Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Deep Fried Turkey

Normally on Thanksgiving, there is plenty of turkey left over. This year, we didn't have that experience. The 14.5 lb. deep fried turkey I made was almost completely consumed by the eight adults who attended! That is a lot of freakin turkey per person! Now, of course, I do understand this, as the turkey was by far the best that I have ever eaten, but still, wow.

The experience turned out very well. After watching a couple of Food Network shows, and reading some articles -- my only concern was safety. It seems a disturbing number of people hurt themselves when they deep fry turkey with propane. I took all the required per-cautions, and it went off without a hitch. In fact, it went so well that I've decided that all major holiday meals this year will be centered around deep fried turkey. Yum!

Wii at Home

Well, that was fast... Target had 42, and while my wife was there, 5 sold.

Looks like I have a Wii at home to play with... can't wait to get home...

Waiting for Wii

I've been trying to get a Wii since launch. I didn't really think about getting one, until the day before. On launch day, we tried several places, with no luck. Then, on Black Friday, I went to two Targets and even a Wal-Mart at 5:30 in the freakin morning. Again, no luck. In fact, there were no units even being sold on Friday -- which seems weird. On Sunday and Monday, I felt extremely sick, so I didn't even try to get one, or think about it.

About 30 minutes ago, I read that Target had plenty in stock. So I called my wife, and asked her to check it out (since I'm at work). She called me back in like 15 minutes saying "I'm on my way".

So now, I'm stuck at work, waiting to find out if, in fact I have a Wii. I feel like a little kid. I can't wait for the phone call... I hope I get one, and if I do, I don't know how I'm going to stay waiting until I get home...

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Doing my Part...

Martin Luther King
Martin Luther King
Martin Luther King
Martin Luther King
Martin Luther King
Martin Luther King
Martin Luther King
Martin Luther King
Martin Luther King

If you don't understand why I'm doing this, read here.

9 and 1

So far, so good. We beat the Jets and the Giants. Now, if we can beat the Patriots, we are set.

I think I heard someone last night on the news say that the Bears can win the division this week, if they win, and the Vikings and Packers lose. It could happen, maybe. The Pack are at Seattle, and after that embarrassing lose to SF, I think the Seahawks are going to be pretty tough. It seems less likely that the Cardinals will find a way to be the Vikings in the Dome. But - I suppose it could happen.

Even if the Bears don't win the division this week - they will win it soon. Green Bay and Minnesota are both 6 games behind at this point - there will be no recovery!

Animator vs. Animation 2

From the guy who brought you Animator vs. Animation, comes Animator vs. Animation 2!

The sequel is just as good as the original. I love it!!

Thursday, November 16, 2006

How to Follow a Turducken...

Last year, it was the Turducken, which, was good. Although several family members did admit it didn't live up to they expectations.

How could/should I follow up a Turducken?

With a deep-fried turkey. I've had them before, but I've never attempted to make one myself. I have to say, I'm excited (and a bit worried).

So far, I haven't decided on rubs, injections, etc - but I will finalize my choice before the weekend (in time for shopping).

8 and 1

It was an interesting week for football. How about those Chargers!?! What a crazy second half! A total of 778 yards by the quarterbacks, 440 from Palmer and he lost the game, that's just crazy. I was watching Inside the NFL last night, and in the highlights, they showed some Bengal during the game saying "We're gonna need 50 point to win this." At the time, I sure he wasn't being totally serious - but as it turns out, that was the exact right number. They really seem to be the team to watch out for in the AFC. I wonder if Indy can beat them?

Of course, it was the Bears game that I was most interested in watching. I was filled with some dread, wondering if the team that lost to the Dolphins or the team that beat the Seahawks would show up. In the beginning of the game, it looked as if the wrong team showed up. Eli looked pretty good, Rex looked like crap. But then, as the first quarter wore down, things changed. The Giants weren't dominating, and the Bears started to look a little better. At the half, the Bears looked like they were coming back.

The second half was all Bears. And I think they looked pretty good. Hester completely redeemed himself with the crazy 108 yard return off a missed field goal. How crazy is it that two years in a row, the Bears have done that? Last year it was Vasher, this year Hester - is this to be a yearly event? ;-)

With one down, and two to go in the crazy road trip from hell, I'm feeling pretty good. Except I'm not sure who the Jets beating the Pats says more about. How good the Jets can be, or that the Pats are really beatable?

If we beat the Jets on Sunday, I think we stand a really good chance of beating the Pats as well. Not because the Jets have, but because the momentum will be on their side. Of course if something crazy happens, say Green Bay beating the Pats, then the Bears might be in trouble. The Pats loosing four in a row? Can't see that happening.

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Error Messages Done Right

Japanese Windows Error Messages, via some MSDN blog... Real? Who knows... still fun.

