Birthdays and What They Actually Mean

I’m writing this post because a lot of people (Google) seem to have an issue with understanding what birthdays actually are.

Their own definition is…

A birthday is the anniversary of the birth of a person or an institution. Birthdays are celebrated in numerous cultures, often with gifts, cards, a party, or a rite of passage.

Two words are missing. Living and Existing. A “living” person and an “existing” institution.

Birthdays are a celebration of life. If you have 5 birthdays than that means that you have been alive for at least five years.

If you die at the age of five then you will never be able to have a 6th birthday. You know…because you are DEAD.

Google loves to put up a birthday celebration honoring a particular figure in history. The problem is that they are usually dead.

It is impossible for any of these people to have birthdays past their death date.

For example, Princess Diana is not 56 years old. She only ever made it to 36.


Statement of the Week

The story that I found this little nugget of wisdom in is most certainly tragic. A mother killed herself and probably her son. The story seemed a bit unclear about that.

It’s not clear how the child’s mother got a gun into the hospital. Banner Health has a policy — which is posted at entrances — against carrying firearms and weapons into its facilities, Lozano said.

This makes it sound like either the poor mother didn’t know how to read or that signs will solve everything. Just post a sign and people will do exactly what it says.

Or, in this case…not.

Common Sense: Adobe Flash

If you are still using Adobe Flash for critical pieces of your website, I’d say that logic dictates that you change to HTML 5 or something that most all devices can play.

For example, I just visited WGAL 8 here in Lancaster. They have slideshows that require Adobe Flash to play them. Guess what? I’m using an iPad tablet. I don’t have Flash and will never have it on this tablet.

I’m not alone. Apple has just announced that it sold 3 million iPads in 3 days. That is on top of all of the other iPads that are already out in the wild. Let’s face facts. Its the dominate tablet. Chances are…it will be the dominate tablet for a long time to come.

That means that most people are choosing iPads which means that most people who use tablets can’t view your Flash content.

What do I do in those cases when I come across a site that requires Flash?

I go somewhere else.

I’m pretty sure that we’ve come to the point in this relationship where using Adobe Flash for critical parts of your website means a loss of traffic for you.

I’m not exclusing myself either. I currently have an MP3 player that uses Flash to function on one of my sites. However, I am quickly moving to an HTML 5 alternative.

Someday we’ll look back on this Adobe Flash nonsense and… [fill in the blank]…

The Iranian Hikers

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Perhaps you are following the desperate story of the innocent hikers that got too close to the Iranian border and then got arrested? (via CBS)

You know.

Because they were just hiking and happened to get too close to the Iranian border completely by accident.

Could happen to anyone. I’m sure.


Hikers my ass.

I love hiking and I can tell you that the first place that pops into my mind for some great hiking does NOT happen to be anywhere NEAR Iran.

If you were “hiking” too close to Iran it was probably because you actually were spying because no sane person in their right mind would hike that close to the Iranian border. It’s amazing these idiots are still alive.

If I am from the United States, why would I spend all of that money for air fare to go that close to Iran to hike? The answer is that I wouldn’t.

So here we are listening to the American media and shedding a tear for these poor American boys who made just one little mistake. Those Iranian bastards had the nerve to capture “hikers” and prosecute them as spies?

Who are the unreasonable people here? I don’t like Iran at all. I’m not defending Iran here and that is not my intention but what I am defending is simple common sense.

We can’t admit that the kids are spies.

Logic can’t defend the “innocent hikers” meme.

We are left with the scenario that our boys are innocent hikers and the Iranians are bastards for arresting them and the real crime here is that neither statement is true.

A.D.H.D. and Bringing Up Baby

Warning: This post is just a vain attempt of venting on my part. I personally am sick and tired of this “pussy” culture I find myself living in. I may just call the string of these writings “The Pussy Chronicles” because there are just so many examples of how “pussified” our society has become that I could be adding to this series many times daily. My qualification for using the term “pussy” is my military background. That means that if I say you are a pussy you indeed are a pussy. Now, on with my rant…

A.D.H.D. (attention deficit hyperactivity disorder) is not a medical condition.

It is an environmental condition.

Your child isn’t suffering from A.D.H.D. you just feed them too much sugar. Now they are bouncing off of the walls and you don’t quite know why? You want to blame this on a non-existent disease designed and conceived to prevent Pediatric professionals from being sued because you are an extremely bad parent. A.D.H.D. is also a big business now. People make money from telling you that your child has it. You or your insurance company pay the doctor who diagnoses it and the pharmaceutical companies make money from the medication that the doctor you just saw will prescribe to treat the symptoms of it.

