Responses to this rant

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steve   Friday, 5/13/2005 6:21 PM
badbart   Friday, 5/13/2005 6:41 PM
steve   Friday, 5/20/2005 12:40 PM
badbart   Friday, 5/20/2005 2:22 PM
Older rants
June 1, 2020   Trip to the Grand Canyon (last year),
Code Talker
Mar 21, 2020   The World Famous San Diego ComicFest
and the testament to dorkness that is my cubicle
and my sad, sad little doodles
Mar 8, 2020   A return to Potterland,
Meg & Dia's Christmas album, December Darling,
some other random stuff
Feb 21, 2020   Agorafabulous!,
Emeli's amazing creations
Nov 27, 2019   David Savakerrva Volume 1
The cubicle of nerdishness
Oct 28, 2019   Art Matters, Neil Gaiman
Always Look on the Bright Side of Life, Eric Idle
Alternate Routes, Tim Powers
Disneyland - Galaxy's Edge
Oct 4, 2019   Meg & Dia, HappySad tour San Diego 09/18/19
September 21. 2019   David Bowie - Scary Monsters,
More Adventures in Leasing,
More cubicle fun,
A new doodle
September 10. 2019   The Cranberries - In The End,
The Cranberries - Something Else,
Icicle Works, Icicle Works (vinyl),
Dia Frampton, Red,
Juliana Hatfield, Juliana Hatfield Sings Olivia Newton John,
The Lemonheads, The Lemonheads,
Green Day, Insomniac ,
Flight of the Conchords, Flight of the Conchords Live in London
August 28, 2019   Heir of Ra (Maciek Sasinowski,
The Catalyst Series (JK Franks): Downward Cycle, Kingdom of Sorrow, Ghost Country
May 11, 2019   Goodbye, little friend
Nov 30, 2018   Fire of Our Fathers,
a Science Fiction Book Club rant
Nov 24, 2018   The Dinosaur Lords,
Dragon Teeth
Nov 20, 2018   My cubicle revisited, really-old ComicCon stuff, Emeli's Art, More Disney Adventures, The Zoo and Safari Park
September 9, 2018   Perimeter - an eBook thriller
September 3, 2018   Take Back the Sky Starcraft Evolution
August 11, 2018   Idaho Dunes Awesome soda Ethanol-free gas an awesome Bald Guy card Our rough dig Harry Potter Interlude story
July 21, 2018   The Cup in the Shadows (The Forbidden Powers Book 1)
June 24, 2018   Jake, Lucid Dreamer
June 13, 2018   Troll-stalking
May 23, 2018   Another badbartopia email spoofer, A sunny-day Disney adventure, Raymond E Feist book signing
May 15, 2018   A rainy-day Disneyland trip The Bassoon King
Apr 28, 2018   Down and Out in Purgatory
Apr 13, 2018   Operation Hail Storm
Mar 4, 2018   American Exodus
Jan 22, 2018   Christmas, Didn't Get Frazzled, The Sea People, The Rooster Bar, Last Burial Night, Doctor Who and the Krikkit Men
Dec 15, 2017   Mistrial, City of Death and Disneyland
Nov 14, 2017   Grace Vanderwaal - Just the Beginning
Nov 11, 2017   Tim Powers Signing at Mysterious Galaxy for Down and Out in Purgatory
November 4, 2017   Return to Disneyland, Halloween at the office, Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, The Long Cosmos Maximus One year After War Dogs, Killing Titan Daddy, Stop Talking
October 29, 2017   Bruce Campbell Signing, Hail to the Chin, Further Confessions of a B Movie Actor
October 20, 2017   Meg & Dia, Imagine Dragons in concert, 2 Years 8 months and 28 Nights
October 17, 2017   All Apologies
October 16, 2017   Thrawn
Septempber 7, 2017   The Rage of Dragons, The Lincoln Myth
August 10, 2017   The Molly Ringwalds, Dia Frampton Musical awesomeness, Beauty and the Feast
July 28, 2017   The IT Sweatshop revisited, How to Talk to Girls at Parties, American Gods and The Magicians, Rogue One, Camino Island
July 24, 2017   CRV glovebox difficulties, San Diego Comic Con rant
July 11, 2017   Beauty and the Beast at the Lyceum, Earthweeds, Sons of Neptune Book 1, Aftermath, Empire's End, If Chin's Could Kill: Confessions of a B Movie Actor
June 30, 2017   Eastwood: No Direction Home book 2
June 23, 2017   Excellent Adventures on the PCH (part 4/4) - The PCH family vacation tale concludes, my new record, record player, and Emeli's site is live!
Jun 14, 2017   A noteworthy eBook mention before I return to my vacation ranting - No Direction Home
