Sunday, October 31, 2010

I Broke Down and Bought Actual Candy

We were almost one of those Ricola houses this year.

The sweetest trick-or-treater in the whole wide world is away at school, and I am left to reflect on all the Halloweens gone by. Many of them were cold. Some of them were too cold. And some of them had me hoarse from saying, "Say thank you, Say thank you, no honey, say thank you to the person who gave you candy."

And I'll miss being that shadowy guy in the street. The Halloween grown-up enforcer who saw to it that all the teenagers waited until after midnight to go around smashing pumpkins. The middle-aged guy in a nun's habit with a flashlight, scowling at anyone driving over 15 mph, and keeping my part of America safe.

So it would have been easy to go full cynical and buy the discount Chinese candy with the falsified lead count on the list of ingredients. Or rely on last year's candy with the addition of a few bags of Ricola to mask the moldy smell. But no. I joined the doofus parade in the candy aisle of my local supermarket - none of us making eye contact because we don't want to be asked what we're doing buying candy only 20 minutes before the kids are supposed to come.

And I paid the supermarket price for the "fun size" candy that is so small that you don't dare give less than a half dozen to each kid. I got it home and put it in a big bowl so that it would be easy to disperse when the onslaught, um, started onslaughting.

So...... where are the kids? Why are there no trick-or-treaters?

Just How White Was It?

The Stewart Colbert rally may have set a record for the lowest percentage of black people on the Mall, ever.

Now does that mean anything? No. So call this a warning to the MSM: Don't speculate for days and days about how the Sanity Rally was racist ok?

What? There was never any chance of that?

Frightened Writer

Ellen sends one of her writers through a haunted house for our entertainment.

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Too Soon

I'm Afraid They're Actually Serious

At first I thought this was an Onion piece, but no, it's the Guardian, and they're being serious:

What's the carbon footprint of ... email?
The carbon footprint of spam:
0.3g CO2e: A spam email
4g CO2e: A proper email
50g CO2e: An email with long and tiresome attachment

Our recent piece on the carbon footprint of the internet generated plenty of coverage, so next up in our map of the world's carbon emissions is … email.

Of course, sending and receiving electronic message is never going to constitute the largest part of our carbon footprints. But the energy required to support our increasingly heaving and numerous in-boxes does add up.

Very roughly speaking (remember that all complex carbon footprints are really best guesses), a typical year of incoming mail for a business user – including sending, filtering and reading – creates a carbon footprint of around 135kg. That's over 1% of of a relatively green 10-tonne lifestyle and equivalent to driving 200 miles in an average car.

And the blahblah goes on from there. You can read it all if you like: here. Does anyone really take navel gazing to this extreme? Are the writers even serious?

I have this vision of a future in which we're all confined to our chairs -- where we sit alone, not moving, not consuming, now, not even communicating. Meanwhile the Uberconsumers like Al Gore and Leonardo DiCaprio thunder around in their private jets making sure that nobody has gotten out of their seats or used their coffee makers.

The good news: the zealots aren't interested in actually living by the rules they ask others to accept. The bad news: they think they can legislate restrictions that won't cause them hardships. And for the very rich, sure, maybe they can -- Al Gore can afford a $30,000/month utility bill, I'm sure another $10,000 won't break him. And Leonardo DiCaprio won't notice if the price of gas doubles or even quadruples. But the rest of us will.

Thankfully it looks like November 2nd will be a step away from big government boots stomping around in our lives. But everyone needs to get out there and vote. If we leave it for the other guy to toss the bums out, they might not all get tossed. And even if you think you live in a hopelessly Democrat state, make your voice heard by voting.

Friday, October 29, 2010

Good Idea

I have to agree with the government's decision to split this into a two-voting-days election. There will be less fraud and voter intimidation if the voters are kept separated.

OK, so in case the official government site is down, remember: Republican and Tea Party voters go to the polls on November 2nd. and Democrat voters vote on Wednesday, November 3rd.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

First Human Photographed

Jonah (as his friends call him) has an interesting find up at NRO: The above image from PetaPixel:

This photograph of Boulevard du Temple in Paris was made in 1838 by Louis Daguerre, the brilliant guy that invented the daguerreotype process of photography. Aside from its distinction of being a super early photograph, it’s also the first photograph to ever include a human being. Because the image required an exposure time of over ten minutes, all the people, carriages, and other moving things disappear from the scene. However, in the bottom left hand corner is a man who just so happened to stay somewhat still during the shot — he was having his shoes shined.

