Thursday, July 30, 2009

Thats a No Sexy

So, it's post #250, and I feel like I need to do something unique or shocking or something...

I found this...

Since I have the 'Hot Babe Trifecta', I really can't complain that Mrs Koda thoroughly enjoyed this particular news story!

Tired of Living

Don't worry folks... I'm not contemplating suicide!

Actually it's kind of the opposite situation... I'm ready to live, to do more, to experience more. I had the thought that perhaps I'm spending too much time obsessing with stuff that I shouldn't be wasting time on - my disenfranchisement with religion and politics in particular, and not enough on things which matter.

It's kind of a somber topic, and I'm not even really sure what the answer is... Maybe it was just the fact that 4:30 is way to early for a person to be awake.

And now for something completely different...

I have a friend on facebook, with exactly the same name as me. I think we're related a couple of generations back, although clearly his side of the family got the superior athletic genes... I believe he plays for the South African National Baseball team, while I'm just a middle of the pack weekend warrior. I requested the friendship just because it looks funny when either of us comment or interact with the other. Maybe that's kind of juvenile...

Anyway, he had the following on his status this morning. I thought it was kinda cool, so I took him up on his challenge, and thought I would do it here too...

Here it is:

1 question, 1 chance, 1 honest answer. You can ask me 1 question. Any question no matter how crazy, wrong or weird it is. No catch but i dare you to post this on your status and see what people ask you..

Since we're not on facebook, you can either ask your question in a comment or shoot me an email... question at urbankoda dot com

Depending on what kinds of questions get asked, I may even publish some of them here!

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Will you.... PISS OFF!!!

I'm still planning on doing a series of posts about what it's like to be a Mormon Missionary... Not to try and convert anyone (If you know me well, you know I likely have the complete opposite idea in mind), but more because I think many might be curious as to what it's like to give up 2 years of your life and what it's like going from door to door, having many slammed in your face - and paying for the privilege to do so.

This isn't part of that, but it does kind of deal with a Mormon missionary based experience.

When you begin your 2 year mission (or 18 months if you're a lady)... You are generally sent to a place called the MTC or Missionary Training Center. Actually the first time I heard someone speak about it, I thought they were saying "Empty Sea" and I assumed it was some religiously significant place near the Dead Sea, but I digress.

The role of the MTC is to teach you how to be a missionary. A lot of the training is in the doctrines of the Church and how to present them. You also get language training if you're headed to a foreign country and back when I went through the program in the mid 90's, you also spent a lot of time with "The Missionary Guide".

The Missionary Guide is a handbook which was prepared by Stephen R. Covey and I believe it was Boyd K. Packer.

Stephen R. Covey is famous for his 7 Habits Books, and Boyd K. Packer is a high up in the Church whom I think should best be associated with his quote about the truth...

"I have a hard time with historians, because historians idolize the truth. The truth is not uplifting. The truth destroys. And historians should tell only that part of the truth that is uplifting, and if it's religious history, that's faith-promoting. Historians don't like doing that, and that's why I have a hard time with historians."

As one of the main leaders of "God's only true Church", that's just not a good statement to make!!

But again I digress...

Most of the book focuses on something called "The Commitment Pattern". It's a method of presenting an idea to someone and then committing them to follow it, and if that sounds a little wacky, it is... Unless of course you're convinced you're doing it in the name of God, and then it's OK.

The basic pattern is... BRT, Invite and Followup

BRT - Build a relationship of trust. This consists of lots of questions to the target to feign interest, and is usually accompanied by a complete lack of sincerity. How are you? How many kids do you have? blah, blah, blah...

Invite - This sounds like a good thing - Invitations are good right? But here's how it is suggested that you do it. Pretend you are teaching them about the Word of Wisdom - the Mormon Health Code.

Missionary: God has commanded that we don't drink Tea, Coffee or Alcohol. It's because he loves us.

Missionary: Can you see how much he loves us that he doesn't want us to harm out bodies?

Target: Sure, I guess

Missionary: Will you show God that you love him too by committing to live the Word of Wisdom from now on, by not taking harmful substances into your body?

At this point the Target has been hit with the "Will You" question. It's a question that requires a direct Yes or No response. If the person says yes, you follow up with something about how you know God will bless them for their righteousness. If they say no, you "Resolve Concerns", which can take the form of guilt - "Why wouldn't you don't want to follow your loving Heavenly Father?!?" or "I sense you have a concern with following this... Is there something you would like to tell me about?"

In looking for the pattern to try and remember the steps, it looks like they may have adjusted it a little in recent years to be more subtle, but at the end of the day, it's still incredibly manipulative, and very effective at getting people to commit to doing what you want them too. Part of the reason many returned missionaries, are able to embark on successful careers as salesman.

Anyway, the thing is that when you know this pattern, and it gets used on you, it's pretty annoying.

2 examples...

