-time champs Detroit in a close game (20-14). The Divas are part of the 30-team National Woman's Football Association.

Divas team colors are burgundy and gold (big surprise there), but what's up with that Cowboy-esque star in the logo?

Posted by Ted at 06:09 AM | Comments (1)
Category: Links

Pretty flowers

These pictures make me sooooooo jealous.

Posted by Ted at 04:57 AM | Comments (0)
Category: Links

July 18, 2004

Astronaut Training

Ten days on the ocean floor is about as isolated as you can get on ol' Mother Earth. This sounds like an excellent way to prepare for long-term space missions.

Posted by Ted at 08:32 AM | Comments (0)
Category: Space Program

Can you hear me now, eh?

An Ariane-5 rocket has placed the world's largest telecommunications satellite into orbit Saturday evening after blasting off from the Kourou site in French Guiana.
Details here.
Built by Boeing Satellite Systems (BSS) in El Segundo, California, Anik-2F is to provide telecommunications services across North America for 15 years for the Canadian operator Telesat.
Posted by Ted at 01:31 AM | Comments (0)
Category: Space Program

Someone's in the kitchen with Dinahhhh!!!

I'll give you the super-simple method first, which is tasty. At the end will be some tips to make it even better (and easier too).

Easy Beef Enchiladas

1 lb ground beef
1 half cup onion, coarsely chopped
1 can enchilada sauce, divided
1 4oz can chopped green chilies
1 tsp chili powder
1/2 tsp cumin
8 oz sharp cheddar cheese, shredded
corn tortillas
sliced black olives (optional)

Brown the ground beef, drain and chop fine.
Add the onion, green chilies, 1/4 cup of the enchilada sauce and the spices. Simmer until the onions are translucent.

Spray a 9"x13" baking pan with no-stick. Spread about 1/4 cup of enchilada sauce in the bottom.

Set up an assembly line to make the enchiladas. Pour the rest of the sauce into a wide shallow bowl.
Dip a tortilla into the sauce, do both sides.
Spread a heaping spoonful of the meat mixture down the middle of the tortilla.
Add shredded cheese.
Fold the two ends of the tortilla over the middle (like an omelet), then use both hands to transfer the enchilada into the baking pan, folded side down.
Once all the enchiladas are made, pour the rest of the sauce over them in the pan, sprinkle the rest of the cheese over the top, then add the black olives if you want.
Bake at 350 degrees for 20-30 minutes or until the cheese is melted and bubbly.

If you have a crockpot, you can brown the meat that way, even frozen. A couple of hours on medium low will thaw it out and cook it. After you drain it, add the onion and spices and let it cook another hour.

A pastry cutter works great to chop the meat super fine.

This makes a pretty mild enchilada, add more chili powder and/or a chopped jalepeno or two to zing it up.

Canned enchilada sauce is ok, but if you make your own (recipe here), it really does make a difference.

Posted by Ted at 12:29 AM | Comments (2)
Category: Recipes

July 17, 2004

Don't snicker, it's a Vorpal Bunny

Yutaka Fukufuji is Japan's hope for respectablility in Olympic ice hockey. He attends development camps in the US and played for Cincinnati in the East Coast Hockey League.

Here's a picture of Fukufuji in the gear for Kokudo, his home team in Japan.

Thanks to Sharkspage for the pointer.

Posted by Ted at 02:49 PM | Comments (0)
Category: Links

Assault Weapon Ban

Publicola asks an important question:

If the "Assault Weapons" Ban is renewed will you vote Republican generally & Bush specifically this November?


His reasoning parallels mine, although we come to different conclusions because our key issues are different. I think that second ammendment rights are important, and he makes some telling points that give me things to chew through, but for me the key issue is foreign policy (a superset of the war on terror). I'm going to paint with a broad brush here, so don't get all nitpicky on me. Comments are certainly welcomed.

With President Bush at the helm, America is once again pursuing her best interests. All of the Euro-whining and the moonbat barking basically boil down to the same thing: America is doing what it feels is best for America, and if another country doesn't agree, well, that's just too damn bad. According to some, we're only supposed to act if we get permission from historical friends and allies, regardless of how they've behaved towards us in the present and recent past.

France is diplomatically deft but otherwise irrelevant. Germany is still trying to shake off its national angst over WWII and the effects of reunification, rendering it less than effective on an international scale (other than economically). On a personal note, I found the Germans to be the most racially prejudiced people I've ever met. Is that a European trait? I don't know, but Germans are wonderful people that definitely have a strong bias against non-whites. And America is a mongrel country to them, which may explain some things. Moving along, you have Spain, Italy and Portugal, important locally, but much less so on the international stage.

These countries, and the rest of Europe, have been 'dealing' with the unpleasant facts of the world for decades. Rather than solving their problems, they compromise, usually by devising a solution designed to buy time. They hope the problem will go away in the meantime, or perhaps someone with authority (aristocracy or bureaucracy) will take care of it. It's been pointed out for years that NATO relies almost entirely on US air transport. Are the other NATO nations rushing to build military cargo aircraft? Of course not, but they are finding time to write regulations to define how much curve an imported banana is allowed.

Why are we taking these people into consideration when deciding on US national policy? Because we have to, but over the years that aspect has grown from being one consideration to become THE key consideration.

The foreign policies of this administration recognize that fact. John Kerry wants to bring back the old way, the safe way, the European way. He wants to 'deal' with the world instead of solving its problems as they affect America.

George W. Bush is no friend to the armed citizenry of the US, but he would never bow down to international pressure (via the UN) to impose stricter gun controls. I'm not so sure than John Kerry wouldn't think that a fine idea, since the rest of the world would want that.

I'm sorry if you feel that you couldn't vote for President Bush if the AWB is renewed. I hope you're right when you speculate that there wouldn't be a significant difference in the arena of second ammendment rights under Kerry. That's a helluva gamble though, in my humble opinion.

For the record: I'm anti-AWB. It's stupid legislation, designed to make people think something is being done without actually addressing the perceived problem.

