Monday, August 30, 2004

Coca Cola Ad Music

There's a cool song in a recent Coca Cola ad which I saw several times during the Olympics. I liked the song so much (not to mention the concept of the ad: singing a gentle song and handing out gifts to strangers) that I did a few searches until I figured out what it was. The song, "I Wish I Knew How It Would Feel to be Free", was written in 1954 by Billy Taylor, and became a civil rights anthem. It was first recorded in 1967 by Nina Simone. Here's a Library of Congress article about it (they have a manuscript of the song). The version in the commercial is by Sharlene Hector of Basement Jaxx, and has been released as a single in Great Britain.

If it weren't for the ad, I may have never noticed this beautiful song. Every once in awhile commercials are good for something.

Did I also mention the JC Penny ad with the cool hiphop music? I'm not much into rap, but this one is just very cool. The song is "Rock Ya Body (Mic Check 1, 2)" by Stagga Lee of MVP (Most Valuable Playas). The album is available on, but I only want the one song. It's not like I listen to a lot of rap. If I could get it legally as an MP3 I'd go for it. At least until I can get a copy, there is a sample at to listen to.

Writer's Block

I owe an article to a friend, I need to write up some other stuff for here and there, and I want to finish up some reviews for Bloggity. So why can't I seem to get anything actually written?

Saturday, August 28, 2004

Traffic Woes

So. You are driving on a five lane road, two lanes each direction and a turn lane in between. You are in the lane next to the turn lane. The traffic is fairly heavy, making it difficult to change lanes.

Suddenly, you see an emergency vehicle coming from the other direction, headed toward you. Do you:
  • A) Slam on your brakes
  • B) Slow down but not stop
  • C) Drive at a normal speed
  • D) Speed up
  • E) Try to change lanes despite the heavy traffic

I know which four options I might consider, and which one I wouldn't do at all. In general, I lean toward "B" unless it's clear that the vehicle needs a clear lane and mine is the only choice, in which case I will go for "E".

However, TWICE in the last week I've nearly rear-ended idiots who decided that "A" was the correct choice. I mean, c'mon people! You don't just slam on the brakes when you hear a siren. That's just asking for an(other) accident.

As long as the emergency vehicle can get through, you don't want to stop. Worse, in one of the incidents the car in front of me stopped right where the ambulance was turning! In other words, by stopping he blocked the emergency vehicle. IDIOT!

The Marathon

Tomorrow morning is the men's marathon in Greece, then the closing ceremonies. This will be an interesting last day.


Yeah, everybody's posting it. If you want a Gmail account, I've got a bunch of invites. Feel free to post a comment or drop me an email asking for one.

Friday, August 27, 2004

Synchronized Swimming

Synchro is very odd. I like it.

Thursday, August 26, 2004

Women's Football Gold

Ok, that was really cool. The Women's team were singing along to the national anthem! They aren't the best singers, but that's one song I don't have a problem with anyone singing along to.

I Miss Eric

The hot tub isn't as hot when he's not here. The Olympics aren't as interesting. The traffic outside is more annoying when he's not around. The moon isn't as bright. The internet is less exciting. Food is bland.

I miss him.

Women's Football in the Olympics

Excuse me. "Soccer".

I caught the end of regulation time on NBC and watched the beginning of extra time, as the score was tied 1-1. What was odd was that the refs didn't come back on the field when the players did. In fact, they had to send someone to find out where they were. The announcers were perplexed, saying they'd never seen anything like it before.

There was speculation. Did the refs mistime how long they had to rest? Was there a reason they weren't coming out, a protest? Maybe they forgot there was extra time? No... none of that. Eventually word reached the announcers that the main ref during regulation had suffered a hamstring injury and wouldn't be returning, and the delay was in finding another ref to take her place.

Wednesday, August 25, 2004


Yahhh! Jay Buhner is in the M's Hall of Fame! Yahhh!

Now, if only the current Mariners could actually win a game or two.

Tuesday, August 24, 2004

Best Moment Yet

A pole vaulter, as he went over the bar, pumped his fist. Yes, as he went over, because he knew he'd made it.

