Thursday, May 31, 2007

Stop the Presses!!!

Gas prices actually dropped 2 cents at the Weigel's convenience store near my office, from $2.97/gallon to $2.95/gallon.

Woohoo! Now I can go on that cross-country trip to Portland in my SUV.

When, oh when will the madness end!?!?!

I'm Not Saying Anything Here...

..but doesn't it look highly odd that the brand new father-in-law of the TB guy (an Atlanta lawyer) is a CDC microbiologist specializing in the spread of TB.
Cooksey works in the CDC's mycobacteriology laboratory branch. He has co-authored papers on diabetes and infectious diseases, including TB. He recently co-authored a report on a bacteria outbreak in bone marrow transplant and oncology patients in a hospital water supply.

I just think it sounds fishy the lawyer contracted the very disease his F-I-L is an expert in.

If this were a Stephen King novel, the CDC guy would've been working with an experimental strain of TB at home when the son-in-law accidently takes a swig, thinking it's soup or something.

Anyway, that's just me.

Lagging

Sorry for dearth of posts lately, we were out of town at my brother's wedding in Texas this past weekend. I'll have a bunch of pictures to post, plus some observations about the beautiful Texas Hill Country, but...later.

Got all kinds of work and play rehearsal to catch up. More soon - promise.

Thursday, May 24, 2007

Lost In Thought...."Through the Looking Glass"

My random guesses to the season-ending mysteries:

1) Who's in the boat, and who's Naomi working for? - The Hanso Foundation/Dharma Initiative has been searching for the island, since the jamming started they couldn't find it again to reestablish contact with their workers. Because Naomi had a picture of Desmond and Penny, Widmore Industries is involved.

2) Who's in the coffin? Someone we haven't met yet, but will in Season 4. I'm betting the person works with/for Dharma and will be someone Jack becomes close to (similar to Juliet). In fact, with all the named Others killed off now, except for Ben, Richard and Isabel the sheriff lady, I'm betting we'll get a whole new set of Dharma characters to interact with next season as the new heavies.

Close-ups of the newspaper clipping/obit showed the person's name was J____ _____ingham. Something like that. Which matches nobody we know as of yet, unless someone is under yet another alias. Michael was supposed to be in the coffin but they couldn't get the actor back, so the identity remains a mystery.

3) Is Jack's father dead? - I don't think Jack was delusionally drunk and just believed his father was still alive in the flash-forward. I think Christian Shephard is/will be still alive.

4) Was that really Walt? - I'm split on this. While I don't think Walt and Michael are back on the island, it's possible this could be a Future Walt, sent back in time either physically or as a projection, to warn Locke. The more likely explanation could be it's yet another manifestation of the Smoke Monster or Jacob. Ben did say he hoped Jacob could save Locke, and looks like he did.

5) What's up with Locke? - A strong reason for FutureWalt, Walt told Locke what would happen in the future if Jack signaled the ship. Why Locke just didn't explain to Jack is one of those infuriating Lost Mysteries. In addition, Locke survived the gunshot because it hit the spot where his kidney would have been had he not donated it to his father, so no lasting internal damage was done. Why he was paralyzed again and could suddenly walk, I don't know. Mind over matter I suppose.

6) What can Jack and Kate do from the future to fix things? - Sounds like they will work with Desmond and perhaps Walt to use their powers to alter the past and stop himself (Jack) from contacting the ship. In which case Desmond may be able to save Charlie, as well.

7) Is Mikhail dead? - I think Mikhail died at the sonic fence, just as he died from the spear gun. But because of Dharma's experiments with life-extension science he cannot die and keeps resurrecting. I would be very surprised if he did not survive the grenade as well.

As much as I love time travel stories, I hoped that Lost would steer mostly away from sci-fi and more towards metaphysical and perhaps supernatural, but that doesn't seem to be the case.

