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November 01, 2006

Happy Birthday!

It's MVRWC Beth's birthday! So I thought I'd get her a guy jumping out of a cake, and boy was I surprised to find someone I know she likes to do the job....

He's below the fold, BTW....

Read More "Happy Birthday!" »
Posted by caltechgirl at 10:26 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

In which I get political

John Kerry is a Tool. A rusty, squeaky, useless TOOL.

Many liberal gasbags have jumped up to defend his dubious honor and attempt to point out that this remark is actually aimed at President Bush:

Because, OF COURSE a US Senator would NEVER insult our brave men and women in uniform, right?

It's not like he's never questioned their intelligence or called our troops terrorists before.....

And as for President Bush, lets not forget that someone else's medals aren't the only things Ketchup Boy would like to throw at the President.

Here's my advice for John Kerry: Go away. Go quietly. No one cares about you anymore, even the idiots who still drive around with your name on their bumper as if the 2004 election hasn't happened yet. You are a joke waiting to explode in someone else's face. No wonder candidates in your own party are distancing themselves from your coattails.

Like he's gonna listen.

UPDATE: The Troops respond:

h/t Alabama Improper

UPDATE II: More soldier's response, here's what CPT Ziegenfuss has to say:

I wouldn't piss on [Kerry] if he was on fire. And that is coming from someone who has *been* on fire.


Posted by caltechgirl at 11:13 AM | Comments (4) | TrackBack

More Happy!

Happy birthday wishes to the Random Penseur as well!

Enjoy your birthday lunch and your half day off!

Posted by caltechgirl at 11:45 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

November 03, 2006

Hypocrisy lives at the NYT

And we're all a little less safe for it.....

The Grey Lady now claims that not only was the President correct about WMD in Iraq, but posting the relevant documents on-line contributed to Iran's nuclear program.

So which is it?  No WMD or a Security Breach?  Make up your mind people!

Well, in any case....

Jim Geraghty has more pertinent thoughts.

Seen everywhere, but the Robbo the Llama has the most entertaining post!

UPDATE: What Charles Johnson said.

Posted by caltechgirl at 09:37 AM | Comments (2) | TrackBack

British Soldier wins Gulf War Syndrome case

Even though he never served in the Gulf:

"Alex Izett, a former lance corporal in the Royal Engineers, won a case at the War Pensions Tribunal in Manchester, northwest England, in 2003 attesting that his ailments developed after vaccinations he received in 1991.

That ruling allowed him to to receive a pension for individual conditions such as the brittle bone disease osteoporosis that developed after army medics innoculated him against chemical and biological agents.

More importantly, though, the UK court ruling in effect declares that Gulf War syndrome is real and that soldiers SHOULD be compensated and treated for the after effects of vaccinations, other medications, and environmental exposures during their service in the Gulf and pre-service staging.

This stands in stark contrast to the "official" US view that there is no such thing as Gulf War Syndrome, based on a VA-funded study conducted on soldiers returning from the Gulf since 1990.  In the US, veterans may only claim special disability benefits if they suffer from an UNDIAGNOSED illness that can be directly related to their Gulf War service.

Do you know how hard it is to get NO diagnosis?  You must have at least a preliminary diagnosis in order to treat a patient appropriately.  Sure, you can treat symptoms individually, but you must be able to draw some conclusions in order to avoid iatrogenic injury or disease.

Maybe our sick vets should go to Britain to get sicker be treated for their illnesses.  At least they'll be appreciated and not belittled.

Posted by caltechgirl at 10:10 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

November 06, 2006

Calgon Take Me Away!

right click and view image to see the whole thing if your screen is too narrow

The only thing saving me from putting my foot through the TV is Mr. TiVo, who graciously skips all the political commercials.

The only thing stopping me from throwing the phone at something is Mr. Caller ID, who helpfully displays "Political Caller" whenever these idiots try to call....

More on the election later, including my take on who I am voting for.

Posted by caltechgirl at 09:54 AM | Comments (2) | TrackBack

Weekend Happy!

While I was busy retreating (work retreat, yecccch) and then recuperating (read: tackling the laundry pile and watching football...) a bunch of people went and had birthdays!

