They drive in a friggin circle!

Lets start off by stating the obvious. NASCAR is not a sport. Anyone who begs to differ can leave right now. I will admit that it take skill to drive a car, especially at high speeds, but I will not declare it a sport. A sport, by definition, requires some sort of physical activity, an object, spherical or otherwise, that is used to fascilitate scoring and some semblance of “team” mentality and perhaps even strategy. That is my definition of a sport. That basically covers anything from ultimate frisbee strait through polo and everything in between. I say again, driving in a circle is not a friggin’ sport. But the zeal with which it is covered certainly makes it seem that way sometimes.As an example of my dislike for this “sport” I will entertain you with tales of yesterday. For it was yesterday that the Daytona 500 was occurring at the same time Lauren’s family was trying to have two separate birthday parties at two separate locations. Lauren’s grandfather, a very nice man, was watching it when we arrived at Lauren’s parent’s house shortly after church. That was fine, it was on merely in the background and it wasn’t bothering anyone. We had lunch and cake and the headed over to Lauren’s uncle Jon’s house. Uncle Jon is a rather large man, a mechanic by trade, and so he has an affinity for racing. Understandable since both his livelyhood and hobbies involve engines of somekind. Jon’s sister and husband were also there, I can only assume to torture the rest of us. They had the race on too. Actually when we arrived the race had just finished but for some reason we were forced to watch the “post-race wrap up”. This is absolutely fascinating to me since only insane people would want to watch the “highlights” of something that a) isn’t exciting in the first place and b) they just finished watching and obviously know the outcome of. I’ve been told by some that watching it again is simply done to “see the crashes”. Those people have issues. What also got to me was the annoying banter back and forth debating perticular drivers worth and skill. Something to the effect of “number 34 should have beaten number 8 and I can’t believe that number 16 came in 5th”. I also completely made up those numbers, so don’t go looking those up or anything. The converstation was mind numbing at parts as they retold the heroics of “Alison’s pass of Gordon on lap 112”. They even got the phone out to call their other NASCAR friends and ask them if they had seen the same things they did. Surprise! They did… because they were glued to the idiot box for 5 hours as well. What’s almost worse is the warping of the little kids. Since it was “race day” the kids were dressed in matching Daytona t-shirts and hats with their favorite drivers numbers on it. There was also controversy over the birthday cake, which had the wrong drivers number on it and didn’t match the match-box car on top of it. I sat very quitely in the corner of the room, hoping, if I stayed quite long enough, I could ride it out and leave without having to discuss “someone’s new engine” or “the new paint job on number whatever’s car.”

So, let me get this strait… they drive a little bit, then turn left… then left again… then left again… then left some more… and they do this 500 times and whichever moron has driven in a circle the fastest wins? Idiots. At least Indy car racers have to turn right occasionally. They at least qualify in the “skill” category. Shit, they even had Ben Affleck in the pace car. Do NOT tell me HE has the ability to tie his shoes let alone drive a car that fast. That boys, does not add credibility to your sport. Now, give each car some guns or rockets or something and I’d be there… but if all they’re doing is driving in a circle, then yes, the crashes are the interesting part. Simply because they’re a break from the monotony.

/end rant

Sweeeet! FireFox and Thunderbird

Just found out this morning that the Mozilla teams just released FireFox 0.8 and Thunderbird 0.5. I’d switched to FireFox, which until now was known as Firebird, months ago as my browser of choice and recently gave Thunderbird a try and I’ve loving it. You can check out the main news page here (firefox and thunderbird), but it’s been down for the past few hours because it’s getting hammered with requests for the downloads… I was going to give you guys the links to the direct downloads but I figured I’m the only one that would be using them under Windows anyway, so what would be the point. So, since there’s no point in giving you the windows links, I’m going to give you the whole release directory and you can pick what you want, all the releases (osx, winxp and linux) should be there… Thunderbird & FireFox. You’re welcome.

