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Lake Ida Fishing

So, I went fishing today. My first day on the kayak, and in fact, my first real time fishing in the state of Florida since I moved here. My totals for the day?

3 - number of bites I had which resulted in about a three-second fight before the fish spit the lure.

2 - number of white crappie I caught (yes, a "crappie" is a kind of fish). How these little suckers thought they could swallow a fish the size of my lure is beyond me. They were 1/4 - 1/2 lb fish.

3 - The number of mystery fish I caught. I say mystery fish because I think they are redbreast sunfish but the world record is only 1lb 12oz and the fish I caught were fairly large - 10-12 inches and 1-2 lbs. My fish had much more pronounced color (a pinkish orange) and much darker "zebra stripes" down the side. I thought they were "orange perch" but there seems to be no such creature.

5 - The number of fish returned to their watery home unharmed. In case you're asleep, 2+3=5. I catch and release.

All told, a great day on the water.

Paddles: 240cm vs. 230cm

I've currently got a 240 cm paddle. I previously had a 220 cm paddle, and I'm certain that it was too short, because my hands were hitting the side of my boat when paddling, and I was making an awful lot of noise. Having read this article, I'm considering a 230 cm paddle. I really like my Bending Branches Stealth Dream Carbon Composite paddle, so I'm going to have to try it in a 230 cm version. Anyway, if you're interested in physics, the link above is a pretty simple example of applied physics, and an example of something people rarely think about when they're wasting energy paddling around in arcs.

QotD: Overrated

Question: Who is the most overrated actor? Actress?

My Answer: Ben Affleck is an easy choice. The guy's got one character. Compare him to, I dunno, Sean Penn, who may be one of the most underrated actors, and compare their roles. Actress? Brittany Murphy, perhaps. Julia Roberts is close - she's not as bad an actress, but she's far more highly rated.

You are encouraged to answer the Question of the Day for yourself in the comments or on your blog.

Tarpon 120 Mods: Rear Hatch Handle

Today I "hacked" my kayak to add a handle to the rear mini-hatch. The hatch was a bitch to get out, often requiring about a zillion screws before it'd finally come out. The problem seems to be that the threading is either not deep enough or is simply too tight, because as one side would start to get high enough to pop out, the other side would often tilt and fall right back into the threads. This is further complicated by the fact that the hatch is two inches directly behind the seat, and kayaks, though stable, get substantially more difficult to balance when you're twisted around 180° in your seat.

So, I put a handle on it to generate lift. This should solve the "falls back into itself" problem, plus, it provides another means of attachment.


QotD: Pirating

Question: How much software have you pirated?

My Answer: When I was 18, before I started my e-zine Apple Wizards, I pirated as much as anyone. Oddly, though, it was mostly for "prestige" of sorts - I rarely if ever used any of the software to which I had registration codes. Since then, I've "pirated" exactly one thing: a copy of REALbasic because I couldn't find my registration code and I needed to finish up and "Carbonize" a Sound Set-making piece of freeware I'd released awhile ago for Sound Set Central. Then I trashed the registration. Two days later, I found my original registration (and created a database so I wouldn't lose registrations again).

One of the perks of running Apple Wizards was that I got any software I needed legitimately (and free). Since I've started selling software of my own, I can assure you that I pay for everything, because I'm an honest fellow, I'm no longer a poor college student, and releasing software of your own really puts pirating into perspective.

You are encouraged to answer the Question of the Day for yourself in the comments or on your blog.

I've been a freelance software/web developer since graduating from college. That's a job you do at home, and it has its good and bad sides. One of the bad sides is that the only creature with which you can flirt is your pet (if you have one) and any girls who might be "online" at the time. (Hey, you in the back - stop making sick comments about flirting with pets - it was an attempt at being wry!)

Having a "real job" (one among people) has its downsides (many) and upsides. One of the upsides is that you get to meet cool people, some of whom are attractive gals in their early twenties.

Unfortunately, it's been my belief that it's unprofessional to "hit on" anyone whom you meet while in the employ of someone else. There are lots of arguments: it's "good customer service" or "it's fun, and that's good" or "it boosts morale" or who knows. But color me old-school - it just doesn't seem professional. No, I'm not talking about a fellow co-worker, but some person who you happen to meet while "at work."

Does anyone have any thoughts?

QotD: Cuisine

Question: If you could master one type of cuisine, what would it be?

