Topic: Announcements

Migrating to Wordpress


New posts will be here until the migration is done.

Apologies to my e-mailers


I just discovered a ton of legitimate e-mail messages caught in the spam filters for my two domains, and, which I've now dialed back to a less draconian setting. I've also added a bunch of people to the e-mail whitelists. I'll do my best to get caught up soon, but if you've been wondering if I've been ignoring you, I haven't.


Sorry, everyone.

I'm trying to figure out how to get data from a mySQL database located on a web server into an MS Access 2007 database on a desktop computer.

I am the furthest thing from a web developer or a database guru. I understand HTML very well, I have some decent experience with MS Access, and I'm starting to understand a little tiny bit about SQL. PHP is Greek to me. My current idea is for the data to move like this:

[mySQL on server] → [XML on server] → [MS Access 2007 on desktop PC]

Am I going in the right direction? If so, how do I do step one?

Renovation in progress


I'll be spending the next few days renovating the structure of this site. Sorry for the inconvenience.

I haven't succeeded in figuring the darn thing out just by popping the hood and poking around. My most urgent task is to understand how to edit HTML on a site that runs entirely on Miva Merchant 4. And I do mean the whole site, not just the online store.


Happy New Year!


Enjoy 2009, folks. It's going to be a very interesting year.

My laptop's been crashing repeatedly over the last several days. Rather than fight it, I'll publish my Twitter timeline in a sticky post dated 11:59 PM tomorrow. I'll be very busy as an observer at the polls, so the updates may be infrequent if turnout is heavy, but I'll do my best.

A research team from the Psychology Department at New York University, headed by Professor Yaacov Trope and supported by the National Science Foundation, is investigating the cognitive causes of voting behavior, political preferences, and candidate evaluations throughout the course of the 2008 U.S. Presidential election. This stage of the study focuses on the information people use to inform evaluations during the last few weeks before the election. They seek respondents of all political leanings from all over the country (and from the rest of the world) to complete a 15-minute questionnaire, the responses to which will be completely anonymous.

If you're interested, participate here.

Tony Snow, 1955-2008


Just got back from Vegas


BlogWorld Expo over. Arrived home on red eye. Tired. Can't use sentences. Will post later.

Must. Have. Coffee.

Joining the Blogging World


Greetings online community. I am going to be blogging with my fellow co-horts here at Brainshavings as a more reasoned voice (I'm not a right-wing nut like the Pirate) for the online community. In fact, both the Pirate and the Spider Slayer like to refer to me as their "left-wing moonbat friend." I'll take that as a compliment. I'll bring a more centrist personal perspective, or as the Pirate likes to say "I'll stick my finger in the air and figure out which way the wind is blowing before I give my position." I've actually registered as both a Democrat and a Republican in the past based upon the issues, though recently I've been an Independent due to my disgust with both national parties. Let the debate begin!

Welcome aboard!


Please help me extend a hearty how-do-you-do to my new co-blogger, The Spider Slayer!

Spider eater

She's one twisted co-blogger. Make her feel welcome!

New to the boat

Lest the Puddle Pirate be allowed to run amok and call people members of a  "far right lunatic fringe"  I should have a forum to offer my perspective.  Albeit, my mind is far right, it is still more moonbat-ish than my just-right-of-atilla-the-hun friend the Puddle Pirate.  Who is the Puddle Pirate to accuse one of being a lunatic hailing from the far right....sounds more like the far left to me! This is just the beginning of my brain shavings!!!!! Let the party begin

Site design in progress


In order to finish the upgrade to Movable Type 4.0, I'm updating the design of this site today. The kinks ought to be ironed out soon.

Site upgrade in progress


I'm upgrading the back end of Brain Shavings to the newest version of Movable Type today. I apologize for the inevitable glitches that will turn up during the process.

2:15 PM Update: Looks OK so far. Testing the installation ...

3:38 PM Update: ... and everything looks good behind the scenes. Interesting. The user interface for Movable Type 4.0 is radically different (dare I say improved?), and the upgrade was surprisingly easy. Maybe I won't have to switch to WordPress after all. Time will tell.

Technical difficulties


My computer's dead, and access to any other is very limited where I am. When replacement parts arrive, I'll be back online ASAP.

I apologize for the inconvenience.

11/25 update: Everything seems to be working now. Time to get caught up! Man, it feels like it's been a month. The online news cycle sure does move quickly.

Off to the Hewitt/Prager broadcast


I'm going to head on over to the broadcast with Hugh Hewitt and Dennis Prager and Ken Blackwell, so I'll see y'all later!

"Where's Castro?" contest update


Two out of four judges have voted. As soon as the other two decide, I'll announce the three winners and distribute the prizes.

Stay tuned, and thanks for your patience!

Cutover to MT 3.3


I just installed Movable Type 3.3, and I'm going to try a hot cutover today. If things go really screwy, you'll know why.

Update: The home page seems to be working fine. Now for the individual archives ...

Update: OK, they look passable. That's enough for today. Let me know if you run into problems.

Out of town today


I'll be in Marietta all day today at my brother's graduation, so you won't see much happening here. See you folks soon!

Site hosting problems


I apologize for the spotty presence today. The host for my blog is apparently having technical problems, so my blog either appears as a blank white screen or as a fourteen-month-old outdated version of itself. I also can't seem to find any individual posts. Hopefully things will be restored soon.

UPDATE (4/29): I think everything's back to normal. I hope.

Site renovation in progress


As you can see, I got tired of the boxiness and the tan color scheme of my blog. I apologize in advance for any strange displays you may see on your screen while I tinker with the style sheets. Things will look much more refined soon.