Interesting. Very interesting. But not as interesting as what you get if you zoom in still further and apply the amazing CSI algorithm:

The Doctor! I only wish he had been caught talking on a cell phone.

Put Down the Glass of Milk First


ARLINGTON, Va., Oct. 28 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ — The National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) has warned National Public Radio (NPR) that a remark made by NPR’s CEO in the firing of senior correspondent Juan Williams may violate the letter or spirit of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA)....

...After firing Williams for talking about Muslims during a Fox TV News program, Schiller told news media that Williams’ personal feelings should have been kept between himself and his “psychiatrist or publicist — take your pick.” Williams responded that he did not have a psychiatrist.

Schiller later apologized for the “thoughtless remark,” but NAMI called it an “outrageous” statement.

It reminds me of something I read many years ago (I think in the WSJ) about this nice couple that had worked in the EPA for many years. I think he was an environmental lawyer; she worked with endangered species or something.

Anyway, they were getting ready to retire and had invested in a beautiful bit of land where they hoped to live out their days sheltering abused llamas, or raising ostriches, or whatever sweet retired liberal types do on their rustic pretend farms. (which, by the way, I've got no quarrel with, more power to them)

Only problem was -- there was a spot on the land where a puddle might form after a stiff rain. So their dream cottage could never be built as it would adversely impact the "wetlands".

I think they had invested almost all their savings... something like $400,000, which, in those days was worth at least twice as much as $200,000. Yet the land was useless. They could visit it but not live on it.

For days I would remember the article and smile. How many people had they put in exactly the same position over the years? Maybe not directly, but as cogs in the EPA machine?

What is it about the PC crowd getting hoist by their own petard? Maybe the Schadenfreude comes from having to live our lives always a little bit on guard, always having to censor ourselves lest we offend. Or not so much guard against causing offense, but of crossing a line that some nit picking liberal will deem possibly offensive.

I have the urge to write NPR a deep-umbrage-o-gram explaining why I won't be donating again this year. (it must be decades since I gave them a penny) But this year I won't be donating because of that horrible horrible psychiatrist remark. And to emphasize my displeasure, I'll watch Wallander anyway. Taking goods I've not paid for, solely to teach them a lesson.

Herp Derp Whooo

Stormy Weather

Every tornado season I like to outfit my vehicle as a 'storm chaser'. Then I park it as far away from storms as it can possibly get. Usually that's in my garage, but that's only because I can't park it in the basement.

Really, I like the idea of going out and chasing storms. It just seems insane to actually do it. Besides, I like the lightning most, and that comes to me several times a year.

I suppose tornadoes also could come to me, but if they do, I'll be hopping in my storm-chaser and heading the other direction. I guess the old Toyota is actually an antistorm-chaser. A storm-avoider. The Alan Alda of storm related vehicles.

Besides, why chase storms when there are great image sources like this?

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Command Performance

Gibbs: "We had our own work to do, but he'd make us sit and watch
as he reenacted the movie Flashdance every Tuesday morning."

Eschaton Immanentized

Big Dummy


Time Traveler

Jonah Goldberg found this interesting piece of youtubia:

You can jump to 3:30 to avoid excessive blahblah. The gist of it is that this clip from an old Charlie Chaplin film seems to show someone talking on a mobile phone.... dramatic pause... in 1928!

Pretty interesting. But did you notice anything else incongruous? How bout on that sign?

Screen grab, mendaciously enhanced:

Sorry, my only excuse is that photoshop was already open.

What I really think it could be - this person had a toothache and was holding some cold object to their face as they walked. They wandered into the Chaplin shoot and the speaking you see is in response to the director yelling, "Get off of my set you idiot."

Confusing Call



"Hi, honey, this is Daddy. Is Mommy near the phone?"

"No, Daddy. She's upstairs in the bedroom with Uncle Frank,"

After a brief pause, Daddy says, "But you haven't got an Uncle Frank..."