Posted by Ted at 09:59 AM | Comments (3)
Category: Politics

The Donner Party

Growing up in northern California you learn different things than you do in other parts of the country. Of course, you learn about the Revolutionary War and The Civil War, and all those tiny states up in the corner where America first began, but you're more exposed to western history and geography. Things like the missions along the El Camino Real, Father Junipero Serra, redwoods and the '49 Gold Rush. Also, you hear about the Donner Party.

The Donner Party were settlers coming to California to homestead. After making a series of bad decisions, they wound up stranded up in the Sierra Nevada mountains for the winter. The winter was harsh and food was scarce, and before the spring thaw arrived half of the original eighty had died, and some had reverted to cannibalism to survive.

My uncle had a wonderful collection of books in his home, and one was about the Donner Party. In this book, diary entries and personal recollections from survivor interviews were gathered to tell their tragic story. These people literally went through frozen hell trying to keep their children and each other alive. Over the years I've read everything I could find on the subject, for it holds a morbid fascination for me.

Archeologists have discovered what they believe to be one of the camps used by the Donner party.

Here's an excellent site that shows the original route and timetable, using quotes from the original sources to create a daily log.

This is a nice resource, with tons of links to related materials.

Posted by Ted at 08:06 AM | Comments (2)
Category: History

There's an idea, just throw rocks at it until it goes away

Spain is proposing an interesting concept that could possibly provide Earth with some protection from those 'killer' rocks that's floating around up there (Bruce Willis ain't gonna live forever, ya know).

According to their plan, a pair of spacecraft will be launched together to intercept a selected asteroid. One will orbit the rock and take measurements and pictures, while the other slams into the asteroid in an attempt to alter its trajectory. The idea being if you do it far enough away, a smaller nudge is needed to make it miss Mother Earth.

Posted by Ted at 06:42 AM | Comments (0)
Category: Space Program

July 16, 2004

So much for *that* nap

So I'm in the recliner after dinner, having told my wife that I'm going to close my eyes for an hour, when the Martha Stewart news comes on the TV.

I startled the wife and both dogs as I came flying out of my chair when Martha Stewart actually compared herself to Nelson Mandella.

I'm trying to maintain some perspective, but it's hard when that condescending and sanctimonious bitch whines about how she's being treated.

Posted by Ted at 11:18 PM | Comments (1)
Category: Square Pegs


Dinner tonight was a beautiful steak, accompanied by a thick slab of onion (drizzled with olive oil and a little salt and pepper), and a fresh pear, quartered and cored. All grilled to perfection.

Try it sometime.

Posted by Ted at 05:54 PM | Comments (5)
Category: Recipes


For my friend and co-worker will be this afternoon. To be buried with full military honors (retired Air Force) at Quantico National Cemetary.

Posted by Ted at 06:54 AM | Comments (3)
Category: Seriously

Stage right

There've been some new MuNuvians added (there are getting to be quite a lot of us too), and some others added to the blogroll farther down. I recommend finding one you've never visited and give a read. If you like it, tell 'em Rocket Jones sent you. If you don't, well, life is full of little disappointments, isn't it?

Posted by Ted at 06:51 AM | Comments (1)
Category: Links

July 15, 2004


I missed work Tuesday and Wednesday with a stomach bug, and when I got to the office this morning, an email was waiting, informing me that a close co-worker at my last project had passed away Saturday evening.

This friend was about my age, and found out about three months ago that he had an agressive form of cancer. The last time I talked to his wife, just before I started this new job (what, three weeks?), she said he was fighting hard and doing fine.

I've been distracted all day, and just got home a little while ago from the viewing. I'm not very good at dealing with these kinds of situations.

Posted by Ted at 07:53 PM | Comments (2)
Category: Seriously


Not only are they remaking the classic House of Wax (and destroying the original storyline in the process), but word is out that Paris Hilton is co-starring.

Hopefully she's the first to go.

Posted by Ted at 08:04 AM | Comments (2)
Category: Cult Flicks

Tip #1, Never ever forget to invite Bubba

Martha Stewart appears in court tomorrow for sentencing, complete with her friends, family, legal team and a "sentencing consultant".

"A federal prosecution is incredibly adversarial. You can come out of it feeling victimized, saying 'They were mean to me, or they didn't have to go that far,'" says [consultant] Novak. But he emphasizes to them: "Your choices and the consequences for those choices are truly what put you in this position."

Pruno. It's time to pull out the good crystal!

Posted by Ted at 06:02 AM | Comments (0)
Category: Links

Happy Birthday Mookie!

Go on over to her place and wish her a happy 16th! And while you're there, remind her to clean her room.

And Mookie, I found this for you. You're welcome sweetie.

Posted by Ted at 04:41 AM | Comments (0)
Category: Links

July 14, 2004

For no particular reason

George "Machine Gun" Kelly (he's the guy wearing the bracelets).

(in the extended entry)

Machine Gun Kelly

Posted by Ted at 05:27 PM | Comments (0)
Category: History

Holding Pattern stuff

One of my favorite features of Movable Type is 'draft mode'. I'll find stuff out on the net, then throw together notes and links and such into a drafted article until I can get around to polishing it until I get bored, then it goes out as is.

Once in a while, when the muse is silent, and I'm too lazy or busy to nudge her the hell up, I'll pull out one of my "Holding Pattern" posts and there you go - instant content.

For instance, here's two that I've been sitting on for a while now, both courtesy of Alan E. Brain.

The CSS Zen Garden . Site design ideas and inspiration.

And for those more inclined to the arts, presented here are Earth songs in Klingon - funny funny stuff!


Posted by Ted at 10:35 AM | Comments (0)
Category: Links

July 13, 2004

Found her!

A while back I wrote about a rocket I fly called Ain't Misbehavin', and posted a picture of the decal for it. I'd mentioned that the pinup-style lady on the decal was from an artist named Shannanigan, but that I'd lost the link. Well, I found it again, and her site is well worth a visit.

Psst. She does Sims stuff too.

Oh yeah, Yahoo has taken down all my old photo pages, so I've included the decal for Ain't Misbehavin' in the extended entry.

I added the lettering in PowerPoint, and the edges are smooth on the decal, they jagged-ed when I converted the image to .jpg.

