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Showing posts from January, 2006

Light Blogging

My apologies for the light blogging. I have a house full of sick people so I am busy playing doctor with all of my normal sensitivity. " I know that you are five, but you are old enough to just suck it up ." Ok, I didn't say that and I didn't even think it, but apparently a few of you think that I might. Relax with the emails, I haven't drowned any kittens. Here is what you missed tonight: Obsessed With the Blogroll Blogging Makes Me Hungry The State of The Union Blast from the very recent past: The Many Layers of Hell Why Do You Believe? G-d, Afterlife, Etc The Most Time Consuming Part of Blogging

Obsessed With the Blogroll

If you have been blogging for any length of time you probably have received an email from another blogger asking for you to blogroll them. Sometimes they phrase it differently and offer you a reciprocal link exchange. Either way the question is still the same, "will you blogroll me?" They want a link on your site that can be used by your readers to find their blog. I am a bit of a prickly and at times moody fellow so these requests haven't always fallen upon receptive ears. Sometimes I have just done it and sometimes I don't even bother to consider it. You may recall that in the past I asked the denizens of cyberspace to tell me how many blogs you read . It was a serious question that I asked because I have noticed that many bloggers have blogrolled an exceptional number of blogs and it occurred to me that it would be tough for them to read them all. So I spent a few moments pondering this and considering whether I thought that it made sense to have that many bl

Blogging Makes Me Hungry

I don't know about you, but blogging makes me hungry. I don't know why. I am not sure if this is physical or behavioral but virtually every time I sit down at the computer to blog I am hit with this desire to nosh. Speaking of noshing there used to be a restaurant called The Bagel Nosh. I loved that place. In the good old days you used to be able to watch them make the bagels. It was kind of cool. Now some 30 years later they have changed owners several times and come up with a new name. Somewhere along the way the food and service have gone downhill. I was very disappointed by this. I'd write more but I need something to eat, I am starving.

The State of The Union

Dubya said several things tonight that made me happy, assuming that we make them happen. But before I speak about those I have one comment. Has there ever been a time in which the president said that the State of Our Union was anything less than strong. I can't remember it. " Our offensive against terror involves more than military action . Ultimately, the only way to defeat the terrorists is to defeat their dark vision of hatred and fear by offering the hopeful alternative of political freedom and peaceful change. So the United States of America supports democratic reform across the broader Middle East. Elections are vital – but they are only the beginning. Raising up a democracy requires the rule of law, protection of minorities, and strong, accountable institutions that last longer than a single vote. The great people of Egypt have voted in a multi-party presidential election – and now their government should open paths of peaceful opposition that will reduce the appeal

The Many Layers of Hell

I can't remember who said that there are many levels of Hell, but I know that there are many and that I have been to at least a couple. The Department of Motor Vehicles, The Mall during the holidays and most recently Costco and Trader Joe's market on a Sunday afternoon. It is common knowledge among the intellectual elite that venturing to a Trader Joe’s, home of “Two Buck Chuck” vintage wines and fine cheeses will involve solving a puzzle that is a prerequisite for entrance into Mensa. It is called parking. Some sick man/woman in their corporate office gleefully searches for store locations that cannot support the traffic that the store will bring, or so it seems. I conducted an unscientific survey in which I drove to four stores and then polled the people there and the three dogs that were tied up in front of the stores about this. All of them agree that parking at any Trader Joe's is an exercise in treachery and guile best left to politicians or those of low mor

Deconstructing Bin Laden

Victor Davis Hanson has a very interesting article that I encourage you to read. I have supplied the link and a couple of paragraphs. It is called: Deconstructing Bin Laden "W e don't know whether the latest and much-discussed Osama bin Laden tape was recorded recently. But the harangue is still a valuable reflection of the current al Qaeda hierarchy that broadcast it to the world. First, things must be going very badly for the terrorists to propose a ceasefire: "We don't mind offering you a long-term truce." In truth, the winning side does not ask for a reprieve. Losing autocrats — whether the officers of the German army in the summer of 1918 or Hitler's cadre in the spring of 1945 — always "don't mind" sending out peace feelers in the 11th hour to salvage their power before they lose it for good. That is not to say there won't be more sacrifices to come. The battles of the Bulge and Okinawa were the most costly for Americans