June 9, 2017   Excellent Adventures on the PCH (part 3/4) - The PCH family vacation tale concludes...almost. More pictures of spooky old houses, trees, rocks, and other things that nobody cares about! Plus, Goonies stuff
June 2, 2017   Excellent Adventures on the PCH (part 2/4) - The PCH family vacation tale continues... And more pictures of trees and other things that nobody cares about!
May 31, 2017   Excellent Adventures on the PCH (part 1/4) - Way more detail than anyone wants about our vacation up the coast of California and Oregon. And lots of pictures of trees!
Apr 26, 2017   Resurrection America, Pizza Studio art, AmandaLynn, Emeli art, and Disney art, and Gifted
Apr 14, 2017   My San Fransisco OSI PI adventure & "Thanks for the Money: How to Use My Life Story to Become the Best Joel McHale You Can Be"
Apr 12, 2017   Neil Gaiman speaks, Norse Mythology, American Gods comic adaptation, The Magicians TV series, and Dirk Gently on TV
Feb 2, 2017   A trip to the ever-less-magical land of Disney, The Prince of Outcasts, the Whistler, and a brief mention of The Magicians.
Jan 21, 2017   An update to my nerd wall at work, Found out about Richard Thompson (Cul De Sac) being gone, A list of all the stuff (or most, anyway) I've given up to new homes, A review of Dave! and Warp, and a couple of new doodles.
Dec 23, 2016   My final visit to Potterland and a couple of doodles
Dec 11, 2016   Books and related comics, and free/cheap stuff. Not taco Bell Material, President Me, A Knight of the Seven Kingdoms, The Hedge Knight (comic), The Sworn Sword (comic) Ooma, Ringplus, Amazon prime and other money-saving stuff.
Dec 4, 2016   I'm sharing my sad doodles with the world again. They're not very good, but I'll bet they're better than your scribbles!
Nov 12, 2016   Yet another trip to The Wonderful World of Harry Potter!
Nov 7, 2016   Blathering on about a few of the books I've read recently - Spire, The Check, and Dangercide, Pirate Detective
Oct 7, 2016   Yet another Visit to Harry Potterland. Oh, and my lease-mileage calculator.
July 25, 2016   Another Visit to Harry Potterland, a new car, a new shirt, a new dog, and a whole lot of the same old complaining
May 17, 2016   Email spoofers, Phishing emails, and scammers galore!
Apr 30, 2016   Winter's Edge and a Management zombie attack
Apr 23, 2016   Harry Potter land re-visited
Apr 9, 2016   Xenia...again
Apr 2, 2016   Sing Street, Batman vs Superman, Craigslist griping
Mar 1, 2016   The Wizarding World of Harry Potter Hollywood preview, fun at work, Xenia's new song, A Vanishing Glow, Our Fair Eden, Race Wars, The Force Awakens
Jan 27, 2016   Text Wars, Books I've read... Yup, that's pretty much it
Jul 30, 2015   Xenia Martinez news Still selling stuff on eBay, Hyperbole and a Half (the book), The Path Between the Seas, Trigger Warning, In Fifty years We'll all Be Chicks
Mar 17, 2015   Selling my treasures on eBay, Hyperbole and a Half, the Long Mars, Gray Mountain, Anathem, The Golden Princess, The Given Sacrifice
Mar 12, 2015   You'll be sorely missed, Sir Terry
Jan 21, 2015   More BBC 4 radio dramatizations by Neil Gaiman & Terry Pratchett: The Amazing Maurice, Guards! Guards!, Neverwhere, Night Watch, Small Gods, Wyrd Sisters
Jan 10, 2015   JabberWocky, Neil Gaiman style!
Dec 24, 2014   The Good Omens BBC treatment
Aug 03, 2014   Every hobby has to end eventually, right?
Oct 8, 2013   Warning: Extreme Geekness ahead!
Oct 1, 2013   The Bloody Crown of iGoogle
Aug 26, 2013   Headphones at work
Aug 22, 2013   The guvmint is gonna getcha
June 25, 2013   Dweebs vs Big Bang vs IT Crowd
Jul 3, 2012   Xenia Martinez & Dia Frampton concert
Feb 24, 2012   Reading...just not much
The Reluctant Fundamentalist
Being an idiot with Lev Grossman
Jan 7, 2012   If it ain't broke...
Aug 22, 2011   non-ComicCon report 2011
A Thousand Splendid Suns
An Act of Self Defense
May 5, 2011   On Stranger Tides
On Stranger Tides
March 2, 2011   I'm a gigantic slacker...
Wild Guns
Lord of Ultima
Metin 2
Lord of the Rings Online
