Thursday, June 24, 2004

Back from the doc's office. No Lyme disease (*whew*). Doc didn't offer any ideas as to why I've had (what appears to be) two colds for three weeks. Matter of fact, he really didn't do any typical doctor stuff. No stethescope listening to my lungs, no feeling my throat for swollen glands, no bright lights in the ears, no "turn your head and cough" (ok, so I wasn't there for that, but a boy can dream, can't he?).

He did send me over to have blood drawn to "run some tests". Always a good sign. He said that although it didn't sound like Lyme disease, it could potentially be another insect-transmitted illness. Or maybe just a couple of colds in a row. Evidntly the blood will tell.

As for Lyme turns out that ticks have to be attached to you for about 24 hours to transmit it. A subtile detail not mentioned on any of the 20 Lyme disease websites I read (including the CDC ). Oh well. Note to web authors: add that little tidbit and save everybody some time :)

Monday, June 21, 2004

I don't like to play chicken little too often ("the sky is falling, the sky is falling" and all that crap), but every now and then, I gotta wonder...simple summertime cold? or did I really go and get myself some Lyme disease this time??

Two weeks ago, I got a cold. I felt like shit for a solid 7 days. Took a couple of days off of work, and the whole nine yards. I never take off sick days. Not counting hangover "sick" days, those were probably the first two I took in 4+ years on the job. Anyway, I was pretty much out of commission Sunday thru Sunday. Then Tuesday and Wednesday following, I did a couple of mountain bike rides, cuz I had a friend in town from Atlanta, and generally I was sick of being cooped up. Exerted (sp?) myself pretty good.

All goes well the rest of the week. Friday, I spend an hour or two taking photos at an abandoned farm in Loudoun County (VA). It's a really cool rundown place with a few buildings, a lot of land, a few pieces of old farm equipment, bigass rolls of hay in the field, and a life expectancy of maybe 2 months. There are already signs put up by developers touting "COMING SOON! Luxury townhomes and retail space!". Yay. just what I need. More high density housing and Starbucks swilling soccer moms clogging my roads. But anyway...I digress...Ahh yeah, that's progress.

Anyway, I'm out at this soon-to-be-leveled farm and the grass surrounding it is easily waist high (and I'm 6'6"). I'm trapsing through it knowing full well that I'm getting ticks all over me. No biggie. I'll pluck them off when I'm done. It's not like I'm gonna be out here all day.

Maybe two hours later I finish shooting and head back to the truck. At the truck, I proceed to pull 8-10 ticks off of me. Most were just wandering around looking for a place to have lunch, but I'm pretty sure two were mid-meal when I plucked them. One was all ultra small. Dunno if he was the dreaded Lyme carrying "deer tick" or just a little-ass run-of-the-mill-dog-tick. Again, no biggie...on with my life.

Jump to Sunday. Wake up feeling a little crappy, and procede to get more crappy as the day goes on. By the afternoon, I'm on the couch under a blanket, watching 6 hours of an American Chopper marathon on the Discovery Channel.

Monday (during my Lyme disease research phase) I learned the following...and I quote:

"The incidence of Lyme disease in Loudoun County is about 20 times greater than that of the Virginia average." Oh joy. The best part comes if you read the causes. Loudound takes the opportunity to use Lyme disease as a selling point as to the county's greatness:

* the preservation of our county’s beautiful rural nature and woodlands [editors note: bullshit. see rant above about townhouses and Starbucks]
* our increasing population, which allows more people to come in contact with ticks
* a well trained medical community that appropriately diagnoses early Lyme disease, and
* a well educated citizenry that knows to see their doctor if they have an unusual rash or had a deer tick attached to them for more than 36 hours.

