31 January 2008

Latest AIDS News

File this latest news from Switzerland under WTF?!:
The Swiss National AIDS Commission said patients who meet strict conditions, including successful antiretroviral treatment to suppress the virus and who do not have any other sexually transmitted diseases, do not pose a danger to others.
Charlie Gilks, director of AIDS treatment and prevention at the World Health Organization, thinks this might be a tad bit irresponsible:
He said WHO was concerned that the Swiss proposal could be misinterpreted to imply that everybody who is on treatment can have unprotected sex.

"It may be fine for Switzerland, it may be fine for a few other countries who have similar small numbers of patients who are very carefully followed up," said Gilks. "But from our point of view globally, we are not going to be changing our recommendations."
But I tend to agree with the following:
"Not only is (the Swiss proposal) dangerous, it's misleading and it is not considering the implications of the biological facts involved with HIV transmission," said Jay Levy, director of the Laboratory for Tumor and AIDS Virus Research at the University of California in San Francisco.
In other words, don't be a dumbass! Either practice abstinence or, if you are going to have sex, use a condom each time every time.

30 January 2008

Say A Little Prayer

I don't know in what god you believe. I don't know in what you place your faith. I don't know to whom you pray.

Whatever your spiritual calling (or non-calling) happens to be, my household could really use whatever positive energy you can send this way.

Thank you in advance.

29 January 2008

The End Of A Disturbing Ad Campaign

Kudos to Wendy's for ending its appetite-killing, red-pigtailed commercials. Of all of the fast food restaurants out there, Wendy's is my strong Number Two after Chipotle ...

(... mmm ... Burrito Bowl ...)

*wipes drool from chin*

... but their commercials almost turned me away.


I'm glad to see that they're righting an egregious wrong and focusing on their delicious food instead of some stomach-turning gimmick.

Now, if only a certain other company would rethink its commercials, all might be well on D.C. airwaves.

24 January 2008

Brain ... Melting ... Urge To Kill ... Rising ...

So, in the last twenty minutes, I was subjected to four ... count them - FOUR ... Koons Toyota commercials. (Two sets of two. BACK TO BACK. I know you feel my pain.) Now it was bad enough that I had to endure Krystal Koons' raspy, inflection-free voice on WTOP every five minutes during my rush hour drives to Chantilly and back. But to have to see her emotionless, android-like, CGI face FOUR TIMES IN TWENTY MINUTES is more punishment than a death row inmate (or Lindsay Lohan) should have to bear.

Major local television stations, please ... PLEASE ... stop this madness. It's bad enough that The CW runs those horrid "Law Offices of Peter G. Angelos, PC" commercials. (Peter Angelos. Oh the gall.) They can be forgiven because ... well, because they're The CW and they need whatever revenue flow they can find. But FOX5? Shame on you.

18 January 2008

Cloverfield - The Spoiler-Free-ish Review

Okay. I witnessed the event of the year last night. (Hey! It's only January! Settle down over there!) How was it, you might be wondering.

Let me start by stating that I was early. Very early. Disturbing geeky fanboy early. First one in line early. I didn't plan or want to be; it just happened that events worked it that way for me. After waiting for *mumble* hours, I finally grabbed my seat.

I hate commercials at the theater. Can I just tell you that? I can understand sitting through them for free television. (You know, the kind you get with your rabbit ears? The kind that won't work after this goes into effect?) But I'm paying a pretty penny to sit and watch movies in a movie theater. Ixnay ethay ommercialscay. I figured we're close enough for me to share that. Thanks.

But to the movie.

Oh, another thing. I am seriously unnerved by people who actually try to be first in line at things like this. These are the same people who will spend hours debating the damage points of a Dark Mage who possesses the mystica ... whatever. It's just a movie and you will get a seat. Calm the fuck down, dork.

Huh? Oh. Right. The movie.

By the way. I may have been early enough to be first in line. But I wasn't first in line. Or second. Or third. I was seventh. So suck it.

Anyway. The damn commercials are over and the trailers begin. Generally, I enjoy trailers. Sure some ... okay, most ... of them are crap and some of them over-sell their movie. It's an art, making trailers. The prime example is the trailer for Cloverfield - the first one, shown before Transformers. It is the only trailer I've ever seen where my only reaction was "What the fuck was THAT?!" That's how all trailers should be. The trailers we saw tonight? If you watched I Am Legend in the theater, you've seen these trailers already.

What was I talking about? Movie. Right.

Ooo ... except for one trailer. A teaser for the new Star Trek movie was shown. Thirty seconds of the USS Enterprise under construction. Which is what the text on the screen said - "UNDER CONSTRUCTION". Like the movie still is. Witty, that J.J. Abrams.

I still haven't told you anything about the movie, have I? Hmm, let's see what I can say without really saying anything.

