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oknazevad
02 February 2012 @ 12:45 am
"I'm running a test to see who's reading my posts. So, if you read this, leave me a one-word comment about your day that starts with the third letter of your LJ USERNAME. Only one word please. Then repost so I can leave a word for you. Don't just post a word and not copy - that's not as much fun!"

Of course, had I actual posts to read…
 
 
oknazevad
22 March 2011 @ 07:18 pm
Five-and-a-half-years ago, a friend of mine was moving into an apartment that had been the home of a friend of hers. This outgoing friend owned a cat, but wasn't allowed to take him to her new apartment. My friend, who was moving in, already had two cats and a dog, and couldn't take another cat. So I wound up with a second-hand cat. His name was "Meow". I am not making that up.

Today, I had too put him to sleep. I am heartbroken.

He was a fantastic cat, exactly the sort of easygoing, low maintenance pet I needed. He was always there when I got home, readily snuggled and never got lost. (Being a completely indoor cat who never went more than a few feet outside the apartment helped with that.) He was a beautiful cat, looking exactly like a cat should look. He was perfect.

I can't believe he's gone.
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Current Mood: sadsad
 
 
oknazevad
30 October 2008 @ 03:04 pm
This user endorses Barack Obama for president.

John McCain is a good man, one whom I would have considered a worthy president in years past. But Palin killed any desire to see him president that I ever had. While she may only be running for the largely meaningless VP post, to pick her shows me that McCain's judgment has slipped. And that he's far to ready to pander to the theocratic right. I refuse to agree to put anyone of those undemocratic nut jobs in office. They are not the "real America" they are un-American.

Obama has impressed me all along, however. Not just because he speaks well, but because he thinks before he speaks. He understands better that there is a role for government in the economy other than just getting out of the way. He understands that diplomacy is not weakness, unlike far to many who think about foreign relations with the wrong heads. he's a positively minded individual who sees our current crises as an opportunity, not just something to dodge.

He realizes that America is not perfect, always right and immune to mistakes. It is a nation of fallible people, and therefore imperfect. But it has long been a positive example in the world, not because of some divine right, nor purely due to its military, but due to its commitment to individual rights and democratic government. <i> Real politik</i> has gotten in the way too much in recent decades, and the theocratic belief that America is always divinely right has wasted far too much of our credibility. We need to break with our current administrations destructive policies. Obama is going to be the bigger change. Period. And while it's a trite cliche at this time to say it, Obama is indeed change I can believe in.
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oknazevad
13 July 2008 @ 10:47 pm
As I write this, I am sitting in the Province of Ontario, on a long weekend to Toronto.

In short, I've fled the country and am living as a refugee.

Or maybe I'm just a tourist.

And maybe I'm bored.
 
 
oknazevad
26 June 2008 @ 11:04 am
Here's one from April courtesy of Darkfrog24 that I've been meaning to put up but have been absent-mindedly forgetting.

"I can't believe this is how we're getting out of this."

"Oh shut up, you big pussy. I got us invited to the wedding didn't I?"

Kyle glowered at Billie. He glowered until he could glower no more, until his re-freckling nose turned pale red in reflection of his tacky polyester vest with matching cufflinks.

"And quit with the stinkeye!" snipped Billie.

"You didn't get us invited to the wedding, Billie," said Kyle. "You nearly got us killed and now we're serving as waiters in exchange for our lives. The professor sent us to steal the only Nintendo Revolution in existence but instead of snipping the security system and using brains and tact like I wanted to do, you smash the glass of the entertainment system, trip the alarm and get us caught!"

"Which turned out to be a handy way to catch up with our buddies from the Henchmen's Union for Greater Good, Internationally Extended." Billie paused, eyes searching the inside of the tent roof. "Is there something wrong with that name or is it me?"

Kyle resisted the urge to bean Billie on the coconut with his champagne tray. "We weren't catching up with Bob. We were getting captured by him." Kyle covered his eyes with one-white gloved hand. "Maybe it's good that you're braindead," he said. "If you started blabbing about how Bob deliberately put us in a seemingly inescapable death trap with one obvious mode in escape then Doc Freestyle would turn him into a half-man, half-shark henchmonster for sure!"

