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  1. Monday, March 05, 2018:
    Pet Peeve of the Moment  
  2. Wednesday, June 14, 2017:
    Coke Zero Day    I've been a Coke Zero drinker since early 2006 because it allowed me to drink free sodas at my old job continuously throughout the day, but it didn't have the disgusting aftertaste of Nutrasweet-based Diet sodas. I'm still on the Coke Zero bandwagon (as evinced by the 140 cans I bulk purchased at Costco because they only stock it once every ten years), but I still get irritated by Coke Zero's penchant for premature bubbling. You can try this Mr. Wizard experiment at home to see what I'm talking about:     Take a chilled can of Coke Zero from the fridge and gently pop the top.   Have a sip or two then gently place the can on your desk.   Go back to work writing missile guidance systems...
  3. Monday, November 07, 2016:
    Quiz Day: Me Me Me!, Part VIII  Part:  I  |  II  |  III  |  IV  |  V  |  VI  |  VII    How much you know about me? Hover your mouse over the right column to see the correct answers.    table.table161107 { border: 1px solid black; } table.table161107 td { border: 1px solid black; padding: 5px; } td.answer { background-color: #fafafa; color: #fafafa; font-size: 18pt; font-weight: bold; text-align: center; width: 60px; } td.answer:hover { color: #000000; }       1   What is my current ringtone?    Just Jack - Glory Days   Hi-Los - Minor Changes   Muse - Undis...
  4. Tuesday, June 28, 2016:
    Google+ Day   Happy 5th Birthday to Google+, the clear winner in the social media battle that made Facebook shut down its servers in a clear surrender almost immediately.    Jokes aside, I actually liked the concept of Google+ when it came out, and gave it a fair shot at grabbing my attention. However, once I got done making jokes about +1s and Circles, the bottom line was that there just wasn't enough of a network present to justify its continued use. The whole point of social media is to brag about how great your life is to all of the plebians who probably shop at Food Lion, and if no one is home, your message gets lost in the ether. After a half year or so, I returned to Facebook which boasted a larger network effect, even th...
  5. Friday, March 11, 2016:
    Alt Text Day    I take a yearly refresher course in information security, much like everyone else doing computer work around this area. This year, they released the course with a text supplement for people that couldn't use the website, including image captions that some poor technical writer had to invent for 508 accessibility compliance.   Why take the course when you can get the gist from reading the alt text of the briefing images?     Image Alt: Three unknown men sitting in chairs   Image Alt: Three criteria for an authorized recipient - "Eligibility" is a thumbs-up, "Requirement" is a "Need-to-Know" key on a keyboard, and "Agreement" is a signature on an NdA.   Image Alt: A collage o...
  6. Tuesday, February 23, 2016:
    Quiz Day: Me Me Me!, Part VII   Part I  |  II  |  III  |  IV  |  V  |  VI    How much you know about me? Hover your mouse over the right column to see the correct answers.    table.table160223 { border: 1px solid black; } table.table160223 td { border: 1px solid black; padding: 5px; } td.answer { background-color: #fafafa; color: #fafafa; font-size: 18pt; font-weight: bold; text-align: center; width: 60px; } td.answer:hover { color: #000000; }       1   Amidst all of my superpowers, what is my fatal weakness?    Constantly sick   Clumsy with glassware   Dyslexia&nb...
  7. Tuesday, July 07, 2015:
    Quiz Day: Me Me Me!, Part VI   Part I  |  II  |  III  |  IV  |  V    How much you know about me? Hover your mouse over the right column to see the correct answers.    table.table150707 { border: 1px solid black; } table.table150707 td { border: 1px solid black; padding: 5px; } td.answer { background-color: #fafafa; color: #fafafa; font-size: 18pt; font-weight: bold; text-align: center; width: 60px; } td.answer:hover { color: #000000; }       1   What is my favourite kitchen appliance?    Microwave   Toaster Oven   Rice Cooker   Wok      B...
  8. Tuesday, May 19, 2015:
    Overselling Day  We received the periodic newsletter from our local Sterling representative last week, and it's pretty clear that he's been singlehandedly responsible for every newsworthy event in the world since 1921.     If you were to create a word cloud of its contents, it would just be his name in 128 point font, with a tiny swatch of prepositions and articles dwarfed around it. It's not clear that this newsletter is taxpayer-funded, but I'm hoping that it's a product of one of his shady fundraising organizations. The newsletter is even named after him, and it's probably that name recognition that's kept him popular in spite of the fact that he was stripped of all committee seats in 2013 for fundraising on government time.&nb...
  9. Tuesday, May 05, 2015:
    Quiz Day: Me Me Me!, Part V   Part I  |  Part II  |  Part III  |  Part IV    How much you know about me? Hover your mouse over the right column to see the correct answers.    table.table150505 { border: 1px solid black; } table.table150505 td { border: 1px solid black; padding: 5px; } td.answer { background-color: #fafafa; color: #fafafa; font-size: 18pt; font-weight: bold; text-align: center; width: 60px; } td.answer:hover { color: #000000; }       1   Which musical job have I never had?    Pit musician   Sheet music transcriber   Trumpet teacher   Student film compose...
