background photo by Jeff Clark
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18th of November 2000

     Congratulations Kitty!

     Turned the tables on the national cable company and went around them to their local representative. I got an even better deal on cable Internet service than the telemarketers were offering. That made my little principled diatribe yesterday worthwhile. :b

     I had my first opportunity to listen to The Rainmakers. Thanks for the CD Elise. Elise's husband Pat Tomek was the drummer for this band that was quite popular in the late 80's and through much of the 90's. They managed to slip through my radar screen, but are now securely on my play list.

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17th of November 2000

     I'm a dork. Sometimes my principles get in the way of progress. I've been trying to get cable modem access for two weeks now, ever since it became available in my area. The company finally called to schedule an installation time. They were on a quick-strike, sign up as many suckers as possible mission, and couldn't take time to answer my technical questions.

     I'm no dummy when it comes to telecommunications matters. I've been working in the industry more than 25 years. Some of my questions they had to research, hurting their signups per minute ratio. In a rush to move on, the telemarketing supervisor finally offered me a rude "take it or leave it" proposal. Based on his attitude, I left it. Now I don't get cable access. Way to go dork.

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16th of November 2000

     Based on his three minute speech calling for a meeting with his opponent, can you imagine an hour long State of the Union by Al Gore? Probably two Supreme Court justices and three senators would pass away from complete boredom. Wait a minute — maybe that's the whole idea! Then the Democrats get their Court appointments and Senate replacements. I've obviously underestimated the forward-thinking nature of the Gore cabal.

     Some of Gore's proposals for finality actually seem contrary to Florida law, in particular his willingness to "offer" a state-wide manual recount. The deadline for that possibility expired last Friday. So Bush's response to abide the decisions of the Florida Secretary of State appear at face value to be backed by statute. There's just one problem.

     Because that Sec'y of State is a Bush supporter, her decisions will all be termed political. Therefore, another round of court battles is assured. It is the job of any judicial branch to interpret law, not to write law. We will probably learn between now and Saturday which the Florida circuit judges and Supreme Court will choose to do.

     Yeah, yeah. You've probably had enough and couldn't care less about my evaluation of all this. But it keeps me from saying what I really think about all the A-List blogudrama crap going around. I'm just trying to be a good boy.

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15th of November 2000

21st Century Carnac      My first glance at this photo from the Palm Beach county, Florida manual vote recount immediately brought to mind the old Johnny Carson Tonight Show character Carnac the Magnificent. Making every effort to conjure the intent of the voter behind the card, this election canvas board supervisor (Charles Burton) holds the fate of voter's rights and those of a nation within his intuitive powers. Probably he's an honorable man, but he ain't Carnac. Won't you sleep better knowing these patriots are watching out for our interests?

     Blogma 2001. Right on Graham, and in one of life's equalizing little ironies, Blogger doesn't work in the new Netscape 6.

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14th of November 2000

     When you get so much spam each day, it's almost a shock when email like these arrive:

     Example 1 — "You probably don't remember me, since lots of people probably e-mail you for help. I e-mailed recently with a question, and you referred me to your site's faq section. Once I went there I found the solution to my html problem right away. I figured I should e-mail back and thank you for helping me out, especially since most people wouldn't have bothered. Some sites just want to show off, and they don't want anyone else to be able to do the stuff they do, so they won't help people who e-mail them with questions, but when I happened upon your site I could tell right away that it was meant to help people understand stuff."

     Example 2 — "It was an absolute pleasure to browse the Internet Brothers web site. It is a rare occasion indeed that we have the opportunity to review such an informative and useful web site. We were unbelievably impressed by the quality and quantity of information that you make available to your vistors, and we would actually say that your site has far more than 'must bookmark' value — it is in our opinion essential viewing for web-builders everywhere."

     Thanks for making my day.

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13th of November 2000

     In the Utah desert, hard within the red sliprock pinnacles of the Arches National Park, hides the Fiery Furnace, a haven for solitude and silence. Sheer, smooth walls stand hundreds of feet in height, yet separated only by the width of a strong man's shoulders. As you explore the narrow paths of fine sand that wind through the spires, the childhood thought of leaving bread crumbs reminds to pay attention to where you've been, and where you're going.

     A guided tour is recommended for your first trip through this colorful geology, but there's nothing like losing oneself in the confines with just a good friend and the ancient visages. The quiet is uncanny. The only sounds are your own organs, heart pumping with excitement, lungs breathing the same air as 11th century Anasazi. Turning each corner produces another discovery — rare double arches, shimmering pools from last night's rainfall, the trail of a tiny salamander.

     You may get the impression I like this place. Given the opportunity, I'd spend a day there every month. Those that can, do. Should you find yourself near Moab, Utah, take the time to enjoy the Arches National Park and its Fiery Furnace. Share the awe.

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12th of November 2000

Bluzz of the Week      Introducing a new feature at Lucid Confusion, Bluzz of the Week. Each Sunday I'll try to find the brightest, funniest, most controversial or otherwise intriguing comment from the previous week in Bloggerville. I scan a lot of weblogs and journals, but with thousands to be found on the web, I certainly can't hit them all. So if you find a true treasure you'd like to nominate, even if you wrote it yourself, please let me know.

     The first is this jewel from Jeffrey Zeldman, found in his My Glamorous Life series, and titled The Visitor. For those who may not know, Mr. Zeldman recently lost his mother to a long battle with Alzheimer's Disease. In her memory and in honor of Dr. Web, Lucid Confusion today assumes his traditional orange.

     "Depression plopped his baggage down on my bed, and trotted off to the kitchen to fix himself a sandwich ... I've been alone with him since Wednesday. Every time I start to work he comes into my office and distracts me ... When he isn't talking about me, he's talking about the Election ... He's begun redecorating the place, after a fashion. He leaves underwear in a corner of the bedroom. Fills the sink with unwashed dishes. Deposits excrement in the cats' litter box. The strange thing is how quickly I am getting used to his presence." — Jeffrey Zeldman


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