Friday Update (03-24-17)

What I’m reading
I’m still working my way through In Search of Schrodinger’s Cat: Quantum Physics and Reality. I haven’t really devoted a lot of time to it lately.

What I’m doing for my health
I met my doctor on Wednesday and my annual checkup went pretty much as I’d expected. She started me on Lipitor and she wants me to check my blood pressure daily at different times over the next 60 days. I’ve been taking this body for granted and I need to step up an take care of it. The plan is to amp up the treadmill workout and add some weight training to the regimen.

Technology I’m dealing with
I was planning to upgrade my ultra-small form factor PC to Mint 18.1 Serena but I ran into some hardware problems which I determined to be not worth the effort to fix. I had an older laptop with that distribution already installed so I replaced it with that. That particular computer was just something I keep attached to the router/gateway for troubleshooting connection and network issues so I don’t require too much from it. I added a few “essential” applications to it and I may install a few networking utilities down the road.

Conky is a system monitoring utility that has become a staple on my Linux computers My script for it has been a perpetual work in progress as I’m always finding new ways to tweak it. On the laptop running Mint 18.1 Serena, I noticed a couple of quirks about its appearance of the desktop. After a bit of research, I found that all I needed to do was delay its execution on boot-up to give the desktop a chance to be completely drawn. It was a simple matter to implement the delay into its autostart file.

I picked up a couple 8 GB USB drives to make into bootable drives to install Linux. Putting just one ISO on an 8 GB drive is such a waste of space so I looked into ways to have multiple installations on a single drive. Most of these utilities are written for Windows but I like to do as much as I can in Linux rather than Windows. I found MultiSystem which seems to work quite well. I was able to install six Linux ISO files on a single 8 GB drive. I’m kind of surprised there aren’t more Linux-based tools for this.

Concepts that piqued my curiosity

  • homophobic gay porn
  • mindful pornography

I haven’t given either concept a lot of deep thought yet but my interest has been aroused. On the surface, I’m inclined to consider that much gay porn is likely to be homophobic in much the same way that most heterosexual porn is misogynistic at some level. I’m sure at all how to process the idea of mindful pornography.

Quote I’m pondering
“In the process of burning out these confusions, we discover enlightenment. If the process were otherwise, the awakened state of mind would be a product dependent upon cause and effect and therefore liable to dissolution. Anything which is created must, sooner or later, die. If enlightenment were created in such a way, there would always be a possibility of ego reasserting itself, causing a return to the confused state. Enlightenment is permanent because we have not produced it; we have merely discovered it.” – Chögyam Trungpa


A Visit from Bruce Green

My old buddy Bruce Green paid me a visit this morning, just as he visits every Windows user from time to time. You know the guy, Bruce Green of Death, the one who turns your screen blue and emblazons it with cryptic messages.

Fortunately, he only visited me with a simple hardware problem which was easily remedied. It could have been much worse. After all, I’m dealing with Windows, an “archaic” version that has worked quite well for me over the years but is starting to show signs of age. Microsoft still provides updates but otherwise doesn’t support it and I’ve found that some software products no longer support it.

It looks as though I may have to bite the bullet and upgrade to XP, another OS on its way out. I’ve been putting it off since I know it will be a pain in the ass to prepare for the upgrade and it doesn’t play well with 2000 Active Directory, particularly at boot-up. So much for login scripts and group policies. I still haven’t found any work arounds to force XP to submit to AD. If anyone has any ideas, please let me know. Leave a comment or email me. Upgrading to 2003 or later isn’t really a viable option. You’d have thought M$ would have released a patch for 2000 Server to update AD but that wouldn’t play into their plan to force upgrades and achieve world domination.

The Masochism Tango

Today’s Quote: “Here is a challenge to any TV producers who might be reading this: Make a TV show, a light and silly comedy, with at least five really cute girls, who are in the buff 90% of the time, or at least topless. Man, would that lift the spirits of everybody.” — Eolake Stobblehouse’s blog (Domai founder)

I’d watch a show like that as long as it had good production values, good plot lines, good dialog, and good, clean humor. What are the odds of anyone in this country producing a sitcom like that?

I’m finally did it. After putting it off for well over a year, I finally backed up my files and put an OS on that new drive I purchased…over a year ago. It’s just been crazy fun! And the fun isn’t over. I still have a sh…, a lot of programs to put back on.

