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64 entries from April 2004

CNET News.com: Pepsi’s iTunes promotion goes flat

Apple Computer said Wednesday that about 5 million free songs have been given away through a Pepsi promotion, far fewer than the 100 million tracks that could have been redeemed.

An Apple representative said the music giveaway was probably the biggest ever of its kind but admitted that the company gave away fewer songs than it had intended.

"We had hoped the redemptions would have been higher," said Katie Cotton, Apple's vice president of worldwide corporate communications. Customers with winning bottle caps have until Friday to redeem their free music tracks.

Cotton noted that the yellow-capped bottles with the Apple song codes were late in reaching some key markets. However, Cotton said the promotion did introduce a lot of people to iTunes.

I wonder if the results of this promotion would have been appreciably different had Apple paired up with Coca-Cola instead of with Pepsi.

And not just because I prefer Coke products, although it certainly is true I would have participated in the promotion a bit more willingly—I should say "would have participated at all"—had Coke been the vendor of choice. And had they offered it with Diet Coke, because regular Coke is way too sweet for my taste.


15 random tunes: 28 Apr 2004

Now that I have iTunes 4.5 (released today on the one-year anniversary of the iTunes Music Store), my occasional random-songs posting will be easier because I can use the Party Shuffle feature instead of relying on my own stupid (and, as I discovered several times as I prepared to make a 15-random-tunes post, not all that random) Smart Playlist.

About music sharing

Music I'm willing to share is linked directly from this page. No link, no sharing—don't email asking for files.
Without further ado, the first 15 tunes in today's Party Shuffle list:

  1. A Little Less Conversation - Elvis Presley - A Little Less Conversation (Singles)
  2. Starving Seed - Nick Kelly - Between Trapezes
  3. Little Star - Madonna - Ray of Light
  4. My Medea - Vienna Teng - Warm Strangers
  5. Lullabye for a Stormy Night - Vienna Teng - Waking Hour
  6. You Oughta Know (Alternate) - Alanis Morissette - Jagged Little Pill
  7. California Dreamin' - The Mamas and the Papas
  8. Marble Halls - Enya - Paint the Sky With Stars: The Best of Enya
  9. Border Song - Elton John - To Be Continued... (Disc 1)
  10. Money - Pink Floyd - A Collection of Great Dance Songs
  11. Concerti à Cinque, Concerto in D Minor, No.2, Op.9, II. Adagio - Han De Vries/Wouter Moller - Virgin Veritas: Telemann, Albinoni: Concertos and Sonatas for Oboe
  12. Heading for the Light - The Traveling Wilburys - Vol. 1
  13. Never Gonna Give You Up - Rick Astley - Whenever You Need Somebody
  14. One Day at a Time - Elton John - Rare Masters (Disc 2)
  15. Please Please Me - The Beatles - 1962-1966 (Disc 1)

So then the wind kicked up

and I made an unscheduled 2-lane change on the AZ Loop 101 about 2 miles shy of the I-17 interchange. Scared the hell out of me, and I think I nearly caused the old man in the little Toyota in the center lane to have a heart attack.

But he swerved expertly, and then he probably said, "Damned Washington drivers!"

High-wind warning in effect for now until tomorrow at 19:00. Sustained at 25-30mph, gusts to 47mph (!) according to the weather report I heard immediately after that unscheduled lane change.

Oh yeah, and dust storms possible.

Two weeks in and oh, how I love life in the desert!


bash.org quote of the day: 04/28/04

#282032

<Van> huh. if you inject dye into eggs, when they hatch the chicks will be whatever color you injected
<@Unarmed> similarly, if you inject radioactive compounds into eggs, when they hatch the chicks will rip you apart with their massive talons

When Text Ads Mismatch!

Text ads mismatched to Michael Jackson molestation case story on CNN.com
Click image for full-size version in pop-up window
I was browsing CNN a bit ago and came across their story about Michael Jackson's replacing his lead attorneys.

Then I looked at the text ads that came up with the story and noticed the ads were wildly out of place based on the story's content.

The ads obviously were keying off the words jackson and court, and didn't take into consideration the rest of the story.

They've since finessed the keywords for the ads that appear on the story, so they're more relevant to the content.

