Archive for September, 2007

have you seen…

i need to start watching tv. i never know what people are talking about. people used to ask me questions that started with “did you see [insert show] last night?” or “wow, can you believe [insert random name] was voted off yesterday?” now most people know that asking me any question about a television show is a complete waste of their time because my reply is always a blank, comatose stare.

so why is it that i don’t watch television? right now, there are a handful of quality programs that are very popular, with interesting characters and engaging plot lines. so why isn’t my bottom planted in front of the rather nice 42inch LCD in my basement?

it is because remote controls have become outrageously complicated.

remote controls can now control your tv, cable box, dvd player, coffee machine, and pyloric sphincter. there are a thousand buttons, some with numbers on them, other with words, and still others that are just arrows. some buttons do nothing, others do multiple things depending on what ‘mode’ you’re in. and once you press the button, you’re treated to a menu screen that lets you see what program is going to be shown 5 hours from now on a channel that you can’t get to. why 5 hours from now? because it will take that long to decipher the hieroglyphics on the screen. but don’t worry, because your remote controls the Enigma machine that the cable company includes in their rainbow package (which will cost you $400 a month and the rights to your first born child), so you’ll be able to interpret the symbols you see.

as a result, trying to watch the telly becomes a mental exercise. i have to remember the name of the interesting show i heard about at work, remember what day and time its on, find out what channel its on, find a way to get sound of the speakers, figure out if there is high definition programming for the show, find the high def channel among the eleventy billion channels we get, and then guess what happened during the first 15 minutes of the show that i missed because of the time it took to figure out the confounding remote. wash, rinse, and repeat every 7 days? no thank you. i would rather go to the dentist for routine root canals. or set my face on fire.

so until remotes get simplified, i will simply remain ignorant to people’s conversations about grey’s anatomy, the office, dancing with the stars, and survivor. instead of watching tv, i will be stare at the sky through my window.

this way, when people decide to talk the weather, i will be extremely well informed.

September 26, 2007 at 11:30 pm 1 comment

on apples and nuts

a good friend who is an elementary school teacher recently told me about a parent that he had to deal with. this mother forbade the school from giving her child anything with apples in it, including juice and sauce, because every one knows apples are the devil’s plaything. she requested that her daughter be given only water, milk, and vegetable juice. also on her black list were cheese goldfish snacks, because apparently, her daughter is too thick not to gorge herself on them.

well of course she’s going to gorge herself on goldfish snacks if all you feed her is water, milk, and vegetable juice. water is for plants, vegetable juice belongs in a bloody mary, and i’m completely surprised that milk, with all the hormones dairy cows are pumped up with, made it to this mother’s ok-to-put-inside-my-daughter list. most likely, the daft mother believes that milk comes from a cow named bessie that lives on a quiet farm with a red silo, and is lovingly milked by farmer joe who wears denim overalls and a straw hat.

my theory is that this mother believes that this is what good parenting is; eliminating from her child’s life any thing remotely tasty, fun, and exciting because pesticides will rot their gums, sports will disintegrate all tendons and bones, and playing in the mud will lead only to anthrax. snowball fights cause hypothermia and frostbite, video games turn their brains to mush and induce seizures, and oh my god, white bread contains bleached flour which will make their limbs fall off, so peanut butter and jelly sandwiches must be made with 37 grain wheat bread that tastes like the bottom of my shoe.

oh wait, cancel the peanut butter, because peanuts give you aids and melt your lungs.

how many generations of kids have led normal kid lives without turning into kid-sized puddles of blood and hair? the only thing snow is good for is skiing and snowballs, and as far as i know, no kid has ever had his arms fall off from eating a grilled cheese sandwich.

maybe all this effort that parents spend on making sure their kids don’t get vaccinated, because vaccines are a way for the man to pad his pocket, and eat only organic food that is made from rainbows and happy soy plants should go towards being a good parent. go to the park and toss a baseball around. teach your son how to gut a fish and ride a bike. come home from work on time to eat dinner with your child. read a bed time story and kiss your daughter on the forehead at night.

