A Sunday evening collection of randomness

Good Sunday evening, Internet(s)! I hope the American contingent of the readership is enjoying the holiday weekend. Mine is being interrupted by a work day tomorrow, though I get the feeling I won’t be there the whole day. We’ll see what happens. Tom is once again having his July 4 shindig, so I’ll be there on Tuesday.

So what’s going on?

Home improvement: My dad came over today and dropped off an eight-foot ladder so I can change the overhead light bulbs in the apartment. For the first time, I have overhead light in my room. The overhead light in the living room is suffering from a lousy switch, which I will have replaced. We also lit up the gas stove, which I have never had before. I’m quite pleased with its effectiveness thus far.

Annoying advertising: If you watch TV, there’s a good probability that you’ve seen the commercial for Head-On, a (reportedly ineffective) headache reliever that is rubbed right onto the forehead. Head-On is more notable for its incessantly repetitive advertising, which is about 15 seconds of the phrase “Head-On! Apply directly to the forehead!” YouTube user MrSchimpf ponders what would happen if the advertising agency responsible for marketing Head-On bought three minutes of advertising time. (h/t to sss2006 at TWC Classics for the find!)

More NSA drama: Bloomberg reports that according to a filing in the lawsuit against the major telecoms over the NSA spying program, seven months before September 11, 2001, the NSA wanted to set up domestic telephone surveillance even before the phrase “war on terror” was even coined. Besides the fact that the program clearly did not prevent the attacks, the timing also circumvents the “emergency wartime powers” argument (talking point?) that’s been slung around since the news first broke. Additionally, the Bloomberg article also notes that USA Today recently had to renege on some of its comments about Verizon and BellSouth being complicit in the NSA program – they now can no longer confirm (see “Note to Our Readers” in left sidebar) that the two companies entered a contract to provide the data, but stand by the big picture in their reporting: that there is, indeed, a massive NSA operation to track telephone calling patterns. It’ll be interesting to see the reaction to this partial retraction – it doesn’t seem to have caught much fire in the blogosphere (yet).

Thrilling left turns: Who would have thought Boris Said would have finished anywhere near the front at a restrictor plate track?!? Not I. Kudos to his team for a fantastic fourth-place finish last night at the Pepsi 400. I wonder what the “Coca-Cola Race Team” thought of that event.

Baseball: The Braves are getting some stronger starting pitching in the last few days with the resurgence of Horacio Ramirez and a new addition to the rotation, rookie Chuck James, who has been downright nasty in his two starts. Jorge Sosa’s also earned his second save. It’s not much, but it’s a start, though an 11 game deficit is going to be a very tough obstacle to overcome…San Diego’s dropped their last two games, but are clinging to a half game lead over the Rockies in the NL West…the All-Star rosters were announced today. Six Mets go to the game for the National League, and people, you’ve GOT to vote in Francisco Liriano of the Twins in the Monster Final Vote on MLB.com. This kid can pitch (he totally stole the show in the Rocket’s return to the majors) and has been a big factor in the Twins’ 10-game winning streak.

Cremins Watch: We’ve gotten past the first 24 hours since he’s agreed to the job, which is a positive sign. Certainly bests Marshall’s endurance record. :) He’ll be formally introduced tomorrow as CofC’s coach.

Planning a public appearance: I fully intend, barring unforeseen circumstances, to attend the Lowcountry Blogs latest gathering, Blog Party No. 2. It’ll be at the Sunfire Grill on Sam Rittenburg Blvd. I look forward to meeting a few of Charleston’s bloggers there.

I will probably have one more post in a bit concerning stuff I observed last night, so I’ll catch you all in a bit. But first, I do believe a Wendy’s run (or something comparable) is in order. Peace!

J