Thursday, September 7, 2017


Yes, there's a hurricane coming this way. This one might be trouble.

Of course, I've been through hurricanes before. The last hurricane that came this close, I went to a football game.

[The YouTube]

I was at that game. Want proof? I'm in this picture.

Wait. Here's a better picture.

[Photo credit: Georgia Southern Athletics]

Did you find me?

I'll probably stay inside for this one.

Wednesday, August 23, 2017

Satire News Sites Sue ESPN Over Intellectual Property Infringement

ESPN reporter Robert Lee
ATLANTA (AP) -- Several satirical news Websites have file suit in federal court in Atlanta against ESPN alleging the sports network has infringed on their intellectual property. The suit comes days after ESPN announced that the network was removing reporter Robert Lee from the University of Virginia home game on September 2.

Kurt Mueller, COO of The Onion, said that the network's actions are "a clear infringement of The Onion's intellectual property. This should be an open and shut case. After all, when news of Mr. Lee's reassignment was announced, social media exploded with questions asking if it was a post on The Onion." The topic was trending on Facebook and Twitter.

The Onion was joined in the lawsuit by news satire Websites Weekly World News, Babylon Bee, DuffleBlog, and others. Paul Szoldra of DuffleBlog explained, "While we focus on satirical news from the military standpoint, an infringement against mainstream humor is an infringement against us all."

Weekly World News spokesman Bat Boy said "The lawsuit speaks for itself." Babylon Bee's Adam Ford added, "Yeah, what he said."

Tuesday, August 22, 2017


I received an email from Google last week. I'm not sure what to make of it. Let me first take a minute and give you some idea of how Google and this little blog are intertwined.

The domain name of this blog,, is registered with Google Domains.

This blog is hosted by Google, via their Blogger platform.

I could register the domain elsewhere, and I could host it somewhere else, but Google's reliability and pricing are hard to beat.

One other thing that isn't directly blog related, but worth noting is that Google also has a Web browser that is quite popular, called Chrome.

Oh, and there's a thing called Google Search Console which offers tools that can be handy in checking out and improving your Website. You don't have to be hosted at Google to use Google Search Console.

Got all that? Good.

Now, that email I got from Google. It's from Google Search Console, actually. It said:

Starting October 2017, Chrome (version 62) will show a “NOT SECURE” warning when users enter text in a form on an HTTP page, and for all HTTP pages in Incognito mode.

The following URLs on your site include text input fields (such as <input type="text"> or <input type="email">) that will trigger the new Chrome warning.
So, I it would be a good idea to enable https on the blog, right? Only...

Warning: HTTPS is currently not available for custom domain blogs.
Which means that, as long as I'm hosted at Google on their Blogger platform, and have my own domain name, I can't enable https.

So, all together, this means that Google is warning me that I don't have https enabled on my Website that they host and don't allow https for Websites like mine.

Catch-22? Maybe. Or maybe I need to move back to another platform and host for this little blog. Which I don't really want to do.

I can hardly wait to see what I decide.

Sunday, August 13, 2017

Disney World

Until recently, I hadn't been to Walt Disney World in two decades. The last trip was one with my daughter and son in the mid-1990s.

When I was younger, a teenager or thereabouts, I had been to Disney World a few times. It was always a big deal and I always enjoyed it.

Of course, back then, they had the tickets (I think they actually called them "coupons") designating different attractions. A ticket, B ticket, up to E ticket. I always spent my E ticket on The Haunted Mansion. Love that attraction.

Note: Here's another link showing different attractions on some of the tickets.

When I took the children in the mid-1990s, that was, I believe, my first experience without the ticket books. That was great in that I didn't have to choose among certain attractions. The downside? Neither did anyone else. That meant the most popular attractions had long lines. That did put a little damper on things, but I focused on making the trip as enjoyable as I could for the children. I'm not sure how successful I was, but they did seem to enjoy it.

