Friday, October 31, 2008

Happy Halloween!

Go Scare Someone today!  Have fun kids and be safe.  Make sure your mom checks your candy for needles before you eat it!

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

the pain...

This makes me want to delete every single rap mp3 in my collection.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Finch Blog

So the infamous Finch has a blog.

Some great photos of Obama

19

Finch sent me this link to this really amazing set of photos from the Obama Campaign.  Enjoy.

Monday, October 20, 2008

Officer Burke

Recently one of the security officers employed at the building where I work past away.  Quite a shock as he was only in his 50’s.  His passing saddens me greatly.   There was a period of my life when things were not going so great for me.   Many trips to my building’s shipping dock were made during that time.  Even in the midst of near mental break downs Officer Burke was there with a kind word and ear.  I never got to say thank you to him for those few brief moments of his time that were offered to me unsolicited.  As I stand from a place where my life has taken on quite a dramatic change from those dark times I wish I could have said “Thank you.”   Officer Burke was not one of those people that make a majour impact on your life, but contribute none the less with a kind word and smile.   Officer Burke, thank you for listening.  You’ll be missed.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

A Leisurely Sunday Blog

Hey there folks.  How are you all doing.  Trying something new today.  I'm just hanging out at my place.  Watching some football.   I thought I'd just start a post while I'm hanging out and add to it as the day goes.

So watching the Bears vs. The Vikings.  It's a great game so far.  Both teams are playing it tough.  The Bears are really impressing me on offense.  Kyle Orton is playing really well.  He looks like a different quarterback then I've seen him in the past.  He's thrown 2 touchdown passes today.  (It wasn't his fault that Marty Booker can't catch.  He made that throw.)  I'm liking the fact that the Bears are running no-huddle at times with Orton in the shotgun.   It harkens back to the 90's Bills a bit, and you know I think that is a good thing.  Part of me feels like they're an "Andre Reed" away from being something really effective.

Just saw the new I'm a Mac add from Apple.  Ouch!  That's mean.  Super funny but...Ouch! Point Steve Jobs.  (It's called "Bean Counter".)

Bravo!  The Bears' special teams is outstanding today!  Two special teams touchdowns on defense.

OMG!  Marty Booker!  CATCH THE BALL!

So I've been listening to the most recent Presidential debates on my iPod.  Really interesting stuff.   I'm not going to get to politicy on a Sunday.  Here's my only thought.  "Breaf of thresh air..."  Obama won the debate.  That is the moment McCain started to loose.  Interesting, that this brief momentary stumble (On a line that I'm sure had been feed to him as away to describe Sarah Palin.) came in response to a question about their Vice Presidential running mate's qualifications to step in as President should the need arise.  In his response, I can't claim to be convinced that even John McCain thinks she would be capable of being the President.

  27 - 24 at the half.  This is becoming an awesome game.  Bobby Gould just gave us the lead!

Why is it that I just NEVER get bored of Dustbowl? 

Yay!  The bears won!  So did the Bill's.  I'd call that a good Sunday.  To bad I was stupid and forgot to check my fantasy line up this morning.  I failed and started a bye week player.  The game is close at the moment, would have been nice to not be getting an automatic goose egg.

Well Folks.  Time to wrap up this post.  Me and Finch are off to dinner soon at Bob Chin's Crab House!  Enjoy the rest of your weekend!

Friday, October 17, 2008

Wow…

Yesterday I had 212 hits.   Including 192 uniques.  That is easily a record for In Mark’s Head.  Thanks to all who visited.  Please feel free to come back anytime.  Most folks were here to read this…

fallout3

Thanks to my mate Cas for the link.

Coming Soon to Theaters Near You

It would appear that the folks over at Valve Software have gotten a case of the “sillies”recently. 

predahoadhouse

Soy La Pequena Sarah Palin

 

I don’t know why I can’t get enough of this!  Thanks Finch for the link.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

200!

That last post was my 200th post this year!

Should There be another Halo Soon?

Don Reisinger wrote an article on wether or not there should be another Halo game anytime soon.  Here are my thoughts on the subject.

