Friday, July 31

Four Cryin' Out Loud

Why isn't Taco Bell's "Fourthmeal" sales gimmick called "Quatromeal"?

Everywhere A Sign

Ubiquitous road construction signs are the norm for this time of year in Utah. In fact a witticism that pervades our whole culture says there are only two seasons in Utah: Winter and construction.

So while current road work signs are to be expected, completed project signs are rare.

Why, then, are there signs proclaiming construction completion signs still in plain view on Highway 40 on the western end of Vernal? From Fall 2008?

Yes, 2008.


The construction that was completed three seasons ago added new passing lanes on a two or three mile stretch on Highway 40. Necessary? You betcha. Slow-moving vehicles are pretty much the norm anywhere on Highway 40, as that stretch is a major conduit for folks traveling east or west; I-80 is quite a ways away yet.

But it's not the completed signs that puzzle me - it's the "still under construction" signs no-one ever bothered taking down. Still standing are signs warning motorists that speeding will result in double fines. And not until last week did someone finally get fed up to take down the 50 mile per hour temporary signs - the regular posted speed in the area is 65.

It appears UDOT needs to check up on their sign inventories.

Thursday, July 30

Mavericks And Rebels

Just those two words conjure up ideas of the Wild West. A la Bret Maverick and James Dean.

Maybe that's a stretch.

But you cannot deny that Rebels and Mavericks are part of the landscape here in Utah. If it weren't for a Maverik store on every other street corner from a 7-11, we'd never even think of Bret. Or Bart for that matter. And we're all rebels in one way or another.

I've begun to appreciate Maverik stores - they're plentiful, and their pumps work with my employers' fleet gas cards. So in a similar way to sloughing off the company for your own frequent-flier miles, I decided earlier this week that I should take advantage of Maverik's Adventurer Club, and get a card there, too. Save the company a couple cents off each gallon of gas, and get kickbacks for the trouble.

But when I got onto their website to request a card, I was a bit dismayed at the following dialog that appeared to let me know when I could expect my card to arrive:

An Email has been sent to a member of card services. To receive the card will take normal delivery times of mail. If you would like to inqure of the status of the registration, please send an email to...

"...normal delivery times of mail" - is what? And if I don't get my card in that "normal delivery time", I can "inqure"?

Sounds particularly foreign to me. I could be a rebel and demand someone fix the website before I accept the card; maybe visit wherever their headquarters is in Utah, but then again, I'd have to make use of a service a Utah bail-bonds service supplies. On the leeward side of Duchesne on Highway 40 is a billboard advertising their services. But fear not, I don't plan on being a rebel myself, but they apparently think anyone who would call them is, considering their phone number:

1-800-U REBEL U

Funny stuff.

Wednesday, July 29


...and strange bedfellows.

Awesome quote by Colin Powell this morning regarding the whole Gates/Crowley matter, over at CNN. From the article:

Former Secretary of State Colin Powell said he believes Harvard professor Henry Louis Gates Jr. could have been more patient with the officer who arrested him. Powell also faulted police. He told CNN's Larry King, "I would've thought at that point, some adult supervision would have stepped in and said 'OK look, it is his house. Let's not take this any further, take the handcuffs off.' "

When first I heard of the Gates affair, I thought it was a prelude to a new National Treasure movie (Ben Gates was played by Nicolas Cage), or even someone or something related to Bill Gate$.


As a dear friend once said, after a heated discussion of relationships of the genealogical bent, he exclaimed "Bob, you're probably related to every white person in the United States [in one form or another]." My good friend is African-American, as is Henry Louis Gates, Jr.

In relation to the above, another indication we're all related to each other in one way or another, not unlike "Seven Degrees", a blog entry at the LA Times points out genealogy IS all it's cracked up to be:

"Turns out that Harvard professor Henry Louis Gates Jr. may actually be related through Irish ancestry to the police officer who arrested him in his own house earlier this month, according to ABC News. No, really!"

Funny, interesting stuff.

Tuesday, July 28

A Cut Above

Some days this is too easy.

Found this one this afternoon. Why this thing is $700 belies the imagination. And not only that, it's on a waitlist, and available in only sizes 8 and 10.

