Monday, December 18, 2006

PC Gaming Geekiness!

Two stories, ripped from Joystiq, that make my heart go a flutter!

Games for Windows


BIOSHOCK - oh man I can not wait to play this game. Emergant game play, here we come!

Install Tomorrow, and Update!

Install Tomorrow, and Update! : Stephanie has an update posted about R10 (arriving in your Journal tomorrow!). Read it so you're not left in the dust sucking the wind of old R9!

Saturday, December 16, 2006

Grinch and Overseas Holidays

Blogthings seems to think that I'm not a Grinch. I disagree.

Nope, You're Not a Grinch

Although you may feel Grinch-like at times, it's just because you're worn out from the holidays.
You get into the holiday spirit more than most people - and you truly enjoy celebrating with your family and friends.


They also think I like rice pudding, the simpletons.

You Should Spend the Holidays In

Denmark - where you leave a mischievous elf a bowl of rice pudding


Weekend Assignment # 143

Scalzi wants us to talk about gifts from a youngin's perspective.

For this week's Weekend Assignment, I want you get in touch with your inner child -- and give it a gift list:

Weekend Assignment #143: Imagine you are a kid today, age 10 or under. What would you want for Christmas/Hanukkah/Seasonal Holiday of Your Preference?

I would have to go with something for my game system - maybe a PSP? :)


What can I say, I'm a dork!!!

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Coming soon?

Mustang Giugiaro

Say it ain't so! The Mustang to have four doors and a hatchback? NO!!!!!

Stephanie, over at BamBam, has some fun stuff to share about upcoming changes in Journals. Check it out!

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Just a quiz and an update

I picked this quiz up from Lily. She's fun.

If only Blogthings knew!:

Your Social Anxiety Level: 52%

You have moderate social anxiety.
It's possible that you have a serious social anxiety problem.
But it's also likely that you can help yourself, by getting out more and trying new, scary activities.
No one's secretly judging you. So be yourself, and if you screw up, just laugh.

Also, Joe posted an update about the newest changes to AIMPages. I'm still pushing this product - it's fun! Try it!



Consider your own calling

A few minutes ago, as I polished off a double espresso from the on-campus starbucks, I lamented my role as professor, advisor, mentor, and student. I'm tired. fifteen minutes ago, when I went to the men's room and before I bought the espresso, I didn't recognize myself in the mirror; haggard face, etched lines furrowed into my brow, five o'clock shadow emphasizing sunken cheeks and dark circles hollowing my eyes.

I graded my last paper, for this evening at least, and picked up my Magnificat. Here is tonight's reading:

1 Corinthians 1: 26-29

Consider your own calling, brothers. Not many of you were wise by human standards, not many were powerful, not many were of noble birth. Rather, God chose the foolish of the world to shame the wise, and God chose the weak of the world to shame the strong, and God chose the lowly and despised of the world, those who count for nothing, to reduce to nothing those who are something, so that no human being might boast before God.

My calling is in education, for the present. I am not the smartest person, nor the wisest, not the richest and certainly not the most powerful, but by accepting this calling and the work it requires I have the chance to preach the Gospel by living life - and that's good enough for me, I think.

Surrendering to my calling and embracing all its rewards and challenges opens my heart to true humility and love and strengthens my relationship with God. Mary abandoned herself to her calling completely; let us pledge to do the same this Christmas season.



Monday, December 11, 2006

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Stupid Christmas Meme
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"Charley...  Do you really hate Christmas?  Okay, now I'm just sad...



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Of course not!
Well, when I was a kid I was a grouch on Christmas morning, and recently for the first time in my memory (as in like a year or two ago), my wife Jillian made me fall in love with Christmas morning.

Stupid Christmas Meme

Dawn did this meme and she made fun of me. Now I HAVE to do it. You see, I'm opposed to posting any entry in red and green. I'm a grinch. She wants it posted in boring old black. FINE!

1. Wrapping paper or gift bags? Wrapped? What the hell are you talking about?

2. Real tree or artificial?   I don't contribute to global warming by cutting down a valuable oxygen producing tree OR purchasing a tree produced using carbon based petroleum by-products.  Real tree, truthfully.

3. When do you put up the tree? Whenever we get to it....this year? Maybe Christmas eve?

4. When do you take the tree down?  When there aren't any needles left.

5. Do you like eggnog? Eggnog is the drink of Satan. The Prince of Darkness himself brews it in his wretched hovel.
6. Favorite gift received as a child?  Castle Grayskull. Hands down.

