Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Quote of the Whenever I Feel Like It

They say celebs die in threes. leave it to Billy Mays to throw in one extra COMPLETELY FREE!

-- My friend, Dave Burgess

Monday, June 29, 2009


I'm reading Victor Davis Hanson's "A War Like No Other", which looks at the Peloponnesian War between Athens and Sparta. Something that struck me was how incredibly wealthy Athens was at the time. Imagine Toledo, Ohio with a one billion dollar budget surplus, *after* funding everything everyone could think of. I can't quote directly because the book isn't in front of me, but the lasting output of Greek theater and architecture (like the Acropolis), were as much a function of wealth as of dynamic creativity.

Sunday, June 28, 2009

Didn't Miss A Thing, Did I?

Gone away from the internet for a few days and all hell breaks loose. Michael Jackson dies. Billy Mays dies. Obama introduces an executive order that continues Bush's policy of infinite detention of terrorists (Hope and Change!). Cap and Tax passes the House. China blocks the sale of Hummer for environmental reasons.

Yep, didn't miss any of it one freakin' bit.

Thursday, June 25, 2009

A Cultural Interlude

Via Ace, a whole heap o'... er... interesting sculpture.

There are some marginally NSFW images, but museums are full of nudes too.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Waxing Lyrical

We hate to see her go, but love to watch her leave.

Trace Adkins - Honky Tonk Badonkadonk


On my way in to work, I heard on the radio that nine had died in yesterday's tragic Metro train collision in DC.

This morning in a meeting, someone told me that the death toll was now only seven, according to the Mayor's office.

Nobody else thought it was funny when I recoiled in horror and whispered "zombies".

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Baseball And Father's Day Weekend

Our season ticket package for the season (Potomac Nationals - single A minor league), had us set up for a game both yesterday and today, but as has happened all season, Mother Nature jumped in and toyed with us.

The P-Nats have had nine rainouts this season, the most for at least 20 years, and the season is now only half over! Double headers have been frequent to make up the games, and there have been times when... well, like this time.

Friday night was supposed to be a double header, but was rained out. Ok, so Saturday would be an evening double header, but the field was still swamped from an early afternoon downpour that they finally called it and scheduled *another* double header for today.

Liz and I knew that they had had some rain on Saturday, so we watched the weather radar and the team website. The notice kept saying "postponed due to field conditions". We called at 6pm and the box office said, "Yep, they're starting the first game now!"

We jumped in the car and got to the stadium but, nope, they'd postponed again. From 6:15 to 7:00 to 7:30. In the meantime, they'd given out t-shirts, baseballs, more t-shirts, had contests and more give-aways and generally kept things going.

Finally, at 8pm they called it, because the outfield was just too sloppy to play on. To make it up to the fans, some of whom had been there since 4pm, everyone with a ticket to the game will get *two* free tickets to a future game. Fireworks were still scheduled, so they let the kids run the bases for a half hour - and gave away more goodies like game used bats - and then did the fireworks. It still wasn't real dark, so the fireworks were different. You could see the smoke from each shell burst, and they'd light up with different colors from the following bursts. It's better in full dark, but this was still pretty cool.

Today we stayed for the first game only. A foul ball ricochetted off the fence by the visitors dugout and zoomed between Liz and I, almost beaning me. Later a high foul popup came our way and the visiting team's third baseman came over the fence and practically into my lap trying to catch it. He was ok, no thanks to the concrete steps that broke his fall.

Later, Liz was selected as the "lucky fan" and if one of the guys had hit a home run in the inning she would have won $100. A grand slam was worth $2800. No such luck. The game ended up 1-0 when they walked the winning run in in the bottom of the ninth. Yay!

Later I talked to my Dad, who's in the hospital. The doctor saw a spot on his lung so they went in to look. It was cancer so they removed about a third of his lung. He's doing fine, breathing on his own and sounding good. We Phipps' are tough, and he'll be going home probably on Wednesday.

How was your Father's Day?

Saturday, June 20, 2009

That Other Place

I obviously haven't been doing much Rocket Jones posting, but I have been keeping busy. Hammer movies, hiking, writing stories and learning to paint watercolors. Wanna see?

Click on it and it gets as big as all outdoors.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Quote of the Whenever I Feel Like It

"There are 10^11 stars in the galaxy. That used to be a huge number. But it’s only a hundred billion. It’s less than the national deficit! We used to call them astronomical numbers. Now we should call them economical numbers."
— Nobel laureate physicist Richard P. Feynman

Monday, June 15, 2009

Dis Be My Crib

Arlington Rap.

Well, I work there anyway. Yo.

(My current layout doesn't lend itself to embedded video. I'm going to have to do something about that.)

Wisdom Worth Wemembering

Whatever you give a woman, she will make greater.
If you give her sperm, she'll give you a baby.
If you give her a house, she'll give you a home.
If you give her groceries, she'll give you a meal.
If you give her a smile, she'll give you her heart.
She multiplies and enlarges what is given to her.
So, if you give her any crap, be ready to receive a ton of shit.

