Sunday, July 31, 2005

The Tenth Planet

You've all seen this news item about the discovery of a "tenth planet" by now, right? Apparently, the astronomers who discovered it -- being, as astronomers often are, great big geeks -- are informally calling it "Xena."

Personally, I vote for "Mondas."
Hey, Look! More Random Links!

For, lo, there has been much web-wandering...

Dungeons & Dragons for Complete and Utter Idiots: Exactly what it says. The flowchart is particularly amusing.

Blog Depression: Are you suffering from Blog Depression?

Catty: "[A] chatter bot that does not try to understand or simulate human language, cannot learn, does not know meanings, knows no facts. Instead, it interfaces you to the entire web by using Google search engine to look up sentences that may be relevant to what you are saying." Kind of surreal to talk to. Sometimes says rather, um, inappropriate things, so be warned.

Interview with a Search Engine: More talking to search engines, this time a transcript of an "interview" with Ask Jeeves. Extremely funny.

Planarity: A puzzle game I found deeply fascinating right up to the point where it became deeply frustrating.

Saturday, July 30, 2005

Life in the Crack(ed) House, Update

This Has Your House Got Cracks? book, sadly, is proving to be pretty much useless. It's full of incredibly detailed, highly relevant information... for British people. Alas, I'm afraid the UK a) undoubtedly has different insurance and housing regulations, b) definitely has a very different climate, and c) builds almost exclusively with brick, meaning there's not much information that's terribly relevant to me and my wood-frame-on-concrete house.

Between the book and what I've been able to infer from the scraps of information I've gleaned on the internet, though, I've at least been able to reassure myself that, no, there probably really isn't any serious danger of my house collapsing[*], and that it is entirely normal for existing cracks to widen and for new cracks to appear in the summer, especially when it's been dry. That does help my peace of mind, because it's the fact that the changes are large and ongoing and came on rather quickly that was really freaking me out.

I definitely need to consult a professional, though. It seems quite possible to me that the foundation will need work, and even if it doesn't, informed advice on how to prevent further damage and at what point I do need to be concerned about safety issues is a good thing to have. Sigh. Why do I have the feeling that I'm going to be saying goodbye to what remains of my savings all too soon?

[*] The biggest danger, apparently, is cracking pipes. Which is definitely something to be concerned about, but which somehow doesn't lead to quite the same kind of panicky feelings as "Oh, my god, is the wall going to fall down?!"

Friday, July 29, 2005

There Will Be Non-Quiz Content Here at Some Point, I Swear.

FANTASY! - Mystical, magical mayhem! You feel the
urge to write of fantastic worlds that never
were and the beings that might live there. Are
they Lands of Wonder or adventures of Magical
Folly? JRR Tolkien and Tanith Lee are your

What Kind of Novel Should I Write?
brought to you by Quizilla

Not entirely sure about that result, but bonus points for picking Tanith Lee as an example.

Wednesday, July 27, 2005

We All Scream For...

You Are Strawberry Ice Cream
A bit shy and sensitive, you are sweet to the core.
You often find yourself on the outside looking in.
Insightful and pensive, you really understand how the world works.
You are most compatible with chocolate chip ice cream.
Pottering Around

OK, so, I got the new Harry Potter in the mail a couple of days ago, and finished it last night (or, technically, this morning). I definitely enjoyed it: the plot continues to develop in interesting ways, and even though the situation is getting more and more desperate and sinister, there's still a lot of great humor. (Dumbledore, really, is a funny, funny guy.) And, like the previous books, it's a very fast, zippy read.

The ending, though (about which I am now going to talk in vague, non-spoilery terms), left me feeling pretty unsatisfied, because it raises six billion questions and answers nothing. Which promises interesting things for the next book, for sure, but leaves this particular novel, to me, at least, feeling like one big, uncomfortable, dangling loose end. At least the previous ones, even though they were part of a continuing storyline, still had a sense of individual closure. Mind you, it could be that I'm overthinking things, and the stuff that raises the most questions in my mind is stuff that I'm actually supposed to take at face value and not expect more exploration of later... But I really don't think so, and if that turns out to have be the case, I'll be extremely disappointed.

In other words, I guess I can't really let you know entirely what I thought of Book 6 until I've read Book 7...

Tuesday, July 26, 2005

I Always Said I Was Mostly a Sci Fi Geek, Really

My computer geek score is greater than 52% of all people in the world! How do you compare? Click here to find out!
Up, Up, and Away!