I'm sure the proprietors of the Jackson Court hotel are just so happy to be associated with such a worthy personage as Michael "Shadow" Jackson.


Week 64: Unconscious Mutterings

Week 3 for me.

Said... :: Thunk...
  1. Elastic :: Band
  2. Intervention :: Drug
  3. Risk :: Reward
  4. Junk food :: Chips
  5. Arrogance :: Bush
  6. Responsibility :: Duty
  7. X :: Gen
  8. Marshall :: Baton
  9. Kill :: Maim
  10. Brother :: Sister

Mobile test

Settings test since the recent cell-number change seems to have hosed me over

Posted from Arrowhead Towne Center AT&T Wireless store
Glendale, AZ
via Sony Ericsson T616

15 random tunes: 25 Apr 2004

About music sharing

Music I'm willing to share is linked directly from this page. No link, no sharing—don't email asking for files.

  1. Genuit puerpera regem (Antiphonal and Psalm 99, Modo II) - The Benedictine Monks of Santo Domingo de Silos - Chant
  2. Learning to Fly - Pink Floyd - Delicate Sound of Thunder (Live) (Disc 1)
  3. Ludas Mercator - The Benedictine Monks of Santo Domingo de Silos - Chant III
  4. A Guy What Takes His Time - Marlene Dietrich - The Cosmopolitan Marlene Dietrich
  5. Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious (Mary Poppins) - Classic Disney - 60 Years of Musical Magic (Disc 2)
  6. Radharc - Dead Can Dance - Aion
  7. Christmas Classics - Radio City Music Hall - Songs of Christmas
  8. Cursum Perficio - Enya - Watermark
  9. Don't Hide Your Love - The Rembrandts - L.P.
  10. Shattered Dreams - Johnny Hates Jazz - Red Hot (Disc 2)
  11. Jessie's Girl - Rick Springfield - Awesome '80s
  12. La Vie En Rose - Marlene Dietrich - The Cosmopolitan Marlene Dietrich
  13. A3S1: Piano, Qui Posi (Carlo) (Alvaro) - Giuseppe Verdi - La Forza del Destino (Disc 2)
  14. Kevin's Party (Cowboy Gil) - Randy Newman - Parenthood
  15. The Loss of the Journal and the Return to Winter Camp - John Barry - Dances With Wolves


15 random tunes: 24 Apr 2004

About music sharing

Music I'm willing to share is linked directly from this page. No link, no sharing—don't email asking for files.

  1. Transformation - Alan Menken - Beauty and the Beast
  2. Take Me to the River - Annie Lennox - Medusa
  3. Finally (7" Choice Mix) - Ce Ce Peniston - The Adventures of Priscilla, Queen of the Desert
  4. Somebody for Someone - The Corrs - In Blue
  5. A3S1: Al Tradimento (Carlo) (Alvaro) - Giuseppe Verdi - La Forza del Destino (Disc 2)
  6. Deconstruction - Indigo Girls - Become You
  7. But I Do Love You - LeAnn Rimes - I Need You
  8. Still - Lionel Richie - Back to Front
  9. America - Neil Diamond - The Jazz Singer
  10. The District Sleeps Alone Tonight - The Postal Service - Give Up
  11. Finest Worksong - R.E.M. - Eponymous
  12. One and One - Robert Miles - Dreamland
  13. Tornadoes - Seana Carmody - Struts & Shocks
  14. Sixteen Going on Seventeen: Rolf And Liesl - Sound of Music - The Sound of Music
  15. Basina Bela Olurum - Tarkan - Ölürüm Sana


The world is ending soon

I just saw an advertisement for Gillette's new men's facial moisturizer. The slogan they used:

This is not your girlfriend's moisturizer.

(emphasis added to approximate voice-over announcer's inflections)


CNN.com: No-carb-diet couple booted from buffet

This caught my eye because it happened in Salt Lake City, where I was born and raised, and it happened at Chuck-A-Rama, easily the world's most hideously bad buffet restaurant.

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah (AP)—A couple on a low-carb diet were kicked out of a buffet restaurant after the manager said they'd eaten too much roast beef.