Posted by Ted at 08:57 PM | Comments (0)
Category: Links

iPods A Security Threat

This isn't a surprise, and it's not BS either.

Some time ago the US Government banned the little thumb drives from the workplace, and I'm not allowed to connect my iPAQ to any government computers for the exact same reason.

Once again, technology outpaces security.

Posted by Ted at 10:47 AM | Comments (1)


Now you can get and cure the clap, all in one easy pill.

Just don't take it with beer (in the extended entry - safe for work).

beer with viagra.jpg

Posted by Ted at 04:55 AM | Comments (0)
Category: Square Pegs

July 12, 2004

Baseball factoids

(courtesy of Sporting News)

This season, Barry Bonds has more intentional walks (67) than any hitter in the AL has total walks.

Back in 1934, NY Giants southpaw Carl Hubbell struck out five straight batters in the All-Star game. Those five were Babe Ruth, Lou Gehrig, Jimmy Foxx, Al Simmons and Joe Cronin. All five were easily elected to the Hall of Fame upon retirement.

The starting NL outfield (Bonds, Griffey [doh!] and Sosa), has combined for 1,735 career home runs. The entire AL starting lineup has a total of 1,799 career homers.

Posted by Ted at 06:51 PM | Comments (2)
Category: History

It is a silly place

Major thanks to Lawren for pointing out that next year the Broadway musical version of Monty Python & the Holy Grail premiers.

Let the spankings commence!

Posted by Ted at 11:19 AM | Comments (2)
Category: Links

Burial in Space

Space Services Inc. is poised to resume service in September launching containers full of people's ashes into space, where they will circle the Earth for years to come.
$1,000 for a gram's worth of you, or you can super-size it to seven grams for $5,300.
The company also offers a video of the launch and provides software that allows families to track the orbital location of their loved ones' remains in real time.

The last funeral flight, in September 2001, failed to reach orbit, but three prior launches did.

The company pledges a free relaunch if the first attempt fails. Chafer said the families of 48 of the 50 people whose remains were on the last flight had opted for another attempt.

"The key to the business is the routine access to space," Chafer said, adding the company planned to make three to four launches a year if the Falcon program proves successful.

As much as this appeals to me, I have a couple of problems with the concept. Right up front, let me state that I have no knowledge of exactly what kind of containers they're using, how they're being orbited, nor what kind of orbit they're using. If they're keeping everything together in one larger piece holding all the smaller containers, then that's good. If they're in an orbit that's not useful for any other purpose, then that's good. But this is basically littering in orbit, and someone is making money to do it. It sounds like the orbit will decay in a few years, so the problem takes care of itself eventually. But I don't want to fall into the trap of "there's plenty of room up there" because that kind of thinking led to problems with Earth's oceans. "Plenty of room" implies big, not infinite, and you'd be amazed at how much crap humanity has already left floating around over our heads.

Posted by Ted at 09:44 AM | Comments (3)
Category: Space Program

I'll take 'ass whooping' for $1000, Alex

Have you been watching Jeopardy lately?

Jennings is making the most of a change in "Jeopardy!" rules. To mark the start of its 20th season last September, the quiz show lifted its five-game limit for winners and allowed them to keep going until they lose.

He's won 28 nights in a row, and has over $900,000 in winnings so far. The article talks about how self-deprecating he is, and it's true. This guy has had the opportunity to really run it up and hasn't done so. He makes modest, non-greedy Final Jeopardy wagers - which he almost always wins - and just destroys the competition by being faster on the button and giving the right answers. I've also never seen him buzz in just to guess at an answer, the guy has his act together.

By the way, my wife reminded me that we'd seen the longest contestant appearance streak ever on a show called Tic Tac Dough, hosted by Wink Martindale. On that show, a Naval officer named Thom McKee stayed on the show for 45 straight games.

Posted by Ted at 05:58 AM | Comments (1)
Category: Links


Thanks for all the good wishes yesterday. The three of us went to a local dinner theater, Mookie was along as part of her (upcoming) birthday present. Like most places of the sort it's small, dark and intimate, and the actors and technical crew double as wait staff.

Our waitress was a nice lady who was only an understudy for this show, she told us her primary job was "chief electrician". Reading the actors bio's in the program, we found out that she'd appeared several times on the television series M*A*S*H as Nurse Able and also (more memorable to me) as Frank Burn's wife - remember the "home movie" where she wouldn't let him drive?

I thoroughly enjoyed myself. The food was fair (advertised as "Pennsylvania Dutch" style buffet - lots of dumplings and casseroles and such). The show was excellent: Seven Brides for Seven Brothers. This particular theater seems to specialize in musicals, and they have a pretty good cast for singing and dancing.

All in all, a nice day.

Posted by Ted at 05:18 AM | Comments (2)
Category: Square Pegs

July 11, 2004

Happy Anniversary to my Love

Twenty-three years, and I'm ready for fifty more, because I feel exactly like this:

I'm no poet and I know it
I don't use five dollar words
This might not sound like much compared to all the pretty things you've heard
But here's how I'd explain it
Since you brought it up
It won't sound like anybody else's version of love

It’s like just before dark
Jump in the car
Buy an ice cream and see how far we can drive before it melts kinda feelin’
That’s how your love makes me feel inside
There’s a cow in the road and you swerve to the left
Fate skips a beat and it scares you to death and you laugh until you cry
That’s how your love makes me feel inside

It might not be more suitable for greeting cards and such
But it’s a true and honest feeling and if you feel it half as much
We could go through life together without a worry or a care
Knowing deep down in our hearts that we’ve got something special here

It’s like just before dark
Jump in the car
Buy an ice cream and see how far we can drive before it melts kinda feelin’
That’s how your love makes me feel inside
There’s a cow in the road and you swerve to the left
Fate skips a beat and it scares you to death and you laugh until you cry
That’s how your love makes me feel inside
That’s how your love makes me feel

I have always heard you can’t put love into words

It’s like just before dark
Jump in the car
Buy an ice cream and see how far we can drive before it melts kinda feelin’
That’s how your love makes me feel inside
There’s a cow in the road and you swerve to the left
Fate skips a beat and it scares you to death and you laugh until you cry
That’s how your love makes me feel inside
That’s how your love makes me feel inside
That’s how your love makes me feel inside
That’s how I feel
That’s how your love makes me feel

-- Max Barnes & Trey Bruce (Diamond Rio)

Posted by Ted at 11:59 AM | Comments (8)
Category: Waxing Lyrical

July 10, 2004

The Trailer Trash Culture Thingy

Lynn from Reflections in D minor has put together the latest quiz to show just how uncivilized we are. Personally, I'm such a gentleman I take the dishes out of the sink before I pee (who recognizes that quote?).

