here's one for rc

Since I can't don't have two minutes to rub together right now, I'm lobbing this softball in RC's direction.

The Roger Ebert page at the Chicago Sun Times has a post today in its commentary section summarizing Ebert's reviews of various Michael Mann films.

I'm wondering which of these films RC has seen and what he thinks about them. If I had time, I'd write my answer to those questions, but like I said, I don't.

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bring 'em the heater, ricky*

This important news update, just reported to us by my wife in the next room:

"Now tomorrow's high is down to 98 (from 102) with a heat index of 102 (from 105)."

We're hoping the mail comes light tomorrow, aren't we my precious.

*Pop quiz: Identify the movie from whence this qoute. For bonus props, name the actor who spaketh.


blogathon link love

Hey! It's Saturday afternoon, what you doing outside enjoying yourself, git yer butt back inside 'n sit in front of your computer. It's blogathon!

Here are four people from the blogroll that are blogging throughout the day and all night too. Go ahead and read them, make a pledge or two while you're at it.

Julie (omigosh... you've GOT to see this)
Eric (he's even funnier when he's tired)
JimmyP (wearing his Yankees shirt and posting pictures of Shea Stadium, a true easterner... even if he is from Texas).
Beth (redoing her bathroom live and in color... no kidding).


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unwelcome words of weather

I was out getting gas in the Passat (my LLV) today and WHYY's Dave Heller gave the weather report.

These are not his exact words, but close enough: "Saturday, partly sunny with a high of 90, Sunday's high reaches 93. Then on Monday it gets hot..."

Monday forecast high: 95
Tuesday: 98 (!!!)


meet the new boss

Our old boss went to another post office and her replacement came and told me today that due to my regular carrier's extended absence, I will be working 4 straight six day weeks.


See ya when I see ya.

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i thought this job was part time

Upon returning from delivering my new primary route today (I switched from R5 to R7) I learned that because of factors which I won't go into here, I will be delivering this route every day for the next three to four weeks, perhaps longer.

I'm really gonna need a vacation when this is over.

So if this blog gets even more boring than usual, you'll know why.

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not the sharpest tool in the shed

I just read this piece by Kerry Madden, a writer I've never heard of. Apparently she's blue and her parents are red.

She wrote a nice little piece about surviving a visit to your conservative folks' place (funny, I can't find a link to that story. How 'bout that? She does have a blog though), and her mother Googled her and found it.

Her mom was a tad put out. Imagine that? To her credit, Ms. Madden says "I wouldn't be speaking to me either."

This thing resonates a bit with me as I imagine myself to be a writer and I have a decidedly unimaginary parent who has a prominently placed, autographed photo of our current president in their living room. Our politics diverge. But this isn't the first time Kerry Madden has unintentionally(?) mocked/outed/embarrassed her parents.

"The very first time my mother found something egregious I'd written was in 1987, and dark days ensued. I was living with my brand-new husband in my parents' basement. During that time, I finished a terrible play that featured a domineering mother who ropes her daughter into moving in with the grandparents, who are in failing health, while she flees to live the good life.

And I had the gall/lack of imagination to set it in my grandparents' home in Leavenworth, Kan. My mother found the play, read it and recognized every insidious detail, from the Reader's Digest Condensed Books to the frozen OJ cans stuffed with fast-food condiments and A&W's two-for-one Chili-Dog Tuesdays." (Judging by this quote, Ms. Madden has yet to learn her lesson)

I don't know, maybe I'll never be any kind of writer, 'cause I can't imagine doing things like this to my parents. Guess I'll just stick to the mail.

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new template and all that

Well, I couldn't figure out how to get that old template to work right after blogger templates migrated it.

So now we have a new one. Did you notice? It's from Noipo.org. I've modified it some, and probably ruined it's elegant code... but at least it works.

I'm still tweaking it (or perhaps the better word is destroying).

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haloscan re-up: this is not a real post

commenting and trackback have been added to this blog.

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especially when the neighbors get involved and everybody comes out of their house

Color Consultants who help you pick out a house hue.

They say things like:

"We're color nerds. I mean, that's what we talk about. It's how we live in the world."

"We take our colorants with us and tweak right there on site and put it up on the house until we get it."

--Yo and Lo of YOLO Colorhouse

"Until I came along paint was just paint. It was a chemical in a can. When I came along I said 'this is 40 yards of liquid fabric'."

