August 2006 Archives

Hypocrites

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"We are apalled and disgusted that 72 hours before the cease fire between Israël and Lebanon, 90% of the attacks with cluster bombs occurred."

"All the weapons we use 'are legal under international law, and their use conforms with international standards.'", Israeli Army states.

Tons of countries produce cluster bombs (PDF File), but the USA is the world's largest manufacturer. There are international standards for the use of these devices, hence there seems to be a standard and agreed upon regulation on how to kill people using a device that knows a 30% failure rate.

Don't come claiming to be disgusted that these devices are used, when you don't ban the production of them! Some sources state that right now, Belgium is the only country to have issued a ban on the use (carrying), transportation, export, stockpiling, trade and production of cluster munitions, yet there are some companies active in Belgium that produce cluster munitions according to a study conducted by some NGO's. Especially Forges de Zeebrugge, a subsidiary of Thompon Dasa Armaments (TDA), is mentioned in this regard. TDA is a joint venture between Thales and EADS GmbH. I'll leave it up to you to dig up more info...

FK goes Pink!

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No, I'm not about to start wearing salmon pink sweaters, flashy pink slippers or fluffy pink underwear. I just ordered tickets for the Pink concert in Antwerp on October 1st 2006! I've got time off for a wedding on the 30th, I'm home on the 1st as well, and if all is "normal" I have to work a late shift on monday the 2nd. If not, well... too bad, because I'm gonna see Pink!

Pink Pink Pink!

Cute women are always welcome to join me at the concert, if you feel like you fit the description, or would be fun company, let me know!

Do you SWOP?

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As I was reading Vixen - The Daily Dildo I stumbled upon a reference to Jack's Raging Mommy, who asks "Do You SWOP?". If you have no idea about the meaning of the acronym, go read the entry. It'll be bloody obvious in a matter of seconds. If you feel less adventurous and wish to know beforehand what you're getting into, hover here : SWOP. Then again, if you first hoovered here, you probably don't SWOP :)

I usually don't SWOP, as there are tons of other possibilities, but I have no moral objections against it. Never say never and all that, you know?

My mailbox tells me what to do!

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Yesterday I emptied my mailbox and found two envelopes I wasn't expecting. One was from Smart/ DaimlerChrysler and the other from Bankcardcompany. The BCC one was due, as it is the time of month to receive my bill for the card, but instead it was a promotional folder for flights using Connections. Some interesting destinations available for acceptable rates, I may look into it, but in the end I probably won't be flying anywhere ;)

The letter from Smart was an invite for the Smart meeting 2006 in Ostend, and as I've always had loads of fun when I used to go to Mini meetings - back in the days I drove a Mini - I decided to go. So, September 24th I'll be heading off to Ostend for a day out with other Smart owners/drivers. Should be fun, and a nice way to meet people...

On September 30th, I'll be attending the marriage of D&K, which will be fun as well. It's been a long time since I had this much things to do in a single month. Gotta get some nice clothes for the occasion though.

Oh, now that I've got your attention, make sure to update your Java Runtime Environment to Update 8. There are some security problems with previous versions. Download here : java.sun.com. After installing the new version, you can safely remove previous versions from your computer, and free up quite some space doing so.

Week in TV, continued

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Tuesday August 29th
Andes to Amazon : A guide to Wild South America [La Deux - 14h15]
TerZake Zomer : Prisoners of Katrina [Canvas - 20h00]
The Human Zoo [Canvas - 20h50]
Telefacts Zomer : Hugh Hefner [VTM - 21h00]
The Last Boy Scout [VT4 - 21h05]
Traffic Cops [VTM - 21h55]
Blackadder goes forth [Canvas - 23h50]
NYPD Blue [VTM - 00h00]
Cops [Kanaal 2 - 01h35]

Wednesday 30th
TerZake Zomer : Too hot not to handle [Canvas - 20h00]
Flikken [Een - 21h05]
Hero (Ying xiong) [VT4 - 22h05]

Thursday 31st
Dangerous Encounters : Dens of Danger [Nation Geographic Channel - 20h00]
Rare Streken : Africa's Predators in Crisis [Canvas - 20h50]
De Donderdag Documentaire : Kleur in de klas [Nederland 1 - 22h55]

Do you know of interesting programs that I overlooked? If so, please leave a comment and tell me why you think I'd love to see it...

