Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Sunset Over PPG

The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, One of America's Great Newspapers, notes this photo of PPG Place as a sunrise. But it looks like a sunset if you work for PPG.

Student Loan Update

Hopefully, under President Obama, the student loan situation will soon improve from its current state:

Today's Oneword - Loan

I need a loan. I also need the means to pay it back. Which means I need to work harder. Which means I'll have less time to enjoy what I want to do with the loan. Which means I don't really need the loan. Oh, never mind. I'll just work on paying off the loans I already have. And see about refinancing them at a lower rate.

Monday, December 29, 2008

NO AIRCRAFT PARKING at Houghton County Memorial Airport

We recently traveled to Isle Royale National Park, flying to Houghton County Memorial Airport in Hancock, Michigan. The picture below was taken upon our arrival.

Be sure to check the zoomed image:

"NO AIRCRAFT PARKING". I wonder where the aircraft have to go if they're staying overnight!

Today's Oneword - Gravel

This time of year I'm usually fighting a cold and my voice is kind of gravelly, which is bad since I like to sing. But my son found this supplement that helps. It was developed by a second grade teacher. I'm not sure how that helps sell the stuff, though.

I Am 32% Abnormal

You Are 32% Abnormal

You are at medium risk for being a psychopath. It is somewhat likely that you have no soul.

You are at low risk for having a borderline personality. It is unlikely that you are a chaotic mess.

You are at low risk for having a narcissistic personality. It is unlikely that you are in love with your own reflection.

You are at high risk for having a social phobia. It is very likely that you feel most comfortable in your mom's basement.

You are at low risk for obsessive compulsive disorder. It is unlikely that you are addicted to hand sanitizer.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Today's Oneword - Circles

I felt like I was going around in circles while Christmas shopping today. The circles under my eyes are evidence. Tonight I go to the funeral home to see someone who has completed the circle of life.

Monday, December 22, 2008

Today's Oneword - Solstice

Today's the winter solstice, and it's cold, and maybe it froze my brain because I had to look up at the word to ensure that I'd spelled "solstice" correctly. We'll see what happens when we have the summer solstice.

(As an aside - when I googled for a solstice image, almost all of the hits were of some car! Thankfully I didn't see a single Oneword entry relating to a car.)

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Today's Oneword - Broken

The economy is broken. Band-aids are being applied but the doctor has not been invited to provide a diagnosis. Good thing, because it would be ignored.

The Snow Test Says I'm Independent

Your Snow Test Says You're Independent

You feel like something good will happen to you in the next few weeks.

You love to work, especially when work is creative. You have the makings of a successful artist.

You are an independent, individualistic person. You thrive when you're doing your own thing.

Your biggest worry in life is your family. You stay up at night thinking about them.

When it comes time to relax, you have difficulty relaxing. You are a bit high strung.

The Snow Test

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Friday, December 19, 2008

Christmas Food Quiz - I Am A Gingerbread House

You Are a Gingerbread House

A little spicy and a little sweet, anyone
would like to be lost in the woods with you.

What Holiday Food Are You?

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My Christmas is Classic

Your Christmas is Classic

Your wish for the New Year is more happiness.

For you, Christmas is a spiritual holiday. You can't separate it from your beliefs.

You are patient when it comes to Christmas. You don't celebrate too early, and you don't like seeing holiday decorations in October.

You like to have an authentic, traditional Christmas. Doing it the old fashioned way is important to you.

You like to celebrate Christmas your own way, and you don't like to have to compromise.

You are too busy to really get into Christmas, but you try to do a little to celebrate.

You like giving to your friends and family during Christmas. You focus on the people you're close to.

What Does Your Christmas Say About You?

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YIKES! My Christmas Is Most Like The Movie "A Very Brady Christmas"

Your Christmas is Most Like: A Very Brady Christmas

For you, it's all about sharing times with family.
Even if you all get a bit cheesy at times.

What Movie Is Your Christmas Most Like?

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Christmas Wrapping Paper Quiz - I Am Generous and Loving!

You Are Generous and Loving

You approach the holidays in a warm, caring fashion. You make sure everyone is taken care of, and you connect with all the people you know.

