Sunday, December 30, 2012

Monday, December 24, 2012

Semi-random thoughts

  • My wife was carded when she wanted to buy a senior ticket to a movie. She was so happy.
  • I went to the Leonard Cohen concert at the new Barclays Center in Brooklyn. A friend of my wife's invited us to the private suite her brother's company has there. It's very comfortable, but I don't think they should call it a suite--it's only one room.
  • I really like Citibank's remote check deposit via cellphone service, but I wish they'd raise the $1000 limit.

Sunday, December 23, 2012

Happy Festivus!

To all Seinfeld fans (and non-fans), Happy Festivus!

BlankTo the tune of Let it Snow:
What a lovely day for Festivus,
a Festivus for the rest of us,
this is the place to hate,
let them wait, let them wait, let them wait.

It doesn't show signs of stopping,
I bought some caps for popping,
aluminum pole's aglow,
let them know, let them know, let them know.

With the feat of strength at hand,
stop crying fight your old man,
so go and drink another beer,
T'is the best time of the year!

What a lovely day for Festivus,
a Festivus for the rest of us,
gather your family around,
cut them down, cut them down, cut them down.

No need for decorating,
as tinsel's too distracting,
all you need is a metal pole,
cleanse your soul, cleanse your soul, cleanse your soul.

With the feat of strength at hand,
stop crying fight your old man,
so go and drink another beer,
T'is the best time of the year!

What a lovely day for Festivus,
a Festivus for the rest of us,
gather your family around,
cut them down, cut them down, cut them down.

No need for decorating,
as tinsel's too distracting,
all you need is a metal pole,
cleanse your soul, cleanse your soul, cleanse your soul.

With the feat of strength at hand,
stop crying fight your old man,
so go and drink another beer,
T'is the best time of the year!

T'is the best time of the year!

Animal headline of the day

Rescued Turkey Thinks He’s a Dog

Micro movie review

Hyde Park on Hudson: The fine story of FDR's meeting with the King and Queen of England in 1939, while simultaneously starting a relationship with a distant cousin. Olivia Colman's portrayal of the Queen is very, very different from Helena Bonham-Carter's in The King's Speech.

Saturday, December 22, 2012

Plat du jour--guest submission










Another one found by Joanne. She asks if his other car has MD plates.

Friday, December 21, 2012

Monday, December 17, 2012

Artwork from my life, going into the Met


From the Metropolitan Museum of Art

















I just came across a news article from a week ago, about how Thomas Hart Benton’s mural "America Today" is going into the Metropolitan Museum of Art. I have seen this mural many times.

As the article explained, it was installed in an office building lobby from 1996 until recently. For seven months after 9/11 I worked in a temporary office my employer set up in that building. I went through the lobby frequently, and I much admired this huge work of art.

In recent years I have gone through the lobby monthly, on my way to the meetings of the board of LeGaL--The LGBT Bar Association of Greater New York. Again I delighted in seeing the mural.

Then, they started renovating the lobby, and the murals were covered up for their protection--at least that's what I thought. However, the article tells me, they were actually removed and put in storage, as their owner has donated them to the Metropolitan Museum.

So I will be able to see them again, but not immediately. They will be going into the Met's new space where the Whitney Museum is now, and will be until 2015. Eventually, though, it is planned to move the murals to the main Metropolitan building--only four blocks from my home.

Recent news round-up

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Bad News

Sunday, December 16, 2012

Someone talks sense about prayer in public schools, and elsewhere

This notion that prayer isn't allowed in public schools is absolute horseshit. Ostentatious, invasive displays are not the same as prayer. In fact, the more theatrical someone is about the connection with their god, the more you can be certain of their doubt in their own belief.
--twitter.com/moviesbybowes

I don't know who Danny Bowes is, but he's sure right about this.

Happy (maybe) birthday, Ludwig!

It's Ludwig van Beethoven's 242nd birthday. Maybe. All we know for sure was that he was baptized on the 17th.

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Recent news round-up

Good News

Cartoon of the day

                                 Sky Color

Micro movie review

Skyfall: One of the best Bond movies ever.

