Apr 30, 2009

Belly Time

Wolowitz, one of our new kittens, is a strange dude in just so many ways. He coos like a pigeon, he needs to find a way to get on top of the highest thing in every room, he loves an empty box more than any living thing should love any inanimate thing and he likes to hide in our bathroom sink. It's a white sink and he is mostly black/dark brown. He's pretty easy to spot.

But the oddest thing that he does is his belly time.

When he is in the mood for some lovin', he will jump up on the bed or the couch or wherever and start purring and preening for some petting. Then he will lay down, usually just out of reach so that he has to start the process all over again. Then he rolls onto his back and spreads his rear legs wide while he allows us to scratch his belly. Right above his hey nonny nonny. He will stay in this position for hours as he usually falls asleep during the process. And Wolowitz sleeps like the dead. It's incredible.

I've never had a cat before that enjoys his/her belly rubbed like this. They usually let you do it for a moment or so and then they push your hand away with their back paws. But this guy? He fucking loves it.

It's his special belly time.

PS - I understand that this post is in serious need of a kitty pic of Wolowitz in his belly time pose, but we have yet to capture it on film. Deal with it, bitches!


Note: Remember to play the Bug-Eyed Trivia Challenge every day. I'll scratch your belly if you do.

Apr 29, 2009

Tuesday Taco Night

I think I've finally kicked my cold. Crossing my fingers. So to semi-celebrate I ran out to the market late this afternoon for all the fixings for Tuesday Taco Night.

It's an arbitrary assignment, this Tuesday of Tacos. But we did tacos last Tuesday night and we figured what the hell...let's make it a thing. I kinda like the sound of it too. Tuesday Taco Night.

I made some regular hard-shelled beef tacos and some chipotle pork tacos in jalapeno-flavored soft tortillas. Yeah, those were pretty fucking good if you ask me. Some cheese, some diced tomatoes and green chilies, some sour cream, some lettuce and green salsa. Yum. This stuff is pretty good too.

The secret with hard-shelled tacos, in case you were wondering, is to stuff the taco shell with meat (keep it clean folks) prior to heating them up in the oven. That way the juice/grease from the meat softens the shell a bit on the bottom and it keeps the taco together while you are eating it. Instead of shattering upon first bite.

You are most welcome.

Note: Remember to play the Bug-Eyed Trivia Challenge every day. Todos los niños están haciendo frío que.

Apr 28, 2009

Blogger in Draft

Uh oh. Not sure I'm gonna like this.

Is anyone else using "Blogger in Draft" out there besides Steph?

Hmm.  Putting an image in the middle of a post is now easier, but they took away that funcionality from their HTML box.  I kinda liked that.  And I don't see how you can align the image to the left or the right of a paragraph or re-size it.  Wait...I see how you can resize it now.  You have to click on the image in the Compose box.  Still don't know how to change the alignment easily.

What else?  They have an Undo feature now.  That's good.  I don't see a spell check button, though.  Where the hell is that?  How am I supposed to spell "parallel" correctly? OK, so they underline the mis-spelled word in red, but still.  Everything else seems about the same.  I just don't know why the took stuff away from the HTML editor.

What do you Blogspot folks think?


Note: Remember to play the Bug-Eyed Trivia Challenge every day. All the Blogidiots are doing it.

Apr 27, 2009

Egg Drop Wonton Soup

Every time I am sick with a cold or the flu, something I am dealing with right now, I crave soup.

Egg Drop Wonton soup, to be specific. I like to mix in about a tablespoon of that hot mustard that Chinese restaurants make and cover it with some of those crispy noodles they give you. Mmmm.

Yet, when I look at it the above picture it kinda makes my stomach roll.

What do you crave when you are sick?


Note: Remember to play the Bug-Eyed Trivia Challenge every day. All the sick kids are doing it.

Apr 25, 2009

Protest this

A couple of protests gone wrong here.

Rick Monday Saves the Flag

I'm no big flag waver, but I thought this was pretty cool. I don't have a huge problem with anyone protesting the policies of our country by burning our flag. I don't agree with it and I don't want to see it, but I believe in the right to do it. Yes, it's a symbol of our nation and all...but it's just a piece of cloth. Just don't interrupt a baseball game to do it. That shit is unforgivable.

