Nuadha's Tale

Ignorance can be tolerated, where reason is left free to combat it. -Thomas Jefferson

Sunday, December 28, 2003

Signs of Getting Old
When "stoners" no longer refers to those lovable pot-smoking metalheads, but people afflicted with Kidney Stones.

I've done some reading. There's a lot of different takes on what can help spmeone from having a recurring kidney stone problem, but about 60% of males tend to have repeat problems.

The main thing they say is drink lots of fluids, mainly water of course.

...and cut down on caffeine or cola seems to be a common tip. Between this being a tip for this and a tip for people with sinus problems, you'd think I'd get the clue. I've managed to avoid cola all day but it has been calling to me. I'm on my fourth 20 oz of water instead.

I'm in a hell of a lot of pain right now. It's almost as bad as the night I went to the emergency room. I've been taking the Ibuprofen the doctor prescribed me but with no help. Now all I can think of is getting home to my Vicoden prescription bottle.

I would like to hear the president explain how the bloody $200 billion invasion of Iraq improved our defenses against terrorism -- and also why, a week after Saddam's capture, the United States is confronting the worst threat from al-Qaida since the disaster of September 2001.
-- Joe Conason,, December 22, 2003

The problem with the French is that they don't have a word for entrepreneur.
-- George W. Bush, repeated to an audience in Brighton, UK, by politician Shirley Williams, according to London Times arts writer, Jack Malvern. Reported in the Washington Post, July 10, 2003.

I'm also not very analytical. You know I don't spend a lot of time thinking about myself, about why I do things.
-- George W. Bush, aboard AirForce One, June 4 2003.

Red Meat
This is a good one.

Kidney Stone
Is back. If I'm still in pain tomorrow, I'll call the doctor. It's supposed to pass in 48 hours. I'm quickly approaching that.

Friday, December 26, 2003

Meme of the year
(Via Eternal Eponine and several others)

1. What did you do in 2003 that you'd never done before?
Went to the emergency room. Also, I started DMing a D&D game after years of being a D&D hater.

2. Did you keep your new years' resolutions, and will you make more for next year?
If I made one last year, I don't remember it so chances are good I did not keep it.

3. Did anyone close to you give birth?
Cody and Jen had a baby boy.

4. Did anyone close to you die?
Our next door neighbor, Vivian, died. We weren't close but we did talk fairly regularly.

5. What countries did you visit?
Can I say Canada if I only went to Windsor?

6. What would you like to have in 2004 that you lacked in 2003?
More time.

7. What date from 2003 will remain etched upon your memory, and why?
No particular date comes to mind.

8. What was your biggest achievement of the year?
I got a new job where I make less money but am a hundred times happier.

9. What was your biggest failure?
Not sticking with school after the Spring semester.

10. Did you suffer illness or injury?
I passed a kidney stone. Other than that, I had

11. What was the best thing you bought?
Nothing comes to mind right away.

12. Whose behavior merited celebration?
Carla. For being my Samwise G.

13. Whose behavior made you appalled and depressed?
Shrub & Co.

14. Where did most of your money go?
Comic Books and collectible "crack" games like Magic the Gathering and D&D Minis all got regular contributions of my money.

15. What did you get really, really, really excited about?
Ambercon (always get really excited about Ambercon)

16. What song will always remind you of 2003?
"Going Through the Motions" from the Buffy musical. The whole soundtrack will remind me of 2003 because I heard it so many times.....sometimes just because it was stuck in my head.

17. Compared to this time last year, are you:
i. happier or sadder? Happier.
ii. thinner or fatter? Neither.
iii. richer or poorer? Neither.

18. What do you wish you'd done more of?
Meditation and exercise.

19. What do you wish you'd done less of?
Working at Interfirst.

20. How will you be spending Christmas?
Spent Christmas Eve dinner was with Carla's family. Christmas was a quiet day at home with Carla.

22. Did you fall in love in 2003?
Never fell out of love this year.

23. How many one-night stands?
None. I apparently have less offers out there than my wife.

24. What was your favorite TV program?
"The Prisoner" has always been my favorite TV program. Of shows I saw for the first time this year: "Buffy". However, it was the episodes on DVD that counted as favorites not the ones that were actually aired this year.

25. Do you hate anyone now that you didn't hate this time last year?
Ann Coulter. She barely registered on my radar last year but this year I read some of her stuff.

