Archive for January, 2006

you be the judge

Tuesday, January 31st, 2006

The most ambitious rhyme ever attempted in rock?
My blood’s so mad
Feels like coagulating
And I’m just sitting here
Doesn’t quite work, but I admire the effort.

just what the world needs (part 1)

Friday, January 27th, 2006

A giant economic treatise by me, the length of which is in direct proportion to my lack of knowledge of the subject. This is inspired by an awesome post on ThinkChristian and the subsequent discussion. I commented a couple of times there, but I don

Phone phun

Monday, January 23rd, 2006

We get phone calls for people other than ourselves pretty frequently. The first phone number we were assigned when we moved to GR showed up on everyones’ caller IDs as “Michael Flowers.” I believe it was after a very confusing call from someone in Chicago who really, really wanted me to give her Michael Flowers’ current phone number that I decided to call the phone co. on that one. Several months/more phone calls later, the phone co. decided they couldn’t fix the problem and assigned us a new number.
After that we started getting calls for Amy all the time; this culminated in Amy herself calling to ask if we could give them her new number. Thus I embarked on my new career as a message service. We still get calls for Amy (after this # has been all ours for at least a couple of years), but lately we’ve been getting calls for some mysterious new entity as well.
Last week we got a message from a fellow who wanted a “brochure” from some company he was trying to call–the name of it sounded like “Amumblemumblemumble.” (By the way, I’ve noticed that when people are leaving phone messages, they tend to mumble information that is very familiar to them, like their own names. I’m sure I do that at least as much as anyone else does, but in my secretarial avocation this leads to problems when taking messages: “Um, Muhmumble called and wants you to call him back, his number is 555-82mumblemumble”).
Sometimes I ignore these calls, but other times I call the person back to let them know their message didn’t reach its intended hearer. I did that today with the brochure guy.
It has occasionally happened on these calls that people want me to give them the new number of the person that they are trying to contact. Now, I hate to cloud the issue by the fact that I do indeed have Amy’s new number; but in general, how on earth would I know contact info for the previous holder of the phone number that was randomly assigned to me?
The brochure guy seemed confused, like most recipients of my well-intentioned corrective calls do, but he also kind of tried to argue with me. “Well, I was trying to reach Amumblemumble. This is the number I was given.”
I wonder what he was expecting? That I would crumble and admit that I was actually a representative of the Amumblemumble company all along, and promise to send out his brochure immediately?
Haha, he won’t get me to admit my complicity with Amumblemumble that easily. Nice try, brochure guy, but you’ve got to get up pretty early in the morning to fool Michael Flowers–I mean Amy–I mean, um, yeah, me.

cool stuff

Saturday, January 14th, 2006

(I’ve turned comments on on this one, despite the fact that anonymous individuals continue to attempt to sell all types of crazy crap to the readers of my blog)
A random one: I was thinking about the use of gender-inclusive language, etc., and realized that while I use gender-inclusive language myself in writing and speaking, I am really not bothered when others do not do so. I’m also not bothered by the idea of God being primarily represented as masculine in the Bible etc. I think there’s two main factors in this:


aaaaa….The Simpsons…

Saturday, January 7th, 2006

The Simpsons has been on TV for exactly half my life. I must have sometimes watched the Tracy Ullman show, on which it of course debuted, because I remember one short about Bart stealing cookies and saying Maggie did it, also one about Bart and Lisa pretending to be tribesmen or something using Homer’s ties, and getting yelled at by Homer’s original voice. On the other hand, I don’t remember anything Tracy Ullman did on the show.
I was 16 and a junior in high school when it started. Well I remember its, and my, early years. I remember I had to watch it on a tiny black and white TV because my mom wanted to watch something else in the living room–Monday Night Football maybe? Did it used to be on on Mondays? I remember writing an essay for an Earth Day contest in 1991, while watching The Simpsons on the tiny TV. For my Civics class, I had to volunteer at a community center, and I remember one time trying to watch it on a TV mounted to the wall, without sound, while kids swarmed about kicking up a ruckus. And of course, I had one of the T-shirts.
I was so pleased with myself that I understood the literary references in the Kamp Krusty episode; and wished I could understand what Bart was saying in the one where he goes to France and learns French. I didn’t understand the controversy over Bart being a bad influence–and now I understand it less than ever. Though I wouldn’t let any children of mine watch hardly anything on TV now, which shows you the difference between 16 and 32.
I didn’t watch much TV while I was in college, but kept watching faithfully when I could. Who could forget the Halloween episodes, Otto’s wedding, the death of Maud Flanders, the time Ralph went on a date with Lisa, the Monorail, and the proud day that Homer was promoted to Safety Manager at the power plant.
I never thought the show could get bad, and I hoped it would keep going on even if it did, because I thought it could be just as funny if it became a deliberate parody of itself. But I haven’t watched many of the new episodes in the last few years, and those I have seen haven’t done much to bolster my confidence. Bart joining a boy band? Which is really a front for Navy recruiting? Huh? Then there was an incomprehensible one which culminated in the Mad Magazine building blowing up. I seem to remember that one was on shortly after 9/11, and I couldn’t believe they put it on at all.
If this trend of badness keeps up, and if the show is still on in another 16 years, you can bet I won’t be allowing any of my kids to watch it…instead, I’ll be making them watch the DVDs of the first 10 seasons or so with me. Won’t they be thrilled?


Saturday, January 7th, 2006

It’s true, I’ve turned off comments on new posts due to the ratio of unsolicited sales “comments” to real comments having become about 50:1. Apologies to all of you kind folks who read & comment here from time to time.