Julie with a B

Monday, April 17, 2006
Must have chocolate bunny on the brain . . .
London Times:
Hundreds of churches are preparing events to coincide with the release next month of the film version of the novel, to help congregations understand why the version of events that appears in the book is untrue. The Da Vinci Code is based on the premise that Jesus married Mary Magdalene and had a child, leading to a secret bloodline that was suppressed by the Roman Catholic Church and was the Holy Grail of legend.
What part of "fiction" do they not understand? The Da Vinci Code is FICTION as in "a literary work based on the imagination and not necessarily on fact; a fabrication: a deliberately false or improbable account".
Why would the church feel compelled to explain anything about The Da Vinci Code? Why would they feel threatened by something written to be an entertaining story? Seems to me their parishioners should feel insulted - the Anglican Church has no faith in their own congregants.
Ah! Maybe the Church is just jealous:
Dr Rowan Williams, the Archbishop of Canterbury, said that conspiracy theories would not undermine the truth of the Gospel. Dr Thomas Wright, the Bishop of Durham, said that an “ethically confused, navel- gazing society” had made Dan Brown’s novel a bestseller.

It's a best seller. Why not? It's a great read. Surely something that involves people in their religion should be popular, not condemned. Clearly, they've eaten too many chocolate bunnies.

Police shoot dead driver . . .
Um, OK, why 'zactly would you shoot someone who is dead? Because he wasn't *really* dead until they shot him. . . .
London Times:
Police shoot dead driver of "stolen car" at roadblock. A man was shot dead by police in Northern Ireland yesterday at a checkpoint set up to stop a suspected stolen car.
An officer opened fire after a silver BMW reached the roadblock in Ballynahinch, Co Down, 20 miles south of Belfast. Another three men and two women in the car were taken for questioning.

Nah, the first paragraph doesn't improve on anything. The rest is a bit garbled as well -
An officer opened fire after a silver BMW reached the roadblock in Ballynahinch, Co Down, 20 miles south of Belfast. Another three men and two women in the car were taken for questioning.
Nuala O’Loan, the Northern Ireland Police Ombudsman, announced an inquiry to establish whether the shooting was necessary to protect lives.
The BMW is believed to have travelled from Ballykinlar, about 12 miles away, and was heading for Belfast, according to reports. Officers had set up a checkpoint outside a police station in the town centre.
Police fired several shots, witnesses said. It was not clear whether the driver had tried to go through the roadblock. His body lay several feet from the car, a witness said. A priest from a nearby Roman Catholic church was called to the driver as he lay in the road.
Security sources later disclosed that the man was shot while he was still in the car. It is understood that his body was taken outside so that he could receive first aid.

First he's dead in the street, then he's dead in the car . . . see? He was dead and they shot him.

the Monday joke
It was the first day of school and a new student named Pedro Martinez, the son of a Mexican restaurateur, entered the fourth grade.

The teacher said, "Let's begin by reviewing some American history.
"Who said 'Give me Liberty, or give me Death?' "
She saw a sea of blank faces, except for Pedro, who had his hand up.
"Patrick Henry, 1775."

"Very good!" apprised the teacher.
"Now, who said, "Government of the people by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth?"
Again, no response except from Pedro: "Abraham Lincoln, 1863."

The teacher snapped at the class, "Class, you should be ashamed! Pedro, who is new to our country, knows more about its history than you do!"
She heard a loud whisper: "Screw the Mexicans!" "Who said that?" she demanded.
Pedro put his hand up. "Jim Bowie, 1836."

At that point, a student in the back said, "I'm gonna puke.
" The teacher glared and asked, "All right! Now, who said that?"
Again, Pedro answered, "George Bush to the Japanese Prime Minister, 1991."

Now furious, another student yelled, "Oh yeah? Suck this!"
Pedro jumped out of his chair waving his hand and shouting to the
teacher, “Bill Clinton to Monica Lewinsky, 1997!"

Now, with almost a mob hysteria, teacher said, "You little shit. If you say anything else, I'll kill you!" Pedro frantically yelled at the top of his voice, "Gary Condit to Chandra Levy, 2001."

The teacher fainted, and as the class gathered around her on the floor,
Someone said, "Oh shit, we're in BIG trouble now!"

Pedro whispered, "Saddam Hussein, 2003."

Finally someone throws a eraser at Pedro, someone shouted "Duck"!

Teacher asked "Who said that?

Pedro: Dick Cheney 2006

Thank you

From the Pirate's Cove
You Belong in Paris
You enjoy all that life has to offer, and you can appreciate the fine tastes and sites of Paris.You're the perfect person to wander the streets of Paris aimlessly, enjoying architecture and a crepe.
From Teach

Friday, April 14, 2006
Seasonal joke at the expense of fair haired women . . .
Three blondes (natural) died and found themselves standing before St. Peter. He told them that before they could enter the Kingdom, they had to tell him what Easter was.

