Jun 30 2012


Feline of the Damned

Just frickin’ frack it

Is it worth the trouble? For Swedish meatballs, yes. Here’s AVI’s suggested recipe.

I’m way behind on my allotted conspiracy theories.

The Conspiracy Meme

The origin of hippies. (via Assistant Village Idiot)

What? Germs don’t come from Germany?

Everything old is new again, sort of. How Instapundit is like Paul Harvey. (via Instapundit, of course) Here’s an example of how Instapundit doesn’t even try to be like Paul Harvey.

Does Justice Roberts have the Judgment of Solomon? Alas, probably not.

A visit to a small Texas town honoring a local born celebrity — Conan the Barbarian. How could anyone not want to go a festival named “Barbarian Days”?

“…don’t treat a fever.  Avoid perplexed sclerosis. And breathe normally my friends.

Jul 31 2010


Tag: energy,fictionDonna B. @ 10:42 pm

Finally, a topic worthy of Twitter.

CWCID – Dustbury

Dec 27 2009

Not Recommended, As Well As Highly Recommended

Tag: books,energy,fictionDonna B. @ 8:10 am

I do not recommend One Second After as a good book to start reading by candlelight and/or a Coleman lantern when the power is out on a cold winter holiday evening.

And now that the lights are back on, I find myself not recommending the book for most other times. It’s not that it contains bad information, or that the plot couldn’t have been riveting, it’s just sappy. This kind of book should be anything but sappy.

One thing I found annoying was the author’s comparisons to the plight of the people after an EMP attack as reducing living conditions to those of medieval times. That is annoying because the situation he describes makes medieval times look good by comparison.

The message that civilization is fragile and must be guarded by those seemingly uncivilized is a difficult one to swallow. It was the same in medieval times… yet completely different because nothing ‘better’ was known.

The huge difference is that we today are not fully aware of the slippery place of civilization that protects us from the demons below. No parent in medieval times would have worried about the availability of insulin, for their diabetic child would never have lived in the first place.

There is the conundrum. The problems of the fall of civilization are due to the rise of civilization. In medieval times, civilization was new. It was not the norm for most, but rather for the few.

So… this book is not recommended for most, yet highly recommended for a few. It is up to you which group you belong to.

Dec 12 2009

Saturday Surfing

*Buying cheap cheese is worse than buying no cheese at all. When you have no cheese, you don’t waste time, energy, and other ingredients trying to make it edible.

*I hate the scrolling twitter widget. I hate anything on a website that moves unless I tell it to.

*History’s First Redneck Mummy (lower left panel)

*I love my battery backup, because I hate power outages.

*Am I the only person who cannot manage to order a Pizza Hut pizza online? I’m beginning to think they want to be able to say they offer online ordering, but are actively discouraging anyone from ever using it.

* New study reveals most children are unrepentant sociopaths (via Retriever). And then they grow up and design scrolling, flashing widgets for websites or tests for “security” that can’t be passed. For a more scientific view, see The Science of Success.

*Speaking of pizza — a quick perusal of our buying habits over the past year says that this family orders pizza on average of once a month, and that approximately 25% of these orders coincide with having company. Yeah, I am just that lazy.

*Is it the least we can do? Buy Local, Act Evil. Just a thought here… but, if I buy the best that I can for the least amount of money, is that not also ecologically sound? (Note: I’m not saying I do this — see cheap cheese.)

*Tundra. Just go, click, and scroll. That’s what I plan on doing for the next hour or so.

Jan 13 2009

ThinkHost: Pretends To Provide Webhosting, Pretends To Be Green

My LittleSister can’t get to her website dependably. Neither can I. Bet you can’t either. Nobody could yesterday. The really huge problem for LittleSister is that she can’t even get into backend to point the domain name somewhere else and just move the site.

Thing is, the tech support at ThinkHost is just horrible. Back in October, she opened a support ticket about a specific issue. It was something she’d always been able to do with other hosting providers with a few clicks – additional FTP functionality. That’s so easy on the three providers I’ve used that even I can do it.

