My Adventure in Mommyhood

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Win $101!

Face & Fitness is giving away $101...

Check it out...

Friday, January 27, 2012

#FQF Five Question Friday

1. Do you swim in the winter?
If I fall in the water… I am not that into swimming in the summer; although my dogs are…
The last time I went swimming was after we had been camping for two weeks, in a tent, and we checked into a hotel in Kanab, UT, on the UT-AZ border. We were on our way to another week of tent camping at the North Rim of the Grand Canyon, so I took advantage of the pool...
2. Do you love or hate winter?
Love it! I am, generally, a big fan of seasons. I grew up where the only difference between winter and summer was overcast and about 10 degrees...
3. Do you put makeup/actual clothes on when you know you're going to be home all day with just family?
No make up. Just doesn’t do anything for me. The point to being at home full-time is lounging around in your ‘casual clothes.’
4. How old were you when you had your first alcoholic beverage?
I forget… 
5. How many ill calls in a 12 month period do you think are acceptable?
If they give you sick days, they must mean for you to use them, right? 
I used to feel conflicted about this, until I realized the people who were paying me on salary were, pretty much, exploiting that by trying to get me to work as much overtime - on a sixty hour week - as possible without compensation.
I took a few days to go skiing, too...

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Delivery Woes

When I first started sweeping, I replied to a blog posting asking what was your  biggest complaint about sweeping (or a question somewhat similar)
My reply then was shipping.
It still is.
I live in a very small town - 500 people, 70 miles – over the continental divide – to the nearest town with a UPS/FEDEX store. The USPS doesn’t deliver mail to street addresses here; we all have to go to the post office to get our mail.
Because we don’t get mail delivered to our street addresses, when my street address is entered into a UPS/FEDEX shipping form, it comes back as being invalid. Somehow, despite this, most of the time, UPS/FEDEX gets delivered to my house.
Fortunately, I have a personal relationship with the UPS guy up here, (I slipped on some ice, hit my head and had a big laceration on it just as he was delivering a package when I first moved to my current address. He had to call an ambulance for me. Sort of a bonding experience.). So, I have had UPS deliver packages to me with a variety of addresses, including one addressed to my PO Box and another that had my name on it; my sister’s address, (3 hours away); and my zip code. The benefits of having a friend who works for UPS!
I don’t receive packages shipped by FEDEX as often as I do via UPS, and we don’t get the same FEDEX delivery person everyday here. So, I don’t have a personal relationship with the FEDEX delivery person. I am not hurting myself to get to know them better, either… LOL
Lately, I have been having an interesting delivery problem with FEDEX. A sponsor shipped a prize, transposing one digit of the zip code. It went to the local National Guard base. Then the sponsor re-sent it to the correct address and FEDEX returned it as undeliverable.
FEDEX said it might not have been delivered because of the 4 feet of snow we had last week. However, FEDEX delivered a package to the same address the sponsor shipped my prize to - in the middle of the snowstorm.  So that pretty much rules that out.
Today, I sent and the sponsor the address, again; a photo of the shipping label from the package I received Friday; and the address of the local hardware store  where they could also ship it to. 
We shall see what happens.
Ever had delivery problems like these?

Thursday, January 19, 2012

The first (major) snowfall of the winter

It's been snowing for about 40 hours straight. 

I was busy spreading the 'news' about SOPA/PIPA today when I realized I needed to go out to the store, before they sold out of everything, (where I live is very isolated). So, I headed out the door to this:

Well, actually, this is after I dug out. There was about 3 feet of snow on the windshield and the hood when I came out. I was standing in snow up to my knees trying to push the snow off my windshield and the roof of my truck. I had to clear the back window, which is rare, which was difficult because the back of the truck was full of snow, (that's rare, too).

Then I put it in 4WD and tried to get out of my driveway. That took about  10 minutes. By the time I got out, the eau de clutch was strong.

The snow plow had been by my house, once, in the last two days and the snow was still about a foot deep on the road.

Getting back into my driveway was even more difficult. When there is snow, I park at the end of my driveway so I can get out easier. Backing in was a pain - see that tree on the right side of the picture? No matter what I did, my pickup slid towards it. (It's beautiful tree, but I'd like to strangle the person who put it at the end of my driveway. LOL) Back and back and forth. Eau de clutch was getting stronger. 