Jump ahead to Tuesday, and I'm still feeling like crap. Stiff neck, nausious, headache, sinusy, my throat feels like it's trying to expand out of the skin surrounding it (I'm guessing swollen glands?). So I go through the trouble of actually picking a new doctor and making an appointment (I think my company medical coverage has changed three times since I last used a doctor). Just two short days from now and we'll see if I can add "lyme disease" to my list of "cool plagues I've survived". So far, it's just pnumonia and rabies on the list. And I didn't really even have rabies...I was just lucky enough to go through the treatment (shots!). But that's a story for another day.

Sunday, June 20, 2004

So while I maintain that MD drivers are the worst in the universe (at least the universe surrounding DC), I think I've found the imbecil-queen of the idiot drivers.

Driving through a residential neighborhood in Arlington VA (30mph max speed limit), I hear a strange "clank" come off of my truck. Thinking there was a problem, I pulled over to a far left turn only lane, put on my hazzard lights, and come to a stop. There are still two perfectly good travel lanes to use.

This queen-fucking-dumbass-woman drives up behind me in her minivan and starts blowing her fucking horn. How abso-fucking-loutely stupid do you have to be to pull up behind somebody *obviously* having some kind of problem and blow your horn at them?? I mean, far as this dumbfuck knew, I could be outta gas, having a heart attack, engine could have blown up and blown a push rod through my skull. This dumbass had no idea. So what did she decide was the best course of action in this situation? Pull 15' behind me and blow her horn. And did she blow it once, realize I was having mechaincal (or medical) problems and pull around? NO! Her dumb ass sits behind me for 20 seconds blowing her horn 4 or 5 times. Argh! I was irate.

So to you, imbecil-queen, I wish the following: may your ovaries fall out of your body, and when they do, may you be wearing your favorite pair of shoes, and fuck them up too. I hate you.
First read the story on Then composed this email to a few friends. Thought it was worth blogging for my legions of fans. Damn you Beastie Boys. Damn you right to Hell. You are the last people I would expect this from...


So much for respecting the beastie boys

I was *gonna* buy the new disk...but now I gotta pause. I'm all for supporting the artist, but music CDs that surreptitiously install crap on my machine piss me off. Funny thing is that I had the disk a week before the copy protected version was released. Who do they think they're stopping?

slashdot story

original post apparently made by an MIT guy

thread about the copy protection on

Wednesday, June 16, 2004


"SOUTH RIDING, Va. - It will be weeks before the Northern Virginia Medical Examiners Office in Fairfax County completes the autopsy of the woman whose body was found in a suitcase inside a dumpster in Loudoun County.

The case is being investigated as a homicide, although investigators have not released the cause of death."

Arrgh! I don't know why I let this crap get to me. I mean, I know that the media are, generally speaking, fucking idiots (with the shining exception to this rule being NPR). And I suppose if I think hard enough about this situation, it's conceivable that the woman died of natural causes, her sleep, and her bereaved family decided to stuff her in a suitcase and toss her in an apartment dumpster. Theoretically.

But c'mon. You gotta admit it's a longshot.

-edit...5 minutes later-

Ok, I was going to stop with that, but seriously...what the hell kind of Engrish is this (from the article):

"The victim's age is between her mid-twenties to 40 years old."

Fucking, what? Hey your editors! Now!

Tuesday, June 15, 2004

Yay Google! Seems thier email service has spurred Yahoo to improve it's service. 100MB mailbox, 10MB max message size, "exciting new interface".

**edited to change "sixe" to "size", duh**

Monday, June 14, 2004

Trying to impliment some fancy comment code from Haloscan that my boy DT recommended. Not sure if it's configured correctly or not. It now appears that I have two comment links per blog post. Ah well, I don't feel like tinkering with it right now.

Oh, side note, totally unrelated to comments or Blogs...had my first performance review in 3 years at work today. Basically, the boss said he was totally happy with my work, and that I should try finding new things to entertain myself with (not like setting up the corporate pr0n server or anything...things that could eventually better the company). Net skool technology and such. I'm pretty happy, since the last couple of years here have been basically a "maintain-the-existing-gizmos" deal. I wasn't given the goahead to buy half a million in new hardware...but it's a start ;)

Oh, and I got a bit of a raise too. Couldn't have come at a better I'm broke and totally coveting my friend's Nikon D70. Still don't think I'll be able to roll out to the camera store and pick one up tonight tho. Ah well.