7. Do you have a nativity scene? Yep, in the dining room/office. 

8. Hardest person to buy for? Probably my father.

9. Easiest person to buy for? My wife.

10. Mail or e-mail Christmas cards? MAIL.

11. Worst Christmas gift you ever received?  A sweatshirt with the 'X' symbol of Malcolm X on its front. My mother thought it had something to do with the Civil War. Needless to say not only did she insult African-Americans, but also racist redneck southerners, all in one purchase. (Is it even POSSIBLE to insult a racist redneck southerner?)

12. Favorite Christmas Movie?  White Christmas. Snow, snow, snow, snow, SNOW!!!!!

13. When do you start shopping for Christmas? I haven't, actually.

14. Have you ever recycled a Christmas present? What do you think colleagues are for?

15. Favorite thing to eat at Christmas? Rolls

16. Clear lights or colored on the tree?  Clear.

17. Favorite Christmas song(s)?  White Christmas, O, Holy Night. 

18. Travel at Christmas or stay home? Stay home!

19. Can you name all of Santa's reindeer? Duh.

20. Angel on the tree top or a star?  Angel.

21. Open the presents Christmas Eve or morning? Morning.

22. Most annoying thing about this time of year?  Other than hating this holiday in general?

23. Favorite ornament theme or color?  The kind the cats can't break when they knock over the tree.

24. Favorite for Christmas dinner?  HAM!


All the news not fit to print, 12/11/06

Alligator skin boots, bags, and luggage?

Hardcore shoppers. Hardcore.

Do you think she was conceived up there?

They DO fly!

Scary is scaring me!


Sunday, December 10, 2006


All of the following are from blogthings

You Are 46% Peaceful
In general, you think the world's a pretty great place - and you're happy to be a part of it.
Sometimes you struggle with life, but who doesn't?
You are quite level headed, though you have more inner angst than you'd like.

You Have Your Sarcastic Moments
While you're not sarcastic at all times, you definitely have a cynical edge.
In your opinion, not all people are annoying. Some are dead!
And although you do have your genuine moments, you can't help getting your zingers in.
Some people might be a little hurt by your sarcasm, but it's more likely they think you're hilarious.

It's been a while

If anyone ever tells you that being a professor is easy, you have my permission to shoot that ignorant individual in the face.

Not really. But you can imagine the gunfire, blood-spattering associated bliss if it makes you feel better.

I've been swamped with work, grading projects, papers, websites, and let's not forget everyone's favorite responsibility - governance!

Did you know human beings spit venom? At least they can in faculty meetings.

Anyway, I've been neglecting your journals so I'll make the rounds here in a bit, but a few things I've seen already and want to pass on here:

New Rule: Stop giving me that pop-up ad for! 
There's reason you don't talk to people for 25 years.
Because you don't particularly like them!
Besides, I already know what the captain of the football team
is doing these days: mowing my lawn.

New Rule: Don't eat anything that's served to you out a window
unless you're a seagull.
People are acting all shocked that a human finger was found
in a bowl of Wendy's chili. Hey, it cost less than a dollar.
What did you expect it to contain? Trout?

New Rule: Stop saying that teenage boys who have sex with
their hot, blonde teachers are permanently damaged.
I have a better description for these kids: lucky bastards.

New Rule: If you need to shave and you still collect baseball
cards, you're gay. If you're a kid, the cards are keepsakes of
your idols. If  you're a grown man, they're pictures of men.

New Rule: Ladies, leave your eyebrows alone.
Here's how much men care  about your eyebrows:
Do you have two of them? Okay, we're done.

New Rule: There's no such thing as flavored water.
There's a whole aisle of this crap at the supermarket - water,
but without that watery taste.
Sorry, but flavored water is called a soft drink.
You want flavored water?
Pour some scotch over ice and let it melt. That's your flavored water.

New Rule: Stop f***ing with old people.
Target is introducing a redesigned pill bottle that's square,
with a bigger label. And the top is now the bottom.
And by the time grandpa figures out how to open it,
his ass will be in the morgue.
Congratulations, Target, you just solved the Social Security crisis.

New Rule: The more complicated the Starbucks order,
the bigger the asshole. If you walk into a Starbucks and
order a "decaf grande half-soy, half-low fat, iced vanilla,
double-shot, gingerbread cappuccino, extra dry, light ice,
with one Sweet-n'-Low and one NutraSweet," ooh, you're a huge asshole.

New Rule: I'm not the cashier! By the time I look up from
sliding my card, entering my PIN number, pressing "Enter,"
verifying the amount, deciding, no, I don't want cash back,
and pressing "Enter" again, the kid who is supposed to be
ringing me up is standing there eating my Almond Joy.