Blogger Formatting Annoyances

According to the settings tab on blogspot, if you leave a blank line between paragraphs, it will put in a paragraph mark. But it doesn't. It puts in a break mark instead, and in HTML, there is quite a difference between the two. Especially if you are using CSS (cascading style sheets).

Normally, this doesn't really have any impact. After all, the formatting in Cascading Style Sheets applies to subsequent paragraphs. The only place it doesn't cascade is after I've put in an image. I think the centering tag throws off the formatting.

And so, every once in awhile on Bloggity, the formatting looks really bad... but only on Internet Explorer. If everyone used Mozilla, it wouldn't be a problem.


If it's not one thing, it's always another. While I was still uncertain whether or not the modem issue was fixed by getting a replacement modem, my laptop network card disconnected me. I was pretty sure it wasn't the modem... so I disabled the card using XP's tools and re-enabled it. Sure enough, the connection was still there and very strong.

An hour later it happened again.

So I went to Google and tried some keywords, and LO! I found an answer. Apparently one of the XP "hotfixes" has a fairly negative impact on some wireless cards. If I understood what I was reading correctly, and I may well have read it wrong, my choices as of a month ago were to uninstall the hotfix or live without the internet. Fortunately, Netgear had released an update to the drivers on my card and that was supposed to fix the problem.

So I installed the update, not without considerable trepidation, and it works again... and hasn't died at all since the upgrade several hours ago.

One at a time I kill off these problems, one at a time. Eventually I'll have a properly working system again.

Another Gold for Canada

Anyone reading this out of the blue would think that I'm a Canadian instead of Seattlite watching the Olympics on cable...

Anyway, another Canadian won gold, this time a 38 year-old cyclist in the Women's Sprint. Again, the Canadian national anthem sounded utterly horrible as played by whatever they are using to play it in Greece. I wish they'd find a better arrangement. It's such a beautiful song, I hate to hear it so utterly out of tune.

A Canadian diver (a very young one) got Silver in the 3 meter Springboard, too, today. I saw the end of that event. It was pretty cool to watch.

Doping Dopes

I like watching the Olympic games. I like seeing athletes perform their best. I like seeing the amazing efforts. I like watching pure sport.

So whenever I hear about athletes doping themselves to get an advantage, I'm just disgusted. They do more than just taint themselves. They taint the whole sport. They taint the joy of watching the competition. They taint the innocent athletes who are truly doing their best without unfair help. They taint everything.

Instead of being something to admire and aspire to, they become the degraded dregs of greed. The whole joy of watching sports is taken away because you start to wonder as you look at other athletes... could they be doping, too? Just a handful of cheaters can destroy the credibility of pretty much all athletes. That's not fair to the ones who don't cheat.

As far as I'm concerned, an athlete who dopes to gain an advantage is no longer an athlete. They are just a wannabe. They might have been the best in the world before they cheated, but once they cheat, they aren't anything anymore. You might as well strike their names from the rolls of champions. They don't deserve to be remembered, unless it's a hall of shame.

Test Post

This is a test. This post is not meant to make sense. That's because it's a test. Here's a picture:

Here's some text beneath the picture. This is actually an image of a Sharkfin Modem, like the one that was just removed from my house by Comcast after we figured out that it was most likely the cause of my connection problems. Sure enough, four hours later we haven't had an outage.

I'm still testing. Here's another picture:

Here's some text beneath the picture. This is a picture of our new Surfboard modem. Pretty schway, huh?

This concludes this test. This was only a test.

Bye Bye Sharkfin

So Comcast showed just before 10 am. The guy walked into my house, took one look at the old 3Com Sharkfin modem and said, "Let me get you a real modem." He replaced it, enabled it, and now it's running. I'm going to keep an eye on it for random disconnects, but if the modem was indeed the problem, it's fixed now.

He also checked the line into the house, just to be complete. And he had somebody who works at the office along with him, too. I'm not sure if she was just on a ride-along, or there because I've been a problem customer in the past. For whatever reason, I'm pleased at the moment. I hope they don't charge me for the visit, but I'm not holding my breath.

