Thursday, November 09, 2006

Imagine That

Not one day after the mid-term election and gas prices have already risen 10 cents per gallon (after suddenly mysteriously going down 5 cents per gallon a few days before). Wife says that somehow, despite Bush's many orders contrary to the house previously, that this will be blamed on democrats. I think she's right.

Episode V: The Ranter Strikes Back

People have often wondered why I had stopped ranting on this website as of late. To be honest, I have a new baby in the house, and I have worked diligently to be as happy as I could; to live as free from anger and frustration as I possibly could; to appreciate the softer, more subtle treasures of life and not focus so much on what puts people in the grave early.

Unfortunately like roaches coming out of the walls during a dinner party it seems there is no lack of idiots coming forward during times of an election. These rats will stop at nothing to lie or manipulate your vote out from under you. Things happen that we don’t like, for sure. Progress and change sometimes take time. That is a fact.

But on Tuesday, 81 percent of Tennessee voters approved a constitutional amendment that legally defined marriage as a union between a man and a woman.

Now people please, no bullshit smokescreens here. Let’s put this out on the table for what it really is.

This is a religious argument that has forced its way into civil government. I’m not going to waste my time screaming separation of church and state here. I just want people to own up to what they believe and just admit what this issue really means. This is an issue of control.

Marriage is a civil union, not a religious one. Sure, most people get married in a church, and a minister may be the one who signs the papers, but everyone knows that it is a legal document, a legal contract, in fact one in which the signers are entitled some legal benefits, primarily in taxes, medical decisions, and occupational medical insurance. There is no religious benefit to getting married whatsoever. Keep this in mind.

The primary campaign against homosexual marriage that I have seen in Tennessee has centered on “protection of our holier than thou snow white pristine pure sacrosanct union of marital bliss.” There have been countless fliers, banners, billboards, TV spots, radio spots, and political streetwalking whores going door to door trying to convince us that by letting homosexuals marry somehow we are destroying traditional family values.

Family values, in fact, that are so traditional that it is perfectly reasonable to violate them if you happen to be hetero. I mean why else would the United States census report in 2001 that the rates of marriages ending in divorce have more than doubled in 50 years? Is it fear of homosexuals at the gate, waiting to charge in like Huns and destroy the holiness of marriage? Are the divorcing heteros simply accepting the inevitable fate of marriage if we allow these disgusting, drooling perverts to marry?

Or does it have something to do with the fact that heteros bring more problems into marriage, soiling the white linen, so to speak, than gays ever could hope to bring?

This somehow makes me think back to the issue of control. Since it is obviously fine for heteros to walk all over the traditional values of the holy union there must be some other, darker reason why we can’t let homosexuals marry. Maybe we should ask Representative Mark Foley. Maybe we should ask the Reverend Ted Haggard. Jimmy Swaggart? Bill Clinton? Is there ever a season that goes by where people in power or the public eye, frantically waiving the “save the values” flag, are involved in one sex scandal or another?

The simple answer is this is a religious issue. Many Christians think they somehow have the right to keep people who sin from having the same secular rights that they have. Maybe they think that if they prohibit gay marriage that somehow they will help rehabilitate gays? I have no idea. I can say that it is obvious that there is no legal reason why gays shouldn’t marry. And if they aren’t soiling the institution of marriage any more than heterosexuals already are, why keep it from them?

If the fact that this being a religious argument forcing its way into secular politics doesn’t table this entire issue in favor of allowing gays the right to marry, how about this?

Why would we allow for religious pundits to dictate our laws in the first place? Has anyone out there who wants to institutionalize their flavor of Christianity ever thought about what that actually means?

What the hell. Let’s do it. Let’s make Christianity the state religion of the United States and designate what rights we give to Christians and what rights we take away from heathens, especially the ones who sin most terribly. By the way, has anyone decided what type of Christianity we would implement? Do we want Mormons or Catholics or Presbyterians or Southern Baptists teaching our children their creation stories? Maybe we want Christian Scientists in our hospitals? How about as the elementary school nurse? I guess it doesn’t matter really. Christians get along. There wont be any problems with who gets what rights and privileges. Christians understand who is a heathen and who is not. They’ll be able to decide on the best government for all of us. After all, with so many denominations, hasn’t it been proven that they all can come to agree?

Now Christians, hear me out. I am not trashing you or your religion. I am only saying stay out of politics. Please stop trying to force people to your beliefs. Live your lives well. Free yourselves from scandal. Be happy. Bring people to you and your way of life through modeling. People, when seeing your happiness, will want to be like you. They will listen, and they will follow. But if you continually say “you must stop this now or be damned,” no one will listen.

And get rid of the Ted Haggards. They really REALLY make you look bad.

Sunday, August 27, 2006

A Blast From The Past

Ok, Today we have a funny post. I decided to repost something my brother sent me back in the year 2000. I was working for a well-known telecommunications giant in customer service at the time, and had shared personal stories with him. He located these stories on the internet and sent them to me. I do not know the authors of these tales, but based on what I know from personal experience, the believability of all of these stories is very firm.

If anyone knows any author information, please let me know.



1) I am a medical student currently doing a rotation in toxicology at the poison control center. Today, this woman called in very upset because she caught her daughter eating ants. I quickly reassured her that the ants are not harmful and there would be no need to bring her daughter into the hospital. She calmed down, and at the end of the conversation happened to mention that she gave her daughter some ant poison to eat in order to kill the ants. I told her that she better bring her daughter in to the emergency room right away.

2) Seems that a year ago, some Boeing employees on the field decided to steal a life raft from one of the 747s. They were successful in getting it out of the plane and home. When they took it for a float on the river, they were quite surprised by a Coast Guard helicopter coming toward them. It turned out that the chopper was homing in on the emergency locator that is activated when the raft is inflated. They are no longer are employed by Boeing.

3) A true story out of San Francisco: A man, wanting to rob a downtown Bank of America, walked into the branch and wrote on a deposit slip "this iz a stikkup. Put all your muny in this bag." While standing in line, waiting to give his note to the teller, he began to worry that someone had seen him write the note and might call the police before he reached the teller window. So he left the Bank of America and crossed the street to the Wells Fargo bank. After waiting a few minutes in line, he handed his note to the Wells Fargo teller. She read it and, surmising from his spelling errors that he was not the brightest light in the harbor, told him that she could not accept this stickup note because it was written on a Bank of America deposit slip and that he would either have to fill out a Wells Fargo deposit slip or go back to Bank of America. Looking somewhat defeated, the man said "ok" and left. The Wells Fargo teller then called the police who arrested the man a few minutes later as he was waiting in line at the Bank of America.

4) A woman was reporting her car as stolen, and mentioned that there was a car phone in it. The policeman taking the report called the phone and told the guy that answered that he had read the ad in the newspaper and wanted to buy the car. They arranged to meet and the thief was arrested.

5) Drug Possession defendant Christopher Jansen, on trial in March in Pontiac, Michigan, said he had been searched without a warrant. The prosecutor said the officer didn't need a warrant because a "bulge" in Christopher's jacket could have been a gun. Nonsense, sad Christopher, who happened to be wearing the same jacket in court that day. He handed it over so the judge could see it. The judge discovered a packet of cocaine in the pocket and laughed so hard he required a five minute recess to compose himself.

6) Guy walked into a little corner store with a shotgun and demanded all the cash from the cash drawer. After the cashier put the cash in a bag, the robber saw a bottle of scotch that he wanted behind the counter on the shelf. He told the cashier to put it in the bag as well, but the cashier refused and said "Because I don't believe you are over 21." The robber said he was but the clerk still refused to give it to him because he didn't believe him. At this point the robber took his driver's license out of his wallet and gave it to the clerk. The clerk looked it over, agreed that the man was in fact over 21 and put the scotch into the bag. The robber then ran from the store with his loot. The cashier promptly called the police and gave the name and address of the robber that he got off the license. The robber was arrested two hours later.

7) A pair of Michigan robbers entered a record shop nervously waiving revolvers. The first one shouted, "Nobody Move!" When his partner moved, the startled first bandit unloaded his revolver into his accomplice.

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

A Little Bird Told Me....

I am allowing a guest rant here today. My wife told me to check out this guy's rant, and I did, and as she expected, it expresses one of the opinions of terrorism to which I ascribe. I have censored out most of the obscenities because I feel in this case the words do not do the argument justice. There is real meat on these bones, and it would behoove everyone to listen.

The actual entry in its entirety, uncensored, can be found at:

Otherwise, I am giving you his rant as he published it, without his permission. If he doesn't like the free publicity, well... not everyone is ready for NASA I guess.

I enjoyed his FDR reference. Where's our backbone today?


