Archive for August, 2007


The Internet Thinks I Have A Thing For Asians

August 16, 2007

I get a lot of Spam email. A LOT. I’ve had this email address for 10+ years, and in the early days I was a drunken Paris Hilton level of promiscuous with what I signed up for & who got my email address. Turns out that over time, there can be repurcussions. Fortunately, that’s what corporate spam catching software is for. 

But as I was wondering just exactly how much spam I get, I decided to do an experiment. I collected all the spam from last Friday @ 5:00 PM through this Monday @ 8:00 AM. 638 messages in all. And the other night I got bored & divided them up into sub categories to try and better understand what the internet thinks about me.  Click the image on the right for a detail view.

As one might imagine, the majority of the unsolicited email preyed upon the standard human needs/weaknesses. Companionship, money, greed, curiosity. I chose large hierarchies, like Sexual Services, Financial Services, Drugs, Random Product Sales, and the weirdest one, PDF attachments. I guess the spammers think that by hiding the message in the PDF it won’t be caught by the anti-spam software. A) They’re wrong, but more to the point, b) who the hell opens up unsolicited email attachments from strangers with no body copy to clarify? This tactic must be working for someone, because I got 41 of these PDF attachment emails, which is almost as many emails as I got about drugs to keep my penis hard.

Within the top hierarchies, I sub-categorized.

Sometimes the categories weren’t clear; like, I received a bunch of emails in Spanish, but I didn’t bother to figure out what each one was, I just lumped them under “Foreign Language” in the “Random Products” category.

I’ve been thinking about the categorization, and I realize that both the “Products” category and the “Drugs” category are artificially inflated as I put genital related products (pumps, patches) & drugs (Viagra, Cialis) into those categories when they could very well have gone into the “Sex” category.

Among the “Sex” category, miscellaneous non-specific sexual escapades was the number one item being offered, but as far as specific services, Interracial hotties was the number one lure. In specific, the majority of these hotties were Asian.

The least popular sexual service, with only one email over the weekend, was gay porn.

In an amusing side note, a friend of mine whose midlife crisis took the form of leaving his wife & family to be gay once told me that Asian women were the gateway drug of homosexuality; it starts with a love of smaller breasts, slighter curves, eventually you’re just transitioning to young men.  I have no idea if this is true, but I plan on tracking the amount of Gay email spam I receive over time to see if the internet has plans for me.



August 16, 2007

Stephen Hunter (author of the Bob & Earl Swagger novels) just commented on my blog.  And while it might not actually be him, it sure looks like it from the IP address, return email, and a couple other things that only show up on the admin screen.  That is pretty damn awesome.  And yes, I hope I enjoy the book too.


links for 2007-08-15

August 14, 2007

Is It Possible That I’m Retarded?

August 12, 2007

As part of the liberal elite, a good portion of my life is spent openly sneering at the things other people enjoy, like NASCAR or Larry The Cable Guy.  But upon reflection, it’s not like I spend my nights reading Dickens & watching Masterpiece Theater.  In fact, as I went to and read the following synopsis for the upcoming Bob Lee Swagger novel, a book I am actually salivating at the prospect of reading, I’m not sure I have much intellectual high ground from which to snark at others.  I wish I could pretend to only ironically enjoy the Swagger novels, but the truth is I just loves them so.  Even if they do get made into corpse-rapingly awful movies.

In The 47th Samurai, Bob Lee Swagger, the gritty hero of Stephen Hunter’s bestselling novels Point of Impact and Time to Hunt, returns in Hunter’s most intense and exotic thriller to date.Bob Lee Swagger and Philip Yano are bound together by a single moment at Iwo Jima, 1945, when their fathers, two brave fighters on opposite sides, met in the bloody and chaotic battle for the island. Only Earl Swagger survived.

More than sixty years later, Yano comes to America to honor the legacy of his heroic father by recovering the sword he used in the battle. His search has led him to Crazy Horse, Idaho, where Bob Lee, ex-marine and Vietnam veteran, has settled into a restless retirement and immediately pledges himself to Yano’s quest.

Bob Lee finds the sword and delivers it to Yano in Tokyo. On inspection, they discover that it is not a standard WWII blade, but a legendary shin-shinto katana, an artifact of the nation. It is priceless but worth killing for. Suddenly Bob is at the center of a series of terrible crimes he barely understands but vows to avenge. And to do so, he throws himself into the world of the samurai, Tokyo’s dark, criminal yakuza underworld, and the unwritten rules of Japanese culture.

