Tuesday, June 26, 2012

More Waldo Canyon Fire Stuff

Looks like the fire back home has gotten even worse today.  The fire's moved North, and they're evacuating more residential neighborhoods.  It looks like all that separates my mom's neighborhood from the current evacuation zone is interstate 25.  The only thing worse than being homesick is not being sure if you'll have a home to come back to.

Monday, June 25, 2012

My home state is a tinderbox

It's not going to be a good summer for Colorado.  Right now, there are 7 or 8 wildfires raging in different areas of the state.  One of the wildfires is right up against my hometown.  They evacuated the entire city of Manitou Springs over the weekend, and they've evacuated some of the ritzier neighborhoods closer to the mountains.

 A view of the fire from my undergrad, UCCS.

 A picture of Garden of the Gods that breaks my heart

Up close.  

So it appears that the fire's almost 4,000 acres, 0% contained, and it's been in the high 90's and 100's with no sign of rain. I'm probably not going to be able to make it back to Colorado at all this summer, and probably won't be back until December.  Seeing a big black scar on the side of the mountain is going to be a kick in the stomach.  

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Saturday, June 16, 2012

I absolutely adore the internet sometimes.

If you're not familiar with The Oatmeal, you should be.  He makes absolutely hilarious geeky comics.

Last year, the author of The Oatmeal blogged about hundreds of his comics being hosted on funnyjunk.com, a site that lets users upload material, and makes advertising revenue off of the traffic.  Funnyjunk retaliated by pulling some of his content, having their users spam him with hate mail, and basically being douches about the whole thing.  Apparently, now, a year later, they had a lawyer send him a letter trying to extort him out of $20,000, plus make him remove his post where he accused them of profiting off of content stolen from him and other artists (which they totally do, but that must be beside the point).  Seriously.

Because The Oatmeal is so awesome, instead of hiring a lawyer to privately tell them to fuck off, he posted the lawyer's letter, edited it to point out all the flaws in his reasoning, and verbally emasculated the lawyer and funnyjunk.com.  He then said that instead of caving to their threats, he would instead try to raise $20,000, photograph it, send the photo of the money with a drawing of FJ's mother being seduced by a bear, then send the money to two charities.  Last I checked, instead of twenty grand, he's up to $173,000.

That should be the end of it, right?  Obviously, people sympathize with him, realize what jerks funnyjunk and their lawyer are, and funnyjunk probably wouldn't have a case, if they were to follow through on their lawsuit.

Oh, no, it gets better.  You see, the lawyer, Charles Carreon has always billed himself as being an "internet lawyer."  i.e. somebody who should know how the internet works.  So now, he's acting all surprised that 1. he was made to look like a moron (seriously, read his letter.  He comes off as somebody who's completely clueless about how websites work,) and 2. didn't expect any sort of backlash for accepting a job from somebody who's clearly in the wrong.

Apparently, he's gotten a bunch of angry emails, and is licking his wounds.  He's even quoted in an interview as saying "I'm completely unfamiliar really with this style of responding to a legal threat — I've never really seen it before"

REALLY?  So it's ok to try to extort 20k out of somebody who's annoyed that their content is getting ripped off, but it's not ok for them to escalate your stupid demands to the public sphere?  Aww, poor little lawyer, is that not how they teach you to negotiate in law school?  You would think that somebody who specializes in internet law would be familiar with how the internet picks up causes, and forms awesome, angry mobs.  Like when anonymous found the woman in england who threw a cat into a dumpster, or when Cook's Source got caught stealing copyrighted material from various websites.  How did Charles Carreon NOT foresee this as a possibility?

Oh, he could have just stopped there in his douchiness.  But no.  In the same article, it says this of Charles Carreon; "He also explains that he believes Inman's fundraiser to be a violation of the terms of service of IndieGoGo, the website being used to collect donations, and has sent a request to disable the fundraising campaign."

Let me see if I have this whole sequence of events right.
1. Steal content from hilarious, wonderful internet comic writer.
2. Threaten to sue said comic writer for defamation when he publicly complains of your theft.
3. When said comic writer points out what a joke your threat is, try to shut down a fundraiser, depriving two deserving charities of $173k.

The administrators of funnyjunk are douchecanoes, but Charles Carreon, by trying to shut down the charitable fundraiser, is such a huge douche, he's a complete douchecraft carrier.

Want to support The Oatmeal?  You can donate to their fundraising campaign here, or you can buy his merch here.

And just in case I embedded way too many links in this post for you to click on, so you're not completely lost, read The Oatmeal's original post here. http://theoatmeal.com/blog/funnyjunk_letter

Sunday, June 3, 2012

Every animal but one in my house has a shaved belly.

I brought both dogs and 3 cats to the ultrasound lab both days this weekend.  My dogs handled it pretty well.  My cats are all kind of standoffish now.   I didn't bring Chicken, because she's evil, or Stego, since she just got spayed last week (so even though she wasn't part of the lab, she already had a bald tummy.)  So yeah.  It's definitely an interesting look for everybody.

I didn't go to the lectures in the morning, because I'm a failure at waking up early, no matter how much I want to do something.  I did get to watch the veterinarians who were taking the course practice ultrasounding while I was restraining my pets, so I managed to pick up a decent amount of secondhand ultrasound skills.  I can pretty readily ID the kidneys, adrenal glands, iliocolic junction, aorta and vena cava on the ultrasound screen.  Other things, like the liver, pancreas and spleen still just look like TV static to me.

Still no luck on the job hunt.  I talked to some other classmates this weekend, and aside from the people who were going back to their old clinics that they worked at before vet school, it seems as though very few people have found jobs.   I'm really starting to miss how UCCS had summer classes that I could enroll in full-time, and get financial aid to help with my cost of living.  (Which is, incidentally how I got my BS in 3 years.)  This whole summer thing kind of blows in a depressed economy.  Yay!  I have 2 months off, in which I cannot find a job, nor can I enjoy, since I can't afford to do anything!  Wheee! Yay summer!