Friday, August 11, 2006
John Rogers

"Wait, Aren't You Scared?"
Errr, no. And if you are, you frankly should be a little $^&%# embarrassed.

No false bravado and it's not that I don't take terrorism seriously. I do, which I why I voted for the guy who believed in securing our ports and fighting terrorism with criminal investigation methods -- which is, if we may remind everybody, how this particular plot was busted.

I am just not going to wet my pants every time some guys get arrested in a terror plot. I will do my best to stay informed. I will support the necessary law enforcement agencies. I will take whatever reasonable precautions seem, um, reasonable. But I will not be terrorized. I assume that the terror-ists would like me to be terror-ized, as that is what is says on their nametag, rather than, say, wanting me to surrender to ennui or negative body image, and they're just coming the long way around.

Osama Bin Laden got everything on his Christmas list after 9/11 -- US out of Saudi Arabia; the greatest military in the world over-extended, pinned down and distracted; the greatest proponent of democracy suddenly alienated from its allies; a US culture verily eager to destroy freedoms that little scum&*(% could never even dream to touch himself -- I would like to deny him the last little check on the clipboard, i.e. constant terror. I panic, they win. To coin a phrase, Osama Bin Laden can suck my insouciance.

I am absolutely buffaloed by the people who insist I man up and take it in the teeth for the great Clash of Civilizations -- "Come ON, people, this is the EPIC LAST WAR!! You just don't have the stones to face that fact head-on!" -- who at the whiff of an actual terror plot will, with no apparent sense of irony, transform and run around shrieking, eyes rolling and Hello Kitty panties flashing like Japanese schoolgirls who have just realized that the call is coming from inside the house!

I may have shared too much there.

To be honest, it's not like I'm a brave man. I'm not. At all. It just, well, it doesn't take that much strength of will not to be scared. Who the hell am I supposed to be scared of? Joseph Padilla, dirty bomber who didn't actually know how to build a bomb, had no allies or supplies, and against whom the government case is so weak they're now shuffling him from court to court to avoid the public embarassment of a trial? The &$^%wits who were going to take down the Brooklyn Bridge with blowtorches? Richard Reid, the Zeppo of suicide bombers? The great Canadian plot that had organized over the internet, was penetrated by the Mounties on day one, and we were told had a TRUCK FULL OF EXPLOSIVES ... which they had bought from the Mounties in a sting operation but hey let's skip right over that. Or how about the "compound" of Christian cultists in Florida who were planning on blowing up the Sears Tower with ... kung fu?

And now these guys. As the initial "OH SWEET MOTHER OF GOD THEY CAN BLOW US UP WITH SNAPPLE BOTTLES!!" hysteria subsides, we discover that these guys had been under surveillance, completely penetrated, by no less than three major intelligence agencies. That they were planning on cell phones, and some of them openly travelled to Pakistan (way to keep the cover, Reilly, Ace of Spies). Hell, Chertoff knew about this two weeks ago, and the only reason that some people can scream this headline:

"The London Bombers were within DAYS of trying a dry run!!!"

-- was because MI-5, MI-6, and Scotland Yard let them get that close, so they could suck in the largest number of contacts (again, very spiffy police work). The fact that these wingnuts could have been rolled up, at will, at any time, seems to have competely escaped the media buzz.

This is terrorism's A-game? Sack up, people.

Again, this is not to do anything less than marvel as cool, well-trained, ruthless law-enforcement professionals -- who spent decades honing their craft chasing my IRA cousins -- execute their job magnificently. Should we take this seriously? DAMN STRAIGHT we take this seriously. Left unchecked, these terror-fanboy bastards would have gone down in history. These cretins' intent was monstrous; they should, and will, all go to jail for a very long time. This is the part where we all breathe a sigh of relief that there are some actual professionals working the job in some countries.

But God gave me a brain, and a modicum of spine. Taking something seriously, and panicking over it are two different things. I do not assign all dangers and risks equal value. Tight little freelance squads with leak-proof operational discipline, like the 7/7 guys, -- those I worry about. A nuke coming in through one of ridiculously open ports -- I am concerned. Not bio-terror so much, because it's a shitty delivery mechanism. That the Muslim population of England seems to be becoming radicalized enough to sprout up these plots, that's not a good thing to consider. al-Queda involvement -- good if true because this means their recruiting is shitty: bad if true because this means they're back in business: bad if false because it means al-Queda has indeed become a "brand": but good if false because it reinforces the idea that they're operationally crippled (and if Zwahari is involved, I personally would like a word with whatever idiot nation took their eyes of the ball and let him escape ...)

... You get the point. There are a million factors in this New World of Terror. You weigh 'em, you process, and then you move on.

You move on, building a better international society so that luddite fundamentalist criminal gangs/cults of personality are further and further marginalized.

Or, if you don't understand 4th Generation Warfare at all, you move on, bombing the shit out of nation-states and handing your opponents massive PR victories. Either way, you move the &%^$ on.

Maybe it's just, I cast my eyes back on the last century ...

FDR: Oh, I'm sorry, was wiping out our entire Pacific fleet supposed to intimidate us? We have nothing to fear but fear itself, and right now we're coming to kick your ass with brand new destroyers riveted by waitresses. How's that going to feel?

CHURCHILL: Yeah, you keep bombing us. We'll be in the pub, flipping you off. I'm slapping Rolls-Royce engines into untested flying coffins to knock you out of the skies, and then I'm sending angry Welshmen to burn your country from the Rhine to the Polish border.

US. NOW: BE AFRAID!! Oh God, the Brown Bad people could strike any moment! They could strike ... NOW!! AHHHH. Okay, how about .. NOW!! AAGAGAHAHAHHAG! Quick, do whatever we tell you, and believe whatever we tell you, or YOU WILL BE KILLED BY BROWN PEOPLE!! PUT DOWN THAT SIPPY CUP!!

... and I'm just a little tired of being on the wrong side of that historical arc.

This is it, folks. This is the world, from now on. Even assuming the War on Terror is a not just a bad metaphor and there is an actual measurable winning point*, the short 4GW struggles last fifty years or so. We're going to be stopping one or two of these bastard mass-murder plots a year, minimum, for the rest of our lives. Hell, the way terror tactics and tech evolve, five years from now we're going to be pining for the dudes with the flammable juice boxes.

It's now part of our life. Let's try not to hop like the trained monkeys every time it happens.

I'm just pleased that for once, nobody --

"Weeks before September 11th, this is going to play big," said another White House official, who also spoke on condition of not being named, adding that some Democratic candidates won't "look as appealing" under the circumstances."

-- ahhhh. Never mind

Friday, July 28, 2006

Prudes And Shrewds Everywhere, And Not A Way To Escape

I have one quick rant to put before you. Frankly, I think all of you women out there who think breastfeeding should not be allowed in public areas are, quite frankly, idiots. Now don't get me wrong, I still respect you, but I think you are being ridiculous. Here's why:

I'm sure you think the breast is a sexual object, even though it's primary design is to allow a newborn to eat. So you want to cover it. I have no problem with that. What I have a problem with is, why are you so damn concerned about the sexuality of a breast during feeding, when you hardly see the nipple, and only see the "fat" of the breast? If this is such a problem, why can I

1) step outside my door onto the street on any day of the week and see hordes of scantily clad women showing meat of breast, meat of butt cheek, legs, stomachs, thighs, or any other type of sexually provocative clothing

2) turn on my tv or open any magazine and see anything and everything from "100 ways to please your man" to hot and heavy lingerie adds

3) see the population supporting en mass celebrities who promote hedonism

4) Oh I don't know, just see lots of women practicing the "if you got it flaunt it" mentality.

Now I'm going to give credit where credit is due. You are right when you assume that men, seeing women breastfeeding in public, may begin to drool uncontrollably and start humping tree trunks and parking meters like some crazed rabbit or dog. But what you fail to realize is breasts are not the only thing that does this to men. You've got the breasts, but also hips, thighs, legs, ankles, feet, arms, hands, collarbones, necks, hair, eyes, and practically anything else on your body will get us going. These all will entice men.

So, If you're really wanting to protect yourself from the prying eyes of lusting men, please, by all means, start wearing a birka. Anything else would be inconsistent. Think that is a bit ridiculous? So is thinking women breastfeeding in public is disgusting.

It wouldn't work anyway. We men can still see your eyes when you wear a birka, and that's probably enough to send us into uncontrollable heat.