Monday, August 23, 2004

Wish Me Luck

A tech from Comcast is coming over tomorrow to check into our odd disconnection issues.

What's been happening is that every five or ten minutes the connection goes away for awhile, usually a minute or less, then it comes back on its own. I tried everything. I switched out the router for a newer one. Same problem. I looked up some possible Windows issues, found one, applied a fix... same problem. I disconnected the router and plugged my machine directly into the modem. Same problem.

At that point I decided that it probably wasn't a problem with my equipment, but had something to do with Comcast's equipment (the modem or the line in). I did a bit of research on my modem (an old 3Com sharkfin) and found that other people have had similar problems with it. So I've troubleshot the thing, and I think I have an answer... time to get support since the modem belongs to Comcast.

Of course, when I contacted Comcast, the support sent me a form letter telling me to restart the modem when it happens. Not helpful at all. I wrote back a really nasty note that quoted my original note and asked if support had bothered to even read my complaint. I got back a somewhat apologetic form letter that said I needed to set up an appointment for a home visit.

Fine. I don't exactly like the possibility of having to pay for a tech support visit if they can't figure out what's wrong with my system, or worse, if my system suddenly decides to work when they come over, but we've been dealing with this for weeks and are sick of it. I pay way too much for poor service, but it seems I don't have a choice.

Or do I?

Eric has discovered that Verizon DSL is now available in our area. While I'm not keen on switching services, if that's what it takes to get adequate support, I may just do it.

So, wish me luck. I hope they can actually fix the problem tomorrow, and that they won't charge me extra for the privilege.

Sunday, August 22, 2004

Nike Commercials

Who's the cyclist in the Nike commercial that shows the concert pianist who is late to his concert? For that matter, who is the runner in the haunted house version? I suspect the tennis player is one of the Williams sisters, but I'm not sure which one because I don't really like tennis much. Maybe I should just Google this question...

Ok, Eric pointed me to, and they say the athletes are Serena Williams, Lance Armstrong, and Marion Jones. The website is utter crap, as it's a "full immersion" website that clearly wants to hijack your computer and is more style than substance, but at least I figured that much out. You can find out just about anything on the internet.

Except, apparently, pictures of the little blue cow in action. I still think it's steroids. I'm just not sure why it's competing in both men's and women's events. You'd think that would be a dead giveaway to the officials. I want to know the results of the doping test for that creature.

Canadian Gold

So the Canadians won a gold medal, in floor gymnastics. When they played the Canadian national anthem, it had to be the worst rendition I've ever heard of the song. It sounded like the instruments were drunk. Poor guy. I hope he was tone deaf, or at the least too excited to notice how they mangled his anthem.

Reality TV

It's so very wonderfully Canadian to have a reality TV show based on hockey.


It's really a shame. The CBC showed when she stopped. I don't know if NBC did. Eric says that marathon course might be the toughest in the world. Lots of hills and oppressive heat. Sixteen runners (by my count) didn't finish. The results are available on the official site.

Olympic Coverage

Yes, I KNOW that the first Gold Medal for Canadians is a big deal, but WHAT IS HAPPENING IN THE MARATHON!???!!???


At least the CBC actually showed the marathon live... NBC can't even be bothered to do that much.

Saturday, August 21, 2004


It was a fun Wizard of Oz event today. I spent most of it in the other room, avoiding attention, but I could hear it all. They seemed to have fun with the Wizard of Oz DVD, which they played in English and in French, with various subtitles, and singing along to all the songs. There was also the pilot of the WB show "Lost in Oz", which they also found quite amusing. They also played a board game and had a quiz, along with lots of food.

Swollen Eyelid

Very odd. I woke up this morning with a very sore left eye. After an investigation in the mirror, I discovered that my left eyelid is swollen. It's not so bad that it's visible, but it is remarkably strange.

Friday, August 20, 2004

Just Google It

Here's a cool logo I shamelessly stole from Fark that Google couldn't use even if they wanted to. But I might not get in trouble for posting it. So here it is. I like the Google Olympic logos that they can use, though. Very cool ancient Greeks doing sports.

Popeye the Sailor - Addict or Deranged?

