Saturday, May 31, 2003

Wear Your Underwear

It may be a legend, but underwear is nevertheless a good idea.

This is not a love song

Hi. It seems that lately I've posted with a bit of a sense of humor, irregardless of what the subject is. This might not be one of those kind of posts:

I'm feeling a bit down right now, to tell you the truth. I'm close to tears. Before I explain, I'll admit that, based on the tone of previous posts, it may be hard to take seriously. Some who read it may laugh or think it's funny. It may be parodied, even by me someday, I suppose. I accept that. I'm still willing to make myself vulnerable.

This is still a Journey Inside My Mind. I may often, through my writing here, give an impression that I have it all together, that all is well with me emotionally, physically, spiritually, etc. Well, that's not really the case. I am dependent on medicine for my mental health. I'm currently taking an antidepressant, Lexapro, and an anti-anxiety medicine, generically called Diazepam. I struggle with depression and anxiety, you see.

Furthermore, I've written before about my struggles with self-injury. That is exactly what it sounds like. Many people don't know how to relate with someone who self-injures. Even seeing the words, I feel a slight sense of alarm myself. Yet it's true. I create scabs on my body and pick at them to relieve anxiety I feel.

I've done some research, and I realize that it's a way I've developed to cope with stress I feel. I know it sounds counterproductive, but it makes sense, from a certain point of view. I get a "rush" from the pain felt from picking at a scab. The pain associated with that activity is better to feel than emotional pain I feel from something else. I've done this since I was about 7 years old. I'm 33 now.

I currently have four scabs on my scalp. I feel their tenderness as I type these words. I've been able to leave them alone nearly all day, thankfully.

So I have that to deal with.

Then, today, it appears that I've developed another migraine. I took my last Imitrex a few hours ago, and I've put a call into my doctor for a refill. I have to wait until 6 PM to see if someone actually called it into the pharmacy. Because it's a Saturday afternoon, I'm thinking that it might not be called in until Monday. I'm hoping that's not the case, but, at the same time, I'm trying to be prepared to accept it, if it turns out to be the case. I've already spent a few extra hours in bed, and I'm ready to head back there in a little while.

I doubt if anyone really enjoys feeling sick. I sure don't. Tears are welling in my eyes right now. I just hope things feel better soon.

Until then...

Friday, May 30, 2003

She Couldn't Stay Away

Well, something like that. Yesterday I gave Keisha's teacher, Jean W., our home phone number and encouraged her to keep in touch with us. We got a call from Keisha's teacher this afternoon. She said, "I bet you weren't expecting me to be contacting you so soon." It turned out that we needed to give her the original copy of some documentation related to Keisha's Individualized Education Plan (IEP).

I gave her directions to our place, and she stopped by. Keisha was excited about having her favorite teacher see where she lives. I had gone to pick Jennie up from work, so Jean chatted with my mom and Keisha on our front porch. She was still there when Jennie and I came home. I took Keisha's picture with Jean, and Jean gave Keisha her home telephone number because Keisha wants to have her come to her birthday party this July.

How cool, huh?

Streams of Consciousness | Keisha and Sagwa

A true story of sorts.

My Youngest Brother

... is in the United States Navy. He emailed us his physical address so that we can send him snail mail. Specifically, Keisha wants to make something to send to her "uncle who works on the big boat."

I found a couple interesting links related to the US Navy:



And then, of course, there's this humorous February 12, 2002 post from this blog, entitled "Navy Summary of Mishaps - First Edition."

PJ, if you ever happen to read this: I love you, bro!

Saddam Hussein's Top Ten Romantic Tips

Matrix: Reloaded Explained

Not having read the article in full, I thought it might make for some nice bedtime reading.

Attention Harry Potter Sleuths!

HPANA reports: "On Saturday of this week at 10pm GMT / 5pm EST, Galadriel Waters, author of 'Ultimate Unofficial Guide to the Mysteries of Harry Potter' will be appearing on the chat network to answer YOUR questions. Galadriel is one of the top HP sleuths around! Be sure to be on the chat promptly 10 minutes before the start and I hope you all enjoy this magical event! The chat link is in the navigation bar on the right under Fans." read more...

The Show Must Go On

I just returned from taking Jennie to work. While waiting for the traffic signal to change, I began to hear Pink Floyd's "The Show Must Go On" in my mind. This song is the very first song on their classic album "The Wall". Why it popped into my head at that moment, I have no idea, but it was nevertheless a pleasant diversion to waiting in traffic.

Thursday, May 29, 2003

American Kids Parenting Magazine

We picked this free publication up at the local Meijer this evening after we ate dinner at the Steak and Shake. The magazine has a lot of cool articles that I want to blog about. First, I need to check out the corresponding website; they may have links to the stories already there.

I am a Total Geek

32.54438% - Total Geek: my results in The Geek Test.

Do You Know These People?

Rachel has assembled a mosaic of a fine group of people. You can see images that are hyperlinks to their weblogs. Quite a neat idea for a blogroll.

Sigh

Today is Keisha's last day of school. In fact, I'll be heading to pick her up in a few minutes. We've absolutely loved the experience we've had with her teachers. It feels a little sad. I don't know how school teachers do it. I spoke with her teacher this morning, and she said that she was up three times last night crying. She's been a teacher for 35 years, and it never has gotten easier.

It reminds me of one of my all-time favorite movies, which we saw again last night: Mr. Holland's Opus. I think Richard Dreyfuss should have won Best Actor for his role as Mr. Holland.