When I became a grandparent, I wanted to take the grandchildren to Walt Disney World. There were some catches, though. When the first grandchildren were born, I wasn't living in southeast Georgia where I grew up. The Columbus, Georgia area is a good six hour drive from Walt Disney World. That meant over 12 hours driving on the trip. Two adults, three children, in a single car, for that time and distance? Not comfortable.

Then, the long lines. Yes, Disney had introduced FastPass, but I didn't know much about that. I can be a quick study on some things, but honestly, I didn't do proper research into it. That's changed, as you'll soon see.

Oh, and the cost of driving and eating and hotels, not even counting the price of admission of adults and three grandchildren. All in all, an expensive proposition. And, it was something we never did. But, it was something I wanted to do.

Now, years later, I have more than three grandchildren. And I still wanted to get them to Disney World. Well, the two year old might be a little young to appreciate it. He'd get almost as much fun out of a sprinkler in the yard, but the day is coming soon. However, he has been to Disney World. More on that in a bit.

While I did want to take the grandchildren to Disney World, there were attractions much closer to Columbus than the one in Orlando. Atlanta has Six Flags over Georgia and Stone Mountain Park. We managed to take the grandchildren to each of those a few times. Even bought year passes for each at different times, but ended up not going that often. Work schedules, school schedules, and self-imposed restrictions that I thought were kinda silly (no, I won't elaborate), all contributed to making it not as often as would have been nice.

Still, the occasional trip to Six Flags or Stone Mountain did happen. Six Flags over Georgia and Stone Mountain Park are great places to visit. What they don't have is the "Disney mystique." I mean, you don't hear Super Bowl winners saying "I'm going to Stone Mountain!"

This year, though, I've been to Walt Disney World twice, and am gearing up for a third trip.

I mentioned that my youngest grandson had been to Disney World. His grandmother, my ex-wife, took him. She had also taken my second-youngest grandson, also her grandson, to Disney World. She's taken him more than once. Note: those are the only two grandchildren we share. My other grandchildren are not also her grandchildren.

This year, at the last minute, my daughter asked about our going to Disney World along with her, her son (my grandson), and her mother (my ex-wife). This was like two days before they were scheduled to go. I was open to the idea. Ex-wife and I get along fine. There's not a bunch of tension in the room when we're in the same place. We've had troubles in the past, but I'm not going to dwell on them, and neither is she, it seems. So, I said if I could work it out (that always means funding) we'd be delighted to go.

Actually, it turned out to not be "we." Wife didn't go. That nearly put a damper on things. Ex-wife expressed concern about that, but after talking with my daughter, it came down to my decision, and I went. And I enjoyed it during the time I was there. I didn't stay for the entire time they were there, but did have a blast riding the rides with my grandson. He rode the rides with me most of the time.

Seeing how much fun he was having made me decide to get the other grandchildren to Walt Disney World. Before I left Orlando, I was already setting things in place for a trip with the other five-year-old.

Wife still didn't want to go, so I ended up taking his brother and sister, both 17, a week later. They were great at keeping up with their brother, and had a fun time. Granddaughter in particular really enjoyed it. From my daughter, I had learned how to work the FastPass+ feature using the app for my iPhone, along with another app. That made the visit a lot more enjoyable, as we never waited in line more than 10 minutes for anything. Okay, there was one 20-minute wait for one ride, but only one. Everything else was either FastPass+ or short lines by noting the wait times on the app.

Right now, there's one more grandchild that's still in school (she's also 17) that hasn't been to Disney World. That's being remedied Labor Day weekend. And, this time, I won't be the only adult in the car. Wife is finally going. She went decades ago, before we met, but I don't think she particularly had a good time. Maybe that'll be different this time around. After all, I'm such a delight to be around.