Dec 15, 2010   Bring out your dead!
Aug 17, 2010   San DiegoComicCon 2010
August 11, 2010   I'm not dead yet...
May 3, 2010   Hero Comics
Liberty Comics
Dr Horrible
Neil Gaiman & Sam Keith in Batman
The Guild, Felicia Day
April 27, 2010   Mean Gene Wilder! Grrr!!!
April 24, 2010   If it's not one Jihad, it's another...
April 20, 2010   The Satanic Verses
March 15, 2010   Unseen Academicals
Feblueberry 8, 2010   The un-reading shelf (from most of 2009)
Feblueberry 2, 2010   Emily the Strange, the Lost Days...a novel
Nov 25, 2009   Happy Halloween, Mom!
Nov 18, 2009   Summer Vacation in Idaho
Aug 20, 2009   San Diego ComicCon 2009
Aug 12, 2009   I'm a big, fat slacker
June 05, 2009   The networks are helping me cut back on my TV viewing
June 04, 2009   Mandy Moore's Amanda Leigh,
Chris Isaak's Mr Lucky
My name is Bruce?
and Emmy Rossum? Where am I going with this?
May 21, 2009   Randy would have really liked Fanboys...sigh
May 3, 2009   The Spring reading shelf
Apr 21, 2009   Holidays On Ice (a little late for Christmas)
Apr 18, 2009   Leviticus Cross and other Hector Sevilla comic book stuff
Apr 16, 2009   The fantastically amazing and banal Badbartopia RSS Feed
Mar 31, 2009   Neil Gaiman's Blueberry Girl
Mar 30, 2009   My Amazon mis-order turns out to be not so annoying as previously expected...
(AKA the Dr Horrible soundtrack)
Mar 23, 2009   Stephan Pastis & Richard Thompson have me looking forward to the 2009 SD ComicCon
Mar 19, 2009   Dr Horrible's Sing-Along Blog,
The Guild
Mar 08, 2009   The Wonderful Wizard of Oz comic adaptation,
Neil Gaiman's Sandman: The Dream Hunters
Mar 04, 2009   Little Brother
Mar 1, 2009   Pete & Pickles
Feb 11, 2009   She & Him
Pushing Daisies
Jan 26, 2009   The Scourge of God,
When You are Engulfed in Flames
Jan 14, 2009   On the Road = hippy nonsense
Jan 12, 2009   One-by-one, my fish have met their maker
Dec 26, 2008   My Azeroth-avoidance continues
Dec 23, 2008   Nothing to see...move along
Dec 15, 2008   New scribbles
Dec 10, 2008   The Oct-Nov-Dec reading shelf
Dec 1, 2008   Shalimar the Clown
the economic impact of the events in Mumbai
Nov 21, 2008   Star Wars: Allegiance
Nov 20, 2008   Daredevil Black Widow: Abattoir
Nov 17, 2008   Travel Team
Nov 16, 2008   A new comic adaptation of The Wizard of Oz
Nov 14, 2008   Berke's Books:
The Last Basselope
Edward Fudwupper Fibbed Big
Mars Needs Moms
Opus: 25 years
Nov 13, 2008   Return to Azeroth?
Nov 12, 2008   Goodbye, Opus
Oct 29, 2008   Halloween costumes of 2008
Project Superpowers
Oct 23, 2008   The Graveyard Book
Oct 16, 2008   Nation
Oct 10, 2008   The Joy of Programming
My foray into Ajax
Oct 9, 2008   My Saturn Scare
Opus ends
Terry Pratchett's condition
Oct 3, 2008   The Hitchhiker's Guide, Book Eoin Colfer?
Oct 2, 2008   Media master - music online
Sony builds a "better" camera
Sept 24, 2008   The September reading shelf
Sept 17, 2008   Still missing Randall
The Fish tank...again
The Graveyard Book
Sept 15, 2008 usual
The Sasquatch Dumpling Gang
Sept 9, 2008   The dearth of Opus strips
yes, I meant to say "dearth"
Sept 8, 2008   A new monitor goes bad...but it all ends happily
Sept 3, 2008   A Boy and His Dog,
Richard Corben,
H.P. Lovecraft's Haunt of Horror
Sept 2, 2008   A slightly newish look
(aka "why I will never be a graphic designer")
Aug 11, 2008   Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull in all its incarnations Mike Kunkel's re-imagining of Shazam
July 29, 2008   San Diego Comiccon 2008
July 24, 2008   Neil Gaiman
July 17, 2008   Chris Isaak!
June 30, 2008   The Woman Who Wouldn't
Legends II
Mouse Guard Fall 1152
the Jetta's latest round of repairs
fishtank overpopulation
June 10, 2008   The Reading Shelf
Fish tank jungle
Attack of the bees
June 3, 2008   Missing Randall
May 9, 2008   My French Whore
Apr 28, 2008   Fish tank fatality
Flight of the Conchords
The Dangerous Alphabet
Mar 5, 2008   Gene Wilder book signing at Borders
new fish tank
Jan 11, 2008   The Jetta Strikes back!
The Plucker