26. What was the best book you read?
I can't think of anything that really stood out. Fiction-wise, I guess I'd say Agents of Light and Darkness by Stephen Green. For non-fiction, I guess it was the collection of Eugene Debs speeches.

27. What was your greatest musical discovery?
Joss Whedon- The man writes tunes that use demonic powers to get into your head.

28. What did you want and get?
Battlestar Galactica DVD box set. I've been waiting for years.

29. What did you want and not get?
World Peace.....or at least my country working for it.

30. What was your favorite film of this year?
X-Men 2

31. What did you do on your birthday, and how old were you?
I can't remember what I did the day of Birthday but I got together with friends that weekend.

32. What one thing would have made your year immeasurably more satisfying?
Not sure.

33. How would you describe your personal fashion concept in 2003?
I'm wearing more sweaters than I use to. Other than that, same as usual.

34. What kept you sane?
My wife, my friends and my dogs.

35. Which celebrity/public figure did you fancy the most?
That girl from Bulletproof Monk stands out. I can't think of her name right now.

36. What political issue stirred you the most?
The invasion of Iraq and the lack of good media coverage on all of the Bush regime's crimes.

37. Who did you miss?
Clinton. Goddess help me, I missed Clinton.

38. Who was the best new person you met?
Although I met them previous years, I got to know several friends better this year: Jarrod, Patrick, Matthew, Kristen, John/Jack, Liz and Jeff.

39. Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2003.
Drink cranberry juice.

40. Quote a song lyric that sums up your year.
Sorry, I can't leave this on an uplifting note...

Mister anchor assure me
That baghdad is burning
Your voice it is so soothing
That cunning mantra of killing
I need you my witness
To dress this up so bloodless
To numb me and purge me now
Of thoughts of blaming you...

Mass graves for the pump and the price is set, and the price is set.

-Rage Against the Machine, "Testify"

Monday, December 22, 2003

Is really sucking this month. It's not as much that we're really busy as it is that everyone who calls is cranky because they're really busy.

More Good News
With all the steps governments have taken towards stifling the free exchange of information, the news has been getting better lately.

I don't believe it's right to copy DVDs illegally and sell them, but if someone wants to share information that can be used for both legal and illegal uses, we should not stop the sharing of that information just because it can be used illegaly. Each person has the right and responsibility to use things like the ability to copy DVDs responsibly. Stopping him from sharing the information on how to copy DVDs is like stopping someone from sharing information on how to set up lights for plants just because those sunlamps could be used to grow marijuana.

Sunday, December 21, 2003

Villian Quiz

Which Evil Villain Bad Habit are you?

Being Green
You are Kermit the Frog.
You are reliable, responsible and caring. And you
have a habit of waving your arms about

"Hi ho!" "Yaaay!" and
"How Green Was My Mother"

"Surfin' the Webfoot: A Frog's Guide to the

Sitting in the swamp playing banjo.

"Hmm, my banjo is wet."

What Muppet are you?
brought to you by Quizilla

Friday, December 19, 2003

Beware the power of Darkfeld!
What a lame name....

What Kind Of Superhero Are You? by electronicoffee
Your Username
Your First Name
Your Superhero Last NameDarkfeld
Your WeaponEmerald Fighting Gloves
Your 1st SuperpowerMeta Speed [genetic speed]
Your 2nd SuperpowerInvisibility [Magical]
Created with quill18's MemeGen!

(Via JavenAllese)

Cool News!
Kazaa is not illegal!

Marriage Poll Update
It's now almost dead even. Current stats here.

Wednesday, December 17, 2003

Slanted poll
A "pro-family" (aka anti-gay) website has this poll which they plan to present to congress to show that a majority of Americans are against gay marriage. Now, putting it on their website doesn't skew the poll a little, would it?

Facts are stupid things.
-Ronald Reagan, 1988

Monday, December 15, 2003

Political Link
Kucinich vs Dean

I had not heard that Kucinich was pro-life. Other than that, I like him on all the issues and like him even better knowing that he's working class rather than another rich kid like most politicians. This means he knows what it's like to not have health insurance.

Dean's not a bad guy, but the guy who made the web page that I linked to says exactly the reason I don't like him: He's not a progressive. Yeah, he's lightyears better than Bush but I said after the last election that I was done voting for the lesser evil. Like everyone else, I got scared that the other guy might win and voted for Gore even though I didn't like him. Then, when the recalls were going on he had a chance to fight for democracy and the African-Americans who were turned away from the voting boots by Kathleen Harris I'm voting for what I want. Instead the Democratic Party focused the fight on "hanging chads" and wussed out even further by not fighting when the Supreme Court illegally named a US President. If this is the party that was supposed to be fighting for the working class, african-americans and Democracy, why didn't they fight harder? They barely said a thing about Kathleen Harris taking away the right to vote from all those African-Americans, which was a far greater crime than the faulty voting machines or the Jews voting for Buchanan. Kathleen Harris worked to steal the vote for the Republicans for her own personal gain.