Oh, remember that I mentioned that one granddaughter really enjoyed her trip? Well, she wants to go again. Only, I had to tell her "no." I explained that I wasn't going to take her twice and the others once. And my focus was on getting her cousin there, and that I wasn't going to buy her another ticket just yet. Undaunted, she said she was working and asked what if she bought her own ticket. I told her that, of course, we'd take her along. Which changed my "no" to a "yes." So, she bought her own ticket. This trip will be two adults (Wife and me) and two teenagers (cousins), which will mean the car is as full as it can be, what with luggage and a six hour trip. I am so looking forward to this trip with three of my favorite people.

There are still a grandchild that's in college. I have an idea how to manage getting her to Disney World. And, there's another that's not in college. We've discussed how to deal with that, too. We will work something out.

Anyway, I've been to Disney World twice since last month, and have another trip coming up next month. I'm not sure when I'll get Disney Fever out of my system. Maybe never.

Saturday, August 5, 2017

Hating TiVo

I don't really hate TiVo. In fact, I love my TiVo devices and the TiVo service. Sure, they're expensive, but they are top notch devices and the service is outstanding. Let me emphasize again, I love TiVo. But, I also hate it.

The problem isn't the cost. I willingly spent the money for devices and for lifetime service.

I first got a TiVo device back in 2006, and have been a fan through all the years, upgrading as time went on. And, after my pleasure of working with a TiVo Roamio, I was excited when the features of the newer TiVo was announced a couple of years ago. I was ready to upgrade my TiVo Premiere and anxiously awaited the release date.

Then I saw one.

I am not putting something that looks like that in my house. I don't know what kind of crack they were smoking, but I won't get near that thing.

Sure, the specs are great. And, if it looked like something a normal person would have in their house, I would have bought one when it came out.

But, I'm not spending my hard-earned money on something so stupid looking as that.

So, I decided to wait. Surely, they'll make something that a sane human being wouldn't be ashamed to be seen near. But, as the years have passed, there's been no indication that they're going to fix that abomination any time soon.

I've spent a decent amount of money over the years, purchasing a Series2 (that should have been my first indication that their brains were cockeyed when they left out the space between "Series" and "2"), a Series3, multiple Premiere, and a Roamio.

Speaking of Roamio (stupid name, another flag I missed), I have an OTA that is sitting in a box. But, where I want to use it -- that is, where I currently have a Premiere running -- has a cable package. There's no antenna, and the location is far enough away from TV towers that an indoor antenna won't do the job. And I'm not going to go through the time, trouble, and expense of putting up a sufficient tower and antenna. So, there's a Premiere still running there, not a Roamio (which I'd buy if I could find a new one that supported cable card) or a Bolt (which looks stupid as hell).

So, I'm hating on TiVo. The dumbasses at TiVo that came up with the idea of the appearance of the Bolt, and the dumbasses who won't put a decent-looking device out in its place.

I'll just keep my money.

Friday, July 14, 2017

Missing Music

When I got my new(er) car back in February, it had a SirusXM radio that had never been activated. Which means it was still eligible for the complementary three months service thing they do.

I'd had SiriusXM since I got Vlad (the Impala) in late 2007. It was actually XM Radio at the time, before the merger with Sirius Satellite Radio in late 2008. I'd gone through some cutbacks over the next few years, and was preparing to drop XM (it was Sirius XM by then), but one of the reps offered me a really cheap plan just to keep me on. Didn't offer much, none of the 60s on 6 type of channels, but it had Symphony Hall, Classic Rewind, Classic Vinyl, The Bridge, and Laugh USA, so it was enough to keep me entertained while driving. Overall, around 50 channels.

I don't see the plan I have online, so I'm assuming it was a retention plan, keeping me as a customer for $6/month (it just went up to $7/month in June) rather than losing me altogether.

Where was I? Oh. The radio in the new car. Right.

When I retired Vlad and put Abe into service, I contacted Sirius XM about switching service. Because of the plan I had, I couldn't do it online, and had to call them. I intended to simply switch service to the radio in the new car and leave everything as is. Well, that's when the CSR found out that Radio ID has never been used with the three month introductory plan. And, yes, it was still eligible. So, they put that on, and scheduled it to return to the previous plan ($6/month at the time) when it the three months were up.

