Saturday, February 18, 2006

21. Thou Shalt Not Republish Without Permission


'Apparently Moses was so enraged he forgot to tell the Hebrews about commandments eleven through twenty'
Religious Correspondent MOUNT SINAI, Egypt

-- Most people are familiar with the story of the Ten Commandments -- even if they can't name (or don't practice) all of them. They are the laws of life's conduct given to Moses by God on the peaks of Mount Sinai. After etching them into two stone tablets, Moses descended from the mountain to tell the newly-freed Israelites what God had ordered. The Biblical patriarch known as the Deliverer found his people worshiping golden idols -- already breaking Commandment number 2 about not celebrating graven images. Moses was so angry that he hurled the two tablets from the mountain. They shattered and, according to holy texts, were subsequently 'restored' and put into the ark of the covenant, later to be discovered by Indiana Jones. We now know that this is not the entire story. "Yes, Moses did destroy the tablets in his righteous fury, but the pieces were not put into the Ark of the Covenant." said Professor Edward Thomas Lawrence, head of a recent expedition to Mount Sinai. "It turns out the word 'restored' does not mean 'put back together.' In this case, it meant, 'Given a new copy.' We believe that someone -- probably Moses' brother Aaron -- used his sculpting skills to make a new set and copy them. But he only copied what he saw." After a painstaking and meticulous search, Professor Lawrence recovered all the pieces of the ancient stone tablets. They had actually been left where they landed. "Everyone just wanted to get on with their day," Professor Lawrence said. Remarkable as it is that Professor Lawrence found the original Ten Commandments, what is more astonishing is what archaeologists discovered after reassembling the tablets. "There were actually ten more commandments carved on the back!" Lawrence told us. "Apparently Moses was so enraged he forgot to tell the Hebrews about commandments eleven through twenty." Professor Lawrence brought in Dr. Ling Wul, an expert in ancient tongues. She translated the second set of commandments and gave the Weekly World News a sneak peek at what the rest of the world will soon be hearing about. "Unlike the first Ten Commandments, which outline an important set of moral laws, the next ten have more specific applications," Dr. Wul told us. "They are more accurately described as 'quality of life' commandments. Most are self-explanatory."
11 Thou shalt tolerate the faith of others as you would have them do unto you. ("This one seems to have been directed at those who objected to other Egyptian slaves who journeyed with the flock of Moses," Wul explained.)
12 In matters of business though shalt protect the rights of laborers, as Pharaoh shouldst have done. ("This is clearly a commandment to form workers' unions.")
13 Thou shalt not put thy animals before people, either in body or spirit. ("This refers to the animal-gods of Egypt, specifically cats, whose well-being was put before that of people -- much like today," Wul told us. "There were sheep traveling with the group and this commandment protected them."
14 Thou shalt not inhale burning leaves in a house of manna where it may affect the breathing of others.
15 Thou shalt renounce a portion of thy worldly goods to be collected by agents of the ruling body ("Tax evasion was a serious problem at the time," Wul said. "A government without a sound tax policy is one that tends to go to war and take slaves.")
16 Thou shalt not elect a fool to lead thee. If twice elected, thy punishment shall be death by stoning.
17 Thou shalt not cry "fire and brimstone" during a large public gathering.
18 Thou shalt not erect a temple of gaming in the desert, where all will become wanton.
19 Thy body is sacred and thou shalt not permanently alter thy face or bosom. If thy nose offends thee, leave it alone.
"The 20th commandment is too worn away to fully read," Wul said, "but after 'Thou shalt not' the words 'war' and 'oil' were legible. It's still a mystery." Scholars agree that it is too early to say how this discovery will change our society. "Will people begin to follow these new commandments?" Professor Lawrence asked. "Or will they be looked at as outdated set of rules? Who can say. One thing I do know: they're going to make someone else very, very rich." Word is that Mel Gibson has bought the rights to the tablets and is preparing to film The Ten Commandments II: the Back Side of Faith.

