gozer: tes_fic made this (Liberator)
Over on my LJ, on an entry dated a few weeks back, called Feed the Rich, Starve the Worker: That's Bullshit... from Madison, [livejournal.com profile] neuralclone commented:

What bamboozles me is the way ordinary people are supporting the corporatists. Economics 101 - can't they understand that by reducing people to a subsistence level they're going to destroy the consumer economy that sustains them? It will eventually rebound upon themselves.

And my rant got kinda long, so I made it an entry:

Corporatists have been working on this for thirty to fifty years (or more, kinda hard to tell when it really started), just chipping away, and they do it by taking advantage of this annoying thing called Human Nature, the desire for short-term gains pitted against long-term gains that require patience and, more importantly, thought. It's what con men rely on. Like all scams, they need the cooperation of the person they're scamming for this shit to work. Despite what the old saying says, you *can* cheat an honest man, but it's a lot more difficult than cheating some idiot who's helping you do it, usually with a smile, because they think they're in on the con with you.

Case in point: )

/rant! I feel better! Especially since Fox just announced they're dumping Glenn Beck! Let's hope this is a the beginning of a down-turn for all corporate shills everywhere!

In other news, LJ is messed up again. I wanted to Import my LJ to Dreamwidth, which I didn't even realize I could do until several friends mentioned it on their journals, but don't think it's a good idea to attempt it until LJ is working again. Besides, I can't get in and change my LJ password, which is suggested on the handy-dandy Import Journal page on Dreamwidth.
gozer: I made this! (Default)
Much hilarity in watching the cats express their deep feline disgust about Snowpocalypse Deux! I love it when they shake a little kitty paw, take a step, shake a little kitty paw, take a step, repeat. Even Zack, who resembles an Arctic Fox more than a cat, doesn't like this heavy, wet slop of a snow. Especially when he takes a step and sinks to his chest. The affronted look on his face is priceless.

From several people on my flist, here's the Birthday Best Sellers website: to display a list of New York Times best sellers for the week of your birth enter your date of birth and press the "Show me the List" button:

http://www.biblioz.com/best_sellers.php?

1 DOCTOR ZHIVAGO Boris Pasternak
2 LOLITA Vladimir Nabokov
3 AROUND THE WORLD WITH AUNTIE MAME Patrick Dennis
4 WOMEN AND THOMAS HARROW John P. Marquand
5 EXODUS Leon Uris author info
6 ANATOMY OF A MURDER Robert Traver
7 THE BEST OF EVERYTHING Rona Jaffe
8 THE UGLY AMERICAN William J. Lederer and Eugene Burdick
9 FROM THE TERRACE John O'Hara
10 ANGELIQUE Sergeanne Golon
11 VICTORINE Frances Parkinson Keyes
12 THE MOUNTAIN IS YOUNG Han Suyin
13 THE RAINBOW AND THE ROSE Nevil Shute
14 THE KING MUST DIE Mary Renault

The week of Dec 8, 1958 had some heavy-hitter books on the bestseller list, the kind of books that are still remembered, loved, and read today (also? Several kick-ass movie adaptations!) Over the years, I've read numbers 1, 2, 3, 5, 6, 7, 8, and 14.

Here is the most recent New York Times Bestsellers list that the site would give me, from December 2010:

1 THE LOST SYMBOL Dan Brown
2 THE HELP Kathryn Stockett
3 I ALEX CROSS, James Patterson
4 SIZZLE Julie Garwood
5 FIRED UP Jayne Ann Krentz
6 THE HONOR OF SPIES W. E. B. Griffin and William E. Butterworth IV
7 DEEPER THAN THE DEAD Tami Hoag
8 THE LAST SONG Nicholas Sparks
9 ALTAR OF EDEN James Rollins
10 UNDER THE DOME Stephen King
11 ā€œUā€ IS FOR UNDERTOW Sue Grafton
12 PIRATE LATITUDES Michael Crichton
13 FORD COUNTY John Grisham
14 I SNIPER, Stephen Hunter
15 THE GIRL WHO PLAYED WITH FIRE Stieg Larsson

I see several movies in the making from these, but I wonder how many will still be read in 50 years?

