Monday, August 22, 2016

Poop Everywhere!

Got a pet and a Roomba (automatic vacuum cleaner)?
Apparently you can be in deep doo-doo if the machine runs over pet poop (or any other poop, one would imagine). In one case, it spread the poop all over the house. This is the main reason I love blogging.

  • CNN has admitted to shorthanding ('creatively editing') the clip of the dead Milwaukee man's sister. The edited version said, "Call for peace." The original version said, "Go burn down the suburbs, not our local businesses." CNN apologizes.

Liz Cheney won the primary for the US House seat her father held. She is reported to have her own heart but does evil run in families?

  • After what must have been an unnecessary lawsuit, a New Jersey driver can now order his 8THEIST license plate. His suit claimed religious discrimination because the Motor Vehicle Commission had approved a plate that said, "BAPTIST." Why are we even having this discussion?

Eight female Egypt state TV anchors have been given one month to lose weight before being allowed back on air. Perhaps they have had some consultants in from Fox.

  • At her 58th birthday party in Havana, Madonna danced on a bar. Ambulances and life support stood by. Go ahead, call me a hypocrite.. sure, most of my favorite musicians are in their 60-70s.

A Malaysian oil tanker was 'not hijacked' despite earlier reports. Because it's really easy to get confused between 'hijacked' and 'not hijacked'.

  • Unwanted pet goldfish are growing to the size of footballs in Australian waters. If they don't get eaten by the giant unwanted pet alligators, we're all in trouble.

I don't have a ton of good (or bad) things to say about Taylor Swift, but she just donated $1 million to help Louisiana recover from the flood. Hats off for your humanity, Taylor.

  • The BBC News reported a study on the rising number of Islamophobic posts on Twitter.  Islamophobic is defined as anything negative about Islam. Not slanted at all, is it? Hmmm.. did they study the elections? I'm sick of them - if I tweet this, am I fraudophobic? If I tweet something bad that a gay guy did, am I homophobic? (ok, bad example). I really can't stand the Olympics (Zikaphobic), Social Justice Warriors (WhiteGuiltphobic), or Kim/Kanye (ok, that's just normal). Then there's concert prices (ServiceChargephobic), bad drivers (idiotphobic), and loud coworkers (deafophobic). Might as well give up on Mainstream Media (Agendaphobic), as if that's news.

Best headline of the month:

Police to search Bath park today for more dismembered feet

 Here's some readable tech stuff:
  • 5 back to school tips to help kids stay safe online. Share this with children and adults you know. Avoid sharing it with kids you don't know - people tend to get upset about this.

If you're planning to install some spyware on your husband or wife's computer, things are starting to get 'interesting' in the courts. A US court has said that a man can sue a spyware company whose software was used unlawfully by a jealous spouse to intercept his messages. This is a significant case and should be watched. Don't you like it when I get all legal?

  • So that DNC hack? It was investigated and determined, as in the press, to be Russian hackers. One of two hacks proved the Russians were inside the network for a year.  This is not partisan politics, folks... this is Serious Shit<tm>. If they're inside the DNC, where else are they? Answer: safe to assume most places.

Need a little light, amusing reading? Here's what happens when your work computer is full of large amounts of porn and it needs a little bit of repair...

So tell me - what's it like, being thrown through the windshield? No, we haven't called an ambulance-this will look great on the news.

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

1984 Was So 20 Years Ago

There is now a wireless hack that will allow someone to unlock 100 million Volkswagens. And you thought emissions cheating was bad,,,

  • Know what's weird? Twitter. It's unlike other places, in terms of variety. There's the ex-NSA guy. The current judges. The girls who show off their boobs for free (and unfortunately, the ones who want you to pay for the privilege). Aging divas who post selfies for reassurance. People who repeat things until they're convinced of them. More than one left-handed guitar player. Tons who want to sell you something and visit their Faceyspaces page. And the one who brags about the famous athletes she banged and the ones she wants to.