Sunday, June 14, 2009


Earl Leaf, photographer, mid-1950's:

Afterwards I grab a quick cheeseburger at Googie's or gargle a pineapple shake on a high stool at Schwab's Drugstore while listening with one ear to the lament of a strawberry blonde who is trying to climb the ladder of success wrong by wrong.

Saturday, June 13, 2009

I Hereby Deem These Cool

Today, I made fire. Specifically, I made a Soda Can stove that boiled two cups of water on 1 ounce of Heet gas line anti-freeze as fuel. I'm going to make another one (my third) to try to up the efficiency some more. Bottom line though, the concept works, and works well.

All right, rather than post twenty things all saying "look at this", I'm going to post them all here. The title is a phase that a good friend uses to good effect.

Everything you ever wanted to know about backpacking stoves, including the dreaded Soda Can stove.

This nifty little map, courtesy of Rachel Lucas, lets you drag a map of the US around a map of Europe so you can get an idea of the size of various European countries and their distances to each other. You will be surprised.

I also saw this video at Rachel Lucas, but I'd seen it elsewhere first and forget where. Flash Mob action, and consider this a formal offer to anyone who wants a pair of Hammer Pants, Mookie can do it. If there's any interest, I'll have her work up a price. Just another benefit you get by visiting Rocket Jones.

Magnum P.I. Han Solo. Synchronicity. Via Brian J. Noggle.

Interactive fun
, thank LeeAnn for this one.

For those concerned about me playing with fire yet again, I'll have you know that I took all appropriate safety precautions, including informing Liz that if she heard me screaming, she should check with me before calling 911.

Late addition from Hot Air. Fantastic Music Machine. They ain't kidding!

Frozen In Time

Check out this panorama of Paris. When you first get there, some little red boxes will flash. Click on any of them to see a photo of what's happening there.

Quote of the Whenever I Feel Like It

Mookie passed along that she's reading Bill Bryson's A Short History of Nearly Everything. She particularly liked the way he explains TV static and how science knows about the big bang.

Tune your television to any channel it doesn't receive, and about 1 percent of the dancing static you see is accounted for by this ancient remnant of the Big Bang. The next time you complain that there is nothing on, remember that you can always watch the birth of the universe.

You don't need no stinkin' converter box either.

Seven Dry Samurai

The samurai sword umbrella.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Going Outside To Play

It's Summertime.

Quote of the Whenever I Feel Like It

Drunken sailors generally spend cash that they’ve already earned themselves, rather than running up debt to be paid by others. If our politicians started spending like drunken sailors, it would in fact represent a dramatic improvement. -- Glenn Reynolds

Pointed out by Random Nuclear Strikes

Tuesday, June 09, 2009

Refrigerator Magnet Wisdom

I'd Tell You To Go To Hell,
But I Work There,
And I Don't Want To See You
Every Day


More snippets not post-worthy on their own. As if they're post-worthy all lumped together.

We've gotten over a foot of rain in the last five weeks. Rain deficit? Ha!

Daughter Robyn is buying a house. She doesn't want me to help with flower beds because I have an insanely green thumb.

I heard a great commercial on the radio for Six Flag amusement parks. The punch line comes after one person asks if they should go after work: "Nah, I've got plans. How about during work?"

I should know better by now, but this gets old (paraphrased:)

Person: "Abortion is good."
Me: "Some people think abortion is murder."
Person: "You are a religious zealot."

Show me where my opinion was stated? I'm sick of asshats who go straight to personal attacks when their viewpoint isn't embraced immediately. They're fucking children, and unfortunately the kids are running the asylum.

Hmmmm... this is getting dangerously near to a rant. Buh-bye.

Sunday, June 07, 2009


Once again, this post will disappoint those looking for deep meaning, keen analysis and any kind of point whatsoever.

I just finished making lunches for the next workweek, featuring the dreaded musubi. For those not up with current Rocket Jones trends, musubi is Japanese styled rice, compressed into a block like sushi and mated with a slice of spam. That's the traditional Hawaiian version anyway. What I did today was use the musubi mold to make thin hamburger patties, which were fried up. Then I mated the burgers to the rice with a slice of American cheese, the idea being that the cheese would melt into the rice and glue it to the hamburger. For seasoning, I used Montreal Steak Seasoning, so these should be good. We shall see.

By the way, if your musubi is meatless, it's more or less an onigiri. Except an onigiri has a spoonful of filling tucked inside.

Musubi is pronounced moo-soo-BEE. I'm not sure how to pronounce onigiri, but I say it sorta like on-NEE-gear-ee and you say gear-ee really fast.

Speaking Japanese is easy because you just say everything really fast. Much like English is more understandable if you speak it loudly and slowly at foreigners.

Last night at the ballgame (double header, split), in between games they introduced some guy who did police work involving internet crime (it was "Internet Safety" night for the kids). Instead of talking about that, he mentioned that his Dad had been in Normandy on D-Day and asked for a moment of silence. Afterwards, the stadium erupted in cheers when he finished up with "God Bless America!"

