random monday linking

if you’re lithe to start your workweek on monday, check these out:

-> a missouri man killed his wife with a gun while trying to make hole in his roof to mount a satellite dish. [kctv5]

-> some dead-on secrets of the married man, stuff that you don’t want to bring up to the wife unless you want to start a dialogue on it. if you have a wife like mine, just submit and roll over. [webmd]

-> interesting travel diary of an iranian man traveling in europe [lifegoeson]

-> lotus notes allows the nsa to intercept and read email. people say this sucks while ibm seems to think this is a good feature in the name of national security [heise.de]

-> why do pennies exist? it costs us 1.7 cents to make a penny. i would be happy to just be rid of the penny and have prices go to .05 increments. [new yorker]

ok, now get back to work.

busy man’s weekend recap

marc and i had a good man’s weekend together, passing the time until the girls get back from florida on monday night. we hit up paul’s birthday party which featured a keg of beer and some rough footballers. marcos made sure to maintain the manliness trend by pushing maddie’s pink stroller around the house, no doubt making dad proud. he did, however, attract a large female following because he was ‘cute’ pushing that thing around. maybe cute wins out over rough?

on sunday morning we headed out to hobee’s where marc sat in a regular adult chair and acted like a 12-year-old and not a 2-year-old. here he is scanning the kids menu and eating kiwi. over breakfast, we discussed the fragmentation of the democratic superdelegates and the logjam in the western conference this year, with only a few games separating the 1st playoff spot and 8th playoff spot. just kidding.

after that, we headed up to sf without much of a plan. i figured it would be nice to hit up golden gate park and maybe finish off with a ghirardelli sundae or something. after parking downtown, i noticed lots of people walking over to at&t park to catch the giants/a’s game as part of their annual bay bridge preseason series. the weather was good, so we decided to join them.

marc had a good time and kept himself together till maybe the 6th inning, which was way past his naptime. he brought up the game a few more times later in the day, so it sounded like a memorable first baseball game.

another bonus is that marcos is free because there’s no charge for kids 2 and under. the only downer was that marc is just a little too small to ride on the coke slide there at the park. maybe next time.

later sunday night, we capped off the man’s weekend by watching some tv with our shirts off, snacking on cheerios and farting.

the clean energy scam

just read this compelling article in time magazine about the hidden costs of using biofuels. these are hailed as the savior of the world by ridding our use of oil-derived fuels. it seems that little is paid attention to 1) how much energy it takes to process these biofuels into usable gasoline and 2) the rate of recycling these plant-based organisms on our land, considering the huge demand for these fuels.

think about this:

1. in the second half of last year, brazil chopped down or burned down a rhode island-size of amazon rainforest. the lush vegetation of the rainforest decarbonates our atmosphere.

2. since the us govt is ruthlessly pushing ethanol as our biofuel of choice, us farmers are switching from soybeans to corn. brazil makes up for this shortage by planting more soybeans and pushing the cattle farmers further out. cattle farmers are chopping down rain forest to make room for their herds.

3. one proposed ethanol plant in the midwest will need 1.3 MILLION gallons of water A DAY to grow corn to convert to fuel. another proposed plant in tampa asked for 800,000 gallons of fresh water A DAY to grow corn for ethanol.

4. corn requires lots of carbon-unfriendly tools to help growth like nitrogen fertilizer, applications of herbicides, heavy machinery to farm the equipment and more fuel for the transportation. some experts assume that it takes 1.3 gallons of oil to produce 1 gallon of ethanol.

5. the us government recently mandated that we produce 36 billion gallons of ethanol by 2012. producing that much ethanol would require 96 million acres of corn. our entire corn crop in 2007, mostly used for food, was grown on 80 million acres. where are we going to find 96 million extra acres of land to grow corn for fuel?

it comes as no surprise to me that the us is behind a foolish strategy for alternative energy production. presidential candidates pander to the midwest states for their precious caucus votes and the powerful agribusiness entities like archer daniels midland. these lame politicians pledge huge increases in ethanol production without really understanding the total environmental cost.

sources:

the ethanol fallacy [popular mechanics]

drunk on ethanol [la times]

you should really check out the articles, they are very well written.

i’m not sure i know what the final answer will be, but i hope that we realize the ethanol is not it. i’d like to see more advanced technology like hydrogen fuel cells, where the total output from the vehicle’s tailpipe is just water. also, overall efficiency of a fuel-cell powerplant is 80%, if you were to compare how much energy can be extracted from the hydrogen. this compares with 20% in a conventional gasoline-powered car, where 80% of the energy is given off in heat and out the tailpipe. there’s a lot of research in fuel cells at the moment and honda even has a fuel-cell concept car called the fcx:

i’m out of breath. that’s all for now.

the boys have the majority in the house

the balance of power has officially shifted in the house. the men and women have battled constantly over the last several years but now the men have the voting power to override whatever garbage the women propose.

during the exam, there seemed to be some fist-pumping going on (seen below) so he was either air drumming in the womb (perhaps some early ‘rock band’ influence?), or maybe challenging the sonogram tech to a fight for disturbing him. the air drumming is from dad, the fighting is from mom.

the real work begins now – trying to find a name for this manly collection of cells. the tentative due date is august 28.

marcos likes horsey music

so we’re driving home yesterday and i have some suedehead playing on the car stereo. marc seems to be mumbling something in the back seat, so i turn the volume down a little bit. he’s mentioning a horsey, and so i’m trying to look around to see what he’s talking about – maybe there’s a horse trailer or a fatty walking on the sidewalk. i don’t see anything where we are, until i finally figure out what he’s talking about. he has identified “morrissey” as the artist on the radio, but he was calling it “horsey”.

this ranks up there with being able to properly identify maybe 20 different brands of vehicles including the tricky honda/hyundai logos, which are both silver H’s.

there’s a good writeup of moz on wikipedia

boy or girl links

will the new baby be a boy a girl? read the stuff below to pass some time and i should have the answer after lunchtime:

-> in a followup to this story, a man was charged with neglect for letting his gf sit on a toilet seat for two years, long enough to have her ass physically joined with the toilet seat [aol news]

->if derek sheeman reads doylez, this might save his job [earthtimes]

-> finally a real-world guide to colleges that everyone can use – rankings based on how hot the female student body is vs the usual SAT/ACT/AP/LSAT/MCAT garbage (mild nsfw) [popcrunch]

-> this issue affects all working mom’s worldwide, i’m sure [the onion]

-> actual photo from 1st and keyes in san jose – i’m glad we’re out of navajo [patrick]

happy easter!

enjoyed the sun this weekend with some good park time and hanging out in milpitas. we capped it off with kimo’s birthday party at sky high. marcos likes the trampolines but he’s so small that if someone even steps on his little square thing, he crumples. he seems to think it’s hilarious. one highlight was seeing will and his obscenely large frame jump completely horizontal maybe 10 feet up in the air. even one of the workers there made a low whistle noise when he finished that jump – and you know they see a lot.

it will be busy week this week at work and also wife and daughter head out to florida for cheer stuff. im sure marc and i will hang out and eat cheerios while watching tv with our shirts off on the days the girls are out.