When I first got out into the field as a missionary, the first guy I got assigned to be with was a Zambian national, with a bit of an ego problem. He was assigned to be my trainer, and was convinced that if he could make me look good, it would make him look good, and appearances are a huge part of being a good Mormon. The guy was a total ARSE about the whole thing though.

I missed home A LOT!! I also missed my girlfriend A LOT!! To help cope with this, each evening I would write in my Journal (One of the prescribed rules), and then I would pull two letters out from the back of my journal. One to my girlfriend and one to my parents. I would then spend a few minutes writing about the day to each, before putting them back in my journal and turning off the light at precisely 10:30.

Mission rules state that a missionary should write his parents each week on P-Day. And so each P-Day (Monday in our case), I would finish up each letter and mail it.

Dickhead Trainer decided that I was being disobedient by writing part of a letter on a day other than P-Day, so one morning, in the hour we had to study the scriptures as a companionship, he gives me a half hour lecture on obedience. He explains how God only blesses us when we are obedient, and then makes some comment about how we aren't getting any baptisms because we're not being obedient enough.

Believe me, at this point in my mission I was trying as hard as I could to follow the rules, and so in all honesty, I was fully expecting him to confess some grievous sin which he'd committed in violations of God's Law...

Next thing I know I get the Will You question... Elder... Will you stop writing letters on days other than P-Day, so God will bless us with more baptisms?

I recall being pretty pissed, realizing what he had just done to me... For some reason, completely out of character for me, I shot back with a direct "No".

Obviously he hadn't anticipated this, and so he was taken a back. His only response was... "I asked you a direct WILL YOU question!" And I responded with... "Yes, and I gave you a direct NO answer." Things went south from there... Dickhead Mission President kept us together for 4 months, which I'll probably elaborate on when I share more about that period of my mission. I think he (El Presidente) thought I was racist, being raised in South Africa and having a black companion, but the only problem I had was that the companion was a complete controlling Dick...

Anyway, so moving on to example 2 and why I'm sharing all of this...

I may have blogged about the moron from Church who phoned at 6am, 2 sundays ago to tell me about a meeting. He called again the next Sunday, a little later mind you, to inform me that I am his new home-teaching companion.

Home-teaching for those who don't know is an LDS Program where 2 men are assigned a couple of families and visit them once a month to share a message and check up on their spirituality. In my opinion, it has more to do with members keeping and eye on each other to make sure everyone is keeping the rules than anything else. Our best home teacher ever only came twice in a year... But he genuinely cared about our family... He has been the only one with any kind of sincerity in his visits. He's part of the reason I'm an IT Pro, but that's another story for another day...

Bottom line is... I don't like the program, and I choose not to participate. Apparently this has irked the leadership because the moron who called, is in the Elders Quorum Presidency - the guys who run the program. I haven't been involved with the group in any way, shape or form in over a year, although my name is on their records, so according to the Church, I'm their responsibility.

Anyway... I didn't answer, nor did I return his call. This last weekend, when he called again, it was what prompted me to unplug our phones. I'm thinking I may do this every weekend from now on.

So... He stopped by last night. Here's how it went. I shall refer to him as AW (AssWipe), although in reality, I prefer his Sister-In-Law's description of him as a ShitLicker, but again... I digress...

AW: Hi, I'm you're new Home Teaching companion. I called a few times, but I've been slacking.

Nice move! Make it look like you're not so righteous either to put me at ease.

Me: I don't home teach.

AW: Well, now you do!

Me: Stunned Silence, while thinking "You arrogant PRICK!!"

AW: Why don't you like it?

He's trying to find a way to empathize now, right in line with the pattern..

Me: I hate the program, and I don't think it does any good.

AW: My feeling on Home Teaching... He then proceeds in a long rambling description how he doesn't like long visits, blah blah blah, not old friends for 20 years blah blah blah, already done it this month, blah blah blah.

You see the problem is, I think he assumed I would tell him I didn't have time, and that was the argument he'd prepared... Rather than listen to me that "I DON'T HOME TEACH", he proceeded to resolve my concerns about it taking too much time.

AW: When works best for you?

Me: It doesn't. I don't have time and I don't want to do it.

Screwed up here... I gave an reason he could try and resolve...

AW: Long tirade again about "Only 15 minutes", "I'll do all the calling", "Only 15 minutes"...

AW: Will you find time to come with me?

Me: I work two jobs and I have a family. I don't have time.


AW: Well, Sunday would probably be best for you then. If I make appointments, and prepare the lesson, and do everything else... Will you come with me?

At this point, I had 1 minute to get ready for the gym (Still in my work clothes). I'm pissed, I'm annoyed and I want him to go away.

Me: I guess...

HUGE MISTAKE ON MY PART HERE... I empathize with a past girlfriend who told me that the missionaries would not take "No" for an answer. At the time, thinking she just didn't want to know the truth... I was a Moron.