Sui Amaama, who along with his wife have been on the Atkins Diet for two weeks, was asked to leave after he went up to the buffet at the Chuck-A-Rama in suburban Taylorsville for his 12th slice of roast beef.

"It's so embarrassing actually," said Isabelle Leota, Amaama's wife. "We went in to have dinner, we were under the impression Chuck-A-Rama was an all-you-can-eat establishment."

Not so, said Jack Johanson, the restaurant chain's district manager.

"We've never claimed to be an all-you-can-eat establishment," said Johanson. "Our understanding is a buffet is just a style of eating."

The general manager who was carving the meat Tuesday became concerned about having enough for other patrons and asked Amaama to stop, Johanson said.

Offended, the couple asked for a refund. The manager refused and called police when they would not leave.

The couple said they have eaten at Chuck-A-Rama's $8.99 buffet at least twice a week, but did not plan to return.

(This is the full text of the CNN.com story)


Cell-number craziness

Cingular logoSpent an hour at the nearby Cingular store, trying to get my cell number changed from the Puget Sound area to the Phoenix metro area.

It took an hour because, as usual for an Cingular store, there were only 3 employees (of the 8 I saw at various times) actually working the sales floor. And their computer systems were operating at glacial speed, requiring upward of 4 minutes between clicking “submit” (or whatever) and the return of the response from the system.

AT&T Wireless logo; obsolete
Obsolete logo
And of course changing one’s phone number, which should be a simple process, actually takes something like 10 of these “submit” operations.

So after I’d waited for 20 minutes for a sales clerk to be available—they’ve even instituted a sign-in sheet at many stores, since it takes them so damned long to help anyone—I went through 40 minutes of “sorry, it’s nearly finished” and “sorry it’s taking so long, our systems are really slow today” and similar.

And now, I see that my service isn’t even working correctly. I’ll have to go there again tomorrow to get the text messaging and data services “provisioned” again.

I hate the use of provision as a verb.


15 random tunes: 23 Apr 2004

About music sharing

Music I'm willing to share is linked directly from this page. No link, no sharing—don't email asking for files.
The first 15 tunes at random from my library of 5643.

  1. Street Urchins - Alan Menken, Howard Ashman, Tim Rice - Aladdin
  2. Ponce: Concierto Del Sur: II. Andante - Andres Segovia - The Segovia Collection: Vol. 2 - Ponce, Rodrigo, Tor roba
  3. My Fair Lady - Audrey Hepburn - Music from the Films of Audrey Hepburn
  4. We've Got It Goin' On - Backstreet Boys - Backstreet Boys
  5. Great Provider - Barenaked Ladies - Maybe You Should Drive
  6. The Fool on the Hill - The Beatles - 1967-1970 (Disc 1)
  7. Glory Days - Bruce Springsteen - Born in the U.S.A.
  8. Bibbidi-Bobbidi-Boo (Cinderella) - Classic Disney - 60 Years of Musical Magic (Disc 2)
  9. Canon in D - Johann Pachelbel - Mad About the Classics
  10. Prospero's Speech - Loreena McKennitt - The Mask and Mirror
  11. Let's Call It a Day - Marlene Dietrich - The Cosmopolitan Marlene Dietrich
  12. Arcangelo Corelli, Concerti Grossi (12) Op.6: Concerto in G Minor, Op. 6 No. 8 "Christmas Concerto": 2: Allegro - Orpheus Chamber Orchestra - Albinoni: Adagio - Pachelbel: Canon
  13. Delíkanli Caklarim - Tarkan - Ölürüm Sana
  14. Handle With Care - The Traveling Wilburys - Vol. 1
  15. A Sort of Homecoming - U2 - The Unforgettable Fire

Week 63: Unconscious Mutterings

My Week 2.

Said... :: Thunk...
  1. Virginia :: West
  2. Soft :: Drink
  3. Carol :: Christmas
  4. Vanity :: Mirror
  5. Feminist :: Agenda
  6. Alias :: Spy
  7. Coward :: Hero
  8. Beer :: Mug
  9. Chance :: Destiny
  10. Honest :: Liar

TypePad’s new logo

TypePad’s new logo, rectangularWhile I’m not updating my blog all that frequently with personal stuff, I figured I’d comment on the new logo I noticed at TypePad’s site about 20 minutes ago.