That this is one of my favorites shows my inclination to become a teacher, too.

But first, today I have an appointment with the manager of the local professional bartending school.

Wednesday, May 28, 2003

The politician and his weblog

About a month and a half ago, Giles Turnbull wrote "Politicians are not known for being very interesting. Nor are they renowned for their ability to keep up-to-date with modern technology." Interesting, isn't it, then, that Tom Watson, a member of Parliament, has his own weblog now.

WorldNet Daily - A Free Press for a Free People

I need to add this to my links page.

Templates, RSS Feeds, and other Techie Stuff

Last week, you may recall, I was doing battle with my blog template. I actually had to redesign the whole website, and I have to say that I like this version better than the last one. I've also recently been struggling to get the RSS feed for this blog to work properly, so that folks can view this blog via Blogmatrix, Amphetadesk, or whatever news aggregator software they prefer to use.

Everything appears to be working fine now, so go ahead and use the RSS feed and enjoy the blog!

The Peeing Post

... is the real name of a "free newsletter for people who love dogs and respect their nature." They got my attention.

"Almighty" Phone Trouble

Normally when people want to speak to the Almighty, they choose a form of prayer.

Others, it appears, choose a different method.

"Seems a number displayed on the cell phone of [Jim] Carrey's character in the would-be divine comedy Bruce Almighty has inspired devilish pranksters and possibly some true believers to punch up the seven digits for themselves." read more...

Dan's Links - Updated

I've updated the page entitled "Dan's Links". It includes a bunch more stuff related to Dayton, Ohio. I've also included the "Other Blogs" blogroll, which you see on this weblog as well. That way you can see all the weblogs and other links in one convenient place. I also changed the font and the spacing of the columns, which makes it look more pleasing to the eye.

Let me know what you think. Feel free to bookmark it if you like.

blogosphere.us

"Have you ever wondered about this 'network science' that seems to be emerging? We have, and we wanted to see how it could be applied to our favorite social network - the blogosphere." read more...

Tuesday, May 27, 2003

Beachstock Reflections

My friend and brother in Christ, Bill T., and a small group of other singles from the Dayton church of Christ in Dayton, Ohio, went to a singles event in Virginia Beach over the weekend entitled "Beachstock." One of the singles happened to be the mother of the two girls we had over the weekend. Bill emailed me his thoughts from the trip:

Dan,

The trip was awesome! We had 5 people packed into a Dodge Neon... cozy, but fun.

It was supposed to rain all weekend, but God heard the prayers. Saturday, there wasn't a cloud in the sky, and it didn't rain Sunday either.

It was really nice to get away and hang with some old friends. I also met some neat brothers from Charlotte, North Carolina, that weren't in the church there when I was living in the Queen City [note from Dan: I think he's referring to Charlotte, although I've most often heard of Cincinnati, Ohio referred to as the Queen City!].

Our group was blown away. That was the first time they had been to any conference outside of Ohio. They finally got to see a glimpse of what I had been telling them the God's church is really like. My old church where I was converted (Charlotte) had 60 people attend. Wow! Our group was impressed by that alone. There were nearly 500 disciples there. It was amazing.

The trip has motivated us (especially me) to stop waiting for someone else to plan activities for us as the singles group. We are talking about having a "movie night" every month and planning on doing a different activity every month on top of that. We need to be creative, and for the longest time, we haven't really had anything going on. Nothing to invite people to except for church.

Nevertheless, it was a great impactful time in so many ways. We have a plan, bro... something about momentum that is infectious.

We had 5 people go this year to Beachstock. My personal goal for next year is 33. I don't know how it will happen, but God works in ways I can never comprehend. I just hope He doesn't expect us to cram 33 people in a Dodge Neon. That would be like clowns going to the circus.

What Matrix Persona Are You?

brought to you by Quizilla

You are Neo
You are Neo, from "The Matrix." You display a perfect fusion of heroism and compassion.

I had taken a similar test like this before, and it turned out that I was Neo then, too.

The Johnson Family Web Site

I'm updating the Dan's Links page of the website to include more links about Dayton, Ohio. I may wind up splitting the page into multiple pages, since there are so many links. I haven't decided whether to do that or not.

Secondly, you may have noticed that I've added a Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) page to this blog and elsewhere on the family website. I've provided this so that you can learn more about me. For example, here's why my internet sign name is 'danimal0416'.

Also, we've gotten some digital pictures back from several months ago; we finally got them developed. I've signed up for a Fotolog, and I plan to add some of these pictures to that. I'll also be sure to include the link on the pages of the website.

In addition, we've got some pictures of our dog Jake. I'm not going to go so far as to create a home page for him, but I do want to include a picture of him, possibly somewhere on the home page.

Finally, since my mom has become a part of our family, I've begun creating a home page for her. She already has her own weblog: Me, Myself, and I.

Support

via email from my friend and brother Bill T. I think the only reason why I'm posting this here is because it's so ridiculous.

Take a minute to enjoy a laugh...

... for little Billy Evans.

I am a very sick little boy. My mother is typing this for me, because I can't. She is crying. Don't cry, Mommy! Mommy is always sad, but she says it's not my fault. I asked her if it was God's fault, but she didn't answer and only started crying harder, so I don't ask her that anymore. The reason she is so sad is because I'm so sick. I was born without a body. It doesn't hurt, except when I try to breathe. The doctors gave me an artificial body. It is a burlap bag filled with leaves. The doctors said that was the best they could do on account of us having no money or insurance. I would like to have a body transplant, but we need more money. Mommy doesn't work because she said nobody hires crying people.