Friday, May 19, 2006

Thursday, April 27, 2006

Bats In The Belfry

I’m going to complain about two things at once in this article, seemingly independent but related on fundamental ground. So bear with me ☺

People oftentimes ask me what I think about “illegal immigrants” coming to the United States, wrecking our system of labor, increasing the burden on our tax paying citizens, and causing all-around chaos and havoc. “We are losing our language,” I hear. “We are losing our culture.” “These Mexicans need to learn English.” The list goes on and on. Well, hatemongers, here is my answer to you.

First of all, since I live in a free society that respects a person’s right to choose his or her destiny, to own property, and to follow his or her own path to happiness, I don’t think that ANY immigration is illegal. I think it is the burden of the society to deal with increased immigration, without closing its borders, much like your local movie theater will have more employees on hand during a holiday or UPS or FedEx hires more employees during the winter months to handle demand. The immigration exists as a symptom reflecting the very state of the country that conservatives hold with reverence – that this country is great and mighty, and is the most desirable place on earth to live, where one can find opportunity and freedom.

How ironic it is that a nation so self-absorbed in the concept of freedom would close its doors to those most desperately seeking it.

I never wanted the job of serving you at Denny’s, cleaning your toilets at the hotel, or picking your soybeans and tobacco anyway. So much for taking jobs of Americans.

And since so many people out there believe the United States of America is a Christian nation founded on Christian principles, I have one thing to say to you:

From the New International Version of the Holy Bible, Gospel of Luke, Chapter 10, verses 25 – 37, from (

25On one occasion an expert in the law stood up to test Jesus. "Teacher," he asked, "what must I do to inherit eternal life?"
26"What is written in the Law?" he replied. "How do you read it?"
27He answered: " 'Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind'[c]; and, 'Love your neighbor as yourself.'[d]"
28"You have answered correctly," Jesus replied. "Do this and you will live."
29But he wanted to justify himself, so he asked Jesus, "And who is my neighbor?"
30In reply Jesus said: "A man was going down from Jerusalem to Jericho, when he fell into the hands of robbers. They stripped him of his clothes, beat him and went away, leaving him half dead.
31A priest happened to be going down the same road, and when he saw the man, he passed by on the other side.
32So too, a Levite, when he came to the place and saw him, passed by on the other side.
33But a Samaritan, as he traveled, came where the man was; and when he saw him, he took pity on him.
34He went to him and bandaged his wounds, pouring on oil and wine. Then he put the man on his own donkey, took him to an inn and took care of him.
35The next day he took out two silver coins[e] and gave them to the innkeeper. 'Look after him,' he said, 'and when I return, I will reimburse you for any extra expense you may have.'
36"Which of these three do you think was a neighbor to the man who fell into the hands of robbers?"
37The expert in the law replied, "The one who had mercy on him." Jesus told him, "Go and do likewise."

If we were a Christian nation we wouldn’t leave immigrants outside our borders to die, but would give the shirts off our backs to help them get on their feet and make a better life for themselves.

Another thought comes to mind concerning the fear that many Americans have concerning “losing our country to the immigrants.” Again, from the Holy Bible NIV, Gospel of Matthew, Chapter 26, verses 51-52:

51With that, one of Jesus' companions reached for his sword, drew it out and struck the servant of the high priest, cutting off his ear.
52"Put your sword back in its place," Jesus said to him, "for all who draw the sword will die by the sword.”

We reap what we sow. Mexicans and other immigrants flocking to our country, bringing to themselves a better life, bringing their language, their culture, their own system of supply and demand, and soon their currency and way of life, is not a new concept. After all, this is precisely what Europeans and Americans did to the Native Americans.

But I see something else at work here. This is the Theory of Evolution at its best. Our country is evolving at much the same way as a human would do, in a macroscopic sense. Don’t know what macroscopic means? Try reading a book instead of burning it.

After our country found its independence, we were a new life, with bright shining eyes, a smile of innocence, and a resolve to explore, to find good in the world, and do what is right.

As we aged we became the schoolyard bully, pushing and hitting the weaker kids around, making our own mark, declaring our own place during phys-ed or recess. "Mess with the the best, die like the rest." During this time, we hurt other kids, and we know it. We hurt the ones that stood up against us even more.

And now our country is a teenager. We are realizing the pain and suffering in the world, and we want to do good but an overwhelming sense of dissonance and angst distract us from what is sensible and right. We fear everything we do not understand, and feel since we are in charge of our own destinies, we are the only ones who know what is best for us. Since it is best for us, we know beyond doubt it is best for other people.

But guess what ladies and gentlemen, the evolution will continue. Soon, our country will be an adult, and after that, a wise elder. I hope I live to see these times, for when this happens, the force of will known as American Determination will support true freedom for everyone on this planet, whether or not he or she lives within our borders, supports our policies, or agrees with our general outlook. These are the times of acceptance and tolerance that will truly lead us to a more peaceful and safer world, and I pray to God every day that it comes to pass. And soon.

What Color Are You?

A relative of mine recently discussed on her blog the characteristics of living in a red state as opposed to living in a blue state. The message I believe was that all of us, no matter what political affiliation we claimed we had, had characteristics of both conservatives and democrats. For those who are unaware, a “red” state voted Republican in the last U.S. election, and a “blue” state voted Democrat. Republicans are often referred to as “conservative,” while Democrats are often called “liberal.”

Before I go further into my personal characteristics (following up on the “things that make fatbody tick” theme), I would like to gripe about the characterizations of conservative and liberal.

The Oxford English dictionary, online edition ( defines “conservative” as:
• adjective 1 averse to change and holding traditional values. 2 (in a political context) favouring free enterprise, private ownership, and socially conservative ideas. 3 (Conservative) relating to a Conservative Party. 4 (of an estimate) purposely low for the sake of caution.
• noun 1 a conservative person. 2 (Conservative) a supporter or member of a Conservative Party.

The same dictionary defines “liberal” as:

• adjective 1 willing to respect and accept behaviour or opinions different from one’s own. 2 (of a society, law, etc.) favourable to individual rights and freedoms. 3 (in a political context) favouring individual liberty, free trade, and moderate reform. 4 (Liberal) (in the UK) relating to the Liberal Democrat party. 5 (especially of an interpretation of a law) not strictly literal. 6 given, used, or giving in generous amounts. 7 (of education) concerned with broadening general knowledge and experience.
• noun 1 a person of liberal views. 2 (Liberal) (in the UK) a Liberal Democrat.
— ORIGIN originally meaning “suitable for a free man”: from Latin liberalis, from liber ‘free man’.

My gripe is that I see the United States of America as the flagship country of the world in the cause of freedom. Isn’t that what we hear every day on the news from our President? “Freedom” will not be defeated. You can’t deny “freedom.” When the people of X country experience the “freedom” to make their own decisions, there will be peace.

The introductions to two pesky documents come to mind:

“We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.”

“We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.”

Now if you know the documents these quotes come from, congratulations, you are smarter than 75% + of the US population who could not identify these quotations.

From my point of view, if you follow what is said in these quotations, you must understand there is a message of tolerance and respect therein. The word “liberty” is mentioned twice, and before anyone tries to split hairs or put spin on this:

The Oxford English Dictionary online edition defines liberty as:

• noun (pl. liberties) 1 the state of being free from oppression or imprisonment. 2 a right or privilege. 3 the power or scope to act as one pleases. 4 informal a presumptuous remark or action.
— PHRASES take liberties 1 behave in an unduly familiar manner towards a person. 2 treat something freely, without strict faithfulness to the facts or to an original. take the liberty do something without first asking permission.
— ORIGIN Latin libertas, from liber ‘free’.

So it seems to me that the entire U.S political way of free thought is based on liberalism, the act of believing in liberty, and taking the liberty to do things (like to be conservative and buy SUVs and declare liberals traitors). I would think that if you opposed the liberal way of thinking by clinging to some “conservative tradition” that isn’t well defined in argument that you, at the heart of the matter, don’t believe in a “free political state.”

That is, of course, contrasted with Tyranny, which the Oxford English Dictionary, Online Edition defines as:

• noun (pl. tyrannies) 1 cruel and oppressive government or rule. 2 a state under such rule. 3 cruel and arbitrary exercise of power or control.
— DERIVATIVES tyrannous adjective.

But a tyrannous nation would be a nation that forces its philosophical will upon everyone, like telling them they can or can’t do trivial things; telling them they have to believe the things the majority believe or be held treasonous; telling them they must support troops and a president without dissent or be declared NOT a patriot; denying them rights given to all “normal” Americans (e.g. the right to marry, the right to assemble in protest, and most importantly, the right to disagree).

What I just hinted at is that conservatives can argue against liberals until they are “blue in the face” but really, if you think about it, they are all liberals. How many times can you turn on Faux News and see frat boys claiming that they should be allowed to drive oil guzzling machines if they so choose; that they can hoard money and not subsidize the poor; that they have the right to choose where their children go to school; that they should be able to accept corporate campaign contributions; that they should be able to do what they want when they want if they can afford to do so. These, like it or not, are liberties, and a belief that one has these choices, like it or not, is liberalism.