I didn’t realize their original logo, which was the word "TypePad" in green and white in a font the name of which I’ve yet to discover, was considered temporary until I saw the new logo and then checked out the related entry on the Everything TypePad weblog.

TypePad’s new logo, squareInteresting choice they’ve made: A lily pad and a new font, both narrow and bold font weights, different colors that don’t (yet, anyway) match the other colors of the TypePad system. I recognized the lily pad for what it was right away, but the font choice seems strange since their old logo matched the Trebuchet MS font they used throughout their site and the new logo’s font is sans serif and sterile.

Perhaps they’ll be changing the entire look and feel of the site sometime down the line...?


Inertia and loss of power

Gotta love how ships come to a complete stop when they lose power in the "Star Trek" universe. Sure, they coast for a few seconds, but then they... just... stop.

Must be fun to live within that set of natural laws.


Damned tires

A lot of squealing tires around here. The parking lot of the nearby mall is paved in what looks like regular asphalt, but it's actually some sort of pavement that induces squealing in all types of tires on all types of vehicles at even the lowest speeds.

gah!


Dinner confusion

So we decided to go to Chili’s for dinner. Right in this general neighborhood, so no problem getting there, right?

The restaurant was slightly west of the nearby north-south street, so we were heading into the sun as we tried to figure out exactly which driveway to use. There are what seems like thousands of retail establishments around here and many of them share one enormous parking lot, but it’s not always obvious where to enter the lot. We ended up spotting the building by its awnings, which have a distinctive stripe pattern.

We arrived and walked in and I put us on the list, table for 2, about a 10-minute wait according to the endlessly bubbly greeter-girl. We stepped aside out of the way of the door and stood staring at the happy-hour menu.

That’s when it occurred to me that the top of the happy-hour menu board read:

APPLEBEE’S

We don’t like Applebee’s, so we walked out laughing about the silliness of the moment. Wondering how embarrassing it would’ve been if we’d actually been seated before we noticed, especially since as I gave the host our name, I looked at the name tag, but it didn’t register on my awareness at all.

When I told Sonya about this by text message, she wondered how the hell we’d managed something so silly/stupid. My reply:

The awnings look a lot alike and besides, the sun was in my eyes ;D

Her response:

So you’re gonna be stupid 11 months out of the year?

Move Update

A couple of days into the new place. All the furniture's arranged and there are only a handful of boxes remaining to be unpacked, along with about 12,000 miles of cables and such in my home office (it didn't seem like that much cabling when I packed it...).

I'll wander around snapping some grainy pix with the T616 in the next few days, because I'm feeling a bit exhibitionist lately.


We're here!

Arrived in AZ a few hours ago, got the apartment keys, immediately went to find a beer.

Now at a hotel for the night, unload the truck in the morning.

Bed calling shortly....


Q for you Oregonians

What's the logic behind requiring attendants to pump gas at the filling stations? The first time I went through OR a few years ago, I tried to pump my own gas (there was no attendant and no sign indicating an attendant would help me), and when the attendant appeared a few seconds later, he nearly had a stroke when he saw me with the nozzle in my hand.

Posted from southbound I-5
somewhere in OR
via Sony Ericsson T616

Low post count the next few days

I'm moving to the Phoenix area, so won't be posting much for a few days. Probably will update my don's camera dot com photo album from the road, so check it out to see what fascinating imagery I've encountered along the I-5 corridor from Seattle to Los Angeles and I-10 into Phoenix.


The truck is loaded

Took 5 or 6 hours of moving boxes, furniture, etc., and then cleaning and whatnot, but the truck is loaded and waiting for its drive south starting tomorrow.

Time to open the beer bottles...!


Silly Quiz: What does your name and arithmacy say about you?

Depends on which form of my name I use.

For my diminutive first name, which is what I use except for official documents etc.:

Sixes are a whole bunch of words; harmony,
friendship, family life, loyal, reliable,
loving, and you adapt easily. You do well in
teaching and the arts, but are often
unsuccessful in business. You are prone to
gossip and complacency. The Pythagoreans
regarded six as the perfect number because of
lots of math things; six is divisible by both
two and three, and was the sum as well as the
product of the first three digits.