New Rule: Just because your tattoo has Chinese characters
in it doesn't make you spiritual. It's right above the crack of your ass.
And it actually translates to "beef with broccoli."
The last time you did anything spiritual, you were praying to God
you weren't pregnant. You're not spiritual. You're just high.

New Rule: Competitive eating isn't a sport. It's one of the seven
deadly sins. ESPN recently televised the US Open of Competitive
Eating, because watching those athletes at the poker table was
just too damned exciting. What's next, competitive farting?
Oh wait. They're already doing that. It's called "The Howard Stern Show." 

New Rule: I don't need a bigger mega M&M.
If I'm extra hungry for an M&M, I'll go nuts and eat two.

New Rule: If you're going to insist on making movies based on
crappy, old television shows, then you have to give everyone in the
Cineplex a remote so we can see what's playing on the other screens.
Let's remember the reason something was a television show in the
first place is that the idea wasn't good enough to be a movie.

New Rule: No more gift registries. You know, it used to be just for weddings.
Now it's for babies and new homes and graduations from rehab.
Picking out the stuff you want and having other people buy it for you
isn't gift giving, it's the white people version of looting.

New Rule (and this one is long overdue): No more bathroom attendants!
After I zip up, some guy is offering me a towel and a mint like I just had
sex with George Michael. I can't even tell if he's supposed to be there,
or just some freak with a fetish.
Don't want to be on your webcam, Dude. I just want to wash my hands.

New Rule: When I ask how old your toddler is, I don't need to
know in months. Not "27 Months." "He's two," will do just fine.
He's not a cheese. And I didn't really care in the first place.

I pulled that from JillAnne of Coastal Comfort

Secondly, AIMPages has a new module directory that makes it a bit easier to do advanced editing. Joe has more about it over on the AIMPage Blog

I've a number of quizzes to post in a bit, so look for them soon.



Tuesday, December 5, 2006

Reading my mind

Paul, from Aurora Walking Vacation, left a very interesting comment in my journal earlier this evening.

It was:
I know you were being facetious, but this is an example of the kind of magical thinking that allows astrologers, psychics, mediums, and the like to flourish. Of course, WebMD did not really *know* what you were thinking. How many million e-mail inboxes was that mesage sent to? And you think (however jokingly) that they were somehow reading your mind. Even though you said it tongue-in-cheek, you still thought it, and said it, and that is exactly the kind of lack of critical thinking that the entire world seems to have fallen into these days.
  Sorry to mellow your trip, man.

My commentary :): First off, Paul, you didn't mellow my trip at all, though I appreciate your trying. ;). Secondly, I think the argument you present is valid among a certain percentage of people (whether they are the minority or majority I cannot say), who fail to critically think in many situations (email forwards are my personal pet peeve example). And that, I agree, is a horrible and society-wide issue.

As an educator, I appreciate your using observable behaviors to determine process (B.F. Skinner would be proud of you!), but what your comment does not take into account is the actual cognitive process I went through - your comment (in the parts pertinent to me) is invalid because you are not critiquing my actual cognitive process.

When I received the email, I did the following:
1. Laughed at the coincidence of getting that email as I was stressing out
2. Thought that some sort of entry on my disorganized life tied to this email would allow for some tongue-in-cheek humor and perhaps a little less stress!
3. Determined that the best way to use the email would be to poke fun at the absurdity of stress and those crazy people at WebMD.
4. Wrote and posted the message, knowing full well that I never at all thought WebMD could read my mind. Let me repeat - My cognitive process decided to use the WebMD email as a tool for humor - it never once dwelled on the actual content or message WebMD intended to send in that email.

What's somewhat amusing to me is that you presumed to know my thought process: "Even though you said it tongue-in-cheek, you still thought it, and said it, and that is exactly the kind of lack of critical thinking that the entire world seems to have fallen into...." That, to me, is a lack a critical thinking. Were you working with an observable behavior? Yes. Were you informed of all the facts that went into the cognitive process behind that entry? No. Did that lead to an invalid critique? In my case, Yes.

Oh, and Paul, if you're ever in Gettysburg there is a FANTASTIC tarot card reader in town I'll take you to; she knows EVERYTHING!



Stress? What Stress

So, you know, I lose a very close family member, I have to be in a stressful situation with my family, my wife ends up having foot surgery, and it's the end of the semester, so I am sitting here, in my office, as it nears 8:00 p.m., and I I stressed?

Then, low and behold, I see this in my email inbox:

Monday, Dec. 5, 2006

Is Your Job
Stressing You Out?