"Oh yes I do, and he's upstairs in the bedroom with Mommy, right now!"

"Uh, okay,'s what I want you to do. Put down the phone, run upstairs and knock on the bedroom door and yell out to mommy and Uncle Frank that Daddy's car's just pulled up outside the house."

"Okay, daddy!"

A few minutes later, the little girl comes back to the phone.

"Well, I did what you said, Daddy."

"And what happened?" he asks.

"Well, Mommy got all scared, jumped out of bed and ran around screaming. Then, she tripped over the rug and went flying out the front window, and now she's all dead."

"Oh my God!! And what about your Uncle Frank?"

"He jumped out of bed too, and he was all scared and he jumped out the back window into the swimming pool...but he must have forgot that last week you took out all the water to clean it, so he hit the bottom of the swimming pool, and now he's all dead too."

There's a long pause.

Then Daddy says, "Swimming pool? Wait a minute...Is this 328-9374?"

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

This Vanity Fair Thing

So anyway, Vanity Fair does these photoshops of conservatives on the bodies of what they are calling "beefcakes". First off, let me say that a cake made out of beef sounds like a wonderful thing. But the beefcake was an empty promise. A lie.

And the VF photos disappointed. Come on guys; this is supposed to be Mike Huckabee?:

Believe me, I know how hard it is to match skin tones. I often miss the mark. But these guys didn't even try. And how does this sweaty guy keep nothing but his face dry?

So anyway, Photoshop was already open. I painted in sweat.. photo filtered a little red in.. then this happened:

Now that's how you do beefcake Vanity Fair.


Blame Vanity Fair

This one isn't on me:

It was done by Vanity Fair. They thought they could get away with it because they were publishing 14 conservative personalities photoshopped onto not-that-there's-anything-wrong-with-that soft core bodies. (more on that later)

Anyway, why did they photoshop him onto a white guy? And why didn't they fix that shadow on his neck?

OK, says I, I'll fix it. But while I was at it, I fiddled around and tweaked some:

I saw something else there so I gave him a backwards-hat NASCAR tan and well, I don't like to brag, but I think I built the perfect NASCAR president:

"We'll get you Jimmie Johnson!"

Foot, and $700 Shoe, in Mouth

I have to wonder if Obama thought this one through:

Now that progress has been made, [Obama] said, "we can't have special interests sitting shotgun. We gotta have middle class families up in front. We don't mind the Republicans joining us. They can come for the ride, but they gotta sit in back."

What? Sit in the back?

Never mind the fact that the first black president doesn't see the Rosa Parks flavor of his remarks. Because there's a Rosa Parks answer that I imagine the president also forgot, or never heard: "It just happened that the driver made a demand and I just didn't feel like obeying his demand. I was quite tired after spending a full day working."

So anyway, if you see the president pointing you towards the back of the bus on November 2, tell him, "Um, no."

Anyway, the second, and more important, thing that I noticed in that Obama quote was that he thinks the middle class and Republicans are two different groups. What if you're a middle class Republican? How do I get fair treatment from a president that doesn't even know I exist?

Monday, October 25, 2010

Sarah Sarah Sarah

Oregonguy has had this up for awhile - but somehow it slipped past my radar:

One thing - if anyone asks you if you're going to watch this, the answer is "Oh gosh yes," or "Oh gosh, I can't." But I recommend the oh-gosh affirmative. (cuz it'll probably be gosh-darned good)

Crime Fighter


Frantic Peeping

Marcel the Shell

Have insulin standing by.

Friday, October 22, 2010

Friday Aside

Just an oh-by-the-way: While searching for Harry Reid (averter of world catastrophe) pictures to photoshop, the first two pages of a Daylife search for "reid" were of Sharron Angle.

Also - remember all those pictures of Obama shot from angles that conveniently gave him a savior halo? It seems that the photo angle deciders settled on righteous head flames for Reid. So the man who saved the world from a depression got shortchanged.

I says

Brian Williams asks NJ Gov. Chris Christie why it is that the country that built a transcontinental railroad can't afford to build a tunnel under the Hudson.

My answer is that the country that built the transcontinental railroad didn't have to give grant support to artists for putting crucifixes in jars of urine, or fund anti salt campaigns.