Nader was right. They weren't that different. They gave lip-service to progressive causes, but that was it.

Never again. I'll vote for what I want in a politician from now on and until the Democratic Party grows some balls and starts really fighting for the working class, they aren't what I want.

I think it is a good thing that the US Army has captured our ex-ally, Saddam Hussein, but this statement on the biggest public relations victory the Bush regime has had for a while has a lot of good points:

Dec. 14, 2003

The U.S. military capture of Iraqi president Saddam
Hussein is being trumpeted by the corporate media and the
Bush administration as simultaneously a great victory, the
start of a new era, and justification for the U.S.
invasion and occupation of Iraq.

The seizure and public display of Saddam Hussein may be a
propaganda victory for imperialism, but it changes nothing
fundamental about the situation in Iraq, particularly the
reality that the U.S. invasion and occupation of Iraq
constitute a blatant and brutal violation of both
international and U.S. law.

While hailing the detention of Saddam Hussein after an
intense 8-month search, the current co-dictators of Iraq,
L. Paul Bremer and Lt. Gen. Ricardo Sanchez, are
expressing the hope of the Bush administration as a whole
that this development will signal the beginning of the end
for the Iraqi resistance.

But intensifying Iraqi resistance to the illegal and
colonial war and occupation has not been primarily based -
according even to the more knowledgeable corporate media
journalists in Iraq - on loyalty to any particular
individual. Instead, it is a response to the negation of
Iraq's sovereignty and independence, as well as the
increasing brutality of the occupying army.

Even supporters of Bush's war such as Sen. Jay
Rockefeller, Vice-Chair of the Senate Intelligence
Committee, are raising questions: "Given the location and
circumstances of his capture, it makes clear that Saddam
was not managing the insurgency. ... That is significant
and disturbing because it means the insurgents are not
fighting for Saddam, they're fighting against the United

There can be no question that the Iraq occupation is a
colonial project in every respect. The U.S.-appointed
"Iraq Governing Council" is headed by CIA asset Ahmed
Chalabi, whose family was the richest in all of Iraq when
the British-controlled regime was overthrown in 1958. All
of Iraq's assets are being put on the auction block.

The U.S. is setting up colonial-style Iraqi police,
intelligence services, and paramilitary death squads. It
is taking and holding family members hostage, including
children and grandparents, to force Iraqis to submit
themselves for "interrogation." U.S. forces are using
"Israeli-style" collective punishment and violence against
the population as a whole in large parts of the country.

"With a heavy dose of fear and violence, and a lot of
money for projects, I think we can convince these people
that we are here to help them," stated a U.S. battalion
commander in Iraq (New York Times, December 7, 2003). He
was speaking from one of the many Iraq villages that the
U.S. has wrapped in razor wire, holding entire communities
prisoner. A sign on the barbed wire reads, in English
only, "This fence is here for your protection. Do not
approach or try to cross, or you will be shot."

The U.S. government has a long history of destabilizing
and overthrowing governments and replacing them with
brutal dictatorships. One need only look at Iran, the
Congo, Guatemala, and Chile to know that the democratic or
undemocratic character of the government targeted by the
U.S. has never been the motivation for its actions. In
that context the U.S. government has supported the most
brutal dictatorships and military regimes.

The long standing demonization of the former Iraqi
government followed by the invasion and occupation of Iraq
is part of a larger global project by the United States to
militarily destroy any government that seeks to maintain
even nominal independence from the dictates of Washington
and Wall Street. The leadership of North Korea, Iran,
Syria, Zimbabwe, Cuba, Palestine and others have been
selected by the Bush administration for destruction. This
stands in fundamental violation of the right of self
determination. Only the Iraqi people have the right to
determine who their leaders will be.

People should keep in mind as they watch the forthcoming
carefully packaged documentary of the "crimes" of the
former Iraqi government, that the Bush administration has
taken tens of thousands of innocent Iraqi lives, has
plunged Iraq into chaos and anarchy, and has removed the
essential features of sovereignty for the Iraqi people who
struggled in the past for decades against colonial rule.

