This Day In History: 09/12

Wednesday, September 12, 2001

Both Virginia Tech and Florida State cancelled classes yesterday, along with many other schools and organizations. The state capitol here (which is only a couple blocks from my apartment) was closed as well, since it's a tempting target, being the only tall building in the city. The entire city felt like it was holding its breath - practice rooms were silent, no sorority girls were walking, and meter upon meter stood empty on the street.

Even before the dust had settled, the vultures were circling. Yesterday's crisis was a gold mine for opportunists of all stripes, and none of them wasted any time in searching for a soapbox. The media saw their chance to report on the next big "Condit" and spent the entire day looping the clip of the second plane crash, while reporting wild speculation as near-fact and quoting unrelated sources ad nauseam. An unending parade of representatives and senators exhausted the thesaurus for synonyms of "horrific" and "tragedy" while arguing that none of this would have happened if more money had been spent on their favourite defense contractor. Even the President realizes that this will be the perfect opportunity to show the American people that he isn't a lame duck, probably to the detriment of any country he defines as the scapegoat. This breeding ground of fear and public opinion will be the perfect rallying cry to expand on our already bloated military spending.

Thousands of people died yesterday, but that fact can be dismissed with a quick disclaimer of personal sympathy (also using the words "horrific" and "tragedy"). America is the land of opportunity so they're all quite willing to do the requisite mourning, if it means that tomorrow they get to reap the benefits.

To all of you who read this site, I hope that any of your friends and relatives involved in the incidents are alive and safe.

On a separate note, it still amazes me that so many people refuse to believe the United States is anything but a kind and just country, beloved around the world. They can't accept the fact that the US is a condescending behemoth with fingers in everyone else's pies... a country that's probably managed to offend everyone out there at least once. I think that as long as we're the "great white Satan", all the military spending in the world won't keep us completely safe.

tagged as newsday, politics | permalink | 0 comments

Thursday, September 12, 2002

It's the end of the third quarter right now, and the VT Hokies are beating Marshall 26 - 0. They're looking pretty good on the field, and it's obvious that Lee Suggs is making up for his missed season with lots of slick moves. It looks like construction at Lane Stadium is finally done as well -- the stadium is now completely enclosed on all sides.

The latest version of Netscape (7) is now available and there's a few decent changes since the beta version. The only lack-of-feature I dislike is the fact that it doesn't prevent popup ads from appearing in new windows as advertised. It also throws AOL icons all over your computer, but that's to be expected from anything made by the media conglomerate.

I've posted my recent battle report on the Writings page if you missed it the first time around.

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Monday, September 12, 2005

The "give us your social security number and T-shirt size and we'll let you walk down a fenced-in path like the Running of the Bulls without the Bulls" Freedom Walk went off without a hitch yesterday. I'm sure the administration was sorely disappointed that the significance and patriotism-swelling aspects of the event were overshadowed by the natural disastery events of the past weeks. They could really use a diversion of some kind at the moment, given all the bad press, so look for the start of our war with North Korea in the next few weeks (with the hopes of a decisive obliteration of the entire country within two to three days). Unfortunately, Kim Jong-Il has a super-human brain and has already discovered the plot and fled to a remote outpost in Venezuela -- a country we won't have the resources to eradicate and sink beneath sea level for at least six months. We will triumph eventually though -- gas is only twelve cents a gallon there, and Exxon finds that unacceptable.

I like watching the fallout that occurs when politicians of all stripes put their feet in their mouths. This time around, it's Louisiana Representative Richard H. Baker, who supposedly said, "We finally cleaned up public housing in New Orleans. We couldn't do it, but God did.". Close by, vying for airtime was Rick Santorum trying to blame the lack of warning wholely on the National Weather Service (It took me multiple tries to crop the image on the right because Photoshop couldn't handle the smarmy politician grin and kept crashing). It seems pretty clear to me that he's just using the excuse to push his bill that would privatize weather forecasting and prevent the National Weather Service from giving the information out for free. I guess this wasn't enough warning for Mr. Santorum:

    URGENT - WEATHER MESSAGE
    NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE NEW ORLEANS LA
    1011 AM CDT SUN AUG 28 2005

    ...DEVASTATING DAMAGE EXPECTED...

