John Furie Zacharias
having a bad day in a strange place
Thunderstorms Anywhere

Thunderstorms in the Imajica



 The different ways I don't like you 
 in a list that may never become organized
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JfZ making a mess of the web
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Monday, August 08, 2005
Pix - Blood and Treacle


 Blood and Treacle 
 by JfZ

"Blood and Treacle"

Another Florida nature photo from around the hood.

This image is half-sized and has been converted into a bandwidth-friendly, lower resolution .JPG file.  If you want to use it on your web site as a background or for any other purpose, feel free to do so.  Simply respect the creative commons license.  Information about the creative commons license is always available by clicking through its icon located at the bottom of the left side panel on every blog page here.  If you would like the original frameless 960x1280 pixel version of this image, contact me.







[Headphones] :: In Winter's Embrace - Age - Yves "evillair" Allaire



Sunday, August 07, 2005
Pix - Poison and Mistletoe


 Poison and Mistletoe 
 by JfZ

"Poison and Mistletoe"

Another Florida nature photo from around the hood.

This image is half-sized and has been converted into a bandwidth-friendly, lower resolution .JPG file.  If you want to use it on your web site as a background or for any other purpose, feel free to do so.  Simply respect the creative commons license.  Information about the creative commons license is always available by clicking through its icon located at the bottom of the left side panel on every blog page here.  If you would like the original frameless 960x1280 pixel version of this image, contact me.







[Headphones] :: Asylum Factory - Infectorium - Yves "evillair" Allaire



Saturday, August 06, 2005
While I was out


First, realize how much I have been sucking on the free blogdrive tit for many months, then compare that to the basic benefits of a subscription here at blogdrive.com.  While I didn't make a point to share my various happy little secrets to get some subscription features like file hosting (or whatever) from free services, one of the reasons I talked so little about them is the reliablility factor.  Free web service sites limit your file size or bandwidth, go offline, or go out of business. Blogdrive has been a self-sustaining business since day one.

In the end, the fact that BlogDrive is here to stay made me cough up hard cash for a subscription.  One of the handy-fracking-dandy things even basic subscribers get is a Ban Control feature.  Ban Control allows you get rid of pesky tag board and comment spammers.  On the left is my proposed modified Ban Control feature for those tenacious spammers that keep coming back using proxy IP addresses.  I don't limit access to my tagboard and comment feature to only blogdrive users, like many blogdrivers do, simply because many of my regular visitors are just websurfing.

I don't mind if people pimp their blog or website from time to time here.  Oftentimes, I actually appreciate the convenience of being able to click on their name to go to their site.  What I won't tolerate are people who don't have any remotely relevant contribution to the topic of the blog entry in the comment area and are just being idiotic.  I'll give you an example.

For those of you who do not have BlogDrive accounts, or are not even familiar with using many online services, let me clue you in.  There is always an account  management area.  It's the under the hood, backdoor, behind the scenes version of what you see in your web browser when you visit a web site.

Since I wasn't able to monitor Thunderstorms because Direcway has been so lame for the last six weeks or so, my normal blog maintenance here has fallen behind schedule and little things like cleaning up the spammer crap piled up a bit.  Here is a cropped screenshot of my blog manage page showing the last ten comments:

As much as I like to perseverate on the happiness of my own penis, I don't need this crap showing up in comments on entries that I blogged in 2003 and 2004.  It's just annoying.  So, after banning these idiots, I found the spammers getting a little more subtle by leaving a comment, but just linking properly in their user names, like this:

Hats off to these 50webs gambling site spammers (above) for being a little more intelligent about it all, but it's still spam if you plaster this same identical mindless crap all over the blog on ten to twenty entries.

Look, I've owned a number of small businesses.  I never ran into the BlogDrive parking lot and plastered twenty identical bumper stickers advertising my business phone number on the same fracking car.  Despite Peter Jackson's apparent attempt at writing a Spam Haiku, this crap will be banned and deleted here, too.  Sorry, the volume of the spam is still annoying and stupid, even if call yourself Troy Cambron and leave me a rootin'-tootin' (listen to the headphones MP3) Spam Haiku.








