September 22nd, 2004

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Once again proving it hates NYC and poor people...

...this latest from the Bush administration:

U.S. Seeking Cuts in Rent Subsidies for Poor Families
Published: September 22, 2004
NY Times

The Bush administration has proposed reducing the value of subsidized-housing vouchers given to poor residents in New York City next year, with even bigger cuts planned for some urban areas in New England. The proposal is based on a disputed new formula that averages higher rents in big cities with those of suburban areas, which tend to have lower costs.

The proposals could have a "significantly detrimental impact" in some areas by forcing poor families to pay hundreds of extra dollars per month in rent, according to United States Representative Christopher Shays, a Connecticut Republican. That extra burden could be too much for thousands of tenants, "potentially leaving them homeless," Mr. Shays wrote in a recent letter to the Department of Housing and Urban Development.

The changes would affect most of the 1.9 million families who participate in the Section 8 program, the government's primary housing program for the poor, including 110,000 in New York City. People in the program receive vouchers to help them rent private apartments from landlords who agree to participate....

More here...
  • Current Mood
    aggravated aggravated
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Sleeping confuses me

Had this dream / repeating sleeping thought that I had something to do at 10 this morning and had to get whatever else done before that.

Got up at 8 for some reason, kind of anxious, but now I realize, I don't have anything to do at 10.

Also, I just realized that my alarm clock was set from yesterday and this is what woke me up before my usual time.

I think I'm going to lie down again.


Last night around 7 I found myself lying in bed all woozy and I guess I drifted off a bit, minor nap. Once again, woke up with no idea what day or time it was. I sort of sat there totally blank, blinking my eyes, then looked out the window, then looked at my clock, and after 5 seconds it came back.
  • Current Mood
    groggy groggy
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Conservatives against Dubya

I've seen a lot of articles about how a certain percentage of Republican and/or Conservatives are totally appalled by Dubya and his policies, but this one article here makes the case especially well:

True Conservatives Would Back Kerry

If they were true to their principles, moderate Republicans and consistent conservatives would be supporting John Kerry. Instead, their acquiescence to the reckless whims of George W. Bush marks a descent into that political abyss of opportunism where partisanship is everything and principle nothing.

How else to explain their cynical support for this shallow adventurer, a phony lightweight who has bled the Treasury dry while incompetently squandering the lives of young Americans in a needless imperial campaign? If Al Gore had been knighted president by the Supreme Court and overseen this mess instead of Dubya, the rational remnant of the Republican Party would be rightly calling for his head.

I particularly enjoy the use of the phrase phony lightweight -- hits the nail on the head!

Meanwhile Sen. Zell Miller (Georgia "Dem") recently wrote a memo to state Democrats like Jimmy Carter, telling them they're all a bunch of losers. Somebody needs to go kick that man in the ass.
  • Current Mood
    annoyed annoyed
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Good phone, good customer service

I have two phones, a 1930s-reproduction cord phone from Pottery Barn (yes, I succumbed) and a cordless GE phone I got at Target. The cord phone is iffy at times (something is loose inside) and recently the cordless phone decided it didn't want to stay charged anymore, so I had to look for an alternative.

I looked online last night and found something, but I'm glad I went to the Office Depot down the street, because what I got was even better, plus there was a huge disount on it (originally $130, only $55 after rebates!). Got a dual-handset system with a "base" phone plus a second handset and not only does it have lots of cool features, it's got a Retro look, like it's some kind of 1950s cordless set. I can pretend I'm talking to Sky Captain :)

I like the Office Depot by me a lot. It's an "express" location so not a big warehouse like a normal office supplies place, but they have everything I basically need (everything from paperclips to printers) and the service is great. In fact, after I paid I asked to fill out their customer service thing because the staff at that store are so darn helpful. You never walk around in there in need of help!

Meanwhile my new phone has to charge 20 hours before first use, so I'm still waiting to test it out. Wheee! Now I can keep one in my office, the other wherever else, so I won't be flying all over the apartment looking for the one cordless. This happens a lot with regard to the office, like if I've just talked with Caleb in the kitchen, gone back to work, then somebody calls again and I'm running through the entire place to grab the phone. No more of that!

Forgot to mention, the store also had buy-one-get-one-free on CDs, so I got 100 burnable CDs for $15. Wheeeeee!
  • Current Mood
    pleased pleased
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Pleasant surprise

I was just using QuickBooks (biz financial software) to enter in the purchase of my phone and just messing around, decided to run a report. I ran one that's "Income by Customer" and while I wasn't surprised by who my big customers have been (CAP, TSW and Mat Tech), I was rather impressed by the TOTAL for this year.

Me: Whoah! I got paid that much?! That's a lot of money! Well, more than it feels like anyway!

It's quite easy to lose sight of this when you're paying bills or you have a terrible couple of months when hardly anybody is paying you, but as I enter the fourth quarter, I can definitely say I've been successful and that people are quite willing to pay for my services.
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As we all know, I don't live in Boston. And I haven't lived in Massachusetts since 1996. But when I read this news article n the Boston Globe, I was really distressed:

2005 First Night Might be the Last

Apparently they are in such money troubles, like not having enough corporate sponsors, that they had to cut the fireworks out and basically don't think they can carry on.

It makes me really sad, because the First Night concept, common to lots of cities now, originated in Boston. I went two times and it was really wonderful -- art and music all over the city, everything from theater to a crazy parade to street performers to ice sculptures.

I wonder if they can't continue it simply as a smaller event, basing what they can do on the donations. The director is quoted as saying the only thing they could cut was fireworks but everything else was a "must have." I think the real "must have" is First Night.



Unrelated but WTF?! I just went to update LJ and I got this whole new format page. In fact I think a lot of LJ's management pages just got upgraded. This is probably a good thing, as I've found every upgrade brings me timesavers. I'll have to see...
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In web design geek news

After getting it in JULY, I just finally installed the Macromedia Studio MX 2004 upgrade. I had the original MX and had heard the 2004 is way better. I'm looking forward to using it and would have installed it right away except I was in the middle of the Mat Tech project and had a superstition about installing and learning a new product in the middle of it. Like what if it ate the PNG files or did something weird to my HTML? God forbid! But now I think I'm safe. I hope anyway!
  • Current Mood
    bouncy bouncy
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Design evolution

Well, tonight I decided to take another stab at the Charis Circle web site. I used my newly upgraded software and was pleased with how it all worked, plus pleased with my design.

1. The site now looks like this

2. My first redesign looked like this.

3. My latest redesign looks like this.

Getting better, don't you think?
  • Current Mood
    chipper chipper
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Touch my monkey

Everybody know how much I love Sprockets. If not, they should. Ditto for my love of imported experimental, techno, electronica, neo-folk, goth, etc.

Well, happily for me, tonight I've discovered an online radio station (or at least a feed for shows) that combines these two likings: Black Channel!

Seems to be some excellent strange music with a deejay who sounds a lot like Dieter, LOL. I love how he keeps trying to pronounce certain band names and stuff with an American accent only to have it so not work; cracks me up.

Right now he's talking about how trip hop is "HIPnotic." This is great.
  • Current Mood
    amused amused