Tuesday, February 28, 2006

Toy Mobile Phones Recalled for Choking Hazard

"My First Mobile phone is a red and blue flip style mobile phone with a yellow bear on the cover and a yellow hard plastic antenna. Inside the flip phone are five round orange numeric buttons, as well as a sun button. The phone sounds with various ring tones when the buttons are depressed. On the inside top cover on the phone is a mirror and a spinning star with a lady bug button. “Made in China” is printed on the back of the battery cover."

Hazard: The toy phone’s yellow antenna can detach, posing a choking hazard to young children. No injuries have been reported.

I bought this phone for my baby cousin for Christmas!!

Oh my God!

Luckily Amazon.com contacted me. I also received notice of the recall through the Consumer Product Safety Commission's email list.

Monday, February 27, 2006

BSG: Downloaded

In a change of pace, this episode was told from the point of view of the Cylons. We really don't learn more about their society or their religion, but we do get to see what happens when they reincarnate.

The Sharon who was shot by Callie and the Number Six who was with Baltar during the attack on Caprica are brought together by the Lucy Lawless Cylon, last seen on the Galactica as the reporter D'Anna Biers. Sharon and Number Six, though both seen as heroes to the Cylons, are having trouble adjusting to being reincarnated. D'Anna feels that Six can help Sharon, but ultimately Sharon makes Six question what it means to be a Cylon.

Meanwhile, back on Galactica, the other Sharon's baby is being delivered prematurely.

Things I Liked
  • It was interesting to see an episode where the Cylons were interacting with each other.

  • Caprica Sharon really loathes herself. Her deep cover programming was so complete, she still feels human and still feels used she was by the Cylons when she shot Adama.

  • Baltar is in Six's head the way Six is in Baltar's head back on Galactica. An amusing touch.

  • The Cylons are rebuilding Caprica, planting trees and opening up cafes. They hate humans but they can't think of anything else to do but imitate them. Sad.

  • The decision to hide Sharon's super baby with an unsuspecting foster mother is interesting, since it's something that happens in a lot of fairy tales and myths. It's one of those things that happen in a Hero's Journey tale, but the baby almost never is a girl.

  • No Apollo or Dualla in this episode.

Things I Didn't Like
  • D'Anna obviously doesn't like or trust Sharon or Six, so why go through the farce of trying to rehabilitate them? Why didn't she immediately "box" them (retrieve their memories and trash their bodies) instead of toying with them?

  • I wish the reincarnation had been more interesting. They just wake up in a vat of goo.

  • That Doc Cottle sure is offensive. He shows his typical crass bedside manner to Sharon in the birthing room when he says, "You people went to all the trouble of imitating us -- you should've upgraded the plumbing." This is in response to the fact that Sharon has a detached placenta. That's nice.

  • Anders' commandos decide to blow up the Cylon café. It's basically a useless gesture, designed mostly so that the writers can have Six and Sharon come across Starbuck's dogtags on him when they meet.

  • I'm assuming that they drugged the baby to fool the parents, but I'm surprised that Sharon couldn't tell that the baby wasn't really dead.

Sunday, February 26, 2006

R.I.P. Darren McGavin

Actor Darren McGavin passed away yesterday at the age of 83. To 40-year-old geeks like me, he’ll always be known as Carl Kolchak of The Night Stalker -- the precursor to The X-Files.

Saturday, February 25, 2006


I’m forty years old today. I’m having a birthday party/baby shower today, which should be interesting. I can’t remember the last birthday party I had. It may have been my twenty-first birthday, which was at Windows on the World in the World Trade Center, which, of course is no more. If I can find pictures of that I’ll post them. I had a jerri curl. It was very shiny. ;)

I was unhappy about turning thirty, but this fortieth birthday wasn’t a big deal. Fifty may be sobering, however.

Friday, February 24, 2006


I'm coming across all kinds of strange things while preparing the baby's room. I had forgotten that in college I used to collect buttons. Above are some of samples from my button collection.

