sshhh.. it’s secret santa..

ramblings 1 Comment »

it’s a secretOK, i just found out that we’re going to attempt to do secret santa here at the office this year. normally we exchange gifts voluntarily with a select few but now i guess it’s an official group-wide gift exchange. we’re required to give a gag gift (less than 5 bucks) and then a real gift (less than 20 bucks).

got any suggestions? especially for a gag gift. need something really hilarious. or obnoxious. or both.

i just hope ours won’t end up like Michael Scott’s infamous Yankee Swap. remember that episode?

gifts ideas at OpticsPlanet

miscellaneous 1 Comment »

my oldest son has really been excelling in science these past few years at school. i’m always amazed at his depth of knowledge about certain things and his ever growing interest in science experiments, biology and even astronomy. as with all parents, i’m trying to encourage his interest in science by getting him books, science kits and now i’m looking into maybe purchasing a telescope or even a microscope. seems to be a great site for purchasing telescopes and microscopes online. they’ve got a Meade brand 80mm Telescope that features auto alignment which makes identifying stars and planets so much quicker and easier. the auto alignment feature is definitely a must for any avid star gazer.
you can find a wide variety of products at OpticsPlanet that would be make a perfect gift this holiday season including binoculars, portal GPS equipment, cameras and even Ray Ban sunglasses. they back all their products with a 100% satisfaction guarantee and they’re currently offering free shipping on any order over $29.95. still a bit stumped on what to get your loved one? check out their online gift guide available on their website for some great gift giving ideas.

hard drive hassles

ramblings 2 Comments »

warning. geek-speak ahead. ..i thought i was doing the smart thing by getting a refurbished portable hard drive off of ebay for cheap a couple weeks ago. but it turned out to be a bit of a hassle once i got the thing. apparently i should have looked through the detailed manual that’s available online before i started bidding for this thing on ebay. i didn’t realize that my 4-pin firewire connector on my laptop doesn’t provide power to any connected devices like a 6-pin connector does. well even before i got to that problem, i unfortunately didn’t know the difference in connector sizes so the connector cable that came with the hard drive didn’t fit the firewire connector on my laptop. i had to then search for a cheap a 4-pin to 6-pin firewire cable out on newegg. then i had to wait a week or so for the cable to get here. once i got the cable i thought my troubles were over but when i connected the hard drive, i soon realized that the firewire connection didn’t power up the external hard drive. so, in order to get the hard drive to work, i learned that I needed to purchase a AC adapter!! oh, good lord! i eventually found one at walmart. it’s the one that gives you the option to chose the specific voltage settings since the hard drive needed the 12V, 1A setting. so after it was all said and done, taking into account the additional cost of the AC adapter and cable, i probably could have save me the time and trouble by just simply purchasing a brand new external firewire hard drive in the first place. i seem to just love doing things the hard way!

Johnny Depp as Sweeney Todd

movies and TV, internet buzz 1 Comment »

Johnny Depp is one of those rare artists in the film industry that always seem to strive to challenge himself as an actor and not just look toward increasing his celebrity status. OK, ok, yes, Depp “cashed in” with the Pirates of the Caribbean trilogy, but on the whole, the man chooses his roles very carefully and always tends to avoid the obvious. if you look through his list of movies, you can easily see the variety and depth of the roles he has taken on over the years. i loved his CIA Agent Sands character in Robert Rodriguez’s Once Upon a Time in Mexico. even though Sands was crooked and evil, Depp portrayed him in a way that you felt sorry for the guy in the end. in one of my favorite scenes… in fact probably in my top two favorite Johnny Depp scenes of all time, is the part where he ends up finding the best puerco pibil that he’s tasted anywhere. he ends up saying, “El, you really must try this because it’s puerco pibil. It’s a slow-roasted pork, nothing fancy. It just happens to be my favorite, and I order it with a tequila and lime in every dive I go to in this country. And honestly, that is the best it’s ever been anywhere. In fact, it’s too good. It’s so good that when I’m finished, I’ll pay my check, walk straight into the kitchen and shoot the cook. Because that’s what I do. I restore the balance to this country. And that is what I would like from you right now. Help keep the balance by pulling the trigger.” my other choice for best Johnny Depp scene is in Tim Burton’s Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. well, every Depp scene in the movie is gold but the way Depp says “Everything in this room is eatable. Even *I’m* eatable. But that is called cannibalism, my dear children, and is in fact frowned upon in most societies” is simply the work of a master!! he’s a genius I tell you, pure genius! you know, Tim Burton seems to always get the best out of Johnny Depp. they work well together. in fact they’re collaborating again in the upcoming movie musical Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street. that’s right, a film adaptation of the Stephen Sondheim/Hugh Wheeler musical. the movie will hit the theaters on December 21 and it’s currently creating quite a buzz. visit the official Sweeney Todd movie site to check out the new movie trailer. from the look of things, it appears to be another wonderful Burton/Depp collaboration. and how can we resist getting a chance to see Depp for the first time singing in a feature film. there he goes again, stretching himself as an actor. be sure to visit Sweeney Todd on MySpace to see some exclusive interviews with Depp about his involvement in the project. and by adding Sweeney Todd to your friends list on myspace, you’ll automatically be entered for a chance to meet Depp at the Global Premiere! check the site for all the details.