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Mick Jagger does the Top Ten list on Letterman's show

“Top Ten Things I, Mick Jagger, Have Learned After 50 Years in Rock ‘n’ Roll”:

10. “Nobody wants to hear anything from your new album.”
9. “Never take relationship advice from Phil Spector.”
8. “Before shouting ‘Hi Seattle!’ make sure you’re in Seattle.”
7. “You don’t earn a cent when someone does a song about having moves like Jagger.”
6. “Everybody you meet after you become famous is only interested in you as a person.”
5. “Song royalties are great, but even they can’t match the guaranteed cash flow of a reverse mortgage.”
4. “A good way to keep yourself entertained is to sign every 10th autograph ‘Doris Goldblatt.’”
3. “Be considerate of other hotel guests — trash your room by 10 p.m.”
2. “You can’t always get what you want — like a good joke on the top ten list.”
1. “You start out playing rock ‘n’ roll so you can have sex and do drugs. But you end up doing drugs so you can still play rock ‘n’ roll and have sex.”

From ABC News

Happy 12:12 12/12/12

I'm sure I'm not the only one doing this.

Sunday, December 09, 2012

My kind of xmas music

I usually try to ignore most xmas music. But then there's this:

Semi-random thoughts

  • I just read a review in a high end audio magazine for a $2,200 power cord! The reviewer hears all kinds of differences in the music when comparing it to his usual power cord. I guess I'm glad I don't have good enough hearing for that.
  • I'm not overly upset that University of Wisconsin head football coach Bret Bielema is leaving to coach the Arkansas team. I think he's a good coach, but not a great one. His time management decisions on the field have been lacking a number of times.
  • My skills as a lawyer have been "endorsed" by a couple of people on LinkedIn. I did once do a little legal work for one of them, a friend. But that was about 30 years ago! The other is an online acquaintance who knows nothing of my work. The only reason I got on LinkedIn was because my LGBT bar association is using a "group" there to communicate with its members. In general, LinkedIn appears pretty worthless.

Wednesday, December 05, 2012

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Still over-priced




























H/T to @jdoxblood on Twitter

Semi-random thoughts

  • My wife and I were relieved to find out that Hurricane Sandy caused no significant damage to the complex in NJ that provides the bulk of our income. They had emergency generators to power the sump pumps that kept the boiler rooms safe, unlike during Irene.
  • I notice that I recently went past 2,500 posts here.
  • I wish there were a way of filtering out comments from non-New Yorkers on NY Times articles about the city--especially articles about local apartments. Most of these people have absolutely no idea about how things work here.

Don't contribute to the Salvation Army

I see the bellringers are already in operation, so I'll reiterate what I said last year: They are trans- and homophobic.

Cartoon of the day

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Recent news round-up

Good News

Bad News

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Recent news round-up

Good News
Bad News

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Happy anniversary to me

14 years ago today was the first time I went out presenting as a woman.

Friday, November 09, 2012

Today's new round-up

Good News

Semi-random thoughts

  • There's something wrong with the way we do daylight savings time. In the spring, we skip 2am to 3am, but in the fall we repeat 1am to 2am. Shouldn't we be doing the same hour both times?
  • My glob just got its first visitor from Kenya.
  • Sometimes things really do go my way. My bi-annual renewal of my registration as a lawyer is due shortly, and I found myself 2 credits short of the requirement for mandatory continuing legal education. I saw my local bar association is giving a 3 credit class next Tuesday, when I have nothing scheduled. I resigned myself to paying the fee and schlepping down there. Then today I got a notice from the NY State Bar Association that they are giving a 2 credit class next Thursday, when I also have nothing scheduled. It's free, and I can take it via webinar.

Wednesday, November 07, 2012

Recent news round-up

Good News
Bad News

Another computer crash

Just like last July, my hard drive has crashed, and everything needs to be restored. At least this time I know the proper order to do things in. After about 12 hours yesterday, I got Vista reinstalled and brought up to date--neither of which ran exactly smoothly. Then I started my file restore, via Carbonite, but it is going extremely slowly. It looks like it will take days.