That is of course unless archaeologists have found the troupe of Hummers the founding fathers drove around as they mapped their new country.

Ok well back to the point. Now that I’ve griped that conservative and liberal don’t really fit as extremes of the same political spectrum, I will go ahead and give you my characteristics that make me agreeable to a “red state,” as well as my characteristics that make me agreeable to a “blue state.”

- I believe in a strong central governement.
- I believe in a national ID that all citizens should carry at all times.
- I believe in having prayer or spiritual “meditation” time in public schools.
- I believe in anti-desecration legislation against symbols of our society.
- I believe in the right to own firearms.
- I believe abortion should be illegal.
- I believe that people should not be taxed according to income.

- I believe in the socialization of medicine and health insurance.
- I do not believe in the privatization of social security and welfare programs.
- I believe the death penalty should be abolished.
- I believe in the institution of gun-owners insurance.
- I believe we should respect our environment; that we should curb our contribution to global warming, conserve oil and other resources, and protect endangered species.
- I believe in nuclear non-proliferation.
- I believe in the separation of chuch and state.
- I believe the words "under God" should be removed from The Pledge of Allegiance
- I believe the act of "swearing on the Bible" when testifying to a court or when taking public office should be abolished
- I believe in the freedom of religion.

Now, you get extra points if you realized that having the choices to have these rights and the beliefs stated above, whether in blue states or red states, is liberalism, then you get a pat on the back and a “hooray” from me.

Monday, April 10, 2006

A Spider Within the Webs

One of the things that really pushes my buttons is when people just plain don't think. Now I understand being stubborn. I of all people know I can get my mind on something or get an idea in my head and see how far it takes me. What I don't like is when people claim they are thinking, claim they are tolerant, claim they are understanding, and then get so intolerant, hard-headed and stubborn that you wonder "what are they thinking?"

This kind of behavior only bothers me when it comes from someone of repute, someone trusted with the responsibility to not act this way. If I were to get upset at every instance of this behavior, i'd be mad at every person alive, including myself, constantly.

Here is an example. There's this new controversy in the Christian community concerning a Gospel of Judas. It seems that this gospel, considered Gnostic, was thrown out in the old days because it was believed that Judas was an incarnation of evil and therefore couldn't write a gospel. The belief has continued through the ages to the present day. Judas is the great betrayer. Judas is Satan incarnate. Judas is the man who betrayed and "killed" Jesus.

This is where I believe the people who hold a grudge against Judas need to stop and think. The Gospel of Judas claims that Judas' betrayal of Jesus was actually against his will, and that Jesus practically "put him up to it." For some reason this idea appears to many to be inconceivable. So inconceivable that they get very, very angry.


Stop and think. Without Judas, there would have been no arrest. With no arrest, no trial. With no trial, no condemnation. With no condemnation, no sentence and crucifixion. With no death, no resurrection. Judas' betrayal of Jesus is instrumental in completing the great plan of salvation. What is the problem with this? And why should we be mad at Judas? Shouldn't we be happy? Wouldn't his involvement in the plan and the fact that he took the brunt of the blame make him a hero?

And even if Jesus didn't put him up to it, how do we know that God wasn't in one of the "harden pharoah's heart" moods when Judas sought Jesus in betrayal? No matter how you look at it, I don't think there's any basis to hold a grudge against Judas for his involvement in Jesus' death.

It isn't the fact that people don't think about these things that anger me. It's the fact that people responsible for guiding others can shrug off ideas like this one out of plain stubborness or fear. It isn't hard to admit, "that is an interesting point, and can be quite possible." Instead they continue breeding hate against a man who's actions were necessary to bring about their own eternal life. You don't have to agree with the point. Just admit the possibility. This idea is more believable than Jesus orbiting the planet as we speak, resting in a spaceship, waiting for the passage of a governmental law.

And this is only one example. :(

Saturday, April 08, 2006

Beneath The Looking Glass

I decided to post about some things that make me tick. Maybe it will help others understand me more? I don't know. We'll see how it works out. I'll start the analysis soon, and the next couple of posts will be all about what horrors haunt this web-infested cerebral cavity of mine.

Sunday, March 12, 2006

Disclaimer In Progress

Ok I have to clear something up. The below post, entitled "which has more value, a grasshopper or your sister" has been renamed to "the roots of mystery."

I did this because the naming of the post was in error and was actually giving off the wrong impression of my argument about how modern day buddhists have strayed from the original teachings.

In the post I state that the premise is to protect all life because it is sacred, so no life is worth more than the life of another.

The point of the post is to get some people into thinking-cap mode so that they can be built to the point of understanding that in most cases, like it or not, change is good.

I still feel that a happy medium can be achieved between war and peace. Many modern day buddhists have come to this point. The monks used to fight in defense; there was a time when they were corrupted and lost their way but that wound healed with time.

Raging Bacteria

Ok thanks to the doctor this flu I've had for a week and six days feels like it might be on the way to the door. It has toyed with me during this illness though, so I'm a bit worried that it leaving is just a ruse. I also feel bad because it's hit my wife too, and she's got the cast-iron immune system and never gets sick. The doctor gave her pills too and she's looking a bit better, although she won't admit it.

So maybe soon I'll get back to spewing venom, but for now I still need rest... and I'm still helping take care of the wife.

Thursday, February 23, 2006

The Roots of Mystery

I have some Buddhist friends, and much of the philosophy appeals to me. I don’t like it when they take it so far as to worship Buddha as a god, but I can agree with the philosophy, well most of it.

What I have trouble with is this whole passive I-wont-lift-a-hand-in-protest modern day approach to violence. I respect the theory behind it: life is sacred, and killing anything is wrong. Some go so far as to not kill bugs, or eat meat, but still eat plants (which they don’t think is killing because a plant isn’t respected as a reincarnate).

But this is what I don’t get. To me, allowing yourself to die in protest is killing yourself. You allow yourself to die. Sure, you didn’t kill yourself, but you allowed yourself to be killed, which to me is the same thing.

None of us were around to hear the Dharma firsthand, but one would think that allowing for ritual suicide was not part of the curricula for escaping suffering.

Nearly 1,000 years after Sidhartha (The Buddha) established his philosophical approach, a Buddhist named Ba Tuo spread the teachings into China and built the first Shaolin monastery.

A teacher named (by the Chinese) Ta Mo brought Ch’an Buddhism to China and came upon the Shaolin Ssu temple. Finally he, after several years of meditation outside the temple, is said to have been let inside. He saw the monks were weak and needed skilled training in meditation and physical arts.

You see where this was going. Soon after the Shaolin kung-fu monk was born. The temple was not poor and was often attacked by peasant armies, and the monks would often be called to defend the monastery and travelers from bandits.

This was all taught and sanctioned by the first Buddhist temple in China. Ta Mo is considered one of the brightest Buddhist teachers from India for his time. These men devoted their lives to physical training for the defense of the weak. This is not indicative of passive resistance.

So now we bring this full circle. The accepted Buddhist tradition of passive resistance is, to me, contrary to what the Buddhists originally taught.

Instead of letting oneself be slain so that a praying mantis won’t get squashed beneath the boot of an overanxious Chinese soldier, the monks of today, in my opinion, need to re-embrace the teachings of the Shaolin Ssu temple, and fight back the oppressors that destroy the lives of their kin in Tibet.

I don’t care if the Chinese army has 1 billion bloodcrazed soldiers. The Law of Conservation of Ninjas applies here. The Chinese army doesn’t stand a chance.

Politics 101

Okay, it appears that I’ve been trashing George W. Bush a lot lately. Well it’s true, I have. But I’ve gotten some messages that have prompted me to address something important, something I’ve failed to get through to some of the bricked up minds out there.

People, understand this. I AM NOT A DEMOCRAT. I am not a republican. I am registered to vote, but I pay more attention to platforms than parties, and more importantly, to what people do once elected when following up on their campaign promises.

I have nothing against Republicans. I have everything against George W. Bush. But understand also, I have just as many gripes against Bill Clinton, John F. Kennedy, Richard Nixon, Ronald Reagan, Martha Lane Collins, Antonin Scalia, and whoever gets in front of 4 billion people and says one thing only to do a totally different thing later.

I happen to hate politicians and nut job false preachers (e.g. Pat Robertson) more than I hate Britney Spears and Paris Hilton, and that’s why I spend most of my time complaining about politics.

