stAllio!'s way
Saturday, February 26, 2005 
if at first you don't
got everything set up, installed barry's old video card, plugged it in.... motherboard powers up but the monitor gets no signal. and the hard drive doesn't seem to be spinning up.

installed barry's new video card... same result.

brought computer upstairs to try different monitor... same result.

played around with cables, swapping etc... same result.

thought "maybe new hard drive is defective." opened old/current computer to remove its primary hard drive. but the damn thing is screwed in (with phillips screws) on both sides and the hard drive cage, which is supposed to swing out, will not swing out. spend at least 30mins, maybe even an hour, trying desperately to unscrew the screws before giving up on that mission.

plugged new hard drive into power supply of current computer: it seems to power up.

plugged new hard drive back into new computer... it won't spin up and monitor shows nothing.

so... possible scenarios:

1. i hooked something up wrong
2. new hard drive is defective
3. both barry's video cards are defective
4. something else is defective (motherboard?)
5. new power supply is defective or insufficiently powered (it's 350W)
6. ?????

i suppose tomorrow i might be going out to buy a new power supply... though maybe first i will run more tests. i'm giving up for tonight.

parts is parts
everything but my video card arrived early! my new computer is mostly built, except for the following:

and i did it all myself, with no help from my hardware-certified brother-in-law (though i did ask him one question and might ask a couple more, or have him run an inspection once i've hooked everything up)

Thursday, February 24, 2005 
tattoo pics!
if you've been following along, you already know that connie was here a couple weeks back.

on valentine's day, connie & drove up to muncie so she could get a new tattoo (we chose that date because she was returning home the next day, not because tattooing is particularly romantic). she had it done by bad taste artist, awia member, and tattooist extraodinaire bobby vomit. afterward we went on a double date with bobby & bella.

when connie originally told me that she wanted something themed around indiana (and corn in particular), i knew bobby vomit would flip over the idea because he's all about that stuff. and the final design even incorporates the awia logo: bobby & i concluded that it is the first ever animals within animals tattoo. so naturally i had to post photos as soon as i got them!

these pics are super fresh: taken at the tattoo shop (ground zero in muncie) immediately after it was finished.

click the pic for a larger version (1632x1232)


Wednesday, February 23, 2005 
harder than hardware
well that's it: i have now purchased all the hardware for my new computer. although i don't expect to actually have it all until early next week: most of it i ordered online. barry recommended i check out pricewatch and i did, though eventually i still bought most of it through newegg. newegg was not always the cheapest, but it was typically within a few bucks, and it carries more exclusive parts that are hard to find elsewhere.

here's what i'm getting. i bought everything from newegg unless otherwise noted. and all links are to manufacturer's website unless otherwise noted.

it'll be another week or more before i've received all the parts and the thing is actually assembled. but that's fine. now i can focus on something else for a few days.

Tuesday, February 22, 2005 
hoosier daddy?
indiana state senate passes gay-marriage ban... by a ridiculous 42-8 vote! come on now: we have a lot of homophobic rednecks in the state but it's not 84% homophobes!

fortunately, really discriminating against some--and doing it right--takes years to accomplish.

The Indiana Senate voted overwhelmingly Monday to make a ban on same-sex marriages a part of the state constitution, shipping the controversial issue to the House.

Senate Joint Resolution 7 was approved 42-8 after a brief debate. The measure is expected to pass the House easily, too.

After that, the always-emotional issue must be set aside. Amending the state constitution requires a second vote by a separately elected legislature, which could happen no earlier than 2007. Then the amendment would have to be approved by voters statewide, in November 2008 at the earliest.

Monday, February 21, 2005 
here it is, kids!

the awiannounce is now fully automated so you can subscribe yourself, unsubscribe yourself, and even re-subscribe yourself if you're bored!

sign yourself up for the latest awia & stAllio! news at

decisions decisions: sex scandal or drug scandal?
so i started perusing the lefty blogs again, after having been away for awhile, in search of sound clips of the bush drug tapes (see previous post). so far i haven't found any. in fact the lefty blogs don't seem to want to talk about this story too much... they still want to talk about jim guckert (aka "jeff gannon"). indeed, when you manage to find discussion of "the bush secret tapes" on dailykos, most of the comments revolve around whether the bush tapes story is indeed a smokescreen to divert attention away from the guckert story.

but where the progressoblogs focus, the corporate media seems to look away, and vice versa. the corporate media is all over the story about wead secretly taping bush. already it has 391 related links on google news. meanwhile, google news search for "guckert" turns up a mere 476 hits, despite the story being a full week older. and if you look at who is publishing the stories, they generally aren't the big media: E&P, buzzflash, counterpunch, salon, and the occasional big-name place such as the washington post. namely, a bunch of progressive sites and blogs and some of the smaller media.

granted, the tale of guckert/gannon is a deep and intriguing one. since it broke during my vacation, i have to admit that i almost missed it, and learned of the story on the daily show (thanks to atrios for the link, with other good links in the same post).