I haven’t been able to install the printer that’s shared off one of my servers. Every time I try, the system reboots without warning, which really sucks. I found a post about a similar problem on a tech forum site that suggested updating the NIC driver. It’s worth a shot. I could install the driver for the onboard NIC and try that. Hopefully, one of them will work. I seem to recall I had some BSOD or reboot issues when I loaded the old drive a couple years ago but it had more to do with the system board and video drivers. This time around the video was a piece of cake, no problems at all.

With 80 gigabytes of hard drive space that I don’t have to share with anyone (removable drive), I’m installing some stuff I didn’t have room for (or the OS was too flakey). I’ve installed a “professional” Web development application and I’m about to get started on some tutorials. Maybe I can get my site a little more standards compliant. I’m sure I’ll have to buckle down and study HTML, XHTML, CSS, and other Web stuff. I can’t afford real books so it looks as though I’ll be looking for free information on the InterWeb.

There’s a lot more free space on the old 40-gig drive now that I’ve removed my “data” files. Once I get my “new” drive fully loaded, Rob will inherit the old one.

My Gerburtstag is coming soon and I’d still like to drop ten more pounds from my waist and my tits. I’ve got a reward in mind if I meet my goal but I really don’t think there’s a ghost of a chance that “She who must be obeyed” will give me permission to accept it. I’m trying to think of acceptable alternatives but I’m drawing a blank.

And speaking of shooting drawing blanks, Number 31 is in only 16 days and you all know how clueless I am. Let’s see, jewelry is out and so is a new Lexus. Clothing is too risky since I have absolutely no sense of style or size. I can’t think of anything she “needs” or wants. If she’s sending out any clues, they’re too subtle to be picked up by my radar. I need a sign written in big, block letters, with pictures. If I’m lucky, I may be able to afford a card and dinner.



The Masochism Tango by Tom Lehrer
Album: An Evening Wasted with Tom Lehrer (1959)

As The Toilet Flows

Janis Joplin – Me and Bobby McGee

Today’s Quote: “Many come to bring their clothes to church rather than themselves.” — Thomas Fuller

It looks as though we’re adrift in the Red Sea again but I suppose it’s better than being up Shit Creek (with or without a paddle). This morning the toilets starting backing up and there was oozing from the drain cap in the front yard. That could mean only one thing, a blockage in the sewer line but where.. A call went out to Earth Tech and the guy didn’t even have to check where I lived. They’ve been here before. Just my luck, the city sewer was flowing unabated, leaving only my sewer line as the source of the blockage. A call went out to Roto-Rooter and they were able to clear it out lickety split. They also cleared out my checking account. Oh, well, payday is Friday and I should have an $80 expense check due about then too. I hate living on the edge. Why do I have such an extravagant lifestyle?

I’m sure that if they’d had toilets back in the time of Moses, the toilets backing up would have been one of the plagues, probably the one that convinced Pharaoh to let the Israelites go.

I’m still in denial regarding my computer but I’m at least making baby steps. I actually opened it up and made some changes to the physical layout. I put in the removable drive bay and moved the floppy drive to down below the Zip drive. Those are two allegedly obsolete technologies I’m not ready to abandon just yet. Talk about being in computer denial. I’ve got three drive trays. One has the current 40GB drive, another has a “new” 80GB drive, and another has a 40GB drive. The 80 gig drive will be my “personal” drive with all my stuff. The current 40 gig will sort of be Rob’s drive and I really haven’t decided what to do with the third one. I’d like a desktop machine running Linux but as near as I can tell, there’s no Linux support for my onboard NIC or my video card. I may throw 2000 on it and let the grandchildren use it.

Now that I’ve taken care of the physical configuration, the next logical step will be to load my drive with an OS and my apps. I’m not looking forward to that labor of love.

Music Trivia Quiz:
1. Which group had the top-grossing North American concert tour? A) The Rolling Stones B) U2 C) The Backstreet Boys
2. What is the most popular format for radio stations n the U.S.? A) Oldies B) Country C) Adult Contemporary
3. For which band is Gwen Stefani the lead singer? A) The Black-Eyed Peas B) No Doubt C) En Vogue
4. Who had a cult hit with Mr. Brightside in 2003? A) The Killers B) Maroon C) Franz Ferdinand
5. This bluesy-rock band from New York City had hits with Two Princes and Little Miss Can’t Be Wrong? A) The Spin Doctors B) Soul Asylum C) Fastball

Music Trivia Answers:
1. A) The Rolling Stones
2. B) Country
3. B) No Doubt
4. A) The Killers [Killers guitarist Dave Keuning wrote this about lead signer Brandon Flowers’ ex-girlfriend who cheated on him. (]
5. A) The Spin Doctors [I can’t believe doesn’t have anything on The Spin Doctors, yet they have the Spice Girls. What gives?]

