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134nbclogo.jpgI just finished a fantastic roast with juice soaked vegetables prepared by my better half. The meat was so tender I didn't bother using my knife. Dessert was a wonderful spice cake. However, the fine dinner was almost ruined because I left the TV on in the background, something I usually don't do when sitting down to eat a meal at the table because civilized folk should focus on each other and the food that someone, no doubt, worked hard to prepare. Unfortunately, I left on the aptly named boob-tube/idiot-box. Worse yet, a MainStream Media station was on which I am loath to watch because it is always so freakishly bias...tonight did not disappoint.

135brianwilliams.jpgTonight's MSM spokeshead was played by Brian Williams filling the airwaves with NBC's Nightly Bias™. First story up: Iraq. They found some poor Iraqi woman to interview who said that she was better off under Saddam than she is now. No doubt they searched far and wide as internal opinion polls of Iraqis consistently show that a greater number of Iraqis believe just the opposite of this woman. Further, objective statistics involving the numbers of starving children, people with clean drinking water, etc. show the Iraqis are better off now than before Saddam.

136chertoff.jpgNext story up was about the Department of Homeland Security Secretary nominee Michael Chertoff. Williams made a statement to the effect that Chertoff had given advice on torture in violation of U.S. anti-torture laws. I nearly fell out of my seat. Chertoff did no such thing. This was a blatant lie by NBC/Williams. All that Chertoff did was respond to a CIA inquiry asking for an interpretation of the anti-torture laws. The notion that Chertoff violated any law is ludicrous!

Finally, the last story I heard ticked me off even more. Williams reported that the final selection had been made for the next generation of presidential helicopters. Two companies had been vying for the contract: Sikorsky and its model S-92 and Lockheed Martin with its model US101.

137us101.jpgI was excited to hear about the selection because I had previously read about the two different helicopters and was curious to hear some discussion about the different characteristics of the two aircrafts. Instead, NBC/Williams focused on how the Sikorsky helicopter would have been made entirely in the US while the Lockheed Martin will be made only partially in America. This is true enough, but I couldn't help wonder how many Clinton era procurements had the same focus. I brushed it off and waited for a factual comparison of the two helicopters and related reasons why one was chosen over the other.

Instead, Williams made a comment about how someone involved with Lockheed Martin has ties to President Bush and showed some supposedly damning video footage of that person sitting with President Bush in the White House...oh, the horror! Williams then continued by mentioning that Lockheed Martin also has ties to that insignificant little state of Texas. Clearly this sealed the fact that the selection was corrupt by pointing out that a huge multi-national conglomerate corporation has ties to the second largest state in America.

I don't think NBC/William even ever mentioned the model numbers of the two helicopters. I know the helicopters themselves were never discussed--like the fact that the Sikorsky S-92 has two engines and is smaller while the Lockheed Martin US101 has three engines and is bigger making it capable of carrying a larger volume and heavier payload. The Department of Defense, specifically the Navy, stated that the proposals were evaluated as was initially specified solely on "technical, past performance, experience and cost factors." Too bad NBC/Williams refused to report on any of these factors but then, they might not have had time to turn a ubiquitous story into another excuse to bash Bush.

I, for one, will be redoubling my efforts to not catch a glimpse any MSM.

Posted by Don | Comments (6) | TrackBacks (0) |
Jan 29 2005

Drew Enjoys the Snow

Here's Drew pointing out the first snowfall of the year and showing how excited he is:


Drew kept telling me to "come closer"..."a little closer"..."just a little closer"...hmmmm, gotta keep my eye on him.


Posted by Don | Comments (2) | TrackBacks (0) |
Jan 29 2005

First Snowfall

Yesterday, Tulsa received its first snowfall of the year as the city was softly blanketed with between one and two inches of snow--the perfect amount--plenty enough to look pretty and to remind everyone what winter is all about, but not enough to have to shovel! I grew up in the Chicago suburbs and if I never have to shovel lake-effect snow again, that will be fine by me.

