gridlore: Photo: Rob Halford on stage from the 1982 "Screaming for Vengeance" tour (Music - Rob Halford)
Dear person sitting in front of us at the Iron Maiden concert last night.

You are a self-centered ass, and completely ignorant of concert etiquette.

First of all, you skipped the opening act. Sucks to be you, Ghost was amazing. But then, once Iron Maiden took the stage, you spent the entire show with your phone out, taping the entire thing. Which wouldn't be so bad, but you had the camera's light on. You keep turning the phone to take selfies, meaning you kept shining that light right in my eyes as I was trying to watch Maiden.

So I hope that when you got home and reviewed the footage, you'll appreciate the fact that almost all of your selfie shots feature my raised middle fingers waving around behind you.

Up the Irons! And up yours!
gridlore: Doug looking off camera with a grin (Bosch)
I spent the day - after my writing class - enjoying the books, wifi, air conditioning, and comfy chairs at the Santa Clara library. As always, there were tons of cute little people getting books, awesome babies doing baby stuff, and general people watching. But there was this one guy.

We were sitting on the first floor, a great spot for the best air conditioning, with a table between us. While I was reading about Alcuin of Tours' influence on the court of Karl, King of the Franks, he was cold calling every single tech company in the valley.

I wanted to throttle him. First of all, this was a library. No cell phone zone. Be quiet. He wasn't particularly loud, but it was noticeable. Secondly, he was calling off a hand-written list, and asking about email addresses for HR and if they were hiring. Folks, we were 10 second from the library's computer room. He could have found all of that with web searches, and the librarian would have probably helped him post his resume online at the right headhunter sites. Thirdly, he was asking about assembly jobs. Don't know if this is a software term, but nobody does assembly in the valley anymore.

But what made me want to scream was when he got a call back. From his end of the conversation, it was an interview offer. An immediate one. He put it off.

He put it off.

If you are looking for a job, and somebody calls for an interview, you take the time they give you. You offer to be there that day. If one is fishing, one needs to be ready when you get a bite. I mean I feel for the guy, looking for work. We looked to be of a similar age. But I find myself hoping that sombobdy else jumped on that lead and is there finishing uo an interview right now.
gridlore: Doug looking off camera with a grin (Penguin - Wobble)
And I had such hopes.

Today was my long awaited appointment with a dermatologist. Anyone who has seen me in the past few years may have notice the blemishes on my hands and the thing on my face just right of my nose. There are other things that I wanted to deal with.

I'm still using Outreach to get around. Today they sent a cab from the company they contract with for overflow work. I didn't write down my pick-up window; so I just sat here with the door open to listen for a car. Now, Outreach has specific rules. The people who take it are disabled, so the drivers are supposed to meet us at the door, and help us into the car. This guy just sat there. I walk with a cane these, days, and was carry a book. No help at all.

Now Outreach is a share-ride service. So when the driver headed away from where I was going, I thought nothing of it. But then he pulls into the parking lot of a very nice restaurant and starts muttering about not seeing the address. A bit confused, I point out I'm going to 701 El Camino Real in Mountain View. ECR is an extremely long road that goes from here in the South Bay to just outside San Francisco. It is over 40 miles long, and the numbering resets in every municipality it passes through. This moron didn't read the city on my reservation.

He gets turned around, and I have to practically yell at him not to get on 101N. That freeway is a nightmare up through noon most days. I make him get on Central Expressway. Despite me telling him that I take this route almost every week, and would tell him well in advance of the best place to turn, he kept staring at the GPS. Even when I gave him a clear direction (turn right at the next light) he'd get in the wrong lane.

This guy wasn't a driver. A driver knows his area. A driver doesn't need to be led around by the GPS. A driver confirms his route before pulling out. I'm a pretty forgiving person, but called in a complaint on this guy.

But onto the doctors. More great news. The things on my face are suspected to be basal cell carcinoma. Biopsies were taken, I'll know in a week. The stuff on my hands and elsewhere is seborrheic keratoses. My INR was off the scales. Recheck next week.

And I may have to start drinking non-alcoholic beer.

2014 is going to need to mount one hell of a comeback at this point.
gridlore: Doug looking off camera with a grin (Me - CAR -15)
I've been getting a ton of email from camera whores. Today, I snapped and replied.

OK, who the fuck are you? If you offer me dirty pictures, I swear by the howling dark gods of my fathers I will track you down and pour Drano down your throat. I will rip your entrails out and set them on fire before I let you die. I will ravage your family unto the ends of the Earth.

So, what's up?

Be interesting to see if I get a reply...
gridlore: Doug looking off camera with a grin (Bosch)
There is too much to explain in detail, too much even for a summary. So I'll be brief.

  • To every stupid, lack-of-prior-planning, moron I dealt with; may a moose become erotically obsessed with your ass.

