1. Dean, Gov. Howard, VT - Democrat (92%)
2. Kucinich, Cong. Dennis, OH - Democrat (91%)
3. Sharpton, Reverend Al - Democrat (86%)
4. Gephardt, Cong. Dick, MO - Democrat (79%)
5. Kerry, Senator John, MA - Democrat (76%)
6. Edwards, Senator John, NC - Democrat (76%)
7. Lieberman Senator Joe CT - Democrat (72%)
8. Graham, Senator Bob, FL - Democrat (70%)
9. Moseley-Braun, Former Senator Carol IL - Democrat (70%)
10. Libertarian Candidate (63%)
11. Phillips, Howard - Constitution (11%)
12. Bush, George W. - US President (8%)
13. LaRouche, Lyndon H. Jr. - Democrat (-5%)
Apparently, I would rather vote for some crazy, unnamed Libertarian candidate or the insane Constitution guy before Dubya. Apparently, the Republicans just can't count on me for support.
Dean came out on top. I'm not horrendously surprised. I probably could have attended meetup yesterday in Rockville, but I was just dead from drop and release.
The weekend was the weekend. We went over to the 80's party at meercat and snidegrrl's Apartment Party Palace on Saturday with capital_l in tow. ect had produced several SWANKY discs of groovy 80's mix (although I realized sunday that there was a distinct lack of Van Halen so my tiny fist -- IT SHAKES!). Jack apparently put up some pictures. The blur in the exceedingly ugly orange and pink sportscoat is me. I don't think there are any non-blurry pictures of me. However, you can see devolutionary wearing the Power Pyramid. Are we not men? We are DEVO.
And, of course, I crashed at around midnight, because I am OLD and LAME and OLD.
And, technolope is coming to DC next weekend. I'm hoping to see him, even for the briefest of brief.
Sunday I crashed -- sick, head stuffed up, chest stuffed up, head hurting, ears hurting, that kind of thing. I played a million hours of Dark Cloud 2. Must... build... stupid... little... town. The game is like crack.
Today I weight train (ow) and work until my eyes bleed. Drop on Thursday.
I came in to 10 new political messages in my inbox this morning. Time to start procmailing the suckers.
Strom Thurmond is dead. Long live Strom Thurmond. He lived 55 years too long. Am I bad for doing the Strom is Dead Happy Dance? Perhaps.
The LGBT decision from the Supreme Court must have killed him. Finally. The ACLU has a new site for further LGBT issues that stem from the decision. It's the "Get Busy, Get Equal" activism drive. They have little buttons you can stuff on your website, like so:
I'm naturally very happy with the decision, since I'm a huge "Keep the Hell Out of My Bedroom You Dirty Fuckers" person. Homophobia makes no sense to me. It's not like you're going to catch gay. It's not an airborne disease. "A gay person looked at me! Now I'm going to catch gay!" And what the hell do you care what people do in their bedroom? Worse, why do you care only about gay people, when straight people are just as twisted and kinky -- and often more so?
Thank God for sanity.
I'm sending the following letter to the Dean Campaign. It's under the cut for your enjoyment. I had to submit through their comments page, so I don't know if anyone will ever see it or if it goes to /dev/null.
Fear and Loathing on the Campaign Trail '04, here I come.
In other news, we lost power somewhere between 2-4pm yesterday afternoon, and the bastards from Allegheny Power didn't get it back on until 5am. ect and I stayed at a Motel 6 last night, because there was no way we could stay in a 100+ degree house. Sure, we could have huddled in the basement, but... Eric had to be at class at 8am, and that just wouldn't have worked. The Motel 6 was fine. Mildly crappy, but all we did was sleep there. But man, did it piss me off mightily.
I need to start drinking much more water after lifting weights. Ow ow ow ow ow ow ow ow.
