Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Thought of the Day #177 - Costumes

I'm trying to come up with a costume idea for the Vegas bash. It has to be from the movies...any movie. Any ideas out there that would work for me that wouldn't be too hot nor too complicated? I'm drawing blanks and coming up with mediocre ideas, i think. If you've got an idea, email it to me: cat@catay.com. Thanks!

Monday, June 29, 2009

Thought of the Day #176 - Upselling

I really, really hate "upselling" -- the pushy sales tricks to get you
to buy "just a little more...because it's a better deal." It happened
today at the optometrists. Lasik...coating for eyeglasses (if it's that
important, shouldn't you automatically put it on your lenses)... a
"service contract" to save x percent and get a free exam next time ...
get your eyes dialated (a good idea once in a while, but not everytime)
... etc, etc. Nothing makes me lose confidence and respect for an
establishment faster than upselling. I haven't been hit up this bad
since my 18 year old cat was ill and they suggested I needed a 3-D
image of his heart to see if there were things wrong. He was 18...more
than likely there were definitely things wrong, but would a 3-D image
of his heart cure him? Of course not...the 7K open heart surgery
*might* do that. Just insane.

I think it especially irritates me because vets and optometrists have
you by the nards. You love your animal, but he's sick. And, you love
your eyesight and need a prescription in order to see properly.


Sunday, June 28, 2009

Thought of the Day #175 - Air Burial


Crazy lookin' birds, but soooo awesome, too. I haven't ever seen them here in Utah before yesterday. I've only seen one in the wild a few years ago while trekking through Death Valley.

They reminded me of the concept of an "air burial" that is performed in some parts of the world. Basically, the body is chopped up and placed on a "air burial" platform or location where meat eating birds frequent. The birds eat the flesh and you ~soar~ into the afterlife (or lack thereof). While the idea is a bit creepy, there's a complete homage to the circle of life that I sincerely appreciate. In fact, if they offered that as an option here, I would definitely request it upon my demise.
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Saturday, June 27, 2009

Thought of the Day #174 - Fit for a Store

I was rearranging my fabric stash in my small office closet, and using
rubbermaid type bins, I sorted the fabric and unfinished projects.
Putting the bins back in the closet, it became painfully obvious that
the angled sides of the bins is not designed for saving space in a
closet. As a Twitter pal pointed out...the angled sides are meant to
ease the stacking of empty bins. Ah, yes, it's more important to have
hundreds of bins available on the shelf, even though a different
squarer shape would be better for people who will be using the bins.
Interesting concept and it explains why I cannot find square freezer
bins. Bastids. Worry about the consumer, please??

Thought of the Day #173 - Heat & Mood

On really hot days, I start off in the morning feeling pretty chipper. I
love the coolness in the early morning light. My mood is good and I'm
often pretty ambitious. As the day wears on and the temps climb into
the ninties, my mood sours. I don't want to do *anything* and I really
don't even want to talk to anyone. Getting a glass of ice water seems
like a chore. My contacts end up drying up, too, which only worsens my
mood. Grrr. Of course, by the time the sun gets close to setting, I'm
back into "normal" mode and willing to socialize. By the end of the
night, I suddenly realize I've got central air, so why am I not using
it?? Because, in the early day, it seems that I don't find it
necessary. By the afternoon rolls along, I'm too sour to bother. Oh,

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Thought of the Day #172 - Pop Culture Deaths

Like Farrah Fawcett, I feel that Michael Jackson's death put an end to
pain. So much of Jackson's later years seem wrapped in pain, yes
physical, but far more so emotional. He struggled to find a physical
"look" that matched his inside and he struggled to live on the outside
amid public scrutiny with beliefs and behavior that were "different" in
so many ways. Death may have been a blessing for them both.

Thought of the Day #171 - Bugs

The weeks of rain has finally ended...but two days after the rain has
stopped and the earwigs have started invading. Two in the house today.
Ick. Maybe it's 'cuz I have killed all the spiders around...and that's
their only threat aside from birds and other more advanced ctitters.
It's either that or it's a crazy infestation year. Ugh. Bring back the
rain so they don't wanna pop out of the ground. Ick! (Did I say that

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Thought of the Day #170 - Shoes

No matter who you are, if you are wearing shoes that are uncomfortable,
you are a fool.

Thought of the Day #169 - Swimming in the Heat

I bought my plane tickets to go to Vegas for the BBW Network bash in
July. The pool is calling me... Cool water and painfully warm air.
Delightful! I promised myself to be smart about sunscreen.'cuz the burn
was brutal last year. *swim* *swam* *swum* Go to bbwnetwork.com if you
want to swim in the sweltering heat, too. Remember, it's a dry heat!
(Well, except when you're in the pool.)

Monday, June 22, 2009

Thought of the Day #168 - Cat Came Back

We had a cat go missing last month. Sweet, kind of crazy, outdoor kitty,
he was. When he disappeared, we figured he had probably been hit by a
car as we live on some very busy streets. Last night, however, he
returned! He seemed pretty well fed, so someone must have been feeding
him, knowingly or unknowingly. We'll never know where or what he's been
up to, but it's nice to have him around again.