He is a photo I took with my cell phone out my office window yesterday afternoon:


Posted by Don | Comments (1) | TrackBacks (0) |

130movabletype.jpgI am very happy to announce a solution to the Movable Type bug that causes the creation of duplicate pages ending in "...name_1.php". If you are curious you can check out the thread in the Movable Type forums where the problem was reported and eventually solved. The following is the final post by the Six Apart Software Engineer Brad Choate:

Thanks DWD, the preview step is definitely the problem. This has been fixed for the next update/release.

You can sort of patch this one yourself by adding this in the form found in the tmpl/cms/edit_entry.tmpl file. Find this line:

[input type="hidden" name="id" value="[TMPL_VAR NAME=ID]" /]

and put this under it:

[input type="hidden" name="basename" value="[TMPL_VAR NAME=BASENAME]" /]

That will pass through the existing basename value to the preview step properly, so MT won't reassign it.

If you don't want to edit your templates, another workaround is to choose "Re-edit this Entry" after doing a preview and then save from the edit entry form itself. Another alternative is to use any of the weblog posting clients like Zempt or Ecto or w.Bloggar, etc.

Note, the code shown above has the "< >" symbols replaced with "[ ]" so that Movable Type wouldn't think it was actual code and so that it would be visible in this post. If you intend to use the code you will, of course, have to switch out the appropriate symbols.

Posted by Don | Comments (1) | TrackBacks (0) |

Just thought I'd test this out as a post before considering further whether I want to add it to the page somewhere.

I'm cognizant of the maxim that you don't just add something to your blog simply because you can. I'm curious first, how fast and reliably it loads and second, if I'll actually use it.

I don't have any intention of using the four day forecast version, but just wanted to see how it looked while I am checking out the smaller version.

Posted by Don | Comments (2) | TrackBacks (0) |
Jan 22 2005

Okie-Blogger Bash V

It's been incredible. The topics have ranged from technical issues, to international adoption, to politics both local and national. Wrapping up now and heading home...

Posted by Don | Comments (5) | TrackBacks (0) |
Jan 22 2005

Okie-Blogger Bash IV

Dan has posted some pics on his site.

I've taken some, but too engrossed in conversation to post them right now.

Posted by Don | Comments (1) | TrackBacks (0) |
Jan 22 2005

Okie-Blogger Bash III

We've now been joined by:

Dan Lovejoy of Dan & Angi Have Something to Say from Oklahoma City.

Sean Gleeson of The Gleeson Bloglomerate from Oklahoma City.

As well as Brett Thomasson from Oklahoma City. Brett doesn't have a blog of his own...he's siteless.

Posted by Don | Comments (0) | TrackBacks (1) |
Jan 22 2005

Okie-Blogger Bash II

In attendance today are:

John Owen Butler of okcalvin and PsalmCast is here from Lawton.

Charles G Hill dustbury from Oklahoma City.

Dwayne and Barb Hendrickson of AKA Mike Horshead from Oklahoma City.

Jan of Happy Homemaker from Oklahoma City.

Dawn Eden of The Dawn Patrol from New York City area.

Michael Bates of BatesLine from Tulsa.

William Kerr of Passionate America from Midwest City.

And, me of course, from Tulsa.

Posted by Don | Comments (0) | TrackBacks (1) |
Jan 22 2005

Okie-Blogger Bash

The first ever Okie-Blogger bash is underway as I type at the Oklahoma City Will Rogers Center in the renovated old Will Rogers Theater.


Posted by Don | Comments (0) | TrackBacks (0) |

Tomorrow, Saturday, I'll be attending a meeting of the Oklahoma chapter of the Vast-Right Wing Conspiracy! Actually, it's just an informal bunch of Sooner State bloggers getting together to meet and share our mutual interests. The guest list is described as:

There's no ideological or theological litmus test, but in the interests of congenial conversation, rather than vitriolic debate, we're inviting only bloggers who, if not particularly conservative or religious themselves, can at least handle being around committed conservatives and Christians without an outbreak of hives or an attack of Tourette's Syndrome.

It's being held at an undisclosed wi-fi friendly location. I'll have my laptop and camera with me and hope to do a little live blogging!

Posted by Don | Comments (1) | TrackBacks (0) |
Jan 20 2005

Unknown Orchid

During the day, when I'm thinking of other things, things that might make a decent blog post come to my mind. Now, at home, sitting in front of the computer...I'm blank.