Blog Disappointment

This is something that I suspect the majority of bloggers go through. It is a malady is best described as being upset because you spent time composing a post that you thought would be outstanding. A post that you were certain was so good that you wouldn't have time to respond to all of the comments because you knew that within an hour of putting it up there would be at least 15 and by the end of the day there would be hundreds. Only the exact opposite happens. You upload your post and anxiously await your first comment but there is nothing. It is like being back in high school. Your parents went out of town and left you home alone with strict instructions not to throw any parties. Of course as soon as they left you spent a ton of time notifying everyone about the amazing 16 keg Bacchanalian festival that you have planned and no one came. And then the disappointment and depression set in. Why, oh why are there no comments. You tried so hard to be funny, to be witty and insightfu

Their Thoughts on Hamas

Soccer Dad has put together a good roundup regarding the Hamas victory. Read it. On a separate note Forbes reports the following: " A Hamas leader asked the international community on Monday not to cut aid to the Palestinian Authority, insisting the money would go toward helping the Palestinian people and Hamas was willing to have its spending monitored. Ismail Haniyeh, a Hamas leader in Gaza, also said the Islamic militant group is ready to negotiate the terms of continued foreign aid with donor countries. He spoke ahead of Monday's meeting of the so-called Quartet of Mideast mediators - the United States, the European Union, the United Nations and Russia - to discuss the repercussions of Hamas' election victory. The United States and European nations have said they will cut off aid to a Hamas-led government unless the group recognizes Israel, renounces violence and adheres to interim peace deals with Israel." You'll forgive me for be

Sunday Night's Main Event

Memory- A Game We All Can Play Sleep Apnea Search Terms Used to Find My Blog The erosion of anonymous Internet speech It left an Impression on Me Past Posts You Might Enjoy: My Penis is Sad Scenes From a Car My Son & The Strip Club

Memory- A Game We All Can Play

We played a game here last year in which I asked you all to share a memory of something that we did together. I'd like to try it again. Go ahead and leave me a comment in which you relate something that we did together. It can be anything. I look forward to reading about us.

Sleep Apnea

My father and I had a conversation the other day in which he suggested that I get tested for sleep apnea . It is not the first time that I have thought about it, but it is the first time that I really considered it. Both of my parents have it, but it never really seemed real to me, at least as something that I would have to be worried about. I spent a few minutes wondering if it was possible and then I went online and looked it up. Signs and Symptoms Excessive daytime sleepiness (hypersomnia) Loud snoring Observed episodes of breathing cessation during sleep Abrupt awakenings with shortness of breath Awakening with a dry mouth or sore throat Morning headache I don't feel excessively tired, at least I don't think so. I have young children and have gone through spells in which I haven't slept as much as I wanted to. It is called a child who is teething, so I never really thought much of that. As for snoring that has been a claim to fame for years. My sisters used to

Search Terms Used to Find My Blog

Just for kicks I like to list some of the search terms used to find my blog: It is not my thong Monkeying around with a shmata aliyah musings Karl malone hurricane katrina schnappi the krokodil IDF blog Lakers cleveland sucks roly poly good old boys guitar music napoleon complex matisyahu meaning how do you become germophobic how to become a real ladies man sex with monkeys And this is just the short list. Perhaps I'll provide more later.

The erosion of anonymous Internet speech

I thought that this commentary was quite interesting . Here are a couple of snippets: "The Communications Act has prohibited the making of telephone calls or the utilization of telecommunications devices "without disclosing (one's) identity to annoy, abuse, threaten or harass any person at the called number or who receives the communications." The same law also has been clear that the term "telecommunications device...does not include an interactive computer service." This means this law has not been aimed at Internet communications. Now comes the huge qualifier. A small but important provision buried deep in last year's Violence Against Women and Department of Justice Reauthorization Act, which was just signed into law, now brings the reach of the above-quoted text home to the Internet. The provision in question applies to "any device or software that can be used to originate telecommunications or other types of communications that ar

It left an Impression on Me

Twenty years ago we lost the Challenger. Many bloggers have shared their thoughts regarding that moment. As I think about that day I have two thoughts to share. First, I remember very clearly being in my AP History class when the announcement was made. I remember that when I got home and turned on the television there was nothing but news about the Challenger and what had happened. I have one other memory that is tied into this but I really can't remember when this second event happend. I am not really sure why I associate the two because one is very serious and the other is not. That associated memory is hearing the following words: Buckwheat Has Been Shot . I can't explain the relationship, just that it exists. I feel a little guilty about it, but I'd be lying if I said that I don't associate the two.

