Saturday, January 29, 2011

I hope we have a remote off switch for all those tanks

I spent the day watching fox news and playing Napoleon's
campaign in Egypt. I'm making the crossing to Palestine,
and I'd bet the same invasion will be happening soon enough
if the wrong people end up in charge of Egypt.

Egypt deserves to be a republic. A good percentage of the
people in the oilfield are egyptian, and they are some of
the best educated, smartest people, switching from french
to english to arabic at the drop of a hat. Instead, according
to the pols in this article, it's going to be an Islamist

But what do Egyptians really think? According to a recent Pew poll, they are extremely radical even in comparison to Jordan or Lebanon. When asked whether they preferred “Islamists” or “modernizers,” the score was 59% to 27% in favor of the Islamists. In addition, 20 percent said they liked al-Qaeda; 30 percent, Hezbollah; 49 percent, Hamas. And this was at a time that their government daily propagandized against these groups.

How about religious views? Egyptian Muslims said the following: 82 percent want adulterers punished with stoning; 77 percent want robbers to be whipped and have their hands amputated; 84 percent favor the death penalty for any Muslim who changes his religion.

If that's the case, I'd bet their first item on their agenda
will be taking all the rage on the streets and pointing it to
Israel. Who knows how that would go if it's M1 tank against M1 tank?

Yikes. That curse of 'may you live in interesting times' is very true,
I wish it was the end of history again

Sunday, January 23, 2011

End of Weekend humor

Not a very effective weekend. I had to re-revise the revisions
of the edited version of the paper I'm writing.
Apparently I'm the worst user of Word version tracking in the world,
I ended up turning off all the editing popups so I could see what
words were there. I got that sent off, and instead of jogging
around the lagito here, or doing some other work I spent the
rest of the weekend playing Total War Napolean and surfing the

The game isn't too bad, not as good as Rome, and it must require
windows 7 and 32 gigs of ram, because with the 3 GB that xp32 can
use it crashes at every big battle, a couple of times saving me
from humiliation as my last few calvary got chased around the

I surfed the web and watched some movies too, since my family is
off visiting relatives. One very funny writer is on Altucher Confidential.
His writing is so open that one of the commenters suggested he must
have a brain tumor (cue Arnold "It's not a tuma").
Super funny though. Including stories about his dot-com companies, where he lost millions after making millions. It's good that he can joke about it, I lost a crapload of money but nothing like millions, and if I think too hard about it I'll have to go drink a relief beer.

Here's a clip from his story today about beginner yoga classes:

Chanting. At the beginning of class there’s a chant. It starts off with a big “Ommmm”. I can handle that. But then it goes into something else that I can’t understand. Everyone else is doing the chant. For some reason I blush and I try to hum along with it but then blush more because why am I even humming?

there's a scott adams (dilbert) rule that chanting is always funny.
Dogbert asking a prospective cult member "can you chant" is funny, humming
while pretending to chant is double funny.

The world turned upside down

The funny video showing Chairman Hu in washington like
the new owner was even truer than I thought. One of the
songs the piano player played at the presidential reception
is a song from a movie about the korean war.

Linked from Althouse to the paper the epoch times:

The song Lang Lang played describes how beautiful China is and then near the end has this verse, “When friends are here, there is fine wine /But if the jackal comes /What greets it is the hunting rifle.” The “jackal” in the song is the United States....

Just from reading James Clavell novels about china and the orient it's
easy to know that they have no respect for westerners, and if this happened
in china it wouldn't surprise me at all. But this was a piano player the
USA paid for, and he provided the list of songs he was going to play to
the state department and the Chinese. Our state department doesn't have
a single person who would recognize that song and squelch it. Maybe we deserve
their disrespect.

Monday, January 17, 2011

Just Dang

Apparently Steve Jobs is still sick and will take
a leave of absence. I hope he gets well not just for
the sake of my apple stock, but because he seems to
create things that I really like (iPod, Pixar, iphone
and itunes). Some jerkwad in bucharest stole my iphone,
but itunes is still a big source our entertainment, for
the times when we've been tvless like the first couple of
months in Italy and before we got skytv here.

On the other hand, apple stock was the last best chance
for us to get rich. I bought it with the remainder of
my dot-bomb account when apple was $15/share. I heard
the first ipod playing in the cubicle next
in the heck did so much music play without repeats I asked?
I put the 2k that hadn't boogered away during the crash
into apple.

I stupidly sold off most of it when it quadrupled, but the
remainder still has gone up 10 times. Fear and greed made
me sell at the wrong time and now hold too long. Tomorrow
the stock will probably go down $50, of course fear will
probably keep me from buying it tomorrow morning. doh.

here's what zerohedge has to say:

Below we present the top 200 holders of AAPL stock. The holdings of the smallest one in the group amount to $133 million. We are confident they will all exit the theater in a calm, collected fashion.

