Archive for August, 2005


Previously posted on August 31 at:!1phaOgcvNsBxzvBN9Zpx1vbQ!177.entry

Katrina was catastrophic. Others have written much more and better than I will be able to, so I’ll keep it very short:
  • It’s unfortunate that 1/3 of Louisiana’s national guard is out of the country
  • I’m glad that President Bush is cutting his vacation 2 days short to fly down there
  • They’re now saying potentially thousands dead in New Orleans alone
  • New Orleans is a great city; I hope it and its people can rebound from this tragic circumstance

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Jodi’s Resident Retreat 2005

Previously posted on August 31 at:!1phaOgcvNsBxzvBN9Zpx1vbQ!176.entry

Jodi (and her fellow residents) got two consecutive days off from hospital duty to allow them to collect near Mount Rainier for their Annual Resident Retreat at UW Pack Forest. A good time was had by all, particularly on Saturday night when we did some salsa dancing! Then on Sunday, Jodi and I went the extra 40 miles or so to Paradise in Mt Rainier National Park.

See the Photos at the Doddsnet website.

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Use of Apostrophes (Apostrophe’s?)

Previously posted on August 29 at:!1phaOgcvNsBxzvBN9Zpx1vbQ!174.entry

Found this Mallard Fillmore comic funny in yesterday’s paper:

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Real ID vs Passport

Previously posted on August 26 at:!1phaOgcvNsBxzvBN9Zpx1vbQ!173.entry

I’ve been hearing a bit lately about this Real ID Act of 2005. This is the bill (passed by the house) that pushes for a national ID card to replace state driver licenses, state IDs, etc. This is both a noble goal, and a scary one. Our current system is broken, in that it’s not at all difficult for illegitimate folks to get a bankable ID made. That said, nobody smart really wants a required national ID. The privacy implications are terrifying!
But through all that, what I want to know is: don’t we already have this?
I have a passport. I’ve had a passport for years. Anytime I need to “prove” who I am for travel, employment, etc — all I have to do is bring my passport!
Why not let states continue to issue driver’s license that is not intended to be used as an authoritative ID card, and let the federal government continue to issue passports that are (intended to be used as authoritative ID)? Then, the only change is that driver’s license would need to be explicitly disallowed as ID for anything where a library-card-as-ID would not also do.
Problem solved.

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Jack Welch “Winning”

Previously posted on August 26 at:!1phaOgcvNsBxzvBN9Zpx1vbQ!172.entry

Another book report. I just finished “reading” (thanks Audible!) yesterday morning on the bus. This was actually quite a good book, I thought. After you’ve listened to the top couple “best selling” books on improving your management skills, improving the company you run, whatever the career self-help topic happens to be in the top 10 best sellers… they all start to run together a bit.
So, in that spirit, there were a lot of topics covered in this book that were pretty straight forward and familiar; but probably this was mostly because of the number of books I’ve “read” on this topic over the years.
Some notable good points he makes:
  • 20/70/10 rules – reap rewards on the top 20% performers, nurture and reward the 70% (they do the bulk of the work and want — reasonably — to move into the top 20 group), and move out the 10% at the bottom… This last one is the part that’s so different than how things are generally done. It seems to me like most companies tend to try and “fix” the bottom 10%, rather than acknowledging that they are not likely to be a good fit with the job if they’re a poor performer who hasn’t improved over some reasonable time period.
  • Don’t make your boss spend his political capital to defend you. Ever.
  • Great performance on your part buys you “chits” that can be used for things like flexible hours, time off, etc. Demanding these perks because they’re company policy is likely to backfire, and if your performance is good enough, you won’t have to call in the “company policy” argument.
  • Always be willing to try new and increased responsibilities, even if they are a “stretch”. You might be surprised how much you are able to stretch successfully!


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Posting from the bus

Previously posted on August 26 at:!1phaOgcvNsBxzvBN9Zpx1vbQ!171.entry

Follow-up to my post yesterday… from the bus. Wow. That was sorta cool. Using my smartphone (Audiovox SMT5600) — while still listening to my audible-book, no less — I was able to connect to mobile MSN’s new beta and drop a post into my msn space blog. That’s sort of cool. I suppose it could be done to any blog engine, but having a smartphone friendly interface to the blog is pretty important. Particularly if you’re on a standing room only bus!
Anyways, according to its position on the mobile msn site, this is still in beta. But it looks like it’s available to anyone, since it’s right there on the first page as a link.

