20090720

Love is Over.

Twenty years. Twenty years is a long time. It's a long enough period of time that it has a name, like century, or millennium. It's a score, by the way.

My family has been loyal customers of the Puerto Rico Telephone company since we moved to the island. My dad worked for them for around 15 years, and we've probably used their internet service for more than ten years now.

Obviously, what goes around, comes around- these guys have our back, right?

No.
They don't.

Allow me to elaborate- it all started in February. I noticed that my DSL signal would reset itself, and cycle this behavior repeatedly for an hour or two, then go back to normal. It would do this one day, and then be fine the next five days. A minor, if odd annoyance, I thought at first. Then, it started happening with more frequency, and during specific times, usually early night. Mind you, this modem is new, the other one had died back in late 2008.

So, I ring up customer service. They make me dance through the whole 'reset your modem, take off the filters, plug it directly to the computer' jig that they always make you do regardless of what it is you're calling them for. Finally, he asks "But, do you have internet now?"

"Yeah, like I said, it comes and goes."

"Oh, ok then. If you have internet now then problem solved, call us if you need anything." Click.

...

I should've sensed trouble right then and there, but despite the angry rantings liberally peppered throughout my blog, I can be a very patient and forgiving person. That little session repeats itself once or twice more. It's March by now. This time, I don't let him get any words in. "Look, I've called you thrice before and you guys always put me through the same useless procedure. The problem is not how my modem is connected to the computer or the wall, I think that's been proven emphatically."

"You're right sir, I see that you've called before. What I'm going to do is put in a report, so that our guys can check the connection on our side. We'll get back to you." Click.

Remember kids, 'We'll get back to you' is a nice way of getting people off your back when you don't feel like dealing with the problem.

I call once again, and once again they think they're gonna make me unplug my modem. "I've called many times already, I'm not doing that. The problem's on your side, and you said you'd report it."

"You're right sir, I can see that you've called us before. This problem might need a personal visit from one of our technicians." No shit, you think?

He didn't give me a specific time or day, but he took my number and said the technician would call to set up a house call. I bet you guys can see where this is headed. He didn't call, and he came in at a time when no one was home. Left a note saying we weren't there.

And you didn't call, fucker!


Anyways, it's April by now, and since I'm not home much, I'm not on the internet much either, so I usually miss most of the working week's internet downtime. Also, I'm tired of getting nowhere with these people. What really kills me is when the reset cycle happens during weekend nights, and kicks me off any online game I'm playing. It begins to worsen, and the signal deteriorates to the point where whole days go without internet, and the phone line itself is getting buzzy. By the middle of May, whe have no internet and no phone. We start calling much more frequently, and finally get a technician to come over. "The problem isn't inside your home."

BRILLIANT. Give this man a Nobel. Captain Obvious bows before your might.

"We'll have to check over at our side."

Here we go again.

He disappears as quickly as he came. We wonder if he was but a mere fancy... An ephimeral apparition from the great beyond, meant to instill false hope within our hearts. We call a couple of more times, and they assure us that they're testing our shit. It's June by now. Finally, this other technician comes over. "When I saw your case, I had to come over as quick as I could. I couldn't believe how long you guys have waited for service! Don't worry, I'll have you guys fixed up in a jiffy."

Holy shit could it be? A technician that has heard our plights?

"Seems the line that comes from the distribution pedestal is broken... The break is about twenty feet from here. I'll need to go fetch the blueprints to this area and see where the line goes through, and we might have to break some ground to find the line."

"Hey, do what you gotta do, I just want this fixed."

He leaves, and that's the last time I see him. I call once more, and talk to someone in charge. "I can't believe you guys have been waiting for so long! I'm filing an official complaint case."

Sounds offcial enough, but as expected, nothing comes from it. Nothing comes from the following calls we make, either. It's July now. My dad's been talking around with his old PRT buddies. "Oh yeah, technicians and contractors try to avoid breaking ground like they avoid a syphilis-riddled plague."

Guys, this is why immigrant workers come and take all your jobs. Just because the work you have to do sucks, doesn't mean you can leave a paying customer in the dark! Do you have to get the blueprints? Go get them! Do you need to file city permits to bring equipment to break ground? Fucking do it! It's your job- you KNOW you have to! Don't just avoid the calls in the hopes that some other guy gets stuck with the job!