I said, "Don't cry, Mommy," and she hugged my burlap bag. Mommy always gives me hugs, even though she's allergic to burlap and it makes her sneeze and chafes her real bad. I hope you will help me. You can help me if you forward this email to everyone you know. Forward it to people you don't know, too. Dr. Johansen said that for every person you forward this email to, Bill Gates will team up with AOL and send a nickel to NASA. With that funding, NASA will collect prayers from school children all over America and have the astronauts take them up into space so that the angels can hear them better. Then they will come back to earth and go to the Pope, and he will take up a collection in church and send all the money to the doctors. The doctors could help me get better then.

Maybe one day I will be able to play baseball. Right now I can only be third base.

Every time you forward this letter, the astronauts can take another prayer to the angels and my dream will be closer to coming true. Please help me. Mommy is so sad, and I want a body. I don't want my leaves to rot before I turn 10.

If you don't forward this email, that's okay. Mommy says you're mean and heartless. One who doesn't care about a poor little boy with only a head. She says that if you don't stew in the raw pit of your own guilt-ridden stomach, she hopes you die a long, slow, horrible death and then burn forever in hell. What kind of cruel person are you that you can't take five freakin' minutes to forward this to all your friends so that they can feel guilt and shame about ignoring a poor, bodiless nine-year-old boy?

Please help me. I try to be happy, but it's hard. I wish I had a kitty. I wish I could hold a kitty. I wish I could hold a kitty that wouldn't chew on me and try to bury its poop in the leaves of my burlap body. I wish that very much.

Thank You,
Billy "Smiles" Evans (the boy with just a head, and a burlap sack for a body)

Monday, May 26, 2003

Geeky Legal Beagles Nail Spammers

"A battalion of lawyer geeks is taking on spam, spyware, security screw-ups, incomprehensible software licenses, useless privacy policies and many other ills plaguing computer users. The charge is being led by New York state's Attorney General Eliot Spitzer." read more...

Blogger Template Woes: Strange AND Confusing

Last week, I changed the template for this blog. As you may recall, I had to completely redo it. This meant rerunning it through the Blogmatrix Template Rewriter again. Once I did all of this, I noticed, after a few days, that the RSS feeds were not being generated/updated. I've realized that I had added some formatting to the metadata tags that the Template Rewriter added, and this formatting may be what is causing the problems with the RSS feed.

So last night I removed the extra formatting and republished the blog. I just returned to the template HTML that is stored on Blogger, only to find that the previous template -- with the old layout -- is present!

Fortunately, I saved a copy of my new template in case I needed to revise it or, in this case republish it. But, when I copy, paste, save, republish, and return to check it, guess what? The old template is still there! It's as though Blogger is not saving my changes.

Update: Maybe the recent hardware failure is to blame.

Sunday, May 25, 2003

Daytrippin' in Columbus

Today my lovely wife Jennie, our daughter Keisha, and her two friends Hailie and Stevie -- we all travelled to Columbus, Ohio for the day. We had an all-Ohio church service along the banks of the Scioto River, at Genoa Park. This location also was adjacent to COSI. Here are the details:

All-Ohio Church Service

The service itself was great. Doug Jacoby preached a sermon about the Seven Unities of the Faith, based on what we read in Ephesians 4. The main point was this: if we don't know what we are about as a church, then we're in big trouble.

COSI for Lunch

After the service, we went to COSI. Our membership at Dayton's Boonshoft Museum of Discovery is reciprocated at the Columbus COSI, so we didn't have to pay any admission fee. We then proceeded to the Atomic Cafe for some lunch. After lunch we headed toward the exhibits.

It was all Jennie and I could do to keep up with the girls, who are collectively between the ages of 4 and 6. Between the frequent potty breaks -- all the girls had to go with Jennie, and I went alone to the men's room -- and trying to keep our eyes on them as they experienced each of the various stations at the exhibits, Jennie and I got worn out.

The Crashendo Exhibit

We went to this one exhibit entitled Crashendo, in which we rode in a vehicle and watched a movie that simulated us riding behind a man who was "driving" a piano. It was hilarious! You had to have been there.

The Brave Unicycler That I Am

Like the COSI in Toledo, it has a cycle ride across a wire. The difference is that Columbus has a unicycle whereas Toledo has a bicycle. I got to ride it, and I must have looked so brave to my daughter and her friends!

Nighttime at the Planetarium

We also toured the Planetarium, in which there was a program about what we're seeing in the Springtime night sky. That was pretty cool.

The Centripetal Force Was With Us

Outside Keisha and Stevie went on a Centripetal Generotor ride. As we stood against the wall, the machine spun around at 17 miles per hour. Inertia and friction kept us pinned to the wall, even as the floor dropped two feet. It felt like an elephant was sitting on me. Then, as the ride slowed down, we all slid the two feet back to the floor. Stevie and Keisha, myself, too, enjoyed the ride so much that we returned three more times! Jennie and Hailie didn't want to ride it. They opted instead to play with the Big Giant Lever, in which they attempted to lift an automobile with a level.

Little Kidspace

There were so many other exhibit stuff, and I'll have to post about it another time. Jennie and I learned that we probably could have gone to the little Kidspace and stayed there. It was the last exhibit we attended, however.

Scattered and Smothered

On the way home we stopped at the Waffle House for dinner. I had their hashbrowns ("Scattered, Smothered, etc."), Stevie had a grilled cheese sandwich, Keisha had her cheeseburger, and Jennie and Hailie had breakfast. We sat in the five seats at their bar. The girls were really impressed as they saw the kitchen area. Keisha told one of the servers that she thought it was cool. We later talked about having our home kitchen set up like theirs. Keisha decided that she would man the station with the drinks and the toasters.

