Tuesday, February 22, 2011

RTT: iPhone Hell-o

If you like Random Thoughts Tuesday, take a look at Keely, the Un Mom. Go ahead, it won't kill you. It's way better than reading my crap. And she invented it, to boot.



iPhone 4: My experience to date

I like my iPhone 4. It is pretty cool and does nifty things, and often helps me make phone calls. However, there are some drawbacks to it.

Like the aforementioned PHONE CALLS.

Let's be clear on this. To start with, I should have said that I like my iPhoneS - plural. I was an Early Adopter (code for numbskull who waited in line), so I've had an iPhone 4 since the day they became available. I have also had to take it in for service (code for swapping it out for a new phone) FOUR TIMES. And all for the same issue: it wouldn't make proper phone calls.

During a call, the person on the other end would, at some point, end up suddenly unable to hear me. I, of course, always heard, "Hello?"
"Hello?" "HELLO???!" 

So I have made four trips to the Apple Store, and each time they have simply swapped out the phone and I have gone home and subsequently had to restore my phone from its last backup, which, thankfully, I do every day. But it still takes hours to restore and it's a pain.

This morning, I was on the phone with a nurse, walking her through a complicated oncology issue and heard the fateful, "Hello?, etc..." 
I kept calling back and kept losing her. After hearing "Goddammittttttt!" on the last hangup, I turned my car into the mall parking lot and ran into the handy Apple Store, where they.....

.......wait for it.......

.....swapped out my phone.

I left the store with the new phone and immediately called the nurse back to apologize and heard.....you guessed it, "Hello?, etc..."

----insert string of your very best profanity here----

Since I hadn't left the parking lot, I went back into the Apple Store, whereupon seeing me, the Genius at the Genius Bar had a stroke and dropped dead saw me, came hustling over and said (and I quote), "No way!" 
I looked at him and simply said, "SIM Card." 
Did you know that you can almost actually see the light bulb go on over another person's head? It's true. I think I saw it over the Genius. He said, "Yeah, SIM Card. That makes sense."

Fortunately, there is also an AT&T store in the mall, so I sauntered on over to it, and asked them for a new SIM Card, which they obligingly installed. I strolled back over to the Apple Store, and tested out the phone for about fifteen minutes, while every other Genius in the store waited with bated breath to see if that solved the problem. Of course, it now worked fine, because it was the SIM Card all along. 

Now you tell me why a store full of Genii couldn't figure this out in the first place. Seriously, if my title was "Genius" I'd not only not be working at an Apple Store, but I'd sure as hell be able to figure out when a SIM Card was acting up. For that matter, I DID figure it out!
Wonder if I can charge Apple for my time?

By the way, there is a nurse in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania who is really pissed off at me right now, and I can't blame her. I'm afraid to call her back to attempt to explain myself. Any volunteers?


I've watched the Rifftrax versions of all of the Twilight movies now. It's really the only way to watch them. Same goes for The Room. If you get the chance, give them a try.

Which reminds me of a conversation I had at dinner last night. Two members of my "family" - I have to use that term loosely because of their affliction - are of the opinion that the Twilight movies are pretty good. I told them the cold truth. First, that they are adopted and that nobody loves them, and second, that those films are to the Vampire genre, what Barney is to 
Jurassic Park.


Guess what?
My iPhone is still syncing and being restored.

So how's your day been?

Monday, February 21, 2011

Getting Sporty Because I'm Bored

Look, I've been traveling and haven't had time to think, let alone write. So here's a brief sporting interlude, with some of my favorite moments from college and high school athletics. 
(click on each to see large image)
(all images copyrighted by me, but if you're reading this it means I like you...possibly...so feel free to use them, with attribution, of course)

1. Panic in the goal.

2. Yeah, it's a trip.

3. Top HS Soccer player in the nation getting some big air.

4. She hits like a girl.

5. Serious Pole Vaulting skill, over 16 feet.

Sunday, February 13, 2011


If 'Two wrongs don't make a right', then what don't ten wrongs make?

If a politician lies in the forest and no one is around to hear it, is he still a douche?

According to statistics, there is a 60% probability that this sentence is true, but only 2% of all statisticians will think so; this comes with a p value of 0.06, of course.

In my spare time, I volunteer with the Baby Harp Seal Defense Institute. Fair warning: if you see a Baby Harp Seal with a bandoleer, run.

(Image borrowed here and enhanced in Photoshop CS4 by me.)

Pablo Picasso did not become wealthy through his paintings, but through shrewd investments in surreal estate.

If Einstein was so smart, how come he always misspelled emcee?

What kind of sick bastard teaches kids to sing,'Tom Dooley'? It was the first song I learned when I took guitar lessons, at age 7 (in a masterpiece of irony, 'Kumbaya' was the second).

Monday, February 7, 2011

Was it Suntzu I Said?

This is Monday, and I'm sort of cheating by posting a fairly random piece. However, I'm in Chicago right now, and tomorrow I'll still be here, but in meetings all day long, and into the evening. Because of that, I'm posting a bit of semi-randomness now, rather than try to squeeze it in late tomorrow night. Plus, I have just the iPad with me, and it's a bear to type on in rush mode.