THIS is the kind of shit that is making Puerto Rico destroy itself from within! Well, you guys won. You won't have to do the work. You know why? Because we called the cable company. We got cable tv, 4MB internet, and VoIP telephone, for a lower price than your telephone+1MB internet. Not only that- we went to the cable company on Saturday, and their technician came in SUNDAY MORNING to set us up! SUNDAY MORNING!! Puerto Rico Telephone technicians (more commonly known as Turds) only work Monday to Friday, 9am to 4pm!

Puerto Rico Telephone has failed in the grandest of scales. Fuck you guys, fuck you guys to hell. Go eat a baby dick. You guys are lower than PuDS. From now on, I'll lead a Holy Crusade in the name of informing everyone I meet how much you guys fail at everything. Even if I don't do much, as long as I can convince at least one person to switch, I'll be happy. I hope the economy takes you guys out, because you truly deserve the worst this world has to offer.

Thank you cable technician guy, for hooking me up on such short notice, and for showing me the light of the internet once more.

20090506

25 or 6 to 4

Hanging out with Pikkon will invariably leave you with a story to tell every time you do. More often than not, these stories will run the gamut from terrifying to embarrassing to horrifying.

Here I am at my house, it's eight or nine p.m., and Pikkon calls me up. "I WANT PANCAKES" he bellows. I got nothing better to do, so I accompany him to Denny's, where he finds out that pancakes aren't a main dish, but a side dish. After making the poor waitress wait a good while (he was on the phone most of the night), he finally orders a club sandwich.

So much for pancakes.

After an enlightening talk about the Military and its ranking system, and after making the waitress wait twice more (Pikkon ordered dessert, and then after the bill came, he ordered more food), we finally get up to pay. I lay down my ATM for my side of things, and Pikkon asks the cashier if he can bring his excess coins to pay with; Pikkon's had a couple of friends pay him IOUs in coins, for reasons unknown, and he wants to unload.


So, he walks out to the parking lot and walks in with a tupperware bowl full of coins. WUT.


Again, WUT.

I can only wonder what the cashier, and the dozens of people walking in and out of the restaurant thought of Pikkon's little stunt. So after 10 minutes of counting, we came to a grand total of $23.30, 3 bucks of which were pennies. WHY PIKKON WHY. As you can see from the pictures, he shows no shame in the fact that we are now probably banned from this particular Denny's. The cashier was a good sport about it, and another customer actually WANTED all of Pikkon's pennies, so she exchanged them for dollars, which just added to the lulz of it all...

Oh, and when we got back to his house...

Pikkon showed me that there was more where that came from.

orz.

20090414

So fresh and so clean clean

Ah, there's nothing like giving your car a nice wash. Not so nice are the storm clouds reflecting off the very clean windshield. Sigh.

20090413

Twice more, with feeling

Let's give this another shot, shall we?

I've been meaning to change things up a bit, and move the focus a bit from me ranting aimlessly to me taking pictures aimlessly and ranting about that. I won't erase the previous posts, but I'll be pretty much considering this the zero post from now on. That doesn't mean that I've forgotten about all those PuDS out there... You're all still on probation. Anyways, I haven't had a camera of my own in years, so now that I've got a little point-and-shoot Nikon, I need to make up for all those years I've spent not taking pics of every little insignificant thing I find. Keep in mind, this is for fun, so don't expect expert composition, masterful lighting, or any other poser photography dicksuckery.

I wanna begin with a note of nostalgia. When I was a young boy (after my father took me into the city), me and my neighbor used to play with his LEGOs day in and day out. His dad would always get him big, piece-laded sets and we would lay all the blocks out in our front yards and build anything that came to mind. Thanks to my (still) overactive imagination, epic starfighters and motherships and grand space operas soon began taking shape. LEGOs weren't the only construction equipment to our imaginations- does anyone remember K'nex? Or Zaks? Look them up if you're ready for a nice hit of nostalgia, or alternatively to see what you missed, you childhoodless heathen.

Anyways, as is always the case, as the years passed, the LEGOs were put away but never forgotten when video games came into our lives. Well, back in February, I decided to do a little Spring cleaning and lo and behold, look what I found:

My Lego/Zaks stash!