Naked Wizard Gets Tased

And I'm not going to post the actual video to this story here. Way too much (or too little - wtf is going on with his button dick?) penis going on there. But follow that link to see video of a "wizard" at Coachella get tased when he refuses to put his clothes back on. My take? Who cares if this idiot wanted to be naked. And I think three strong cops could have cuffed him and hauled him away without tasing him. Then again, maybe he was using his wizard powers to augment his strength. I dunno.

Note: Remember to play the Bug-Eyed Trivia Challenge every day. All the naked wizards are doing it.

Apr 24, 2009

Music Video Fridays - the Ink Spots

OK, this is gonna get a little weird.

Do any of you remember this Chanel No 5 commercial from the late 70's/early 80's?

The song in the commercial is "I Don't Want to Set the World on Fire" by the Ink Spots. Or so says the almighty Wikipedia. I dunno though. The vocals sound a bit different, maybe a bit of a higher tone from the version I remember. And a more distinct vibrato that I don't recall. Check out this version from a trailer for Fallout 3 (a video game)*.

Wikipedia says it is the same 1941 cover of the song by the Ink Spots, but they sound very different to me. What do you think? Could just be a recording issue. The reason why this came up was because Gia has it on her iPod. We were listening to it in the car the other day and I immediately thought it was from Stanley Kubrick's version of The Shining. It wasn't, but it is strangely evocative of that film. Then I remembered the Chanel No 5 commercial.

Anyway, here is another one from the great Ink Spots. "If I Didn't Care" with Bill Kenny singing lead.

*I couldn't find the original song in a video anywhere. Sucks.


Note: Remember to play the Bug-Eyed Trivia Challenge every day. All the Ink Spots are doing it.

Apr 23, 2009

Dude...you smell

In another life, I was a manager at a financial services company responsible for a an entire staff of accountants, data processors, AR/AP clerks and bookkeepers. Technically only the five financial reporting accountants reported directly to me, but as a manager I was responsible for the entire department at times.

One of those times was one of the worst days of my life.

One of the women in the department came into my office one day. She sat down and told me that I had to talk to one of the guys who sat near her. I had to talk to him about his body odor. She said it was so bad that she had a difficult time getting through the day. I told her that I would have a word with him.

But I didn't. Not yet.

Then another person came in with the same story. Then another. Then another. In total, five people came in to tell me about this guy's stench. I guess I had to say something, right?

So I went to our Human Resources Department to talk to our HR Manager. Now, you know how Michael hates Toby on The Office? That's the kind of hate I had for this woman, but even more so. She was useless. She was stupid. She was literally the worst person I have ever met on Earth. She used to go into our Payroll Department and complain to the ladies about her vaginitis. I don't even know what that it, but it sounds pretty bad. Certainly not anything that should be discussed at the workplace.

So, aghast at the possibility that I had to tell this guy that he reeked, I went to this fucking awful person for advice. Maybe she could have a chat with him instead. Hey, that sounds like a great idea! But no. As I said, she was useless. She told me to ask him if he showered in the morning. If he said "yes", then I was supposed to ask him if he used soap.

Really? That's your advice? Crap!

So I put it off as long as I could. I waited until the end of the day and I asked him to stick around for a few minutes after work. Told him that I had a report I needed his help on. Ugh.

So he comes in and I ask him to close the door. I just blurted it out. Told him that I've had a few complaints about his body odor. He was mortified. I mean he was fucking crushed. He asked if it was just one or two people and I had to tell him that it was more than that. He couldn't believe it. Just sat there in stunned silence.

I couldn't believe this was happening. That's when I heard myself ask him if he showered in the morning. Of course he showered in the morning. He sat there with his head in his hands. Totally embarrassed that his co-workers told me he smelled.

Then I asked him if he used soap.

I just wanted to die. I'm sure he would have been happy to join me on that ride. He said he would take care of it and he excused himself. I immediately left and headed to a local pub to try to forget the incident. I never said anything to him again about our meeting, and he never did either.

But about a week later I came into work and there was a card in an envelope on my desk. It was a Thank You card from the five employees who asked me speak with their smelly co-worker. They knew how mortified I was to have to tell this guy that he smelled bad, so they just wanted me to know that he no longer reeked. It didn't make me feel any better. I would have preferred that they just lived with the stench and left me out of it.

I shredded that card right away and tried to put it all behind me. Apparently, I haven't.

What's the worst conversation you ever had with an employee/co-worker? (UPDATE - besides having to fire them, of course. That's always awful - Earl)


Note: Remember to play the Bug-Eyed Trivia Challenge every day. All the smelly kids are doing it.