So Happy Happy (late) to

Dana of Frankensoul (11/2)
Beth of YeahRightWhatever (11/3)
Kat of CatHouseChat (11/4)
Stacy of Still Stacy (11/5)
and last but certainly not least, blogmom Deb of Dispatches from Blogblivion (11/5)

Posted by caltechgirl at 10:13 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

For Aciddude...

One of my girly pals was visiting from out of town, so we all went to get pedicures together, and as I chose the color for my toes, I couldn't help but think of Rob....

It's my favorite nail polish color, too.  Althugh I suspect he would shit on me about the flowers....

I miss you, you crusty old cracker bastard.

Posted by caltechgirl at 11:36 AM | Comments (2) | TrackBack

California Election Cheat Sheet

For Tuesday's statewide election:

First, a general rule of thumb: "desperate" career politicians get no votes from me (see below)

Governor-- Ah-nold.  I don't like him that much, but Angelides is a tool.  A rusty, John Kerry-like tool who has already declared he will raise my taxes.

Lt. Gov -- Tom McClintock.  Again, not entirely my cup of tea, but Garamendi is also a tool and is covered under the general rule of thumb above.

Sec. State -- Bruce McPherson.  Who is he, you ask?  Well he's the incumbent who stepped in and cleaned up the huge freaking mess Kevin Shelley left behind, and without a lot of press.  Go Bruce.

Attorney General -- This is a toughie.  Poochigian is a class A DICKHEAD.  A career politician that the rule of thumb applies to.  But then again, so is Jerry Brown.  And Brown was responsible for Rose Bird.  Yeah, that Rose Bird.  So I guess Poochigian it is.  I wish I could just vote NO.

Insurance Commissioner-- Steve Poizner. The rule of thumb above was WRITTEN for Cruz Bustamonte.  I mean, do you really want someone SO DESPERATE TO STAY IN OFFICE that they're willing to go from Lt. Gov to freaking INSURANCE COMMISSIONER????  Not to mention he couldn't come up with a better campaign slogan than "I lost weight, I can keep my promises."

Controller-- Tony Strickland.  He sued Gray Davis for the secret dealings that led to the rolling blackouts.  He knows corruption when he sees it.

Treasurer-- Claude Parrish.  Bill Lockyer is currently Attorney General, so he falls into the same category as our friends Cruz Bustamonte and John Garamendi:  Desperate Housewives Career Politicians who get no votes from me.

US Senate-- Dianne Feinstein.  I dislike her, I really do, but I don't think Dick Mountjoy is really the best candidate.  What I want to know is why the Republican party in this state always puts the more electable candidates up against Feinstein.  She's the conservative one.  A Republican has a hell of a lot better shot against crazy ass Barbara Boxer. If Mountjoy had a chance of winning, I'd vote for him just to switch the seat over to the Red side, but that ain't gonna happen, so I'll smile and vote for Dianne and thank God that she's not Barbara Boxer, part II.

State Ballot Measures:
1A-1E: YES.  I realize that bond measures aren't always the best way to go about funding these projects, but it increases the revenue stream in the short term to get a number of BADLY needed projects going, including freeway improvements and education programs.  For example, 1D sets aside funds to build new school buildings from elementary through college, pays for new science labs and equipment, and restores CA's badly needed vocational education programs, which have all but disappeared in the last decade.
83-- YES.  Jessica's Law: Increased restrictions and monitoring for sex offenders
84-- NO  Do we need this right now?
85-- YES Parental Notification is NOT CONSENT
86-- HELL F*CK NO.  This is a revenue direction scheme masquerading as a cigarette tax.  When several professional medical associations line up AGAINST an anti-smoking measure, it probably sucks.  This one sure does.
87-- HELL F*CK NO AGAIN.  This is that alternative energy thing Bill Clinton is shilling for.  Frankly, it will only end up raising our gas prices and taxes.  It will bankrupt the CA economy by making it too expensive to do business here.
88-- NO WAY JOSE -- Increases property taxes in attempt to circumvent Prop 13.  If it wasn't for Prop 13, my parents wouldn't be able to afford to own their home.  Would you??
89-- NO.  More regulations won't clean up corrupt politicians.  Period. Perhaps poison...
90-- YES.  This is CA's Kelo response.  Keep your hands off my body AND my property.