Other than that it’s the same old thing around here. It’s Monday, so I have the day off, so I’m sitting here in the computer room in my bathrobe at 10:30 in the morning. I’ve got two rather expensive cigars here on my desk, one for me and one for Nagle, ceremoniously of course, and I might have to enjoy one of those this afternoon on my veranda. I’ve also got redesign on my mind as I think most of you do to, well, at least those of you with web pages. I dunno, it’s spring, new things need to happen with web pages. I guess technically it’s only spring here in Texas, so maybe I’m speaking too soon. Regardless, I’ve got a design that I like and I’ve asked Nagle to take a look at it since he’s the bomb in terms of design. It’s actually a pretty simple design. Centered, one main pannel and a smaller one to the right. That’s about it. It’s got a little worn/grunge/WWII fighter plane sort of look to it. Metallic and retro. You’ll dig it. I’m going to keep the main design a surprise, but I will show you this as a teaser:

In fact, if you liked that, how about a wallpaper or two…

That’s about it kids, I’m off for a long and well deserved day of R&R. Later.

’cause I really hate these things

Yeah. Chip did it. So did I. Not really much of a surprise. I’m supposed to be an artist. Duh.

Extroverted (E) 52.63% Introverted (I) 47.37%
Imaginative (N) 55.26% Realistic (S) 44.74%
Emotional (F) 60% Intellectual (T) 40%
Easygoing (P) 62.86% Organized (J) 37.14%
Your type is: ENFP
You are an Inspirer, possible professions include – conference planner, speech pathologist, HR development trainer, ombudsman, clergy, journalist, newscaster, career counselor, housing director, character actor, marketing consultant, musician/composer, artist, information-graphics designer, human resource manager, merchandise planner, advertising account manager, dietitian/nutritionist, speech pathologist, massage therapist, editor/art director.

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This past week…

This past week has really been all over the place. I’m at a loss to remember most of it, but I will pass along the highlights if I can. Let’s see, this week we rented (via Netflix) Outside Providence, Pitch Black and Eddie Izzard: Dressed to Kill. They weren’t half bad. Outside Providence was a little weak, Pitch Black was your standard de-facto sci-fi flick but was saved by it’s creative cinamatography and Eddie Izzard is a comedian so odviously that DVD was rather funny. I’ve also gotten further in both my season of ESPN NHL Hockey for the Xbox and Silent Storm for the PC. Silent Storm is really impressing me. Great graphics (for it’s genre) and extremely in-depth game play and physics. At work, rumors are swirling that we still might take Rodger Clemen’s photo before spring training and we’ve also booked the star of ABC’s “For Love or Money” reality show as a wedding client. We’ll be doing his wedding in March. If doing Master P’s wedding hadn’t fallen through you could probably consider us a “celebrity photography studio”. Let’s see, oh yeah, I hacked my DVD player. It’s now region free. For the longest time it wouldn’t play DVDs without region encoding, only specific region 1 disks. That made playing movies like Snatch rather hard, since it’s a region 0 disk because it was released both here and in the UK. WIth a few simple key strokes of the remote I’m now region 0 and can play whatever I feel like. If you feel like searching for yours, check out The remote hack for mine was actually found under the players listed features. It’s also a great site just for general how-to information. Lets see, what else, oh yeah, we were taken out to dinner last night my Lauren’s parents to, get this, Perry’s Steak House. Aww yeah. I had one of tastiest pieces of meat ever. And I wouldn’t expect anything less of Texas. These folks seriously know their steak. Afterwards we watched Lost In Translation. I actually really liked the film. Lauren and here parent’s didn’t. I wish I could explain why I liked it, I’ll have to mull it over in my head today and let you know later. The only thing I can think of at the moment is that I liked it for it’s simplicity and honesty. I’m sure I can think up more things to add but I’m running late for work. We’ve got a long day of portraits today and then Lauren and I are seeing Miracle (the hockey movie) tonight because last weekend we missed the sneak preview in favor of Xbox games (Fusion Frenzy with a few friends). Alrighty, gotta run.

Matt out.