Archive for August, 2006

Deaths in Kentucky

It’s sad – in more ways than one – but the Comair crash last night in Lexington, Kentucky raises a lot of questions. Some of them will be answered, in coming days, weeks, and perhaps months; whether they will be answered honestly and truthfully is another matter altogether.

One question that should be answered is “who was on board?”. That, in turn, may or may not answer other questions – such as why the plane took off from the wrong runway. If the two seem unconnected, rephrase the first question like this:

“Were there any NSA whistleblowers onboard?”

It seems that former employees of None Such Agency who’ve criticized certain programs of their former employer have been getting their tickets punched early of late. Once is a coincidence, as they say. Two, or three, or four… isn’t. And, if you’re inclined to believe such things, it would seem that airplane crashes are a traditional way of “eliminating” the squeaky wheels of the government world in recent years.

It shouldn’t be hard to figure out. Forty-seven passengers were on board; the likelihood of there being two people on board the government would like to silence seems… statistically improbable. (Unless you’re particularly pessimistic about the number of citizens the government would like to make “go away”, at any rate).

Published in: General | on August 28th, 2006 | Comments Off on Deaths in Kentucky

One For the Road

The other night, my partner was being a little petulant about being thirsty. We didn’t have the important bit on hand to make the drink she asked for – tequila and lime, I think it was – so, being equally petulant, I offered a snarky alternative – a ginger ale and lime. She said that would work, so I fetched a bottle of Canada Dry, and half a lime we had in the ‘fridge.

Apparently, the one soft drink that doesn’t come in a “and lime” flavour – ginger ale – is also the only soda that tastes better with lime than without. Figures, doesn’t it? One decent squirt per twenty-ounce bottle; one anaemic squirt per can or glass. It’s good. 🙂

Published in: Geekiness, General | on August 27th, 2006 | Comments Off on One For the Road

Goat-Milk Soap

So, I broke down and got some shaving soap, and a really, really cheap bristle brush. (Hey, it came free with the soap.) The soap is homemade goat’s milk soap, lightly lavender scented.

I actually used the brush first with Proraso cream, which worked quite well, and a bit better than just rubbing the stuff on my face with my hands, as I’d been doing. (It’s not that there’s anything inherently bad in the manual application, just that the brush works a lot better.) I’ve been doing that for a few days, and been happy with it. Today, though, I felt like something a little different, so I decided to try out the bowl of soap.

It did the job; don’t get me wrong. The scent was mild, pleasant, and inoffensive. It lathered really, really well, too; much more volume than the Proraso. But the lather kind of dissipated on my face, as lather is given to do, though rather more rapidly than I’m used to, even with crud out of a can.

Where it really failed to shine was lubrication, though. It got the job done, but less well than the Proraso, or even the hand soap I’d been using before that. It was still better than foam inna can, but kind of a letdown after almost two weeks of really, really slick shaving. I don’t know if it’s an inherent characteristic of milk soaps, or if it’s just a quirk of this particular brand, or batch.

That said, I’m getting a lot better with the Super Speed; I really think that you need to use a new razor for at least a week, possibly longer, before you adapt to it and learn it’s “sweet spot”. By the end of today’s shave I came to feel that I was almost getting as good a shave as I have been with the Star single-edged razor. Probably, by midweek I’ll have achieved that level of smoothness and satisfaction.

I’ve broken down, by the way, and added a category for wet shaving posts; previous posts on the subject have been added there, but this is the first one to get posted anew there…

Published in: General, Wetshaving | on August 27th, 2006 | Comments Off on Goat-Milk Soap

Still More Technorati Irritation

Five long months ago I wrote about Technorati‘s mildly schizophrenic behaviour regarding my inability to claim this blog as, um, mine, in their silly, useless software. A few days later, it had miraculously worked.

Five months later, this site is again gone from my utterly point- and use-less account there. Trying to add it again produces the same wonderful effect I got back in March – i.e., nothing at all.

At least they’re consistent, over there.

It’s interesting to note, looking at statistics, how traffic from Technorati has dropped off. Much of the traffic I used to get from searches there has evaporated, to be replaced by visits from users of Google’s blog search, or blogs.com, or various other indices and search engines. In true empirical quasi-scientific fashion, I shall choose to interpret this as reflective of a decreased popularity of the nigh-functional and oft-irritating Technorati in favor of competing services that have two clues to rub together.

It’s 2006, after all; a cool URL, a lot of exciting hyperbole, and unfilfilled promises don’t count for much anymore. Ah, well; just another Next Big Thing that’s rapidly becoming The Last Big Could-Have-Been. 🙂

Published in: Geekiness, General, Meta | on August 27th, 2006 | Comments Off on Still More Technorati Irritation

Asymmetric Foodstuffs

Consider for a moment, if you will, snack foods. Your pretzels, your chips, your crackers; your crisps, even, to say nothing of chocolates and other candies.

Now consider the Wheat Thin, possibly unique among snacks. Why? Because it’s asymmetric.

No, not asymmetric in the geometric sense – cheeze doodles are a good example of that – but asymmetric in that the flavor coating stuff is on only one side. Cheez-Its and most other crackers – not to mention flavoured crisps, flavoured popcorn, cheese-anything and -everything, and much more – are pretty much completely coated in saturated-fat goodness.

Why is this important? Well, because I think I, and everyone I know, have been eating Wheat Thins incorrectly. When you smear salmon pate on a Ritz cracker, it really doesn’t matter which side is up – what one would consider the top, or the nearly-identical reverse. You get the same taste sensation either way.

Not so with Wheat Thins, though. Apply your topping of choice to the top, like most people, and it’s delectable, right? But if you put your cheese, meat, or other accessory on the bottom of the cracker, then – assuming you insert the assembled comestible into your maw topping-up, like any sensible person, the flavored coating on the top of the cracker make contact with the millions of taste buds on your tongue, thereby enhancing and improving your snacking experience.

Now you know, and knowing is half the battle. 🙂

Published in: Geekiness, General | on August 24th, 2006 | 2 Comments »