Tuesday, June 13, 2006, posted by Q6 at 6:08 PM
Does anyone remember that old Sesame Street game, "One of These Things Just Doesn't Belong Here?" (For those that do, sorry for putting that tune in your head.) Here's what I saw on my drive to work this morning: there's a bicycle/jogging path that runs alongside the road to my office, and in addition to cyclists and joggers I saw a guy on a Segway.

Now I'm all in favor of technology making people's lives better. I think that it's great that this guy (a young guy) was out taking in the morning air. I thought the helmet was a bit much, but whatever. Here's the thing that gets me: that path is meant for some sort of exercise. He wants to drive along and take in the morning, cool; he wants to use his toy, no problem; can he do it on a path that doesn't suggest sweat, exertion, and muscle development?

Said the guy burning 30 miles a gallon.
Monday, June 12, 2006, posted by Q6 at 11:10 PM
I used to have such respect for A&E, the channel famous for "Biography" and a wealth of other truly informative documentaries. It's been rapidly converting to reality programming, however, and I've been losing my interest. Now, it seems, the programming director has decided to include (and I use the term very loosely), sports.

Now I'll admit that I've been spending some time watching darts, poker, and billiards on ESPN. Not sports in the best sense of the term, but that's where it is, and I like it, so whatever. Now, however, A&E is trying to push the envelope by airing a $50,000 tournament in Las Vegas (sponsored by Budweiser, no less) for the national Rock, Paper, Scissors tournament. No, I'm not kidding.

The whole thing played out like a real tournament: games, sets, and matches with specific rules and referees; feature matches; commentators who provide cutaways on the history of the "sport," along with input from psychologists about how gender, hair color, profession, and other factors contribute to what a person will "throw" most often (yes, there's even jargon: apparently, a guy who throws three rocks in a row is called a "caveman"). And who put all of this together? What organization sanctions and oversees all of this?

That's right. They have a league. It's the USA Rock Paper Scissors League. Bikini-clad models and everything. I didn't watch the whole thing, but I saw enough to know that on THAT day, Las Vegas had more zeros than a lottery win.
Thursday, June 01, 2006, posted by Q6 at 6:09 PM
My fourteen year old son has a girlfriend. It was going to happen eventually, and it comes with its plusses and minuses. Plus: she seems like a nice girl--she was very nice to my girlfriend and me when we net her. Minus: my son spends a lot of time with her after school, and his other friends are having a reaction. Plus: he's being very open about it, telling me the things I need to know the first time I ask (in some cases, he volunteers). Minus: he spends a lot of time text messaging, but she's doing it on AIM . . . so it runs up his message count but not hers (Update, July 15--that cost me some money, and set new limits on how he communicates with her). Plus: getting him to do his homework is a little easier, as she encourages it. Minus: her parents don't know about him, as she's not supposed to be seeing anyone. This last one is a problem for a couple of reasons: if push comes to shove, I won't be dishonest and cover for them; he's not hiding anything from me, but that could change if he feels heat from the other side; finally, this could backfire on them both, and he could suffer a bit of heartache. For now, though, it all seems pretty innocuous, and as long as I keep an eye on my end and maintain his trust, all should be fine going into the new school year.

At least she's encouraging him to do his homework.