Monday, August 28, 2006

True story

A stranger (female) walked into my house this morning, around 11am. She said she had stuff in the closet; she had come to retrieve it. I granted her permission to act, and she walked to the closet, leaving the front door open. (The door opens to the outside world.)

She got some stuff, came back to the open doorway. She stopped and her eyes started following a bee flying across my living room. And then she said (I'm not making this up) with a straight-face, "How did that get it here?"

Imagine my furrowed brow.

Friday, August 25, 2006

Protesting a job that is better than yours

This is a great article pointing out the irony of an anti-Wal-Mart union. I promise you'll laugh.



UCFW organizer Bill Hornbrook: "Wal-Mart has no benefits at an affordable rate. The (Wal-Mart) workers can't afford the insurance with the wage they're making. We'd like to see them improve their working conditions," Hornbrook said. "The Neighborhood Markets are the same as a supermarket like Albertson's or Safeway. Some supermarkets start (pay) at $7 an hour, but they do get benefits. These people (employees at Wal-Mart) have to pay for theirs," Hornbrook said. So the UCFW is protesting each of the five new Wal-Mart Neighborhood Markets in the Vegas area; this one in Henderson opened June 29.


Wal-Mart employee: "The average rate of pay for Nevada Wal-Mart workers is $10.17 an hour. We have a good insurance program, and every associate—even part-timers—are eligible for the 401k," says Mark Dyson. "There's actually different levels of insurance, dental and medical—I have a $500 deductible, but there's no cap on it. Some other companies' plans have a $1 million cap, but here there's no cap. For example, not long ago we had an associate whose husband needed a liver transplant, and that alone was $600,000; but they didn't have to worry about a cap."

Who do you trust? A union head or someone who actually works there.

Monday, August 21, 2006


Loyalty is a curious subject.
  1. Steadfast in allegiance to one's homeland, government, or sovereign.
  2. Faithful to a person, ideal, custom, cause, or duty.
Loyalty sounds like something you should want to be. But you also don't wish to be called loyal by the wrong people. What is the deal with loyalty? Should I be loyal to my favorite automobile manufacturer? Favorite operating system developer? What about my country? state? ethnicity? employer? academic institutions? religion? family?
I've heard both positive and negative stories of people being loyal.

I've pondered many times on the subject, and I wish to explore it further.

Today I was leaving the university library as it was closing, and the speakers were blaring the fight song. I was filled with the desire to pump my fist in the air during the appropriate time, albeit I resisted the urge. Where exactly does that sort of urge come from?

I was raised in a state in the USA which is known for its pride. Where did this pride come from? Is it important for me to have pride in a state that I didn't choose to be a part of? What are the consequences of choosing loyalty or disloyalty?

Sometimes, when I hear the national anthem of the USA, my eyes well up with tears. Why? Is it because I know something? Is it because I feel something? What am I feeling and thinking exactly when that happens?

To what things should I be loyal? When? In what priority?

I hear married people talk about their unwavering loyalty to a spouse. I ask them how they can be loyal to a spouse that is incorrect, such as in a dispute with a neighbor. They say that they have to stay on "the same side" as their spouse. I can't really understand why that makes sense. Maybe they mean that in public they stay united, and in private the try to reach an understanding. Apparently lots and lots of loyalty is needed in marriages, or else they break apart.

This is a work in progress.

Thursday, August 17, 2006

walmart wage

Employees at walmart are getting ripped off, right?

I think that Walmart should add a gratuity line on their credit card signature receipts. That way, if you're a walmart hater, you can put your money where your mouth is. Help these poor people out, please!

Post ideas for discussion here

Sunday, August 13, 2006

almost like christmas

I arrived in a classroom, and a strange woman seated near asked me if there was to be a lecture in the room for the next hour. I let her know that, yes, there would be a lecture starting in about five minutes. She said that she better get going. I said, "If you stay, then you'll learn how to make a nuclear bomb." She then quietly got up and left.

And then I looked at a fellow student, who was snickering. "Who doesn't want to know how to make a nuclear bomb?" I wondered aloud. "I can think of no better hook, and she wasn't interested in the information at all!" he added. I continued: "How strange. The secret that makes the political world go 'round, and she doesn't even have a sliver of interest! How could she not be in the least bit curious?! [....] I wonder if she thought it was a joke."