So...I pop open one of my to-be-blogged folders and find the below unknown orchid (Orchidaceae Incognitum) that I photographed last year at the Four Seasons in Dallas.


Posted by Don | Comments (1) | TrackBacks (0) |
Jan 16 2005

Movable Type Bug

Can anyone explain why Movable Type sometimes creates a new duplicate html/php page when you update a post instead of just updating the already existing file?

The duplicate page is created by adding "_1" to the file name right before the ".php" file extension. Even weirder, sometimes the new updated file has the "_1" added and sometimes it's the old file that has it added. Both, the new and old html/php pages remain on the server in the same archive folder.

It has been brought up in the MT Forums for a while but no explanation has been provided. I added another thread about it.

It's really annoying with trackbacks or links to posts which will often become incorrect if you update a post.

Does anyone have an explanation or know anything about this?

Posted by Don | Comments (2) | TrackBacks (0) |

125illinimoving.gifThis year celebrates 100 years of Fighting Illini basketball and the University of Illinois' (Champaign-Urbana) current 17-0 men's basketball record ties both the best start to a season and the longest single-season winning streak in school history. The other 17 game winning streak, also at the start of a season, was in 1988-89, my last year at U of I. Only the 25-game winning streak that included parts of three seasons from Feb. 21, 1914, through Feb. 9, 1916, bests the Illini's current string of victories.

126illini.gifThe 1988-89 team, coached by the all class act Lou Henson, stared: Kendall Gill, Steven Bardo, Nick Anderson, Kenny Battle, Lowell Hamilton, and Marcus Liberty. During the regular season Illinois beat Michigan twice but in the semi-finals of the big dance lost to Michigan when Lowell Hamilton failed to box his man out on the final shot of the game and Michigan got an easy put-back to keep the game from going into overtime. Michigan went on to have an easy win despite a close score over Seton Hall for the national championship. But, at least I'm not still bitter.../said with teeth clinched.


Drew is a little uncertain what to think about my new hat but he seems content to wear his Illini cap sent to him by an alumni friend of mine.

Posted by Don | Comments (4) | TrackBacks (0) |

124rafaelperalta.jpgI've been meaning to post this for almost two months now. Better late than never, it is the story of a true hero:

On the morning of November 15, 2004, the men of 1st Battalion, 3rd Marines awoke before sunrise and continued what they had been doing for seven days previously - cleansing the city of Fallujah of terrorists house by house.

At the fourth house they encountered that morning the Marines kicked in the door and "cleared" the front rooms, but then noticed a locked door off to the side that required inspection. Sgt. Rafael Peralta threw open the closed door, but behind it were three terrorists with AK-47s. Peralta was hit in the head and chest with multiple shots at close range.

Peralta's fellow Marines had to step over his body to continue the shootout with the terrorists. As the firefight raged on, a "yellow, foreign-made, oval-shaped grenade," as Lance Corporal Travis Kaemmerer described it, rolled into the room where they were all standing and came to a stop near Peralta's body.

But Sgt. Rafael Peralta wasn't dead - yet. This young immigrant of 25 years, who enlisted in the Marines when he received his green card, who volunteered for the front line duty in Fallujah, had one last act of heroism in him.

Peralta was proud to serve his adopted country. In his parent's home, on his bedroom walls hung only three items - a copy of the United States Constitution, the Bill of Rights and his boot camp graduation certificate. Before he set out for Fallujah, he wrote to his 14-year old brother, "be proud of me, bro...and be proud of being an American."

Not only can Rafael's family be proud of him, but his fellow Marines are alive because of him. As Sgt. Rafael Peralta lay near death on the floor of a Fallujah terrorist hideout, he spotted the yellow grenade that had rolled next to his near-lifeless body. Once detonated, it would take out the rest of Peralta's squad. To save his fellow Marines, Peralta reached out, grabbed the grenade, and tucked it under his abdomen where it exploded.

"Most of the Marines in the house were in the immediate area of the grenade," Cpl. Kaemmerer said. "We will never forget the second chance at life that Sgt. Peralta gave us."

