kctipton's blog

VHS Going Away In Lubbock Libraries

They're pulling VHS tapes off the shelf in Lubbock. I realize that you can't buy new ones any more, but is that reason to not check 'em out? I am guessing they don't get the check-out traffic they used to get, but it still saddens me. Kids (or their nimrod parents) are surprisingly good at ruining DVDs by inflicting lots of scratches. It's much harder to wreck a VHS tape.

Do City Libraries Get A Raw Rent Deal?

Rumor has it that the Lubbock Public Library was close to a deal to rent an old Albertson's location to hold one of its branches (closed due to water leaking/mold in the walls). When the real estate people figured out that the city wanted the spot, they said the rent would be 3x what was originally discussed.

If this rumor is true, what gives? That old Albertson's spot is not the only "big box" sort of spot in Lubbock needing occupants. Stupid real estate people.

Blogging, installing Wordpress, finding a site host...

My blog reached the 18 month milestone this week (approximately). Nearly 480 posts in all as I learned when uploading them into a new Wordpress setup yesterday.

I've been looking for a place that is cheap (sorry Blake, you ain't cheap enough) to host one or both of my domains: keithtipton.com and kctipton.com. My blog is found at powerblogs.com for just $15 a year (and keithtipton.com redirects there), and that's fine for now. However, I'd prefer some customization that I can't seem to do at powerblogs.

I've found a promising "pay as you go" domain host (and I found it by researching a splog, no less): NearlyFreeSpeech.net which is based in SW Houston if I recall the layout of the town correctly. You prepay for usage (and you don't have to prepay much), and you can get nearly all of the unspent/unused money back if you find that you want to cancel the acct. There's a good chance that I'll spend no more than $15 a year there, and I'll have more control over the output :)

Stay tuned. For now I have kctipton.com there, but I don't yet have things configured correctly for anything other than a default page to pop up.

I've Been Busy(?) Blogging

I've been twiddling around for a few months on my own blog at keithtipton.com, so apologies for not posting here in the meantime.

Deleting Journal Entries

I get notifications of posts in various LISNewsters' journals. I want to read them, but not necessarily the day I get the notification. Sometimes I click on the link and find it's gone. http://www.lisnews.com/~Bibliofuture/journal/2749 is one that was sent to me on Feb 9. Today's the 19th, and it's gone! Why delete it? Heck, why post it if you found it so deletable within 10 days? I've had this happen with other posts by other posters (I'm not picking on one person, in other words).

Here's my suggestion: if you think a post will be transient, put in the subject line "(Expires in 5 days)" or something like that. At least I won't be surprised if I don't get to the post in a very short time.

"To Treat Autism, Parents Take a Leap of Faith" -- NYTimes

Here's a new, rather long article dated today, the 27th. It covers some of the ground from the other article about "curing" autism but addresses how that's being attempted in much more detail. Wow it can cost a lot.

A friend of mine has a little girl who seems to be an "Aspie." She's getting some horse-riding therapy, among other things. It's not nearly as costly as what gets mentioned in the NYTimes, but it's still more than they can afford -- and their insurance company has screwed up bigtime in interpreting its own rules about whether or not it'll cover some or all of the cost. Sheesh, some companies will do anything to avoid paying -- but that's a gripe for another day.

Autistic People Don't Want a "Cure" -- NYTimes.com

Here's an article from today's NYTimes where people with autism have something to say about being "cured". It also describes an experimental school for "Aspies." (Registration required)

Beheading Euphemisms

Why can't the reporters and their editors call it what it is?

Beheading with a knife while having your neck sawed until you are dead and disfigured = cruel murder = execution

Videotaped and televised beheading = snuff film.

I think I saw some comment in Newsweek about these being Jihadi snuff films. Yep, they are.

But, the term is being used in too sanitized a way. Why not just call it head removal with adverse consequences?

Beheaded = terminated = passed on = died.

Bullshit!

I dared to go find a website that showed poor Nick getting his head sawed off. I found it (it's not that hard to do). One site is hosting them ALL, but only after a huge number of disturbing disclaimers that you ought to not look. It made me sick, and I did it with audio off. Audio on would seem to be intolerable.

The victims in in Foxe's Book of Martyrs were treated as bad or worse, as were the medical experiment victims of Hitler's Germany.

My high school senior English teacher often made reference to "Man's inhumanity to man". It was a theme in some of what we had to read. It's clearly a theme that the press can barely address.

