That Profile Picture — 30 Years Old

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You have probably seen the picture many times across various sites that I am on such as Twitter, Facebook, Tumblr, Google+, and LinkedIn.  Chances are you might be sick of it.  I have been asked many times why I never update the picture on any of my sites.  The reason I will explain below.

First off, a little history of the picture.  This picture was the picture featured way back in 1983 in my senior yearbook.  The actual picture was taken back in August of 1982.  So this makes it the 30th anniversary of this picture.  Anybody who knows me knows that I do NOT take a good picture, okay I am probably the worst person in pictures.  You won’t find me in anybody’s album or even in any family pictures.  No, I am not a ghost, but I might as well be though.  I hate everything that I am ever in.  Simply put, I hate the way I looked then and I hate myself even more now.  It is the story of the picture that is most interesting though.

It is was a midweek day back in August in 1982 in the morning.  It was going to be the day in which I would be getting my picture taken for the high school yearbook.  It was the decision of my mother that something should be done with my hair.  Anybody who knows me that I have absolutely the worst hair in the world.  I can’t part it because I am bald, I can’t push it back because it would look bald that way as well.  So I decided to go for my one and only time to a beauty parlor.

This was a very interesting experience to say the least.  After the beautician spent several minutes playing with my limp hair, she suggested that I get a perm.  Easier said than done on that.  The first time she tried curling my hair, it failed miserably.  So she tried a method of tighter curls and more of them.  Thankfully most of them stayed and so I was off to my photo shoot $30 lighter from the hairstyle.

There was about 3 hours between when I finished my hair and the photo shoot, so I had to be careful not to damage the hair.  I was lucky it stayed up that long, but somehow it did.  The photo shoot was at Loring Studios that was located on Congress Street in Portland Maine.  The entire photo shoot lasted about 2 hours and included about 7 different shots.  It would take about 2 months (mid-October) that I would receive the test pictures back and choose the one that would make the yearbook.  This one by far was the best as the others were absolutely horrid.  Sadly, the hair only lasted through the day and was pretty much back to normal by the next day.

Now the real question:  Why do I continue to use this picture?  There are several reasons for that and here are the most important ones:

  • It was a happier time in my life.  I had a somewhat of a girlfriend and was happy about that.  Little did I realize that girlfriend was really lying to me after 10 years and she NEVER really cared at all.  Unfortunately, I never got another “girlfriend” ever again since.
  • I had “friends”.  I say it that way because I believe that many of them are fake and one of them has since turned out to be a real social backstabber and had to be avoided at all costs.  Only these “friends” know if they are real or fake.
  • I knew I was going to have a pretty easy year ahead.  Since I had completed almost all of my required courses, I was able to spend most of the year in computer based classes, most of them in one room.  Bad news:  I had mostly computer classes and they were mostly in one room thus leading to no variety and really lacked social interaction.
  • I was in good health.  Back then I could get out and walk for hours on end, today I can barely complete a lap around the mall without sitting down half way around.  I blame my former employer Staples for that.  (Follow my other blog on that ongoing story)

So I hope I have cleared up part of the reason why I use this picture for everything as everything was much better back then and sadly has never been that good since.  However, tomorrow is another day unfortunately.


Time Warner Cable Sneaks in New Feature


Last week , Time Warner Cable (Portland, Maine area) sneaked in a “new” feature called AutoHD.  However, this feature should be turned OFF at all costs.

What this feature is supposed to do is allow the lazy viewer to change channels to the standard definition and have it automatically tune to the high definition channel instead.  The idea is nice except for the following things:

  • It doesn’t work with all SD channels.  As a new feature this is expected.  It works only on local channels and a very small handful of the basic cable channels.
  • It records to the HD channel whether you want it to or not.  HD eats DVR space thus should only be used for shows that you want  to save otherwise record in SD.  I found this out the hard way when my DVR ran out of space just recording a couple of shows that I thought were being recorded on the SD channels.

Until the bugs with this feature is fixed, I recommend staying away from this “feature”, it just is not worth the trouble.

Rumor abound that another update to the Navigator software is coming very soon.  Hopefully it will fix the problem of freeing up DVR space after deleting a show since this bug has once again reared its ugly head.  There is also a rumor that TWC plans on getting a new programming crew so maybe many more of these bugs will be squashed as previously mentioned.  We can only hope that TWC fixes the messes with the current software and SOON!

Jay Leno Takes Paycut–Somewhat

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It has been reported that Tonight Show host Jay Leno took a pay cut to roughly $20 million a year from his $25 million per year.  Unfortunately, about 10% of the staff was still let go which resulted in about 20 people still losing their job.

I wonder why Jay Leno didn’t take a bigger pay cut, say to $10 million per year, and save ALL of the staff.  It is unfortunate that somebody like him still needs to be part of the 1% crowd while so many other people are struggling from day-to-day.  Apparently, Jay only cares about flapping his over-sized jaw and says to hell with his staff.

I have been to NBC Studios in Burbank, California several times over the years and seen many shows taped and believe me that everybody is always busy and certainly the number of people who actually do REAL WORK are far greater than people like Leno just standing around cracking jokes.

This seems to be a case of pay rates going to extremes as reported in the current issue of TV Guide Magazine that lists the pay rates of many top television personalities.  It’s sad to say that even shows that have not even made the air yet are paying high amounts in anticipation of a show’s future success.  I don’t believe anybody should be paid based upon potential, but be paid for what they are really taking in value to the network show they work on.