Another light entry

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I'm a couple of days late, but here are the TV programs I think seem interesting or entertaining for the next (and past) week (friday to thursday) :

Friday August 25th
The Simpsons [VT4 - 18h50]
Blackadder goes forth [Canvas - 22h35]
Queens Supreme [VTM - 00h45]

Saturday 26th
Dancing on Ice [VTM - 20h55] (with the beautiful Francesca Vanthielen)
The Italian Job [VT4 - 21h10]
You Rang, M'Lord? [Vitaya - 21h15]
The Professionals [VT4 - 23h10]
eXistenZ [Canvas - 23h15]

Sunday 27th
Are you being served? [VTM - 17h05]
Naked Science : Death of the Sun [La Une - 20h10]
Fatamorgana [Een - 20h45] (for the sexy Hilde De Baerdemaker)
Overleven - Levenslang Rugpijn? [Canvas - 21h05]
Charlie's Angels [VT4 - 21h55]
Open en Bloot [Kanaal 2 - 22h40]
NYPD Blue [VTM - 23h35]
Pitstop.TV [Kanaal 2 - 00h25]

Monday 28th
TerZake Zomer : Mad about Animals [Canvas - 20h00]
Seaside Rescue [BBC 1 - 20h30]
The Bourne Identity [VT4 - 21h05]
Trauma [BBC 1 - 21h30]
Traffic Cops [VTM - 22h55]
Comedy Connections [BBC 1 - 23h20]
Men Behaving Badly [BBC 1 - 23h50]
Blackadder goes forth [Canvas - 00h05]
NYPD Blue [VTM - 00h05]

I'll post the rest of the week tomorrow...

Cherries & whipped cream

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I was about to have sex with a girl called Lizzie. While taking a stroll along the beach, Lizzie asked me if I was going to fuck her, to which I simply nodded. "Hard?" "Oh yes!" "Within the next 10 minutes?" she asked, and once again the answer was yes. Then we somehow got lost along the route to the holiday home where the action was to happen. Nice.

I woke up with a headache and a nose filled with snot. I love how my dreams are so real, taking from real life : none of the action yet all of the discomfort. Not that I'm claiming you get a cold from having sex, nor a headache or a nose full of boogers, but you get the idea. I love myself and my damn creativity.

Off to the bakery now, get some food, then I'm gonna watch my Hattrick game (Ongles Reunited vs Red Hot Beavers) and depending on how well the game goes, I may pop in The Truth and Lies of 9/11 (available on DVD through www.fromthewilderness.com) which I borrowed from my dad yesterday. Alternatively, you can also watch it via google :
The Truth and Lies of 9/11.

Ouch, too heavy an entry again? But come on, the near miss dream induced sexual encounter was pure entertainment, wasn't it? Please? Pretty please with a cherry on top? And whipped cream?

Doh!

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I spent much of the afternoon and the evening at B&H's place, chatting, having a very nice meal at the local chinese restaurant and "working" on their IT infrastructure. The "working" part was more toying around and it all started when my dad brought up the problem with the HP JetDirect printserver not working properly. Of course - and I doubt many people are surprised by it - I jumped right onto it and I wanted to "fix" it.

A couple of hours later, we ended up with a firmware upgrade on the router (which was not needed after all), a broken internet connection (yikes!) that was fixed, I had upgraded the firmware of the JetDirect printserver only to go "Doh!" when I realized that the problem wasn't the router talking to the printserver, nor DHCP assigning IP addresses.

When adding a printer on a networked printserver in windows XP, you don't add a network printer. I mean it. You add a printer connected to a network enabled print server by adding a local printer. Go figure. Anyway, once I realized that was the problem, it was quickly game over and the printer showed up, spit out test pages, and everything was ok.

The upgraded firmware for the router and the printserver were not necessary, but hey... why not? They can only help keep everything locked down and safe. I also changed the default password for the router to something else, because even if the firmware claims not to allow remote IP's to administrate the box, one can never be too sure.

