Monday, December 31, 2007


Snow, to me, makes mundane objects more interesting. For example, this bicycle while being completely unremarkable resembles the ruins of Pompey after getting covered by snow.

Snow tree.

I always found snow covered trees beautiful, especially against a blue sky. It almost looks like the trees have leaves again.



Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Merry Christmas.

And Happy Birthday Lili!

Monday, December 24, 2007

Where is Santa?

NORAD, North American Aerospace Defense Command, the people who track every object flying around the Earth also keep an eye on Santa. They have set up a website, complete with videos of Santa's visits to different places around the globe, where you can see Santa's current location. This site is frequently updated and even provides a toll free number to call NORAD in case you can't wait for the site to be updated.

Christmas Eve.

Since it is Christmas Eve I thought that a little Trans-Siberian Orchestra would be appropriate. So here it is:

Sunday, December 23, 2007

Another Christmas tree.

It has been raining all day and the snow, along with my hopes for a white Christmas, melted completely. So here is a picture I took of a tree that grows outside my workplace during a recent snow.

Leather penguin.

This is a cover for an Xbox game. The guy on the right, whose name I assume is Lynch, looks exactly like my friend Leather Penguin.

Saturday, December 22, 2007

Sitting pretty.

Exhausted by shopping, Lili and her teddy bear take a break in a lovely lavender chair.

Rare sight.

With on-line news sources and cell phones galore seeing a pay phone and a newspaper dispencer together is quite unusual.

Friday, December 21, 2007

Empty nest.

This is the computer lab which is a part of the Department of Instructional Technology. During my graduate studies, I spent a lot of time in this lab working on various class projects. The professors' offices are located right around the lab making them easily accessible when you have a question. I am going to miss this place and all the friends I made in it.

At an angle.

Today I had to visit the BU campus to pay a bill and was struck by how much the new addition to the McCormick Hall looks like a ship's bow.

Slow sign.

I never liked how this sign was worded. It always implied to me that the children at play are slow and I don't think that the Department of Transportation is qualified to make such judgments.

One pic a day.

Quite often, after I log in to Blogger, I click on the Dashboard button to see what is new and exciting. I read the latest post by the Blogger team and then check out the Blogs Of Note list. Sometimes the name of a blog on that list peaks my interest and I read it. This is how I came upon One Pic a Day which is a photo blog. Its author started taking pictures on daily basis back in January of 1989 and in January of this year he decided to put these pictures on the web. This blog, and others dedicated to photography, fascinates me because it allows you a glimpse into a world we very seldom see or have access to, a world seen through the eyes of another person. This point of view is the reason why people read blogs, or at least that's why I read them.

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Supermarket at night.

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Oh Christmas tree.

Tuesday, December 18, 2007


Dashing through the snow, on a horse minus the slay, o'er the fields she goes laughing all the way.


What can be said about a banana peel on a patch of ice?

Friday, December 14, 2007

Drive thru ATM.

I was behind this guy at an ATM this morning. Apperently he didn't understand the drive part of drive through.

Thursday, December 13, 2007

In the lane snow is glicening.

This is the view from my front porch. It started sleeting and snowing around 6 this morning and pretty much everything has been closed since.

Friday, December 07, 2007

The date that shall live in infamy.

66 years later it is pointless to argue whether Japan's attack on the Naval fleet at Pearl Harbor was an appropriate response to American embargoes. It is also pointless to talk about whether the atomic bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki was a retaliation for Pearl Harbor or a way to subdue the Japanese population which would have fought to the death following an invasion of the Japanese mainland. And the most pointless thing would be to draw parallels between the attacks of 12/07/41 and 09/11/01. All we can do now is remember.

Kringle racing.

This time of year you find a lot of strange Christmas themed inflatables decorating people's lawns. However, this one was decorating a sidewalk.

Thursday, December 06, 2007

Request for proposal.

If you are planning to write, or to answer, a Request For Proposal in the near future, Free RFP Template Toolkit might come in handy.

Online course design.

This is a banner I made for an online course I am building.