Though the website this is from says it's an octagon cut, either I really am getting old and my eyesight is beginning to fade, but I don't see eight sides on this ring.

The only eight-sided thing I'm reminded of is this:

Little Man

Often in the course of looking for, and finding, pictures to post here on my blog, I'll get a grandiose idea to portray a multitude of photos of one subject. Sometimes ALL the pictures would not do justice to the subject matter.

But more often than not, just ONE photo is all that's necessary.

I'd planned on showing many, many, photos of Sebastian, the kitten we recently lost. But just this one will suffice:

You are sorely missed, Little Man.

Monday, July 27


We had a tragedy here at the house over the weekend. So severe was this that it has shook us to the core.

Sebastian, our dear lttle tuxedo kitten, whom Marilee had dubbed her Snickers replacement, was put to sleep last night, Sunday.

He had so much life in him, right to the end. But watching him grow into adulthood just was not to be.

Friday afternoon, he got into a fight with Lexie, our silky terrier mix. Lexie, likely just playing, did not realize how fragile a kitten can be. So much so, she must have shook him so violently that he suffered irreparable brain injury. Dr. Wilson, a saint in his own right, knew that the time was at hand, and Marilee and I knew it was, too.

So with heavy hearts, we asked Dr. Wilson to let him go.

His passing has left an empty hole in our lives. His little sister Scuttle is now that much more precious. Even now, though he may have picked on Scuttle, she now has no one to play with, and we are now, perhaps, spending a bit more time with her than we had previously as Sebastian was more outspoken in his demands. She has become more outspoken in her own right.

I'll have pictures of Sebastian to share in the next day or so, but for now, we're just taking a day at a time.

Rest In Peace, Sebastian.

Sunday, July 26

Where's The Birth Certificate?

[I previously published this post under the title "The Birthers Debate". This repost has a different title as a test.]

OK, this fringe subject has been so far out in left field that I haven't really paid much attention to the whole matter.

There are apparently two camps on the issue - ONE, that Barack Obama, president of these United States cannot BE the president because he cannot prove that he is a natural-born citizen. And TWO, that he also cannot be president because his mother was not a US citizen. That she was a resident of Kansas and delivered him in Hawaii makes that argument frivolous at that.

So we're left with the first argument, and it's the same one that most "Birthers" have about the whole thing: Where's the birth certificate?

OH GET OFF YOUR FRIGGIN SOAPBOX AND GET ON WITH YOUR LIVES. However minimal that existence might be.

There was a movie years ago that had someone on trial for burglary, or grand theft, or petit larceny; it's not important what they were being charged for. But to prove a point, the defense attorney turned to someone in the audience and asked them about the watch on their wrist.

"That's a nice watch."

"Thank you."

"Do you have a receipt for it?"

"No, I got it several years..." and was cut off by the attorney, who turned to the bailiff to say "Arrest this man, he has no proof that he bought that watch."

The same can be said for pretty much most of the citizens of this country. Even the damn "Birthers".

Do you know where your birth certificate is, and why haven't you registered with the INS - you obviously weren't born here, either!

Saturday, July 25

I'm The Man

So sayeth Marilee.

This weekend was looking to be rather horrid if the air conditioner hadn't been operative.

After a startling discovery yesterday, the air conditioner here at the house is now again running.

Our air conditioner in the back yard looks thus:

Not terribly exciting in and of itself; that's the compressor in the foreground, and attached to the house is the infernal "PowerForward" box on the right, and "some other" box on the left. I'd never paid that second box much attention, just that is was "there". I figured it was the box that just terminated the outside load to the inside circuit breaker, since the breaker panel is directly behind that box on the inside of the house.

I was only partly right.

Yes, that is the termination between the air conditioner and the breaker panel, but hidden inside that box are two items of the electrical persuasion. Yes, dear readers, contained therein are two fuses.

Of the big-ass variety.

And one was blown.

Now, in my chosen profession, I know all too well that if a fuse blows, there must have been a reason. That the box is subjected to all sorts of environmental extremes from snow to rain and everything in between - there's no weather stripping or seals on the box - it's probably a miracle the fuses lasted as long as they did, let alone the bare copper contacts. So after a trip to Home Depot and returning with two packs of two fuses each, with trepidation I replaced them and what do you know. They held.