I have to do this one lift called the 'overhead press.' It hits all the muscles that sit idle from typing all day. I sit down to the machine, adjust the weight down, and lift. Everything from the front of my chest all the way over my shoulders and down my spine cracks in one loud orgy of cracking. I'm good and warmed up before I sit to this machine -- it's the 6th or 7th on my list -- but these muscles have been stubbornly not moving all day, and now they're lifting 35 lbs. It's almost disturbing how loudly my shoulders and back crack.
A second press. Same cracks.
A third press. Now cracks and the hot burning feelings as the acid comes screaming out of my muscles in black torrents.
A fourth press. Cracks and acid and the pain as the uberknot in my left shoulder instantly comes entirely undone as the muscle floods with blood. The whole trick of massage is to get the blood flowing into the muscles and the muscles to move. That releases the knot. This machine does an hour massage all in one go. Now I'm gritting my teeth.
By time I get to twelve presses, I can feel the muscles burning, the lactic acid burning, and my left shoulder screaming. But it was the right weight, because I felt the actual muscle burn in the last three pushes, just like I'm supposed to. I write down '35 lbs' on my sheet and glare at the machine. Stupid machine. You'll get yours.
The entire left side of my back feels like it's been through a minor law war in Asia. "Never get involved in a land war in Asia!"
My weight has not changed one iota in 5 days. I lost 6 lbs very fast, and now my body stubbornly refuses to move. I'm eating less, I'm working out, so it's a bit of a mystery to me. It's likely that my _body fat_ is going down and my weight is going up due to, well, all the weight training. In fact, it's coming off so fast off my legs that it's just gross. So one of three things is happening:
It's likely a combination of 1 and 3. So snacking it is, just to keep my metabolism up. The SUPER metabolism has not kicked in yet -- damn you clomid! -- because of the hormone supplements.
But I wanted to hit 8 lb mark by tomorrow. Won't happen. Sigh. Alas.
ect has lost so much weight that he has to put another hole in his belt. His jeans no longer fit. Now he's baggy-butt Eric. And this is just from adding some walking and some working out into his schedule.
The possible candidates are:
Not a heartwarming group. Alas.
I can eliminate Braun, Sharpton and Kucinich -- two for having no name recognition and nothing that makes them interesting, and one because he's Al Sharpton.
In the second group are the Has-Beens: Lieberman and Gephardt. I think Lieberman is just tired after the Gore thing -- and just being Joe Lieberman -- and Gephardt has been in every Democratic Primary since 1984. I don't want to see them anymore. It gives the party and the primary process this old, tired, stodgy, failed feeling.
We have the 'statesmen': Graham and Kerry. Graham is dull and uninteresting. I write him off immediately. John Kerry, every time he looks like he's going to step up to the plate and do something interesting, he backs down and mumbles something about reaching across the aisle. It's nice that he's actually starting to be a bit pro-active, but he seems too nice, too polite, and not enough fire. The vibe I get is not that he wants it, but that he's entitled to it. I'm not keen on entitlement.
So that leaves John Edwards and Howard Dean. I find Edwards to be slimy. He has a coat of film. I can see it in his pictures. He's all shiny.
I voted for Dr. Dean, ex-Governor of the Free Republic of Vermont.
As a bonus, looking through his literature, the man is insane. I prefer my candidates to be crazy. And he's pro-gun. So he's a crazy, somewhat-liberal, somewhat-centrist, pro-gun Democrat who likes to shake his fist at the sky and scream about War and misuse of money and deficit. And mostly, he seems to have some fire.
I'm more interested right now in people who want it then people who feel entitled to it. I'm looking for someone who is willing to fight and won't fold. I don't think any of them will give me what I'm looking for, so I'm looking for the guy with the most entertainment value.
If anyone cares, the campaign page is here. Sadly, I cannot find a good link to order swag. If you're going to stand around and scream, dammit, there should be swag involved. It's a moral imperative.
ect and I drove up to less than lovely Trenton New Jersey on Saturday through rain and muck and endless traffic for Joe Mancuso's wedding. The entire experience was kind of eerie and strange and naggingly unpleasant. It wasn't seeing Joe get married -- that had its own surreal qualities -- I just felt like there was this life and I was there and now I'm not there anymore so I'm just watching it from the outside.
