February 24th, 2007


With judges like that, now wonder their elections are crooked

The judge in the Anna Nichole case is whacked. Even a layman can see he's way out of his jurisdiction and not a fit person to make an objective decision even if it was his to make.

His only responsibility is to say who gets the body. Period. He has no say about what happens to it after he has made that decision.

He wants her buried next to her son in the Bahamas. Fine. Purely emotional, but fine.

But that's not his decision to make. The last time I looked, the Bahamas was a foreign nation, and it takes a lot more than some low-level judge in Florida to ship the body of a US citizen to a foreign country. And I suspect he overstepped his bounds in deciding in favor of someone who is not a relative, over the objections of the victim's mother. He decided the body will go to the court-appointed guardian of Anna's daughter, which is like giving the body of a deceased investor to her broker.

And if I was the daughter, I don't think I would want to be raised anywhere near where my overdosing mom and half brother were planted.

All kinds of boyfriends said she told them she wanted to be buried in the Bahamas, but you have to wonder if she ever really said anything of the sort. It's not as if she expected to die so suddenly. It's clear she never put it in writing.

Now we have the DNA circus coming to town. If they do it the right way, they will test Anna's DNA against her daughter's just to make sure. With a guy like Stern around, you never know.


Fried Day

The past 2 days at work were almost fun. I was given a hard drive with hundreds of short video files (most of them less than 1GB) from Europe, and they turned out to all be multiple stream files. Which means each file had several video and audio programs. They are from France, Germany, Italy, UK, and Spain. My assignment was to pick one from each country and put them on a machine which would stream them over the corporate internet. The original plan was just to take the first one from each country, but as it turns out some of those were broken, and once I figured out how to use VLC to watch the different programs, it was clear that some files had more and better content than others. So I looked at all the files in the first folder for each country, maybe 30 in all, and picked two from each country yesterday, and today narrowed it down to one each. Plus a test pattern which happened to be from Spain but could have been anywhere in Europe.

The clips were all about 5 minutes long. Some of the fun clips included parts of:

STTNG dubbed in German. Picard sounded pretty good in that language, which surprised me.
Charmed dubbed into Italian
BBC news signed for the deaf. Or maybe it is signed for the illiterate deaf because they do, after all, have closed captioning.
A water polo game called in Italian.
Lots of Spanish TV ads
An American blacksploitation sitcom which never aired in the US, dubbed in French

And so on.

We also had quite a chunk of encoder issues, some of which I handled on my own, others with the help of my office-mate.

After work has not been so amusing. I went to Lowe's, Radio Shack and Fry's trying to find an EN22 industrial 9V battery for the CO2 alarm, because that was what was in there when the low battery alarm went off. But the alarm says it just needs a standard Duracell 9V, which is what I got at Walmart tonight, and it works just fine. The industrial battery is slightly smaller than the regular one, and some smoke detector manufacturers make their alarms' battery holder too small to fit the regular ones. It's a major scam, because there's no significant difference in the life or output of the smaller ones, but they are only sold wholesale, and cost 4x the price of the retail ones.

Been having a problem with UPS. Twice in the past 2 days, instead of going next door to the office to have them sign for a package, they left a note on my door saying to call for pick-up, since an in-person signature was required. Talking with both shippers, no such requirement was made. Well, the first shipper was wrong, they subscribe to signature tracking, which does require the name on the package to match the signer's name. But the other one definitely did not. I had UPS send back the first package, it was towels and pillows which I can get just as easily locally, but the other one, which are digital speakers, I re-routed to the apartment office. We'll see Monday of that gets delivered.

I have a different problem with Fedex - their bozo comes 5 minutes to 9, when nobody is home and the office is not open yet. Makes me wonder why people just don't use the post office like I do. The prices are not that much different, and neither is the service. Ironically, the commercial delivery services have taken such a big load off USPS, that the post office is now as fast at delivering packages as the commercial guys are.

Plans. Saturday afternoon drive to Marin for the annual NorCal Peace Corps alumni meeting. I'm supposedly going to be an alternate board member for the South Bay. Sunday see Babel with a friend.

If anyone wants to invite me to an Oscars party, please do so now...

Monday, BASFA. This may be my last meeting for a while, depending on rehearsal schedules.

Tuesday, first Jekyll & Hyde rehearsal in Palo Alto. I get to meet my daughter. No wife this time, darn it. I've had good luck with stage wives, am still good friends with one, and would be good friends with another if we ever managed to see each other more than once every 3 years or so. Come to think of it, I've played a lot of bachelors. Sgt. of Police, Dick Deadeye, Bill Sykes, Lazar Wolf, Moonface Martin (2x), Slartibartfast, Cowardly Lion, Big Jule, Charlie Brown. The only wife I didn't get along with was the one in A Funny Thing Happened on the Way To The Forum, which wasn't so bad because my character was supposed to loathe her. I didn't have to act. The woman who played Guenevere to my King Arthur didn't like me, but then she runs off with Lancelot, doesn't she?

I think I've only had one stage daughter before, and we're still friends 20+ years later. Oh wait, I forgot Kiss Me Kate when I played Kate's dad. I've seen her a couple of times since, and the other daughter too, Bianca. They were both terrific, although the show as a whole was one of my worst stage experiences.

But I ramble.

It's Raining It's Pouring

and this old man will be snoring tonight in a San Raphael Travelodge.

My Peace Corps alumni meeting in Mill Valley was great. An amazing array of food (it's a potluck with food from people who served in almost every corner of he world). I brought my green curry beef. And as often happens at meetings far from home, I met a nice woman who works near where I live - at Stanford. And strange coincidence, she works in the Bill Gates building.

The food and conversation was great, the business meeting was well-run and entertaining, and the only flaw is the 3-piece acoustic Latin band was miked and way way too loud. But that didn't stop some of the hotties who served in S.America from dancing.

When I left it was raining hard and the wind was blowing even harder, lots of deep water on the way to 101, so I invoked Plan B and checked into a motel in San Raphael, which has free wifi.

Aside from the meeting, I didn't do much today. Slept in late, changed the litterbox. Big whoop.

Tomorrow morning I'll head back, will meet a friend for some computer help & a movie. Still looking for an Oscars party.
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