g r o t t o 1 1

Peeve Farm
Breeding peeves for show, not just to keep as pets
Brian Tiemann
Silicon ValleyNew York-based purveyor of a confusing mixture of Apple punditry, political bile, and sports car rentals.

btman at grotto11 dot com

Read These Too:

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James Lileks
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As the Apple Turns
Entropicana
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Capitalist Lion
Red Letter Day
Eric S. Raymond
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Aziz Poonawalla
Corsair the Rational Pirate
.clue
Ravishing Light
Rosenblog
Cartago Delenda Est



Cars without compromise.





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  4/4/2005 -  4/10/2005
 3/28/2005 -   4/3/2005
 3/21/2005 -  3/27/2005
 3/14/2005 -  3/20/2005
  3/7/2005 -  3/13/2005
 2/28/2005 -   3/6/2005
 2/21/2005 -  2/27/2005
 2/14/2005 -  2/20/2005
  2/7/2005 -  2/13/2005
 1/31/2005 -   2/6/2005
 1/24/2005 -  1/30/2005
 1/17/2005 -  1/23/2005
 1/10/2005 -  1/16/2005
  1/3/2005 -   1/9/2005
12/27/2004 -   1/2/2004
12/20/2004 - 12/26/2004
12/13/2004 - 12/19/2004
 12/6/2004 - 12/12/2004
11/29/2004 -  12/5/2004
11/22/2004 - 11/28/2004
11/15/2004 - 11/21/2004
 11/8/2004 - 11/14/2004
 11/1/2004 -  11/7/2004
10/25/2004 - 10/31/2004
10/18/2004 - 10/24/2004
10/11/2004 - 10/17/2004
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 6/21/2004 -  6/27/2004
 6/14/2004 -  6/20/2004
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 5/31/2004 -   6/6/2004
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12/29/2003 -   1/4/2004
12/22/2003 - 12/28/2003
12/15/2003 - 12/21/2003
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11/24/2003 - 11/30/2003
11/17/2003 - 11/23/2003
11/10/2003 - 11/16/2003
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10/27/2003 -  11/2/2003
10/20/2003 - 10/26/2003
10/13/2003 - 10/19/2003
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  2/3/2003 -   2/9/2003
 1/27/2003 -   2/2/2003
 1/20/2003 -  1/26/2003
 1/13/2003 -  1/19/2003
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12/30/2002 -   1/5/2003
12/23/2002 - 12/29/2002
12/16/2002 - 12/22/2002
 12/9/2002 - 12/15/2002
 12/2/2002 -  12/8/2002
11/25/2002 -  12/1/2002
11/18/2002 - 11/24/2002
11/11/2002 - 11/17/2002
 11/4/2002 - 11/10/2002
10/28/2002 -  11/3/2002
10/21/2002 - 10/27/2002
10/14/2002 - 10/20/2002
 10/7/2002 - 10/13/2002
 9/30/2002 -  10/6/2002
 9/23/2002 -  9/29/2002
 9/16/2002 -  9/22/2002
  9/9/2002 -  9/15/2002
  9/2/2002 -   9/8/2002
 8/26/2002 -   9/1/2002
 8/19/2002 -  8/25/2002
 8/12/2002 -  8/18/2002
  8/5/2002 -  8/11/2002
 7/29/2002 -   8/4/2002
 7/22/2002 -  7/28/2002
 7/15/2002 -  7/21/2002
  7/8/2002 -  7/14/2002
  7/1/2002 -   7/7/2002
 6/24/2002 -  6/30/2002
 6/17/2002 -  6/23/2002
 6/10/2002 -  6/16/2002
  6/3/2002 -   6/9/2002
 5/27/2002 -   6/2/2002
 5/20/2002 -  5/26/2002
 5/13/2002 -  5/19/2002
  5/6/2002 -  5/12/2002
 4/29/2002 -   5/5/2002
 4/22/2002 -  4/28/2002
 4/15/2002 -  4/21/2002
  4/8/2002 -  4/14/2002
  4/1/2002 -   4/7/2002
 3/25/2002 -  3/31/2002
 3/18/2002 -  3/24/2002
 3/11/2002 -  3/17/2002
  3/4/2002 -  3/10/2002
 2/25/2002 -   3/3/2002
 2/18/2002 -  2/24/2002
 2/11/2002 -  2/17/2002
  2/4/2002 -  2/10/2002
 1/28/2002 -   2/3/2002
 1/21/2002 -  1/27/2002
 1/14/2002 -  1/20/2002
  1/7/2002 -  1/13/2002
12/31/2001 -   1/6/2002
12/24/2001 - 12/30/2001
12/17/2001 - 12/23/2001
Saturday, January 5, 2008
11:58 - What about if I sludge you, ya old bat?