So, for all you people telling me to “fight the man” and dethrone the Bush dynasty, please, by all means, attach a bag of cement to yourselves and jump off the Golden Gate Bridge.

And before I get any anti-Christian flames, understand also that I have utmost respect for some ministers. Those I respect I call ministers, those I despise I call preachers, because all they do is get up and preach at you, they don’t communicate.

Wednesday, February 22, 2006

Motel Hell

Time to gripe. I have been in San Francisco, California, for about 18 hours, and I already hate this hotel. I am staying at the Sir Francis Drake hotel on powell street, in the heart of the city. The hotel is costing us about 120 bucks a night, and is highly billed as being one of the classiest hotels around.

Yeah right.

First of all, sure there's pretty chandeliers and marble pillars. It's great that i can hang the "do not disturb" sign on the door and actually not have housekeeping barge in on me. Oh and it has a working toilet and running water.

Here is what I don't like:

1) the hotel advertises free high speed wireless access in each room. At best I can get 190 kilobytes per second, and the connection times out after 2 minutes of inactivity. So by the time you've read the web page you pulled up, you have to quit your browser and reopen it and log in again. And forget about doing ANYTHING other than reading. Drool comes out of my mouth quicker when I sleep than I get speed off this stupid "high speed" wireless.

2) the ice machines on my floor, the floor below, and the floor above are not plugged into power. You might think this is not a bad thing, until you realize they charge 2 dollars and 50 cents for a bottle of ROOM TEMPERATURE water. And not even that, the refrigerator is locked, so you can't get into the damn thing and refrigerate your own drinks.

3) You might say, hey captain, use your back up dialup to get around their "high speed" internet. I would, of course, if they didn't charge 1.00 for the first minute and 10 cents for each additional minute for LOCAL CALLS.

4) they also offer free tv in the rooms. That is if you like network tv or pbs. They don't even give free cspan. That's what turned me against them. Hell with hbo or showtime, I want to watch congress. Not here I don't.

5) I witnessed a maid blow her nose into sheets she was taking into a room to put on a bed.

Hey, why gripe? At least the cardkey worked. Good god I'd be better off in a holiday inn.

Thursday, February 09, 2006

Letter Of The Week

This is a true jewel. It is so great I just HAD to post it. The following letter was written in the local paper on Sunday, January 29, 2006. The letter was written by Kenneth X and was written in response to recent religious controversy over a made-for-TV film. The letter was dubbed "Letter of the Week" by the editorial staff.

Kenneth X

I agree with those TV viewers and letter writers who don't find dysfunctional families- like the one in the "Book of Daniel" - entertaining. But, in order to be consistent with my values, I've also decided to stop reading all those stories about dysfunctional families, too.

No more reading about a man with anger management problems who kills his brother ( Cain ).

No more reading about a drunken father who exposes himself to his children ( Noah ).

No more reading about dishonest, deceitful, cheating brothers ( Jacob ).

No more reading about a politician with a desperate housewife ( Samson and Delilah ).

No more reading about a king who consults a medium for advice ( Saul ).

No more reading about polygamist leaders who allow their many wives to turn them from God ( Solomon ).

No more reading about kings who commit adultery and then cover it up with murder ( David, later described as "a man after God's own heart" ).

No more reading about a prophet who marries a harlot ( Hosea ).

No more reading about a preacher who strips himself naked and goes streaking through town ( Isaiah ).

In fact, No more reading about a chosen nation described as a wicked and adulterous generation ( Israel ).

And no more reading about apostles who curse and deny their Lord ( Peter ) or a terrorist turned missionary who argues with his co-workers ( Paul ) or churches that are told to stop stealing ( Ephesians ) or commitiing incest ( Corinthians ). How on Earth would God possibly use people like that?

I suppose it makes more sense to pretend that God shows no grace and uses only perfect people like the Waltons and the IIngalls.

So why should Christians have to be subjected to the idea of an imperfect minister whose family life is a mess?

Thursday, January 19, 2006

Bush Administration Subpoenas Google

Ok so those lackeys in the white house have decided to subpoena google for data, saying they are searching to see if anyone used their search engine to find kiddy porn. This is pathetic. This reflects the current state of our intelligence. What kind of moron doesn't know how to use the internet? I'm not saying that people won't use google to search for child porn. What I'm saying is that this kind of thing is a smokescreen.

What I mean is it doesn't take a rocket scientist to find kiddie porn on the internet. You don't need to subpoena google. Hell just type in or the equivalent and browse the links. If you're lucky, THERE WILL EVEN BE A BANNER.

Get off it george. If you really want a list of people who masturbate, just use the phone book. I hate to tell you and your fellow right-wing nutjob fundamentalist friends this, but you do have these parts between your legs, and it does feel good when you touch them.

Feels better than drinking, snorting cocaine, and dodging Viet Nam even. Don't tell us you're looking for child porn when it's already right in front of your damn face. Be honest about it. You just want to know what everyone's looking at, cause you can't stand people having their own brain waves.

Oh and one more thing. George, I know you have a government email address. George, I know other people that do. George, they get spam every day about porn, whether it's lengthening penis size or whatnot. George, often times theres also kiddie porn there. Why don't you start your investigation there instead of stretching the laws as you see fit?

Wait, I forgot. You can't read. Nevermind. At least you can look at the pictures though, even if it makes your gonads tingle.

More on this later.

Thursday, January 12, 2006

The 41 Types of Game Masters

In case you were interested in the 35 types of role players list, click here to read it. Otherwise, enjoy the post!

To counter the 35 types of players, this list came out at the same time. It is the 41 types of gamemasters. I'm sure all of you players out there encountered one or more of these guys in the past. Again, the author is unknown. My favorite has always been MR. FLOWERY.

The 41 Types of Game Masters
author unknown

THE MUNCHKIN – “Having slain the hordes of Azoth single-handedly, without even unleashing the Sword of Universal Destruction, your half gray-elven/ half gold-dragon 50th level paladin/wizard/cleric/monk/bard gazes down upon the pitiful Cthulu who grovels at his feet…”

MONTY HAUL – “You are each granted one wish.”
“I wish to have the hand and eye of Vecna.”
“I wish to have the flask of Teurny the Merciless.”
“I wish to have…”
“Poof, they appear in front of you. Now what do you do?”

KILLER – “As you pull aside the tapestry, a green slime jumps upon you from behind it, killing you. No, there is no “to hit” roll, or saving throw allowed.”

THE TROUBLEMAKER – singles out one player and continually hands him/her notes, which read, “Don’t let anyone know there is nothing on this note.”

THE CHEATER – “I don’t care if you hit on an 18 last time, THIS time you missed, and I don’t want to hear another thing about it.”

MR. DON’T-QUESTION-ME – “A blue bolt from heaven strikes Harold the Whiner, reducing him to one hit point. Anybody else got a problem with that?”

THE NOVICE – “you rolled a 2 on your “to hit” roll. Did you want high or low?”

VERBOSE – “The door is solid oak, bound with 4 iron bands of roughly polished, smooth, stained a dark brown, except for a small patch near the bottom which is blacker. The hinges are not visible from this side, but you notice the exquisite design of the lock, the faceplate of which is a starburst design, edged in gold or maybe polished copper or brass. It’s kind of hard to tell with the torchlight, but the knocker is definitely cast iron and you see… (sounds of snoring from the party members).

WITH A POKER FACE – “The slave you rescued courteously accepts your offer to accompany you and thanks you for your trust in her..”

WITHOUT A POKER FACE – “The slave you rescued (hee hee) courteously accepts your offer (snort) to accompany you and thanks you for your trust in her (haha) boy are you gonna get it now (giggle)."

MR. TIMID – “The orc hits you for 4 points of damage, if that’s OK with you, Steve. Really, you’ve got 17 hit points left and he has only 2. So you’ll be okay, OK?”

DEPALMA SCHOOL OF BLOOD AND GORE – “Your magic drill cleaves the demon’s skull in twain and it literally explodes, spattering everyone with blood and brains. An unsightly green ichor drips from your face as you watch the smoldering corpse churn before you like a baby in a blender and finally settle into a puddle of vomit and excrement.”

GIBSON SCHOOL OF WRITING GRADUATES – “The view in the crystal ball was the color of a television, tuned to a dead channel.”

VENGEFUL – “You won’t go out with me Saturday? Okay, all of the were-rats attack Christine.”

AD&D’er – “The 100 peasants beat at your fighter ineffectually with their sticks and pitchforks until you have slain them all. A heroic effort on your part.”

ANTI AD&D’er – “The 100 peasants overbear your fighter with their great numbers and, unable to move under the weight of their hordes, you squirm helplessly as they pry open your field plate and skewer you like a lobster. You die an ignoble death.”