    HURRICANE KATRINA...A MOST POWERFUL HURRICANE WITH UNPRECEDENTED STRENGTH...RIVALING THE INTENSITY OF HURRICANE CAMILLE OF 1969.

    MOST OF THE AREA WILL BE UNINHABITABLE FOR WEEKS...PERHAPS LONGER.

    AT LEAST HALF OF WELL CONSTRUCTED HOMES WILL HAVE ROOF AND WALL FAILURE. ALL GABLED ROOFS WILL FAIL...ALL WOOD FRAMED LOW RISING APARTMENT BUILDINGS WILL BE DESTROYED...ALL WINDOWS WILL BE BLOWN OUT.

    THE VAST MAJORITY...OF TREES WILL BE SNAPPED OR UPROOTED. ONLY THE HEARTIEST WILL REMAIN STANDING...BUT BE TOTALLY DEFOLIATED.

    POWER OUTAGES WILL LAST FOR WEEKS...AS MOST POWER POLES WILL BE DOWN AND TRANSFORMERS DESTROYED. WATER SHORTAGES WILL MAKE HUMAN SUFFERING INCREDIBLE BY MODERN STANDARDS.

The National Weather Service countered the accusation with their own press release touting their new Global Warming educational packet which uses Santorum's face as a visual aid -- his forehead playing the part of the melting icecaps and his toupée in the role of the receding shorelines.

Another fun read is General Stonewall McClellan's toe-ing of the party line on FEMA:.

On the other hand, I don't think it was a big deal that Wolf Blitzer said the victims were "so poor and so black" on a live CNN report. I see it as simply an unfortunate slip of the tongue -- anyone who has watched a newscaster try to report on a sensational story live knows that they generally don't have a clue about the word-turds roiling out of their mouth, and they're lucky to form a single coherent thought 50% of the time (one newscaster recently said that the Corp of Engineers "performed a miracle" by moving water from the city of New Orleans into the nearby lake. Truly God-like, I agree). Yes, all newscasters should just the hell up, but no, Wolf's quote wasn't inherently racist.

In unrelated news, the Hokies won 45-0 over Duke. I didn't get to watch the game (work beckoned) but I'm sure I would have gotten bored around halftime.

Happy Birthday Becky!

Ocala HOA thinks refugees smell funny
IE required to get benefits
And I have five thousand daily viewers

Yesterday's search terms:
michael vick's daughter, name of chips ahoy theme song, uri nude, stick it in stick it in marching virginians

tagged as politics | permalink | 9 comments

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Memory Day: The Safe Spot

I had a very cool bed as a child. Where some kids slept in racecars or My Little Pony stables, my twin bed had a captain's wheel as the headboard. When my mom would sing songs to my sister and I before we went to bed, the wheel would often be a prop in the reenactment of the song about the galleon and the guy thrown overboard for his love. This bed was fairly high off the ground, because underneath it was an old-fashioned trundle bed which was only put into service at Christmas time when relatives filled up my sister's room.

Sometime towards the end of elementary school, the trundle bed was thrown out to make room for storage -- billions of crates filled with Legos in their original boxes and game boxes for Infocom and Sierra classics. At this time, my bed was up against the corner of the room, so I arranged the boxes underneath to create a little secret room. This was my "secret" place where no one else ever came, where I could be alone with my thoughts or read a book. Though the ceiling height (2 feet) didn't measure up for luxury, my under-the-bed-room had all the amenities, from a blanket on the ground to a clip-on lamp for light. A double-decker cassette player (pink because it used to be my sister's) provided the ambient music, and a Costco (then Price Club) supply of Bubble Yum Grape Gum completed the picture, although tragically there was no adjoining bathroom.

This was my safe spot, the place where childhood angst and monsters couldn't get to me, and even after I grew to my current gargantuan height I continued to crawl under the bed well into junior high school, even though I could barely navigate the cramped secret entrance between the Lego El Dorado Fortress and the Lego Car Wash. Long before multimedia became a buzzword, I was in my safe spot on a rainy afternoon, reading Dances with Wolves while listening to the soundtrack and blowing gigantic bubbles, much like the Indians probably did. Where was your childhood safe spot?

Happy Birthday Becky Durham!