latest search engine terms

funnies, ramblings 1 Comment »

ha, ha, ha. I think the search engine gods are having a bit of fun today. why in the world would my site turn up on a search for “oh so good porn“??? i noticed the term come up on today’s visitor stats.
dlee search engine
…i just double checked the term on google and yes, currently, my website turns up on the first page. yikes.

makes you wonder what the hell i’m writing about here on this blog?? hhhmmmmm….

black friday

it's all about me!!, ramblings 1 Comment »

so how did you make out on black friday? did you head out to the stores at 5am with the rest of those bleary eyed bargain hunters? I battled with the crowds at walmart years ago and vowed never to do that ever again. and this year, i kept my word - i was NOT at walmart at 5am. but i did end up at BJ’s when they opened at 7am friday morning to get a proform elliptical trainer for cheap. they only had two in stock and i grabbed one while another customer behind me got the last one. whew. i really thought i was going to strike out on getting one but luckily i was there just in time. the majority of the customers that morning seemed to be getting the large LCD TVs on sale. they hogged all the flat bed carts. i only managed to get a regular grocery style cart. that elliptical trainer box was extremely heavy and i didn’t know how to get that thing onto the cart. thankfully there was a sympathetic customer near me and offered to help load the heavy box unto the shopping cart. i was so glad he offered to help. i would have broken my back or maybe even gotten crushed by the box had i tried to load it by myself.
since i felt that luck was on my side that morning, i went across the street to try grabbing one of those Sansa Clip 2GB Mp3 players Best Buy advertised for 35 bucks. getting in the store was no problem at 7:30am. and i even got a hold of the mp3 player. surprisingly, there were still a few left lying around. but the line for the cash registers wrapped around the interior of the store!! i got in line and it took me a good 40 minutes just to pay for the lil’ mp3 player. it’s a great deal though. the mp3 player normally sells for 60 bucks.
to my chagrin, later on in the day, i found out that anyone could just purchase the same mp3 player online at their website at the “doorbuster price” (on friday and saturday). whatever. at least i got the two items i planned on getting on black friday. how was your black friday?


links and stuff No Comments »

what would life would be like without art and music? obviously life would be pretty dull without them. so we need to do our part to keep the arts alive and well in our town. support your local artists by visiting local galleries and enjoying live music at the local bars and clubs. places like St. Augustine, Florida even hold monthly events to celebrate their local artists. the St. Augustine Artwalk is held the first weekend of every month and features great exhibits, entertainment and refreshments provided by over 20 local galleries. complimentary transportation is even provided for by the St. Augustine Sightseeing Trains and Old Town Trolley Tours. so park your car in the designated free parking area and get free shuttle service to where all the various events are being held. the First Friday Weekend Art Walk is a great concept and should help promote the local artists and musicians in the area. i’m sure it’s tough getting the attention of the average joe especially in the days of the internet, cell phones and multimedia. so events like these help bring in a large gathering of people so that deserving artists can get the much needed exposure. let us all celebrate the arts by participating in the ArtWalk! check it out!

have a great thanksgiving!

general 3 Comments »

i’m *so* ready to stuff myself with some delicious food, aren’t you?
as always, thanks for visiting. I hope you have a wonderful thanksgiving!

Feast One Hundred & Sixty Nine

it's all about me!! 12 Comments »

Feast One Hundred & Sixty Nine
friday feast
What was your first “real” job?
after graduating from college, i got a job as a chemist at a contract lab. i ended up working there for nearly eight years.

Where would you go if you wanted to spark your creativity?
i’d probably go to a concert. watching talented musicians create great music together always makes me want to pick up my guitar to play and create my own type of noise.

Complete this sentence: I am embarrassed when…
I am embarrassed when you look at me in that way. *wink, wink* *nudge, nudge*

Main Course
What values did your parents instill in you?
to work hard and never take vacation.

Name 3 fads from your teenage years.
parachute pants, members-only jackets and aqua-net hairspray (for big new jersey/bonjovi hair).

