Later On

A blog written for those whose interests more or less match mine.

Archive for October 7th, 2006

Denny Hastert’s opponent in the race

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John Laesch’s campaign has now taken off. I think it would be poetic justice if Denny Hastert were swept out of office in public revulsion at his corruption and his covering for a sexual predator for years, and then the Federal highway project that he pushed through to increase the value of the land he had purchased were cancelled. Not that I’m vindictive. I just like justice.

Written by Leisureguy

7 October 2006 at 6:32 pm

Posted in Election, GOP, Government

The Slant Bar: an ode

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This delightful story of an epic journey is from and was written by a man known as Bargepole, who resides in Cambridge, England. The Slant Bar is, of course, a razor—somewhat feared. Here’s the story:

The Slant Bar, aka \|, aka Backslash Pipe. What an odd thing. What passions it do arouse to be sure. Here for the edification of the faithful and the encouragement of catechumens follows my own pilgrimage, in eight fits or stages.


Wonder what this damn Slant Bar is. Wonder why anyone would use it. Wonder how come it looks so peculiar. Wonder what sort of a lunatic would put something so obviously malign and horrible and spiteful and nasty anywhere near their own actual, personal face.


If I don’t understand it, it must be foolish. Of course. Take sides with Mr Greenberg. Repeat to self Mr Greenberg’s jokes about slant bar being for urinal-cake salesmen from Modesto despite feeling guilty as still on good terms with ex from Modesto, nice woman who deserved better. (And got better, too. Different story. Mind own business. Chap entitled to some privacy.) Also wonder en passant whether it’s true about the urinal cake salesmen. How does one go about becoming a urinal cake salesman? Why? Why special cake? Why not ordinary cake? Who eats cake while at urinal anyway? Unhygienic, surely. Life a mystery. Slantbar not a mystery. Slantbar silly.


Read reviews. Read assessments. Read experiences. Look at pictures of \| and shudder. Does everyone else know something I don’t know? How can this be? Been shaving with badger, cream, blade since age 15. Thirty-seven years’ experience. Maybe weakling. Maybe not real man. Maybe should consider it. Look at more backslash pipe pictures. Feel self oddly diminished.


Feel resolve slipping, opinion performing 180-degree facebrake turn. Find self slowing down at Hungerford exit on M4. The Gentleman’s Shop just 6 minutes away. Resist temptation. Find self downloading pics of \| fretfully in small hours. Growing dissatisfaction with old open-comb razor, HD, Vision. Tell self razors like women, all same in dark. Tell self obvious delusion, not all same in dark. Razors like women, all dangerous in dark. Desire continues unabated.


Wait until hair long, excuse for cut, only decent barber obviously in Hungerford, tell Herself just popping out for haircut, Herself says: In Hungerford? Tell Herself keep civil tongue in head or will go worse for her. Herself says: You’re going to buy another razor. Lie. Tell Herself: Nonsense, darling, you are deluded; better have a nice lie-down. Get in car. Drive. Get haircut. Buy \| as ostensible afterthought (“Oh… while I’m here…”), fooling nobody, either self or sales staff. Go home.


Next morning, shave in secret. Prep as usual, plus 10mg diazepam to be on safe side. Trembling hand. Stubble AND razor burn. How can this be? New Gillette blade, sure-fire lather. So? Damn thing clearly rubbish. Everyone on SMF obviously lying, boasting, pulling wool over everyone else’s eyes. Blood.


Still look like tractor-driver next day. Windwhipped raw rural “face”. Reach for soothing HD but find unsuspected reserve of stern resolve. Use \| instead. Worse. Blood. Stubble. Regret. Anger. Herself: Why are you in bathroom shouting at your razor? “Shut up,” I explain. Resolve to sell thing.


