Friday, February 13, 2009

Canada geese brought Flight 1549 down, NTSB says


I knew it! Those damn dirty Canadians, they should pay! Too bad Bush wasn't still president, this would be the perfect excuse to bomb our no-good neighbors from the north. How do you like them apples, eh?

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Things that I learned from FEAR 2.

1. - No PC gamer has a 5 button mouse, and even if they did they wouldn't want to use buttons 4 and 5 for anything in game anyway.

2. - Improved graphics now means it looks good on an XBOX 360. If you're unlucky enough to be a PC gamer, it means "Sorry, we had to make this run on an XBOX, so you get less collateral damage effects, smaller explosions, and lower rez textures."

3. - Shotguns blow people up at close range. We're talking all that's left is a cloud of blood. No wonder PETA objects to hunting, all those deer are being disintegrated!

4. - Old women have a much better chance of surviving in a combat zone than trained soldiers.

5. - Coffee tables will completely stop any number of high caliber bullets.

6. - Body armor will stop several rounds from a firearm, but will cause you to die if punched just once.

7. - In the event that somebody's illegal experiment goes wrong, don't worry! They will leave all sorts of evidence of their illegal experiments lying around so that you can figure out what they did.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Many Americans vexed by spelling


Many Americans vexed by spelling

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Most Americans are in a similar state to that of Matthew Evans, 13, of
Albuquerque, N.M., who was favored to win the bee in his fifth and final
appearance at the 2008 Scripps National Spelling Bee in the District. Except
that while he misspelled "secernent," Americans misspell words such as "friend"
and "definitely."

The nation is not letter perfect. Americans may be embarassed, even.
Make that "embarrassed" - it's among the common words that vex the
spell-challenged in an age of spell check.
According to a study released
Monday by the London-based Spelling Society, 62 percent of the nation can't
spell the dreaded e-word correctly, along with liaison, botched by 61 percent,
and millennium, misspelled by 52 percent.

And while women ultimately prevail as better spellers, members of both
sexes struggle with the configurations of such words as accommodation, separate,
definitely and accidentally.
Men were particularly mystified by friend; 78
percent misspelled the word on occasion, the survey found. For the ladies, more
than half could not get liaison right.

Almost two-thirds of us say that spelling among adults is on the
decline; a quarter acknowledged that they were simply bad spellers. About a
third said they got nervous filling out official forms or formal documents
without a computer-based spell checker or at least a dictionary.

One academic consultant for the project blames the nature of the
English language.
"We have different spellings for the same sound,
especially for vowels - silent letters, missing letters and a system which
reflects how English was spoken in the 13th to 15th centuries, not how it is
spoken today," said Edward Baranowski, a linguist with California State
University at Sacramento.

"So many sound changes have occurred in the language, which are not
reflected in modern spelling, that we are left with a 'fossilized' system.
Perhaps if English had had an effective language academy, such as those in
France or Spain, this would have been mitigated over time," he added.

The Spelling Society - founded in 1908 in Britain to raise awareness of
problems caused by irregularities in English spelling - is calling for a regular
spelling system for the U.S. and Britain.
"Let's allow people greater
freedom to spell logically," said John Wells, a linguist with the University
College London. "It's time to remove the fetish that says that correct spelling
is a principal mark of being educated. Let's spell logically just as you do in
Spanish, Italian or Swedish."

Is a little dumbing down in order, then?

The survey found that 40 percent of the respondents would support
updating words that "typically" caused problems while 16 percent opposed the
idea. A blase 31 percent said it didn't matter.

Spelling, however, appears to be a family affair: 71 percent said it
was a parent's responsibility to help children with lousy spelling, 54 percent
said the task rested with teachers and 10 percent said that government should
take up the matter.

The survey of 1,000 adults was conducted for the project by Ipsos MORI, a
British-based organization, from Jan. 15 to 20.

Meanwhile, commonly misspelled words have drawn the ire of dictionary
According to the Oxford English Dictionary, for example, words
such as address, beautiful, immediate and skillful are worries for would-be
perfectionists. In the Collins Dictionary, supersede is the worst word of all,
followed by conscience, indict and foreign. The "Dumbtionary," - an online
source of the most misspelled words - has amassed more than 10,000 of the

I've seen "lose" spelled "loose" more often than I can count, by morons online and by "professional" writers.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

An example of what is wrong with our country


For those of you too lazy to click a link and read the story, let me boil it down for you: The article discusses how women cannot say no in the workplace and expect to advance their careers. I'd go the extra step, without the Oprah prejudice towards women, and say nobody can say no and still expect to go anywhere.

I should know, it has happened to me many times. My last job was over when - after spending a month away from home already - my company "asked" me to go back to Rockville, Maryland for another 1-6 months for "training". I told them that I couldn't because I had commitments in town and I hadn't seen my wife for a month. I was told they weren't really asking and that I either had to go or submit my resignation. Being the stubborn person that I am, and believing in sticking up for yourself like I do, I resigned.

The issue is that so many companies jumped on the "work/life balance" HR bullshit buzzword bandwagon, but most of them do not have a clue what that means. To most companies, "work/life balance" means "you work for us, work is your life, don't let your personal shit disrupt the balance." They're so busy chasing the bottom line, they've forgotten that employees are actually people who should be working to live, not living to work. And the worst part is, most of the sheep in the workplace have forgotten it too, and contribute to the disaster.

I'm not that old. I don't remember when a "lunch hour" was actually a paid hour that you got for lunch. I don't remember a workplace that took care of it's employees so that they would take care of it. I do remember eating lunch on my 1/2 hour "lunch hour". I remember when working hard got you ahead, and it was OK to say no to overtime or working the weekend. In my last few jobs, people stare at me like I have 3 heads if I actually stop working to eat for a half hour, and breaks are something that you get written up for taking. And God forbid you actually would like to work less than 13-14 hours a day! The nerve of some employees! What's this hard work thing? Please, everyone knows that you just have to kiss ass and steal credit to get ahead.