Upon seeing them, I very quickly started remembering how to put them back together and their individual stories... I felt myself turn 8 again.


This little mech has a beam sword and a shield, and vernier thrusters out back. Yes, even then I needed my fantasies to have practicality to them.



This would be the red mech's rival. Couldn't find his other arm....


F-15E Strike Eagle, because even as a young child, I knew that the Hornet sucks, and that the Eagle and the Tomcat are superior.


These two are one-person speeders, because speeders are awesome.


This whole mess is the inside of a large, square Millennium Falcon-type ship, what with powerful weapons and living quarters and stuff. Yes, I was a budding nerd even at that tender age. Those red and black dudes are grunts, with the little LEGO figures as the protagonists.

Yes, they are all very dusty, it's been years since they've seen the light of day. I'm in a dangerous position right now: my imagination and desire to play with LEGOs has only increased since I was a kid, and now I actually have the money to keep buying sets... You guys better learn to be careful of the past you dig up- it might end up costing you...

20071206

Disparate musings of one shafted by the TSA

Ok, so it took me a bit longer than a week. You guys oughta be used to it by now. In fact, you should check out my DeviantArt page- I was away for around nine MONTHS there. Yes, I'm the very definition of a lurker.

Obviously, a lot has happened in between, and I'd be hard-pressed to remember all of it. In fact, I can barely remember what I was doing before I logged in today. It's been a sleepy semester for me- went by very quickly, but at the same time it felt like it dragged on. Then again, that's how it usually feels, doesn't it? My friend is playing Yoshi's Island DS right beside me, and I hate him for it. With any luck, he will be stricken down by random act of nature, say, a stray piece of the ISS falls and knocks him out, freeing him of his DS duties so that I may abscond with the game. Yes, I said duties.

Oh, and about last time, I just wanted to mentioned that while perfectly understandable, there's a lot of pages that default to Spanish when I visit them, including Blogger. Everything computer-related just reads so very weird in Spanish- mostly because it seems to be written in European Spanish. American Spanish is to Spaniard Spanish what American English is to British English... That is to say, our Old World counterparts sound more... formal, even haughty... Which is funny, 'cause Spaniards are awesome at cursing people out.

I notice I'm veering off topic. Now I notice I have no topic whatsoever, so I'll look around the room for stuff to talk about- you know, for text padding. Ah! Mario Galaxy. You should play it- it's superb. So is Mario Strikers, for that matter- it's like Smash Bros. with a football in the middle. A real football, I mean- not a pigskin. I find it very hard to classify American Football as, well, football. Most of the time they're HOLDING the ball. They should call it American Handball. Or American Ovoid Brown Ball. Or Calvinball.

Speaking of ovoid balls, I am pretty much resigned to the fact that I am bound by a tenuous but resilient soul-link to people that like to speak up in theaters. Seriously, I can sit way up front in an empty theater, and the loudest person in the vicinity will sit right behind me. I mean, if only they made good jokes, but I've found the louder the person the lesser the wit. I'm sure there's some sort of math formula involved. You can tell when a loudmouth has negative wit- he'll start using the same joke over and over every 3 seconds, no matter what's on screen. He gets bonus points if he thinks nobody heard him so he repeats the joke, but louder.

And speaking of donkey shows, did you know that I need to get permission from the government to partake in flight training, all because I'm not a US Citizen? It's interesting how my 21 years of legal residency amount to a big, fat, ovoid zero. It's also interesting how I have to pay the TSA to run background checks on me. Oh, wait, it's not interesting- it's fucked up. EVERYBODY should get background checks, not just non-citizens. Just like you suspect me, you should suspect John J. Patriot from Austin, Texas.

TSA, what a bunch of PuDS.

But, I digress. Back on topic, I'm finding that drawing on MSPaint is unusually relaxing. Go fig.

Wait, that's not my topic... Ah, screw it, I'm gonna go draw.

Later!

20070527

A Buffet of Manliness

'Sup people? Gravekeeper is back, hotter than ever! Seriously. My A/C broke down. My room is now stuck perpetually in 90-95 degree temperature. It's like being stuck between Satan's balls.