St. Nicholas day.

Saint Nicholas was a 4th century Bishop of Myra in what is now Turkey. He was famous for secretly giving very generous gifts to the poor which lead to the birth of his better known counterpart, Santa Claus. He is considered to be the patron saint of several groups of people, such as sailors, and cities, such as Moscow and New York, around the world. In some cultures, people exchange presents on December 6th instead of Christmas day.

Monday, December 03, 2007

E-learning via a cell phone.

As our lives get busier and busier, the humble cell phone is rapidly becoming an increasingly useful and necessary accessory. With the recent introduction of Apple's iphone to the purses and pockets of tech savvy people it has become evident that a device, which is not quite a PDA and not a simple cell phone either, has a lot of possibility beyond being an obviously useful combination of tools and features.

The most useful feature of these devices lies in their ability to download and display content. The screen size along with the storage capacity make newer phones readily available e-learning platforms. In fact, with the email access previously unheard of and the features mentioned before, there is no need for a busy sales representative to carry a cell phone and a PDA along with their laptop. They might even be able to get away with just the multi-talented cell phone. And when a rare free moment occurs, these sales representatives could access trainings or certifications their company require them to take right on their phone.

This idea may not be as far fetched as it first seems. Since Adobe's development, and recent improvement, of Flash Lite now allows a developer to build short e-learning modules which would fit into anyone's busy schedule and would minimize time away from work.

Old wheelbarrow.

Sunday, December 02, 2007

Time for causes.

Right around Thanksgiving you start noticing Salvation Army Kettle Drive bell ringers and the Marine Corps' Toys For Tots boxes everywhere you go. These things are as much a part of Christmas as carols and presents. They are a part of a Christmas tradition of giving and work on the principle of Public Display of Charity. Throwing a few coins into a red kettle in full view of other people not only makes you feel good about yourself, it makes you feel better about the amount of money you're going to spend on presents.

There is another charity which needs attention around Christmas. This charity works with people who, more than most, need the gift of good cheer and a wish of a Merry Christmas. The charity in question is eMOM and the group of people they work with is the American soldiers stationed overseas. EMOM, which stands for eMail Our Military, provide those who sign up on their site with an email address of a soldier in either Iraq or Afghanistan. Once you have a soldier's email address you can provide them with much needed support and holiday spirit. This is of course a very private display of charity, but one that will prove more valuable than a few coins thrown into a red kettle at the mall.

Saturday, December 01, 2007

December duties.

With the arrival of December, we welcomed it to our house by hanging a Christmas wreath on the front door and a Christmas Countdown Calendar on the door of Lili's bedroom to help us countdown the 25 shopping days until her birthday. For her part, Lili modeled the new hat that her great grandmother sent just in time for the first day of Winter.

The ADDIE model.

During C.A.C. I had a brief discussion with Louis Biggie, from Johns Hopkins University, about the ADDIE model and breaking the rules of instructional design. The issues here is that as technology evolved, giving instructional designers better and better tools, the design process itself has not. The design process usually follows a model, like ADDIE, step by step without much deviation. There are several models and each one is an attempt to streamline the design process, but the actual process of designing instruction sometimes makes it difficult to follow a model step by step.

Let's look at the ADDIE model which serves as the staple of instructional design. ADDIE is an abbreviation of the five steps that make up this model: Analysis, Design, Development, Implementation, and Evaluation. An instructional designer supposed to follow these five steps in order, using the outcome of one stage as the starting point of the next. However, the Design and Development stages can be done simultaneously which simplifies the process. For example, let's assume that during the Analysis stage it became evident a client's needs would be best served by a web based instructional solution. Therefore, a web developer could be building a site, while an instructional designer is working on a solution.

This is why I like the Layers of Necessity model. Layers of Necessity allows you to modify it to fit a project in hand instead of following it blindly step by step. The most important parts, Learner Analysis for example, are placed in the fist layer. While the rest, depending on their importance, project time line, and the budget, are placed in the second, third, or nth layers. This model has only been around for seventeen years, but it demonstrates what instructional design can become if the theoretical development follows closely with the technological.

