By Ray on January 19, 2006 - 9:31am
Finally got my old computer over its fit the other night, and
settled down to working properly again, after it gobbled that
Trojan late last week. That bug also did something to my anti-
virus, and that in turn did something else, and the whole
computer took on a life of its own - running the processor
at 100%, and constantly swapping files back & forth from one
section to another. Enter Defragmenter, which got it out of
that. Then, after some fine tuning, during which I found it
was severely 'overweight' and needed to lose about 16,180
useless files, I updated everything from the MS Updates, and
it's now happy again - me too!
In the paper today, Barbara is going on about how we're
all fed-up with being 'Dingwalled'. Not only that, but
being Pelletiered, Gomery'd, and especially Chretiened.
Given Old Crooked Mouth's conniving over La Belle Province,
I'd have to say he's certainly no Patriot. His real agenda
seems more intended to guarantee separation rather than the
kind of unity we all prefer. That, in turn, is proving to
be the Kiss of death for his successor, our former Finance
Minister, (and a very good one!) who may not survive all this.
That's a shame, because a leader ought to have the
opportunity to put his own stamp on a government, rather
that just constantly dealing with the hangover from the
past incumbent. There really ought to be a statue of
By Ray on January 18, 2006 - 8:02pm
Everybody and his brother or sister wants to know how you intend to vote on Monday. In the past few days, I've had repeated calls
from both the Liberals and Conservatives, asking for my support.
(Big Flash, Kiddies - I haven't owned a support for over 30 years!)
In all fairness, I can't tell any of these people what my intensions are, because I haven't heard yet from all of tham. The Bloc Hasn't
called yet, and I'd love to know what they intend to do for us out
here in British Columbia. They must have some plans, being a truly
national party, and all like that. And nobody from the NDP or the
Greens has called yet either. Only those from the two biggest and
richest parties have bothered to call. That tells me a few things.
The little guys either can't afford to make the call, or they've
already surrendered the field to those bigger guys.
So really now - who am I going to vote for? Or against? That once famous comedian W.C.Fields said, "I never vote FOR anybody - I always vote AGAINST." I haven't decided yet, mostly because I'm
and old-timer, and have already seen too many of these bombastic
greenhorns pop up out of nowhere, with an empty resume, and the gift of the gab, and miraculously land in the top job in the country.
Then it takes us years and billions for their on-the-job training
and by the time they know their butts from their elbows, it's
time to start all over again. The trouble with politicians is
By Ray on January 17, 2006 - 9:00am
Today's paper is full of it - I mean literally!
Gawd, I'll be glad when it's all over except for
the bitter recriminations, the disillusioning reality,
and the "we'll get 'em next time" bluster...
The Editorial today goes on about how the Liberals lag
behind on ethical reform. Wanna know why? They can't
find any mention of it in that infamous Red Book...
Barbara today goes on about how the Liberals are the
authors of their own misfortune, and Barb, you sweet
thing you, you're absolutely right. It's been nothing
recent, though. It started long ago, with that well
known cours de bois, Old Crooked Mouth, from you-know
-where, creating phony crises among our good citizens
of Quebec, and wheeling & dealing golf course and hotel
properties, and busting his butt to convince the rest
of us that Quebec's separation was imminent. Hah !
Think about it - if you were getting the lion's share
of largesse from federal coffers, would you want to
give that all up for winging it on your own? Not very
And Vaughn today is thrashing his keyboard over Harper's
"enthusiasm" for reforms which might benefit Beautiful
B.C. - I say "might" because if Carole James succeeds
in convincing our multitudes of NDPers to go her way
and vote for Jumpin' Jack, we're going to have a hell
of a time prying much cash loose from Ottawa with
Harper The Carper's eye firmly fixed on winning over
By Ray on January 16, 2006 - 6:46pm
In a word - VERY!
I've been going cross-eyed for four days, trying to get
Old Computer back to normal, after it picked up a Trojan,
and then went crazy on me. After studying the advice in
Microsoft's Knowledge Base, referencing drivers and other
stuff close to the problem, and making copious notes on
a clipboard, by hand, drinking about four gallons of coffee,
and cussing a blue streak every time I'd have to reboot to
keep on looking, it all came down to two little words!
Those two little words had been added by unknown sources
to the top of the page of DOS instructions for loading the
various items onto my Control Panel window - without which
I feel like I've lost an arm. The words made me suspicious,
because they were right at the top line, in squared brackets,
and they said [don't load]. That didn't sound like your
typical Microsoft Programmer, so I quietly removed them,
re-saved the page, did a reboot, and suddenly after four
days of going nuts here, everything came back to normal.
And all that time, those two innocent-looking little words
had been freezing my computer solid every time I tried to
right-click on anything. That's what Trojans can do to you.
By Ray on January 16, 2006 - 8:19am
Lots of things, Darling...but mostly it depends on
who I think might win, and whether I like the weasel-eyed
little bugger. But many things effect my decision to vote
or not to vote for this one or that. The way he/she wears
lipstick for photo-ops, how phony-looking their smiles,
what part of the country spawned them, their position on
the anglo/franco scale, and whether or not I think we can
afford their hare-brained schemes.
Also coming into it is the weather, time of year, and my
own health or lack thereof. Polls don't grab me a whole
bunch, because (A) those can be and are manipulated, and
(B) those are snapshots of how we felt last week, and
(C) nothing based on the utterances of known lyin' bastards
should be taken as gospel without more proof. Generally
speaking, I'd rather see us try to reform known miscreants
than take our chances on the veracity of unknowns. So I'm
going to do what I always do - put my 'X' where I think
it might do the most good for the greatest number of us.
