Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Seriously... enough of the Katrina stories!

CNN.com - A year later, recovery in New Orleans not easy - Aug 30, 2006: "After months of rebuilding, Henry and Flora Hamilton's house doesn't look like it was sitting in 7 feet of water a year ago. The same can't be said for most of their neighbors' homes."

Is it me or have we seen more "reports" on CNN on the anniversary of Katrina than we did on the anniversary of 9/11?

About that trade deadline...

In case anyone out there was wondering (and something tells me somebody might have been):

The trade deadline has come and gone, but trades can still be made, though players must clear waivers first. How does the process work? The Globe's Gordon Edes gives us a quick primer on the waivers process:

You're going to hear of many players put on waivers between now and the end of August. If a player clears waivers, that is, doesn't get claimed by any team, he can be traded to any team. If he gets claimed by one team, he can only be traded to the team that claimed him. If he gets claimed by more than one team, he goes to the team with the worst record in his league that claimed him, and can only be traded to that team. If he's claimed by teams in the other league, he goes to the team with the worst record, and can only be traded to that team. Of course, not trading the player remains an option. He can be pulled back from waivers once in August. If he is placed on waivers again before September, he can't be recalled a second time. Or, if a team is just hoping to dump a player's salary, it can simply allow a team that claimed that player to have him for a small waiver fee.

Sunday, August 20, 2006

Personal update from O'Connor in the OC

It's been a while since OC Chronicle has had a personal post regarding a family update. Niece Kate (15 now!) was justout for the annual visit and took a heck of a great picture of the clan... so now you know how the munchkins are doing.

Friday, August 18, 2006

Bronx Bombers Battle over Botched Ball

Steve Lombardi has a nice breakdown on the latest drama with the Yankees. Most baseball fans not inclined to root for the Yanks have been waiting patiently for A-Rod and Jeter to come to blows... looks like the wait might soon be over. WasWatching.com: The Pop-Up:
"In the YES replays, you clearly see Jeter moving his mouth when the pop is in the air. It appears that he's saying 'I got it!' a few times. In the same replays, you never see A-Rod open his mouth, at all.
Rodriguez was clearly planted under the ball. He was in perfect position to catch it. Jeter had to range to his right to get towards the ball. I would offer that Derek had to move around 10 feet, away from his position on the pitch, towards the foul line, to get to where the ball was going to land.
Jeter went behind A-Rod and their gloves bumped as they both reached up for the ball. That appeared to be the only serious contact between the two players. It seemed as if their gloves met just as the ball was going into the pocket of A-Rod's mitt - and that knocked the ball loose.
After this happened, Jeter stood behind A-Rod for about 6 seconds with a stone-cold expression on his face. The only way I can describe the look is to say it's the same type of look that a husband gets from his wife when he says 'I think your hair looks fine.' It's the are-you-eff'ing-kidding-me and/or are-you-that-clueless look of disapproval.
While I could not see A-Rod's expression when this happened (or, maybe I missed it?), I can say that YES had Jeter and Rodriguez on a split screen after the miscue (and the subsequent replays) and, while Jeter still had the same all-the-nerves-in-my-face-are-dead expression, Alex Rodriguez had a semi-giggle smile on his face. It appeared to be a not-knowing-what-else-to-do nervous type reaction. I think A-Rod's facial reaction could be filed under 'Smile, because it rains on you everyday, anyway.'"

Workers who make iPods can't afford to buy one.

Apple invetigates accusations of forced labor at their iPod manufacturing locations and publicizes that they found no such thing. However, buried int he article is this little passage
"The probe found the workers assembling iPods were paid at least the minimum wage, with more than half earning more than minimum wage, excluding bonuses. Minimum wage for Shenzhen in southern China, where the factory is thought to be located, is about 800 yuan ($100) a month."

No, I don't have an iPod but I have great admration for Apple. Here's my issue... On the whole, the people who use Apple products or are iPod afficianados are, in general, the types of people who think they are "counter-culture", or free-thinking individualists fighting against the "mainstream".

Look at how Apple has positioned their brand for the past 2 decades.. going all the way back to the famous "1984" commercial for Macintosh. It implied that if you use a PC, you are part of Big Brother, the establishment. Their current campaign for their computers shows a hip, trendy, cool dude (a liberal)representing the Mac and a stuffy, boring guy in a suit and tie (conservative) as representing the PC. And, of course, the iPod commercials feature hip music and dancing and position the brand as something to appeal to young, hip and creative types.

What's the point? Well, clearly, the demographic of people most likely to buy Apple products is close to the demographics of those who are most likely to listen to Air America, Blog for Howard Dean and maybe even protest the World Trade Organization. So when do they start boycotting Apple products for utilizing this kind of labor to make their products?

Look at me... I'm holding my breath!

One more reason not to let your teenage niece use your computer:

MySpace users hit by hacker virus the Daily Mail:

"They believe that the hackers have hidden dangerous software on the site whichmeans that computers can be attacked unaware to users while they are just viewing pages. "

Kate... did you use my computer last week?

Thursday, August 17, 2006

JonBenet suspect got jobs as a teacher of young girls after arrest for Child Porno!