"If you've got the wrong white, baby, you got the wrong white. And it will not feel right."
--Gretchen Schauffler of Devine Color

I don't know about her unafraid colors, but Gretchen Schauffler herself is not hard to look at.

Woah, did I just type that?

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I was fervently hoping for a return to regular blogging from Zalm... and now the signs are good that this is happening. Judging by the comments, I'm not the only one who was hoping.

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kindness of strangers

The Postal Service tried to make up for pounding us with tub after tub of flats on the hottest day in three summers by providing us with some ice water. So I had extra water with me all day, but still I think this double helping of awesomeness deserves mention.

First helping: A guy walks out to his mailbox and stands there waiting for me (this is at about 2:45pm, the hottest part of the day and not a tree in sight). When I get to his box and hand him his mail, thinking that he's a bit impatient to get his 5 pieces of junk mail, he hands me a big bottle of Deer Park. It's so cold it makes my fingertips go numb.

"I kept it in the freezer until about an hour ago. Thought you might need it."

"You, sir, are the best!" I said.

"No. You da man!" he replied.


Second helping: A few houses later, a woman is waiting at her box. I hand her the mail and she hands me a Caffeiene Free Diet Coke. Okay, let's leave aside the fact that soda is the last thing you want to drink in this heat. It's the thought that counts.

"I saw you come up the other side of the street. It's just so hot out here! Have a good day."

I shouldn't have, but I did. It was cold, and even though I really don't like caffeiene free diet anything, I liked this. After finishing it, I drank about half of the ice cold water.

I suffered no ill effects from either the heat or the coke, but I did have to pee wicked bad when I got back to the post office.

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as if you needed another reason...

to hang up and drive. The driver should be charged.

Regrettable H/T to: Obscure Store.

how great is this? ...for me, that is

Most of you gentle readers don't live anywhere near here, which is unfortunate.

Why? You ask. Because a new store opened about a month ago in the neighboring town of Douglassville. It's called "A Taste of Italy" and it's awesome!

The family that opened up the store hails from Staten Island, NY where they owned a whole bunch of stuff... restaurants, bakeries, you name it. Now they're here.

They make their own Canoli... and not the fake kind with pastry creme in the center, but the real thing with Ricotta Cheese.

Prosciutto, Sopressata and all those other Italian deli meats.

They have prepared foods too, like roasted peppers, Eggplant Parmigiana, even Pulled Pork (and before you westerners start scoffing, you ought to come out here and taste it).

Plus they have that italian cookie extraordinaire: the seven layer cookie.

Oh my goodness! You've got to help me! I can't stay away from the place. Good thing I've been working almost every day because, 1. It keeps me from going there all the time, and 2. It's a workout to deliver mail, so I burn the extra calories and 3. I'm making the money that is funding my newfound habit.

Too bad they're closed right now. I'm getting hungry.

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these are the good old days

Who said things aren't like they used to be?

Just look at this chart*, and you'll see that they are.

*I have no idea if the chart is accurate. Who has time to fact check anymore?

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score one for the good guys... er, i mean, gals


Related links (h/t Ars Technica):
PDF file of dismissal
P2Pnet's story on the case from Dec 05
Patricia Santangelo's story, also from 2005


wait, let me think on that

is your brain really necessary?

apparently not.

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still the right mann for the job

It's getting harder and harder to scoop RC. He's developed a habit of beating everybody and their brother to the punch when it comes to pop culture.

But I got the drop on him this time! While he was off contemplating Meryl Streep's chances for winning another Oscar before she's a senior citizen, I was pursuing the following, much more substantial story in Slate about the tumultuous Miami Vice shoot, in which director Michael Mann intimidated and alienated almost everyone. Things got so bad that there was even a shooting, the bang-bang, bullets flying variety, during filming. That incident prompted the following event:

Foxx(as in Jamie, the big Oscar Winning star dude) and his entourage packed up and left for good. "Jamie basically changed the whole movie in one stroke," a crew member says—and not, in his opinion, for the better. The ending that was supposed to be shot in Paraguay would have been "much more dramatic."

Did you see that? Foxx and his entourage. Apparently Foxx is now an acteur (or something silly like that). Says the article,

he showed up with an entourage and something of an attitude. Foxx balked at flying commercial to Miami (Universal finally gave him the jet). And there was an early problem because Foxx was getting paid less than Farrell even though he was now an Academy Award winner. Foxx got a big raise while Farrell took a bit of a cut.

and also, quoting a crew memeber,

he was afraid of boats, afraid of planes—there were a lot of things where he was afraid for himself.