Back to the post. I seemed to have frightened off some folks, but I'm not sure what did it. Was it the talentless dreck I call prose? If so, I have to say in my own defense that I warned you people about that. Was it Studio 30 Plus? Ever since I created my profile there, I've been deluged with silence. How about Sun Tzu? It was him, wasn't it? Look, I spared everyone all those middle chapters. Should I have left them in? Dammit! What is it???


Chicago. Lovely city. Probably the only major city I have ever visited that I feel I could live in. NYC. No way. LA. Nah! Phoenix. You kidding? Philly. Ok, maybe Philly, but just because I know it well and I'm from the suburbs. But it doesn't hold a candle to Chicago. Perhaps I shouldn't use a phrase that has anything to do with flames and Chicago? My apologies, Mrs. O'Leary.

Anyway, I love this town. Broad avenues, great culture, entertainment, food, shopping. And it doesn't smell like a sewer, except in the sewery parts, like the sewers. I mean, compare downtown Chicago to Times Square, or midtown Manhattan. Times Square literally smells like shit, all the time. Chicago, even down by the river, does not.

One thing Chicago needs to do though, is change that building's name back to the Sears Tower. Willis Tower doesn't do it for me. I don't care who owns the thing now, we all know it as the Sears Tower. And since the new name has such a terrible nickname, you'd think they'd want to change it back. But hey, maybe they all want a Big Willy.

Who am I to judge?

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Random Tuesday Thoughts: Snoring and Other Delights*

If you like Random Thoughts Tuesday, take a look at Keely, the Un Mom. Go ahead, it won't kill you. It's way better than reading my crap. And she invented it, to boot.

*This technically qualifies as random because it was completely unplanned and spontaneous, and so NOT what I was going to write about. And this is my blog, so there.

With humble apologies to 孫武,

The Art of Snore, by me.

Chapter One - Lying Down
You must lie down.

Chapter Two - Waging Sleep
You must take up the challenge to fall asleep quickly, 
before consciousness overtakes you and rouses you.

Chapter Three - Sleep by Stratagem
The source of strength in sleep is the dream. You must use your REM and activate the 
dream state quickly and efficiently.

Chapter Four - Tactical Positioning
Recognize your ideal position for the sleep state and do not let your enemy, 
consciousness, move you from it. Be still.

Chapters Four Through Ten - No One Ever Reads These

Chapter Eleven - The Terrain
You must use terrain to your advantage. Pillow-Top Mattress will provide you 
with advantageous terrain.

Chapter Twelve - Avoid Incendiary Attacks
Thai, Indian, Mexican, and Korean are out. 

Chapter Thirteen - The Use of Spies
Lets face it. There's no good analogy for this one. 

So, where was I, anyhow? Or is it anyway? Who cares? Oh, yes....The Art of Snore...

I snore. A lot, apparently. I don't know, because I'm often asleep when it happens. Let me explain.

Some time ago, Lady Marshmallow suggested I mention the fact that I snore to my family doctor, the next time I went to see him, just as a side note, and because she was going to tell him if I didn't. Since we live in a smallish town, and the likelihood of her running into him and blabbing about this was fairly high, I caved in. At a recent checkup, I casually mentioned that I might, just a teeeeeeensy bit, have a sort of, slight, tonal quality to my somnolent inspirational episodes. 

Well, either Lady M had already bumped into Dr. Overcautiouspanicattheslightestthing, or he was simply being true to his name, because the next thing I know, I'm partaking in what is ironically called a Sleep Study. I say ironic, because the takeaway lesson I learned from it is that you neverfuckingsleep have some difficulty falling asleep and staying asleep while you're in a sleep study. 

The good doctor was trying to ascertain whether or not I suffered from - yet another irony, since because I am sleeping when I snore, I don't suffer from or hear a damn thing except my dream Playmate asking me if I want more ice for my drink - Sleep Apnea. How nice of him to be concerned! 

Apparently, sleep apnea can be dangerous and is responsible for, in highly technical medical jargon, bad things that happen to your body. What my doctor failed to take into account was that for over forty years, I had already done bad things to my body, and that for me, snoring and/or taking a short break from breathing is a virtual vacation for me.

I will spare you the details of the process of a sleep study, because frankly, it's boring as hell, and it involves placing wires all over my body. Oh, and that guy, Desmond Norris, who wrote The Naked Ape, is wrong. I have hair in all those places, and the brutes at the Sleep Lab use industrial-strength adhesive! 

Cutting to the chase. After a night of whatever the opposite of bliss is, it was determined that a) I do not have sleep apnea, and 2) I can, while snoring, create a partial vacuum in a room. 

So after all was completed, and I returned home, nothing really has changed except that I now know that Lady M will be throwing more elbows and doing more of those cute little under-blanket kicks that she likes to do. And I will know the reason, in advance, should I wake to her holding a pillow over my face while laughing maniacally.