Still keeping with our No Olympics Policy, I can only say that there's a lot of them about. And, in spite of my love of Brazilian women, the place is a shithole. Also, if you like big boobs, you're shit out of luck.

  • Know what's great about drugs? None of them work right on me. Think of the money I've saved!

it's national tell a joke day: A VA employee sits down at his desk and fulfills requests.
Thank you.
I'm available for children's parties.

  • There have been lots of accusations lately where one party blames the other for being corrupt. Hint: they're both correct.

Work gives me a headache. Not work itself, but my coworkers. The cubicle to the left features a phone ring that sounds like an annoying whistle, which the cube to the right automatically parrots every time. The cube in the back has a bird chirp so real that people keep looking up for the bird. The cube on the left also has a hearing problem, so every time his phone goes off, we have to be pulled off the ceiling.

  • Ok, I don't know much about geography or floods, but I'm going to go ahead and say it's time to get out of certain parts of Louisiana. Good thoughts to the fine people there. I hope they survive and thrive.

Aetna said that it would sharply reduce its participation in Obamacare's public marketplaces next year. Yes, another win for Obamacare and another loss for the people.

  • Ban Ki-moon, outgoing secretary-general of the United Nations, says he would personally like a woman to take over for him.  Why does having indoor plumbing qualify one for this position? Hey, I know.. we'll send Hillary! The UN is practically worthless and we ignore it anyway....

I have an adversarial relationship with Yelp: it sucks plus I don't use it. Trying to locate a restaurant between two hotels a few blocks apart was a nightmare. Not only did it come up with an incredible amount of choices (good), most weren't open at the moment (bad). The reviews were less than helpful. 

The other day we wandered into a store and the owner got started on Yelp. Apparently every few months, perhaps as the result of a salesman change, he gets calls from Yelp, offering to enhance his position. This is quite obviously pay-for-play, which undermines their own stated business model. He said it was nothing more than a platform for trolls. The reviewers didn't say a word to him, yet posted negative reviews. If the platform had any validity, I'd have given him five stars. Honest, personable, knowledgeable, and great customer service. 

  • I just read a fascinating(?) story from an Olympic swimmer about performing during her period. For your reading pleasure and general health, I have conveniently forgotten to include the link.

A nation of morons has expanded to include many nations. Pop star Adele tweeted about a burrito, which got retweeted 31,000 times.

  • A second information layer of DNA has been found. This is a mixed blessing, as I still don't understand the first layer.

My area got some cooling thunderstorms last night, so it's only going up to 93 today.

This is how McDonalds can fix the $15/hr minimum wage problem

Monday, August 15, 2016

Just Call Us Oblivious

I suspect most men are born oblivious to certain things, one of them being the ability to recognize when women are interested in them (or more than just interested). The guys who get this usually have to beat off the ladies with a stick. The rest of us are simply poor shlubs.

A small group of the Oblivious becomes aware of the fact they're not tuned in, usually after the fact. They wonder what could have been, if anything was.  I spent a lot of puberty asking my best bud how do we know if they're into us. Being somewhat self-aware, we agreed that if a female presented herself nude to either of us, we'd still be wondering if she was into us. Further, we'd probably ask if she wanted help finding her clothes. Or we'd shyly inform her she was naked.

We worked diligently, through the years, figuring out some of the signs. The personal space thing. The hair-flipping. The shy smile. The sudden interest in what can only be described as fatally boring. Of course this usually comes about way too late.

I say Funny Shit. I've noticed that I can make lots of people laugh, even in odd situations. One day it hit me, as most things hit me (like a sledgehammer), that if I had only used my gift for evil instead of good, I'd have been swimming in it all of my life.  Women love a sense of humor, or at least that's what they say. If I can stand near them and give them a silly laugh, I'm most of the way there. Yay!  Again, too late.