I can see Don's point about how advantageous it would be to pair a very generation of Microsoft Console with the newest Halo title. The thing is that there really isn't a reason why they can't release new content for the existing game. If the expansion content is quality then it doesn't diminish the brand. If it does, that could be a problem, but I don't think Bungie has released enough "stinker" Halo games yet to soil public opinion against the franchise. I mean they are coming off one of the largest entertainment (not just video game) releases ever.

I would like to point out that I'm nether a 360 or PS3 fanboy as I own neither console. I favour the PC, but this isn't a pro PC rant in anyway. I've tried Halo 3, and found that I don't really care for it. However, I would root for it as I like seeing gaming as an industry thrive.

If I do have one concern, it would be with the fact that the newest game will be a prequel, and we all know what can happen to prequels of beloved Sci-Fi series. Just ask Jar-Jar or Capt. Archer.

Friday, October 10, 2008

Hey! It's a Friday! Happy Friday Everyone!

My last post was a bit heavy.  I don't want to send everyone off on their weekends on such a serious tone.  Thought I'd share some tunes to get your weekend off to a good start.  Enjoy!

Mark Writes a Political Rant

We got into a discussion about who we would vote for in the up coming election on my Team Fortress 2 message board.  I wrote "a little" essay outlining my political beliefs.

I will be voting for Obama.   I entered the election process not 100% certain about who would receive my vote, but strongly suspected that I would end up leaning in the direction of Obama.  I can honestly admit that went through some serious back and forth over the issue.  I have always held a great deal of respect for John McCain as a politician and as a person, and there was a time 8 or 9 years ago when he might have easily have received my vote.   Ultimately Obama appeals to me more.   Allow me to elaborate on a few points why I find Obama more appealing.

Foreign Affairs - Foreign affairs is supposed to be McCain's strong point.  He brings to the table a distinguished military career, and has been involved in the process of determining our nation's foreign policy for a considerably longer time the Obama has.   In spite of this inherent advantage in this arena McCain's stance to me shows little understanding of what I believe the true role of a President as Commander and Chief truly is.   As the CiC of our armed forces I feel the president's greatest responsibility is in the determination where and when the application of American military resources should be appropriate.   The use of our nation's military should always be an action of last resort.   Obama seams to understand that better then McCain.  I like that Obama is willing to meet with foreign leaders to try and broker understandings between our differing view points.   There is no doubt in my mind that Obama would not hesitate to do so should the situation require actions of this nature to defend our nation, people or interests.   I feel that restraint in this manner speaks volumes more toward the power of a nation then a bombastic and antagonistic  stance.   A stance that McCain seams to cling to very strongly.   Our nation is stronger, when our population is engaged here in our country and not over seas.   As a nation we have never been shy to go to the aid in a crisis.   It is one of the things that historically has contributed to our moral imperative as a nation.  A moral imperative that has eroded dramatically as of late and needs to be restored.   One of the surest ways to do this in my mind is to ensure, that when someone in a foreign country sees an American soldier deployed in their country they know without a doubt that person is there because there was no other, better option.  I think Obama understands this concept better then McCain. 

Economics - Obama's focus on the middle class is my key factor here.  This is not just because I happen to be a member of said middle class, but also when comparing the two over arching economic philosophies of the candidates this makes more sense to me.  I have never been a believer in the effectiveness of "trickle-down" economics, as I don't believe it is as effective as it's proponents believe it to be.   I think that one of the truest way to stimulate an economy is to put more money into the hands of the largest section of your population.  I know that the more money I have available to spend, the more money I am going to spend to buy things that I need.   Logically, this would seam to benefit everyone around me.   The wealthy people will still remain wealthy, because they are getting the benefit of my increased ability to spend money on things at their businesses and make them wealthy.   Giving me more money to spend means that I need more options as far as how I am going to spend that money, thus creating more opportunities for new business to develop and new jobs to form so that I may give this extra money I have to someone for something I want.  This I think is what truly drives a country's economy to grow.   If there are tax cuts provided to the wealthy and to business owners where is their incentive to innovate?  If they are already being given the extra money they might receive from me buying something where is the incentive to find new ways to make me spend my money that I don't even have to spend because you already gave my extra portion to the place where it would have ended up had I spent it.   The only problem is that if this money doesn't go into my wallet first and instead directly into the wallet of a wealthy business, then it has missed passing through a few vital stages of economy that can provide jobs.