Go, Discovery! And come back in one piece, please.

Monday, July 25, 2005

How Strange

You Are 50% Weird

Normal enough to know that you're weird...
But too damn weird to do anything about it!

Tennant's Looking Pretty Bootylicious in His Tardis![*]

I still miss the heck out of Eccleston, and I'm still pissed off by the complete lack of a US distribution, but pretty much everything else about the plans for the next season of Doctor Who makes me happy. Well, I'm not sure about the costume, but, hey, I didn't like the leather jacket at first, either.

[*] Apologies to Loyal Readers John Hall and Fred Coppersmith, and to the OED.
Time to Dump Some Random Links on Ya

Princeton Art of Science Competition: "[I]magery produced in the course of research or incorporating tools and concepts from science." Some very cool pictures.

Kill Harry Potter: Tired of the Hogwarts hype? Take it out on the kid on the broomstick, in this cruel but amusing flash game.

episode iii: backstroke of the west: Revenge of the Sith, translated into Chinese and back into English. Badly.

Hangmoto: Hangman game featuring no hanging, but a monster stomping on your city instead. Several categories to choose from, including science fiction movie titles.

SF Citations: Tracks down the usage of all kinds of interesting sfnal words and phrases. F'rinstance, "space" as a verb, meaning "to toss someone out an airlock without a suit" dates back to at least 1952, in Heinlein's The Rolling Stones. I'd kind of been wondering about that.

Saturday, July 23, 2005

Sci Fi Friday

I'm still really enjoying Battlestar Galactica. It's not, admittedly, one of those shows where the characters spring to spontaneous life of their own inside my head and try to take over my brain even when the TV's off. (Which, yes, is something some shows do, and other equally good shows don't, and I've never entirely understood what it is that makes the difference.) But it's an extremely worthwhile hour a week of TV, and I've been very impressed with season 2 so far. It's featured some of the most realistic-feeling combat I've ever seen on TV, and there was a moment in last night's episode that actually brought tears to my eyes. Which, as I've said before, makes me feel like kind of a sap, usually, but which I also regard as a hallmark of quality television.

I also happened, largely by chance, to catch bits and pieces of Stargate SG-1, even though it's not a show I've ever really watched. Actually, I think I've seen it three times, and two of those times (including tonight), it happened to be part two of a two-parter. What is it with that? Anyway, I wasn't really following most of it, as I just sort of had it on while I was wandering around the house doing some cleaning, but it was good to see Ben Browder and Claudia Black back together and doin' the science fiction thing again. One of these days, I really need to borrow the DVDs and try watching that series through from the beginning. From what little I've seen of the show, I haven't been moved to feel much of anything about it one way or the other, but friends assure me that it's a lot of fun, if you give it a chance. Of course, given my DVD backlog, I suppose the odds of my ever actually getting around to it are low...

Friday, July 22, 2005

"This is a different thing. It's spontaneous and it's called 'wit'." -- Edmund Blackadder

the Wit
(52% dark, 17% spontaneous, 22% vulgar)
your humor style:

You like things edgy, subtle, and smart. I guess that means you're probably an intellectual, but don't take that to mean you're pretentious. You realize 'dumb' can be witty--after all isn't that 'the Simpsons' philosophy?--but rudeness for its own sake, 'gross-out' humor and most other things found in a fraternity leave you totally flat. I guess you just have a more cerebral approach than most. You have the perfect mindset for a joke writer or staff writer. Your sense of humor takes the most effort to appreciate, but it's also the best, in my opinion.

Also, you probably loved the Office. If you don't know what I'm talking about, check it out here:

PEOPLE LIKE YOU: Jon Stewart - Woody Allen - Ricky Gervais

My test tracked 3 variables How you compared to other people your age and gender:
free online datingfree online dating
You scored higher than 50% on dark
free online datingfree online dating
You scored higher than 0% on spontaneous
free online datingfree online dating
You scored higher than 8% on vulgar
Link: The 3 Variable Funny Test written by jason_bateman on Ok Cupid
Blogs in Spaaaaaaace!

Loyal Reader JenBen has alerted me to an, um, interesting website that offers to beam your blog into space. I'm trying to imagine why I'd want to send my blatherings about Farscape and swamp cooler maintenance to the entire galaxy when I already occasionally feel silly for inflicting them on humans.