THE STICKLER FOR DETAIL – “Taking into account atmospheric conditions, the acceleration due to gravity, the low drag coefficient of your greased plate mail, your high dexterity, the gold in your backpack, your associated credit rating, the eggs you had for breakfast, … and the average number of chickens who would remain inside the coop on a warm day, you have to roll 13 or better to survive this fall.”

NO ORIGINALITY – “It’s a quest, see, you’re trying to take this ring to Mordor, to drop it into a volcano to destroy it. No, no, honest II thought of this campaign myself.”

LEADING AND OVERBEARING – “You pump the bartender for information and he tells you about a red dragon’s lair to the west.”
“Too risky, we go to hear rumors somewhere else.”
“A man offers to hire you to clean out a red dragon’s lair for him.”
“We say no thank you and leave for the next village.”
“On the way to the village you stumble onto a red dragon’s lair…”

THE DUNGEON BUILDER – “The first door in the hallway opens onto a 20’x20’ room containing a griffon. The next room contains a party of orcs. The next contains a gelatinous cube. The next contains a couple giants…”

THE SCHMUCK – “Oh. Can someone really do that? Okay, I’ll let you have a 50% chance. Oh, Okay. 75% then.”

THE EXECUTIONER – “A hidden blade slides down the doorway, mincing the two fighters and the cleric. The thief gets nine crossbow bolts in his back, and the magic user is hit by an intense beam of light, burning a hole through his head.”

THE GHOUL – “That’s the 17th character you’ve rolled tonight? MWUHAHAHA.”

THE ABSOLUTE MONARCH – “The huge red dragon CAN fit through the little hole, because I SAID SO!”

THE GENEROUS MUNCHKIN – “Okay, now that you’ve killed that kobold, you open the treasure chests and find 100,000 gold pieces, 50,000 platinum pieces, and two hundred gems worth a million gold each. Oh, and a +20 vorpal sword. And before I forget, a Rod of Seven Parts, too.”

THE KILLER MUNCHKIN – “You guys are dead.”

THE WHINING MUNCHKIN – “But, but, you guys CAN’T do that! It’s my only dungeon! Waaaaaaaiiiiiil.”

THE DIE MODIFIER – “Yeah, yeah, so you rolled a 20. You missed. Secret modifiers you know.”

THE UNIMAGINITIVE TYPE – “You walk into the bar and see 30 mercenaries all wearing scale mail and carrying longswords. They all sit at separate tables.”

THE DESIGN ZEALOT – “I just need another 15 minutes. I only have 3 more levels to populate.”

THE STORYTELLER / SCRIPTER – He has the plot for the adventure all figured out, and you’re going to follow it come hell or high water.

THE PLANNER – He has everything for the adventure carefully planned and written out ahead of time. He has all the NPC stats and backgrounds, details, who will tell what, and so forth.

THE MAKE-IT-UP-AS-WE-GO – He comes in with a vague idea of what the PCs will run into today, and fills in the details as he goes along.

THE LITERAL TYPE – Player: “I wish joe had more lives.” GM: “Joe, you are now a schizophrenic.” Player: “What is the air speed of a swallow?” GM: “ African or European?”

THE SADIST – “Just then, 80 ancient huge red dragons descend on your party. They all breathe on you at once. What do you do now?”

THE SADIST WITH MASOCHISTIC PLAYERS – “Realizing that you are adventurers the 80 ancient huge red dragons kill themselves to prevent you from getting the experience for them (pre 2nd edition).”

GRADUATE OF THE BOB NEWHART SCHOOL OF DRY HUMOR – “okay, the sun goes nova and you are caught in the explosion. Everybody takes (rolls) nine thousand seven hundred and forty-eight points of fire damage from the plasma…. Save for half… What’d you roll? Oh, too bad.”

THE NICE TYPE – “Well, Bill, I don’t know how to tell you this. Your character is dead. Just like that. I’m really sorry, but you know, these things happen. ‘Man hath but a short time to live, and that full of sorrow.’ Look man, I know you’re hurting. If you want to tlak about it, we can take a break.”

MONTY PYTHON-ESQUE – “Oh no! The mutated potato monster sprays the party with a stream of Red-Hot Wolf Nipple Chips ™! Everybody takes zero damage, save vs. the heebie-jeebies or become frightened and explode!”

MR. FORGETFUL – “Okay you walk into the room. The orcs look up from their card game, much surprised to see anybody at this hour, and grab their …. What? You’ve already been through here and killed the orcs? Damn. Okay let’s try that again. You notice seven slaughtered orcs.”

MR. FLOWERY – “Oho! Methinks that the Purple Mage has waxed sorely pissed at they attempt to engulf him they vomitous Stinking Cloud dweomer! By my trow, he has, in his wroth, flung a Power Word Kill at thee, with a shout of ‘Have at thee vile knave!’ What dost thou doest now, brave adventurer?”

THE CHAOS KING – “Ok, the gnome got off his confusion spell. Everyone roll their actions as the 4 leprechauns chase 3 rust monsters into the camp. By the way, the two hobbits who you found tied to a tree earlier take this moment to change into doppelgangers and attack the princess you’re supposed to be guarding. You see all this clearly because the wagons in the caravan are burning from the arrows the orcs have fired at them. Who’s wearing armor, as you were all asleep?”

The 35 Types of Role Players

This page gets a lot of traffic, so much that I thought I'd leave a link directing you to the types of Game Masters. Enjoy! Click here for the list of Game Masters.

This is a little note I have kept with myself for about thirteen or so years. I don't know who composed it. I have been an avid role player and game master for quite some time, and I always found this list humorous. If you're a game master, or player even, you're bound to find memories in that head of yours tied to the types on this list.

The 35 Types Of Players
author unknown

THE REAL MAN – “Hot Diggity!! Gnoll outpost at twelve o’clock!! CHARGE!”

THE REAL ROLE PLAYER – “Don’t start yet! I need my two minutes to get properly into character.”

THE LOONY – “I sheathe my longsword and kiss the ogre on the lips.”

THE MUNCHKIN – “Five arch devils and two demigods? That’s ALL? I guess I’ll only need to use six of my rings for this encounter.”

THE COWARD – “Yikes! Three kobolds! Retreat! RETREAT!”

THE TROUBLEMAKER – “Just before the mayor gives his speech to the town, I cast “command – vomit” on him.”

THE NOVICE – “I just rolled a 2 on my “to-hit” roll. Did I want high or low?”

THE TACTICIAN – “The archer will move silently into position behind the podium, carefully aiming at the sergeant. The mage shall remain behind the door in preparation of a “sleep” spell, which will be centered at the table around which are the bulk of the guards. Meanwhile, the fighter and I shall…”

THE QUIET TYPE – “I dunno.. I lob off another arrow at the monster this round, I guess.”

THE PUNSTER – “You know how many clerics it takes to fix a light bulb? One… to cast “cure light.””

THE PC INFIGHTER – “Sinth’s been such a twit. I hit her in the face with my flail while she’s casting her “find familiar” spell.”

JOE-I-GOT-THE-RULES-DOWN-PAT – “No, if you look in the DMG, page 81, paragraph 5, you’ll find this spell won’t affect griffons.”

THE WHINER – “Three points? I take three points of damage?!”

THE BULLY – “Are you sure I don’t make my saving throw? Are you ABSOLUTELY sure? Do you want to keep your nose the way it is, Lou?”

Mr. GREEDY – “So it’s not evil? And it’s not attacking? So what! I want that xp!”

THE CHEATER – “I roll an… 18! It hits!” (quickly grabs dice)

THE CHASTISER – “And you didn’t see that trap coming? HAHA! Just how long did you say you’ve been playing this game?”

THE KAMIKAZE – “I jump off our perch, taking careful aim to land dead center on the hobgoblin patrol. Just before I hit the ground, I set off the ‘fire trap’ on all of my nine flasks of oil.”

THE GOOD ROLLER – “Oh looky here. An 03 percentile dice… If that door was trapped, I just found something.”

THE BAD ROLLER – “Oh, damn it all! Another critical fumble!”

THE BRAGGART – “The thought of you attacking me isn’t even interesting. I could get off a sleep spell and slit your unconscious throat before you even get your longsword out of its sheath.”

THE REMINISCER – “Say, y’know, this is kind of like the time our party thief spent twenty minutes trying to lockpick an unlocked door.”

GOODY TWO SHOES – “Wait a minute. Even if they are orcs, we just can’t kill them when they’re asleep and can’t defend themselves.”

THE OVEROPTIMISTIC DAYDREAMER – “After we get through this campaign, and have gained about nine or ten levels, I’m going to buy me the finest battle axe that money can buy.”