Domestic Affairs - We live in a very divided and sadly segregated society here in America.   The Republicans to me seam more focused upon exploiting and emphasizing these differences then instead working to find the commonalities that should exist between all people.  Wether they be citizens of our nation or some other country.   I think that it is time that our nation as a whole takes a stand to recognize that while we are a nation that houses a great number of people in various styles of life ultimately at the end of the day we all really want the same basic things for ourselves and our loved ones.   We all want life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.   One of the strongest of all American ideals is the concept of all men being created equal.    Now by saying all men (and ladies) are equal, we need to realize what this concept really speaks to.   We are all equal in the fact that we should all be afforded the same opportunities to achieve how we define life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.   One of the key concepts that needs to be kept in mind in this regard though is that this is not a call for social anarchy.  A free pass to "just do it" if it feels good to you.   What people need to be conscious of is that my right to pursue happiness stops when it directly effects your ability to do the same.  This is why our society has laws governing what is or is not acceptable conduct between members of our society.   Those laws exist to protect my rights from you, and your rights from me.   If a transgression against these rules is committed, then the offender should be help accountable according to rules our society has established. 

Whew...sorry that was long winded.   Ultimately, my previous point was stated as an around about way of addressing two of the most interesting and divisive social issues that crops up time and time again in discussions of nation politics: abortion, and gay marriage.   Both of these issues can in fact be boiled down to a basic legality vs. morality argument.   I believe whole heartedly, that it is the responsibility of a government to protect the legal rights of it's citizens, while refraining from dictating to them on a moral level.   Morality is a personal decision.  Legality is a societal decision.   I firmly believe that a person should have the option to seek out a safe and legal abortion should their own personal morality allow for them to consider such an option.   That being said, I will also defend to my last breath your right to find abortion morally objectionable.   I defend your right to express such views and even to try and convince me to you point of view, so long as you do not cross that "magic line in the sand" protecting my rights from yours.  Personally, I think I do tend to fall on the side of Pro-life, as I would  have a very difficult time if placed in the situation of pondering an abortion, but that is not to say that I would not ultimately be able to support the decision to proceed with such a procedure should the situation warrant it.

On the issue of gay marriage, at first I am tempted to say that neither candidate goes far enough in regard to my views on marriage.   Upon reconsidering, I think that again the question of marriage as a legal institution vs. a social institution must be considered.   In my mind, one of the basic rights of a person in this country is the ability to choose a life that fits to their own personal definition of happiness.   I feel that as a society the core unit is the family, and a nation's strength as a whole stems directly from the strength of it's family units.   It is for this reason, that I feel that our government should not impose legal restrictions governing what can constitute a family from a legal stand point.   If two men or two women (especially if they're hot) want to form a family unit they should be able to do so.   Now if that union is recognized as a marriage I think more directly is a religious issue up to the discretion of the various faiths represented in our society.   Legally there should be no distinction between a man and a woman who want to share their lives and 2 members of the same sex.

Coming back to my original point, I feel that the democrats are more closely in line with this idea that what will strengthen our nation is the focus upon allow people to pursue the basic requirements of life that all people are entitled to according to our constitution.  I think if our country as a whole adopts an attitude of telling each other what we can do because we are similar as opposed to what we can't do because we are different we will all be in a better place.

Okay.  This concludes my rant.   Please note, that I wrote this not to try and sway you to my opinion, but rather to explain a view point I personally hold.  Should you read this and disagree please by all means do so.   If I raise some points that get you thinking cool.   Ultimately when it comes to who you vote for this election you should vote for the person that you feel will provide our nation with the best direction towards reestablishing it's self as one of the finest nations on the planet.   Just make sure you are making your decisions because it is what you believe.  This is an important moment in our nation's history, and ultimately we are the ones who have the power to choose the direction that the leadership of our nation takes.