STAY HOME, STAY WARM AND HAVE SOME HOT COCOA IF YOU ARE IN DEEP SNOWAGE!
gozer: I made this! (Default)
This morning I woke to find that someone quite evil grabbed my hotmail account's address list and sent out spam (or possibly worse) to the people on it. The email looks like it's from Telzey Amberdon, which is my hotmail name. It bounced to a lot of defunct addresses I still had in there. I can still get into my hotmail account, I wasn't locked out, but I changed the password because, what the hell, why not.

How did these guys get hold of my email address book? Did they actually hack my email account with my password, or did they do it by using the new Facebook-like connectivity Hotmail and Gmail seem to be trying to constantly force on us in new and clever ways? Any suggestions, other than "change your password", which I've done? I went into my account info and zeroed out all the "Isn't it neat how we're sharing all your personal info with your friends!" crap they build in, with friends being able to access all sorts of things on your account. This should not be the default, privacy should be the default!

EDITED TO ADD UPDATE: I got nothin' in my Hotmail "sent emails" folder, so this happened off-Hotmail! The spammers took info and ran and did not use my hotmail account itself to send their spam.

I recently tried to set up an Outlook account on my computer so that Hotmail would drop into it when I hit "send/receive" on my home computer, but was unsuccessful -- and my Hotmail address and password being input into Outlook were part of that attempt. Maybe the bad guys got the info that way? NOT A KLEW.


EDITED AGAINDeleted the second half of my post because I figured out how to get rid of a defunct alternate email address... man, they don't make it easy.
gozer: I made this! (Default)
FA LA LA LA LA, people! I hope you all have been having a lovely holiday long-weekend! I spent Christmas Eve day and Christmas with my mom in Brooklyn -- saw the family, made nice with my sister, had a lovely dinner; no stress, no strife. I had planned on leaving on Sunday afternoon, taking the commuter rail from Grand Central to Hartford to meet up with ComicbookMan, who was going to drive down from Boston for the Legends of Superheros Christmas Party, then we'd go home from there.

IT WAS NOT TO BE!

See, there was this hella scary snowstorm that blew in from Santa's Workshop the day after Xmas, so I stayed put in Brooklyn and ComicbookMan stayed put in our apartment in the Boston area, where he'd spent Christmas, ostensibly for cat-sitting purposes, but mostly sleeping. As the Sunday storm began to subside, I went on line and purchased a bus ticket to Boston on Peter Pan for Tuesday noon. NYC gets back on its feet very quickly after a snowstorm, and this was only the sixth-worse snowstorm on record, after all! I lived in NYC for many, many years, and I could always get to classes or my job in Manhattan the day after a snowstorm. Surely the city would be mostly navigable again by Tuesday!

OH, HA! OMG, NOT SO MUCH!

My mother's house is located in South Brooklyn. Tuesday dawned, but there were no buses running in Brooklyn, despite the false info the MTA website posted. Even if there were buses, there were no trains operating in Brooklyn. There were also no car services for hire. What was the problem? PROBLEM: there was no snow removal of any kind from any of the streets, even the major ones; at all, at all, at all. ZERO.

Peter Pan's buses were running by 5am Tuesday, so they basically laughed at me when I called to ask if they'd honor my Tuesday ticket on Wednesday (they are honoring Sunday's and Monday's tickets all week.) Customer service at Peter Pan -- a bus company named after a sociopathic little bastard! -- didn't care that there was no way for me to get into Manhattan to get on their bus unless I'd started walking out of Brooklyn on snow shoes at about midnight the night before.

