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2003mar07. Mail.

hi i m asif pzl being online if u can


I’ve been a faithful reader and I also work for an airline. Well, technically an airline website. You’re completely right about PNRs. Sometimes there can be some interesting stuff in there. The best one that I saw said something about a woman that had shown up at the airport the day before her flight and checked her luggage. Two bags that were WAY over the maximum of 70 lbs. The day of her flight she was nowhere to be seen. The day after her flight she shows up and can’t understand why they won’t let her on the plane. I guess she was all strung out and acting like a crackhead. It takes all kinds, but I certainly wouldn’t want to be sitting next to her on the plane, even if I’m travelling for free as I often do!


- K

Yet another translation for: “Desculpe minha ignorância, mas não conseguí entender o site. Me explica, por favor ?”

“Pardon my ignorance, but I cannot gain access to the site. Could you please explain?”

Oh, and the alert status color codes on cockeyed are excellent.

2003mar07. Sela Ward is more attractive than Shannen Doherty.

2003mar07. Ebay: McSweeney’s #3 that I am selling. It is time to sell.

2003mar09. To celebrate our eighth year online (mar 20), Cardhouse is having a March Madness sale. Everything is 20% off! Come on down. Shop ‘til you drop, we'll have EMTs standing by ready with various-colored pills that will most likely do something to you!

2003mar09. Mail of science.

Dr. Berk,

My boss and I have been having an ongoing argument about wind chill and non living items and your site does not help things. If you believe that a wind chill of 30 degrees F will freeze a pan of water then we are truly in trouble and I am glad that you are not working at NASA. (seems like those boys need some help with basic science in non-redundant systems)

If what you say is true we would all be driving with iced up windshields when we are going 60 mph and it is raining with an actual temperature of forty degrees F. This would be a windchill of 25 degrees F by the new scale.

It surely would be nice if you took your more than egotesticle column and retracted your wise crack answers.

Seems like windchill is becoming over used like the term, “Lake effect snow.”Last time I checked you still had to shovel it. I’m sure the residents of Buffalo, NY know of what I speak.

Bob V.


I was working with you until I reached the word “egotesticle,” at which point all attempts at reasonable, scientific discourse were driven from my mind like cold rain would be driven from a windshield at 60 mph before it had a chance to freeze.

-Dr. Berk

2003mar11. “Hello Mr. Bunny, I’m a baby bird.”
“You will be destroyed and I shall reign supreme as the solitary Easter icon. Also, don’t forget to see Honolulu, the new MGM production. It’s a hoot.”

2003mar13. The inside story on the cheap Chinatown bus services.

2003mar13. Mail from Random Uncle!!!!!

Hee, actually I used the ol’ chinese bus just this weekend past. the good news for me is that the nyc – boston route is so dead simple that they never have problems with it. the bad news for me is that, for the first time in my 2+ years of taking it, this time the chinese bus did actually have the nasty chemical/worse smell pervading it (but the clever chickie behind me would spritz some of her perfume every so often, which helped a little)

I’d long ago started bringing ms. mp3 player along to fend off the infrequent bad movies. I speak enough cantonese to insult the driver, or more likely put some smackdown on the loud, annoying people that sometimes get picked up midway thru the trip at the mohegan sun casino.

eh, for $10-15 each way I can deal.

2003mar14. “Learn what abstract nouns are, kid, or you'll end up like me [laughs].” [via Lo]

2003mar14. Weooooo ... if you’re looking for some sort of wild, rad approximation to plaster and cardboard tonight on your dinner table, let me happily point the way to Trader Joe’s Tempura Shrimp Roll.

2003mar15. Outgoing mail. Special thanks to Kevin of waxyleaves.com for pointing this out to me.

Hello Ky Luong of Asiagrocery.com!

Please forgive me if you are not the correct person to address concerning the contents of asiagrocery.com, but you are the contact address given for this domain.

Someone mentioned that you have an interesting description of haw flakes at your site, and I went to http://www.asiagrocery.com/haw.htm to “check it out.” And there it was! A rather longish description of haw flakes, with a few scanned-in pictures (pretty sloppy, methinks), and the page includes some additional commentary about how the person who wrote this article is a “totally clueless American.”

That’s sort of weird, isn’t it, Ky Luong of Asiagrocery.com? That you’re using this person’s words to sell your product, and then you turn around and insult them? I wonder if this person knows you’re doing that. I wonder if this person even gave you their permission to use this article for your own marketing purposes.

The answer, actually, is “no,” seeing as how I’m the guy who wrote the article. I’m the “totally clueless American.” Here’s the link that you “lost” ../a/pixbarn/p19.htm

Oh, that’s another thing. I know, in these Homeland Security Advisory System Threat Level Yellow (Elevated) times, we’re all under a lot of stress and we may say things we regret now and then. My words are good enough to sell some more haw flakes for you, but my nationality offends you somehow, even though you’re an American company, located in America? I really don’t get you, asiagrocery.com.

But I do get copyright law. And the last thing I want to do right now is push haw flake units for you. Take ‘er down, asiagrocery.com. Take ‘er down.

2003mar15. I was thinking about people who want to create their own weblog, but don’t want to be involved with the set-up, etc, and I figured if you’re really lazy you could just start your own weblog in the comments section of someone else’s weblog. I call this concept a “virusblog,” because everything needs a name.