  1. The Web site you seek cannot be located, but countless more exist.
  2. Chaos reigns within. Reflect, repent, and reboot. Order shall return.
  3. Program aborting: Close all that you have worked on. You ask far too much.
  4. Windows NT crashed. I am the Blue Screen of Death. No one hears your screams.
  5. Yesterday it worked. Today it is not working. Windows is like that.
  6. Your file was so big. It might be very useful. But now it is gone.
  7. Stay the patient course. Of little worth is your ire. The network is down.
  8. A crash reduces your expensive computer to a simple stone.
  9. Three things are certain: Death, taxes and lost data. Guess which has occurred?
  10. You step in the stream, but the water has moved on. This page is not here.
  11. Out of memory. We wish to hold the whole sky, But we never will.
  12. Having been erased, The document you're seeking must now be retyped.
  13. Serious error. All shortcuts have disappeared.
  14. Screen. Mind. Both are blank.

Tuesday, November 07, 2006


Today is Election Day (which should be a paid holiday for all Americans). If you haven't voted, make sure you do so.

If you need any extra reasons to vote, here is a lovely list of 109 reasons, why we need to get rid of the 109th Congress.

I voted this morning, and I'm happy to say that my polling place didn't force me to use the electronic voting machine. Good old paper ballot, with an optical scan. Thank you Cook County!

Friday, November 03, 2006

Diebold Has Some Nerve...

I can't believe the nerve of Diebold. The Diebold e-voting products have proven to be filled with flaws (easily hackable, return wrong votes, etc). For them to attempt to get HBO (a company known for the quality of its documentaries) to pull a documentary about the machines is pretty gutsy.

But whats better yet, they haven't seen the documentary, and in the letter they sent to HBO, they are talking about a completely different movie, made by different people. Way to go Diebold, for proving you guys can't get anything right...

Thursday, November 02, 2006

2 Years of Blogging

Wow, I was just looking at my blogger profile and I realized that I've been blogging for 2 years. Crazy. Amazing how time flies.

7 and 0

OK, so this is another seriously late post, but how about those Bears on Sunday!?! 41 points in the first half - tying a team record. I'm still pretty certain we won't go 16 and 0 (the Patriots and maybe even the Giants are going to be tough as hell to beat), but at this point, I do think we are set to be the NFC Champions! The road to that title, certainly would seem to run through the Windy City.

As to the game Sunday? I think the Dolphins are pretty screwed! They maybe coming off the bye, but Joey Harrington has never been very good aginist the Bears (oh wait, he hasn't ever been very good at all...). I'm pretty sure we are going to see another very one sided game.

Back from MAX

I've been back from MAX since Friday. And in some ways it has taken this whole week just to recover. Las Vegas is a crazy city. So what did I learn? I'll separate it in to two difference sections, Vegas and MAX.

First MAX. The conference was one of the better ones I've been too. I took a full day training session on Flex with ColdFusion on Monday, which was really worth the extra money and time. Before that training session, I really didn't feel like I had a grasp on how to use CF as a back end for Flex. Sure I could cut and paste example code, play with it, and make it sort of work, but I didn't have a good understanding of what I was doing -- now I do (at least with the basics). That knowledge was reinforced by the Flex sessions that I attended. I really feel I'm ready to dive, head first, in to a complex Flex project.

Other things I learned? Well, I think Adobe is on track with the Apollo product. I didn't get to see as much of it as I wanted to, but from what I did see, Apollo is going to be a great solution for providing a single application across the OS/browser divide. The fact that it will render Flash (and Flex of course), HTML, PDF, CSS, etc in a single easy to use environment should really allow it to take off. That being said, I'm concerned about making the product a success. Macromedia tried with Central. Sun with Java something-or-other. And, there have been others as well, who've tried to create a platform for bringing web applications from the browser to the desktop. Is this the right time? Right product? Only time will tell, but I think Adobe is on the right path, and truly "gets it".

Of course, an equally large part of my week was Vegas. What a city, it many ways, it shows the best and the worst parts of what America is. The best part of the experience was playing Black Jack. I had never played in a casino before. I stepped off the plane expecting to play, and lose, I choose an amount that I could accept losing and when with it. In the end, on my last day, I ended up with a profit of $5! This including the money I spent on food, drinks, etc. I consider that to be a huge win!

Seeing the many casinos was pretty cool -- of course the casino floor in all of them ended up being the same. Different ways to get you to spend money. That being said, I was really impressed with the expense, the use of costly materials, and the overall quality of the finished products. Some of the places I visited were truly beautiful. The thing I didn't really expect, or realize was the size of Vegas. When you are on the strip, the different locations don't seem that far away. However, try walking from Mirage to Paris, and you soon realize how far away they really are. Last, but not least, was the food. While the food at MAX itself was fairly boring, the after parties, and the special event made up for it. I got to eat Kobe beef for the first time, at two different places, it was damn good at Tao, but it was incredible at Little Buddha. And I did end up eating in my third Emeril resturant, Emeril's N.O. Fish House -- it wasn't as good as the other two I've eaten at (Tchoup Chop andNola), but it was still one of the best food experiences I've had.

Last, by not least, I met some really nice people at MAX. That, perhaps, is the best part of the conference. Each year, I make more friends, new contacts, and expand the list of people I hope to see at the next one.