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Tales of dismay.

Ever since I first signed up for Twitter I have been thinking about its uses. An individual Twitter post, or Tweet, is only 140 characters in length which is smaller than an average cell phone text message. This makes it difficult for individual posts to contain a lot of useful information. However, Sean McMinn, a writer from Hong Kong, has found an interesting approach. He is writing a novel called Tales Of Dismay one Tweet at a time. This is a very interesting literary and Web 2.0 experiment which I intend to follow.

CCDP site.

Columbia Child Development Program is a non-profit organization that provides child care in the Bloomsburg area. This is a site I created for CCDP using HTML, CSS, and Java Script. This was supposed to demonstrate to the CCDP managers how a website could streamline their enrollment process.

NYC at night.

This is a picture my wife took from a Circle Line boat at night. It wasn't much to look at so I helped it a bit using PhotoShop and Illustrator.


I made this image using Adobe Illustrator. It is called "Space" and was inspired by reading too much science fiction and watching entirely too much Star Trek: The Next Generation.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Cool-Aid aquarium.

For some strange reason the water in an aquarium at a local Chinese take out place is a lovely shade of green. The fish, however, don't seem to mind.

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Family type thing.

Today, to celebrate my Dad's birthday, Thanksgiving, and the 11 months anniversary of Lili's birth my wife, Lili, and I had brunch with my Dad. It was a nice family event especially with the Christmas spirit oozing out of every store.

Saturday, November 24, 2007

Cellular gift guide.

If you are planning to give somebody a cell phone for Christmas, check out Phone Scoop's Holiday Gift Guide. And if you are looking for one yourself, check out Phone Scoop for cellular news and for cell phone reviews.

Reading level.

cash advance

Get a Cash Advance

I don't know if this is true, but it's nice to think it is.

Thursday, November 22, 2007


After watching the Macy's parade, Lili celebrated her fist Thanksgiving with a holiday bib and a jar of turkey and sweet potatoes baby food.

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Faux Dutch.

Traditionally the Amish, or Pennsylvania Dutch as they are sometimes called, decorate their barns with a five pointed star. However, this is a picture of a side of somebody's house and what's really funny is the fake barn door.

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Reinventing the wheel.

Yesterday I was talking to Dr. Kapp about Second Life and e-learning. The discussion centered around what in the instructional design field is called stand up training. Stand up training is the term used to describe the keystone of education: a teacher in front of a group of pupils. This method of education has literally been used for centuries around the world. And that is the huge barrier anybody who attempts to implement e-learning in either 2-D via a program like Centra, or in 3-D via Second Life has to overcome. The issue here is not the simple reluctance of the learners to use e-learning, but the ingrained idea that education only takes place when you are sitting in a chair in front of a person who has the credentials to educate. This is why a lot of people who teach classes in Second Life teach them the same way they would in a regular classroom with student avatars sitting in chairs arranged in rows and looking at a PowerPoint presentation. What these educators fail to recognize is the ability to use Second Life in a way that is impossible in real life. For example, one of my favorite places to visit in Second Life is Virtual Starry Night, a Vincent Van Gogh museum built by a Dutch company. One thing that makes VSN so special is that they recreated some of Van Gogh's paintings in 3-D. So if an educator decided to hold a lecture on Van Gogh they can hold it in a cafe from his painting The Night Cafe. This is, in a way, reinventing the wheel because it would still be a form of stand up training but conducted in a way that incorporates all the wonderful things Second Life has to offer.

Monday, November 19, 2007


To coincide with a new chapter of my life that is about to begin Lili decided to start a new chapter of her own. She started crawling forward yesterday. I specified "forward" because she has been crawling backward in one form or another for a while. Watching your child grow is an amazing and unforgettable experience especially when you are undergoing a growth process yourself. In slightly over a month Lili will be one. She will no longer be a baby, she will become what people at her day care call a "young toddler." I still can't believe it has been that long since my wife and I drove to the hospital on that rainy Christmas day. It is almost Thanksgiving and we have to start looking for the first set of Christmas/Birthday presents for Lili. This is going to be an annual ritual in years to come and I am looking forward to every one of them.