I believe Dharma was experimenting with life-extension on the island originally, for years, and the original Others were mainly failed experiments that escaped and eventually overthrew their "creators". It seems that the original Others were people more like Richard, Ethan, Goodwin, Isabel, Mikhail and Ms Klugh, and people like Tom, Pickett, Colleen, Ryan, Bonnie and Greta were hired muscle brought in later from the outside. Something on the island made it impossible for women to bring children to term before dying, and the Others were trying to figure out why. Dharma will now want to take all that research back over and probably start again.

Probably more later, as things come to me.

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

At Last, Our Long National Nightmare Is Finally Over

05:59:57

*bleep bloop*

05:59:58

*bleep bloop*

05:59:59

*bleep bloop*

06:00:00

*bleep barf*

Food, Glorious Food

I was wondering when I was going to get tagged for this meme - thanks LissaKay!...


1. Add a direct link to your post below the name of the person who tagged you. Include the city/state and country you’re in.

Nicole (Sydney, Australia)
velverse (Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia)
LB (San Giovanni in Marignano, Italy)
Selba (Jakarta, Indonesia)
Olivia (London, England)
ML (Utah, USA)
Lotus (Toronto, Canada)
tanabata (Saitama, Japan)
Andi (Dallas [ish], Texas, United States)
Todd (Louisville, Kentucky, United States)
miss kendra (los angeles, california, u.s.a)
Jiggs Casey (Berkeley, CA, USA! USA! USA!)
Tits McGee (New England, USA)
Joe (NE Tennessee, USA)
10K Monkeys (Chattanooga, Tennessee, USA)
Big Stupid Tommy (Athens, Tennessee, USA)
Newscoma (Weakley County, Tennessee, USA)
Russ McBee (Knoxville, Tennessee, USA)
Atomictumor Mrs Eaves (Oak Ridge, Tennessee, USA)
Oh Really? LissaKay (Oak Ridge, TN, USA)
Inn of the Last Home (Knoxville, TN USA)

2. List out your top 5 favorite places to eat at your location.


1 - I once got made fun of mercilessly by a large group of online culinary snobs for this pick, but I love eating at The Olive Garden. Not so much for the pasta itself, but for the hot, buttery, melt-in-your-mouth breadsticks and the delicious salad with Italian dressing. Both are all you can eat, and the pasta comes in huge portions, too. Take that, K2K!! There's an Olive Garden in Turkey Creek I actually went to last night, but the one we went to the most is on Kingston Pike near West Town Mall. (Honorable mention for Italian goes to Altrudas which has better pasta, especially the Fettucini Alfredo, and Gondoliers, which is close by, quick and filling.

2 - My favorite Mexican place is Monterrey's in Farragut. Good, hot, spicy-but-not-too-spicy, fairly authentic as best I can tell and economical. My wife loves Cozymel's but I prefer my Mexican somewhat less corporate. I used to eat at Cancun's a lot (Broadway, Chapman Hwy, Peter's Rd) but after finding bugs all over a buffet plate at the old Kingston Pike location, we haven't been back much.

3 - I spoke briefly of my favorite pizza spots in my small personal history here, but the only one of those that still exists is Stefano's on the Strip. And that's mainly for the delicious crust. The toppings are fine, but the crust is to die for.

Do you get the idea I only go for specialty types of food? You couldn't be more wrong!! Actually, no, that's pretty accurate.

4 - Litton's in Fountain City has the best hamburgers in town and have been #1 for many years. What's funny is their jumbo hot dog on toasted bun is almost as good, and I'm often torn when I go there which one to get. But the burger usually wins out. Another really good burger can be had at Steak Out on Kingston Pike, and quality burgers served in an especially quality, friendly, clean atmosphere can be had at Back Yard Burgers.

5 - I'm especially fond of subs and a good ham'n'cheese, and my favorite is at Mcallister's (on the Strip, in Turkey Creek and in Alcoa). The Hickory Melt is my favorite, followed closely by the new Club Wrap. And it has some of the best SWEET TEA in town, which is a big priority (Back Yard Burgers in Bearden wins that crown). I also enjoy the Cuban and the Cheeseburger Wrap at Beef O'Brady's.

I tag Michael, Julie, The Beast, Sarcomical and Will.

