Sunday, June 29, 2008
Saturday, June 28, 2008
In the interest of full disclosure, I should probably add I thought ET was overrated, and even though Citizen Kane was groundbreaking in its camera work and storytelling, I thought it was kind of boring, too. So when it comes to movies, I guess I'm like the guy in the old joke who said the radio was wrong, "There's not one car going the wrong way on the freeway, there are hundreds."
More From the Anchorage Daily News About the Exxon Valdez Punitive Damage Award. Not Mentioned: Exxon CEO Retired With $400 Million Package
For Exxon, delay was rewarding
$5 billion -- Amount the jury said Exxon should pay in punitive damages for its Alaska oil spill.
14 -- Years Exxon spent appealing the case before it was finally resolved.
50% -- Reduction in the jury award that Exxon won from the federal appeals court.
90% -- Reduction in the jury award that Exxon won from the U.S. Supreme Court.
$110 million -- Amount of the final award Exxon will pay to itself, thanks to a once-secret settlement of other spill claims with Seattle seafood processors.
1 year -- Time it would have taken Exxon to earn enough profit to cover the $5 billion award when it was handed down in 1994.
5 days -- Time it will take Exxon to earn enough profit to cover the final award set by the Supreme Court.
5.9% -- Annual interest rate Exxon will pay on the award covering the 14 years of appeals.
12% -- Minimum annual amount Exxon earned as it held onto the money due Alaskans during those 14 years.
$40 billion -- Exxon's profits in 2007.
Friday, June 27, 2008
Anyhoo, I signed up for paperless billing, and I never got a bill, paperless or otherwise. Checking their website, the statement dates were "Unavailable". I made two payments, and when I went to make the third, I noticed that I owed more than I had the month before on this interest free balance. It turns out that I was late and they had charged me $35.00.
I double checked my e-mail including the trash folder, and they really never had sent me a statement. I called them this morning and their customer rep told me they could make an adjustment as a courtesy, but that they would never ever do it again.
I bought airline tickets today, too. Also irritating.
But then we went for a 40 mile bike ride scoping out the route for our century, and that was pretty cool. I had a new water bottle and a hydrating pack from father's day, so I was very well hydrated which is sort of unusual for me. Then, at Costco I had a sample of zipfizz, and now I have 22,000% of the daily recommended allowance of vitamin B-12 coursing through my urine.
Thursday, June 26, 2008
Like a wheel within a wheel
Never ending or beginning,
On an ever spinning wheel
As the images unwind
Like the circles that you find
In the windmills of your mind
Exxon Oil Spill Punitive Damages Award Cut in Half, and Then By Another 80%, Outrageous Factoid and Then One Judge's Dissent
"In light of Exxon's decision to permit a lapsed alcoholic to command a supertanker carrying tens of millions of gallons of crude oil through the treacherous waters of Prince William Sound, thereby endangering all of the individuals who depended upon the sound for their livelihoods, the jury could reasonably have given expression to its 'moral condemnation' of Exxon's conduct in the form of this award." Justice John Paul Stevens ~From the Anchorage Daily News 6/26/08
Wednesday, June 25, 2008
*Chinglish (slang) is a portmanteau of the words Chinese and English and refers to either (a) English interspersed with Chinese language errors
Tuesday, June 24, 2008
Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.
According to the Atlantic Monthly this month, our ability to think at all is being replaced by the internet's easy access to a veneer of erudition and the pithy quote.
I finally had my preliminary consultation with my supervisor about my route. It looks like it will be longer. You can imagine how that made me feel.
Sunday, June 22, 2008
Today I called someone at church a suck-up because she was telling the pastor how moving the sermon was, and citing examples of things he'd said.
She told me that she didn't let her kids use the word "suck-up" in their house. "Ha," I said, "this isn't your house, this is church!"
Saturday, June 21, 2008
A young woman was telling me today that roses were not a good symbol of love. They're demanding, they fade, and the thorns are painful. Potatoes, she thought were more appropriate. I think she's just wrong. Start with the way roses are open and beautiful, and potatoes are skulking furtively underground.
She said you can leave potatoes in the dark, and come back months later, and they'll still be good for you. In the first place leaving something in the dark for months isn't love, that's kidnapping. But if the potato is loyal, that's not love, either. The potato represents Golden Retrievers.
Friday, June 20, 2008
McClatchy recently announced they were laying off 14oo people, including 35 from the News here in Anchorage. Apparently, if they're sad, we all have to be sad. The story also pointed out that this is almost the latest in the year we've gone without without getting above 70°.