I spent most of the time talking to theshunter, catching her up on my more immediate life. I talked to other people -- hi, how you doing, how's life -- but it was all... I don't know. I said to mcniadh that everyone and everything felt old. However, there is a vague, slim chance that Mark might be moving to Gaithersburg, and that would make me do a happy dance. So I've found that those who I liked to hang out with -- the very original Bursley crowd -- I still do, and still feel comfortable around, but it's gotten to be a very Through the Looking Glass feeling.
I was assured that people have livejournals. I am currently tracking them down.
We returned home around 12:30-ish to wonderful, glorious Germantown and slept the sleep of the sleepy.
On Sunday, we were well and truly jacked for people to hang out with -- damn you all and your l33t social lives! -- so I was forced, alas, to spend the day with ect and talk to him and stuff. I went outside and was the Murderer of Weeds, pulling six handfuls of weeds out of my tiny plot. It was the first time in months that it didn't rain on a weekend, and the plot needed to be dealing with. As of this morning, it still needed to be dealt with. There were survivors attempting to struggle to sunlight, and several I pulled before I went to work.
My strawberries are strawberrying. I picked two and ate them with breakfast this morning. And just when I thought they were done mad-sprouting like sprouting things, they shoot up more flowers to make more berries. These are some really horny plants.
The box of marigolds have all flowered, and are sending up more flowers. They look really fantastic, and even though there are only a dozen plants, I started them from seeds, so I'm all proud and stuff. I should take a picture of them and paste it up here.
As of today, I've also lost 6lbs. Not that anyone can tell, but my pants are already fitting better. I start weight training (10 machines, 10-12 reps, 30lbs or more) tonight, plus 20 minutes of cardio. No cheese, no mayo, no eggs, no bacon, no sausage (but I cheat here), no sour cream, no guacamole, no ice cream. But there is fat-free ice cream, so I can get around some of the last one.
I've noticed that jlj seems to prompt me into writing really huge journal entries. Alas.
I am in the "risky" category, so losing weight is the plan. The trainer also pointed out lunch as a problem area (no surprise) and told me I need to eat more (big surprise). The trick is to snack lightly between meals so I a) eat less at meal time and b) my metabolism keeps going all day long. Apparently, if it has something to chew on, it thinks it should move all the time, and starts burning weight. It makes a certain amount of sense.
Next came the fat count and blood pressure and... it got depressing. I'm fat. And now it's written down that I'm fat. Whenever I feel unmotivated, I can look at that number and go, "But I'm a big land whale."
Then I sat on the cardio bike, and the trainer cranked the resistance for the cardio test up too high. My left knee is like white fire under the kneecap. I had to stop and lower it and redo the cardio test, but then my heart rate was way up, so it got all flummoxed. And I did 2x as much killer bike as I needed to do, so now I pay the price with Advil.
Afterwards, time for the weight machines! Boy, I'll be feeling this for days! 12 reps on 8 different Nautilus machines, 2x a week for 60 days, and then onto the 'advanced' weight training with free weights. Just the Nautilus machines set on 'wimpy engineer' was hard. And some of it in my upper body was super hard. My legs seem reasonable, even my flabby thighs. But my upper body was hell and suffering. The Advil for my knee goes to my arms as well.
I have to do cardio machines 3-5x a week for either 20-30 minutes (cardio) or 40-60 minutes (fat burn). I have to keep moving machines and workouts or else my body gets used to it. With 2x week on the strength training, this means going to the gym every day. Thank God it's about two minutes away across the street.
Now I go to collapse and wimper for a while. Alas.