Friday, February 17, 2006

Friday Night Fights

ahhh. it's nice, after a longlonglong week of working with and for imbeciles, to get home, turn up the heat (it will, after all, get to a low 19 degrees tonight) and tip a beer or 6.
it's amazing what my job has morphed into in only two and a half little months. my business card says "lab services manager". but i seem to be spending more and more time acting as a project manager. to be blunt, the two real project managers in my office are really: 1) a salesman, and 2) a glorified field inspector. not that they don't have their merits and strengths. i'm just hard pressed to visualize them when i'm asked to handle client needs and ignorance that only a certified engineer should be involved with. i can answer most questions regarding asphalt and concrete, but i have to preface every answer with "this is not the answer, this is only my experienced opinion". which, of course, should make a client wonder why they're even talking to me in the first place.
and, again, i wonder when clients call or email me directly as lab manager, because they are not getting a response from the project manager.
this week i had to:
tell a project manager to clean up his equipment that he left lying around in my lab or he would find all of it on his desk the next morning;
force a project manager to define the word "we", because he kept asking me if "we" had made a phone call and had "we" gotten results from another lab and were we taking care of a client's needs (needless to say, "we" meant me and no, i hadn't and no, i wasn't about to);
inform that same manager that he was going to actually have to do some of his own work every now and then;
listen to the "salesman" expound on how we have control of 98% of all of the work on our peninsula, but in the same breath tell me how "we" couldn't afford to have someone spend a couple of hours creating 3 or 4 excel spreadsheets for the lab;
listen to several snide comments by the "salesman" about smokers, smoking, butts and lawsuits;
have the "salesman" take me over to another lab whose equipment we bought so i could inventory it and decide what goes to me and what goes to other offices and tell me that we're not in a huge rush to clear it out, then have him confront me each of the next two days about why i wasn't over there getting stuff out posthaste;
deal with another office's manager who hates mine (it's a hate/hate relationship evidently) about a sample that was not tested, because their manager claims i called him up and cancelled the test (when, in my reality, i told him he had two boxes of the same sample and to run the test on only one of the boxes so that my office wouldn't get charged twice);
learned over and over and over and over again that my "salesman" is a liar in the first degree and will not hesitate to cast blame on someone else if it deflects attention away from him;
heard a rumor that he wants to install a suveillance camera out back of the lab with the video monitor on his desk (hmmm, counting smoke breaks? or looking for cells of insubordination? i remember once at my first job in this industry when the office manager decreed that no more than two people could stand together outside the office at one time [mustang knows what i'm talking about]. we figured he was afraid that, because he was in the shitter with corporate, we were all outside talking about him. he was fairly right).

but then i arrive home an hour early (because when i work the weekend i take that time back during the week) and there is a brown package sitting on my doorstep. i call out to the gardener and say "hey julio, you dropped your unit on my porch. shearing accident?" but he says no.
lo and behold, it's a present from my very good friend blake. he sent me a present. two cds by the most excellent band the Pogues. plus, a couple of his own original compilations (by that, i mean that he is an amazing muscician who records his own music). by the way blake, i have that cd already, so i'll be damning people's souls to eternal purgatory when i give them out. just like i'm doing to you with this picture, but if aughra from badnewsblonde can give out naughty photos of herself in exchange for pressies, so can i. feast (and then scrub) your eyes on this!

so, i get to "end" the week with awesome music while sitting inside my toasty home with frosty beverages. okay, i'm not ending the week since i'm working in the lab tomorrow and sunday, but you get my drift. i'm getting drunk tonight (which i do so much less frequently than i did when in the 'no), eating a zucchini salad (now now, children. it's not what you think or hope unless you're lecram), listening to both the Pogues and the Trike Shop, and watching Wallace and Gromit's new movie.
does it get any better than that?
well, if you loathe ann DOES!!!

“When contemplating college liberals, you really regret once again that John Walker is not getting the death penalty,” Coulter said in an address to the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC). “We need to execute people like John Walker in order to physically intimidate liberals, by making them realize that they can be killed too. Otherwise they will turn out to be outright traitors.”

Tuesday, February 14, 2006

Who Your Daddy? Dick Your Daddy!