Saturday, June 12, 2004

Spent a good deal of the day Saturday at the Fairfax County Virginia Fair. My kid is a fan of the Presidents of the United States of America and they were playing. What better way to earn points with my 12 year old than to take her to an almost free show by a band I don't hate too much! (Totally selfish gave me a good opportunity to take some photos of things not seen every day).

The day was beautiful. Mid 70s for temps, bright sun. After a drive to the local mall, then a trip on the shuttle bus, we managed to get there at about 3:03 and the band started at 3:00, so we bee-lined to stage area and saw everything but the first song. Not too bad.

I spent most of the time taking pix of the band (big John Kerry supporters too) in action, as well as anything else that caught my eye. Another day of complete camera envy. There were a couple of pro (or at least "more-pro-than-me") shooters there with some impressive gear. I got a cople of shots of them taking shots. Kinda recursive-photography, if you will.

I also managed to get a few decent shots of your typical carnival midway. Food booths, ferris wheels, brightly colored flags flying from rooftops of things, spinny throw-up rides, creepy monkey tattoo on some guy's leg.

Only problem with being out most of the day Saturday is that it left Sunday for my kid to do all of her homework, so I ended up having to bail out on my friend who was down in Richmond VA racing in the Xterra triathlon. So congrats go out to DT for being badass enough to take on Xterra and survive! Hit the link, read the blog and grab another ring-ding out of the box like the rest of us mortals.

Friday, June 11, 2004

I live in Fairfax, VA. Zipcode 22031. Look it up. If I threw a rock hard enough, I can almost hit DC. It's not way the hell out in the country. Not redneck-ville or anything. Pretty suburban. Every now and then, you come across something that makes you think your view of your little world has been clouded by some rosy-ass colored glasses. Case in point:

Driving home from work today, I drove past a road-kill dear. Pretty big beast. Not too strange around here (unfortunately), but this one was special. Somebody had taken the time to pull over and surgically remove the fucking head! Who the hell does that? In the suburbs? Is this thing now adorning some fool's living room wall? Sheesh. Just when you think you've seen everything.

Tuesday, June 08, 2004

So back in April (for my legions of fans keeping track), I mentioned that I got a fancy new digital camera. Well, the mediocre results of my first couple of months have finally been posted up where people can see them. The site was created, designed, coded and is hosted by a friend (and fellow photographer), I'm just freeloading. So big ups (if you will) to Ben of the Paved Earth Worldwide Radio Network for all the work. The photosite (which is still a work-in-progress) can be seen here: It showcases both of our work. My stuff is attributed to Gary, his is to Ben. Go figure. I believe we're trying to incorporate a comment system on the site, but until then, feel free to comment on the photos here (on the blog).

Oh, and for the record, both of the above URLs will remain in my "Links" list on the right side of the main Blog page until I remove them. Which could be any bookmark now!

"Montgomery County MD Teen's Beating Death Ruled a Homicide

SILVER SPRING, Md. (AP) - The death of a 16-year-old who was beaten by a group of other teens has been ruled a homicide, according to the state medical examiner."


Main Entry: ho·mi·cide
Function: noun
1 : a person who kills another
2 : a killing of one human being by another

So this kid was beaten to death by other people? No shit? What a novel idea. I suppose this is in direct contridiction to all of the people who beat themselves to death in suicide each year. Do they even need to say this shit out loud? I'm tired of the stupid media. Next thing they'll be telling us is "Man who ingested 2 gallons of water through nose while swimming probably drowned". Save a tree. Fuck, save an electron. Don't print this shit. Gah.