Oh, and Kat Coble, cuz she and Slarti, they's my two new favoritest bloggers, but Slarti's already done the meme...

Politics

I read blogs, and watch the news, and listen to the radio and I am amazed and stupified by all things “political” - that anyone would attach such importance to abstract, ephemeral concepts such as “conservative”, “liberal” - or even worse “Republican”, “Democrat”, “Libertarian”, etc - to assign them concrete, measurable values…. it’s so sad.

And that’s especially magnified when you do something like truly experience life: outdoors, nature, people, love, kids - all that which is available for all to enjoy, while so many lock themselves in their own little self-righteous dungeons and choose sides against one another.

Politics as it stands today - me against you, him against her, us against them against us - will eventually be lethal.

What do I mean eventually? It already is.

If you truly feel proud to align yourself with one of these artificial, arbitrary entities (and I don't mean registering as one party or the other in order to vote - that's required by today's voting laws in some cases), if you feel that calling yourself, proudly, a Republican or Democrat...a conservative or liberal, if you feel that it's more important to align yourself with people who are more concerned with exercising their own egos than serving their country - I have no use for you.

Groups of arbitrary and unrelated "values" have been randomly co-opted by either side, based on which issue came up under which politician's watch, and they added it to their "platform". Humans don't need to think that way, they don't need to let a "party" speak for them, they need to speak for themselves. You need to speak for yourself, decide for yourself. Think for yourself.

Stop the gamesmanship. Stop the childishness. Stop the foolishness. Stop the endless waste of time pursuing political ends instead of the good of the country and the people.

And please, all of you, stop perpetuating the myth and understand the reality. We have to work together - truly together - to succeed.

Forget abortion. Forget global warming. Forget immigration. Forget the war. Forget taxation, forget big government, forget welfare, forget parties, pork, platforms, policies and philosophies.

But don't forget to think for yourself.

Please.

UPDATE (05/23/07): For some reason partisanship or "Label Politics" extends down to the local level, to the extent that we still insist on mainting party affiliations for local races. As if that made a difference when you're trying to decide whether to redraw school districts, repair roads, set taxes, improve law enforcement or renovate historic buildings. If a county desperately needs an increase in property tax to fund a needed initiative, Republicans - being the party of small government and low taxes - would likely oppose it, regardless of whether it was fiscally necessary or not. Because that's what they, as Republicans, are "supposed to believe", or because that's what their most influential constituents want them to believe. It has little to do with whether or not a property tax increase is actually necessary and good for the people.

That's what I mean when I say arbitrarily subdividing ourselves into teams and rooting for the teams regardless of the game is wrong. It's fine when we're talking College Football, but not for government and social issues.

Sunday, May 20, 2007

I loves me some Lipitor

February 2007 Cholesterol Check

HDL (good cholesterol): 30 (should be more than 50)
LDL (bad cholesterol): 151 (should be less than 130)
Total cholesterol: 210 (should be less than 200)
Triglicerides: 145 (should be less than 150)


Put on Lipitor by my doc.


May 2007 Cholesterol Check

HDL: 37
LDL: 79
Total cholesterol: 137
Triglicerides: 118


I think it's working :)


(Note to Pfizer: If you'd like me to talk up Lipitor on my site for a tidy renumeration, I'd be happy to oblige - I certainly wouldn't be lying!)

Thursday, May 17, 2007

Lost in Thought...Greatest Hits

Not quite as many HUH??? moments as last week, but a decent, solid hour. I like how they got all the cast together for one big family reunion (sans Locke, of course) - Losties and Others both. Was there anyone in the main or recurring island cast besides Locke that wasn't in the episode? I don't think I saw Tom, though, in the Others camp but I could be wrong. I thought it was odd that Ben picked Random Other guy I don't remember being mentioned before to lead the 10-man Other Assault on the beach and not Tom, though. Now that Pickett's dead, Tom seemed to be Ben's main "enforcer". I wonder if he's walked? Now that I think about it, we didn't see Mikhail either.