After about 15 minutes of back and forth, I finally got to were I wanted to be.

And all I got front the store was a box of frozen 'fried' chicken and a bag of frosted flakes...

Oh, and it is still snowing...


This is an absolute ‘must read’ post   from the Techdirt website about SOPA.

The Hitler screaming about SOPA video that has been making the rounds is a 'meme.' Hitler has screamed about a lot of things over the years - changes in Xbox Live, et cetera

For more from Hitler on SOPA/Wikipedia Blackout/etc go here.
There is an exception in Copyright law called 'fair use.' You can use copyrighted material, to a limited degree, for several things - criticism and parody among them, (I would call the Hitler meme both criticism and parody). It remains to be seen what will happen to these types of videos  IF SOPA is ever enforced.
A couple of years back, PA passed a law where any person could call the AG's office and claim a site was hosting kiddie porn. The AG had the power to order the web host for that site to take it down. Technically, the AG had to sue to have the sites taken down, but he intimidated most site providers into taking them down without due process. As many of the websites targeted by the AG were outside of PA, (the law only applied to people and sites "living" in PA, the take downs were attempted anywhere a PA citizens complained about a  website.), the method used to cut off PA's access to alleged 'kiddie porn' sites was IP blocking. Hundreds of websites are commonly hosted using one IP address. So, blocking a single IP address took down 100's of sites that weren't accused, much less proven, of having illegal content. The AG's method of enforcing the law, using IP blocking, shut down huge parts of the Internet to PA Internet users.
When PA's law was tested in court, the court held that blocking IPs was an infringement of freedom of speech and stopped the AG's office from  enforcing the law.  SOPA/PIPA are, largely, the PA law on steroids.
SOPA or PIPA are a long way away from getting out of congress and/or getting to the president's desk for his signature. Obama has already said he doesn't support SOPA. Even if Obama signs it, it will have to face judicial scrutiny. I don't see either of these laws coming anywhere near to being upheld as constitutional. There are a couple of centuries of precedent against them.(1)
No doubt the EFF, et al will file a lawsuit seeking a TRO blocking enforcement of the laws as soon as they are signed into law. The TRO will granted and the law will wend its way through the courts for years before it makes it to the Supreme Court. Keep in mind, the responsibility for defending the constitutionality of laws lies with the United States Solicitor General, who acts on behalf of the president - a president who doesn't support SOPA/PIPA.
I would say we are, at least, five to ten years, or more, away from the law making it to the Supreme Court - if it makes it that far.
This law is one of those, "Too Bad to Be True" things that comes along every once in a great while. The bills are junk. They constitute an attempt by the RIAA/MPAA to get the US government to support their antiquated business model.
Enforcement would be a nightmare. The Internet was designed in time when there was still a real possibility of nuclear war in some politicians' fevered imagination. At the time, networking protocols were designed so that both the sending and receiving networks had to be up and running for a message to be sent or received. Using TCP/IP protocols designed by ARPA, (Advanced Research Projects Administration–i.e.; the US government), only the sending network had to be 'up'. If part of the network between the sending and receiving network was down or damaged, (as might happen in a nuclear war), TCP/IP routed the message around the damage(1) and followed whatever route was available to get to the recipient.
The Internet will see what SOPA/PIPA are doing as 'damage' and route around it. Trying to stop this will constitute a high tech version of hide and seek*. One route will be closed, the traffic will route around it, et cetera. Meanwhile, the RIAA/MPAA will be chasing right after it in a futile attempt to stop the Internet from doing what it is designed to do. And spending millions to do it. (Eventually, they will, probably, try to make a law to stop the “Internet” from using TCP/IP protocols.)
Once MPAA/RIAA has the authority, they will start shutting down websites(2), they will have to continuously chase the information around the Internet. When the power is given to a private entity, (Corporations are people, too - Mitt the Nitt), to implement any type of censorship, it will be abused. Let me say that, again, IT WILL BE ABUSED. To stifle dissent. To blackmail other companies. To prevent competition. It is incredibly naive to believe these laws will only be used to “control” online privacy.
 Considering how many people make their living off the Internet(3), this scheme is totally impractical. (Buying and selling goods and services on the Internet equals taxes paid. No matter how much their buddies at the RIAA/MPAA donate to members of congress, they aren't going to cut a source of tax revenue.) Furthermore, it will cost the RIAA/MPAA millions of dollars to do this. It's a zero sum game. One they cannot win. (Which is why they keep trying to pass these obscenely stupid laws.)
I, personally, hope they try to do it. I would love to see them spend millions of dollars trying to perpetuate a business model that has been dead for 15 years, at least.
Needless to say, this post is copyright 2012 by me. If you copy it, use it, quote it, even think about it without paying me, I will have you thrown in jail and sue you for all the money you, and your kids, will EVER have.
Just kidding. I don't think that way. But, congress does think that way… (actually congress feels any way the RIAA/MPAA tells them to feel)
Footnotes 1 through 3 are from:
(1)"Finally, even if you disagree with all of that, and believe that the problem is enforcement, SOPA and PIPA, won't be effective in dealing with that. The internet always has a way of routing around "damage" no matter how hard people try to stop it, and the approach put forth by these bills is a joke. It's hard to find anyone with technology skills who thinks that they will be effective. Every "blockade" has an easy path around it, and the supposed "anti-circumvention" rule in SOPA will never deal with the more obvious paths around things like DNS blocking (use a different DNS or a perfectly legal foreign VPN system)." {emphasis added}
(2)"Even worse, it appears that Universal Music also included the personal website of one of its own top artists, 50Cent. The hiphop star has a personal website as well as a website owned by Universal Music. The personal website is much more popular... and it appeared on the infringement list. Suddenly, you can see how letting companies declare what sites are dedicated to infringement can lead to them looking to stifle speech and competition."
(3)"That uncertainty has very real and quantifiable effects on jobs in this country. President Obama has noted that the internet adds approximately $2 trillion to the annual GDP (pdf). The amount of jobs created by the tech industry are massive, and represent a large percentage of all new job creation today. IDC has predicted 7.1 million new jobs and 100,000 new businesses created in the next four years from the tech sector. An astounding 3.1 million people are employed thanks to internet advertising -- jobs that simply did not exist a decade ago." {emphasis in original}
*I was going to say, "Wack-a-small, underground rodent", rather than hide and Seek. However, since I have seen the "Wack-a-small, underground rodent" game at Chuck E. Cheese, I am assuming Chuck holds a copyright on the phrase.
There is no way I want to take on that large rat, (also known as a large, above ground rodent), that works for Chuck.
You see, this is 'self-censorship.'

