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13.44% of High Schoolers Will be Dead in 5 Years

August 31, 2005 at 7:35pm By: Mr. Wilson Posted in 625 Elm Street

It’s true. The new federal website Just Think Twice links to Meth is Death, which tells us that:

  • 1 in 7 high school students will try meth
  • 99 percent of first-time meth users are hooked after just the first try
  • only 5 percent of meth addicts are able to kick it and stay away
  • the life expectancy of a habitual meth user is only 5 years.

Therefore, 13.44% of all high schoolers will be dead in 5 years. It’s true because our government told us it is true. (Even though they also tell us it’s all lies.)

(Hat tip: Hit and Run)

Free Opera

August 30, 2005 at 11:11pm By: Mr. Wilson Posted in 625 Elm Street

Opera is giving away its web browser for free in honor of its 10th birthday. That’s the full, ad-free version.

Go get your copy!

A Skip in My Step

August 29, 2005 at 11:20pm By: Mr. Wilson Posted in 625 Elm Street

I recently discovered Adobe Designer at work. It’s an incredibly powerful form design tool that makes form creation easy for designers, and form completion easy for users. Unfortunately, it has a couple shortcomings in how it interacts with the user. Those shortcomings nearly torpedoed a hefty portion of a project I’ve been working on. In fact, we had “officially” decided to dump Designer and go a more old-fashioned route.

Fortunately I was stubborn, and my stubbornness paid off.

Through a bit of luck I ran across a helpful document (PDF) that led me down a path that led to a path that led to a dead end, which encouraged me to dig a tunnel… Long story short, I found a workaround to do what we wanted to do with zero extra effort on our end, and only an extra mouse click or two from the folks who will be using our end product. And best of all, I earned a healthy scoop of brownie points, which always come in handy.

I love the rush you get when you accomplish something you had almost given up on. Considering how much energy we had put into this project, I would have been really disappointed if we had had to back down. Instead, I get to go hop on the bus with a skip in my step. To which I say: cool.

Poop Head

August 28, 2005 at 10:34pm By: Mr. Wilson Posted in 625 Elm Street

Daisy rolled in a huge, fresh, steaming pile of poop this morning. Her neck and portions of her head were coated with it. She was pleased as punch; I was not amused. I would have strangled her, but there was no way in hell I was going to touch her. Fortunately, when we got home she jumped into the bathtub on her own, and I was able to rinse most of it off without having to touch her. But it’s going to take a long time before I let her cuddle up close to me.

Why must dogs roll in foul, stinky things? Why?!

Friday Diversion

August 26, 2005 at 2:20pm By: Mr. Wilson Posted in 625 Elm Street

Check out The Matrix, ascii-fied.

Scovilles Aplenty

August 25, 2005 at 8:17pm By: Mr. Wilson Posted in 625 Elm Street

I had lunch today with Mr. T and a joint acquaintance, whom for today we will call “The Black Widow.” I will spare you the full back story, but Mr. T and The Black Widow decided to make a wager: whichever of them lasted longer in a hot chile eating competition would win a free steak dinner, purchased by the loser. I would act as the judge, and I would supply the chiles from my garden. I just happened to have a couple fresh habaneros waiting to be eaten.


Now THIS is Democracy

August 25, 2005 at 2:27pm By: Mr. Wilson Posted in 625 Elm Street

Democracy is, by design, a bit ugly. What do you expect when you try to let everybody have a say in their government? Its ugliness is one of democracy’s most interesting traits. Often the public doesn’t want to see the unpleasantries of government at work, but sometimes they really do want to take part and get their hands dirty. When government officials try to prevent citizens from participating, the citizens can get a bit unruly. Case in point: a public meeting in Davis, California, was taken over by citizens when the government officials leading the meeting were a bit too closed-minded about how the public ought to be able to participate:

About 30 minutes into the session, audience members revolted against the format, arguing that residents should be able to speak. [Mayor Ruth] Asmundson abruptly halted the session and directed the panel to leave the City Hall dais.

Opponents of the spraying took over the meeting and quickly restored order. They elected as their leader a local woman who had caught the virus.

Good for them! And best of all, “the meeting ended nearly on schedule with a polite round of applause.”

Those are my kind of citizens. We need more of ‘em.