First snow.

This is an apple tree that grows outside my work place. It hasn't lost any of its leave by the time it snowed.

Winter wonderland.

This is a tree that grows outside the place I work. I took this picture after putting two kids on a school bus following a two hour delay due to snow.

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Early parade.

Following the trend of putting up Christmas decorations before Thanksgiving, Santa arrived in Wilkes-Barre five days early.

Friday, November 16, 2007


Lili has mastered the fine art of sitting. Soon she'll be one. She is growing up so fast.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007


My coworker drew this picture which doesn't much look like the Horn Of Plenty.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

What if?

Here is something that has been puzzling me for a bit. If a two term President becomes a Vice President and the new President becomes unable to perform his duties as President, does the Vice President become President for the third time or does the job go to the Speaker of the House? A two term President can't run for a third term but the Constitution doesn't say anything about him becoming one.

Monday, November 12, 2007

My neighbor.

I love this sign. I think this house is either the residence of a tribute band or The Doctor and his companion.

Sunday, November 11, 2007

Armistice Day.

Today is Veterans, or as it is known throughout the world Armistice, Day. Today we celebrate all those who have served in wars both recent and distant. It seems that we tend to remember those who gave their lives more than we do those who came home with physical and emotional scars. The veterans would tell you they are not the heroes that the heroes are the ones that died, but it takes as much bravery to come home from a war and make a life as it is to fight in a war. The only difference between the heroes who lived and those that died is random chance. So, let us remember the veterans today and every day.

Autumn leaves.

I love seeing leaves change and carpet the ground. However, it is also nice to see some leaves still on a tree. It brightens up what should otherwise be a gray and rainy month.

Wednesday, November 07, 2007

Happy anniversary, comrades!

Today is the 90th anniversary of the Russian revolution that took place in St. Petersburg on October 25th, 1917. This revolution brought about a five year civil war and eventually the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics. The anniversary was celebrated on November 7th once the Soviet leaders decided to join the rest of the world and switched calendars from Julian to Gregorian.

Tuesday, November 06, 2007


Suzi M., an alumna of my graduate program, just had Nemesis, her first novel, published. Nemesis is the first novel in a horror trilogy so be prepared to be scared. Suzi also created a Second Life experience to go along with her novel. You will have to download Second Life before clicking here.

Election Day.

One year from now people across the country will either be voting for the next President or watching election results on CNN. In the 12 months until then we will be bombarded by a multitude of negative ads, party conventions, personal appearances, and debates. We will also be bombarded with roadside signs, campaign buttons, and websites. This will be an ongoing onslaught unlike the election of 2004. The stakes will be higher, the the future will be more uncertain, and our enemies will closer than we would like to believe. But, unlike 2004, there will be enough candidates for President to have the winner's cabinet filled with the losers. So, sit back, relax, and get ready to watch the most amusing reality show that any television network has ever offered.

Monday, November 05, 2007

Hanged, drawn, and quartered.

Since tonight is Guy Fawkes Night in England I have been thinking about torture. Guy Fawkes, after being captured near barrels of gunpowder in the basement of the British Parliament, was executed for treason using a rather barbaric, by modern standards, method of being hanged, drawn, and quartered. This method of execution, although utterly ruthless, was reserved for traitors to the crown. Before his execution, Guy Fawkes was tortured for information regarding his co-conspirators. Four hundred and two years ago in England this method of interrogation had to be approved by the king. I am not saying that we should bring back some of the wonderful methods used in Medieval Europe, but it would be nice to have somebody in the government finally decided if torture is constitutional. Because, clearly, when dealing with people like the current crop of crazies, regular methods just don't apply. We can not torture people one day and apologizes to them for it the next because we now think that torture in unconstitutional. Tougher enemies and tougher times call for tougher measures.

Guy Fawkes Night.