For my full first name:

Five; the number of instability and imbalance,
indicating change and uncertainty. You're
drawn to many things at once and commit to
none. If it makes you feel any better, I'm a
five. And proud of it. Because Fives are
adventurous, energetic, and willing to take
risks. Fives enjoy travel and meeting new
people but may not stay in one place for very
long. Fives can be conceited, irresponsible,
quick-tempered, and impatient.

What does your name and arithmacy say about you?
brought to you by Quizilla

Silly Quiz: Which New York Times Op-Ed columnist are you?

Maureen Dowd
You are Maureen Dowd! You like to give people silly nick-
names and write in really short, non-sequitur paragraphs.
You're the most playful of the columnists and a rock-
ribbed liberal, but are often accused of being too flamboyant
and frivolous. You tend to focus on style over substance,
personality over politics. But your heart is in the right
place. Plus, you are a total fox.

Which New York Times Op-Ed columnist are you?
brought to you by Quizilla

OnStar stupidity

OnStar commercial in their recent "an actual OnStar customer's call" series:

OnStar user presses his little button when he finds a lost child wandering a neighborhood. OnStar "advisor" (...?) calls local police, connects cops to OnStar customer, all ends happily ever after.

In other words:

OnStar customers are so stupid, it doesn't occur to them to dial 911 for themselves!

And if Verizon's right hand knew what its left was doing...

So I'm speaking to a very helpful, if difficult to understand, gentleman who's telling me that if he submits my DSL disconnect order right now, the signal will end by midnight tonight and my email account may be accessible until tomorrow, and am I sure I want to do that? Because he can also put in a future-disconnect request, blah blah blah.

Last week when I spoke to them, they told me their systems could not accommodate a disconnect request more than 3 days in advance, because that's what their timing was on all disconnect orders, and if I placed the disconnect order that day I'd lose the service 3 days later.

So he's backing the immediate-disconnect order out of the system and putting in a future-disconnect order for 04/15/04, and I expect as soon as he hits "Submit" that I'll be cut off instantly.

MORE GAH


Today's Verizon hold experience

Elevator-music versions of Landslide and Never Going Back Again, and now Turn Turn Turn while I'm on hold for 20 minutes for Verizon DSL after holding 41 minutes through Verizon's main queue, since they don't publish their DSL customer-service number in any location accessible to us mere mortals.

GAH


15 random tunes: 12 Apr 2004

About music sharing

Music I'm willing to share is linked directly from this page. No link, no sharing—don't email asking for files.
The first 15 tunes to play at random from my library of 5643. Included album name this time, for the hell of it.

  1. Michelle - The Beatles - 1962-1966 (Disc 2)
  2. Children of the Revolution - Bono - Moulin Rouge
  3. Dunmore Lassies - The Chieftains - The Long Black Veil
  4. Leader of the Band - Dan Fogelberg - Greatest Hits: Dan Fogelberg
  5. Na Laetha Geal Moige - Enya - Watermark
  6. No, I'll be brave - Gilbert & Sullivan - The Pirates of Penzance (Disc 2)
  7. A2S2: Re: pei sacri Num - Giuseppe Verdi - Aida (Disc 2)
  8. Venus, the Bringer of Peace - Gustav Holst - Planets
  9. Neptune, the Mystic - Gustav Holst - Planets
  10. Go Forward - Lisa Gerrard - Whale Rider
  11. Courtyard Lullaby - Loreena McKennitt - The Visit
  12. Another Brick in the Wall, Part 2 - Pink Floyd - A Collection of Great Dance Songs
  13. The Oh of Pleasure - Ray Lynch - Deep Breakfast
  14. Passage - Vienna Teng - Warm Strangers
  15. Goodbye, Carmen - Wilson Phillips - Shadows & Light

Beautiful day for a barbecue

Mid-70s, sun and only a few fleeting clouds (mostly the contrails from passing aircraft)... would've been a crime not to have a barbecue. Sonya and I drove over to Kat's apartment, fired up the grill, had a few brews and got a bit of a sunburn (I did anyway) after a few hours on the patio.