Anyway, the choices are in the extended entry, and my preferences in bold.

1. UPN or Fox?
2. roller derby or WWE?
3. Loretta Lynn or Tammy Wynette?
4. Tony Lama or Durango? (this one has me stumped)
5. fried Spam or fried boloney?
6. Buck Owens or Porter Wagoner?
7. fiddle or banjo?
8. Texas or Tennessee?
9. Ford or Chevy? (pickup of course) -- doesn't matter, Ford sucks
10. extended cab or long bed?
11. Tabasco or Texas Pete's?
12. Saints or Cowboys?
13. baseball cap or cowboy hat?
14. double wide or single wide? -- I grew up in one
15. Wal-mart or K-mart?
16. "Your Cheatin' Heart" or "I'm So Lonesome I Could Cry"?
17. Gunsmoke or Bonanza?
18. Johnny Cash or Merle Haggard? (ooooh... tough choice)
19. catfish or buffalo wings?
20. Charlie Daniels Band or ZZ Top? close call though
21. Velvet painting: Elvis or bullfighter? what, no dogs playing poker?
22. Plastic sunflowers or plastic flamingos?
23. Lawn chairs: molded plastic or aluminum frame?
24. John Wayne or Clint Eastwood?

Posted by Ted at 10:04 PM | Comments (3)
Category: Links

Please explain

I watched Bound last night, starring Jennifer Tilly and Gina Gershon.

What is it about Gina Gershon that women find so attractive? She's not a classic beauty, but she is easy on the eyes, and I suspect that there's something more than just physical looks that drives ladies wild.

For the record, I really like the movie.

I just stumbled across another little interesting movie tidbit. The flick Donnie Darko (very odd so far) just started, starring Jake Gyllenhaal who also played Homer Hickam in October Sky (rocket movie, yay!), and is also the brother of Maggie Gyllenhaal, who starred in Secretary and plays one of the sisters in Donnie Darko.

No Kevin Bacon's were harmed during the making of this post.

Posted by Ted at 10:30 AM | Comments (4)
Category: Cult Flicks

A little dark inside

Gahan Wilson. You may recognize his style, if not the name. Wonderful cartoonist who appeared for years in Playboy and National Lampoon, among other publications that teenagers searched through looking for pictures of boobs.

Posted by Ted at 09:30 AM | Comments (0)
Category: Square Pegs

A musical interlude

Saddam's visit to court, soundtrack provided by ZZ Top - Sharp Dressed Man.

Thanks to Travelling Shoes for the pointer.

Posted by Ted at 08:24 AM | Comments (0)
Category: Links

July 09, 2004

What would she call me if she weren't college educated?

Here ya go, Susie. No links for monkey boy, but in his honor I just watched Bride of the Gorilla, starring Raymond Burr, from 1951. Good flick.

Posted by Ted at 10:20 PM | Comments (1)
Category: Links

More PDA reading stuff

I'm discovering that trying to read internet sites not specifically formatted for PDA viewing can be a royal pain in the butt.

Eric McErlain's Off Wing Opinion is wonderful. He's got a dedicated mirror site that formats everything nicely, so that when I 'sync' and it gets downloaded, it shows up beautifully on the screen of my iPAQ. So I get all the great OWO sports articles in a handy, easy to read format.

On the other hand, sites like Scrappleface or USS Clueless are difficult to deal with because of scrolling issues, as in horizontal scrolling, because the pages are too wide and don't format properly (if at all) when being downloaded.

Now it's certainly not their problem, because I imagine it's another bit of work involved to put up a PDA-formatted site with your content, and who wants more to do just for a relatively few readers.

So I was wondering, might it be possible to use an RSS aggregator to collect posts from hither and yon, using it to strip away the problem bits, and then point the AvantGo channel to the RSS output?

Must do more research...

Posted by Ted at 11:51 AM | Comments (0)
Category: Links

I'm in a good mood, honest!

World Court Rules Isreal's West Bank Barrier Illegal. Oops, I think they misspelled "effective". I've struggled with this one, because of the parallels between this wall and the Berlin Wall. Major (and critical) differences exist, but the two absolutely share the trait of being effective.

Moving right along...

The headline should've read "This Security Briefing brought to you by the letters 'C', 'Y', and 'A'". What exactly was the reason for that worthless little infomercial? Besides having something to point to later when the idiots start whining about not being warned, that is. Intelligence gathering is difficult and an incredibly inexact science art, and people need to start admitting that. The best organizations in the world get it wrong as often as not, and you'll seldom hear about the successes because it can compromise future operations. Yet now we get officials holding nonsensical press briefings to say the same thing they've been telling us all along in anticipation of some future molehill-sized fingerpointing fest.

Norbizness does this so much better than I do.

Redefining "jumping the shark".

All right, that's enough. I just saw a headline about cell phones damaging sperm, and the first thing that came to mind is "hang up while driving and getting a hummer".

Posted by Ted at 06:10 AM | Comments (0)
Category: Links

Excuse me, I thought you were someone else

There has been some buzz in our little corner of the 'net about a certain someone posting her fuzzy grainy miniscule picture on her blog.

This isn't her.

This isn't either.


But I bet you wish it was.

PS. I have a date with her. Neener neener.

Posted by Ted at 05:05 AM | Comments (3)
Category: Links

Students and Rockets

Here is NASA's latest press release about the Student Launch Initiative. You may recall that one of the prizes in the Team America Rocketry Challenge was for teachers to attend education-related workshops. This is one of 'em.

I'm lazy this morning. Links to the Student Launch Initiative and Team America Rocketry Challenge are at the bottom of the press release, or you can use the Search box up in the right hand corner here at Rocket Jones.