Incredible Stupidity, Ignorance and Incompetence All Around

The 9-11 Commission says we couldn't shoot down hijackers if they were in hot air balloons on a calm day: Here's a recent public opinion survey about who Americans blame for the mess related to 9/11

Top this off with the asinine nonplanning that occurred related to the "runup to war" with Iraq and the perversity of US soldiers (and their commanders) who felt it's ok to humiliate Iraqis in the most PR-damaging way possible and I am absolutely pissed off at everyone in charge of the US right now.

NPR gets a label from FAIR

Interesting commentary by the NPR ombudsman this week.

FAIR (Fairness and Accuracy in Reporting) has published a study that says NPR has gone over to the conservative side when it comes to who is interviewed and who are commentators.

I do and don't agree, and the ombudsman feels about the same.

LISNews is in good company, IMHO, if it and NPR are both considered too conservative by various "progressive" folk.

Another autism story on the radio

I heard this on the KUT radio feed online - Gorilla Therapy

This lady talks about her having Asperger's among other topics.

[NPR] Andrei Codrescu actually said something I agree with

Andrei Codrescu had an audio essay yesterday on NPR about how his literature students could be the same ones in Iraq doing the same awful things we're hearing about now. He wonders and explains why/how that could happen (hint: it's American society being expressed overseas for all the Iraqis to see). He hopes the soldiers are ashamed and that they know why they should be.


Listen here.

Am I Really Autistic? Self Test Results...

This is a self-test for Asperger's.

I scored a 37. Hmm.

There's a related article here.

Making Your Own Way, Consequences Be Damned

Wow, NYTImes.com has the story, The Pizza Parlor Prodigy today. A prodigy with the cello plays before large crowds with important people and orchestras at his side. He more or less walks away from that version of a music career to do things "his way." He's succeeding.

Who here has the nerve to do such a thing? I'd like to say that I do, but... I don't.

Vietnam, Deferrals, and Me

The NYTimes.com has Cheney's Five Draft Deferments During the Vietnam Era Emerge as a Campaign Issue as a story today (one of the top 25 most emailed stories).

I was born in 1968. At the time my dad was close to 25 years old. I think I was a Vietnam baby: one of the ways my dad got a deferral. My brother was born 2 years later. I don't know the details, but I think he could be a Vietnam baby too. I think my dad proposed to my mom (after the second date IIRC) to get a deferral. Went to school full time to get a deferral. Changed his major, stayed in school even longer to get a deferral...

Now, I could be wrong.

Does anyone know of a website that explains draft rules during the 1960s and the ways to get a deferral at various times?

To Library School or not to Library School?

OK, time is ticking. I am strongly considering working on an MIS (or is it MLS? I forget) through the U of North Texas web-based program. I've started the application process, but I have a lot to go. I got great test scores last May, and I am pretty sure they'll accept me as long as I get my bazillion transcripts all mailed in :(

My problem is that I'm wavering... Although the programs they offer sound great, watching most of you actual librarians post here and on lists like NEXGENLIB, I think I may not fit in well enough to be hired and/or to like a job enough to want to stay with it.

I was a high school teacher, loved the concept and tried hard to do well, but the people skills necessary to fit in to a politically correct social system (meaning, buttkissing and all that) weren't there. They still aren't. It sounds like working in a library will take the patience of Job. I don't have that.

Also, it sounds too much like a loner's job -- nobody but you to take on the masses. I realize that it can't actually be that way, but it sounds like it. I wanted teaching to be a team-like situation, with all of us teachers pulling together to do a good job and keep up each other's morale. That didn't happen more than a smidgen.

I need to hear more stories of intellectual stimulation, enjoyable teamwork, and more good news than bad. I need to hear it soon; the deadline to apply is close at hand.

Viruses and the technologically challenged

The NYTimes has an article today called "Geeks Put the Unsavvy on Alert: Learn or Log Off" about how viruses lately seem to be spread (or caught, depending on your POV) by the same people's computers over and over. Tech-savvy people are getting more and more peeved at the supposedly knowledgeable folks who just can't help clicking on an attachment no matter how many times they've been told not to.

I wonder if libraries a serious vector for computer viruses. All those public terminals add up. I'll bet that a lot of libraries don't disable or remove email programs, leaving themselves open to viruses and all the maladies that go with them.

Teachers vs. Educators - Labels Used in the News

I get google news updates for various keywords. I used to teach high school physics and math, so I like seeing what articles Google is finding. I search for "educator" and "teacher" and get separate emails for each. What I notice is that, usually, "teacher" is associated with a lot more negative news than is "educator."

  • teacher arrested
  • teacher charged (or accused)
  • teacher sentenced
  • educator awarded
  • educator remembered
  • educator honored

Yes, there's some positive and negative used with both terms, but the headline news Google finds tends to be as I describe above. It's odd. I don't like it.

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