Saturday Night Roundup

Here is your evening roundup of what has transpired at The Shack: From the Mailbag Losing Touch With Friends, With Family, With Life Hamas What I am Listening to Right Now Blast from the Past: Charlie's Angels- Child of the '70s Children T he GermoPhobe

From the Mailbag

It has been a while since I last shared some of the musings of those who frequent here so here are a few. Dear Jackass, I suppose that you think that you are a very funny man. The clever and sensitive man who is always oozing charisma. It is too bad that you are not him. You are just fat and arrogant. I hope that choke on a chicken bone. -Nicole Dear Nicole, Is it just me or did you just finish watching an old episode of SNL. You know the one, where Belushi pretends to be Liz Taylor choking on a chicken bone. That was pretty funny. Keep on posting. -Jack Letter Number 2 Jack, I really enjoy your posts. I think that you are a very talented writer. Keep up the good work. -Michael (P.S. Can you please link to my blog) Michael, Thank you for the kind words, I really appreciate them. I'd be happy to link to you blog but you forgot to give me your URL. -Jack Letter #3 Hello Jack, I just finished reading The Story of Two Souls and wanted to know what gave you the

Losing Touch With Friends, With Family, With Life

The title sounds dramatic, overly dramatic. I know it does because as soon as I put it down I crinkled my nose and made that face I make when I see something ridiculous. I probably snorted derisively as well, but I am wearing headphones and I can't hear anything other than Josh Groban and whomever follows him on my iTunes. Oh, it is Kate Bush. Anyway, today my son the strapping young five year-old dug around in the hall closet and found some photo albums which he insisted I look at with him. It wasn't like it bothered me. I am a sentimental old fool and I love looking at pictures. Ok, let me qualify that I love looking at my pictures I am less patient about looking at others. Don't get me wrong, I like seeing them but I just don't have the same attention span for it, does anyone. The big boy found hundreds of pictures of his old man. He saw me on the blocks at a high school swim meet. Wearing nothing more than a pair of speedos I am poised to launch myself out i


By now more than a few bloggers have written about the results of the Palestinian election and their thoughts regarding it. So you ask, what does Jack have to say that is new and insightful. My answer is that I am not sure that I have anything new to provide, but that I think that it is important to say something. The vote for Hamas is an indictment of Fatah. It is a message that is being sent to the corrupt old guard that their day is over and no longer will their way of doing business be accepted. At least that is the noble and poetic version of it. I don't totally buy it. It makes sense to me that a vote for Hamas is a vote against Fatah but I don't believe that the people were unaware of who Hamas is and what their principles are. I agree with this: Daniel Pipes commented on the differences between Fatah and Hamas. On the key question of their attitude toward Israel, Fatah is willing to negotiate with Israel to gain territory and other benefits, while Ha

What I am Listening to Right Now

Amazing Grace/Nearer G-d To Thee Ladysmith Black Mambazo Duel of the Fates from Star Wars Episode 1: The Phantom Menace London Symphony Orchestra The Breaking of the Fellowship (Featuring "In Dreams") Lord Of The Rings Soundtrack Our House Madness A Place Among The Stones Máire Brennan What's Going On Marvin Gaye Bhangra Fever MIDIval PunditZ We Are All Made of Stars Moby Goodbye-Goodbye (1988 Boingo Alive Version) Oingo Boingo

Mispronunciation (mispro·nunci·ation)

Most Popular Posts

Based upon a check of stat counter here are the most popular posts of the moment: Haveil Havalim #54 Big and Beautiful Commenting on Comments Charlie's Angels- Child of the '70s Playing Games With Telemarketers The Search For Answers About Our Ourselves Building The Blog Back By Popular Demand- Skills/Talent I'd like to have What The Hell Happened to Courtesy

