Nuadha's Tale

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

Thursday, January 29, 2004

Yesterday: 5 minutes, breathing meditation 5 minute meditation on sinus pain. (Had a bad sinus headache. The Buddha taught that when someone has an unpleasant feeling or emotion they can't shake, they should examine it and become more aware of it, so we can understand the source of suffering.)

Wednesday, January 28, 2004

Mydoom Virus
I've gotten three emails from people I don't know with .txt files. Of course, I have not opened them. Also, I have gotten several emails saying that a message I supposedly sent was not received. These messaged were to people whose address was not anyone I know or in my address book.

I've not opened it, but being that this new virus turns around and uses random people's email addresses to say they are from it, I want to warn everyone. If you get a .txt file in your inbox, do not open it unless you know you can trust it! If you get an attachment from me, I always include a message saying what the attachment is. I don't usually send anything in .txt but if I do, I will tell you in the email what it is and why. If it sounds suspiciously not like me, it probably isn't me.

The Gamecat says: Be careful. Be very, very careful.

Bush likes the Pretty Boys
Story from The Globe and Mail

Tuesday, January 27, 2004

Eugene Debs Quotes
I'd rather vote for something I want and not get it than vote for something I don't want, and get it.

I have no country to fight for: my country is the earth, and I am a citizen of the world.

I don't want you to follow me or anyone else. I would not lead you into the promised land if I could, because if I could lead you in, somebody else would lead you out.

I may not be able to say all I think, but I am not going to say anything I do not think.

When great changes occur in history, when great principles are involved, as a rule the majority are wrong.

Intelligent discontent is the mainspring of civilization.

Bush: "I need some ribs."
Apparently, this is not a parody. I don't know what is scarier, Bush's comments or the fact that someone felt that it should be a press release.

This Day in History

1913: Paterson (New Jersey) silk workers' strike. 800 employees of Doherty Silk Mill quit work in protest of firing a workers' committee trying to talk to management about eliminating the four-loom system, returning to two-looms per worker. The new system meant faster, harder work for less pay. The strike became industry-wide within a month. The IWW was called in to help and 25,000 -- virtually all the silk workers in the city -- went on strike. Lasts six months, ending when ribbon workers negotiate separately. Negotiations broke down, shop by shop. The workers had become impoverished and weakened during the long strike.

1951: First U.S. nuclear weapons test conducted at what would become the Nevada Test Site.

1957: For the second time in a year, Martin Luther King, Jr.'s home is bombed.

1967: Outer Space Treaty signed by U.S., U.S.S.R. and Britain. Yes, Dubya's Star Wars plans violate it.

1969: A group of Detroit African-American auto workers known as the Eldon Avenue Axle Plant Revolutionary Union Movement leads a wildcat strike against racism and bad working conditions. Since the 1967 Detroit rebellion, African American workers have organized militant groups in several Detroit auto plants. The most famous of these was the Dodge Revolutionary Union movement, or DRUM. Combining Black-Power nationalism and workplace militancy, these young militants compare factories to plantations and white supervisors to brutal overseers. Shutting down inner-city plants in more than a dozen wildcat strikes, they criticize both the seniority system and grievance procedures as racist. United Auto Workers (UAW) union leaders quickly denounce the protests, calling the dissidents (quote) "black fascists." The revolutionary groups will leave a permanent imprint on the Detroit labor movement. Most inner-city UAW locals will soon be headed by African Americans, some of them veterans of the insurgency.

1973: Vietnam Peace Treaty signed in Paris

1987: Soviet General Secretary Mikahil Gorbachev signals new era of "Glasnost" (openness), proposing economic and social reforms.

1999: Pope John Paul II urges Catholics to oppose death penalty.

Tech Support
I've been there.

My British Movie Rating

My life has been rated:
Click to find out your rating!
See what your rating is!

(Via MacGeek)

15 is basically equivalent to most R movies in the US.

Monday, January 26, 2004


I am an Intellectual

Which America Hating Minority Are You?

Take More Robert & Tim Quizzes
Watch Robert & Tim Cartoons

Is that Michael Moore and Noam Chomsky? Cool.