Despite that, Foxx is still signed to make The Kingdom with Mann as producer.

I never knew Michael Mann was so hard to work with. He does make great movies though. And, hey, at least he doesn't throw phones at people.

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the kinks just keep gettin' harder to fight

It may be that I am a CSS ignoramus, which is certainly true, but the new blogger templates home server seems to be sporadically cooperative. So, if you're looking at my blog and the background or some other stuff is missing, that's probably the reason.

Hopefully they'll get it worked out so that it's ignoramus proof. Either that, or I'll have to invest in a new template and template supplier.

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hey kettle, you're black!

This is kinda funny. Verizon is (implicitly) accusing Google with pursuing an "old world business model." Says Verizon's pet suit, Tom Tauke,

“We’ve seen what happens to innovation when the government imposes old-world, common-carrier regulations and tries to anticipate or impose business models,” he said. “For consumers and the country, government regulation of this developing market is a lose-lose proposition.”

You mean old world business models like Verizon's? Listen you guys, let me know when you figure out how to stop my dsl connection from kagging out every time there's a rumble of thunder within 100 miles. Then we'll talk.

Note: I was just about to publish this post when I heard some thunder and promplty lost my connection. Thank you Verizon.

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nothing to see here, just a test.

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the answer is 'i have no idea'

I do not know what happened to my template. Working on it. If you'd like to offer suggestions or sympathy, I think you can still comment.

UPDATE: If you visited this afternoon, you may have noticed a slight template adjustment... there was none. Apparently the fine folks at blogger templates, from whence my template comes, updated all of their work and housed their templates at a new place. I had no idea they were doing this. After updating the linkages within my template (yeah, like I know how to do that... I guess I do now), all appears to be working again. Whew!

If any of you css wizards want to have a look, please go ahead. I have no idea if I did it right.

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tek no! rot! ee!

Alright, it must be said. Technorati has officially reached the suckage stage. Technorati tells me and anyone else who looks at my summary page that I haven't updated the blog in two days (last update was last night dudes!). Rotty also insists that, as of their last update, the number of sties linking to me has gone up by two but that the number of links here has fallen by, oh about twenty. Nice. Neither number is accurate, so I guess it's a good thing I don't look to their stats for any useful information.

The one fact that sucks worse than Rotty's service is that there's nothing else that works better, or even as well. Ugh.

technorati tag:

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late night with a great film

In the course of composing the post below this one, I had to find some web resources devoted to the best movie ever made.

In the course of that research, I found an article in which Tom Hanks discusses the film, which is his favorite as well. I also found two reviews by Roger Ebert. The first from 1968, when the movie was released, and the second from 1997 when he added it to his Great Movies series.

I also found a host of other fascinating stuff at palantir.net's Oddyssey fansite.

Yes, yes. I'm sure most of you don't like 2001 as much as I do, if you like it at all. So just be glad you're not here at my place tonight as I fire up the DVD player and enjoy this masterpiece for the next 141 minutes, give or take.

I don't have to work tomorrow (or at least, I'm not scheduled though I'm always on call) for the first day since... I can't remember. This is my way of celebrating.

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not that it matters to me

Hey all you office drones out there.

The cubicle is getting a makeover. Herman Miller has designed cube 2.0 and it's smaller than my shower stall. How inviting!

They're also rethinking all kinds of office space design, as the article's revolving picture presentation shows. Looks to me like the folks at Herman Miller spent a bit too much time watching 2001: A Space Odyssey.

TIME is asking readers to send pictures of their workspaces. Hah! Follow this link for a picture of mine.

steal the mail, go to jail

It has a childlike, mailicious ring to it.

It's also true, as this woman has found out. Ouch. Five months in the pokey and three years supervised release. And for what? A few movies, most of which probably sucked anyway.

"postal inspectors followed Durante from the post office to a nearby gas station, where she threw away empty DVD envelopes. A search of her home found stolen DVDs worth $20,937, according to court records."

And I just don't understand the motivation behind stealing netflix and blockbuster envelopes. Those things are such a pain in the butt, who would want to handle them one more time?


a reminder to choose your words with care

Rural Carrier Associates are assigned as "sub of record" to a certain route. As you may know from past posts, I am sub of record on Pottstown's rural route #5. Or, I should say, was. I switched my route to #7 and the word got out today.

