Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Did You Ever Wish You Could Have a Band?

Well, you can't. But you can play this fun game. Here's what you do:

Go to The first random wikipedia article you get is the name of your band.

Go to The last four or five words of the very last quote of the page is the title of your first album.

Go to Third picture, no matter what it is, will be your album cover.

Use Photoshop (or Elements or something else) to put it all together.
Post a link to it and share with your friends!
Check out some other peoples albums:
Sean Duffy “Others Might Pick them Up”
Rajshahi Collegiate School: “Powerlessness Make You Pure”
Return of the Street Fighter: “So we can have some Conversation”

I found this at

I love my album cover!

Here's Sue's

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Birthday Boy

Happy Birthday you little outlaw, you.

Free Photoshop Textures

I found a good site on Flickr for textures this morning. People are incredibly generous and give so much great stuff away on the web. I made this header with one of this lady's textures. Her other photos are wonderful too. These can also be used with other image-editing programs.

Monday, February 23, 2009

First--Set The Stage

My favorite thing about Oscar night was the set design. Gone were the overgrown clunky golden Oscar statues of other years and the deep dark orchestra pit and the long walk of the winners down the aisle tripping up the stairs to claim their prizes. The whole theater was redesigned by architect and designer David Rockwell who reconfigured the entire stage and theater into a more coherent and intimate space. The orchestra was up on stage on a bandstand that moved up and down the stage and sometimes broke apart and completely disappeared at times during the night.

There was a magnificent crystal curtain that out-glittered the glitterati. Instead of one giant flat screen to show movie clips and montages, there was a grid of screens that could show several or many images at once. The stage, protruding out into the seating floor with only four steps between the presenters and audience, allowed the winners to gracefully ascend to get their prizes. The stage floor itself was a work of art with arches and triangles complimenting the curve of the stage.

The seating areas reinforced the stage itself with their gentle curves and balance. Everything worked together to make this the most beautiful Oscar theater setting I've ever seen. Really outstanding elegant design.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

"I Wish. . ."

How can you not love this show? We started watching a little late so we could spin the commercials and then the tape ran fast and skipped some show and I cried out, “stop, stop, go back,” and Bill said (drily), “don’t worry; I won’t let you miss one exciting moment.” And as soon as it was over, I wanted to watch it all over again (I didn’t).

Last night was terrific. I loved that it mirrored the pilot and opened with Jack’s one eye, but I knew pretty quickly it wasn’t going back to the beginning because he didn’t have that big gash in his back that Kate had to sew up. And how about that little bit of Locke’s note that he dropped when he heard Hurley yelling. . .”I wish. . .” That’ll turn up again. And Hurley using Charlie’s guitar case for a raft; did Charlie give it to him before he left, and I can’t wait to find out why Hurley decided to get on the plane (I suspect Charlie did it)? Oh, so many delicious questions.

What the heck happened to Ben? He was really beat up. He called Jack from a marina after he was hurt. Did Sayid finally lose it, and that’s why he seems to be escorted by an Ana-Lucia look-alike (Sayid in handcuffs this time instead of Kate)? Or did he go for Penny, and Desmond took care of him. (Penny better be all right, is all I can say). And who’s that guy on the plane who sympathized with Jack in the airport? He showed up a lot; he’ll be back. Wasn’t it so Hurley to buy up all the extra seats he could so that people wouldn’t get hurt. “They can take the next plane.” And, oh, by the way, where’s Aaron? Oh, I forgot, we're not allowed to ask that question.

I loved Desmond’s reaction to Mrs. Farraday’s calm, well-reasoned argument about the 06 returning to the island. “You listen to me, brother. . .these people are just using us; they’re playing some kind of game and we’re just the pieces.” And finally Jack is becoming a man of faith, “this is ridiculous!” But he gets on that plane just the same. “That’s why it’s called a leap of faith, Jack.” Lots of religious imagery in the scenes with Mrs. Farraday, all sorts of Mary statues, icons, paintings and the Doubting Thomas story. Is Locke Jesus and Jack Thomas?

What was up with Jack’s father’s shoes and the scene with his grandfather in the nursing home? A magic show, a white rabbit, grandad wants to get away where they won’t find him? I thought Jack was going to pack him on the plane. At least we know why Christian was wearing white sneakers with his suit. Jack couldn’t be bothered getting him shoes in Sidney.

Locke sure doesn’t look dead, not at all pasty white and embalmed. And wasn’t it great how the note returns from the dead to Jack on the plane?

How about good old Frank showing up as the pilot. “We’re not going to Guam, are we?” Hah, Frank! He looked just dandy. . .for the moment.