Let’s see. I got 1, 2, and 5. It doesn’t surprise me that County would be the most popular musical format for radio stations in Walmartland. So much for any attempt at culture.

I Got Dem Ol’ Kozmic Blues Again, Mama

Big Brother and the Holding Company (Janis Joplin) – Kozmic Blues
Kozmic Bluses Band (Janis Joplin) – Kozmic Blues

Today’s quotes:

  • “You don’t want to go in and get your sperm right off the rack. You want designer sperm.” — Kristi Lee on sperm banks (The Bob & Tom Show)
  • “Oral sex and regular sex are not the same. That’s why they’ve got different prices.” — Keith Alberstadt
  • ” When a dog humps your leg, it’s kind of an insult. Because out of everyone at the party, he looks at you and thinks ‘I think I’ve got a shot with that guy’.” — Larry the Cable Guy
  • “I don’t know why people video tape sex because after I have sex, the only thing I can think of is that I’m glad nobody saw that.” — Mike Birbiglia
  • “I like to think of my body as a temple… or at least a nice Presbyterian youth center.” — Emo Phillips

Hey, there’s a half gallon of vanilla ice cream in my freezer, which I have successfully resisted for at least a week and a half. I’m not sure why I’ve resisted it or why my resistance seems so significant. Maybe there’s some deeper symbolism at work here. She calls out to me in her creamy vanilla voice, tempting me with her cold sweetness. Yet I continue to resist this cold, white temptress. What’s at stake here? What would be the price of surrender?

Or maybe it’s like Freud said, “Sometimes a cigar is just a cigar.”

My video card came in today. And I have dual monitors again. Praise the Lord! It took a bit of messing around with it to get it so maximized windows wouldn’t expand across both monitors but I figured it out. It will let me have a different background on each monitor, which is kind of cool. I’m at least partially happy now.

No takers on that other word? I can’t google it since I don’t know he spelling or the definition. I used to know the word and I was able to use it in a sentence. I think I was even able to use what it defined in a sentence. Suffering from chronic CRS sure is a pain in the ass. I guess I’ve forgotten more than a lot of people know.

Pooter Stuff

Buffalo Springfield – For What It’s Worth

Today’s quote:
“If I were two-faced, would I be wearing this one?” — Abraham Lincoln

I figured out why my site wasn’t displaying properly on my computer. It was the freaking firewall. I had to go in and explicitly tell it to allow cookies and turn off all ad blocking for my site. I’m using at least three different versions of Zone Alarm here and this one appears to be the most granular in its controls. Zone Alarm has been the root of all sorts of bizarre problems both at home and at work. It was Zone Alarm that was adding the java script to the source. If you look at the source on a different computer, there is no java script.

I’ve decided that living with only one monitor isn’t going to work out. I found a GeForce MX4000 video card with 128MB and two VGA ports for $55. That should resolve the problem. By the way, it has been very stable since I removed that “old” ATI Rage Pro card. I do mean old; it had © 1998 stamped on it.

My genealogy pages are mostly updated. I still haven’t update the pages for my direct ancestors; that will wait until another night. I added a “news” page to the site to summarize changes and research accomplished since the last update.

The Gods are appeased (maybe)

Bruce Springsteen – Glory Days

Today’s quote:
“The two most common elements in the universe are Hydrogen and stupidity.” — Harlan Ellison

The patient is stable now; at least I think it is. I have dual monitors again. Making the PCI adapter the primary card did the trick. I’ve got audio output now; I discovered a couple of jumpers that were missing. Naturally, the manual didn’t mention that. But it is much, much better than it was Friday night. It will be a while until I begin to really trust it (as far as a Windows system can be trusted).

Well, cancel the part about dual monitors. It was locking up on me a lot today and there really wasn’t anything consistent about it and there was nothing in the event logs. I thought back on it and noted that it hadn’t locked up for no apparent reason until I got the dual monitors working. I pulled out the PCI video card and it hasn’t locked up since. Something with that card? Its drivers? I don’t know. I may have to experiment a bit.

I guess the bite on my leg is getting better. It started out looking like a pimple then it resembled a nipple. Now it’s an oozing red spot on my leg. There’s still a bruise around it but it doesn’t hurt like it did before. I have no idea what bit me or how it happened. It was just there last Tuesday.