Have a great weekend!

science is cool

miscellaneous No Comments »

back in junior high when i was struggling to find my own identity and feeling out which clique i fit into, i remember saying to myself that when i had a son of my own one day, i’d make sure to raise him to be a sports jock and not some booksmart nerd. well, nowadays with the rise of the internet and the world of Steve Jobs and Bill Gates, being identified as a nerd or geek ain’t so bad anymore. most people understand now that good looks and being a varsity jock won’t take you too far in the real world. in our fast paced, hi-tech world, you need innovative ideas, a strong business-sense and a clear, sharp mind to make an impact. so encouraging your child to develop their interest in science and math is pretty much the “in” thing to do nowadays. as parents, we need to supplement beyond what is taught in school. our children’s minds are hungry for more and more stimulation and if we don’t take the opportunity to keep them stimulated, we may end up limiting their potential down the line. i’ve recently ordered science kits at CoolStuffExpress. it’s a great source for neat and unusual educational products. there’s also a cool LaserStars Holographic Projector that i think my boys would just love to have in their room. it projects a moving universe of stars all across the ceiling and walls of a room. the nightly view of the stars will challenge their imaginations and open up their perspective on the world around them.

dad’s 70th b-day

ramblings 4 Comments »

at the last minute, my parents decided to celebrate my dad’s 70th birthday early since they were going to be on a cruise in the caribbean during his actual birthday. and since it’s one of those milestone b-days, i had to get him something big. i actually offered to pay for his cruise but my uncle and aunt already took care of that. So i ended up purchasing a new 42 inch plasma for my dad. it’s definitely something i’d love to have in my own home. well, actually, i’d prefer something even bigger than 42″ but now that i’m tapped out from this big purchase there’s no need to worry about that at this juncture. i took the day off yesterday to get the plasma TV before the party. spending all that cash usually makes me all lightheaded and woozy and i’m pretty much useless the rest of the day. well the wife did try to snap me out of it by taking me out for some lunch time sushi at the local kanki’s. that actually did the trick. i just love me some sushi. yeah, it’s an expensive lunch but hey, since i’m already in debt to my eyeballs anyway…
the birthday dinner at the dad’s went well. we had a great feast and he loved the new TV. and in a couple of days, he’ll be off to the caribbean. happy birthday Dad!

quality blog hosting

internet buzz 1 Comment »

quite often i hear the same ol’ story from other bloggers about the limitations using free blogging platforms like blogger, livejournal and xanga. complaints range from not being able to customize templates to losing entire entries due to buggy software. i can see the draw to free sites like blogspot and even i started blogging on a free host many years ago. but if you enjoy blogging enough to take it seriously, you need to move to your very own hosted website. it’s really not as complicated as it seems. hosting services like even have specialized hosting plans just for bloggers. their blog hosting plans conveniently have either Movable Type already installed or you can opt for wordpress hosting instead. their Movable Type “blogger” plan features 2GB of space, 20GB of bandwidth and the ability to add up to 11 domains to the account for only $9.99 a month. they also offer a cheaper “starter” plan which includes wordpress, 1GB of space, 10GB of bandwidth and the ability to have up to 2 domains on the plan for just $6.99 a month. AQHost is an affordable and dependable choice in blog hosting. they have an overall uptime of 99.9% as monitored by they’ve built their business on quality hosting and quality customer service. as a webhost customer, you’ll rest assure knowing that you are taken good care of by AQHost.

Garden of Heaven

movies and TV 2 Comments »

there are a lot of great korean films out there but unfortunately The Garden of Heaven isn’t one of them. the movie is about a jaded doctor that ends up falling for a girl with stomach cancer. yup, the overused terminal illness plot device should have tipped me off from the get go. but i gave the movie a chance and sadly, it didn’t come through for me. the whole movie had an amateurish quality - from the stilted acting to the b-movie like editing. in fact, i’m almost certain there was a “missing reel” (a la Grindhouse) of some sort since an inexplicable plot twist occurs 3/4 of the way into the film with no build up or reason or logic. in other words, it was bad. not *so bad* it’s funny. just plain, bad. an utter waste of time in my book.

if you’re looking for some recommended korean dvd titles, be sure to look over my previous post about korean movies.

Luther Sales

miscellaneous No Comments »

in our ongoing quest to fill up this empty house with affordable furniture, we recently came across Luther Appliance and Furniture Sales. they’ve got a great selection of furniture with a variety of styles and brands. the website even features a home planner interactive design tool to help you visualize where to place your furniture in a particular room. Luther’s got the Pasadena Upholstery Collection by Kincaid that would be perfect for our living room. i like the modern and sleek look to the sofa and chair set. and the cool thing at Luther Sales is their flex-pay option. yup, they will gladly let you have their furniture on credit. in these times where a lot of us are feeling the financial crunch, it’s great to know that there are businesses out there that are willing to accommodate for these difficult times. they even will make special considerations for those in the military as well as federal, municipal and hospital employees. furniture can get expensive but items like beds, sofas, chairs and dining tables are essential for our living space. so it’s good to know that Luther Sales will work with you to get you the furniture that you need.

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