It’s Time to Call Barbara Boxer Ma’am Again

h/t: NRO

Thursday, October 21, 2010

In the Garden

You just need to taste a raw turnip to understand why they are so immensely popular.

I think that for the first time in my adult life I understand what love is.


If I owned a restaurant, I'd advertise that all salt in the kitchen has been replaced with sodium chloride.

This isn't about decisions being made based on bad science. The problem is that decisions are being made on things that are none of the government's (state, or federal) cotton-picking business. I'll make my own salt decisions, thank you.

Juan Williams

This will show you Juan Williams: leave your honesty at home if you want to work at NPR.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Elephant Story

In 1986, Peter Davies was on holiday in Kenya after graduating from Northwestern University. On a hike through the bush, he came across a young bull elephant standing with one leg raised in the air. The elephant seemed distressed, so Peter approached it very carefully.

He got down on one knee and inspected the elephant’s foot and found a large piece of wood deeply embedded in it. As carefully and as gently as he could, Peter worked the wood out with his hunting knife, after which the elephant gingerly put down its foot. The elephant turned to face the man, and with a rather curious look on its face, stared at him for several tense moments. Peter stood frozen, thinking of nothing else but being trampled. Eventually the elephant trumpeted loudly, turned, and walked away. Peter never forgot that elephant or the events of that day.

Twenty years later, Peter was walking through the Chicago Zoo with his teenaged son. As they approached the elephant enclosure, one of the creatures turned and walked over to near where Peter and his son Cameron were standing. The large bull elephant stared at Peter, lifted its front foot off the ground, then put it down. The elephant did that several times then trumpeted loudly, all the while staring at the man.

Remembering the encounter in 1986, Peter couldn’t help wondering if this was the same elephant. Peter summoned up his courage, climbed over the railing and made his way into the enclosure. He walked right up to the elephant and stared back in wonder. The elephant trumpeted again, wrapped its trunk around one of Peter legs and slammed him against the railing, killing him instantly.

Probably wasn’t the same elephant.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Attention MSNBC

Attention MSNBC news-babes, and other Democrats:

Well, It's a Step Up

President Obama has tentatively ("I'll have to ask
my mom") picked a new science and technology adviser.



What rule has been used to create the following number sequence:

8 5 4 9 1 7 6 3 2 0

Enlightenment here.

There are puzzles there Fridays. Sometimes hard, sometimes not so much.

Oh also... this one was clever:

Can you figure out the radius of the circle?

The Yoke Salesman

Another wallpaper :
"Take up the yoke America!"

Monday, October 18, 2010

Louie The Dog

So... I guess I'll accept "Louie" as his name. My choice was "Password" and I argued hard for it. But I know when to give up - even though having a dog named Password would have greatly simplified my online security habits.



and bonus xkcd:


Monday Photoshops

Tinkering with the clockworks:

And I made this one for a desktop background. It was nice to unsleep this morning and see the prez leaving my desktop. You know what happens if you click on it:


Sunday, October 17, 2010

The Stimulus is Like an Umbrella

"Yes, perhaps it's not working as well as it should, but there's
nothing wrong with the umbrella; we just need to make it bigger."

Meet the Tired Old Press

David Gregory, obviously unaware that no black people, white people, or people with skin on the outside watch Meet the Press anymore, asked:

And obviously he also doesn't read Lumberjacks or he would know how silly it is to continue with this white-supremacist malarkey. David, I have direct access to my brain, you don't. If my motivation was racist, I wouldn't care what you say - if my motivation is liberty, smaller government, and fewer industries under government control, well then I really wouldn't care what you say.

Who's your audience for this sad fiction? Are you looking to convert the 6 people in the country who haven't heard what the tea party is about yet? Sure, a few liberal groups are in on the tea-party/racist band wagon but what does that mean? It's like taking a poll of the Pelosi household - it means nothing.

The only people buying this are liberal Democrats anyway; you're not gaining political ground with them. Meanwhile time is running out on your chance to explain why we should have more of what we've been given for these past two years. Explain why more stimulus, cap and trade, and government involvement in industry would be a good thing.

