Jan 30


What’s the most weird to me about so-called conservatives is that as long as they are the dominant ones, they don’t care if they are wearing a loincloth standing astride the slum where everyone else is naked – as long as the naked ones are poorer and more oppressed than they are.

Caring about relative status so very much just makes no sense to me. Apparently I just was not born to think that way.

Jan 30


I have pretty extensive weapons training, both informal and formal – I can hit targets accurately and consistently at 300 meters. I can disassemble and re-assemble a number of weapons very quickly. I can hit moving targets, and I can even fire fairly accurately dual-wielding pistols action movie style (which is very hard, I might add).

I also don’t panic and I don’t seem to have much of a normal fear reaction.

All that said, if I were to walk into a room where there were one or two bad guys with guns, a bunch of civilians maybe some of whom also had guns, and other confusing and confounding elements, if I had to shoot someone – though I am quite sure I could hit my target accurately, unlike most people – there’s maybe a 50% chance I’d shoot all the right people.

Look at all the advantages up above that I have, and then think about how much worse the average person toting a gun who only fires it at the range would do.

So why the hell would we ever even consider arming teachers and college professors? Really, could you think of any worse idea? Great, not only would half of them lose their guns within a few weeks, but if they ever needed to shoot anyone, most likely they’d shoot everyone.

Jan 29

Wild about them

In other music news, Wild Flag is fucking fantastic.

I was never a fan of Sleater-Kinney; despite their agreeable politics and Carrie Brownstein being an amazing woman, their music just never grabbed me. No matter how much you agree with someone, when it comes to liking music you just can’t fake the funk.

Wild Flag on the other hand – their music is both playful and cerebral, complex yet approachable, immersive yet never irksome.

And that guitar hook on “Boom.” Now, that’s something. Whoever plays that – damn, girl has some skills.

Jan 29

Cannot hear

Apparently I am very late to to this, but anyone who thinks Beyoncé was lip-syncing the Star-Spangled Banner at the inauguration must be freakin’ deaf.

I mean, you can hear the audio from the monitors on the microphone, so it sounds like she’s double-tracked. There’s around a 20-30ms delay. Listen for it; I’m guessing most but not all people will be able to hear it as I’ve noticed anything below 50-60ms is difficult for you mortals to discern. 😉

And the performance, while great, is not studio great. Lip-synced renditions are usually perfect, but her actual performance* is not. Hell, as this article points out, she’s signing in an entirely different key at the beginning! That’s the second thing I noticed before I’d even read the article (the first being the monitors being too loud).

You can also hear the wind in the microphone quite loudly on two occasions, for which the sound engineer (probably frantically) adjusts for.

I’m wondering what sort of weird weed people have to be smoking to even suspect that’s lip-synced.

*It’s likely the very best any human could do under those weather and audio conditions

Jan 29


Every time I see something like this:


I go pirate something else expensive. Seriously, fuck the copyright industry.

Jan 28


Confirmed: It’s not just an urban myth (as I’ve seen some people claim) that burned CDs and DVDs deteriorate after less than a decade.

This weekend, I tried to read several hundred files from a DVD I burned seven years ago. Approximately 20% of them were corrupt to various levels. Some were totally unreadable, and some were readable but partially corrupt.

These DVDs were not stored in the sun or in the heat. They’ve never been wet and they have no scratches; the media just deteriorates after a while.

If you have any DVD or CD older than 2-3 years on which you have vital files, it’d probably be a good idea to get those files to other media ASAP.

Jan 28


Argh, trying to use Linux commands at the Windows command line today. Too many OSes.

Jan 28


While I was dreading doing yard work today, a duskywings of some sort flew into the yard and started snacking on some weeds.

This gave me the perfect excuse to go retrieve the camera.

What I like about my 100mm lens is that it’s such a great piece of glass that I get to see details using it that I’d never notice with my naked eye. It’s not the most expensive lens I have, but it’s by far the best one as far as optical quality and ease of use.

Here’s the photo of the duskywings – it’s isn’t that great, but I like it because the 100mm allowed me to see the iridescent sheen on the underside of the wings. It’s really beautiful.


And I also thought it looked pretty cool run through Photohop’s oil paint filter, and then having it sharpened heavily.