The occupation is taking the lives of Iraqis, U.S. and
other "coalition" forces every day. While Halliburton,
Bechtel and other U.S. corporations are reaping immense
profits, the people both here and there are paying the
price for Bush and his corporate friends' looting spree,
in blood and money. According to administration figures,
the cost of the Iraq occupation is 210 million dollars
every day. The administration has stated that it need not
bother to count the number of Iraqis that it kills.

We will continue and intensify our mobilizing work to
demand: "End the Occupation, Bring the Troops Home NOW!
Money for Jobs, Health Care and Education, Not for War and

Sunday, December 14, 2003

Safest City in America
In a recent report, Canton was named the 16th safest city in America. I'm so proud.

Presidential Selector
I'm kind of upset to see that the Selectsmart Presidential Selector no longer includes third party candidates by default. (You have to unselect an option at the end of it that says not to show candidates "who are not affiliated with one of the two major political parties.") Why does this bug me so much? Because many people may find that the third parties better represent their ideals but most people won't think to unselect it.

Anyways, they have the newest edition up and my score is:

1. Your ideal theoretical candidate. (100%) Click here for info
2. Socialist Candidate (88%) Click here for info
3. Kucinich, Rep. Dennis, OH - Democrat (77%) Click here for info
4. Dean, Gov. Howard, VT - Democrat (75%) Click here for info
5. Clark, Retired General Wesley K., AR - Democrat (73%) Click here for info
6. Green Party Candidate (70%) Click here for info
7. Edwards, Senator John, NC - Democrat (67%) Click here for info
8. Kerry, Senator John, MA - Democrat (59%) Click here for info
9. Sharpton, Reverend Al - Democrat (58%) Click here for info
10. Gephardt, Rep. Dick, MO - Democrat (57%) Click here for info
11. LaRouche, Lyndon H. Jr. - Democrat (43%) Click here for info
12. Lieberman, Senator Joe, CT - Democrat (42%) Click here for info
13. Moseley-Braun, Former Senator Carol, IL - Democrat (35%) Click here for info
14. Libertarian Candidate (26%) Click here for info
15. Bush, President George W. - Republican (11%) Click here for info
16. Phillips, Howard - Constitution (0%) Click here for info

I'm still not sure about the accuracy of the test, but this seems more accurate than the last time I took it.

For the record, the Socialist candidate is:

Walt Brown (Socialist USA) Volunteer attorney, Consumer Justice Alliance. Before that worked as a aircraft riveter; mailman; construction laborer; faculty, Northwestern Law School Educational background: U.S.C., B.A., J.D.; Harvard Law School; Boston University, M.A. (government); U of O, M.L.S. Prior goerenmental experience: U.S. Navy (1944-70); served in Pacific, China during WWII, as special prosecutor in Vietnam. Oregon Senate (1975-87). Malheur County Counsel, Deputy D.A. (1989-91). Family: Married 48 years; wife, Barbara, buried Arlington Cemetery. Three sons: M.B.A., M.D., Ph.D.

Friday, December 12, 2003

Dean takes on the giants
He may be shooting himself in the foot, but its about time a politician has the guts to try to take on the media. Go Dean!

(No, this doesn't mean I'm voting for him now.....)

Indeed Jvstin, the miserable failure is unelectable, even with the vast right wing conspiracy GOP News network.

Thursday, December 11, 2003

Shrub Quote
The best way to get the news is from objective sources...and the most objective sources I have are people on my staff who tell me what's happening in the world.

Thanksgiving Quote
Today was my first Thanksgiving, which is a little odd because I'm not American and I don't live in America. I'm not sure what I'm supposed to be giving thanks for. Perhaps the fact that a bunch of religious extremists left England to go and bother someone else.

--From the web journal of the British fantasy author, Patrick Samphire, after a Thanksgiving dinner with his American partner

"When contemplating college liberals, you really regret once again that John Walker is not getting the death penalty. We need to execute people like John Walker in order to physically intimidate liberals, by making them realize that they can be killed, too. Otherwise, they will turn out to be outright traitors."
-Ann Coulter

Her words were applauded by National Security Adviser Condoleeza Rice, Secretary of Health and Human Services Tommy Thompson, and Lynne Cheney (wife of Vice President Cheney), all of whom were in attendance.

Wednesday, December 10, 2003

Battlestar Galactica
...was great. It was even better than the original. How often does that happen?

