WordPress 1.5 has been released

Upgraded to wordpress 1.5. It was a no-brainer (or, as I originally typed it, a no-vrainer, because everyone knows how much I’m trying to get all traces of vrainage out of the house, now that Grace is here).

WordPress 1.5 now directly supports themes. I’m rather fond of Cup-o-Joe (as you can probably tell), but I want to have the sidebar headers generated in text, but I can’t figure out how to download fonts in Firefox.

The Big Cheat in The Lord of the Rings that nobody talks about

Especially in The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King (2003), but it is manifest in all three films;

Why is Frodo the main character leaving, while Sam is the one the audience is left to identify with in the last scene? It would probably been easier to stop the film earlier, so there must be some reason, aside from “Oh, but I want to film another series of shots!”.

The only even possibly valid assumption seems to be that Frodo is “too far out there”, too risky for “the audience” to identify with, so we’re left with the safe Sam at the closing scenes to establish a regular family life.

There is another, far more alienated, but probably academically acceptable answer:

The story of Frodo is too homoerotic; even at the end he still has only male friends, even while Sam goes off and gets married and has kids.

Then again, it seems to silly to blame homophobia on Hobbits, doesn’t it?

Speaking of roads…

Let’s see if this one pisses anyone else off.

We live less than two blocks from the neighborhood big park. There is still quite a bit of construction going on closer to the river, so there are many large trucks passing by during the day. A few of them are going the speed limit (35 mph). Many are going 5 to 10 miles per hour over the speed limit. Some, I suspect, are going 5 to 10 miles per hour over the speed limit of light.

We rarely take the kids to the park, as it involves crossing Riverplace Blvd. Instead, we put up a “Slow — children at play” sign at the end of the cul-de-sac, and tell the kids to never approach that zone.

Last week, when the weather turned nice for the first time in a few weeks, it was up, the kids were riding trikes and running and having a blast, when a nice fellow pulled in to ask where we got the sign, and to relate this story to us:

They called the Travis County sheriff’s department, and asked how to get a speed bump or speed hump put in. The answer?

“We can’t do that until there has been a death.”

My question is, “Does that death have to be related in some way to an engine, or can we get the brain-dead policy-based decision-makers out here to meet with the neighborhood parents armed with thousands of pounds of diapers, many with the diaper genie still wrapped around them?”

Hopefully I’ll be able to verify this claim at the next homeowners association meeting.

Nature has it’s place

and that place is outside. Seriously, anything with more than three legs had better be pretty damn cute before it thinks about crawling in here.

Why should that matter? I was driving Grace down to Grandma Albertson’s, and that last stretch of MOPAC between 290 and William Cannon is almost complete. It used to be trees, as recently as six months ago. Trees and presumably small furry woodland creatures. And spiders. And snakes, and scorpions, and iguanas, and geckos, and gnats, and mosquitos, and leeches, and ticks, and who knows what else.

Oh, yes. I did claim to have a point, didn’t I?

My point is that all that crap was outside. Where it belonged. Where do you think all those things went to live now?

I’m damn glad I don’t live within a mile radius of that area. I’d have our exterminator on speed-dial.

Oh, and at least the fsck-heads that were appointed changed their minds for the fifth time and decided not to make that little stretch a toll road, ten years after the bonds to pay for it were approved and sold. But wait! There’s time for them to change their minds five or six more times before it opens, and countless times after it opens.

Let’s just rename that little bit of road to “Whimsi-toll Road”, and watch everyone veer around it (unless they’re from out of town, on their first trip to Austin).

It’s not easy to get good debate about the evolution/creation debate

Except perhaps in the interesting people mailing list.

From John S. Quarterman

This isn’t something that many of us particularly want to do; science isn’t about attacking religion; it is about science. However, this isn’t science; it is politics. What creationists believe and teach in their own homes and churches is their affair. But when they interject their dogma into public school systems as fact, they expose it for critical examination, not to mention ridicule.

I love being a daddy

It sounds trite, but it holds true.