One last go this morning, in order prove something self. Annoyed. Am going to be beaten silly razor? Pish. Bugger it: just shave. If stubble, blood, too bad. Snik-snek-zzzzip. Hello? Shave perfect. Irritation nil. Alum block: no stinging. Hmm. Splash on Trumper’s Milk of Flowers, guaranteed to sting even feet. Even shoes. Does not sting. Feel face. Smooth. Slantbar seems to have pulled itself together after yesterday’s tongue-lashing. Put all other razors away in Secret “What, this old thing, it was Great-Uncle Florence’s” Razor Drawer. Strange feeling have found The Answer. Order a second one for other house, small hovel on Greek island. Breathe Zen-type sigh relief, feel deep sense brotherhood with other \| users, deep sense pity for those who have not yet discovered the backslash pipe. Send rude email Mr Greenberg. Resolve look into opportunities in urinal-cake sector. Investigate Modesto property prices. Turn over new leaf.

Written by Leisureguy

7 October 2006 at 5:58 pm

Posted in Daily life, Shaving

“Gutenberg 1, Sony 0”

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That’s the title of the Business Week review of the new Sony eBook reader, by Stephen Wildstrom:

In an age when digital distribution of content is becoming the norm, the oldest mass medium has remained stubbornly resistant. Most recorded music is available for download, as are newspapers, magazines, and some TV shows. But books remain stuck in the Gutenberg era, with minuscule sales of the few titles that exist in electronic form.

Sony’s much delayed Reader aims to change that. It will be available in October for about $350, which includes a credit for $50 in book purchases. Even though the Reader has its flaws, it’s a vast improvement over various other e-book designs rolled out in the past decade. I can’t say the same for the clunky software that manages book purchases and Reader downloads on a Windows PC, or for Sony’s attempt at an online bookstore, which is reminiscent of its clueless efforts to sell music online. Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Leisureguy

7 October 2006 at 5:25 pm

Clarity Defender applied

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In Monterey, it’s like getting up the storm windows: Clarity Defender is now on all the Prius windows, so it’s ready for winter (which, around here, means rain). A great feeling of accomplishment (for very little effort 🙂 ).

Written by Leisureguy

7 October 2006 at 3:12 pm

Posted in Daily life

Good complaint-letter template

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Take a look at The for an excellent sample complaint letter.

Written by Leisureguy

7 October 2006 at 11:49 am

Posted in Business, Daily life

Afghanistan is rapidly falling apart

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This is not good news at all.

Written by Leisureguy

7 October 2006 at 10:05 am

The criminal mind, GOP version

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Denny Hastert ran a slick land scam to make himself millions. Buy the land cheap, sell it to a trust for 3 times what he paid for it (with himself as part of the trust), and with the trust buy much more land. Then use his position (and the trust the public mistakenly placed in him) to fudge a Federal highway project to route the highway next to the land, and make sure that the highway project was fully funded. Presto! Wealth.

Of course, he’s not the only GOP guy to do this—there’s another down near San Diego pulled off exactly the same scam. Maybe the GOP gave a handout to their people in Congress: here’s how to rip off the public.

Written by Leisureguy

7 October 2006 at 10:02 am

Posted in Election, GOP, Government

The criminal mind

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I just got a spoof email about PayPal’s new “Identity Protection Plan”. It was a really good spoof—looked exactly like a PayPal email except that it did not address me by name.  But the look was exactly right, and the URLs for “merchant offers” and the “helpful links” at the bottom (including the PayPal security center) were right. But if you clicked to go to the “Identity Protection Area” you went to a URL that began “” followed by a bunch of gobbledy-good that included “paypal” several times (probably to lull your suspicions).

Watch out, folks. Those criminal types are constantly thinking about how to get your money.

Written by Leisureguy

7 October 2006 at 9:30 am

Posted in Daily life

Minor efficiencies in daily life

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First, I discovered that, if I turn on the electric kettle just before I shave, by the time I’m dressed and in the kitchen, the water is at exactly the right temperature to make coffee. 🙂

Second, last night lying in bed, I had a sudden inspiration for how to make a rack to hold my razor collection: short sections of PVC pipe glued to a board.

Moreover, the rack I want for my shaving cream/soap collection (36″ high x 18″ wide x 4″ deep) I can make using thin strips of wood and sections of PVC pipe at the ends. (The size is to fit the end of the bathroom counter.)

Home Depot, here I come. [Update: The Wife thinks I’m crazy.]

Written by Leisureguy

7 October 2006 at 8:46 am

Posted in Daily life, Shaving

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