Sunday, February 27, 2011

NPR rant

The other day I tuned my radio to NPR and discovered (to my dismay) that they were smack in the middle of one of their pledge drives. For those of you that have not had the pleasure, basically their pledge drives consist of NPR radio personalities trying to make you feel guilty for listening to their station and not contributing money. While I find these segments annoying, I realize that they are a necessary evil for public radio. The problem arose when NPR took a break from its pledge drive to air some COMMERCIALS for Nissan and Progressive. Now I'm no genius but I was under the impression that the reason NPR has to beg for money periodically is because they are a public radio station, made possible by listeners like me. Okay, maybe not like me since I haven't contributed, but you get the idea. My point is, what the hell are commercials doing on this station?!

"But Ryan," you may be saying, "they aren't commercials. They're just shout-outs to companies that contribute money to the station." First of all you really shouldn't start a sentence with a conjunction. Secondly, bullshit. They are pre-recorded endorsements promoting specific corporate consumer products in exchange for money. If that's not a commercial I don't know what is.

Now don't get me wrong, I love NPR. It is a great radio station that provides a wealth of fascinating information. One of the reasons I love it, however, is for its balanced approach to news. If they continue to accept corporate sponsorship they run the risk of becoming biased towards their investors. I understand that the economy is bad and money is scarce (which is why I haven't contributed to their programming yet). I just worry that they are going down a dark road. Also, the fact that they're taking breaks in their PLEDGE DRIVES to air commercials is just plain insulting.

So pull yourself together NPR. You're on notice.

Thursday, February 24, 2011


My sandwich bread is trying to friend me on Facebook. Maybe the world is going to end in 2012.

Saturday, February 19, 2011

That's Mr. Baals to you

No joke: Ex-mayor's name too funny for Ind. center
Associated Press (article excerpt) - February 8, 2011

A former Indiana mayor who won four terms in the 1930s and 1950s is proving less popular with modern-day city leaders, who say they probably won't name a new government center for him because of the jokes his moniker could inspire.

Harry Baals is the runaway favorite in online voting to name the new building in Fort Wayne, about 120 miles northeast of Indianapolis. But Deputy Mayor Beth Malloy said that probably won't be enough to put the name of the city's longest-tenured mayor on the center.

"We realize that while Harry Baals was a respected mayor, not everyone outside of Fort Wayne will know that," Malloy said Tuesday in a statement to The Associated Press.

An online site taking suggestions for names showed more than 1,000 votes Tuesday for the Harry Baals Government Center. That's more than three times the votes received by the closest contender.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Olfactory work

I have in my possession the results of a Yale University study that lists the "20 most recognizable smells in the United States." I am going to post the list on my blog sometime in the near future. Your mission, if you choose to accept it, is to guess what is on the list. Share your answers by commenting on this post and we'll see who comes closest to the results of the study.

P.S. I want to establish once and for all that you do not need to create a Google account to post comments on this blog (see below).

To comment on a post click the "comments" link beneath the post you want to write about. Type your comment into the text box and select "Name/URL" as your identity. Type your name in the "Name" box and hit "publish your comment." Congratulations, your typings will now be posted into the matrix of the interwebs.  Now get commentin'!

Thursday, February 10, 2011


Hey everybody, I got a rad new camera and a Flickr account. Visit to see my latest work.

Tuesday, February 08, 2011

Myths debunked!

I recently purchased Armchair Reader: The Book of Myths and Misconceptions. I love this book because it reminds me of the stuff I used to buy at the Scholastic Book Fair when I was in elementary school. The reader is filled with popular myths and fascinating trivia. I've been taking notes while I read in order to post the most interesting information on this blog. Here are some of my favorites.

* Contrary to popular belief, hair and nails do not continue to grow after a person dies. When we die our bodies dehydrate and our skin shrinks, giving the illusion that our nails and hair are still growing.

* A mother bird will not abandon her baby if she smells evidence of human touch. Most birds have little or no sense of smell.

* A penny dropped from the top of the Empire State Building would not kill a person. Some of the speed that the penny picked up through the force of gravity would be negated by air resistance. The most damage it could cause would be a small cut.

* Lobsters do not scream in pain when dropped into boiling water. Lobsters have no vocal cords and lack the receptors to feel what humans call "pain." The sound that is caused by boiling them is from air trapped under the lobster's shell that expands rapidly and escapes through small openings.

Tuesday, February 01, 2011

Wise wisdom

I heard this the other day and I really like it:

There is no way to happiness, happiness is the way.