Like a good customer, she went to their Knowledge Base for information. She found they suggest using a virtualFTP thingie (whatever that is) and that ThinkHost would set it up for a fee and it would then triple her monthly hosting fee.

The funny part is that they finally answered her original question after 15 days of telling her they couldn’t. This was after a message from tech support telling her how to cancel her account if she wasn’t happy with their service.

Now, I’ve got to let you know that I would never have signed up with this hosting service in the first place. And yeah, LittleSister knows that. She’s OK with me bursting into laughter within seconds of viewing the homepage.

What made me laugh? The logo tag: powered by wind and sun. Of course that explained LittleSister’s problem! She lives in Scotland and probably hasn’t seen the sun in several days. Yes, this is nonsense, but it’s just the way my mind works. Then again, ThinkHost is based in Portland OR and I’m wondering how much sun they’ve had recently too.

The site says “we provide world class hosting powered by renewable energy. let’s change the world together — join us today.” That is misleading because it is, of course, impossible. What they are doing (and is discussed on their site, so they’re not trying to hide it) is buying renewable energy tags, which sound a lot like carbon credits which have always struck me as similar to complex financial instruments, ie., useless and worthless paper.

Not that there’s not money to be made on carbon credits — my father owns timberland and has been approached with offers to buy his carbon credits. His scam-o-meter alerted him to the fact they don’t really make sense and he didn’t sell because he didn’t want to be involved with scammers on any side of the scam.

To LittleSister, this green thing sounded good. She is a good-hearted person and wants to do things in a way that is best for the ecology. And she’s a progressive and we agree on very little politically. But durnit, she’s my sister and she was scammed and that really irritates me.

I have little doubt that the collective at ThinkHost thinks they are doing good and no doubt at all they are trying. If they want to succeed, they are first going to have to refine that little thing about “world class” hosting. It doesn’t mean leaving your customers in the dark to save electricity.

What I do not believe for one minute is that the “green” and “progressive” angles are not marketing tools. When someone signs up for hosting with ThinkHost, they are buying conscience relief; psychological carbon credits. They are paying higher (in my opinion, at least) prices for the hosting because the company is in political agreement with them, plants a tree for each customer and gives progressive non-profits discounted hosting.

OK, that’s a bit snarky, but geez… I can’t help it! (sorry LittleSister). But you agree that non-profits are not helped by poor service and technical support. I know you do.

It occurs to me that these greenies may be simply capitalists/opportunists with a niche product designed to empty the pockets of greenies and progressives. Except they picked on my sister. Nobody should pick on my sister, ya know?

I’m through. For now. If you are in the market for web hosting, please overlook ThinkHost. How green can a site be if their service increases one’s desire to throw things which will then have to be replaced?

Sep 07 2008

Hummer, Chick Magnet or Not

Tag: energy,humorDonna B. @ 3:29 am

A serious discussion here between my son and myself. I, the 55+ female says that Hummers are serious NOT chick magnet. My 30+ son thinks they are.Who’s right?NOTE: We’re not talking about the military Humvee with a 50 caliber… which would no doubt be a chick magnet, we’re talking about the cute yellow or black ones on the car lots.   

Sep 04 2008

Pit Bull With Lipstick

Tag: 2008,energy,foreign policy,guns,military,politicsDonna B. @ 12:57 am

And I want to hug that pit bull! Oh yeah, that sounds a bit lesbian, so sue me. She’s one hell of an orator (Obama, uh, listen up — you uh, really don’t shine in uh, that department, you know, uh, despite what’s been, uh, written about you…)

If Sarah Palin was snide and sarcastic, then I like snide and sarcastic. No, I love snide and sarcastic.

If Sarah Palin is wrong to treat her “special needs” child as normally as possible, then I’m wrong too in treating my “non-special needs” children as normal. Good grief, what is a mother to do when faced with any child — set him or her up to fail due to “special” treatment? And, yes, I do speak from experience here as the mother of a special needs child who is now a special needs adult. He is still his own entity, not an extension of me.