So Popeye claims that eating spinach makes him strong, but he has to eat the spinach right when he needs the strength. So is that really spinach, or is he addicted to something else that he keeps in a spinach can? If it is spinach, why isn't spinach a banned substance at the Olympics? All the athletes would have to do is eat a can of spinach (not as easy as Popeye makes it look) before each event and they would win every time. Or maybe Popeye just thinks he needs spinach. He's actually not addicted to spinach, but to the thought of spinach. He's got the power all along, he just can't focus it mentally until he gets the spinach in him. In that case, he needs therapy.

Gjovaag Blog = Gjoblaag

Gjovaag rhymes with blog, so when I let Eric in on the fact that I'd started another blog, he immediately suggested changing the name. Just pull out the "v" and put in "bl" and you've got a Joe-Blog. Pretty cool. No one just looking at it is going to be able to figure it out, but tough. It's still cool.

Beach Volleyball

I don't mind beach volleyball. I think it's a great sport, with enough differences to distinguish itself from regular volleyball. I like the format of two people. I like the sand. What I hate is the dress code. See, I wouldn't mind if the players were wearing the outfits by choice, but they don't have any choice. The guys can wear t-shirts, but the women? Tiny bikinis. It's dumb. It's stupid. And it's my only real problem with the sport at all.

Canadian Olympic Commercials

The little blue cow. Hermaphrodite? It has an udder, and horns like a bull. It competes in women's beach volleyball and women's synchronized swimming. It also competes in men's weightlifting and men's hurdles. Just what is up with the little blue cow? Is it on steroids? Just what is the viewer supposed to think when watching these commercials?

So I leave you with this thought: Little Blue Cow... male, female, or something more sinister?

Stupid TV

I'm now to the point where I'm turning the TV off when certain commercials come on because I hate them so much. The latest one to irritate me is one where some idiot guy is looking at a motorcycle, then a woman comes up and he tries to impress her by saying the motocycle is his. Of course, it's not, and when the real owner arrives and rides away I get so annoyed that I want to throw something at the TV. I'm not really sure why it annoys me so much, but I can't stand seeing the ad.

This is the reason that I generally don't watch TV at all, I think. I get so frustrated at the lack of creativity in the commercials, as well as the inability of commercials to stand up to repeat viewings, that I hate to have the TV on at all.

Thursday, August 19, 2004


If I had more of an imagination, I would come up with a punishment that is truly suitable for virus writers. It would have to be painful. It would have to last a long time. It would have to involve frustration due to hope (i.e. the hope of fixing the computer only to find out something else is wrong thanks to the virus).

Wednesday, August 18, 2004

Men's Swimming

I'm really enjoying watching the swimming events in the Olympics. For some reason, the form of a male swimmer is, in my eyes, the most perfect of male forms. Quite enjoyable to look at. And when they are in the water... yum!

Thanks to having six channels covering the Olympics, I'm getting to see quite a few events. I've also pulled out Eric's copies of Wallechinsky's excellent books and have been reading stories. I tried to confirm the story of the 1948 Canadian Hockey team that's been running on Canadian commercials, but there was a big flap over the American team that year, and that 's the story Wallechinsky chose to report on for that year.

Secret Blog?

I do wonder if any of my regular Bloggity readers will notice this new blog, and if they do, will any of them comment on it? For that matter, I wonder if my husband will notice it?

Tuesday, August 17, 2004

Canadian Olympic Commercials

There's a good one from Bell that starts with a guy in an office standing up and putting his arms over his head. Then you see some kids do the same thing. Then a couple talking in a park. Then two guys sitting in a diner. Then a bunch of people on the street, until you realize that they are doing "the wave". The shot goes to a stadium, where you see the tagline: "For 17 days in August, we are all connected."

Another cool add talks about the 1948 Canadian Hockey team, which apparently had to be scraped together at the last minute, then were sent to the games with sponsorship by the Royal Bank. All very cool, and the ad is nicely put together.

Eric Got A Cow

No, no... I didn't say he had a cow, I said he got a cow. It's a cute little stuffed cow that "moo"s when you squeeze it. Loudly. He got it at work, I don't know what for. But it's cute. So have a cow, man.