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Full Bus!

Previously posted on August 25 at:!1phaOgcvNsBxzvBN9Zpx1vbQ!169.entry

This might just be the fullest bus ever. According to the bus driver, evidently the ‘leader’ bus broke down and this bus had to pick up the slack from the missed route. it was more than standing room only!


 These folks ended up standing in front of the yellow line because the bus was so full. The bus driver finally had to cut folks off from trying to get on and leave some behind for the 8:39 bus (5 minutes later, presumably) because literally the entire standing-room part of the bus was out of space!

In good transit news, however, today was a great day for a fast commute! I ended up sprinting for both of my buses, so there was no time spent waiting. Plus, I didn’t get stuck at lots of traffic lights, etc (ie – the 5 minute Montlake light).

Total transit time was just about 45 minutes, door-to-door… a new record!

It breaks down about like:

  • 8:17 – Run to catch the 8:16 48-bus in front of my building.
  • 8:34 – Disembark the 48 bus at montlake, nearly trip over myself getting down the stairs to the SR-520 access to make the ST545 bus that had just pulled up.
  • 8:52 – Get off the bus at Overlake TC and walk to my office
  • 9:01 – Arrive at my office. 🙂

Note: Posted initially from my smartphone through the beta “mobile spaces” functionality, but updated when I got to work to contain the photo and some more info.

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Earthquake rocks North Carolina

Previously posted on August 25 at:!1phaOgcvNsBxzvBN9Zpx1vbQ!168.entry

Not something you hear about every day! An earthquake (albeit, only a 3.8) hit western North Carolina last night around 11pm EDT… I heard about this because of an email I received from someone, which digressed in the middle to mention the rumbling and muse about what had happened. Not sure if it was felt over in Charlotte or not.

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As if doctors don’t have enough to worry about…

Previously posted on August 24 at:!1phaOgcvNsBxzvBN9Zpx1vbQ!167.entry

A doctor in New Hampshire got in trouble for counseling one of his patients that she was overweight.
Here’s the excerpt from the article: 

Dr. Terry Bennett says he tells obese patients their weight is bad for their health and their love lives, but the lecture drove one patient to complain to the state.

“I told a fat woman she was obese,” Bennett says. “I tried to get her attention. I told her, ‘You need to get on a program, join a group of like-minded people and peel off the weight that is going to kill you.'”

Wow. There’s not a lot of detail in the article, but it seems like this is pretty much the sort of advice a doctor SHOULD give!
Now, if the woman was not actually obese, it might be out of line and counterproductive. Or if the doctor was seeing her for something totally unrelated to general-health, maybe it seemed a bit strange to the patient… but in my opinion, still not out of line; all good doctors are concerned about overall health in addition to any specialty they practice.

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Pat Robertson, misinterpreted

Previously posted on August 24 at:!1phaOgcvNsBxzvBN9Zpx1vbQ!166.entry

The breaking news on right now is about how Pat Robertson has apologized and is claiming his remarks were “misinterpreted”. Here’s the developing article (there are video clips at the CNN site also):
From that article, here is the “misinterpreted” quote:
“I didn’t say ‘assassination.’ I said our special forces should ‘take him out.’ And ‘take him out’ can be a number of things, including kidnapping; there are a number of ways to take out a dictator from power besides killing him. I was misinterpreted by the AP [Associated Press], but that happens all the time,” Robertson said on “The 700 Club.”
And the quotes from the actual broadcast on Monday:
“If he thinks we’re trying to assassinate him, I think we really ought to go ahead and do it,” said Robertson Monday. “It’s a whole lot cheaper than starting a war.”

“We have the ability to take him out, and I think the time has come that we exercise that ability,” he said. “We don’t need another $200 billion war to get rid of one strong-arm dictator. It’s a whole lot easier to have some of the covert operatives do the job and then get it over with.”

Uh, I guess I misinterpreted too. It looks pretty clear-cut to me.

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