Or you can just do your duty as a Californian and vote NO on everything, since you didn't really even pay attention to which measure was which in the first place.....

Posted by caltechgirl at 05:45 PM | Comments (4) | TrackBack

November 07, 2006

I suck

I just spent the last 2+ hours cleaning my office. In the 13 months I've been here, I hadn't ever set up my filing cabinet, and the piles kept getting bigger and bigger and bigger. And, as I have been assigned more projects, it was getting a lot harder to keep things separate.

Yeah, I know. more than a year, but I'm one of those people who has a photographic memory for messes. I know right where everything is and when i put it there, so there was a lot of inertia on this one.

What decided me to do it today, you ask? Well, I decided that I needed to keep all of the paperwork for each of my students together in one file folder, and that just started the avalanche.

But it looks a heck of a lot better in here. And I discovered that my linoleum is wearing out where my chair rolls over it all the time. Time for an office mat. But that will have to wait until next week when my business manager gets back from a conference so I can order it....

And before you ask, no, I haven't voted yet. DH and I usually go together so that we can confuse them with two different last names :-) Also, our polling place is at a high school, so it's just not a good idea to attempt to vote before 9AM or between 2 and 4PM. We'll vote around 5 or 5:30 and then go out to eat, as we usually do.

Posted by caltechgirl at 12:03 PM | Comments (3) | TrackBack

November 08, 2006


It's called being a gracious loser.

Three Examples:
1) Jonah Goldberg's email correspondance
2) Jim Geraghty's response
3) President Bush's response (the first 2 minutes of the PC) (will pop up Real Player)

Posted by caltechgirl at 11:18 AM | Comments (2) | TrackBack

Happy Happy!

Happy Birthday to Lisa W of Lemons and Lollipops! Hats off to you!

Posted by caltechgirl at 12:32 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

November 09, 2006

Happy Birthday!

To one of my favorite sailors, who was a day past his 16th bithday when I arrived myself.

I found a special cake for ya, Lex. Enjoy!

Posted by caltechgirl at 01:03 PM | Comments (5) | TrackBack

Do it Yourself Country

The Dixie Chicks got you down?  CMA awards hijinks too much to handle?  Why not write your own country songs???

Here's mine:

I met her outside Fresno in September;
I can still recall that little hat she wore
She was drinkin' Dr. Pepper in the twilight,
and I knew I'd have to scrape her off the floor;
She asked me if I'd stay a dwarf forever;
She said to me that Rolaids made her high;
But who'd have thought she'd wind up with a robot;
I pushed her off the bridge and waved goodbye.
Yes, you CAN sing it to the tune of "Grandma Got Run Over By A Reindeer."  Why do you ask?
h/t Pixy via JustMe

Posted by caltechgirl at 01:31 PM | Comments (3) | TrackBack

November 10, 2006

It's the big 3-0

So of course I celebrated like an adult:

I went to the zoo and then I came home and took a nap.

Of course, I did take a lot of fabulous pictures. The best were of course of the chimps.  I take better pictures of chimps than anything else.  Here are a couple:

Happy Birthday to me!

Posted by caltechgirl at 06:33 PM | Comments (28) | TrackBack

Best Birthday Present yet....

USC REALLY DID beat Texas in last year's Rose Bowl National Championship game.

...although this is a DAMN close second. Oh my......

Posted by caltechgirl at 08:20 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

November 13, 2006

A Great idea for Christmas

As some of you who have participated in the Soldier's Angels online auctions know well, Holly Aho is a fabulous artist.  Well, Holly has just opened an online store featuring her art, including her paintings and handcrafted jewelery.

There are lots of beautiful things on display, and some great ideas for holiday gifts.

She's also having a referral contest to win gift certificates for the store:

Here's how it works. Use your blog (or website) to refer visitors to the SAHA Store, and win a $5 gift certificate per 250 visitors you refered.

Sound good? It gets better. Each time a visitor you refered to the store makes a purchase you get an additional $5 gift certificate.