In my previous life, I was pretty much a stickler — oh, OK. I was an asshole. If you didn’t do things right by the tenth try or so, you were written off as a lost cause.

I even had an evil twin. He’s the guy who would always say what he thought, no matter how offensive. By most accounts, he’s been in remission since the first sonogram. Then, there is Austin traffic… Especially through westlake. Ewww.

Today has been all about the new laptop

So, Cy gets a new laptop. It’s the last one they have, so it was the demo unit. Heavily discounted, good. Tested and solidly burnt-in, good.

Fsck only knows what’s installed on it, bad. Very bad.


  1. Reinstall XP.
  2. OK, first find that damn 25-character code. Where the hell is it? Don’t throw out that receipt — it’s not in any of the paperwork.
  3. Oh. Here it is, on the bottom of the machine. OK.
  4. OK, now reinstall XP
  5. Oh, we need a network connection now?
  6. Merde, wireless isn’t working.
  7. Dig out an ethernet cable.
  8. Good, that works.
  9. Now, reinstall XP.
  10. Wait. Every 5 minutes, the screen will change, but leave it alone, and it will prompt you for an answer to an inane question.
  11. OK, we still have to do that windows update crap.
  12. Install all the drivers. At least it’s only one DVD-ROM worth.
  13. At least now wireless works.
  14. Install firefox, his copy of office, anti-virus, anti-spyware, set up privileged and unprivileged users (to keep things safe), RealVNC for remote access, Putty SSH and cygwin for me to be able to use it as well.
  15. Defrag the disk (to speed things up, since speed is the major gripe I hear about)

Oh, and let’s not foget after:

  1. Turn away for 30 seconds, and turn back to find weatherbug installed.
  2. Endure 2 hours of constant bitching, as I install gaim instead of aim.
  3. Hope for death to end the bitching. No such luck.
  4. Oh, but every other system is slow because of my anti-spyware activities. Forget the fact that there are > 200 useless and unused programs installed on the system in question.
  5. Oh, and I’ve never recommended a cd-ripper that works, despite the fact I’ve never used anything except cdex on windows, and it’s the only program that has ever worked. That’s my fault, you see.
  6. That also explains about 50 of the useless and unused programs that don’t slow down the system.
  7. Tabbed browsing? Keyword search on google, ebay and amazon? OK, maybe this isn’t so awful.
  8. Sure, if gaim and firefox aren’t so bad, let’s try Thunderbird.

What is the difference, really?

The Lemon helps us understand the true difference between Democrat and Republican.

I’ve also always been partial to Dave Barry’s take on it (I’m paraphrasing here):

Imagine you get a flat tire one night. The Republican won’t stop, because they don’t want to be late for ugly pants night down at the club. The Democrat will stop, but will accidentally set your car on fire.

Grace is sick

…with a cough.

Top this off with the skinned knee and nose from a few days ago, and we’ve really got a winner. Poor girl. Being 3 is hard.

We went to the store today, and bought 3 different types of medicine. I gave her the liquid one before bedtime, but she didn’t like it. I also got the “breath strips” type, as well as some popsicle-style, but those weren’t frozen yet.

We’ll see how she wakes up before deciding if she’ll go to gymnastics tomorrow morning.

It finally happened…

Grace came downstairs in the middle of the night…all on her own.

I was getting ready to slice bread, and shut our bedroom door as a precaution (so as to not wake those who were already sleeping). I had put the loaf in the slicer, and plugged in the knife when I heard the bedroom door open.

My first reaction? “Damn cat.” (For those not in the know, our cat can open doors. In either direction.)

I get ready to close the door, when I glimpse blonde hair getting ready to wake someone.

A very brief conversation ensued, and she willingly was carried back up to her room and put back in her bed. Turned on Daddy Cy’s music again, and she promised to close her eyes and go to sleep. Fortunately, I heard her call before she woke him. Some fresh ice water and some cough medicine, and snoring emanates from her room once again.