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Past is prologue

I just watched "Full Metal Jacket" for the first time since I saw
it in the theater in 1987. I watched it the first time at the BX
theatre at Chanute AFB during AF tech school. They probably should
have chosen a different movie to show there, since the whole base
was full of airmen fresh out of basic training. My main thought
after watching that was 'thank goodness I didn't join the Marine
Corp, since the crazy guy at Paris Island was playing me. I started
Basic training as the fattest slowest guy there. It took every bit
of running around for 6 weeks to burn all the fat off, not a chance
I could have made it through anything more rigorous.

Anyway, it's kind of weird the way the past is telescoping behind us.
When full metal jacket came out it was only 14 years after US combat
troops left Vietnam, and Vietnam seemed like an eternity in the past
at the time. Now it's nearly twice as long back to 1987, and really
just a blink of an eye has passed. (or as the wife says, like 10 minutes,
under water.

Kind of weird too that 20 years ago this week I started in the oilfield,
and that time definitely passed as if I was underwater. But I wouldn't
change anything, working here allowed me to meet my wife and have a
family, without the oilfield I'd probably still be turning wrenches as a jet
mech, drinking 40 oz miller lites every night. doh.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Killer Greens

Over at EU referendum they point to the floods in
Australia whose effects were entirely preventable
and predictable. Similar floods have happened in the past
and flood control projects were shelved in favor of
desalination plants to deliver fresh water to a global
warming parched land.

Good irony. Here's the killer quote:

But the real story is bizarre, another classic example of the greenies forcing major distortions in policy which cost money we haven't got and eventually kill people. Increasingly we see that the obsession with global warming is not a risk-free option. It costs money we can't afford, and lives. This must stop.

Economics says we can't have everything. Choices have to be
made in order to provide shelter, water, heat and power
efficiently. Instead of choosing the most cost effective option
we're choosing the global warming mitigating option:

Windmills, solar, etc. Solar PV in germany when an insolation map would say
there is no point. Talking about windmills in the gulf of mexico
when half the year there's no wind, the other half it's too strong.
In a poor country like mexico they are talking about outlawing
incandescent bulbs so the poor people can't even have a reasonably
priced light at night.

Decision making is so terrible in all levels of government in every country.
People don't understand, when they choose something it almost always
eliminates the other options (Tanstaafl) Choose wisely, or we'll be
spending future winters in the dark and cold.

Sunday, January 09, 2011

Pour encourager les autras?

I didn't get to see much news this weekend, I got to
go to a bbq at a fellow gringo's house and attempted to
kill off my various stomach problems with beer and grilled
meat. Didn't work but I had fun.

I missed the ruckus over in TJICistan when after the congresswoman
got shot, TJIC snarkily said one down and 534 to go. Not LOL, but pretty clever.
Half of the libtardosphere went there and commented, what
terrible people they are that inhabit Tjicistan. (A similar situation
happened at work, a coworker pointed out an article from africa where
a guy got eaten by a lion when he went out of camp to take a leak and
I laughed. I even gave permission to laugh at me if I'm ever eaten
while taking a dump, or hang myself with a rope tied to my nuts.) Little
girl shot by nut, tragedy, not funny. Gringo killed in Army/narco crossfire,
not funny. 1 down and 534 to go is not in good taste, but is pretty funny.

It's a terrible thing that happened, but snark is always allowed.
and snarky comments shouldn't cause a visit from the FBI as some of
the commenters are hyperventilating.

After listening to libtards talking about assassinating bush
for 8 years, their gnashing of teeth over this tragedy and pinning
the blame on Palin is pretty fucking rich.

Update 23 Jan - "I Am TJIC"

Apparently his guns were taken away by the local sheriff because he's
a threat. What kind of bullshit is that? So much for free speech.

Friday, January 07, 2011

The best cracker ever

I'm eating the best cracker ever, a slightly burnt saltine,
and the salty/smoky flavors are rolling across my tongue.
It's the first solid I've eaten in two days, which was the
continuation of a really sucky week. I got sick new years
eve, so sick I had to leave a party with free booze and lots
of good food. New years day every doctor in town was closed,
so I went to the emergency room and the guy there told me I have
the flu and gave me an antiviral with decongestant and Tylenol
mixed in (big honging pills that have to be taken for 10 days)

Stayed home all week, still feeling like crap, I went to an ENT
to see what was really going on, and he declared a bacterial infection
and gave me 10 giant antibiotic pills that have to be taken one
per day. I was feeling overmedicated, but better, until those
pills reacted, I ate something bad or someone gave me poison and
my digestive system as they say in the oilfield, reversed out.

The only thing comparable is being seasick on a boat for 15 hours;
with the flu; a hangover and 'irregularity'. I felt like that
point in the movie The Fly, when jeff goldblum holds the shotgun up
to his head.

Everything finally stabilized last night, and I slept like the kind
of sleep where I didn't blink awake or dream a dream, just an instant
of deep dark rest, followed a moment later by waking up in the morning
light, with my family looking at me like, "hey, you're alive". Now
I'm drinking changua caballo soup (onions and salt) and eating the best
cracker ever baked.