August 2018

The frogs are back.  I’ve spent the last few months in a nightly battle and species-wide war with the little jerks.  We’ve reached our stride in monsoon season which is good for keeping the frogs out of the back yard.  Monsoons typically hit later in the day which gives the sun less time to evaporate the puddles so the frogs are comfortable enough by the hiking trail and don’t need to jump in my pool.

There are more this year than last year and I think that they’re getting smarter.  A few nights ago I was out looking for a few to scoop into the sky during a lightning storm.  Then I realized that these tiny, pea-brained frogs tricked me into walking around my back yard with a long metal pole in a lightning storm.

I’m not as smart as the frogs I throw into the desert.

There’s a game that just made its way to the Xbox called No Man’s Sky.  It’s been out two years and only now made its way to my ecosystem.  When I heard about it years ago I was already excited to one day buy it.  It’s fantastic and scratches a lot of the exploration itches that I have.  Dinosaurs, geology, space.  I have my complaints but they’re minor relative to what the game offers.  I can’t stop taking photos in the game.

I had to push my car through an intersection a few weeks ago while the temperature was just under 100 at 8:00 AM.  I had the help of a co-worker who gave me a jump and happened to be following me to the mechanic to get things figured out.  I put a new battery in just a few weeks prior and it turns out the alternator took a big dump.

The IMSA series is very exciting this year.  The top three teams are within a few points of each other so each race counts.  IMSA turns 50 next year and is leaving the Disney-identity-crisis FOX network (did Disney buy FOX Sports?) for the better equipped NBC Sports network.  Fortunately I get both through Sling’s basic cheap package and they each have decent apps.

I’m nearly a year into my other game, Project CARS 2.  Check out my photo album.  The randomizer has gotten a bit of use but I think it’s still a bit hidden.  I never meant for it to get “big” or make any money at all so I think that this is all that I can expect.  The game has issues which I’m confident will be addressed in due time.  I feel comfortable exploring space in the other game while I wait for better online racing.

Work has been different.  Better in most ways but very different.

I’m entertaining the idea of removing this blog entirely from the internet.  I’d like to reduce my and my family’s presence which is why I stripped this site down so much.  It’s very easy to adopt the Nihilist viewpoint and say “it doesn’t matter” but I think the passive acceptance of injustice is the worst injustice. I know that’s not a popular opinion.

I’m nearly twice eighteen and Sarah turns a massive four in just a few days.  Grandma will be out to visit and we’ll have a party with a big bouncy castle.

That means that half of my life has passed since I ended one of the worst times of my life…high school.  What a horribly traumatizing few years that was.  I still wish I would have skipped school.

I still get anxious as fall comes around.  Just thinking about going back to a classroom gives me butterflies in my stomach…and it’s been nearly twenty years.

Final Dope

Today, The Straight Dope’s Cecil Adams stated that, after 45 years, the column is going to end.  The Chicago Reader is being sold and the owners think it’s time for a change.  Read Cecil’s own words on the news.

Fighting ignorance since 1973.

The Straight Dope has been around since 1973 and has been a part of my life since the late 90’s, effectively 20 years.  I remember using the Straight Dope portal on AOL and pouring over old columns.  Most of my life, Cecil Adams has answered the unanswerable for me.  The civil, witty, and honest column has been one of those reliable parts of my life that I thought would always be there.

Times change and business is business.  The columns will be archived online and the community (of which I’m too dense to contribute) will remain.

I have a feeling that, like Mystery Science Theater 3000, this small but very dedicated base of fans will remain long after the end.  And who knows, maybe like MST3K, a well-funded Kickstarter will bring Cecil out of his cave and begin another column elsewhere.

If you’ve never heard of The Straight Dope, you owe it to yourself to at least check out the website.  Here’s a link to the Archives which includes the final question column from June 27, 2018.

Cecil Adams, Slug Signorino, and the teeming millions – thanks for everything.

Slimming Down

I’ve decided to remove a few things from this site, most noticeably the OneDrive photos link on the navigation bar which I did a few weeks ago.  I look at the odd crawlers that visit this site and it makes me uncomfortable about what is being done and how frequently.  The current plan is to keep the blog where it is but it will have less media.

I also want to reduce the amount of cookies and feelers that visitors have to deal with as I don’t like them myself.  I don’t care who you are but I don’t want to contribute to the tracking/security issues that you face.  The less cross-site stuff on my site, the less you are being stalked by large companies.  You should care about this.

This is a personal decision as I don’t make any money here nor has traffic ever been high.

I will still share images and albums from OneDrive but nothing permanently.  I’ll use links that allow me to set expiration dates.

As the world moves into more “share, like, subscribe” mentality, not only does it exhaust me, it also worries me.  Security and privacy are things we trade for convenience.  Your information is today’s oil.  It shouldn’t be given away and I don’t want to contribute.

A cookie or two gets set on this page by WordPress but it is easily blocked with almost any ad blocker.  I don’t know how to prevent it from being set but feel free to block anything this site tries to set on your own computer.  I don’t care who you are and I don’t need statistics.

If you have questions, leave a (mostly) anonymous comment.  I have a feeling most people reading won’t care but these things are important to our future.