A penguin and a polar bear are sitting on an iceberg. The penguin yells, "No Soap Radio!" They both jump in the water.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Dear Mrs. Nathan's Mom

Dear Mrs. Nathan's Mom,

I have to start by thanking you for posting a comment on my blog. I've been a little out of practice with this thing, and haven't posted in it since March. Your comment reminded me this blog existed, and I'll be updating it more regularly in the future.

I notice in your comment that you don't offer any arguments for the safety of giving a blind kid a gun; you actually create a pretty decent argument for your son to never, ever be handed a loaded firearm. First, let's clear up a few things.

1) Your son does not have super-sensitive hearing: This is a myth. Your son pays more attention to his hearing no doubt, since his vision isn't up to par, but his ears operate exactly like yours and everyone else's.

And what's your real argument there? That your son can hear where a deer is accurately enough to tag its kill zone from 100 yards away? He might enjoy reading the Braille version of Daredevil comics, but those human echolocation powers are still fictional, ma'am. Although, I have to admit I would read a comic called "Daredevil: The Man Without Fear (of Innocent Bystanders)."

(By the way, your son scoring well on his hunter safety written test doesn't really have anything to do with his vision, does it? I've taken that course as well.)

2) Legally blind is still blind: For the purposes of this conversation, anyway. The American definition of legally blind is at least 20/200 vision in the best eye with the best correction. That literally means the deer I can pick out at 200 feet would have to be six strides from your son before it was that visible. In case you've never been hunting, deer don't get that close.

Your son isn't allowed to drive a car. He can't read his rifle's safety manual. Why should he operate a firearm? How can he possibly safely do so? And I'm guessing his gangbanging career is just shot, so to speak.

3) Your blind son is not a sharpshooter: I used to live near Camp Lejeune, North Carolina, which houses one of the two sniper schools used by the Marine Corps. Let's say the military ignored its rule about not accepting the legally blind (something to do with them not being able to safely operate firearms, grenades, artillery, Humvees, maps, etc.) and let him go toe-to-toe with actual sharpshooters. His legally nonexistent oculars are going to serve him better than the 20/20+ military-trained eyes of actual snipers?

At what point did you slip into the delusion that your son is a superhero? I'll tell you what, the day your son fights off a group of burglars or saves an infant from the burning building that not even firefighters can get to--firefighters with properly operating eyeballs mind you--then I will personally buy him a rifle. No bullets, though. I figure by the time he navigates his way to the store I can get myself safely out of range, out of state, or do whatever I need to do to get away from a walking definition of the phrase "firing blind."

Mrs. Nathan's Mom, if you're going to go around Googling your son's name and reading random blogs then you've got to expect to find some that disagree with you. You've also got to expect some of those people to be assholes about it. (If you didn't expect that, then I'd like to formally welcome you to the Internet. Wikipedia is useful, and Yahoo Mail is the best.) I considered post-scripting the above with a list of things that I was better at than your son (e.g. dodgeball, darts, reading, checking the expiration date on milk, etc.) but they all seemed pretty obvious. Obvious to everyone but you, of course.

And finally, just so you know, finding things I don't like and then writing about them is actually my chosen career, so this attitude has already and will continue to take me far. I don't really foresee myself taking a hard fall. Mostly because I can see where all my furniture is.


Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Failure to Communicate: Re-elections can't come early enough for SGA

As a preface, here's this week's front page story from The Carolinian.

In February of 2007 when the UNCG Student Government Association was placed on probation, it was because the SGA failed to give the university 12 hours notice before holding an event on campus. It was a small rule broken, essentially a technicality.

In March of 2008 our SGA was placed on probation again, for what we again can essentially call a technicality. The SGA recently lost its affiliation with the university for about a week and a half when SGA President John Bryant was supposed to submit some paperwork, but apparently did not. Its current probationary status is the result of Bryant's error.

These errors might seem small when taken at face value, but they reflect a huge failure of our SGA to fulfill one of its major purposes. To many students, SGA is known mostly as the governing body they have to deal with in order for their student group to gain and maintain affiliation with the university or receive any of the funds allotted to student groups. Without filling out the correct forms and taking the technical, SGA-approved steps toward affiliation, you're not getting a dime.

I know plenty of people who have failed at this task, frustrated, because they simply forgot a form or turned something in too late. But them's the breaks. You don't go through the motions, you don't get your moolah.

So, the mere fact that these violations happened in the governing body charged with deciding if all other student groups can receive or maintain affiliation with the university begs the question, why are people who can't follow the rules in charge of enforcing the rules?

Full column

Friday, February 08, 2008

La Oficina

Variety -- BBC Worldwide Americas has licensed "The Office" for a local remake in Chile.

It's the first format deal in Latin America for Ricky Gervais and Stephen Merchant's comedy and the first Spanish-language version.

"We stopped making 'The Office' in 2003, but the rest of the world didn't," Gervais said. "I won't be happy until I see an Inuit doing the dance."

Yet another point for me to turn to when arguing that The Office is the best television show that has ever existed. The Chilean version will be the sixth version of the show, the others hailing from France, America, Germany, French Canada, and the original U.K. show.

This reminded me of the surprising amount of Smurfs exposure there has been in the world, a fact NPR educated me on earlier this week. The show has been put in so many other countries that it has basically been translated into more languages than it hasn't. Not bad for a communist conspiracy.

Full Variety article

Thursday, February 07, 2008

Word, son

An english professor played this for us in class once. I'm gonna miss the English department at UNCG.

Sunday, January 20, 2008

Rock on with your historic self

For various reasons, I've spent the past couple days looking through remixes of MLK's "I Have a Dream Speech." And, for various reasons, I've decided this is the best one I've seen.

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Financial lemming

Someone I know asked me a while back what I would do if money wasn't a factor, the famous Office Space question. The fact that I'd still write tells me I'm in the right career track, but I would probably get rid of the things I don't like, such as getting up early, doing work I don't want to do, and wearing pants. I'd probably just blog.

When I heard of Smorty, a site that basically pays to advertise on blogs by paying you for blogging whatever opinion you have on topics they come up with, I figured it was B.S. Then a couple of my friends gave it a shot, and Joe said he made 50 bucks in a week, and I decided it was time to go with the crowd.

Obviously I wouldn't be doing this if the site tried to control what I write in any way. Get paid to blog, write what I want, doesn't seem like a bad deal. The only catch is I can't label which post is from Smorty. So, fair warning, some of the unbiased entries to follow may or may not be making me small amounts of money.

Romney wins!!!!11!11!666!!!!

Did the people of Michigan vote for the most evil looking person, or do republicans just look evil when they're happy? Maybe Michiganders love Mormons.

Yes, the correct term is Michigander.

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Now that I'm not six, Full House gets more and more creepy

So everyone remembers Steve, the guy that DJ dated for a long time. We're all together in this 90s nostalgia?

Well, that guy's name is Steve Weinger. In addition to playing Steve in Full House, he played in an episode of Scrubs, was the voice of Disney's Aladdin, and by the way, played DJ's cousin in a much, much earlier episode.

I guess it technically isn't as creepy as the season seven episode where Stavros, Jesse's cousin, makes a pass at Becky, but really. He was their cousin and DJ's boyfriend. That's just lazy casting.