The Anubis Gates
National Treasure II
Nov 8, 2007   San Diego on Fire,
A clean break from WoW,
UCSD Extension Java I graduation (kinda)
Making Money
Dress Your Family in Corduroy and Denim
Oct 2, 2007   Back to school, Java class at UCSD
AT&T's Uverse
new sketches
Blockbuster movie pass
August 28, 2007   Mandy Moore concert!
Aug 19, 2007   ComicCon 2007 - Neil Gaiman, Iron Man and all the usual suspects
May 22, 2007   World of Spamcraft (and other spamalicious topics), forum fun...gus, the woes of being a contractor and PIRATES!!
Apr 5, 2007   I'm a conservative - bite me!
Timbaland? Dumb!
Marie Antoinette - snaggle teeth and teasing glimpes. Sweet!
John Q - a lesson about fatherhood or a liberal-propoganda film?
Mar 30, 2007   Things that make me grumpy-er,
employed again at last,
Finn and assorted other ramblings
Feb 8, 2007   The search for employment continues..and the unemployment benefits are NOT pouring in!
Jan, 22, 2007   Freed from the bondage of employment, a very brief review of a few books and films
Dec 17, 2006   Sad excuses, The Innocent Man, 1776, THe Man in High Castle, Absolute Sandman, Wintersmith, garage sale treasures: Ghost in the Machine
Aug 20, 2006   Writers of the Future XXII/Tim Powers, more movie reivews
July 20, 2006   San Diego ComicCon 2006
July 15, 2006   Superman Returns, inconsiderate morons, Peewee's Playhouse returns, my plea for more pirate movies
July 8, 2006   Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest, Wild Animal Park critters, site remodeling
Jun 27, 2006   The good, the bad and the mediocre (a bunch of movie reviews in the new forum).
June 15, 2006   Because of Romek - A Holocaust Survivor's Memoir
May 21, 2006   The DaVinci Code, Aeon Flux, Everything You Want
May 12, 2006   World of Warcrack, the Office, Coraline, my apologies...
Jan 24, 2006   Christmas Vacation 2006, Syriana, Traveling Pants, Wish You Were Here
Dec 19, 2005   Festive Neighbors, the death of Olivia, Media Misinformation surrounding Brent Wilkes/ADCS, Make Love the bruce campbell way
Nov 15, 2005   Microsoft Technet 2005 launch party, Lexmark printer problem, a bad, bad day, changing dentists.
Oct 22, 2005   Thud!, Anansi Boys, Where's my cow
Oct 18, 2005   Terry Pratchet Thud! signing, Neil Gaiman Anansi Boys signing
Oct 15, 2005   A very, very late Comiccon 2005 report.
Jun 23, 2005   The black hole of Warcraft, The Years of Rice and Salt, After the Sunset, Madagascar, Mr and Mrs Smith, Taxi.
Jun 3, 2005   All is quiet on the PM Front, War of the Worlds (the novel), Kingdom of Heaven, Sahara, Star Wars Episode III, Flight of the Phoenix
May 9, 2005   The program managers strike again, More of my horrendous sketches, Spanglish, A Lot Like Love, Elektra, The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy (the film)
Apr 9, 2005   Stuck in Corporate Hell, a few of my recent sketches, Miss Congeniality 2, Collateral
Mar 21, 2005   Revenge of the Jetta (car problems), a Newegg purchase, a few new drawings, more Opus
Feb 13, 2005   The Mail mystery solved, more of my crappy sketches, A few new photos of the girls, bill-bert (introducing the new Project Manager), sweet phone skills, Opus, Dungeons and Dragons, In Good Company
Jan 27, 2005   Mystery mail, new photos of my beautiful kids, some new sketches, an Episode 3 spoiler, Opus, Going Postal, The Three Stigmata of Palmer Eldritch, Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep, Ubik, Remember the Titans, Lemony Snicket`s A Series of Unfortunate Events, Dodgeball
Jan 7, 2005   Christmas 2004, Update to the site, Elf & King Arthur revisited, National Treasure, Opus, Blade Runner
Dec 18, 2004   A new Stephanie sketch, another Target web page goof, the SD Union Tribune confirms Greg Bear`s research for Vitals, Miramar VW proves my dealer service assertions wrong, neighborhood Christmas fun, Opus
Nov 24, 2004   More of my mediocre drawings, nw russian mail-order coins, Star Wars toys, a big green spider comes to visit, Opus, Dies the Fire, Digital fortress, The Incredibles, Twisted, Van Helsing