A Visit to Iron Works

August 25, 2005 at 4:26am By: Mr. Wilson Posted in 625 Elm Street

The Missus and I dined at Eighth Street Iron Works this evening. It was our first—and probably last (see below)—trip to the Haymarket restaurant.

Iron Works is in a bit of a difficult location within the Haymarket. Sitting on the northwest corner of 8th and Q, the site has seen several restaurants fail. Iron Works has a lot going for it, including a cozy interior that invites diners to sit and stay a spell. The servers were very friendly and helpful. The menu is contemporary American, with prices on the high side for Lincoln.

The Missus ordered a dish that featured stuffed squash (zucchini) with mushrooms, quinoa, and drizzled with truffle tea. I had the bacon-wrapped meat loaf with mashed potatoes and fresh sweet corn. Both of us really enjoyed our dishes. The emphasis at Iron Works is definitely on quality before quantity; the Missus and I are both big eaters and we could have used a bit more on our plates. Nevertheless, we were pleased with the overall experience.

The reason I’m not putting more effort into this informal review is that it seems Iron Works won’t be with us much longer. I couldn’t help but overhear our server speak with another customer about the restaurant’s impending close. I didn’t catch many details, but few were needed: if you want to catch Iron Works one more time (or for the first time), get there quickly. That’s too bad, because I think the type and quality of food at Iron Works is a welcome addition to the Haymarket atmoshere. I suppose this news should technically still be filed under “rumor” since one server’s chat with a customer isn’t official. But when a server talks about having to find a new job while on the job ... well, that’s not a good sign.

Locker Room Psychology

August 22, 2005 at 7:52pm By: Mr. Wilson Posted in 625 Elm Street

Iowa’s new locker rooms have taken on a unique hue.

Chuck Finally Went and Did It

August 22, 2005 at 12:51am By: Mr. Wilson Posted in 625 Elm Street

Well, Chuck Hagel finally went and did it: he called the Iraq War Vietnam. (Upon hearing the news, Don Walton had a massive orgasm.) I remain convinced that Hagel is pulling these media-friendly tricks as part of an elaborate plan to gamble his way into the White House in 2008. Will the gambles work? Time will tell. I just hope Senator Hagel remembers Rule Number One of gambling: the house always wins. And he is going up against a pretty darn powerful house.

Depending on how events play out, I see Hagel going down in history either as one of the most beloved or most reviled of all Nebraska senators. He has left himself very little room to leave a legacy anywhere in the middle.

Update: Hit and Run is following this story and, as always, there are plenty of good comments to chew on.

Game One: Done

August 22, 2005 at 12:07am By: Mr. Wilson Posted in 625 Elm Street

My first college soccer game is in the books. Laramie County Community College defeated Concordia University 5-2 in a scrimmage. The LCCC women almost won 6-2, but their last-second shot was still 10 yards shy of the goal when time ran out.

The game was great as a first game. It was very low-key, slow-paced, and zero pressure. In fact, it felt a lot like a Class A girls high school game more than a college game. That gave me a chance to learn the routines college referees go through before, during, and after games. I have a couple upcoming games that won’t be nearly so laid back, including AR assignments at Nebraska Wesleyan and Creighton. Those mens games will be much faster paced and the intensity will be much higher. I can’t wait!


August 20, 2005 at 6:59pm By: Mr. Wilson Posted in 625 Elm Street

Steve carried through on his promise to write an article putting gasoline prices into perspective over at his blog. I just have one question for him: Where the heck does ribeye steak come in pints? [Homer Simpson]Mmmm, liquified ribeye steak ::drool:: [/Homer Simpson]

CNN: Voyeur TV?

August 19, 2005 at 8:31pm By: Mr. Wilson Posted in 625 Elm Street

There’s something very disturbing about this screen capture from

Screen capture of CNN website

So You Wanna Be an Air Traffic Controller?

August 19, 2005 at 7:33pm By: Mr. Wilson Posted in 625 Elm Street

No you don’t.

Poor Devil

August 19, 2005 at 7:32pm By: Mr. Wilson Posted in 625 Elm Street

Gas prices are a popular topic of conversation these days. But there is at least one perspective from which gasoline prices aren’t too shabby.

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