I expected Charlie to die, since the big Sword of Damocles was waving mighty low over his head the whole show. But I'd rather him not, since I kind of like the character - however, he has to defy fate himself by figuring out how to thwart Desmond's vision and save Claire and himself. If it's done for him, out of his control, the character arc and growth is lessened.

How many people said out loud, in unison, "...and then we'll blow them all to hell!" with Jack in the last seconds of the teaser? Me!

I thought the best line was when Charlie apologized to the woozy Desmond and said, "brother". Loved it.

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Take Care of Him

The founding of American is celebrating 400 years this week in Jamestown, Virginia.

The very essence of modern America took root on the banks of the James River in 1607, at Jamestown, Virginia ...13 years before the pilgrims founded Plymouth in Massachusetts.

Brainyboy's 5th grade class left this morning, en masse, on a big honkin' luxury bus to visit Williamsburg, Jamestown and Monticello. We got up at 5am this morning and waved them away after 6. The bus has wireless internet access and satellite TV. Chew on that for a while. Oh, yes, Tennessee Kings, the keeper of the library at his school and mom of one of the other 5th graders, is going with them. I told her she should live-blog the trip...

We've visited Williamsburg twice before and had a wonderful time together. The area is so steeped in American history it's a fascinating place to visit.

And it doesn't hurt this is there, too.

He and his class get back late Thursday night. Keep them all in your thoughts as they travel the roads of America.

Monday, May 14, 2007

More Tech Etiquette

Now I don't want to go off on a rant here..--



Wait, you know what? Yes I do.




Please indulge me to rant about e-mail for just a moment. Specifically, email habits in the business and group hobby world (in this case, community theatre).

As we continue deep into the 2nd week of rehearsals for "Suessical", it has become somewhat critical that we fill several major holes in our cast. Three main characters have yet to find actors, which is not a good thing.

[Side note - if you are or you know a young performer (ages 12-25) that would be interested in performing, PLEASE let me know]

Starting last week, when we knew we'd have to start searching for replacements I began calling in contacts of various local theatre and musical people I know. I asked their assistance in giving me names of folks they've worked with in the past that might be interesting in joining our show. These are high schoolers, mostly, with some middle schoolers thrown in.

In total over the past two weeks I received about 15 different email addresses of possible cast members. In most cases, the emails were for their parents. In addition, I gathered email addresses for some cast members of last year's "The King and I" and sent the invitation to participate out to them as well. All in all, in the past week and a half, I've sent out approximately 20 emails to different area performers and parents, either to see if they or their kids had any interest in being in the show, or to request they check some of their contacts.

Since then, I received one reply. One. That was from a dad of a kid who was interested in being in the show.

I heard nothing else from anyone I sent emails to. Not a "thanks, not interested." Not a "thanks, I'll see if I'll check my schedule." Not a "thanks, let me see if I can find anybody for you." Not a "thanks, I don't think I can really help you."

Nothing.

Here's the scoop. If someone sends you a personal email with some kind of call to action, reply to it. It can be as simple as, "thanks." That's it - just acknowledge receipt. If someone walked up to you on the street and asked you a question or if you would do them a favor would you just ignore them and keep walking? Of course not, you'd stop, say hi and respond in some way.

If you have an email address and you give out that email address to the world as a contact point, you have just as much obligation to check it and respond as if you gave someone your phone number.

But then there are people who screen calls with caller ID or answering machines and only answer or respond to those people they want to talk to. In other words, it's all about themselves - not others.

Email contact is huge and only going to get bigger. You may miss out on an important opportunity, or contact with an old friend. I doubt I'll be contacting any of these people again soon to be in a show.



But that's just my opinion, I could be wrong.

Kat Trax

Tish the Chattie Kat has moved. Be sure to updated your blogrolls to http://chattiekat.com/

Friday, May 11, 2007

Friday's Feast



Feast One Hundred & Forty Three

Appetizer - Tell about a time when you had to be brave.