Nov 03, 2004   Some thoughts regarding the 2004 election, rants about the environment, a memory rebate update, new computer issues, Opus, The Lone Drow, Deception Point, Roswell season 2 on DVD
Oct 12, 2004   An interesting quiz, mal-in rebates, a parrot joke, my new computer, thoughts on frame removal, web logs, Opus, Vitals, Star Wars trilogy on DVD, Ladykillers
Sep 23, 2004   My "Heath" sketch for Mark Oakley, an update on my a PNY rebate check, the fictitious AWNA Act, Browser Issues with the site, Opus/Pickles, The DaVinci Code, Garden State (Natalie Portman), Man on Fire
Sep 11, 2004   A new drawing: "Stephanie", redneck wisdom, my salary to hourly reclassification, funny video: news from iraq, an update on my mail-in pny rebate, a new rebate through Costco, Ella Enchanted, Highlander Endgame, Princess of Thieves, The Whole Ten Yards
Aug 27, 2004   Fun with my VW Warranty, Opus, Harry Potter & The Order of the Phoenix, The Land of SokMunster, The Princess Diaries 2: Royal Wedding, Napoleon Dynamite, Hidalgo, Chasing Liberty, Out of Time
Jul 23, 2004   San Diego ComicCon 2004, the family summer vacation, Bruce Campbell, Opus, Nanny Ogg`s Cookbook, Angels & Demons, Folk of the fringe, Bourne Supremacy, i robot, Confessions of a Teenage Drama Queen, Cody Banks 2, Hellboy
Jul 19, 2004   *** PNY Rebate fun, IE Patch, Linux and socialism, liberal scum, Opus, BIM, timeline, master and commander, tad hamilton, stuck on you,cold mountain, 50 first dates, the terminal, spiderman 2, king arthur, a hat full of sky, the thousand orcs, meditations on middle earth
Jun 20, 2004   Memorial day pictures, Duplex, Mark Oakley/Heroes, Wild Animal Park Dinosaurs, B-52s concertman, Say After Tomorrow, Big Fish, Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, Eragon, A Hat Full of Sky, Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire
May 08, 2004   Pat Tillman, LOTR Toys, 13 Going on 30, Mean Girls, Tolkien Miscellany, Last Juror, Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets, Pork Tornado
Apr 06, 2004   Roswell season 1 DVD and a some other mindless drivel
Feb 19, 2004   Highlander site contest results, new downloads, princess gallery updates, lord of the rings toys, harry potter, underworld. lost in translation, the hunted, a tolkien miscellany...
Feb 09, 2004   Murder at 1600, Radio, Cheaper by the Dozen, King Arthur, Spiderman 2, Van Helsing, Harry Potter, Tolkien Miscellany, Mark Oakley, massive snow in Idaho...
Jan 28, 2004   Swat, Uptown Girls, Somethings Gotta Give, Along Came Polly, Seabiscuit, Ashley Judd Marathon, Van Helsing, Harry Potter, Science Fiction Bok Club, Nanny Ogg`s Cookbook, RA Salvatore, Mythology (Alex Ross), Fastner & Larson, Best page in the universe, etc, etc...
Jan 07, 2004   Clint`s rules, X-Men 2, Holes, Pirates, Two Towers, Freaky Friday (Haley Hudson), new drawings, Thieves` World, Playskool Star Wars, new Interest section
Jan 02, 2004   nothing all that interesting...
Dec 21, 2003   Nemo, Highlander page, Christmas vacation 2003, star wars kid
Dec 12, 2003   E.T. (Erika Eleniak), new drawings, Opus, Santa Claus 2 (Elizabeth Mitchell), Legolas toy/pics, How to Deal (Mandy Moore), Myth update, Last Samurai
Nov 27, 2003   Another Fine Myth, Elf
Nov 22, 2003   Dude, Where`s Bill & Ted
Nov 18, 2003   Not much to say
Nov 15, 2003   Disneyland, Astronaut`s Wife, Dumer and Dumber-er, Monstrous Regiment
Nov 10, 2003   Terry Pratchett, Matrix Revolutions
110103   School of Rock, Terry Pratchett signing, Darth Vader MBNA bust, San Diego fires
Aug 17, 2003   Johnny English, San Diego Comic-Con
Jun 17, 2003   Assorted ramblings
May 28, 2003   Not much to say
May 24, 2003   Almost nothing of note
May 17, 2003   Matrix Reloaded, Pirates
Mar 23, 2003   The Police, Pirates, Lord of the Rings grievances part II
Mar 16, 2003   Lord of the Rings grievances part 1
Super auld stuff   A big list of old submissions with boat loads of broken links