Women and the Look of Death

One of the hallmarks of women is that most of you have mastered the "Look of Death." You know the one I am talking about. It is that look you give to us when we pretend not to hear you ask us to take out the trash. It is the look you give that man/woman who just cut you off. The one where lightning comes out of your eyes and smoke escapes from your nose and ears. And we just know that when your mouth opens flames are going to come shooting out. Do you take classes on it? Do you and your girlfriends practice giving it? I wonder.

Call Me Color Challenged

I am not a clothes horse. No one would ever call me a fashionista or accuse me of stalking designers. Clothing is a practical matter and not something that I care all that much about. Oh I want to look nice. I pay attention, enough to notice whether my shirt is wrinkled or my pants stained. But on the whole I just don't care all that much about clothes. Comfort is my priority. I am a Taurus and built like the bull. I frequently have a hard time buying off of the rack. I always have. When I weighed 205 I wore a 44 jacket and had a 33 inch waist. Sometimes I would have to get a 46. It always had to be tapered. Broad shoulders and a broad back with a flat stomach meant a trip to the tailor. Pants weren't much better. My legs have always been muscular, esspecially my thighs so I always needed an easy fit pair of jeans. Not to mention that Charles Barkley and I share the same style butt. It is great for boxing out, not so great for buying jeans off of the rack, especial

A Few Things that Caught My Eye

Scientists follow the money to predict epidemics "LONDON (Reuters) - A popular U.S. Web site that tracks the geographical circulation of money could offer new insights into predicting the spread of infectious diseases like bird flu. Money, like diseases, is carried by people around the world, so what better way to plot the spread of a potential influenza pandemic than to track the circulation of dollar bills, researchers reasoned. Researchers in Germany and the United States did just that to develop a mathematical model of human travel that can be used to plot the spread of future pandemics. "There are some universal rules governing human travel and they can be used to develop a new class of model for the spread of infectious disease," said Dr Dirk Brockmann, a physicist at the Max Planck Institute for Dynamics and Self-Organisation in Gottingen, Germany. Health experts fear the H5N1 bird flu virus that has killed at least 82 people in six countries since

The JIBs Revisited

An awful lot has been written about the JIBs , much of it criticism. I include myself among those who have offered criticism, but I have also said and still maintain that they are important. Dave deserves thanks for the hard work. I am going to pick on one of my favorite lurkers and use his comments to make a point. " What good is winning a JIB if the day after the voting is over a blogger is sitting there with 16 readers, no comments and 2 inbound pity links? The point of the JIBs is to increase everyone's readership while actually recognising those that are really the most widely read in their category ."

The Boy Was Busy Today- Your Roundup

( In the background Suicide Is Painless also known as the theme to Mas h) There was an explosion this evening in which the posts just came flying out of me. I intentionally did not post everything that I could have because some of this material deserves a little time of its own. But it is not always easy to restrain myself this way. Anyway, if you are just getting here this is what was covered tonight. ( Now playing the theme to Little House on the Praire. In case you are wondering I have been amusing myself with Television's Greatest Hits, Vol. 3: 70s & 80s It is sad how many of these tunes I can name ) A Very Disturbing Video- Warning Graphic Blogroll cruisin' Stupid Blog Mistakes The Lock On the Stall Door Charlie's Angels- Child of the '70s ( Now playing Ladysmith Blackmambazo singing Homeless ) And in related links/old posts to bring back out I present: Bloggers- Do their pictures match the writing? How Many Blogs Do You Read?