2003mar16. Winner, Worst User Interface Ever In Which A Flat Textfile Will Reign Gloriously: Periodic Table of Haiku. Want to see all the haikus? That’s going to cost you 118 mouse-clicks.

2003mar17. Ebay: Digital camera also keeps you smelling your zestiest.. “Earl? This here camera’s foamin’ up again, guess that means I gotsta take in the roll to be deverleroped.”

2003mar18. Excerpt from The Book of Etiquette & Manners (1961) by Carolyn Coggins.

Chapter 8: Your Social Life.

When children must be present at adult parties, it is sometimes quite a problem to mother ... if it is possible to allow children to participate ... they are less trouble to look after.

To this end, it may be worthwhile to show children how to pass nuts or mints or cigarettes or canapés. As they grow older they are able to light cigarettes for ladies (if they are small boys) which is a polite gesture they enjoy and are proud to accomplish safely – as they must be taught how to do. Children who clear the room of glasses and ashtrays ... returning the ashtrays clean and tidy while parents and guests are at the dinner table ... are a joy rather than a problem.

“Oooh, can I get that for you, Mrs. Weintraub?”

2003mar19. Oh, boo hoo hoo ... my precious tobacco subsidies don’t pay my bills ... . Less handouts from taxpayers for tobacco farmers – it’s breaking my heart, here ...

2003mar20. The Golden Guide To Hallucinogenic Plants

2003mar20. Dinnertalk – Conversations With Your Child. A coloring pamphlet handed out by the California Beef Council at the California State Fair.

Children learn a lot about food through color, texture and taste. Ask your child to talk about the sound of biting into a taco, the texture, and the taste.

Talk about and show your child how to use the cheese grater safely. Ask your child to describe how the cheese looks before and after grating.

Ask your child how cooking has changed the way ground beef looks. Ask your child to talk about other favorite beef dishes.

2003mar20. Today is our eighth anniversary. So I’ve decided to continue acting like an eight-year-old. Special thanks to everyone who’s written in or sent stuff to the box or sent a box of stuff. Also, let’s “give it up” for the Cardhouse support staff who toil endlessly fighting strange, archaic electronical components to keep this domain live and lively. Lastly, I’d like to thank our beloved, sexy president for finally making clear the connection between 9/11 and Iraq.

2003mar21. SF street action (group: 1 2 3 4) (massive amount of photos) (SFPD: the softer side.) (inaccurate map)

2003mar21. More protest photos.

2003mar21. For a short while this afternoon, Mexican TV station KTNC featured a dietary topical cream infomercial video with an ABC channel’s audio feed, which, naturally, wasn’t overly concerned with weight loss:

” ... it was intended to be another [video cuts to close-up of sleek, tanned torso] body blow, one of many delivered by the US-led coalition ... ”
Yes, of course I taped it.

2003mar22. Google: Chaka Kahn/Shock Awe.

2003mar24. Achewood guest week begins.

2003mar24. Article about strange “movie quoting” phenomenon. [via obscure store]

2003mar24. My habitual non-corporate grocery store has been asking people for zip codes, to determine where they should put a new store, or something like that. The guy before me in line said “53492” and the cashier said, “oh, is that the East coast?” and the guy said “no, I made it up. I just don’t like data mining.” Then the cashier noticed that the man was using a credit card.

“You know, your address is on that.”
“Yeah, that’s true, but I don’t want to supply any additional information, no offense.”
“Oh, none taken.”
But the thing is, the cashier really doesn’t care, and most likely isn’t in a position to change the store’s policy. And really, if he had been making a cash purchase, it wasn’t “data mining” (I’m totally against this, if you haven’t figured it out already) – a zip code by itself can’t be tied to anything, unless you’re paranoid that they’re going to go through the security videotape, figure out who you are, and match your address up with this new-yet-redundant piece of information. He could have just said “yes” to the East coast query and been done with it. Then it was my turn.
“Zip code, please.”
“9 0 2 1 0 delta Z cranberry sloth 2 residual Ting Ting Jahe.”
I kid.

2003mar24. TV Go Home War Special.

2003mar24. The People’s Book of Records: Horse Stalking.

2003mar25. Threat level orange: Everyone’s a spy!. Related: The San Jose airport is now at THREAT LEVEL ORANGE which means that eight+ cops “examine” all incoming cars on the two-lane road via klieg lightbanks. They don’t stop the cars, they just look at you and your car very intently as you drive slowly by if they’re, you know, not just sitting there leaning against their patrol cars gabbing with each other (this was at 4:30am and 10:30pm, when airport traffic is light). If a terrorist was strapped to the underside of my vehicle, I’m sure someone might have seen it and removed him with a comically large wooden paddle or something. “Come on, you ... ”

2003mar25. Truth and Lies on the War on Iraq [via doc]

2003mar27. Several people have never asked me about my early fiction writing. Here’s a short story I wrote in the summer of 1987.

Land of the Copiers.

Everything was quiet in the land of the copiers. Suddenly, there was an eerie, blinding pinpoint of light from within a dark, dense forest. It was a Ricoh FT 4085 Pan-Deluxe Copier.

2003mar29. I have been thinking about jobs lately, as I could use some money. Here is my list.

Coney Island barker (1930 or so)

Baker who doesn’t know much of anything about baking

That’s not just the Bs, that’s the whole list. Also I was considering working at the Santa Cruz Mystery Spot, but that’s too much of a commute, I’d be paying to work there, really. Next week I will think of more jobs with my brain!