Monday May 9, 2005

The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy

I waited 20 years for this film to finally make it to theaters and showed up on opening night to fork over my $9 for a ticket. It was slightly disappointing, as any long-awaited movie based on a novel is apt to be, but still satisfying. The Vogons, the effects and the scenery (especially Magrathea) were spectacular. The music was effective (I felt tears welling in my eyes when the original theme kicked in during the title sequence). The casting was hit and miss. Arthur Dent was cast perfectly. Martin Freeman was low key, British and perfectly mediocre--very Dent-like. Ford Prefect's casting seemed very odd before I saw the film, and after seeing him in action, I'm still not sure that Mos Def made a good Ford. The script attempted to explain his non-British-ness in the pre-Earth-being-destroyed pub dialogue, but it still seemed an odd choice. Sam Rockwell fit the part of Zaphod physically, but I had a hard time getting past the southern/Texas accent. I felt the snobbish Zaphod was scripted as too common; I can't imagine this conversation between Sam Rockwell's Zaphod and Arthur Dent:

"Listen, you semievolved simian," cut in Zaphod, "go climb a tree will you?"
Arthr Bristled.
"Go bang you heads together, four eyes," he advised Zaphod.
"No, no," the waiter said to Zaphod, "your monkey has got it right, sir."

Which brings up another oddity in the film: Zaphod's heads. I always imagined him having two heads, each on a different neck (how else could he "bang his heads together?"), not one head below the other. The third arm gag was pretty cool. Completely digital and infrequently in play, but smooth. I was disappointed when Ford failed to be comment on it ("the extra arm really suits you, Zaphod"). And that brings us to Zooey Deschanel as Trillian. She fit the part physically (without her Elf blonde hair). But her lack of a British accent (I'm surprised the script didn't try to mold her as an American immigrant to Britain) was...distracting. Her characer also wasn't given the same intellect as the Trillians from the previous incarnations of the Guide. Her character was written as "beautiful, but brilliant" in the novels. Zooey didn't convince me that she was brilliant, just beautiful. I think this reviewer sums her up best:

Two marvels here, by universal consensus.
One: design...[blah, blah, blah]...
Two: Zooey Deschanel as Arthur's wannabe girlfriend, a porcelain American keepsake like a sparkler crossed with a cherub, so innocently sexy.

Marvin was somewhat different than I had imagined, but didn't veer too far from his predecessors; and Willow was inside the suit--how cool is that? The other GPP contraptions were very disappointing, though (there wasn't even any mention of the Sirius Cybernetics Corporation). The doors only sighed, which wasn't nearly annoying enough. Eddie, the shipboard computer, was silent, unless called upon and didn't even sing. I could go one forever...Slartibartfast was too young, Vroomfundel and Majikthise (the mice) were completely wrong, the bit with Prosser was wrong (where was the digital watch?), the Vogon poetry scene and Vogon airlock were too-truncated, the bit with John Malkovich as the leader of an alien religion (I'm sure there is a reference to the religion, if not his character, in the books, but I can't find it), yada-yada-yada... Like I said, I could go on and on. One thing the film has inspired me to do: re-read the novels again. The same thing happened after I watched the first Lord of the Rings film. I may even try the old Infocom game again. I don't intend for my opinions to dissuade anyone from seeing this film. I actually enjoyed the movie. I really did. I'll probably see it again this week. I felt the same way when Tom Bombadil was cut from The Fellowship of the Ring (among the myriad other changes)...but I still treasure the Lord of the Rings movies. I rushed out to buy the extended edition of each (after seeing each multiple times in the theater) on the day each was released.

The Guide has appeared in so many forms--books, radio, a television series, records and soon to be a major motion picture--each time with a different story line that even its most acute followers have become baffled at times. --Douglas Adams

Pointing out the deficiencies of the film version of any book is unavoidable for the borderline psychotic fan of the books. This does not mean that the movie was bad. It was just different.

Badbartopia stuff

There are a few new sketches (my first with any color, Tinkerbell, a couple of SpongeBobs and an R2D2), but not much else has changed. I'm planning to update the Douglas Adams section with Movie information, but I haven't quite made it there yet. I also have a couple of funny video clips to upload and several Opus strips to scan and upload.

I haven't really been devoting much time to reading. I picked up the Douglas Adams biography by Nick Webb, but haven't started it yet (I'm still slogging my way through The Years of Rice and Salt; it's almost as bad as reading non-fiction, but I am learning a little, assuming the "facts" of the book are genuine, so it's all good).

Do you speak Moron?

I'm probably going to get in trouble for posting the following, but I couldn't have found a better example of the chronic idiocy rampant in corporate culture if I had tried to create a fictional one. I realize that I'm beginning to sound like a broken record, but the Project Managers of my company have outdone themselves this time.

I recently received a request from the Senior Program Manager (SPM; the most senior Project Manager who gets to boss all the other "Project Managers" around) for an insignificant change to a web page. It was a simple change, so there was no problem with completing the request. The problem lies not with the execution of the direction, but with the analysis behind the direction--the change had been done at least once already and, as I have explained many times to these guys already, will be done again when the current mail recipient departs the company. I have tried to explain that the mailbox to which the web site responses are made should be a "public" mailbox that multiple people have access to (to avoid unintentionally ignoring an e-mail), but this has fallen on deaf ears. Why would anyone so obtuse be placed in a position of authority?

But that wasn't the inspiration for tonight's tirade...