Okay, I don't usually revisit stories. Shut up . I don't. But this is too, too interesting. Cheney's got a gun. Cheney sees a Quayle. Cheney shoots and scores...a lawyer. Cheney doesn't speak to local law. Secret Service denies access to local law. Cheney calls Rove who calls Bush (we think). Bush reacts with...we don't know what. Scott McClellan finds out the next morning. Gets bushwhacked by the White House press. Somehow. Gets in an argument with a journalist. Local law is evidently allowed to interview Cheney (but we really don't know that for sure). Word gets out that a local Deputy Sheriff approached Cheney's compound the night before to get a statement and was turned away. The main witness interviewed by everyone was sitting in a car, which means they might have been shooting from or close to the roadway or she was quite a distance away from the event. White House says the bottomfeeder, I mean lawyer, is stable while in ICU. Later, the doctors say the is in stable condition in the ICU. Later, the press clarifies that ICU means InContinent Uvula, which all buckshot men get. Still later (today)., the doctors say that the (i'll get this right dammit) lawyer has had a "silent heart attack", because one of the pellets somehow got near his heart. The doctors estimate that between 6 and 200 pellets hit him. And they have no way of knowing if more of these might pose a risk.
Now, look at these two numbers. First there's 6. Then there's 200. Just for kicks I'm going to list some of the numbers that fall between those two.
get the picture? perhaps we're being lied to about how bad this guy was hit. between 6 and 200 is a large sward of denial.
but really the real story to me is why Cheney couldn't stand up to the local deputies at the scene and tell them what happened. a few stories abound that Cheney was drunk. a few abound that his friend was on the out-list. i might buy Cheney being drunk. i mean, come on. they got guns, they got immunity. they can do what they want. i'd be tipping back a few myself. never did fire my rifle sober anyway. way more fun that way. in fact, i'm looking for a good garbage dump on the peninsula where i can work my rifle back into shape and bring a six pack.
but what the fuck? accidently shot a bro out on the back forty. cut and dried accident. so why the delay, the blather, the sudden "complication not necessarily related to the shooting" with the victim? Cheney fucked up as a hunter. Is that so bad? So he doesn't get his picture in the Women In Waders Who love Geriatric Geezers Who Can't Shoot To Save Their Own Shit calendar.
Deal. Show. And let the pot go to the winner.
Unfortunately, we don't live in a society that can do that anymore.
We win or we kill.
And sometimes we kill in order to win.
Not that I'm suggesting Cheney did so. I think he really did fuck up, because he's too fucking old to be in possesion of anything more powerful than a lawn dart on a string.

Monday, February 13, 2006

Cheney Steps Up War On Lawyers: Shoots One (stole this, but damn it's funny)

I'm still trying to hunt down info from a CBS news story about Cheney shooting his buddy. Right now, everyone is talking about the delay between the shooting and the public announcement. However, CBS evidently had a news bit on the fact that Cheny's Secret Service entourage would not allow local law enforcement to question him about the incident. Standard procedure in this kind of case includes questioning of all involved on the offchance that criminal complaints may be filed. The Secret Service refused to allow any questioning. Local law was alerted to the incident when the ambulance was summoned by Cheney's party and showed up at the scene. But no questioning. None. Nada. Nichts. Niente. Null set. Zippo. Don't know really if they even asked, but I think they did.
As for the delay in a public announcement (or even an internal one for that matter...Bush didn't know for about 2 and 1/2 hours. Scott McClellan didn't know until the next morning. Evidently, Cheney called Rove instead of Bush) it's interesting, but not to my mind noteworthy...yet. I would like to know if, in fact, local law officials were really not allowed to interview Cheney about his role in the shooting. If I tried that I would be arrested for obstruction of justice or fleeing the scene of a crime (even if none were actually commited). I could, also, be arrested (along with everyone with me) for conspiracy after the fact to commit a crime. All three can be contrued as potential felonies. Instead, I'm sure the Secret Service called on them good old boys down there to pass on a little professional courtesy and let Dick tend to his friend in the hospital. Most local law folks will do that, but they will still want a personal statement from Cheney. And I don't mean a fax from the White House.
Personally, my first thought when I heard about it was that his buddy criticized the War or something and Cheney tried to fire a warning shot over his head. Something along the lines of his telling a Senator on the floor of the Senate to "go fuck yourself" (remember that little gem?).