Next verse, same as the first

The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.

Albert Einstein

So given that yet another critical Internet Explorer flaw has been discovered—one that’s serious enough for a well-known security firm to bluntly advocate “[using] a browser other than [Internet Explorer] until the current vulnerabilities in [Internet Explorer] are patched”—tell me again why you’re not yet using the latest Firefox offering?

And while we’re at it, why are you still using Outlook [Express]—Internet Explorer for e-mail (and I don’t mean that in a good way)—instead of Thunderbird? Unless you just enjoy having your system compromised, that is.

Anatomy of a respite

Day 1: Arrive in Los Angeles

Day 2: Six Flags Magic Mountain—All. Freakin’. Day.

Day 3: San Luis Obispo / Hearst Castle

Day 4: Carmel / Monterey

Day 5: Carmel / Monterey

Day 6: Yosemite

Day 7: Yosemite

Day 8: Yosemite

Day 9: Yosemite

Day 10: Yosemite

Day 11: San Francisco

Day 12: San Francisco

Day 13: San Francisco

Day 14: Return to D/FW (*sigh*…)

I. Love. This. Woman.

Let’s start off with the yard. As I left for work yesterday, it was tall. Really tall. Lose small dogs in your front lawn tall. So the plan was to race home from work—maybe even a little early—and tame the beast, especially given that rain is forecast off and on for the next couple of days.

But fate intervened. Due to a great deal of carelessness on someone else’s part, I ended having to put in another six hours after “normal” (whatever that means) working hours to get things ready for a trade show that starts today. Meaning no cutting of the grass. Meaning more growing of the grass. Meaning I was living in fear of how tall the grass would be when I could eventually get to it later this week.

So I get home yesterday evening, ready to put in those six extra hours from home (remote access to work rules), to discover that my wife—knowing that it was turning into One Of Those Days—made the ultimate gesture on my behalf.

She mowed the lawn.

I don’t think you understand just how much she dislikes mowing the lawn. (That’s part of our deal—I take care of the outside of the house, she takes care of the inside. Believe me, it’s a win-win proposition…) But when I pulled up in the driveway, there was the back lawn… cut. The front lawn… cut. The side strip between us and the neighbors… mostly cut. And there she was—sweaty and exhausted, pushing the mower those last few feet to finish off the strip.

She did it. Not because I asked her to (I didn’t). Not because she actually wanted to (I’m pretty certain it wouldn’t have been too high on her list). But just… because. Because it was growing past our ankles. Because it was going to rain today. Because she knew that I had been desperately planning to do it myself after work before the after-hours assignment came up.

Because she loves me.

Yep, love is strange. But I love this woman. I love her, I love her, I love her.

And yes, I guess that means I’ve got toilet cleaning duty for the next month or so… :-)

Taken out at the ballgame

By now, pretty much everyone has heard the story: At the Rangers game on Sunday versus the Cardinals, a grown man jumped across a 4-year-old boy’s seat to get a foul ball, unapologetically nearly knocking the boy down not once but twice in his blind zeal to retrieve his in-game trophy. But in a move that shows that the cosmos does have a sense of fair play, the tot ended up being showered with gifts (balls, bats, you name it) from both the Rangers and Cardinals players. The (at the time) unnamed jerk got the crap booed out of him as he left the park about halfway through the game.

Well, the jerk has a name, and that name is Matt Starr. But reminiscent of seemingly every interview with the neighbor of a serial killer (“He was such a nice, quiet young man. I never would have suspected…”), poor ol’ Matt doesn’t deserve the unending grief he’s been subjected to since the incident:

Starr is “not the bad guy he’s been made out to be,” said Rick DuBose, senior pastor of the Sachse Assembly of God Church. “He probably got a little aggressive and did something he regrets. But that’s not Matt. He’s a good kid, a good young man.”

Now let’s review the facts as they stand right now: He practically knocked down a 4-year-old kid. To get a foul ball. Hit by Gary Matthews, Jr. (who may be a fine player in his own right, but we’re not talking Mark McGwire or Barry Bonds here). And to top it all off, he had the gall to mouth off at the boy’s mom when she disapproved of his actions. But he’s not a bad guy?

At one time, maybe he was a “good kid”. At one time, maybe he was a “good young man”. But actions speak louder than words, and his actions show that for all that he was, right now he is a big ass.

Congratulations, Matt Starr. Display that ball with pride.

Dumbass.

Follow-up (Jun 17, 2004): Starr has [belatedly] offered to give up the foul ball and make restitution of sorts to the boy and his family. A noble offer, though he essentially had to be guilted into it. He could have spared himself a whole lot of grief and scrutiny if he’d just done the right thing the first time around…