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Thought of the Day #167 - Sleep

When in doubt, get more sleep, not less. Tell your dreams I sent you.

This Thistle

The bumble bee just happened to fly in and pose for me. I appreciate when the wildlife behaves like that. So considerate!
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Friday, June 19, 2009

Thought of the Day #166 - CNN & Twitter

Apparently Arnold Schwarzenegger had an emergency landing and "tweeted"
about it on Twitter.com. CNN received an official statement from the
governor's office, but they made a bigger deal over the tweet. I think
they're either 1. forgetting that a social networking site isn't an
official news source or 2. they are "in bed" with Twitter.com for
future financial gain. I'm really betting on the latter. All to much
news on there is now Twitter-centric. While I think there is some
validity to the medium, I don't think it should be a main source.

I'm also going beyond my previous totd about news and social networking,
and going to assume that tweets are easier to hack and spoof than even
emails. To start, there's no SSL security when posting tweets on the
web. Just makes me go hmmmm even more. Be careful out there!

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Thought of the Day #165 - Chocolate & Cherries

Ever have chocolate chip cookies with dried tart cherries inside? No??
What's wrong with you??

Thought of the Day #164 - Social Networking Propaganda

I've heard quite a bit of buzz the past week about the advantages of social networking sites moving information out of Iran. It made me think, however, that this same information leakage could be used as a propaganda machine quite easily. And, quite honestly, it probably is being used around the world in that way already. It just makes me wary of the loose definition of a "source" for information. Just making me go "hmmmm..." tonight.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Highly Recommended Roll Recipe...that I meant to share long ago...

These are always a hit when served to new people, and they're highly requested by those who have tried them. My mom used to make something very similar, although in my mind's eye, the ones she made were fluffier. In any event, the flavor is VERY similar.

By the way, the recipe calls for 2 cups of water, but if you'd like an even richer dough, try using warmed milk.

Parker House Style Rolls

6 cups bread flour
2 packages yeast
1/2 cup sugar
2 tsp. salt
2 sticks/cubes butter
2 cups hot water
1 egg

Using a large heavy duty stand mixer with the dough hook installed(or a food processor), combine 3 cups of flour, yeast, sugar and salt. Add a stick/cube of butter that has been melted. Add the water as you turn on the mixer. Add the egg. Keep mixing on medium speed for about 5 minutes. (Helps to activate the gluten in the flour!) On low speed, add the remaining three cups of flour, one cup at a time. At this point, I let the mixer do the kneading for several minutes. If your mixer can't handle the load, remove the dough and hand-knead the dough until the flour is incorporated and the dough has a good texture. Put the kneaded dough into lightly greased bowl. Cover with either plastic wrap or a moistened towel. Let rise until double. Punch the dough down. Take the remaining butter (1 stick/cube) and melt into a 13x9 or larger baking pan. The pan should be a dark coated pan to get maximum browning on the bottom of the rolls. Form into rolls (use your imagination, there are LOTS of shapes to make!). Dip each roll into the butter, flip it over and set into the pan of melted butter. Bake at 400 degrees for ~18 minutes or until the tops are golden brown. Delicious!

Thought of the Day #163 - Wireless Thieves

Have you ever stolen an internet connection? You know...you're in a strange place, need to check something online and you randomly find an unsecured wifi network? And you connect to it?? You know you have if you have a laptop. Admit it!

I understand that it's illegal in some places, but I'm starting to think with the extent of broadband availability throughout the country that soon we will all have free wifi unsecured networks. (Well, unless the greedy bastids (you know who you are) decide that free anything is wrong...'cuz they could make money off of you!)

If I could feel safe and not worry about greedy hackin' bastids, I would open up my connection to the general public. I use my broadband connection for work and whatnot, but I rarely use up all bandwidth that's available. If I could have ~priority~ to the bandwidth and grant free access to non-hacker types, I would. Would you??

Thought of the Day #162 - If you don't mine...

If you don't mine...it doesn't anti-matter.

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Thought of the Day #161 - Flash Mobs

Flash mobs bring a temporary continuity to an ever more separated existence. And I like it.

Thought of the Day #160 - Crosswords

I realy don't like crossword puzzles. I've done them, of course, usually
when trapped in an airport with nothing to do beyond guessing citizen
origins or giggling about choosen flight-ready footware.

The crossword puzzle's clues are far too cryptic for me to enjoy. I feel
the crossword's author is often sniveling with glee over his/her attempt
at vaguely clever twists in tangental relationships. That annoys me.
Other times I just don't care enough to want to think that hard.

Friday, June 12, 2009

Thought of the Day #159 - Synchronous Names

It bothers me sooooo much when my "catay" name is taken on websites as a username. I started it. It's mine, mine, mine. Ok, fine, the other "catay"s out there that are actually called "Catay" and mine is strictly a nickname, but it's almost a trademark for me now. I use it everywhere I can. A synchronous online definition of who my online persona wants to be. So, when I heard that Facebook was allowing users to create named links at EXACTLY 10:01pm, I thought...I GOTTA BE THERE! Of course, long about 11PM, I remembered. Luckily, http://www.facebook.com/catay was available. Wooooohoooo!