Remember, remember the Fifth of November,
The Gunpowder Treason and Plot,
I see no reason
Why Gunpowder Treason
Should ever be forgot.

Saturday, November 03, 2007

Reliving history.

When I discovered World War I: Experience of an English Soldier among the so-called blogs of note I was intrigued by its title. Why, I thought, would anybody blog about something that ended almost ninety years ago? So I did the only thing I could, I clicked on the link. Turns out this blog is truly worthy of note because it is comprised of letters posted ninety years after they were written. This is a very interesting idea and a great way to keep this soldier's memory alive.

Friday, November 02, 2007

Political corectness.

Somehow Halloween has become offensive to people and can not be referred to by its proper name. It must be referred to as an "Autumn Festival" which, I always thought, was another term for Thanksgiving.

Thursday, November 01, 2007

Giant spider.

Since today is All Saints day, Halloween decorations are still up in many places around town.

Wednesday, October 31, 2007


More volley ball.

This is a fragment of the volley ball picture after I ran it through Photoshop and had a bit of fun.

Volley ball.

Fellow BU students are playing volley ball on a recently finished academic quad.

Another great video.

Sometimes really weird things happen when people play video games. This is a good example of such an event:

Happy Halloween!

To celebrate this holiday in all its bizarre and unearthly nature here is a new take on a beloved classic:

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Another Web 2.0 site.

Ryan Reilly, an alumnus of my graduate program, pointed me to a new Web 2.0 site called Gcast. This site allows users to record podcasts right from their cell phones by calling a toll free number and post them on-line. This idea is similar to what Jott allows its users to do with reminders and emails. This is a new trend in web based services that turns a basic cell phone into a super gadget.

Red leaf.

I saw this leaf during my morning walk from work.

Monday, October 29, 2007

Happy Birthday, Dad!

Today is my father's birthday. When I was growing up we used to call him a young communist because his birthday fell on the anniversary of establishment of Komsomol, the Soviet youth organization. I thought my Dad was the coolest because he always took me on adventures and made up stories for me. When I turned 7, for my birthday he gave me a book of his poems and stories based on our adventures. He made it, including illustrating and binding it, with the help of his friends. This was one of the things I knew I was going to bring with me when I emigrated from the Soviet Union. I still look at it occasionally and can't wait to read it to Lili. Even if she doesn't understand Russian, I still want her to know that she has a cool grandfather. After Lili came along I felt closer to my Dad because he was my age when I was born. He taught me about jazz and classical music, about literature and film, about physics and physical fitness. But most importantly he taught me to be myself. I hope one day Lili will be able to say that her Dad is cool, too.

Sunday, October 28, 2007

Two teeth in two weeks.

Lili sprouted her second tooth. It is a relief for all of us because my wife and I can be sure that the first one wasn't a fluke and now Lili is not in constant pain and sleeps through the night. The slightly odd thing about Lili's new teeth is that they were one week apart but she got the first when she was 9 months old and the second when she was 10.

Thursday, October 25, 2007


The episode I have been anticipating for a week did not disappoint. The CSI cops chasing the killer virtually and actually was an interesting twist. Another deviation from the usual plot lines was the lack of a second case. Usually, no matter which of the CSI shows you watch, the team investigates a second murder. This time the team was chasing a professional killer and getting to her victims too late. And in the end she got away which probably means that there will be other CSI: SL episodes. The one aspect of the show I didn't like was the World of Warcraft style tournament Mac Taylor's SL avatar has to fight in to get information. But otherwise I think the episode was a successful blending of CSI and Second Life. For more CSI: SL check out this site, it has some cool SL tutorials and a link to the virtual CSI: NY.

Trick or treat.

Lili's Halloween costume arrived yesterday. So after I got home from class we dressed her in it. Your child's first Halloween costume is a big decision, that's why it took us a long time to agree on Piglet. The costume arrived faster than expected, it matches her toy Piglet, and the best part is that it says Piglet right on it therefore eliminating any possibility that people might think she's Eeyore.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Rear window sticker.

