Sunday, November 27, 2005

The weekend is over

Thing1 came home on Wednesday. Time sure flew by. We got to watch the Bears win and then he was off. He seems to have grown up a bit more every time I see him.

What a great kid.

Chris Muir on Black Friday

Day by Day nails it!

Fun at 1

Yesterday was the Wife's nephew's son first birthday. We went to the party as most of us hadn't met Jack just yet. For a 1 year old Jack was a very friendly kid. Never met me before but as soon as I took his picture with my digicam and showed him how he looked he was my buddy. Jack also has a big dog named Sox to watch over him. Sox is a Dalmatian-Lab mix. Overely friendly (he liked to chew on my hand) he got sent downstairs and his tail was clearing things off tables and chairs.

As Jack started opening his presents he started with one from Mom and Dad. It was a shirt that read "Big Brother in Training". Next fall Jack will have a little brother or sister and his parents surprised everyone with the news. It was a great way to let everyone know.

Harry Potter

Thing1 and Thing2 are both fans of the Harry Potter Books. So much that both have their own copes as they won't share. I've never read the books but I have enjoyed the movies. So on Black Friday, rather than shopping, we went to see Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire on the local "ultrascreen". It's a 75 foot screen and makes for a fun movie experience. Thing1 and I saw Episode III at this theater and it was a lot of fun.

Back to Mr. Potter - this is a very good movie. Probably my favorite and it earns the PG-13 rating. Kids under 10 should NOT see this movie. 11 and 12 year olds - it depends on the kid. If they have nightmare problems or scare easily then don't take them. On the other hand if they know fantasy from reality they will probably enjoy this movie.

Friday, November 25, 2005


There was a couple of things in the ad I wanted so I decided to head up there around 7:00 am. Buffy had been nice enough to wake me at 5:00 so I was awake. Lots of cars in the parking lot but the store was easy to navigate. Picked up the two items, looked at the 3.44 DVDs (lots of interesting movies but Full Frame - yuck), and checked out. The cashier said that when they opened at 5:00am they were very busy. at 7:30 I walked up to a empty register.

There were also some items I wanted at Best Buy. Hah! Thing1 and I went there on the day after Thanksgiving a couple years back. Way too many people and not enough registers. Left without buying anything. This year I checked and the items I wanted were there for the same price and one had free shipping! So for $1.35 more than I would have spend at the store I get my stuff delivered. Way worth it.

Shop safely. Use your computer.

Giving Thanks

Yes a day late but with good reason. I wanted to survive the trek on the TriState Tollway to my sister-in-laws on Thanksgiving. For those who don't live in Northern Illinois the TriState is one of the those roads that is always under construction. This year the toll booths are being converted to 'Open Road Tolling' so that people with I-Pass transponders get through quickly and ease congestion. I've always thought the best way to ease conjestion would be to get rid of the toll booths but that will never happen.

An interesting thing about toll booths. Exiting the booth is like going into turn 1 at Daytona except you're 10 wide going into 3 lanes. Quite possibly the scariest part of the journey. Well till we got to Indiana. 80/294 is torn up (again) so it makes for 'interesting' driving. Not much traffic (for 80/294) so we slid right through and got to our destination safe and sound.

After we settled it we watched some football on their HD big screen. It just make the empty seats in Detroit look so much worse. A great picture - just not a great game.

My sister-in-law is a pretty good cook so there was plenty to go around. Turkey, dressing, potatoes, noodles, etc. Lots of pie, cookies, and other treats for after. A little too much wine for a few people and comedy ensued. Lots of fun to watch.

Soon it was time to head home. I was a bit worried as northbound 294 has been a parking lot when we went south. Much better at night. Cruised right home. Home sweet home.

So what am I thankful for? Family, safe travel, love, and happiness are enough for me.

Wednesday, November 23, 2005

Amazing Beliefs

At IMAO. Orginally by Michael Z. Williamson, it's a interesting read. Michael also makes knives.

Amazing Beliefs is worth a few minutes of time to read.!

Jack is Back!

While watching House at lunch today there was an ad for the next season of 24. I only have to wait till January 15th, 2006. At almost the same time I ran across Blogs for Bauer. One entry was most disturbing. If this one ever gets written I just hope the bad guys don't shoot like this or Jack is in for a bad day.

Tuesday, November 22, 2005

PT Barnum would be so happy

A XBox 360 Premium for $3000.00? So much for the economy being bad!

A different perspective

Are we out of touch with the rest of the world? Some cable news personalities go so far as to say that " The person on the other side is not evil -- they just have a different perspective." Note that the incredibly clueless and gutless Mr. Matthews went to Canada to give that speech.