Posted by Don | Comments (34) | TrackBacks (1) |
Jan 13 2005

Free Long Distance

To one Danzfamily.com lucky reader, I give 10 minutes of free long distance calling thanks to Folgers, Sprint, my employer who supplied the coffee and my distaste for getting cutoff in the middle of a conversation.


Just go to the Folgers website and enter the code on the label and the other information requested. Enjoy!

Posted by Don | Comments (0) | TrackBacks (0) |

118rosemary.jpgRosemary Kennedy, sister of President John F. Kennedy, died yesterday at the age of 86. While the "official" story is that she was born retarded, she very likely was only "shy and mentally limited - symptoms of what many suspect was dyslexia." She is shown here (looking awfully normal) in a 1938 photo with her mother Rose Kennedy four years prior to the "procedure" discussed below.

In her own diaries before the [procedure], she chronicled a life of tea dances, dress fittings, trips to Europe and a visit to the Roosevelt White House.

But as she got older, her father [Joseph Kennedy] worried his daughter's mild condition would lead her into situations that could damage the family's reputation.

So what is a good loving father and patriarch of a perfectly normal family to do? Why a frontal lobotomy of course! You know...just like the barbaric animals performed in Planet of the Apes or as was done to quiet the patients in One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest.

Doctors told Joseph Kennedy that a lobotomy, a medical procedure in which the frontal lobes of a patient's brain are scraped away, would help his daughter and calm her mood swings that the family found difficult to handle at home.
In Rosemary's case it was a disaster and left her permanently disabled, paralyzed on one side, incontinent and unable to speak coherently. She was never allowed to return home, but instead was spirited away to St. Coletta's School in Wisconsin.

As late as 1958 the family was maintaining the fiction that Rosemary had become a quasi nun in Wisconsin, content to renounce the glamorous world of her siblings to teach less fortunate children.

119kennedykids.jpgOn the right, the original Kennedy children, from left to right: Eunice, John, Joe Jr., Rosemary and Kathleen. It never fails, whenever I learn something new about the Kennedy family, I'm always disgusted. Perhaps though, this helps explain an origin of the Kennedy males' incredible disrespect for women and ambivalence for women's lives. The irony: Joe Kennedy worried that Rosemary's mild condition would somehow "damage the family's reputation." Instead, his disgusting actions serve to solidify the family's reputation in my mind.

Joe Has His Daughter Lobotomized
Kennedy Who Inspired Special Olympics Dies
ABC News retains (as of the time of this posting) the original not so politically correct headline on the same AP article which Yahoo also used but subsequently changed: Retarded Kennedy Sister Dies at 86

Posted by Don | Comments (48) | TrackBacks (2) |

While driving to Chicago on Christmas Eve, we received a not unexpected phone call that Mary's grandmother--her mother's mother--had passed away. We were logistically prepared, having packed funeral clothes, but still such news is never an easy thing to receive.

120christmasdonelda.jpgWe got into Chicago a little after midnight, said our Merry Christmases, unpacked and went to bed. Christmas day was celebrated at my sister Donelda's. Between her and my mom, our family continued the fine tradition of over doing it. Barely able to walk around all the Christmas presents, we enjoyed an amazing selection of all homemade rum balls, peanut brittle, peanut butter balls (covered in chocolate), chocolate chip cookies, and snickerdoodles. After marathon present opening, we all overate a huge meal prepared by my sister. Our family believes, if it's worth doing, it's worth overdoing.

121funeralfamily.jpgLater in the week we drove to St. Louis for the wake and funeral. Then, drove back to Chicago to celebrate New Years with friends of mine at Harry's home who I've been friends with since third grade, although, I think we only started getting in trouble together since eighth grade. New Year's day was a drive back to Tulsa.

122newyearsstar.jpgI commented to Mary's cousin Tom that we were driving a big "M" (motioning with my hand how we had driven from Tulsa to Chicago to St. Louis to Chicago to Tulsa). He, more accurately, pointed out with his own hand motion that we were really just making a dark "I."

Posted by Don | Comments (0) | TrackBacks (0) |
Jan 1 2005

Happy New Year 2005

Happy New Year

May the new year be peaceful and prosperous to you and yours.

Posted by Don | Comments (1) | TrackBacks (0) |