"Cool!" said Billie.

"But then how could he get married, Kyle? They've barely made it legal for gays, let alone mutated shark monsters!"

"Oh no," said Billie, "it would be a vivisected shark monster. You see, when you mutate something it means you change the DNE."

"DNA," said Kyle.

"That's what I said," said Billie.

Kyle banged his head against the ice sculpture.

"I know a dude who got stuck to one of those once," said Billie. "'Cept it wasn't his head that got stuck. And the ice wasn't shaped like a swan."

"Fuck you, Billie," said Kyle.

"It was shaped like a chick with a--"

"Fuck you in your nephrons, Billie!"
 
 
oknazevad
11 May 2008 @ 08:52 am
Today is National Train Day.

It's a made-up holiday. Amtrak chose the date because it is the anniversary of the Golden Spike ceremony at the completion of the transcontinental railroad. But that doesn't make it meaningless.

Railroads built this country, and the heritage of it all is found everywhere. A visit to your local library should reveal a rich history of railroading in your area.

But more importantly, railroading is a major part of our country's future. At least it should be if we are to prevent the collapse of the country. With energy prices rising, traffic horrble and climate change a real problem, getting cars and trucks off the roads is an absolute neccesity.

Fortunately, people are finally waking up to the reality that the highway-first model we've chosen was a bet on the wrong horse. Rail moves goods and people more efficently than any other mode. (The relatively low friction between steel wheels and steel rails is the ultimate reason.) It's amazing how they got it so right so many years ago.

Freight railroads have never been busier, not even during the "golden age" where it was trains or nothing.

Passenger rail ridership is up, as well, and people are clamoring for expansion projects, too. This thrills me both as a rail fan, who loves to see more trains, but also someone who has seen the social and environmental costs of over-reliance on cars and trucks.

So, like the title of this post (which is Amtrak's slogan for today) says, get your choo-choo on. Take a train. Forget the traffic and high gas prices. Relax, and enjoy a bit of our history while becomming part of the future.
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Current Mood: happyhappy
 
 
oknazevad
03 May 2008 @ 02:30 am
And I've seen them all, so I'm fully qualified to say that regarding Iron Man.

It actually tops the first Christopher Reeve Superman film, which had long held the title.

There's not a single misstep in the entire movie, everything is pitch perfect. And this holds for both fanboys and the general public, although I may not be the best judge. After all, I've seen every superhero movie ever made.

I'm thrilled beyond words at this time. No way I'm getting any sleep tonight.
 
 
Current Mood: ecstaticecstatic
 
 
oknazevad
13 April 2008 @ 08:04 pm
So I just finished my taxes, and I owe a chunk of change to the IRS. (Damn tutoring-on-the-side job had to be on the books!) Bad week to have to pay, as car insurance is also due, but I'm not horribly upset.

Actually, I'm one of the few people I know that doesn't complain about taxes. I guess I figure that it is the price we (literally) pay to live in a free country, and to receive services.

 After all, nothing gets people to pay attention to government more than having to pay for it. And deciding what to pay for with taxes is, after all, the practical execution of the lofty idea of people participating in their self-government.

Of course, this is all for naught if people don't actually pay attention and participate in governing, even if it  is just voting and not running. It is a damn shame we have such low voter turnout in the US these days. Cries of "They're all crooks" or "Nothing ever changes" make me furious. Of course not, moron! It's because you're not doing anything to change it!

I guess what I'm getting at, is that, in my opinion, If you want to live in a democracy, there's still obligations to fulfill. That's the difference between liberty and absolute freedom. Liberty is the right to self-govern, as opposed to the absence of government. The former is structured, and therefore, paradoxically, far more protective of your freedom than a non-existent or overly weak government.

Think about that the next time you grumble about taxes or politics.
 
 
Current Mood: thoughtfulthoughtful