Wednesday, December 21, 2005

What is the Internet for?

I found this extremely amusing:

The Internet is for Porn

Enjoy :)

Oh, and the language used, while not explicit, may not be suitable for younger viewers, or for work.

View at your own discretion.

In case you're wondering, the song is from a little known Broadway play called Avenue Q

Friday, December 16, 2005

Trivial : The three tallest mountains in the world

Mount Everest: The summit of Mount Everest is the highest point on the Earth's surface as measured from sea level, with an elevation of 8,850 meters.

Mount Chimborazo (Ecuador): Although the summit of Volcán Chimborazo is just 6,310 meters above sea level, its summit is the farthest point on the Earth's surface from the Earth's center of mass; a distance of 6,384,404 meters or 3,967 miles.

Mauna Kea: From base to summit, the tallest mountain on Earth is Mauna Kea in Hawai'i. The base of Mauna Kea is 5,998 meters below mean sea level, and when combined with an elevation of 4,205 meters, Mauna Kea has a total height of 10,203 meters.

(Ok, kids, I think that's enough fighting for today)

Tuesday, December 13, 2005

Inconsiderate bus riders

They make a good point for people being inherently evil...ok, maybe that's too harsh, but they definitely behave in a "me first, f**k you" manner.

There was the lady on the overly full bus who took up two seats, one for her, one for her shopping bags, while she chatted away on the phone. Another lady gestured to her that she'd like to sit down. Phone Lady said, my bags are here, and continued talking on the phone. Standing Lady stood over her, so Phone Lady turned away and faced the window and continued talking. Standing Lady finally realized that Phone Lady was not actually a Lady at all, but was really Selfish, Inconsiderate Evil Bitch Woman in disguise.

Today the bus was once again full, including Wheelchair Guy (he's ok), who effectively takes up 4 seats when he parks in the disabled section at the front of the bus. We pulled into the Bus Station (major bus depot) and several people got off but a crowd of people waited to get on. One older guy from the back of the bus walked down and stood in the rear doorway.

The first two people to board the bus were an old Chinese couple. Ma had several very full shopping bags, Pa was pushing one of those basket carts with wheels. They boarded the bus and in the fashion of most riders got just past the driver, and Ma put her bags down and they stopped, but there were at least 20 people still waiting to board the bus.

As people boarded Ma would pick up her bags, move a step or down closer to the back, then put the bags down. More people would board, and Ma would repeat the shopping bag shuffle. Until she got level with the rear door, where there's two steps up to the back half of the bus, and there she stopped, with Pa right behind her, blocking the entire aisle with his basket cart, and at least ten people still outside waiting to board the bus.

One other woman had joined the man standing in the rear doorway, so it was kind of crowded, but with people pushing and shoving, Ma eventually moved up onto the second step but refused to move any further. Pa managed to force his basket cart into the rear doorway where Standing Man reluctantly made room for him, but only when the basket cart's wheels ran over his foot.

A young man behind Pa managed to squeeze past him, but he really had to force his way past Ma. Everyone else remained stuck in the front of the bus, jammed in like sardines, and yet the entire aisle at the back of the bus was free.

I figured Standing Man (the one in the rear doorway) wanted to get off at the first or second stop past the Bus Station, but he didn't get off at either. Wheelchair guy's stop is about six stops after the station, I figured that would help alleviate the crowd. I was hoping Ma and Pa would be getting off before then, or at least at my stop, because at every stop, if someone wanted to get off, Standing Man had to leave the bus, let them out, then get back in.

At Wheelchair Guy's stop Standing Man let a couple of people off, then he got back on. With Wheelchair Guy getting off, the people at the front of the bus needed to move out of his way, but Ma & Pa effectively prevented anyone from moving further into the bus, so the front passengers left the bus by the front door, and under direction of the driver walked down to the open back door and attempted to board.

Standing Man would have no part of that. Now if he absolutely had to be in the rear doorway, Standing Man could have got out himself, let these people in, and got back on after they'd pushed past Pa and Ma. Once in the back of the bus they could have sat down, because Ma & Pa hadn't let anyone past them to sit in the seats vacated by the riders who'd disembarked earlier.

But Standing Man refused to move.

Standing Man actually said, out loud, "Don't send them down here," as he stood in the doorway and refused to let them in. Being all Hispanic and not wanting to make a fuss, not one of them said to Standing Man "Either get out, or move back, but get the f**k out of our way so we can get on." I wouldn't have said that either, not at first, but I would have politely asked Standing Man to let me past. His continued refusal would have led to a stronger choice of words until I would have uttered the above expletitive.