Thursday, July 21, 2005

For the Firefly Fans...

The international trailer for Serenity is now up on the web. It's a bit longer than the US one, and it's making me increasingly eager to see this movie.

Wednesday, July 20, 2005

"The Word Is Given. Warp Speed."

A moment of silence, please, for James "Scotty" Doohan.

It was easy to make fun of the "Scotty" accent, or of Doohan's increasing girth in later Trek movies, but in truth he was a talented actor, and a guy who never turned his back on his fans. I had a lot of affection for Scotty, and I'm sorry to see the man who brought him to us go.

Also, the fact that the original Star Trek actors are slowly leaving us is kind of starting to make me feel old. Sigh.
"And remember, every time you support a canceled Fox show, somewhere a network executive loses his wings."

Here's an amusing article about why you should watch Firefly, which will be running on the Sci-Fi channel on Fridays, starting this week. (Note that Sci-Fi's actually going to be airing the episodes Fox never got around to, so if you liked it when it was originally on but didn't want to shell out the cash for the DVDs, now's your chance to catch what you missed.)

A sample:
Regular television consumption will leave you with the inescapable conclusion that everyone in the world is a moron. People say stupid things, make stupid assumptions, and consistently fail to see obvious solutions because then the show would end 52 minutes too soon. You can actually feel your brain freezing up from vapor lock

The folks in "Firefly," good and bad alike, tend to do the same things you usually scream at television people to do, before you think to scream them, except when they're doing something even better. As it turns out that doesn't always help, but at least then you've got no one to blame but yourself.
Things That Suck About Sleeping During the Day, #17

By the time I'm awake enough to look at the clock in order to decide whether I should be getting up yet or not, I'm too awake to get back to sleep if it turns out I shouldn't.
When the Moon Hits Your Eye

Today (July 20th) marks the 36th anniversary of the Apollo 11 moon landing. (And, what does it say about me that I looked at my watch shortly after midnight and found myself with the strange, niggling feeling that the date was special, like, somebody's birthday or something?) Google has decided to mark the date in a really cute way (as well as sort of showing off their nifty new maps feature). Go to Google and click on the logo. No, seriously, go on. (If you're reading this and the date's already passed, the relevant page is here.) Be sure to check out the "more about" page, and links therefrom, 'cause there's some very funny stuff.

Monday, July 18, 2005

And They Don't Even Bother Saying "To Be Continued" Any More!

Pet Peeve #173: books that end in cliffhangers. I mean, come on... I don't mind series, as long as each book comes to something vaguely resembling a resolution. I don't have a problem with books that are one story split into multiple volumes for length (a la Lord of the Rings), as long as they're clearly labeled as such so that I know a) how long a story I'm actually reading, and b) to wait until I've got the whole thing in my hot little hands before I begin.

I'm beginning to wish I'd never started this damned series. The first book was great, a good little self-contained fantasy story that I really enjoyed. But they're just getting more and more annoying, and less and less self-contained. And yet I can't stop reading. Because there's nothing in the world more annoying than not getting to find out how a story ends.


(Note to those who haven't bothered clicking the links: No, that's not a Harry Potter rant. I still haven't got my copy yet. And Rowling, at least, seems to get the concept of resolving individual books in reasonably satisfying ways while developing an overall story arc.)

Sunday, July 17, 2005

Heck, I'm Even Clever Enough to Figure Out How To Divert a Stream of Water!

I am 13% Idiot.
Friggin Genius
I am not annoying at all. In fact most people come to me for advice. Of course they annoy the hell out of me. But what can I do? I am smarter than most people.
Eight Facts and a Solution

Fact #1: My swamp cooler is a model which excretes a steady trickle of water through a hose which hangs down the side of my house. I was advised by the former owners of the house to move the hose around and use it to water the plants.

Fact #2: The hose can only be moved to reach a few rosebushes at the front of the house. Also, while it can be draped into convenient positions over a trellis, it is kinky and stiff and is easily dislodged.

Fact #3: When dislodged, it hangs straight down and pours water directly onto the foundation of my house. Water around the foundation of my house causes said foundation to sink, which is Not a Good Thing.

Fact #4: The hose pumps out way more water than the few plants it can reach actually need anyway. Especially if I'm leaving it in the same position for many hours at a time.

Fact #5: We are currently experiencing highs in the triple digits (Fahrenheit, of course). The swamp cooler must therefore be run pretty much continuously during the day, including when I am at work or asleep.