During the fireworks show after the games, I had about 20 kids around me ("Internet Safety" night, remember?), all oohing and ahhing (and why is "oohing" a word but the spell checker flags "ahhing"?) at each burst. Bruce Springsteen's "Born in the U.S.A. was rocking the house, and all these young kids were dancing and singing loudly right along with the music.


There you have it. Living up to my promises, if not my potential.

Saturday, June 06, 2009

Digging Deep In The Cellar

Back in 2003, I wrote the following:

Classic Trashy Movie Titles

I talked about movie stars appearing in less-than-memorable movies, and now I'll list some wonderfully crappy movie titles. Once again these are courtesy of Video Hound's Cult Flicks & Trash Pics.

Also, titles preceded with an asterisk are ones I've seen. I love these kinds of movies, although, to quote the hound: "An inspired title doesn't necessarily ensure an inspired movie."

* Assault of the Killer Bimbos
Attack of the Killer Refrigerator
Avenging Disco Godfather
The Beautiful, the Bloody and the Bare
* Beneath the Valley of the Ultra-Vixens
* Cannibal Women in the Avocado Jungle of Death
* Children Shouldn't Play with Dead Things
* Faster, Pussycat! Kill! Kill!
Ferocious Female Freedom Fighters
Gore-Met Zombie Chef from Hell
* Hillbillys in a Haunted House
Hollywood Chainsaw Hookers
* I Dismember Momma
* I Spit on Your Grave
* Mars Needs Women
Oversexed Rugsuckers from Mars
* Pecker
Please Don't Eat My Mother
Rabid Grannies
Rat Pfink a Boo-Boo
The Rats Are Coming! The Werewolves Are Here!
* Santa Claus Conquers the Martians
Satan's Cheerleaders
* Sorority Babes in the Slimeball Bowl-A-Rama
Three on a Meathook

So how about an update?

* Assault of the Killer Bimbos
Attack of the Killer Refrigerator
Avenging Disco Godfather
** The Beautiful, the Bloody and the Bare
* Beneath the Valley of the Ultra-Vixens
* Cannibal Women in the Avocado Jungle of Death
* Children Shouldn't Play with Dead Things
* Faster, Pussycat! Kill! Kill!
Ferocious Female Freedom Fighters
Gore-Met Zombie Chef from Hell
* Hillbillys in a Haunted House
** Hollywood Chainsaw Hookers
* I Dismember Momma
* I Spit on Your Grave
* Mars Needs Women
Oversexed Rugsuckers from Mars
* Pecker
Please Don't Eat My Mother
** Rabid Grannies
** Rat Pfink a Boo-Boo
** The Rats Are Coming! The Werewolves Are Here!
* Santa Claus Conquers the Martians
** Satan's Cheerleaders
* Sorority Babes in the Slimeball Bowl-A-Rama
Three on a Meathook

The '**' means I've seen it since the original post. If it's in bold, then I own it.

Hmmmm, I need to add some things to my Netflix queue.

Friday, June 05, 2009


Links courtesy of the Rocket Dungeon.

What the heck is an Ekranoplan? To oversimplify, it's a boat that flies by taking advantage of the wing-in-ground effect. Clear as mud, eh? Ok, how about this:

...when an airplane is about to land, it almost wants to "float" on air, moments before touchdown. The compressed air between the wing and the ground becomes a "cushion" that gives the plane smooth gliding ability. Over the sea surface this effect is even more noticeable.

So it's a vehicle that can travel many time faster than a boat and carry many times more weight than an aircraft. Some designs could even "fly" over dry ground.

No matter what, they usually look weird (click komrade, for glorious Soviet-size).

For lots more hella wicked cool pics, background and links, check out Dark Roasted Blend: Ekranoplans Show, parts 1 and 2.

Ancient Sex Secrets of the Orient

From page 413 of the Kama Sutra:

Cho Kyo Chicken. Tie rope around genitals, now around neck. Have fun.

It's now coming out that David Carradine may have died from self-asphyxiation while masturbating. Guys will do some pretty crazy things for sex, but c'mon, what's the appeal here? I just don't get it. If you need to strangle yourself to get off, then here's a little hint: You aren't doing it right.

Note: "Cho Kyo Chicken" came from my long-time blogging bud Tuning Spork.

Thursday, June 04, 2009

Emergency Advice

Q: What do you do in case of fallout?

A: Re-insert and shorten your stroke.

Wednesday, June 03, 2009

Hint Hint

If someone wanted to get me one of these, I'd be very very surprised and pleased.

Now You Know

Q: How do you make holy water?

A: Boil the hell out of it.

Monday, June 01, 2009

Care Packages

Newly graduated Mookie is already in Colorado for her Summer gig. Conditions there are chilly and old, as in the house she's staying at is circa 1880's. She's also found herself in a casino town, with gambling and scenery and not much else. I've worked up dry-mix recipes of my Baked Potato Soup and Chicken Enchilada Soup and have a couple of batches of each ready to send her way, along with an overloaded dehydrator full of fruit merrily desiccating away. The soup mixes don't quite match up to the originals (natch), but they're good enough to share with friends.

No real point here, I just wanted to post something.