Sunday, January 25, 2004

If the Americans go in and overthrow Saddam Hussein and it's clean, he has nothing, I will apologize to the nation, and I will not trust the Bush Administration again, all right?
-Bill O'Reilly, March 18, 2003

No apology yet.

Friday, January 23, 2004

Top Ten List
from David Letterman last night, as read by Howard Dean

Top Ten Ways I, Howard Dean, Can Turn Things Around

10. "Switch to decaf"

9. "Unveil new slogan: 'Vote for Dean and get one dollar off you next
purchase at Blimpie'"

8. "Marry Rachel on final episode of 'Friends'"

7. "Don't change a thing -- it's going great"

6. "Show a little more skin"

5. "Go on 'American Idol' and give 'em a taste of these pipes"

4. "Start working out and speaking with Austrian accent"

3. "I can't give specifics yet, but it involves Ted Danson"

2. "Fire the staffer who suggested we do this lousy Top Ten list instead of
actually campaigning"

1. "Oh, I don't know -- maybe fewer crazy, redfaced rants"

Spotted in a toilet of a London office:

In a Laundromat:

In a London department store:

In an office:

In an office:

Outside a secondhand shop:

Notice in health food shop window:

Spotted in a safari park:

Seen during a conference:

Notice in a farmer's field:

Message on a leaflet:

On a repair shop door:

Thursday, January 22, 2004

This morning: 5 minutes, breathing meditation, sitting

After 5 minutes, the dogs decided they should both worry about me. Zam started staring me in the eye and licking my hand. Then Sadie came over and started pacing in front of me. So.....I changed my meditation of the morning to "petting the dogs with mindfullness." I think they liked that meditation better. Next meditation, I go to another room and close the door.

My Favorite Scientist
All the time, I am thankful for the invention of something that has enriched my life and for it, I thank George Washington Carver, one of the first African-American scientists. What did he invent? Peanut Butter. (He invented all sorts of other things too, but it's the peanut butter that I thank him for.) As I understand it, GWC was lactose intolerant and was looking for something else to put on his toast. He was also a scientist that was working with peanuts at the time and discovering all sorts of new uses for peanuts, so peanut butter was born.

Tuesday, January 20, 2004

One of my New Year's resolutions this year was to start meditating regularly again. To keep me on track, I'm going to start keeping a Meditation log here. I'm trying to set sometime aside for meditation at least three times a week. Like any physical exercise, this seems like a decent amount. I may end up meditating more. We'll see.

This morning: 15 minutes, breathing meditation, laying down on back. Not a lot of success. Mind wandered a lot.

So y'all know: There are several kinds of meditations and reasons to meditate. For Buddhists, the goal is usually to get your mind to be less distracted. The human mind is easily distracted and before you can contemplate things like god and enlightenment, you need to make your mind a tool that can work for you rather than against you.

When I was meditating regularly at the Jeweled Heart Buddhist center, I would meditate for 1-2 hours, usually guided by another student. The first hour was usually just breath contemplation. Sometimes we would meditate on sutras or mantras. At that point I noticed a pretty big difference in my life. I was just doing that once a week but was able to focus more on my tasks that I was doing (whether at work or at home) and when I talked to people I found that I was really listening to people.

One of the downfalls that can happen and what seemed to happen to me at that time was I started feeling a lot of pride over how far I had come. I know from all my reading on spirituality, that I hadn't really come that far, but pride is always a tricky thing.

So, maybe keeping a public log is not the wisest thing. I worry that my mind is saying, look I want to tell the world, but I don't think that is true.

I want to post my log here because 1) I look at this almost every day 2) my friends may note when I haven't been meditating and, being friends, gently point this out to me like a zen teacher tapping his student to let him know that his posture had slipped or his attention is wandering 3) at least one of my friends out there is interested in getting into meditation and maybe this will help her as well.