Before I'd left for Home Depot, and after telling Marilee that there was, indeed, a blown fuse, she asked if I wanted the $200 or so that it would have cost us to have someone from Rocky Mountain Power to replace the same fuse that had blown, plus the five bucks for the fuse, she exclaimed "YOU'RE THE MAN!".


Where's my $200?

Friday, July 24

Hot Time In The City

The projected high temperature is just 92 degrees today - that's Fahrenheit for you across the pond - but it shouldn't be that bad here at the homestead since it's already 78.


Our air conditioning isn't working at all this morning - and appears to have been for several hours, as Marilee insisted on awakening me at 11:30 last night to tell me it was hot in the bedroom.

"Mmm-hmm" and lights out again.

Upon arising this morning and feeling the heat, downstairs I trodded to see the thermostat was set for the 70 degrees we set it for in the evenings; it ramps up to 74 during the day. That's when I found the internal temp was 78.

Outdoors? A pleasant 72.

Also outdoors, the compressor was not running - I knew there was a sound missing out there.

No breakers popped. No nothing.

Several years ago we had arrived home to a sweltering house due to Utah Power's surprise of a "PowerForward" add-on to our compressor. Basically, Utah Power (now Rocky Mountain Power) decides FOR YOU when your house should be cooled. Upon calling the HVAC folks - we didn't yet know about the add-on - that's when we found out about the program. A quick call to the power sompany settled that. Once and for all. TURN THAT DAMN THING OFF!

Now... is that the case this time? Don't know, yet.

I'm off to work. Marilee's off work for a time so she gets to make phone calls.

They better not have turned that inFernal box on.

My inTernal temp may go through the roof.

Wednesday, July 22

Long Lost Machines

In my chosen profession, more often than not, a customer's location is remembered as "the place where they have that beastly printer." Or as the office with ink stains on the floor. Or of the one time a filing cabinet was placed atop a network cable, ultimately severing the connection from the weight of said filing cabinet. Or...

You get the idea.

Since I have begun a transition into a world I know nothing about, that promise of identifying a customer by their machines has gone right down the crapper. Every convenience store has the same equipment. Every bank has the same equipment. Every pharmacy has the same equipment. Every chain supermarket...

Again, you get the idea.

Early on - say twenty years ago - to keep my sanity, I began identifying places where I'd go to fix machines not by the machines, but by the people.

What a novel idea.

This morning, I started thinking about how long it had been since I saw a certain Laserjet III, and of a Laserjet 5si. And an old abandoned IBM PS/2 Model 80.

OK, that's not quite right.

I wasn't thinking about the machines, I was thinking about the people.

I received an email that a long lost machine person had added me as a friend on Facebook. That machine person hadn't entered my psyche for over a year. Partly since I hadn't had a reason to see the machine person, as I no longer have that machine person as part of my workday; I simply don't do that sort of thing any more.

Sure, there are people at the places I go to, be they banks, or convenience stores, or pharmacies, or supermarkets. But it's not the same. They're too impersonal. I long again for the personal nature of the industry I fell in love with over thirty years ago.

I hope you get the idea.

Tuesday, July 21

If The Moon Landing Were To Happen Today

This is how the mainstream media would cover it:

Sunday, July 19

I'm Not A Monster

Marilee has a new term for me.

She just said "I've created a monster."

I was just commenting on a peculiar abnormality that occurred after my spinal surgery - I've been having trouble swallowing, a condition known as dysphagia. Not during the healing process, but afterwards, as this snippet from a health journal in Ireland explains (the italics are my emphasis):

"Dysphagia is a common complication of anterior cervical surgery, with potentially serious respiratory complications. The available literature suggests that symptoms may be prolonged for several weeks or more in a substantial number of patients. This report suggests that the initial post operative dysfunction resolves as early as ten days post operatively and that following this, a different pattern develops related to the position of the neck. Flexion of the neck at this stage will reduce the pressure on crico-pharyngeus and also facilitates swallowing by improving aryepiglottic closure and tongue base retraction."