Keeping Busy

Got a lot more accomplished today than yesterday. Yesterday was lazy lazy day, today I've had the fun of doing the dishes, working on my resume and on Eric's, taking some photos with the digital camera, going to the library, filling out a rebate form (for $50, I sure hope it goes through!), and finally exercising.

As I mentioned before, I've had good luck exercising to TV shows off DVD or video. I've actually gotten ahead of my posted reviews. I meant to post my reviews as soon as I wrote them, but I'm still posting reviews I wrote some time ago (Angel) and I've already watched the first season of Buffy and just started in on the first season of Farscape! Oh well, I can't complain. It's useful to have extra blogs pre-written and ready to post for the days I'm not energetic enough to write something good.

I do try to write something new every day, though. Don't get me wrong. The blog is my writing exercise. I'm trying to improve my communication skills by practicing writing every day. I like to think that I've improved from being a lousy reviewer to a not-too-lousy but still pretty bad reviewer.

In addition to working on my resume, I also need to write a letter describing my abilities for this particular job (a library assistant job at an elementary school). I have some small doubts in myself, but when I reread the requirements I feel I do fit them well, and I could do the job. Once I have my resume fixed up, I also hope to apply for a library page job in the King County Library System. I don't have a lot of confidence of getting a job, but it would be nice to get either one so I can get myself some good experience.

I've been watching the Olympics today again. I saw some swimming, some kayaking and canoeing, a bit of a basketball game that the Greeks kept from being boring by keeping it nice and close, a bit of a soccer game... last night I saw team handball for the first time. That's a cool game.

I'm hoping to see the Iraq/Morroco match, but I'm not sure if anyone plans on airing it... (me starts poking around the web)... It's actually been rather difficult to figure out when things start here when I look at the official site. And NBC's site is a wee bit overcrowded and confusing. Lucky for me, the CBC has a nice searchable table for sports so I've found out that the match isn't until tomorrow morning... with a bit of work on the NBC site, I see that MSNBC is showing the game live starting about 10 am here. It'll be on.

By the way, if you're curious as to who has won the medals, there's a medal table by country on the official site, and if you click on the abbreviation of the country's name, you can see what events the medals were won in.

When I watched the floor exercise in gymnastics, I found myself wondering about some of the events that are considered sports. While I don't doubt at all that gymnasts are athletes, I do tend to wonder why/how it can be a competitive sport when so much about judging it seems subjective to me. Eric admitted that he feels like sports in which the judging is mostly subjective probably shouldn't be in the Olympics, but then they are the same sports that tend to draw the largest crowds. Like ice skating in the winter Olympics.

At least with so many channels showing the Olympics that we can get on our system, I've had a good variety of sports to watch and usually a choice of what to watch, as well.

Oh well. Time to get back to the resume and cover letter. Perhaps I can make some progress on it today.


So I had the strangest dream last night. I've been having vivid dreams lately, but they are more the normal type of "regular world twisted" dreams. Last night's dream was a bit different in that it actually contained a good idea.

I may have mentioned that Eric and I live in a house we like to call "Frankenhaüs" (or Frankenhouse, I've never worked very hard on the spelling). Before we bought it, it was apparently owned by a do-it-yourselfer who wasn't very good at doing it. In short, pretty much everything we've had to get fixed in the house was either a direct result of this guy's incompetence or we discovered more of his mistakes while repairing.

For instance, when the water heater went out we called for a technician who said it was pretty much dead, then when he started to install the new one we heard him exclaim in shock. When we questioned him, he said that the wires had all been put in wrong, and the heater wasn't grounded. In addition, the wrong type of pipe had been used as a shunt to one section. The tech said that because he hadn't noticed the problems when he took out the old one, he wasn't going to charge us extra to fix them. Then he said we were lucky that we'd never been hit by a power surge while we were in the shower.


To make a short story long, Eric and I have often discussed expanding the house just a little to add a laundry room and maybe some extra storage. We've always considered the best place to expand as the back yard, right behind the kitchen. The big problem with that is that the yard slopes upward fairly quickly, but there's a decent area that's flat enough that, if we had any money, an addition could be built on it.