Well, for three months, I had the big package. All the channels. And that's when I started wandering around the dial. Before that, I had programmed the channels I was used to on the presets. Then I went wandering. The Decades channels were there (you know, 60s on 6, 70s on 7, and so on), along with many others I had heard before. It was nice.

Of course, some channels were gone. 40s on 4 had been replaced by some nonsense on 4. Then, I stumbled across SirisXM 74, 40s Junction. So, 40s on 4 had actually been incorporated into a 40s-style station. I say that because they'd actually play songs from the 50s that were stylistically 40s music. For example, Cherry Pink and Apple Blossom White is a 50s song, but it sounds like something from the 40s. It was written in 1950, and was a major world-wide hit for Perez Prado in 1955. They didn't play that on 40s on 4, but did on 50s on 5, even though it sounded like something from 40s on 4. They do play it on 40s Junction.

The point is -- at least, now this is the point -- that I discovered how much I missed the 40s music. I never listened a lot to it, but would listen to some. I spent most of the next three months listening to 40s Junction.

The three months ended, and my subscription to the Sirius Basic plan kicked in again, right in the middle of some song. I toyed with the idea of upgrading my plan, but the cheapskate in me won out. Back to classic rock and classical music.

But, I do miss the 40s music.

[The YouTube]

I miss it a lot.

Tuesday, July 11, 2017

Watching the Un-MSTied versions, Update 1

I mentioned in June that I was watching the un-MSTied versions of the movies shown on Mystery Science Theater 3000. Actually, I had mentioned that in April, but that was in passing. In June, I began focusing on doing that. Still am.

Since the, I've only watched five of the movies I haven't previously seen in un-MSTied form:
  • The Deadly Bees
  • Invasion of the Neptune Men
  • The Mole People
  • Prince of Space
  • The She-Creature
Why only five? That's all I could find. I had to subscribe to Netflix DVDs to get those. Yes, I actually did that. And, it leaves me with 45 movies still to go:
  • Agent for H.A.R.M.
  • At the Earth's Core
  • Carnival Magic
  • Code Name: Diamond Head
  • Daddy-O
  • The Dead Talk Back
  • Devil Doll
  • Escape 2000 (Escape from the Bronx) (Bronx Warriors 2)
  • Final Justice
  • Godzilla vs. Megalon
  • The Green Slime
  • Hamlet, Prinz von Dänemark
  • Invaders from the Deep
  • Kitten with a Whip
  • Last of the Wild Horses
  • The Legend of Dinosaurs
  • Lost Continent
  • Master Ninja I
  • Master Ninja II
  • Pod People (The Pod People) (The New Extraterrestrials)
  • Quest of the Delta Knights
  • Red Zone Cuba (Night Train to Mundo Fine)
  • Revenge of the Mysterons from Mars
  • San Francisco International
  • Secret Agent Super Dragon
  • The Sinister Urge
  • The Slime People
  • Soultaker
  • The Space Children
  • Space Mutiny (Mutiny In Space)
  • SST - Death Flight
  • Superdome
  • The Starfighters
  • Teen-Age Crime Wave
  • Teen-Age Strangler (Terror in the Night)
  • The Thing That Couldn't Die
  • Time Chasers (Tangents)
  • The Touch of Satan
  • Untamed Youth
  • Village of the Giants
  • Warrior of the Lost World
  • Werewolf (Arizona Werewolf)
  • Wild Rebels
  • Wizards of the Lost Kingdom II
  • Women of the Prehistoric Planet (The Prehistoric Planet)
A few are available via Amazon by renting them. Over a dozen are listed on Netflix DVDs, but not in stock. So, I'm gonna ride Netflix DVD until that peters out. Will probably take a while, what with having to wait a couple of days inbetween each mailing. I've found other movies, unrelated to this project, that I'd like to see anyway, so I'm having Netflix send me those until the MST3K-related movies are back in stock.