Tech Support For Non-Techies

From xkcd[*1]

Yes, indeed, this really is how we do it, everyone. Trust me, I built a pretty good career out of doing this much of the time. OK, I also had the rare ability to actually read and comprehend technical manuals, but still, this is how we REALLY do it.

Also via Coyote Blog[*2] .

Obscene Profits Alert

It seems like we’re lectured on a daily basis how one industry or another is making “obscene profits.”


From the Cato Institute[*1]

This is AVERAGE compensation, folks, including both salary and benefits. Remind me again who’s making obscene profits?

I think the Government has plenty of money, don’t you?

Hat tip: Coyote Blog[*2] .

No, seriously, READ THIS ARTICLE!

The health care debate, summed up in a single statement:

“You know, what we’re doing doesn’t work. So, we should do MORE of it.”

Go read this Atlantic[*1] article (which I previously posted on here. Hell, don’t just read it. Memorize it.

Update: I’m promoting this to a “featured” article, so it will show up at the top of the articles for a while.

Update:A Modest Proposal from a physician[*2] :

Since we are moving toward socialism with ObamaCare, the time has come to do the same with other professions—especially lawyers. Physician committees can decide whether lawyers are necessary in any given situation.

There’s an old saying: what’s sauce for the goose is sauce for the gander.

Thought for the day

The very act of hyphenation (i.e. something-American) strips the very humanity from those doing it, and from those to whom it is done.

I am an American. Period.

Hyphenation Is Racism.

Going biblical, part 2

Regarding Obama’s bizarre swerve into muddling church and state (by the way, it’s remarkable, isn’t it how all of the sudden it’s a religious imperative to enact a political agenda?), here’s a few more passages from a book considered by many to be holy:

Proverbs 16:18 Pride goes before destruction, a haughty spirit before a fall.

Proverbs 11:2 When pride comes, then comes dishonor, But with the humble is wisdom.

Proverbs 18:12 Before destruction the heart of man is haughty, But humility goes before honor.

Jeremiah 49:16 “As for the terror of you, The arrogance of your heart has deceived you, O you who live in the clefts of the rock, Who occupy the height of the hill. Though you make your nest as high as an eagle’s, I will bring you down from there,” declares the LORD.

Obadiah 1:3 “The arrogance of your heart has deceived you, You who live in the clefts of the rock, In the loftiness of your dwelling place, Who say in your heart, ‘Who will bring me down to earth?

Inspired by an Andrew Klavan[*1] post, where he says, in part:

Obama told the rebs (rabbis), “We are God’s partners in matters of life and death.”

In response to this statement I would like to make a subtle theological point: No, we’re not. For those of you who aren’t versed in the finer points of theology, let me try to simplify that for you: No. We’re not. Or to put it even more simply: No. We. Are. Not.

It is not Obama’s opponents who are risking the heights of pride and hubris. Most of us just want to be left alone, really. We’re certainly not going around elevating ourselves to a point where we think we’re God’s partners. My vague recollection of Sunday School is that there’s only one man who sits at the right hand of God, and it isn’t Barack Hussein Obama.

Fact Check Like the AP!

You, too can check facts just like the AP does. Now, since you can’t post an article from the AP or even, as far as I know, link to one without the AP wanting you to pay a bajillion dollars, you’ll have to look for yourself for what Ace at Ace of Spades HQ[*1] says about it:

Here’s what the AP’s “fact check” would have looked like in the summer of 1974, if they were this in-the-bag for Richard Nixon:

POLLL: 70% of the public believes the President participated in, or was aware of, or even ordered the cover up of the Watergate burglary.

FACT: President Nixon says “I am not a crook.” Next.

Uh, okay. Really jerked that one out of the park there, buddy.

It’s crazy, but there is an unexpressed assumption (redundant, I know) lurking under the surface of the AP’s “fact check.”