Apr 22, 2009

What We Want

If you've read this space with any frequency at all in the past, then you probably know that baseball is a huge part of my life and it is my first and only religion. Gia and I are both die-hard Yankee fans from as far back as either of us can remember. I started rooting for them in 1973 to piss off the rest of my family who were Mets fans. Gia...well, Gia was born a Yankee. Literally. Her father was signed by the Yankees right out of High School in the early 60's and her parents had her while he was playing for one of their minor league teams.

Unfortunately he blew out his shoulder and he never got to play for the big league squad. But he pitched in Yankee Stadium, shared clubhouses with the likes of Mickey Mantle, Whitey Ford and Roger Maris, met Joe DiMaggio, roomed with Roy White and he pitched in a minor-league All-Star Game. Sounds pretty fucking great to me.

Anyway, that's not what this post is really about.

I've grown disgusted with the spending going on with baseball and with the Yankees, in particular. I know that the revenues are there, but it seems that the only ones who are getting screwed by the high costs are the fans. It is way too expensive to enjoy a day at the ballpark nowadays. I used to go to 30-40 games a year at the Stadium. Sure, a lot of times I had free tix from work, but I still would eagerly await the day that tickets would go on sale so I could pick a dozen or so games that I really wanted to see. In the past few years I have only been to a handful of games, yet I've tried to buy tickets for a bunch of games this year only to be denied by high costs and unfortunate ticket selling policies on the part of the Yankees.

Anyway, that's not what this post is really about either.

This is what this post is about.

Isotopes Park, Albuquerque NM*

Gia and I want to move to a small town that supports a minor-league team. Some town that loves their minor-leaguers and comes out every night to see them play. Someplace warm and lazy where life doesn't move very fast at all. We want to drink cold beers on a porch swing as we wait for game time to approach. We want to casually stroll into town where a small ballpark filled with green grass and brown dirt awaits us.

We want to keep score and root for the home team. We want to see a fresh-faced phenom out of high school or college learn his craft as he pitches against a veteran trying to get back to the Show. We want to see kids with their mothers and fathers and grandparents eating popcorn and cotton candy and hot dogs until they pass out in their seats. We want to see the team mascot do silly things in between innings to entertain us. We want to fall in love with the game and each other all over again.

We want to sing "Take Me Out to the Ballgame" during the 7th inning stretch.

And we want to mean it.

UPDATE - Rob Neyer over at ESPN just wrote about the economy and its' effects on major-league and minor-league attendance this year. Kinda interesting.

*We don't necessarily want to move to New Mexico. I picked a picture of this park because it has been receiving high praise since it opened back in 2004. And I know that I have minor-league options close to home. But the LI Ducks play an awful brand of baseball and we were looking for something a bit more small-townish than Coney Island, Staten Island or Trenton. You dig?


Note: Remember to play the Bug-Eyed Trivia Challenge every day. Just take it easy, ok?.

Apr 21, 2009

N.F.B. (Stellubnikufesin)

It's been an interesting day. Rainy, but interesting. Let's see what else happened on Monday, shall we?
  • Finally! Something interesting about the whole Twilight phenomena. Frankly, this makes more sense than "seeing it all in a dream" as she claims, but it's still probably not true. I'm pretty sure that Mormons consider plagiarism to be a mortal sin. That and polygamy.
  • Speaking of, ahem, literature...Dan Brown announced that the sequel to "The Da Vinci Code" will be called "The Lost Symbol" and I assume that it is going to have something to do with this guy.
  • Gia has had a cold for the past three days. Guess what I got today? Ain't love grand?
  • Have you ever wondered what it looks like if you got to see yourself sneezing in slow motion? You have? Fucking freaks!
  • I'm probably just as sick of the Lolcats ripoffs as anyone. But this one is almost offensive enough to make me laugh. Almost.
  • Kim Kardashian (I always think of Star Trek when I see her name) should probably get one of her groupie friends to put some sunscreen on her face. Or, ya know...wake her up when she falls asleep on a beach in Mexico.
  • What exactly is opposite marriage? Isn't that, um, like being single or something? But her teeth sure look nice. Awwwwwkward.
Gonna go bang my head against the wall now.

Hat tip to Mahalo, Gorilla Mask, What Would Tyler Durden Do? and Warming Glow for all the content you see above. Hey...I'm sick, ok?


Note: Remember to play the Bug-Eyed Trivia Challenge every day. But use a hand sanitizer. My germs are all over those bad boys.