Jim Regular, the carrier for #5 feigned sadness to be losing me, though I'll still be working 5 all the time since the other subs hate it (with good reason). Anyway, as he searched for words to describe my hard work and dedication (or, perhaps more accurately, desperation), he said this...

"You were like my little Tarzan"

My response: "Jim, I'm not sure I like the imagery conjured by the "Little Tarzan" characterization."

His response to my response: "Huh?"

Just another day workin' the mail. How 'bout it?

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windows, literal and otherwise

So here's what's happening up and down my blogroll. (Yes, I couldn't figure out what to write... but lots of other people could, so you win).

Searchie writes about windows and doors. A great psychological trip around the block.

RC is also taking a stroll: down cartoon memory lane. I don't even recognize the names of most of those shows. Just give me the original old Looney Toons and I'm happy. RC's got quite the thoughtful blog going, even when he toons out.

CP is hawking Doctor Pepper Cake, which I've never heard of. Perhaps I need to make it and be enlightened.

Eric, who's quizzing us, and Jimmy, who's dogged, are both in the blogathon and both are on the same "team". Go ahead, make a pledge.

Brian is contemplating string theory.

The icon(oclast)ic St. Julie of the Plains is weighing the merits of various Bible translations in the balance and finding some of them wanting.

PMax (or Paulicus Maximus, which is way too long to type), is contemplating the implications of Ken Lay's untimely death.

Jeff reviews a book by Barbara Brown Taylor, which I may have to check out. Thanks Jeff.

It must be an international day of reminiscence. Mis_nomer is also musing, in her mysteriously bittersweet way, on past notes.

And Randy reviews the latest Superman. Gosh I wish I had time to see a movie.

This is by no means an exhaustive list of all the lovely bloganalia spawned by the sidebar. Au contraire mon frere (ou, ma soeur). Click your way down. You may find a few new regular reads... in fact, I'm sure you will.

P.S. Hey Zalm, when you comin' back?!

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what i should be doing right now

At this moment I should be in Memorial Park in Pottstown watching the fireworks display. Pottstown has very few things with which to commend itself to prospective visitors, but the annual fireworks display is close to or at the top of that short list.

There must be 50,000 in Memorial Park every July 4th. The display is memorable, the finale spectacular. This year however, it is non-existent. The display has been postponed until Labor Day. because of the flooding last week, which almost completely submerged Memorial Park.

So it is a peaceful night here in Pottstown, with only distant booming reminding us that today is in fact the 4th of July.

Oh well, it's all good anyway since I have to work tomorrow. Time for bed.

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happy independence day

The Glorious Fourth is great! Heck, even Rachel is celebrating it all the way from the southern hemisphere*!

In honor of our nation's independence, I am making today a true day off. I'm declaring my independence from doing anything I don't want to do for today. So, if you'll excuse me I have some independence to bask in.

*She's using her baptism date, 13 years ago, as an excuse. And now I'm wondering... what kind of church was Rachel baptised in? If it was some sort of mainline protestant or Calvinist or other Dutch reformed or Catholic church, or if it was a church along anabaptist lines, or perhaps non denominational or assemblies of God or other Pentecostal. And finally, based on that answer perhaps we can infer Rachel's age.


some good news...

...in the writing department.

I found out today that Alive Now (a devotional magazine published internationally by Upper Room Ministries) will be including an article of mine in their November/December issue. This will be the second time I've had something appear in their magazine.

Your church may subscribe to Alive Now, and if so, you'll be able to pick up a copy that way. Otherwise, if they put it online (they sometimees excerpt an articles or two), I'll put up a link.

I needed a little good news.

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i guess this one is mostly right

Thanks to Jeff for this meme.

I'm not really into Christianizing society. Of course, that depends an awful lot on what one means by "Christianize." Funny that I scored zero on the "inner reality" item. That's pretty much spot on for me. If the kingdom of God is limited to an inner experience, well, then it can't really be a kingdom can it?

You scored as Kingdom as a Christianised Society. Christians shouldn't
withdraw from the world, but by being present in it they can transform
it. The kingdom is not only spiritual, but social, political, and cultural.

Kingdom as a Christianised Society


The Kingdom is mystical communion


The Kingdom as Earthly Utopia


The Kingdom is a Future Hope


The Kingdom as a counter-system


The Kingdom as a political state


The Kingdom as Institutional Church


Inner spiritual experience


What is the Kingdom of God?
created with QuizFarm.com

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