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Monday, December 31, 2007

Not Bad For a Sooner Chick

Yeah... it's 4am... I couldn't sleep....

So... if I'm doing the math right (2100 point lead... 5 games at 500... 4 answers at 50... carry the one... one bonus at 1500- thank you, Tony Romo... ) last night, the Tennessee Titans became my new (however temporary) favorite team, propelling me to an mathematically unbeatable score on KLBJ's Football Show Challenge. The official results aren't posted yet, but... it should say "mom-o-twins" as the winner anytime now. They won't leave us hanging over the holiday, will they???The website says the winner will be announced the Tuesday after the final game of the regular season. Drat. (I'll post more info, including what the prizes are, when I find out.)

I've been telling people for a couple of weeks that I wasn't gloating- the season wasn't over yet. Well, it's over now.

Thanks to everyone who helped me, answering questions, offering advice and patiently listening to me as I droned on and on about this contest.

Not bad for a Sooner chick, eh, Austin?

UPDATE #1: According to the web site, I gained a little ground. I had 4650 points for the weekend, not 4200.

Friday, December 28, 2007

A Quick Round-Up

It's been a while since I've done one of these. News has been kind of... unnewsworthy lately.


Thursday, December 27, 2007

Benazir Bhutto was gunned down after a rally. Pakistan is in chaos. Al Q supposedly took credit, but "they" (the suits who figure out this stuff) aren't sure who is really responsible (well, except for the coward who blew himself up instead of facing a little Pakistani street justice). We'll see how the craziness works itself out.

Here's one of the last photos taken of Bhutto.

Better Than I Could Say It

A couple of weeks ago, I opined about my general dislike of Mike Huckabee. Well, Ann Coulter says it better and in more detail.

The Huck scares me. Most of the rest of the GOP "hopefuls" fill me with dread. My first choice would be Duncan Hunter, but my "best bet" is Fred Thompson. I will not be happy if any other candidate gets the nod.

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

The Birth of Our Savior

In those days Caesar Augustus issued a decree that a census should be taken of the entire Roman world. (This was the first census that took place while Quirinius was governor of Syria.) And everyone went to his own town to register.

So Joseph also went up from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to Bethlehem the town of David, because he belonged to the house and line of David. He went there to register with Mary, who was pledged to be married to him and was expecting a child. While they were there, the time came for the baby to be born, and she gave birth to her firstborn, a son. She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger, because there was no room for them in the inn.

And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night. An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is Christ. This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.”

Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God and saying, “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace to men on whom his favor rests.”

When the angels had left them and gone into heaven, the shepherds said to one another, “Let's go to Bethlehem and see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has told us about.”

So they hurried off and found Mary and Joseph, and the baby, who was lying in the manger. When they had seen him, they spread the word concerning what had been told them about this child, and all who heard it were amazed at what the shepherds said to them. But Mary treasured up all these things and pondered them in her heart. The shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things they had heard and seen, which were just as they had been told. (Luke 2:1-20)
May you all have a blessed Christmas.

Monday, December 24, 2007

Monday's Hero

(This week's hero is a couple of days early.) This week's hero was suggested by Cindy & Kathi

Arlington Christmas Wreaths
Each year, around this time, since 1992, the Arlington National Cemetery has something happen to it. It gets covered in vibrant green Christmas wreaths. The wreaths are donated by a man named Merrill Worcester who is the owner of the Worcester Wreath Co. in Maine. From the Worcester Wreath Co.'s website:

Each year Worcester Wreath donates Maine wreaths to adorn the headstones of those who serve and those who sacrificed to preserve our freedoms. In 2007, over 10,000 wreaths are destined for the annual wreath-laying ceremonies at Arlington. In addition, 2,500 wreaths will be sent to Togus National Cemetery in Augusta, Maine. Worcester Wreath also donates ceremonial wreaths that will be used as part of the Wreaths Across America events at over 230 State and National veterans cemeteries all across the Country.