Back in the days of musical comedy, I let the other two guys be social, dealing with the crowd and selling merchandise, while I packed up the gear. Dealing with people was not exactly paradise for an introvert (no, really).  My wife used to tell me I could get laid multiple times at any gig. After I stopped laughing, I asked where that came from.  She said they were falling over me. The laughter subsided. I said they weren't. She said, with all the love in her heart, that I was a blind idiot. My mind reeled at the possibilities. The possibilities I'd missed, as I had my girl. The possibilities of Fun Times up to meeting my girl.

Speaking of meeting my girl, I've mentioned we worked in two different offices in a medical building. Unbeknownst to us, our two offices were working diligently to get us together. I'm not so sure their planning went too far, as the day we met, it was over for both of us... we were smitten. My coworker knew it before I did (I kid you not. RIP Pat). She said I must like her, as I let her into my personal space, which normally runs about twenty feet in all directions. Dammit to hell, another woman has to tell me about this.

So we're out to eat the other night, at a place we kinda gave up on- The Olive Garden (just like real imitation Italian food!), due to their late hours.  The waitress was first class, even going so far as to recommend we come back again for something they were out of.  And she was also a treat on the eyes, as confirmed by Mrs leftystrat. She did not confirm, however, my request for the waitress to babysit me when the wife is away visiting relatives. You know, Vice Wife.

Why is it that I keep looking at women and discovering I'm about twice their age?

Two more visits with food later, the wife casually informs me the waitress likes me.
HOW DOES SHE KNOW THIS? WHAT SORT OF MAGIC COULD THIS BE? Is this some sort of radar women have that can't be installed in men?  Much as it would have caressed my old, battered ego, I had to say this was not true. The wife insisted otherwise.  Ok, consider my ego stroked, I guess.

I still didn't see it.

Wednesday, August 10, 2016

Special Non-Olympic Edition

Since this is the non-Olympic edition, I'll open with an Olympic-related matter.
Notice some of the athletes appearing with what looks like pepperonis on their backs? This is called fire cupping. In brief, a large baby food jar gets its air evacuated by a small flame and stuch onto a person's back. This provides relief for all sorts of maladies, fibromyalgia and fascia disorders among them. The vacuum in the jar helps pull at the skin and other layers, ultimately causing those pepperonis.

We at ThermionicEmissions are amused by this, as Mrs lefty had this treatment about twenty years ago, Don't we sound like hipsters? The only issue was visiting a hospital at the time, when the staff asked her if she was being abused because they had never heard of it. We're an interesting household.

  • Up to 900 million android phones are at risk due to a flaw in Qualcomm chips. The bug has been fixed but your phone carrier has to do whatever phone carriers do to it before they send it to your phone. Breaking my heart, this is the bad part of android. But, as we say here, at least it's not an iDevice.

Why is it that women complain when people comment on a tv host's wardrobe but it's ok to publicly grope male athletes?

  • There's a young guy at work who answers his phone "FBI." It's heartwarming to see a younger version of me, opening his trap inappropriately, without regard. He will go far (if he's not fired on the way).

Thinking of purchasing a new, computer-controlled car? Jeep was just hacked, allowing acceleration, brake slamming, and turning the wheel at any speed from outside the car.

  • The dog continues his grief over his missing cat. We tried some sort of scent that's supposed to remind him of his mother. We're having some difficulty determining if it works, as we can only use it when we're not in the house. As he's still barking at the door when we leave, I'm thinking no. Next step: pharmaceuticals. It's only a matter of time until we're all on the same meds. The vet is talking Ativan.


So Delta experienced a 'power outage', which took down the entire airline on Monday. The power outage quickly morphed into a 'computer outage' and very limited functionality was restored by the afternoon. One day later, they're still pretty messed up.