Posted by Ted at 04:54 AM | Comments (0)
Category: Rocketry

July 08, 2004

Give me your tired, your poor, your despotic?

Famous novelist or not, I'd have to vote no.

Thanks to Jennifer (who never links me) for the pointer.

Posted by Ted at 07:06 PM | Comments (1)

Well, that was interesting

I just finished lunch, a "spinach pocket" from a little coffee shop downstairs. It sounded intriguing. They took spinach and a whole bunch of mushrooms (more than I expected, but it was too late to tell 'em to hold them), threw it on the grill, topped it with a scoop of cottage cheese, then melted provolone over the top. Folded into a hot flatbread, it tasted better than it sounds.

Not that I'll be ordering it ever again.

Posted by Ted at 12:27 PM | Comments (3)
Category: Square Pegs

Virtual Voodoo Dolls

For Dawn, who probably needs these more than anyone else I know.

Posted by Ted at 11:18 AM | Comments (1)
Category: Links

Houston, we had a hiccup

Scaled Composites has released the telemetry data from the historic first flight into space by SpaceShipOne, and despite the success of the flight, it wasn’t flawless. At one point near the end of the 76 second burn of the composite rocket motor, the automated pitch control quit functioning, forcing the pilot to switch over to the backup system. The slight loss of control cost SpaceShipOne some 6 miles from the expected altitude and caused the craft to reenter the atmosphere farther south than anticipated.

The data also shows that pilot Mike Melvill experienced weightlessness for over three minutes, and experienced 5g’s during portions of the reentry.

This flight alone was not enough to win the X-Prize. The goal is to make two flights into space with the same manned craft (capable of carrying three people) within a two-week period. At a recent press conference, Burt Rutan would not rule out additional test flights before going for the prize.

Posted by Ted at 09:42 AM | Comments (0)
Category: Space Program

Soliciting Input

I've signed up for the AvantGo service for my iPAQ Pocket PC. What this means is that I can subscribe to selected online publications and have content downloaded onto my PDA. It's free, and so far the obligatory advertising is unobtrusive enough to make it worthwhile.

I'm wondering what kind of news service(s) y'all think I should get. They offer standards like The Wall St Journal, The New York Times and The Washington Post, as well as Rueters and BBC. I was even pleasantly surprised to see the Christian Science Monitor available. I've got my own ideas about these, but would like to hear yours.

I'm just learning about how AvantGo actually works, but so far it's been fairly straightforward. I've successfully downloaded pages from a couple of technology pubs, plus Space.com and The Sporting News, and this morning I created a custom 'channel' for Eric McErlain's Off Wing Opinion. We'll see how that works this evening when I synchronize with my home PC.

Who needs Tetris? I've got words!

Posted by Ted at 07:43 AM | Comments (4)
Category: Links

Except for the detour around Wealthville...

Thanks to Susie and Johnny-Oh, I now know where I am on the highway of life.

(in the extended entry)

PS. Some beasties like bogs. I am one such critter.

Rocket Jones Highway
Mt. Happiness7
Contentment Meadows53
Bog of Eternal Marriage511
Please Drive Carefully
Where are you on the highway of life?
From Go-Quiz.com
Posted by Ted at 06:32 AM | Comments (2)
Category: Links

Additional thunk'd about "The Last Man On Earth" post

(original post here)

There have been countless stories written about a variation of the "Last Man on Earth" theme. Besides the classic "I Am Legend" by Richard Matheson, Damon Knight's short story "Not With A Bang" is an interesting take on the situation. Originally published in the Winter/Spring 1950 issue of Fantasy & Science Fiction, it's also included in the excellent anthology Alfred Hitchcock Presents: Slay Ride.

Posted by Ted at 06:09 AM | Comments (0)
Category: Cult Flicks


A blonde and a lawyer are seated next to each other on a flight from LA to New York. The lawyer asks if she'd like to play a fun game. The blonde is tired and just wants to take a nap, so she politely declines. The lawyer persists and explains that the game is easy and lots of fun.

He explains, "I ask you a question, and if you don't know the answer you pay me $5.00, and vise versa." Again she declines and closes her eyes. The lawyer, now agitated, says, "Okay, if you don't know the answer you pay me $5.00, and if I don't know the answer I'll pay you $500.00."

This catches the blonde's attention and, figuring there will be no end to this torment unless she plays, agrees to the game.

The lawyer asks the first question. "What's the distance from the earth to the moon?"

The blonde doesn't say a word. She reaches into her purse, pulls out a fiver and hands it to the lawyer.

Okay says the lawyer, your turn.

She asks the lawyer, "What goes up a hill with three legs and comes down with four legs?"

The lawyer, puzzled, thinks for a while and then takes out his laptop and searches all his references, no answer. He taps into the air phone with his modem and searches the internet and the Library of Congress, no answer. Frustrated, he sends emails to all his friends and co-workers, to no avail.

After an hour, he wakes the blonde and hands her $500.00. The blonde says, "Thank you", and turns back to get some more sleep.

The lawyer is more than a little miffed, so he wakes the blonde again and asks, "Well, what's the answer?"

Without a word, the blonde reaches into her purse, hands the lawyer $5.00, and goes back to sleep.

And you thought blondes were dumb.

Posted by Ted at 05:20 AM | Comments (0)
Category: Square Pegs

July 07, 2004

Undeveloped thought

Group A thinks that the way to reduce gun violence is through more education, while Group B wants legislation to deal with the problem.

Meanwhile, Group A thinks that legislation is needed to reduce the number of abortions, while Group B believes that education is enough.

Lots of facets to this one, consistency isn't one of them.

Posted by Ted at 06:00 AM | Comments (0)
Category: Square Pegs

Rocketing Around the Blogosphere

This time around, my fancy has been caught largely by technology posts, which isn’t unprecedented I suppose.

First stop is Murdoc Online, with his look at Great Lake water levels and a splash of cold perspective to those who need it. Good story, great ending.

Al talks about what I’ve always suspected about pilots. You have to be detail-oriented, level-headed, clear thinking, quick reacting, and have the black soul of DeSade. Quoting Rick Riley:

”I was worried about getting airsick, so the night before the flight I asked Biff if there was something I should eat the next morning.