Admiration is something I have for few people. My mother and father have earned it. My grandmother and step-grandfather have earned it. A few very special aunts, uncles, and cousins have earned it. My children — they too have earned it, each in their own special way. But… to bestow any semblance of this admiration to a politician is unheard of in my world. Yet, Sarah Palin has earned, at the very least, a consideration that she might possibly deserve my admiration.

Oh yeah, and I want to adopt Piper and Trig. Would that be OK with you Sarah?

Aug 14 2008

Secret To A Youthful Long Life

Tag: energy,grandchildren,health,my family,photosDonna B. @ 1:43 am

Could it be simply the ability to play?

My father, age 85:

papaswinging by you.

papaonslide by you.

My father, age 85

issieswing by you.

issieslide by you.

My granddaughter, age 18 months.

Jul 27 2008

Sunday Drive on the Internet Highways

Tag: computers & internet,energy,health,politicsDonna B. @ 4:18 pm

I’m driving slow, and that’s most certainly not an efficient use of my time (or energy) considering the vast improvements in technology since 1974. I’m not using any off-label or illegal drugs, so I should relatively safe.

Social Policy Hindsight: is it merely a thought experiment or should we actively analyze and use such information. Would driving 55 today have the impact it did in 1974? Why or why not? Would limiting physician’s ability to prescribe off-label impact patient care adversely? I wonder if prescribing birth control pills as a fertililty treatment might not now be considered off-label.

Obama goes out of his way not to plainly say… anything. Consider Obama in charge of freeway exits signs. ::shudder:: (via Amba) Now is the time to merge together and exit, for it is this spirit that leads you… somewhere.

Be sure to use the proper fuel and good maintenance for greatest efficiency, in your car and in your body.

We’re winning the Iraq war and Bush drove us to it! If you hit a bump in the road today, rest assured that it’s Bush’s fault.

Of course reading on the internet counts as reading. Just don’t engage with text while driving, but if you do, at least make it interesting.

It’s Sunday. Take the scenic route. However, Monday will come, and this device might be handy for the commute and at least until Friday.

Should your drive take you near any summer camps, watch out for hovering helicopters. Drive carefully around full-blown addicts too. Most of them will probably be on a trail somewhere, but I’ve seen them on the side of the road.

I’m stopping at the Carnival of Cars. See ya!

Jun 26 2008

Not Everything Is Neatly Indexed On The Internet

I hate it when my husband or father asks me to look for car or truck information on the internet. It’s not so bad when they have a part number. I can find dealers and prices with no problem with that information.

But when they want information on… say… how to improve gas mileage on an ’84 Mazda b2000, the internet is not so friendly. In part, I know it’s because I do not understand exactly what information they want well enough to define good search terms.

What’s really frustrating is their “man on the moon” attitude. Just because we can put a man on the moon doesn’t mean somebody has written and posted on the internet a way to increase gas mileage in a specific vehicle.

Sure, I can find plenty of site that will tell me how to make that truck run on water. That just screams SCAM to me. The idea that the hydrogen can be separated from the oxygen and used as a fuel doesn’t sound nearly as far-fetched as the idea that somebody is going to sell me that knowledge for $49.  For only double that amount I can learn how to make a fortune in real estate.

May 22 2008

Better Solar Technology From IBM

Tag: energy,politicsDonna B. @ 7:55 pm

Eric at Classical Values posts about IBM’s using chip cooling technology and lenses to amplify the power of the sun that a photo voltaic cell can produce. It doesn’t sound like technology that would work well (at its present stage) because, as his co-blogger and commenter, M. Simon, points out, of water vapor.

I could see maybe Phoenix working with this, but I suspect Louisiana’s humidity and rainfall might be a bit of a disadvantage.

However, at the end of the post, Eric points out that E-Fuel Corporation is marketing a home distillation unit that can produce up to 25 gallons of ethanol per week at a price of $1.00/gal. Considering the unit is going for about $10,000, it’s not economically feasible except for those much richer than I am.

However, I seem to remember some relatives in the not so distant past that knew all about the distillation process and obviously knew how to set it up for less. Much less. Dad, you remember how? I think there may be some copper tubing in our storage shed.

That techology is very suited to the South, where the technology has been understood for generations.