I received an e-mail request a week earlier from SPM for a system change. Actually, my manger forwarded the request to me so I could review it since the system in question is one I am responsible for maintaining. This was the intial e-mail:

From: SPM
Sent: Tuesday, April 26, 2005 4:12 PM
To: MGR X (My Manager)
Subject: Event Planning Enterprise Software

As you probably know, COMPANY X is using the Event Calendar function on the Catering Software.
However, they have two small text changes that need to be made to the dialog box that is pictured below:
1) Please change the text from “In House” to “On-Site”.
2) Please change the text from “On Site” to “Off-Site”.
You don’t need to make any other changes at this time.
These are small and quick changes. Please let me know when you can have this done.


This request is moronic in several regards:
1. The check boxes in question (see here, circled in red) serve completely different functions, as I have been forced to explain repeatedly to SPM in painfully slow meetings. Just "changing the text" would obviously not have the desired result.
2. The "on-site" check box (when unchecked) is the equivalent of an "off-site" check box. Is it really that hard to follow?
3. I can't just "change the text" for the check box and have it magically start working as a flag for "off-site" events.
4. Look at the cheap shots this guy feels obligated to take ("as you probably know", "two small text changes", "You don’t need to make any other changes at this time", "These are small and quick changes"). I'm beginning to winder if you have to pass a condescension test before you are fully accepted to the dark side and become a project manager.

After getting clarification about the idiocy of these demands, my manager informed this dolt of the error of his assumptions:

From: MGR X (My Manager)
Sent: Tuesday, April 26, 2005 4:30 PM
Subject: RE: Event Planning Enterprise Software


That change wouldn’t make a lot of sense since these are check boxes (basically “yes” or “no” questions)
“On-site” refers to on-premises events if checked, somewhere else if not.
“In House” indicates the event is an internal (company sponsored) event. It has nothing to do with the location.


Any normal human being would realize that they had made a mistake, and leave it at that. But not this SPM...

From: SPM
Sent: Tue 4/26/2005 5:08 PM
To: MGR X (My Manager)
Subject: RE: Event Planning Enterprise Software
I appreciate what you are saying, AND you have to realize that the way it is currently set up doesn’t fit with their business needs.
What they need (and have requested) is a way of distinguishing between on-site and off-site events. Remember, this fits with how they are currently using the calendar. That is why they want the wording changed. Right now they are using it to indicate which events are “On-site” (in our building) and “Off-site” (not in our facility).
It is NOT important for them to record whether or not this is a company sponsored event. That is handled in another part of the process.
Remember, when it comes to requirements and business needs, the customer is always right. They are the one’s who will be using the software, and they are the one’s who will be paying for the software. (The development cost is coming out of their budget).
So, please make the change.


I've already pointed out the idiocy of his request, so further refuting the complete gibberish of his response would be pointless.But I wil point out the additional condescending comments: his use of capitalization is insulting, he incorrectly parrots what was clearly explained to him in the previous e-mail, and he orders my manager around like he's his boss (which he is clearly not).

Once again, my manager attempts to explain (in a dialect of moron) why this is a bad idea:

From: MGR X
Sent: Wednesday, April 27, 2005 8:38 AM
Subject: RE: Event Planning Enterprise Software


A guy walks into an auto repair shop and tells the manager, “I would like to put oil in my radiator instead of water.”
The manager replies, “That won’t work.” The guy’s project manager adds, “My client would like oil in the radiator. Please, just do it.”
The manager points to the sign that states, “We reserve the right to refuse service to anyone.” Knowing he is ultimately responsible for the work in his shop, the manager declines the request.

The moral of the story: clearly the customer AND the project manager are not always right.

If they need to be trained, we’ll be happy to do that. Anyone with experience in development knows that you can’t just change what a field in the database represents. It is called “referential integrity”. I have included the definition below:

A feature provided by relational database management systems (RDBMS's) that prevents users or applications from entering inconsistent data. Most RDBMS's have various referential integrity rules that you can apply when you create a relationship between two tables.

For example, suppose Table B has a foreign key that points to a field in Table A. Referential integrity would prevent you from adding a record to Table B that cannot be linked to Table A. In addition, the referential integrity rules might also specify that whenever you delete a record from Table A, any records in Table B that are linked to the deleted record will also be deleted. This is called cascading delete. Finally, the referential integrity rules could specify that whenever you modify the value of a linked field in Table A, all records in Table B that are linked to it will also be modified accordingly. This is called cascading update.

Placing the mouse over the description “In-house” or “on-site” shows the user the definition of the field.
We can hide the “In-house” check box if they would like, however it does serve a purpose in the status reporting section of the Event Calendar System.
Regarding the “on-site” check box, a check means the event is “ON-SITE”, no check means the event is “OFF-SITE”.

If you would like to discuss this with the customer, I will be happy to attend that meeting.


Yes, it was condescending and maybe even insulting, but it was justified. It would be too much to expect it all to end here, though...

