Saturday, May 6, 2017

Our Next Long-Term National Nightmare...

Let me start off with some bright news: healthcare breaches hit an all time high in 2016. At five months into 2017, would you care to guess which way that trend is heading? From my memories of working in healthcare, we're pretty much screwed.

  • As I type, there is a noise like a 100 pound bee coming from another floor. It has depth like no other. A quick search of archival memory brings back last year, when the wife told me this noise was spooking her and the dog (back when the dog could hear). A window is open, apparently creating currents of air so strong that it's playing songs with the miniblinds, like some sort of gargantuan kazoo. In addition to normal human laziness, I'm typing and don't want to be bothered with the alleged musical instrument, but it's so loud even the mostly deaf Marshall can hear it.
  • I've mentioned trash before too. It's less immense for me than mowing but still annoying. I'm a big boy, though... I don't have to be reminded constantly. The Crazy Lady next door found out that cans can't be put out til 7:30 the previous evening, so she stands out there with her atomic time standard and her clipboard, waiting to POUNCE on getting those babies to the curb by 7:31. And after they're collected, they're put back precisely where they came from and ready for next week's assault before the truck is two houses down.
  • Speaking of trucks, I've worked out that there are three very loud trucks that come to collect cans, every trash day. I know this because when I'm off work, each one of them wakes all the dead at the cemetary a few blocks down. After further thought, and further leaping out of bed, screaming, I realized there are not three, but six trucks in the morning, as they take care of the other side of the street.
  • Just to make matters more amusing, someone is having yardwork or something done, necessitating very loud construction gear. Very loud construction gear. It might be tree-related, which means it's only a matter of time until the Industrial Tree Chipper comes into play, like a mighty present buzzsaw, with loud spikes.  A coworker often tells me about her h fantasy of putting her ex into one of these, so I know it can be done.
  • Oh wait - correction... the loud noises also have something to do with stones. A humongous pile of them got dropped in the drive, and the time since has been spent shoveling them. Ever hear Repeated Stone Shoveling? It's American Water Torture.
  • This might come as a surprise to you, but I'm off work today. As I type, I can hear the kazoos, with their swan song. As God is my witness, I will stop this minor annoyance!

If you're an IBM or Lenovo Storwize customer, IBM wants you to locate that flash drive they sent you and feed it to the cat. Apparently it has malware on it. Oopsie.

  • A pair of Pennsylvania medical clinics have reported a 'privacy incident'. They determined that in March, a person "could potentially have accessed" data on their systems. There is no evidence that they did.   Let's dance, shall we?

If you feel your android phone needs optimizing, do not install Full Optimizer or Full Optimizer Lite from Google Play - they're full of malware and only show ads. Your phone really doesn't need optimizing. Install Android Assistant to clean it up weekly (among its other talents) and Malwarebytes to run scans for junk.

  • In the latest set of public excuses as to why she lost, Hillary Clinton blames the FBI letter and "Russian WikiLeaks".  Somebody should explain to her that the election was over in November and she lost.  Even after the George W Bush Hanging Chad Miami Fiasco, the crying didn't go on this long. You'd think simply having Chelsea omnipresent in the news would be enough for her. Someone has to take over...

Some poor fella was just struck by lightning. He's alive, in the hospital, and has a rather ugly red mark from neck to below his waist. He also has another lasting trophy: a permanent erection.  In unrelated news, there is a line of nurses outside his door, stretching back to the front of the hospital. An anonymous female charity group has paid off his hospital bill, and doctors have advised him that if his erection lasts longer than 4 days, to call a dating service and have them show up at hourly intervals.

  • At a fast food expo in the Netherlands, two Dutch pranksters served McDonald's food, cut into pieces and skewered with toothpicks, and then told attendees that that they were eating an organic product. Participants described the taste of the samples as being very rich, and very pure. the link goes to a YouTube video in Dutch, but subtitled. One day, I want to pull off something on this level.

On this day in 1991, Texas governor Ann Richards declared ZZ Top day.

  • Remember in the last post I reported that the NSA is suspending collection of US data because it referenced a foreign target?  Check out this article on how they collected data on 151m Americans.

