"Madame, bear in mind That princes govern all things--save the wind." -Victor Hugo, The Infanta's Rose

Friday, December 30, 2005

Look what I got for Christmas!

Oh boy! It's a Giant Plastic Hippo! Just what I always wanted! Wowie zowie! It's really big. Where the hell am I going to keep it? How will I explain this to my friends and relatives? They think I'm pretty strange already. Should I seek professional help? What if it eats my dwarf?? Oh shit, it's a Giant Plastic Hippo! My life is ruined!

But seriously folks: no giant hippos under the tree, but we do have a brand spankin' new Tivo box that in addition to recording our favorite programs, will also supposedly let us pause live TV, suggest other shows we might like to watch, download cool stuff from the Internet, play back slides and mp3's all over the house, feed the cats, and make a damn fine cup of coffee. All I have to do is figure out how to program the stupid thing, which is my assignment for the next week. In the meantime, 2006 is nearly upon us and I'd like to take this opportunity to wish everyone who might be reading this (both of you) a very sincere "Happy New Year". Since New Year's Eve falls on a Saturday this year, which coincides with my weekly radio show, we've decided to celebrate by throwing a party here at Chez Toast and broadcasting it live "on the air". If you'd like to join the toasty fun and debauchery, and are into trance/techno music, be sure and tune in Saturday night from 9 PM (Central Time) until 2 AM. The traditional countdown to the New Year will be featured just before midnight, although we'll have to pause for an extra leap second to allow the earth's rotation to catch up with us. This is for real, not because we're such wild party animals or anything. The planet apparently is wobbly enough in it's rotation to get out of sync with our accurate atomic clocks about every seven years or so. Fortunately for us all, however, the folks at World Jump Day have a plan: get 600 million people to jump into the air at the exact same moment (6:39:13 AM EDT) on July 20, 2006. The resultant momentary displacement of mass, it is claimed, will nudge the Earth into a slightly different orbit and thus "very likely stop global warming, extend daytime hours and create a more homogenous climate". Whoa, somebody cue the Van Halen -- 2006 is going to be a great freaking year!!

Still, this does not affect our need to add one leap-second to the clock on Saturday night. Now a second may not sound like much, but if you consider that the world's population is about 6.5 billion and multiply that by one second, that means that collectively, we have somewhere around an extra 206 years on our hands. What a bonanza! So, responsible public-service spirited netizen that I am, let me offer a few suggestions about how to use that second of extra time:
  • Take the scenic route to your refrigerator.
  • Speed-read a book. War and Peace, Ulysses or The Complete Works of Shakespeare would be good choices.
  • Delete a few more "spam" messages from your computer.
  • Take a quick, one-second nap. You need all the rest you can get.
  • Do volunteer work for the less fortunate. If you see an orphan, elderly shut-in or homeless person, wave at them and smile.
  • Contemplate your existence, and your unique place in the great tapestry of life. But when you do this, be sure not to scream out loud as it will disturb everyone else's contemplation of their own existence, and they'll hate you even more.
Whatever you do, don't use the extra time to watch TV. Since there's not much else on besides crappy reality programming, one second of it is about all you can take anyway. It's also not a good idea to be on the phone with a lawyer, or engage in any other activitiy that charges by the hour or fraction of an hour (i.e., the babysitter).

Above all, don't squander the time reading some ridiculous blog post about how to spend your leap second... Oops, too late!

But no matter how you choose to celebrate the holiday...



  • At 12/30/2005 08:08:00 PM, Blogger April said…

    We have a DVR, which is, in my opinion, better than a TiVO. You'll love it! I NEVER watch live TV anymore! Even if I am watching live TV, I pause it for a good 10 minutes, so when I go back to it, I can fast forward through the rest of the commercials for the whole show... yeah, lazy I know. You'll never want to give it up! You never have to remember to set your VCR again, just set a "series recording" and youre set for the whole season. Have fun! Its Gods Gift, I'm tellin' ya!

  • At 12/30/2005 08:09:00 PM, Blogger April said…


    I'm so jealous of your big black hippo!


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