Tag Archives: internet

Five lightsabers, one walrus, one WordPress and several demolished config. files: A Parable

GateHouse — A short parable for this holiday season, starring .htaccess files, five lightsabers, inessential ambition and egregious, carrying-a-walrus-with-two-hands-over-your-head stupidity:

I am, as anyone who has spent more than four minutes with me and my collection of stories involving personal interactions with “Weird Al” Yankovic (there are six) will attest, a nerd. Not a geek, mind you, nor a dingus, and not really a twerp, although there was a good period of pronounced twerpery between the years of 1987-1989 that cheerfully coincided with the purchase of a new camera by both my Dad and the school yearbook staff. Good times.

The point is, nerd. To wit, I spent Thanksgiving this year at the home of lovely and hospitable friends who have one baby and five lightsabers. Also to wit, I just said to wit, which actually makes me want to beat myself up. Anyway, after dinner the husband component of this couple produced the replica lightsabers — I’m going to stop and do that again with overbearing punctuation: five. replica.lightsabers — and the small percentage of guests who were able to regard this development without releasing a sigh of utter despondency adjourned directly outside and — well, there’s no other way to say this — had a Jedi fight. I would say we did this for the benefit of my five-year-old son, but I’d be lying if I suggested that I found the entire endeavor to be anything south of way awesome.

Anyway, this minor though not entirely un-violent episode coincided with a time in which I decided, hey, you know what, this Internet thing seems to be gaining traction amongst the youngsters and the media, in that order, so let’s see if I can’t get my blog looking a little spiffier and moved to a new host that can make that happen.

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http://bit.ly/af0mky

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Famous Celebrities: Please tweet with less ferocity

rainn_wilson2GateHouse — I’ve been on Twitter for a few weeks now, and I’m liking it pretty well except that Rainn Wilson WILL NOT LEAVE ME ALONE.

Rainn Wilson of course plays Dwight on “The Office,” and he exists as @rainnwilson in Twitterland and is one of a growing number of celebrity Twitterers, which is a word that you can say a thousand times while still never sounding like a grownup. Twitter, of course, is the Web service on which you post updates of 140 characters or less that has been christened the MOST IMPORTANT WEB SERVICE EVER, so you might as well delete your stupid loser Facebook or Digg or whatever, to say nothing of you consumer-mall juiceboxes still on MySpace, if that’s even still on.

The point of Twitter is to celebrate and rejoice in the short attention span, so, hypothetically, if you’ve been born with relentless ADD tendencies and can’t get your mind focused on so much as writing a lousy humor column without your itchy right hand drifting, literally outside your control, over to the IM window, or God forbid the unholy hellbutton that lets you log in to Facebook, it will probably kill you in days.

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Twitter = Shaqtasticness

mask_shaqGateHouse — Big week here at the house: I’m on Twitter, which is good, since I’ve been eagerly seeking out inventive new ways to spend more time staring at a computer. (Does anyone know at which age permanent iMac-borne corneal damage scorching can occur, and is it in the 30s? Would it help if I wore goggles, or will those do nothing?)

I’m wicked late with the Twitter thing, of course. I was late to the Facebook party, too; I was sort of dragged into it by the children I work with. Needless to say, I’m now on it like eight hours a day, although, in my defense, all of those hours occur at work.

But in joining Twitter, I am legitimately trailing all of the nation’s cool kids as well as the following: Shaquille O’Neal, everyone I went to college with, Barack Obama (or at least some army of MacBooks in his employ), Lance Armstrong, about 17 million hack reporters on cable news stations, Dwight from “The Office,” Dave Matthews (of the Dave Matthews Band, the page I’m looking at helpfully informs me, so as not to indicate that’s Dave Matthews, Earth science teacher and assistant basketball coach at Kouts North High School), Al Gore (pfft, of course), fake Clarence Clemons, MC Hammer, and John McCain. To repeat: JOHN MCCAIN WAS ON TWITTER WELL BEFORE ME. It’s not like I was ever dying to get on Twitter or anything, but that’s a little like when your Dad purchases an iPhone and asks if it gets long distance.

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Facebook By Numbers, or, Don’t you judge me, or my e-mails

GateHouse – As the sixth-oldest person on Earth to participate in social networking sites, what bothers me most about sites like Facebook is not the level of access they offer to my personal information. Nor is it how they make it so I constantly and accidentally learn absurdly minor details about my Friends’ days (“Abby is having a muffin — a banana muffin“). Nor is it the insanely constant flood of requests to add third-party applications of questionable value (to all my Friends, I beg you to listen to me: I AM NOT ADDING SCRABULOUS. LEAVE ME THE HELL ALONE.)

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