I often feel (and perform) my best when toying around with unknown hard and software while chatting away. I'm a geek at heart... and it was a fun evening!

Search, search

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I just got up, and am now searching for something "lighter" as I promised yesterday. Unfortunately, it seems all this seriousness of the past days/weeks/years (?) has made ServMe a dull boy. I could always revert to the old Penguin joke, but it's been posted here before, so that's out of the question.

OK, I'm gonna head off to PB first and when I come back, I hope to have found inspiration along the way.

Note to myself : don't press the pedal to the metal. A speeding ticket for 50 euro showed up in my mail box yesterday. Guess what? Exactly the same location as last time! It's not hard to part a fool from his money...

Marketing sneakers with style and groovy sounds : Fukijama (via eskimokaka)

Something to take into account

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If you thought that VoIP calls over the internet were anonymous, think again. According to a recently published study, Tracking Anonymous Peer-to-Peer VoIP Calls on the Internet is possible by using a watermarking engine that changes the otherwise non-distinctive VoIP flow into a trackable unique stream by use of inter packet timing differences. I suggest you read the complete paper (PDF) to know all the nitty gritty details. If you have a hard time obtaining the paper, or the connection times out, use Google's cache.

Will this forever change how people use VoIP? I really doubt so, because even if less than 0.1% of the current VoIP users worldwide read this paper, it would be a huge success. Besides, reading the paper will only alert you to the possibility, but it won't fix or make your calls "untraceable". As long as third parties are able to come between you and the one you're calling, the VoIP stream can be watermarked and traced.

If you now think "but Skype encrypts all calls using 256 bit AES" you are correct, but missing the point. Encryption doesn't matter for this type of watermarking, as no one is trying to figure out what is being said, or what data is being transferred. This technique just proves computer A connected/talked to computer B at a certain time. Adding more encryption, or using an anonymizer network won't help.

I promise to post something "lighter to digest" over the weekend :)

Wonderful

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Ain't it wonderful to have your colleagues call you at 7AM after you got home from a nightshift, because some fool took home keys? And it wasn't me? Not only he took keys home, he also grabbed the wrong coat, to complete the mess. I just love working with idiots, I truely do. One has to appreciate the total lack of responsability some people manage to cultivate. Unforunately, none of this will directly lead to the one and only final solution : fire his ass.

Another drop in the bucket I suppose. Now... if he calls me while I'm asleep, whether it be on the phone or on the doorbell, someone will be in quite some trouble, that I guarantee. Let's hope he manages to find my address and drop the keys in the correct mailbox. That in itself may be too harsh a task to successfully complete for a dimwit such as him.

Sleepy

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Tired. Off to bed. It's been a long night, but luckily quite uneventful.

How well are we doing?

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Let's take a look at recent headlines in the news, and determine the current state of affairs in the world :

North Korea threatens US with first strike. (The Guardian) (Idea : We may scare them away, look tough and succeed.)

Iran, Syrian leaders laud Hezbollah ‘victory’ (MSNBC) (Result : Lots of people killed, nothing resolved. War is not an answer.)

Fire-ravaged Portugal faces erosion (BBC) (Caused by : Nature. With a lot of help from people trying to get very rich.)

The list goes on and on... Apocalyse?

Now... yesterday I was watching "Loose Change 2nd edition" (movie also available at video.google.com, edition with Dutch subtitles at Loose Change, Dutch Subtitles), a documentary about the WTC disaster in September 2001, and while I may not believe everything, even if just 1% of all the claims they make is correct, one thing is clear : we're all suckers and we're being played like pins in a bowling game.

Darwin

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Some people just have it coming, don't you think? Pretty girls try to hook victims via spam email.

Even if you decide not to read the article, the comments by Graham Cluley (senior technology consultant for Sophos) speak for themselves : "Some people need a reality check, and take a long hard look at themselves in the mirror - is it really likely that an unknown young woman would see them on the web and be moved to make contact? And even if it was, would this be the sane behavior of anyone you would ever want to meet?"

"Would you like to meet a 'young attractive woman' that can't write an email without errors?" I certainly wouldn't. There's more to love (and lust) than tits and ass.