Once again, I need to point out that there's a serious problem with aviation these days.  This is approximately the fourth airline that has had computer issues in the last year. What kind of infrastructure do our airlines have?  Airlines and the Federal Aviation Administration are pretty important are pretty important functions. Important functions require all sorts of important infrastructure. I'm talking about basic things like at least two sources of power, at least two paths to the internet, at least two data centers, with automatic failover to the second one, reliable backups with functional (and tested) restore, a whole buncha spare parts onsite...  are you getting the idea? If I, in my various jobs, did not have these things, I'd be out on the street the first time there was a power outage (or a computer outage). I have heard from insiders that some of the airline infrastructure is old because the bean counters emphasize profits over equipment.

One article I read stated that this might be a human issue. I'd hope that a human could not take down an entire airline by himself, regardless of what he did to the computer. Yesterday it emerged that their power company said there was an outage, but Delta's equipment failed to switch over to a different provider.

Before any significant news came out, we were assured that this wasn't hacking. This is precisely the same M.O. when there's a shooting: "We don't have any details, but it's not terrorism." I'm not saying that Delta was hacked, but after at least four airline outages, do you think any of the airlines or the FEDERAL Aviation Association would admit to a hacking? Perhaps there were four separate instances of computer outages....I certainly don't know. Decide for yourself.

  • I hate like hell to descend to the depths of tabloidism, but here is a small collection of Leonardo DiCaprio's dating stall. Any of us could have a wonderful time with his rejects.

An Indian political activist is ending a 16-year fast.
16 years.
As a result, the laws of medicine will be reinstated and thousands of women will want a copy of the regimen. It will become the most attempted diet of all time.

  • A Philippine lawmaker wants to ban Donald Trump from the country. Like him or hate him, he sure generates headlines. I'm amused that he gets so much response from people outside of his own country. Meanwhile, democrats also want to ban Trump from the country.

Led Zeppelin has lost a legal bid to recoup almost $800,000 in legal fees from the recent lawsuit. The judge refused because the suit wasn't frivolous. The law is the law but let $800,000 in legal fees soak in.

  • At the Olympics, Rowing in Rio was cancelled because the water kept eating through the bottom of the boats. No reschedule dates have been mentioned.

Today's Faceyspaces news: Facebook will now bypass your desktop browser's adblocker. FB and Google own 64% of the digital ad market - do the math.  So if you need yet another reason to dump FB, here it is. I get the feeling it won't matter to many- except my fine readers here.

  • Bernie Sanders just bought his third luxury home, at a cost of $600 million. After he asked nicely, they allowed him to pay for it with a check from the Hillary for President campaign.

Wednesday, August 3, 2016

Feel the Johnson

About 200 million Yahoo account credentials were just dumped online. While there is no indication if the theft is fresh, it won't hurt you to change your password. One of my friends got hacked last week.

In fact, it wouldn't hurt you to change any or all of your passwords. Make them secure. If you're not sure what secure is, do a little searching online with your favorite search engine. I use, which doesn't track you.

  • I don't wanna say I work with some interesting old folks, but the guys in the next cubicle are discussing the need for sheetrock and the fact that one of them had a half sheet that he just threw out. No, wait, he gave it to his son. Then he proceeded to describe it. It's been a year and a half and I still don't understand this place.

More earth-shattering (stupid) news: our friends over at Apple have changed their handgun emoji to a green water-pistol. Hopefully they will not reproduce. Next up: Apple changes phone shape to round, so you can't 'point' it at anyone.

  • I think I'm experiencing Political Burnout. Or General Burnout - I can never tell.

ISIS has threatened the Olympics. In Portuguese. Unfortunately the Google Translate results came out like this: "Your mother is a dumptruck. We fuck goats. We will masturbate in stadiums, to images of pork and pork products."

Just in case they're serious, some of the Olympic sports have been 'adjusted':
* The 100 yard run from explosions
* Throw the javelin at the terrorist
* The itsy bitsy, teenie weenie, yellow polka dot pork bikini pageant for women and men
* The 50 foot dive while keeping your AK47 dry

  • The World Health Organization has endorsed a 42 second hand-washing method. Compulsive hand-washers all over the planet rejoice.