In my dream, however, the addition went into the front yard. We currently have a small area of the front fenced off. The old owner had a hot tub in there at one point. In the dream, we simply used that area to build out a bit.

Ok, so there were some weird bits. Like when I went out to measure it was my parents house instead of ours, and when we installed the new bathroom it looked like a school locker room, but the core idea isn't really that bad.

Three rooms would be impacted, instead of two, but one of the rooms is the bathroom, which would be really nice to expand a little (and get a new tub!). During the construction we could fix the drainage problems by installing a nice cleanout, since that's right in the same area. The tree that caused our lovely power problems could be moved or removed. If we could move the water heater, that would be even better, but I would suspect that would take a lot more effort. In short, it's not a bad idea, considering that it bubbled up from my subconscious in a dream.

And adding a little bit to the back of the house wouldn't be out of the question, either. A nice little addition to house a hot tub, maybe...

Monday, August 16, 2004

Playing With Blogger

I would love to host a blog on my own website, preferably one with my own domain. Unfortunately, money problems plague us. It doesn't help that I'm mostly unemployed. I need to find myself a decent job soon. One that doesn't involve sitting in front of a computer all day.

I've been playing with this nifty new template. I like playing with the templates, since I tend to learn more about CSS and HTML every time I do. I always hope to learn new stuff I can apply to Bloggity. I don't know if I've mentioned the way my other blog got it's name? I was trying out this whole blogging thing thanks to Elayne, and when they asked for a name I tried to come up with something that would work. The first name that came to mind was "Bloggity", but it seemed too boring, so I added the extra "blog"s. Silly, but it was all I could think of. Perhaps if I'd stopped for a bit and thought about it, I would have come up with a better name.

I'm not sure when I first realized that my name rhymes with blog, but when I did I put it into my list of rotating taglines for Bloggity. Now I've got a blog based on it.

Anyway, I hope to keep playing with templates on this blog, so don't expect it to stay this way for long. Hopefully this will prevent me from completely screwing up BBBB, which I've done a few times annoyingly enough.


Today... today I got bored and decided to create a second blog. My "real" blog is here. This one is for things I wouldn't put on my regular blog for whatever reason. I also intend this blog to be really freakin' boring, so unless you're up for some boring writing exercises, I don't recommend you read this thing.

By the way, my regular blog has posting rules. This one doesn't. No limits, no requirements. Just pure writing nonsense.

Anyway, I'm watching the Olympics on Bravo because the other NBC channels aren't showing them and the CBC is showing stuff I already watched, mostly synchronized platform diving (who the heck came up with that?). Too bad Bravo is showing Tennis, which I'm not really interested in at all. I'm enjoying the CBC's coverage so far, but their commercials aren't as good as some have been in the past.

The best ever Olympic commercial was on the CBC a couple of Olympics back, and made me teary-eyed every time I saw it. It concerned an event in the 1988 Seoul Olympics, during the sailing events, when Joseph Chan from Singapore was injured when his boat in the 470 class was capsized. As he struggled in the water, a Canadian sailor in the Finn event, Lawrence Lemieux, spotted him and left his race to help. Chan was so exhausted he couldn't even get into Lemieux's boat without help. Lemieux won no medals, but he saved a life.

Of course, if you want really cool Olympic stories like that, you need to by David Wallechinsky's books. Here's a friendly link to the books on Amazon: The Complete Book of the Summer Olympics 2004 edition and The Complete Book of the Winter Olympics 2002 edition.

Let's see. Accomplishments today:

Sorted out the mortgage insurance mess with help from an incredibly competent and wonderful agent at AAA. Thank gooness for Kevin. I hope he gets a raise.

Did dishes and laundry. Oops. (sounds of scrambling) Ok, now I've done laundry. I forgot to put the clothes into the dryer.

Exercised for nearly 30 minutes. Watching TV shows while exercising seems to be the way to go, especially shows that are on DVD or off bt so they don't have commercials.

Hmmm. Those aren't much by way of accomplishments. I think I need to work on my daily efforts.