The first blonde said, "Easter is a holiday where they have a big feast and we give thanks and eat turkey."
St. Peter said, "Noooooo," and he banished her to hell.

The second blonde said, "Easter is when we celebrate Jesus' birth and exchange gifts."
St. Peter said, "Noooooo," and he banished her to hell.

The third blonde said, she knew what Easter is, and St. Peter said, "So, tell me."
She said, "Easter is a Christian holiday that coincides with the Jewish festival of Passover. Jesus was having Passover feast with His disciples when he was betrayed by Judas, and the Romans arrested him.
The Romans hung Him on the cross and eventually He died. Then they buried Him in a tomb behind a very large boulder ..
St. Peter said, "Verrrrrry good."

Then the blonde continued, "Now every year the Jews roll away the boulder and Jesus comes out. If he sees his shadow, we have six more weeks of basketball.”

Friday, April 07, 2006
A little geek humor
From the LATimes:
In the ongoing battle of the nerds between Caltech and MIT, the latest volley has been fired from a 130-year-old cannon.
Actually, the latest volley is a cannon.

Massachusetts pranksters, posing as professional movers, stole the beloved Fleming Cannon — traditionally fired at each year's commencement — from the Pasadena campus last week.
On Thursday it popped up, pointed toward Pasadena and adorned with an oversized Massachusetts Institute of Technology school ring, at the Cambridge campus next to a plaque referring to Caltech as "its previous owners."
The plaque explained that the students created the phony "Howe & Ser Moving Company" and used fake work-order forms to get past Caltech campus security guards. After that, a real shipping company toted the 2-ton relic across the country.
The heist continues a long-running rivalry. Last year, Caltech students went to Cambridge to give prospective MIT students T-shirts that looked official. But on the back, they read: "Because not everyone can go to Caltech."
As for the cannon, it has traveled before. Twenty years ago, 11 Harvey Mudd College students spirited it off to Claremont.

I confess the story caught my eye because my Dad was a graduate of Cal-Tech and he would occasionally haul us over to the campus to wander around. I've seen the cannon "in situ".

It *does* boggle the mind to consider some jokesters hauling a functioning cannon across state lines with some kind of fake paperwork.

A friend of mine hauled one of his guns to a gun show in W. Sonoma County. It's a 6 barrel, 20mm, "Vulcan" cannon that's been de-militarized. However, since it was tied into the back of his pickup truck, some friends decided to have a little "fun" and called the County Sheriff to report a "mounted cannon" in the back of a pick up truck headed towards Santa Rosa. All hell broke loose and it took Gary over an hour to disentangle himself from the prank.

OK, so the ATF or Homeland Security care not for a cannon traveling from coast to coast?

Just wondering . .

Wednesday, April 05, 2006
This explains alot of things . . .
I'm Charles the Mad. Sclooop.
Which Historical Lunatic Are You?
From the fecund loins of Rum and Monkey.

You are Charles VI of France, also known as Charles the Mad or Charles the Well-Beloved!
A fine, amiable and dreamy young man, skilled in horsemanship and archery, you were also from a long line of dribbling madmen. King at 12 and quickly married to your sweetheart, Bavarian Princess Isabeau, you enjoyed many happy months together before either of you could speak anything of the other's language. However, after illness you became a tad unstable. When a raving lunatic ran up to your entourage spouting an incoherent prophecy of doom, you were unsettled enough to slaughter four of your best men when a page dropped a lance. Your hair and nails fell out. At a royal masquerade, you and your courtiers dressed as wild men, ending in tragedy when four of them accidentally caught fire and burned to death. You were saved by the timely intervention of the Duchess of Berry's underskirts.
This brought on another bout of sickness, which surgeons countered by drilling holes in your skull. The following months saw you suffer an exorcism, beg your friends to kill you, go into hyperactive fits of gaiety, run through your rooms to the point of exhaustion, hide from imaginary assassins, claim your name was Georges, deny that you were King and fail to recognise your family. You smashed furniture and wet yourself at regular intervals. Passing briefly into erratic genius, you believed yourself to be made of glass and demanded iron rods in your attire to prevent you breaking.
In 1405 you stopped bathing, shaving or changing your clothes. This went on until several men were hired to blacken their faces, hide, jump out and shout "boo!", upon which you resumed basic hygiene. Despite this, your wife continued sleeping with you until 1407, when she hired a young beauty, Odette de Champdivers, to take her place. Isabeau then consoled herself, as it were, with your brother. Her lovers followed thick and fast while you became a pawn of your court, until you had her latest beau strangled and drowned.
A severe fever was fended off with oranges and pomegranates in vast quantities, but you succumbed again in 1422 and died. Your disease was most likely hereditary. Unfortunately, you had anywhere up to eleven children, who variously went on to develop capriciousness, great cruelty, insecurity, paranoia, revulsion towards food and, in one case, a phobia of bridges.

thanks to Robert at The LLamaButchers

Sitemeter fun . . .
Apparently if you Google "contour bikini" you get my July 15, 2005 post re: Productivity Enhancer. However, when I google "contour bikini" I get this. Uh. This has *not* enhanced productivity in THIS office, however, it has produced a steady stream of co-workers.