Fortunately, I checked online and found a ticket on Bolt Bus for $1.50, on the 11:30am Wednesday bus to Boston. Seriously, a buck-fifty. Since Bolt is owned by the same company that owns Peter Pan, it's as if they reissued my ticket for a minor change-of-date fee. Except Bolt buses are way nicer, newer buses than Peter Pan's buses, and Bolt takes a much shorter route out of Manhattan, so there's a lot less nausea-inducing stop-and-go. It was force-of-habit that I checked and purchased from Peter Pan first, but no longer.

So if you plan on busing from Boston or Philadelphia or Washington DC to/from NYC, check out Bolt before you try Greyhound or Peter Pan. Oddly, the same company owns and operates all three bus companies, but Greyhound's buses are even worse than Peter Pan's. The weirdest thing is that Greyhound's tickets are usually the most expensive of the three! TERRIBLE buses. HIGHEST prices. Buh? IS THIS SOME SORT OF STRANGE SOCIOLOGICAL EXPERIMENT?

I left my mom's house at 9am and got home at 6pm, and yet I consider myself lucky.
gozer: I made this! (Default)
From demandprogress.org:

Just the other day, President Obama urged other countries to stop censoring the Internet. But now the United States Congress is trying to censor the Internet here at home. A new bill being debated this week would have the Attorney General create an Internet blacklist of sites that US Internet providers would be required to block.

This is the kind of heavy-handed censorship you'd expect from a dictatorship, where one man can decide what web sites you're not allowed to visit. But the Senate Judiciary Committee is expected to pass the bill this week -- and Senators say they haven't heard much in the way of objections! That's why we need you to sign our urgent petition to Congress demanding they oppose the Internet blacklist.

http://demandprogress.org/blacklist/

Read more about the bill:

http://demandprogress.org/blacklist/coica

This article explains how the government is proposing it censors the internet, the way it would work:

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/david-segal/stop-the-internet-blackli_b_739836.html

WHO THOUGHT THIS WAS A GOOD IDEA?
gozer: Stella made this! (Claws Beat Skin!)
I kinda loved his speech... he never broke character. Scummy Michigan Rep. John Conyers apparently tried to throw him out, saying, "I'm not asking you not to talk, I'm asking you to leave the committee room completely and submit your statement instead," but Colbert stood his ground and refused to go unless California Rep Zoe Lofgren, the one who invited him, asked him to leave.

I haven't seen a way to embed his speech, but here's the link:

http://www.necn.com/09/24/10/Stephen-Colbert-testifies-in-front-of-co/landing_arts.html?blockID=317523&feedID=4214

Also:

http://www.associatedcontent.com/article/5825056/stephen_colbert_testifies_in_front.html

If that doesn't work for you, do a google search for "Stephen Colbert congress NECN" and it should pop up.

RIP Susan

Aug. 15th, 2010 09:34 am
gozer: I made this! (Default)
Via [personal profile] nycdeb, I just got the bad news that Susan Garrett, aka [profile] susanmgarrett, had passed on.

We lost a good one this morning. The thing about Susan was that she was an amazingly powerful influence for good, just by the sheer force of her sweet and smart personality. I really only knew her through Forever Knight fandom, on the ForKni lists, though I did get to meet her at parties at a friend's house once or twice -- yet all these years later, I remember her and the work she did vividly. She pulled FK fandom up to a whole new level just by participating in it. She made people want to be better and do better.

Terrific writer and all around great human being: you'll be missed, Susan.
gozer: I made this! (Default)
Carpe Geekdom (a.k.a. The All-Purpose Nerd Tour) will appear at Legends of Superheros on Saturday, August 7th from 8PM to 10PM!!! Woot!

Carpe Geekdom is the 2010 summer tour of Nagini, Fred and George the Band, Snidget, and Muggle Mike! Special appearance by wrock artists Bella and le Strangers!