I need to throw things out, but it's hard. ;)

Thursday, February 23, 2006

Five Days and a Wakeup

Next Friday is my last day of work. After that I’ll be using vacation days to bridge the gap until my real maternity leave starts.

Man, I’m tired. I’m bringing things to a close at work, cleaning up my hard drive and taking home personal items.

I’m hoping the last few days at work will be uneventful, but I’m sure there’ll be some huge problem.

Counting the days.

Wednesday, February 22, 2006

Bush Unaware of Ports Deal Before Approval

From Netscape News/CNN:
President Bush was unaware of the pending sale of shipping operations at six major U.S. seaports to a state-owned business in the United Arab Emirates until the deal already had been approved by his administration, the White House said Wednesday.


Tuesday, February 21, 2006

Winter Olympics

Yeah, I’m watching it.

February is a weird sportless limbo most of the time for me. Football season is over (not that I’m really into that, but it’s something to watch on Sunday), spring training hasn’t really started and I don’t care for basketball.

So, I’m watching.

Mostly I find myself watching to catch someone busting their ass. Busting one’s ass seems to be a possibility in nearly every event, unlike in the summer Olympics which features a lot of events where there’s no possibility of someone getting a concussion (swimming, badminton, shooting, etc.) . There have been some spectacular wipeouts in the skiing events and the falls in the ice dancing on Sunday made me wince.

But so far the most painful thing I’ve seen in these games was the opening ceremonies. For some unknown reason as the countries made their entrances they were accompanied by a disco medley straight out of a Friday night mix in ’80 on WKTU. It was unreal. They played Le Freak, I’m Your Boogie Man, Hot Stuff, Spank, I Will Survive, some stuff by the Village People and on and on and...

What in the world was that all about? They’re in Italy, for God’s sake.

Celebrate your own culture.

Monday, February 20, 2006

BSG: The Captain’s Hand

This week’s episode covered three issues -- the ongoing lack of trust between the two battlestars, the upcoming presidential election and, from out of nowhere, the issue of abortion.

Some Raptors belonging to the Pegasus go missing during a training mission and, predictably, those on the Pegasus want pursue at all costs, while those on the Galactica want to show more restraint.

Laura gets a new secretary to replace Billy and work on her campaign. The new woman seems very media-savvy and briefs Laura on how she’s doing in the polls.

A pregnant stowaway arrives on the Galactica looking for asylum and an abortion. Her parents and the Gemonese government are not happy.

Things I Liked

  • The nicknames for the two battlestars are amusing. Galactica is “The Bucket.” Pegasus is “The Beast.”

  • I like when they examine the reality of the survival of the human race. They haven’t done it in a long time, but bringing up the need to start ensuring that there is a future generation is a start. Another logical move will be to show what’s happening to the hordes of unsupervised children that must surely be present among the survivors. We saw in Black Market that children are being sold as sex slaves. There will be children that band together for protection as a reaction to this.

  • Doc Cottle turns out to be pro-choice, which surprised me. He always seemed very old school, especially when he described Baltar’s radical treatment of Laura as “dammed unnatural.” It is Cottle who tells the woman to ask for asylum and evidently he’s been doing abortions on the down low for whoever wants them, no questions asked.

  • Zarek decides not to run against Laura. Instead, he backs Baltar and pegs him as someone who’ll remember his friends. Not true, of course, but still a shrewd move.

  • Laura finds herself having to make abortion illegal, both to keep the fleet’s population up and to appease the Gemonese zealots. Yet she still lets the Gemonese girl have her abortion, which pisses off the girl’s family and Sarah, the Gemonese councilor.

  • After telling Laura how the human race will be extinct if people don’t start breeding, Baltar backstabs her at a press conference, says she’s taking away their rights, and announces his candidacy. Bastard. ;)

Things I Didn’t Like

  • The episode starts with Lee and Dualla in bed in the officers’ rack. Ick. Well, at least we didn’t have to see that with Billy.

  • Yeah, it’s realistic that with so few people left alive people will move up the ranks quickly, but too many people got promoted this season. Adama made admiral, Lee went from captain to major to commander in three weeks, Starbuck went from lieutenant to captain to CAG in the same time period. It robs the value from these promotions.

