Thursday, January 29, 2009


Er, yeah

I don't blog here anymore, I decided to just put everything at mightybear.

Tune in at for more rambling!

Sunday, July 01, 2007


Here's what you will experience. . . .

There are some things that have such a predictable influence on our thoughts and feelings that they just fascinate me. One of those things is the Monty Hall problem. People who are good at math and probability most always hear the problem, come to an obvious-to-them conclusion, absolutely do not believe the actual solution, argue to the death for their solution, have some epiphany, and then immediately and completely switch to the other side, without the slightest doubt that they may have been right in the first place. Google it (or come to my house and we'll talk about it, if you prefer, I LOVE to do this.)

Today I experienced another one of these things. My mom sent me this video:

Go ahead and watch it now if you want no spoilers, or if you want to see how much of a mind-reader I am without influencing yourself. My only request is just keep on watching, it gets better.

OK, so here is my take on what everyone in the world thinks. (Or at least all the cool people.)

0. Hear the video is cool and fire it up to watch it. Take note of the comments that say it's the neatest thing since sliced bread.

1. Start the video. "Huh," you think, "That's weird."

2. Watch the video for 30 seconds. Think "This is incredibly stupid. I am pretty sure that nothing that could happen will actually turn out to be cool, and worth the annoyance of sitting through the first bit"

3. Watch stupidity even longer. Wonder why anyone on earth would ever suggest this video to you, much less write all those rave comments on the site.

4. Stuff starts happening. It's vaguely interesting, but still. . . WTF?

5. As it goes, it gets more and more interesting. About halfway through grudgingly admit "OK, maybe this is interesting enough to bother with after all. This is kinda cool."

6. And as it goes on even longer. . .you become more and more facinated. It ends. You're thinking "HOLY CRAP, THAT IS COOL!" And then you watch it again. And again and again if you're me.

Soooo enjoy! (Thanks mom!)

Monday, June 11, 2007


Doubt is a Virtue

This quote was attributed to JFK in some recent bits of media.

There was some meme a good while ago where you were supposed to collect 5 quotes that define you. I went to my favorite quotes engine and found a bunch. I couldn't narrow it down to 5 (and not all were about ME, but instead about things I believe or find particulary true and funny) but I found a handful that were of this subject. This quote reminded me of the meme, so I'm sort of resurrecting it.

For anyone who cares, I'm just going to post all the quotes I picked.

Say not, 'I have found the truth,' but rather, 'I have found a truth.'
Kahlil Gibran (1883 - 1931)

Believe those who are seeking the truth. Doubt those who find it.
Andre Gide (1869 - 1951)

Human beings are perhaps never more frightening than when they are convinced beyond doubt that they are right.
Laurens Van der Post, The Lost World of the Kalahari (1958)

If you couple a skepticism of all things with the tendency to apply Occam's razor to most issues, you have my general philosophy down.

And then my other quotes:
He who laughs, lasts!
Mary Pettibone Poole

Tact is the knack of making a point without making an enemy.
Isaac Newton (1642 - 1727)

What I look forward to is continued immaturity followed by death.
Dave Barry (1947 - )

We cannot control the evil tongues of others; but a good life enables us to disregard them.
Cato the Elder (234 BC - 149 BC)

I've been on a diet for two weeks and all I've lost is two weeks.
Totie Fields

I also saw some quotes that seemed particularly appropriate to people I know. Some of these are more deep or meaningful than others, but I only post them here because these people immediately came to mind when I read the quotes.

For Mark:
I no longer prepare food or drink with more than one ingredient.
Cyra McFadden

I have never taken any exercise except sleeping and resting.
Mark Twain (1835 - 1910)

For Sean:
If you make it plain you like people, it's hard for them to resist liking you back.
Lois McMaster Bujold, Diplomatic Immunity, 2002

For my charming Grandma:
Charm is the quality in others that makes us more satisfied with ourselves.
Henri-Frédéric Amiel

And for Mom:
Aim at the sun, and you may not reach it; but your arrow will fly far higher than if aimed at an object on a level with yourself.
Joel Hawes

Advice for Dad:
Never fight an inanimate object.
P. J. O'Rourke (1947 - )

For that entire class of people that claim not to understand why people on welfare don't just get off their arses and go to work:
I've known what it is to be hungry, but I always went right to a restaurant.
Ring Lardner (1885 - 1933)

Monday, May 14, 2007


Hmm, Interesting

Mark accidentally made "The Internet" mad at him because someone posted a link to Mark's blog at a website where people post links and discuss them.

I am pretty bemused by this so I've been keeping up with the site, so I can observe first hand what's wrong with the Internet these days. Well today someone posted an article about a promising new cancer treatment - what may work out to be an inexpensive, relatively non-invasive general cure. It sounds too good to be true, but I think it's worth keeping an eye on.

The problem is the compound can't be patented and it will dry up a large source of
income for drug companies, so they don't have a lot of incentive to study and develop the drug. However, research IS being done (by universities and what-not) and I'm sure that even massive drug company efforts won't be enough to squash this thing if it pans out. The day that most politicians don't know anyone that's been affected by cancer is the day I'll really worry about conspiracies from this quarter.

The most powerful way to keep drug companies from sweeping this under the rug is to make more of the general public aware. So this is me doing my little part.

All that said, though, I have no idea how often miracle cures pop up that look really promising at first, but turn out to be unworkable in humans for whatever reason. So you get what you pay for here!

Here's a link to the wiki:

Friday, May 11, 2007


The moral of the story


I suppose the moral is . . . if your child is at the top of a transplant list, just leave your cell phone on because police stopping a concert is a little more disruptive than a phone going off.

Wednesday, May 09, 2007


I hate these ethical dilemmas

Story on CNN about a disabled girl who was given a hysterectomy at the family's request. The hospital is now in trouble for violating her rights.

I don't know what we're protecting when we ensure that someone who can't walk, talk or eat on her own can still reproduce. HER quality of life will be better with this surgery, her family's quality of life will be better with this surgery. . . she would never have gotten pregnant from a choice that she made.

It deeply grieves me that people get into trouble for doing what they can to make a hard life a little less hard.

Monday, May 07, 2007


The final shirt count

76 shirts! That's 15 weeks of work without having to launder a shirt, with one left over in case of a spill.

Silly Markie!

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