I'm not having difficulty breathing, just swallowing. Feels like there's something there, but I just can't pinpoint it.

As far as diagnosis, x-rays and MRI's aren't conclusive in finding the problem, but esophageal manometry will be used for the testing.

So I'd just explained all of that to Marilee, and as I'd turned away to do something else, she made that monster comment. Rather than attack the subject directly, I commenced the above monograph.

Just a moment - I'll ask her now what she meant by that quip:

Says she: "I'M the medical person."

"And in that fantasy world, what does that make me?"

"You're the computer person. Stick to what you know best."


You know, she's right. In THIS fantasy world, I know to keep my big mouth shut.

And While We're On That Subject

Much is said about how the economy has tanked, that there's perpetually less and less money - read tax dollars - going into the general funding of the Nation. And of the State.

Why, then, do larger and larger families get more and more tax breaks for having all those extra kids? Sure, at some point farther down the road, those same multitudes of rug rats and ankle-biters start contributing, but the same cycle will start anew when those kids start having their own.

In Utah - and you really don't need "statistics" to back this up - there's shortfall after shortfall each year and the powers that be wonder why.

It's because the powers that be condone the practice.

Is It Just Me?

How is it that the majority of people in Utah who complain the most about large class sizes and thus fewer teachers for the number of students are the ones having the most children per household?

Fire away.

The Furminator Revisited

It's that time of year again, and Princess is blowing her coat.

This year as last, I've been using the Furminator. Still doing a fine job of removing that overabundance of undercoat her breed develops.

I've got a few more "treatments" to give her, so this mass of hair will likely diminish:

At least it's not all over the floor.

Saturday, July 18

Duck Took Second Place!

It was rather hot at King's English today, as Lexie and I took part in the Dirty Bow Wow competition.

And Lexie took second place - with her duck, of course!

A brand-new copy of Dirty Bow Wow and a $20 gift card to the King's English was our prize. It was my first-ever visit to King's English; I'd wanted to go back on April 15th if not for Princess' little accident. But that was another story. But now, with the gift card, I don't have an excuse!

Pictures of Lexie and her duck - and all the other participants - can be found on King's English Facebook photos page.

House Guest

Chris, Jenn, and Ramin are off for a few days, taking advantage of a no-fee weekend at our National Parks; they're going to Yellowstone.

So while Belle is off at another friend's house, Lady is staying here for the weekend.

And as is always the case, she's made herself right at home:

The big dog's back, if only for a short time.

Friday, July 17

Holy Crap

Virgin Mary Bird Poop

Along the same lines as "If the foo sh!ts, wear it?"

Dirty Bow Wow

Fun event happening tomorrow - Saturday July 18 - at The King's English bookstore in Salt Lake City. 15th and 15th for you locals.

Part of the Dirty Bow Wow Dog Toy Drive is a "competition" to find the dirtiest dog toy. From the website: "Bring your dog and its dirtiest toy, along with a donation toy, for a chance to win fun prizes."

I'm taking Lexie and her duck. It has been further de-stuffed since that original photo was taken, and I'm SO glad I never washed the thing. Not so much that it is "dirty", but that you can smell the thing a mile away.

Should be fun.

Thursday, July 16

Giant Leap

It's been many years - forty, to be exact - since the Apollo 11 mission to the moon. Then, as now, there still is the burning question as to whether Neil Armstrong, as he set foot on the Moon, said "That's one small step for man" or "That's one small step for A man."

Listening to that broadcast those 40 years ago, I don't think it was all that important what he said, just that we had accomplished it.

That audio clip has been played over and over; there's static between "for" and "man", and if you squint your ears, there's just a hint of an "A".

As this week celebrates the fortieth anniversary, news organizations are all abuzz with articles about the anniversary - one such article at CNN caught my eye, and not for the contents of that article, but for the headline, thusly:

From doughnuts to liftoff, Apollo 11 launch was blast

There's no static there - shouldn't that be "a blast"?

Do Blogs Have A Gender?

Early evening, and I was once again channeling dooce. Written by a local mommyblogger right here in Salt Lake City. I figure if SHE can have a blog that pays all the bills, then I can too. Just not quite yet.