Now, the other day a coworker surrendered his Motorola Phone Tools CD, much to my manager and mine's glee- the bitch costs 50 bucks, which is 50 bucks more than I was willing to spend on something that could easily be included with the phone. That means that I now posses the ability to upload incriminating pics and videos I might have taken of, say, Carlos and Andrew in a jacuzzi. I'm not saying that I have such pics, but yes, yes I do.

Anyways, I've had a pic here I've been meaning to comment on. This is the dash on a Toyota Yaris/Echo/Vitz what have you. As you can see, the gauge cluster on these cars is placed in the center.

Now, this is a pic I took at a stoplight. It is a girl in a Yaris. As you can see (not so well thank's to my phone's rather ass camera), she has chosen the center cluster as the perfect place to mount photos. I had to poll some women on what they thought of this, and to my surprise, it seems most don't miss or pay attention to all those gauges and warning lights. This is... mildly troubling to me. There's quite a bit to be said about somebody who proclaims proudly how little attention they pay to driving.

The female mind is quite an interesting subject for study. I could go to lengths on the total retardeness that I've seen on display... You see, I've always been of the mind that men and women are equally stupid and equally horny. Of course, the problem with women is that they refuse to acknowledge how idiotic they are, unlike men. We know we're simple. We revel in it. That's why we can laugh at how stoopid we look on YouTube. A woman sees herself acting stupid, and she's devastated.

Here's an example of the female mind at work. Two female friends of mine were rummaging through EmoSpace. We'll call them Albita and Andrea. Albita had gotten a new boy toy, and was checking up on this dude's ex-girlfriend's myspace. Catty 'til the end, the ex-girl had posted videos of the good-old days with Dude, ostensibly to get to Albita, I'm guessing. Albita freaked out, and was seriously reconsidering going to a concert with Dude. Then, Andrea, in what must've been an orgasmic mental eureka to her, dropped this little golden brain fart- I paraphrase:


"You know what I would do? I would go to the concert, let him see me there, and *not* talk to him!!!11!"

Up until that point, I had held both their intellects in high regard.

The statement made my mind grind to a halt. I'm not one to do things without express purpose or without logic, so why would I pay to go to an overpriced local concert to not be with somebody, when I could keep the money and not be with that person at home? You'd think that the non-presence of your corporeal being would be enough to drive the point home. The point being, of course, that the dude should be ashamed of at one point having had a good relationship with somebody else, in the past.

But, I digress.

As long as I'm unloading stuff stored in my phone, I have to post these.

It's a customer of mine, and the hilarious part is how the truck makes his already short stature seem almost prepubescent. I get a good laugh out of the fact that he can only peer into the window because he's on the sidewalk, thus standing on slightly higher ground than the Tundra. Now check this out.

I had the munchies, so I put in a dollar in the vending machine to buy some Doritos. The machine is informing me that my selection is $90.00, meaning I was 89 bucks short. I decided to take my business elsewhere.

I had to take a picture of this. This was taken shortly after his execution. Those of you that understand, will get a good laugh. Others, disregard.

Lastly:


Can somebody tell me what in the world this is? These are taken from two cable channels that only seem to display these monitors. As you can see, they're measuring something, and they're clearly not happy about it.

Well, now that I've unloaded, I think I'm gonna go eat some Oreos, one of the manliest substances on earth- I'll see ya guys later this week, 'cause I wanna vent about region recognition.

20070319

Windows needs your permission to suck balls

How ya been, people? I disappeared for a couple of days, but such is the nature of a lurker. I warned Lola about me not being very social or committed at all to internet things, so this small hiatus should come as no surprise.

Anyways, as I write this, I'm setting up a computer my dad bought. It was pretty cheap, one, because it's an eMachine, two, it's a Pentium 4, already pretty ancient news in this world of multi-cored computers. Now, since Microsoft is dead-set on jamming, fisting, permeating, nay, donkey-punching Windows Vista into our collective rectum, this comparatively old, low-end, clearance-sale computer has it, even though it very probably shouldn't. It's the Vista Home Basic edition, which, aside from not including the much-hyped translucent version of the Aero theme, probably has as many features as, say, Windows 3.1.

