September 23, 2006

20th Wedding Anniversary

It was 20 years ago that I was asked the question whether or not I would take Wendy Erin Hutchings to be my lawfully wedded wife, to have and to hold, 'til death doth us part. I said, I do. We've been together ever since, side by side:

Many people will say to their wives, "I cannot imagine life without you." They have no imagination. I can easily imagine where I would be had I not found Wendy:

Posted by Paladin at 07:53 AM | Comments (1)

September 04, 2006

Mislead = You have nothing good

I've got Google News set up to look for "california motorcycle helmet" as I try to find what is happening on the overturning of the California Mandatory Helemet Law. Today got a link to an editorial in the Arizona Republic.

It starts: "Motorcycle helmet law long overdue

Sept. 4, 2006 12:00 AM

The latest statistics from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration are sobering: 43,443 U.S. highway fatalities last year, with 1,177 deaths in Arizona."

The title is concerning motorcycles, so he starts with statistics on automotive fatalities. And not the rate, but the raw number. If you increase the number of drivers, and maintain the same fatality rate, why of course the raw number will rise. Truth is, the U.S. fatality rate, deaths per 100,000,000 miles, is down to 1.5 -- less than half of the 3.3 it was in 1980. In Arizona the rate is 2.1, down from 5.3 in 1980.

He continues:"These were the highest numbers since 1990, and Arizona was no exception to the increase. Motorcycle deaths increased for the eighth straight year, with half of the fatalities involving riders without helmets."

First note, a jump to motorcycle deaths with no mention that the previous numbers were for automobiles. And again, no mention of the fact that motorcycle sales are jumping. From 2000 to 2003 the number of vehicles increased about 4.5%. In the same period the number of motorcycles increased by almost 20%. Which represents a million new riders, and one of the factors in motorcycle accidents is being a new rider, so of course the accident and fatality numbers will rise even faster than the number of motorcycles.

But ignore that and note the statement -- half of the fatalities involving riders without helmets. Which means that half of the fatalities involve rider with helmets.

Move on to his next observation: "I recently moved to Arizona from California. When I drive around the Valley, I notice something alarming: Most of the motorcycle riders are without helmets."

Hmmm...... You claim that most of the motorcycle riders are not wearing helmets -- and yet half of the fatalities involve motorcyclists wearing helmets. Correct me if I'm wrong, but it seems that you are claiming that you are more likely to be killed if you wear a motorcycle helmet.

You know, if you have to mislead people in order to push your agenda it is obvious that you do not have any legitimate reasons.

Posted by Paladin at 02:03 PM | Comments (0)

September 03, 2006

Vacation Time!

Didn't take any last year, haven't taken any so far this year. Mainly 'cause we're down to just three and with a normal workload we are barely ekeing by. But my two projects are done, John's project is done, we have some slack time and I'm taking a break while I can.

So I start with reviving a laptop for guest use at my Father-in-Law's. Win2000, password? Nah, just rebrick it. So I do. With the original Win2000 disk. Out of date, of course. Plug in a just as old 3com LAN card, it recognizes in and gets on my LAN. Misplaced my old Speedstream WiFi card, so I stop by Frys and get a $40 Airlink card for $15. Go to install it. Disk won't boot -- wants Flash. Go to Macromedia, redirect to Adobe, won't install 'cause Windows needs updating. Go to Microsoft, upgrade to service pack 3. Make that 4. Upgrade Internet Explorer. Only about a dozen reboots. Back to adobe, Flash now loads. CD loads. Plug in the WiFi card and it sees my access point. Type in my key and it's connected wireless. Still need to install MS Office and Xitami server software. (The Xitami will allow me to configure Sally access over the Internet to Root -- assuming I can pinhole through the 2Wire brand router.)

Posted by Paladin at 04:59 PM | Comments (0)