Friday, November 02, 2012

Today's news round-up

Good News

Justice!

I received notification that a settlement of a class action suit against Classmates.com has been approved. As a member of the class I am receiving $3.93.

The aftermath of Sandy

FreshDirect cancelled my usual Sunday night grocery delivery right before the storm, so I got what I could from my supermarket during the day. Then I put in a small FreshDirect order for this evening, for a few things that were unavailable. This morning they sent me an email saying 5 of the items in my order were unavailable.

I had only ordered 6 items. Tonight they will be delivering me one quarter pound of cheese.

UPDATE: It came!

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Today's news round-up

Good News

Bad News

It's going to take a bit of work to get the Metro-North trains running on the Hudson Line


















--From the MTA website

Living with wild hogs VI

Wild boar attacks and injures 4 people in Berlin

Recent news round-up

Good News

Bad News

Mixed Good and Bad News

Monday, October 29, 2012

Re: Hurricane Sandy

I haven't posted anything here, but I'm fine. All my Facebook and Twitter friends who were joking about it all day, and dismissing the precautions taken, have now shut up, with serious flooding happening, building facade collapses, a probable electrical transformer explosion at a ConEd station, etc. And high tide is just occurring now.

Trans United for Obama

Semi-random thoughts

  • In my wife's mind, taking a nap in bed is being lazy, but if she does it on the couch it's OK.
  • It was a disastrous Saturday for alma mater, the University of Wisconsin. The football team lost to Michigan State in overtime, which ended their 21 game home winning streak (second best in the nation). But much worse, our young but quickly improving quarterback broke his collarbone, and is probably out for the rest of the season. And on top our football woes, our men's basketball team lost its newly-named starting point guard for the season due to a torn ACL in pre-season practice. 
  • I always keep a Chrome window open, in addition to my normal Internet Explorer one(s). This is so I can keep two Yahoo Mail ID's open simultaneously. Now I've found another use for my Chrome window: When a newspaper website limits me to a certain number of free articles per month, I can switch to the other browser and get double.

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Somali thugs keep losing

Dutch Warship Destroys Pirate 'Mother Ship'

This means the parents aren't gifted, of course

New Gifted and Talented Test Leaves Parents Stumped

Seriously, a great many parents have a seriously inflated opinion of their children's capabilities. Most children aren't gifted. This test was designed so that coaching, by parents or anyone else, isn't going to help.

Today's news round-up

Good News
Bad News

Romnesia?

Question of the day

Why do "terribly pretty" and "pretty terrible" mean opposite things?

Monday, October 22, 2012

Today's news round-up

Good News

Bad News

Semi-random thoughts

  • I was very happy to see the Yankees swept out of the playoffs. I'm an Indians fan. I hate the Yankees.
  • At first I thought the Wisconsin Badgers football team was just going to have a "rebuilding year," but it looks like it might only have been the beginning of the season. They've won their last three games, and are looking better and better each week.
  • I generally don't read any news article with a question mark in the headline. Usually it's about something that isn't true, or at least is totally unsubstantiated.

Animal headline of the day

Chickens Threaten to Divide Community

From Overheard in New York

Wife: I'm cold. Are you cold?
Husband: Not really.
Wife: How come men never complain about being cold?
Husband: We have good thermostats, you have multiple orgasms. Wanna trade?

--MoMA
via Overheard in New York, Oct 17, 2012

Friday, October 19, 2012

Fight bullying!

Today's news round-up

Good News

Bad News

Traveler's insurance fail

Now I understand more fully why my automated credit card payment for my Traveler's insurance failed last month. I had made an extra payment on the credit card, as I was getting close to my limit and the charge was large. I just thought the payment got delayed. It seems that was not the problem.

After the charge didn't go through, I got a letter from Traveler's saying that my automatic charges to my credit card had been cancelled, and I had to sign up for it again. I did this, specifying that I wanted the charges to made on the 20th of the month. I then got another letter from them saying my credit card would be charged on October 22 (because the 20th is a Saturday).

