Saturday, September 08, 2012

Bailey's Wariness Beginning To Crack?

Last night, for the first time in the 15 months I've had him, Bailey the Rabbit allowed me to pet him. I'm completely flabbergasted! Perhaps he's finally beginning to trust me?

Blog Chaos Beginning To Settle Out

After much stress and five efforts I finally managed to get most - maybe all - of the old JS-Kit (formerly Haloscan, formerly Echo) comments successfully transferred from the old Blogger blog to the new Wordpress blog. Yay! But then, by necessity, I altered the Blogger blog's template and proceeded to vaporize the old JS-Kit comments before the end-of-the-month JS-Kit comments termination deadline. (I still have a local copy of the comments, but it may not be very useful).

Interestingly, at this time, it does not appear possible to copy the old comments back over to the old Blogger blog. There is a method that would work for small blogs, but mine is a large blog. So, for the moment, the old comments reside on the new Wordpress blog, and not over at the old Blogger blog. So, the new blog has all the old stuff. It's all very confusing. And worrisome too. If the Wordpress blog is ever lost due to non-payment, or an asteroid strike, or whatever, then the old comments will be endangered again, unless software options improve and get exercised!

But, the important thing is, the old comments still survive on-line! Just not in both blogs. But they linger still! Halleluljah!

I was trying to think of an analogy to my situation. Picture the crew of the Starship Enterprise (my old comments) being endangered by a fatal disease. So, I built a new Starship (the Galaxy) and tried to beam over the crew from the Enterprise, but the transporter malfunctioned. On the fifth try, the transporter worked, after a fashion, but created clones of the crew on the Starship Galaxy, and let the original crew remain on the Enterprise. Then, before the disease struck, I remodeled the Enterprise, but inadvertently killed off the original crew in the process. Still, the clones survive! Long live the clones!

Thursday, September 06, 2012

Dirty Harry Can't Make The Dirt Stick

Via Facebook.

I'm Planning To Attend The Freak Music Festival In Phoenix

With decoration provided by these folks.....

Clinton Just Killed The Republican Party

Sixty-five more days for the GOP zombies to feign life!:
“They also want to block-grant Medicaid, and cut it by a third over the coming 10 years. Of course, that’s going to really hurt a lot of poor kids. But that’s not all. Lot of folks don’t know it, but nearly two-thirds of Medicaid is spent on nursing home care for Medicare seniors who are eligible for Medicaid. … And a lot of that money is also spent to help people with disabilities, including a lot of middle-class families whose kids have Down syndrome or autism or other severe conditions. And honestly, let’s think about it, if that happens, I don’t know what those families are going to do.”

Breaking Bad's Meth Consultant

Trying to remain faithful to the science :
Originally from the small Oklahoma town of Eufaula, Nelson picked up an interest in science from her father and grandfather, both doctors. In 1983 she became the first tenure-track female professor ever hired by the university’s century-old chemistry department. She estimates that she has taught organic chemistry to nearly 10,000 students.

...Nelson got involved with Breaking Bad after reading an interview with its creator, Vince Gilligan, in Chemical & Engineering News. “He said neither he nor his writer had a science background, and so they had to rely on Wikipedia and the Web,” she says. “When I read that, I thought, ‘We scientists are always complaining about shows getting the science wrong. It’s like fingernails on a blackboard to us. This would be a great opportunity to work with one.’”

Her second thought, however, was “Wow, do I want to get involved with this show? I wouldn’t want to do anything that looks like it condones illegal synthesis. People say it glamorizes illicit meth labs.” After watching a few episodes, she stopped worrying. “It portrays the characters getting beat up, shot at, having these horrible lives,” she sums up. “I don’t think any kid watching it would want to be like that.”

... In one of the first scenes Nelson was asked to help with, the show’s antihero, Walter White (played by Bryan Cranston), was supposed to explain the nomenclature of alkyne hydrocarbons to his high school chemistry class. “When I saw what they had written, I thought, ‘Wow, they really need help,’” she recalls. She rewrote much of the dialogue and handed the staff some explanatory diagrams, which she was delighted to see Cranston re-create precisely on-screen on the classroom blackboard.