I rush inside and get changed, while he continues to visit with my wife and kids (and his wife was there too).

My wife caught me right before I left for the gym. Apparently after I'd left, he'd turned to his wife and mine and said something about how he had "Committed" me to do my home teaching. He wife looked thrilled - obviously they've been discussing my spiritual welfare... My wife told him "Good Luck!"

I'll stop there.

Gentle Reader... Can I make a commitment to you please?


I'm going to stand my ground next time, and I'll report back on what happens. If for any reason I turn into a great big pussy and cave in, will you please lay upon me the biggest load of guilt and shame you can, because I will so totally deserve it.


Monday, July 27, 2009

Choose your caption...

Unfortunately, embedding has been disabled on this video, although I'm sure I could crack it, if I put my mind to it.

Click Here to View

I need your help with the caption though...

Your two options are:

Why the LDS Church doesn't allow traditional wedding marches in their Chapels


What happens when you let a woman officiate in a man's position

Either way, I say.... ROCK ON!!

Master of Puppets

Before I say anything too critical, let me start by saying that it appears Mr. Rush Limbaugh has lost some weight. I'm not going to try and figure out how he may have accomplished this, be it that he's back on drugs or that the new administration is causing random bouts of nausea, but whatever the reason... Good on ya for dropping some extra poundage!

I got to spend Friday afternoon at a BBQ with persons close to my family. They're good people, although the last couple of visits have been interesting, mostly due to the fact that for some reason, those who know I voted for Mr. Obama take great pleasure in telling others, and in typically conservative Utah circles, it's not viewed very favorably. To their credit, they still treat me with respect (generally), and I in turn try to keep my mouth shut when around them. It's not that I'm ashamed of my choice, but when people take politics as seriously as religion, arguing does no good for anyone.

That said however, some things were said that made me want to slam my head against a wall, and to prevent any cranial damage, I feel I need to let them out... And what better place than my semi-anonymous online forum!

First of all, let me state that there are conservative thinking individuals that do actually think for themselves, and there are those of the liberal persuasion that don't. I just happened to spend the afternoon amongst conservative leaning folks who don't think things through.

Perhaps the afternoon could be summed up by one of the final quotes of the day...

"I don't watch or listen to the news anymore... It makes me too depressed."

Now that's something I can agree with, and I almost stood up and gave the man a standing ovation. In fact I was turning to my wife to give her the thumbs up, when it was followed with this gem....

"All I need to know I learn from Rush, and sometimes Glenn Beck. But Rush seems to know what I'm thinking."

Does anyone have some sharp implements I can shove into my ears?

Here's my take on Rush, and you are welcome to disagree... Rush is an exceptionally wealthy man and he's a marketing genius. I however must take issue with his methods. Rush is a peddler of fear. Fear induces a state of panic within the mind of the listener. Fear shuts down logic. Fear produces a chemical reaction in the brain which is addictive. Thereby, Mr. Limbaugh has become a drug to his audience that replaces their logic and free thought, with his opinions. It's genius and the means by which most religions seem to flourish as well, but that doesn't make it right.

The reason Rush seems to know what people of thinking is that he is doing their thinking for them. He is in effect the Puppet Master and his loyal listeners are the puppets. Perhaps the most ironic part of the whole twisted relationship is that the "Free Thinking" followers refer to themselves as "Ditto Heads". Somehow they take pride in it, as though parroting someone elses political views is honorable.

The problem with men who operate like this is that by taking control of peoples minds, you take on the responsibility to watch what you say. The tragedy with Rush, Beck and likely other commentators from both sides of the political spectrum, is that they don't always mind what they say. Such is the case when Beck quipped that Obama was the anti-christ, and many of his followers took it as gospel - and these aren't white trash, gun toting trailer dwellers either... These are intelligent entrepreneurs, business directors and accountants.

To further make my point, please allow me to share some other gems from my afternoon...

"You can't say Michael Jackson was on drugs, because apparently that's racist."

Say What?!? You can't say he was on drugs because unless you're the medical examiner, it just shows you to be ignorant and assuming fool. Who the hell claimed it was racist?!? Oh and I may blog more on this later, since more needs to be said on the Michael Jackson thing. But the racist theme came up again later in the afternoon....

"I'm worried that these politician don't read the stuff they vote on, and you just know Obama is going to stick something in there that will allow him to be president until he dies."

I only wish I were making these up, or that the person was joking. I mean it would have been a lousy joke anyway, but still...

Seriously, how can the President insert something into a bill being debated in Congress or the Senate?

Wouldn't Fox News find out about this ahead of time and do a huge expose on it? I mean I watched (not by choice), an hour long segment on the President "Checking out a girls butt", which was kind of a leap anyway, since they had to do it in slow motion in order to make the glance long enough to be viable and you couldn't see where he was looking specifically anyway, but apparently these are the lengths you have to go to in order to discredit a man who thinks differently from you.