On the plane everybody’s into smart remarks. Jack asks Kate how they all ended up there and she says “because they bought a ticket.” Jack asks Ben how he can read (Ulysses, by the way--probably the greatest book in the English language), and Ben says, “my mother taught me.” Everybody’s a comedian on this flight.

To cap off the whole terrific episode, we have Jin in a new Dharma jumpsuit in the VW bus holding a rifle on the folks, but then recognizing them and then giving that little hint of a smile. Lord, I love this show. "I wish" I didn't have to wait a whole week for the next episode.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Show Me The Money!

Yesterday President Obama signed the 1,100-page American Recovery and Reinvestment Act into law. This $787 billion stimulus package is meant to revive the American economy and provide jobs and tax cuts for millions of people in an effort to jump-start economic recovery. According to an e-mail he sent me this morning, the President says that citizens can track every dollar spent and every job created on a new website named And you better believe that people will try. (Pity the poor web developers here for a moment.) The site breaks the spending down into broad categories and provides state-by-state estimates of jobs created, but it is not possible currently to track the specific spending at a community level because the states haven't always made those decisions yet. You certainly have to give them points for this effort, though. This is part of the new transparency of government the President is committed to even though it may not yet be perfect. It will set the standard for the future, however, and I get the feeling the President will not tolerate anything but excellence in this endeavor. It is a data stream for holding our government accountable. The future is now and we can see it on the Internet.

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Does This Ever Happen To You?

Chris's Frankie in "Remain Aloof" mode
Your cat monopolizes your favorite chair or he/she insists on watching The Dog Whisperer when you really want to see Top Chef. And nothing you can say makes any difference; you just get ignored no matter how hard you plead, beg, cajole. Well, here's the answer you've been waiting for--the "Control-A-Cat" remote control. Simply point it at your cat, press the buttons on the remote, and see what happens. With buttons for "Stop Scratching," "Show Affection," "Remain Aloof" and others, you'll be in control in no time. It's finally your turn to make your cat do what you want. I definitely think Chris needs one of these for his birthday. That "Chair" button should come in especially handy.

Friday, February 13, 2009

Love Notes

(click on the picture to read)

This post requires a little backstory. When Bill and I finally decided our kids were responsible old enough to stay home alone for a few days, I used to write out long lists of instructions, chores and duties in the hope that one or another of them might happen to glance at it and at least feed the animals or lock the doors at night. I know now it was probably foolish of me, but I did it anyway for my own peace of mind in the hope they could survive a weekend without us. These lists had to be written on a yellow legal pad in red ink. I don't remember why, but they did--nothing else was acceptable. They would tell me to rewrite it if I happened to use a white pad or black ink instead. I'd try to make them as amusing as I could, and I spent a lot of time composing them. They are all lost to the trash by now.

But the other day I was rooting around in the desk for something and I came across one I wrote to Bill when Amy and I went to Cleveland for an art excursion (old habits die hard). I am posting it here even though it is not quite up to the caliber of the ones I wrote to the kids. I thought they might get a kick out of seeing it anyway and recalling their mom's old "love notes".

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Good Boy! Now Sit!

Poor Arlen Specter is apparently in the doghouse with his Republican colleagues because he voted for the stimulus package along with two other Republican senators (Olympia Snowe [isn’t that the greatest name?]) and Susan Collins of Maine (“Maine!” is there some theme going on here?). Those three votes allowed the package to pass right under the noses of the Republican portion of the Senate and now they are growling and snarling at him.

All I can say is “Good for you, Arlen,” you did the right thing and now I am at your service. Want me to campaign for you next election? I will (unless there’s a good democrat I can trust who is running) and I’ll remind everybody what a smart guy you are and how you put your country before your party, which is not something a lot of Republican senators apparently know how to do. Senator Specter knew his vote wasn’t going to win him any points with his party, but he said “I believe that my duty is to follow my conscience and vote what I think is in the best interests of the country. And the political risks will have to abide." That and Meredith told me to vote “Yes.” Now I have to write back and praise him. Good Boy!

Friday, February 6, 2009

Suffering From Cabin Fever?

It's so cold and wintery here; it's definitely time for an adventure. Where would you go if you could go anywhere? A tropical island maybe? Or would you dare go on a once-in-lifetime Australian Walkabout? Would you want to explore ancient ruins, swim with the sharks, or cavort with polar bears? All these travels are possible on Ajira Airlines and for just $87.00 a trip. Check out their offer to fly you to a mysterious destination where you will have the adventure of your life. You might even get "Lost." Sounds good to me.