I've never had to be brave about anything, I don't think. My life's been pretty darn uneventful as far as needing actual bravery/courage to accomplish a task or endure a hardship. It's interesting, I'd never thought about it that way before. I've never really gotten in a fight, never had to defend anyone from harm. Never tried to parachute or dive with sharks or hunt wild boar. Never been in any real physical danger. The bravest I've ever had to be was finally getting on a roller coaster for the first time as a teenager after a bad experience when I was a kid.


Soup - Which upcoming movie are you excited about seeing?

I'm looking forward to seeing "Pirates III", "The Simpsons", and "Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix". Maybe even "Evan Almighty" if it gets good reviews. Plus "Dragonlance: Dragons of Autumn Twilight" comes out on DVD this fall.


Salad - Name an item you try to always have on hand.

My fingers (at least 5)


Main Course - Imagine the most relaxing room you can think of. Now describe it!

Nice, comfy overstuffed chair. Open window, warm day and slight breeze coming in. Rather sunny. Good book in my hand, cold glass of ice tea and bag of chips nearby. Quiet, or some soft music playing.


Dessert - On a scale of 1 to 10 (10 being highest), how spiritual or religious are you?

I'd say a 7.

Thursday, May 10, 2007

Who Is Jacob?

Here's a screen-grab of the mysterious "Jacob" seen (or not seen) in last night's Lost:


I lightened/sharpened/contrasted it quite a bit from the dark original, but it's still not quite as good as what I freeze-framed on the HD picture last night. You see the character has a high forehead, a fairly long head, long hair parted in the middle, a pinkish-salmon jacket/sweater over perhaps a khaki shirt or maybe a uniform. There's a flat, patrician nose and maybe a hint of a grey beard or goatee.

Doug (and others) think he looks like Ben. I think he looks somewhat like the apparently ageless Richard Alpert, especially how he looked when young Ben first ran into him in the jungle.

I think it's more likely that it's the Smoke Monster - or rather, a manifestation of whatever the Smoke Monster is - because of its apparent invisibility and ability to manipulate objects all over the room. I don't really think it's a figment of Ben's imagination, nor do I think he's pulling a fast one on everybody. I think there's a "there" there, but what it is is still indetermined.

What do you think?

Wednesday, May 09, 2007

Note To Self

Using "frak" as a mild curse word sounds really cool and sci-fi when you use it in your head, but not so much when you say it out loud.

Examples...

In your head:

"This frakkin' traffic is about to drive me frakkin' crazy!! What the frak are these people doing??" (sounds hip and edgy)


Out loud:

"When the frak did gas go up another 10 cents???" (gets you strange looks from Weigel's store clerk)


I'll just keep that one to myself...

Tuesday, May 08, 2007

The Pointlessness Of It All

Some of you know James Lileks lost his day job.

I really like Lileks, and have read him since I first entered the blogging community. He'll bounce back, hakuna matata there.

But this post isn't about that.

I've never heard of Nancy Nall (hey, everybody can't read everybody), but read her take on Lilek's predicament and her "advice" to him. What's more, read the slew of comments both in support of her and support of Lileks.

It's a prime example of how distorted and self-serving today's politics - especially internet-fueled politics - has become. Nall is liberal, she labels Lileks a conservative (though I believe, as some commenters do, he's more moderate than they believe). Her liberal readers slam Lileks for his politics, Lileks supporters slam them for their slamming, everyone slams everyone for slamming the slammity slam slam out of the other and at the end of day there's just a whole lot of slamming and nobody's actually learned anything. It's fascinating in it's banality and narcissism.

Even if you've never read either online writer, for an example in where partisan politics has led us to today and how the anonymity of the internet has amplified it, take a look.

Monday, May 07, 2007

Runs in the Family

Just so you know Brainyboy's not the only all-star athlete in the family:

What form!

His swing is a blur...

Rounding the bases--

--and coming home!


These were taken during this game.

The Next Pelé?

BrainyBoy gets his kicks:





The JV Soccer season may be over, but the memories remain....

Friday, May 04, 2007

Who Knew?

De La Hoya and Mayweather prep for Saturday showdown

Wait a second, wait a second....hold on. I have an important question, here.

There's still boxing?

I had no idea....

Up, Up and Away!

Wow.