Really, though, people rarely move to Anchorage for the heat. Nope, our catchphrase, and this is almost true, is, "It's cold, but it's a dry cold."
Thursday, June 19, 2008
Well, Of Course, I Wouldn't Know, But on the Other Hand, It's Almost Bedtime and I Still Don't Have a Post
Or, are we really so insanely secure that in mocking ourselves we're really mocking everybody else that doesn't see it?
Wednesday, June 18, 2008
Today after work, I rode back to Main Tree St, which is a street in the same sense that Niagara Falls is a stream, and rode up it to the top. It's much easier when you're not in the middle of a gluttonous binge. The girlish whimpering on the way down is still pretty annoying, though.
Monday, June 16, 2008
Sunday, June 15, 2008
The Weak, The Sick, The Old: They Make Easy Prey, But Now That I've Read This Post, I Realize They Don't Always Make Up Funny Stories About It
While they discussed where they wanted to go next, a small portion of the sky, right above Rich''s flashing strobe headlight started to whirl in time with it. They rode off again, while I struggled to get up on my bike. When I caught up with them again, where they were waiting for me, again, I told them I had maybe twenty minutes before my migraine kicked in. I told them I'd be fine riding home by myself, but true friends they escorted me home.
Saturday, June 14, 2008
Friday, June 13, 2008
Thursday, June 12, 2008
I've started reading Apathy, again, a book about a man who doesn't care about anything. There was a hiatus because someone had unplugged my bedside lamp. The reviewers aren't wild about it. They're like the boys in the Sultans of Swing that don't like the band because, "It's not what they call rock and roll." Apparently it's not what they call absurd.
Speaking of books, David Sedaris has gotten some flack recently because sometimes when he's telling a story, he exaggerates. I think that happens sometimes. For all we know, maybe the cyclops was just squinting. Do you think it means anything that this is the second time I've mentioned the cyclops in the last couple of years? Me neither.
It never even crossed my mind that this bit of news would mean anything to me other than how nice it would be for Rich to have somebody competent carrying his route on his day off. But this morning I found out that the carrier leaving the parcel post route had left our station a few months ago for the greener pastures of parcel post. But now he's coming back. I'm not the kind of guy who would ever talk bad about another person, but he laughs more than any unhappy person I've ever met. And not just some decorous little simper, either. It's like a jackhammer heard a joke, and my head is just dainty and resonant enough to shatter. And then he laughs ha ha ha, and then ha, ha, ha, and then some poorly chosen obscenities, and then ha, ha, ha. hah, hah, ha, ha. Pretty annoying, huh? Now imagine it at a hundred and five million decibels, for 8000 hours straight.
Luckily, Zoloft and noise canceling technology working together have made me an amiable member of the Get Along Gang, so it's all good. lol, ha, ha, ha, ha
*T for carrier technician, the person who carries a route on the regular's day off
Wednesday, June 11, 2008
This afternoon, Karen was reading an article in one of her nursing magazines about pain. Her pain doctor has begun to suspect that she's using her meds for other than pain management. The article said that doctors and nurses were just awful at guessing how much pain their patients were in. The article gave a long list of signs that patients might be abusing their drugs. Karen has not done any of them. Everything, every thing, about her health care is just so infuriating.
Tuesday, June 10, 2008
That's not how we do things at the PO.
Finally he found a NASCAR-watching, oil changing mama, and it wrenched his world (unless I think of a spark plug or tune-up metaphor in the next few minutes).
His brother gave the first toast at the reception and then the maid of honor stood up and wished that their "love run as smoothly as a Chevy big block."
Monday, June 09, 2008
Did Rush Limbaugh, really say that decorated war hero, John McCain, isn't a man? What a jerk; what a drug abusing, draft dodging jerk.
I was just checking a site in Cambridge, MA that gives the rules for outlining to see if I had to come up with a third item, or if I could just let this sad little post go. People from all over the world have accessed the site. They have little flags representing each country, including someone from Red Sox Nation.
Friday, June 06, 2008
Tuesday, June 03, 2008
Monday, June 02, 2008
Yesterday, as you may know, I rode 100K on my skinniest tires. Because they're not only skinny, but really high pressure, they sent every little bump in the road directly into me. In fact, it was so heptic that tomorrow I'm going to put the other tires back on.
Sunday, June 01, 2008
I'll probably have some pictures later. I'll post them if I don't look to geeky. Except...I just reread the sentence about the iPod.