good parenting is so much more than making sure your kid is safe from the miniscule threats in their school’s lunch rooms. whatever happened to being concerned about bullies? making the basketball team? winning the science fair?

hopefully, bullies in today’s schools aren’t too emaciated from their diet of water and wheat bread to beat up on the runty kids. hopefully, basketball hasn’t been outlawed because sports cause cancer. and the science fair?

i hope its done away with – its the scientists that tell me that farmed salmon will make my eyes explode.

September 15, 2007 at 6:13 pm Leave a comment

vanity

i decided to wear shoes to work today. i wear shoes to work maybe one or two days out of the week, usually on days that i know i have to talk to a client visiting our lab. i wore shoes today because of my vanity. wearing shoes makes me feel more like an adult. ridiculous but true.

like a peacock getting its fancy tail feathers caught in the turbine of a jumbo jet, i suffered. i hate my shoes so much because wearing them is about as comfortable as getting your legs chopped off. i have no idea why i spent money on these things. i would rather have spent the $60 on a dose of dysentery. what made it worse was that i had a lot of lab work to do today which means i was on my feet from 7:30am until 4:00pm, when i sat down to do work at my computer.

how do girls wear shoes all the time? and girl shoes look much worse than guy shoes. girls have heels, point toes, weird buckles, no padding, foot binding, and other torture devices attached to their footwear. do girls just have better tolerances for pain? even now, at 11pm, im rubbing my sore heels and wishing i had a morphine drip.

so what did i learn today?
1) shoes must be made by masochists, or by people who don’t have feet.
2) looking nice has its price (point 2 rhymes)
3) girl shoes must either look deceptively uncomfortable or the average girl has the pain tolerance of a drugged rhinocerous.

September 11, 2007 at 3:12 am Leave a comment

our future

I’ve recently become addicted to NBC’s “Heroes” television show. Part of the addiction stems from the marvelous characters that the writers have cooked up. The other part of the addiction comes from every males’ inner, secret desire to have super powers.

Masi Oka’s charcter, Hiro, has the ability to bend time and space, allowing him to time travel and teleport. He’s my favorite character so far because he is what I would like to be – endlessly optimistic, convicted of his purpose, and geekily stylish. The future version of Hiro, who is clad in black, wields a large katana, and speaks perfect Ivy league English is the only positive portrayal of an Asian American on television.

This brings me to my next point, which is our future.

We are told that every day, dozens of species of exotic birds and plants go extinct, the hole above the polar ice caps is widening, causing all polar bears to get skin cancer, and that carbon dioxide from our cars are going to turn the earth into an uninhabitable wasteland. The people telling us this say that we should only use fluorescent light bulbs and flush our toilets only when absolutely necessary. To them, driving an SUV lies on the morality scale somewhere between doing heroine and pedophilia.

Has the world gone mad?

You only have to look at the Health page on Reuters.com to see where our society’s real problems lie:

my word....

Why don’t we focus on our children for a while? Certainly they are more important to us than some silly ant species in the Amazon. While the adults in society are at the Home Depot buying energy saving light bulbs and water conserving toilet tanks (which they can afford only by working 50 hours a week), our neglected children are turning into manic-depressive, iron-deficient fatties. Oh, and they have low iron which will retard any possible learning in our already dreadful public school system.

A good, critical look at the things around you and what you will realize is that in our quest to be politically correct and environmentally friendly, we are destroying the very future that we intended to save. Our misguidedness goes beyond the trivialities mentioned here.

I am only up to episode 11 of season 1 of Heroes, so future Hiro has said little other than “Save the cheerleader, save the world.” I wish Hiro were real and I wish he would say more.

Save the world, indeed.

September 4, 2007 at 3:57 pm 2 comments


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