Learn more about the Waffle House story and some interesting Waffle House facts here.

It's Like Having Three Daughters!

It's interesting to see how these kids can behave like siblings. Granted, Halie and Stevie are sisters. But for Keisha and the rest of us, it creates a great dynamic. For four days Keisha has two sisters living with her whereas she normally is the only child. The adults in our household are realizing how much we appreciate how quieter the house is.

I love these two extra girls as though they are my own, and we have really enjoyed having them with us.

We Interrupt this Memorial Day...

This article from the Akron Beacon Journal reminds us all to remember why we're celebrating Memorial Day, while poking some fun at television's choices for programming on this day.

Dayton to Host All of A-10 Tournament in 2004

For the 2003 Atlantic 10 college basketball championship, the University of Dayton hosted eight of the 12 teams. This effort brought in more than a million dollars to the Miami Valley. Next year, all the teams will play in Dayton, which is sure to give the Dayton area a big economic boost.

For those of us living in Dayton, we know to expect the extra congestion around Interstate 75 and the Edwin C. Moses Blvd. exit. Also, we'll want to stay away from Stewart Street.

Well, we have until next spring to really be concerned about it.

Saturday, May 24, 2003

Journey Inside My Mind - One Year Ago

One of the great things about blogging is that, over time, one develops a history to which he or she can return. With that in mind, let's take a Journey Inside My Mind from one year ago:

Head Full of Snot

That's how I feel right now. I spent most of the entire day asleep. I only awoke at 9:30 PM after Jennie told me to take my medicine (She means my Lexapro and Diazepam.). I also took a sinus/allergy/pain reliever. Maybe a beer chaser would be good, too. Nah. Not today anyway; it's already 10:30 PM. I don't think I'll have trouble falling back to sleep.

Star Wars: Episode III

In just over one month, the stages of Fox Studios in Sydney, Australia will be ready for shooting, according to the Homing Beacon newsletter, dated April 17, 2003. Also, Lucasfilm will be using the next generation of Sony's HD cameras and equipment for filming.

Create your own free Fotolog!

Now I know what to do with all the digital pictures we keep getting from Kodak.

The Official Iowan Takes a Break

Mark C. Morris, the "Official Iowan," is calling it quits. I have a feeling that he'll be back, though. Later, if not sooner. One has to hope, right?

Living in the Estrogen Ocean

This weekend we have two extra girls staying with us. They are 6 and 5 years old. Our daughter Keisha is almost 6 years old. In one sense, it's great that they are all so close in age. In another, it's like having three of Keisha in the home. They all three behave just like they're sisters. Well, Hailie and Stevie are sisters, but Keisha gets in there and mixes it up with them just fine:

Thursday night was the first night they spent the night. Keisha, being an only child, is not used to having other kids here. The other girls needed to get used to being at our house as well. Nevertheless, we needed them to get to bed because Hailie had school on Friday.

They didn't settle down that easily, and, as a result I had to bring out Mr. Justice. Mr. Justice is the name we've given to a ping pong paddle that we use to spank. After a few sessions of administering Mr. Justice, the girls finally understood that we were serious about them getting to bed.

I don't know whether Hailie and Stevie's mother spanks them that often, but, when they received Mr. Justice from me, I could tell there was a little bit of shock. I had to tell them it was okay to cry, and they did.

Another reason why it's good to have the girls over is that Keisha gets to play and watch her "girly" movies (like "Life-Size", "Snow White", and so on) with her friends.

I, being the only human male, tend to want to take our male dog and go camping or something like that.

For now, I'll settle for the online experience.

Lord, please help me to have patience, and soon!

Friday, May 23, 2003

Climbing the Wrong Ladder

I just added this to Streams of Consciousness. It's really about me.

Sinus Crud - Again

The cold weather -- warm weather cycle that we've had this spring here in Dayton has provided the right conditions for me and several others to get chronic sinus infections.

I'm encouraged by the hope that there will be no sickness in heaven.

Also, Carla could use a hug.

New Layout

There. I like.

Thursday, May 22, 2003

Blog Survivor

This is a unique method of removing links from one's blogroll. It's an interesting idea, worth checking out, if you can look beyond the profanity. Thanks to Kate for the link.

Chance to buy a bit of Britney

Now let's start the bidding, shall we? NOT!

Want to "Rat on a rat"?

Yahoo! has proclaimed today as "Dump the Junk Day:"

Among the goals of "Dump the Junk Day" is educating people. Research released by Yahoo revealed that 56 percent of U.K. e-mail users are perpetuating the spread of junk mail by replying to it, and thus clarifying that their e-mail address, which is generally targeted at random, is indeed valid and in use. It is a mistake guaranteed to attract even more unwanted mail.
You are hereby encouraged to "rat on a rat" by reporting the most prolific spammers to dumpthejunkaward@yahoo.co.uk.

Template Wackiness

Okay. Well, at least I'm back to publishing new stuff. I've got the bare bones template now. I'll be making some changes, and hopefully it will be the way I really want it. Of course, in a short while there will be a new version of Blogger and I might have to change things around again. We'll see.

More on the RSS Feeding Frenzy

I'm really starting to get into this news aggregating thing. Last week I downloaded Amphetadesk, and I love it. Now I read where I can use my Outlook 2000 software to post and read blogs. It just keeps getting better, doesn't it? Chris has used it already.