Laura was given a couple of free tickets to the UT/Ole Miss baseball game this evening and took Brainyboy with her. I had Suessical rehearsal and Tink was staying overnight at a friend's house, so they went by themselves.

In the midst of a 1 hour storm/lightning delay, they had a drawing for two free round-trip tickets from Allegiant Air, a new carrier in Knoxville.

Guess who won?

So she just called me with a choice: Las Vegas, Orlando, or Tampa? It wasn't really a hard choice - I've been to Vegas a couple of times on business but it's not really the place for us as a couple. And if you're choosing between Tampa and Orlando...well, duh.

I wonder what Mickey's up to lately?

Friday's Feast



Feast One Hundred & Forty Two

Appetizer - Name something you would not want to own.

I would not want to own a really fast, expensive car, because a) status doesn't excite me, b) insurance rates would be murder, c) I have no real need for speed, d) I have to transport kids, e) most really fast, expensive cars are ugly, and f) the money could be better utilized elsewhere. Like in a boat ;)


Soup - Describe your hair (texture, color, length, etc.).

*sigh*

It's brown, with a high forehead and thinning in the back. If I didn't wash it every day, it's stick up in all directions.



Salad - Finish this sentence: I’ll never forget ___________.

I'll never forget the 1982 World's Fair! (I know, you're getting tired of me talking about it)


Main Course - Which famous person would you like to be for one day? Why?

I'd like to be the president for a day, on the one condition I don't have to make any decisions regarding nukes. I wouldn't spend the day tackling the big issues, I'd spend a max of 15 minutes on small problems that the president could decide on to make America better. That's 96 nationally important problems solved or addressed in one day - pretty good track record.


Dessert - Write one sentence about yourself that includes one thing that is true and another thing that is not.

I just turned 40 and I'm happy about it.

Another Cell Phone Etiquette Question

You leave your cell phone lying on the table, and come back and see someone has called but not left a voice mail. Do you call them back anyway and see what they wanted (assuming it tells you who called)?

Thursday, May 03, 2007

Lost in Coincidence

One followup to my previous "Lost" post (I can tell you're all sick of me talking about this week's episode, judging by the voluminous comments /:) )....

Let's assume the Others knew nothing about the Losties before their plane crashed. Mikhail worked with unknown outside sources to gather files on all the passengers and crew (?) only after the plane hit their airspace. Presumably these outside sources have a lot of influence to find out such things as Sawyer killed in the man in Sydney.

I hypothesised that since the fake plane wreckage had to be placed in the trench very soon after the real Flight 815 was reported missing, those who placed it probably had to have either had a hand in their crash or at least known beforehand that it was going to happen. Does that mean they influenced the inclusion of or actually chose the people who were going to be passengers on that flight?

If not, then how to explain the coincidence of so many cross-connections between the passengers, especially the ones featured on the actual show? Locke's father is the original Sawyer. Jack had to choose between his future wife and Boone and Shannon's father to save in the emergency room. Hurley and Libby were in the asylum at the same time. Desmond ran into Charlie once when he was a street musician. Sayid's American soldier handler was Kate's stepfather. And the list goes on and on: Anna Lucia was hired as a bodyguard to Jack's father. The mother of Sawyer's child once helped out Kate when she was on the run. Locke once inspected a house for Sayid's former lover. Libby met up with Desmond and gave him his sailboat. Mr. Eko visited Claire's psychic. And of course, Claire and Jack are actually step-siblings.

So how to explain so many coincidences? Were they all manufactered? Implanted memories? Part of some greater purpose to guide each of them both to Australia and to that particular flight back to L.A.?

Somewhere, somehow this questions has to be answered for any of the overarching series to make sense. The flashbacks have been so integral to the show as to almost define it stylisticly that to ultimately chalk up the coincidences to just that, coincidence, would be to hugely undermine the credibility of all the writers have produced...

Lost in Thought -- at Sea

More "Lost" in Thoughts...

Ok, so it's established by Naomi and Cooper that some plane was found four miles deep in the ocean off of Bali. The world now believes it was Oceanic Flight 815, and that all the passengers and crew are dead.