Sometimes a hero is one who sacrifices everything in their life to help others. And sometimes a hero is one who sacrifices nothing more than their time.
We Should Not Only Mourn These Men And Women Who Died, We Should Also Thank God That Such People Lived

This post is part of the Wednesday Hero Blogroll. To find out more about Wednesday Hero, you can go here.

Sunday, December 23, 2007

(h/t to a reader)

For My Democrat Friends:
"Please accept with no obligation, implied or implicit, my best wishes for an environmentally conscious, socially responsible, low-stress, non-addictive, gender-neutral celebration of the winter solstice holiday, practiced within the most enjoyable traditions of the religious persuasion of your choice, or secular practices of your choice, with respect for the religious/secular persuasion and/or traditions of others, or their choice not to practice religious or secular traditions at all. We also wish you a fiscally successful, personally fulfilling and medically uncomplicated recognition of the generally accepted calendar year 2008, but not without due respect for the calendars of choice of other cultures whose contributions to society have helped make America great. Not to imply that America is necessarily greater than any other country nor the only America in the Western Hemisphere, and without regard to the race, creed, color, age, physical ability, religious faith or sexual preference of the wishes. By accepting these greetings you are accepting these terms. This greeting is subject to clarification or withdrawal. It is freely transferable with no alteration to the original greeting. It implies no promise by the wisher to actually implement any of the wishes for herself or himself or others, and is void where prohibited by law and is revocable at the sole discretion of the wisher. This wish is warranted to perform as expected within the usual application of good tidings for a period of one year or until the issuance of a subsequent holiday greeting, whichever comes first, and warranty is limited to replacement of this wish or issuance of a new wish at the sole discretion of the wisher."

For My Republican Friends:
Merry Christmas and a
Happy New Year!

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Wednesday's Hero

This Weeks Hero Was Suggested By Leo

SSgt. Mike Mills
SSgt. Mike Mills

On June 14, 2005 SSgt. Mike Mills's life was forever changed. The HETT(Heavy Equipment Transport System) he was riding in was hit by an IED. The attack resulted a cracked clavicle and scapula bones, dislocate shoulder, broken left hip, 4 out of 5 bones broken in his foot and being set on fire. The driver in the truck behind him ran with a cooler of melted ice which he threw on Sgt. Mills to put him out.

He spent three months in the Brooks Army Medical Center at Ft. Sam Houston, TX with the injuries listed above plus 2nd, 3rd and deep tissue burns to 31% of the left side of his body. The first thing he remembers thinking after the attack was that his soldiers needed him and he needed to get back to them.

"Then the guilt set in about what I did to my family. I've totally screwed that up. Look at me, no don't. I look hideous. How can I face my kids looking like this. They'll be embarrassed to be seen with me. What if they won't love me anymore? Speaking of love, my wife, oh my god. How can I expect her to stay with me. I'm not a man anymore. She's not going to want be intimate with a freak. What if I can't work, how do I support myself, my family.

I had the nightmares and couldn't sleep. I wasn't eating and was loosing weight. I didn't really care. If I didn't start eating, they where going to put the feeding tube back in. Who cares, I've totally screwed up my life anyways."

But he found out just how much is wife loved him, when she stood by his side throughout the entire ordeal. She was there for every wound dressing and even learned how to change the dressings herself.

SSgt. Mike Mills now runs the site For The Veteran... By A Veteran in which he helps veterans, soldiers and their families find information they may not have been given after their medical discharge or retirement.

Some may say that Mike gave his country more than enough when he was severely maimed by an IED on that fateful day of June 14, 2005, but Mike continues to give to his fellow servicemen, as well as to his nation!

These brave men and women sacrifice so much in their lives so that others may enjoy the freedoms we get to enjoy everyday. For that, I am proud to call them Hero.
We Should Not Only Mourn These Men And Women Who Died, We Should Also Thank God That Such People Lived

This post is part of the Wednesday Hero Blogroll. For more information about Wednesday Hero, or if you would like to post it on your blog, you can go here.


Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Wednesday's Hero

This Week's Hero Was Suggested By Louie

Bill Juneau
36 years old from Rush City, Minnesota
November 27, 2007

If there was one thing Bill Juneau loved as much as his country, it was his dog, Jake.

The accident-prone black Lab, who has been hit by two cars, had a toe amputated on his right paw and survived eating 42 candy bars in one sitting, once fell off a dock and through the ice on a lake while Juneau was hunting with his best friend, Dan Bock.

Bock said Juneau jumped into the icy, chest-deep water to save his dog.

"He threw that wet dog on the deck and sacrificed everything to save him," said Bock. "Bill's just that type of guy."

Juneau, a 10 year veteran of the Chisago County sheriff's deputy, was in Iraq helping to train Iraqi police recruits when his convoy was hit by and IED 50 miles outside Baghdad. A spokesperson for DynCorp, the private firm Juneau was working for, said Juneau was driving the lead vehicle in the large convoy that included U.S. Army personnel as well as members of the Iraqi National Police Force. The convoy was headed for a scheduled training mission. An Iraqi translator and a U.S. Army soldier sustained injuries in the blast as well.

His twin sister, Bridget Sura, said he wanted to help Iraqis rebuild their country and create better lives. "He would often sugar-coat the bad stuff, because he wanted us to know about the positive things," she said. "But we still worried every minute of every day." Another reason he joined was because he loved adventure, she said. While with the Chisago County Sheriff's Department, he started and led the country's SWAT team.

Jake, his dog, has been embraced by Juneau's sister's family. "He has more lives than a cat," Sura said, adding that they recently discovered a chocolate stash he'd hidden in his kennel.

"Jake is a part of my brother," she said. "He[Bill] will be missed by a lot of people. This will leave a hole in a lot of people's hearts."

These brave men and women sacrifice so much in their lives so that others may enjoy the freedoms we get to enjoy everyday. For that, I am proud to call them Hero.
We Should Not Only Mourn These Men And Women Who Died, We Should Also Thank God That Such People Lived

This post is part of the Wednesday Hero Blogroll. For more information about Wednesday Hero, or if you would like to post it on your blog, you can go here.

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Wow! Kids These Days

I guess you could say "Like great- great- great- great- great- great- great- great- great- great-grandfather like great- great- great- great- great- great- great- great- great- great- grandson." Or something like that.
A 5-year-old Arkansas County boy killed a black bear Sunday weighing more than 400 pounds.

Tre Merritt, a descendant of Davy Crockett, was hunting with his grandfather Mike Merritt when a black bear happened upon their stand.

"His 10th great-grandfather was Davy Crockett," Mike Merritt said. "And Davy supposedly killed him a bear when he was three. And Tre is five and really killed a bear. I really doubt if Davy killed one when he was three."

Mike Merritt was in the stand at the time but said Tre did it all by himself.

"He came in about 40 to 50 yards," Mike Merritt said of the black bear, "and when he got in the open, I whistled at him and he stopped and I said, 'Shoot Tre.'"

The only problem is that now he's going to spend the rest of his life trying to top it. How do you top that?

Sanity? From a Democrat? Who Knew?

I've been told that even the conservatives in Wisconsin are pretty darn liberal, so this struck me as... pleasantly surprising.
Currently the tree is referred to as a "holiday tree," but the resolution that will be brought to the Committee on State Affairs would rename it as the Wisconsin State Christmas Tree.

Michael Schoenfield, legislative aide to Rep. Marlin Schneider, D-Wisconsin Rapids, who is sponsoring the resolution, said the state should refer to the tree as a Christmas tree because that is what it is.

"A rose is a rose is a rose," Schoenfield said. "Whatever you call it, it is going to be a Christmas tree, so call it what it is."
Did you notice of which party Rep. Schneider is a member? Like I said... pleasantly surprising.