When the Spam Hits the Blogs

Wired News reports that many bloggers "have recently noticed that their referrer logs have become the newest target for spam." The logs are being stuffed with bogus links that lead to pornographic or advertising sites.

One side effect of this practice is that many bloggers' sites increase in their page rank in search engines. Nevertheless, be careful out there.

Strange Banana: Maybe This Will Help

A couple days ago I wrote about having hosed my template. I spent last night redesigning it to become something I felt like I could tolerate. Perfectionist that I can be, I'm almost there with the new design (Your comments - good and bad - are welcome, of course!).

What serendipity to read that there exists a web design tool that randomly generates your web page design. It's called Strange Banana.

Thanks, Chris, for the link!

This is a test.

Wednesday, May 21, 2003

Blogging for Links

I just found this not-so-old post with some good advice on how to get people to read your blogs. You may find it interesting. I'll have to read it later.

Tuesday, May 20, 2003

Layout Woes

I'm deeply aware that the HTML layout is screwed up. I've thought about scrapping the template altogether and starting over. Anyone got any suggestions on a new layout? I'll see if I can tweak the absolute settings on this thing first. It may be easier than it initially appears.

Stay tuned.

CodeAmber.org - The Web's Amber Alert System

I just found this from visiting Country Keepers. This is an online version of the AMBER alert system. You can pick up the HTML code for the Code Amber Ticker. Honestly, the more people that see this stuff, the better it works.

The Matrix: Reloaded

Jennie and I saw the movie yesterday. I loved it. This is the kind of movie that I might even see again in the theater. Given today's movie ticket prices, that's saying a lot.

I waited through all the credits and was treated to a preview of The Matrix: Revolutions at the end. I don't know whether Mike over at _monk has seen it yet, but it sounds like the kind of movie he would really dig, especially with the philosophical stuff. The cliffhanger ending is quite reminiscient of what he and I have seen in 'Alias', too.

Be sure to set aside three good hours to sit through the film. One couple who waited with us wound up not seeing the movie because they were previously unaware that the movie would be that long.

I get nothing from this except for a nice, warm feeling of helping my fellow moviegoers: Purchase your tickets to the movie online at MovieTickets.com

Dayton, Ohio USA: The Place to Be in 2003

Big things are happening in my city this year. First, we have the 200th anniversary of Ohio's statehood. Secondly, we have the 100th anniversary of the Wright brothers' first airplane flight. This past weekend was Hamvention, an annual convention of HAM radio operators and the like. Each July the Dayton Air Show is always a big draw. It's going to be huge this year!

Moreover, the Dayton, Ohio area hosts one of the busiest interchanges in the country. We have Interstate 75, which extends north up through Michigan and south down through Florida. Also, we have Interstate 70, which extends west to Colorado and east to Maryland. Let's just say it's a vital interchange to the country. Its cloverleaf design has been outdated for quite some time, however. In fact, it's been quite hazardous, given the volume of traffic now flowing through it.

This interchange is being reconstructed, and the Ohio Department of Transportation has an official website for the project: I-70/I-75 Interchange Project Information. The site includes lots of neat links to before and after pictures, construction maps, project schedules, and the like.

Monday, May 19, 2003

Sick as a Dog

Jake, our labrador/collie puppy is sick. Yesterday, since we noticed that he'd had a couple of accidents in the house, we put him in his cage and closed the door. Then, throughout the night we heard him vomiting in his cage. I tried and was able to sleep despite the "characteristic" sounds coming from his cage. Then, early this morning, Jennie, my wife/better half, let him out of his cage and let him go outside.

My job is to clean the cage. Basically that just means laundering the blankets and washing the cage. Fortunately for me, there's not much to it.

So, we'll be monitoring him today. We have some NutriCal, which is a nutrient gel that we can feed him. I wouldn't be surprised if he doesn't eat much today.

Poor guy.

Sunday, May 18, 2003

SamSpade.org

I have never seen The Maltese Falcon, but the website bearing the main character's namesake looks like an awesome offensive and diagnostic tool for fighting SPAM (not the mystery meat from Hormel, mind you, the other kind!). Add this one to your favorites list, people.

link via Deep Green Crystals

Steal These Buttons

Save them to your own web server and stuff.

America's Top 10 Vegetarian-Friendly Cities

I thought I'd post this link here even though I'm an omnivoric, meat-eater. I can think of at least one person who may really appreciate this article.

Obsessive Compulsive

I just found this link via blogdex. I don't know what is really going on with it yet, but it looked interesting and I wanted to have it available for another look. Let me know what you think!

Saturday, May 17, 2003

The Week of the Migraine

The Week of the Migraine

It's coming to an end. Actually, I've been feeling much better for the past few days. So let's pray this thing goes away and doesn't come back for a long time. If at all.

Public Speaking

On a different note, I will be speaking in front of church tomorrow. Our evangelist emailed me earlier in the week, asking me to do communion. What that means is that I'm going to spend a little bit of time talking about Jesus Christ, the crucifixion, the resurrection, etc., with a personal emphasis. I believe that communion is the most important reason why we come together for worship. I've been mulling some things in my mind, and I believe I've got it down - what I'm going to talk about, anyway. I might post more about it tomorrow after I've done it.

RISE UP with John Ritter

The local country music station we listen to on Sunday mornings broadcasts this program.

RSS Feeding Frenzy

Courtesy of Webmonkey, here's the skinny on RSS Feeds.