Katharine's Siamese cat Fezzik decided today would be a fun day to leap through the patio fence and go for a run. Did it several times before we shut him inside her apartment, which prompted him to stand at the open window and YOWL! plaintively behind the wicker couch where I was sitting.

Charming little bugger.


Week 62: Unconscious Mutterings

Week 1 for me—another weekly (?) list I've seen at others' sites. Thanks to random thinks for the sighting this week.

Said... :: Thunk...
  1. Boxing :: Helena
  2. Lewis :: Clark
  3. Bodyguard :: My
  4. Burnout :: Overwork
  5. Cruising :: State
  6. Easter :: Basket
  7. AA :: Battery
  8. Research :: Grant
  9. Redemption :: Coupon
  10. Snickers :: Bar

Music-library analyses

Because I should be in bed, but I’m not tired.

I used KavaSoft’s iTunes Catalog to generate the music listings I mentioned in an earlier post. One of the handy features of iTunes Catalog is that it provides totals by artist for time and play count, so you can view not only how much time a particular song takes or how many times you’ve played that song, but you can also view the total time and total play count for all works by that artist.

About music sharing

Music I’m willing to share is linked directly from this page. No link, no sharing—don’t email asking for files.
I was just looking at the list in iTunes Catalog and noticed a couple of interesting things. All times are listed in hrs:min:sec or min:sec.

  • The artist best represented in my library by total time is Elton John, with 14:14:07 for 191 songs on 10 albums (including two multiple-disc sets).

    The next highest total times: Steve Winwood (7:35:49 for 81 songs on 10 albums), Enya (7:20:51 for 127 songs, 7 albums), Kenny Loggins (!) (7:08:41 for 84 songs, 7 albums).

  • The artist with the highest play count is Eastmountainsouth, at 1947 total plays for 16 tracks on 2 albums.

    Next highest play counts: Sarah McLachlan (1297 plays, 5 albums, 57 tracks), Paul Spaeth (1284 plays, 4 albums, 23 songs), Vienna Teng (1060 plays, 2 albums, 25 songs).

    I’ve tallied just 129 plays for the 191 Elton John songs.

23 questions

21 answered, two deferred.

  1. Grab the book nearest to you, turn to page 18, find line 4. Write down what it says:
    orous man, not the senile old goat who now sat at the head of
  2. Stretch your left arm out as far as you can. What do you touch first?
    halogen torchiere
  3. What is the last thing you watched on TV?
    Five minutes of Cirque du Soleil “Alegria”
  4. WITHOUT LOOKING, guess what the time is:
    00:05
  5. Now look at the clock; what is the actual time?
    00:03
  6. With the exception of the computer, what can you hear?
    “Drought” by Vienna Teng
  7. When did you last step outside? What were you doing?
    Two hours ago, walking from car to apartment after getting home from a day out
  8. Before you came to this website, what did you look at?
    Amazon.com music catalog
  9. What are you wearing?
    White shirt, jeans, black sox, brown shoes, glasses
  10. Did you dream last night?
    Yes
  11. When did you last laugh?
    A couple of hours ago, general chit-chat with Sonya
  12. What is on the walls of the room you are in?
    Two framed posters of the 1988 Yellowstone fires
  13. Seen anything weird lately?
    Odd mix of people at the opera Saturday afternoon
  14. What do you think of this quiz?
    Fun idea, it’s making me see some things in different ways
  15. What is the last film you saw?
    Looney Tunes: Back in Action
  16. If you became a multi-millionaire overnight, what would you buy first?
    My way out of debt
  17. Tell me something about you that I don’t know.
    I love to burn candles
  18. If you could change one thing about the world, regardless of guilt or politics, what would you do?
    Get rid of religion
  19. Do you like to dance?
    I like to dance but I’m completely dancing-impaired so I feel like a fool when I do
  20. George Bush: is he a power-crazy nutcase or some one who is finally doing something that has needed to be done for years?
    I’d describe him as “arrogant,” which puts him closer to the power-crazy nutcase of the question
  21. Imagine your first child is a girl, what do you call her?
    ...
  22. Imagine your first child is a boy, what do you call him?
    ...
  23. Would you ever consider living abroad?
    Yes, I’d love to live in either London or Australia

idea taken from TwilightCafé


15 random tunes: 10 Apr 2004

I've seen something similar to this on several other sites and it intrigued me. I don't remember the specific criteria, so I made up my own.