No, it was the saturated fats, and they were killing me. I was eating 200-300% of the AMA requested saturated fat amounts. No soft cheese. No mayo. Cut the eggs. Avoid bacon. Sausage is okay if it's the right kind of sausage and in moderation. And definitely no gravy.
Cheese, I don't think I can quit entirely. I'm very attached to cheese! If you look at my info, cheese is on my "likes" list! However, my life won't be sad without mayo.
As of this morning, I have lost a whopping 3lbs in a week. But then again, my target is 2-3 lbs/week for the next 10 weeks -- well, 9 now. It's finally started to obviously work.
In other news, I signed up for Latin at Montgomergy College -- the same place giving ect fits yesterday. Getting through Admissions was a huge pain. I had to stand in this one line, and I was stuck behind the Dumbest Girls Ever, who spent 45 minutes explaining to the Admissions Officer that they didn't need to take some placement test because they took a phantom AP exam they had no scores for and they placed really highly on the SAT which they also had no scores for. They had a stunning lack of scores. Why would you bother to lie to get out of a 30 minute placement test?
I got up to the desk. The form was looked over and she asked me, "Do you have a prior degree?" I said, "I have several." She picked up a form and sent me to a different line -- which I then stood in for a long, long time. Luckily, AvantGo kept me from going completely mad. Hurrah for the Guardian!
Once I got through that line, my form was processed, my $25 taken, and I was told I could register immediately. Have prior degree? Go to the head of the registration line! It's like being a Senior all over again. So I went home, and registered for Latin. I can afford A class. One. Single. And that was the winner -- it beat out Japanese because Japanese is only spoken, and I want written.
Of course, it's 9-12 on Saturday mornings. Joy! Latin I have to get out of bed for! I have to get a sticker and a badge, but I'll do that later. Class doesn't start until Sept. 2nd.
Sadly, this is the only thing I could get in the realm of Extreme Geek. I tried some pretty incredibly geeky things, too, before I found this one.
Help! I have no wires and I must scream!
I had already started working out 30 minutes a day, every day. And went from a mix of diet pop-normal pop down to just diet pop.
So I am sick and tired of being sick and tired. Time to drop 20 lbs.
As I've mentioned elsewhere, I don't much eat candy, chips, cake, ice cream, etc. I eschew fast food, especially fast food burgers. (Yuck.) But I'm still socking on the pounds. I _know_ the hormone mixture that's being tossed into my body is playing havoc with my metabolism in unpredictable ways, and I know that is very seriously part of the problem. There's really not much I can do about it except attack the symptoms. The other part is that my job requires me to sit on my ass all day. And I can't get another job.
I read The Hacker's Diet last night. It's a calorie counting diet for engineers -- and engineers in specific --, but it has some interesting mathematical twists to it to do some statistical predictions based on trends in loss and predicting the loss curve. If you keep up with the predictions, you lose weight. Ta-da!
Hmm, sayth I.
I loaded the software onto my palm pilot, but found that it didn't do any calorie counting, although it predicted how much to injest per day to lose the predicted weight based on the curve. So I had to go get a calorie counter. I found one at The Calorie King -- goofy name, but a 19000 item database with calorie, carb, sodium, and fiber counts. I think it's cool, but it'll cost me $20 to register it. If it's still cool in a week, I will.
So I'm not changing anything yet, but I am trying to figure out where the weight is actively coming from. I really don't think I need to DDR myself to death or ride 10,000 miles a day. Something needs to go. I just need to figure out what.
And, I just noticed, JLJ forgets to put in the line breaks, forcing me to manually edit.
I've had two bad side effects from the strange mix of pills: fast weight gain and breakouts.
Now, the fast weight gain can also be somewhat attributed to my fine, fine lifesucking job and crappy lifestyle. I sit in a chair for ten straight hours and write code. I don't move too much. Eventually, I start socking on pounds and my lower back starts to cramp something fierce. I get muscle knots and anxiety and discomfort. I can't sleep. Ergo, the thirty minutes a day on the bike I am doing now -- in fact, as I type this entry.