My Answer: Is "French Desserts" a cuisine?

You are encouraged to answer the Question of the Day for yourself in the comments or on your blog.

QotD: Classic

Question: What's Up?

My Answer: The sky.

You are encouraged to answer the Question of the Day for yourself in the comments or on your blog.

QotD: Sports

Question: If you could coach any current sports team professionally, which would you choose?

My Answer: The Pittsburgh Steelers. Then the Penguins. Then the Pirates. Get the picture?

You are encouraged to answer the Question of the Day for yourself in the comments or on your blog.

QotD: Habits

Question: If you could eliminate one habit your significant other has, what would it be?

My Answer: Being entirely critical without accepting any responsibility for improving the relationship herself. How's that for bitter? :-)

You are encouraged to answer the Question of the Day for yourself in the comments or on your blog.

QotD: Film

Question: Have you ever filmed yourself having sex?

My Answer: Nope. Heck, I've never filmed myself doing anything except swinging a golf club. I've used my iSight to "film" myself sitting in a chair having a video chat if you want to be entirely too broad.

You are encouraged to answer the Question of the Day for yourself in the comments or on your blog.


It's amazing, but some UIs keep getting better and better (and faster and faster) and some keep getting worse and worse. Look at some of those screenshots! What the hell is going on? It's tough to tell what you can click on, what does what, anything. It's horrible! I'm not exactly objective, but can someone tell me how anyone can use that crap?

QotD: Elimination

Question: If you could eliminate one thing from sex, what would it be?

My Answer: Disease. When you begin dating someone, it's an awkward moment when you have to pause and say "you haven't got any diseases, do you?" People lie (otherwise honest people), and some people may not know they've got a disease until they've given it to you. No, I haven't got any diseases, and I'm fairly damn certain I never will, but it's something I really wish I didn't have to worry about. Pregnancy is easy enough to prevent if you've got half a brain. Disease, well, even things that won't get a woman pregnant will transfer a disease.

FWIW, I had intended the question originally to be more about the act of sex itself, with answers like "cuddling" from the guys and "daily blowjobs" from the girls, but oh well. Feel free to use either of those two answers if you wish. :-)

You are encouraged to answer the Question of the Day for yourself in the comments or on your blog.

MCI = Fucktards (Cont.)

On May 13 the whole thing started. It continued on through June 26. Hopefully, as promised today, within 14 days I will receive a refund check for $158.89 from MCI.

I estimate that I spent ten hours on the phone since May 13 fighting this issue. I've mailed three letters, sent five faxes, and spoken to every department MCI has (including the janitorial and "executive perks"). However, the satisfaction of finally triumphing (in 14 days, anyway - I'm not counting anything before it's hatched [or cashed]) is worth it. Bah, who am I bullshitting? I shouldn't have had to do all of this in the first place.

Old West Wing

As I watch the old episodes of West Wing as they play on Bravo, two thoughts strike me. One is that the show is dramatically much improved in recent years. Older episodes focused more on the personal lives of the staff members and not the interpersonal relationships of the staff members. Older episodes, partly due to this and partly due to other factors, are also slower paced. There aren't as many running jokes and there aren't as many parts that force viewers to rewind to catch everything. Perhaps the actors have advanced in skill, or perhaps Aaron Sorkin has, or both, but the quicker pace is quite a good deal more enjoyable. West Wing was never slow, but it used to be slower.

The second thought is how well the series ties together. In the end, this may very well be a massive, epic movie. Zoe was kidnapped at the end of last season, the "man who's not only President, but also a concerned father" has just stepped down as President (temporarily), and so on. President Bartlett told (I believe) Leo that years ago he'd given Zoe a speech about exactly what would happen, and that it'd scared her and she'd cried. That speech did indeed happen in the 1999 episode I just saw, and the foresight was either dumb luck, brilliant planning, or a good grasp back into the archives to pull something new out for a season-ending cliff-hanger. Whichever it was, it worked well, and I'm tempted to say that it may be the middle of those three as Zoe's kidnapping is not the only idea which has taken its time to come to fruition or be fully realized.

The old episodes are certainly interesting. And though I'm making my own DVDs so I can clear the episodes off of my TiVo (I'm drastically far behind, and my 100+ hour TiVo is filling up), I will order the West Wing DVDs the day they are available.

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