...In one episode, Cranston and his young sidekick, played by Aaron Paul, can’t find any pseudoephedrine—a common meth precursor chemical often extracted from cold medicines. The two steal some 30-gallon drums of methylamine to use instead. “I looked up the exact process in which you’d use methylamine and did all the calculations on how much it would yield,” says Nelson. Turns out there are several different processes one can use. “They chose the one that was easiest for the actors to say.”

The show is now in its fifth season, and Nelson is clearly enjoying the secondhand glamour it brings her—she even made a brief cameo appearance as a nurse in one episode, she says, but wound up on the cutting-room floor. Meanwhile, she’s hoping to leverage her Hollywood cred by making a public service announcement warning Oklahomans about the dangers of crank. That idea came from a recent meeting with the state’s governor. “She told me,” says Nelson, “that the biggest problem we have right now in the state is illegal meth synthesis.”

Love Me Some Courtney Love!

A Change In Direction For "Breaking Bad"

A little too light-hearted:
LOS ANGELES—Following last Sunday’s Breaking Bad midseason finale, creator and showrunner Vince Gilligan told reporters that in a departure from the “light, fun tone” that has characterized the program thus far, the concluding episodes may take more of a darker turn. “Ever since the very first episode, in which [main character] Walt is diagnosed with cancer and forced to sell meth to provide for his pregnant wife and cerebral-palsy-stricken son, I’ve thought that perhaps one day we could begin taking the show in a grittier direction,” said Gilligan, adding that while the program’s ongoing depiction of a man slowly succumbing to an illegal lifestyle defined by power, violence, and alienation was fine for four and a half seasons, he “wouldn’t mind” eventually exploring some grimmer themes. “I know our audience has gotten comfortable seeing Walt regularly kill drug dealers, endanger his family, and poison small children, but, personally, I think people would be interested in seeing a slightly more sinister side to the character.”

Tuesday, September 04, 2012

No More Apologies

The instant a Democrat mutters the truth in this country, he's forced to apologize for it by senior Democrats and grovel to various media representatives. When Republicans shout falsehoods, only liberals ever call them on it. Media representatives cower in fear. It's a double standard, and it has to stop!

John Burton, we have your back!:
California Democratic chief John Burton made the remarks Monday in an interview with San Francisco station KCBS while in Charlotte for the Democratic National Convention.

Burton said the Republicans lie and don't care whether people know they lie and that, quote, "As long as you lie, Joseph Goebbels (GUR'-buhls), the big lie, you keep repeating it."

Goebbels was the chief of Nazi propaganda. Nazi leader Adolf Hitler believed the "big lie" had a greater chance of being believed.

Republicans immediately criticized Burton and called for an apology. Burton later issued a statement saying that he "humbly apologized" to anyone offended by his comparison.

Sacramento Rainbow Festival 2012

Sacramento Sirens

Cheer San Francisco

"Faces" vs. "Badlands"

Not Sure Yet About What To Do With Two Blogs

Old blog

New blog

Hmmmm. I see the value in not getting rid of the old blog:

  • Old host Google and new host Bluehost have different philosophies. Google is trying to incorporate the entire Internet within its embrace. Bluehost is willing to do so only if it pays. If I die and abandon the old blog, it will likely still remain available for decades. The new blog will vaporize as soon as the money stops flowing.
  • Many people have placemarks already keyed to the old blog, and the redirect command sometimes introduces errant characters that disable the redirect. Just the little bit of blog chaos of the last week may have already cost me half my readership.
  • The old blog has features that do not seem to transfer easily to the new blog - what seems to be a more-extensive sidebar, for example.

But the new blog nonetheless has desirable features:

  • Cleaner presentation that renders better in different Internet browsers.
  • More sophisticated editing capabilities.
  • Greater capabilities for pictures, movies, recordings, etc.

So, what to do?