Grace the Snidget is a solo hammered-dulcimer player and budding ukuleleist from Virginia, the rest are solo guitarists from New York, and they all write and perform original acoustic music (as well as some awesome covers) about everything from D&D and Doctor Who to robots and imaginary friends. As members of the wizard rock community, Carpe Geekdom has traveled the East Coast singing songs about Harry Potter. They are pleased to bring their nerdy tunes to Legends of Superheros on Saturday, August 7th, 8PM to 10PM!

This appearance only: local wrock artists Bella and le Strangers will join Carpe Geekdom! They write and play music from the perspective of Bellatrix Lestrange, whom they feel is the coolest character in the Harry Potter universe.

This is a free concert, but a $5.00 donation per attendee is appreciated to help cover touring costs. If you don't live in or near Connecticut, click through and see if Carpe Geekdom is appearing in a city near you!

Please note, there are two fab restaurants flanking our store -- one an award-winning pizza/Italian food restaurant, the other is a brand-new pan-Asian restaurant, with great sushi and an ice cream bar for dessert. Come have dinner, then stroll the six or eight feet over to our store for the entertainment.

They don't call it "filk", but I'm a long-time fan girl and that's what I call it. These kids today with their Wizard Rock and their My Space pages!
gozer: I made this! (Default)
Edited for the solution: WOOT!

I tried a few things, but this seems to have fixed my problem: when I got my computer back on Monday, I had originally changed the DPI setting to Large (120 DPI) and slid the slider on the Display Properties: Setting box one over to the left. That made my screen images nice & big & viewable.

To fix the problem, I reset the DPI setting back to 96 DPI (normal, which is the default.) Then I pushed the slider on the Display Properties: Setting box over to the left once more to embiggen everything on the screen to make up for losing the Large DPI. Currently, my screen resolution is 1024 by 768 pixels. I've rebooted a few times and let the computer/monitor go to screensaver a few times and it hasn't gone to "Input Not Supported" even once!


Can anyone in the hivemind of LJ or DW help me with a computer problem? (Also, apologies for not replying to the lovely commenters on my previous posts -- I've been playing computer catch-up and will make time to do that tonight.)

Since I got my baby back on Monday, I have had a small problem. When the computer went to screensaver, the screensaver would be on for a few minutes, but after those minutes, the screen would go entirely black. If I then moved the mouse to bring the desktop back into focus and pop out of screensaver mode, instead I would get a box bouncing around that said "Input Not Supported" -- the box around those words had "HP" for Hewlett Packard (the make of my computer) on it. The only way to get the desktop (or whatever I had on the screen) back on the monitor would be to unscrew and then reseat and re-screw-in the DPI cable that attaches the monitor to the computer. Then, the monitor would work perfectly, like nothing had happened. But this happened over a dozen times over the next few days.

I did a google check and found there were a few others who had this problem, but none of their suggests were overly helpful. Some of the queries people made on tech sites went unanswered, others had people telling them to go into "safe" mode to do lines of type, which is something I don't feel comfortable doing.

I called the Staples repair guy and he had me do a right-click on the desktop to get into "Display Properties" on the Screensaver tab, then click the "Power" button. You get another box for Power Options, and he had me pick "NEVER" for all four of the choices you get there. Basically, he felt that after a few minutes of being in "screensaver" mode, the computer was slipping into "sleep" mode and that was... I don't know, doing something to cause the monitor to not understand and give me the Input Not Supported box. Now, when my computer screen rests, the computer itself never goes into sleep mode. Which begs the question, is it okay for a computer to never go into sleep mode?

SO, this actually did fix the problem -- I can walk away and go take a shower or go out to a store and when I come back, the screensaver image is on, not the "Input Not Supported" image.

Except that now when I turn on and boot up or restart the computer, it doesn't go to my desktop, it goes directly from loading Windows into "Input Not Suported". So every time I turn on the computer, I have to pull it out, unscrew the cable, reseat said cable and rescrew it in. Then the computer is fine and I can see my desktop.