  10. Monday, January 19, 2015:
    MLK Jr. Day   Happy MLK Jr. Day!   The MLK, or "Mustard Lettuce Ketchup", is a variant of the hamburger invented by entrepreneur, Chuck Wheezy, who says he gained inspiration by making different permutations with his son's plastic hamburger toy in hopes of finding a mix that would outsell the BLT. It became a regional hit selling as a vegetarian alternative to the Bacon in a BLT, although strangely, no one seemed to notice that it still contained a meat patty underneath the 3 advertised garnishes.   Wheezy's sandwich would have remained a regional oddity had the Burger King corporation not expressed interest in making a smaller version of it, selling for one dollar. Once the MLK Jr. began selling in franchises across...
  11. Thursday, December 04, 2014:
    Quiz Day: Me Me Me!, Part IV   Part I  |  Part II  |  Part III    How much you know about me? Hover your mouse over the right column to see the correct answers.    table.table141204 { border: 1px solid black; } table.table141204 td { border: 1px solid black; padding: 5px; } td.answer { background-color: #fafafa; color: #fafafa; font-size: 18pt; font-weight: bold; text-align: center; width: 60px; } td.answer:hover { color: #000000; }       1   What do I always name my character in Zelda games?    Link   BU   Zeke   Gassy      D     2 ...
  12. Friday, November 14, 2014:
    Quiz Day: Me Me Me!, Part III   Part I  |  Part II    How much you know about me? Hover your mouse over the right column to see the correct answers.    table.table141114 { border: 1px solid black; } table.table141114 td { border: 1px solid black; padding: 5px; } td.answer { background-color: #fafafa; color: #fafafa; font-size: 18pt; font-weight: bold; text-align: center; width: 60px; } td.answer:hover { color: #000000; }       1   How do I calculate restaurant tips?    Exact percentage of bill   Percentage of bill rounded to the nearest dollar   Percentage of bill rounded so the entire cost adds to a who...
  13. Tuesday, July 15, 2014:
    Order Archaeology Day  Browsing through my old Amazon order history is like peeling back the layers of ash over Vesuvius. You can see which phases of my life I was in at any given time, based on the orders I had placed.   
  14. Tuesday, July 08, 2014:
    Device Activity Day   Last used yesterday...       Last used four days ago...       Last used two weeks ago...       Last used over six months ago...       Last used over a year ago...    
  15. Tuesday, July 01, 2014:
    Non-Self Improvement Day  Learning Spanish has been on my to-do list for  many years now  but I never progressed beyond CD #1:  El Alfabeto , and each additional day that passes by without any real progress further increases the odds that I'll just never get around to it. That's okay, because I never get around to plenty of things, and there's not enough time in the day to waste worrying about the things I haven't done.     Since I'm not getting any younger at this point, it would probably be easier to change the world around me, such that my four years of high school French would be worth something, rather than have to do any real work at self improvement by learning a  new  second language. Here then, is my fi...
  16. Friday, June 20, 2014:
    All-Met Day    This year's All-Met spread of the area's best high school athletes is pretty awful. I don't really understand the artistic decision to put the athletes under a rain machine. Does it show their perseverance? Are they mailmen?   My hunch is that the Washington Post has had such awful luck getting the macho male athletes to smile in the past, that they gave up and forced a reason to frown upon the proceedings. 
  17. Tuesday, April 29, 2014:
    Quiz Day: Me Me Me!, Part II  Did you ace the last  quiz about me ? Try round two! Hover your mouse over the right column to see the correct answers.    table.table140429 { border: 1px solid black; } table.table140429 td { border: 1px solid black; padding: 5px; } td.answer { background-color: #fafafa; color: #fafafa; font-size: 18pt; font-weight: bold; text-align: center; width: 60px; } td.answer:hover { color: #000000; }       1   What sit-down restaurant food was I obsessed with from 2003 - 2005?    Red Robin Mushroom and Swiss Burger   Applebee's Ribs   Ruby Tuesday Chicken Fingers   Maggiano's Calamari  ...
  18. Tuesday, March 18, 2014:
    Anatomy of a Migraine    I used to get migraines a few times per month, but that tempo has greatly decreased over the past few years. On Sunday, I had the first since June 2013.   Migraines are not the same as regular headaches. Because people often don't understand why people can't just "walk them off", here is a behind-the-scenes look into my own as a PSA.      Root Causes : Unconfirmed. Often related to changes in weather / air pressure, and sometimes related to computer usage or very bright, burning lights or camera flashes. Mine have never been food-related.     Phase I (Minute 0 - 10) : Miniscule visual artifacts invade my vision like "eye floaters" on steroids. Where I can fling ...
  19. Tuesday, February 25, 2014:
    Quiz Day: Me Me Me!  See how much you know about me by answering the questions below. Hover your mouse over the right column to see the correct answers.    table.table140225 { border: 1px solid black; } table.table140225 td { border: 1px solid black; padding: 5px; } td.answer { background-color: #fafafa; color: #fafafa; font-size: 18pt; font-weight: bold; text-align: center; width: 60px; } td.answer:hover { color: #000000; }       1   Where was I born?    Alexandria, VA   Seoul, South Korea   Arlington, VA   Busan, South Korea      B     2   Which sport would...
  20. Friday, January 10, 2014:
    Of Course Day  Amazon wants me to sell back my used textbooks:     Of course, they used Gamestop as a model for how much something should be worth.   Tomorrow, it's supposed to get up near 60 degrees with buckets of rain:     Of course, that's the day we'd planned to go snow tubing at Wintergreen for a friend's birthday.   Facebook wants me to reminisce about the highlights of 2013:     Of course, it was really just a ploy to dub me the boring-est of all of my friends. 
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