Saturday, December 06, 2003

The Smurf Village as a Utopian Marxist Society
It's weird, but I love reading articles that take movies and shows and talks about the allegorical or philisophical meanings of the shows. I guess I never thought about the Smurfs, but it makes sense now.

An excerpt:

Gargomel's ginger cat, Azrael, represents the worker in the ruthless, free-market state that is Gargomel's house. He is uncomplaining, or, since he has no voice (ie. Trade Unions), is metaphorically unable to complain. He cannot negotiate his wage - he eats whatever he is given by his master. He is smaller and less well-off than Gargomel, and metaphorically, he represents the proletariat, while Gargomel represents the bourgeoise. Azrael is exploited and oppressed. He risks his life fighting and hunting for his master, and does not have the intellectual capacity to question this state of affairs, just as the worker suffered his fate for centuries because education was off limits to him, and he had no other option but to work for his bosses.

Friday, December 05, 2003

Why I'm not a teacher
I'd love to teach. In particular, I'd love to teach history. I was going to school for it, but then I heard more and more horror stories about schoold districts censoring history. The history taught in public schools is a white-washed Pollyana history.

....but this is a new low.

(Link via Jvstin)

Rise of an Empire
David Horsey and bring us this satirical history.

Thursday, December 04, 2003

Lucky Ducky and more!
There's a new Lucky Ducky strip by Tom the Dancing Bug! I don't know why these amuse me so much.

Even better, is Presidential Action Revisionist Comics!

Target CEO Robert Ulrich's estimated hourly wage: $9,134
Average Target emplyee's hourly wage: $8
Percent increase in Ulrich's bonus between 2001 and 2002: 24.3
Percent Target stock fell between 2001 and 2002: 24.3

Percent of NPR/PBS listeners who hold at least one of three misperceptions about the war in Iraq, including the incorrect belief that world opinion favored the US-led invasion of Iraq: 23

Percent of Fox News Channel viewers who held at least one of these mispercerptions: 80

"Battlefield Earth" is like taking a bus trip with someone who has needed a bath for a long time. It's not merely bad; it's unpleasant in a hostile way. The visuals are grubby and drab. The characters are unkempt and have rotten teeth. Breathing tubes hang from their noses like ropes of snot. The soundtrack sounds like the boom mike is being slammed against the inside of a 55-gallon drum. The plot. . .
-Roger Ebert, reviewing Battlefield Earth

According to this article, the Turkey bush was pictured with on Thanksgiving wasn't edible. The soldiers were fed from steam tables and the picture-perfect turkey was nothing but a decoration.

Wednesday, December 03, 2003


Which Peanuts Character Are You?

Quote of the Irregular Time Period
I read a story about a 2nd grade teacher who...[t]old her class that there was no Santa.

It was odd to me, because I'm an atheist. I don't really think that kids SHOULD be taught religion and stuff. And yet, when I read about this 2nd grade teacher, she sounded like the most evil person imaginable.

I bounced it around in my head all day. On one hand, how could you possibly take SANTA away from some little kid?? On the other hand, why DO we feel that we have to make up a lie about some supernatural fat man in order to give presents to little kids?? Wouldn't they be just as happy knowing that Mom and Dad gave them Christmas presents?? When I was that age, I couldn't care less if Nyarlathotep came in through my basement window and slaughtered 9 kittens to summon forth toys from the Outer Plains, as longs as I got my goddamn Hasbro Millennium Falcon. The whole Santa myth is just a bizarre idea all around, isn't it?

-"Wurmwyd" replying to The Ferrett's post about this DJ who announced to kids on the air that there is no Santa.

Personally, I thought the fact that my parents lied to me about Santa was kind of funny. I had known from sometime and just thought it was amusing asking them questions to get their ridiculous answers. I was on to them from the moment they told me that all the Mall Santas were actually Santa's Helpers. I was about five years old and wanted to know how Santa was at two malls at once. I started realizing how ridiculous the whole notion was. Still, it took me a long time before I could really believe in things that I couldn't see again. If adults lied about Santa, then what's to say they weren't lying about God and Angels?

Yeah, I was a doubting Thomas. (Since I mentioned Thomas- They found the Gospel of Thomas some years back and from what I heard about it on NPR, it falls much more in line with my spiritual beliefs than anything in Contemporary Christian teaching. It sounded to me like "Doubting" Thomas understood Jesus's teachings better than the rest, but since it didn't jive with what John taught, the church had to choose one or the other. Of course, noone is alive today who knows what Jesus actually said, so who knows?)