Union Pacific's Great Excursion Adventure

Two hits…

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A couple of quick things that have put a smile on my face:

  1. I have a Blow-Pop.  (And, I have more in my desk drawer!)
  2. There are no ordinary moments.

That’s it.

As you were.

“The roof, the roof, the roof is on fire…!”

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Monday – 30 May 2007
And so, another week begins.

Fortunately, it’s a short week… and a week that will end with me on the Right Coast – Kris (Sib3) graduates from law school this weekend.  Of course, that also means that it will be a busy weekend.  Oh, well… no rest for the wicked.

Yesterday, I made it to the second game of Patryck’s double-header.  The umpire was ludicrously inconsistent with his calls – one pitch would be a ball; another, in the same spot would be a strike.  It wasn’t pretty.  But, Patryck’s team won, so I guess that’s all that really matters in the long run.  After that, I stopped in to see and Matt.  Enchiladas!  Homemade enchiladas, at that!  TASTY homemade enchiladas, even.  Then, home to take care of a few things… including making a mess of my kitchen, because it’s much better to pour rice all over the stove and floor than into the pot of near-boiling broth.  *sigh*

Stray Toasters


Click. Whir.

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Sunday – 29 April 2007
Coffee…? Check.
Honey Bunches of Oats…? Check.
Interweb connection…? Check.

Let’s get this thing moving, then.

So far, it’s been a quiet morning. I’ve been up a little longer than I would have expected – since a little before 9 AM. Yet, miraculously, I haven’t done much. Oh, sure, I have observed the rituals d’hygiene and made a pot of coffee, but other than that…? Bupkis. And I’m okay with that.

I’ll be getting out of here shortly to check out Patryck’s team play some baseball. That will get me out in the sunshine for a while. Gotta work on getting a good base for my tan, after all. Beyond that, I’m not sure what kind of trouble I’m going to get into. But I’m pretty sure that I can find something.

Stray Toasters

Out-of-Context Quote of the Day

: You don’t need lube for grab-ass.


“Who wants to live forever…?”

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This post is going to be full of comic-related items – and a few other things – so, if that’s not your particular cup of tea, roll on.

And that’s a wrap… for now.


“Brainy, you speak robot… you talk to them!”

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Saturday – 28 April 2007

It’s both the name of a Gordon Lightfoot song and today’s episode of Legion of Super Heroes. But, since this is my blog – and it’s a Saturday morning – it’s a fair bet that this post will have very little to do with the song (even though it is a pretty decent song).

This was the first of a two-part episode. It opened strongly, with the Legion taking on the Fatal Five… and getting trounced. While newly-elected leader Bouncing Boy is still reeling from this, an emergency alert is broadcast: The Legion is called to a weapons depot to keep a weapon from being released. No one, not even the guards, know what the weapon is; they just know that it can’t get out. The LSH arrives on the scene and searches for the weapon – which is trying to break free of the facility. Artificial intelligence, go figure. After the weapon goes a couple of rounds with various Legionnaires, Brainiac 5 identifies it: A sun-eater. The sun-eater breaks free and begins a journey towards a nearby star to feed. One problem: It’s a red star, meaning that Superman will be powerless. Undaunted, the LSH pursues and takes on the sun-eater again. The fight was well-choreographed and the characterizations were pretty solid, too. We also got to see Sun Boy in action – for the first time that I’m aware of.

The conclusion airs next week; the previews show a LOT of LSH-related characters engaging the even more-power sun-eater.

As long-time Legion fans know, the sun-eater crisis also involved the death of a Legionnaire: Ferro Lad. In the original comic story, Superboy was going sacrifice himself to detonate a bomb in the sun-eater’s core. He was subdued by Ferro Lad, who carried the bomb to the sun-eater. I will be interested to see if the next episode follows through with this and, if so, how they will treat it.

Long Live the Legion!

“You can be the President, I’d rather be the Pope…”

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…and I don’t mean the Mormon Pope, either.

Good work and good scouting to Derek for pointing this out.

His Chocolate Holiness,
Pope Groovalicious

“You are a veritable cesspool of useless trivial knowledge.”

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Friday – 27 April 2007
This is it.  The end of the week.  Amen.

So far, the day’s going fairly well.  I am thinning out the blood in my caffeinestream.  I didn’t have to wrangle road monkeys – PoW or otherwise – this morning.  There were people paragliding off Traverse Mountain.  And it’s been quiet here at the ranch.
I spent a portion of last night hanging with Kate, Perry and the kids.  It was a nice way to wind down after work.  Then I went home and vegged.  And it was good.  I even managed to catch the rare and elusive online; we chatted for a bit.  She makes me laugh… even if she did say that the outfit that I (currently) have Dhoruba in makes him look like a gay Mr. T.

