Thursday, September 21, 2006

The Great map Debate

I'm getting directions for my impending Florida vacation, from somewhere near Chicago to an undisclosed local in florida. Here are my mileage and time estimates from the various map engines available:

Google Maps: 920 mi (about 18 hours 25 mins)

MapQuest: Est. Time: 14 hours, 31 minutes
Total Est. Distance: 873.45 miles

MSN Maps: Total distance: 920.7 mi
Estimated time: 14 Hours, 54 Minutes

Yahoo Maps: 922.1mi 14hrs 38 Minutes

Rand McNally:
EST. DRIVE TIME: 15 hours, 30 minutes
EST. DISTANCE: 911 miles

My boss observes that only huge dorks would be bothered by this. But I am bothered by it.

Monday, September 18, 2006

Where's Our Apology?

In reference to Pope Benedict's Recent remarks muslim groups are throwing molotov cocktails and having demonstrations. Now, I'm no big fan of the pope. Really not at all. I liked the last Pope, this one, I could do without. But when the response to his quotations from old writings that were less than flattering to the muslim religion comes to this:

"We tell the worshipper of the cross (the Pope) that you and the West will be defeated, as is the case in Iraq, Afghanistan, Chechnya," said an Internet statement by the Mujahideen Shura Council, an umbrella group led by Iraq's branch of al Qaeda, according to the Reuters news agency.

"We shall break the cross and spill the wine. ... God will (help) Muslims to conquer Rome. ... God enable us to slit their throats, and make their money and descendants the bounty of the mujahideen," from bruneidirect

The group said Muslims would be victorious and addressed the pope as "the worshipper of the cross" saying "you and the West are doomed as you can see from the defeat in Iraq, Afghanistan, Chechnya and elsewhere. ... We will break up the cross, spill the liquor and impose head tax, then the only thing acceptable is a conversion (to Islam) or (killed by) the sword." from cnn

So, where's my apology? Where is my "I'm sorry our group threatened to kill you even though you didn't do anything to us." Why is it the Muslims are the only ones who don't have to be sorry?

And for that matter, why are you proving his point for him? So he reads some junk about islam being 'evil" and "inhuman" and your response is "Convert or Die?" "His apology is not sufficient because he did not say that what he said was wrong," said Uzair Ahmed, from Pasban-e-Hurriyat, a Pakistani political group. (cnn) hmmmmm I wonder why that is Mr. Ahmed.

And I"m sorry that peaceful muslims all over the world had their feelings hurt: "This has gravely hurt the feelings of the Muslims across the world, including those from China," Chen Guangyuan, president of Islamic Association of China, was quoted as saying in an interview with the Xinhua news agency. (cnn) Well, my feelings are hurt too! Hurt by the collapse of the twin towers, and the women in Burkha's.

Where's my apology?

Thursday, September 14, 2006


Pajama's Media is trying to decide what to call voters who don't fit into our Left/right pidgeonholes.

How about.... People.

What a stupid question.

more on this later if I have time

Monday, September 11, 2006

Photographing Mountains

The weather in Chicago is extremely crappy today. Funny how I remember the weather on that Tuesday being extremely beautiful. I remember thinking about how nice it was as I walked to my university center to try and donate blood, after watching news coverage all morning.

I wish I didn't somehow resent all the media coverage, and "memorial" events. I certainly agree that this anniversary needs to be recognized. But to me it feels somehow cheapened by headlines and media footage. It seems like maybe what we really need instead of online streaming repeates of the coverage from that day and corny news segments and miniserieses, is just a little quiet, a little respect. Though, of course the media and others are remembering this day the way they know how. It just doesn't work for me, it seems to cheapen it somehow. I don't know why.

But I guess that's because there is no real way to capture what happend that day in film or words, and the memorials all just seem too small to reflect the tragedy, sortof how a photograph of a mountain can never really capture that mountain. You take the photograph and you look at it on your digital screen and realize that it is just a cheap attempt to capture the vastness of that mountain. In real life the mountain is huge, humbling, it towers over you, but in the photo, it just looks like a scenic photo of a mountain. It almost seems like a shame to keep the picture. I guess that's what the memorial services and movies and other coverage seem like to me. It can never do justice to such a huge tragedy, and it almost seems a shame to try.

I will simply remember what my friends and I agreed that morning sitting in my living room watching CNN. I don't remember who said it, but I remember how it resonated, and still does.