(top)
Here's what happens in a state that doesn't get any rain for most of the year, and then each winter chooses one month at random to dump an entire year's worth of water on us all at once.

Freeways flood, big rigs get blown over, wimpy little underused storm sewers clog and overflow, commuters go careening into 40-car wrecks, and thousands of homeowners go scuttling up their extensible ladders to slouch about on their two-story roofs in the pelting rain, cleaning the debris and goop out of their gutters so they don't have to walk through a curtain of water that dribbles over the edge of the brimming gutter and falls in big boogery gouts into the back of your collar on your way out to the car.

Yes, Mrs. Glick, the sludge really does collect in those downspouts:



Enough so that you have to hose off the wall four feet up to clean off the gunk you've scooped out and hurled to the deck below.

There were a lot of chunks of old cedar shake, roofing nails, and red gritty sand that's sloughed off the steel roof we put on last summer. Apparently the roofers didn't exactly do an exemplary job of cleaning everything up when they left. But it sure is satisfying to see all that water and mud and stuff gushing out the bottom drain and overflowing all over the quartz gravel in a red sandy naily pile that will be just as much of a pain to clean up, if at less risk to life and limb.

And my roommate will never know which spoon I used to dig out all the crud from those downspouts. Heh heh heh...


Friday, January 4, 2008
16:20 - There shall, in that time, be rumours of things going astray
http://www.sinfest.net/archive_page.php?comicID=2677

(top)
So, like, I'm confused:



Let's assume, for the moment, just for fun, that the government and the media are two sides of the same coin, in perpetual cahoots and backing each other up. Forget the Rathergates and the Abu Ghraibs and so on for now; let's just humor the conceit. Call it a thought experiment.

So: assuming that, wasn't it in the interests of the Powers that Be to keep the "sheeple" feeling fat and happy? Wasn't that the whole idea—to lull everyone into a false sense of security, to keep people from feeling like there's anything wrong, so they go through their lives in dead-eyed dreariness and don't question the rules that order their existence?

At least, that's how I always read the script. But how exactly does it square with this idea here that the same forces that want us to remain fat and happy are also conspiring to terrify us, to make us jump through hoops, to keep us perpetually paranoid and on edge?

I mean, the same people are claiming that the Powers are doing both things to us. They're controlling us through bread and circuses, and they're controlling us through manufactured unrest. How do they do that?

How are we supposed to feel about these claims? Sure, everybody knows that terrorism doesn't really exist, that it's just a false-flag enemy ginned up to give us something ethnic to hate and fear. At the same time, everybody knows that the economy is going to hell and the government is a bunch of criminals and the election is a fraud, no matter how pretty a face the media puts on it. Right? ...But then, I suppose, everyone also knows that global warming is a farce and the war is actually going swimmingly and obesity isn't a problem and everyone will have plenty of money to retire, despite the media's transparently fraudulent attempts to pump worry about those things into our minds on a 24/7 basis. Right?

What am I missing here? What's the grand unifying theory? Am I supposed to be skeptical of the media's scaremongering, or of their soothing platitudes? Should I hate them for treating me like a cow, or for treating me like a hungry coyote? Which should I wish they did more of?

Damned if you do, damned if you don't. And that's what you get without even being affiliated with the dark forces whose bidding everyone assumes you're doing anyway. Who would want that job?



13:07 - Famouser and famouser
http://macmost.com/macmost-now-12-leopard-phrasebook-review.html

(top)
Hey, look what I just rescued from my Junk folder while perusing it for false-positive spam matches: a link from my publisher to a video review of my book by one Gary Rosenzweig.



He seems to like it, though he does mispronounce my name, as everyone does. It's an odd experience, to say the least, being on the receiving end of something like this...



09:22 - Glad I didn't pick this weekend to go skiing
http://www.cnn.com/2008/US/weather/01/04/california.storms/index.html

(top)
Okay, in California we usually keep our weather underground where it belongs. Not today, though.

(CNN) -- More than 10 feet of snow could fall on California mountains by Sunday and winds could reach the strength of an extremely strong hurricane as powerful winter storms move through the state.

"Travel is not advised in the mountain areas this weekend. It could be a life-threatening situation for you," CNN meteorologist Jacqui Jeras said Friday.

"The combination of heavy snow and powerful winds will likely cause frequent whiteout conditions at the highest elevations," National Weather Service forecasters said. "Travel in the Sierra will put your life at risk. Extremely high snowfall rates will make it impossible for road crews and emergency personnel to keep roads passable and to assist stranded vehicles."