"You have to watch what you say now on the phone or on Facebook, because you never know who's listening with this new administration...."

I know, the warrantless wiretapping going on under Obama is seriously out of control. Oh - wait a second - warrantless wiretapping... Wasn't that the dude who got told by God to attack Iraq, and wasn't he your guy... I guess as long as he's being guided by God and he's not a Democrat that's OK though, right?!

Moving on, perhaps a couple of quotes on health-care...

"The new health-care plan will allow abortions on children up to the age of 2."

"The new health-care plan is designed to kill anyone over the age of 70."

First of all, as I've said before, these are real quotes, and the originators were dead serious! I found these particularly ironic, because back when I used to listen to Rush (Yes, as one of his "Ditto-Heads"). I remember him bitching about how the Democrats were accusing the Republicans of killing the elderly and the young... And being outraged by such baseless accusations. Perhaps Rush needs to add "Hypocrite" to the list of accolades he affords himself each hour.

Now in their defense, they did cite an example to back up their claims here...

A 103 year old woman who wanted a heart transplant and was denied by a doctor, and then another doctor allowed her to have it, and then she got to live till she was 104.

The thing is... Yes, I'm glad for that woman, but...

Let's say you have a 29 year old man (we can even make him Black or Hispanic, or even make him a woman for this example...). Prime of their life, and sole provider for their family. They're trying to pull themselves out of their rut, working hard, providing for those they have responsibility for. Seeking the American Dream as it were...

Unfortunately they're just barely eeking by right now, struggling to provide food and shelter to their kids, and medical insurance premiums in the $500+ a month range just aren't even close to being in the realm of possibility. Let's say this person collapses at work one day, rushed to the hospital and discovers they have heart problems and desperately need a heart transplant.

Let's say, for sake of argument, that the 103 year old woman has the same blood type, tissue matching and all of that as this young man/woman in the prime of his/her life.

As luck would have it, the hospital comes into possession of a matching heart - but only one. Who gets it?

Under the current system, 103 year old lady has a huge amount of wealth. 29 year old person has nothing of real value, so of course the 103 year old lady get's it, and gets to live another couple of years. 29 year old person dies.

Isn't capitalism wonderful?!?

Under the new system (And I could definitely stand to learn more about it...).

Both people have medical coverage. Doctors, hospital administrators, perhaps even a [gasp] government employee could weigh in on the discussion, and I would suspect the heart would go to the 29 year old. It's sad for the old lady, but it's the right decision. I mean we outlaw selling organs for money, but yet, isn't that what our medical system effectively does? Whoring itself to the highest bidder?

When I've done disaster response training in the past, I was taught about assessing situations where multiple victims are involved. In those situations, you want to focus attention on the person with the most responsibility, with the best chance of survival. They're tough decisions to make, but they need to be made, and it shouldn't be a case of "Show me the MONEY!!"

Interestingly enough, they also claimed that everyone has free health-care anyway, if you don't have insurance, just go to the emergency room, and you get free care. Clearly these people have never been to the emergency room... I took a kid in a while back after he played superman, and flew into the side of the coffee table. Somehow they fouled up the billing and I got charged twice. Within weeks I was getting collections calls and nasty mail about my unpaid bill (at least the unpaid part of the duplicate charge). It sooooo wasn't free!

Why do these people think the health-care reform is a bad idea? Especially when many of them would actually benefit from it?

Because it's going to cost Rush Limbaugh money. And what's bad for Rush is bad for his audience.

Now don't get me wrong here, there are both good and bad points to healthcare reform and the new plan in particular. But what is certain is that the current system doesn't work, and that people need to start understanding and thinking things through for themselves, and they really need to start voting for their interests and not Rush Limbaugh's interests.

The final thing that got me going - actually it got me going to leave the area and go play with the kids....

A discussion on President Obama, and that he's not even black. Their point of contention was that since his mother was white, he's only half black. They discussed whether they should call him a "Nig" or a "Ger". And then someone commented, that you couldn't say that, because

"But that would be considered racist."
[in a rather sarcastic tone, with eye rolling]

I'm sorry, but actually that is.

Let me elaborate...

Nigger: (vulgar, see usage notes) A dark-skinned person, especially a person of, or primarily of, Negro descent.

Usage Notes

"Nigger" has taken on pejorative qualities, as it implies not only darkness of skin, but a general lack of intelligence and sophistication. At the time of the word's origin, various English-speaking North American settlers who set cultural standards considered black people fundamentally inferior and less civilized than white people. The term is generally considered offensive to black people, not only because it singles them out on the basis of their skin colour, but also because, due to its origin, it carries connotations of slavery, inferiority and oppression. (

So yes, without a doubt, talking about the president as a Nig or a Ger is racist.

And lets examine the whole concept of is he black or not...