Ok, disregarding Cooper's assertion that they're all in hell (including him - well, he probably actually is, now) let's figure out the mostly likely explanation what happened.

1) We can reasonably surmise that the "Others" were not expecting the plane to appear in the sky over their island, but were prepared for the eventuality.

2) Desmond's failure to enter the numbers in time in the Hatch caused the electromagnetic pulse that caught 815 and crashed it.

2a) Did the pulse also pull it off course in the first place? According to the pilot (the crewman and the Episode title), "Six hours in, our radio went out; no one could see us. We turned back to land in Fiji. By the time we hit turbulence, we were a thousand miles off course. They're looking for us in the wrong place." Which did the pulse cause - the radio to go out, or the turbulance? Or the actual break-up of the plane? In other words, did the pulse cause all three things to happen in sequence, or was it one of several forces at work to divert the plane?

3) Regardless of the how, Flight 815 crashes on Lostopia Island. The tail section breaks off and lands mostly in the water off the northern coast. The nose section breaks off and lands some distance inland in the trees. The middle section, plus some of the wing and engine sections that are still attached, land on the beach and some parts are eventually swept back out to sea.

4) Therefore, ignoring the possibility of such sci-fi concepts as twinning (dual Will Rikers or John Crichtons) and alternate universes, someone placed a replica of Flight 815 at the bottom of the ocean off the coast of Bali. It had to have been done fairly quickly, since once rescue efforts got started in earnest the possibility of doing so unnoticed grows vanishingly small. Therefore someone or group of someones had to have access to another, unused Boeing 777 that would not be missed, transport it toward Bali and sink it in a 4-mile trench before any search & rescue teams could get to that area and search it before they got there. Did whoever placed the fake plane and people know beforehand that the real 815 was destined to crash on the island? Did they have a hand in bringing that about? How could they have planned for that exact eventuality when Desmond's failing to push the button happened to occur at that exact moment? This would explain a lot about how the Losties' pasts are so connected to each other. More on that in a later post.

5) Allowing that the plane was somehow transported there, how to account for the bodies? According to parachutist Naomi, "Submersible robots explored the wreckage with cameras, which showed that all of the bodies were there." Whether they actually were able to capture video of 324 bodies inside at outside the fuselage is unknown, but if that's so the people who placed this replica would have had to actually kill 324 more people of relative size, shape, gender and race of the Losties. That fact is actually debatable, since the depth of the plane would make rescue efforts almost impossible so positive identification of any of the bodies would be unlikely. Still. 324 people.

6) So who did it? Ben, after witnessing the crash, takes Juliet to visit Mikhail at The Flame Station. Mikhail is monitoring global news coverage of the disappearance of the flight, and Ben tells him to find out everything he can about the passengers.

Did Ben, and Mikhail, also have a hand in or knowledge of the plan to create a decoy Flight 815? Juliet's recruiter Richard (the GQ guy that gave Sawyer's file to Locke) was at that time in the outside world keeping an eye on Juliet's sister, Rachel so they did have some human contacts off the island at that time. Were they at that time in contact with an outside agency, all working together to further whatever plan the Others have going?

I think there are two main possibilities at this point (some I've postulated about before have been eliminated). Sun's father and Paik Industries, and Desmond's girl Penelope's father and Widmore Corporation. If either are involved, do they work together? Separate? At all? Were either in touch with the Others, before the second pulse that Locke caused that cut off outside communication? Or is it the ever-evasive Hanso Foundation, the force behind the Dharma Initiative? Are Hanso and Dharma still actively interested in what happens on the island, and completely informed? Somebody out there is the mysterious "Jacob" Ben and other Others (heh) keep mentioning. "Jacob" is the brains behind everything, a "great man" and to me he's either Charles Widmore, Alvar Hanso, Mr. Paik, or Christian Shephard (Jack's supposedly dead father). Anthony Cooper has obviously been eliminated.