Lastly....After 2 weeks the blog/website with the most referals will win a $50 gift certificate to the store!

I don't usually do blog ads, as you know, but I love Holly's work and she's been a tireless supporter of our troops and their families.  So a button linking to the store is up on the left sidebar.  If you'd like to link Holly's store and maybe win some gift certificates  of your own, the instructions for getting the button are here.

Posted by caltechgirl at 11:15 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Happy Birthday!

 To Richmond!

Here's hoping you have a wonderful day, and a year full of everything you could wish for, my friend!

Posted by caltechgirl at 11:41 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

When cool things happen to awesome people

My friend Val Prieto  just got some serious validation that what he is doing at Babalu is getting the message of Cuba out there!

Posted by caltechgirl at 11:59 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

Prayers and thoughts needed

If you have a moment, please take some time to ask the deity of your choice to intervene and send peace and healing to RP's family, as his mother undergoes surgery today to remove what was originally thought to be a pre-cancerous lump in her breast, but which turned out to be stage 2 breast cancer.

Posted by caltechgirl at 12:22 PM | Comments (2) | TrackBack

November 14, 2006

That PhD really came in handy...

You paid attention during 100% of high school!

85-100% You must be an autodidact, because American high schools don't get scores that high! Good show, old chap!

Do you deserve your high school diploma?
Create a Quiz

heh. Seen everywhere, stolen from Jen
Posted by caltechgirl at 01:56 PM | Comments (6) | TrackBack

November 16, 2006

Son of Diet Coke and Mentos

h/t Jen
Posted by caltechgirl at 12:09 PM | Comments (7) | TrackBack

Good Night, Uncle Miltie

Milton Friedman, economist, Nobel Laureate, and Patriot is dead at age 94.

Friedman offered blunt advice on subjects as personal as laws against prostitution (he saw them as incursions into individual choice) and as sweeping as the international system of relatively fixed exchange rates, which he sought to overturn and which did collapse in the early 1970s.

He became the human face of the influential "Chicago school" of economics, emphasizing the role of monetary policy, which affects interest rates, and the benefits of laissez-faire or free-market approaches to the economy.

Political leaders listened, granting almost unparalleled influence to a capitalist icon whose free-market emphasis had once seemed out of step with his times. The rise of Ronald Reagan and British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher brought Friedman fans to seats of national power.

Later, some would see the inspiration of Friedman behind moves of former Soviet governments, the People's Republic of China and other nations to stake more of their future on a private sector.
Although he his best known for his theory of Monetarism, MIlton Friedman was a true Libertarian who believed in personal choice as a social and economic force.  He was a fierce advocate of legalizing drugs and prostitution as a deterrent to crime and a staunch advocate of school choice for elementary and high school students.  His adherence to personal choice more than once put him on the wrong side of the fence with his closest political allies, including President Ronald Reagan.

More on Mr. Friedman here.

And, like he needs MORE linkage, but Insty has a nice round up with links to some writings and several interviews with Dr. Friedman. Also, Steven Leavitt (yes, that one) has some thoughts up at the Freakonomics blog.

Posted by caltechgirl at 02:21 PM | Comments (3) | TrackBack

Give 'em the Inglewood Jack....

Ever wonder what happened to Jules AFTER Pulp Fiction?

h/t The Pirate

Posted by caltechgirl at 02:53 PM | Comments (5) | TrackBack

November 17, 2006

Ah the Hypocrisy

It's a subject we haven't visited on this blog since The Breck Girl™ and Ketchup Boy lost the election, but the hypocrisy of John Edwards is back in the news again.

Of course he says it's all just a mistake made by an underling.

Wal-Mart had noted in a news release Thursday that on the same day Edwards was criticizing the company in a conference call with union-backed activists, the volunteer staff member had asked a Raleigh, N.C., electronics department manager to obtain a PS3 for the ex-senator's family.

Earlier Thursday, Edwards had said in a statement e-mailed by spokeswoman Kim Rubey: "We instructed no one to contact Wal-Mart on our behalf."