  • The leaders of the Pegasus are getting killed so fast it’s ridiculous. With the death of Garner that’s three this season. Of course, now that Apollo is in charge, the deaths will stop.

  • Kara gets thrown in the brig again for mouthing off at a superior officer. Later, she gets an angry lecture from Lee. We’ve been down this road before. Ho hum.

  • The Pegasus falls for a really obvious trap, jumps to where the missing raptors are supposed to be, and gets the shit bombed out of it by three basestars. Duh.

  • Garner, an engine room kinda guy, abdicates the bridge to Lee during the attack, goes below to fix some stuff, then runs out of oxygen and dies. We’ve seen this in countless submarine movies.

Sunday, February 19, 2006

Separated at Birth (8)

On the left, Emily Hughes, sidekick to (big sister) Olympic skating gold medalist Sarah Hughes.

On the right, Alyson Hannigan, sidekick to Buffy the Vampire Slayer.

Separated at birth?

You make the call.

Saturday, February 18, 2006

Bloody Playdate

I took my dogs to a French Bulldog playdate for the first time since last March. Beren really enjoys these. Cricket’s just along for the ride.

Frenchies play really well together. They’re not into fighting and they don’t bark too much. There were about 30 of these little piggies romping around having fun and everyone seemed to be getting along. One precocious piebald grabbed a water bottle and enticed the others to chase him from one playroom to another. Beren joined in on this and I tried to keep sight of him but he was blending in with the other brindles.

The pack darted behind a fake tree but I could see his butt and rear legs. All of a sudden someone said, “Whose dog is this?”

Uh, oh, I thought. What did he do?

I hurried over and Beren was lying on the floor with a mouth full of blood!

Luckily, it looked worse than it was. Somehow he had cut his tongue. I never found out how. I’ve never heard of a dog biting its own tongue, so either another dog bit his tongue, or he got hold of the plastic bottle and it had cracked.

Beren is fine, but that was quite a scare.

Friday, February 17, 2006

Ten Ways Dick Cheney Can Kill You


Thanks to David and Nicole for this one. :D

Thursday, February 16, 2006

Battlestar Galactica Season 2 Finale


From Comingsoon.net:
...with the presidential campaigning in full swing, the election's outcome hinges upon a core debate - whether or not to abandon the search for Earth when the Galactica crew discovers a habitable planet. When the election begins to swing in favor of Baltar - a man whom Roslin is convinced is a Cylon collaborator - the incumbent president must decide whether or not to take drastic measures for the greater good. Things become even further complicated when the Cylons, led by Caprica Six and Sharon, find the planet and offer humanity a stunning proposal of peace.

Lay Down Your Burdens, Part 2 will be presented as a special 90-minute television event on Friday, March 10, 2006.
Sounds great!

Wednesday, February 15, 2006


It’s been three days since we had the “biggest snowstorm ever” in New York. The temperature warmed up today so it’s a big slushy mess out there.

Funny, but the snowstorm was pretty much a non-event. I remember a snowstorm in ’77 (or was it ’78?) that shut down the city for three days and that one apparently isn’t even in the top five record snowfalls. There was also a big one around Easter back in the 80’s that doesn’t rate either.

Am I remembering things wrong?

I think what’s happened is that they handle the snowstorms differently now. Back then, whether it was for financial reasons or things were simply badly managed, they waited until the snow fell, then they tried to clean it up. That just doesn’t work. Now they’re out there salting and sanding before the street even gets wet, never mind waiting until there’s already six inches of snow on the ground and the plow can’t make it down the street.

Of course, the downside to all of this preparedness is that there’s never a reason to close down my job.

Joy. :(

Tuesday, February 14, 2006

Monday, February 13, 2006

Cheney Accidentally Shoots Fellow Hunter

From AP:
CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas - Vice President Dick Cheney accidentally shot and wounded a companion during a weekend quail hunting trip in Texas, spraying the fellow hunter in the face and chest with shotgun pellets.