7) So to sum up: The real Flight 815 crashed on the island. Some agency set up a fake crash site just inaccessible enough to satisfy searchers but unable to be disproven. Said agency has some connection to the goings on on the island, and may or may not have been in collusion with the Others.

That's my story and I'm sticking with it.

I have another idea on a related subject I'll get to later today...

Cell Phone Voice Mail

Does anyone actually check the voice mail on their cell phones?

I've left business messages on two peoples' cell phones in the last two days, specifically explaining my requests and asking them to call me back. I was fairly explicit in the importance of my call.

So far, I've heard back from neither of them. I'm reasonably sure at least one of them is in town, but it's possible they aren't.

Incidentally, both of them are women if that makes a difference.

Do you return cell phone voice mails promptly, especially those that aren't strictly personal? Do you give it a few days to stew? Do you ignore them? Or do you even check voice mail?

Jasper 1, Knoxville 0

In the first Sawyer flashback on "Lost" way back in Season 1, it's established that after seeing his father kill his mother and then take his own life, young Sawyer wrote the con man Sawyer a letter. In it, the eight-yr-old wrote that he knew what the con man had done, and that someday he would find him. Young Sawyer never delivered the letter, and he'd kept it with him in an unmailed envelope when he crashed on the island.

The stamp on the envelope read "Knoxville, TN", which revealed to an excited Knoxville community that Sawyer was from here. He was born in 1969 and was 8 when the con/killings happened so that would have put it at about 1977.

Last night, our Sawyer finally caught up with con man Sawyer - who also turned out to be Locke's father - and had gave him the long-awaited letter. I waited in anticipation, knowing that Knoxville or Tennessee would have to be mentioned in some capacity since in the process of dialogue some connection to Sawyer's past had to be made.

Jasper, Alabama???

Our Sawyer asks con Sawyer (aka Anthony Cooper) if he'd ever been to Jasper, AL, and conned a woman there named "Mary". Cooper said he had, and Sawyer eventually kills him for the evil deed.

Rats. Alabama beats us out on something again. Even though I'm pretty sure it was established Sawyer is a native Tennessean, he and his family were apparently living in Jasper at the time and after the deaths he must've been brought to live in Knoxville. That's where he wrote the letter. Well, you can't have it all.




Meanwhile, in the most pointless cameo of the season - hello, Rousseau. Um, bye Rousseau. Would you like fries with that dynamite? You know she's planning to blow something up good with the stuff which will become apparent in a later episode but the exchange between she and Locke, especially after she just vanished after seeing Alex, was extremely odd. Hope she doesn't blowed herself up good like Arnst did... *poof*

Wednesday, May 02, 2007

Enhancing the User Experience

In order to keep up with emergent technologies, we would like to announce a breakthrough by our staff of Information Technology gully dwarves:

Inn of the Last Home will now be broadcast using Cisco Telepresence© technology.




If it's good enough for the Russian-American relations, it's good enough for me.

Tuesday, May 01, 2007

I'm Getting Too Old For This

Last night at softball, I:
  • Went 3-4
  • Scooped up a hot grounder at first, which bounced and hit me in the abdomen. I trapped it and tossed it to the pitcher covering first, but it wasn't in time. I felt like I had the wind knocked out of me, and today I have a softball-sized red spot just below my ribs.
  • Was standing on 2nd with another runner on 1st when the next batter hit a blooper to left-center. The left- and leftcenter-fielder (in softball there are 4 outfielders) both converged, so I went about half-way. The ball hit the left-center's glove and popped out. I started running for 3rd and noticed him catch the ball in the air with his other hand, barehanded. You could hear the cartoon *scr-ee-ee-ee-ee-ch* as I skidded to a stop and ran back to 2nd. Left-center threw to 2nd to try to pick me off, but I slid under the throw, landed hard, and - once again - bruised my rear end in the same spot as the last time. The throw was dropped and rolled away so I scrambled up and ran on to 3rd. I scored a couple batters later.
  • In the process of sliding (which is being charitable - it was more like "stumbling with style") I also bruised the inside of my left wrist. There is now a greenish area that looks like I'm about to become a zombie.


Some people seem to find this amusing...