From: SPM
Sent: Thursday, April 28, 2005 10:10 AM To: MGR X
Subject: RE: Event Planning Enterprise Software - a solution


In the food industry, the phrase “on-site” and “in house” mean the same thing, and therefore IT IS VERY CONFUSING TO EVERY PERSON who tries to use it. Your interface design is NOT INTUITIVE or useful to the people it is suppose to serve. Because of the high turnover in this industry, the software needs to be intuitive and fit the way they are doing business. They don’t want software that is going to be confusing or require special training.

The following is a solution that could work without changing the integrity of the database. It would still maintain the meaning of the underlying data that is stored in each field.

I would suggest replacing the tick box that is labeled “On Site” with 2 radio buttons. One radio button would be labeled “On-Site” and the other would be labeled “Off-Site”. Because they are radio buttons, only one or the other could be selected at a time. Since it is a binary (on/off) answer, the data can still be recorded in the same way, in the same field, in the database. This does NOT require a database change. It merely requires an interface change.

The tick box that is labeled “in house” could have the text label changed to “[Company Sponsored] Event”. Again, this would not change the integrity or meaning of the data. It would only make the interface clearer and more intuitive to the user. Also, because CEO can have a personal event “On-Site” or “Off-Site”, the user should be able to select this tick box with either one of their site selections.

Think about this for a while and let me know.


There was more, but that was the end of the e-mail trail that I am privy to. Be assured that SPM was reprimanded for his highly technical use of the term "tick box" as well as attacks on the "interface design" (the system design was based on the requests of the previous manager for that department). I don't know if the fact that he completely changed his request from the first e-mail to this final e-mail was pointed out. It's sad that, if we had done exactly as he ordered us to do in his initial request, the system would have been seriously horked up.

In the end, I made the retard-friendly change (is it really necessary to use a radio button with only two options to replace a checkbox?). It's never ending. I live an oddly Dilbertesque existence.

Movie Reviews


This movie surprised me. I didn't go see it in the theater because I was expecting a comedy, with Adam Sandler in a starring role, not a drama. And I didn't know that much about it. That goes to show that a good title will help sell a movie. The movie is a nutshell: A young mother (Paz Vega) is abandoned by her husband in Mexico. He leaves her and her daughter penniless, so they head to the land of opportunity, Los Angeles. She doesn't speak a word of English, but her daughter learns quickly and acts as her translator. She works various crap jobs until one day she gets hired as a housekeeper for a famous chef (Sandler) and his nutty wife (Tea Leoni). The housekeeper helps with the kids' self-esteem and busts her butt to learn English while the nutty wife is cheating on her husband and, of course, the husband falls for the housekeeper. They live happily ever after (not the wife, no love for her). It sounds sappy when I lay it all out, but it was actually pretty good, thanks to Paz Vega and Shelbie Bruce (the young actress who played her daughter). Adam Sandler is not a great dramatic actor. He doesn't have the tools to convincingly show a very broad range of emotions. Don't get me wrong, he's great comedic actor. But he should probably stick with his strengths.

A Lot Like Love

I only saw this movie because I was at the theater and nothing else was starting soon enough (and Julie wanted to see it). I have a sever disliking for Ashton Kucher. Amanda Peet is extremely cute and a decent actress, but it's hard to be convincing in a role when you're playing opposite Kelso. A brief summary of the movie: Ashton Kutcher's character flys to New York to hang out with his older brother. He sees an attractive punkish girl at the airport and manages to hook up with her during the flight in the restroom, but she was only out for rebound nookie, so he's out of luck. But...he manages to run into her repeatedly in that tiny little hamlet of New York and they get to know one another (she teases him and gets his phone number so she can see if he's still a loser at the culmination of his five-year plan. TIme goes by, she ends up calling him, they do stuff, the seperate, the get back together...repeat. Finally, they end up together and live happily ever after. Another sappy story that really was sappy. Blech. The only redeeming quality was Amanda Peet's cuteness.


This film got such horrid reviews that I avoided seeing it in te theaters. I'm sure the association with that massive crap-fest Daredevil didn't help, either. But it was better than I expected (then again, my expectations couldn't have been much lower). The requisite summary: Jennifer Garner is a cold ruthless assassin, Elektra. She was raised by some weird British/Buddhist monk school looking for the next chosen one who will do something (never made clear). Elektra has too much rage (anger leads to the Dark Side, you know) and is booted from school. She inadvertently gets to know one of her targets before she finds out that she's supposed to whack them, can't do it and ends up saving them from other assassins. The young girl she saves turns out to be the current potential chosen one. She saves her, finds out the whole thing was a test by her British-Buddhist mentor and is accepted back into the fold (I think. I can't actually remember how the film ends). I actually managed to watch the deleted scenes when this one was over. Ironically, one of the deleted scenes was Afflak appearing to Electra in a dream. Gee, I wonder why they cut that out of the film? The special effects were silly, the bad guys' abilities were too far-fetched and the whole British guy at a Buddhist monastery was weird.

Tell me to shut up or, if you're really smart, how right my opinions are. So far, 2 people (other than me) have had something to say.

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