Thursday, March 29, 2007

Gates of Fire

Gates of Fire: An Epic Novel of the Battle of Thermopylae
Gates of Fire: An Epic Novel of the Battle of Thermopylae by Steven Pressfield (Paperback - Sep 27, 2005)
Buy new: $15.00 $8.99 30 Used & new from $8.97

I'm Greek (my grandfather was George Emmanuel Mylonas) and an attorney and, well this book is number one on the reading lists of a lot of Greek attorneys.

The surprising thing is that much of the book is really about the power of love and the power of faith and friendship; that the opposite of fear is love; the power and strength of women.

Moving, in spite of itself, or perhaps, because of itself.

Monday, March 26, 2007

Discussion on kids borrowing the car keys ...

Even though she was a bit high-maintenance, at least Ishtar politely asked her father for the Bull of Heaven. She didn't just go sneaking off behind her dad's back to steal the keys to the bull and then get really drunk and start tear---ng all over town causing chaos everywhere until she wrapped the Bull of Heaven around a telephone pole.

Enkidu totally gets the short end of the stick though.


No wonder the Epic of Gilgamesh is a classic:

Father give me the Bull of Heaven,
So he can kill Gilgamesh in his dwelling.
If you do not give me the Bull of Heaven ,
I will knock down the Gates of the Netherworld,
I will smash the doorposts, and leave the doors flat down,
and will let the dead go up to eat the living!
And the dead will outnumber the living!
It will be awful!

You know how it is, any discussion kind of gets back to family, no matter where it starts.

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Junia, A Female Apostle?

I did a short poem over at the Snark in way of response to a riff they did. In that, I referred to Junia. My cites got cut off, but here they are:

Junia, btw, is an early Eastern Orthodox Saint.

If you click on the links (note, the first is a pdf paper), you will find that the first one disagrees with the thesis. Well, it is one thing to make a comment on a humor site, it is another to be certain as to the conclusion. I'm not certain at all, though it does make for interesting reading.

Do I know what Paul meant when he wrote: "Greet Andronicus and Junia, my relatives who were in prison with me; they are prominent among the apostles, and they were in Christ before I was." No, I don't.

But it is worth some thought, and it fit the meter needs of the line. Sorry if I have no answers here, but there are many things in life without answers.

Sunday, March 18, 2007

Bridge to Terabithia

I'd seen some Disney channel on this, mostly about two kids discovering a magical world.

Went to see the movie. It is one of the "dead pet" genre of movies -- kid comes of age because of a death. In this case, because his best and only friend dies. Felt like I'd been ganked. Other than that, lots of product placement, even when it hurt the movie (the family is dirt poor and in distress, but the kids have premium brand name orange juice for breakfast -- in large glasses they aren't told to finish? On that family's orange juice budget I could have bought the kid the new shoes he wanted in a week).

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Diet, etc.

Speaking of SLD and the Shangri-la Diet, I did have someone post and ask how I could state that the diet was boring. It is. I find a time, once a day, and drink two ounces of extra light olive oil. There is none of the stress, effort, willpower, thought or anything else that goes into a "normal" or "typical" diet. It is more like drinking a glass of water every day eventually becomes a routine that is boring to talk about.

Still, I've been down 70-75 pounds since June or July of last year. That is amazing and wonderful, but the diet itself is boring by now.

I also got a warning that one of my SLD links had given way to link rot. -- David's Shangri-La Diet Saga -- has link rot in the worst way. I'm taking the link down and would advise you not to enter the url by hand.

I'd click on the "report" button, but the site forwards immediately and blocks that. If anyone knows how to report that sort of thing, I'd be grateful. Guess I can just kill the link, though it is a good reason not to just kill your blog -- people will take the url over for purposes like that. I thought it was bad enough when an LDS blog was replaced by a calling card advertisement. An autoforward to a porn site is a lot worse thing to have happen to your blog -- and pretty typical it seems for any blog that is taken down. Someone else signs up the url and uses it for advertising purposes.

Monday, March 12, 2007


From a recent analysis of Plano (where we live):

White - 65%
Asian - 16%
Hispanic - 12%
African American - 5%
Other - 2%

I've got a spammer, who under the terms of service now owes me the tos amounts. Anyone who wants to try to collect is asked to contact me about collecting from spammer's e-mail (

I need to write about grief, loss and revisiting places you've been before.

Also, a very funny link to a cross-over of Lord of the Ring and Princess Bride. this morning has Vernor Vinge's "What if the Singularity Does NOT Happen?", at

Friday, March 09, 2007

Taking the short plane ...

I never heard any "short bus" jokes as a kid, I must have been about forty the first time I heard one, so they don't seem funny to me, but going to Florida, Continental changed planes on us, and we ended up on the "short plane" (meaning that the seats we had reserved on our boarding passes didn't exist). They told us to just take other seats.

Well, that was fine, except on coming back, they told us that our tickets were not valid since we hadn't flown all of the legs on the flight out. Automatic, computer enforced penalties. I wasn't amused, and after they got that fixed (since they had a record of our luggage going, etc.) we made our flight with five minutes to spare. I was told that next time that happened, to make the flight crew reissue the tickets (which is what they were supposed to do).

On the other hand, the rest of the trip went rather well. We saw a timeshare presentation (more at but they seem like a very, very bad deal). Now I know what they are offering.
Last time we were at Disneyworld it was with Jessica and Heather (Courtney stayed with a babysitter -- she was too little). But we had a good time; and, eventually made it safely home. Where the power was fixed (as we left, the power was out in half the house due to some problem on the utility company end. Luckily we had gotten up on our own, as the alarms were all on the lines that went out).

Friday, March 02, 2007