I understand our enemies. They crashed planes into the World Trade Center and the Pentagon. They bombed the USS Cole. They hide behind women and children. They use women and children to attach civilians. Why? They want the United States and the rest of the free world to submit to their brand of Islam or die. Not gonna happen without a fight. Unless the Democrats and the Main Stream Media convince America that we've already lost.

If that happens - we have.

    Update: Mr Matthews is now saying that he didn't say that. Hmmm - where's the transcript of the speech?

A different side of Iraq

One that is never seen on the Main Stream Media. Why is that? Do they want America to fail? Is there hatred of President Bush so intense that they will stop at nothing to attack and discredit him while keeping the good news hidden? A couple of years ago I would have said no. Now I'd have to say yes. Whether it's your local paper, network news, or the vast majority of the cable news outlets there is only bad news.
But if you want to see a view of Iraq that you will not see on your local TV station go and visit Michael Yon's blog. Be prepared to spend some time there. It's worth it.

Why is there no timetable for leaving Iraq?

Chris Muir nails it!

Saturday, November 19, 2005

Don't forget to shop today

I made my purchases for National Ammo Day around 8:25 this morning. 600 rounds should last an hour or so at the range :-)

Friday, November 18, 2005

Reminder for Saturday

It's National Ammo Day on 11/19/2005

It'll be an early trip to the Wal-Mart for me!

Carnival of Cordite #39

Available for reading

Withdrawl from Iraq?

Since the House Republicans have decided to start growing a spine and force the House Democrats to choose between their bashing of the President and the support of the Global War on Terror there have been a few, um, interesting comments made.

While watching Hannity and Colmes on FNC they played a tape of Rep. Jean Schmidt, R-Ohio reading a message from a Marine colonel.

"He asked me to send Congress a message - stay the course. He also asked me to send Congressman Murtha a message - that cowards cut and run, Marines never do," Schmidt said.

It made me smile. Gotta love those Jarheads.

Anyways the House errupted in boos. It's amazing that Pelosi and company can attack anyone on the right side of aisle by name and a generic reference to cowards brings a reaction like this. One has to wonder if the comment hit close to home...

Found the following on Powerline

LGF has the picture as well with lots of comments.

First Peace. Then Withdrawal

No End But Victory

Some interesting reads. Thanks to BlackFive for the link

Heroes and Movie Stars

At The Punishers' Ball

Thursday, November 17, 2005

A Busy Week

For a Thursday it sure feels like Friday. It's been one of those weeks with something going on every night. The wife has something on Monday night, Thing2 and I were at her school for a 'intro to high school' meeting (I'm not ready for this) while the wife got some peace and quiet for her birthday. Wednesday brought confirmation class after dinner and tonight there is a concert at Church that I'm taking Thing2 to. Of course her small group is having a dinner for the singer prior to the concert so we have to get there right after school. Well after Ceramics Club. Tomorrow night is Karate class but we actually get to have a real dinner together. Real food - nothing out of a can or a package. And we won't have to rush off. Can't wait!

One of the things that makes America great!

Where else could we get to do this?

Wednesday, November 16, 2005

A Mistake?

According to former President Bill Clinton "It was a big mistake..."

But in 1998 he said "Saddam (Hussein) must not be allowed to threaten his neighbors or the world with nuclear arms, poison gas or biological weapons..."

Were mistakes made in planning the Iraq war? Yes. Was it a big mistake? In my opinion no. Freedom has always exacted a high price and it has been paid in Coalition and Iraqi blood.

I suppose that one could go into the whole WMD issue. Small amounts have been found. And if the report is true there were plans to hide existing stocks. I think history will come down on the side of President Bush.

Now if we want to start talking about former President Clinton's mistakes - that might be interesting...

The beginning of the end

For the Main Stream Media? I certainly hope so. Go get em OSM!

Tuesday, November 15, 2005

Iraq: Weapons and Tactics

The Jawa Report has an interesting post up.

What kids say

Kids always interpret things a little differently. I can imagine Thing2 saying this when she was younger:

    "Dear Lord," the preacher began with arms extended and a rapturous look
    on his upturned face, "without you we are but dust..."

    He would have continued, but at that moment one very obedient little
    girl (who was listening carefully) leaned over to her mother and asked
    quite audibly in her little girl voice, "Mommy, WHAT is butt dust?"

Almost an American

Micheal Yon has a story about a (soon to be) American Hero.

Note - Walt's already a hero. Soon he'll be an American.

Monday, November 14, 2005

Project Valour-IT Competition

Looks like the Navy pulled out a victory at the end. The total raised was $88,333.44 from 967 people for an average of $91.35 each. Pretty impressive.

I know that Soldiers Angels will put this money to good use.

Whats even more interesting is this

    Somebody with a strong history of "supporting the troops," and the capacity to fund Valour-IT's every goal, is asking very pointed questions about Valour-IT's ultimate goals and needs.