"jeff gannon" was a regular in the white house press pool since at least feb 2003. he was ostensibly there as a reported for a publication called talon news, which was a branch of an organization called "GOPUSA". he would get called on occasionally, and would offer up a lightweight or softball question.

recently it was discovered that "jeff gannon" was in fact a man named jim guckert ("gookert"). until recently, guckert also apparently worked as a gay escort, with ads soliciting his sexual services on various male escort sites. some of these ads had photos of guckert... and his penis. and text descriptions of his penis.

okay, so a former gay escort (a conservative one, even) in the press pool, directly asking questions of president bush. that sounds salacious, but only in an "another hypocritical gay working for gay-bashers" way, right? but it gets much more curious. guckert seemed to have access to some serious insider info despite the fact that his employer was some fly-by-net publication with no professional or accredited journalists in its employ. this despite the fact that his employer was seemingly not even founded until after he had joined the press pool (founded april, he was there in feb or earlier).

so who is this guy, and how did he manage to not only get into the press pool but get access to secret documents about valerie plame, the iraq invasion, etc? was he a plant? was he sleeping his way to the top? or was the the ultimate success story of a poor young prostitute making his way all the way to the white house (in a sense) before a tragic fall?

americablog seems to be getting the credit for breaking the guckert story (and in fairness, has a big post right up top about bush's secret tapes), and indeed if you want all the data on guckert that seems to be the place to go.

so yeah, it's an intriguing story on several levels, and it seems to keep getting weirder. and the news that "bush smoked drugs" is pretty duh-tastic: everyone has basically known so for years, though he'd never admit or deny it per se. but even if the bush secret tapes story is there to divert attention away from guckert, the secret tapes still deserve some analysis... and there should definitely be mp3s of the tapes (or excerpts) all over the net by now.

come on, people! i can't be the only person on the net with tivo, and if i had been watching a show that aired excerpts from the tapes (as i know some places have), i would have had that shit recorded to my hard drive & possibly online within 5 minutes. but i couldn't find any mp3s online, or even links to the video on abcnews. i refused to sign up for realplayer's all-ass-pass just to see some abc video online, but fortunately right now the "free daily clip" on the site is a 45-second blurb with 20-30 seconds of audio from the tapes, which i have now recorded... but i know there's more to be heard, and i bet more has been broadcast. so where is it? as a sampling buff i am drawn to tales of salacious audio recordings, and i want all the audio i can get off those tapes.

caught on tape
new secret tape recordings of gwbush have come out, clandestinely recorded by "someone he thought was a friend". and they're juicy.

...while standing in the Republican primaries in 1999, Mr Bush apparently ruled out Colin Powell and Tom Ridge as vice-presidential candidates because they favoured abortion rights.

But he refused to bow to conservative pressure on him to criticise homosexuals.

"I'm not going to kick gays because I'm a sinner. How can I differentiate sin?" he claimed on the tape to have told James Robison, an evangelical minister in Texas.

seems like he changed his mind on the gay-bashing issue, since he eventually "came out" in favor of a gay-marriage ban.

but the really juicy material is all the drug-related stuff:

"I wouldn't answer the marijuana question," he says.

"You know why? 'Cause I don't want some little kid doing what I tried."

He feared that any such admission might affect his standing if he won the presidency.

"You gotta understand, I want to be president, I want to lead," he tells Mr Wead.

"Do you want your little kid to say 'Hey daddy, President Bush tried marijuana, I think I will'?"

In response to a remark by Mr Wead that the future president had publicly denied using cocaine, he said, quoted by the New York Times: "I haven't denied anything."

He said that he would continue to refuse to comment on allegations of drug use.

"I am just not going to answer those questions," he said. "And it might cost me the election."

In the tapes, Mr Bush mocks Al Gore, his opponent in the 2000 elections, for admitting to smoking cannabis, and also dismisses him as a liar.

so gore is a liar because he actually admitted his past drug use, while bush is not because he obfuscated? okay then.

but there's more to the tape than marijuana:

"I don't want any kid doing what I tried to do 30 years ago," Bush said in recordings made when he was governor of Texas and aired Monday on ABC's "Good Morning America.""And I mean that. It doesn't matter if it's LSD, cocaine, pot, any of those things, because if I answer one, then there will be another one. And I just am not going to answer those questions. And it may cost me the election."

so is that a tacit admission that he also did coke and acid? sounds like it to me, though some media outlets are only focusing on the pot.

if you hear a loud chorus of clicking, it's probably thousands of bush apolo-bloggers and PR pros trying their damnedest to dismiss and discredit the story... or at least attack the messenger. but the former bush friend and taper doesn't think he's being opportunist:

Wead said he didn't intend for the tapes to become public in his lifetime, but he was forced to release them by his publisher. Wead is the author of "The Raising of a President: The Mothers and Fathers of Our Nation's Leaders," which was published by Atria and went on sale last month.

Wead said he made the tapes as a historical record. He denied that he released them to make money or sell books.

"This book could have been released before the election, driven by partisan sales," Wead said. "The publisher wanted it. I wouldn't let it, and my publicist told me at the time, `That cost you a million dollars.'"

why would a biographer voluntarily give up "a million dollars" worth of free publicity & book sales?

RIP hunter s thompson
the legendary gonzo journalist has died from an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound

Sunday, February 20, 2005 
my new "drinking song"
it's called "drinking song", it's not what you expect, it's brand new, and it's this week's mp3 of the week! download it now!

i'm starting a new mailing list for awia & stAllio! announcements, including show news, mp3s, and of course every new mp3 of the week. i think i'll call it "awiannounce". if you'd like to join, email with "JOIN AWIANNOUNCE" or something like that in the subject line... really, whatever so long as i don't think it's spam & delete it without reading.

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