Television networks must become more frugal with money or else someday we will have no television because everybody will have priced themselves out of existence.  Just more proof of the 1% running rampant again.

Newsweek Magazine — Not So Newsy or Weekly

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Earlier this year, I had the opportunity to get a free subscription to Newsweek magazine.  Never one to pass up a free deal, I decided to go for it.  I have been a subscriber to Time Magazine for over 30 years so I thought it would be interesting to get another view of the world’s news.

Unfortunately, Newsweek has been nothing short of disappointing.  Not only has many of the issues that I have received been double issues (published every other week), but the magazine hasn’t been much on the newsworthy side either.

Take for example the issue from two weeks ago.  The cover story was all about Mitt Romney being a “wimp”.  However, reading the article called him a “weenie”.  Whether you hate him or not, this type of bullying is just not really acceptable.  I say “not really” because I am actually 100% in agreement with the statement, but I really don’t think that it was proper for a “news magazine” to use this term.

This article was preceded by a story about drunk girls in London which was led by a picture of three young women’s backsides stumbling around a London street.  Again, not really appropriate in a news magazine.

Following the Romney story, was a multiple page essay on President Assad’s wife and interview with her.  The article was about 4 pages too long and very boring and certainly lacked any newsworthiness.  Sandwiched between these two stories was a story about some recent mass killing murders along with some very weird pictures of them.

Basically, each of them were called psychopaths and left no other real explanations. Again, name calling is used to make these people possibly worse than they truly are.

The current issue of Newsweek is no better than the previous issue by having its cover story be about the 101 best places to eat around the world.  Seriously, as if any REAL person will ever experience even 10% of these places.  What a waste of paper to list these along with phone numbers to contact the various eateries.  Do they not have any real news to report?

To add insult to injury, the magazine also gives top 10 lists of colleges in various categories like best schools and best party schools.  Shouldn’t this information have been made available around January before kids were getting ready to head off to college instead of just days before they head off to school.  A little to late for those wanting any real info about the school they would be entering this year.   This issue also contained a multiple page story of  employment issues, however it said nothing that hasn’t already been said many times before.

It is no wonder why the publishers of Newsweek are thinking of discontinuing publishing the magazine and make it a web-only magazine like U.S. News and World Report.  This magazine when compared to Time lacks relevance and certainly confuses real news with bullying opinions.  Until they can separate these apart, the magazine will continue to lose market share and be worth only the free subscription that I receive and not worth a penny more!

Took Time Off

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Admittingly, I took last week off to unplug from the internet and get away from it all.  I decided to do this just because I felt that I needed the rest even though I said that I wasn’t going to take any time away from my writing.  I felt that I needed the summer “vacation” from the internet and my email just to get back to the real world if only for a short time.  Hopefully, with cooler temps, I can continue to write more and not feel like I need to take the rest.  I plan on getting back up to speed with a posting tomorrow, but until then, enjoy my apology.

Fred 3: Camp Fred – A Review

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Here we go again!  Nickelodeon has once again allowed another “Fred” movie to be created and as expected its even worse than the previous ones.  Thankfully this movie is shorter than the previous movies.  This one is 1 1/2 hours long, without commercials approximately 75 minutes long.  That is 75 minutes too long to this train wreck sequel.

Most of the players from the second movie were roped into this sequel, even if they were on screen for a very short time.  Both Daniella Monet (Fred’s friend Bertha) and WWE wrestler John Cena (Fred’s dad) had less than 5 minutes of screen time each when in the previous film they both had significant parts.  As John Cena said as he re-entered the abandoned refrigerator, “You can’t see me!”, as he wiped his hand in front of his face.  Mr. Cena, I think we all wished we hadn’t seen any of this mess.

The premise behind this movie was sending Fred off to camp.  However, it wasn’t the camp he was expecting.  Instead of going to Camp Superior, he was sent to the rundown Camp Iwannapeepee, headed by councilor played by brainless actor Tom Arnold.  Sad to say, the camp name is the only thing funny about this film.  The rest of the film leads up to competition between Fred’s camp and Camp Superior.  How many times has this been a theme to movies?  Unfortunately, this premise which has been used in many movies including many R-rated movies with significant nudity, that this movie is just downright boring.

It almost started interesting with a large musical number of “Last Day of School”, which could have been a song from a “High School Musical” style movie.  However, this musical number wore thin fast and this movie quickly ran thin even faster.  I won’t spoil the ending of this movie as if you didn’t see this coming with every other movie of its kind ending exactly the same way.


Unless, you have absolutely NOTHING ELSE to watch, I would avoid this movie at all costs.  I expect to see this movie arriving on DVD before the end of the year and would be a great holiday movie to the person that you really want to hate you for the rest of your life.  As if that didn’t already happen with the last movie!

Rating:  1 out of 10


Time Warner Cable Rolls Update; Fixes One Bug

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Last night Time Warner Cable rolled out its latest software update (ODN version 5.2.0_9)  in the Southern Maine area.  Sadly only one bug, the slow search engine bug, has been resolved.  All of the other errors in the guide still remain and have been there since last November.  Its time that TWC gets off its duff and fix the REAL errors before creating a pretty interface.  I would rather have a working guide than a pretty interface.  Its apparent that TWC has its priorities all messed up.  Maybe the next update will fix the problems with the guide.

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