19 October, 2012

Energy independence.

It is the worst time of the year in my opinion. The time that everyone and their dog likes to pretend that they know more than anyone else about the troubles of the world and how they can be fixed.
One of my favorite terms comes up about this time every year (it seems) and that is "Energy Independence".

The concept of this is that America (or your favorite country) can produce enough energy domestically that there is no need to send our precious dollars to another country so we can buy oil. What a great idea. Home grown gasoline burning away in our American made cars.
 However, the idea is a myth and let me tell you why. For the sake of argument, I will change the word 'Oil' with something else. Something easier to understand like 'Chairs'.

Lets say you are a chair maker. You make the most lovely chairs and they are in demand everywhere in the world. When you sell your chairs in your neighborhood, you can get $100 per chair,  but your chairs are so cool, people outside your neighborhood will pay you $200 for your chairs. If you double and triple your output, they will still pay you $200, and people in the next town over will pay you $300! Boom! That is some serious cash per chair. If you can more than double  your profits by selling your chairs out of town, why would you bother to sell your chairs to the locals? They are only willing to pay $100 bucks for one of your chairs because they can buy an imported chair for the same price. The imported chair looks just like your chair and costs less.

Given the option to make $100 per unit or to make $300 per unit, any business person is going to opt for the higher number.

Oddly enough, this is exactly what is happening with oil production in the US. The US is exporting more oil now than they were in the heyday of Texas drilling when Dallas was on TV the first time. Overseas markets are paying much more than domestic markets for US produced oil. The idea that a US based oil firm would give up the extra profit of selling fuel overseas to make less money by selling it in America is laughable. The fact remains that we can buy oil from other countries for less than we are willing to sell oil to ourselves.

That is why America buys foreign oil. Because it is cheaper than producing it locally. Oil men like J. R. Ewing are not going to sell oil to the US gov for less than they can sell it to a foreign gov. They just aren't.

That is my take of energy independence. On to the next rant.

05 September, 2012

Birthday Month!

If you know me, or have ever met me, you might know that I was born in this here month. That makes me a September baby. Now normally, for the sake of easy math, I celebrate my birthday in January. See, if you were born in 1972 and this year is 2012 it is easy to say, "this year I am 40." But if you don't celebrate your birthday in January, you can't really say that. New year, new year older. That is how I like to play it.

You know who else has a birthday this month? That's right. Subway.
Talk about sharing with a famous person. Who needs Stephen King when you can have a turkey bacon club on your side? I think we ALL know the answer to that one.

I doubt a footlong could have much to contribute to a dinner conversation whereas Steve would (my opinion) be a great person to have round for dinner. Not only is he tall enough to get the bowls off the top shelf, he plays a mean guitar and I am sure he is a good listener.

Just for fun, here is my dinner party guest list for a September birthday party.
Jimmy Fallon, Jerry Bruckheimer, Bill Murry, Will Smith, Joan Jett, Salma Hayek and Jane Curtin. All those people, and me having a birthday dinner. Now I just need to figure out what we are going to have and call Bill. He is the hardest to get a hold of. He never returns calls... 

19 June, 2012

*insert rant here*

I had a good long internal rant the other morning on the way to work. I was reading some article on teh interwebs and it set me of on a tear. I was mental-ranting the entire walk. Granted, I don't live that far from work but it is about a half mile so that is a good 10 minutes of yelling in my head.

The drawback about having that much of a good rant is that I got it all out of my system. I don't really recall what it was that I was so bitter about. Normally, I can hold onto a topic like a Staffy with a stick. I must be getting soft in my old age. 

Wait wait! I remember what it was. Thank Jay-sus for that. How random would this post be without a topic...

I read an article talking about Utah's law making it a criminal offense to have a miscarriage. I realize that the law past two years ago, but the whole concept is still fucked. You take someone on the worst day of their life and potentially bring in the rozzers to slap the cuffs on them because they were negligent when they slipped in the tub, were over 45 or had Lupus. And if the miscarriage happens in the first trimester, the NHS says it is normally the baby's fault.