Lisamarie- If you are still interested in starting meditation, I can't think off the top of my head of any books for you to read on the topic. I was taught to meditate in classes or at a temple. My suggestion is to start with the same meditation I did this morning. It is a great basic meditation. It works like this: 1- Get comfortable, either sitting or laying down. A warning about laying down is that it is easy to fall asleep. If you sit, it is best to make sure that your back is straight. I find it easiest to sit with my legs lightly crossed against a wall to keep my spine straight. In this position, I rest my hands on my legs or in my lap. Sitting, it is most comfortable to let your head look slightly down. 2- Breath in. Breath out. focus on the feeling of your lungs expanding and the air moving in and out of you. 3- On your first breath out, count "one." On your next breath out count "two." After counting "five" start over with "one." The goal isn't counting. It's concentration. You'll generally know when you lost your concentration becuase you'll also lose your place. 4- Whenever you think about anything besides your breath (what you'll be doing later, etc.) notice that your mind has wandered and make a quick note of it, and go back to concentrating on breathing. Eventually your mind will wander less.

Richard Gephardt. Loser. Big loser. Death blow loser. That thud you just heard is Gephardt falling off the White House ladder and hitting the bottom of the Democratic dumpster. Again.
-- Will Durst

Friday, January 16, 2004

More Bush Spending
As if paying billions for his war and helping Halliburton wasn't enough, Bush is proposing to spend $1.5 billion dollars to promote marriage, heterosexual marriage of course.

Ordering Pizza in the World of Homeland Security
A friend emailed me this:

Operator: "Thank you for calling Pizza Hut May I have your order?"

Customer: "Hi, I'd like to order for delivery please."

Operator: "May I have your NIDN first, sir?"

Customer: "oh sure, My National ID Number, yeah, hold on, eh, it's

Operator: "Thank you, Mr. Sheehan. I see you live at 1742
Meadowland Drive, and the phone number's 494-2366.
Your office number over at Lincoln Insurance is 745-2302
and your cell number's 266-2566. Which number are you calling
from, sir?"

Customer: "Huh? I'm at home. Where d'ya get all this information?"

Operator: "We're wired into the system, sir."

Customer: (Sighs) "Oh, well, I'd like to order a couple of your
All-Meat Special pizzas..."

Operator: "I don't think that's a good idea, sir."

Customer: "Whaddya mean?"

Operator: "Sir, your medical records indicate that you've got
very high blood pressure and extremely high cholesterol. Your
National Health Care provider won't allow such an unhealthy choice.
We could get in alot of trouble if they found out that we put that
order through... somehow they always dooooo!

Customer: "Geez, What do you recommend, then?"

Operator: "You might try our low-fat Soybean Yogurt Pizza. I'm
sure you'll like it"

Customer: "Ugh,what makes you think I'd like something like that?"

Operator: "Well, you checked out 'Gourmet Soybean Recipes' from
your local library last week, sir. That's why I made the suggestion."

Customer: "All right, all right. Give me two family-sized ones,
then. What's the damage?"

Operator: "Ok sir, two family sized pizzas should be plenty for your
wife, Linda, and your two kids. Are the step-children home tonight??
If so, I would recommend another large. I see here that Linda has full
custody of her older two from her previous marriage."

Customer: No, this is their weekend with their Dad...uh, hey,
how do you know all this? Just give me the total for the pizzas!

Operator: "It's Just what's in the system sir! OK, your total
damage comes to $49.95."

Customer: "Hold up, Lemme give you my credit card number."

Operator: "I'm sorry sir, but I'm afraid you'll have to pay in
cash. Your credit card balance is over its limit."

Customer: "I'll run over to the ATM and get some cash before
your driver gets here."

Operator: "That won't work either, sir. Your checking account
was overdrawn as of this afternoon. I see here that your paycheck w
on't clear until Monday."

Customer: "Never mind. Just send the pizzas. I'll have the cash
ready. How long will it take?"

Operator: "We're running a little behind, sir. It'll be about 45
minutes, sir. If you're in a hurry you might want to pick 'em up
while you're out getting the cash, but carrying pizzas on a Harley
can be a little awkward."

Customer: "How in the world do you know I'm riding a bike?"

Operator: "It says here you're in default on your car payments,
so your car got repo'ed. But your Harley's paid up, so I just
assumed that you'd be using it."

Customer: "@#%/$@&?#!"

Operator: "I'd advise watching your language, sir. You've
already got a July 2006 conviction for cussing out a cop."