Yes, I could've written this, but no, I didn't. A female UCLA student and member of MENSA has developed an IQ of 220 after drinking sperm for a year. Her original IQ was 154 and she was already a MENSA member.

The article details her decision to go with this method. Her new IQ makes her smarter than Albert Einstein, Stephen Hawking, and Leonardo DiVinci. Also listed are some benefits of sperm ingestion.

You have to know I didn't let this news go to waste, alerting Mrs. lefty, who promptly told me to "get chugging." Witty as this was, I was forced to remind her that my IQ is several points ahead of hers.

You can tell neither of us belongs to MENSA because there is a regulation that you tell people you're in MENSA within five minutes of meeting them (similar to the Vegan Rule).

Judging by the story on Yoko Ono admitting to a lesbian affair with Hillary Clinton, this 'newspaper' is probably more of an entertainment source than pure news. The story above on the lightning strike came from the same source.

  • One of our charities is Oldies But Goodies. It's a Virginia-based non-profit that finds homes for old cockers.  We're on their mailing list, having donated and because we're stupid enough to keep reading their emails (which would make Sarah McLachlin shoot herself). The latest is about Snoopy, who's 12. His owner died and family members took him to a vet to be put down. The vet refused, saying Snoopy had much life left in him. So the relatives dumped him at a shelter.
  • Not. Human.


I don't like to mow the lawn.
You might remember this from paragraphs to entire blog posts, ranting on this topic. In fact, there are an awful lot of activities I prefer to mowing:
  • chewing razorblades
  • dating dead people
  • eating stinky cheese in a pit of fire
  • a quiet weekend with my cannibal in-laws

My wife, dear smart woman that she is, figured out I don't like mowing (after ten years of forcing me to do it at gunpoint) and went in search of a solution. We can't afford a service and don't really have a lot of grass.

My nemesis in life, the mower, is seriously a great piece of hardware. And when I say great, I mean the engine still runs after ten years. Almost out of the box, the throttle cable broke. I purchased a replacement, which of course did not work at all, even after I did a remarkable job of attaching the cable to the handle. So I had to devise a custom rig that would keep the throttle open enough to run the bastard. This involved a pair of locking pliers and a foot of wire. Also about 30 minutes of screaming per effort. Suffice it to say the neighbors, even the very old ones, learned some interesting new vocabulary words.

Don't let my technical words and inventive solution fool you - I should not be allowed near a mower (or under the hood of a car). My solution was somewhat less than optimal, in that it lasted for less time than I needed to complete the mowing, resulting in a second case of interesting verbal output.

I am mortally terrified of going to the dentist. Even though I can generally allow him to work on my mouth, the other 2/3 of my body keeps trying to escape. I would gladly spend some quality time in his chair than mow. It's ridiculous and illogical but it's reality.

Alas, the seasons took their effect on the mower: the engine started every year, but the body got cancer and I'm afraid it won't support the engine much longer.

Just the other day I was advised that a box would be appearing. Boxes appear at my house all the time.  I gave up on asking years ago, as the answer would only frustrate me. Just the other day an outdoor gazebo/tent thingie appeared. No one knows why but I thought I caught a glimpse of the dog with a sly grin on his face.

The box arrived shortly thereafter. It was a new mower. I didn't know whether to laugh, cry, or give it back to the poor driver. I was 'urged' to put it together, as that's generally the safest task, as opposed to me actually using the device. It was battery-operated, with a cute battery that looked like a car battery that was left in a dryer and shrunk to 1/3 normal size. It was also considerable more narrow than any mower I have ever seen, generating complaints because I'd have to mow more rows. After getting halfway done, I realized the instructions, which made Ikea instructions look like fine literature, failed to mention that the handle needed to be attached in only one direction. And look at me - I was cursing before even running the little bastard for the first time.

Once again the wife outsmarted me. She hired a neighbor's kid to use the new Infernal Device. He was thrilled to get paid for what he has to do at home for free and eagerly took the job. In fact, he just got done.

I have never been happier in my life.
I guess it's time to start using my dental insurance now.

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