Learn how to get a handle on job stress before it takes a toll on your health.

Gotta love WebMD for knowing just what you're thinking. It's actually kind of creepy.

And so, to entertain you all, I decided to give you a snapshot of what my office looks like at the end of semester, during this time of my life, with absolutely no editing done to hide the detritus of missed deadlines and rushed planning! Enjoy!


Tag: Courage, Stress, WebMD

Monday, December 4, 2006


Sarah McLachlan recently did an AOLSession. She sang one of my very favorite songs in Adia.

As Journals (for some ridiculous reason) STILL won't support i frames, you'll have to click the link to watch.


The Centurian

Sometimes, I get a little too cocky. Maybe I'm trying to impress Jillian, or manipulate my way into someone's good praises or affections, or maybe I am simply thinking more of myself than I truly am.

Any way you look at it, we all need the courage to be like the centurion in Matthew's Gospel. He lays down all his authority, willingly, and in true humility asks Christ to simply use the power of his Word. This centurion, a Roman pagan to the Jews of the time, understood the power of Christ's word and the humility needed to show praise and thanks giving.

Here's to us having the courage every day to do the right thing.

When Jesus entered Capernaum,
a centurion approached him and appealed to him, saying,
“Lord, my servant is lying at home paralyzed, suffering dreadfully.”

He said to him, “I will come and cure him.”
The centurion said in reply,
“Lord, I am not worthy to have you enter under my roof;
only say the word and my servant will be healed.
For I too am a man subject to authority,
with soldiers subject to me.
And I say to one, ‘Go,’ and he goes;
and to another, ‘Come here,’ and he comes;
and to my slave, ‘Do this,’ and he does it.”
When Jesus heard this, he was amazed and said to those following him,
“Amen, I say to you, in no one in Israel have I found such faith.
I say to you, many will come from the east and the west,
and will recline with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob
at the banquet in the Kingdom of heaven.”


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Quote A Day - December 4, 2006
Comment from: hugsdoodlewacky
"((((((((((((((((((((((((((((HUGSTOYOU)))))))))))))))))))))Intresting,I like reading your journal.Do you mind me asking?Are you a christian?Sorry,if this offends you.Have a good night."

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I don't mind answering this question at all! I am  Roman Catholic, which means that I am a Christian in the sense that I am a follower of Christ. The concept of being a Catholic (which means universal), is the foundation of my faith in Christ - that all are part of the body of Christ. There are actually 23 particular churches in the Catholic Church, one western (Roman Catholic) and 22 eastern churches (Byzantine, Ukrainian Catholic, etc.). Thanks for asking the question!

News Alert: U.N. Ambassador Bolton Resigns

Looks like the housecleaning at the White House continues - First Rummy, then a change in course, and now in the U.N. Is Rome falling?

News Alert   9:30 a.m. ET Monday, December 4, 2006

U.N. Ambassador Bolton Resigns
President Bush has accepted U.N. Ambassador John Bolton's resignation, effective when his recess appointment expires.

For more information, visit

Tags: Courage, UN, Bolton

Quote A Day - December 4, 2006

A little message to spark up your day on a Monday morning :)

The peacock of today is the feather duster of tomorrow.

Ezra Aranoff

Tag: Courage, Ezra Aranoff, Monday

Sunday, December 3, 2006

The Saturday Six - On Sunday

Here is the latest Saturday Six from Patrick's Weekender!

1. What is the last fruit or vegetable juice you drank? How long ago did you drink it?

Hrm - I'd have to say a sip of cran-apple only a few hours ago :)

<?xml:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:office" /> 

2. Which are more likely to have on hand: fresh fruit and vegetables or fresh juice?

Probably fresh juice, unless it's clementine season.


3. Does a negative movie review make you less likely to see the movie? Does a positive review make you more likely to see it?

Yes, and no - I read one reviewer who I almost always agree with so I'm not tainted by those media hacks.


4. Take the quiz: What gender is your brain?

Your Brain is 60% Female, 40% Male

Your brain is a healthy mix of male and female
You are both sensitive and savvy
Rational and reasonable, you tend to keep level headed
But you also tend to wear your heart on your sleeve


5. Which line of description in the results best describes you?

I wear my heart on my sleeve.


6. The <?xml:namespace prefix = st1 ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:smarttags" />U.S. Mint has announced a plan to reintroduce one-dollar coins, this time with former presidents. Would you use one-dollar coins, or is paper still the way to go?

Coins! Easy, cheap, portable, not possible to forge well. I mean, REALLY folks, get witth the program!!!


Tag: Saturday Six, blogtings, Courage