Posts 905 to 912:


Lizard 1: It’s terrible.

Lizard 2: The horrible loss of American soldiers freeing that country from tyranny...

Lizard 3: ... only to have it devolve into Civil War.

Lizard 1: Car fires, busses burning, security forces being attacked...

Lizard 2: ... and the native population seeming to be helpless to stop it.

Lizard 1: Unemployment sky high...

Lizard 2: ... no vision for the future ...

Lizard 3: ... a leader at odds with the U.S.

Lizard 2: No-go zones with anti-government gangs in control.

Lizard 1: Terrible. We never should have "liberated" them. It was a mistake.

Lizard 2: And I was so hopeful..

Lizard 1: They voted in a constitution...

Lizard 3: The economy was doing well - exports were increasing...

Lizard 1: But now, just thousands of dead and wounded Americans.

Lizard 2: Billions of dollars squandered.

Lizard 1: And for what? Muslim radical driven civil war.

Lizard 2: Yeah. Sad. What a waste.

Lizard 3: But enough about France. Now what should we do about Iraq?


Posted by Anthony on reply

Hickory Run State Park

I just posted the photos from our trip to Hickory Run State Park.

Posted by Anthony on 3 replies


Kim recently had a business meeting in Utah, and despite the fact that airfare to go out west is astronomical, I went along for the trip.  Her ticket was on the company dime, of course.

The farthest west I’d ever been before this trip was Colorado, and Utah is the next state to the west, so it was a new record for me.

Utah is beautiful.  We only had 3 and a half days there, 1 and a half of which were work days, so we didn’t have too much time to explore; we saw Salt Lake City, Alta, and Antelope Island (briefly).  But even just in Salt Lake City, it’s so clean, and there are mountains everywhere; it’s a lovely city.

We took lots of photos.  Here are the ones I’ve posted so far:

Downtown Salt Lake City Sugarloaf Road Hike (Alta)

Update 2006-12-17: here are the final 2 sets:

Night Shots of Air Products in Bountiful, Utah, and Oil Refineries in Salt Lake City The Great Salt Lake and Antelope Island in Utah

Some random interesting things about Utah or the Salt Lake area in particular:

The highways are really wide.  Route 15 is 6 lanes in both directions at some points.

Every shopping center has a pawn shop and/or a payday-loan shop.  Literally every one.  There must be hundreds of them in and around Salt Lake alone.  It’s weird because those kinds of places are so tacky, and there were other tacky/gaudy shops, but then the next block would be really nice.

All restaurants in UT are non-smoking.  That alone is nearly enough reason to move there.

They have this great little restaurant called Noodles & Company.  We went there twice in 3 days if that tells you anything.  I had the mushroom stroganoff and the penne rosa, and both were amazing, for $5.  It is a chain, so I can only hope that one comes to PA soon.

And finally, not really about Utah, but about the flight out there: it was non-stop, which I always figured (you always hear) is ideal, but 2 hours into the 4.5 hour flight I started getting really claustrophobic and fidgety.  And the seat next to me was empty.  I don’t know what my problem was, but Kim also was really claustrophobic on the flight back (due to the huge guy next to her).  So from now on I think I prefer that longish flights like this have a layover.  And I would certainly always rather drive 8 hours in my own car than fly any amount of time.  Of course to go this far west, driving isn’t usually a viable option, but I’m just saying.

Also, they tricked us when we got our seats: they were like, you’re in an exit row, are you willing and able to assist others in the event of an emergency?  And we’re like of course, no problem.  What they DON’T tell you is that the exit row seats don’t recline!!  On a 4.5 hour flight, that’s something they ought to tell you.

Posted by Anthony on 1 reply

Humanity Getting Smarter

Kim and I were in Utah last weekend, and I’ll be posting about that soon, but one of the really cool things about Utah is that smoking is prohibited in all public places including restaurants and bars.  It was so nice to go out to eat and not be bothered by the smoke that never fails to infiltrate the "non-smoking section" in Pennsylvania restaurants.

When I learned about Utah’s public smoking ban, I looked it up and found lots of other good news on the subject:

On September 25th, a public-smoking ban went into effect in Philadelphia.  And Allentown is making noises along the same lines:

On Sept. 20, Allentown City Council approved a resolution urging the state of Pennsylvania to enact a statewide ban on smoking in public places.
This is not an issue of choice.  Those directly affected by second-hand smoke did not choose to bear the negative effects of someone else’s habit.  Taxpayers do not choose to shoulder the financial burden of those who require regular, costly treatment for lung disease.  In fact, most consumers are in favor of indoor bans.  According to a national Zagat Survey of more that 110,000 restaurant patrons in the United States, 80 percent of respondents said that all restaurants should be smokefree.  In California, 70 percent of respondents said they would eat out less if smoking were permitted again in restaurants.

Earlier this month, Philadelphia became the latest major U.S. city to go smoke-free indoors.  This continues a trend at the state and municipal level that is spreading across the United States.  According to Americans for Non-smokers’ Rights, a California-based lobbying organization, 17 states and 474 municipalities have enacted smoking bans in restaurants, bars and other workplaces.  Hawaii begins a ban in this November, and Washington, D.C., is going smokeless in January.

Even those crazy Europeans are on board with this:

Four fifths of EU citizens support a ban on smoking in offices, shops and other indoor public spaces, according to a poll marking World No Tobacco Day.

However, they are less sure when asked specifically if they support a ban in bars - in this case, 61% are in favour.
The world’s first nationwide smoking ban in public places was imposed in Ireland in 2004.

Italy and Scotland have outlawed smoking in enclosed public places and the rest of the UK is following suit in 2007.
"More and more of us don’t smoke and don’t want to be anywhere near smokers either."

The poll suggests that young people are the most likely to find smoke unpleasant, for reasons such as its smell.


This is January 2005, and even Italy, where it is not unusual to see doctors smoking in hospitals and pupils lighting up in school corridors, has moved with the times by introducing a harsh new law banning smoking in public places, including bars and restaurants.


France is to ban smoking in all public places from next February, the prime minister has announced.

Cafes, nightclubs and restaurants are to be given until January 2008 to adapt, said Dominique de Villepin.
Smoking kills more than 13 people a day in France, said Mr de Villepin - calling it an "unacceptable reality".
Opinion polls in France - often considered a nation of smokers - suggest 70% of the people support the ban.

And the BBC has this roundup of smoking bans around the world.

Posted by Anthony on reply

Viewing Aunt Jeannies Movie Clips

Hi Anthony... hope all is well with you.  I was sorry to hear about Kim’s dad.  I posted a message to you all to let you know that you were in our prayers. 

I love how you set up your mom’s photo site.  Very nice!!  Can you tell me what I need to do to view her movie clips?  I’d like to be able to view them. 

Thanks Anthony... next time come down too!  Love Lisa

Posted by Lisa Rowland on 1 reply

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