The charge went through today, the 19th.

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Semi-random thoughts

  • Recently I had lunch with an old friend at his office. He works for Google, and it's as wacky a place as I've heard. If I worked there I'd probably be as big as a house, with all that yummy, free food. The most amazing thing I saw was a rack where people can park their scooters. There were two scooters neatly parked.
  • Somehow I'm on the Chabad's mailing list. Oy.
  • The Browns finally won a game! After only 11 losses in a row (dating back to last season).

Micro movie review

Argo: The gripping story of the 1980 escape from Iran of the U.S. embassy employees who were not captured there. Despite some over-dramatizations and exaggerations (trucks, even police cars, can't go that fast), a fine movie.

Monday, October 08, 2012

Animal headline of the day

Woman texting while driving kills prize-winning cow

Why political movements have so much trouble

Last week I got a group e-mail asking us to say which of three times we're available for a conference call. Today I checked to see if there was a consensus. Ten people have replied. Five of us are available for each of the times.

Oy.

Recent news round-up

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My tax update

My taxes are done! My taxes are done! My taxes are done!

Sunday, October 07, 2012

Micro movie review

Arbitrage: Any resemblance between this film and reality is purely co-incidental. There isn't even anything about arbitrage in it.

Thursday, October 04, 2012

Update on my taxes

Taxes are going pretty well. It started slowly Monday, as I had difficulty (re)installing TurboTax, and then getting it to run. Their website was quite helpful in getting past the installation problem (though I did have to try their procedure twice to get it to work). But it was of little help in getting the software to run. After I tried all of their possible solutions, which did nothing, I decided to uninstall and reinstall. It was only when I went to do that did they offer me the alternative to "repair" the program--which did the trick. It should have been one of the suggestions on their "troubleshoot" page. Then I transferred the info from my 2010 return, and downloaded my state tax software. Finally I imported the data from my stock broker. This was critical, as it would take forever to type all of that stuff in--my 1099 is 24 pages long.

I resumed working on my taxes Wednesday. I organized all my documents, then started doing the income information. There were a couple of cost basis figures missing from the 1099s (one of mine, one of my wife's), but I was able to find the numbers pretty quickly. I'm not quite done with all the income items.

I'm taking today (Thursday) off to go out, and I'll start again on Friday.

Tuesday, October 02, 2012

If anyone wants me

I'm doing my taxes this week.

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Today's news round-up

Good News
Bad News

Plat du jour












I guess it means "no one's in."

Recent news round-up

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Bad News

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Monday, September 17, 2012

Recent news round-up

Good News
Bad News

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Micro movie review

The Bourne Legacy: The series is re-bourne (sorry, I couldn't help myself).

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Plat du jour--guest submission


















I guess this refers to the celtic music group from Canada.

This was found quite a while ago by Joanne.

Monday, September 10, 2012

Friday, September 07, 2012

Fairey gets probation

Shepard Fairey Is Fined and Sentenced to Probation in 'Hope' Poster Case

I have written about this a number of times, most recently here and here. I'm disappointed he got no jail time. Maybe he has learned something from all this, but I have to wonder if this will deter anyone else from doing what he did.

Semi-random thoughts

  • I am now older than my father was when he died. Hopefully I'll be at least as lucky as my mother--I've got 18 years to go to equal her longevity.
  • I always like it when the catcher throws out a runner trying to steal. Stealing is wrong.
  • Citibank now gives me the option of having the record of my ATM transaction e-mailed to me. No more little slips of paper to handle. 

Tuesday, September 04, 2012

Sunday, September 02, 2012

Micro movie reviews

The Dark Knight Rises--I think I liked it, but I'm not totally sure because, for some reason, the dialog was very hard to understand when I saw it.

Sleepwalk With Me--A snooze, mildly amusing. The sleepwalking has almost nothing to do with the rest of the film.

If anything is needed to prove the Somali "pirates" are just thugs

Somali pirates kill hostage held for 2 years as ransom demand

Saturday, September 01, 2012

Today's news round-up

Good News

Sort of Good, Sort of Bad News