[Headphones] :: The Dope Fiend - Troy Cambron (1940)



Friday, August 05, 2005
Pix - In the Shire


 In the Shire 
 by JfZ

"In the Shire"

Another Florida nature photo from around the hood.

This image is half-sized and has been converted into a bandwidth-friendly, lower resolution .JPG file.  If you want to use it on your web site as a background or for any other purpose, feel free to do so.  Simply respect the creative commons license.  Information about the creative commons license is always available by clicking through its icon located at the bottom of the left side panel on every blog page here.  If you would like the original frameless 960x1280 pixel version of this image, contact me.







[Headphones] :: In Winter's Embrace - Prelude - Yves "evillair" Allaire



Thursday, August 04, 2005
August updations


 JfZ played little league football
If you look at the blankness of the July 2005 blog entry calendar, you might be tempted to celebrate or grieve the possibility that I have been pushing up daisies, sleeping with the fish, or otherwise taking a dirt nap.  As usual, I'm pleased to deflate your hopeful expectations, despite your feelings.  Although I have been digitially deprived for a time, I've decided to continue to irritate you on Thunderstorms in the Imajica no matter what it takes.  And, yes, that is a photo of me -- over there -- many years ago.  I was an irritating little effer back then, and I'm not too likely to change my ways now.

But since I have been AWOL here for such an extended period of time, I thought I might uncharacteristically share some personal updations with you.  First, my customer service fight with Direcway continues.  Despite my hopeful expectations that a personal service call might fix my problem, it did not happen.  The guy told me, "your problem is that the trees are blocking your clear view of the southern sky," as is the Direcway slogan.  Unfortunately, the one tree he identified as a problem is a 50-year-old pine tree that could not have grown more than an inch in its canopy in the last six months.  He also pointed at an oak tree as an offender blocking my satellite signal.

Hours later on that same day as the Dway service call, I enlisted the help of my neighbor, Robbie, and we cut the half of that tree down that might be anywhere remotely near my precious, precious, satellite uplink.  Also that same day, I got an estimate from a tree service contractor to completely remove the supposedly offending pine tree.  I don't have the $1100.00 they want for tree removal in my secret coffee can of kitchen cash for that, especially considering the Direcway satellite guy's troubleshooting methodology.

The Direcway service tech did get out of his truck.  He did knock on my door  However, he did not even touch the satellite dish, or look at my system, or even want to know what error messages were flickering across my monitor.  He did stare at my car hood-sized satellite dish for several minutes, and then told me that the trees were my problem.  Those trees were there when Direcway was more than happy to install the satellite ISP system.  They haven't grown or jumped around the yard in the last six months, have they?  No. So, I'm back to square one with Direcway and calling customer service in India.

But, I have some good news.  With the generous help of several neighbors, Kathy, Robbie, and Larry, I bartered and traded up through four levels of bicycles to finally get one that my lame ass can pedal.  That's huge.  Limping my sorry ass to Winn Dixie for a two hour trip to haul groceries back home in my backpack was getting seriously old, fast.  My maiden voyage on the bicycle, which I will refer to as the Post Apocalyptic Fat Boy from now on, was a success.  With the additional cargo capacity of a cute little front basket, in addition to my back pack, I was able to resupply my humble home with over forty pounds of groceries on that first trip.
 
I also finally ordered a land line from Sprint.  So, after almost a year, I'll have a telephone number again.  I plan to create a backup dial-up ISP account.  More importantly though, I should be able to call Direcway's Customer Service phone number everyday, at all hours of the day, continuously, until those frackin' people restore my internet service to some basic idea of reliability.  As it is now, I may get a window of connectivity between 2:00pm and 7:00pm, *if* it doesn't happen to rain that day.  Unfortunately, it rains everyday in Florida in the afternoon during this time of year.  So, I can literally measure my time online in minutes for an entire week, lately.  My new landline doesn't have long distance.  It is an unlisted number, but I was told that I can accept collect calls on it, should you become unexpectedly incarcerated and want to waste your only jailhouse call by dialing my number.

Well, that about wraps it up for me lately.  You may not see many entries with a large number of links in them this next month.  Creating links takes time online.  This particular entry was typed up in notepad, offline, and I added the HTML manually.







[Headphones] :: Free Will - Akira3099



 
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