The breakouts are right from the hormone mix. I've always had problems, but now they've become _problems_.
So I see the doctor today, and he looks at my back, and he says, "Yep, pretty bad."
And I think, _Thanks_.
The doctor then tells me that due to the hormone mix causing the breakouts, he can only do a limited number of things to _cure_ the breakouts. Isn't that wonderful? But I walked off with a fistful of prescriptions and I'm almost positive that something is better than nothing, and the prescribed medications are more effective than supermarket items.
So okay, that's dealt with. I have to go back in a month, but it's better than nothing.
The weight is still an issue, although I'm sitting here pedaling away. There's a brand new center built across the street from the townhouse complex. It took me a bit to actually find it -- it's in an arcane and somewhat bizarre location off the beaten path -- but I found it. It's a full gym/ptherapy/phys rehab center associated with one of the local hospitals. It has trainers, equipment, racquetball courts, classes, an Olympic pool, a hot tub, and hoops courts for $100 for both myself and Eric per month. Not too crowded, and less than two minutes from home. Even if Eric doesn't want to go, I probably should to get rid of the flab and just do something else that isn't sitting inside. I kind of wish it was cheaper, but I think if I pay for something, I'll actually use it.
I just want to get rid of the flab. I very much want to lose 20 lbs. I have already cut out chips and cookies and cake and fast food and yadda out of my daily diet -- although, sadly, if it's within grasp, I will snack. I do three real meals a day. I buy sammiches without cheese or mayo. At work, I've switched from Coke to Diet Coke. I'm aware that if I cut anything, I'll start to just starve myself. And the damn hormone pills take anything I eat and turn it instantly into either flab or breakouts.
So I'll probably spring for the gym and cut down on my online time and go after work. It seems to me to be a worthy enough lifestyle change.
What I can gather is this:
SCO, which was once SCO, and then Caldera, and again SCO, has invented some strange patent claims where it says it owns all of Unix (plus all derivatives), it bought it from Novell, who got it from AT&T.
There are some mystery patents that no one seems to know about or understand, and they're claiming all sorts of copyright and patent infringement. So far, they haven't told anyone what is infringing on what, nor have they pointed out where in the open-source sourcecode these infringements took place.
Novell has told them they're on crack.
IBM has told them they're on crack.
It looks like an attention grab and the last stand of a desperate company who will close its doors any day now. If patents were infringed, they knew about them since 1995, and haven't bothered to do anything about it until now -- which is extremely suspicious. I know that if you have copyrights or patents, you must enforce them, hence the nastygrams that go out to website providers all the time.
So either they just spontaniously invented them, or they didn't feel they were worth noticing until they suddenly realized they could litigate for ONE BILLION DOLLARS.
It sounds like a super evil plan by Dr. Evil. After they take over Linux, they will TAKE OVER THE WORLD. Muhahahaha!
Of course, what they're doing is coming up with some garbage claim, suing IBM (who has lots of money) and planning on settling out of court for less than their claim but enough to keep them above their burn rate for a bit longer. Why bother to go and get funding for your cruddy product and company in an oversaturated market when you can just litigate for it?
Do I think this is a garbage claim? Yup.
Do I think it will be dismissed in court? Yup.
Do I think the Slashdot crowd will scream and cry and beg and moan for years over this? You bet.
What deeply entertains me is that someone, somewhere, has finally found a way to have Linux make them money. Heh.
I've brought my patheticness to a brand new high. "This lj entry brought to you by calories 150-200 and the letter Z."
I've been socking on weight like weight is going out of style. I'm not happy. I suspect it's a side effect of the hormones-that-do-not-work, along with several other strange and inexplicable problems that have cropped up in the last month or so, none of which I'm terribly pleased with. I'm going to see a variety of other doctors to help clear up some of these issues while pondering the long, horrible call to the Shady Grove cline I don't want to call. I'm almost convinced these pills the ob/gyn put me on are completely placebo, except when I'm taking them they make me unholy ill.