I got the Input Not Supported box bopping about on my monitor when I turned on the computer for the first time after I got home on Monday night and put the system together -- I assumed that I simply hadn't screwed in the monitor cable properly and reseated it as a matter of course, so I didn't think anything of it at the time. For the next couple of days, I had to reboot the computer quite often (due to downloading over a dozen software packages and executing them), and I never had this problem once. But now that I've told the computer NOT to go to sleep mode when at rest, it's doing this when it starts instead.

Any ideas? Have any of you heard of this? No fear, I'm gonna called that guy at Staples in a bit, but I thought maybe one of you might have an idea first. This is the guy who assured me that my computer not going into sleep mode, ever, would not be a problem, so I'd love some feedback on whether or not I can trust him on this even if you don't know how to fix the DPI cable/monitor problem.
gozer: tweeter made this! (Give her a pony!)
Did you ever sit a newbie down in front of a computer to try to teach them how to use it, and they got all big-eyed and their fingers curled away from the keyboard and they said, "I'm afraid I'm going to break it!" and you told them not to be afraid, they weren't going to break the computer just by using it -- all they had to do was avoid opening suspect emails or downloading viruses and they'd be fine!

Well, it turns out you CAN break a computer in a fairly spontaneous fashion all by your own bad self without any help from some scum-sucking virus-maker living in his mother's basement.

Here is my very good advice to you: NEVER EVER EVER interrupt a download of a Windows service pack or security update or patch. If you do, you will live to regret it. Your computer probably won't live to regret it, but you will. I won't go into why I stopped the download, but it was for an almost perfectly good reason, and I started it back up again when I was finished doing whatever the hell it was I needed to do just then.

When I turned on my computer the next day after stopping that freakin' Windows Update download, the computer would not load Windows. It went to a blue screen of death, then rebooted and blue-screened and rebooted over and over, Ourobouros. We took the patient to Staples, and they did a recovery that set my baby back to factory specs using the Recovery DVDs I made last year when something disturbingly similar happened (but that time I was able to hit F10 when it rebooted, so I managed the reset myself for free.) Staples charged us a total of $99 and it took a full week to do this quick and simple fix because half of their techs were on vacation.

Anyways, it's going to take me for-fucking-ever to get the 'puter back to the way I like it, if I can even remember how I set some of this stuff up. How do I make everything look bigger for my tired old eyes, for instance? I have forgotten how to change the look of my desktop and dictate file preferences; this make me feel so stupid! I lost my many (30 or 40, possibly more) Firefox tabs, I have no idea how to get my mail client, The Bat!, back, and I'm on the CNET Download website downloading all the software that wasn't loaded at the factory (like Word Web, VLC, ZoneAlarm Free, etc.) I also wish I'd done a more recent backup of my hard drive, but all bitching aside, I am happy I have the computer back. So insanely grateful to have it back! I was computerless for a full week and must now admit that I am something of a computerholic, because it was a terrible experience that I do not wish to duplicate.

Useful: I have a ten-page print out with my logins, usernames, and coded versions of my various passwords that is proving invaluable to the reconstruction. (Though I feel I must add, you should never have a hardcopy, document, or file with your full and uncoded passwords on it!)

I really missed reading my Reading List and Friends List and hope you are all well.
gozer: I made this! (Default)
I donated blood last Friday -- the Red Cross is in such dire need of O negative blood that they called me up to beg me to come in! They've never done that before. If you live in the USA, you can find someplace to donate close to you -- just go to their site and enter your zip code:

http://www.redcrossblood.org

Busy day: Yoga class in the morning, then blood donation at the American Red Cross Donation Center in Chinatown, then a quick trip to buy cute and very comfy yoga pants at the Eddie Bauer Outlet at Downtown Crossing at 70% off. God, I love that Outlet store! Then a walk over to Haymarket for blueberries and strawberries, and home.
gozer: I made this! (Default)
A message from the people at MoveOn.org and Credo, with regard to a political attack on Net Neutrality:

74 Democratic members of Congress just sold you out to AT&T, Verizon and Comcast.

They signed industry-backed letters telling the FCC to abandon efforts to protect Internet users by prohibiting big companies from blocking Internet traffic.