  • To every single airline I had to deal with tonight: may your trip to paradise involve a flight on your own airline, with a tricky connection in Chicago.

  • To my whiny, piss-ant drivers (not all of them, but a select few): may you be evicted because you didn't make enough money after demanding that every job that inconvenienced you be taken away.

  • and finally, To the webmasters at United and American; may your lives someday depend on machinery that is as stable and dependable as your fucking "track flight" pages.

But I have to give a shout out to the drivers who dealt with all the shit tonight professionally, calmly, and who asked "how can I help?" I'll remember you guys when I get add-ons and juicy trips.
gridlore: Doug looking off camera with a grin (Me - Glare of Sarcasm)
It's not quite 1000hrs and I have already lost all faith in humanity.

Since Kirsten is taking Ranger Darby to TTITD I've been getting him ready for the trip. Yesterday, it was Precision for their Road Trip Special (oil change, tire inspection and rotation, brake inspection, battery and alternator checked, fluids checked and topped off, and a safety inspection, all for about $63).

This morning? A quick trip to Kragen Auto (I refuse to acknowledge the name change) for some fuel additive, little trees, and industrial strength glass cleaner. Then fill the tank at Arco, dumping one bottle of fuel system cleaner in. Here's where my problems began.

I'm cruising along, having already filled the jerry can, when a trash heap pulls in behind me. Seriously, from the sound of things the sound system was worth four times the car it was mounted in. Guy gets out, smoking, leaves the engine running, and starts pumping fuel.

Hilarity ensues. The guys on duty freak out (so was I to be honest) and scream for the moron to stop pumping gas. He flips them off. So the clerk hits the emergency kill switch. All the pumps stop dead. Moron freaks out. It was at that point that the wind shifted and I smelled what he had been smoking.

Yeah, stoned and pumping gas.

Since it became clear that these pumps weren't being turned on again anytime soon (at least five people were calling the police) I packed up and rolled to the Chevron down the block to finish filling up. I would have just gone home, but those fuel cleaners are corrosive. You need to dilute them with a full tank or your gas tank suffers.

I bought the traditional pre-Burn lottery tickets.

Next up is starting the loading process tonight. As of tomorrow we're switching cars.
gridlore: Doug looking off camera with a grin (Goth)
It's no secret now that GOP in Congress literally plotted to undermine U.S. economy during President Obama's Inauguration.

 In Robert Draper's book, "Do Not Ask What Good We Do: Inside the U.S. House of Representatives" Draper wrote that during a four hour, "invitation only" meeting with GOP Minister of Propaganda, Frank Luntz, Senior GOP Congressmen plotted to undermine and destroy America's Economy.

Read this. Then contact Rep Darrell Issa and demand that the House open hearings into expelling those members who took part in this conspiracy to destroy the US economy.
gridlore: Doug looking off camera with a grin (Me - CAR -15)
PayPal is evil. Stop doing business with them immediately.

Once you've stopped screaming and throwing things, let them know how you feel.
gridlore: Doug looking off camera with a grin (Atheism - God)
| Burning Buddhas, Books, and Art: Meet The New Apostolic Reformation

Texas governor Rick Perry's August 6th, 2011 The Response prayer event, the de-facto launch of his presidential bid, was dominated by the apostles of C. Peter Wagner's New Apostolic Reformation. This article documents a little-noticed aspect of this little-noticed movement.

Top NAR leaders, including C. Peter Wagner, Cindy Jacobs, Ed Silvoso and, Chuck Pierce, have repeatedly emphasized in their writings the need for believers to destroy or neutralize, by burning, smashing, or flushing down toilets, objects deemed to be unholy, including profane books and "idolatrous" religious texts (such as Books of Mormon), religious relics (such as statues of Catholic saints, the Buddha, or Hindu gods), and native art (such as African masks, Hopi Indian Kachina dolls, and totem poles.)

According to New Apostolic Reformation doctrine, objects to be destroyed include those associated with Mormonism, Islam, Jehovah's Witnesses, Hinduism, eastern religions, Christian Science, native religions, and Baha'i.

NAR theologians, including C. Peter Wagner, sometimes cite, as a Biblical justification for the destruction of artifacts, an incident described in the New Testament's Book of Acts in which the magicians of Ephesus, under the influence of Apostle Paul, gathered together and burned their books of magic (thus weakening, according to Wagner, the hold of the goddess Diana over the city of Ephesus.) But Wagner also provides a more contemporary model.

In books from 1994 up into 2008, C. Peter Wagner has repeatedly cited, as a model for societal "transformation", the efforts of the Dominican friar Girolamo Savonarola in late-15th Century Florence, Italy.

Savonarola is credited with instigating the mass-burning in Florence of books and cultural objects deemed to incite sin (including by some reports several paintings by the Renaissance master Botticelli), in an event that has become known to historians as the "Bonfire of the Vanities."