Smoking Gun has a better breakdown of the Karr resume at the link below. One question: How does a guy fleeing trial for Child Pornography get jobs overseas as a caregiver and teacher of young girls? Isn't this the "Information Age"???

Resume Of A Killer? - August 17, 2006:
"The man arrested for murdering JonBenet Ramsey taught at a variety of foreign schools and worked as a tutor and 'caregiver' for young girls in the years following the 1996 death of the Colorado girl, according to an online resume. John Karr, 41, was arrested yesterday in Bangkok, Thailand on an arrest warrant charging him with the slaying the six-year-old Boulder girl. Karr's resume, a copy of which you'll find below, was posted to an online clearinghouse used by teachers seeking overseas jobs. The resume notes that from 1996-2001 he taught in 'some of the most prestigious schools in the United States working with children from high profile families.' It appears that his foreign employment began after his April 2001 arrest in California for possession of child pornography. Karr, who went on the lam while awaiting trial, worked as an English teacher in Asia and Europe during 2001-2002. He appears to have bounced between teaching and nanny jobs in the following years before landing at a school in Honduras, where he worked as a second-grade teacher and the school's Director of English. The resume, which appears to have been posted last year, indicates that Karr's 'mission' was to help develop a child into a 'student of superior poise.' The resume notes that Karr holds a bachelor's degree from Regents College in Albany, N.Y. The school, now known as a Excelsior College, is a correspondence school that describes itself as 'a world leader in distance education.' (1 page) "

JonBenet suspect tried to contact Ramseys


NBC10.com - Local News - Audio: Accused Killer Says He Contacted Patsy Ramsey:
"In an audio interview, accused killer John Mark Karr says he contacted Patsy Ramsey before her death to say he was 'so very sorry' about JonBenet Ramsey's murder.

The audio was obtained by an AP reporter in Karr's Bangkok apartment just before police took him into custody.

'I've contacted the Ramsey family, actually before Patricia passed away. And I conveyed to her many things, among them I am so very sorry for what happened to JonBenet,' Karr says on the audio tape.

'It is important for me that everyone knows that I
love (JonBenet) very much, that her death was unintentional and it was an accident.'

Karr then repeats his claim that he contacted the Ramsey family.

'I made several efforts to communicate with Patricia before she passed away. It is my understanding that she did read my letters and she was aware of me before she passed away.'

The reporter then asked, 'What happened in the basement?'

Karr stammers and then says, 'it would take
several hours to describe that.'

The reporter asks a follow-up , 'Could
you be brief?'

'There's no way I could be brief,' Karr counters.

Atlanta attorney Lin Wood confirms Karr tried to correspond with Patsy Ramsey, in writing in the months before Ramsey died this year. He says
Mrs. Ramsey didn't reply, but that she handed the information over to investigators, and that it helped link Karr to the case."

More odd JonBenet suspect stuff...

Drudge had a link up earlier to this dude's resume for teaching jobs. This link is disabled now, but it was interesting for a few reasons. I archived it and will try to get it up later. (UPDATE: I've posted the saved HTML page here)

Most of his teaching gigs started in 1996. (JonBenet was murdered in 1996) And until 1996 he had this entry:

-Real estate (1981-1996) Privately owned rental business. Restoration of mansions from the Queen Victoria Era.

Much speculation has been made on how the intruder would have known the layout of the Ramsey home since it was a wierd floorplan. Is it possible his connection with them involved a restoration of their unique mansion? It was noted by the Ramsey's that their home was part of the Boulder Historic Homes tour, so it must have been something special, and perhaps it was recently renovated?

Psychic's rendering of JonBenet murder from 1998

It's been a few months since OC Chronicle has been updated, but the JonBenet suspect story has compelled me to show you something. I've read about this case on the internet for quite sometime because, as the father of young girls, I'm terrified of something this horrible happenning to us. Also, I couldn't imagine the horror of being falsly accused, worldwide, of such a heinous act.

When I saw the image of the suspect, I remembered that I saw a sketch of a suspect based upon a psychic's vision back in 1998. Now I don't believe in this psychic stuff, but check this out: Psychic's rendering of JonBenet murder from 1998.

"To this day, John and Patsy Ramsey have lived up to their promise and continue to search for their daughter's killer. They have posted a composite sketch of a suspect compiled by the late psychic, Dorothy Allison, on their Internet site with the attached message:

"Have you seen this man? This man may have been in the Boulder area in December 1996. ... We firmly believe that this most horrible of killers will be caught based on information provided by people who care about right and wrong. ... Please help, so another innocent child will not be a victim and another family will not suffer unbearable grief."

Allison, who claimed to have assisted police investigations, came up with her vision of the suspect during an April 1998 appearance on a network television show. She died on December 3, 1999. Boulder Police Chief Mark Beckner declined to comment on the late psychic's work."

UPDATE: I got robbed by Drudge! I forwarded Matt Drudge the link to this post and the link to the Psychic's drawing from the "True Crime" web page. He bypasses OC Chronicle and linked directly to True Crime. Come on Matt! I GAVE YOU A GREAT TIP!