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September 27, 2011 The Return of Wazmo Nariz

Wazmo Nariz

I adopted the nom-de-web "Wazmo Nariz" way back in 1998 in honor of the seminal new wave singer songwriter Wazmo Nariz, a.k.a. Larry Grennan a.k.a. the guy with two ties.

Well, I've been contacted by Wazmo through YouTube and have been politely requested to stop using the name. Wazmo is back and is about to release a new album! His first new release, Chemosabe Cigarettes is now posted on YouTube. He hopes to minimize any confusion.

Please support the community of musicians. Attend live shows. Buy CDs from the artist websites when possible. Turn your friends on to new music.

Look for the new Wazmo Nariz album!

--Waz





September 23, 2011 They Might Be Tubthumping

The Onion's entertainment newspaper "A.V. Club" has a feature where they invite artists to cover a song from a list of 25. As part of "Undercover2011", They Might Be Giants recorded a smashing cover of Chumbawamba's "Tubthumping".

Mrs. Waz and I caught a TMBG show on Friday that included an even better version.

The set also included a two-chord version of Horse With No Name accompanied by 30 acoustic guitars manned by the A.V. Club.

--Waz


September 14, 2011 WE WERE WATCHING TV AND DRINKING BEER WHEN OUR FREEDOMS WERE DONE AWAY WITH

I am very much an advocate of personal privacy, and very surprised at how willing most people are to give it up.

Take a look at a typical data aggregator, Spokeo. Type in your name and city, and see how much information they've collected on you. Hey! Is that your house? Scroll down and look closer -- see how much FALSE information they have about you. And they're willing to sell this real and false information to anyone with $3.95.

(I'm particularly pissed that this particular site has me listed as a Republican.)

Now go to your gmail account and open a personal note -- do the ads in the right-hand column seem to align with the subject matter? Is Google "reading" your mail?

Note that AT&T, Verizon and others turned over your phone records to the federal government, in violation of the 4th Amendment, then lied about it. And Google turned over e-mail records of suspected dissidents to the Chinese government.

Here's a few things you might do to increase your privacy:

1. Use an on-line alias. Wazmo may or may not be my real name. Not sayin'.

2. Turn off cookies in your browser. Or at least set them to be erased every time you close the browser. MS Internet Explorer is the worst for retaining cookies.

3. Use Ad-Aware, a free application that prevents most tracking. Periodically scan your entire system. Supplement with Malwarebytes Anti-Malware, Spybot Search & Destroy, and Spyware Blaster. Each of these finds differnet types of unwanted files.

4. Don't post personal information on Facebook or other similar sites. I'm surprised at the number of people that post real-time information that they're out of the country.

5. Install the Ad Blocker Plus add-in to your browser. This has the added benefit of speeding up page loads.

6. Always opt-out of data sharing with companies you do business with. By default, they are allowed to share or sell your personal information to others. But they're also required to allow you to opt-out and keep your information private. Look for a "Personal Privacy Statement" from your bank and others with whom you do business.

7. Don't use "Safeway Club Cards" and other frequent buyer cards. Your purchases are being tracked and correlated.

8. Don't shop at Wal-Mart. Nearly all Wal-Mart suppliers are required to place RF (radio frequency) tags in their merchandise, for "inventory purposes." But don't be surprised when your two-year-old Nikes generate a projected "Need New Shoes?" message on the floor in front of the "greeter".

9. Be wary that surveillance cameras are everywhere. You're likely to be scanned and indexed if you're anywhere near a government building, or in crowded areas like airports or sporting events. Can you find Wazmo?

10. Don't answer surveys. Or better yet, screw with them a bit.

11. Turn off the location tracking feature of your cell phone, or set it to "911 only". Some smart phones (notoriously the iPhone) constantly monitor and compile your position throughout the day. They claim they keep this secure and private (see the ATT/Verizon item above).

12. Use TOR (the onion router) if you don't want your internet protocol (IP) address tracked and recorded.

13. Place yourself on the national "Do Not Call" list. Politely ask telemarketers to take you off their call lists. Be less polite with repeat offenders.

14. Try not to be seen.

--Waz

I just listened to a couple very disturbing interviews from WHYY's Radio Times show. I encourage you to listen if you can. Here are some links ...

Dana Priest on 'Top Secret America: The Rise of the New American Security State', which is about the massive expansion of American intellegence community after 9/11. Much of their activities are carried out without Congressional oversight. All they have to do is classify something as "top secret" and they can basically get away with anything … scary stuff.

The other article is Eli Pariser confirms our online confirmation bias, which describes how Google, Facebook and others track your every action on line and contrive to present information to you that, they consider, fits your profile. Let's say 2 individuals at different ends of the political spectrum enter the same search string into Google. They are likely to get different results, based on their past behavior on the Internet. … scarier stuff.

--DJP




September 9, 2011 Hard Times For Gumby

< I'm deeply saddened that television and movie star Gumby has fallen on hard times.  He's desperate and down to his last 27 cents.  Which he lost.

He is now being sought by police after a failed robbery of a 7-11 in San Diego.

Numero uno:  Gumby was accompanied by an accomplice, but it was NOT Pokey.  Pokey would have talked him down ("Let's rob a 7-11!"  "I dooon't knooow, Gumby.")

Numero two-oh:  The 7-11 clerk thought it was a joke, and the attempted robbery didn't get reported until his manager viewed the surveillance tapes several hours later.

Numero three-oh:  To convince the clerk he was serious, Gumby reached for a weapon in his pocket, but instead spilled 27 cents on the floor, and tried but couldn't pick it up with his slab-like hands.

Numero four-oh:  Saddest of all is the young clerk didn't even recognize him, describing Gumby to police as a "green Sponge Bob SquarePants."

A $1,000 reward is being offered for information leading to the arrest of Gumby and his accomplice.


Update from DWW: Fame up! Take a closer look at the attached enhanced photo!



Update from TC: It looks like a trend.


August 28, 2011 Alien John McCain Alleged Fake

Here's a panel from today's comics on critical thinking. They make slanderous accusations about "bonkers stuff" despite ample proof to the contrary.

--Waz




August 10, 2011 Annual Bubble Baba Race

It's that time of year!  The annual Bubble Baba sex doll race.

"Don't riot! Be happy! Cavort with inflatable sluts!," or something to that effect, might be the unofficial motto of the Ninth Annual Bubble Baba Challenge — in which 800 brave participants ride inflatable sex dolls down the Vuoksa river rapids, about 50 miles from St. Petersburg. The entire event lasts about three minutes, and was conceived by organizer Dmitry Bulawinov "as a joke at a party where the men got drunk and the women didn't show up."

Please now you enjoy these images of the great things humans can accomplish when they simply put aside their petty differences and blow.

New Yosemite race this year!

--Waz


Yosemite Bubble Baba Sex Doll Race start near Half Dome
2011 Yosemite Bubble Baba Race




July 19, 2011 Crossing a Tiger with an Iguana

You could be driving a Liger. But noooo.

I quote from Wikipedia:

Naming process

As part of a marketing strategy by Volkswagen the name was chosen by the public through the Auto Bild group with over 350,000 voters through Auto Bild's magazines and Web sites. The other possible names were Namib, Rockton, Liger, Samun and Nanuk. Tiguan is a combination of the German words Tiger (“tiger”) and Leguan (“iguana”).

Democracy simply doesn't work.

--Waz



















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