"Bananas," he said.

"For the potassium?" I asked.

"No," Biff said, "because they taste about the same coming up as they do going down."

And since we’re talking about bodily functions of the output class, here’s a childish joke that I’ve already told my family, friends and anyone else who would listen that I found over at Mostly Fluff:
Guess who just got back together after a bunch of crap?

My buttcheeks.

Try it on a 3rd grader, they’ll treat you like the French treat Jerry Lewis.

Next up – and somehow I got my mojo on because this is flowing incredibly well – here’s a story about a French sculptor who created a piece to honor the Americans at D-Day, and the support she received from other French to keep the project moving forward. Thanks Casey, from The Gantry Launchpad for pointing this one out.

Who likes roller coasters? In our family, roller coasters ranks right up there with cheese and hugs on the list of important things in life. Five years ago we took a family vacation dubbed “Roller Coasters and Rockets”: a week-long rocket launch sandwiched by multiple day stays at two amusement parks. Ooo baby ooo baby ooo (you can quote me if you'd like).

So if you’re like us, you’ll definitely want to stay away from LegoLand in San Diego. Read the sad details over at QandO.

Whack-a-Mole. Smack down an elected idiot. Same concept, courtesy of Stephen at Hold the Mayo. My letter is drafted and goes out tomorrow.

So where’s all the technology posts, eh? Like a centrifuge spinning faster and faster, the weightier subjects all collect at the bottom. Yeah, I know, whatta crock…

Anticipatory Retaliation points the way to a site that shows you how to use your microwave and common household chemicals in the right proportions a nifty little toy to measure the speed of light.

I liked Michael Gross much better in Tremors than in Family Ties.

Bad movie physics. As in bad physics in movies, not physics in bad movies. Check it out and be prepared to howl. Thanks to Transterrestrial Musings for the link.

Remember when I talked about inflatables in space? Perv, I’m talking about this post. Rocket Forge points out that it looks like the Chinese are interested in the technology, and Bigelow has been moving ahead with prototypes.

File this one under 'science fiction': Kim Jong-Il, beloved leader of North Korea, loves golf.

The "Great Leader" routinely shoots three or four holes-in-one per round, the government-controlled media reported.

Take that you running dog capitalist lackeys. Big thanks to Eric of Off Wing Opinion for today's best chuckle.

And finally, just because someone must be last, is a nifty story from AEBrain about Coca Cola and the potential to ruin someone’s day in a National Security kinda way. The proposed solution would never work, it makes too much sense. Look for revised (and obscenely expanded) rules to be published soon.

So that’s it. Bananas and butt cheeks, Michael Gross and inflatables, and of course the obligatory BDSM reference from Bondage Rocket Jones. Have fun.

Posted by Ted at 04:47 AM | Comments (3)
Category: Links

July 06, 2004

New tagline

Over on the right column, in the usual place. That and new banners is about all the furniture rearranging that happens here on Rocket Jones. It's a guy thing.

Posted by Ted at 09:06 AM | Comments (0)
Category: Square Pegs

Something you don't see every day

Oldest daughter and I were driving to the hardware store saturday morning, and as we came up on a stop sign in our residential neighborhood, we spotted a large bird standing in the middle of the road.

My first thought was "chicken", then "turkey" as I realized just how big it really was. As we slowed down, it walked out of the way of my truck, and I saw the hairless red head. It was a Turkey Vulture. Not terribly uncommon, but rarely seen standing around in the road like that.

Ugly thing.

Legend has it that in the earliest of times the sun lived very close to the earth making it almost unbearable. The vulture was the most beautiful and powerful of birds-its head covered with rich feathers that all other birds envied. Knowing that the earth would burn up unless someone moved the sun, the vulture placed its head against the sun and began to fly toward the heavens. With powerful strokes of its mighty wings, it pushed the sun further and further away from the earth. Though it could feel it crown feathers burning, the vulture continued until the sun was high up in the heavens. The earth was safe, but unfortunately, the vulture lost its magnificent head of feathers for all eternity.

Pretty cool too.

Posted by Ted at 07:24 AM | Comments (1)
Category: Square Pegs

Aviation Art

Some of my favorite works are by Dru Blair. Check out his site for some great works.

(more in the extended entry)

According to the website, Mr. Blair allows the use of his images as wallpapers, which is how I have them.

View "Deliverance"

View "Tomcat"

Posted by Ted at 04:40 AM | Comments (0)
Category: Links

July 05, 2004

Going through old paperwork

I've been putzing around the house this weekend, taking care of little chores. I'm pretty disorganized, so one task has been to gather up all the little piles of paperwork I have stashed all over and get them into some semblance of order. While going through one stack, I came across this...

Commonwealth of Virginia
Department of Motor Vehicles

Administrative Letter No. 92-5

April 24, 1992

To: All Licensed Property and Casualty Insurance Agents
All Virginia Dealers of New and Used Cars
All Banks, Finance Companies, and Lending Institutions

From: Donald E. Williams

Subject: Automobile Headlight Dimmer Switches

Pursuant to House Bill No. 755, all motor vehicles sold in the Commonwealth of Virginia after July 1, 1992, will be required to have headlight dimmer switches mounted on the floorboard. The dimmer switch must be mounted in a position accessible to operation by pressing the switch with the left foot. The dimmer switch must be far enough removed from the brake pedal or clutch pedal to avoid inadvertent operation or pedal confusion.

Included in the above bill, and beginning July 1, 1992, all vehicles with steering column mounted dimmer switches must be retrofitted with a floorboard mounted dimmer switch. The steering column dimmer switch must be disabled or removed from the vehicle. Vehicles which have not made this change will not pass the requirements of the Commonwealth's Motor Vehicle Inspection Act and will, effective July 1, 1992, not be eligible for Automobile Insurance.

It is recognized that this change will cause some hardship for the driving public. However, this change is being made in the interest of public safety. A recent joint study by the Department of Motor Vehicles and the University of Virginia found that 25 percent of all nighttime highway accidents are caused by blondes getting their foot caught in the dimmer switch mounted on the steering column.