Apr 20, 2009

Hot, hot, hot

So remember how we adopted those kittens a few months ago? Well, we had Wolowitz fixed a while ago when he needed x-rays. No reason to put him under for two seperate visits, right? We waited on Gogo because the Vet said there was no rush. Just make sure to do it at or around the six-month mark.

Well, we think she is around 20 weeks old right now. That would put her between four and five months old. I made an appointment for this coming Thursday for her "procedure". Felt it was about time.

So, of course, she went into heat over the weekend. She is coo-ing and warbling and acting all kinds of weird the past few days. Fucking figures. Now we have to wait a couple of weeks, we think. Does anyone have any experience with female kittens going into heat? I'm calling the vet tomorrow for advice.

So in Gog's honor, here is The Cure. with "Hot Hot Hot". Talk about your weird cooing and warbling.


Note: Remember to play the Bug-Eyed Trivia Challenge every day. All the kittens in heat are doing it.

Apr 17, 2009

Music Video Fridays - silly edition

Every once in a while you just need the silly. You know what I mean? Of course you do. Let's get silly.

I think just about everyone I know loved There's Something About Mary, and we all loved the ending credits montage of The Foundations singing "Build Me Up Buttercup" nearly as much. I don't think I'm the first guy who fell a little in love with Sarah Silverman because of her role in this film and her sad lip syncing of "...and you never call baby when you say you will" in the video here. Sigh. Don't worry Sarah. Daddy's here.

I posted this spoofed version of Danzig's "Mother" a while ago, but it always worth a repeat viewing. I mean the original was pretty funny anyways because of how serious the diminutive Glenn Danzig takes himself. This, however, takes it to eleven.

The next piece of silliness is a music video that actually killed a rock star's career. No one knows what Billy Squier was thinking when he made the video for "Rock Me Tonite", but 20 years later I think we can all agree that it is awesome with a capital A. Wait...I meant awful with a capital A. Same thing. Check out his shirt-ripping move at the 1:30 mark. Genius. I posted this one before as well, about a year ago. With some bonus stories of Slyde in Key West. It was a whole gay thing. Check it out.

That's all I can take for tonight. My sides are still aching from that last one.

Ohhhh, Billlllyyyyyy!!

PS - I've already posted 2 out of these 3 videos? For shame on me. New content next week. That is my pledge - Earl


Note: Remember to play the Bug-Eyed Trivia Challenge every day. All the silly folk are doing it.

Apr 16, 2009

We sing sin

We real cool. We
Left school. We

Lurk late. We
Strike straight. We

Sing sin. We
Thin gin. We

Jazz June. We
Die soon.

Gwendolyn Brooks (1917-2000)

According to interviews with Ms. Brooks, the last "we" in most of the lines is supposed to be said softly. As if the protagonists in the poem are pondering the validity of their own existence.

When I was in college back in the mid-late 80's, I was forced by an evil professor to attend a reading by Pulitzer Prize-winning poet Gwendolyn Brooks. What I knew about poetry back then is pretty much what I know now. It's an art form that has escaped me. That doesn't mean that I have, at times, been blown away by it.

That night in an auditoreum with about 250 students, many of whom probably wished they were any where else, was one of those times. I remember a friend of mine laughing at the poem above as read by Ms. Brooks. "How hard is it to come up with that?" he laughed. But he wasn't seeing it. He wasn't seeing the pain, the passion, and ultimately the futility of it all. I remember looking at this woman's face as she spoke. I remember thinking about how much it meant to her, and how much it must have meant to others.

And then the next day I forgot about Gwendolyn Brooks.

But every once in a while her words come to me while driving or watching a film or dreaming. This morning was one of those times. I awoke from a dream where I was reciting the poem to a group of students. Maybe most of them didn't pay attention either. I don't know. I woke up pretty quickly.

I wonder why some things stick with us. Maybe pondering a bit of my own existence every now and again. I dunno.

Weird Update: One of my favorite writers, Joe Posnanski, wrote about poetry on his blog a little while ago. It's the only time I can recall him ever writing about poetry. At least since I've been reading his blog. Must be something in the wind today.


Note: Remember to play the Bug-Eyed Trivia Challenge every day. We die soon.

Apr 15, 2009

Didn't see that coming

You ever find yourself rooting for the underdog? Do yourself a favor and watch this video from this past weekend's "Britain's Got Talent". It's the feel-good story of the week.