Marilee knows I look at dooce on a semi-regular basis. She'll look over my shoulder when I hit her site. From the dead silence behind me, I await the onslaught.

"Maybe I should find some guy's blog to read."

She should have seen it coming:


Yes, folks, my lovely wife has yet to read my blog. At all. With 477 blog posts since last year she better get started.

Wednesday, July 15

Michael Jackson Pepsi Ad Fire

From Us Magazine via CNN, never-before-seen video of the infamous Pepsi ad where Michael Jackson's hair caught on fire:

The New "Tan"

As reported on NPR yesterday morning, pasty-white Alabaster skin is the new "tan." One caller during the show said that the dermatologic industry needs a spokesmodel who in years past would have had an all-over tan, to show that lack of color can be appealing as well.

Too bad Michael Jackson is no longer around.

While the basement-dwelling adolescent of today hasn't been out in the sun all that much, let alone spent time with three-dimensional beings, there's hope.

Another caller, a dermatologist, said that fake-tanning products aren't all that bad. As for safety of the products, one of the ingredients - DHA - is the same that bakers use to make bread crusts brown.

"It must be safe."

I'll be reading bread labels tonight...

More On "Christmas In July"

Apparently I'm not the only one to take note of Sears' Christmas in July promotion.

Time Magazine has also questioned their thought processes with an article titled "Kmart's Christmas in July: Inspiration or Desperation?". (Kmart is owned by Sears.)

From the article, a Sears spokesperson says "People are buying earlier today. Also, customers have grown accustomed to the Christmas-in-July terminology, so we wanted to leverage that."

Which made me wonder just what marketing genius came up with this whole Christmas in July thing in the first place? After all, it was a marketing gimmick that started the whole Valentine's Day massacre of the postal service in February, so why not Christmas in July?

Was it, too, a marketing ploy? Partly.

While Chistmas in July has marketing underpinnings in the Western hemisphere, the Southern hemisphere it's the name given to social events with a winter Christmas theme, as July is generally the coldest month of the year. (from Wikipedia)

As we head into this weekend where the temperatures are going to hit 100 degrees for the first time this year, I'm reminded of my best memory about Christmas in July. It was during one of the hottest days ever in Utah; a local TV station said they were about to show a weather-related photo, and up popped a picture of a blizzard.


Tuesday, July 14

Awesome T-shirt At Cafepress

Wish I had thought of this one:
Available here.

Why You Should Never Put Bloggers On TV

Video from MSNBC's website, via Gawker.

[Video has NSFW audio. Of the BJ variety. A la Bill Clinton and Monica Lewinsky. You have been warned.]

Definition of NSFW = Not Safe For Work.

Monday, July 13

Not Knowing

Marilee and I watched a movie last night which we knew nothing about.

Only from Redbox, that is.

Knowing stars Nicholas Cage, so we figured it had to be good. Well, for the most part. As with other reviews I've seen since we rented it from the friendly neighborhood red box, the flick starts out really good, but falters near the end. So much so that an audible groan was heard from the two of us at the climax.

This morning, both of us speculated on better endings, but the rest of the movie wouldn't have made any more sense.

With all the misgivings about the movie, we still have to ask: why did we not hear about this movie when it came out on March 20th? Typically, a movie that goes to DVD within four or five months must've had something wrong with it, but we didn't hear anything at all about it.

Maybe another blockbuster came out that week, but I cannot recollect any.

Anyone out there know why this movie had NO press?

Back To Work

Trepidation included at no extra charge.

In other news, hopefully Jenn and Chris won't have to deal with a law that's been on the books for centuries:

A little-known law dating to Elizabethan England is suddenly being enforced with gusto in Pennsylvania. The law can force adult children to pay their parents' health-care costs.

From the Philadelphia Enquirer.

Sunday, July 12

Targeted Advertising

...for the 16-year-old mind. Such as it is.

Last evening's fare for dinner was Taco Bell. I got my usual, Marilee wanted her usual, and as has been the case lately, Taylor's choices were far from typical.

Not unusual, just not typical.

"I'm going to Taco Bell. What do you want?"