I'm trying to decide which category to file this one under.

Posted by Ted at 11:30 AM | Comments (0)
Category: Square Pegs

Who Was Who

I've just finished an oldie-timey humor book called Who Was Who, 5000 B.C. to Date. Edited by Irwin Gordon around 1910, the humor is gentle and good for a smile, but what I found most interesting is the general attitudes and mores of the day that are included.

According to the Foreward:

Who Was Who contains over 500 biographies of those who did or endeavored to become famous.

Mr. Gordon states his policy for accepting corrections - from friends and enemies alike - and notes that the text is protected by the libel laws of both Great Britain and the United States.
Under no circumstance will duels be fought.

Here are a few of my favorite entries:
BACON, Francis, either wrote or did not write Shakespeare.

GOOSE, Mother, a fine old lady who was loved by all, but who told some awful untruths to the innocent.

ROY, Robert, a very wicked Scotchman whom we all hope will always escape the police.

SANTOS-DUMONT, a pre-Zeppelin-Wright air investigator who had enough money and sense to quit before people remarked how natural he looked.

Just for the heck of it, I went and googled "Who Was Who" and came up with several pages of nifty links to explore.

Posted by Ted at 10:53 AM | Comments (0)
Category: Links

Itsy Bitsy Spiders

My PC is down in my den/workshop/basement/laundry room, and I treat it like the comfortable 'guy space' it's supposed to be. It's seldom ready for company, and sometimes stuff lays around on the workbench for quite a while before I get around to putting it where it belongs.

I have an old stand lamp sitting next to my desk, forming a small pool of light in the usually dim room. There are four minute spiders doing acrobatic spider things on the lamp. These spiders are smaller than the roller ball in a ball point pen, which means that despite my severe arachnophobia, I don't fear them. Hell, they're fun to watch. They weave their almost invisible webs and dangle under the lamp, working like they don't need the money, until hurricane Ted raises the wind, and they scramble for their safe points.

So I watch and enjoy and am amused. And I carefully count them, because if they increase to eight, then God (or a sufficiently accurate facsimile) is gonna wipe 'em out. Because I freakin' hate spiders.

Posted by Ted at 08:26 AM | Comments (5)
Category: Square Pegs

July 04, 2004

From one cowboy to all the others

Happy Independence Day!!!

(picture in the extended entry)

Yipee Kye-aye.jpg

Posted by Ted at 12:13 AM | Comments (0)
Category: Square Pegs

July 03, 2004

Don't Fight The Feeling

TV Land is showing the Flip Wilson Show every weekday evening at 5pm. Awesome.

Posted by Ted at 05:50 PM | Comments (1)
Category: Links

Happy Birthday-ish to Rocket Jones

July 3rd. It was a year ago (give or take a few days) when Rocket Jones started on BlogSpot. Like many others, I owe huge thanks to Pixy Misa for offering me a new home on Munuviana. One of my personal goals was to post something every day, and believe it or not I managed that. It's kind of like Cal Ripken's consecutive game record: at some point I'll miss a day and now that I've reached the one year point, I'll be ok with the end of the streak.

The first blog I ever read was Rachel Lucas, and it was sheer accident that I stumbled across her site. Several guys where I used to work are avid shooters, so for fun I googled "Girls with Guns" or something similar. Rachel Lucas' place came up, and I discovered blogs. I read around for some time, sent a few emails, was actually answered by a few people (which surprised me - thank you Rachel and our very own Annika), and eventually decided that by sharing myself on a blog of my own, the world might not be a better place, but it'd survive. What the hell.

So today, rather than toot my own horn, I'd like to mention a few memorable posts I've read since I started blogging. This is by no means a comprehensive list.

Spork bringing back Rachel Lucas. At least the scary little girl floating head part of her.

Stephen's iPod project, back when he was still on BlogSpot. His series inspired me to start building a rocket online.

Meatriarch's multi-part dog breed posts. Three quick notes: 1 - did you decide to not move to the Munuviana site? If so, then I need to readjust my links back to the old place. 2. There's no search function on your old site, could you give the links in the comments here, because... 3. These "dog" posts are outstanding, and everyone that hasn't had the chance to read them should take the time.

The story of Collins. The man, the nose, the saga. Gone, but not forgotten.

My first Instalanche, during the original link war on Frank J, when I compared Frank to Aquaman - unfavorably (yeah, so I tooted my horn a little bit).

Funniest line: From Anna at Primal Purge, about women having way too many children: "It's a vagina, lady, not a clown car".

(Ok, another toot) Winning three photo caption contests on three different sites: Wizbang!, Captain's Quarters, and Blather Review. Take that all you authority figures who said being a smartass would never get me anywhere!

The picture that Helen drew in my mind with this:

...while he was busy on a tractor on one of them I walked along the cornrows in amiable company with my man, Mario. We noticed a patch of unplanted ground, a little cove that had thick grass under the shelter of some trees. Investigating closer, I found it was a small graveyard, a jumble of tombstones falling to the side, the names edging their way back out of the headstone, a family of tombstones grouped under the trees, forgotten.

A whole family, buried and ignored for the rest of their internment.

Paul, over at Sanity's Edge, who had me laughing to the point of tears with his post Tales From The Holidays. Just head over there and click on his "best of" link, you won't go wrong (there, I've linked it - happy now?).

I know I'm forgetting a million others. I'm about 2/3 of the way through a bottle of Sangria, which makes my total alcohol consumption for the year about 3 beers and 2/3's of a bottle of Sangria. It also makes for a pleasant buzz, I'm a cheap date.

There was that intervention set up by WindRider over at Bloviating Inanities. Virtual Anarchy, and lots of fun. Search the archives over there, look for Rocket Jones amongst others.

And of course, meeting people in real life. Over the last year, I've enjoyed a wonderful visit with SilverBlue and his compadres PoloRandy and Tink (and Roxette Bunny). I've shared a fun meal or three with the lovely Dawn, which is pronounced completely differently than Don.