From Wal-Mart headquarters in Bentonville, Ark., company spokesman David Tovar said the Edwards staff member left a voicemail at the Raleigh store and identified himself as an Edwards staff member.

When the manager returned the call, the staff member again identified himself as working for Edwards, and Wal-Mart said it confirmed it with Edwards' office. The retailer issued a written statement Thursday accusing Edwards of not wanting to wait his turn.

"While the rest of America's working families are waiting patiently in line, Sen. Edwards wants to cut to the front," the Wal-Mart statement said.
So much for putting America first, huh, John?

Posted by caltechgirl at 11:34 AM | Comments (4) | TrackBack

November 19, 2006

Awwwww SHITE

He's not going to make The Hobbit. Not because he doesn't want to, but because of studio business bullshit.

Fuck New Line. Fuck them up their Fucking Asses.

h/t Ith

Posted by caltechgirl at 11:42 PM | Comments (3) | TrackBack

November 20, 2006

Cuba as a solution to LA's healthcare woes?

The two things I hate most are ignorance and hypocrisy. This event promises to deliver both. IN SPADES.

Since when is a health system that is so short on drugs that patients must get drunk rather than have an anesthetic held up as a model of what to do in this country?

I realize that the residents of South Los Angeles are USED to substandard health care (witness emergency room closings and the state of the former King-Drew hospital), but to actively seek to model a health system that looks good on paper, but in reality provides no relief to the suffering is inexcusable.

This is a real Cuban hospital. Do we really want to look to this for answers to our healthcare problems?

Posted by caltechgirl at 10:07 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

November 21, 2006

I am thankful for...

1.  Best Buy.  They put the laptop I wanted on sale enough that A. I could afford it now and B. the sale also paid for the "Oh Shit" warranty.  You know, the one that includes dog teeth and sand.

2.  The dudes at Mozilla.  I have over 200 blogs in Sage and dozens of buttons and book marks, not to mention about a dozen extensions and not a few passwords (like for the blog and some news sites, not the bank or anything).  Literally one click and a few keystrokes and VOILA! I was able to get everything going on the new laptop!  SWEET!  The last time I tried to do that (with my work computer) it took me HOURS.  Even with a cheat sheet....  I shoulda known there was a shortcut.  Just go to firefox help and search for profile.  Then click on the bit about restoring or moving your profile.

I've been wanting a new laptop for a while, as my trusty old Fujitsu gave up the ghost about 3 months ago (after SIX years!!!), and DH and I have been sharing his laptop ever since.  Well, he got grumpy with me eating his laptop time and I wasn't a fan of how much space his games took up, so we decided a compromise was in order.  I would get a new laptop for me since the last new one was his.

Also, the Dell Inspiron we have weighs 9 lbs and about 11 if you include the power cord, so it's not much of a traveler.  And my RA makes it hard for me to carry it around, so I went for a small, light laptop.  More pricey, I know, but it's a MUST for me.

Aside from cleaning the house for Thursday, I've spent the majority of tonight getting this baby street legal: transferring files, downloading programs, and installing them.

Not to mention re-learning a smaller keyboard.....

Posted by caltechgirl at 12:22 AM | Comments (5) | TrackBack

Or maybe not.....

About the Hobbit?  MGM is PISSED:

In the most recent flurry of events, Peter Jackson and producing
partner Fran Walsh posted a letter Sunday night on the "LOTR" fan site
Theonering.net saying that New Line told them last week that it was
going to make "The Hobbit" without their services.

The letter
also reiterated in detail Jackson's stance on "The Hobbit" -- that he
is not willing to have a serious conversation about directing the film
until his ongoing lawsuit with New Line over what he considers improper
accounting practices over "LOTR" profits is settled.

New Line's
given reason for proceeding sans Jackson is that the studio's rights to
the pic are about to expire, and seeing as the lawsuit with Jackson
isn't moving ahead, well, the message was that New Line is.

of this has riled MGM, which in recent weeks has been openly touting
the fact that the newly revamped studio is serious about making "The
Hobbit" -- with Jackson.

An MGM spokesman said that "the matter of Peter Jackson directing 'The Hobbit' films is far from closed."