About music sharing

Music I'm willing to share is linked directly from this page. No link, no sharing—don't email asking for files.
Opened up iTunes, loaded the master library (5638 songs), hit "random" and "play." These are the first 15 songs that come up, in the order they're playing:

  1. Wonderful Love Songs - A-House
  2. Angel Eyes - Ace of Base
  3. To Love You More - Céline Dion
  4. Island Girl - Elton John
  5. I Found a Love - Eric Clapton
  6. Let it Grow - Eric Clapton
  7. A2S2: Son Giuta! Grazie, O Dio! (Leonora) - Giuseppe Verdi
  8. I Know Why the River Runs - Lee Ann Womack
  9. Trouble - Lindsey Buckingham
  10. Bring the Peace - Mary McLaughlin
  11. A Call to Arms - Mike & The Mechanics
  12. Celestial Soda Pop - Ray Lynch
  13. Walk the Walk - Ryan Shupe and the RubberBand
  14. Bad - U2
  15. I Still Haven't Found What I'm Looking For - U2

I'm planning to do this every day (read: when I remember to do it) and post what comes up.


Beautiful Saturday with opera performance

Beautiful day today, bright sunlight and few clouds combined with warm temps—high 60s or low 70s, not sure exactly how high. I got a news alert on my cell phone about a record-setting high temp for this date, but of course the alert didn't say what the temp was, and I haven't bothered to look it up yet.

Sonya and I saw the Seattle Opera Young Artists Program's production of Così fan tutte at Meydenbauer Center in Bellevue this afternoon.

I was surprised by how small the theater at Meydenbauer is. It seats 410, and the vast majority of those seats were filled in today's matinee performance (the evening performances were sold out entirely)—a couple of seats next to us were empty, and there were a few other empties scattered about. Appreciative audience and the performers did a splendid job.

I was amused by the tiny captioning screen perched atop the stage. I'd guess the stage was 50-60' wide, but the caption screen was maybe 7 or 8', and for those of us close to the stage—we were in row B, stage right—it meant we had to shift our gaze from stage to nearly vertical in order to view the captions. I don't speak Italian, so apart from knowing the basic story of Così fan tutte, if I wanted to see what they were saying I was kinda hosed.

The orchestra was made up of members of the Auburn orchestra (I didn't even know Auburn had an orchestra), and the conductor, Dean Williamson, did a wonderful job.

The woman seated on my right had a great deal of difficulty staying awake. About 20 minutes into the first act, she started nodding off, and her head took a couple of precipitous drops when she descended into a full doze a couple fo times. She never did twitch or snort or anything, however, and I only noticed it because I was right next to her and had to keep my gaze turned in her general direction to see the majority of the stage.

I enjoy opera now and then, but I was struck again by the absurdity of it today. If people wandered around singing their daily lives, the world might be a more entertaining place, but damn if it wouldn't get annoying. Although I imagine we'd also consider plain spoken language to be a high art form in such a world.


Operating-system software installation from hell

I really hate it when an OS X installation on a G3 iBook shows its "estimated time remaining" counter with INCREASING times.

It started out at 40 minutes, and now 20 minutes later estimates 1 hour 56 minutes remaining.

gah!

(And I forgot to turn off the localization files install, so it's 200MB bigger than it needs to be... dammit)


Information about MP3Concept, the first Mac OS X trojan horse

The Notes and Tips section of today's MacInTouch offers information (started by an Intego press release) about a trojan found to affect Mac OS X via the ID3 tags of an MP3 file.

Full text of the MacInTouch report below the cut.

(Edited Fri 04/09 08:55 PDT to remove Intego link from main entry, add MacInTouch information)

Continue reading "Information about MP3Concept, the first Mac OS X trojan horse" »


Silly Quiz: Which mythological form are you?

Dragon
You are Form 5, Dragon: The Weaver.