I took this while walking through a parking lot on campus.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

A Second Life promo for CSI: NY.

As I mentioned before, tomorrow's episode of CSI: NY will feature footage shot in Second Life. This is a promo for that episode featuring Anthony Zuiker, the CSI: NY creator, that was filmed entirely in Second Life. Enjoy:

Monday, October 22, 2007

How not to be seen.

To brighten up an otherwise mundane Monday, here is a classic Monty Python skit filmed in Halo. This is truly priceless:

Sunday, October 21, 2007

Kirk vs Picard.

As a wrestling fan and a Star Trek fan I found this video absolutely hilarious. My hat is off to whoever had the idea of creating Captains Kirk and Picard in a wrestling video game. This finally answers the question, "who is the better captain?". There is no audio, but the sounds of your own laughter will be a sufficient soundtrack as you watch this. You have to watch the whole thing:

Classic short stories.

I found the Classic Short Stories site while trying to help a classmate who, in turn, was trying to help his friend with a paper. As the name implies, this site is filled with classic short stories. It's worse a read if you like 19th, and early 20th, century authors.

American League championship.

The Sux and the Tribe are tied at 3 games each and I fear the Sux will beat the Tribe tonight in Game 7. I am not even going to watch since I don't want to see the Sux win. If they do win, I am going to avoid the World Series like I avoid American Idol. Besides, I have already seen the Sux win a World Series and once in a lifetime is enough.

Audience is from Latin "to listen."

I love Real Time with Bill Maher because the show is always full of highly entertaining debate and surprises. Unfortunately, I missed this particular episode and had to watch Bill Maher kick an audience member out of his studio via a YouTube video posted on the Ann Althouse blog. Here it is:

Saturday, October 20, 2007

Lili's first tooth.

Yesterday we took Lili to see her Russian pediatrician to make sure that her ear infection cleared up. He checked her ears and told us she was fine. He assured us that her nightly crying is due to teething pain and that he could see a speck of white on her bottom gum. Later that day, while changing Lili, my wife noticed a tiny protrusion in her lower right gum. She felt it and declared a dental holiday. Lili's first tooth has finally broken through! We were overjoyed because we didn't have to take Lili to our dentist to be fitted with tiny dentures as we feared we might. Now, after calling every relative to inform them of our dental holiday, we will buy Lili her first tooth brush and teach her to brush her only tooth.

Friday, October 19, 2007

Damn, Yankees!

Yesterday, while trying not to watch the Red Sux destroy the Tribe, I heard the two commentators talking about what was going to happen to the Yankees. Since I am a Yankees fan I paid attention. And here is what they, to my absolute horror, had to say. Joe Torre is no longer the general manager. This move is not surprising because I have been expecting George Steinbrenner to fire Torre for years. But I was surprised by how things transpired between Torre and the Yankees. Torre's contract is up this year and instead of simply letting him go they sat on their hands for a week and then offered Torre $5 million for one year. He politely declined since this was half of what he was making previously. Next round of bad news was about the players. A-Rod is going to the Sux, which neither bothers nor surprises me because he is a third, a half at best, of a short stop that is Derek Jeter. So this is actually a very, very good thing. The really, really bad part is that Jorge Posada and Mariano Rivera probably won't report to spring training next year. The Yankees without their star catcher and closer might as well be the Mets. There is also the question of where is Torre going to manage next year and who is going to manage the Yankees. Regardless of who wins this year's World Series the post season guarantees to be interesting.

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

CSI: Linden.

Next week's episode of CSI: NY will include scenes shot entirely in Second Life. I have read that CBS was going to do this on Kapp Notes. But I didn't expect to see it on my favorite CSI show. There are a number of companies that operate stores in SL, so it only makes sense that a popular show would jump on the band wagon.

Web 2.0 telegraph.

I found an interesting article, actually a blog post, called "Twitter dot dash" by Nicholas Carr about Twitter, Web 2.0, and social networking. I am not exactly sure if Twitter has as much relevance in the Web 2.0 world as blogs and wikis, but it is definitely more interesting than MySpace because it allows the users to create a message-by-message history of the world.