Fact #6: Installing a longer hose or somehow adjusting the cooler to use less water would involve crawling around on the roof in triple-digit heat, as well as, you know, doing actual work.

Fact #7: A large trashcan placed directly under the hose seems like a good solution, but has the following problems: It fills up and must be emptied every couple of hours lest it overflow. It may blow over in the wind. When full, it is far too heavy to move. And, oh, yes, discovering a dead bird in a trashcan full of water is not a particularly fun way to start your day.

Fact #8. I live in the freakin' desert, where wasting water is kind of evil.

The solution? Swamp cooler hose + duct tape + garden hose = dry foundation + happy plants + waste water going to good use = happy home-owner.

Ah, duct tape. Is there anything it can't do?

Saturday, July 16, 2005

Speaking of Books...

I ordered a copy of the new Harry Potter novel along with the previously-mentioned book about what to do if you're living in a crack house -- er, a house that has cracks. I suppose I'll have to read it pretty much as soon as it comes. I think I'm already looking at a repeat of last time, when it seemed like every conversation I had for a week involved me shouting, "Don't tell me what happens!"

Friday, July 15, 2005

Why, Yes. Yes, It Does.

I don't know why, but when I've got a problem, finding a book about it is almost as good for my peace of mind as actually, you know, dealing with it.

Wednesday, July 13, 2005

Starving in the Desert

I just walked down to the local Subway to grab some lunch, but the place was locked, and there was a legal notice taped to the door saying they'd violated their lease by not paying the rent.

I think it very inconsiderate of them to bail on their rent when I've got a craving for a chicken sandwich.

So, like I said earlier, I went up to Albuquerque last night to see Bruce Campbell. He was in town on a tour to promote his new book, Make Love the Bruce Campbell Way, which seems to be a semi-autobiographical comic novel, and looks like a lot of fun. So I snagged me a copy of the book and got it signed, then went to a special screening of his new movie The Man with the Screaming Brain at the local indie theater. Bruce did a Q&A session with the audience before the movie, and was really, really cool: hysterically funny, full of great stories, not in the least afraid to express his opinions, and possessed of a surprising amount of energy after having just sat in a bookstore signing his name over and over for three hours.

As for the movie... Well, it was a "Sci Fi Pictures Original," which, if you're at all familiar with the Sci Fi network, probably tells you something. (Well, technically, it was a theatrical cut of the movie, intended for overseas release, which apparently means there was more sex and swearing than you'd see on Sci Fi.) It was at least somewhat ahead of most Sci Fi productions, in that it didn't have any giant killer animals in it. Actually, it had kind of a fun (if goofy) premise, involving bits of different people's brains being spliced together, and some laugh-out-loud funny moments, but it worked best when it was really going almost over the top in parodying B-movie conventions, and I can't help but think it would have really improved it to play up that type of humor more. Also, apparently it was originally supposed to be set in LA, but Sci Fi insisted on producing it in Bulgaria, because Bulgarians will work for next to nothing, so they had to re-write the script to set it in Bulgaria, leading to a certain "WTF? Bulgaria?" quality. If I'd come across it flipping channels on Sci Fi, I suspect I'd quite likely have changed the channel, but in a theater full of Bruce fans, having been warmed up by his terrific intro, and having gone in with the full expectation of getting a B-movie, it managed to be an entertaining experience.

Plus, I had good Chinese food, and got to hang with some friends I don't see nearly as often these days as I used to, so it was a good night. I'm callin' it my birthday present to myself, I think.

Tuesday, July 12, 2005

Ah, That's Better.

Hmm, apparently building an isolated woodsy cabin in your brain and retreating there when people start to stress you out works quite well, too. I'll have to keep that in mind for future reference.

I'm starting to develop a deep desire for a vacation. I want to hole up in a cabin in the middle of nowhere, with no phone, no neighbors, and even -- gasp! -- no internet, and spend a week reading really thick books and looking at trees.

Instead, I am going to go to work. And then tonight I'm going to Albuquerque to see Bruce Campbell, which should at least be fun. And tomorrow I'm taking the day off. Maybe I'll pretend I'm in a cabin...

Sunday, July 10, 2005

Oh, Look, It's This Thing Again.

Current clothes: Black t-shirt from Weird Al Yankovic's "Poodle Hat" tour. Blue denim shorts. White ankle socks. Black sneakers. Black belt.