I love how the producers of the show portray her as one of the retarded idiots that everyone gets to make fun of initially. Then she starts to sing and she even makes Simon Cowell look human. For a little while.

Hat tip to Warming Glow for posting this yesterday so I could post it today. Because that, my friends, is how the Internets works.


Note: Remember to play the Bug-Eyed Trivia Challenge every day. All the retarded idiots are doing it.

Apr 14, 2009

Do over


A fucked up.


(Not to mention Phil Spector found guilty of murder, Mel Gibson getting divorced and a passenger successfully landing an aircraft after the pilot died in flight.)


Note: Remember to play the Bug-Eyed Trivia Challenge every day. Feh.

Apr 13, 2009

Double You!

Today's post is brought to you by the letter W.

I couldn't sleep the other night. And you know what questions were banging around my head? "Why did someone come up with a letter that was a double U, but looked like a double V? I mean, was there a huge ancient preponderance of words that included a UU or a VV in them somewhere that a new letter had to be invented?"


That is what I was thinking about while lying awake. I've never claimed to be the most exciting egg in the basket. So I did a little investigating thanks to the Wikipedia.

Some W fun facts:
  • The earliest form of the letter W was a doubled V used in Old English around the 7th century. It wasn't very popular at first. Kind of the shy kid in the class. But after the Norman Conquest it took off. Something to do with William the Conqueror, perhaps?
  • In Finland, they hate the letter W. They don't include it in their alphabet as they consider it to be a variant of the letter V. Snooty Finnish folks. The Danes and the Swedes both used to ignore the mighty W, but each recently officially acknowledged it as an official letter. Can you imagine a more boring legislative session? And yet here I blog about it. Go figure.
  • It's the only letter in the English alphabet with more than one syllable.
  • The abbreviation for World Wide Web actually has three times as many syllables as the phrase itself when spoken aloud. That shit is crazy, yo!
  • The binary code for a capital W is 01010111 which, of course, translates to the ASCII code of 87. But you knew that.
  • The representation in the NATO phonetic alphabet for W is Whiskey. Damn...I knew I liked this letter!
And so on.

But honestly, the only real reason for this post was to inform you of a new film review over on the old MovieGrenade. Dudes...aliens and stuff were in it.

Note: Remember to play the Bug-Eyed Trivia Challenge every day. Did you really make it all the way through a post about the letter W? Wow! I'm impressed.

Apr 11, 2009


I just might have to hunt some metal at FOX if tonight's episode of Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles is the last one we see. The season (series?) finale was just so awesome in so many ways.

And Shirley Manson's character in one episode went from someone that I couldn't wait to see offed to someone I need to know everything about now. And Cromartie/John Henry...well, I didn't see THAT coming! I guess I should have though. Must be slacking.

This sucks.


Note: Remember to play the Bug-Eyed Trivia Challenge every day. All the fucking metal are doing it.

Apr 10, 2009

Baseball Season

I find it difficult to blog when baseball season starts. This year is worse because I joined a couple of fantasy baseball leagues, something I haven't done in a few years. It's a little overwhelming to get back into it all.

Anyway, here are some of my favorite baseball sites for anyone that cares:
  • Baseball Reference - Probably the most useful site on the Web for baseball statistics and analysis. Wanna know what happened in the bottom of the 7th in the 3rd game of the 1994 World Series? Ha. Trick question. There was no World Series in 1994. But if there was, you could find out about it here.
  • The LoHud Yankees Blog - LoHud refers to the Lower Hudson Valley here in New York State. This blog, by Peter Abraham, probably will only interest the Yankee fans out there. You mean you aren't Yankee fans? Fuckers!
  • Joe Posnanski - I mentioned this one the other day. Great writer! And he likes to mix in a whole range of topics to go along with the baseball stuff. Just a great site.
  • Bugs & Cranks - I've got a problem with one of the writers on this site, but generally it is a nice, light-hearted look at the world of baseball from a whole gaggle of different viewpoint. Oh, and that writer that I dislike? He emailed me an RSS feed that includes everything on the B&C site except for the stuff he writes. I thought that was decent of him. I still won't read his crap though.
  • MLB Trade Rumors - Exactly what the title says, and more! This site kept my baseball soul alive during the off season.
  • Sweet Spot - Senior baseball writer for ESPN.com, Rob Neyer now has a blog of his own on the site. I've been reading Neyer for just about as long as he has been on ESPN. Always great stuff.
There are more, but those are some of my favorites. If you are a baseball nut like me then you probably already read some or all of them. If you aren't a baseball nut like me then you probably didn't make it this far into the post. If you are a someplace in between then give them a look see.