Also, remember.  I'll be 35 the time next election rolls around.  Vote .theButterFly in 2016!

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Wolverines!!!

So today the Mad_Typist came to me with a request.  She’d been reading this article and wanted to know if Red Dawn was in fact worth seeing.   If you were my age and saw this movie back when it first came out most likely you are screaming “HELL YES!” at this moment.   I tend to share your opinion.   Is the movie “good”?  maybe not.  Does stuff blow up really good?  (Say it with me folks)  HELL YES!

Red Dawn is a very interesting movie.  It is violent and often times frightening.  The movie is worth renting for the opening sequence alone.   The acting, script and dialogue is on par with what you would expect from a 1980’s Patrick Swayze movie.   That being said it is also the ultimate 13 year old boy’s  fantasy.   Taking off into the hills to fight the evil Communists, what 13 year old wouldn’t get off on that?

So yes.  I would recommend this movie to the Mad_Typist.   If you’ve seen Red Dawn before, I would highly recommend giving that article a read.  It is a very interesting commentary on the film.

Thanks Dingo!

Dingo from TF2F sent me this.  Enjoy.

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Barak Obama, A Kind American Stranger

Finch found this article and passed it along to me.  I thought I would share it.  It originally appeared in a Norway’s VG Newspaper.  Here is a link to the original article.   Below is a translation of the article into english.  Enjoy.

Barack Obama--A Kind American Stranger
├ůSGARDSTRAND (VG) Mary had just married and was ready to move to Norway, but she was stopped at the airport because she didn't have enough money for the trip. That's when Barack Obama came by and paid her fee.

Mary Menth Andersen was 31 years old at the time and had just married the Norwegian Dag Andersen. She was looking forward to starting a new life in ├ůsgardstrand in Vestfold with him. But first she had to get all her belongings to Norway. The date was Nov 2 1988.

At the airport in Miami it was business as usual with long lines in the check-in
terminal. When it finally was her turn and she put her luggage on the conveyor belt she got the message that would tear away her happiness from under her.

“You have to pay $103 in excess luggage fee if you want to bring both your suitcases to Norway,” the man behind the counter told her.

Mary didn't have any money. Her husband had travelled to Norway ahead of her, and Mary didn't have anyone she could call.

“I got filled with despair and tried to think what I could possibly remove from the bags. But they were filled with all the stuff I loved the most.”

Even though she explained her situation to the airline employee, he didn't show any sign of compassion.

-I started to cry, the tears poured down her face and she didn't know what to do.
Then I heard a mild and kind voice behind me say: "I'll pay her fee." Mary turned around and there was a tall, dark man she had never seen before.

-He had a mild, friendly voice that was still firm. The first thing I thought was, who is this man? This happened 20 years ago, but Mary can still remember the authority the man radiated.

-He was handsome and fashionable with brown leather shoes, an open cotton shirt and khakis, Mary tells us. She was happy to get both her suitcases to Norway and assured the stranger that she would pay him back. The man wrote down his name and address on a piece of paper and gave it to her. She thanked him repeatedly. When she finally went towards the security checkpoint, he waved goodbye to her. The piece of paper read, "Barack Obama" and his address in Kansas, which is the state which his mother originates from. Mary kept it in her wallet for a number of years before she threw it away.

She paid back the $103 to Obama the day after she arrived in Norway. At the time Obama had just finished his job as a low-paid environmental worker in Chicago, and was studying law at Harvard.

In spring 2006 Mary’s parents heard that Obama was considering running for president, but was still undecided. So they wrote him a letter where they told him they would have their vote. At the same time they thanked him for helping their daughter 18 years earlier.

In a letter to Mary’s parents dated May 4 2006 and stamped "United States Senate, Washington DC" Barack Obama wrote:
"I want to thank you for writing so nicely about me and for reminding me about the incident at the airport in Miami. I'm glad I was able to help that time, and I'm happy to hear that your daughter is doing well in Norway. Please send her my regards. Sincerely yours, Barack Obama, United States Senator."

Ask and Finch shall provide.

This is why I love my girlfriend.

BNL Fans! A Little Help Here!?!