Maki-Suhsi, Yummy Sushi!

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Yesterday evening, I had homemade maki-sushi for the first time ever, and while quite yummy (I used surimi crab sticks and paprika), I had some problems getting the rolls to "stick". The rice stuck to everything imaginable, so that wasn't a problem, but every time I used my bamboo mat to roll, it pushed out the contents. The second attempt was better as I used less rice and filling and the third roll actually looked like sushi :)

I cheated a bit by using a spare sheet of nori to glue the end and start of the roll together. Then when cutting the rolls up, I figured out quickly that you don't use a carved knife to cut, but rather a plain one, preferably as sharp as possible. Keeping it wet also helped prevent the rice from sticking to it.

I'll have to do that again to get better at it. And I'll get more ingredients to I can make different sushi, how about cucumber, salmon, spinach, radish... More recipes available at Blue Dragon, MediterrAsian or SushiLinks.

Update : I've got a small problem it seems. It's 20h00 as I write this and I'm feeling a bit tired already, but have to leave for a nightshift in 45 minutes. The first one in a series of six. I guess I'll have to crash tomorrow when I get back home.

Healthy food?

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2 watermellons, 2 paprika (red), radishes, apples, nectarines (2 kg), 4 red grapefruits, brocolli, 2 mangoes. Combine any of those with rice and you've got a healthy yet tasty dish. I plan on doing that over the next few days. Some of the fruits and vegetables may end up in a drink though.

Off to do some work in the apartment now, nightshifts again tomorrow. Gotta maximize the day off!

The golden cat returns

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A limp, a bill for 214,5 euro but Tai has nothing else to show for his unsuccessful basejump. I just picked him up and he looks fine. As I wrote, he's still limping a bit, but that should get better over time as the tendons en sinews regain their original length. They've been stretched when his toes got dislocated, but luckily nothing was broken.

When I asked the doctor if he would have learned from the experience, he said no. Cats don't learn and can easily get distracted again, forgetting they're up a small ridge three stories high when a leaf comes floating by on the wind, and decide to chase it again. He suggested making sure that Tai can't get up there again, but that's kind of difficult if you ask me. I've got a full day off from work on saturday, so I can think about constructing something that won't block the view, but will stop him from trying to jump or walk the railing. The doctor suggested a parachute.

I suggest a firm kick in the ass if he ever tries something like that again.

8 lives left

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Cats normally have 9 lives, or that's what they say anyway. Well, my Tai just used up one of his nine lives and now has 8 left. Most of you already knew that he loves water, but today he found a new hobby : basejumping. Too bad he didn't get to page 3 of the basejumping manual, which clearly states what you need in order to successfully basejump :

- a building sufficiently tall,
- a parachute,
- the guts to actually jump.

Tai took up this new hobby of his using a three story high apartment block, too much guts and no parachute. The result? A call to pretty much all vets in the area and an visit to the animal clinic nearby for a sedative, painkiller and photographs.

What happened, you may wonder? Who knows!? All I know is that he was outside on the terrace and suddenly I heard a "thump" and when I searched for Tai, he was nowhere to be seen. I looked inside - because he often likes to play hide and seek - but no Tai there either. I went back out on the terrace and called for him, but got no answer. Then I heard my neighbor from accross the street yell to me "he fell down!". I hurried downstairs and after a couple of minutes, I found a scared cat under some bushes. I picked him up and was greeted by a meow that went right through me.

At least he was still making a noise. I immediately noticed his front right paw was pointing in a less than normal direction, but apart from that, he appeared to be complete and without holes or punctures. I went back up, put him in his carrier to prevent too much movement and started calling around for a vet. My regular vet - for the cat that is - wasn't home nor available on cell phone. My old vet - for the ferrets - picked up but told me she isn't equipped to handle broken bones and such and gave me a number for an animal clinic.

I knew there was one clinic closer by, but the number I called didn't give me an emergency number. I tried a couple of other vets including another animal clinic, but the vet on call there was en route to a delivery and wouldn't be able to help me out for at least an hour and a half. Some more searching - being online pretty much 24/7 has its benefits - turned up another number for the first animal clinic and I got an emergency number. I called that and explained, and I could come in right away.