Harry Whittington, a millionaire attorney from Austin, was in stable condition in the intensive care unit of a Corpus Christi hospital Sunday.

I wonder if Cheney’s buddy will be into gun control now?


Sunday, February 12, 2006

BSG: Sacrifice

Another mediocre episode. A woman whose husband was killed in a Cylon attack on one of the fleet’s freighters has become convinced that the Colonial military has been compromised by the Cylons. She and her cohorts take hostages in a bar on the Rising Star and demand that Admiral Adama had over Sharon for execution. Naturally, among the hostages are Ellen Tigh, Lee, Dualla and Billy -- all people who mean something to the major players on Galactica. And Starbuck, who just happens to be there on R&R, gets to lead a rescue mission.

Things I Liked
  • They finally killed Billy.

  • They’ve made it clear that the average person in the fleet really has no idea what is going on. To Joe Survivor in the rag-tag fleet, it’s only a rumor that there’s a Cylon in Galactica’s brig. Underground newspapers and random radio broadcasts are sent out, but no one really knows what we, the audience, know.

  • Ellen is such a skank! She honestly thought Lee wanted to do her in the bathroom. Whew! ;)

  • Col. Tigh is very sensible in this episode. He makes it plain to Adama that he’s been relying too much on Sharon for intel -- and he needs to start thinking of her as a Cylon, not “Sharon,” because there never was a “Sharon.”

  • When Adama asks Sharon if she would ID the other Cylons hiding in the fleet, she says no. He respects that. Interesting.

  • Lee got shot. By friendly fire. By Starbuck. Oops!

Things I Didn’t Like
  • The relationship between Dualla and Lee seems very forced. And I dislike the way she seems to latch on to bland unappealing guys in positions of power. Billy was the right hand of the president and Lee, of course, is the son of humanity’s last military commander.

  • The way Billy got blown away was out of character. Unless maybe he was trying to get killed since Dualla turned down his marriage proposal.

  • Did Dualla even bother to see Billy in the morgue? When she kicks someone to the curb, she don’t play.

Saturday, February 11, 2006

Cable Guys

You can write this post yourself. You know what I’m going to say.

The cable guys (actually, they’re from DirecTV) were supposed to come between 8-12 today. They called at 9 to say they’d be here at 10:30.

They arrived at 11. At 12 they said the drill bit they needed to go through the wall was too dull so they had to get a new one. They said they’d be back in an hour.

The main office at DirecTV must be very vigilant, because they called at 10:20, 11:30 and again at 2 o’clock to see if the guys had completed the job.

The “one hour” the guys promised turned into FOUR and necessitated a call from me to their office to find out where the hell they were.

Then, while they were here, they wanted to install a TiVo box that they had brought instead of using the one that had been shipped to me. They swore I wouldn’t be charged for their box.

Did I trust them? Hell no!

I had to call their local office AGAIN and have their manager order them to install my box.

They finally left here at 5:30, just as the snowstorm started.

A wasted day for me.

Friday, February 10, 2006

Foiled L.A. Terror Plot

Bush is now saying that mere months after 9/11 a terror plot that would've targeted the Liberty Tower in L.A. was thwarted. Naturally this is supposed to justify the illegal wiretapping and make us forget about those terrorists that escaped from prison in Yemen.

Sorry, I'm just not buying it.

How come he didn't drop this bombshell during the 2004 election? How could he have resisted that temptation if this was true?

Read more…

Thursday, February 09, 2006

Use a Car Seat, Britney

This is the photograph of Britney Spears driving a car with her baby son sitting on her lap.

Dumb ass.

Wednesday, February 08, 2006

The New Lion’s Domain

As I mentioned yesterday, I’ve decided that it would be a good idea to transition to a new blog. Today I installed a WordPress database on my Pessoa Gallery website.

Click here to watch The New Lion’s Domain as it slowly comes together over the coming weeks (or months).

Tuesday, February 07, 2006

A Year of Blogging

Today marks the first anniversary of this blog!

I have 416 posts under my belt, so at some point I was doing multiple posts a day. No time for that now!