Friday, May 16, 2003

Quiz - Music

I am not a type of music
You're nothing, really. But you're nice.


What type of music are you?
brought to you by Quizilla

Well, at least I tried.

Thursday, May 15, 2003

Mainly Migraine Mantra

Ugh! It's back! I'm currently 3/4 the way through the dosing schedule. I just long for the pain to go away... The fun thing about it all is that the medicine makes me a little incoherent, and, if I happen to be typing in my blog or something like that (like right now), you get to witness it!

Relief! Please! Soon!

Miracle Migraine Medicine

I got my prescription for Imitrex filled yesterday. I've had this murderous headache since Sunday afternoon. I followed the doc's orders and took the pills: 1 every hour for four hours. I was feeling it. I almost fell asleep face down on the living room couch before Jennie urged me to head to bed. After I took my other medicine, I went to bed and slept like a baby.

I'm still feeling drowsy, but for the most part, the migraine seems to be gone.

Hallelujah!

You Came Here, and I Noticed

I even went there, too. Others should, too. Where? Here: My Boog Pages

Tuesday, May 13, 2003

I Said, "Doctor! Mr. MD!"

"Won't you please tell me what's ailin' me?"

(from the song "Good Lovin'")

Day 3 of the headache from Hell. I went to the doctor this afternoon, and he did something I did not expect. After having me lie down on the bench, he nudged my neck a few times. I felt a couple cracks and just laughed. "That's it?" I asked incredulously. He gave me a sample and a prescription for Imitrex.

So I've got this migraine that at time feels like a sledgehammer is being driven into my head. Actually, that might feel a little better.

By the way, folks, in case you're wondering, yesterday I spent nearly ALL day and night sleeping. I didn't even have an appetite for dinner.

I've heard of diets, but I think I'd prefer a different kind.

I think that's all for now, and I'll be off to bed shortly.

Monday, May 12, 2003

I Can't Believe the News Today

... specifically from this Referrers thingy at the bottom right hand side of my page. Could there really be 53 referrals from my links page? I dunno. Maybe... hopefully, you're finding what you're looking for. Let me know what you think.

It's Not All In Your Head

This recent article from MSNBC about fibromyalgia discusses recent developments.

Sinuses, allergies, or was it too much Mother's Day?

Hi. I'm not feeling too good today. I think it actually started yesterday afternoon. We came home from church and I laid down on the couch for a nap. A few hours later I awoke with a splitting headache, where the upper left-hand corner of my left eye was the epicenter. I made my way downstairs and took a Sinus/Allergy pill and laid down on our bed.

I reawoke at 4:30 PM to take my mom and Jennie to dinner for Mother's Day (I actually alluded that something like this would happen late last week.). We initially tried to get into Golden Corral to take advantage of their All-You-Can-Eat Steak Buffet, but, alas, there were lines extending outside that showed how busy the restaurant was. We decided instead to go to Skyline Chili. My mom, who grew up in Cincinnati, the birthplace of Skyline Chili, did not have it available to her as much when she lived in Texas. Yet another good reason for her to move back to Ohio. :D

I barely had any appetite, but I somehow managed to eat a small 3-way and a cheese coney. I guess there are some things that even sickness can't overcome, huh?

I went home took all my medicine and went to bed. This was at about 6:30 PM last night. I woke up this morning, and I felt a little better... until I coughed. So I just took another dose of the sinus/allergy medicine, and I'm going to head back to bed for a little while. The hot shower didn't seem to help a whole lot. Except, maybe, that I feel sick and smell clean and fresh at the same time!

Saturday, May 10, 2003

They sent us to our basement

This afternoon it rained hard. We had a big thunderstorm come through. I was brought to my senses when I heard the hail hitting our roof and looked out the window to see it streaming across the yard. I walked to our covered porch to see how big the hail was. At one point, I picked up a golf ball-sized piece. Of course at that time, the local weathermen told us we needed to get to our basements because they had noticed some rotation in the cloud system, even though no funnels were created. Just to be safe. So we all went downstairs and sat on our bed and watched the progress of the thunderstorm on the local television station.

When it looked and sounded like the worst had passed I walked upstairs and outside to survey the area. I called for everyone else to come up, too. We saw lots of hail strewn around our yard, and it appears that the hood of mom's car was pelted with hail. Other than that, everything looked okay.

Keisha walked around the yard, collecting pieces of hail in a plastic cup.

Then we all returned inside to the rest of our lives.

Mom

Have I mentioned that my mom is awesome? More evidence can be found here.

His Royal Jakeness

For the past week, Jake and I have been getting some good exercise. Almost every day this week we've gone for an hour-long walk around the neighborhood. Today we did it after the huge rain storm, so we got kinda wet from walking in the puddles. It's amazing that he can urinate in so many places; I wonder how he does it. Does he have a second bladder? I've also learned that I have to carry three plastic bags when we go on this walk.

When we came home, I knew that Jake needed a bath. So Keisha and I got into our swimming suits and gave him a bath outside on our driveway. He initially resisted the ordeal but gradually let what had to be done be done.

Only after we'd dried him off with a towel did Jennie allow him to return inside.

Jake: His royal Jakeness, our labrador - collie puppy.

Friday, May 09, 2003

Another Visit from the Tooth Fairy

Keisha got another visit from the Tooth Fairy. Yesterday while at school, she lost her second tooth. While Jennie took her to speech therapy at Children's Medical Center today, the Tooth Fairy stopped by and left some money under Keisha's pillow. To say that Keisha is excited is an understatement. Thanks to Nana for placing the call to the Tooth Fairy!