Having being raised in a time and place of extreme racism, I know a little about this, although I was fortunate that I was not black, purely because of the harsh treatment and unjust laws directed towards this group of people, whom I consider equals with myself.

I have in my possession a certificate from the South African government, classifying myself as a white person, and thereby subject to all benefits of such a classification.

Being black isn't about skin color really, it's about your ancestry. From what I understand, laws of racial assignment typically operate of a 1/16th rule - and the 1/16th is applied to the color being examined, whether for good or bad. In the case of Americans being considered black, or African American. If you have 1/16th black blood in you, or if one of your great, great grandparents was black, you are classified as black.

For the United States, that definition came about during the time of slavery, when if you were black (by definition), you were not necessarily a full citizen of the Union, and could thus be treated as property and bought and sold.

And while we're on this topic...

Glenn Beck dressing up his Obama bobble head in a turban could perhaps be considered funny, if you hadn't all thrown such a huge fit when Bush was compared to Hitler. Although when you look at credible evidence... Bush being similar to Hitler in ideology is far less of a reach than Obama being an Islamic extremist.

Anyway, I think I've rambled on long enough. Please feel free to refute any of my arguments, but please try and be civil about it!

Oh, and if you're the redneck, inbred member of the KKK, who after my last blog post on African Americans, completely missed my point, and left a comment about how uncivilized blacks are and how terrible america (yes, small a) would be if Obama won the election. Please go test the rope hanging from your tree prior to commenting. Might I suggest standing on a ladder, placing your neck in the noose, and doing a swan dive....

Monday, July 20, 2009

Collective Genius

I'm writing this as an appeal to my readers intelligence and life experience. Any and all advice and suggestions will be appreciated and carefully considered.

And please accept my apologies again for a less than humorous post...

For the past 5 or 6 years, I've run a small software development business from home. About a year or two into it, I got connected with a guy out of Chicago developing some software. After working on various projects with him for 5 months, he asked me to look into building his product into a full scale web application.

I started work on this in December of 2006. He actually flew out to Utah and met with me for a couple of days to strategize and plan it out. During lunch on the final day, he drops the bomb that he can no longer pay me, and suggests a partnership on the new project, wherein we split the proceeds 50/50. Having just quit my job to pursue the home business full-time, the timing was bad, but at the same time it seemed like a good investment for the future.

Anyway, after a year, we had a pretty respectable project built and he starts talking about changing our arrangement. It went from a 50/50 split to my getting 50% of all sales for the first 5 customer, and then 50% on the first 5 customers for the first 3 years. Red flags were already waving for my sweet wife, but I was an idiot at this point and assured her that it would work out for the best.

June last year, he invites me out to Chicago for a week to meet with him, the new IT guy he wanted me to start reporting to, and his new business mentor. I was pretty excited about it, and after convincing my wife that a week in Chicago was a good idea, and getting leave from work, I call the guy back, and was informed that I didn't need to be there anymore, since they were only going to be discussing the future of the company, and I wasn't involved. About this same time, he also changed our agreement again to where I would get a 25% share in the new company, in exchange for my work thus far.

Red flags went up for me at this time, but like the idiot I am, I did nothing about it.

From June through December I asked for a formal agreement as to my share in the new company. It was always with the attorney, or he needed to review it or something. At this time, he'd asked me to start billing him hourly again, requested my rate stay what it was when we started - some 25% of what my actual market value was.

In August they picked up a huge national customer as a client, and brought in a development firm in the Philippines as well. From August to December I spent 20-30 hours a week correlating with the Philipino developers and working on the application. In December this ramped up to 40-50 hours a week. I was doing all this while trying to be a husband and father, and working another full time job.

The IT guy he'd brought it, was a nice enough guy, but communication broke down. Mid December I got a really nasty email from the head guy, which was basically the result of them providing me incomplete data, and expecting me to somehow load all the data into the system.

Having had almost no sleep, I was getting real tired of being the whipping boy for his and his IT Guys incompetence, so I asked him again (Nicely mind you!) for my formal agreement. Funnily enough (on a Sunday too) within 10 minutes I have severl pages of legal document, offering 10,000 shares in the company, and absolutely no say in how the company in run or anything.

I politely asked what percentage of the company that worked out to being, since the numbers in the documents where adding up the way I thought they should. He responded with all kinds of warnings about looking at the big picture, and how we all had to make sacrifices to make this a success... And then tells me that my share in worth 1.6%

I was understandably upset, and told him that I thought that was inappropriate, and that if that was all I was worth to the company, my hourly rate was going to be changing to what my market value was.

Within 5 minutes all my access was removed to servers, databases, everything. 4 hours later, an email explaining that he feels best that our relationship be terminated.

I sent him my bill for my hours up until that date, which where only for the past couple of months.

I emailed him in January after my invoice was over due, and I had heard nothing.

