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What Idaho Foxes Say June 29, 2014

Posted by Retired Geezer in Gardening, Philosophy.
4 comments

Apparently when they purr, they sound like Diesel Trucks.

West Side Story June 25, 2014

Posted by Retired Geezer in Entertainment, Music.
38 comments

Some of you know that I’m doing the lighting for West Side Story at my local theater.

Here’s my favorite scene from the movie:

 

 

Some lighting looks from my show:

Opening look.

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Tony and Maria at the dance in the gym.

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Father of the Bride speech June 21, 2014

Posted by Retired Geezer in Family, Gardening.
11 comments

Touched me.

Maybe Dave in Texas should start brushing up on his speech.

 

A New Hobby, Perchance? June 20, 2014

Posted by geoff in News.
1 comment so far

I swear, I waste way too much time blogging when I could be doing amazing, awe-inspiring things with my time.

Like building a 6-foot tall Bender out of Legos:

Bender Bender Innards

This was built by Adrian Drake, and all rights and credit for the photos are also his.

Yes, You’re Surrounded by Idiots June 18, 2014

Posted by geoff in News.
14 comments

Never underestimate the stupidity of large crowd…sources.

“Yo.” That is all you can say with Yo, the new messaging app for iOS and Android. Yet somehow it has raised $1 million from investors and has attracted 50,000 users. The self-described “single-tap zero character communication tool” was created in eight hours by Or Arbel, an entrepreneur who moved to San Francisco from Israel. (Yes, he is hiring). As one might imagine, it’s pretty easy to use. Tap someone’s name and it will send a push notification that says, “Yo.”

Many crowdsourcing projects have been meritorious and successful. But I suspect stories of these not-so-meritorious projects will be cropping up more frequently.

You’re Doing It Wrong June 18, 2014

Posted by geoff in News.
3 comments

Wedges are for chumps. Apparently people a century ago figured out a better way to cut cake and keep it moist.

Rediscovered by Alex Bellos, author of The Grapes of Math, and demonstrated in a video on Numberphile’s YouTube channel, the trick is to cut the cake all the way across the middle, removing a strip, pushing the remaining cake together and sealing with a rubber band. Unlike with the wedge, none of the interior is exposed to air, which keeps the entire cake moist and delicious for days to the last slice.

Or you can just take the approach developed by IBers, wherein you simply eat the cake, rendering the problem moot.

DinTX advises me that the same method can be applied to pie, and I can certainly vouch for the carton of ice cream.

Britain Shows Us Our Future. Again. June 17, 2014

Posted by geoff in News.
1 comment so far

Britain is the canary in our coal mine, showing us where our economy, culture, healthcare, and gun rights are headed. They’ve also got something to tell us about immigration:

White working-class Britons are “marginalised” due to immigration and badly paid jobs, according to a study by the Open Society Foundations (OSF).

They found that residents felt disillusioned and disempowered after years of mass immigration to the area. Although the residents have a “strong work ethic”, they are still finding it hard to get jobs thanks to mass migration. Researchers also found that although there is a “strong” local community, it is currently being “eroded”.

Good thing we’re not considering incentivizing illegal immigration by promising them rights and benefits.

Writing’s on the Wall June 17, 2014

Posted by Retired Geezer in Art, Family.
2 comments

This made me smile. Hope it works for you also.

 

When the Going Gets Tough, the Disinterested Go Golfing June 17, 2014

Posted by geoff in News.
4 comments

Was getting ticked at the President’s dereliction of duty concerning, well, everything, but Iraq in particular. Thought I’d write a post about it, but Andrew Malcolm had it covered:

As fresh word arrives of Islamic militants continuing their full-speed assault on Baghdad and executing thousands along the way, President Obama rushed back to Washington Monday to convene national security advisers on a path forward.

Well, actually, that’s not true. The commander-in-chief did not rush back at all from his long weekend getaway in southern California.

He arrived in Palm Springs’ sunshine Friday. Saturday he spoke at the University of California-Irvine graduation. He, of course, did a Democrat fundraiser, a feature of almost every trip nowadays.

And then the president played golf, lots of golf. On Sunday he also phoned Spain’s king with congratulations on a long reign. He returned to the White House Monday night.

Today, Obama’s off to Pennsylvania for another speech. And then tonight he’ll do two fundraisers in New York City, including a Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender Gala.