After giving him a sedative the vet took some x-ray photographs and the first idea is that nothing is actually broken, but the specialists will have to look into it tomorrow. If it's not broken, it's probably sprained quite badly, and his toes are at an awkward angle. I couldn't see any lines indicating broken bones on the x-rays, nor could the emergency vet, but then again, we ain't specialists.

He's sleeping over now and tomorrow between twelve and one I have to call for an update.

Todays consult and exam was 105 euro already, if they have to operate tomorrow, add 300 to 500 euro to that. Well, if you have animals, you have to be prepared to pick up the bill if something happens to them, but he won't be getting food for the next 72 months I think ;)

Or he could catch about 300 mice to pay off his debt...

I'm considering renaming the blog "brokenkitten" instead of friedkitten - Dumb cat!

Monday Monday

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It's monday, but I'm not in a monday mood. I got up early (before 9) and did some laundry cleaning up. Then I set out to have a set of photograhps taken for my new ID, and I planned on delivering all the paperwork for it to the correct place. However, some people are clearly in an extremely monday mood : the community service center wasn't even open. I guess they're even worse than banks - who manage to take every public holiday off and then some - so if anyone is looking for a career with loads of days off, now you know where to apply.

I did some shopping for food and personal hygiene stuff - online of course - and will be heading off to the store later today to pick up some food for tonight, tomorrow and wednesday.

Hattrick is offline till 14h00, so that means no browsing the transfer market, no planning my upcoming games. I'll play some Burnout Revenge on PS2 instead. It's my last day off, I should be having fun, right?

Yesterday afternoon's game party was lots of fun, and I beat Joco & Mark on the Buzz Music Quizz, even after they started teaming up to prevent me from gaining too much lead. Better start training, blokes! ;)

Change of plans : the mailman - mailwoman in this case - just stuffed the following things in my mailbox : The L-Word Season 2 (yay!), Black Books (Series 1, 2 & 3) and a new CT Magazine. It's gonna be a busy day :)

For your next girlfriend

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The sun is shining, I'm quite awake and got up around ten if I'm not mistaken. It actually surprised me a bit that I could get up that early seeing I only went to bed around 4. The Neerpelt Open Air festival was quite enjoyable and very well organized.

When I arrived, Soldout had just started their set and I liked them. I liked them so much I bought their CD at the merchandising booth :)

Concerts are a great way to get to know new bands, it seems. Last year I discovered Nid & Sancy, this year Soldout.

The Neon Judgement was solid as usual, but nothing special. Vive La Fête was nice to see again, though it's not really one of my favorites. (Interludium : Els Pynoo has a nice ass, and she knows it). T. Raumschmiere was loud, but couldn't really grab me by the balls so to speak. Front 242 - the main if not only reason I went - rocked hard, playing quite a lot of older songs, and celebrating their 25th year. Fabulous set, and we all loved it.

I stayed for about 45 minutes into the Dr. LektroLuv set and headed home. Loads of young people in the tent during his set, and they all seemed to enjoy it. When he threw some oldies in the "lektro" mix, the place exploded.

An enjoyable evening, time to lick my wounds and treat the bruises now...

Publishing SPF records

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I should be on my way to Neerpelt, but I clearly am not (yet). I'll be leaving soon though, once I finish writing this entry.

A couple of minutes ago, I got my SPF records published for the friedkitten.com domain, after some mailing back and forth with my webhost. They were professional and excellent as always, pointing out benefits and disadvantages but leaving the final decision up to me. After getting their informed opinion, I decided to go through with it, as there is little to lose for me.

SPF is not an anti spam tool, but rather an anti forgery tool. It should prevent unauthorized people from sending mail in your name, though much of that depends the checks done by the receiving party. If no one checks the validity of the SPF record, they don't benefit from the added layer. Even if checking, one can still accept, question (accepts but moves to a specific mailbox for instance), or refuse the mail, based on the outcome of the check.

It's a vicious circle, I'm well aware of that. If no one publishes SPF records, people will not rely on them to decide what's potentially legit or fake. If no one checks the records, why would you publish them? I went ahead and had them published for one domain so far. I'll now be monitoring if any problems arise - if not, more of my domains will have their SPF records published.