If it makes it go down easier for you, I won't mind if you preface your arguments with, "You're all a bunch of racists, but we need more stimulus because..."

video h/t: Newsbusters

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Star Spangled Banner

Can you imagine Obama at this event, standing next to his predecessor, looking proud, or excited, or interested, or actually anything other than embarrassed?

H/t: ¡NoPasaran!

Friday, October 15, 2010

Five VDH Segments Up

Over at Uncommon Knowledge.

Simpsons' Trailer

Time Flies

It will be November 2 before you know it. And the Light Worker will be up a tree without a paddle. Or something.

- some more:

"I've thought about it and I'm not going to be comfortable unless
I share my rock with those of you who have been less fortunate than I."

Antoine Dodson Continued

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Leaks from Obama's Meeting

Black and Right made it his quote of the day:

According to reports, some people got all awestruck and a few details (and some quotes) got out….

The media is changing so rapidly that websites, like you guys do every day, do two things. Number one, it allows us to reach audiences that may not be watching Meet The Press… I’m just saying, it might be a different demographic.
— Barack Obama

Now while that may be true, that may have been one of those things not meant for public consumption*. Just sayin’.

*I initially thought the president’s comments could be taken as a racially insensitive remark. Then again, NOBODY really watches Meet The Press.

The Chilean Mine and American Politics

Chris "tingle leg" Matthews is off his meds. Somehow he thinks the tea party is about zero taxes and zero government. I read a lot, and I haven't heard that argument anywhere:

CHRIS MATTHEWS: Okay let's talk about what the...message to a lot of the people was. The message coming out of the Tea Party people, and lot of them are good people, is every man for himself, basically. "No more taxes, no more government, no more everything. No more safety net. No more health care for everybody. Everybody just get out there, make your buck, save it, screw the government, move on." Right?


MATTHEWS: You know these people, if they were every man for himself down in that mine they wouldn't have gotten out.

TRUMKA: That's exactly right.

MATTHEWS: They would have been killing each other after about two days. This is a story of how people can work together, the people who were down there for two months.

Sure, that's one way to look at it. You could also look at it realistically:
If those miners had been trapped a half-mile down like this 25 years ago anywhere on earth, they would be dead. What happened over the past 25 years that meant the difference between life and death for those men?

Short answer: the Center Rock drill bit.

This is the miracle bit that drilled down to the trapped miners. Center Rock Inc. is a private company in Berlin, Pa. It has 74 employees. The drill's rig came from Schramm Inc. in West Chester, Pa. Seeing the disaster, Center Rock's president, Brandon Fisher, called the Chileans to offer his drill. Chile accepted. The miners are alive.

The Chilean miners can thank capitalism for equipment that gets the job done, and for drillers who have honed their skills in order to earn a good living.

On the subject of zero government, you could see real zero government types protesting the last G-8 forum. There the anarchists (few of whom I would assume are also tea partyers) stood shoulder to shoulder with AIDS activists and demanded that more be done for the victims of AIDS. Um, yeah. Except that any progress we've made towards relieving the suffering of AIDS victims has been done through capitalism. That's where most of our miracle drugs come from: "Evil" drug companies in search of profit.

Paula Deen's Secret Ingredient

You might have to be a foodie to know that "19 sticks of butter" is Paula Deen's answer to every question. And a good answer it is. If Michelle Obama continues her march on our pantries, we'll need women like Paula to meet her at the gates.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

About the Chamber of Commerce

Charles Krauthammer last night on Fox News's Special Report:

Should Have Seen It Coming

America's Got Talent

Just enjoy it and don't dwell on on the question of whether our president is going to apologize for it or not.

Robert Gibbs

Occupation: Government Worker
Hobbies: Making sure my tongue is still there and checking for rain.
On a cloudy day I like to: pretend that one-tenth of one percent of US Chamber of Commerce income coming from foreign sources somehow poses a threat of foreign control of US elections, even though I have no evidence that any foreign money has been so used, or would have been large enough to have any deleterious effect if it had been.
Other hobbies: Run-on sentences.

photo via

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Tricks of the Trade

"Sure, a simple 'boo!' always works; that's why it's a classic. But you can also get
tremendous effect by walking up behind them and quietly clearing your throat."

Out of Gas

"I'm OK, but why do you keep tapping the brakes?"

Strange Cowboy