"A burrito, and... I saw this ad on TV that they have a special 89¢ menu - get me a soft taco from that menu. And a drink."

I hadn't really wasted any brain cells in the recent past to even look at the 89¢ menu until last night. While there are 99¢ items on the 89¢ menu, it didn't take long to realize that tacos - and burritos coincidentally - have always been 89¢. That Taco Bell needs to make that distinction boggles the mind.

The 16-year-old mind, that is.

Saturday, July 11

It's Not Just Sears

Time was, Sears was THE store. That old Sears catalog was dog-eared and bookmarked beyond its original appearance.

Nowadays, it's Walmart. At least they haven't brought out the Christmas stuff yet.

But it appears that it's not only Sears who is on the Christmas Creep bandwagon - this, from CompUSA this AM:

While "Black Friday" is actually the day after Thanksgiving, the term refers to the day where retailers can finally, after a year fraught with dismal sales, can finally make it into the "black".

That CompUSA feels the need by jumping the gun by four months doesn't bode well for them.

Or are they jumping the shark?

Thursday, July 9

Sinfully Ugly

I haven't done one of these for a while. Marilee's reaction was just like mine.
They said it was a showstopper, and only $648.

Christmas Creep

No, not that mall Santa who reeks of booze and who may be a pedo.

Christmas Creep is the phenomenon where retailers start putting Christmas items out earlier and earlier each year.

The Creep has begun. Here, in the middle of July.

At Sears' home page is the following graphic:

Take a stroll down Sears' Christmas Lane here.


Contact Us

...or not.

Had to call Comcast this morning. While details aren't particularly important, finding their number was a bit of a hassle.

Now do you think that going to their website would supply the necessary information? Probably, except I couldn't get to their website; the cable modem was doing weird things and I couldn't get onto the internet in the first place.

No problem, I'll just grab an old bill and get the number from that.

1-800-COMCAST is of no use - the phone I was using has only numbers - no letters. Businesses who generally realize this fact will also supply the numbers for those who either haven't a clue or a phone without letters.

And though I no longer use a BlackBerry, this keypad makes things even worse:

That telephones prior to the digital age even had letters may be a mystery to some of you whippersnappers. Old Man Talk indeed. For those of you who have forgotten the golden age or didn't live through it, telephones had letters associated with numbers so as to remember what your exchange was, or to call someone else's exchange. Don't believe me? Consider the following image:

Those aren't pushbuttons, sonny. The image is from 1931 at a secretarial school in which the instructor is demonstrating how a rotary dial telephone works.

And what are these exchanges I referred to? I found a neat reference that shows the phone company's "Officially Recommended Exchange Names" here. From that list, maybe you'll recognize your old phone number from childhood.

And what of Comcast's number?

While there's no exchange number involved, the letters on the "dial" correspond to the numbers you "dial".

And I'm filing this one away for posterity: Comcast's toll-free number is 800-266-2278.

Our Version Of Musical Chairs

Potty breaks for the dogs goes something like this:

Up at ungodly hour, Lexie takes the first potty break. Lexie ready to come in, now Bambi needs to go out. Bambi comes in, now Princess needs to go. Lexie sneaks out in the process.

Bambi goes back to sleep under the covers in the bedroom.

Princess barks to be let back in. Open door, and a period of time sufficient for her age and mobility later, gets up the stairs and in. "Lexie! Come here!"

Lexie then rolls over in a submissive posture for a tummy rub.

Walk over to where she's laying.

I've left the door open, and Princess is again making her way out the door.

Bambi? Still in the bedroom.

I go back inside.

Lexie now barking at the neighbor on the other side of the fence.


Lexie comes in.

Princess, seeing Lexie saunter to the back door, likewise makes her way to the door. Eventually.

Just now, the whole process started anew; Bambi just got up from her nap. Same players, slightly different process.

I shudder to think what they'll do when I go back to work on Monday.

Wednesday, July 8

Schematics For The Human Body

In my chosen profession, wiring diagrams are what I live for. Seeing an overview of how things are put together is paramount in understanding how everything works. So, too, the human body. Muscles, ligaments, bones, you name it. All are put together in such a way that boggles the mind.