Note: Remember to play the Bug-Eyed Trivia Challenge every day. All the Hall of Famers are doing it.

Apr 9, 2009

You know how I love bacon?

Well, I think I have to draw the line here.

It started out as an April Fool's joke. But they got a tremendous response from it, especially from folks offering their services as beta testers. Now these dudes are actually thinking about producing this.

I've been able to separate my food urges and my sexual urges so far in life. I'd hate to start combining them now.

Or would I?

UPDATE - New MMA awfulness over at MovieGrenade! Ignore it like you ignore your in-laws. How do you like them apples, Faiqa?


Note: Remember to play the Bug-Eyed Trivia Challenge every day. Do you smell that? Smells like bacon!

Apr 8, 2009

Hey, now!

I've got 116 subscriptions in my feed reader. I just checked.

All kinds of good stuff. Seventy or so personal blogs. A bunch of sports sites, mostly baseball. Some stuff for politics. Some stuff for films. A bunch of beer review sites. There is even a site on there that only discusses the future of the newspaper business. Lots of different sites.

But there are two subscriptions that pop up that never fail to surprise me. Mostly because I forget they are in there some times. I have them filed under a folder called "Sex".

The first is the personal blog of porn star Joanna Angel. I don't believe I've ever seen one of her movies, but I could be wrong. She a cute little tattooed freak and she is funny and intelligent. I tend to look past her industry and focus on the extreme fun she is having with life on an everyday basis. Think what you will about porn, but she seems to have her priorities straight.

The second is from columnist, editor, sex chronicler and long-time crush Violet Blue. I think hers may have been the very first blog I habitually would read on the Web. I think she also recommended Joanna Angel's blog as well. She is smart and funny and cute as hell. And she's a tech geek so she's very cool.

The shock value comes from the fact that both of these blogs are often NSFW. I'll wake up and start scrolling through the new posts that popped up in my feed reader since the day before. Personal blog, personal blog, baseball post, beer post, personal blog, beer post, personal blog, personal blog, something about politics, etc...

When all of a sudden...wham! There's a pretty lady using a vegetable in an interesting way. Or wham! There's a video of a Japanese hardcore sex competition with all the naughty bits pixeled out. Or wham! Nekkid pics from the Gay Porn Awards. Stuff like that last one usually have me scrolling down faster than usual. And no. "Scrolling down" isn't a euphemism for anything masturbatory. Some of you might dig gay porn. I'm not hear to judge you. Well, I am here to judge some of you. You know who you are.

Anywho, it got me to wondering. Do we all have stuff like this on our feed readers? How about you? Do you have something that occasionally shocks you for a moment on your feed reader when it, um, pops up?

I mean, besides Adam's balls.


Note: Remember to play the Bug-Eyed Trivia Challenge every day. Whoops! Look at that!.

Apr 7, 2009

Pick me, Monty!

Door Number Three
By: Jimmy Buffett, Steve Goodman - 1974

Oh I took a wrong turn, it was the right turn
My turn to have me a ball
Boys at the shop told me just where to stop
If I wanted to play for it all
I didn't know I'd find her on daytime TV
My whole world lies waiting behind door number three

I chose my apparel, I wore a beer barrel
And they rolled me to the very first row
I held a big sign that said, "Kiss me I'm a baker
And Monty I sure need the dough"
Then I grabbed that sucker by the throat until he called on me
'Cause my whole world lies waiting behind door number three

And I don't want what Jay's got on his table
Or the box Carol Merrill points to on the floor
No I'll hold out just as long as I am able
Or until I can unlock that lucky door
Well, she's no big deal to most folk
But she's everything to me
'Cause my whole world lies waiting behind door number three

Oh Monty, Monty, Monty, I am walkin' down your hall
Got beat, lost my seat, but I'm not a man to crawl
Though I didn't get rich, you son of a bitch
I'll be back just wait and see
'Cause my whole world lies waiting behind door number three
Yes my whole world lies waiting behind door number three

Jimmy Buffett knew what he was talking about back in 1974. Who didn't love "Let's Make a Deal" and Monty Hall? That show was great and it hearkens back to an era when times were much simpler.

