Category: Miscellany

ET EDT GMT-0400 GMT-0500 — Shoot Me.

As most readers of this blog know, I have some issues with how time is represented 🙂 . For starters, I can’t stand the whole “AM/PM” nomenclature (as opposed to 24 hour clocks) and the whole ET/EST/EDT daylight savings time bullshit drives me batty.

I got the following today about a meeting I have next week (emphasis and redactions mine):

When: Wednesday, October 14, 2009 8:00 AM-9:30 AM (GMT-05:00) Eastern Time (US & Canada).
Where: XXXX Federal St. XXXth Floor, Boston, MA 02110
Note: The GMT offset above does not reflect daylight saving time adjustments.

I have no clue what calendaring system generated this reminder email to me, but it basically made my head explode.

In time zone ET, we have daylight savings time until the first Sunday in November. We switch out of DST on 11/01/2009 at 02:00 ET (we “re-live” 01:00:01 through 02:00:00). During DST, ET is GMT-04. Outside of DST ET is GMT-05. The above text says the meeting starts at 0800 ET but that the offset for DST has not been reflected. What the fuck does that mean?!? Is the meeting at 0800 (GMT-5) or at 0900 (GMT-4)? I happen to know it’s at 0800 ‘cuz I was there when we scheduled it, but c’mon folks!


I think it’s time we moved the word FUCK into the common lexicon. It’s a stellar word. It’s no less stellar than MURMUR, LILT or SCINTILLA. It’s no less useful than LAUGH, SUNLIGHT, GO or COME.

A word has only those powers that a society agrees to confer upon it.

We are in complete control of those rules.

Words, strung together, are what should move us. Words, strung together, are to be loved or feared. Words, strung together, allow us to be rational, thoughtful, entertaining, disgusting, and beyond.

There is no net-positive reason for a sole word to be conferred such capabilities.

No rational society would allow the color #4E36C8 to be assigned, explicitly or implicitly, a politeness, usability, helpfulness, or appropriateness ‘score’ – thus broadly limiting or mandating its use in societal functions. Folks would need to repaint their houses, change their corporate logos, throw away lots of clothes, and revamp their schools’ art classes. Picasso’s Guernica probably couldn’t exist without #4E36C8. It’s clearly irrational.

Imagine the global good that could come from the removal of irrational societal constraints on individual words. If epithets are made powerless, it means you have to string together words to hurl a (usually pointless) insult at someone – and in so doing you are suddenly halfway towards having a conversation with them…

So can we start with FUCK? Let’s decide to make it, singly, as powerless as the four letter words DOOR, BLUE, MAKE, and SIGN.

Check Out Sweetwater

I wanted to toss a shout out to the good folks at Sweetwater!

Over the last fifteen or so years I’ve purchased all sorts of music items (guitars, amps, strings, straps, 4-tracks, saxophones, books, videos, and who knows what else) from a handful of internet and mail order providers. I tried Sweetwater this week and was impressed.

First, they had what I wanted. I was looking for two VOX headphone amps. While checking through my usual online sources, nobody had both flavors; only one or two outlets had one or the other; and a couple shops weren’t clear as to whether or not they had what I wanted in stock. I stumbled upon Sweetwater via search. These guys have a truly impressive selection and inventory.

Second, their pricing was damn reasonable. While they weren’t the dirt-cheapest option, they were absolutely in the game.

Third, my order included free shipping. I like free shipping :).

Fourth, I placed the order just after Noon on Wednesday, and the package was here this morning – in less than 48 hours. For free! Can’t argue about that!

Fifth, these guys ship stuff in used boxes – really! They reuse what I have to assume are TONS of boxes that pass through their warehouse(s). Your order goes into an old box, and is then sealed with security tape so you know it hasn’t been tampered with en route. That tape has text on it to let you know that they reuse boxes. Brilliant! Why bother recycling the corrugated cardboard when you can just slap new labels and whatnot on a perfectly-good box? Why on earth doesn’t everybody do this?!?!?! Also worth noting on the ‘green’ front: their new headquarters facility is apparently the first LEED-Gold-certified building in Indiana – kudos!

Definitely my new “go-to-guys” for future musical needs. Check ’em out.

Italian Tasties Night!

Friday evening the boss and I were able to get away for a couple of hours. We ended up at our favorite cheese shop – Wasik’s – in Wellesley center

We picked up a slab-or-slice-or-chunk-of Pecorino Sardo Grand Cru from Sardinia. We rushed home and all but inhaled this stupendous cheese, on some tasty olive-oil-infused bread rounds, with a delightful ripe pear we had on hand! We paired all this with a Sicilian Nero d’Avola.

Que bella! Best dinner I’ve had in ages!