Monthly Archives: May 2008

The Ease of getting into Photography

As many people know, I carry my camera with me everyday. It’s easy, not too heavy and you never now what or who you will come across in New York City. Since it’s all digital there is no such thing as a wasted shot as you can just delete it. Unlike film cameras, you don’t need to print them either. You can host them on a variety of sited from Flickr (my personal favorite), Smugmug, Pbase or many others. Many people don’t host their images but just keep them on their PC and simply print their best shots.

This is exactly why Digital SLR’s are becoming so popular. At work, several of my co-workers (5 so far and another seriously considering it) are spending the extra cash to get a Digital SLR instead of a point and shoot camera. The initial cost is high, but the camera lasts for years with proper maintenance (Sensor Cleaning).

You have a wide selection of Digital SLR’s too. I have a Nikon D80, but Nikon’s makes the Nikon D60 which is sold at Costco as a package that includes the 18-55mm VR and 55-200mm VR lens for $874 (at this writing). Its’ a good camera, shoots at 10.2 Mega pixels and is like all Nikon cameras, very ergonomic. For variety, Costco also offers a Canon Rebel XSi with a 18-55mm IS Lens for $879 as well. Me, I prefer Nikon as I like the feel and ergonomics of the controls but you really can’t go wrong with any Digital SLR. All of them have a rich feature set.
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Keith Olbermann Special Comment

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In the past, I’ve written how Sen. Clinton was really close to losing my vote and I’m repulsed that she used Osama Bin Laden (9 seconds in) in her GOP political advertisement. Now, Sen. Clinton latest “gaffe” is to invoke the memory of Sen. Kennedy’s assassination in some sort of rationalization for her to stay in the race.

Mind you, I don’t care if she’s In or Out of the race, but after Keith Olbermann’s Special Comment on the matter, I think it’s safe to say she’s done.

I’m glad she stopped that “Gas Holiday” nonsense. Ignoring the legal hurdles of getting the Oil companies to eat it or the deficit it would contribute to if the Gov’t just stopped collecting it for a time, it won’t solve anything in the long term.

Music I’m listening to right Now:
Mercy” by Duffy from the “Rockferry” Album. You can see the video here.

Wow, that’s going to leave a mark!

Saw this on The Huffington Post:

John Hagee, the controversial evangelical leader and endorser of Sen. John McCain, argued in a late 1990s sermon that the Nazis had operated on God’s behalf to chase the Jews from Europe and shepherd them to Palestine. According to the Reverend, Adolph Hitler was a “hunter,” sent by God, who was tasked with expediting God’s will of having the Jews re-establish a state of Israel.

I’m thinking Sen. John McCain is having a bad day right about now especially since, IMO, he went out of his way to Get John Hagee’s endorsement.

It didn’t take long for Sen. John McCain to finally reject his endorsement. Amusingly, the News media pretty much ignored John Hagee’s comments. I suppose they feel he’s not as inflammatory as Rev. Wright.

Music I’m listening to right Now:
Stop And Stare” by One Republic from the “Dreaming Out Loud” Album. You can see the video here.

GW Bush stopped Playing Golf?

First saw this on Think Progress and Huffington Post. From the Article on Politico :

Q Mr. President, you haven’t been golfing in recent years. Is that related to Iraq?

THE PRESIDENT: Yes, it really is. I don’t want some mom whose son may have recently died to see the Commander-in-Chief playing golf. I feel I owe it to the families to be as — to be in solidarity as best as I can with them. And I think playing golf during a war just sends the wrong signal.

Q Mr. President, was there a particular moment or incident that brought you to that decision, or how did you come to that?

THE PRESIDENT: No, I remember when de Mello, who was at the U.N., got killed in Baghdad as a result of these murderers taking this good man’s life. And I was playing golf — I think I was in central Texas — and they pulled me off the golf course and I said, it’s just not worth it anymore to do.

Wow. over 4,000 US soldiers dead and he gave up Golf? I wonder if the president realizes that people serving in Iraq and Afghanistan are giving up a lot more than Golf?

Music I’m listening to now:
Nothing at the moment.

Wash. Post: Some War Dead Were Cremated at Facility Handling Pets

This is just too bizarre. As per the Washington Post:

The U.S. military has, since 2001, cremated some of the remains of American service members killed in Iraq, Afghanistan and elsewhere at a Delaware facility that also cremates pets, a practice that ended yesterday when the Pentagon banned the arrangement.

Ok, bad enough our soldiers get killed, but to send their remains to a place that also handles Pet Cremation is just completely thoughtless and inappropriate to say the least. If they can’t find a Funeral Home with the proper facilities, just pay the money needed to have the proper facilities installed at a Funeral home. How hard is that?

I can only imagine how bad it was for the the Army officer who went there to attend the final service of their friend only to see the place labeled as a as a pet crematory.

The article also has:

Lt. Gen. Frank G. Klotz, director of the Air Force Staff, said he does not know whether any military officer had ever inspected the contracted crematories.

I would hope that after this, all facilities used for the fallen are inspected.

Music I’m listening to right Now:
Nothing at the moment.

Oil surges past $126 a barrel

Nice. And I was worried about $120 a barrel…

I’m in the midst of pricing out a conversion to either Natural Gas or simply upgrade to a new Oil Burner. When I get numbers/facts, I’ll document it here as I’m sure many people are thinking they have to lower their energy costs.

Our home is old, not fully insulated and the current Oil burner is from 1923. On top of being inefficient, our boiler room is dusty and the oil tank takes up a lot of space.

Image from CNN.

Music I’m listening to right Now:
These Hard Times” by Matchbox Twenty from the “Exile on Mainstream” Album. You can see the video here.

Oil now at $120 a barrel

Just perfect. Oil hit $120 a barrel today. This is exactly why I’m pricing out a conversion to Gas. At this rate, one would need to be a millionaire just to heat your home. Gee, I wonder how long it will take the three Presidential candidates to notice?

I’m all for Political Expression but SPELL CHECK first

Saw this on and had to look. Maybe she’s trying to be “ironic”? After all, she underlined “offical”.

The Image caption reads:

Excellent point: In Houston, a Texan protesting amnesty for illegal immigrants argues that anyone who can’t master English doesn’t deserve to live in America.

Music I’m listening to now:
Nothing at the moment.

Sen. John McCain: ‘Mission accomplished’ banner not Bush’s fault

From the AP: Sen. John McCain says President Bush should not be held responsible for the much-criticized “mission accomplished” banner five years ago, but he should be blamed for bungling the early months of the Iraq war. So, The Buck stops where? Not at the desk of the current President.