A Very Disturbing Video- Warning Graphic

ssI found out this evening that Google offers a new function that allows you to embed video in your blog so that it can be displayed. So I spent a few minutes exploring various videos and stumbled onto the video below. It is 17 minutes of footage of girls fighting. I am shocked. I am. I am just stunned by some of this. When I was younger I was involved in some disagreements with other guys that were far more violent than shown here, but there was something distinctly different in those. It is not a matter of the obvious difference in gender. What bothers me is the footage of so many different fights in which the onlookers exhibit indifference to the violence. What bothers me is that so many of these fights were clearly filmed by people who have little to no regard to the damage both mental and physical that is being delivered in front of them. What bothers me are the numerous times in which I see one person being ganged up on by several people at once. It bothers me as a parent a

Blogroll cruisin'

Blogroll cruisn' is hip, it is cool and it is what you do when you find yourself with a little extra time and curiosity about what the people you read do when they aren't blogging, commenting on your blog or doing whatever it is they do when they aren't at the computer. Blogging is a bit voyeruristic, aw heck during the best of times it is quite voyeuristic. It is a little exhibitionistic and a chance to peer in the windows of those in the world around you to see what they do in the quiet and comfort of their own homes. Through blogging I have learned many interesting and less interesting things. Some of the knowledge I have gained has been relatively intimate and probably a case of TMI. Examples: Blogger A discussed his preferred position for wiping his behind as well as his preference for "naked defecation." That has an interesting ring to it, "naked defecation" but let's save that for a different day. Blogger

Stupid Blog Mistakes

I am on a tear tonight, so much to say and so little time to say it all. I better include a roundup for those who might have missed a post, but I digress. The bane of blogging is to destroy good content by masking it with stupid mistakes. Here are a couple of examples of stupid mistakes. 1) Posting inaccurate information and presenting it as being factual or truthful. 2) Blatant spelling mistakes in your headline and posts that are riddled with spelling errors. Of these two it is the second that I dislike the most. And I am never more irritated than when I am the numbskull who commits the error. I just caught a really egregious mistake in a headline. I am surprised that no one said anything to me and don't know if it is because it was missed or they were being kind. Ouch.

The Lock On the Stall Door

Earlier today I spent some time considering the shape and layout of this common lock on a common stall in a common public restroom. I wonder who developed this and why they chose a diamond shaped base as opposed to a rectangle or a square. I am not an engineer, but I cannot see any structural advantage this way. If you really look at this you can see that there are many pieces that combine to make one unit. Based upon a rough guest I would estimate that there are at least there are somewhere between eight to ten separate and distinct pieces. I suspect that the manufacturer makes most of the parts, at least I would expect that they would, but maybe not. There could be more than a couple of companies that do the machining and shaping of the metal into the appropriate pieces. This simple locking device might possibly be the result of the efforts of hundreds of employees, or it might be made by two or three employees of some third world sweatshop. And there you have a few of t

Charlie's Angels- Child of the '70s

Here is an easy test to see if a woman of a certain age is a true child of the '70s. Turn on the theme to Charlie's Angels and see if she subconsciously assumes the pose. C'mon ladies, you know what I am talking about. Which angel were you? Did you wear you hair like Farrah or did you have that funky Dorothy Hamil haircut. Confession is good for the soul, so spill beans and share the goods. And if you are really feeling nostalgic you can listen to the theme here .

My Daughter's Favorite Book

At the tender age of 18 months my daughter loves Goodnight Moon above all other books. Every night before she goes to sleep I read this to her. We have a routine in which she climbs into my lap and waits patiently for me to begin reading. Ok, not so patiently. If abba takes time to clear his throat or take a breath she begins to urge me on, but that is ok at 18 months I don't expect her to act any differently. This evening she changed things up for me. She climbed into my lap and said " I love you daddy ." It is only within the last few weeks that she has learned to say "I love you" but tonight caught me off guard. For a moment I was choked up. This little body was curled up against me, a tiny hand held three of the fingers of my right hand and a face showed nothing but the defintion of unconditional love. How could I not smile. How could I not hug her and promise her the world, my everlasting love and protection. This may sound goofy, but I cannot reme

Commenting on Comments

I have been blogging for a little more than 18 months now. In that time I have generated a little more than 3000 posts. Yes, that is right, more than 3,000 posts. Some of those posts have been pulled down, so the number of posts that is actually live is likely to be different, but you get the general idea. I am prolific. I have a lot of interests and a lot to say and I do stop every now and then to consider whether what I have to say is meaningful. When I consider why I got into blogging and the reasons why I come back to the same place in which I do see meaning. I blog because this gives me a running diary of my life, a place to vent and the opportunity to engage and interact with interesting people. I try to visit as many blogs as I can , but time is fleeting and it can be a challenge. Nevertheless I make an effort. I also make an effort to comment. I am not much of a lurker. I am " lurking challenged ." Some of that is because I feel a bit of an obligation to comment a