Non-political message: Trump called Hillary the devil.
Please put your own punchline in a comment. The winning entry will be included in the next post. There will be no monetary compensation but maybe I can manage a candy bar. Probably not.

  • A Dutch man waiting for an online girlfriend to show up, spent 10 days in a Chinese airport. Between the 2 of us, I don't think she's coming, Dude.

I know it's early, but can we have a remake of "Suicide Squad" starring Congress?

  • This is Bachelor Week at ThermionicEmissions, as Mrs leftystrat is off tending to two sick parents. Rest easy - Marshall and I are ok, except for figuring out how to hide the hookers and blow Marshall ordered while I was at work. The wife is likely to notice the charge on the credit card.
  • The Good Neighbor is concerned, as Marshall has spent less time outside, commanding her to bring him food. Speaking of which, he was so hungry the other day, he ate his own food.
  • Marshall also turns up his snout at tap water. We have to put it in a spring water bottle and refrigerate it until cold. My relatives went to Disney and brought him back a water bowl that is very difficult to tip over, as he does when it's empty. At least he has something to occupy his creative side. Meanwhile, I take the water bottle out of the fridge and announce "Special Spaniel Water." He runs to his bowl and drinks the water as I pour it from 3 feet up. After he's done drinking, he paws the water out onto the floor. Nobody knows why.
  • Are you getting the picture of life in my house yet?

Donald Trump made few friends the other day, when he kicked a baby out of a Virginia rally. I don't know why people are upset: when I go to a restaurant or on a plane, I always ask for the No Screaming Baby section.

  • An Australian woman just became a mother at age 63. Has this possibly gone too far? Who does she think she is - Mick Jagger?

A lawsuit has been filed against the makers of Pokemon Go over players trespassing on private property. Unfortunately, you still can't sue for stupidity.

  • A leading Irish Archbishop has said he will stop sending his trainee priests to study in the country’s main Catholic college due to allegations of a “gay culture.”  Still no word on the "pedophile culture".

It has already been established that California is the Land of Fruits and Nuts but the Hollywood Set is particularly affected. The following was heard at the DNC:

"Our president is brilliant" - John Legend
"I Love You, Barack Obama" - Alyssa Milano
"I don't expect to feel as proud of a president in my lifetime as I feel about Obama" - Michael Ian Black

They appear to be living in a different universe.

Get the hell out of here before you get me SHOT

Monday, August 1, 2016

The Light That Shines Only on Hillary is Gone

Thankfully for Philadelphia and the US, the DNC has packed up and left. Now Philly can go back to its normal gridlock and infighting.

  • Pope Francis fell over the other day at a function and required help to get up. The staff here at ThermionicEmissions hopes he's in good health. We're also thankful that when he fell, he did not land on a little boy.

John Hinckley, the man who tried to assassinate Ronald Reagan, will be released from the Happy Place<tm> to his mother's custody. It is rumored that if anyone says, "Polka Dot Dress" to him, his face goes blank and he tries to kill Donald Trump.

  • A new debate asks what's the right age for a child to get a smart phone. My informed answer is 53.

A 17-year-old says he is "overwhelmed" after Celine Dion shared a video of him performing one of her hits. The audience, however, stared in mute horror.

  • There are an awful lot of people claiming Donald Trump is a racist. Think about it for a second.. this is a guy whose primary interests are himself and his money. I don't think he has time to be racist.

Got an android phone with MS Swiftkey keyboard? There was a slight glitch the other day, where autocomplete was providing suggestions of things never typed or in different languages. Oops. There was a problem for people using The Cloud to back up their settings so they could be shared across devices. Swiftkey turned off cloud replication and email prediction. If you have an iDevice, you're only affected if you opted in to The Cloud.  
     1. Don't use MS anything.
     2. Don't use The Cloud.

And while we're at it, if you have an iDevice and use WhatsApp, your messages are not being deleted securely. This is a problem, as 'professionals' with forensic software can read the messages. Of course, if we're using WhatsApp for secure communication, we have other problems.  Copies of the database are stored on your device and.... wait for it... in The Cloud.

