Dumb, Dumb, Dumb

[doug][nuke]It seems that today I have come across a number of headlines that reflect individual, societal, or corporate stupidity. Let me share a few:

Individual: Not getting enough attention with your body piercings? Have your tongue split!

Reuters Oddly Enough news simply titled this article, “Aaaaaaaaagggggghhhhhhhhhhh!!!! ” Enough said, da?

Societal: Let’s boost tourism by catering to marijuana-smokers!

A little history:

Last month, the Canadian government introduced legislation to end criminal penalties for the possession of small amounts of marijuana.

Under the bill, people caught with 15 grams (half an ounce, or enough for about 15 to 30 joints) or less of cannabis would only be fined, and criminal penalties would be reduced on those growing up to 25 marijuana plants.

I won’t even begin to list the stupidity of moving toward the legalization of marijuana (but, hey, it’s Canada—the people who brought you the best argument against Socialized Medicine in North America), but check out these statements, made by “Prince of Pot” Mark Emery:

”Marijuana—that means fun times, parties, a cool city and an enlightened state of mind,” Emery told a crowd gathered in front of Toronto's police headquarters.

Cradling a marijuana plant in the crook of his arm, and a pipe in one hand, Emery said: “Believe me, marijuana people don’t create problems like alcohol people. You want those kinds of tourists who are laughing, having a good time, and eating a whole lot in Toronto restaurants.”

See the full article here at Reuters.

¡Qué bárbaro! (What an idiot!) Apparently, slowed thinking and reaction time, confusion, impaired balance and coordination, cough, frequent respiratory infections, permanently impaired memory and learning, increased heart rate, anxiety, panic attacks, drug tolerance, and addiction are not problems. You might want to wander over to the Partnership for a Drug-Free America® site.

Corporate: USB Whah?

Confused about USB standards? You will be.

In December [the USB Forum] announced that henceforth USB 1.1 would be called USB 2 and USB 2 would continue to be called USB 2. To help the public grasp this subtle distinction USB 2, which was the old USB 1.1, would have “Full Speed” added to its title and USB 2, which was USB 2, would have “Hi-Speed” added.

See the full article here at the Bangkok Post.

Ultrasound (and Names)

[nichelle]Well, the technician checked twice and the result is in: We're having a girl!!!!!!!! We (Isaac, David, and I) saw her yawn several times. The boys were asking many different questions and commenting on what some of the body parts looked like, e.g. a t-rex, a skyscraper, etc. The technician thought it was pretty funny.

Doug and I have had the first name picked out for some time now (before Isaac was born), but we're not sure what the middle name is going to be. Your suggestions are welcome. [Note from Doug: I’ll get a Web form up for submissions soon.] For those that don't know yet, the first name is going to be Naomi.

Yeah, right!

According to the Hobbes’ Internet Timeline, CERN didn’t release the WWW until 1991. So, you can imagine my surprise when I saw this AdWords link on Google, of a Web developer boasting of 20 years’ experience.

Judging by the view through his Webcam (overlooking a private harbor of some sort), he hasn’t exactly done too badly for himself, even if his site is a bit overdesigned and hyperactive.

Lego [in the] News


I’ve seen a number of interesting Lego-related items in the past two days. Here are three good ones:

Wow! I still haven’t gotten around to completing my Lego Thunderbird 2 model (my first ever attempt at a Lego reproduction.

Family News Update

Well, it’s about time I updated a few family items; Nichelle can add her 2¢ later.

  • Isaac’s last day of school (second grade) was yesterday. He cried because it was over. He does much better in elementary school than I did.
  • Work at Kronos has been great, and a wonderful opportunity to daily improve my Java skills. One colleague pointed out that our team seems to have “the right amount of fun.”
  • My father’s health has actually improved (this was not expected)! He was able to walk into and out of church a couple of weeks ago, and the congregation appauded when he came in. This is a big difference from how he was doing at Christmas.
  • Nichelle’s pregnancy is halfway through, and she finally has another ultrasound scheduled for June 16, which should be the gender-determining one. (If this child is a boy, I’ll post a link to the e-bay auction soon.) If it’s a girl, we still need to pick a middle name. I’ll probably create an online submission form for suggestions. (Kherna Yoyo continues to insist the middle name should be Kherna.)
  • We are still working on our move to Nashua. The cosmetics on our current house are nearly done. I have a minor plumbing problem to correct, but the greenboard for the new bathroom ceiling is up. Nichelle is (as usual) doing her masterful job of spackling, patching, and painting. We do not yet have a house picked out in Nashua or Hudson, but we find reasonable listings every day. We continue to pray for God’s guidance in this.
  • The Mexico missions trip is back on after a one-year absence. I am going alone (sniff), but am looking forward to continuing to help with the church and children’s home in Constitución, as well as reimmersing myself in the culture. (I will be keeping The Missions Trip Site updated starting in a week or two, and will be porting the BLOG software to it, so I can do live updates from the trip. I read an excellent biography on Benito Juarez, the orphan-who-became-president. His story rivals that of Lincoln in some ways. I’d like to re-read the book before we leave, and take some notes.

Cuba: The Forgotten Oppressed

Mallard Filmore, from April 29, 2003

[nuke][doug]It angered me when I heard (a few years ago) that former President Bill Clinton shook hands with Fidel Castro at the United Nations. Were I President, I would have relished the opportunity to speak with Castro, but I would not have shaken his hand, and my conversation would have opened with, “¿Por que odias tu propio gente?” (Why do you hate your own people?)

One of the first Cuban exiles I ever met, Pastor Elmer Fernandez, has a lovely final memory of Cuba—he was able to flee to America to be with relatives when he was 8 years old—his last significant memory is his mother saying to him, “Do you hear that noise? Those are gunshots. They [Castro’s revolutionaries] are executing our pastor.”

Modern-day Cuba should be a paradise. It has amazing agricultural and tourist potential, yet in all but a few areas it clearly demonstrates the absolute failure of Totalitarian Communism. We know a number of people who have visited Cuba, some on covert missions trips, who are able to provide a better picture than our media. Would you like to live in a large city that has running water only two hours a week? How about visiting a hospital emergency room with your infant, to find nothing but squalor and crying? Would you enjoy being part of a population that cannot buy aspirin? Or books? The people there don’t even mention Castro’s name—they merely make a sign with their fist like a beard.

It is a pity Castro has lived so long.

The Amazing Geckoman

Scientists in the UK have created a sticky tape which works in the same way as gecko feet.

Co-worker Brian Cortez sent me this link from the BBC, about a tape that has been developed that works using microscopic hairs, just like a gecko’s feet. (Isaac owns a New Caledonian crested gecko, and they are amazing climbers.)

There are still significant technical challenges to overcome before this can be mass-produced, but Brian suggested this likely scenario at the WIlcox house:

I can see the toy manufacturers drooling over this one. Imagine being able to sell a set of real “Spiderman” gloves! I can also imagine you as a parent telling your son Isaac to get off the ceiling … it’s dinner time. 🙂