New Line no-commented inquiries about Jackson's statement, the
mini-major's move is a loud statement to both MGM and Jackson that the
studio is in the driver's seat when it comes to "The Hobbit."

Big studio $$ vs little studio  $$.  Gee, I think the winner will be all of us.

h/t Anwyn at EV

Posted by caltechgirl at 09:15 AM | Comments (2) | TrackBack

It isn't Friday, but I feel a meme coming on...

Lifted from Karen:

1. How old were you when you learned to read and who taught you?
I was about 2 and a half when I started reading.  I have no memory of NOT knowing how to read.  My mom says that Sesame Street and the Electric Company taught me to read, and I believe her.

2. Did you own any books as a child? If so, what’s the first one that you remember owning? If not, do you recall any of the first titles that you borrowed from the library?
Did I own any books, are you kidding?  I had dozens.  Among the earliest were: Go Dog Go, Hop on Pop, Wacky Wednesday, Put Me in The Zoo, Big Dog, Little Dog; and and all the Little Golden Books.  Later I had the Little House, the Anne of Green Gables books, The Narnia series, Encyclopedia Brown, the Ramonas, the Fudge books, and dozens more.  My favorite library books were the Obadiah books, by Brinton Turkle

Did I mention my mother is a children's librarian?

3. What’s the first book that you bought with your own money?
Oh Boy.  No idea.  I think it was a full (8 volume) box set of Anne of Green Gables.

4. Were you a re-reader as a child? If so, which book did you re-read most often?
I still AM a re-reader.  The Little House Books and the Anne Books were definitely read to bits and replaced.  And Sherlock Holmes mysteries.

5. What’s the first adult book that captured your interest and how old were you when you read it?
I always loved the Sherlock Holmes mysteries, and I startes reading them before I was in second grade.  I also read a lot of my mother's crime novels, Elliot Roosevelt, Margaret Truman, and Tony Hillerman were some of her favorites, and I read them when she was done.

6. Are there children’s books that you passed by as a child that you have learned to love as an adult? Which ones?
I didn't read a lot of Dr. Seuss as a kid.  Mom wasn't a fan, so I didn't get them.  But  Green Eggs and Ham is seriously one of my favorite books of all time.

Posted by caltechgirl at 09:41 AM | Comments (4) | TrackBack

November 22, 2006

If it doesn't fit.....

Oh wait.  It sure as hell does:

h/t Darleen via email

Posted by caltechgirl at 10:56 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

They say the way to a man's heart is through is his stomach...

I don't know about his heart, but certain other organs sure seem to respond to food:

Thirty-one men, aged 18 to 64 years... underwent olfactory testing with the University of Pennsylvania Smell Identification Test (UPSIT), a 40-item, forced choice, scratch and sniff odor detection and identification test...  The effects of 30 odors on penile blood flow were assessed by comparing a subject's brachial penile index while wearing an odorized mask to his average index while wearing an unodorized mask. This was done for each subject for each odor.

Here are the 10 odors that elicited the largest responses:
1.  Lavender and pumpkin pie
2.  Doughnut and black licorice
3.  Pumpkin pie and doughnut
4.  Orange
5.  Lavender and doughnut
6.  Black licorice and cola
7.  Black licorice
8.  Doughnut and cola
9.  Lily of the valley
10. Buttered popcorn
Well, I know doughnuts, black licorice, cola, and pie are some of MY husband's favorite foods, but I had no idea they could have such an effect on him.

This study explains a lot.

h/t AWTM

Posted by caltechgirl at 11:17 PM | Comments (6) | TrackBack

November 28, 2006

work work work

At a three day work retreat.  If you have keys, jump in and post!

Back Friday!

Posted by caltechgirl at 09:14 PM | Comments (4) | TrackBack

November 29, 2006

Bwah-ha-ha! CTG gave me a key to her place

I'm not certain she should trust someone like me with her blog while she's working hard at a workshop.

What to post, what to post...?

Posted by writersblock at 07:18 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack


(cross posted over at my little blog)

It's a lengthy rant full of profanity, so I'll put it into the extended entry.

Posted by writersblock at 07:23 PM | Comments (9) | TrackBack