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I needed to print something. I fought the printer for 10 minutes, doffed my hat to the victorious output device, then quit the field of battle.
::interior, conference room::
ME: Before we start, do you think it’s a little hot in here?
CLIENT: I was thinking the same thing.
CLIENT: Whoa. Someone set the thermostat on 80.
ME: It was probably my wife.
CLIENT: Your wife?
ME: I turn the thermostat down, then she comes behind me and cranks it up. She probably drove from Knoxville to Nashville, snuck in the building, and set the thermostat to 80.
I have a million dollar idea for a futuristic reality TV show called Cloud Storage Wars. People of questionable ethics bid on unpaid storage accounts on Dropbox, Google Drive, and iCloud. Once they win the auction they determine how much money they can make by selling the previous owners’ credit card numbers or unpublished screenplays, or by blackmailing them with their boudoir photos.
Previously - My Million Dollar Coffee Creamer Idea
I’ve gotten back into making videos. I’m spending more time on the beginning and ending credits and having fun with it. This is a local band covering an Allen Toussaint tune. If your RSS reader doesn’t show YouTube videos, use this link.
This graphic from Facebook reminded me of a scene in the extended version of Pulp Fiction. In the extended version, Vince (John Travolta) goes to pick up Mia (Uma Thurman) for their night out. She greets him with a video camera. She starts asking him questions, questions she designed to find out more about a person.
The first question is Beatles or Elvis, but she doesn’t bother asking him, because she thinks it’s obvious Vince is an Elvis man. That’s why, later in the movie at Jackrabbit Slim’s, Mia calls him an Elvis man. (That scene didn’t make sense in the theatrical version, because the earlier video interview scene was cut.)
This question is the one I want to talk about:
MIA: In a conversation, do you listen or wait to talk?
VINCE: I have to admit that I wait to talk, but I’m trying harder to listen.
Watching that opened my eyes. There are a select few people I have a hard time communicating with and now I know why. They aren’t listening to anything I say, which is why they ask me the same question within minutes of getting an answer or reply with a non sequitor.
One way you can tell the other person isn’t listening – the split second you stop talking they immediately jump onto their chance to talk. They can respond so quickly because they were thinking about what they were going to say while you were talking, instead of listening to what you were saying. Their responses can come so quickly that the conversation can have the rhythm of an argument even when it isn’t.
I’m so old I remember when Sundance Channel and Independent Film Channel showed independent films instead of Law and Order reruns and big budget blockbusters. This week some of their small, handcrafted film options include marathon showings of the Rambo, Terminator, and Nutty Professor franchises.
Because if anything defines independent film making it’s Sylvester Stallone, Arnold Schwarzenegger, and Eddie Murphy. Outlaws. Rebels. Thumbing their noses at the stuffy Tinseltown status quo, these three maverick outsiders will explode the Hollywood movie-making formulas or have fun trying.
Tam writes: “I swear, from tennis shoes to soda flavors to TV dinners, it gets to feeling as though me liking something is a surefire way to get it pulled from the market.”
Tam has discovered Herblock’s Law: “If it’s good, they’ll stop making it.”
“No man ever steps in the same river twice, for it’s not the same river and he’s not the same man.”
“I think I’ve seen this movie before. When I was a kid I saw it on TV. I don’t recognize this movie. This is like what’s happening with us. Like the past. The movie never changes. It couldn’t change. Every time you see it it seems different because you’re different. You see different things.”
– James Cole (Bruce Willis), 12 Monkeys
A demonym /ˈdɛmənɪm/, or gentilic, is a term for the residents of a locality. It is usually but not always derived from the name of a locality. For example, the demonym for the people of Canada is Canadian; the demonym for the people of Sweden is Swede; the demonym for the people of Germany is German; the demonym for the people of Switzerland is Swiss; the demonym for the people of the Netherlands is Dutch. Some locations have double forms; for example, the demonym for the people of Britain can be either British or Briton.
Previous WOTD - Gray/Black/Brown Thursday and Green Monday
Someone asked what I thought the worst-tasting thing would be.
I think the worst-tasting thing would be the Juice of a Dead Raccoon That Fermented in Spoiled Milk That Ran Down the Devil’s Asscrack and Dripped Into a Fetid, Bubbling Puddle on the Floor of a Horse Stable.
In fact, the only thing I can think of that would taste worse than the Juice of a Dead Raccoon That Fermented in Spoiled Milk That Ran Down the Devil’s Asscrack and Dripped Into a Fetid, Bubbling Puddle on the Floor of a Horse Stable would be Diet Juice of a Dead Raccoon That Fermented in Spoiled Milk That Ran Down the Devil’s Asscrack and Dripped Into a Fetid, Bubbling Puddle on the Floor of a Horse Stable. I don’t know why Snapple even makes that flavor.
ME: What did you learn in school?
KATIE: We talked about the s-word.
ME: Which s-word?
KATIE: What mommies and daddies have before they have babies.
ME: Oh. You mean se—ctional sofas, so the family can sit together in the living room.
KATIE: Different s-word.
ME: You’re talking about sze—chuan chicken. Mommies eat it to get pregnant.
KATIE: That’s not what the teacher said.
Tam has checked out of blogging due to a creepy stalker. I hate that she’s in that situation. I can’t blame her calling it quits, but I’ll definitely miss her blogging.
I started this blog in February, 2003. At one time I averaged five thousand visitors a day. I used to post every weekday, sometimes half a dozen posts daily. If I couldn’t post something in the morning I’d put up an apology about not having any free ice ream that day.
Since starting the blog I got married and had a kid, then another kid, then another kid, and the blog posts have gotten farther apart. Lately I’m happy if I post once a week to whoever still has me in their feed reader – the days are long past that anyone would check the front page for new posts every week, much less every day. Like lots of other bloggers, I post more material on Facebook than I do on my own blog. The daily visitor count is down below 200.
Tam was one of only five bloggers that I still read every day. And I go to them straight from my bookmarks toolbar. RSS? Forget it. There are dozens of blogs still in my RSS feed reader, but I only fire it up once or twice a month if I’m bored out of my mind. I have to use Feedly now because Google discontinued Google Reader, which wasn’t exactly a show of support for the future of blogging.
There are still great bloggers out there, but the fire is gone from the first generation. Jeff Jarvis said that blogging is a conversation. As the number of people talking drops, the conversation gets a lot less interesting.
WordPress installations often get broken into by brute force guessing of the password for the “admin” account. Changing the administrator account to something other than “admin” is the single best thing you can do to improve WordPress security.
My favorite WordPress security plugin is iThemes Security (formerly WP Security). It has every security feature you can think of in one plugin, and is available as a free plugin or a paid version with more features. I just noticed that it has a new feature. It can automatically blacklist IP addresses that try to log in using the admin username.
- Install iThemes Security plugin. In the WordPress administration panel, click on Security. It will be on the left side near the bottom.
- Before making changes, make a backup of your database on the off change something goes wrong. Click the Backup tab. Click the Create Database Backup button. While you’re in the tab, it’s a good idea to schedule automatic database backups.
- Click the Advanced tab. Change the administrator name to something other than admin.
- Click the Settings tab. Under Brute Force Protection, check the box for “Immediately ban a host that attempts to login using the “admin” username.”
- Click the Save All Changes button.
That will stop 99% of bogus login attempts.
Another WordPress plugin I like is Captcha (free and paid versions available). It protects the login page and comments from bots by asking the user to answer a simple math problem.