Winged Justice
After that, I took Corvus Nox to Paragon City.

You know it’s hard out there for a pimp Level 10 hero.  I couldn’t find anyone from my supergroup online, so it took some time to find a team.  I was invited to join a group for missions in The Hollows.  My big complaint about The Hollows: They expect low level characters to run – RUN – across the zone to a mission… and avoid higher-level bad guys in the process… and not die.  *sigh*  Or in my case: Hover.  We had a member with teleport for one of the missions, that was a boon.  WHen he left, however… it was back to hover-ifficness.  Wa.  Hoo.
The team – actually “teams” – I was on was/were good.  I was worried in a couple of cases because we were heavy with Tankers and Defenders… and only one blaster, at one point.  Typically, you want to have a well-rounded team – especially one with members who can do some ranged damage, hence my concern.  I shouldn’t have been quite so worried – we did pretty well.  Yes, we died a few times, but not as frequently as I had originally feared.

I even managed to add a couple more levels and make it to Security Level 12 before I logged out.

Stray Toasters

  • I am craving something.  I think it’s cotton candy.
  • Why isn’t the new Legion set of ‘Clix out yet?!?  Oh, wait… it’s not June.  *sigh*
  • Super-Ventriloquism.  This may actually push Hover out of the “second most-stupid superpower ever” slot.   Tyranist disagrees; he thinks it is the – and I quote – “Worst. Power. Ever.”
  • Speaking of Tyranist, he introduced me to a song from EuroTrip called Scotty Doesn’t Know.  It cracked me up.  Even worse: About halfway through the song, I started picturing Cyclops as the Scotty in the song… and Jean and Logan as Fiona and the lead singer.  That made me laugh even more.
  • 301 Useless Facts (not all of which have been verified, so take them with a grain of salt)
    I found these most interesting: 11, 20, 29, 37, 49, 53, 92, 104, 111, 117, 124, 126, 145, 149, 168, 175, 176, 179, 183, 204, 246, 256 and 289.
  • By way of Wired: Is ‘Internet Normal’ the New ‘Sex Normal’?
  • Jack Valenti dies at 85
  • I was able to find (because I finally remembered to look for) the long video for Janet Jackson’s Alright, featuring Heavy D.
  • Chuck Berry’s My Ding-A-Ling makes me laugh.  And sing along.  Every time.
  • The 52 Most Important Video Games of All Time

Back to it.


“The good guys dress in black, remember that, just in case we’re ever face-to-face and make contact…”

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"The good guys dress in black, remember that, just in case we're ever face-to-face and make contact..."

Wrapping up Suit Week with a bang.
Black suit, the black shades, the black shoes
Black tie with the black attitude
New style black ray bans I’m stunning man
New hotness pitch black 600 hundred man

(click for full-sized image)

Show love to the black suit tux…
Cause that’s the Men in…
That’s the Men in…

“Respond. Vibrate. Feedback. Resonate.”

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Wednesday: coda
I spent more time than I really care to admit trying to bend the Wireless Network Connection settings in MicroSquish Vista to my will… and that of ‘s network.  I swear, setting that thing up was like going around your ass to scratch your nose.  I finally got it set up… I think.  Of course, I thought that I had it set up once… and it wound up dropping the connection a short while later.  *braincramp*   I need to take some time and tinker with Vista more.  But it will be a long while before it winds up on any of my boxes as the standard OS.  I may be getting a chocolate cake out of the deal, too.  That ain’t bad.

After Vista-aerobics, I hung out with Liz for coffee.  Unfortunately, B&B was closed so I had to fall back on one of the local embassies of the Seattle Coffee Empire.  Beggars.  Choosers.
Thursday is the last day of Suit Week… because we can’t justify suits on Friday.  Not that we really need to justify them, but we’re talking Friday.  If ever there was a “not a suit day” day, it’s Friday.  So, to cap off Suit Week: Tuxedos.  And, we even talked one of our other coworkers into joining us.  Yowza!
Stray Toasters

  • I am taking suggestions for lyrics to use as the basis for my next few drawings.
  • I also need to make some time to get in some freehand drawrin’ practice with my Wacom.
  • For some reason, Signe – the opening track from Eric Clapton: Unplugged – is running through my head.
  • …and we’ll throw in a “Felgercarb,” at no extra charge!
  • By way of Slashdot: How Wii Is Creaming the Competition
  • , this one’s for you: Amateur Batman movie destined to become cult favorite
  • “I… I… I… want the knife!”   *spin prayer wheel*
  • Australia bans Snoop Dog
  • Tom’s Diner, the way it was meant to be… and with an introduction by Suzanne Vega


“I can’t stand to fly, I’m not that naive….”