Joe Posnanski, just about my favorite sports writer ever*, has recently re-discovered a math probability problem that references that great show. I don't know if any of you out there are math geeks. Hell, I'm not even sure I am one although I was basically a Mathematics major in college**. But I've always liked this question. Even if my heart doesn't truly believe what my brain is telling me.

Here is the gist:

You are on a game show and participating in the final showdown. You are given a choice of three doors. Behind one of the doors is a grand prize. Behind the other two doors are goats. So you pick a door, let's say Door #1. The host, Monty, knows what is behind each door. He picks one of the other two doors, a door he knows has a goat behind it. Let's say Door #3. So now he offers you the choice of keeping your original choice or switching to Door #2. What do you think? Is it to your benefit to switch or should you keep your original choice?

Most people would say it doesn't matter. There are two doors left and one of them has the grand prize. 50/50 chance. Right?

Wrong. If you switch doors you now have a 2 in 3 chance of getting the grand prize. Confused? Yeah, a lot of folks are.

The simplest way to explain it is that before Monty revealed the three doors, your chances were 1/3. Follow me? The opposite of that would be picking the other two doors collectively and your chances would be 2/3. Those probabilities don't change just because Monty revealed one of the goats. Your original choice is still 1/3, but by switching your choice you move up to 2/3. Because it really doesn't matter that he revealed one of the goats. Get it?

Yeah, I know. Doesn't seem to make sense. But it works. The catch in this question is that Monty knows where the grand prize is. He is trying to trick you by revealing one of the goats. If he never revealed anything your chance would remain 1/3. Just as if you originally only had 2 choices, your probability would be 1/2. But that isn't the case. The man is messing with you.

My heart tells me that it is two separate problems and that is where I think most folks go wrong. "I'm given a choice between three doors, my probability is 1/3. If I am then given a choice between two doors then my probability goes up to 1/2. Right?" But it isn't two separate problems. It is one problem with a devil whispering in your ear.

Don't believe me? Someone developed a simple simulation** to prove the point. Play it for a while and you will see that the chances of getting the grand prize go up drastically if you change your original pick. The heart doesn't want to believe it, but the logic behind it is true.

*His blog isn't totally about sports. You should check it out.

**I was actually a Comp Sci guy in college, but my major required almost as much Math as someone studying to be a mathematician.

***For some reason it doesn't work for me in Firefox. In fact, it locks it up. Works fine in IE, though. Dunno why. Something about the applet, I guess.


Note: Remember to play the Bug-Eyed Trivia Challenge every day. The answer is, of course, behind door number three.

Apr 6, 2009

Say Ohai to Avery

I know I was just complaining about the new kittens yesterday. Dumping water on the head happens, yo! Well, we aren't done with expanding the feline portion of our family. Meet Avery. He is a 9 week old Ragamuffin kitten who will be taking a long flight up from Georgia on May 9th to join us. Then that's it! We're done with cats. For a while.

Here's what happened. Gia was heartbroken when Sydney passed. In her grief, all she could do was look at kittens on Ragamuffin breeder sites. Problem was there are none local. Used to be, but for some reason there aren't anymore. She got Syd from a breeder in Connecticut, but they have since stopped breeding. So she found this one breeder she really liked and started communicating with her by email. Told her about Syd, shared some pics and some tears and she let us know about a few litters that she was expecting soon. A deposit was sent and Avery was born 9 weeks ago.

He is an only kitten. Huh? That sounds weird. What I meant to say is he was the only kitten in his litter. His mom was what the breeder affectionately called a "roller" meaning she wasn't fond of the feline sex act. Hard to breed. Avery is her last kitten as she is now officially retired. But another one of her cats had a full litter the week before so Avery has had plenty of playmates from the get go.

He is going to gradually add some color to the white, and you can see glimpses of it in the picture below. Maybe some champagne streaks to go with the white. However he turns out we are getting constant updates from the breeder about what a great cat he is. I wondered if it was part of the sales pitch, but we have already purchased him so she's got nothing to gain by exaggerating. We hope.

So why did we get the other kittens when we knew we'd be getting a new Rag in a few months? Well, karma I guess. When I took Syd to the Vet after he passed our two kittens (Wolowitz and Gogo) were there waiting to be adopted. And we were a little guilty to buy a new cat when there are so many waiting to be adopted at shelters. So we appeased our guilt with the twins and they are awesome! I have to download new pics of them from our camera later to show you. The distinct personalities on these guys crack us up. Gogo is becoming very attached to Gia and Sammi (our eldest cat). Wolowitz, however, is my guy. Especially while I am on the computer. I am alternately scratching his belly and typing this post right now. Everything takes a bit longer when he decides he needs to be stroked.