"And The Dragon seperated the virtuous from the sinful. He tore his eyes from his sockets and used them to peer into the souls of those on trial to make a judgement. He knew that with endless knowledge came endless responsibility."

Some examples of the Dragon Form: Athena (Greek), St. Peter (Christian), and Surya (Indian).

The Dragon is associated with the concept of intelligence, the number 5, and the element of wood.

His sign is the crescent moon.

As a member of Form 5, you are an intelligent and wise individual. You weigh options by looking at how logical they are and you know that while there may not always be a right or wrong choice, there is always a logical one. People may say you are too indecisive, but it's only because you want to do what's right. Dragons are the best friends to have because they're willing to learn.

Which Mythological Form Are You?
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Wrong coffee

Ever ordered coffee at Starbucks or Tully's (or any coffee shop) and grabbed the wrong cup when the barista calls out the completed order?

I did that a few weeks ago at the Starbucks in Thrashers Corner. That location doesn't ask for names of customers, only calls out the order as each cup is placed at the pick-up area, so it's up to attentive customers to retrieve the correct cup when their orders are called out.

So I heard a barista say, "Grande nonfat no-whip white chocolate mocha," and I reached for the cup she placed on the pick-up board and walked out. Got to my car and looked at the sleeve with its encoded order information (letters and slash marks and such) and noticed this was actually a grande almond latté. Thank God I hadn't sipped yet, because I despise almond flavor.

Walked back inside, handed the almond latté to its rightful owner, and at that moment the barista shouted out my order. She apologized when I picked it up; she'd only been repeating the order the first time she said it, to make sure she had it right (I guess in the way of submariners, who repeat their orders back so the commander knows the orders have been heard correctly).

No idea why this suddenly popped to mind.


NYTimes: Illinois Tells Mormons It Regrets Expulsion

SALT LAKE CITY, April 7—Illinois officials came to this predominantly Mormon city Wednesday to apologize for the expulsion of the faith's earliest members and the killing of its founder.

"The murder of Joseph Smith and the expulsions of the members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints was a time we are not proud of," Representative Daniel J. Burke of the Illinois House said in a meeting with Gov. Olene S. Walker of Utah and Mormon leaders at the church administration building.

The meeting was held in a room with towering columns, marble walls and gilded molding. There, Illinois's lieutenant governor, Pat Quinn, presented church leaders a copy of House Resolution 793, which expressed "official regret" for the violence and state-sanctioned condemnation that caused the Mormons to leave in 1846 on the trek that led them to Utah.

An earlier draft of the resolution asked the Mormons for their "pardon and forgiveness," but the language was weakened at the behest of Illinois lawmakers who said they could not ask forgiveness for acts they had not personally committed.

NYTimes.com article (registration required; non-registry link)

What exactly is the point of this?

Terrible things happened in this country's history, certainly, but how does an apology (and a watered-down one at that) from the leaders of today's State of Illinois to the people of today's State of Utah (and/or the members of today's Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, depending upon how ecumenical one wishes to view the story) make what happened 160 years ago any more tolerable?


Shredders and "Queer Eye"

Going through papers and such as I pack up to move. Borrowed Sonya's shredder, and I see now why she and Katharine have both talked about the fun of shredding, but I can't imagine owning a shredder. I get a low enough volume of junk mail and bills and whatnot that I'm fine with tearing things into small pieces with my own hands, don't need a machine to do it except every two or three years when I move.

God, how I hate moving.

Anyway. The "Queer Eye for the Straight Guy" episode from my TiVo is about a New Jersey man with a mullet from hell and a waxed mustache, and the changes wrought by the show's namesakes are quite something to see.

I think watching this show while shredding old documents and paperwork is the best way to do it. Somehow it just seems... right.


washingtonpost.com's "Maintenance Notice"

I was amused by the URL for the page that appears when the user-account areas of the Washington Post's web site are undergoing maintenance and thus unavailable for access:

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-srv/tombstone.html

The text on that page:

To our Readers:
washingtonpost.com is undergoing maintenance and some sections of the site are temporarily unavailable. We apologize for the inconvenience. Of course, the latest news and updates will continue to be available on our home page.