Customer: (Speechless)

Operator: "Will there be anything else, sir?"

Customer: "No, nothing. oh, yeah, don't forget the two free
liters of Coke your ad says I get with the pizzas."

Operator: "I'm sorry sir, but our ad's exclusionary clause
prevents us from offering free soda to diabetics. I also
see that Dr Schwartz told you to cut back on your sugar
intake at your last checkup. I will put two spring waters
aside for you. See you when you get here!"

This Day in History
from Working for Change:

1776: Continental Congress approves General George Washington's order to enlist free Negroes.

1919: Police smash peaceful IWW demonstration in Seattle; 43 are arrested and later sentenced to prison.

1919: Prohibition ratified by 3/4 of the states; Nebraska is 36th. (starts 1920)

1920: 18th Amendment, prohibition, goes into effect; repealed in 1933.

1920: First meeting of League of Nations Council, Paris, France.

1933: Birth of Susan Sontag, American "new intellectual" essayist and novelist; opposed Vietnam War, her post-Sept. 11 essay in the New Yorker, mildly questioning U.S. government characterizations of the attack, raised a firestorm of criticism and gave the first clear indication of how little tolerance there would be for mainstream dissent against Bush's policy choices in response to the attack.

1986: U.S. Energy Department announces 12 potential nuclear waste sites in eastern U.S., including a Penobscot (Native American) site in Maine only re-granted to the tribe six years before, along with four other tribal sites.

1991: U.S. invades Kuwait and Iraq. Several dozen U.S. troops (many victims of friendly fire) and up to 400,000 Iraqi citizens die in the following weeks. At least 1,000,000 Iraqis have died due to the effects of the following decade plus of U.S.-led global economic embargo.

Another pointless Meme

Your life in a Final Fantasy game by Neko_Kaolla
Character Name
Hair/Eye ColorGravity Defying Green/Blue
Role in PartySexy one
In Game LoverFreya Cresent
Created with quill18's MemeGen!

and a very similiar meme.....

What kind of Final Fantasy Character would I be? by TheBlueParadox
Your Name/Handle
Your Hair StyleHairspray Loaded Spikey Blond
Your Clothing StyleSexy Skinsuit Showing Your Bod
Your Weapon of ChoiceDaggers
Your MissionMy Target? ULTIMECIA.
Your Role in the FantasyThe Hero"Victory is the key!"
Created with quill18's MemeGen!

God begins random oath checks
article here

Good one, Bill.

Tuesday, January 13, 2004

A legend in his own mind
"No President has ever done more for human rights than I have."
-George W. Bush.

I'm sure the "detainees" in Guantanamo Bay would disagree. For that matter, anyone with any knowledge of US history would disagree, but then GWB doesn't have much knowledge of US History despite having a History degree.

A quick internet search reveals:

In 1777, Thomas Jefferson and others worked on a proposed new criminal code for Virginia in anticipation of the success of the American Revolution. The proposed new sodomy law would have eliminated the death penalty and replaced it with castration for males and the boring of a hole through the nose of a woman. The proposal did not become law, but clearly showed that women were subject to prosecution under current legal thinking.

He was trying to lessen the sentence.

This Day in History
1777: Jefferson gets Virginia to make "sodomy" punishable by castration.

1874: As unemployed workers demonstrate in New York City's Tompkins Square Park, mounted police officers charge into the crowd, indiscriminately clubbing adults and children, leaving hundreds of casualties. Police commissioner Abram Duryee boasts, (quote): "It was the most glorious sight I have ever seen..." Except for the 1930s, the U.S. never knew a more serious economic catastrophe than the depression of 1873 to 1877. The four years left three million workers unemployed. Those with jobs face wage cuts, while the jobless go hungry. In the winter of 1873, 900 people starved to death, and 3,000 deserted their infants on doorsteps. Today's Tompkins Square Park demonstration is part of a wave of unemployed parades and bread riots across the nation. In Chicago, 20,000 people march. Even under police attack, workers in New York, Omaha, and Cincinnati refuse to disperse.

1957: Hungary: Death penalty enacted for strikers as government calls for order and quiet.