You think the holidays are all about personal relationships, and you enjoy making the people you love smile. You'll go the extra mile to make sure everyone is happy.

Of all the types, you are the most likely to have the most types of wrapping paper. You're also the most likely to include a homemade gift - even if it's just cookies or a funny card.

Strange But True - Colonoscopy Prep Is Worse For You Than It Feels

They recommend that men aged 50 or above get a colonoscopy. I could live with that - I have a whole year to go until I turn 50. But, unfortunately, I've already had to have one. If you've never had a colonoscopy, you can relax, the procedure is fast and painless. Heavy doses of sedatives are given, and you don't remember a thing about it.

That's the good news. The bad news (yes, there's bad news - this is a colonoscopy discussion, isn't it?) is the 24 hours leading up to the colonoscopy. In order for the procedure to work, your colon needs to be squeaky clean. You have to drink something that helps everything come out, like Fleet Phospho-soda. It's this teeny little bottle and you drink it with Ginger Ale or something like that. And then you wait, but not for long. Within 30-45 minutes, your digestive tract rejects the Phospho-soda and everything else in it. You wouldn't guess that you had that much volume inside of you. It would be a great temporary weight loss tool, if you didn't feel so bad while it was doing its thing.

And now, for some more bad news. According to the FDA, drugs to clear the bowels before a colonoscopy may harm the kidneys, causing acute phosphate nephropathy, whatever that is, and it can lead to permanent kidney damage, which sounds like a bad thing to this medical layman.

The best preparation for your colonoscopy is to listen to this John Green piece, or reading this link to it from Knot Magazine. And, if you like Ginger Ale, don't drink it with your Phospho-soda. You won't want to be having any more for a long while.

Today's Oneword - Toast

I'll drink a toast to someone who can finish my Christmas newsletter and get it all mailed out for me. And actually do it BEFORE Christmas.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Today's Oneword - Sigh

I gave a sigh when the old version of Oneword went down for an extended period. I'm now getting back into the mode of looking at each day's word, and am enjoying challenging my ability to write quickly.

Tiger Woods Says Leg Will Be Stronger Than Ever - Will Ride Tour de France

THOUSAND OAKS, Calif. (AP) -- Tiger Woods wore sneakers instead of spikes. He sat next to a bottle of Gatorade Tiger, not the silver U.S. Open trophy. One thing that didn't change at his first press conference in 184 days were questions about his left knee.

But after speaking for a half-hour Wednesday at Sherwood Country Club, covering everything from his rehab to his caddie to his improbable victory at Torrey Pines, the most powerful statement about his health and future required no words at all.

Six months after reconstructive surgery on his left knee to repair a ruptured ligament - his third surgery in six years - Woods said he was right on schedule to return, already hitting short irons and excited about playing on a leg that has never been more stable. "I've just been training and trying to get healthy enough to compete next year," Woods said. "Everything has been right on schedule. I couldn't have asked for anything more.""In fact, Woods said, I plan to ride the Tour de France next year. If Lance Armstrong can do it, so can I."

His plan was to start hitting balls in January, but he already has been chipping and putting, and taking full swings with small clubs, shots that go no more than 100 yards."But, as I've always said, 'It's not about the clubs,' " said Woods. "After I can ride around the block on my Big Wheel, I'll be really interested in getting on my bike and riding out to the driving range and back. After that, there'll be no stopping me. The Giro, the Tour, the Vuelta. Who knows? Maybe I'll do all three."

Retirement can wait. Woods now is occupied only with riding again.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Today's Oneword - Course

The blood is coursing through my veins, at a pressure that is nearly high enough to require medication. But of course I will not resort to that unless the situation is really dire.

Joe Paterno Exhumed, Granted 3 Year Contract Extension

Penn State coach Joe Paterno today was exhumed and agreed to a three-year contract extension that will keep him with the football program through the 4011 season.

According to a statement released by the university, "it was also agreed that the parties might re-evaluate their circumstances, including the ability to sustain life, and alter the arrangement by either shortening or extending its length as necessary."

