April Fools' Day

... got started early this year, if you are on the internet, and have friends and associates around the globe, because April Fools' Day started today!

Fun all around... I'm looking forward to seeing what's on the web tomorrow :-).

But I'll probably be too busy with my own jokesters. They look to me to be plotting something...

If you don't hear from me in two weeks, have the police dig up my yard, lol!!


I've survived a ZOMBIE attack!!!

It's a standing joke in our home that Mom is always protected by the security phone ... a very useful device, to keep the masses of children in my house in line. [I use it as a martial arts weapon ... "security phone - YAAAAAHHHHH!", thrown like a throwing star.]

Well, tonight, I discovered the limits of the security phone.

It's been pretty chilly here lately, and someone's coming over in the next few days to haul off the trash that needs to go to the dump.

So, I look around for everything that needs to go, and tell the children to move the old tires that were on the edge of the property [a failed project - don't ask], and a few pallets that were near them, over to the pile of trash.

When they all come in, they are chilled to the bone, and look over at me, who has been supervising, in a warm, toasty house.

I saw the gleam in their eyes... and realized, too late, what was about to happen.

They turned into FROZEN ZOMBIES - and all proceeded to attack me at once ... touching my [warm] skin with their [!!FROZEN!!] hands.

I tried holding them off with "Security phones [I had 2 in hand] - YAAAAAHHH!!!"

But it didn't work!!... There were too many!!... Coming in at all angles!!

My threats bounced off frozen ears, and they giggled madly as I screamed at the frigid fingers that stuck themselves to my [warm] flesh.

Covered by a pile of [!!FROZEN!!], giggling zombie children, my neck, arms, and even legs were given a taste of the outside temperature. (I successfully kept them out from under my clothing... a small, but significant, victory for me.)

Let's just say that I was yelling "YAAAAAHHHHH!!" for an entirely different reason than usual :-/.

That's okay, though... I'm going to buy a slingshot and some extra phones for ammo... Maybe a heavy repeater trank gun... I'll be able to hold off more next time!! (And, if all else fails, a little Ex-Lax in the 'ole hot chocolate will keep them in line, Then they'll be yelling, "Bring me my brown pants!!", lol!)


Lies, Bad Lies, and...


Here, in all their glory, are real time world statistics about our world:

Worldometers - world statistics updated in real time


And, How's *Your* Day Going?

In the "Truth is stranger than fiction" file...


Scientific Scrutiny vs. Belief



Yesterday's Weather ...

was something else. It started out as an overcast day, maybe some rain, and from there, turned into a crazy-weather kind of day.

I went out to pick up a few things, when it began to rain. Of course, my eldest called me on my cell. I picked up the phone.


"It's raining."

"Yep. And long before you were conceived, I went out without you worrying about me."

"But it wasn't raining then."

"Don't sweat it, I'm not so mean that I'll melt when the rain hits me."

"Ha, ha... just be careful, Mom!"

"I always am. Bye."

I hang up the phone and shake my head. First it was my parents, now it's my children... and an all-too-short period where I was considered an adult, and competent to deal with the rain, for pity's sake!

As I head on down the road, it begins to rain harder... and hail starts to fall... the wind picks up, and now I'm concerned about whether I'm going to need a new windshield. The wind is driving the wind so hard, that there is almost zero visibility. All I could do is slow down to a crawl, like the other cars on the road with me.

Fortunately, one of my favorite gas places was up ahead, on the right, so I pulled in [it was on the list of things to get].

The wind and rain got progressively worse. Even under the canopy of the pumps, the rain was being driven by the wind so hard that you could barely get out of the car.Natures' fury was totally breathtaking. I had to wait ten minutes before it subsided enough to swipe my card and pump my gas. And when I did get out, I was soaked to the skin in less than thirty seconds [the time it took to swipe my card, take off the gas cap, put the nozzle in the pump and set it to autofill, and hop back in the car]. And this was under a canopy!!

Thankfully, about another ten minutes after I started pumping my gas [at $3.01/gal, thankyouverymuch... hooray!], the storm subsided, to being merely rain.

The weird, Twilight Zone Part?

I get back home after all that, and sign into Twitter. One of the people that I'm following is twittering about how he's got hail on his lawn after a storm... but he lives on the West Coast, in Los Angeles!! And, to top it off, it's at about the same time that I was dealing with my hailstorm!! Pretty creepy... identical weather on both coasts, three thousand miles apart, at roughly the same time?!?

As Arsenio Hall used to say, "Things that make you go, 'Hmmmmm....'"


Getting Children To Sleep ... ARRRGH!!

[Ok, it's not a showtune, but it IS from a musical animated movie!
Sung to the tune of "Somewhere Out There"]

Somewhere out there...
beneath the pale moonlight...
Someone's thinking children
will go to sleep tonight.

