Idiom correction

A person parks a vehicle and begins canoeing at a point along a stream, B, which is equidistant from two points on the stream, A and C. The stream flows from point C toward point A and beyond.  If the person canoes to point C, “up” stream, and loses all means of locomotion then the person can simply ride the current back to point B.  However, if the person canoes from point B to point A, “down” stream and loses all means of locomotion then the only way to get back to point B is by portaging the canoe.  Therefore, the idiom should be “DOWN shit creek without a paddle.”  QED.

Changing directions: Just veering off a bit

I admit I’ve all but abandoned my blog.  With the proliferation of Twitter, Facebook, Stack Exchange, and a host of other social networking tools, in addition to my time commitments this has just slipped off my radar.

My twins are now in first grade and they’re involved in soccer 3 days a week plus cub scouts.  The rest of my free time has been pretty much dedicated to competitive shooting – mostly practice.

I haven’t had much interesting to say about software of the business of software either since I haven’t been working on anything cutting edge, or what I would consider interesting beyond a very small niche of programmers.

So I thought I’d try writing about shooting for a while.  I’m heavily involved in competitive shooting, and since most of my free time goes into that I thought why not?  I’ll try that and see how it goes.

Why’s Poignant Guide to Ruby

This is the internet routing around a problem.

Since Why The Lucky Stiff disappeared and the poignant guide domain with him, I’ve made the PDF available here:  Why’s Poignant Guide to Ruby

It’s also available online in html format here: if you prefer that format.

Hoping Why reappears soon.


RE: Fark

First I’d like to thank Fark for having a 6-hour delay between account creation and comment privileges as it gives me an excuse to update this blog.

This is just a stupid retort to this viral comment on Fark:

I admit I haven’t proof-read this, so excuse the grammar and spelling as I’m sure there are errors.  It’s not meant to be a political commentary so much as a simple rebuttal to the seemingly witty ozone.

Disclaimer: If you don’t have a sense of humor, or you’re unsure about its quality, stop now; do not pass Go; do not collect $200.  Please direct your browser to Otherwise proceed.

Dear ozone, I fixed this for you.

This morning I wasn’t awakened by my alarm clock because the electric meter was broken, so I called the public power monopoly regulated by the U.S. Department of Energy to get some assistance. I was told they would send someone out in about 9 hours, but the meter is attached to my house so they would have to charge me. I complained about the customer service, but it’s a monopoly.

I then took a shower in the clean, chlorine-less water provided by my private well.

After that, I turned on the TV to one of the FCC-regulated channels to see what the local news channel’s Doppler radar indicated that the weather would be like. My satellite dish receives signals using satellites designed and built by a private company who paid the National Aeronautics and Space Administration to put it into orbit. At least I have two choices of satellite providers unlike my local FCC/FTC-enabled cable monopoly.

I watched this while eating my breakfast of genetically engineered U.S. Department of Agriculture-inspected food hoping not to have a repeat bout of salmonella. I took the Food and Drug Administration-approved drugs that are believed responsible for heart failure and liver damage, but are still on the market thanks to the drug lobby our political machination adores.

On the way out the door I deposit any mail I have to be sent out in my email sent items and fedex any urgent materials. I then drop the kids off at the private school because the public schools are under-funded and falling behind the rest of the world in curriculum and education standards.

At the appropriate time, as regulated by the U.S. Congress and kept accurate by the National Institute of Standards and Technology and the U.S. Naval Observatory, I get into my National Highway Traffic Safety Administration-approved automobile and set out to the airport on the roads built by the local, state, and federal Departments of Transportation that are in desperate need of repair, possibly stopping to purchase additional fuel of a quality level determined by the Environmental Protection Agency, using legal tender issued by the privately held Federal Reserve Bank that prints money on behalf and at the request of the U.S. government.

I almost missed my flight (operated by a private airline regulated by the Federal Aviation Administration) because the screeners who work for the U.S. Transportation Security
Administration under the U.S. Department of Homeland Security accused me of carrying too much toothpaste, and harassed me because I refused to submit to a millimeter wave full body scan. There was also a mix-up with my name potentially being on a secret “no-fly” list but that was sorted out when the FBI arrived and assured the screener that my name hadn’t shown up on any unauthorized warrantless wiretaps.

After spending another day not being maimed or killed at work because I sit in an air-conditioned office working on the Underwriters’ Labs Inc.-approved computers and monitors. Thankfully I don’t rely on the U.S. government to sanction any of these devices in light of the soldiers in Iraq being electrocuted just trying to shower.  I also enjoyed another two meals which again do not kill me despite the USDA, I drive my NHTSA car back home on the shoddy DOT roads incurring only one pot hole-induced flat tire, to my house which has not burned down in my absence, even though it was built in the 1800′s before the fire marshal inspected such buildings, because I remembered to turn off the burners on the stove. Fortunately it has not been plundered of all its valuables thanks to the locks I placed on the doors myself purchased from the privately owned hardware store down the street. My home was burglarized once but the police never did catch the people responsible.

And then I log on to the privately developed World Wide Web, underpinned by the Internet developed by the Defense Advanced Research Projects Administration, to read the local news gathered and reported by employees of the privately held newspaper company.  I read the news about the trillions of dollars of bailout money the U.S. government gave to the banks responsible for the recession and collapse of the economy. I also saw a headline about the exhaustion of U.S. Social Security funds.

Then I decide I’ve had enough so I post on and Fox News forums about how SOCIALISM in medicine is BAD because the government can’t do anything right.