Not only is this letter an attack on net neutrality, but by signing the industry letter, they are attempting to drastically undercut the FCC's ability to make a fast, affordable and open Internet available to everyone in America. They are actually taking a position against the interests of rural and low-income communities.

This is unacceptable.

We need to make sure these members of Congress know that their constituents are paying attention and will hold them accountable when they undermine net neutrality protections.

I just signed a petition to these 74 House Democrats telling them that I'm upset by their decision to side with the wealthy telecommunications corporations over their constituents. I hope you do, too.

Have a look and take action at the link below.


http://act.credoaction.com/campaign/74_dems/?r_by=9443-1371504-0q26ypx&rc=paste1

As I explain over & over again to my sadly right-wing mother (who calls me a Communist approx. once a visit) -- I don't trust the Democrats any more than I trust the Republicans.
gozer: I made this! (Default)
Hey guys! Have any of youse ever seen a chiropractor? I've seen one on and off for many years for various problems, and was lucky enough to have one of the world's most famous and talented chiropractors work on my knee back in Brooklyn (thus saving me from a very painful knee operation). I recently started seeing a new chiropractor here in the Boston area because I stepped funny and threw my leg into a downward spiral of OUCH, and he's doing a pretty good job, but he did something weird and I wondered if it was common in chiropractic circles to do this.

After doing a neck, spinal and leg manipulation, he took a long, smooth bar that resembled a knife (to my myopic eyes, as I wasn't wearing glasses), and he put lube on my leg on and above the knee where I've got a pulled and stiff front-of-thigh muscle. He then used the bar to smoosh out all the nasty little lumps and kinks in my stiff and painful muscle and knee. The action was as if he was trying to scrape something off of the skin, very hard, but the lube made the leg slippery. It really hurt like hell, too! But it did feel better afterward -- the area felt hot, as all the blood rushed where he'd been smooshing. My leg is a mass of tiny clumped bruises where he worked the muscle (he warned me that I'd be badly bruised.) He said he was breaking up the kinks and working them out.

I've never seen this before and can't find it online as something chiropractors do. What is this action called? Anyone else have any experience with this?

I'm all-over painful today, but then I went to a very tough yoga class before my chiropractor visit, so it's to be expected. He is seeing me again next week after my yoga class -- he likes that I've worked out before I show up, as it helps loosen my muscles up.

I'm going to take a nice, hot bath now. I may not be in Gregory House levels of pain, but it still hurts enough for me to be chugging motrin.
gozer: I made this! (Default)
People on my flist and reading list have been posting "What would you like me to post about?" posts, but I don't have to... because I know what you want! KITTY STORIES! Oh, flist/rlisters, you are so predictable.

Oh, Scully; you do keep me entertained.... )
gozer: I made this! (Default)
OY, it's been busy since last I posted. Here's a (rather long-winded) recap:

Cut for tl;dnr family drama... )
gozer: I made this! (Default)
I ain't linking to nothin', you all know who I'm talking about. He's posting piggish/trollish questions to his own LJ now, and it's quite obvious he wants to poke us in the side and make us twitch, and by "make us twitch", I mean he wants us to post lots of long, heated replies to his LJ, waste our time trying to school him as he laughs at us, and just generally get us upset with his awesome and manly temerity. I don't know whether it's a case of "he's doin' it for the luls!", or he's getting sexual pleasure from upsetting the wimminfolk, or if he can actually glean quotes and ideas from us for his tacky little pseudo-science paperback that he's hoping to work into a movie deal someday, but PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE do not post any replies to his LJ.

PLEASE IGNORE HIM. IT IS THE ONE THING HE DOES NOT WANT YOU TO DO.

From this point on, I'm officially getting more annoyed with the people who keep rising to the bait than I am at the idiot in question.

June 2011

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