That assumption: Obama, being our Savior, is of course incapable of lying. Like Superman.*

They really seem to believe this. Or seem to believe, at least, that you should believe it. I don’t know how else to explain their apparent belief that Obama’s unsupported, and often utterly contradicted, claims are to be taken as wholly authoritative on all issues of contention.

* Can’t lie? Okay, he can lie, he just doesn’t. Or at least not very often.

Charlie escapes! (kinda)

Denver Post[*1] has this thrilling story of a simian near-escape:

“He certainly wasn’t any trouble,” (a zoo spokeswoman) said. “He did exactly what we would have hoped he would do.”

Charlie, a 12-year-old, was outside his pen only about three minutes, she said, and was never at risk of escaping or confronting visitors.

Weight Loss: Day 1 (and a half)

No pictures in this post, sorry. They’ll be forthcoming–at least of some of the various pre-packaged diet foods which now constitute my diet for the next couple of months.

I got started on the diet on the afternoon of Wednesday, August 18th, with a sumptious supper of cream of chicken soup, roasted & salted soy nuts, a mixed-fruit-flavor fiber drink, and the supper medications and supplements: zonisamide[*1] as an appetite suppressant, three “Ultra Prevention” multivitamins, one green tea extract[*2] and one chromium[*3] supplement. Yum, yum! The soup was surprisingly good, the soy nuts are OK as well (although I think I’ve driven Snookums crazy with my comment that “one bag is about all I want to eat at one time.” She seems to think that means I don’t like them, but I do. I just don’t want to snarf down three or four bags worth at one sitting.) The fiber drink tastes exactly like a Crystal Light sort of drink, so that’s cool, too.

(I need to remember to take pictures of some of my daily feasts going forward, don’t I?)

I need to drink at least 64 ounces of non-caffeinated beverages daily. I took care of that easily in my big KU cup, filled to the brim with cherry sugar-free Kool-Aid(TM) (I’d use a cup with the South Dakota State jackrabbit on it, if only they made one!)

Evening snack was a bag of chili soy snacks–small peanut-sized things with the approximate texture of puffed Cheetos. They’re actually pretty good. Bedtime, and time for my evening pills and supplements: Vytorin[*4] for cholesterol, gemfibrozil[*5] for triglycerides, and 3 calcium[*6] /magnesium[*7] supplements. One of the goals of the weight loss project is to get off of the hideously expensive Vytorin, and the astonishingly cheap gemfibrozil.

After the jump (hit Read More!): Sleep! Sickness! Pickles! My nose was a bit stuffed up, which is always a bit problematic when I go to bed because among the other health problems I hope will go away–or get better–with weight loss is obstructive sleep apnea[*8] , so I use a CPAP[*9] through which I breathe during the night–through my nose.

Well, one of the things that happens every once in a while, especially when I’m congested, is that I get a sinus headache when I wake up. The headaches can range from really nasty to just annoying, and fortunately, I had the just annoying kind, the morning of Thursday, August 20th.

I got up, looking forward to a ‘breakfast’ of a package of cocoa drink, and a package of cappuccino drink, mixed with my morning coffee. I also have a list of 28 different pills to take every morning.

That’s when the trouble began.

The pills include the prescription drugs lisinopril[*10] and hydrochlorthiazide[*11] , for blood pressure; another dose of the aforementioned gemfibrozil; budeprion[*12] for another appetite suppressant (I’ll eventually be taking one of the zonisamides for breakfast too, as well as at supper, but that’s a couple of days away yet). The supplements are (gird your loins, it’s a big list) three “Ultra Prevention” multivitamins, five vitamin D[*13] gel-tabs, 2 chromium[*3] tabs, 4 omega 3 fish oil[*14] geltabs (EPA and GLA, mainly), 1 green tea extract tab, 4 salt[*15] tablets, 1 glucosamine/chondroitin[*16] tab, one coenzyme Q-10[*17] tab, and 2 cinnamon[*18] pills. Whew.

I think it was a salt tab that got me.