I haven't accomplished any of the things I intended to do with this blog.
I was going to:
  • Write about Narnia. I did that maybe three times.
  • Use it to prepare for NaNoWriMo. Didn't even bother signing up.
  • Post new artwork. I posted old artwork instead.
Ah, well.

With Blogger acting up lately, I'm concerned about stability. I don't want everything I've written to disappear one day, so I may transition to a blog hosted elsewhere so that I can easily back up everything.

Something to think about.

Monday, February 06, 2006


A meme created by me (using questions from 4,000 Questions for Getting to Know Anyone and Everyone).

What is your favorite:

Sunday, February 05, 2006

BSG: Scar

This episode was basically a rip-off of the “Red Baron” episode from the short-lived Fox series Space: Above & Beyond (if you remember that show). A Cylon Ace has been picking off the Galactica’s Viper pilots one by one over a four week period while the battlestar has been protecting a mining operation in an asteroid belt. Fear mounts in the younger pilots as newbies are killed right and left. Predictably, the rivalry between Kat and Starbuck heats up as each vows to be the one to kill “Scar,” the battered Cylon boogieman. Meanwhile, Kara is off her game because she keeps obsessing about the guy she left behind on Caprica.

Things I Liked
  • Kat is now an instructor of the newbie pilots. It’s good to see minor characters undergoing career advancement and taking on greater responsibilities. Years would go by on a Star Trek show with supposedly competent people never rising up the ranks.

  • The dialog between Sharon and Kara when the latter wants information about Scar was pretty good.

  • Kara and Lee’s fumbling pathetic attempt to change the nature of their relationship to a sexual one was a failure, and that’s fitting.

  • Kat is the one who ultimately takes out Scar and she and Kara still hate each other at the end of the episode. If this were Star Trek, they’d have taken out Scar together and bonded. This is better.

Things I Didn’t Like
  • Anders, the guy Kara is pining for, just wasn’t depicted in a compelling enough way when last seen for me to boy that this dude is now the great love of Kara’s life.

Friday, February 03, 2006

Jabba the Nut

From the NY Daily News:

A 38-year-old bald "Star Wars" geek who called himself The Emperor formed a fight club on his Staten Island school bus - encouraging kids to descend into the dark side and beat their classmates, authorities said yesterday.

News of the mini Death Star on wheels, where middle school students were pummeled and their clothing was cut with scissors - instead of lightsabers - outraged parents.

"I put him on the bus in the morning and I'd like to know he's safe. It's disturbing," said the mother of an 11-year-old boy who was one of the Tottenville Intermediate School students to come forward and reveal the sick game.
Read more…

Thursday, February 02, 2006

Birth Class 1

I went to the first of four birth classes on Monday. It was better than I expected. The one problem was that the classroom was packed and the chairs were uncomfortable. Okay, that’s two things. :)

The classes took place at Methodist Hospital, which is where I’ll be giving birth (it still sounds weird to say that). The hospital is very nice -- the lobby is like an upscale hotel. I’ve heard that the maternity ward is very impressive, but we don’t get to see it until week three, I think.

The nurse who taught the class was good. Not too old, not too young. Good speaking voice. We went for two hours with no break and it didn’t seem so long.

Class one was basically all about labor -- the phases of labor, positions in labor, how to tell real labor from false labor, etc. The nurse also went into exercises we should be doing (I haven’t been doing jack for fear that I’ll hurt myself or the baby).

What everyone really wanted to talk about was pain and pain medication. It’s funny how there’s pressure on women in this country now to not accept or ask for any medication.


Who makes these rules? Me, I want as much drugs as possible. I don’t have shit to prove. And believe me I will not hesitate to ask for a C section. Why mess around?

Wednesday, February 01, 2006

W.Va. Gov. Seeks Halt in Coal Production

From AP:
CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) -- Gov. Joe Manchin called for all coal companies in West Virginia to shut down for safety checks after two more mine workers were killed Wednesday in separate accidents.
Sixteen people have been killed in West Virginia mines in the last 32 days??