Is World of Warcraft a game?
Screech fleeces the Internet
Wearing helmets can be dangerous

tagged as memories | permalink | 2 comments

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Chad Darnell's 12 of 12: Bethany Beach Edition

I'm uploading these pictures from a borrowed laptop, so my apologies if they look a little rough!

8:24 AM: Waking up to the sun over Bethany Bay

8:52 AM: The obligatory post-shower shot

9:12 AM: Making a ridiculous amount of breakfast food

10:05 AM: Looking down on Puzzle Time from the second floor balcony

10:44 AM: Out on the screened porch, enjoying the mild 70 degree weather with no humidity

11:08 AM: Apparently I enjoyed the weather a little too much

12:01 PM: Catching up on other 12 of 12ers courtesy of the free wifi in the beach house

12:22 PM: Marc arrives, fresh from Virginia

2:18 PM: On Bethany Beach, Rebecca becomes a mermaid

5:12 PM: After a nice afternoon lounging at the beach and/or digging, we go back to the car to return to the beach condo

5:34 PM: This is Shortie, the dog who lives two floors below us, always ready to greet us when we come back

5:45 PM: Having some Coconut Pie from Jimmie's Diner before heading out to Dogfishhead Brewery for dinner

See more 12 of 12ers at Chad's site!

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Friday, September 12, 2008

Chad Darnell's 12 of 12

6:32 AM: To start off my three-day birthday weekend properly, I go into work an hour later than usual. This is me driving on the Beltway of Perpetual Traffic.

7:02 AM: The view from my new office is great, but it's a dreary day.

7:52 AM: Breakfast, obviously.

11:14 AM: Taking a trip to Costco to pick up the essentials for the weekend birthday party.

11:48 AM: A quick jaunt over to Home Depot to be fuel-efficient.

12:16 PM: Unloading the trunk full of MEATS and BEERS.

12:35 PM: Having leftover pasta with tomato/basil sauce for lunch while reading the paper and ignoring the politics.

3:07 PM: On a conference call with the folks at work.

3:48 PM: Dinner time for kitties.

6:38 PM: My newly-rearranged living room (I believe this is either the sixth or seventh time it's been rearranged in four years).

8:02 PM: Unwinding with a little World of Warcraft.

9:50 PM: Watching Rebecca make my birthday cake!

See more 12 of 12ers at Chad's site!

Hanging on to Biden's every word
Verizon worker accused of making $220k in sex calls
Fainting goat farm, with video

tagged as 12 of 12 | permalink | 9 comments

Monday, September 12, 2011

Chad Darnell's 12 of 12


5:26 AM: Now that Rebecca commutes to Springfield every day, I just get up with her.

5:38 AM: Post-shower.

5:50 AM: Full moon over Herndon.

8:12 AM: Unexpected at-work work.

11:58 AM: On the way home for lunch, trying to figure out why the engine light is on. I don't think that's a proper error code, although it could be a koala.

12:14 PM: Welcomed home by Amber.

12:25 PM: Wings for lunch.

1:45 PM: Cats sleep while I work to earn money for their food.

3:00 PM: Freshly mowed lawn.

4:48 PM: Working on DDMSence.

5:45 PM: Recording tomorrow's Museday, Mercurial.

6:15 PM: Dinner tonight is all leftovers all the time: cheesy slow cooker chicken breasts, mashed potatoes with bacon bits, and Popeyes fries.
One worker blamed for leaving millions without power
Arizona church is a house of prostitution
Woman dies after injecting hot beef fat into her face

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Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Chad Darnell's 12 of 12


5:50 AM: This may look early and cold, but Rebecca was already up and moving towards Springfield for school.

6:05 AM: Making a mental note to put Windex on the shopping list.

6:12 AM: Chilly enough for seatwarmer action.

7:15 AM: The tale of the rapidly-growing spider plant.

11:21 AM: Driving home for lunch in a dearth of traffic.

11:41 AM: Someone has to eat these leftover hot dogs.

12:30 PM: Anna and brood drop by to deliver the communal Halloween party decorations.

1:49 PM: Booty hungers.

4:30 PM: Working out with Jack Bauer (and Calvin and Hobbes, for when Jack Bauer is boringly recapping plot points for 30% of an episode).