Not being one to self-diagnose, I never would have imagined prior to my spinal surgery just how much goes on in ones' spinal cord. Admittedly, I never even knew how the spine works. As an example, I had always believed the spinal cord traveled through the discs, leading to herniated discs. That's not the case. Rather, the spinal cord travels through the vertebrae, and the discs are located behind the spinal cord:
In the image above, the spinal cord passes through the "Vertebral foramen", while the disc is located in the oval shaped depression at the top of the image. The nerve bundle attached to the spinal cord passes through the transverse foramen.1

In my case, enough degeneration had occurred in the disc between my C6 and C7 vertebrae (C7 is shown above) such that the disc had herniated and was pressing against the right-hand nerve bundle.

So far so good, but just how does one know - from a layperson's perspective - where that nerve bundle goes? And how does it affect the body?

I knew what my symptoms were, and was a bit surprised that the doctor knew exactly what the problem was without seeing my MRI. After meeting him and again explaining what my symptoms were, he stopped me before I got too far ahead of myself, and basically explained "I know how you're wired and you don't."

At that point, I put my neck - literally - in his hands.

In my exile these past months (I return to work the 13th), I frequently wondered about the wiring diagram; surely this information would be available somewhere. Not to self-diagnose myself, since I'd already had my surgery, but just to see if I could find that elusive wiring diagram. And finally found the term that I'd been searching for. As is often the case, you know what you're looking for, you just don't know what it's called.

Friends, it's called a dermatome (click the image for a larger view):

From Wikipedia: "Dermatomes are useful in neurology for finding the site of damage to the spine."

I only wish I'd known about dermatomes long ago; I'd had a dull pain in my hand for several years, and the whole time it had been a herniating disc, exacerbated by the events of a couple months ago.

And now you, too, have a reference point for finding out how you are wired.

1 Disclaimer: I am NOT a physician. Nor will I ever be. This information is not to be construed as legitimate medical information. The opinions presented here are my own. If you are experiencing life-threatening symptoms, don't contact me - call a doctor. Really. If you're having a major problem, getting on the internet isn't in your best interest.

Tuesday, July 7

More From Taylorsville Dayzz

THIS was a once-in-a-lifetime shot. Totally unexpected. All I wanted and expected was the parachute and flag:

Jumping over the Moon? Priceless.

Rather Creepy

Billboard Bleeds When It Rains:

More Fireworks

If you're wondering just how to take fireworks photos, rule number one: get a tripod.

Rule two - learn how to use your camera. The rest will come naturally.

On The Boob Tube This Morning

Elephants shown going into the Staples Center - Ringling Bros. & Barnum and Bailey is in town.

What with the traffic jam that has occurred because of the Michael Jackson memorial at the same venue, Los Angeles truly is becoming a three-ring-circus.

New Family Members

...of the four-footed variety.

Meet Sebastian and Scuttle! Sebastian's the tuxedo, and while the other looks all gray, Scuttle is beginning to show tabby markings.

Ask anyone who has ever been involved in an animal rescue organization if they ever thought they'd have this many animals, and you'll get the same answer. Hell, I never thought I'd have even one - now we've got a three-ring circus of three dogs and five cats.

Scuttle came to us from one of Marilee's friends, while Sebastian is a CAWS kitten. Suffice to say, Marilee was smitten with this kitten.

Bambi, our Rat Terrier, pretty much leaves Sebastian alone, but is far more interested in Scuttle. Pay no attention that Scuttle looks like a rat. Lexie is a bit too hyper around both; she's visited a bit less.

Sundance is declining comment.

Monday, July 6

Posts Missing In Action

Photos from Taylorsville Dayzz on 6/27 (the fireworks display on 6/26 was rained out):

More fireworks photos to come...


Yes, this is an update to my blog.

No, it's not a full update.

No fancy sh!t, nor any real "stuff".

Why, then, am I not doing a full update, even though I'm obviously on a viable computer and able to DO an update?

Because I'm on Marilee's portable. It's just different.

But good news is in the offing. According to the shipping information provided by the seller of the new display for my laptop, it should arrive today.

Barring any abnormalities, I should be back on my laptop by the afternoon. There's much to come. Stay tuned to this bat channel.
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