For the time being, I suggest you don't refuse mail that fails the SPF check on friedkitten.com, especially since this is just a first test case. But please, do check if you can. Gmail, the mail service of google, for instance does check SPF records, but appears not to reject based on the outcome.

Note : right now most SPF checking will be done - if any is going on - by the mailservers of the company/ISP/organization you use. End users have little options to verify SPF records themselves as far as I know. If you know of any tools, feel free to leave a comment with explenation or an URL for me to check.

Preparations

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It is pouring outside, which sucks. I go to one or two concerts a year, and today is one of those rare occasions : Neerpelt Open Air. Anyway, there is a positive side to that as well, and I'm gonna focus on that : I can take precautions against the rain. If it were to start raining while at the concert, it would be worse :)

So... sunday I'm organizing another gaming afternoon, should be fun. People actually asked to do it again, so I take it they had fun the last time around. Which pleases me. I'll have to do some cleaning up around the apartment first though, so that'll happen on saturday afternoon. Then some shopping for snacks, drinks. I also planned to paper the bedroom wall, but that may possibly happen on monday.

That's it for now... Tai is playing outside - yay, rain - and then running in with wet paws. Gotta love the company!

Exercise

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It's quite windy, a lot cooler than the previous weeks - around 17°C and clouds in abundancy, but I'm gonna go downstairs and take the bike for a spin anyway. If it starts raining, so be it :)

Update : After inflating the tires of the bike, I headed off to the park. First I grabbed a martino sandwich and a bottle of water, and consumed those in the park. Trash in the trashcan, and off I went for a nice though windy ride. After cruising at high speed through the park, I ended up in Wommelgem, then I headed in the direction of Wijnegem and then back home. Not a clue how many kilometers I did, but I've been gone for just over an hour.

Bicycle race

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Apparently, that previous entry has caused some commotion, which I didn't expect. I was (just) venting, throwing it all out, hoping that would help. It did, in a way, though now I've got people asking me whether I'm ok and things like that. Sure, I understand them, and I even appreciate their concerns, but if I wanted to talk to someone face to face, I would have done so.

So, thanks, I know you're all around and willing to listen, but I'm not (yet) ready to do so. I'm not depressed, I'm not fatally ill nor am I doing stupid things. Well, nothing more stupid than the dumb stunts I usually pull off.

If you wonder why this is yet another nightly entry, the reason is simple : I couldn't sleep and after reading for a while, I suddenly got the wonderful idea to take the bike for a spin tomorrow if the weather is right. So, I got up to check the weather forecast, and it seems I'll be cycling tomorrow :)

Oh, I went and saw The Fast and The Furious : Tokyo Drift on wednesday. Man, is that a stinking movie or what? Even the dozens of hot asian chicks with tight skirts that barely covered their tiny asses couldn't cover up the lack of a plot. And guess what... Vin Diesel shows up in the final 2 minutes of the movie, claiming to be a friend of Han. Sequel anyone?

And here's some (weird?) entertainment for you all : The Great Orbax: Octopus Saran Tabasco Escape!!

The Perfect Plan

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Today is my first official day of holiday as on monday and tuesday I was off after working nightshifts. I received a mail asking if I could come back a day earlier because a colleague is ill til the end of the month. I agreed to help out, because the 15th is a public holiday, which means extra money when working. Well, also because what goes around, comes around, and I don't really like public holidays anyway.

Off to entertain Tai now - vastly asleep in the sofa for the time being - and I have to find something to eat. Strangely enough, I don't really have a headache, after last nights' "Wodka Limskaya on the rocks extra large" that I poured myself.

Midnight Blues

If you are looking for entertainment, love, happiness or joy, I strongly suggest you stop reading right now, because it may not be a pretty entry. In fact, I'm about to lay it all on the table and though it may look as a serious package, most is just air. I'm all facade and little bricks.

Midnight Blues, yet it is way past midnight. I can't even get that right, can I?

I'm 33 years old, and I'm seriously wondering what I've got to show for it. I've got a place of my own - well, the bank owns it unless I pay them back every cent I borrowed years ago - I've got a fulltime job that I usually like, but that's about it.

