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We are lunatics from the hospital up the highway, psycho-ceramics, the cracked pots of mankind.


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If there really had been a Mercutio, and if there really were a Paradise, Mercutio might be hanging out with teenage Vietnam draftee casualties now, talking about what it felt like to die for other people's vanity and foolishness.
--Kurt Vonnegut's Hocus Pocus p151

The Cure for Your Fugly Armpits
Topic: Miscellaneous 12:39 pm EDT, May  5, 2011

Celebrating a hundred years of advertising against women...

Dove recently unveiled its latest campaign, and it hinges on the idea that your armpits are ugly. Dove Ultimate Go Sleeveless is supposed to give women "softer, smoother underarms in just five days"—in ads for the product, which Stephen Colbert calls a "breakthrough shame-o-vation," women cut the sleeves off their tops with joyful expressions, as if they've been liberated from a terrible scourge. If it's news to you that this part of your body is not so hot, Dove says you're in the minority, citing a survey in which 93 percent of women said they "think their underarms are unattractive." And if you doubt statistics culled from 534 women in an anonymous online poll, rest assured that Dove's best advertising efforts will be directed at making those numbers true.

OMG, Lysol douche?! Ouch! My question is, what will women be aghast at in another 50 years?


The Cure for Your Fugly Armpits

NOAA: Record 312 tornadoes in 24 hours last week  |
Topic: Miscellaneous 2:34 pm EDT, May  3, 2011

WASHINGTON — Preliminary government estimates say there were more tornadoes in a single day last week than any other day in U.S. history.

Extreme weather abounds in the Southeast, and victims need all the help you can give:

Donate clothing and household items
Donate cash


NOAA: Record 312 tornadoes in 24 hours last week  |

You have got to be @!#$@$! kidding me.
Topic: Games 4:11 pm EDT, Apr 27, 2011

So, Sony's PlayStation Network has been down more or less without explanation for five days, and now I get an email from Sony containing the following things:

Although we are still investigating the details of this incident,
we believe that an unauthorized person has obtained the following
information that you provided: name, address (city, state, zip), country,
email address, birthdate, PlayStation Network/Qriocity password and login,
and handle/PSN online ID. It is also possible that your profile data,
including purchase history and billing address (city, state, zip),
and your PlayStation Network/Qriocity password security answers may
have been obtained. If you have authorized a sub-account for your
dependent, the same data with respect to your dependent may have
been obtained. While there is no evidence at this time that credit
card data was taken, we cannot rule out the possibility. If you have
provided your credit card data through PlayStation Network or Qriocity,
out of an abundance of caution we are advising you that your credit
card number (excluding security code) and expiration date may have
been obtained.

Wait... what? Let's focus on something in there:

While there is no evidence at this time that credit
card data was taken, we cannot rule out the possibility.

Translated into more practical and less asinine terms that says:

"We've been merrily ignoring PCI guidelines and keeping your credit card information in plaintext where anyone could get at it through a simple compromise of our gaming network."

Words absolutely fail me on how incredibly wrong that is.

As much as I despise Microsoft and everything they stand for, I'm giving Sony exactly 48 hours to come up with an answer that involves taking responsibility for their actions, or I'm selling my PS3 and using the money to buy an XBox360 the copies of the games I was still playing on the PS3.

You have got to be @!#$@$! kidding me.

Increase gas mileage and get 50 mpg in your car - MSN Money
Topic: Miscellaneous 5:40 pm EDT, Apr 11, 2011

Rules of the road

Increase gas mileage and get 50 mpg in your car - MSN Money

7 Foods That Should Never Cross Your Lips -
Topic: Miscellaneous 1:01 pm EST, Mar 10, 2011

7 Foods That Should Never Cross Your Lips:
* 1. Canned Tomatoes
* 2. Corn-Fed Beef
* 3. Microwave Popcorn
* 4. Nonorganic Potatoes
* 5. Farmed Salmon
* 6. Milk Produced with Artificial Hormones
* 7. Conventional Apples

Whoa. More reasons to go organic and forgo questionable farming and packaging.