Happy Anniversary!

Happy Anniversary to my Dad and stepmother, Linda! They were married on this date in Camden, Ohio 5 years ago (I think)! They now live on a farm in Bright, Indiana. Congratulations, Dad and Linda!

Thanks, Mom

A total of four million American women give birth each year. Of this number, about 450,000 are teens and nearly 100,000 are age 40 or over.

Source: U.S. Census Bureau

He Really Loved Her

One of the world's shortest wills was left by an Englishman named Dickens. Contested in 1906 but upheld by the courts, it read simply: "All for mother."

-- Source: Reader's Digest Book of Facts, © 1987, page 82.

Killer Tortoise

In July 1981 a tortoise was sentenced to death for murder. Tribal elders in Kyuasini, a village in Kenya, formally condemned the tortoise because they suspected it had caused the death of six people, apparently through magic. However, because none of the villagers was prepared to risk the tortoise's wrath by carrying out the execution, it was chained to a tree instead. The tortoise was later freed after the government promised an official inquiry into the deaths.

-- Source: Reader's Digest Book of Facts, © 1987, page 82.

Thursday, May 08, 2003

Well, I just had to laugh

... because I saw what some people searched for to find this blog, and it's quite funny:

  • wine sayings
  • dream interpretations on peeing
  • Squoosh a Terrorist game
  • spanking Mary Kate and Ashley Olsen
  • flatulence filter coupon
  • hoaxes children motrin
  • virus that makes a computer quack like a duck
  • hawaii ear bugs
  • hidden camera of gay activities
  • sex as a social problem

Wednesday, May 07, 2003

While I'm on the subject...

Here's freshman congressman Mike Turner's website. (Note to self: need to add this to the Links section on Dayton, Ohio).

Josh Claybourn

I see an uncanny resemblance to Ohio Representative John Boehner.

FAFSA on the Web - U.S. Department of Education

The Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) is now available on the web. I did not know that.

Did You Know? Mother's Day Dining Fact Sheet

This just from the U.S. Newswire: "According to the National Restaurant Association, 38 percent of Americans will celebrate Mother's Day this Sunday in one of the nation's 870,000 restaurants." Which one will we be going to? Tune in late Sunday/early Monday to find out.

US judge finds Iraq link to Sept 11

"A U.S. judge says that families of two victims killed in the September 11 attacks on America were able to show a tenuous link between Iraq and Osama bin Laden in the deadly strikes -- and he awarded the plaintiffs more than $100 million (63 million pounds) in damages."

2005 Update: removed reference to an obsolete Yahoo! UK link

The Good Napkins

Note: I'm definitely a guy because it took me a couple of times worth of reading and re-reading this before I figured out why this was so funny. BTW, I got this from mom, who picked this up via email, too:

The moral of this story: Always take time to explain. REMEMBER THIS COULD BE YOU!

My mother taught me to read when I was four years old (the first mistake). One day I was in the bathroom and noticed one of the cabinet doors was ajar. I read the box in the cabinet, I then asked my mother why she kept napkins in the bathroom. Didn't they belong in the kitchen? Not wanting to burden me with unnecessary facts, she told me that those were for "SPECIAL OCCASIONS".

Now fast forward a few months. It's Thanksgiving day and my folks were leaving to pick up the pastor and his wife for dinner. Mom had assignments for all of us while they were gone. Mine was to set the table. When they returned, the pastor came in first and immediately burst into laughter. Next came his wife who gasped, the began giggling. Next came my father, who roared with laughter! Then came Mom who almost died of embarrassment when she saw each place setting on the table with A "SPECIAL OCCASIONS" napkin at each plate, with the fork carefully arranged on top. I had even tucked the little tail in so they didn't hang off the edge.

My mother asked me why I used these and, of course, my response sent the other adults into further fits of laughter. "But Mom, you SAID they were for special occasions!!!"

Take time to laugh, it's the music of the soul. A merry heart doeth good like a medicine, but a broken spirit dirt the bones . Proverbs 17:22

The Listeners Make the Playlists

I just completed an online survey about my music preferences from one of the local radio stations here in Dayton, K99.1FM. I always hear them say that they survery hundreds of listeners to get their feedback on the music they play, yet this was the first time I was chosen to provide the feedback. I was encouraged to offer my thoughts.

We Still Got Power

A representative from the local electric utility company paid us a visit. We wound up paying him back:

You see, with finances the way they are right now, we've been unable to keep on top of our bills. You may recall that, in March, ("From Powerless to Powerful") we had our power shut off once before. We were able to give the company a little bit of money over the phone, but we had to live an entire day without power.

I am thankful that we recently got our federal income tax refund, because with part of that money we were able to pay off the electric rep. Partly, anyway. I just hope the check goes through okay.

God, you are taking care of us, and you are helping us not to be anxious. Please change our circumstances for the better and help us to thrive during this time. In Jesus' name, Amen.

P2P shenanigans

via email from CNET.com

Last week, a federal judge threw out a lawsuit by the RIAA and MPAA against Grokster and Morpheus for copyright infringement. The judge concluded that though the technologies could be used for copyright infringement, they are legally neutral because they can also be used for legal file trading. So nobody is going to break down your door just for having a P2P client installed on your computer. However, according to news reports, the major labels might have other tricks up their sleeves, including Trojan horses that may shut down your computer, slow down your Internet connection, or cause other damage. File sharers, beware.