Then there is this one, some clicking on the "see *larger* image" link . . . although the "enlargement" was not quite what was hoped for.

Eh, well, hope "springs" eternal....

The French - chicken when dealing with possibility of bird flu
Oh dear. Why do they keep providing fodder for the joke mill? Apparently, after hearing that cats may help carry bird flu, the French have been dumping their "beloved" pets at the pound at a hefty rate.
There is evidence that cats who eat birds that are infected with the H5N1 virus fairly easily and pass it on to other cats. As yet there is no evidence that the cats are passing it on to their humans.
The article notes in several places that all kinds of cats, large ones in the zoos and regular domestic kitties, can come down with and die from eating infected birds and poultry. What I wonder is how they can note that and in the next news release announce that it is perfectly safe for humans to eat poultry? They claim that the virus cannot be caught by ingestion.
Hmm. I say. Hmm. Bird flu. Mad Cow. Maybe the vegetarians are right?


Exposure, indeed
From the London Times:
THE most senior British agent to have been exposed as having worked at the heart of Sinn Fein was found murdered at his home last night.
Denis Donaldson had been shot in the head, execution-style, inside the primitive cottage in Glenties, Co Donegal, where he had been living since he was dramatically outed as a spy in December.

After reading several articles, I can't figure out how he was "exposed" as a British spy. Although this bit might be a clue.
Tracked down by an Irish newspaper last month to a cottage in Co Donegal, Mr Donaldson was said to appear gaunt and chastened by his change of circumstances. For years he had been liked, as much by journalists as by fellow republicans, for his humour, sharp mind and evident pleasure in the finer things in life. Little did anybody realise that he had been working for British Intelligence and the Royal Ulster Constabulary Special Branch for more than 20 years. That a man as trusted and apparently committed to the republican cause as Mr Donaldson could have been spying for the British for so many years posed the pertinent question: “If Denis, then who else?” Mr Donaldson was an East Belfast Catholic who joined the IRA as a teenager. He served a prison sentence for bombing a distillery and forged a close alliance with Mr Adams’s “kitchen cabinet”, a team who went on to reshape the Provisional IRA into the most lethal and efficient terrorist organisation in Western Europe.

From the "breaking news" box on the page:
British spy Denis Donaldson was warned by police in the Irish Republic his life was in danger weeks before he was murdered, it has emerged. Even though the 56-year-old former Sinn Fein official believed he was safe living in an isolated, run down cottage in Co Donegal despite betraying his colleagues for more than 20 years, he was gunned down in a house belonging to his son-in-law Ciaran Kearney. As Gardai mounted one of the biggest operations seen in the county questioning motorists at roadblocks, they vowed to leave no stone unturned in hunting down the Belfast man's killers.

The economy...
This guy is walking with his friend. He says to this friend, "I'm a walking economy."

The friend replies "How so?"

"My hair line is in recession, my stomach is a victim of inflation, and both of these together are putting me into a deep depression!"

Tuesday, April 04, 2006
Oye, oye, oye
From WaPo:
This month, Rabbi Shmuley Boteach becomes a family-adviser-on-the-road hosting a reality TV show, "Shalom in the Home," scheduled for prime-time broadcast on The Learning Channel.

I had to read this article... I laughed and then I thought and now I'll be looking for it on The Learning Channel.

My favorite part of this is that in Judaism sex is not a sin. It's encouraged, within marriage, but encouraged none-the less. Not only that, sex on the sabbath primarily for the wife's pleasure is considered a mitzvah (good deed). So nice to be Jewish . . .

Monday, April 03, 2006
Where have I been?
Oh, I dunno - working mostly.
Now I'm watching the immigration situation heat up. It's about time. Some things we need to look at. We need borders. We need a process for good workers to get into the U.S. We want most of them to go home again, but not all of them. And how about those already here? We need a process for them to become legal taxpayers.
I worked for a farm/food processing company in Northern California for 6 years. There were legal and illegal workers. Trust me, having the INS come in, discover an illegal worker or two and shut the company down is not the best way to get the job done. Some of those are big wealthy companies, they pay taxes, they donate to election funds. Hmmm.
And why are there illegal workers here? Because they work for cheap at jobs that many Americans won't take. Really. They are more desperate for a day's pay than we are.
Employers need the workers. The workers need jobs. Employers, friends, and families give workers places to stay and a level of anonymity. How many are here? Hard to know - really.
We could use a committment of capital to border security, unfortunately that did not happen in the last Federal budget. It's not ALL about resources, but some of it is.
Its more about how to allow workers in, out, and keeping some as taxpayors. I would rather they stayed, not in hiding, but paying taxes for things like hospitals, schools, and social security.

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