I emailed him again in February, and indicated that we needed to discuss my compensation for the past 2 years as well as the overdue invoice.

He called my cellphone almost immediately (I let it go to voicemail) and made all kinds of excuses about how his client hadn't paid yet, and then launched into a long tirade about how awful my code was, how I had bailed on him at the worst possible time, and that his developers had to rewrite my code, since it was useless and therefore he owed me nothing.

My invoice was paid a month later and I've heard nothing since.

My initial approach was to chalk the whole thing up to experience, be grateful I got some money out of him, and just kind of let the whole thing die.

I've been told that is the admirable thing to do, and that many around me are proud of my approach. My wife if just glad the whole thing is over.

But the thing is, it isn't. Every so often, it comes back to haunt me, and this weekend was one of those weekends. I gave up 2 years of my life to develop this guy an application, that meant time away from my family, and many, many hours of uncompensated work. To put it mildly, it pisses me off. Having relived the whole experience right now, I am physically shaking.

I'm not sure what to do about it.

I figure I have a few options:

1. Just deal with it, and hope it goes away sometime soon.

2. Meet with an intellectual property attorney and find out what my rights are. I could then:
a - make sure I am legally entitled to sell the code myself and try and market it.
b - Request the attorney to send him a cease and desist order, specifying that all my code be removed immediately, as well as the table structures in the database and all of that. (Seeing as I worked with him on much of this, I wondering if I do indeed have full ownership of the code though.

3. Find a tough attorney and go after his company with everything I can. I suspect this will bankrupt the company, which would be satisfying, but I wonder if it's worth all the stress, and if it really will be satisfying in the long run.

4. Send the guy a letter informing him of my intent to sell my code, offering to let him buy it, and if not, requesting that he immediately cease using any of my code. I doubt this would have any effect though, and I'll either get a nasty letter in return or they'll just laugh at me.

Does anyone like any of those options or have any others? And does anyone by chance have a good intellectual property attorney they could recommend, since I think ultimately I need some good solid advice at this juncture.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

If I may vent...

Had a busy weekend... Thursday thru Sunday saw "the pukes" going through our 4 oldest kids. Interestingly enough the younger they were, the better job they did of keep it all confined to the appropriate containers. Now that they are getting older, they don't keep us up as much when they're sick, but there is still a sleep deficit which gets incurred.

Saturday morning, my alarm went off at 4am. I still need to pull a report together on my fitness blog, but I spent the morning up near a small town called Coalville for a triathlon. It actually went rather well, and I think when you factor in different distances and all of that, I think it was my fastest race to date! I tried out some new nutrition things and different pacing on the run, and both world splendidly.

It was an Olympic distance race, and took me just under 3 hours, so there is a certain amount of fatigue associated with it as well. Usually I'll take a couple of hours of sleep when I get done, but being Saturday and my returning to a house of wife and kids who were anxious to get out, I skipped the nap.

We spent the afternoon at the Airforce Museum, which was kinda fun, and then headed down to the in-laws to perform minor surgery on their computer. It took longer than expected, and we ended up getting home shortly after 10pm.

After a really long day, I think I finally got to bed around midnight, and was extremely grateful that Sunday morning would likely bring with it the opportunity to sleep in.


I looked over at the clock - it was 6:03 in the freakin' morning, and the freakin' phone was freakin' ringing - Who the freakin' hell calls at this freakin' time of the freakin' morning?!?!? This had better not be OOOOOORRRRRLANDO!

It turned out to be some guy from the Elders Quorum (Mens group from the congregation we belong to)

For those of you who haven't been following... This group meets together in the last hour of the 3 hour church block every week. The last time I went to this meeting was over a year ago. The topic at that point was how Mormons just aren't good enough and why God is disappointed with us - I blogged about it here, and commented on how crap like this is the reason the use of prescription anti-depressants in Utah is through the freakin' roof! Prior to that the topic of conversation was on how to show 'Righteous Anger towards your Wife and Kids'. Anyway, so I don't attend this meeting, or participate in any of the activities they put on, and I haven't in over a year.

Anyway, so EQ guy calls, and I opt to let the machine get it.

Apparently there was a general meeting being held for all the men in the area (10 congregations or so) at 5pm on Sunday night. I wasn't aware of the meeting, and even if I had been, I have better things to do with my time.

Sometime on Sunday morning however, the powers that be decided that they should move this meeting to 7am and so at 6am the calls started to let everyone know.

In a Church where things are usually done very methodically and carefully, this was kind of a shock. Of course by this time, I was too awake to get back to sleep, and curious as to what might be the reason. I checked the local news stations and all of that - nothing. So I went back to bed, and tossed and turned for another couple of hours.

According to one of the young men I spoke with later in the day, the meeting itself turned out to be the biggest freakin' waste of time of his entire life.

I have a theory on why they may have done this...

