Friday, July 02, 2004

Omnibus random rants and ravings

It's been a while since I did my (now-no-longer-)weekly collection of miscellaneous thoughts.

So, without further ado, a new compendium, departmentalized for your convenience:

  • From the "I Hate Waiting" Department. Waiting for bureaucracy to finish turning is painful enough. Waiting for three different bureaucracies to operate at their own respective speeds, and then coordinating those to end up with a job I like as a post-doc seems interminable.

  • From the "Life Imitating Government" Department. It looks like my declaration of victory against the manuscripts I've been writing lately was premature. I know have yet another manuscript to write, this one due by the end of the month. Yes, that makes three manuscripts in three months. Now, while I appreciate that this will amount to another publication credit in my fledgling CV, it's still not something I wanted to worry about this month. I was hoping to spend July furthering research, not rewriting my thesis. But hey, a paper is a paper.

  • From the "No, I'm bi-sectional" Department. One of the problems that comes with having a voice that doesn't quite fit in clearly as either a tenor or a bass is that sometimes you end up having to do double duty. That's the situation I'm currently facing--I'm supposed to sing tenor, unless the basses are the dominant line, in which case I'm supposed to reinforce their ranks. In other words, this means that my voice will be front and center in the musical balance, much like the last time I sang with this particular group.

  • From the "Meteorological No-No" Department, Part I. There's nothing quite like being woken up at 5 a.m. by a nice, brisk, loud thunderstorm. It makes the day so much more refreshing and exciting.

  • From the "Meteorological No-No" Department, Part II. Either thunder and lightning, or sunshine. Not both.

  • From the "Heads in the Clouds" Department. You'd think that in an affluent state like Connecticut, pretty much everyone would know that our governor has just been replaced, and who the new governor is. Surprisingly, though, more than a third of Connecticut residents couldn't name who our new governor would be. [Her name is Jodi Rell, in case you were wondering.]

  • From the "Laugh So You Don't Cry" Department. I finally got around to seeing Fahrenheit 9/11 earlier this week. Well-put together, even if it wasn't quite everything I was hoping for. I have to admit that I was holding on to my jaw, so that it wouldn't drop to the floor every five minutes when one bombshell after another was dropped. The most damaging testimony in fact came from the military personnel themselves. If anybody sees the behavior of the recruiters, and the anger of our military, and still thinks Bush is a strong, compassionate leader, they must be smoking something.

  • From the "Movie Math" Department. We really need a better means for determining what a good movie is. The fact is, a screen is not a screen is not a screen. Some screens have capacities in the range of 100-300; others can be twice that, or more. What we really need is a "gross per seat, per showing" average. After all, at three and a half hours, you simply can't show "Return of the King" as often as you can "Shrek 2" or that Mel Gibson film from earlier this year.

  • From the "Paging the Kerry Campaign" Department. I think that Bush's quip about "the haves and the have-mores" and "Some call you the elite. I call you my base" (which appears front and center in "F9/11") would make great excerpts for a political attack ad.

  • From the "I Hate Spam" Department. I could honestly do without the "weightloss available" spams that seem to be the latest rage. Especially as it seems to mutate every few days, not so fast that our local spam filters can't keep up, but fast enough that it's downright obnoxious. Besides, if I have about 13,900 e-mails last year, and 12,000 e-mails so far this year, it tells me that spam is getting just a wee bit out of hand.

  • From "They were looking for what?" Department. Our latest entrants into the world of strange searches leading to my blog are:
    • Stave of Jingle Bells
    • correct spelling coinkydink
    • chemical engineering divorce statistics
    • durian Tampa

    The last one is the only one that truly scares the living daylights out of me. The first one just puzzles me; the others just engender "huh?"

And this was the week that (almost) was.


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