Archive for March 14th, 2008

After seeing her new Wikipedia entry I knew what I had to do.

I love all her albums. But Sirens will always hold a very special place in my heart.

So… I started working on her Discography pages with an entry for Sirens.

Let me tell you… Doing those pages from scratch… not as easy as you might think.

But I’ll do more when I get the time.

Morning happy picture

Everyone tends to be a bit slow in the morning. However, there are certain things you see in the morning that really just pull the grouch out of anyone.

This is happy making for me.

Aiden just after 18 months. 080314
Aiden just after 18 months. 080314
Aiden in the morning shortly after waking up and being dressed. Oh the happy!

Click the image for a larger version of the picture.

Taken from a posting from theferrett

How observant are you? Count the number of basketball passes.

No really, this isn’t a trick. This is quite amazing.

I worked for a tech startup in ’99 as a dev. Our company’s dev attended a technical developer’s conference. At the conference was a trade floor. The dev’s were told that they needed to put in shifts during the conference at the booth with the marketing and sales guys. This is pretty much standard practice.

What was not standard practice, was that this company’s sales and marketing force were pretty much a row of impotent has beens. As the adage goes, they couldn’t sell a bottle of water to a dying man in the desert.

When I took my shift I watched as the two suits at the booth stood there like they were waiting for the delivery of the next roll of toilet paper. After 10 minutes of this I decided to “switch on”. As people passed by I engaged them. You’ve seen this in action done very poorly at malls. Typically you’ll pass a fragrance or cell phone kiosk and a person will physically move towards you. You probably instinctively respond with a wide swerve and a Wolverine-esqe attitude that says, “Don’t engage me, or die.” Because you can get this instinctive defense up so quickly, it proves the mall-drones suck at their jobs. This is why they are working kiosks (not even real stores) as drones.

Engaging people is one part character and 10 parts reading the person you’re talking to.

Hill of beans time… as I often point out. (What does any of this have to do with a hill of beans)

This morning (ah… here we go)

This morning, I’m standing on line for my bus. There is a ‘just out of college’ aged guy listening to an iThing. He has a backpack on the ground. Outside, it is pittering with rain. I pop my umbrella and look at him with my usual friendly smile and nod.

“It’s weeeeehht owt, aw-right”… Which is a harshly badly transliterated copy of what came out of his mouth.

Now… here’s where experience and a little study of absolutely useless facts makes itself absolutely useful.

The average person would say, “Well, that’s not an American accent. Must be British.”
The slightly educated person who’s watched maybe one piece of culture from outside this country would say, “No, not British… must be Aussie.”

Now… there is a little known rule. It’s similar to the concept of Pitt vs. Penn State.

Don’t confuse a “Kiwi” for an “Aussie”. For those that don’t know what that is… Kiwi is a friendly term for New Zealand. The two countries (I believe) are further apart than Hawaii and mainland US. And to be honest the rivalry is not as bad as making some off handed idiot remark that Canada is just part of the States.

So I said, “I have to ask. New Zealand?”

His eyes lit up. “Yeah… not many people in the states even know about New Zealand”

I made a comment that the “ay” was broader than what I’d expect out of Australia and than joked, “Come on, never mistake a Kiwi for an Aussie. First rule.” Which gave him a strong chuckle and then he told me how it really wasn’t that bad. He asked me how I knew. Due to it being odd for an American to pick up those things. I talked about having been into accents (which got me at least into the right hemisphere) and how I dated a woman after college who was a huge Split Enz nut.

Okay.. you want to score with a New Zealand’er at least 90% of the time. Mention “Split Enz”. (But you really should actually know about the group) … This is home town pride. No, not everyone from the country loves the band, but they are pretty much an institution, like 007, Doctor Who or Harry Potter is for the Brits.

Effectively we then went on to talk about the band. And once you’re on to music.. you’re engaging a person.

I really wasn’t intending to pull the guy into conversation. I was actually wet and hate waiting for the bus. I probably won’t really talk to him again. Not because I’m avoiding him.. just because there are so many people at this bus, I rarely run into the same people twice.

But it’s interesting to analyze the ability to talk to strangers. Which really seems to be something that I firmly believe should be taught in school. It’s helpful, it’s socially beneficial… and hell if you’re going to ever go into sales… it should be instinctive.

Oh.. that startup? Folded within 3 years.

It’s a bad thing when your devs are better at sales than your sales folk.


Pi Day!


Of course one could hazard that we still have 7 years to go until… 3/14/15

Then there are others who might say that 3/14/16 is a more correctly rounded day.

What I really want to know is the one geek in Shakespearian time who was into this.

“Good my Lord, Forsooth, is not the date and time Marche the 14th in this the year of our Lord 1592?
“Roderick you oaf, why must thou quest me thus at 6:53…nay now 6:54 in the morn?”

And Roderick found himself having crap thrown at him and shortly thereafter dying of the black plague.

Next useless time and date on December 24th and 9pm (Eastern standard time)