The Tribe has spoken?

This post season is turning out to be interesting. The Rockies swept the Phillies and then the Diamondbacks to earn a chance to win this year's World Series. And now the Tribe leads the Red Sux 3 games to 1 and is one game away from doing away with them. I could start getting excited that the Sux will not make it to the World Series this year, but the last time they were in this situation, back in 2004, they came back and won the league championship and then went on to win the World Series. So, it is a little early to start celebrating the Sux not making it to the World Series, but Thursday's game is going to be an interesting one either way since Josh Beckett, for the Sux, is going to face off against C.C. Sabathia, for the Tribe.

Monday, October 15, 2007

The times they are a-changing.

If you read the New York Times in any way, shape, or format, stop right now and toss it into the nearest fire pit. The New York Times is not the paper it used to be. It's not even on par with publications such as the Weekly World News anymore. It has sunk into the filth that resides on the bottom of the Hudson River. And what, you may ask, did the Times do to deserve such high praise on my part? They refused to cover a Congressional Medal of Honor being awarded to Lt. Mike Murphy, a Navy SEAL from Long Island, who gave his life in Afghanistan to save his comrades. Here is the story from the New York Post.

Saturday, October 13, 2007


"My name is Fester which means to rot!" -Uncle Fester, Addams Family Values

Lurking Lili.

In training for Halloween, Lili practices lurking behind the hamper.

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Going, going, gone!

I have been watching the baseball playoffs and wondering how much of baseball is skill and how much is luck. The Mets lead their division the entire season until they pulled a Red Sux type move and lost a seven game lead. Then there were the Phillies whom nobody expected to get anywhere near the playoffs but somehow they managed to get in only to be swept away like some debris. The Yankees and the Cubs did not do any better. Although the Yankees managed to win a game losing to the Tribe 3-1 instead of 3-0 like everybody else. It was sad to see the Cubs lose because now they haven't won a World Series in 99 years. So, next year they absolutely have to get in the World Series because a century is a long time without a win. If the Cubs don't win next year, the Red Sux have no right to complain about their 86 year World Series drought. This entry would not be complete without mentioning the fans, especially the fans that refer to the teams they root for as "my team". If you don't play for the team, have played for the team, or own the team, please do not refer to it as yours. These people drive me betty almost as much as those who say "we won" when the team is victorious.

Thursday, October 04, 2007


Fifty years ago a massive rocket lifted off from the steppes of Kazakhstan carrying into space the first man made satellite. This was, and still is, a significant event in human history because the launch took place fifty four year after the Wright brothers flight. Fifty four years isn't such a long time in a life of an invention if you consider the fact that the wheel was around for centuries before somebody combined it with an engine, improving on the existing concept. That breakthrough eventually lead to manned space flight, Moon landings, the International Space Station, and countless satellites which constantly orbit the Earth. Ever since that first launch it has been easier, cheaper, and safer to launch unmanned probes to explore the Solar system and the rest of the galaxy. While mankind plunged bravely into exploration of the unknown that abounded on this planet, Space, to paraphrase Star Trek, has remained the one frontier where very few men have gone before. In the fifty years since Sputnik orbited the Earth, Space flight has not developed as much as regular flight in the same amount of time. Fifty years after the Wright Flyer took off from Kitty Hawk, I am talking about the year 1953, aviation become an acceptable mode of transportation. But Space travel is still the domain of governments and the very rich, not to mention that only three countries in the world launched humans into Space successfully. Anyway, getting back to Sputnik, here is a story about what happened behind the scenes before the Sputnik launch. And here is one about what happened after it reached the end of its useful life and fell back into the loving arms of Mother Earth.


I found this creature hiding in a shrub outside of a local Dunkin' Donuts. It seems that the neither world also runs on Dunkin'.

Tuesday, October 02, 2007

Fallen leaf.

October has always been my favorite month because I love to watch leaves change. However, a dried up, brown maple leaf like this one is a very unusual sight in early October.