I'm scared to fall in love, yet long for it. I've got no social skills whatsoever - hell, if it were possible to have negative social skills, I'd rank first in my class - and I do things that make no sense in the great "meaning of life", should such a thing exist. Some things don't even make sense the second after.

I go to the movies on my own, I eat dinner alone, I get laid alone - let's call it what it is : masturbation - I get up alone and go to bed alone. Instead of living a life I blog about a fictional one that lasts 24 hours that make up a day, the days that make up a week, month, year and a lifetime. And in the end... I stand before the great nothingness, empty handed. And alone.

Hobbies? None, but computers. Work defines me as a person, defines my life. I don't meet strangers and if I do I say nothing to them. If I do talk, it'll be about business or work, or it is related to it. It's not a social conversation at all.

I'm overweight, have no stamina and am not inclined to do something about it. I feel good with who I am, yet hate myself at the same time. I set high standards for everyone around me, but fail myself time after time. When I start a task, I rarely finish it. I get distracted easily and have the attention span of a goldfish in troubled water. I like disco music more than can be good, my mind dances yet my body doesn't move. If it does, it bursts out in spams of some kind, not looking like anything but spasms.

I yell along with songs such as "Thriller" by Michael Jackson or "Funky Town" by Lipps Inc. but only when alone. Which is quite often. I wouldn't dare it call singing, let that be clear.

Goals in life, I have no more. I live day by day, and time passes. Money ain't a problem, but the dreams are gone. I'm overly realistic, yet dare imagine things unreachable. I do such things to make sure there is no chance I ever get there and then end up hurt because the dream was false to begin with. I could go on and on for a while, but I think this is it for now.

I'm not gonna allow comments on this entry, because what I write here is the truth laid bare, and no matter what someone else thinks or writes can change that. People may want to cheer me up, or share their own sad story, but for once, this is all about me. Not about you, your life, your problems or your story. Did you really think I'd care? I've got problems enough as it is, I don't need yours.

To be continued, maybe.

140 words and nothing to say

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In a matter of hours, no less than 12 patches will be released by Microsoft (10 for windows, 2 for Office) and some of them are rated critical. Make sure to install them asap!

While I usually keep up to date, I'm not gonna wait around for them, and instead will dip myself into a hot bubble bath or lock myself in a hot wooden box. It's supposed to be relaxing ;)

Oh... this blog is now also reachable at friedkitten.net, friedkitten.org and friedkitten.tv - Not yet sure if seperate content will be delivered on that last domain, but you have to admit that the idea of producing and broadcasting your own video or TV stream sounds exciting, not?

Rest assured that if something like that happens, you'll be the first to know. If you read the announcement here, that is.

Update : the patches are out. Most (9) are rated critical and/or allow remote code execution. Affected : Outlook Express, Internet Explorer, Windows Kernel, DNS resolution, MMC, HTML Help, Visual Basic for Applications, Office. Exploits for at least one vulnerability are in the wild and actively being used. Patch NOW.

Plans for today

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- sleep for a few hours
- sedate or find a way to calm Tai down
- find a girlfriend (lol, wishing myself good luck !)
- relax and enjoy my "holiday"

Capturing life

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Asurfael said it best : I'm very live and let live. I don't believe in an absolute truth nor do I think everybody should think alike. Our differences are what makes life interesting. Some people you'll dislike and others you'll love, and that's life.

a Hot Tip

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Although the heatwave is over in Belgium for now, I'm glad The Mighty Geek shares tips on how to deal with it. Go read his advice : What I Do During A Heat Wave.

Enjoy!

Work and Idiots

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I've got nothing new to report really, so I wonder why I'm writing this entry. Tai is playing around with one of his new toys, and outside it's raining. At least the heat is gone for the time being, and I'm not sorry about it at all.

Yesterday we had a unexperienced colleague in the team and after he did one of his tasks, I went out and checked everything myself. The task he was assigned wasn't even that difficult, though it was his first time doing it. I'd rather not have him around because although he seemed quite promising to start off with, he proves to be a man that answers affirmative when asked if he knows what to do, yet clearly shows he has not a clue when out in the field.