Current mood: I've been really irritable and bitchy lately. Not continuously, by any means, but all kinds of things that I would normally shrug off are getting under my skin, and I keep wanting to argue with people. This in itself is kind of starting to irritate me.

Current music: Still mostly listening to randomly-generated playlists. Which can have interesting results.

Current annoyance: See "mood."

Current thing: Um... Being bitchy? Mostly on the internet.

Current desktop picture: A picture of a glacier that I look on my Alaska cruise a couple of years ago. I just put it up yesterday, though, and I don't think it actually makes very good wallpaper, so I'll probably change it again soon. But here it is:

Current song in head: "It's Not Unusual." Thanks to a reference to it over at Impenetrable Prose and Poesy.

Current book: Timescape by Gregory Benford. I've actually read this once before, way back in high school, but I couldn't remember much of anything about it except that it was a very hard-SF story, that it involved time travel, and that I enjoyed it. Alas, my enjoyment level is not terribly high this time around, as I appear to have lost most of my taste for the kind of story where people stand around lecturing each other about particle physics. But it's redeemed a bit for me by the fact that Benford's characters, at least, feel very much like real scientists doing real science, which I think is very rare in SF.

Current video in player: Nothing at the moment. Most recently, a tape of fan-made Doctor Who videos a co-worker lent me. Mostly little humorous things: music videos, bits of Who eps spliced together with bits of Monty Python sketches in amusing ways, stuff like that. Most of it was just kind of OK, but there were these clips that spliced together innocent lines of dialog to get amazingly filthy results, which were so hysterically funny I almost required the Heimlich maneuver because I made the mistake of trying to eat while I was watching.

Current DVD in player: Disc three of The Greatest American Hero, season 1. Fun, fun show. And I'm finding it very interesting to look back on it now as a product of its times.

Current refreshment: Green tea. (Still haven't seen any demons, though, John!)

Current worry: I may have mentioned that there are some cracks in the walls of my house, because there's been some uneven settling of the foundation. Lately, they appear to be much worse than I thought they were. Are they getting bigger? Did I just not notice before how bad they were? (Which is entirely possible, because the full extent of some of them is only visible from inside closets.) Or is it somehow due to things expanding in the heat? I don't know, but, aaargh! My house is going to collapse! Except it isn't. But I seem to be imagining worse-case scenarios for everything, lately.

Current thought: I don't know what's causing me to be both bitchy and neurotic lately, but, damn it, it's time for it to stop! I wish to return to my normal state of bland, good-natured apathy.

Friday, July 08, 2005

Alarming Developments

Well, for those who suggested that it might be steam from the shower setting off my smoke alarm, it looks like you were right. The number of times it's happened while I was showering cannot possibly be coincidence. I'd have thought it was far enough down the hall from the bathroom for that, but apparently not. Looks like the simplest thing to do would be to move it, though I have no idea where to. Either that or get the vent fan in the bathroom fixed, but I'd have no idea how to go about doing that, either.

Stupid homeownerness.

Thursday, July 07, 2005

A Short Movie Review

I went to see Mr. & Mrs. Smith last night. I'd heard good things about it, so I walked into the theater with pretty high expectations. Note to self: never go into a movie with high expectations. It's a sure recipe for disappointment.

It wasn't that the movie was bad, exactly. The premise was wonderfully fun, and there were some great bits of humor. But the pacing just wasn't very good, leading to lots of long, dead spots without much in the way of laughs and action sequences that just draaaaaagged. And I found major parts of the plot weirdly hard to follow, possibly due to bad editing. Anybody want to explain to me, for instance, how he managed to survive the elevator? I made up a nice, plausible explanation, but it wasn't remotely clear to me from what we saw on the screen if it was right or not.

Also, I have come to the conclusion that I just have difficulty accepting Angelina Jolie in the role of a human being, 'cause she simply doesn't look like one. Seriously, she looks like some kind of sex android, or possibly a walking parody of the Hollywood concept of female beauty. I can accept, for the duration of a movie, all kinds of wacky spy antics and ridiculous technology and wild coincidences. But I simply cannot stretch my suspension of disbelief far enough to encompass Angelina Jolie's lips.

Mind you, I gather that at least the last couple of lines were really great, judging by the big laugh they got from the audience. Unfortunately, I have absolutely no idea what they were, as the cell phone belonging to the colossal asshole behind me chose that moment to go off for the second time.
I Shall Refrain from Making Any Political Commentary.