Obama does like to see himself as a cool guy, calm, observant, thoughtful.

But there’s cool. And then there’s blase. And Americans, watching in shock as the awful sacrifices of lives, limbs and American treasure flood down the drain of futility in Iraq, would much rather have a national leader who at least acts like he cares about this crisis.

The President has exhibited no sense of urgency or even interest in the Iraq situation. But he did finish his 176th round of golf since taking office.

So we don’t have to worry about global crises infringing on his “Me” time.

Well That’s a Relief June 16, 2014

Posted by geoff in News.
2 comments

The Obama administration finally takes positive action on the Iraq situation:

The United States on Sunday condemned a militant group´s claim of killing 1,700 Iraqi soldiers… The claim by the Al Qaeda splinter group — the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria, or ISIS — that it had killed Shiite Muslim air force recruits in Tikrit en masse “is a horrifying and a true depiction of the bloodlust that these terrorists represent,” State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki said in a statement.

Yes, that’s your administration doing what it does best: hemming and hawing and talking about a crisis instead of acting on it. Ms. Psaki continues with:

Psaki’s statement said “one of the primary goals” of the group “is to set fear into the hearts of all Iraqis and drive sectarian division among its people.”

No, Ms. Psaki, their primary goals are to take over the country, kill their enemies, subjugate the Shiites, and establish a religious state. You see, you don’t have to worry about abstract things like fear and sectarian division when somebody is sawing your head off.

As Instapundit would say, “We’re in the best of hands.”

A Tale of Two Philosophies June 15, 2014

Posted by geoff in News.
11 comments

As I’ve mentioned before on these very pages, I believe that conservative and liberal attitudes are informed by different positions on the Maslow hierarchy of needs chart. That’s the chart that shows that as societies/individuals progress, they move from one set of needs up to the next, gradually working toward self-actualization:

MaslowandtheDNC

This chart is one I’ve used before, and I am lazy, so I didn’t change the “DNC” label to something more relevant. But suffice to say that I think that conservatives live in Tiers 2 – 4, with special emphasis on the Safety Tier* (Tier 2). Liberals, on the other hand, occupy Tiers 3 – 5, with their emphasis on Tiers 4 & 5 (Esteem and Self-Actualization).

The fact that we occupy different tiers isn’t a problem until the priorities start to conflict. When, say, the emphasis on Self-Actualization or Esteem compromises Safety. Or when concerns over Safety inhibit people’s progression up the ladder. But if I had to choose, I’d say that protecting the lower tiers certainly takes precedence over the higher tiers.

So the question is: are conservatives’ fears that their safety/security/stability is in peril justified? Or are they creating Monsters from the Id?

Well let’s see. The conservative worldview says that evil exists in the world, and that other countries are pretty much out to get what they want, regardless of the consequences to others. The liberal viewpoint is that what we perceive as evil is really just misunderstanding caused by lack of insight and communication, and that everybody being pretty much the same, we ought to be able to resolve our differences through discussion and empathy.

Which world do we live in? I don’t think you have to look any farther than the Islamic rebels in Iraq to decide that. Or Syria. Or Russia. Or China. Or Iran. Or North Korea. All of whom are pursuing aggressive policies designed to force people and/or countries to live as they mandate.

Obama’s “diplomacy first” policy is a prime example of how somebody operating in the upper tiers of Maslow’s hierarchy can compromise the lower tiers. Without a security-minded emphasis in our foreign policy, the lid came off the box, and now the safety and security of millions of people are directly at risk. His naivety is rapidly bringing the security of the US itself into danger.

All of these events were predicted by the conservative worldview. Every single one. But they caught the President completely by surprise.

Our Kumbaya foreign policy is a disaster. We need to take it down a couple of notches, and get back to the basics.

*I think there’s one item missing from Tier 2: that would be freedom. One could argue that freedom isn’t actually required to ascend Maslow’s ladder, that you could climb the entire ladder under some sort of benevolent dictatorship. But from the conservative viewpoint, the Tier 1 and 2 concerns aren’t really fully addressed until you’ve ensured that they can’t be taken away. And that requires a life free of coercion by others and by the State.

Hence guns.

Babies Swimming Underwater June 13, 2014

Posted by geoff in News.
2 comments

Very cute collection of photographs.

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