Paterno, who turns 2082 (Earth Years) Sunday, 82 of those years in a living condition, is the third winningest coach in Division I-A history with 383 victories. In his last will and testament, he asked to be exhumed should his coaching record be surpassed.

Paterno's first game will be against the University of Venus in the Solar Bowl January 1.

Friday, December 12, 2008

Today's Oneword - Sidewalk

If I had a sidewalk I would get some chalk and write the things I'm procrastinating because I don't want to do them for people
And then the rain would wash it all away.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Pittsburgh's North Hills To Get The Blues

Highmark Inc., the Pittsburgh region's largest health insurer, plans to open a retail outlet in the North Hills next year, according to an article in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, One of America's Great Newspapers.

Highmark Direct, as the store will be called, will be at 4885 McKnight Road, in Ross township's McKnight-Seibert shopping center. It won't deal with large corporate group plans, but everybody else is invited, including individuals, seniors and small business.

Great! Since fewer people will be employed and will therefore be unable to obtain health care through their employers, it's good to know that Highmark's looking out for the little guy. I mean, they could have located right next to Tiffany's at Ross Park Mall.

Plus, there's an H & R Block office at McKnight-Seibert, so you can get your tax refund check and sign it right
over to Highmark, saving you a stop on your way home from the day's job hunt.

Now hold still. This might hurt a little.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Today's Oneword - Wish

Seeing the word wish made me think of all the things I want. But that makes me wish that I were a little less greedy. I wish to be content with what I have and what I can share with others.

Monday, December 08, 2008

Today's Oneword - Gear

When you go out into the woods in December you need the right kind of gear. We're talking electric socks. Hand warmers. Boots rated to 50 below, even if it's only going to be 20. And windproof everything.

Friday, December 05, 2008

Today's Oneword - Muse

I'm musing as I watch the line move across the screen. I think of all the words I could write about but I draw a blank when the word appears on oneword. Amusing. I'll ask my muse about it.

Thursday, December 04, 2008

Today's Oneword - Hover

it has been a while since I have been to the oneword site that was down for some time. now i will hover over it, returning for a drink every day.

Tuesday, December 02, 2008

Will NRA Come to Defense of Plaxico Burress?

New York Giants receiver Plaxico Burress was arraigned Monday on two separate counts of a weapons charge. Burress accidentally shot himself in the thigh at a Manhattan nightclub with an illegal handgun last Saturday morning.

In what prosecutors called “a strong case,” Burress faces a mandatory sentence of 3 ½ years in state prison, with a maximum of 15 years, on each count of second-degree criminal possession of a weapon.

The charge relates to Burress possessing the gun without a permit. And, of course, the National Rifle Association opposes permitting requirements for firearms. So we'll see if they come to his defense. Not likely, for a black celebrity from New York!

NEWS FLASH! - We're In A Recession!

There's nothing I like better than to be told something that I already know. Even if it's from an official source.

Like the National Bureau of Economic Research. Today they announced that the U.S. has been in a recession since December 2007.

The announcement caught the attention of lame dead duck president George W. Bush, who said that "the American people got to know how that we will safeguard the system."

In case you didn't notice, President Bush, your not getting around to safeguarding the system is why we elected Barack Obama.

Prostitution Linked to Tetanus in Ohio

A little low on Christmas shopping funds this year? Or are you looking for a tax-free way of generating a little extra income? The Pittsburgh Tribune-Review reports on a scheme involving a time-tested and recession-proof service.

Christopher S. Johnson, 33, an academic adviser at OSU's School of Nursing, and a real estate agent on the side, organized a $10-a-ticket raffle that offered an evening with a prostitute who is also a child sex-abuse caseworker, police said. The raffle participants were part of an invitation-only party at the house of fellow real estate agent Rusty Blades. With a name like that, we hope that free tetanus shots were offered to party participants.

It's unclear from the article how Johnson and Blades were caught. But it appears from the article that the prostitute, Vanise Dunn, will probably be in more trouble Johnson and Blades.

As Mark Knopfler sings on one of my favorite songs:
Punish the monkey
And let the organ grinder go.