On page 96 of his book Changing Church: How God Is Leading His Church Into The Future (2004, Regal/Gospel Light), bemoaning the lack of significant city `transformation' in the U.S., Wagner notes that, while evangelists have invested "huge amounts of time" and "large sums of money", "Even after 10 years, we cannot point to a single city in the United States that has undergone a sociologically verifiable transformation!"

A lot more at the link.
gridlore: Doug looking off camera with a grin (Penguin - Revolution!)
Holiday Inn Abruptly Ejects Progressive Groups Who Reserved Space For Jobs Rally In Same Hotel As Cantor Event

Progressive groups organizing a rally at the same Richmond-area hotel where House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-VA) was holding an event Wednesday were abruptly kicked out of the hotel and told by hotel management to remain off of its property during Cantor’s event.

Cantor held an Advisory Council gathering, closed to the media but open to constituents who registered ahead of time, at the Holiday Inn Koger Center in Richmond. A coalition of progressive Virginia organizing groups — Progress Virginia, OurDC, and Virginia Organizing — had booked rooms and a separate ballroom in the hotel to hold a “jobs rally” countering Cantor’s event. According to organizers, the groups planned to invite Cantor to attend their rally after his own event, in the hope that he would listen to their concerns regarding job creation and unemployment.

But just hours before the events were set to begin, the Holiday Inn canceled the groups’ ballroom and room reservations and ordered the groups to remain off of hotel property during Cantor’s meeting. According to organizers, hotel management falsely accused them of smoking in their rooms and used that as justification to cancel their reservations. A representative of Holiday Inn who only agreed speak on the condition of anonymity, however, said the hotel was seeking to avoid confrontation between the progressive groups and those attending the Cantor event. He would not comment on whether the hotel had any communications with Cantor or his staff regarding the progressive groups.

Attempts to reach both Cantor’s office and Holiday Inn’s corporate offices for comment prior to publication were unsuccessful. In an interview with a local news station, Cantor acknowledged that he saw the protesters but said, “I don’t see how that’s productive. … (It was) a very productive event. I’m not quite so sure how that was productive outside.”

After their reservations were canceled, the progressive groups assembled across the street and began marching to the hotel, where they were met by Virginia state police officers and hotel management demanding that they remain off Holiday Inn property. The protesters remained assembled between the Holiday Inn and the street, where they held signs protesting Cantor’s record on job creation and his legislative priorities and chanted that they wanted Cantor to focus on jobs. Multiple protesters told stories of their unemployment over a megaphone as police and hotel management looked on.

Please Contact Holiday Inn and let them know that until management apologizes, fires the manager who cancelled the progressive groups' reservations, and institutes training for handling diverse groups in their facilities, that you will not be staying at any Holiday Inn property. Be polite, and state this is because of the events in Richmond, Va.

Corporate Office | Headquarters Holiday Inn.
11766 Wilshire Blvd., Suite 1450 Los Angeles, CA 90025.

If that number doesn't work try 800-621-0555
gridlore: Doug looking off camera with a grin (Army - Infantry)
Texas lawmakers fighting to insert Christian language in funerals for non-Christian soldiers

Shouldn't veterans and their families have the right to decide whether religion -- and what kind -- is welcome at their own funerals? The Department of Veterans Affairs says yes. But three Texas Congressman and Christian military organizations want to strip away this basic right. Instead, they want to be allowed to impose unwanted Christian ceremonies on the military funerals of everybody who has served the red, white, and blue.

OK, I am livid over this. I am a veteran. I am an atheist. My disposal plan is cremation and scattering at sea, but if I did want a military service, I would not want an unwanted religious element intruding. Read Invictus instead. The crazy thing that the Christian services these morons want would horrify my family members who are Christians, as they run the gamut from Catholic to semi-agnostic deists. Then there's my mother-in-law's Judaism...

This is just another example of how the far right in America doesn't give a damn about Constitutional freedoms. Freedom of religion? Only if you're the right Christian sect.

Makes me sick.
gridlore: Doug looking off camera with a grin (Ka-boom)

  1. The ice cream truck playing Turkey in the Straw a half-measure slow.

  2. The ice cream truck playing Turkey in the Straw a half-measure slow.

  3. The ice cream truck playing Turkey in the Straw a half-measure slow.

  4. The ice cream truck playing Turkey in the Straw a half-measure slow.

  5. The ice cream truck playing Turkey in the Straw a half-measure slow.

  6. The ice cream truck playing Turkey in the Straw a half-measure slow.

  7. The ice cream truck playing Turkey in the Straw a half-measure slow.

  8. The ice cream truck playing Turkey in the Straw a half-measure slow.

  9. The ice cream truck playing Turkey in the Straw a half-measure slow.

  10. The ice cream truck playing Turkey in the Straw a half-measure slow.

gridlore: Doug looking off camera with a grin (Penguin - Exploding)
My Google account was hacked. Ignore any spam you get from me. Changing passwords all over the place.
gridlore: Doug looking off camera with a grin (Baseball - Scream)
DIE ZITO DIE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
gridlore: Doug looking off camera with a grin (Penguin - Exploding)
They missed.

