Monday, November 29, 2004

Ineffective Protests

The problem with most protest groups is that they just can’t help making themselves look stupid. Many of them start out with serious and valid concerns, but their taste for mindless rhetoric always gets the better of them.

Over the last week I have seen the following protests:

  • a housing human rights group that listed the 3 worst offenders on the planet. Sudan for ethnic cleansing, Russia for displacing 100,000 people in Chechnya, and the United States for having anti-homelessness laws. They have a valid concern about homelessness, and a valid concern about homelessness in the United States, but they make fools of themselves by comparing the United States to these other nations. I can just see the guy putting together the press release; “Let’s compare the United States to Sudan. That will really make our case!” Well, it does say something about their organization!
  • a coalition of liberal church groups and labor unions pushing for self-determination in Iraq. So what do you think the United States is doing? They want out. But they don’t want to turn over the country to Saddam’s armed thugs. I guess in the minds of some, it is better if the United States leaves immediately and Iraq falls into chaos, rather than waiting a couple months for the first democratic elections in decades.
  • George Bush is visiting Ottawa tomorrow, so the protest groups are out in force. They have “told” the police that they plan to be well behaved, but that police provocation will be met with force. I guess the police stand warned! One loony-tune group has called for Bush to be arrested as a war criminal if he sets foot on Canadian soil. Again, their message is lost because they just can’t help shooting their mouths off.

I guess this is a democracy. Anyone is free to cloud his free speech and make it as ineffective as he wishes!

More on the late night with Hannah

Hannah went to sleep at 2:00am, then woke for another half hour at 2:55am. We think that perhaps it was gas pains, since she had eaten her first wheat based cereal at supper. We’ve switched back to rice cereal for now. Hopefully this is not a permanent problem with wheat. Karen and I are quite tired. Hopefully she’ll sleep better tonight!

Banana Breath

Banana Breath is my nickname for Hannah when I'm not too happy with her (i.e. I still love her dearly, but she's fussy). Anyway, she woke up at 11:30pm screaming. She's fed and changed, but won't lay down. She'll fall asleep on my shoulder, or fall asleep sitting up at the computer, but as soon as I put her down she wakes up and screams. It's now 1:30am. What a little banana breath!

Saturday, November 27, 2004

Another Saturday Update

It’s busy week. Karen took Hannah to the doctor for a check-up and vaccination. She was quite good about it, but a little fussy that night. I’m preaching on Sunday night, so there are a lot of preparations involved. I went to the Physiotherapist for treatment of a tennis elbow. It looks like I will need to get a brace of some sort.

Also, while the children were at AWANA on Thursday night, I went and got a haircut. In fact, it’s quite short (number 3 clippers at the sides and number 4 clippers on top). Karen had given me the OK, but wasn’t too happy with the outcome. I like it, but Karen’s reaction was strong enough that I don’t think I’ll do it again.

I finally got DOSbox working on my new computer. It is a DOS simulator which can be used for running old DOS based programs (particularly games) which will not run under Windows XP, etc. While it worked fine in a window, it gave me a "Sync out of range" error from my monitor when in full screen mode. An online support forum gave me some suggestions for tweeks to the configuration file, and now it works.

Today I went shopping for Christmas presents for Karen. We got her a dh s y adgsyd gsdgashdgsa gsggdhgs PARITY ERROR - TRANSMISSION ENDED.

Sunday, November 21, 2004

Weekend Update

Hannah slept better last night, and went longer between feeds. Karen let me sleep in this morning, and I also got a nap in the afternoon. Another positive thing was the fact that she let us eat without holding her and without screaming (although she continues her high pitched screaming as a way of testing out her lungs at other times in the day).

The weekend was great from a food point of view. On Friday night I made a Chicken and Proscutto Alfredo sauce on fresh pasta. Karen does most of the cooking, but considers it a treat when I do cook. Last night Karen warmed up some “Molten Cakes” which are chocolate cakes filled with a rich chocolate cream sauce, with custard and oranges on top and white hot chocolate to drink. For lunch today, Karen made a roast chicken with mashed potatoes. Yes, we are eating well!

Sunday, November 14, 2004

The Unexpected

Our furnace quit on Saturday morning. The repair guy came a couple of hours later and had a tough time fixing it. There was a cracked igniter, but when he put in the replacement, it touched the side of the firebox and arced. This blew out the motherboard (yes, furnaces have computers in them!). Anyway, he ended up going through a motherboard and 5 igniters before he got it fixed. Unfortunately the circulating fan is now running non-stop, so he’ll have to come back tomorrow!

I had forgotten that I had tickets to bring the children to see the Lipizzaner Stallions last night. Anyway, I did end up remembering and took the kids out to the Corel Centre to see them. They were really amazing! They say that the Biblical definition of meekness has nothing to do with weakness, but rather strength under control. Well these horses certainly demonstrated strength under control!

Thursday, November 11, 2004

Let's blame the right wing fanatics!

Have a look at this link:

Apparently right wing fanatics are trying to destabilize the Episcopal Church in the United States. But thankfully there is one Bishop who is willing to stand up to them, and allow a safe environment for theological exploration.

Of course I'm speaking rather "tongue in cheek". Clearly the Bishop is unsure of his essential allegiance to Christ and orthodox doctrine. This is no minor theological point, but actual heresy, and by not taking strong action, the Bishop himself displays support of heresy.

Work and Home

Hannah is still a fussy sleeper, but thankfully she goes back to sleep after her (many) feeds in the night. Bethany is doing well with her music. I’m still thinking about some sort of activity for Joel, but he isn’t showing much interest. Perhaps he’d be interested in chess, because he likes board games. Anyway, we’ll see.

At work I’m doing all the regular stuff, but also working on defect prediction models, to determine how many defects we are likely to encounter (and need to fix) before we can ship the next release of our software. My model for the last release worked out quite well, and this time I’m using more of the historical data to make an improved model.

Computers and Networks

I purchased a second computer, and have now set up a wireless LAN (802.11g) within my house. The old computer has a wireless card, and the new computer is plugged directly into my router. Initially, I couldn’t get the two computers to see each other, but that was a configuration issue on the software firewall. The old computer is now in the school room, and the kids both have their own account.

The router makes it really easy for me to work from home. I just plug my laptop into the router, login through the VPN and I have full access to everything at work. On the downside, the router occasionally drops an internet connection, and then I have to reboot the router. I just upgraded the firmware and bounced the router, so we’ll see if this solves the problem.

Saturday, November 06, 2004

Just out of curiosity

Government forces in Ivory Coast launched airstrikes against rebel positions, resulting in the deaths of several French peacekeepers. In response, the French President ordered his troops to destroy the government warplanes. My question is this: did the French President ask permission from the United Nations, or is this the sort of unilateral military action that the French spend so much time criticizing the Americans about?