Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Sweet Home Chicago

I had a fun Chicago-filled weekend (if you count Monday as part of the weekend).

On Saturday, my friend and I went to the Chicago History Museum. I've loved Chicago history ever since I took a sociology class in high school that included a section on Chicago. At the museum, I learned about Chicago's rich history of disaster, crime, dead animals and rioting. It is a magical place. You know a city is destined for greatness when it's built on a swamp.

My second fun Chicago excursion was the Google Adwords Seminar for Success on Monday with a coworker. The seminar was great, I learned good things, and it was at the Drake Hotel. Very classy. Plus we got a free USB flash drive and a Google mug and pen. I love free stuff. This was all well and good, but by far the most exciting and terrifying part of the day was our taxi ride to and from the hotel. We took the train into the city, but the walk to the hotel was a bit much, so we opted for the taxi. Now, I've not experienced a taxi ride in any other city so I'm not sure how they compare, but a taxi ride in Chicago is not something you'll soon forget. Basically you're first filled with intense fear for your own life, followed by intense fear for the lives of any pedestrians that may get in the taxi's way. It's quite the adventure, one that everyone should experience at least once.

Seriously though, I love Chicago. I love the buildings, the lake, the street musicians, the shopping, the history and all the busyness going on all the time. A walk along the lake is so beautiful and especially fun when the weather's nice and the bikers and runners are out. As long as they don't run into me.

Random Items

Two things I need to say:

1) Google is now openly admitting that they are taking over the world. This is what they wrote in a recent blog post:

Not only do we offer email, calendaring, and document creation and collaboration services (and more!) for individuals, but with Google Apps, businesses, schools and other organizations can customize these tools and use them as their own internal systems.

Yep, they're infiltrating our school systems. The future of our country is now owned and operated by Google.

2) A few months back Microsoft introduced the Zune, their lame answer to the iPod. There was a good amount of hype surrounding it's release, and there was some talk about their iPod wannabe commercials, but I'd never actually seen one. Finally, tonight during American Idol (nothing Paula said tonight made ANY sense, by the way) I saw my first Zune commercial. Now being completely objective, putting my feelings toward the Zune aside (feelings such as disgust, embarrassment and pity), this commercial was awful. I'm not sure what it was supposed to be about really, but it mostly just looked like Zunes are being used as headstones at a cemetery. Headstones that play music and video. Is this what it's supposed to be portraying? Can anyone shed some light on this? If they are supposed to be headstones in a cemetery, I'm not sure that's the most effective advertising strategy. Is the Zune dead? Does it represent dead people?

That concludes my random thoughts for the day. I love blogs.

Friday, May 11, 2007


Awhile back, McDonald's was giving away the Madame Alexander Wizard of Oz dolls in their Happy Meals. Being the Judy Garland-lover that I am, I had to collect them! I got all of them except the Wicked Witch of the East. Why she was even part of it, no one knows.

Anyway, I started setting them up in my cube at work in various scenes...Dorothy beating up the Wicked Witch, the Cowardly Lion hiding behind Glinda, etc... They were living peacefully for quite some time, until I came into work one morning to find that some Terminator action figures had taken them hostage.

This meant war. So I turned the tables and made my Wizard of Oz friends take hostage of the Terminator guys. It quickly got out of hand, and this is what I saw when I came in this morning:

What's not pictured is the dinosaur biting off Dorothy's arm and the Terminator monster stabbing the Wicked Witch. So before I left today, Glinda had taken over the Star Wars...thing...and was shooting the Storm Trooper down. Dorothy had taken down the dinosaur and the Wicked Witch was chasing the Terminator monster with his spear.

Thursday, May 10, 2007

Dwight K. Schrute

Just a quick note to say I love Dwight Schrute and his blog that he doesn't update nearly often enough. But it's still amazing. I was delighted today when I saw his latest post on ninja preparedness.

My favorite Dwight Quote: "Whenever I'm about to do something, I think, 'would an idiot do that?' and if they would, I do not do that thing."

Tuesday, May 8, 2007


The other day Google decided to start calling their personalized home page option "iGoogle". Yeah they totally copied Apple, which is kind of sad for them, but apparently when you're the Antichrist (see below) you can copy stuff and nobody cares.

I've had a personalized Google homepage for awhile with some random gadgets (not to be confused with Apple's widgets. Does Apple have to invent everything?), but suddenly it's significantly more fun with the addition of themes. They're so completely pointless, but impossible to resist. Here's my beautiful iGoogle page:

Yep, that's a little fox having a picnic and a frog prince on the pier. The scene changes depending on the time of day. Sometimes, the fox is doing laundry in the lake or sleeping out on the pier. It's amazing. Why do I waste my time with this crap, I don't know.

To add to my fabulous theme, I have my comics gadget featuring Cathy, Dilbert and Peanuts. The best gadget by far is the Free iTunes Downloads...a must have.

There are approximately one bazillion different gadgets you can add. And now, as if every kind of gadget possible didn't already exist, you can make your own gadget.

Thank you, Google, for making my humdrum searches so entertaining.

Friday, May 4, 2007


Why does everyone think nonconformity is so cool? What if I decide that I think conformity is cool? Wouldn't that make me a nonconformist? That's right.

I'm really sick of this attitude that we have to be different than everyone else. No one is different than everyone else. You're always conforming to something, even when you're trying to be different. You are, so just deal with it.

Even if you're going against the crowd, you're still letting them dictate what you do. The only way to truly be yourself is to do exactly what you want, with no regard for what others are doing. If what you want to do happens to be the same as what everyone else is doing, who cares?

Now I will leave you with my favorite quote by my favorite TV doctor when speaking to a job candidate who was trying to hard to be different:

Nonconformity; right... I can't remember the last time saw a twenty something kid with a tattoo of an Asian letter on his wrist. You are one wicked free thinker! You want to be a rebel; stop being cool. Wear a pocket protector like he does, and get a hair cut. Like the Asian kids that don't leave the library for a twenty hours stretch. They're the ones that don't care what you think.

End rant.

Wednesday, May 2, 2007

Google is the Antichrist

I recently changed positions at my place of employment and I've lately been working with Google Adwords. I've become obsessed with reading blogs and message boards full of advertisers trying to figure out how Adwords works. The answer: nobody knows. Google doesn't even know for sure. They just keep rolling out new "features" so that we all think they have things under control. But they don't. Even still, countless numbers of advertisers are fighting with each other to show up on Google's search pages. Now that's power. As a result of all this new information, I've come to believe that, if they put their minds to it, Google could be the Antichrist, and here's why:

1. World Dominance. Google has basically infiltrated every aspect of our internet experience, and it won't be long until they spread throughout the entire world—internet or not. Anything you may want to do online, you can do through Google. If you want to send an email, you can use Gmail. If you want to advertise, use Adwords, make money; AdSense, start a blog; Blogger, shop; Froogle. If you want to make sure you don't miss the new Dilbert comic every day, add it to your personalized Google homepage. It's all too easy and fun to resist.

2. Evil. The amount of money they're making is a sin. And the amount of information they have on every user is disturbing.

3. Brilliance.

Now where I come from, world dominance+evil+brilliance=Antichrist.

Disclaimer: I do not actually think Google is the Antichrist. I'm just saying that if they wanted to, they could be. I actually love Google, and I never cease to be amused and excited by the latest useless feature they introduce that I never knew I needed.