Just as soon as I figure out who that might be....and
so far, I'm thinking "Let's patch the boat, instead of
buying a new one this year."
Enjoy your day, Everyone
By Ray on January 15, 2006 - 10:13am
It's so distasteful being a politician these days, they're
literally scraping the bottom of the barrel for anyone brave
enough to run. Ipsos' latest poll shows the Harperites are
out in front by 10 points in the 3rd period of the game, with
some of the players already injured, or carried off the field
of battle for good. One of the Liberals, because he was
accused of offering a bribe, and one of the Conservatives
because - and get this, Kiddies - he's awaiting trial on
smuggling charges. I betcha it wasn't integrity being
In the good old days, the combatants got the edge on their
rivals by catching them in bed with some delectable blonde
of questionable morals and great physique, a la Profumo,
but alas, now they're reduced to offering wads of cash, or
"future considerations", or driving a truck across the border
with a load of contraband of great value to some consumers,
provided none involved gets caught.
Small wonder none of us with a few more braincells than your
average goose wants any part of that political circus.
H.L. Mencken said it better when he said: "It is inaccurate
to say I hate everything. I am strongly in favour of
common sense, common honesty, and common decency. This makes
me forever ineligible for any public officc."
Enjoy your day, Everyone.....
By Ray on January 14, 2006 - 10:19am
Strange day - there's a big hole in that usually grey ceiling,
and what's that big ball of fire out beyond ?
Figured out (Finally!) what's been wrong with Old Computer...
It's an add-on called TweakUI, for tweaking your User Interface.
My anti-virus thinks it's a bug, and it thinks I'm a bug, and
everything freezes up every time I click on something innocuous.
I must've rebooted this rig with the big red button about 500
times in the last three days, trying to keep it running long
enough to figure why it didn't want to co-operate. So be very
careful about that TweakUI, if you get it or have it. The wrong
settings on its own little control panel can really mess you up.
And what can I say about politics? If voting changed anything,
they'd make it illegal. But I vote because I've paid for the
privilege, and this election's costing about $300-million or so.
I like what Mark Twain said about politicians: "It can probably
be shown by facts and figures that the only distinctively
native American criminal class is Congress." And the great
American homespun humorist Will Rogers said, " Tomorrow is
Labor Day. I suppose set by act of Congress. How Congress
knows anything about labor is beyond me." Not to leave out
the ladies, Maureen Murphy said, " The reason there are so few
female politicians is that it's too much trouble to put
makeup on two faces." Lastly, old George Burns sums it up nicely
By Ray on January 12, 2006 - 11:34pm
It was just one of those things - just one of those
crazy flings - a trip to the moon on gossamer wings...
Got fed-up with my ancient old Windows 98SE today, and
decided to spring for something newer and authentic.
So I rushed down to my friendly neighbourhood computer
service shop, where the nice man had one lonely copy
left of a new Windows Millennium full version CD in its
original wrapper, with the Authenticity Codes & all.
$142.50 later, I'm home & ready to take it for a spin.
Big disappointment ! After it scanned my computer and
promised me it was ready to install, suddenly up pops
a very unexpected popup, saying " You already have Windows
installed and this cannot be installed. You need the
Millennium Upgrade CD. Please click here to exit this
program." Gee ! Installing Windows Millennium wasn't
hard at all, was it? Now, I've got a mint-condition CD
of it here, and it doesn't even make a good paperweight !
.....And you thought you had troubles :)
By Ray on January 11, 2006 - 4:52am
For starters, I'm very glad that I've got all the various
anti-this and anti-that installed, because I really need it.
Secondly, I learned you can't be too careful grabbing a
great-sounding basement-built program off the wild web.
Thirdly, I'm pleased to report I got rid of that Trojan,
and got everything back to normal again, and it only took
me all day & half the night!
During which, I learned a couple of things. Firstly, those
guys who put together bootleg versions of commercial software
often make little-but-deadly mistakes, like not copying a
filename exactly right, resulting in your machine trying
to run two copies at once - the old and the new. What does
that do to it? Reading forums about problems today while
trying not to take a hammer to this thing, I saw a lot of
blab about troubles with the Kernel 386 caused by Explorer.
The Explorer in question isn't Internet Explorer, but rather
Windows Explorer, and the Kernel 386 problems causing freezes
or near-total wipe-outs is because Kernel 386 is the base of
the runs-everything scheme inside this computer, like a
master control-room, and the freeze results from two copies
of the same program trying to do what you asked at the same
time. Result: all hell breaks loose. The solution is spend
a lot of time combing out the files with File Checker and
System Config, and eyeballing how many of what is the same
By Ray on January 10, 2006 - 11:25pm
Sorry, Old Chap, but I've got my own problems today.
I've been busily tracking down & killing off a nasty
Trojan that I picked up on that upgrading expedition
to that helpful German's website bragging about how
well he fixed up Windows 98SE for us. He sure did !
I've seen more hidden files today than I ever thought
existed, and if I met that guy right now, he wouldn't
be around for breakfast, I can assure you.
Luckily, I have a program that hunts down & captures
those trojans, but it doesn't repair the harm they do
before they're caught. That's what kept me busy today.
So I can't help anyone win a laptop. If you'd like
some advice, though, be very careful, because there's
a lot of ways to skin a cat these days, and you just may
get a lot more than you bargained for. I know for sure!