Category Archives: Uncategorized

April is National Poetry Month

This year for National Poetry Month, I am once again going to attempt to write 30 poems in 30 days. However, I’m not likely to post all of them.

There will be a poem posted every day of April at Generations of Poety – The eZine for Genealogists. None of these poems will have been written by me, but they will all have been selected by me, as I am the editor of this new poetry e-zine.

Public Displays of Affection

Public Displays of Affection

should cease being gross
after junior high.

I enjoy holding her hand in public;
laying my lips on hers;
giving and receiving
a neck massage
on a park bench.
These should not be privileges
I somehow earn.

I’m not talking about the obscene.
But if you’re comfortable
seeing me and her
you should remain comfortable
if it’s him and him.

If you’re not, seek help.
It’s your problem.
Not theirs.

Metric System: Odi et Amo

This entry originally appeared on December 30, 2004
. I am running a repeat because I’ve received complaints about the lack of posts here, and running repeats is an easy fix.


11.27 ≠ 12. Not in any mathematical universe I am aware of.

You might think, “What’s a mere .73? No one in their right minds would complain about so small a difference. But the difference is significant, trust me.

What am I talking about? Soda cans. The metric system steals .73 ounces from the loyal soda drinker. How? Simple. 1/3 of a liter = 11.27 ounces. It’s as close as they can get to the standard 12 oz US can in the metric system with a “logical” metric unit. They could have used .35 liters, which is 11.835 ounces, or even .36 liters, which is 12.173, which would have gifen the metric consumer a benefit. But neither 7/20 of a liter, nor 9/25 of a liter really make any sense. So they used 333 ml, or 1/3 of a liter.

These soda cans look small. If there was a six pack of 11.27 ounce cans next to a six pack of 12 ounce cans, I doubt there’s anybody on this earth who would buy the 11.27 ounce cans. (Assuming the price per ounce was equivalent.)

Sure…it’s kind of nice to know that 1 sixpack is exactly equivalent to a 2 liter bottle, but that’s about the only thing that can be said in its favor. (And the 2 liter bottle is a strange anomaly in the US…one of the few things we buy in metric units)

2 liters, by the way, is 67.628 Ounces. A US sixpack is 72 ounces. So there’s 4.372 extra ounces of soda in every US sixpack compared to a European Metric sixpack.

The significance of this difference was easily detectable on the grocery store shelves of the British Caribbean island I recently vacationed at by one fact alone: They sold beer in 12 oz cans. Your loyal beer drinker will absolutely refuse to accept anything less. Soda drinkers are forced to suffer.


* Multiplying and dividing by 10 is so easy.
* The French Revolutionary Calendar is a thing of beauty

Schicksalstag and the World Press

November 9th and 10th are the anniversary of several events in World History, most prominently the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989 and in 1938, Kristallnacht (sometimes referred to as Pogromnacht), which is often looked at as the start date for The Holocaust.

In past years I have done a comparison of the results for Google News searches on several key phrases. (I performed the searches last year, and recorded the information, even though I didn’t create a post. If anyone really wants to see them, I will share them.)

This year’s results are interesting foremost because this is not a major anniversary of either event.
“Kristallnacht” OR “Pogromnacht” = 648 results
“Berlin Wall” = 660 results

[Note: In past years I conducted searches on some other phrases which I am not bothering with this year.]

This doesn’t really indicate that the press has finally found the balance that I wished for when I began this annual accounting. It means that Google News has found a more diverse selection of news sources.

It’s possible to limit one’s search on Google News to the location of news sources.

Limiting the results to USA news sources
“Berlin Wall” = 355 results
“Kristallnacht” OR “Pogromnacht” = 166 results

There is definitely still a marked difference in results for the American press. A difference that appears to be counterbalanced in the opposite direction by the non-American press.

Three Things Meme

I wrote this post two years ago, and it’s sat in my blog’s drafts folder since then. It’s time to release it to the world!

Blind Lemming Chiffon participates in his first meme.

Rules: Post 3 things you’ve done that you believe nobody else on your F-list has done. Indulge in remorse if someone calls you out on a listed item.

Obviously, this meme began on LiveJournal, or somewhere else with a “Friends-list”. We will reinterpret this to mean any reader of this blog. Yes, that’s you.

This seems to be the inverse of the popular drinking game, “I Never” (Where you proclaim something you’ve never done, and anybody else who has done it, has to drink.) So, if one of my readers has done one of the below, let me know, so I can imbibe the proper amount of alcohol.

1) I’ve read over 1500 books in a 12-month period. (1509 in First grade, which is actually a 9-month period, so I am being generous. I know I participated in the Summer Reading Program at my local library the summer after 1st grade and read an additional 100 books. These books weren’t long. I was in first grade.)

2) Played for an entire season on an undefeated baseball team, while striking out every at bat. (Optimist Baseball. I think I was in 3rd grade. Luckily there were others on my team who were better athletes.)

3) Knew what a catheter was from first-hand experience prior to age 18.

Archon 34 – Schedule

Archon is this weekend – October 1-3. I thought I would post my planned activities, in case any friends or stalkers wished to find me. I am not yet a writer behind a panel desk; just a fan attending the con. However, I did enter the Archon Writer’s Contest.

Friday – October 1

10 AM (if I manage to get to the con that early) — Researching Historical and Fantasy Novels – Geneva
11:10 AM — Different types of publishing and how to choose the right market – Zurich
12:20 PM — find lunch somewhere
1:30 PM — Opening Ceremonies – Matterhorn
2:40 PM — Filk Writer’s Workshop – Davos
3:50 PM — Wander around con — maybe go to dealer’s room — art room — grab dinner
6:10 PM — Writer’s Workshop – Poetry – Zurich
7:20 PM — Filk Concert in the Round – Matterhorn
8:30 PM — grab dinner if I didn’t manage to do it earlier
9:40 PM until I collapse — Open Filk – Davos

Saturday – October 2

9-11 AM — **
11:10 AM — Paranormal Plotting Writers Workshop (2 hours) – Zurich
1:30 PM — Writer’s Workshop – Editing and the Necessary Art of Revision
2:40 PM — Archon Writer’s Contest Critique Interviews – Zurich
3:50 PM — Twitter, Facebook, New Media and Marketing – Basel
(or, if I want to risk spending money, the Charity Auction – Matterhorn
5 PM – 7 PM — **
8 PM – get in line for seating at the Masquerade
9 PM – Grande Masquerade – Versailles
After the Masquerade until I collapse – Open Filk – Davos

Sunday October 2
1:30 PM – Luke Ski Concert – Matterhorn
2:40 PM – Filk in the Round Concert – Matterhorn

** – I will be sitting behind a “Fan Table” handing out fliers for the USS Discovery, a local SF/Fantasy fan organization

For St. Louis Baseball fans (for Coloradoans and Bostonians, too)

Yes…it is all but certain…within the next few days we will be eliminated mathematically from the playoffs.

Those disconsolate fans upset with the way the Cardinals collapsed, and who once again are swearing they will never root for the Cardinals again — read my post from last year.

St. Louis, Boston and Colorado are each adding another year to their streaks of avoiding the annual Baseball Vacuum Cleaner.
If I had to guess, it looks like Pittsburgh and Seattle are this year’s Hoover Award winners. Nothing unusual about that in either city. However, the season isn’t over.

I know. Bragging about not finishing last place isn’t exactly what every fan dreams about. However, we haven’t finished last since 1918. Boston hasn’t finished last place since 1933. And Colorado hasn’t done it yet (give them time.) Every other team has done it at least once since 1973.