Bleh. Ill and no effect. Not a good combination. I'm about to give in and make an appointment with the endocrinologist, knowing full well she may not see me for months.
For those who know what I'm talking about: We're not going to Tiki. Joe Mancuso's rather sudden wedding reception is on June 21st. I've known Joe for twelve years, and, much to my surprise, he remembered to send an invitation. People I've known for over a decade vs. people I know... over the Internet. It was a hard call, but after thinking about it for .37 seconds, my mind was made.
I was betting good money that it wouldn't show after I told him we wanted to come via email, but it's sitting upstairs on the table. So startlingly impressed am I, I shall even wear my Garish Purple Suit of Doom. I will need to buy a present.
My boss disappeared today, as his wife is scheduled to suddenly give birth this week. So the guys at work put a blow up astronaut with an NFR t-shirt on his chair as a Placebo Tony. I'll have to ask the doll to go run to subway to get me a sammich every day, now, and send it funny links about 80's music.
This exercising and blogging at the same time thing is making my arms ache.
The last time I actually went out and bought a gaming supplement (not counting Engel, which is an actual game) is about two and a half years ago. I don't remember what for. Maybe it was even longer ago than that. I just don't buy supplements, because they do nothing for me. I'm sure there are decent ones out there, in the same abstract way I know about the laws of thermodynamics or the laws of emag or about electrons. I know the exist, I know they're pretty handy to someone out there, but they don't do me any good most of the time.
So I was pretty excited when I went out and actually sought out a supplement.
I bought a copy of Dynasties and Demagogues, a supplement for political play for d20 from Atlas Games. It pretty much kicks some serious ass. I always felt that the game was lacking some nice constructs for getting faction and political play going; this has everything I've always wanted and more. I am grooving on the debate system included in the book -- just like combat, but with skills and words and manuevers. I know a few people have enjoyed the personality feats. Act your personality, and gain either XP or a reroll somewhere down the line.
I'm pretty pleased. It has all the tools I need to retool my Planescape game so it's a little more internally consistant. It's what I want out of a sourcebook -- tools I can immediately use. I don't care for fan fiction or pet NPCs or other garbage I have both read and been forced to write in the past. It's good enough that I can actually recommend it to other people.
Looking over the other Atlas Games, I don't see anything else particularly useful, but Dyn&Dem had an ad for "Crime and Punishment" in the back of it -- legal systems in the d20 fantasy world. That kind of pushes my buttons too; I'll likely get it.
So impressed am I that I'll probably send a note, encouraging more of these things.
Sigh. I'm such a dork.
Other than that, I found my deathbug (tm) at work and it was something incredibly stupid. One byte was killing me. Math, as they say, is hard.
So I'm drugged and half paying attention, and I notice something very... odd indeed. The models are all wearing some flat, brown, shiny material. Turns out it is the "Celebration of Chocolate" fashion show, and actual French pastry chefs are standing in the back with plates of chocolate and bags of frosting. When they showed the back rooms, the little white hats were obvious among the tall, mostly nekkid model bodies.
I peer at the TV, and this is, indeed, what is really going on.
I tell ect this morning that I watched this show in a half-drugged state last night. He said the only thing worse than a chocolate dress is a meat dress. And then, he added, he will never wear a meat dress. I can feel confident that I will never come home to find Eric lounging around in a meat dress. Or any meat articles of clothing whatsoever, including meat hats.
My home is meat hat free.
( The BBC Book List )
-- 34 books off the list. A few notes:
o In no way do I consider Dickens great literature. And certainly not that much Dickens.
o The Harry Potter books get a bunch of listings but LotR is just one? Jacked!
o My childhood obsession with Roald Dahl has finally paid off! Woo hoo!
o I didn't think A Prayer for Owen Meany was all that good. Just very long.