Hot Pockets – A Guest Blog Post by Nicole Dunn

December 1, 2010 at 7:26 pm | Posted in Blogging, Review | 1 Comment
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Sunday, November 28, 2010

hot pockets…

Last night Jordan and I got to go see Jim Gaffigan at the Comerica (previously dodge) theater.

I was excited to see Gaffigan live because I had been following him as a comic even before he had Comedy Central Specials or Cd’s. His timing and delivery are classic.

This was a show with all new material, which is probably why the security told everyone at the door ” no pictures or video, not even on your cell phone”. There was one opening act by a comic named Jordan Rubin. He had an interesting style. He would pause in between his jokes to make it seem like he forgot what he was going to say and it would make the next punchline seem random, but it all came together. He had a good joke that hit well with the audience about the rapper Mystikal. He did a good job of warming up the crowd for Gaffigan.

Gaffigan’s act did not disappoint for the long time fans and roped in new fans. The main focus of his act was about working out (or lack there of), the gym, the glory and disgust of McDonald’s, the facade that is Subway, hotel living and hotel indoor pools, and whales. It seems like a far leap from talking about the creepy guy who stares at the women on the hip abductor machines to whale blubber but it flowed seamlessly. The show kept the audience engaged and laughing in hysterics. It was a well timed show, lasting about an hour and half. Gaffigan left the stage and the audience cheered for an encore and without disappointment, he came out and gave the crowd what they wanted to hear….the hot pockets skit. He added new some material to the older, adored jokes about the microwave favorite. He even threw in a shout out to bacon, which was a big focus in his last special “King Baby”; it was subtle but it got a big reaction.

As a long time fan, I loved his new stuff. Jordan made a good observation about how, for the most part, his act is pretty clean as far as comics nowadays goes. Even though it isn’t packed full of swear words and filth, his jokes are relatable and hilarious. I’ll watch this special over and over again when it comes out on cable.

via phoenix dunn family.

Is Prop 110 a Conspiracy?

October 10, 2010 at 12:05 pm | Posted in Blogging, Politics | 2 Comments
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There are a lot of people arguing FOR Proposition 110 on the Arizona ballot this year. There are exactly zero (0) arguing AGAINST it, in the official ballot booklet.

Just for fun, let’s take a look at it from a different…perhaps conspiratorial… angle.

If you don’t have Google Earth installed – you should. Click the link to download it directly from Google. Then, you can follow along in this exercise.

Prop 110 – Arizona State Trust Land Exchanges

_________What your vote will mean__________

A “yes” vote shall have the effect of authorizing the sale or lease of state trust land without auction or advertisement in order to protect military installations and operations. It will also allow voter-approved exchanges of state trust land after public notice and hearing if the exchange is related to either protecting military facilities or for land management purposes.

A “no” vote shall have the effect of retaining current law regarding the sale, lease and exchange of state trust land.

______________________________________________

Let’s poke around at what military bases might be in jeopardy of encroachment, and need some land traded in order to protect them. After all, that’s what the proponents of this proposition say it is for. We will focus on Davis Monthan Air Force base in Tucson, because it is big, and has a decent amount of State Trust Lands in its vicinity.

Open up the AZ Parcel Viewer, located here:
http://sco.az.gov/website/parcels/viewer.htm

Hit the Button, near the top, for EASY SEARCH (popups must be enabled)
Select Township
T16S R15E
Zoom to Township

That will zoom you into an area just south of I-10. you can zoom out a bit to see the air base just north of I-10. It will also create a selected area that is light pink – that’s not the pink I refer to below. After zooming out you will see the base in dark pink.

Turn on Land Ownership in the Layers on the right side by putting a check mark in the square. That will color the map according to who owns it.
Pink=Military (Davis Monthan Air base in this case)
White=Private Owner
Light Blue= State Trust Land

Now ask yourself…”Who owns all that white land just south of the air base?
Lets open Google Earth to find out.
Search for Business:
IBM Tucson, AZ

That should answer that question. (It should come up as selection A – double click it to zoom in and see their campus. The air base is just above it)

Now ask yourself…”Why would IBM care about any land adjacent to their existing campus?

I refer you to Paragraph 1, Sentence 2 on Page 20 of the following document (note title of said document):

THE GEOTHERMAL POTENTIAL
OF THE ffiM PLANT SITE AREA,
TUCSON, ARIZONA, T15S, T16S, RI5E

http://www.azgs.state.az.us/publications_online/ofr/ofr7918.pdf

There ya go. The way I read the proposition, it would allow the State to sell that Trust land to them directly, without advertisement or auction. No independent financial analyses. No public hearings. No highest bidder. IBM just names a price, and they can buy it.

As it stands now, the state can lease that land (and apparently is), or they can sell it at auction, to the highest and best bidder.

Why would they come up with a proposition that requires massive transparency and accountability in order to exchange the land, for other equally valuable federal lands; when they don’t have to provide accountability nor transparency if they decide to sell it privately?

Hey, this is just my thought. Do what you want this information. Take some time, while your map is color-coded as above, to browse around the parcel viewer and see what military bases might be in danger. You are looking for pink areas, surrounded by light blue areas. Check Luke Air Force base in Phoenix. Fort Huachuca outside of Sierra Vista. Note that the yellow areas are BLM lands, so they don’t apply. Green areas are forests. White areas are privately owned (that means there are already commerical buildings or housing tracts there).

Leave me some comments below, or hit me up on twitter @therealcyber5, and let me know what you think about this article.