Swagger’s allies, hard-as-nails, American-born Susan Okada and the brave, cocaine-dealing tabloid journalist Nick Yamamoto, help him move through this strange, glittering, and ominous world from the shady bosses of the seamy Kabukicho district to officials in the highest echelons of the Japanese government, but in the end, he is on his own and will succeed only if he can learn that to survive samurai, you must become samurai.

As the plot races and the violence escalates, it becomes clear that a ruthless conspiracy is in place, and the only thing that can be taken for granted is that money, power, and sex can drive men of all nationalities to gruesome extremes. If Swagger hopes to stop them, he must be willing not only to die but also to kill.

Man.  Someday I can only hope to be in at the center of a series of terrible crimes I barely understand but vow to avenge.


Newcastle: Finally Good For More Than Just Coal

August 12, 2007

On a recent trip to Galco’s, the Highland Park soda wonderland (like six thousand different kinds of rare imports & domestic micro-brewed hard to find sodas), I was talked into buying a British drink called Fentiman’s Curiosity Cola, and it was 9 kinds of awesome.  If 1) Highland Park wasn’t so far away, and 2) the soda wasn’t like $3 a bottle, I would totally drink this instead of my constant influx of Diet Pepsi.  The secret, claim the folks at Fentiman’s in Newcastle is that they actually brew all their drinks, for like 10 days.  Whatever the trick is, allow me to say “Owdy, Guvn’a!” to you good people of Fentimans.  I’m not sure if that’s a compliment, it just happens to be the only British expression I know.


Why Do You Need So Many Flamingos?

August 11, 2007

So, having a daughter I realize that sooner or later I may have to go to the zoo.  Unlike Disneyland, I’m not particularly stoked to take the Little Baby Cupcake to the Zoo.  But, since I was in the area today after lunch with a friend who lives on that side of town, I decided I should do a “dry run” of the Zoo, since I haven’t been there in 20+ years, and certainly the rest of Los Angeles has changed a lot in the intervening years.  I would hate to take Emerson there and find out that it’s a gang-banger hang out like Magic Mountain or that the Zoo randomly lets baby-eating animals out of their cages once a day or something equally crazy.

Like many of the non-zoo portions of Los Angeles, my gringo status relegated me to a very slim minority segment of the zoo populace (seriously, I believe flamingos outnumbered whitey at the Zoo, which also says a lot about how many fucking flamingos the L.A. Zoo has).  Undoubtedly I was the only solo white male in his thirties, which is an awesome way to be mistaken for a pedophile.  The racial mix wasn’t really an issue so much as the huge number of teenagers pushing their one & two year olds around in baby carriages.  That alone may be a good reason not to take Emerson here – I don’t want her thinking getting knocked up at fifteen is an acceptable norm.  But the best reason not to go was that the L.A. zoo is a festering pit of inadequate animal care.  The habitats are depressing, the animals look questionably cared for, and overall the place was just shabby seeming.  I think it’s Aquariums & wild animal parks for the LBC from now on.

The biggest plus of the Zoo was that the Mold-A-Rama machines are still in operation.  The one I really wanted was a statue of three chimpanzees doing the “hear no evil” bit, but unfortunately it had broken earlier in the day when the statue refused to leave the mold, so I settled for a Lion statue instead.  I gave it to Emma when I got home, but I realized that at 19 months old, she doesn’t really get the idea of “gifts,” yet.  Everything she sees in the world belongs to her. I’m going to have to start randomly withholding stuff from her so that she appreciates the plastic Lion statue more.


Upon reflection, I may have been a bad teammate

August 10, 2007

We have a videogame room at our office with all the major consoles in it, and sometimes my co-workers & I will play games against each other on our lunch break, which has the bad side effect of encouraging sabotage.  The worst example of this I can think of was the time I came back early from lunch & logged in as my co-workers’ characters on the Nintendo and then proceeded to bowl 10 frames of straight gutterballs for both of them to ensure that they would lose their magical star-colored bowling balls in Wii Sports, and I would be the only player with a “Pro” ball.  It kinda made me laugh at the time, but then later I felt bad about it, but now when I think about it I kinda laugh again.  And feel bad about it.

To avoid this kind of unpleasantness, we also play games where we are on the same team.  One of the more popular ones has us all play as soldiers trying to eliminate the forces of a despot in Central America & be airlifted to safety.  I’m not sure why, but on repeated occasions when the final villain has been dispatched and the console tells us that the choppers are coming in to bring us safely home, I invariably shoot both my teammates in the back before the helicopter can land.  I don’t do it EVERY time, because this would be predictable, and thus defeat the element of surprise that I rely on when killing my own team members.  But I’ve done it more than once.

I’m not sure what it is about the videogame room, but I suspect it brings out the worst in me.