I hope this happens. I have a feeling I know who it is but I don't want to jinx it.

Saturday, November 12, 2005

American Soldier

Not the Toby Keith song but a new series on CMT. Starts Sat, Nov. 26 at 9:30 PM ET/PT

    CMT chronicles a small-town National Guard battalion as they are called to serve a tour of duty in Iraq, following a group of four weekend warriors who are unexpectedly called to make the ultimate sacrifice for God and country. It's a band of brothers for our times -- an intimate, revealing, real-time look at a group of tightly knit soldiers preparing, deploying and finally fighting through the triumph and torment of war-torn Iraq.

More here. Looks interesting. The wife may be a bit scared when I tell her there is something I want to watch on CMT.

Friday, November 11, 2005

It's almost time

It's easy. Just buy 100 rounds (or more) of ammo on November 19th, 2005. .22, 9mm, ,223 or .50. It doesn't matter. Just buy some ammo!

Carnival of Cordite #38

A special Veterans Day edition.

Democrats Deny Having Intelligence

Was there ever a doubt about this?

Project Valour-IT

The contest ends at midnight today. If you haven't make a donation yet - please consider doing so. As a member of Team Army I'd appreciate your support (See the Donate button Top Right). The Marines, Air Force, and Navy have their own teams as well.

To credit the Air Force
For the Army, go here. Here, here, here
For the Navy, go here.
And for the Marines, go here.

Right now the Army holds a slight lead.

Veterans Day

My dad was a Marine. He entered the Corp in 1944. He never would talk about what he saw or did. As I approached 18 he made it clear that he didn't want me to go into the Marines. For some reason I listened to him - something that was unusual at that time in my life. Instead I made plans to join the Air Force after high school. I had 2 brothers and a sister who were already in so it seemed like a good idea. For various reasons I ended up not joining. I've regretted that decision alot over the last 25+ years.

At the time the wife and I got married I worked for a hospital doing electronic maintenance. The department I worked in was run by a retired Air Force Colonel. Like most hospitals we were open on Veterans day and it wasn't a paid holiday. Except for the veterans in our department. They got the day off with pay courtesy of the Colonel. The rest of us just had to work a little harder that day. Mike Royko has it right. Veterans Day should be a day off for veterans. No one else. We didn't earn it.

So - to all the veterans out there.

Thank you

Without you, your sacrifice, your courage, and your bravery, the world would not be the same.

Gus has a few words as well

More Sony DRM inspired goodies

F-Secure has news of two more 'bots' trying to hide under the Sony DRM software.

Imagine if a worm writer figures out a way to use the cloaking technology properly and gets inside a corporate network...

Just say NO to Sony. All products.

Thursday, November 10, 2005

New Math

I was sent this at work today. Must be the same majority that believe Gore and Kerry won...

It's War

Mike Wallster does a pretty good job of defining the Democratic party with regard to the Global War on Terror.
Ipso Facto Cartoon Blog: It's War

Well done Mike!

Sony DRM a vector for a bot

F-Secure has more

Just say NO to Sony!

Wednesday, November 09, 2005

He's on a roll now

From Mark Russinovich's latest entry

    For those readers that are coming up to speed with the story, here’s a summary of important developments so far:

    The DRM software Sony has been shipping on many CDs since April is cloaked with rootkit technology:

      * Sony denies that the rootkit poses a security or reliability threat despite the obvious risks of both
      * Sony claims that users don’t care about rootkits because they don’t know what a rootkit is
      * The installation provides no way to safely uninstall the software
      * Without obtaining consent from the user Sony’s player informs Sony every time it plays a “protected” CD

    Sony has told the press that they’ve made a decloaking patch and uninstaller available to customers, however this still leaves the following problems:

      * There is no way for customers to find the patch from Sony BMG’s main web page
      * The patch decloaks in an unsafe manner that can crash Windows, despite my warning to the First 4 Internet developers
      * Access to the uninstaller is gated by two forms and an ActiveX control
      * The uninstaller is locked to a single computer, preventing deployment in a corporation

    Consumers and antivirus companies are responding:

      * F-Secure independently identified the rootkit and provides information on its site
      * Computer Associates has labeled the Sony software “spyware”
      * A lawfirm has filed a class action lawsuit on behalf of California consumers against Sony
      * ALCEI-EFI, an Italian digital-rights advocacy group, has formally asked the Italian government to investigate Sony for possible Italian law violations

Go get 'em Mark!

Still more on Sony's rootkit

Another post by Mark Russinovich. Sony still won't admit doing anything wrong.

It's spreading

Syndicated columnist Hugh Hewitt is talking about Sony's CD DRM aka 'rootkit'.

Sony - Just say No!