Winds in the mountains could gust to 145 mph, forecasters said, the strength of a Category 4 hurricane. A Category 4 can inflict extreme damage.

As Lance puts it, "Take Hurricane Andrew and freeze it."

Apparently SFO is reporting gusts up to 65 knots right now, which is Category 1 strength. But hey, it's right down the runway...


UPDATE: Good lord:

AN EXTREMELY POWERFUL PACIFIC STORM IS JUST ON THE DOORSTEP AT THIS TIME. SEE ALL THE SUPPLEMENTAL STATEMENTS...WATCHES...AND WARNINGS THAT ARE OUT. ALSO SEE THE LINKS FROM THE TOP OF OUR HOMEPAGE FOR ADDITIONAL INFORMATION...WINTER SAFETY TIPS...AND LATEST STORM REPORTS.

SATELLITE IMAGERY SHOWS AN IMPRESSIVE LOW PRESSURE AREA NEARING 130W RIDING A STRONG JET STREAM. SATELLITE DERIVED JET LEVEL WINDS ARE AS HIGH AS 235 KTS!!!! WV/IR SAT IMAGERY SHOWS AN IMPRESSIVE BAROCLINIC LEAF NOW INSIDE 130W AT AROUND 35N. THIS FEATURE IS POINTED DIRECTLY AT THE SIERRA AND WESTERN NEVADA WITH CURRENT RAINFALL RATES ESTIMATED CLOSE TO 1 INCH PER HOUR.

...

EXTREMELY HEAVY SNOWFALL WITH WIND GUSTS UP TO 60 MPH OR MORE WILL MAKE ANY TRAVEL NEARLY IMPOSSIBLE AND LIFE THREATENING. IN ADDITION...RIDGE GUSTS OF UP TO 200 MPH WILL OCCUR.

Excellent reasons not to be in Truckee right about now.



09:13 - Oh, do tell me more

(top)
Tim Blair hears from Brian Boyko, a documentary filmmaker who makes Michael Moore look like Carl Sagan.

He's posted Boyko's whole wounded diatribe in response to Blair's earlier post pointing at Bokyo's persecuted global wanderings, and the commenters—as is commonly the case at Blair's place—making wonderful hay of it.

Brian’s spillage is richly detailed about his internal state but vague about all those Americans shipped off to Gitmo or imprisoned for civil disobedience. Names and dates would help. Even one name, one date.

Don’t people like Brian ever proofread their own hysterics and think, ‘I need to present an actual, verifiable fact, right about now’?

This is why I haven't posted much political stuff lately. It won't help. I've long since given up as futile the hope that it would add to anyone's knowledge who already agrees with my position, or that it would change the mind of anyone who doesn't (or, for that matter, not alienate members of the latter group that I would like to call friends). When seemingly lucid and intelligent people are as stolidly disconnected from reality as Boyko is, there's literally no point in arguing with them. All you can do is hope they eventually tire themselves out without causing too much damage to themselves and others.

UPDATE: Similar levels of heroic, dogged thickheadedness are on display from a contributor in the comments of this post on the Bush/Mandela thing by Patterico.


Wednesday, January 2, 2008
21:27 - They call this place California

(top)



13:54 - Clothing Moment of Zen

(top)
Where was this assembled, Coventry?



It actually fits very well, thank you.


Tuesday, January 1, 2008
22:11 - The Year in Review

(top)
2007 wasn't a great year for some of my friends, but for me it was pretty much a landmark worth summarizing. I've had better years, but a lot more worse ones, I'd say.

I've had lots of years where I didn't acquire a supercar, or establish a weekly tradition of a certain scenic drive.

I've had lots of years where I didn't lose about 70 pounds, while at the same time developing a taste for single-origin dark chocolate.

I've gone many prior years without learning how to make truffles and candied citrus peels and heirloom tomato salad à la Monteverde.

Most years I don't launch a new website; this year I did two.

This year I upgraded my Canon 10D to a 20D, complete with a new set of lenses with which to photograph Lamborghinis.

I only finished one book this year, but one's better than zero.

I got our hot tub paid off, a new roof put on the house, and replaced a bunch of the plants.

Probably more stuff too. I'll think of it.

In all I'd say it's been a pretty good one. So I'm not necessarily looking for 2008 to be an improvement; but that's not to say I'm not going to try.


Monday, December 31, 2007
22:35 - I'm dreaming of a something something

(top)
The day after Christmas, in the hills to the north of the house in Northern California where I grew up, it snowed like the dickens:



'Course, that was just the start of the week's vacation, most of the rest of which looked like this:



More will be forthcoming after I've settled back in.

Happy New Year!


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© Brian Tiemann