So I set up the computer and start it up, an immediately notice that the image looks like crap on shit, because the refresh rate is higher than it should be. Good start. The EULA greets me, and tells me that everything I do will be notified to Microsoft via intrawebs, but that it won't contain information that identifies me (You know, other than the fact the information is being transmitted from my computer).

I'm glad they have a sense of humor when it comes to invasion of privacy. It's like a guy walking into the women's showers at the gym and going "Don't worry, I'm not here to look at your faces."

So, this spawn of ME and XP finally starts up. Well, it tries to. I wait for a while. I go drink a Coke. I organize some of my anime. Ah, there we go, it started. First things first- I gotta lower the refresh rate, because the image looks like a failed abortion. Right-click on the desktop and click on Preferences, renamed 'Personalize'. Hmm. Nothing... happens. The computer clicks rapidly, as if it were doing something incredibly strenuous. I wait a little more. I'm geting worried. This processor supposedly clocks as fast as mine, there's no reason for it to click for its life like this. I quickly open the Task Manager. Actually, I quickly move the mouse and issue the command- the Task Manager is not quick at ALL to appear.

Finally the poor thing opens up. 70 Running processes. No, wait. 72. What. The. Fuck.

This is why people build their own machines. The sheer amounts of pure shit that comes pre-packaged on startup on these store-bought bitches is staggering. There's 18 processes for McAfee alone! What the hell?! NAPSTER. Why does this thing COME with Napster? Why does it load it at Startup? Ten service hosts... GoogleDesktop, GoogleDesktopCrawler, GoogleDesktopIndex. Good god. Do the asshats that assemble the program packages for these things actually USE them? The load on the memory that all this useless crap causes is an amazing hindrance on performance.

Do you know when is it that I see more than 35 processes, and more than 5 icons on the tray? When I'm fixing computers laden with spyware and adware. Not when the computer is fresh out of the box. Unacceptable.

Let's forget this ugliness for a minute. Let's try out the Aero user interface. Let's see. The top menus are all gone. The status bar is 15 times bigger, the folder explorer is there, sort-of, and the icons are massive. There's a new bar below the navigation buttons, which I'm guessing is the replacement for the actual menus. The names for these seem rather ambiguous, like a Thai hooker. Is she a woman, or a tranny? I can't tell!

Just like the transition from 2000 to XP, Vista seeks to cater to the mouth-breathing, bottom-feeding, cattle-balling, banjo-plucking, PuDS-eating, Great Unwashed. It's been idiotized down to what I guess passes for intuitiveness down at Microsoft. Here's the problem though- Windows has always had a tiny share of the Operating System market. Somewhere around 154% of it. Everybody and their mom, brother, weird touchy uncle, grandma, etc, have used Windows for eons. People who grew up with Windows are gonna wonder where everything is this time around. I mean, everything has a different name and is under a different menu. You can try to make it look like older versions, but there's still a lot of unfamiliar shit that's bound to cause fear, uncertainty and doubt.

Now, there's this series of commercials with a laid-back dude and an awkward office dude, representing Macs and Windows respectively. A recent one shows Windows dude making conversation with Apple dude, and a big Men in Black thug behind the Windows dude. Every time Mac or Windows talk, the thug goes 'Apple just talked to you, allow or deny?', to which Windows dude has to reply 'Allow' to continue conversing. The point is Apple making fun of Vista's new security monitor. Well, it turns out, they were NOT exaggerating. I tried running MsConfig, to turn off the 70 processes, and then Windows got dark and a prompt appeared. "Windows needs your permission to continue."

'No fucking way', I thought.

"Fuck yeah." said Windows, reading my mind.

I then insalled the Vista-enabled versions of CCCP and Firefox, and got asked TWICE for permission. Basically, Windows is trying to protect me from me? Smart. Very smart. Oh, and you might say, "It's like a Firewall! After you get permission for all your stuff, it's all good :D"

Ha. Ha. Ha.

No.

The bitch keeps asking when you try to do the same things. Not cool at all. And, let's not forget that nothing works for it unless its basically pre-approved by Microsoft. Way to royally fuck anybody who wanted to upgrade and then find that NONE of their shit works.

Bah. Vista has worn me out. I was gonna talk about women. And Andrew. Pardon the redundancy. I'll catch ya laters (but not too much later)