On a positive note, Apple showed the potential for commercial success of digital music by selling more than 1 million tracks through its new iTunes Digital Music Store. And on the PC side, RealNetworks is trying to boost its stake in digital music subscription services by buying out Listen.com, creator of the Rhapsody music service.
I don't have any experience with anything like this.

Tuesday, May 06, 2003

My Name is Dan Johnson

To paraphrase comedian Steven Wright, I have a common name, and it is scattered throughout the world wide web.

Recent visitors??

While browsing through the referrer logs, I noticed that there are a lot of you visiting today. Welcome! For example:

Webhost Magazine

They boast to have hundreds of the best content resources for Webmasters and Webdevelopers. I found them while googling for "Wunderground Web Tool".

Because We Love Her

Right now my wife Jennie has taken my mom out to get her hair done and to get her a new outfit. It's something we've wanted to do for a long time to really encourage her. Mom left with Jennie earlier with no idea that this would happen, so it was going to be a great surprise. I can't wait until they return.

Soundtrack of my Life

Around Christmastime last year, I bought an RCA adapter and some speaker wire. I used it to hook up my computer to our stereo upstairs so that we can play music on our computer throughout the house. We have over 2000 songs stored on the computer, and it makes for a great soundtrack to my life. For example, while I'm working today, I'm listening to music from Sting.

Lay Low and Go!

Last night I taught Keisha what she needs to do in case the smoke alarm goes off. I demonstrated to her what it sounds like, and we practiced rolling out of her bed, checking the bedroom door to see if it's hot, then crawling to the front door. We've designated the fire hydrant in our front yard as the safe spot. We also practiced what we'd do if we were downstairs and the smoke alarm went off.

Keisha thought it was kind of fun, and in a way it was, because we were pretending. I look forward to practicing this with her more. Practicing this is especially important since Jennie and I sleep downstairs. My mom sleeps in the room across from Keisha's upstairs.

I think that if I approach these training situations with an attitude that it's fun, it will help her to remember in case she needs to act in a real situation.

Safe on Saturday

This past Saturday Jennie, Keisha, and I went to the Boonshoft Museum for a program that was put on by Children's Medical Center. The intent was to instruct children and their parents about various kinds of safety.

One session in particular was a lot of fun. It was a puppet show about fire safety. One of the puppets was a smoke alarm, and he was really wound up at first. Then he got real sleepy and fell asleep. The fireman who was moderating the show asked the kids what needs to be done when a smoke alarm goes to sleep. They answered, "Change the battery!"

At this show and others, we learned about what to do in case of a fire. Much of it I'd learned before, but I was very grateful for the review.

Monday, May 05, 2003

Sunday, May 04, 2003

Alias Season 2 Episode 22 - "The Telling"

Alias Season 2 Finale

For those that haven't seen it, I apologize in advance. I am so agitated right now. Actually Jennie and I both are. In a series where plot twists are the norm, they left us with a "doozy". More to come later perhaps.

2005 Update: Obviously you can now read what happened.

Saturday, May 03, 2003

The Matrix - Reloaded

I've been checking out the trailers. Pretty slick stuff. I've also heard that advance tickets are available at MovieTickets.com. Anyone wanna go?

5/5/2003 Update: Here's the link to news articles about The Matrix.

5/6/2003 Update: I found a TIME magazine article that includes some spoilers.

Jake Rinard

... left a comment for me at Streams of Consciousness. So I surfed over to his blog and found this neat little item:

A banner about war


2005 Update: Apparently JakeRinard.com is becoming more of a business site than a weblog. I do wish, however, I'd saved the banner to a different location so that I could display it here.

Free Verse -- Free-basing??

I don't really know for sure, but there is something strange going with this poem generator.

Journey Inside My Mind

Journey Inside there. for
something interesting... Frequently Asked me know that, in the
only Sinus infections.
been up later when somebody came to God currently number 1059 ,
QuotesBlog currently number 1163 have not.
happy Birthday, Mark
C.

Thanks to Mark C. Morris, better known as The Official Iowan, for the link.

Friday, May 02, 2003

We Live in Sinus Valley

I don't claim that we live in the only Sinus Valley in the country, or even the world. I just know that, from time to time, environmental conditions are such that everyone in our family gets sinus infections. I've been fortunate so far this season. My wife Jennie and my daughter Keisha, on the other hand, have not:

Tuesday morning Jennie and Keisha slept in. Keisha stayed home from school because she had been up all night, complaining from a "scratchy throat". Jennie was feeling poorly, too. Since she was a kid, Jennie has been prone to getting bronchitis. Keisha was feeling better throughout the day and wound up going to school on Wednesday.

On Wednesday, Jennie called our family doctor and scheduled an appointment. A few minutes later, she asked me what time her appointment was -- she was so "out of it" that she'd forgotten that she'd made the appointment.

I was getting ready to go to a job fair at the Dayton Job Center, so mom asked Jennie if she felt well enough to drive herself. Jennie asked mom if she would drive her. I returned home from the job fair at the same time mom and Jennie returned.

Yesterday we went to Meijer to fill another prescription, and I saw the store brand for some sinus/allergy/pain relief medicine. I bought for myself, because I've been feeling some of the early symptoms. After we got home, I took the medicine and a nap.

I initially planned for it to only last until Keisha came home from school. I woke up later when Jennie called me for dinner. It wound up being a long nap then.

Now it's Friday morning, and Jennie, while feeling a little better from alternating pain relievers, is still experiencing symptoms. She's going to head back to bed while I take Keisha to speech therapy at Children's Medical Center today. I may pop some more of those sinus/allergy pills before we leave.