Having two blogs that reproduce content apparently leads to search engine penalties. That may be how I've lost readership: Google searches now kick me down on their list of priority. And I don't like cross-posting very much. So, two blogs with different content works. But how to make the split?

One Sacramento blogger didn't like what he considered his blog's chaotic presentation, so he split his blog into four blogs, organized mostly on broad topics. That also split his readership into fragmented shards. I see him mostly on Facebook now.

I've always considered a haphazard, chaotic presentation to be more of a feature, not a bug, when it came to blogging. An omnibus blog works like a general-interest magazine. Like 'Life', or 'Reader's Digest', or something. Why not meteorology AND theater? Or Kylie Minogue AND 'Breaking Bad'?

So, how to make the split?

I haven't made a decision yet, but I'm thinking about mostly text in the old blog and mostly pictures in the new blog. Still, general-purpose blogs, but each would be different. In the old blog, I can shout at chairs, and they can shout back. In the new blog, I'll have pictures of the chairs, in nice poses - maybe with captions! And the old blog works as a rescue craft in the event of trouble with the new blog.

Still haven't figured out what to do about rescuing the old comments - nothing seems to work right now - but I WILL rescue them, one way or the other! There is some kind of flaw in the archived comments that prevents them from being imported, but the cryptic error code reveals nothing about the problem. Still, I HAVE the 5,000+ comments, in 1,000+ threads, and can get access to them. I just don't want to insert all of them into both blogs, by hand! But that may be what I have to do!

Monday, September 03, 2012

"Breaking Bad" - Season 5, Episode 8 "Gliding Over All"

"Gliding Over All", by Walt Whitman:

GLIDING o'er all, through all,
Through Nature, Time, and Space,
As a ship on the waters advancing,
The voyage of the soul--not life alone,
Death, many deaths I'll sing.

I'm continually intrigued by how "Breaking Bad" parallels Navajo origination legend (with Lydia cast as Spider Woman and Walt and Jesse as the Twins, helping them rid the Earth of Monsters). But as with all parallels, it's not exact: Walt is now more monstrous than any Monster he ever dealt with. BrBa is like Navajo legend as interpreted by Mafiosi.

There is an excellent book regarding the Navajo (also known as the Diné), portions of which are available online by Google Books for purchase: Spider Woman walks this land: traditional cultural properties and the Navajo, by Kelli Carmean. The Google Reader is here: below the Reader I quote from specific passages:

It is said that long, long ago, Monsters roamed the Fifth World and fed upon the five-fingered Earth Surface People, today called the Navajo. ....

It was in their time of greatest need that Changing Woman, impregnated by the Sun, gave birth to the Twins. Seeking to help their people by killing the Monsters, the Twins set off on a journey to visit their father and request his aid. Soon, they met Spider Woman, a small and often overlooked creature, but one with great power. Spider Woman helped the Twins by teaching them protective prayers and by giving them hoops tied with sacred life feathers, the power-filled plumes plucked from living eagles. ....

And who are the people being saved in "Breaking Bad"? The families, and the children: Flynn, Holly, and Lydia's daughter too. Very much in accordance with traditional Sicilian ways. Navajo legend, as interpreted by Mafiosi! And who are the Monsters? So many of them! The drug lords, and their henchmen!

Spider Women later also assists two women emissaries of the Navajo to learn the art of weaving (Marie & Skyler?) - once again, to assist their people.

And the Twins did eventually rid the Earth of Monsters. But at what cost?


In any event, regarding locations, a few stand out:
  • Railroad crossing (Lomas at the railroad, looking west);
  • Reverse sunset (Unser Blvd. NW, under the power line intersection, just north of I-40: 35.105916, -106.730296);
  • Motel Hacienda (6214 Central Ave. SW).

The restaurant appears to be Grove Café & Market, 600 Central Ave. SE.

Interesting that they used film footage from airports outside of New Mexico. "Breaking Bad" almost never does that, but to convey international reach, it's certainly an acceptable use here. The jumbo jet takeoff is probably at LAX, in Los Angeles, California.