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"I can't stand to fly, I'm not that naive...."

Wednesday – 25 April 2007
The next time I wake up with a headache, I’d really like it to be because I’d been out drinking the night before. These random “Good morning… here’s your friendly, neighborhood headache” things aren’t something I relish. A couple of Aleve – and a cup of coffee – seemed to quash it, though. Today’s suit choice was a bit of a toss-up between my grey and one of my navy double-breasted suits. I decided on the grey, as it would give me a chance to wear my woven leather braces with it. I was buttoning them into the pants when one of the straps decided to break. (You don’t really think of leather as “breaking,” but this did.) So, not only did I opt not to wear the grey suit, I’m in search of a new pair of braces. *sigh* So, today’s outfit is:

  • Navy double-breasted suit
  • White cotton-blend shirt
  • Navy, tan, purple and burgundy tie (with pianos!)
  • Cordovan wing-tip oxfords

Then, there were the PoW road monkeys. What is it about people that makes their brains turn of when they drive in the fast lane? Unglaublich!

Stray Toasters

  • I was going to meet Perry for lunch… but forgot that we’re having a meeting at noon. At least they’re feeding us.
  • If you have to ask why this amuses me, you don’t know me very well…

  • Coca-Cola lore, from Snopes.com
    (for more amusement, click the link next to the last green dot on the page…)
  • This one’s for
  • I can see the message breathing still
    I can hear the voices sounding deep inside
    I can feel the hero rising up above the silence
    Your soul remembers yet
    The path that men forgot
    I bring the winds to free you from your hesitation
    I call the storms to remind you what you are
    My faith endures for the sake of something less and more in them
    And so I bring the winds, to echo in your heart
  • WHAT would drive someone to do something like this!?
  • By way of Wired.com – Lamest Technology Mascots Ever and Happy Birthday, Star Wars
  • Slashdot poll: Favorite Sci-fi Ship
  • emmet swimming


Jigglypuff. (Just because it’s funny to say.)

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Jigglypuff.   (Just because it's funny to say.)

Tuesday – 23 April 2007
So far, it hasn’t been a bad morning. When the alarm went off, I was up… hit the deck… made it into the kitchen and started my coffee…

…and then went back to the bedroom and laid back down.

The alarm on the iPod – set to music – went off a few minutes later. I listened to it as I faded in and out of sleep for the next forty-five minutes. I got up, observed the hygiene rituals, ironed my shirt, took out the trash, grabbed my gear and headed out.

I had to take some equipment to the north office before making my way to A.F. While there, I talked with , who suggested that I check out two of the stop signs near the parking deck before I left. He said that it would be worth my time. When I got there, this is what I found: 1, 2. Definitely worth it. Then I was on the road.

Along the way, I discovered a new form of road monkey: The PoW monkey. “PoW” being short for “Piece of Work.” I was fortunate enough to see two of them this morning! Both within… a half-mile to a mile of each other. I was coming up the north face of Traverse Mountain when I encountered the first one – a lady in the fast lane… on her cell phone… not looking out the windshied… going about 59 MPH. Did I mention that she was in the fast lane? I did? Okay. She was completely oblivious to the line of cars stacked up behind her. That must have been one HELL of a conversation. A number of us passed her, on the right – we couldn’t get around her fast enough. The second PoW monkey was driving some large, boat-sized car. Also in the fast lane. Also oblivious. This monkey was an older gentleman, so I was willing to cut him a little more slack. Just a little, though.

It’s Day Two of Suit Week. Today’s choice:

  • Olive double-breasted suit
  • Cream and white cotton/poly blend shirt, long-point collar
  • Olive, brown and gold abstract tie
  • Tan woven leather tassel loafers.

Brett’s looking rather dapper in a rather nice black-and-white Glen Plaid single-breasted suit, with a black shirt. Once again, there were more comments from coworkers. Although, there have been fewer “Where’s your interview” comments and more “You guys look nice” or “You guys are making us look bad” ones.