The Hispancis all turned and walked back to the front door, and once Wheelchair Guy had rolled off the bus and the ramp had been raised, they once again took their place at the front of the bus.

By this time I'd noticed that while Standing Man was willing to step outside to let people get out, Pa would remain standing next to his basket cart and leave approx. 6" for people to squeeze past.

I'm a big guy. I can't fit through a 6" gap. I was already pissed off with the blatant "Me first. Nah, f**k that; me, me, me" attitude displayed by Ma, Pa, and Standing Man, and we were just a few blocks from my stop. It was almost my turn to show these people how to really be a prick.

The bus stopped and Standing Man got out, just as he'd been doing all along for nine stops now. The arrogant prick had blocked the doorway for nine stops, and Orion knows how long he remained standing, blocking the rear doorway after my stop.

Pa stayed next to his basket cart, leaving the 6" gap just like he'd been doing all along.

"Excuse me, please," I said to his back, as another elderly Chinese woman (Not Ma) stepped up to the rear doorway. "Oh, are you getting off too?" I asked her, gesturing at the door, implying she could go first.

Not Ma stood there confused, either not understanding me or my gesture, or perhaps just being polite and wanting me to go through first, just like I was willing to let her go first.

"Excuse me," I said once more to Pa's back.

Just seconds before Pa was forcefully bent forward over his basket cart, he was saved by Pa2, another elderly Chinese man, who alerted Pa to the fact that there was a big white guy behind him wanting to get through, and there must have been something in the big white guy's eyes that told Pa2 to tell Pa to move the f**k out of the way before he got hurt.

Pa stepped around behind his basket cart totally opening up the doorway and allowing me, Not Ma, and several other passengers to leave the bus.

I thanked Standing Man as I got off the bus and walked past him; the arrogant bastard didn't even blink at me. Perhaps I should have said "Thanks for not blocking the doorway, you Arrogant Bastard."

Maybe that would have got a reaction out of him.

Monday, December 05, 2005

A very Pagan Christmas

We attended the second week of Advent service at Church this Sunday. Now I like the Christian faith, even though I know it's been corrupted by The Church over the years, but this Advent service really drives home just how much assimilating of other religions The Church did over the centuries.

Let's start with the 7 candles of Advent. Most people's experience with a Menorah occurs during Chanukah. So most people think a Menorah has 9 candles, but it doesn't. A Chanukah Menorah has 9 candles; a Shabbat Menorah has how many? Anyone? Anyone? You there in the back, with the really long sideburns. Yes, seven. That's right. A Menorah traditionally has 7 candles. While our Advent candles are less in number than a Chanukah Menorah, we're still lighting a Menorah. Don't forget that Jesus wasn't actually a Christian. He was actually Jewish. While Jesus was still alive (I mean on this earth in his manly form), guess what he did during the winter solstice (which is when Chanukah and Christmas coincidentally occur)? That's right, he lit the candles of a Menorah, just like we do during Advent.

Now, about that Christmas tree. It's an evergreen, meaning the leaves/needles don't fall off in Autumn; the tree stays green all year round. In our service last Sunday numerous references were made to "The Ancients" (which already sounds a little paganistic to me) who decided that the Pine Tree was "alive" all year long, so it somehow symbolized Jesus bringing eternal and everlasting life. That a Pine Tree was a predominate feature during the Druids' winter solstice festival, which just happens to occur around Christmas time, was not mentioned during the service.

These same "Ancients" also decided that a wreath made from the prickly leaves and red berries somehow symbolized the bloody crown of thorns worn by Jesus at his death. Do you think the Druids used Holly (also an evergreen) in their winter solstice festival? Yeah, me too.

So during Chanukah and the winter solstice we light the candles of a Menorah, we "worship" a Pine tree, and we hang up wreaths of Holly and decorate our homes with other pagan and Druidic symbols...but we do this as Christians, with the approval of The Church.

Don't get me wrong. I'm still going to be a hypocrite...of sorts...I'm still going to celebrate Christmas. Then again, it could be argued that there's nothing hypocritical about celebrating Christmas if I acknowledge where the various symbols of Christmas come from. I'd only be a hypocrite if I knew the history of Christmas symbology, but pretended it was all Christian-based.