So today I’ve been getting some flack from Finch and her friend for my love of the Barenaked Ladies.    Through the course of our conversation I got to thinking about what would be my Barenaked “Unicorns”.  (Finch’s term for a song she would kill to see played live.)   Here is where I need your help Blogo-sphere.  Does ANYONE, ANYONE at all remember a BNL PSA that used to play on television during Saturday morning cartoons that featured Ed Robertson dressed as a green skinned alien?  Does anyone know where this can be found online?  I’ve tried You Tube to no avail.

Hmmm…Big Surprise. I fail at being a Man.

Over at the Royal Toybox a list from Popular Mechanics has been published that contains 80 things every man should know how to do.  The list is below.  I’ve Bolded the ones I am capable of.  Okay, so actually I got 42 so I’m tied with Mr. Garvey who I easily consider to be more manly then myself so perhaps I’m not doing so bad after all.   How did you do?  I fully expect The Mad Typist to do better on this then anyone else I know.

Automotive
1. Handle a blowout
2. Drive in snow
3. Check trouble codes
4. Replace fan belt
5. Wax a car
6. Conquer an off-road obstacle
7. Use a stick welder
8. Hitch up a trailer
9. Jump start a car

Handling Emergencies
10. Perform the Heimlich
11. Reverse hypothermia
12. Perform hands-only CPR
13. Escape a sinking car

Home
14. Carve a turkey
15. Use a sewing machine
16. Put out a fire
17. Home brew beer
18. Remove bloodstains from fabric
19. Move heavy stuff
20. Grow food
21. Read an electric meter
22. Shovel the right way
23. Solder wire
24. Tape drywall
25. Split firewood

26. Replace a faucet washer
27. Mix concrete
28. Paint a straight line
29. Use a French knife
30. Prune bushes and small trees
31. Iron a shirt
32. Fix a toilet tank flapper
33. Change a single-pole switch
34. Fell a tree
35. Replace a broken windowpane
36. Set up a ladder, safely
37. Fix a faucet cartridge
38. Sweat copper tubing
39. Change a diaper
40. Grill with charcoal
41. Sew a button on a shirt
42. Fold a flag

Medical Myths
43. Treat frostbite
44. Treat a burn
45. Help a seizure victim
46. Treat a snakebite
47. Remove a tick

Military Know-How
48. Shine shoes
49. Make a drum-tight bed
50. Drop and give the perfect pushup

Outdoors
51. Run rapids in a canoe
52. Hang food in the wild
53. Skipper a boat
54. Shoot straight
55. Tackle steep drops on a mountain bike
56. Escape a rip current

Primitive Skills
57. Build a fire in the wilderness
58. Build a shelter
59. Find potable water

Surviving Extremes
60. Floods
61. Tornados
62. Cold
63. Heat
64. Lightning

Teach Your Kids
65. Cast a line
66. Lend a hand
67. Change a tire
68. Throw a spiral

69. Fly a stunt kite
70. Drive a stick shift
71. Parallel park
72. Tie a bowline
73. Tie a necktie
74. Whittle
75. Ride a bike

Technology
76. Install a graphics card
77. Take the perfect portrait
78. Calibrate HDTV settings
79. Shoot a home movie
80. Ditch your hard drive

Who You Going to Call…Ghost Hunters!

So the boys (And gal) from T.A.P.S have made another visit to my home town of Buffalo NY.  This time around on Ghost Hunters they pay a visit to the Buffalo Central Train Terminal.  This newest episode is available for viewing via Hulu.  Check it out.  This one is even better then when T.A.P.S visited the Iron Island Museum earlier this season.

497_Natural-BCT_10

Now, I may be a bit selfish in wishing this seeing as how T.A.P.S has already visited Buffalo twice, but I need to join the Wannabe Outdoors Man’s call for them to visit the old Richardson Towers which housed The Buffalo Psychiatric Center.

Buffalo_State_Hospital3

I have driven by the Richardson Towers so many times, and I just have to say that they are some of the creepiest looking buildings I’ve ever seen.  I would love to see T.A.P.S investigate this site.