  • An Australian sex survey names 33 different genders. How many did you think there were?

This election is historic for many reasons:
1. people are PISSED, resulting in a wildly non-standard candidate with no experience, whose every utterance is fodder for amusement
2. the other major candidate is a proven liar and criminal
3. 2nd party candidates are viable for the first time
4. a newspaper published provocative pictures of a potential first lady
5. a group has emails purporting to result in removal of a major candidate
6. the husband of one candidate was impeached and will nail anything that can't run fast enough
7. the press is concentrated on Minor Bullshit, further Dividing and Conquering

No one could have predicted this. Hold on for a wild ride.

  • My wife's phone picked a really bad time to stop sniffing glue. By this I mean she can no longer plug the charger into the phone. HINT: do not force cords into holes. This advice is important for phones, guitars, and, of course, sex.
  • With 2% battery left, she picked a bad time to start thinking about backup and restoring data. Fortunately the very aware person at her phone store suggested wireless charging, which worked perfectly. There's also a program to transfer all data from one phone to another wirelessly.  This works flawlessly, except at Ft Knox here, where I have the network so locked down, it requires an Act of Congress to add a phone.
  • The most interesting thing learned from this experience,per Mrs lefty, is the sheer bliss that comes from silence. No phone ringing, no constant BLEEPs from notices and email, no one can get in touch. This is technically known as Phone/Email Vacation and might be a consideration when you're stressed.

So it must have been boring for a while.
My mother in law went to a foot doctor for a painful toe. He gave her meds and sent her on her way. The next day she was in the hospital, septic (blood infection) and getting a toe amputated and now in Rehabilitation.

Father in law, who has been dutifully visting his wife daily, goes for a routine checkup, leading to a more specific test. He has a 'minor blockage', which, of course, means he will require a triple bypass. Now. Do not pass Go and do not collect $500 because that's probably his deductible for heart surgery.

The family is leaping into action in an admirable way.
And I'm going to spend some time here and there being a bachelor, along with my co-bachelor, Marshall. This will require cooking, shopping, and Generally Laying About (aboot for my Canadian reader). Fortunately we're both quite accomplished at Laying About.

Got any weird friends? The next time you communicate with them, via smoke signals, morse code, or even email, tell them about ThermionicEmissions. We're the blogosphere's dirty little secret. At our previous location, I made a few pennies from advertising revenue. I make nothing here but the satisfaction of (hopefully) entertaining readers. Please help me gratifiy my ego with a few more readers. Thanks!

Not enough attention is paid to 15th party candidates. Don't forget Vermin Supreme .

Wednesday, July 27, 2016


Twitter has been throwing (only) conservative members off the service. Yesterday, Faceyspaces admitted it blocked certain tags critical of the DNC. Not that there's an agenda or anything.

Make America Great Again: get off Faceyspaces.

  • I may have to take out a restraining order against Kaley Cuoco. She keeps calling.

Don't forget to vote. Vote wisely, vote often. Remember - you're competing with dead people. And the voting machines are owned by the parties.

  • The FBI, the organization that refused to prosecute Hillary Clinton for fear of convenient death, is now very interested in pursuing the source of the DNC email links. They may actually succeed here, as it's in the Clintons' best interests to have this info.

Those nice folks over at ISIS have beheaded a priest. It's a peaceful religion. They peacefully beheaded him.

  • Birthday week wishes to Sir Michael Philip Jagger.

Be careful about making your own adult movies: you may regret it when the one with her driving gets out.

  • Remember Miss Cleo, from the tv psychic commercials? RIP - cancer.

If you're a bored Australian Fur Seal, you fall asleep in a Tasmanian public toile.
If you're a bored ISIS member, you behead a priest.

  • A while back, my mother told me I was a mistake. Since then, I have made it my destiny.

The saddest thing I've seen in a long time: the dog with his head resting on his missing cat's carrier.