SHORT ATTENTION SPAN MAN – “Hmm? What? Oh, are we attacking now?”

THERMONUCLEAR MAN – “Alright, I swing at the orc with my bastard sword. (rolls) That’s a 2… +2 for strength… +3 for specialization, +2 for (and on and on). So that’s a 27. (sarcastic grin) Does it hit?”

THE GM HATER – the person who comes into the game and does his best to think of ways to react to a situation that the GM hasn’t. Having a pc who is slightly schizophrenic is a good excuse for this. NOTE: mixes really badly with the “storytelling” style of GM.

THE MINDLESS PLAYER – GM: “The gaping chasm stretches out before you. It is too far to jump across.” PLAYER: “I jump the chasm.”

THE CRYBABY – “you mean the big rock crushed me? My character’s dead? Really really dead? NOOOOOO!”

THE COWBOY – “II walk proudly up to the King and challenge him to a duel to the death. Oh yeah, I make sure to call him a wimp.”

THE WORRY WORT – “Okay, my mage is invisible, levitating thirty meters above the party, has a phantom armor and a stoneskin on him, a ring of fire resistance owrn, a minor globe of invulnerability up, (and on and on). Damn! I have a bad feeling about this!.” DM: Suddenly, a spellcaster appears in the hallway before you. Quickly gesturing in the direction of the invisible mage, he casts a spell… . Oh, my! Mr. worry wort has just plummeted thirty meters to the ground, to his death.

THE PSYCHO KILLER – DM: “okay, you open the door and you see –“ PK: “KILL KILL KILL!! BLOOD BLOOD BLOOD! RAAAAAAAGHHH!”

THE CAVERN SHYSTER – “Oh, so the illusionary medusa I cast at the Archdemon Orcus doesn’t turn him to stone, does it? Well if you look at the spell description, it says right here that he gets no save, has no chance to disbelieve, and I made my magic resistance roll! What do you say to that?” DM: “Orcus is a demon lord. He eats medusae for breakfast. Amidst a hearty chuckle of laughter at your feeble attempt at illusion, he throws a thirty die lightning bolt at you. What do you say to that?”

THE PIG-EYED GLUTTON – “Now how do we go about carting off this 800 copper pieces? We’re already loaded down with the four suits of leather armor and electrum-inlaid toilet seats we found earlier..”

THE MASOCHIST – “I stop running, turn around, slap the minotaur, and tell him to stop breathing down my neck."

Wednesday, January 04, 2006

How To Call Tech Support (Version 1.01)

I don't know who wrote this, but I was given it back in 2001 when I worked for tier 1 and tier 2 tech support for internet cable. I hope you enjoy it as much as I did, and for all of you with similar jobs who know these questions and situations actually occur, I hope you don't burst your spleen laughing.

author unknown


0.0 We support all kinds of connections such as Dialup, Cable, DSL, Satellite, Wireless

0.0.1 Operating Systems: Windows 3.x/9x/2x/NT.x/XP/CE, Solaris, Red Hat Linux, OS/2, Unix, MacOs x.x, MSDOS, Novell DOS, Netware, Linux, SVR4, Bestix, Motorola, PalmOS 4x, Microwave 98, Microscope Windows 98. Note that our software IS compatible with all systems mentioned above.

0.1 Latest games from Microsoft, Epic, Sierra, LucasArts, Captain Crunch serial software, Symantec, Electronic Arts, MTVMedia, Fox Interactive.

0.2 Programs depending on your Internet connection and programs requiring Internet, such as MS Office (versions 1.0 to
to 2000), MS Encyclopedia Offline edition, Star Office, Photo Express, Hot Party 18, IAMOVER18, sexydial, hottichat, Pornosearcher 1.0, MS Front Page (versions from 1.0 to 2000), Hotmail, Yahoo, and

0.3 Programs that are essential for Internet such as: BONZI Buddy, WebCelerator, Sonic, Hot Party 18, IAMOVER18, sexydial, hottichat, Pornosearcher 1.0, BackOrifice, McAfee firewall (change settings to "disallow all"), Zone Labs Alarm (make sure that it is set to "Engage Internet Lock" by default).

**be aware that use of the programs listed above will never result in any of your Internet related problems, such as "Page Cannot Be Displayed", "Server Not Found", "TAPISERV Performed Illegal Function", "Reinstall Dialup Networking", or change of a home page to or,", etc. But for some unexplained reason techs like to blame those programs.

0.4 For the full list of supported titles please go to

0.5 We DO support NAPSTER and we will be pleased to help you burn an illegal CD from stolen songs.

0.5.1 Please note that to burn a CD you do not need a CD-RW drive; a normal CDROM drive will do, note also that NAPSTER has a built-in CD burning software.

0.6 We are here (at ISP technical support) not to troubleshoot and fix your problems, but we are here to help you learn that new program you just downloaded.

0.7 Support coverage is easy; ISP means Internet Service Provider, which means that we support everything that came through the Internet.

0.8 Hardware support offered on all models of printers, scanners, digital cameras, cat scanners, tape drives, external CD drives, CD-RW drives, wireless mice, touch pads, motherboards, fans, Palm Pilots, Pocket PCs, surge protectors, vacuum cleaners and calculators.

0.9 We can also help you read your spouse's email while they are away.


1.1 Make sure that your computer is off, because you CANNOT have your computer turned on and talk to tech support at the same time. If you just received your computer please leave it in the original packaging, do NOT take it out of the box before calling tech support.

1.2 If computer is on, make sure that the monitor is disconnected from the tower or at least turned off.

1.3 Make sure that the computer is in a different room and your cord is not long enough to reach the keyboard. Don't even think to plug in your phone in the computer's phone jack because (once again) you cannot have the computer turned on and talk to tech support at the same time.

1.4 If your computer is on, please launch as many applications as possible (preferred to do that until you get the message "out of memory. Please quit one of the running applications and try again."). You never know where a tech will take you, so to save time have all possible windows open (e.g. My Computer, Control Panel, Dial-Up Networking, Drive C, Windows, Temp). Best case scenario would be to call tech support during the lock-up.

1.5 Computer and monitor color coding are usually deceptive; it has nothing to do with system setup; do not attempt to
go through the setup by yourself; please call tech support and verify what should go where.

1.6 Never restart the computer before calling tech support.

1.7 Make sure that there are no pen and paper within your reach. You should never have to write something down, because you have a computer -- it will do it for you.


2.0 When we ask you what your phone number is we need the phone number that your compuuter is on right now, if it's a laptop and you are travelling now, just give tech support your motel number then.

2.1 If you have a serious problem like system crashes, out of memory, system freeze, illegal functions and lock-ups, please wait for about 2 to 3 weeks before calling; maybe the problem will go away by itself. Keep installing programs
mentioned above without any fear, install or uninstall will never cause any problems at all. If not, a tech will be able to fix it without the help of some fancy SCANREG DOS function.

2.2 Make sure that you contact the correct tech support center and get the proper department. Please not that our call
options are responding to your brain waves, not the keypad, so just press buttons randomly and you will get connected to the correct department right away. If however you were connected to an incorrect department, ignore the greeting and start on explaining what your problem is to the first live person who picks up the phone.

2.2.1 It is a good idea to ask for a senior tech right away; don't waste your time on those level 1 techs. They are there only to get your information and pass you to the higher level tech.

2.3 If you have a simple first and last name, please spell those out to the tech. If your name is not of English or American origin, do not spell it out. Our techs are able to spell last names like Sczherchijski and Khaschic by themselves.

2.4 If you are a resident alien and call the USA for tech support, after greeting us in English you can go ahead and speak Malay, Tagalong, Visayan, Ilocano, Cebuano, Mandarin, Bantu, Japanese, French, German, Klingon, etc. Every tech is trained in all fo these languages for your convenience!

2.5 Contact tech support from your office/your car/friends house/friend's car, you should remember that as described in 1.1 and 1.3 you cannot have the computer turned on and talk to tech support at the same time. Please note that all problems that you have we can fix without your assistance. We have remote access to your computer and will be glad to fix everything for you.

2.6 While on hold feel free to visit the bathroom, eat crunchy stuff, talk dirty to your boy/girlfriend or yell at your kids.

2.7 Do not give your contact information to any of the techs right away. First probe them with technical questions to determine if they are really who they claim they are.


3.1 Be advised that a tech can see the same picture on the computer screen that you do. Therefore there is no need to
elaborate on the problem. A short sentence like "I would like to put the Internet on my computer", "I cannot get to
the Internet" or better yet "It is not working" are more than enough for a tech to fix the problem.

