Monthly Archives: November 2004

What’s in your History Text?

So, I can’t believe that I’m the only one who’s noticed this. There must be tons of other history scholars who have seen the glaring error in the most recent Capital One commercials.

Here’s the scenario: A family spends $120 on snacks and souvenirs at a football game. As Mom expresses her concern about the credit card’s high interest rates a horde of “HUNS” comes bursting through the stadium. (We know that they are Huns because they are apparently playing in their home stadium and signs are everywhere.) Dad says not to worry because he will use his Capital One card, with its low interest rates.. Problem solved. Huns are defeated.

There is one problem with this ad. The Huns are actually VIKINGS! Say what? The ad leads us to believe that Huns are invading the stadium. The ***Huns|*** were an Asiatic tribe of mauraders and pillagers. They did not wear Metal Horn helmets. However, the makers of the commercial seem to think they did. My guess is that they were thinking of another group of mauraders and pillagers, ***Vikings|***.

*shakes head* What would Attila think?


Well, now that Becky’s home and the Camry has returned, I’ve taken an official photo of the 200,000 mile odometer, with the additional 32.5 miles she put on it today.



Apple or Open Source?

The three most important applications for my computer use at home are, in order of importance:

Web Browser
Email Client
Instant Messaging Client

I am constantly re-evaluating which is the best software solution in each category. I know there are a lot of choices in both categories, but to simplify my life, I’ve whittled it down to either a solution by Apple Computer on one hand, or a particular Open Source solution on the other hand.
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Turned Over 200,000

At 8:35 a.m. today, high atop the ***Tobin Bridge|***, my trusty 1994 Toyota Camry LE turned over 200,000 miles. Sadly, I was not in the car to witness this event. Becky had to drive my car in to Boston today since her Golf is having exhaust problems, but she was sweet enough to call me on the phone and give me a first-hand narrated account of the turnover. The turnover occurred just before she went into the tollbooth. Though I am sad to have missed the occasion, I am happy that my car has made it this far.

The car was originally purchased by my grandfather, Clark Keefer (my mom’s dad, Pop-Pop to us grandkids). He put the bulk of the miles on it, and took fantastic care of it. He retired the car in 2000, with about 147,000 miles on it. I received it as a gift in the spring of 2000, and I have since logged 53,000 of my own miles on it. That’s an average of 11,778 miles per year, or 226.5 miles per week. Appropriately, the Camry turned over 180,000 miles last August while we were driving to Pennsylvania for Pop-Pop’s 80th birthday celebration.

On an average day, I drive the Camry roughly 10 miles – the round trip from home to work and back. We frequently make trips into Boston, Cape Cod, and other parts of New England. Our longest trip, however, was a journey from Woburn, Mass to Dunedin, Florida for our friend ***Joanna|***’s wedding. That was over 3,000 miles round trip, and the Camry even made the trip with a crack in the radiator which I didn’t know about until I returned to Mass.

The Camry isn’t an exciting car to be sure – not fast, not sporty, not cool, not rugged. But it is what I need in a car: dependable, long-lasting, comfortable, spacious, and excellent gas mileage after all these years.

Here’s to the Camry.

Changing a headlight on the way to Dunedin, Florida|ppp

On the beach in Dunedin, Florida|ppp

Before a trip from Beverly to Mount Vernon|ppp

Getting ready for our Route 62 Adventure|ppp

Chilling out in snowy Jackson, NH|ppp

You can get a full view of the Camry ***here|***. Though I wasn’t able to take a photo when it turned over 200,000 miles, I hope to take one later tonight when Becky returns.

Cheap Books

If you need or want any technical books by ***O’Reilly|***, check out this ***43%-off sale|*** at BookPool… could save you a lot of money.

Crimson and Scarlet

Today in New England, “The Game” referred to the classic football matchup of the Harvard Crimson vs. the Yale Bulldogs. Harvard beat Yale to a pulp, ***35 to 3|***. This finishes Harvard’s season with a perfect 10-0 record. Congrats to the Crimson!

In the Midwest, on the other hand, “The Game” referred to another classic football matchup, The Ohio State Buckeyes versus the Michigan Wolverines. Ohio State beat Michigan by not such a wide margin, ***37 to 21|***. Congrats to the Buckeyes!

I guess that makes me two for two today with wins from a team in my original home state, and a team in my adopted home state. 🙂

He Died Happy

Fred Hale, Sr., the world’s oldest man and lifelong Red Sox fan, has ***died at the age of 113|***, just four weeks shy of his 114th birthday. I had previously ***written about Fred|*** during the World Series, and I’m glad that he got to see the Sox win one more time before he passed away.