Stray Toasters

  • Derek has erected a Code Monkey shrine at his desk. It amuses me.
  • YouTube has deleted the Code Monkey/Stargate: Atlantis video from its servers. Last night, I discovered that I had… creatively acquired… a copy of it a few weeks ago.
  • I found a new way to look at Marvel’s Civil War: It was really a thinly-veiled version of Pokemon. Think about it.
    • Tony Stark (Iron Man) would be Ash (NOT to be confused with Ash from Evil Dead)
    • In Pokemon, the motto is “Gotta catch ’em all” and they capture the creatures in little balls. In Civil War, that’s what Tony and company were trying to do – catch all of the non-registered metahumans… and put them in little cells in the Negative Zone.
    • Pokemon has Team Rocket, the “bad” guys… with that annoying cat. Civil War had the New Avengers, portrayed as the bad guys… with the often-annoying Spider-Man.
    • I’m sure that there are others, but that is a good enough starting and stopping point.
  • GamerZ. What in the Nine Hells..?
  • This week’s Homestar Runner ‘toon even comes with an NPR reference. (Don’t forget the Easter egg at the end…)


Yeah, this is pretty much right…

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“He’s leaping buildings in a single bound, I’m reading Shakespeare at my place downtown…”

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Monday: coda
The rest of the work day was good.  And, for the most part, it was pretty quiet, too.

Home.  Cleaning.  Cooking.  24.  City.

Stray Toasters

Closing time.


“Gotsta recognize the heat, baby…”

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"Gotsta recognize the heat, baby..."

Monday – 22 April 2007
So far, the day hasn’t been bad.

Today is the first day of Suit Week. Brett and I, for no other reason than “because we can,” are wearing suits. My weapon of choice:

  • Black and white houndstooth single-breasted suit
  • White cotton shirt, spread collar
  • Black, red and white tie
  • Black cap-toe lace-up oxfords

Of course this has led to a number of “why are you wearing a suit” questions. Although, I did one exchange was rather amusing:

Dave: Are you trying to upgrade the quality of fashion around here?
Me: I’ve been trying to do that for the past two years.
Ty: After all that time, without any success, he’s still trying.
Me: No. I just got to the point where I don’t care about the rest of you. You can all go float rocks for all I care.

The morning commute wasn’t bad either. The monkeys were fairly well-behaved. I had a large cup of triple-shot laden frozen mocha goodness. And, Nomad found a good selection of songs… and apparently was on a bit of a Will Smith/Men in Black kick, too:

  • Duran Duran – Notorious
  • Harry Connick, Jr. – Funky Dunky
  • Will Smith – Nod Ya Head (remix)
  • Will Smith – Men in Black

Back-to-back, although in reverse order, MiB themes. I think that the only thing that could have made it more amusing would have been if the theme from the animated series had made it into the rotation.

Stray Toasters


“Minister G’off!”

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Sunday: coda
I need more time on the driving range.

It’s not so much a matter of feeding the newfound addiction as it is that I don’t want to injure, maim or kill anyone.

Out of the 100 balls that I had (105, if you count the one’s gave me out of his bucket), I managed to – somehow – hit four or five of the balls behind me.  Into the area where spectators stand.  With a good amount of force.  While physics and I aren’t necessarily on hanging out terms, we have come to terms and I do have a basic understanding of forces and vectors.  Although, to have seen those balls, you would not have known it.

Despite this, I had a fun time.  I hit a few solid drives.  And a lot of ground-skimmers.

After our time on the live ammunition obstacle course… I mean “driving range,” , Chris and I went to lunch.  Mimi’s Cafe.

The Scales of Justice
After a good afternoon out, it was time hit the mean streets Paragon City.

I was invited to join a team with an old teammate.  After that team broke up, I was invited to join another team.  All in all, it was a productive patrol: I hit Security Level 24… and made it a few bubbles in the direction of Level 25.

Stray Toasters

  • I have a bottle of Merlot.
  • I do NOT have a corkscrew.
  • The above statements, together, both amuse and frustrate me.
  • , by way of , sent me a link to the following: Mechs in the II World War   And, all I can say is “Wow.”
  • It would be great to learn ASL (American Sign Language).   But, is it bad that part of me wants to learn because of this video?
  • I’m liking Thunderbird.  The email client, not the drink.
  • The Brave and The Bold #5, featuring….
  • What happens when you cross Super Mario World with 300?  Something like this
  • …and “a certain movie” and pirates will give you something like this.
  • and , in case you don’t already know: Goatse.cx domain is for sale
  • This… is not a good thing.

    More info here.

  • Do you remember the scene in The Incredibles when Bob and Lucius went “bowling” (i.e.: “snuck out to secretly fight crime”)?  And how… “unhappy” with that whole situation Helen was when she found Bob trying to sneak back in the house?

    Well, let’s extrapolate a little… hypothetically, of course.

    What happens when six guys – say these guys – decide to take a pro-active stance in shaping the course of events around the world.  And… what if they got caught “sneaking in the house,” so to speak, by say their respective significant others… like these ladies, for example?

    How much Hell do you think a certain six somebodies are going to have to pay?  Mm-hmm, that’s right.  A LOT.

And that’s a wrap.