3.2 Problems such as described in 2.0 could never be fixed with ScanDisk or Defrag, don't waste your time going through
those programs.

3.3 When going through the troubleshooting with a tech do NOT follow his directions blindly; he might be making fun of you going through all those steps. Make sure to click randomly without the tech's advice.

3.4 Remember that RIGHT click is a click perfomed by the RIGHT hand on the mouse button (it does not matter which button). Sometimes a tech will tell you to do a right click, but that he might mean left click, so do the one that you
feel is right.

3.5 Modem is a big gray box with a power button on it. Monitor is a fancy tech jargon word for TV-thingy.

3.6 If you have a child in the house who is helping you with the computer DO NOT bother letting the child talk to us. Instead do it yourself, we will be more than delighted to help you learn the secret of double LEFT clicking.

3.7 If you are getting missing .dll or .vxd file errors, please do not tell tech support what programs you installed or uninstalled recently. WHAT YOU HAVE ON YOUR COMPUTER IS YOUR OWN BUSINESS. A tech does not have to know anything. If asked directly deny any allegations of installing or uninstalling any programs.

3.8 When following tech's directions please do not tell a tech what you just did. The tech knows that you already clicked
OK, or typed what was needed. Just relax, keep silent and wait for further instruction.

3.9 If a tech asks you the question "What do you have on your screen now?" tell him what your wallpaer and icons look like. Please go through all the icons and spell out all the labels on them.

3.10 If you have a screen with the message "Click OK to Continue" or "Click Next" and those are the only available option ask your technician what you should do first.

3.11 Never write down error messages, a simple "does not work" statement is all the tech needs. Also remember that as in
3.1, a tech can see the same picture on your computer screen as you do.

3.12 If a tech asks you a question that can be answered by "yes" or "no," answer "OK" instead.


1.1 A STATEMENT THAT "I'm not computer illiterate" is usually a very funny statement. Laugh every time you say it. A tech will have more compassion for you that way. Plus, that makes troubleshooting much easier.

1.2 For faster service please have a crying baby, yelling sister/husband/wife/boyfriend/girlfriend/cat/barking dog/bird or at least a TV with the volume all the way up in the background. We enjoy hearing those sounds.

1.3 If you cannot provide any of the following please use your cell by the radio or computer speakers so we can hear those nice feedback sounds.

1.4 Have no speakers or radio? That is not a problem! Drain your cell phone battery prior to the call and let us enjoy nice beeping sounds every three seconds.

1.5 Have no cell phone? Not a problem! Get a cordless phone from your neighbor across the street and turn the antenna to the opposite direction. No neighbor? Just yell at your kids randomly without covering the phone with your hand.

1.6 If you havve two phones at home call tech support with your spouse on the other phone so you can both get tech support at the same time. Plus, during the call you can discuss your own business if the tech is quiet enough. Talking at the same time is also useful; that gives the tech twice as much information in a shorter period of time.

1.7 To make sure that you are doing everything correctly ask tech support to repeat every sentence at least once. By doing that you will give him a chance to make sure that you are on the right track. Better yet, spell out everything that he asks you to type, no matter if it is your email address or your last name.

1.8 Ask "Are we there yet?" and "how much longer will this take?" every 20 to 30 seconds. A tech will be able to accelerate the troubleshooting process after hearing that.

1.9 During system reboot please ask the tech "Where are you guys located?", it is essential for further troubleshooting.

2.0 Life is short, don't waste it, you can eat dinner and talk to the tech at the same time.

2.1 If you are a lawyer, being "computer illiterate" doesn't matter. Reply to the tech with your professional jargon. It will be educational for the tech.

2.2 Our techs are all mature adults. Using profanity while on the phone is appreciated.

2.3 We are here not only to help you get connected but also to listen to your family problems, old jokes, personal preferences, your life and sex life.

2.4 Make sure that you hold the phone as close to your speakers as you can so the tech can hear the startup and shutdown sounds (please note that the volume should be all the way up).

2.5 Set up your sound scheme to Underwater so the tech can hear a toilet flush on every click.


1.1 When you ask a tech for a good book on Windows98, the tech might reply "Windows98 for Dummies." Be aware! There are no such publications. The tech is simply insulting your intelligence.

1.2 If the tecch recommends "Learning Win98 Visually" hi implies you need a book with pictures because you are so stupid that you can't even read. Ask for a supervisor immediately!

1.3 Going through the Ctrl+Alt+Del and doing "End Task" will uninstall all those programs that you have there.

1.3.1 Ctrl+Alt+Del command will destroy your system. (FATBODY NOTE: no, with windows, your system was bought
already destroyed!)

1.4 Rebooting your computer means pressing the button on the TV-thingy and then turning it back on. Under no circumstances agree to turn off the big gray box, because hardbooting (cutting the power) will cause unrepairable damage to your hard drive.

1.5 Windows ME is the same as Windows 2000.

1.6 It is our duty as a tech support representative to listen to your complaints regarding billing and shipment issues.

1.7 It is our responsibility to reimburse you the $400 phone bill which is a result of browsing "pay by phone" porno sites.

1.8 Your desktop has a picture of hardcore porno close-up, your home page is set to, you have a comet cursor logo at the bottom of your screen and your mouse arrow looks like a penis with two eyes...This is the result of a Windows glitch, not your horny 13 year old son.

1.9 IF your system runs at 10% free resources one of the techs might suggest to take out any of the 31 icons from your
system tray and about 50 from the startup folder. Do not fall for this because you USE IT and your computer is top of the line and should be able to handle those fine.

2.0 Most of the times username/password problems are on our end. Leaving the CAPS LOCK on has nothing to do with it.

2.1 Your windows network username and password ARE THE SAME as your ISP username and password.

2.2 "@" is shorthand for typing in "at" in email addresses. Don't use @. Go ahead and type "at."

2.2.1 To send an email to the webmaster of the website put the full website address in the "TO" field (e.g. When sending your family fresh scanned photos make sure that those have at least 600dpi resolution and the size is not below 640X480. To save yourself time send all 20 files together. Your mail with attached pictures will go off your outbox in a couple of seconds. It should not take much time on your 28.8K dialup either.

2.2.2 Our incoming mail server is POP3 and outgoing is SMTP (as is clearly indicated in the Outlook Express Account
Creation Wizard).

2.3 Your computer has 2 phone outlets, you can use either one of them to connect to the internet.

2.4 All recent models of computers have wireless modems; there is no need to plug the telephone cord into them.

2.5 Modems will function normally even if the telephone line is down.

2.5.1 "No answer" error and random disconnections have nothing to do with the static on the phone line, even if you can barely hear the tech.

2.6 If you are getting "No Dialtone" errors while trying to connect to the Internet and you are speaking with tech support at the same time on the same line please let them troubleshoot this as a separate connectivity issue.

2.7 After deleting essential parts of the netstac or registry tell the tech "My 4 year old son did it." This will make a tech have more compassion for you.

2.8 We got a lot of questions where some keys are located on the keyboard. To make it easier to use we printed a scheme of the keyboard. On the reverse side of this manual you will find a chart with locations of some of the most popular buttons such as: close, next, back, return, space, maximize, minimize, Start, Cancel, OK, Yes, No, and the all-time favorite "any" key.

2.9 New generation printers are all "plug-n-play". There is no need to use a CD which came in the package labelled:
"Printer Setup Disk."

3.0 "Non-system Disk" or "Boot Disk Error" is a server problem. Do not attempt to fix this by yourself. The floppy inside does not have anything to do with it. DENY that you have a floppy in the drive for as long as possible.

3.1 DVD disk is a new version of CD disk and therefore will work in a regular CD-ROM.

3.2 There is a built in radio in your CPU (CPU is a fancy tech jargon word for big gray box modem thingy).

3.3 CD-ROM Drive is not a cup holder. It is too small for mugs and will only fit paper cups. This is actually an ashtray.

3.4 Your computer comes with built in voice recognition software and hardware, refer to it as if you are talking to your friend.

3.5 The correct position for your task bar is on the right side, vertical.

3.5.1 The task bar changes its location and size randomly by itself.

1.1 Based on the increasing demand of replacement parts the following is now covered by the warranty:
-- Spilled water/coffee/tea/vine/urine on the keyboard, as a replacement you will get a new waterproof keyboard.
-- Acts of God or other supreme power such as: your urge for distruction, your kids, pets, and co-workers.
-- Mouse cleaning: including ball exchange, dust-cleaning, hair removal, and vinegar dips.

Good Times

For a few posts i'm going to reprint some things that i have carried with me for years. Please note that I personally composed none of these works; when I know the name of the author, I will include it. If YOU know the name of the author and I don't, comment the name so the author gets her proper notariety.