Tuesday, November 08, 2005

The truth in Iraq

Is making it to the Senate floor - courtesy of Michael Yon.

Monday, November 07, 2005

Carnival of Computing v1.0.4

Available to read.

OCC and Microsoft?

Not only did OCC build a bike for Microsoft they are part of a promotional video!

Sunday, November 06, 2005

Uncle Jimbo

He's filling in for Blackfive while he does some other work. Some interesting stuff to read. With any luck he'll find the God he is looking for. He's a lot closer than Jimbo thinks...

Project Valour-IT

Cox and Forkum, in my opinon, define the project.

If you haven't make a donation yet - please consider doing so. As a member of Team Army I'd appreciate your support (See the Donate button Top Right). The Marines, Air Force, and Navy have their own teams as well.

To credit the Air Force
For the Army, go here. Here, here, here
For the Navy, go here.
And for the Marines, go here.

And then he was gone

Thing1 headed back to school today. 48 hours home and then gone. The house seems strangely quiet. Buffy, our attack cocker spaniel, was scolding Thing1 as he put his gear in his car. After he left she hopped up in the rocking chair and put her back to all of us. The wife took her for a walk to cheer her up. That lasted till the walk was over. Back up in the chair with her back to us.

He'll be back at Thanksgiving. Back to 'normal' for now.

Friday, November 04, 2005

Thing1 is home!

First time since the semester started in August. The dog was dancing in circles when he got home. It's nice to have all 4 of us together.

Why'd he come home? He turns 20 on the 5th and wants his presents :-)

Carnival of Cordite #37

Is up for your reading pleasure

More on Sony DRM

Mark Russinovich has another post up. As always - great reading - if you're a geek.

I think the best way to deal with companies like Sony who do things like this to consumers is to stop supporting them. Just say NO to Sony products. CD's, DVD's, TV's, etc. Just don't buy their products. Let them know why. Contact information is in their FAQ.

For those that like writing letters:

The Sony Corporation of America
550 Madison Avenue
New York, NY 10022

Ultimate Plinker

Now this would be fun. Might be a little loud at the indoor range but the with "pinpoint accuracy at up to 150 meters" it would be so cool outdoors.

Project Valour-IT

Mike Wallster is a great cartoonist.

To credit the Air Force
For the Army, go here. Here, here, here
For the Navy, go here.
And for the Marines, go here.

As a member of Team Army I would appreciate it if you support my team. In the end I'd just be happy if you can help out.

Thursday, November 03, 2005


Halloween was a just a few days ago. Thanksgiving is still 3 weeks away. There was just a commercial for Christmas shopping on tv.


While I don't shop at Nordstroms I love their policy of not having anything related to Christmas visible in the store until after Thanksgiving. I wish all stores were like that.

Boresighting the 10/22

Since Thing1 has stated that he wants to try out the 10/22 with the dot sight on Thanksgiving break I decided that I needed to see if the sight was anywhere near sighted in.

After fitting a new screw (size M4 if anyone cares) to the mount I decided to try and bore sight the rifle. I've done this before with my bolt action rifles so it should be easy. Except for the fact that you can't see down the barrel from the receiver...

I didn't have a light source that would work with the bolt locked back so I broke the rifle down. After removing 2 screws and 3 pins the barrel and receiver are free. My little Surefire didn't fit so I tried a AA Maglite.

Not perfect but in a dark garage I was able to see the light on the wall and the dot wasn't that far off. It should be easy to get sighted in at the range.

It's a Quagmire!

IMAO has the details

Wednesday, November 02, 2005

Want to help an Angel?

Soldiers Angels is sponsoring a inter-service fund raising event. Pitting the Army vs. the Navy vs the Marines vs the Air Force, SA is asking bloggers to help them raise money for the awesome Project Valour-IT. Anyone who has been nice enough to visit knows that I support Valour-IT - not only with a link but with my wallet.

I've decided to Go Army in this event. While my Dad was a jarhead and other family members are zoomies it was BlackFive who introduced me to SA and inspired me to make my first donation to SA.

What can you do? If you can - donate. I know for some money is tight. Been there and back. Help spread the word. This is a worthy project helping America's wounded heros.

Blackfive has more.

    Update: The button is up at the page above. I've made my donation. How about you?

Tuesday, November 01, 2005

Time to boycott Sony?

The DRM used on CD's installs hidden code on your computer? Bad Sony. Their latest DVD releases use a new 'anti-piracy' scheme which may be hazardous to your computer. On mine just watching Lords of Dogtown gave my LiteOn drive a nice clicking noise when ever a disc is inserted.

Sony is now completely off my buy list. I don't care what the product is. It's easy - just three little words:

No More Sony!

    Update: F-Secure has a detection tool!

Ipso Facto on Alito

He nailed it!