A.D.H.D. can’t be “cured” because it’s not a real disease. The medication they prescribe for this is a legal version of what the sixties crowd used to call “downers.”

People who medicate their children because they believe they have A.D.H.D. need to take a good hard look at themselves. Those folks created the problem and should probably sterilize themselves immediately.

I remember thinking as a kid that those folks who beat their kids or at least gave them a smack on the ass every now and then were bad parents. They were not. Before it was called A.D.H.D. it was called a “failure to pay attention.” A smack on the ass, a ruler across the fingers, or perhaps a strong comment designed to embarrass you in front of your classmates was enough to “cure” this affliction.

It is about controlling your child’s environment. When I was a kid we played outside. We played outside everyday and for as long as we could get away with (which was typically about dinner time). We ate candy throughout the day as well. That was the extent of it. Yes, we took in a fair amount of sugar but we were also burning it off by running around and playing outside. Being sent to your room was considered serious punishment and something that we as kids seriously tried to avoid.

Today, kids sit in front of their computers for fun. Being sent to their room is welcomed. Why? All of their stuff is there. Television, computer and internet, game consoles, and cell phones (in a lot of cases smartphones) are also a part of the modern child’s environs. They watch enormous amounts of television and they eat very badly because parents just don’t seem to give a shit about that sort of thing anymore. They are driven to the bus stop or even back and forth to school. Those kids aren’t even being given the opportunity to get exercise by moving themselves around. Of course, the parents will say that it’s a safety issue, they are worried about predators, or they just can’t stand the thought of their child standing out in the rain waiting for the bus. Instead of teaching kids about what they should do in a worse case scenario, modern parents think it’s much easier to just shuttle their children around. This is a short term solution for the parents that causes long term damages to the kid.

I remember my father telling me to stop doing something. He only ever gave me one chance to actually stop. It was usually a better situation if I stopped rather than having him do it for me. It also usually ended painfully for me when he made me stop. What I see these days in the grocery store is some out of control kid with a parent standing there trying to “reason” with them. “Oh, Jeffrey please stop doing that. Now, I’m going to count to ten…” The worst thing the kid has to put up with is listening to his parent drone on and on.

Parents these days want to be their children’s friend. You can’t. Sure, when you kids have grown into adulthood you can be “friends” with them. Just imagine what kind of Army we’d have if all of the drill instructors wanted make nice and be friends with the recruits. The same goes for child rearing. Growing up in a home with “rules” is a boot camp of sorts for life. The tougher the boot camp the more likely it will be that your child will succeed. Incidentally, this also includes a regiment of exercise. Our children are fat and overweight because we’re making them that way.

See? It’s not really a disease unless you consider the parents to be the disease.

I do.

Random Thoughts

This morning (first post of 2011 huh?) I got to thinking about what was wrong with Caprica.

Why did the Sy-Fy Channel cancel it?

Of course, they’ll site viewer numbers and say that people weren’t watching it. I think that would be partially accurate. People didn’t watch it because they didn’t know when it would be on. One of the common problems of networks in general is that they advertise the hell out of everything on their networks which means you have to be watching their networks to see when certain shows will be on.

At least, that’s how it used to work.

Now, I don’t watch any of your network nonsense. In fact, I didn’t watch a single episode of Caprica on Sy Fy. I downloaded the shows from iTunes. I never had any intention of watching Sy Fy to see the show nor did I ever do so. That makes me wonder if Sy Fy ever included those folks when they factor in the numbers?

What about Hulu or

(Update: I just stumbled upon this great article about people leaving their cable and television providers in favor of internet based solutions.) The whole story link is here.

The proliferation of viewing devices — including a new generation of TV sets that connect to the Internet — could boost the chances that viewers will do what cable and satellite companies fear most: cancel their $70-a-month subscriptions in favor of cheaper Web options.

People want to watch your shows just like they always have except now they want it delivered their way and not yours.

They are not going to watch your channel but they do want to watch your shows and that is what you need to monetize.

As I said in a couple of paragraphs above, we never knew when the show was going to be on. That is bad. It’s the same rule for podcasts. People stop listening when you stop delivering your show on some kind of schedule. Caprica was horrible in this regard. Do you remember when TV seasons were about 24 episodes long and were fairly dependable? I miss those days.

I could write a big long post about this. Maybe I will.

An Apparent Misconception

Check this out.

People who watch funny videos on the internet at work aren’t necessarily wasting time. They may be taking advantage of the latest psychological science — putting themselves in a good mood so they can think more creatively.

That’s a great discovery except for one small factor…

…the “getting fired for screwing around at work” thing.

Other than that…solid.