Monday, January 16, 2012


A couple of things - maybe a little off the wall…

I hit 614,820 on Bejeweled. This is, obviously, a milestone event in my life. Right up there with my 100,000 game on Tetris.
Bejeweled is a battery hog. Current iPhone/iPod Touches seem to have about half as long a battery life as the first iPod Touch I used. Anyway, it complicated my 600,000+ game on Bejeweled. I had to stop at around 300,000 and recharge my iPod Touch. Fortunately, Bejeweled lets you do that. And I went on to the glorious, unknown heights of 600,000+...
Okay, so now you know what I did yesterday when it was snowing.
Gaming tips for Bejeweled:
  1. Buy it from PopCap and played it on your plugged in laptop
  2. Buy a ZaggSparq if you must play it on your iOS device and can’t plug it in. The Sparq will let you recharge your iOS device 4x without plugging it in.
  3. Make a lot of matches, then make a lot more and, eight hours and two charges later, you, too, can score 600,000+
All joking aside, I am glad iOS devices weren’t developed until after I retired. I never would have got anything done - supporting networks with one homogenous operating system and consistent applications is hard enough. It would be impossible to control what people downloaded on their iOS devices. Particularly the people that hired me. Trying to support hundreds of different apps and upgrades would have been living hell.
And, eventually, software for iOS devices will be able to pass malware from them to other computers on the network. Talk about a nightmare.
And I would have wasted my time playing with them.  I am a big procrastinator. Huge. iOS devices are a time sink. Even if you don’t use FaceBook on them.