A Snapshot of Recent Posts

Here is a look at what has transpired here: Cheap Sunglasses Received in Email Up At the Jewish Connection Childhood Heart Repairs May Not Last Haveil Havalim #54 As a point of reference these posts relate to my new post at the Jewish Connection: You Should be A Rabb i Moments When I feel Closest To G-d I Yelled At G-d Yom Kippur Thoughts and Musings My Great Sadness

Cheap Sunglasses

"Now go out and get yourself some big black frames With the glass so dark thay won't even know your name And the choice is up to you cause they come in two classes: Rhinestone shades or cheap sunglasses Oh yeah, oh yeah, oh yeah" Cheap Sunglasses- ZZ Top Years ago I used to think that it would be great fun to get ZZ Top to play at the Chabad telethon. For that matter I still do. Some of you might be aware that the drummer's name is beard. I have often wanted to grow a beard like them, something really long and "Grizzly Adams" like but up to now I have never had the patience to do so. Not to mention that that the various women in my life have always complained about my attempts to do so, especially one of my grandmothers. Sunglasses, everyone needs them. They aren't a fashion requirement although some people see them as such. Back in the day it was a Vuarnets or a pair of Ray-Bans, the Wayfarers model in particular. In fact if you

Received in Email

The beauty of spam is that you receive a treasure trove of potential blogging material. Here are nuggets from some of the nitwits that have knocked noggins and nudged nonsense this way: Dear XXXX, My name is Jean-Claude and like you I used to have a penile that not work well. Since that shameful day in which I couldn't love me like I love her I have taken good drug to make lovin last long and hard. Grab me and pills should help you become long and hard too so that her pleashure is replicated. Dear XXX, I am Thomasina Boliviana, the 23rd Demarco of Escuela Spain and the inheritor of a very large sum of money. My father, the 22nd Demarco of Escuela Spain of recent death has left me a great sum of money to which I must acquire. The government of Escuela Spain has very much high taxes that I am trying to avoid. I Should like to use your help to prevent this burden by sharing some of my soon to be acquired wealth. Send to me your billing information and I

Childhood Heart Repairs May Not Last

I found this story from the AP to be quite interesting. Childhood Heart Repairs May Not Last WASHINGTON - One of medicine's greatest triumphs is hitting a snag: Up to 1 million people born with once-lethal heart defects now have grown up, a pioneering generation largely unaware that heart repairs can wear out as they approach middle age. Few even get cardiac checkups, apparently believing they were cured as children — although a surgical repair isn't a cure. Worse, few cardiologists outside of children's hospitals have any idea how to care for these special hearts. "The disease as an adult is completely different than the other kinds of heart disease adults get," warns Dr. Karen Kuehl, a pediatric cardiologist at Children's National Medical Center in Washington, who recently helped open one of the nation's few specialty clinics for adults with congenital heart disease. "Here are people in their early young adulthood who have thought that th

Haveil Havalim #54 Big and Beautiful

Hi gang, I am pleased to host the latest and greatest edition of Haveil Havalim. During this past week I have tried to provide a nice sample of the finest that the JBlogosphere has to offer. I encourage you to take some time to read new blogs and introduce yourselves to new worlds to explore. For those of you who can't wait a full week for a new roundup might want to check out Ezzie as he has a regular roundup that he pumps out. If nothing else he is in dire need of more tehillim as for some reason he roots for cleveland teams. And now for a definition of Haveil Havalim. "Haveil Havalim is the carnival of Jewish blogs -- a weekly collection of Jewish & Israeli blog highlights, tidbits and points of interest collected from blogs all around the world. It’s hosted by different bloggers each week and coordinated by Soccer Dad. The term “Haveil Havalim”, which means "Vanity of Vanities", is from Kohelet, Ecclesiastes, which was written by King Solomon. Solomon bui