Zach Attacks


Zach is the youngest of my three dogs, so it's no surprise that he's the most curious. You can't blame him for instincts bred into his pedigree. He's a retriever. He brings things back. When Zach is outside, he brings things back to my patio. It's covered with palm fronds that he's ripped off my sable palm. He's brought branches twice his size into the patio. Sometimes he digs things up and brings them to the patio. There's half of a rusty barbell weight that some previous owner left outside. I've been hear seven years and never noticed it, but Zach found it and brought it to the patio.

In addition to digging and retrieving, Zach likes to chew. He's previously chewed through the power cable leading to my air conditioner. It's low voltage, but even that would be enough to zap his tongue. He didn't stop chewing that until he finished. So I shouldn't be surprised that Zach dug until he found my telephone cable buried underground in my back yard.

Zach chewed off the exposed cable until it broke. He selected an end of it, and started tugging to unearth the rest. He got about 20 feet of it free when it wouldn't give up any more (probably stuck under some roots). Being the genius he is, it became apparent that he'd need to chew this side off if he were to succeed in bringing the cable back to the patio. Zach succeeded.

Right now, I don't have a working phone in my house. Instead, I have an appointment to wait for a repairman on Tuesday. Good boy, Zach.

iPod Dilemma

George Bush doesn't like black iPods.
As if I haven't donated enough money to Apple lately, I've been jonesing for a new iPod lately. There's no logical reason for it. My current 60gb iPod Photo is sufficient to play my music. It sounds great, and I take it in the car with me all the time. However, it's not new.

  • My iPod doesn't play video.
  • My iPod is twice as thick as the current iPod.
  • My iPod is heavier than the current iPod.
  • My iPod just isn't new.

Think of the joy I could bring to others by playing video on my iPod. After all, look at my collection. I have video from The Man Show of girls jumping on trampolines – arguably the finest concept ever produced on television. I have video podcasts, like Strong Bad's Email or Ask a Ninja. Some of these are classics.

Today, I actually drove the 30 miles to the closest Apple Store and wandered inside. Although I coveted the iPods on display, I did not buy one. You see, a strange part of my brain put forth a thought.

Are you really going to spend about $400 just to carry video clips with you?

That summed it up nicely. I already have my music and photos. This new iPod wouldn't improve upon those things. Battery life isn't a problem for me. If all I wanted was something lighter, I'd just get the Nano. So, the question had power. $400 is a lot to spend just to carry pictures of girls jumping on trampolines.

I came home slightly dejected. The younger guys in my office have new iPods that play video. Granted, they have the 30 gb models, but I already have that much music. I definitely need 60 gb. Still, I feel like I have the “old man” iPod compared to their sleek, shiny, black iPods that play video. This is iPod envy.

For most of this year, I kept waiting for yet another version of the iPod. The one, true video iPod. The internet buzzed with faked photos and even a video of this mysteriously unreleased product in action. Analyst reports seemed to confirm that it was only a matter of days. Still, the elusive product never made it. Then the rumor sites claimed it wouldn't come until late this year, citing battery power problems, and a lack of iTunes deals with major motion picture studios. I may as well get the current one, as I will surely bust before the true video iPod sees the light of day.

Then, it hit me. If I order online, I get free engraving. Now I have a new dilemma. What to engrave on my iPod?

  • George Bush doesn't care about black iPods.
  • How his naked ears were tortured by the sirens sweetly singing.
  • You want a revolution? Get your own.
  • Harmful If Swallowed.
  • For best reflection, hold parallell to face.
  • Music not included.
  • Dear Bill, thanks for the idea. – Steve Jobs
  • Use other side.
  • Actual size.

Those are a few ideas. Let me know if you like one of them, or tell me what's engraved on your iPod.



Baby Zach

This used to be Zach, my Golden Retriever. I should've known then that he'd be trouble. Since chewing up this stupid toy fllp-flop (Shannon bought it, not me), he's proceeded to destroy other things. He's eaten holes right into the drywall in my bedroom hallway. He's eaten the bottom part of my wooden fence to escape the tyranny of the back yard. He's eaten bathroom rugs, and even the bricks of my fireplace.

Meet Zach, the Destroyer.

…And It’s Deep Too!

Richard Pryor died today at age 65. I hate to see him go, but I'm also glad he doesn't have to suffer with multiple sclerosis anymore.
The guy was masterfully funny. Like every other kid, I hid his albums and tapes from my parents, and then snuck them out for a listen when they weren't around. I remember taking those tapes everywhere. He was just so damn funny that your gut would hurt from laughing. I can't think of anyone else who could consistently provoke that kind of reaction from people.

Pryor broke down a lot of doors. People accused him of being the most foul-mouthed comedian of his time. So what? He recognized that words really aren't that dangerous if you don't hide them away. People were shocked by the things he said, but he said them to break down the power of those words and find humor in truth.

No one else found a way to take their own tragedies and turn them into humor. Whether it was drug abuse, shooting his car with a magnum, or getting burned alive, Pryor made his audiences laugh with him without feeling pity.

Tonight, Sirius Radio channel 104 is playing a tribute to Richard Pryor. I decided it'd been long enough since I heard his voice. Despite having bought all of those old albums and tapes before, I went out to Best Buy and bought the last box set of “Richard Pryor: …And It's Deep Too!” tonight. I'm sitting here loading them onto my iPod as I write.

At least Richard knew people truly cared about him, saying “I live in racist America and I'm uneducated, yet a lot of people love me and like what I do, and I can make a living from it. You can't do much better than that.”