My favorite quote from the article is a bit lower.
"As a Jew, I have a problem calling it a holiday tree," Schoenfield said. "It's not my holiday."
I wonder if the "progressives" realized that they were offending some of the non-Christians when they went out of their way to not offend them.

And, the good news? The Freedom From Religion Foundation in Madison said that, even though they oppose the name change, they won't take it to court if it passes.

It looks like it's a pretty tree.

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A Sign of the Times?

If so, we're in trouble.
Expect cheers among hardcore online game enthusiasts when they learn Merriam-Webster's Word of the Year. Or, more accurately, expect them to "w00t."

"W00t," a hybrid of letters and numbers used by gamers as an exclamation of happiness, topped all other terms in the Springfield dictionary publisher's online poll for the word that best sums up 2007.

Merriam-Webster's president, John Morse, said "w00t" was an ideal choice because it blends whimsy and new technology.

...Some also-rans in the 2007 list: the use of "facebook" as a verb to signify using the Web site by that name; nuanced terms such as "quixotic" and "hypocrite"; and "blamestorm," a meeting in which mistakes are aired, fingers are pointed and much discomfort is had by all.
Great... we're being taken over by l33t speak (yes, I knew what it meant before I read the article). And y'all thought ebonics was bad.

I have to admit, I like ... but that's not the same thing at all. And what's wrong with "quixotic"? Much better that l33t speak.

Just Say No....

... to Mike Huckabee.

I wanted to like Huckabee. I really did. He seemed like a candidate I could almost stand behind. Right up to the time I actually learned about him. And the more I learn about him, the more I wonder why in the world he's a Republican (almost as much as I wonder about Ron Paul).

He's never met a tax he didn't like (I haven't look through the whole site, but it looked pretty detailed). He granted clemency to over 660 people while governor (including murders who had no remorse and rapists who went on to rape and kill once they were released). He's unfamiliar with the issues of the Cuban embargo and seems to believe that The Golden Rule should be the basis for US foreign policy. On his site, his immigration plan sounds good, but he's said too many things on the trail that makes me doubt him.

He's not all bad, I guess. He likes the Fair Tax. He's pro-life. He's pro-Second Amendment.

That's not enough to make me like him. Not with all of his faults.

Friday, December 07, 2007

A Day That Will Live in Infamy

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It was avenged, but never forgotten. Rick Moran has a great piece, remembering the day. So does Crunchie over at Misha's.

Thursday, December 06, 2007

My Favorite Christmas Ads So Far

I think I really like Slingbox. No, I'm not going to buy one (sorry, don't need one), but I love the company. They're sports fans, and they're not PC when it comes to Christmas.

I've heard two of their recent radio ads, and they're great. In the first one, the announcer keeps saying "Christmas" and the producer breaks in and says "you need to say 'holiday." The announcer gets so flustered by it (especially when he's told that he can't say that a Slingbox will be under the tree) that he says something to the effect that the recipient of the Slingbox will love it when one mysteriously appears (I'm paraphrasing here- I can't find a link to the ad).

In the second ad, to be "inclusive", instead of just referencing Christmas, everything he would have said "Christmas" (which is intentionally a lot) he says "ChristmasHanukkahKwanzaaRamadanDiwalilasLasPosadasWinterSolstice." He's totally exhausted by the end of the spot.

They get it. It's not about "holidays"- which other Holy Day has gift giving as part of the tradition? Sure, Hanukkah does... kind of... Diwali? Nope... Las Posadas doesn't have a real gift component... Ramadan? Not so much... Kwanzaa... sorta... Like it or not, there's a reason the day after Thanksgiving is called Black Friday- that's the day many people begin shopping for their Christmas gifts.

I'm still not all about the materialism that runs rampant this time of year (even more than normal), but I'm glad that Sling Media gets it.