I still find it odd that when the Right is passing laws like this, people can still deny that there is a war on women being waged. As a recap, it is illegal to abort a pregnancy in Utah. If you are catholic, it is a sin to prevent a pregnancy, yet welfare and childcare cutbacks make it impossible to feed and care for children. Genius.

So I may be a bit late to the party, but I would like to raise a small voice to the idiots that make laws. THERE ARE BIGGER PROBLEMS IN THE WORLD THAN THIS.

Is it wrong that I am looking forward to the day that we have no more fish in the ocean, can no longer grow food and have to live off Soylent Green? Maybe then people will stop complaining, but I doubt it.

20 March, 2012

Rock star bingo part 2

As you may remember, I have been playing Rock Star Bingo. So far on my card I have ticked, Eric Clapton, Ronnie Woods and Jimmie Page. I am not sure if I have to start a new card to include bass players, but my latest chip now covers Canadian bass player and lead singer of Rush, Geddy Lee.

Walking over to drop my dry cleaning the other morning, I saw him exiting a shop with his wife. You may be thinking, "How do you know it was Geddy Lee? He is a Canadian and why would he be in London. Also, what the heck does he even look like?"
That is exactly why I know it was him. There is only a handful of people on the planet that look like this when they go out of the house. If your normal look consists of dark glasses and funny soul patch thing, There isn't much you can do other than cut your hair and wear contacts to go incognito. As he had not done that, I am certain that I have a new square on my board covered.  And I imagine he came to London for the lovely traffic and weather because he grew tired of the sunshine and open spaces of Canada.

Potentially, I could add Felix Bechtolsheimer to the list, but I am certain no one know who he is. Unless of course you are a fan of Hey Negrita. Felix is the singer and plays rhythm guitar for the country blues combo. I saw him on Kings Road as well.
That place is like a magnet for rocky folks.

PS. Can Hey Negrita put out a new album? I know you would sell at least 2 copies. Maybe you guys could just come over and jam. I can play most open chords. Aside from F. I hate F.

20 February, 2012


Today I read on the Beeb about the coming drought crisis and how no one will be able to water their plants, take baths or even flush the loo without some serious changes to how we collect rainwater in the south. There is even talk about running a pipeline from the Severn over to the Thames to get some of that fine Welsh water.

I don't want to sound like a jerk -- that is a mild lie. I am a total jerk. -- but where I live in Chelsea there are at least two spots that look like this on my way to work.
Okay, they aren't that bad, there are two distinct spots near South Kensington that spew hundreds of liters of water a day. I know the council is aware of the leaks, because they were considerate enough to grit all around them when it was cold. 

Perhaps they are keeping this fresh running water available to the homeless population. That is a very kind thing of the RBKC. Or maybe they are trying to keep the levels of the Thames up by dumping water from the main right into the drains. In one of the cases, on Brompton road, the water comes right out of a mains access, runs about two meters down the gutter, then flows right into a drain. It has been going on now for about 3 months. 

I wonder if I could get Boris to come down with a couple of buckets and save some of the water that is running down the drain. I hear he is a hands on type of guy... Boris? You out there? You want to come save some of this Chelsea Water? 

03 February, 2012

Something for the weekend

I know it has been a small Donkey Age since I last posted. I apologize. I could cry that I was in school, then I was looking for a job, then I was doing an internship... But that is just life. It was me. It was all me. I was the lazy, slack-jawed monkey spending my free time watching QI rather than doing any sort of work.

I did go so far as starting a new blog that is dedicated to the world of design and showcasing some of the interesting things that come across my desk. I know I mentioned that I would convert this blog to that purpose, but then I realized it would be hard for me to rant about the state of fat people on the escalator or savages that feel it is their duty to throw their litter on the ground rather than in a bin. 

I have effectively doubled my workload. Maybe not the smartest thing, but that is me. 
So if you would all be kind enough to follow me over to the new blog, you can all have a read about some of the stuff I get up to in the design world. This will remain a refuge for ridiculous ideas, silly concepts and social commentary.
Until next posting, I will be burning penguins to keep warm here in London.