- From

I'm suprised by Jefferson. Usually he was a reasonable man of science....not religion. I never heard about this and I wonder what his reasoning was.

Monday, January 12, 2004

This Day in History
1641: James City, Virginia, passes law that if any Indian commits a crime, the first Indian apprehended must pay penalty, with life if necessary.

1833: Act passed making it unlawful for any Indian to remain within the boundaries of the state of Florida.

1864: Kit Carson's patrol kills 11 Navajo in Canyon de Chelly, Arizona Territory.

1876: Jack London, novelist and socialist, born.

1928: Police raid IWW (Industrial Workers of the World) Hall, Walsenburg, Colorado.

1928: Police seize 800 copies of the lesbian novel "The Well of Loneliness" by Radcliffe Hall.

1928: Ruth Snyder first woman to die in electric chair.

1948: Mohandas Mahatma Gandhi begins his final fast.

1962: President Kennedy signs Executive Order 10988, guaranteeing federal workers the right to join unions and bargain collectively.

1971: "All in the Family" premiere on CBS featured first toilet flush on TV. Its depiction of a working class family would never be approved on modern network TV; wrong advertising demographics.

2002: "Refusenik" movement begins when 53 Israeli soldiers sign ad refusing to serve in West Bank or Gaza Strip.

THE MAGE-GIFT (10 of 14): Vanyel Ashkevron from Mercedes Lackey's _Magic's Price_
Your SF superpower is: The Mage-Gift

People would do well to stay on your good side, as
you wield magicks great and terrible. Beware
of the Dark Side, for if once you succumb,
forever will it dominate your destiny.

Beings who share your superpower: Vanyel Ashkevron
(The Last Herald-Mage), King Kelson (Deryni
series), Willow Rosenberg (Buffy The Vampire

What Is Your SF Superpower?
brought to you by Quizilla

Sunday, January 11, 2004

Bush in 30 Seconds a contest for people to make a 30 second advertisement that shows how Reagan Jr. has been hurting our country. Check out the finalists.

Britney Aids Gay Marriage
Story Here

This Day in History
(via Working for Change)

1885: Alice Paul, first peace picketer at White House, born. A leading suffragist and, a half-century later, author of the Equal Rights Amendment.

1912: Beginning of IWW-organized "Bread and Roses" textile strike of 32,000 women and children at Lawrence, Massachusetts.

1932: Massacre of Casas Viejas Pueblo in Cadiz, Spain, heralds Civil War. A peasant uprising is put down with the killing of 16 peasants and workers by the civil guard.

1964: U.S. Surgeon General issues report linking cigarette smoking and lung cancer.

1975: CIA assassinates two Puerto Rican independence activists, Luis Chavonnier and Eddie Ramos, also killing a six-year-old child and injuring ten others.

Tom the Dancing Bug
...tells us about The Natural World of Nature and that homosexuality is immoral because its "wholly unnatural."

Ralph Nader says he is testing the water and hasn't decided on whether he'll run for president in 2004. Actually, he doesn't really need to run because I think the Democrats feel they can lose without him this time.
-- Jay Leno

I have not seen smoking-gun, concrete evidence about the connection
- Secretary of State Colin Powell regarding the reported connection between Iraq and al Qaida
, 1/9/04

I want to bring to your attention today [to] the potentially much more sinister nexus between Iraq and the al-Qaida terrorist affiliates based in Baghdad now coordinate the movement of people, money and supplies into and throughout Iraq for Saddam's network, and they have now been operating freely in [Baghdad].
- Secretary of State Colin Powell, 2/5/03

I'm Precious
You are Gollum's teddy bear.  He likes to cuddle you and pet you and put bows on your ears and call you
You are Gollum's teddy bear. He likes to cuddle
you and pet you and put bows on your ears and
call you "precious." You don't
understand why Sam tried to throw you into the
Dead Marshes.

Which completely non-existant Lord of the Rings object are you?
brought to you by Quizilla

Friday, January 09, 2004

Little Houdini
This story almost seems like something you'd find in The Onion.

Overheard in the Oval Office
"Mars? Is that another one of them Ay-rab countries? They got oil?"