Monday, October 6, 2008

Happy Mondays…

Welcome back to the work week.  Hope everyone had a good weekend.  First things first, let me kick things off with a musical gift to you.  Enjoy.

While you listen to that awesome song from “The Vampire Weekend” let me offer you up a few notes that I’ve been pondering this weekend. 

  • Political Thoughts:  Gender vs. Race - A lot is being said about how concerned people are that women will be voting for The Republican ticket based solely on the fact that Sarah Palin is also a woman.   This is a very large worry for many of my friends who fear the wrath of the Soccer Mom.  (or Hockey Mom in this case.)   I find it funny that these same people will turn right around and say that they are thankful that most blacks should be voting for Obama because he is also black.  Anyone else think this an odd double standard?  
  • Political Thoughts: Impressions of the VP Debate -  I watched the VP debates last week.  I was impressed by Joe Biden.   Disappointed by Palin.   I do think that she showed herself better then expected, and her performance certainly was not the crash and burn the people I was watching the debate with were hoping for.   That being said, I can’t say that after the debate was over I had any greater sense of who Sarah Palin is, or what she is about.   I didn’t expect that I would come away from the debate with a sudden desire to vote Republican, but I was hoping that I would see something in Mrs. Palin that would show me what sort of person she is.  I didn’t see it.  (However, as my comedian friend Joey V just pointed out Sarah Palin does have something Joe Biden does not have.   Nice tits.)
  • Slightly Morbid Thought :  This weekend I got into a very long debate with Finch on the following topic.   “If Thom Yorke were to be killed (a’ la John Lennon) would he become a cultural icon on a similar level to  a John Lennon or a Kurt Cobain?”   I say no.   The room full of rabid Radiohead fans I was with felt he certainly would, going so far as to say he would be placed above Kurt Cobain in the public consciousness.  They site the fact that Radiohead is bigger then I was giving them credit for.  Apparently they are one of the most frequently listed favourite music artists on Myspace.  I contend that most of John Q Public upon hearing the news would say “Oh, the Creep guy died?”   What are your thoughts Blogo-verse?  (A corollary to this question, what current entertainers could you see achieving this level of status?   Bono is the only one I can think of.   However, Heath Ledger is probably well on his way.  Especially if he were to receive a post-humus Oscar for his brilliant turn as the Joker in “The Dark Knight”.)

**I want to state for the record that Finch and I realized that there was really only one way to resolve our debate regarding the effect death would have on a celebrity’s cultural standing.  That being said, I in no way endorse or advocate the testing of this theory.***

Friday, October 3, 2008

Roger Ebert…the blog.

I have never been shy about the fact that there is one man who is above all else my favourite Chicago celebrity.   Roger Ebert, the legendary film critic for the Chicago Sun-Times is a personal hero of mine.   I must admit to being excited that after a bout with cancer that has left him unable to speak he has returned with a vengeance to his movie reviews, and has now added a blog to his platform of available mediums to reach out to the world.  

You can find Roger Ebert’s Journal HERE.   It is fascinating reading.  Especially his review of last night’s Vice Presidential Debate.

If you are interested in reading more from Roger Ebert you can find his movie reviews for both current and past movies listed HERE.

Recently Time-Out Chicago magazine ran a really nice article about Mr. Ebert and his wife Chaz.

Welcome to the Blogo-verse Mr. Ebert!  Glad to have you here.

...

Freakin Cubs!

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

In Mark’s Head Redesign

So you might notice if you are a faithful reader, that I did a bit of redecorating around here recently.  I worked up a new colour scheme for the blog.  I like it.  (The only thing I am not sure about is the font colour.   Want to help with the redesign?  Here’s your chance.  Make me a banner to put at the top of my blog.   I like that Medic image, but I think it is time for a change.  The winner will have their banner put up on my blog until…well basically I decide it’s time to change things up again.  E-mail your submissions to: tf2f.thebutterfly@gmail.com

I think B.A. Start could take them both.

If you’ve heard B.A. Start do “Baby Got Back”, you know New Hampshire’s finest MC would cut these guys down in a hot minute.

Props to Joey V for the funny video.