So that's it, one year. Thanks to everyone who's ever stopped by to read, and who've left a comment (on slow days even the spammers are welcomed). Some bloggers just seem to attract scads of comments, and I never really got the knack for the cult thing I tried to set up (the sample fridge magnets were hideous). My online time has been sharply curtailed lately, so I'm not able to visit as many sites as I'd like each day. If you're on the blogroll, I stop by at least occasionally.

Now I've got to watch one more old movie for a review I'll post today (tomorrow actually, because I'm writing this last night). And Rocket Jones will continue on as before, sputtering and sparking and occasionally soaring to great heights of silliness.

It's just a year, but damn I'm proud of it.

Posted by Ted at 12:28 AM | Comments (10)
Category: Munuvian Daily Tattler

July 02, 2004

What he said

Rock, Paper, Saddam. Thanks to Curmudgeonly & Skeptical for the pointer.

Posted by Ted at 09:29 PM | Comments (0)
Category: Links

Would the last person alive please turn out the lights?

You've probably seen The Omega Man, the post-apocalypse film starring Charlton Heston. But did you know that the movie had been done before? Both movies were based on Richard Matheson's classic book "I Am Legend", and tell the story of what may be the last human alive and his battle to survive against zombies who roam the night looking for blood.

Wake up, make coffee, gas up the generator in the garage, clear the zombie corpses off of the porch, go grocery shopping, then spend the day killing zombies and burning their bodies. It's a big city, so the routine goes on each and every day. You're half-crazy from the solitude, so you practically welcome the company at night as the zombies try to break into your house.

That's the plot of Last Man On Earth, an Italian chiller made in 1964. Starring Vincent Price, the black and white cinematography and eerie scenes of an empty city littered with corpses go a long way to set the dark tone. This movie is a downer right from the beginning, which feels right considering the concept. There's a lot more background story than in Omega Man, and more psychological depth to the characters.

The Omega Man is one of those wonderfully cheesy SciFi thrillers that you either love or hate. Adapted from the same story as the first movie, both share the main plot line, but where Vincent Price is borderline crazy from his situation, Charlton Heston seems to thrive on it. Details differ, but the most obvious change is recognizing that by being the last man alive, you pretty much own everything. Heston stocks his penthouse apartment with fine art, liquor and food, and as long as he remembers to keep gas in the basement generator, then life is good (except for the being alone part).

Sharing the title, but not the storyline, is the 1924 flick, The Last Man On Earth. This forgotten classic examines the situation from a more literal point of view. What happens if, after all the men die, you find a fertile male? The obvious (and cheesy) answer is "breed".

Similar storylines can be found in such classics as Hell Comes To Frogtown, among others, but here...

Ok, now I'm pissed off. The box gives the synopsis for that movie, but the actual flick included is the Vincent Price version - again. Son of a bitch. Hang on... all right, I've double checked everything, and they switched movies on the DVD.

So now I can't recommend it based on personally seeing it myself, but I am going to be looking for a copy of the original. Ya know what? Go watch Hell Comes To Frogtown.

Posted by Ted at 09:00 PM | Comments (3)
Category: Cult Flicks


Marlon Brando.

Posted by Ted at 12:55 PM | Comments (0)
Category: Links

Too good to miss

Bits of an exchange over on the Munuviana group blog, under the title Blacklist Backfire:

CD: Hey, I can't use the word "socialist" in my comments because it contains the word "Cialis."

Pixy Misa: Just call them filthy godless Commies like everyone else.

Posted by Ted at 06:33 AM | Comments (0)
Category: Links

What's that, Lassie? (updated)

No, Timmy didn't fall into the well again. Lassie just wanted to remind everyone that half the stuff in Adam & Eve's catalog can be found cheaper at PetSmart.

Don't believe me? Take the test: Dog Toy or Marital Aid?

Kudos to Rich for pointing this one out.

Update: Ok, home from work. I took the first two rounds and scored 9 out of 14 twice.

Posted by Ted at 06:20 AM | Comments (1)
Category: Links

July 01, 2004

"America doing it right"

That's a quote from the director of Space Science for the European Space Agency, regarding the successful arrival of the Cassini mission to Saturn.

Cassini is a group effort of 17 nations, funded by the Italian Space Agency, the ESA and NASA, and continues the string of successes NASA has enjoyed this year - two Mars rovers, the "comet catcher" that's returning to Earth, and now Cassini.

The pictures are already spectacular. More please.

Posted by Ted at 12:20 PM | Comments (0)
Category: Space Program

What if they held an election and everybody came?

Mongolia recently held elections and the resident Communist Party suffered huge losses, to the point that they may be out of power. But the truly remarkable part is that their election had an 80% voter turnout!

Thanks to The Marmot for the story, and to Simon for pointing it out.

Posted by Ted at 07:18 AM | Comments (1)
Category: Links

Upcoming Rocket Launch - Y'all are invited

Every year, the National Association of Rocketry has it's Annual Meet, known as NARAM. It's held in different areas of the country, and for an entire week there are serious rocket competitions and hobbyists like myself get to eat, breathe, sleep and live rockets.

This year, it's being hosted by the club I belong to, NOVAAR, and it all happens at Great Meadows, just west of Manassas, Virginia. There will be just-for-fun flying every day, from the smallest finger-sized rockets all the way up to high powered flights by the big boys, and special events like a radio-controlled rocket glider contest. Past highlights include a scale model of the full-stack space shuttle that actually works like the real one, dropping boosters and tanks on the way up before the shuttle glides back under RC control. The contests can get intense, and this year include egglofting, two types of gliders and helicopter recovery events.

NARAM runs from Saturday, July 31st through Friday, August 6th. Just to stop by and watch is free, and there will be several vendors there just in case the bug bites you. I'm going to be helping to run the range this year, so no flying for me, but if you'd like to see what this is all about, drop me an email and we'll hook up. Hope to see you there.

Posted by Ted at 05:11 AM | Comments (0)
Category: Rocketry

Ooooo, pretty pictures

Since there's been such a hue and cry (translation: nobody asked) about the secret identities of our intrepid NogMeisters, I've decided to give some clues about who they are and what they look like.

Inspired by TopDawg, in the extended entry.

If you squint, we look like binary.

Posted by Ted at 04:45 AM | Comments (1)
Category: Square Pegs
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