"The world will never be the same again."

Tuesday, September 05, 2006

Moving Is Hell

So I moved this weekend, for the 6th time in the last 6 years. Hopefully I'll stay there more than a year this time, that'd be nice. Because after this weekend, FUCK MOVING.

I took Thursday and Friday off for the move. On thursday I picked up the moving truck, a 14' long 11' high monstrosity. We loaded it and at about 7pm I parked it in the lot next door, I even went to the trouble of paying for three spots at the automated payment machine. But I couldn't fit my 11' tall truck in the underground lot, so I parked in the adjacent above ground lot. I looked for any signs that would demarcate it as being a separate lot, but I didn't see any at the entrance to the lot, or on the fences along the edge of the lot. I even asked a girl who was parking there if there were assigned spots in the lot. But there weren't.

So we go, clean my apartment. And we come back out at 9:30, and my giant moving truck has been towed. Of course. I can't say I was surprised as things were going much to smoothly. I call the place and find out that it will cost me $900.00 to get it out. That's right, not a typo $900.00, because they do it by weight and my truck was full of all my worldly belongings.

Well after a small fit of crying and yelling I manage to move on. I'm going to take the lot owners to small claims court for not properly labeling their lot.

But my weekend of horror was not yet over, oh no.

My sister asked me to take her to the salvation army to look for a couch. So we go, and get lost trying to find it, and as I'm going down a street in the left lane she says "Hey turn right!!!!" So I glance and I don't see anyone behind me, I try to get over and, of course, what is lurking in my blind spot but a lovely Cadilac.

Fortunately I mangaged to just ding his wheel well and gas tank lid. But of course it's some old asshole, and he gets out of his car yelling things like "What kind of fucking idiot are you" "How stupid can you be" and then we're exchanging information and he keeps it up "Do you at LEAST have a drivers lisence!?" "Who Owns this car?" (Me!) "Who is the owner" (Me!!!!!!) "Yes but who owns it."

So of course being the anal asshole he is he insists on calling the cops and getting apolice report. I think he was hoping I'd get a ticket or something. CaddiAsshole calls, we wait, he harasses me more. So here's the scene, Three old white guys, yelling at me, My sister getting all riled up, her cute blonde friend sitting staring at the pavement, me, sitting in my car trying not to be hysterical. And about a block away there is loud hip hop music and a basketball game going on. We're about 4 blocks from the United Center, not the worst area ever, but also, not the best. So finally we see a cop in the distance, and wave him down, he cruises by and CaddiAsshole asks him about investigating our accident and the cop was AMAZING.

Seriously, Chicago cops, right now, are my favorite ever. (just for now) He just looked at CaddiAsshole and said "We don't investigate accidents, and we're a little short handed so if you wait here you're going to be waiting a while" He clearly thought CaddiAsshole was an asshole too. An this definetly wasn't the kind of area of the city where cops have time to sit around babysitting senile men whose car gets a little beat up. AwesomeCop said we could go down to the police station and file a report if we wanted, but if we'd already exchanged info there was nothing more to do.

He starts to pull away and CaddiAsshole turns to me and starts trying to do the Jedi- Mind-Trick on me. "You are going to get in your car and follow us to the police station." To which I replied that I didn't think it was necessary to involve the cops in this. I was very polite the entire time, I tried to fight his open hostility with polite indifference, but it was quite difficult. And he keeps saying "I want you to follow us to the police station" like he has some kind of power over me, and I keep refusing, really just because I didn't want to go anywhere else with this total ass clown.

So AwesomeCop was still there and he asks "What's the problem?" And CaddiAsshole says we wouldn't go to the station with him, expecting him to force us. And AwesomeCop just looks at him and says "They don't have to, if you've exchanged information then you don't have to do anything else, they have 72 hours to file a police report if they want." At which point us three young chicas pile back into the car and I thank CaddiAsshole and I thank the cop for informing us of the law.

And then I went home after having left the house, gotten in an accident and then gone home again.

Of course, my weekend, not quite over, last night I got home from dinner with Boyfriend2.0's family and while trying to park my car in my new parking spot I ripped the mirror off my car.

Then just for an added bonus, I get to my room and start to get ready for bed and I find that one of my cats has used one of my bra's that was on the floor as a litter box. I think I might have tacos for dinner tonight. And a new fur hat tomorrow.