When one gives him tips or explains something, he doesn't consider it necessary to take notes. I have no problem with people asking me for help once, twice or as many times as necessary, but I can't stand people that consider my time and effort to be trivial or show no appreciation for it. He was expecting to be my backup tonight, but I made it quite clear that he'll be working the site today as well.

It seems I had something to tell you all after all :)

It's been a while since I blogged about purely technical things, security and such, so here we go.

Owners of laptops with an Intel Centrino chipset, beware : Intel Centrino Vulnerabilities (Internet Storm Center) found. Also read Intel plugs Centrino vulns (The Register) and Centrino wireless flaw could be exploited by hackers to spread malware (Sophos). My suggestion? Patch now.

But there is more wireless news : 2 hackers will be showing how to hack a MacBook in front of a room full of hackers at the Black Hat conference. They plan to do this by exploiting vulnerabilities in the low level code of the wireless device drivers. Read the full article : Hijacking a Macbook in 60 Seconds or Less (Security Fix). Exploits such as these are not limited to the MacBook, the same vulnerabilities exists in drivers from other companies! To be continued for sure...

If you're using GnuPG (an implementation of the OpenPGP standard) you should update your install to version 1.4.5 as some vulnerabilities have been plugged. Download : GnuPG version 1.4.5 stable.

While reading various RSS feeds, I came across a short entry by Bruce Schneier : ScatterChat. ScatterChat is a secure Instant Messaging Client using the Tor network. Go take a look for yourself : ScatterChat.

United 93

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After getting a recommendation from Dimi to definitely go see United 93, I did today.

I have to agree, it's a stunning movie which grabs you right by the balls. I can't find words to describe the atmosphere. We all know how United flight 93 ended. Go see for yourself.

There are a few points that I'd to write something about, though. The various control rooms you see in action, whether it be civilian or military, are life like : lack of information, split second decisions, wrong information, waiting for orders to be executed, requests for authorisations not being answered... While it may seem the control room is in "control", it rarely is. They gather information, distribute it, give and follow orders and seem to play a game of chess. Often blindfolded. If at that point the various pieces refuse to move, or move slower or in the wrong direction, the game is over rather quickly.

On a side note : "pay peanuts, get monkeys". What do you expect in a case of emergency? A motivated team works hard to get a general view of the situation, taking fast yet informed decisions while taking into account developments that may or may not happen in the very near future (during the course of the incident), or a crew that works because they're assigned a certain task but that refuses to step up when needed?

A good atmosphere often signals a good crew. Good atmosphere doesn't create itself, one needs to work at it, every day. Paying people well, giving them feedback and appreciation pays itself off numerous times during the time a team works together. A small investment for a huge profit, who wouldn't want that?

Nude power!

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This afternoon the pc fixing took about 2 hours - could have been longer, but the client had to be somewhere around 16h30 - and then I drove off to the Brasschaats Badhuis (sauna) to relax for a few hours. It was quite quiet, not too many people around. Thus, not that much women around either, but it was fun. See, I go to a sauna to relax, not to look at women. I admit that looking at cute naked ladies is aesthetically pleasing, but it's not erotic as such.

I guess that's what many people think when you tell them you go to a nude sauna - that it is a pit of sin. If it were, I'd be there every second of every day :)

Ok, enough babbling now, off to grab something to eat, then a movie. Gotta maximize my 1 day off of work!

Or is it not?

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Up too early again. Slept till about nine, then had to pee so left the comfy bed. Off to R. this afternoon to fix problems, then off to the sauna with J. to relax. Stay up late today, sleep till 4PM tomorrow, buy food, work nightshift.

My life is soooo interesting :-)

Update 13h00 : As I'm gathering things for the sauna, it turns out I can't find my stuff, apart from my bathrobe. Then it hits me : I've left the bag containing my slippers and things like that at work. Damn, now I first have to go fix a computer, then drive over to work to pick up my stuff and then head off to the sauna. Shouldn't be a real problem, unless the computer stuff drags on and on. Or I could just grab another bag, throw in my bathrobe and towels, and rent some slippers. I guess that makes more sense.

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This page is an archive of entries from August 2006 listed from newest to oldest.

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