Somewhere out there...
someone's saying a prayer...
That their meds will kick in soon
And children will sleep right there [pointing]...

And even though we know
How very wrong we were to hope
It helps to know that there are others
Knotting that same rope*

And when the night wind starts to sing a lonesome lullaby
It scares me to think they are sleeping with one open eye!

Somewhere out there
Prozac can see us through...
Then, we'll get some sleep

Somewhere out there
Out where
Kids sleep true!

*['when you reach the end of your rope, tie a knot in it and hold on!']


Happy PI Day!!

Today is Pi Day!!!

To Quote PiDay.org

Pi, Greek letter (π), is the symbol for the ratio of the circumference of a circle to its diameter. Pi = 3.1415926535... Pi Day is celebrated by math enthusiasts around the world on March 14th.

What will you do to celebrate Pi Day?

At 1:59, we will be eating blueberry pie, and talking about Pi, maybe sing some songs about it :-)!!



Are You Addicted To The 'Net?

Of course, if you have to ask, you probably are }:->.

However, if there's any question... here's an oldie but goodie:

Are You Addicted to the 'Net?


If You Are Feeling Like Your Life Is Out of Control...

Take a look at this link:
Our World - Microscopic to Universal

It helped me to put everything into proper perspective :)


PSA: Dude, Where's My Tax Check?


Q: I filed my tax return early because I knew I would be getting a refund. How can I find out where it is?

A: If you have a computer, go to www.irs.gov and click on "Individuals." Then click on "Where's My Refund?" and you'll be taken to the IRS refund locator where you type in three pieces of information -- your Social Security number, filing status (married filing jointly, married filing separately, single, head of household, qualified widow/widower) and the amount of the refund you expect rounded off to the nearest dollar. You will get information on the status of your refund and what steps you need to take, if any, other than waiting.

If you don't use a computer, you can go through the same process by phone at 800-829-1954.

Refunds typically take six to eight weeks if you made a paper filing... a week less if you asked for direct deposit into your bank account. If you filed electronically, typical turnaround time is three weeks.

From: Nancy Dunnan is a financial adviser and author in New York City. Her latest book is How to Invest $50 - $5,000 (HarperCollins).

You can subscribe to the newsletter I got this from here


For The SEO geeks...

Results of a 'long-tail' search...




For The Pilots, Wanna-Be Pilots, and...

all-around curious people... check this out:

360 degree image of an Airbus cockpit . I especially recommend the full screen version. It is really cool... When you close in, you can see the names on the buttons and everything!!

And, if you like the whole 360 degree picture thing, go to the main page, and poke about... there are more pictures of the press conference, and the different areas for the First Class, Business Class, and Economy class passengers. Fun to play with!

Today's Astronomy Picture of the Day:

Hubble Space Telescope archival image data has been reprocessed to create this alternative look at the well-known galaxy. The newly developed processing improves the visibility of details otherwise lost in overwhelming glare, in this case allowing features of the galaxy's dust lanes to be followed well into the bright central region.
Isn't it beautiful?!?


For Those People ...

that you know who wander about with their brains turned off:

The Real Deal About Toxic Waste


Tech Support Geeks and Others...

For those of you who perform Tech Support for your family:

The Tech Support Price List



On D & D...

Gary Gygax passed away the other day.

As I was explaining who he was to my eldest daughter, her ears perked up when she heard 'Dungeons & Dragons' [We only lightly dabble in RPGs]. So, she asked:

"Isn't that game really complex?"


:shakes head and smiles:


So, I have a marriageable-age daughter who likes geeks [like her mom]. I will be putting up a pdf application form in 6 months. Extensive knowledge and enjoyment of Star Trek is required. DMs are okay, as well. [/joke]

RIP, Gary Gygax.

Update: xkcd.com published a strip commemorating Gary Gygax:


I LOL'ed at this one...

but, once I stopped laughing [the author's pretty funny], I had to admit that the reason that it was funny was because it was true!

The Most Expensive Fluid On The Planet (it's not what you think!)


My new love, Sam

Yes, I settled on 'Sam' [official name 'Samuel Gardner']

Taking a bath is hard work....zzzzzzzzzzZZZZZZZZ!


New Beginnings ... I'm In Love!!!

Yesterday was pretty quiet. However, it ended in a pretty spectacular way... I got a new puppy! As I am planning to get chickens in a few weeks, it makes sense to have a puppy, and not a full grown dog, so the two can grow up together. Maybe, that way, he can not view the chickens as food. :-)

He's a rottweiler, border collie mix and he's really sweet. He snuggled his nose into my armpit as I picked him up, and started humming. How could I say no? He likes being held, but not for long periods... just long enough to get his love fix, and then he wants to go take a nap, or use the bathroom, etc. Pretty cool.