I did try to space out all of those pills, but apparently I took them too fast. I was half way through my second cup of coffee–the cappuccino–when the previously imbibed cocoa-coffee mixture (which was the first cuppa the day) along with all 28 companion intended to make their way down into my digestive tract instead decided to make a u-turn.

Up they came. They did give me plenty of warning, so I got one of my big aluminum mixing bowls out, and stood over the sink as a backup. I’m pretty sure I got all of it into the mixing bowl. I woke up Snookums with my ralphing[*19] . My body, satisfied that it had removed whatever was offending its tender sensibilities, began to calm down, and I dumped my attempted breakfast into the toilet.

Well, that was a waste of time and money. But it pretty well set the tone for the entire day. A full KU-cup of Coke Zero (one of my favorite comfort “foods”) helped me along as the day went on. I gingerly approached my morning snack, sugar-free Jell-O (TM) and another serving of the fiber drink.

I don’t think I’ve explained the whole meal plan thing yet. Here’s how it works:

– Breakfast, with two meal units;
– Morning snack, one meal unit;
– Lunch, two meal units;
– Early afternoon snack, one meal unit;
– Late afternoon snack, one meal unit;
– Supper, two meal units;
– Evening snack, one meal unit, and finally
– Bedtime, pills and supplements only.

Daily, one of the meal units is supposed to be a package of soy nuts, so I get a bit of fat in my diet. (You die if you don’t eat at least a little fat, people!) Also, one or two of the soluble fiber drink supplements, to keep the digestive machinery moving, don’t ‘cha know.

A “meal unit” is what I’m calling any of the various pre-packaged foods I got from the doctor’s office. That includes the various drinks, soups, pre-made and powdered shakes, and other low-carb/low-fat protein food products which I’ll live on for basically the next two months or so.

I had a couple of packs of instant oatmeal for lunch–apple/cinnamon flavor, which were actually pretty good, and nice and easy for my seemingly fragile appetite to take the noon supplements with (those being 1 green tea, 4 salt, 1 coenzyme Q-10, 2 chromium, 1 glucosamine/chondroitin, and 2 cinnamon tablets–only 11 total! Cake!) I topped off the Coke Zero in the 60-ounce mug and contemplated an afternoon nap after my “morning” shower.

The first afternoon snack was my first taste of the pre-made vanilla diet shake, which was actually pretty good, washed down with 48 ounces of water. My sinus headache was getting a bit worse, so I took 2 Aleve and 2 loratadine (generic Claritin) and tried to take that afternoon nap. I maybe got in 15 or 20 minutes of dozing, before getting up again. It was now 3 pm, and I was starting to get hungry (seeing as how I basically didn’t have breakfast, remember?) Dill pickles are “free food” on this diet. I ate four. Sugar-free gelatin is also a free food, so I had some of that, too. Pickle juice isn’t specifically on the diet, but I also drank about four ounces of that, too. Like I said, I was starting to get hungry. But that weird combination took the edge off.

By now it was 4 pm and time for the late afternoon snack. I made three more (big) bowls of Jell-O for later, and made my first powdered shake–chocolate mint flavor. It was pretty good.

Supper consisted of beef-vegetable-flavor soup (with little in the way of beef or vegetable therein, but some teeny tiny noodles for a bit of texture), a pack of soy nuts, and a bag of chili soy puffs, which I dumped into the soup and made serviceable cracker-like thingies. Oh, yeah, there were pills! The meds consisted of a zonisamide (I’ll take a budeprion too, in a couple of days), while the supplements are 3 multivitamins, 1 green tea, and 1 chromium. Only six pills? That’s NUTHIN!

Attentive readers will note that I cheated a bit, having three meal units for supper. Well, I skipped the evening snack, so we’re even. I downed three more dill pickles and one of the supersized bowls of Jell-O before turning in for the night.

Next: Friday!

UPDATE: Yeah, Thursday was so hard on me that I had all of my days of the week mixed up. That’s why Snookums is my Proofreader for Life. (Everybody go “awwwww” now ’cause it’s kinda mushy that way.)