Kinda like me in a way.


Note: Remember to play the Bug-Eyed Trivia Challenge every day. All the baby Ragamuffins are doing it.

Apr 5, 2009

Twice now

I like to sleep with a large cup of water near me because I often wake up thirsty in the middle of the night.

The new kittens see this as an opportunity to dump said cup of water on my head while I am sleeping.


I think twice is enough. Guess I'll have to head to the kitchen if I want a drink. Fucking cats.


Note: Remember to play the Bug-Eyed Trivia Challenge every day. All the crazy kittens are doing it.

Apr 3, 2009


Well, eventually I was gonna compile this myself. But these cats got to it first.

The Baconcyclopedia: The Ultimate Bacon Reference of Baconic Proportions

Just goes to show ya. All of the really good ideas are taken.


Note: Remember to play the Bug-Eyed Trivia Challenge every day. All the sizzling, smoky kids are doing it.

Apr 2, 2009

Låt den rätte komma in

There are some films that come into your life like a cool summer breeze. They are warm and wonderful and they make you feel alive ever so briefly. And then they are gone. And the memory of it follows soon after.

Then there are films that haunt you like a ghostly winter chill. Always tugging at the dark recesses of your soul. Something about them makes you want to stop and think about what it all meant, or read about it, or shut it out while you cower under the blankets in the middle of the night. Praying it will all go away.

Let the Right One In is a prime example of the latter.

On the surface it can be called a "coming of age" film or a "romance" or a "vampire" film, but it manages to transcend all of those genres. It truly is one of the more unique films I have seen in quite a long time.

The basic premise revolves around the budding friendship between a 12 year-old classic underdog and bully-bait named Oskar and his new neighbor. A young girl his own age named Eli. She is, to put it mildly, different. There is an instant and sad attraction between the two. He spends much of his time alone, pretending to battle his bully demons with a knife. She only comes out at night, dispensing wisdom far beyond her years on how he should deal with his problems. A bond is formed as only 12 year-olds can form them.

But, as she states more than once, Eli isn't a girl. She is a vampire. Living with her handler (who acts as a sort of father figure) in an apartment building like an exchange student with an aversion to sunlight. The dreariness of the situation is a living, breathing thing to the viewer. Especially as the film is set in the cold and dark winter of Scandinavia. Everything about the film is bleak. The weather, Oskar's school, the apartment complex, his torment at the hands of the sadistic bullies, poor Eli's existence...everything. Ingmar Bergman would have been proud of the overall aesthetic of this film. It was that bleak.

The filmmaker* also took some liberties with the mythos surrounding vampires. One that I found fascinating was his take on the vampire invitation. Believe me when I say that you have never seen something like this in a vampire film before. And since it involves an innocent looking young girl it makes it even creepier. Another shock was a scene that might normally raise a chuckle in a coming of age film. Oskar gets a glimpse of young Eli changing her clothes and what might have been a titillating moment for an inquisitive young boy on his way to manhood instead becomes a dark glimpse of Eli's deeper secret. Something truly too awful to contemplate.

Even if you don't enjoy a good vampire flick I would still recommend this one to just about anyone. Watch it in the original Swedish with English subtitles. The main characters aren't very chatty so it shouldn't be too much of an issue for those of you who hate subtitles. It's bleak, it's dark, it's triumphant (in a way), it's thought provoking. And it succeeds in haunting you. Which is exactly what I look for in a film. Especially a vampire film.

*I don't know if this was his choice or if it came from the author of the book. From reading the message boards there are some significant differences between the two although most reviewers seem to enjoy both.


Note: Remember to play the Bug-Eyed Trivia Challenge every day. All the vampire kids are doing it.

Apr 1, 2009

Conficker? I barely knew her!

Happy April Fool's Day, y'all!

PS - Congrats to Limpy for finally taking down the champ and winning the March trivia contest. I had a commanding lead going into the last couple of days, but Limpy came on with back to back daily wins to end the month and take the title. Let's all give a holla his way. New quiz starts today! - Earl

Note: Remember to play the Bug-Eyed Trivia Challenge every day. Let's hope this virus doesn't infect a$l o^ o!r c@m*)te#s 22d0y. 0h c#@p!