Previous Stake President (the guys who runs these types of meetings) was the guy who gave the teenage girls the commandment last year that they could not wear anything other than long pants to their summer camp - And it was over 100 freakin' degrees most of the week. He also made them sign contracts that they would follow this commandment or face being ejected from the camp. When they returned home, he told us all that he had done this to see if they would be obedient to his commandments and by being obedient to him, they'd had the spirit with them. Pardon me, but WTF!! For those of you who are religiously minded - 2 Thessalonians 2:3-4

One of his assistants at the time, was the asshole who gave the "God is upset with you because you're not good enough" speech I referenced earlier. Since that time the assistant has replaced the President as the new President.

I suspect Sunday's meeting was a way to see who would be most faithful in attending a meeting early in the morning. Either that, or my wife theorizes that he had some family thing in the afternoon, and his wife forgot to tell him about it.

Either way, the whole thing was the biggest, hairiest load of complete bollocks I've heard about in a while.

I need to get myself on the "Do Not Call List"

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Business Time

This is kind of a serious one... But first, something not so serious!

Alright, so last weekend, it was my birthday, and in lieu of Church we opted to actually have a spiritual family experience and head up into the mountains to go GeoCaching. It turned out to be a fun afternoon, although GeoCaching with 5 wee kids can be a little on the tiring side.

We found 3 of the 6 caches we tried to find. Of the three we missed, the first was surrounded by muggles (Non-GeoCachers), so we skipped it.

The second was outside a small motel, and after a couple of minutes I realized that poking around outside the windows of a couple of the rooms was going to be hard to explain to the cops.

The third was supposed to be a big one in the middle of an open field. After crossing rivers and muddy pools, I end up in the middle of a thicket, surrounded by cows. I searched high and low for about 10 minutes and then gave up. Good thing too, since I'd left wifey and the kids in the car, and kiddy #3 piped up that she was convinced I had been killed and was never coming back - it got worse from there, until the wife unloaded the whole tribe and came to find me - panicking slightly.

My point to this story was kind of an aside. There seemed to be a running theme at most of the cache sites. At least 2 had deer skeletons close by, and every single one featured some large bird of prey overhead.

At the last, which was the one where I almost died... A pair of Ospreys had a nest atop a power-line. Ospreys mate for life, and I thought it was interesting looking up at the pair sitting next to each other on the pole.

From what I understand, humans are amongst the only creatures which enjoy sex. I'm thinking the horny lab I had as a teen probably enjoyed it too, but other than that, I think animals engage in mating purely to continue the species.

So as I looked up at the pair of birds, I wondered how important physical attraction is in human relationships, and if it's even necessary. Speaking for myself, I've been married over 10 years, and still have trouble keeping my hands off Mrs Koda - we have 5 kids, just in case that statement needs proof!

Anyone have any thoughts?


I don't have much humorous to share today, so perhaps let me share with you the details of my experiences with OOOOORRRRRLANDO! I posted this on my fitness blog, and that linked itself over to Facebook, so for those who a linked into both, this will be the third time you see this... Perhaps once I'm done I'll have to find something else funny to share...

Those of you who follow me on Facebook, already know that Friday night was rather interesting. Those of you who don’t… Let me assure you that it was!

Friday Night, July 3rd, and for my international followers, the eve of Independence Day in the US. It’s a day of picnics, family, sun and fun, but most importantly - at least if you ask my kids - we get to light off fireworks!!

The law restricts fireworks in our area to 5 days before and 5 days following a ‘Firework’ holiday - like July 4th or New Years, and so after getting bankrupted by the cute Cheerleaders of Syracuse High at the TNT Firework tent, we returned home on Friday afternoon, and got ready for the nights activities.

“Dad, can we do fireworks yet?”


“Dad, can we do fireworks yet?”


“Dad, can we do fireworks yet?”


I would continue, but, you get the general idea.

Finally around 10:30pm it was dark enough, and so we headed outside.

After the first couple of bangs and whizzes, there came a yell from our neighbors house… Something about “ don’t you dare do this to me!!!”

Now I don’t know about you, but domestic disputes make me uncomfortable. And we figured this was one of those - nothing serious, just your average ‘run of the mill’ episode of marital discord.

“Whiz!” “Bang”

A minute or 2 later, a kid comes flying out of the house to another neighbors house screaming…


He bangs on the door, and as it opens screams something about “My dad’s not breathing and there’s blood coming out of his mouth!!”. A couple of people came running out of the house, and next thing I know, my wife has grabbed my little girl from me and is rather forcefully telling me to do something…

I flew inside, grabbed the phone, and dialled 911 while flying back outside. The operator answered and I tried to tell her what was going on - all the while gasping for breath. In my haste, I had grabbed the phone with the crappy reception, and after a trying to tell the operator a couple of times I ran inside for better reception. Finally got it out, and was told that the wife of the neighbor in question was already on the phone.