You Are 51% American
Most times you are proud to be an American.
Though sometimes the good ole US of A makes you cringe
Still, you know there's no place better suited to be your home.
You love your freedom and no one's going to take it away from you!

World News

If I never, ever log into my e-mail again and discover there's been a major news event by suddenly being hit with mailing list posts full of "I heard the news, I'm so sorry" or "Oh, my god, is everyone here from [insert city here] OK?" it will be a blessed relief. It seems to keep happening, and every time, it's like a punch in the gut.

My thoughts go out to the people of London.

Wednesday, July 06, 2005

But It Was Too Warm to Put on a Jacket Today, Honest!

I went out for Chinese tonight and got the Worst Fortune Cookie Message Ever: "Think of mother's exhortations more."

Damn it, how did my mother manage to slip something into my cookie? She's in California!
Local News

There was a bad fire here in Socorro this weekend. The couple of people I was online with Saturday night might remember me having to bug out because of a power failure; apparently that was associated with the fire, though in what way I don't quite know. I didn't even hear about it until Monday, and didn't happen to pass by the affected area until yesterday, but, man, the results are impressive, in a really depressing way. There used to be a building there. Now there's part of a building and a hell of a lot of rubble. Particularly sad for the (copious) geek population: it took out an ISP and a gaming store.

Tuesday, July 05, 2005

No Comment on That Question of Whether Size Matters...

You scored as The film TARDIS. If size is important, you've chosen correctly. The control room to this model is so large you'll not even need the other rooms. A retro-chic control column adds that H.G. Wells effect to impress your guests.

If you liked this test try 'Which Dr Who are you?' at:

The film TARDIS


The Original TARDIS


The 80's TARDIS


The secondry control room


The Master's TARDIS


The Rani's TARDIS




What is your TARDIS interior
created with

Hmm. Personally, I thought it was way overdone. But if it comes with Paul McGann, I don't care!
Believe It or Not...

Apparently my idea of celebrating the 4th of July consists of watching an episode of The Greatest American Hero. This probably says something about me, but I'm not exactly sure I want to know what.

Monday, July 04, 2005

Cylon Invasion

For those who may have missed it the first (and the second) time around, the Sci Fi Channel is running a marathon of the entire first season of the new Battlestar Galactica on Wednesday, July 6, in preparation for the premiere of season 2 on the 15th. I may still be pretty snarked off at Sci Fi for not picking up Doctor Who (not to mention that I'm never gonna be able to forgive them for cancelling Farscape), but I will at least give them props for doing right by BSG: re-running it frequently to give new viewers the chance to catch up, as well as putting lots of fan-pleasing goodies on the web. And this show deserves it, too. It doesn't thrill my heart and fire my imagination the way Who or Farscape have, but it's good, solid, dramatic SF with excellent actors, three-dimensional characters, a worthwhile premise, and an interestingly complex ongoing storyline. Definitely recommended. Ditch any preconceptions you may have about it based on the original version and watch.

Sunday, July 03, 2005

Throwing Things at Snowballs

Sadly, the last space exploration mission I mentioned here was over before it got started. Here's wishing better luck for NASA's Deep Impact probe, whose "impactor" should, if all goes well, be colliding productively with comet Tempel 1 this evening (US time). After all, this one's supposed to crash.

Saturday, July 02, 2005

Things That Confuse Me

So, I went to buy something online a few weeks ago, only to realize that my credit card had expired. I remembered them sending me a notice in the mail saying a new card was coming, but either I hadn't gotten it, I figured, or I'd accidentally thought it was junk mail and thrown it out. (I mean, I get an average of one piece of junk mail a day from some credit card company or other, and I never open 'em. It's easy to get confused.) So I called the company and they said, OK, they'd cancel that card and issue me a new one. Great! A few days later, I got a card in the mail, called up to activate it, and figured all was well. Then, just now, I got another card in the mail... And realized that the one I'd just activated was the first one. Yes, the one I'd already called to cancel. And the new one was the second one. So, OK, I activated that, too, but now I'm really curious as to whether the first one is active or cancelled. I didn't want to ask, though, because that involves a lot of being on hold and listening to people typing into computers and going through long spiels aimed at selling you credit protection plans, and all that kind of thing. Maybe I'll just try using it and see. Even though I really almost never buy anything with the credit card, anyway. Hmm. Maybe it's all some giant conspiracy to get me to use it...