I didn't view it as "America's Godzilla", as Mr. Abrams had envisioned. This movie didn't have the underlying social commentary that Godzilla had. (And if it did, I completely missed it. I certainly didn't get the connection to 9/11 that some people had been suggesting.) The monster was also very cat-and-mouse, as the director said in interviews it would be. The big reveal didn't come until almost the end of the movie, and even that left viewers wanting more. (A cheap trick to ensure a sequel, perhaps?)

Also, if Blair Witch Project made you motion sick or gave you a headache, you should take something before seeing this movie. The camerawork didn't bother me too much.

Did I like it? Eh ... I wasn't blown away by the movie, but I'd see it again. There were some things in it that I really wish had been different. I believe that the film makers could have impressed the same sense of intimacy and confusion on the movie watchers without using the "handheld recorder" device. To me, it made the movie seem very amateur and a little hard to follow. Additionally, I was so annoyed by some characters that I wished they died much earlier and in extremely painful ways. But they didn't. (I suppose that's true in real life, too.)

I would also like to add that if you're billing this as a "giant monster beats down New York City like Ike Turner beat down Tina" movie, then I expect to see more destruction as it's happening, not the aftermath of the destruction. While character investment is a good thing in most movies, no one really gives a flip about the characters in a monster movie. Characters in movies like this are expendable, like EMI employees (ZING!); it's all about the monster and what destruction said monster inflicts on humanity.

There were a lot of very cool and extremely tense moments, enough to justify a second viewing by me. The monster (Mr. Grumpy Pants, or MGP, as some sites call it) is pretty wicked. Some of the scenes made me gasp. Out loud. And I was rather satisfied with the ending.

It isn't everything the hype has made it out to be, but I do recommend that you see it. (Preferrably on the Big Screen.) Then come back here and share your thoughts in the comments section.

14 January 2008

HGTV Change The World Communities - The Results

HGTV has announced the winners of its Change The World contest. Thanks to all who voted ... Anacostia made the list!

You now have the opportunity to volunteer at the efforts chosen for Anacostia. More information on those efforts can be found here.

Elevator Etiquette

Elevators are a necessary evil. We all have to use them at some point and none of us are terribly excited about sharing such close quarters with complete strangers. That said, please show some respect to your fellow riders by showing the following courtesies.

  1. Do not fart on the elevator. Ever.
  2. Hold the door for those coming in behind you. Immediately walking to the back and looking at the floor does not abdicate you of this. You aren't the only one who has to use this thing, you selfish prick.
  3. Unless you have some physical disability or limitation, do not take the elevator for trips of fewer than two floors. It pisses people off. Really.
  4. Save those disturbing personal conversations for other small enclosed areas ... like your office.
  5. Your cell phone won't work in the elevator. Put it away.

Your friends, coworkers, and other assorted persons thank you in advance.

11 January 2008

A Quick Vent

I might have made different decisions if I knew then what I know now. I might not have tethered myself so solidly to this rock. I might have left myself a little breathing room. I might have given myself options.

But I didn't know and I made the best decisions I could for the way things were. Things seemed so eternal then. Life seemed set then. Choices seemed like such a given then. Going "all in" seemed like a smart move then.

I do not regret the choices made. I am not sad about the way things are now, although I do still cry sometimes. I do not wish that things had turned out other than they are; life happens the way it is supposed to happen despite our best efforts to will it differently.


Actually, I would probably make the same decisions if I were given a do-over.

But sometimes the noose feels so tight and I start to second-guess myself again.

08 January 2008


For a company that promotes its products as more secure than certain other products, this certainly doesn't bode well. It seems as though a crack has appeared in the dam. It will only be a matter of time before a flood ensues.

Get ahead of the curve here, Great And Powerful One, lest you become as He Who Shall Not Be Named.

07 January 2008

A Question Posed

It was a simple, common question. We have all asked it at some point or another in our lives. Answered positively, it can fuel a disappointment or feed an ego. Answered to the negative, it can face regret or relief. Thus is the wily nature of the question.

In giving an answer to the question, I would be transferring the burden from one to many. We have so much care in our lives as it is; there is no need to add to the load. And when it comes to certain aspects of my life, I would rather prevent the boat from rocking. It is a flaw of mine. I know that is not necessarily a valid reason. I know it is a crappy copout of an excuse. For better or worse, however, it is my gut reaction and the course I have taken.

Though I suppose that if the question were formed differently or if I were pressed to answer, I would yield.

But if we were being completely honest with ourselves, the question would not have been asked in the first place ... because you already know the answer.

06 January 2008

Happy Election Year

With the Primary season having begun last week, I am serving a friendly reminder for all District residents to vote this year. It is true that D.C. votes count about as much as legal advice for Britney Spears, but it is your civic duty and there are a great many people in this world who do not have such luxuries.

01 January 2008

New Year, New Look

Happy New Year 2008, everyone.

The turn of a new year (and hopefully a turn of fortunes) has prompted me to change the ol' blog site a little. Nothing fancy, just a fresh coat of paint and some minor rearranging. I've been playing with the layout for a few days now and I think it's just about right. What do you think?