"Sir, will you just read the speech like we prepared?"

"...and there was much rejoicing."
No pain.

I's possible I may have passed the stone yesterday. I did use the bathroom a lot in the morning yesterday and at least once it was worse than normal...but not as bad as I would expect for passing a stone. I was still a bit uncomfortable in the morning yesterday but by the afternoon I was able to stop taking the painkillers. I ate a lunch without any stomach problems and this morning I got a big order of pancakes from work's cafeteria. No pain.

It's also possible that the stone has just shifted and is no longer in a spot to cause me all that pain, but the optomist in me says it passed and was just a lot easier passing than it was waiting to pass.

Wednesday, January 07, 2004

Another Google Bomb strikes
To find out who is unelectable, type "unelectable" in google and press "I feel lucky."

As Lou Dubose and I conclude, if you must eat while Republicans control both the White House and Congress, you may want to consider becoming a vegetarian.
-- Molly Ivins

Another Stone Update
Still hasn't passed.

Yesterday was pretty bad. My stomach was upset all day and in the evening I went out to visit a friend and play some cards and I started hurting really, really bad. I waited until it hurt that much before leaving for home because I'm bound and determined at this point to go on with my life as normal as possible while waiting for the stone to come out. I came home and went to bed with the heating pad on my back and it helped a lot.

Today has been pretty good. My stomach has been pretty calm, but I've also avoided eating anything other than a few pretzels and a bag of animal crackers. I'm at work right now and brought the heating pad with me and I think that is part of why I'm doing well. This morning I also just relaxed on the couch watching my Battlestar Galactica DVDs, so I haven't had much time where the heat pad has not been on my back.

I'm not sure why the heat pad helps so much. If the back pain is from the kidney why does my kidney hurt right now when the stone has apparently moved on from the kidney? Is the pain from the muscles tensing up? That makes sense and would explain why the heating pad helps. However, besides the pain in the pack and the upset stomach, I haven't had too many symptoms lately. I'm not peeing as much as normal still, but that should be expected.

I made an appointment with a urologist but he could not see me until February 16th. Hopefully, the stone should have passed by then, but I'm starting to worry about it. The only other option I have to have it looked at is to go to the emergency room, but even with insurance that cost a lot last time we went just to have the doctor shrug his shoulders and tell me that he couldn't do much besides prescribe me painkillers.

My break is in a little bit. I'm debating on whether to try anything more dangerous than the crackers and pretzels I've eaten so far today. I have to eat to keep up my nutrition, but I'm neither hungry nor looking forward to the pain. Even though my stomach is not saying it's hungry, I can still tell I'm craving some nutrients. For the last couple of days, I've really been feeling the urge to eat whenever I see some food, particularly Mexican. However, the bean dip messed me up bad enough Monday night that I'm not eager to repeat the experience.

Monday, January 05, 2004

Stone Update
No change. Lots of pain. TGFI. (Thank goddess for Ibuprofen)

I've been able to catalog all sorts of new kinds of pain over the last couple weeks. I particular, I now know what it feels like when one's kidney hurts. It's a lot like the backaches I've been getting over the last couple of years only right now it hurts much more. Now I'm wondering if all those times I thought I had a backache, I was actually feeling pain due to a kidney stone.

My stomach has been upset almost constantly lately so I haven't been eating much. Today I've been feeling hungry for beans, so I got some bean dip with no cheese (since dairy has been messing me up). I'm hoping I did not make a horrible mistake.

The silver lining: I feel no need for caffeine anymore. It's completely out of my system and I didn't even notice caffeine withdrawal since the pain was distracting me.

Don't Talk Like a Twit
I was reading Yes! magazine ( a Progressive political magazine) yesterday and it had this great article that I think sums up the problems that the Democrats have had winning elections for the last several years and why Clinton was able to win when others who have been more qualified has not. Check out the article. It's a good read. If you get a chance, check out the magazine as well.

Friday, January 02, 2004

The Stone
Still hasn't passed. I read it can take anywhere from 2 day to two months. The pain comes and goes. It's mostly the pressure on my bladder that bothers me now. I've been drinking 100+ ounces of water a day since last week and I haven't been peeing that much.