Also, my smoke detector keeps going off for no apparent reason, which makes me very nervous.
Search Request Weekly

I'm getting kind of bored with this again, which is why there wasn't one last week. But, hey, people seem to like it, and it's a good way to put off the stuff I ought to be doing. So here's another batch. If you get all the obscure references and in-jokes, give yourself a medal.

  • dave ragan batmobile: Ooh, I wonder if he's a relative of mine. Maybe he'll let me have a ride!

  • composition arguable claims statements: When you get down to it, I'm not sure there's any claim or statement that isn't arguable, if you're stubborn enough.

  • celebrity blepharitis: That's it. The cult of celebrity has officially gone too far.

  • "fan fiction" "doctor who" peri: Ooh, kill her off in an entertaining way! She annoyed me.

  • creepy "the boy from outer space": Space children aren't creepy! They just need love and understanding.

  • sims nude furniture "get rid of": Yeah, it sucks to have all that nude furniture cluttering up your house.

  • laurell k. hamilton personality quizzes with pictures: I don't really want to be told I have the personality of any of her characters.

  • knick-knack download: Ah, if only you could download physical objects over the net, I'd never have to leave the house.

  • blog londo: Now, there's a guy who's capable of some verbosity!

  • guinness book of records "biggest dick in the world": Oh, I think my ex-boss hold that record. What a jerk.

  • amanda peterson fan page can't buy nude: Did you check if your credit card had expired? That happened to me a while ago. Not that I was trying to buy nude anything.

  • bigbody sex videos: It's Bigbootay!

  • star wars cartoon porn nude spaceboy: How can you tell he's a spaceboy if he's nude? It's like that ZZ Top song, really. How do you know she's a cowgirl if she's naked?

  • how to build the perfect spaceship out of legos normal legos picture: I don't know, but I wish you absolute success!

  • "Bizarre Obsession" Argo: Yeah, I suppose being all gung-ho over some colored wool is pretty strange.

  • analysis lyrics "thick as a brick" Tull: Good luck. I don't think Ian Andersen actually knows what they mean.

  • babylon five fanfiction em letters: Is this part of that "I Spy" game Marcus and Franklin were playing?

  • video clip dinosaur suit wind: I think I will choose to believe that's "wind" in the British sense, 'cause that makes it funnier.

  • clips girls with 38C boobs kicking guys in the nuts: Well, you gotta admire a guy who knows exactly what he wants. I guess.

  • cortisone injection eustacian tubes: Ow! That sounds painful.

  • Einstein "what did you have for breakfast this morning?": I don't know about Einstein, but I had coffee and some cantaloupe.

  • "jack sparrow" ticklish: I wouldn't be surprised, really. Though it might depend on how much rum he's had.

  • halo and the flood legos: Is that some sort of religious-themed playset?

  • quality "galaxy song": Well, I think it's good.

  • gray tube sock fetish: I guess that's better than having a fetish for something expensive.

  • Babylon 5 fanfic rape: Probably depends on your definition, but I'd accuse the second Kosh if we're accusing anybody. Damn Vorlon.

  • ragan cake: Yes! Give me cake!

  • ashleigh simpson hairstyle: Is Ashleigh Simpson a guy or a gal? 'Cause apparently I was wrong about Ashleigh Brilliant.

  • what Accounts payable do: I dunno. Pay accounts?

  • b5's pictures from bet: You won Babylon 5 pictures in a bet? Cool.

  • females showing their underarms in show pics: My underarms took Best in Show!

  • perverted fire of crais lyrics: I know a few fangirls who'd like to exchange some perverted fire with Crais, if you know what I mean.

  • "bum bum... bum bum ba bum" song: I can name that tune in... Well, actually, more notes than that.

  • penis thwap ascii: Some people have strange ideas about art.

  • swamp cooler critique: Mine's too noisy. And doesn't cool the whole house evenly. And apparently the wiring is... creative.

  • blake's 7 miniskirt: Are you sure you're not thinking of Star Trek?

  • doctor who comics flood cybermen illustrated: Is that Cybermen being flooded, or a flood of Cybermen? Because the latter is much scarier.

  • "nude: heh": I love that little exclamation there. "Heh! I'm looking for nudity! Heh, heh, heh!"