The next part was tricky… A few minutes later, a police cruiser pulled up, followed by an ambulance and a huge fire truck. A small crowd started to gather, and we were kind of a loss as to what to do…

Our problem is that we don’t know our neighbors very well… Not that we’re hermits - well, maybe we are a little, but we just don’t have much in common with them, and we’re kind of the new kids on the block too, only having lived there a year or two. Most of our neighbors have been there for 10 or more years, so….

We figured things were under control, and didn’t really want to be the neighbors who stand around staring as another family undergoes a crisis. It also didn’t seem right to continue with the fireworks, so we headed inside.

My kids were pretty freaked out by all of this as well… From the oldest down to the youngest, so it took a while to settle them down and get them to bed.

Not wanting to share too much about what happened - just for privacy’s sake… It turns out that the neighbor in question had a seizure, and in the process of which had injured his mouth. If you have ever experienced a mouth injury, or a facial injury, you know they bleed horribly. When it subsided, his body, completely spent from the seizure, relaxed and he lay on the floor, effectively unconscious. The combination of blood + lack of movement understandably freaked everyone in his family out, but the good news is that after some tests, he was released, and appears to be on his way to a full recovery.

Finally around midnight, the wife and I were able to get to bed, and after a while both fell asleep.

2:55am - Wake up to the phone ringing.

Phone calls in the middle of the night are never good.

Not recognizing the name on the caller id - Digital Service or something… I answer and am greeted with an automated system.

It turns out it was a free call from the Weber County Jail. Weber County is the next county north of us. It was a free call for Orlando. Now with these systems, the person gets to say their own name, so you have automated lady voice “…free call for ” and then Orlando gets to say his name. It wasn’t just Orlando though… It was OOORRLANDO. The dude sounded like quite the stud.

After listening to part of the legal stuff about the call being recorded for security reasons and all of that, I just hung up.

A couple of years back, we started getting a lot of calls for an hispanic lady - Rosa was her name if memory serves correctly. I’m guessing her number is close to ours, or she gives out our number (unknowingly of course) to suitors whom she deems not worthy of her time. Either way, we haven’t had one for a while, but I’m guessing that is what happened.

Still on edge with the neighborhood incident a couple of hours prior, and then being woken up by OOORRRLANDO! it took a while to get back to sleep.

3:50 - The phone rings again. Caller ID says it’s Steve Rico or something… Don’t know him, and just assume it’s one of OOORRRLANDO’s partners in crime or something. Answer/Hangup. #(*&*$@*&$(*#

4:30 - 2 year old son comes in crying about wanting a drink and needing to pee. He still wears diapers, and so I was all “Dude - just do it in the diaper! Don’t give me problems!!” At this point I picked him up, to take him back to bed and get him a drink, and then realize that the kid has soaked himself with pee from head to foot. Ewwwww!!!

Anyway, 10 minutes later, he has a new diaper, a quick once over mini wipe bath and some fresh PJ’s. He’s also back in bed and sucking away happily on his drink - no doubt needing to rehydrate himself…

It was after 9 the next day when we finally woke up - hoping for a better day, which it was!

Wednesday, July 08, 2009

Ironically Boring....

A certain someone has apparently complained that my blogs have gotten a wee bit boring of late...

So, let me try and rectify that!

A good friend of mine referred me to a guy by the name of Ed Byrne a month or two back. Ed is a comedian from Ireland. Like all comedians he has a unique approach to life, and you either like it or you don't.

I quite like Ed, so thought I would share...

There is a story that goes along with this as well, but it's not complete yet... So while I wait in suspense for it to end, you can to!



My last post was probably a little serious for this blog. But this one is probably not as funny either.

I've been watching some of the Tour de France the last day or 2 and last night I watched the Mens ITU Hyvee Triathlon, and I have been truly inspired. The human body is an amazing machine!

While watching and researching more about le Tour, I came across this ad which Lance Armstrong did for Nike some years ago.

Lance also just put together a new ad campaign as well, to promote his LiveStrong Foundation.

Monday, July 06, 2009

My Ass is Twitching...

This is kind of like the phrase, "My Ears are Burning", but more sinister and with more of a foreboding of evil type feeling.

Do you know people who are sneaky and manipulative?

I know a couple... Communication ceased with some of those I know about 6 months ago.

I wish it were just a case of wanting to get back in touch, but I have learned by sad experience, that the only reason they start being nice or chatty is because they want something.

In a way it's good. I know their game so well now that I can see it coming a mile away. Unfortunately it also means that even if they ever turn over a new leaf and actually wanted to be nice and cordial and pursue an honest relationship, that I still wouldn't give them the time of day. But I guess that's the price they're going to have to pay for choosing the path of sneakiness and manipulation in the past.

Stay, tuned - In addition to the twitching of my rear end, either later today or tomorrow, I'll share the story of OOORRRLANDO, from my interesting weekend!