I haven't decided on a name. My first thought was Sam, but the children wanted to know 'what happened to a Star Trek name', so I looked it up... there is a Sam Gardner, one of Jonathan Archer's bosses at Starfleet, but they called 'cheating'. I overruled them, but now I'm thinking something along the lines of Emory [Erickson], the inventor of the transporter, or Quinn [Erickson], Emory's son, who got caught in an alternate dimension in a transporter accident. Hmmm... I'll have to sleep on it.

Can you guess that I'm grateful for my new dog? [Yes, I have claimed him as 'mine', lol!]


What Parents Do For Their Children and Their Pets!!

I got this in my email:

If you have raised kids (or been one), and gone through the pet syndrome including toilet flush burials for dead goldfish, the story below will have you laughing out LOUD!

Overview: I had to take my son's lizard to the vet.
Here's what happened:

Just after dinner one night, my son came up to tell me there was
Something wrong with one of the two lizards he holds prisoner in his room.

"He's just lying there looking sick," he told me. "I'm serious dad, can
You help?"

I put my best lizard-healer face on and followed him into his bedroom.
One of the little lizards was indeed lying on his back, looking stressed.
I immediately knew what to do.

"Honey," I called, "come look at the lizard!"

"Oh my Gosh!" my wife diagnosed after a minute. "She's having babies."

"What?" my son demanded. "But their names are Bert and Ernie, Mom!"

I was equally outraged.

"Hey, how can that be? I thought we said we didn't want them to reproduce," I accused my wife.

"Well, what do you want me to do, post a sign in their cage?" she inquired.
(I actually think she said this sarcastically!)

"No, but you were supposed to get two boys!" I reminded her, (in my most loving, calm, sweet voice, while gritting my teeth together).

"Yeah, Bert and Ernie!" my son agreed.

"Well, it's just a little hard to tell on some guys, you know," she informed me. (Again with the sarcasm, you think?)

By now the rest of the family had gathered to see what was going on. I shrugged, deciding to make the best of it.

"Kids, this is going to be a wondrous experience, I announced. "We're about to witness the miracle of birth."

"Oh, gross!" they shrieked.
"Well, isn't THAT just great! What are we going to do with a litter of tiny little lizard babies?" my wife wanted to know. (I really do think she was being snotty here, too. Don't you?)

We peered at the patient. After much struggling, what looked like a tiny foot would appear briefly, vanishing a scant second later.

"We don't appear to be making much progress," I noted. "It's breech,"
my wife whispered, horrified.

"Do something, Dad!" my son urged.

"Okay, okay." Squeamishly, I reached in and grabbed the foot when it next appeared, giving it a gentle tug. It disappeared. I tried several more times with the same results.

"Should I call 911," my eldest daughter wanted to know. "Maybe they could talk us through the trauma." (You see a pattern here with the females in my house?)

"Let's get Ernie to the vet," I said grimly.

We drove to the vet with my son holding the cage in his lap. "Breathe,
Ernie, breathe," he urged.

"I don't think lizards do Lamaze," his mother noted to him. (Women can be so cruel to their own young. I mean what she does to me is one thing, but this boy is of her womb, for God's sake.)

The Vet took Ernie back to the examining room and peered at the little animal through a magnifying glass.

"What do you think, Doc, a C-section?" I suggested scientifically.

"Oh, very interesting," he murmured. "Mr. and Mrs. Cameron, may I speak to you privately for a moment?"

I gulped, nodding for my son to step outside.

"Is Ernie going to be okay?" my wife asked.

"Oh, perfectly," the Vet assured us. "This lizard is not in labor. In fact, that isn't EVER going to happen...

Ernie is a boy. You see, Ernie is a young male. And occasionally, as they come into maturity, like most male species, they um....um....m@st1rbate. Just the way he did, lying on his back." He blushed, glancing at my wife. Well, you know what I'm saying, Mr. Cameron."

We were silent, absorbing this.

"So Ernie's just...just... excited," my wife offered.

"Exactly," the Vet replied, relieved that we understood.

More silence. Then my vicious, cruel wife started to giggle. And giggle.
And then even laugh loudly.

"What's so funny?" I demanded, knowing, but not believing that the woman I married would commit the upcoming affront to my flawless manliness.

Tears were now running down her face. Laughing "It's just...that...I'm picturing you pulling on its... its...teeny little..." she gasped for more air to bellow in laughter once more.

"That's enough," I warned. We thanked the Vet and hurriedly bundled the lizards and our son back into the car. He was glad everything was going to be okay.

"I know Ernie's really thankful for what you've done, Dad," he told me.

"Oh, you have NO idea,"

Closed mouth, my wife agreed, collapsing with laughter.

2 - Lizards - $140...
1 - Cage - $50...
Trip to the Vet - $30...

Memory of your husband pulling on a lizard's winkie...Priceless

Moral of the story - finish biology class - lizards lay eggs!!

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