5:56 PM: Video game time, today with Guild Wars 2.

7:32 PM: Grilling up some steaks for dinner.

7:59 PM: Steak Night!

P.S. You can't tell from these pictures but apparently I wore the same shirt today as I did on September 12 last year.

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Thursday, September 12, 2013

Chad Darnell's 12 of 12


6:22 AM: Getting a late start.

6:29 AM: Readying for work.

6:42 AM: No idea who approved this design.

7:59 AM: View from my office.

11:50 AM: The sign is understandable, but the double speed bump on each side of the crosswalk is excessive.

12:15 PM: Marie Callendar for lunch.

12:38 PM: Will be cute for food.

1:00 PM: Back to work.

3:15 PM: Checking on the tomatoes before thunderstorms.

3:31 PM: Treadmilling while watching Under the Dome.

4:45 PM: How am I still enjoying Skyrim?

8:45 PM: Leftovers night for dinner.

tagged as 12 of 12 | permalink | 1 comment

Friday, September 12, 2014

Chad Darnell's 12 of 12

8:05 AM: Soft-boiled eggs on the stove.
9:10 AM: Morning walk on the beach.
10:00 AM: Showered and ready for... work?
10:14 AM: Catching up with Mike Catania's Kilimanjaro exploits on Facebook.
10:57 AM: Hanging around the pool with Rebecca and Annie.
11:59 AM: Reading on the Kindle in the hot tub.
12:09 PM: Choosing lunch from a variety of leftovers.
1:29 PM: Teaching Annie how to play Hearthstone.
3:45 PM: Playing Hearthstone.
5:50 PM: Prepping for dinner.
8:30 PM: Early beach birthday party.
9:45 PM: Poolside dance party.

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Monday, September 12, 2016

Chad Darnell's 12 of 12

5:08 AM: Showered and ready for work.
5:30 AM: The office has not changed.
6:40 AM: Morning over the Reston Town Center.
9:17 AM: Nothing good left in the variety snack pack.
11:48 AM: Safeway run for a successful Burger Night.
12:00 PM: Leftover pizza for lunch.
12:21 PM: Back to work in my new home office.
2:42 PM: Chopping up the detritus of old desks to fit in the trash bin.
3:15 PM: Exercising while watching Broadchurch.
4:30 PM: Taking a cat nap while waiting for the power to come back on. If you squint, Booty is a unicorn.
7:00 PM: Cool weather for grilling.
7:22 PM: 1/3 pound burgers with smoked gouda, portobello caps, and grilled red onions.

tagged as 12 of 12 | permalink | 1 comment

Wednesday, September 12, 2018

Chad Darnell's 12 of 12

12 pictures of your day on the 12th of every month

6:20 AM: Showered and ready for work.
7:03 AM: Working from home today.
8:34 AM: Good morning!
8:57 AM: Breakfast while reading Fear: Trump in the White House
9:14 AM: No pan is safe.
9:48 AM: Grilling premade dinners for our newly un-pregnant neighbours while also hurricane-proofing the deck.
11:21 AM: Working lunch.
12:06 PM: Reading with the grandparents.
1:06 PM: Naptime Beat Saber workout.
3:12 PM: Putting on my socks so we can go out.
4:14 PM: Swinging at Lake Anne.
7:51 PM: Lasagna for dinner.

tagged as 12 of 12 | permalink | 1 comment

Monday, September 12, 2022

Chad Darnell's 12 of 12

12 pictures of your day on the 12th of every month

6:03 AM: Up and ready for work.
6:23 AM: Bagel for breakfast.
6:51 AM: Off to the bus stop in 95% humidity.
7:08 AM: Preliminary sketches for today's Business Development tip.
7:35 AM: The final product.
9:50 AM: Working.
10:58 AM: Leftover molasses-braised flank steak for lunch.
12:44 PM: Home early because a bug flew in her ear and wouldn't come out (the 2nd bug to fly in there in her lifetime).
3:00 PM: Family time in Maia's room.
5:07 PM: Time to start a puzzle.
5:24 PM: Dinner from Joe's.
6:28 PM: Final lap in a live-action Mario Kart race.

tagged as 12 of 12 | permalink | 2 comments

 

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