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Thought of the Day #158 - Organic Cotton

Can "organic cotton" really be organic if they process, wash, or water
the crop at any time in city water? Wouldn't they have to completely be
using well or fresh spring water? I mean, if you really, really wanna be
picky about this crap, you better go all the way.

In all seriousness, organic tagging of any product is far more relevant
to marketing than it is to personal or global health.

Thought of the Day #157 - Oh, Snack!

If you ever say, "Oh, snap!" please change it to, "Oh, snack!" I would
appreciate it. And, won't it be great to know you were in on the change
before anyone else? Be hip, be cool and...oh, SNACK!...I forgot it's no
longer cool to say, "cool."

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Thought of the Day #156 - Killer Bunnies

Love this game! Plenty of killer action and humor for all ages.

Monday, June 08, 2009

Thought of the Day #155 - I can haz cheezburger

I really don't care for the LOLCatz or sites of that ilk. Some of the
pictures are cute, but the bad English grates on me like claws on a
chalkboard. Besides, if my cat were to cry out for a cheeseburger, he'd
do it in proper Queen's English!

Sunday, June 07, 2009

Thought of the Day #154 - Stupid Stick

For some reason, during the past couple of years I've randomly made
completely stupid mistakes when figuring tips at restaurants. I
typically tip 20% unless service was poor. That's usually a really
simple mathematical task, but for some reason I make silly
mistakes...one time giving a 30 dollar tip rather than 3.50. I think
I'm suffering from simple distractions and lack of attention to detail,
but it could be that I've been permanently hit by the stupid stick.

Saturday, June 06, 2009

Thought of the Day #153 - EA Active for the Wii

I've had the Active program for 10 days and have completed eight 22
minute workouts. So far, I like it a lot!

I've had some trouble fitting the leg strap (it fits my knee, but just
barely), so all of my workouts have been cardio and upper body...and
consequently it's sweetly low impact. I am planning on getting a pair
of stretch pants and apply a little pocket to hold the wii nunchuck,
so eventually, I'll get on to the full workouts. Until then, I am
skipping the leg pain.

There are several things I like about it. For one, unlike wii Fit,
someone supersize like me can still use this product. (Yes, fat people
do exercise!) The Active product does limit the profile weight to 300,
but it doesn't affect product play, unlike Fit which basically kicks
fatties off the machine. The best I can figure, your weight is used in
Active solely to calculate calorie burn during the workouts.

I also like that all of the exercises are available in three levels, so
if you're a workout lightweight, the low impact ~ease into it~ level is
great! Some are waaaay too slow for me, but I can imagine for elderly or
infirm, it would be perfect.
If you're used to working out in a gym regularly, this might be too
simplistic? I don't know for sure.

Finally, it's overwhelming positive motivation from the digital
trainers. From what I've heard about wii Fit, it's pretty rude and
nearly insulting. Who needs that??

Briefly, if you're looking to get a little bit more active, give EA
Active a try!

Friday, June 05, 2009

Thought of the Day #152 - Call Me Grandma

My step-daughter and her husband are expecting a baby in November.
That's right, I'll be the evil step-grandma! Or maybe not so evil? In
any event, nothing else really makes ya feel old more than that
"grandma" title. *sigh* I guess I have a few months before the title
applies, so I better live it up!

Thursday, June 04, 2009

Thought of the Day #151 - Lemonade

Why is it so blasted hard to find genuine (read good!) lemonade? So many
restaurants and beverage places offer the reconstituted powdered
lemonade. You know, the "dusty" lemonade. The kind of crap that doesn't
really make you pucker, but rather there's a dry scratchy feeling from
the added acid and that dull flavor that makes ya want to cough? Yeah,
that stuff. There was a place in Minnesota that offered a partially
real lemon drink that was mixed with 7-up, that was *ok*, but something
about it always made me puff up. Something mysterious about that.
Anyway, I know lemons are pricey, but c'mon! It's relatively easy to
make. I make it at home once in a while and it's always yummy. Lemons,
sugar and water. Why can't I get this in a restaurant situation? Even
at 5 bucks a glass? Pretty please??

Wednesday, June 03, 2009

Thought of the Day #150 - See you

My BluRay disc player says "See you" upon powering it down. I don't know
if I'll be watching movies in my undies anymore...

Tuesday, June 02, 2009

Thought of the Day #149 - Note to Self

Do not become a bitter, judgmental old person. Do not become a bitter,
judgmental old person. Do not become a bitter, judgmental old person. I
see far too many of them around. What a waste of the waning years.

Monday, June 01, 2009

Thought of the Day #148 - Black Boxes

I've been reading news of the Air France airbus that went missing
earlier this morning. Some news spoke of the plane signaling back that
parts of the plane were failing or reading "off" readings. It made me
think that all of the recordings typically send to the black box should
be electronically recorded. Technology is more than advanced enough to
handle this. It would eliminate the need to find the box itself, which
in the case of today's downing would be quite beneficial. Obviously,
the planes could still create a local record in the black box, but the
addition of electronic recordings can only help and potentially speed
up the investigations.