The biopsy team managed to not get any usable lymphatic tissue. This was a CT-guided procedure, remember, the doctor was working with imagery that was less than ten minutes old and they missed everything.

Which means we need to reschedule after the new year to do it again. Do I need to mention that when dealing with these kinds of issues, time is of the essence? The entire procedure was a frakking waste of time and effort.

Now I need to contact my primary care doctor and let him know that until this is resolved, I'm staying on disability.

I'm in pain, can't breathe, I'm constantly tired and they missed.
gridlore: Doug looking off camera with a grin (Penguin - Exploding)
Just has my first appointment with my new oncologist. Love her. Not only is she a fellow Giants fanatic and 49er Faithful, she agrees that communication is vital in the doctor-patient relationship. Looking forward to working with her in the ongoing monitoring of my continued remission.

But... about my previous oncologist. Remember about a year ago I was trendy and had H1N1? Came down with it literally the same day I had a PET Scan. With all that drama, I never heard about the results of the scan. A few months later, with no explanation, I was scheduled for a needle biopsy of some of the spleen remnants I have hanging around. Again, I never heard a damn thing about the results.

Understand that if anything Kaiser is over-eager to give you details. Almost every test I've ever taken with them has been emailed to my account on the Kaiser website, with the results linked to explanations of what is being tested and what the results mean. Every single doctor I've met there (but one) has been eager to explain what they are doing, thinking, and planning. Hell, Dr. Jeske turned the computer monitor around today and showed me exactly what was concerning her.

A PET scan is an interesting thing. Without going into too much detail, it uses radioactive sugar to mark areas. Unlike other imaging techniques, nuclear medicine imaging studies are less directed toward picturing anatomy and structure, and more concerned with depicting physiologic processes within the body, such as rates of metabolism or levels of various other chemical activity. Areas of greater intensity, called "hot spots", indicate where large amounts of the radiotracer have accumulated and where there is a high level of chemical activity. Less intense areas, or "cold spots", indicate a smaller concentration of radiotracer and less chemical activity.

In my PET scan, my lymphatic system lit up like a pinball machine. I'm a survivor of Hodgkin's Disease, remember, a common form of lymphoma. Ya think that just maybe a good oncologist would inform his patient about this troubling development? Explain that the flu may well be the cause, but we're going to do additional tests? Does anyone reading this not think that Kirsten and I would be interested to know that my body was making several oncologists worried?

Even better, the biopsy I had reveal cells consistent with the effects of active Hodgkins but no actual Reed-Sternberg cells. I never knew this until today. I was never fucking told that my body was showing signs of a possible active re-occurrence of the fucking disease that almost killed me and changed my bloody life in ways that can best be described as devastating. For those of you blessed enough not to know a great deal about this topic, it's not uncommon not to find R-S cells in the early stages of a Hodgkin's case. They are the instigators that infect and destroy other cells. Hodgkin's can spread through an entire chain of lymph nodes and you'll only find the R-S cells in one or two of the actual nodes. One of the many reasons why Hodgkin's is so hard to diagnose in the early stages.

So done with the old oncologist.

A long-overdue follow-up PET scan is now scheduled for November 22nd.
gridlore: Doug looking off camera with a grin (Baseball - Scream)
..can go DIE IN A FIRE!!!!!!

He walks in two freaking runs in the first, responsible for four runs overall. I've turned the game off, I can't watch.

Giants Baseball... TORTURE!
gridlore: Doug looking off camera with a grin (Bosch)
I was supposed to go back in today. I was up, dressed, and pout the door on time. Then, more than half-way to work, semi-liquid Fixodent ran down my throat and triggered my gag reflex.

The good news I didn't crash while hurling all over myself. The bad news is I hurled all over myself.

I'm going to put the damn teeth back in after they've had a chance to soak in cleaner for a while. I need to get used to them again. Just as soon as my stomach stops convulsing.
gridlore: Doug looking off camera with a grin (Bosch)
My cell phone rang at 0530. It was one of my bosses, asking if I was running late.

No, I have today off. I've had today off for three months. The name "Doug" appears as having both today and last Friday off on the wall calender that we use for just that purpose.

Thanks for waking me out of a sound sleep.
gridlore: Doug looking off camera with a grin (Me - CAR -15)
I'm a liberal, and a former sniper. This turd wants to hunt? We'll hunt.

CA-11: Goehring wants to "thin the liberal herd"

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