Gold King Mine and Ghost Town

March 16, 2010 at 2:02 pm | Posted in Blogging, Photography | Leave a comment
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Spring is in the air, which means summer is right around the corner. In Phoenix that means it’s time to get to higher ground or the ocean. If you opt for the former then why not head two hours north and check out Jerome? Sure, there’s a “Main Street” area where all of the tourists hang out but if you follow the signs you can head a couple of miles outside of the crowds and explore what used to be Haynes, Arizona.


It is a privately owned attraction that features antique machinery and an abandoned mine. Some of this machinery works! That includes a 10,000 cubic inch engine which used to power a small town and a giant saw mill. There’s plenty of trucks, cars and tools lying in rust waiting for the owner Don Robertson to get around to fixing them up and turning them from rust buckets into show cars.

In addition to the rusty metal items are some old wooden buildings. There is a dental office, a schoolhouse and even a bordello. None of them are still operating, but they are picturesque.  If you have kids with you they will delight in feeding the animals at the petting zoo. Sodas and trinkets are available in the gift shop.

Sedona in HDR

March 15, 2010 at 2:04 pm | Posted in Blogging, Flickr, Photography | Leave a comment
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This weekend I went to Sedona for a wedding. So, of course I took my cameras. I decided early on I was going to shoot it a bit differently than I normally do, this time. I set the trusty Canon to Aperture Priority and turned my Auto Exposure Bracketing on.

Three shots, spaced between 1 and 2 stops apart. That was how I shot everything. Why? Well, Sedona is famous for its red rocks and blue skies. Since it had just rained, that meant lots of greens on top of the reds. Add to that some puffy white clouds and shadows and you have a lot of dynamic range to try and capture with a digital camera. I wanted to see if I could accurately capture all the mountain details without blowing out the sky or resorting to any camera filter other than the circular polarizer I brought along.

Now, I’m not going into all the details of HDR (High Dynamic Range) photography, bracketing (AEB) or why the mountains are red. I’m just going to say it was a great time and share a couple of shots with you.

If you have seen HDR before, you may be expecting to see really vivid, almost cartoonish colors here. You won’t. This is a real landscape and the bracketing and HDR composites have been made with that in mind. I wanted to show you that HDR doesn’t have to look surreal. It can be used to capture and display all the details your eyes see. As I mentioned, in Sedona that means lots of red, green and blue. It  just so happens to be colors your camera is made to capture. The bracketing is perfect for sucking details back into the pictures.

Getting Google Buzz Out of Your Inbox

February 16, 2010 at 2:52 pm | Posted in Blog Reader, Blogging | Leave a comment
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Are you testing out Google Buzz and it is driving you crazy by tossing stuff into your Gmail inbox every time you do anything on a social network?

Fear not. It’s easy to filter Buzz out of your inbox! Just go to your Gmail Settings and create a filter like this:

Just type “label:buzz” (without the quotations) into the “Has the words” area. Click the Next Step button. It will give you a warning, just accept that warning – it doesn’t apply here, for some reason.

Creating Gmail Filter

Click For Larger Image

Now, just put a check mark in the “Skip the Inbox” selection and press the Create Filter button. Like this:

Skip the Inbox

Click For Larger Image

That’s it. You will have created a filter that skips your inbox! Everything will show up when you click Buzz on the left side of the Gmail window, but not in your Gmail Inbox.

You will have a filter that looks like this:

Completed Gmail Buzz Filter

Click For Larger Image

How Do I Just Turn It Off Altogether?

Even easier than creating a filter.  Scroll to the bottom of the Gmail page and click the link tht says “turn off buzz”.

Turn Off Google Buzz

Turn Off Google Buzz - Click For Larger Image

YouTube – Sound of Music | Central Station Antwerp (Belgium)

April 27, 2009 at 2:29 pm | Posted in Blogging, Dance, Social Networking | Leave a comment
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YouTube – Sound of Music | Central Station Antwerp (Belgium).

An amazing display of some uplifting stuff in a public place. You gotta love these impromptu publicity stunts!

Concert Tickets May Go To Highest Bidder

February 9, 2009 at 1:19 pm | Posted in Blogging, Concert, Politics, Tickets | Leave a comment
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Have you heard? Ticketmaster and LiveNation may be merging. By the time I write this, it may already have happened.

If you follow this kind of stuff – then you may know that recently LiveNation stock has pretty much plummeted, and they have had to pay U2 around $19 million due to a deal they signed with them last year. [Formerly I had this as Madonna – who has a similar deal, but so far the only payout is to U2 – Madonna’s payout will come later this year]

LiveNAtion had plans to take over its own ticketing operations so they could stop paying Ticketmaster ridiculous amounts of cash for every event they did. Apparently, Ticketmaster did not like that idea so much – and now the two may merge.

Yeah, there’s an ongoing investigation into Ticketmaster practices about tickets being “sold out” within minutes, and then immediately being available to highest bidders on Ticketmaster’s own Ticketsnow.com.

To me, what all this means is that no matter who or what you want tickets for – you will have have to be the highest bidder. No more preferential tickets for those who waited all night in the rain outside the venue. We all knew those days were gone, anyhow. But now, even if you are the “first” online or on the phone – you will probably be redirected to an auction site along with ever other fan.

I am asking all bands from this point on, to go back to managing and selling their own tickets. Or, pay the venue – or another local merchant to do it for them. Screw Ticketmaster and Live Nation.

My only question is – will it be Live Master, or Ticket Nation? Either way, I think the fans are up the proverbial creek. Let’s hope someone does something about it and starts passing out paddles. Soon.

Ticketmaster/Live Nation Merger Could Raise Ticket Prices | Epicenter from Wired.com.

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