7 Foods That Should Never Cross Your Lips -

Peak Oil: Bugatti Makes a Car for the Ages | Product Reviews |
Topic: Miscellaneous 12:45 pm EST, Mar  2, 2011

They had to bolster the floor, doors and B pillars (where the back edges of the windows rest) with acres of carbon fiber. They had to turn the topside air scoops into structural supports for protection during a rollover. Then they had to sacrifice 100 virgins and have the production facility in Molsheim, France, blessed by druids.

I am crying at work I'm laughing so hard reading this review.


Peak Oil: Bugatti Makes a Car for the Ages | Product Reviews |

How to Make Oatmeal . . . Wrong -
Topic: Miscellaneous 12:35 pm EST, Feb 24, 2011

One “positive” often raised about McDonald’s is that it sells calories cheap. But since many of these calories are in forms detrimental rather than beneficial to our health and to the environment, they’re actually quite expensive — the costs aren’t seen at the cash register but in the form of high health care bills and environmental degradation.
Like so many other venerable foods, oatmeal has been roundly abused by food marketers for more than 40 years. Take, for example, Quaker Strawberries and Cream Instant Oatmeal, which contains no strawberries, no cream, 12 times the sugars of Quaker Old Fashioned Oats and only half of the fiber. At least it’s inexpensive, less than 50 cents a packet on average. (A serving of cooked rolled oats will set you back half that at most, plus the cost of condiments; of course, it’ll be much better in every respect.)
The aspect one cannot argue is nutrition: Incredibly, the McDonald’s product contains more sugar than a Snickers bar and only 10 fewer calories than a McDonald’s cheeseburger or Egg McMuffin. (Even without the brown sugar it has more calories than a McDonald’s hamburger.)

Not quite as much of a sucker punch as the images of the factory farming which is required to produce such cheap meat, but still an impressive analysis.

BTW, a Snickers bar has 30 grams of sugar which is 3/4 the amount in a can of Coca-"corn syrup in water"-Cola.


How to Make Oatmeal . . . Wrong -

Word of the Day: Frustum
Topic: Miscellaneous 12:14 pm EST, Feb 22, 2011

In geometry, a frustum is the portion of a solid (normally a cone or pyramid) that lies between two parallel planes cutting it.


Word of the Day: Frustum

Drive on the Autobahn - Wired How-To Wiki
Topic: Miscellaneous 4:35 pm EST, Feb 16, 2011

Picture the scariest and most badass cop you know or have run into. Now multiply that by … well, a lot. That's die Polizei, the German Police, for you.

Every mechanical engineer dreams of driving on the Autobahn. I think it's in the fine print when you get your diploma. I guess I'll have to settle for the antics of these guys in the meantime.


Drive on the Autobahn - Wired How-To Wiki

Canton reservoir shows realities of Deal plan  |
Topic: Miscellaneous 3:35 pm EST, Feb 14, 2011

Skeptics are concerned that reservoirs cost millions of dollars in planning and consulting fees — and that's before any groundbreaking.

Actually, consultant fees are only 10% of the project; the lion share goes to contractors and suppliers. Of course, all phases of the project would be a huge local white- and blue-collar jobs boom.

"The cynic in me says these reservoir projects and the push to build reservoirs is really about consultants and engineers making a lot of money," said Joe Cook, executive director and riverkeeper at the Coosa River Basin Initiative.

Not all engineers or engineering firms are created equal and you will get what you pay for. I can think of several reasons why you should pay a qualified engineer to oversee the construction of a state-of-the-art dam in a metropolitan area.

Cook said money would be better spent fixing leaking pipes and infrastructure that waste the state's existing water supplies.

This exercise has been done before. Fixing leaks would only save 10% of the projected shortfall. Draconian conservation measures would only save 30%. We simply must have new sources. See for yourself in the online report which was created by a coalition of engineers, scientists, politicians and businesses to analyze the feasibility of a hundred different scenarios for getting us out of this intractable mess.

Probably goes without saying that I'm not very impressed by that riverkeeper. He needs to go back to the kids' table if that's all he can contribute.

-janelane, environmentalist engineer

Canton reservoir shows realities of Deal plan  |

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