He Better Hope There Aren't Any Speed Traps

According to a report out of Sweden, Santa's going have to break a few speed limits (and laws of physics) to get his job done on time. Oh, yeah... and he lives in Kyrgyzstan.
"We estimated that there are 48 people per square kilometer (120 per square mile) on Earth, and 20 metres (66 feet) between each home. So if Santa leaves from Kyrgyzstan and travels against the Earth's rotation he has 48 hours to deliver all the presents," he said.

... But Sweco's report on Santa's most efficient route -- which takes into account factors like geographic density and the fewest detours -- shows that he wouldn't be able to make his round-the-world trip from there in time.

"He has 34 microseconds at each stop" to slide down the chimney, drop off the presents, nibble on his cookies and milk and hop back on his sleigh, Larsson said.

Santa's reindeer must travel at a speed of 5,800 kilometers (3,604 miles) per second to make the trip on time.

Another report circulating on the Internet suggested however that Santa's sleigh, weighed down with presents and travelling at supersonic speed, would encounter such massive air resistance that the entire contraption would burst into flames and be vaporised within 4.26 thousandths of a second.

uh... don't worry, kiddies... Santa worked out the heat shield issues with NASA. It's all good.

Oh, don't forget... NORAD tracks Santa's sleigh on Christmas Eve.

Wednesday, December 05, 2007

That's Just Not Right...

This is funny... and yet so very, very wrong.

Wednesday's Hero

This Week's Hero Was Suggested By Mark Bell

Marty and Sue Horn

Go to
 Go to

Born in Philadelphia, Marty Horn spent 20 years in the Army as a Military Policeman, retiring in 1993 and going to work in Internet technologies. In 2003, his son Brian Horn deployed to Iraq. Trying to support their son’s unit, Marty and his wife Sue, who also served as in the Military Police, put together the concept of Any Soldier. In essence, Any Soldier is an effort to provide support and encouragement to those who are in harm’s way. Due to overwhelming requests for ready-made care packages on the site, Sue Horn started

Using his background in Internet technologies, Marty built and maintains the web site. The Any Soldier program slowly expanded to include other Army units. In 2004, the program opened up to include all service branches.. In 2005, the websites for,,, and were launched.

In the words of the Any Soldier web site: "The success of Any Soldier has far exceeded expectations and continues to grow with the invaluable help and guidance of our supporters, board members and Support Team."

In the words of Marty Horn: "It is the supporters who deserve the credit."

Thanks to the efforts of Marty and Sue, their son Brian, and a dedicated staff, over 950,000 servicemen and women received support and encouragement they would never have been able to get through the Any Soldier program.

These brave men and women sacrifice so much in their lives so that others may enjoy the freedoms we get to enjoy everyday. For that, I am proud to call them Hero.
We Should Not Only Mourn These Men And Women Who Died, We Should Also Thank God That Such People Lived

This post is part of the Wednesday Hero Blogroll. For more information about Wednesday Hero, or if you would like to post it on your blog, you can go here.

Tuesday, December 04, 2007

Not Quite The Christmas I'm Dreaming Of

On several environut web sites at this time of year, you can find tips on how to have yourself a Green Little Christmas (or a Green Hanukkah, which starts this evening, btw). Supposedly, Christmas trees cause global warming, and wrapping paper (the pretty, shiny kind) is a horrible polluter. We should choose "eco-friendly, socially responsible" gifts in place of more tradional gifts. (What kid wouldn't rather have Food Force or CO2FX instead of a Wii with all the gadgets, gizmos and games?) Or maybe we should have a "stuff-free holiday."

And don't forget dinner-
"How about making a meal, then, where it's all "trimmings," like vegetables, fruits and nuts? You might not even miss the pot roast."
uh-huh... sure... my kids might not even miss the roast? Good luck with that.

I'm all about getting back to the reason for The Season (and I don't mean the winter solstice). And I'm all about being responsible stewards of the gifts we've been given. But... a "green Christmas"? Except for the Christmas tree and maybe some holly, this is the only green I want to see this Christmas.

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