Tuesday, November 29, 2005

The Berenstain Bears

Stan Berenstain, one of the creators of The Berenstain Bears died on Saturday.

I have fond memories of reading these books as a child and just ran across a ton of them at Booksmart uptown. I couldn't find my favorite one though, which was The Berenstain Bears and the Messy Room, where Mama gets fed up with the sloppy cubs. They end up with closet full of shelves full of shoe boxes with all of their stuff neatly arranged and labeled. Hmm, I wonder if they will come and tackle my closet.

A Dream of violence

I was in line at a grocery store with my friend Debbie when the woman in front of us took her hand out of her pocket and a candy bar wrapper fell out. It was on the belt, and Debbie picked it up and was going to throw it away when the woman got very upset. Debbie didn't understand why, but I explained to her that maybe it was a game piece and suggest she just give it back to the woman. Before she can, the woman lunges at Debbie and they fight for a little before she manages to escape. Later we are sitting on the 'husband benches' and see a woman we know. We start to explain what happened, but my alarm goes off.

Saturday, November 26, 2005

Fears and favorites

My number one fear is sharks (my name is Sarah and I am selachophobic) but some of my favorite marine animals are skates and rays, specifically the order Rajiformes. Imagine my surprise in finding out that Rajiformes are closely related to sharks, yeesch. Well, it's not that surprising, but the main thing that differentiates them in my mind is that most rays have weird little square mouths, not huge gaping jaws with scary knives jutting out of them. I remember being in a zoo in Ohio with my mother and seeing a tank of rays that were trained to slap one of their fins on the water. I don't know what species they were, but I think they were young and about the size of an adult's hand.

It turns out there is another genus called Mobula that have the same general shape, and there are some that leap out of the water. Read about them at The Flying Mobulas of the Sea of Cortez and don't forget to read the last page that talks about the evils of Bycatch (unwanted or unintentional catch) and how one in four marine animals caught in nets are thrown away for various reasons. Remember dolphin-safe tuna? Well there are still many other animals affected by the fishing industry, including whales, birds, turtles and even sharks. As much as I dislike and fear them, I don't think they should be killed.


The dream opens on Tracey Gold (from Growing Pains) who is telling us how happy she is that she was able to get the loan to fix up her coffee shop, the one I am standing in with my mother and sister. It becomes clear that she bought it from my mother and has an interior covered in wood, like a lodge. She tells us she was able to make use of all the "estuary" my mother left behind, which ends up to be tons of animal parts, especially feet and tails that are now decorating the rafters of the shop. There are also some very large bones worked into the architecture. Now we sit down to wait for our food. My sister and I both order po'boy sandwiches, hers with dog meat, and mine with cat! The sandwiches come and we are disgusted not because of the pets we are about to eat, but because the bread on the plate is just the heel of a small loaf and covered in a runny egg. The meat is just two medallions and there is no top to either sandwich.

**I just dreamt about Jessica Simpson, and now she is getting a divorce. Let's hope I'm not becoming psychic

Friday, November 18, 2005

Save Arrested Development

at SaveArrestedDevelopment.com because it's anything but your typical sitcom.

Seriously - how many sitcoms fit into one of these molds?

A two-parent household with 2 or 3 kids (Oh the trials of raising a family! Hey, my husband hates his job and we have ungrateful kids, too! I love this show!)

A gaggle of friends who work together, live together, then finally end up sleeping together. (You'll never make a copy that is better than the original, so stop trying)

An office where people spend 95% of their time socializing and throwing witty banter around in meetings and 5% of their time working.

Thursday, November 17, 2005

Sony = so NO

Boing Boing tells us to read a Wired article discussing Sony's rootkit and how it made it past various anti-virus programs. One of my favorite quotes is "The only thing that makes this rootkit legitimate is that a multinational corporation put it on your computer, not a criminal organization." Boing Boing itself is constantly providing updates and roundups on the whole Sony Rootkit debacle.

Tuesday, November 15, 2005

Dreamt last night

I am in the audience of some kind of live variety show and a stunt with bats goes wrong. A guy has to climb up a wooden ladder to rescue his daughter who was so covered in bats that I couldn't tell she was there. The guy is mad and says he and his family are leaving, so the cast decides that the whole weekend is cancelled.

I am with my niece, uncle and Jessica Simpson. We are disappointed about the cancellation because we're staying at a hotel and are trying to figure out if they will let us check out now instead of staying all weekend. We are playing in the game room and realize it is 3:30pm, too late to check out. Jessica says we should see if we can trick them into letting us check out even though my niece is still in the room and we haven't packed. I tell her we would have to give them the keys and would not be able to get our luggage if we did that. Then we try to figure out how to drive my uncle back home, since we are in Duluth and his house is on my way home.

Wednesday, November 09, 2005

Don't treat your customers like criminals

Boing Boing has a great post that talks about why box-office revenue might be declining. It's not so much that movie quality has gone downhill, but that the MPAA (movies) is acting like the RIAA (music) and assuming that their customers will try to pirate the product.

I would argue that the average movie quality has certainly declined because of two things: formula-based movies and audience splintering. Formulaic movies, like Little Black Book and A Lot Like Love in the rom-com genre, may make back the money it cost the studios to produce them, but they don't inspire much loyalty among viewers. Aside from a few blockbusters like Lord of the Rings, few movies have wide ranging appeal. As the target audience becomes more specific, the studio assumes less revenue and is less than forthcoming with cash and time for production. Thus the final product suffers from a rush job and fails to deliver on the promises made in the slick, funny trailer.

Wednesday, November 02, 2005

Riddler - Geosense

Back in 1996 when I thought the net was just for chatting and playing games, one of the first sites I visited on a regular basis was Riddler.com. They still run some of their Classic games, like Drag Race and Scrambler and have added several new ones like Geosense where you race to find the given city on a World map. You can also play Europe and US map versions. For geography nerds like me, it's a dream come true.