Choir concert tonight


I'm going to go listen to Glori� Dei Cantores sing tonight at St. John Cathedral in downtown Cleveland. I hear they're really good, so this'll be a fun evening.

The new homestead


Just to give an idea of what's been occupying my time, here are some shots of the interior of my newly-built home (which is so bare it's funny).

















When you consider the emptiness of the place along with my near-helplessness in matters of interior design and decorating style, you can probably tell why I've become a regular HGTV viewer. In fact, I'm going to invite their various shows to come over and do my house's interior for me.

Home, sweet home


I've moved in. The boxes are everywhere, but at least I've got a net connection running, so I'll be posting again soon. Thanks for your patience.


UPDATE: Tired. Very tired. Must rest. Blog can wait.

My new advertiser and my new home


First of all, I'd like to welcome a new advertiser here, WMD: The Murderous Reign of Saddam Hussein. It's a new movie, and even if you don't see it up on the marquee at your local 20-screen megaplex, you can get a DVD for yourself at the very reasonable price of $19.95.

The creative minds behind this project include Brad L. Maaske, Jano Rosebiani, Victor Davis Hanson (a brilliant military historian and thinker), Evan Coyne Maloney (sane Americans' answer to Michael Moore), and Judith Mendelsohn Rood. My copy of the DVD is on its way here, and when I get a chance to watch it I'll let you know if it's as good as it looks to be. In the meantime you can browse some good reviews here or check out the trailer here.

An excerpt describing the project:

Alarmed by the lack of outcry against the atrocities committed by Hussein's regime, Maaske set out to uncover the truth surrounding the under-reported acts of atrocity committed directly by or under the command of Saddam Hussein, along with Iraq's links to global terrorism and America's military action to remove Hussein from power. Central to the story are eyewitness accounts and never-before-seen footage of chemical attacks, murders and torture leveled against the population of Iraq dating from Saddam's corrupt rise to power and spanning more than two decades.


Although many filmmakers have chosen to ignore the horrific atrocities that the Iraqi people had to endure under Hussein and the sacrifice that American soldiers have made to free them from these atrocities, WMD directs the viewer to the little-known facts. Regardless of anyone's political views, the story of Saddam Hussein's evil reign, and the horrors that were thankfully ended by bringing this reign to an end, is one that all Americans should know.

Give WMD: The Murderous Reign of Saddam Hussein a look. I know I will.

Now, my second announcement. I'm moving on Saturday, so for the next several days my access to the 'net will be spotty at best. I'll be back in the saddle by Monday with a nice high-speed connection (or so Comcast assures me).

See you then if not sooner!

Coming soon: a contest


I'm putting together a little political prediction contest, and it'll actually have prizes. Watch for details over the next few days.

Merry Christmas!


I hope you all have a very Merry Christmas. I'll see you afterward.


UPDATE: Or would that be "Happy Ramahanukwanzmas"? Ah, just sing this.

It's good to be back


Had a bit of blogging backlog for a few days, what with Christmas shopping and all. Plus, my new house is under construction, so the meetings with the builder and the interior designer took some time. Last week my property was a mud pit with some cinderblocks on it. This week, they really picked up speed:

My house

So now that things are somewhat calm, I'm back in the virtual saddle.

The Buckeye Bloggers


In the spirit of shameless self-promotion, Brain Shavings has joined a new blog alliance with Wizblog and The Open End. We're now calling ourselves The Buckeye Bloggers.

The Buckeye Bloggers

The gaggle of opportunists known as The Northern Alliance has piggybacked on the success of Hugh Hewitt, a native Ohioan with a nationally syndicated radio talk show, a syndicated column in The Weekly Standard, several best-selling books, and a top-notch conservative blog. Thanks to Hugh's efforts (and their own stellar writing and research too ... but I'll gloss over that inconvenient fact), these erstwhile unknowns have gotten enough exposure that they've managed to torpedo Dan Rather and become a thorn in the sides of The Minneapolis Star Tribune and The Associated Press. Not bad for a bunch of pajama-clad scribblers from the midwestern tundra.

If they can do it, why can't we?

I have high hopes, because not only have we successfully begged the mighty Hugh Hewitt to shill for us ... we have an ace in the hole: Eric Hogue, host of his own morning talk show on KTKZ in Sacramento, a blogger, and a former Ohioan himself. Lately, he's been guest hosting for Hugh, Bill Bennett, and Laura Ingraham. Can Hannity or Limbaugh be far behind? Assuming he can keep on functioning without sleep like he's been doing lately, we ought to get more promotion for our buck out of him than anybody else. Ah, who am I kidding? We're not paying him anything. But flattery will get us everywhere, we hope. Seriously, he's an up-and-coming radio talker, and we're happy he's thrown in with us.

This ought to be fun. Watch out, Lileks and Power Line and Captain's Quarters. That speck in your rearview mirror just got a horsepower boost.

I'm back (I think)


My cheapo 802.11b wireless router by The Borg kicked the bucket on Friday, so I've been blogless this weekend. The cruddy router's been canned in favor of a nice 802.11g wireless by Linksys, and things seem to be working now.

Temporary lull


There's going to be some amateur webgeekery around here for a bit, as I flail about and try to understand RSS parsing and PHP. Unless the push into Fallujah kicks off, I'll be pretty quiet for awhile. Don't trash the place, 'kay?

Off to battle


This post from Saturday will stay at the top of the blog through Election Day.

I'll be heavily involved in the Bush/Cheney 72-hour effort, so I won't be blogging much. I made phone calls to undecided voters and possible Bush supporters for a couple of hours on Friday. I'll do it again on Monday, and I'll attend training on Sunday so I can serve as a poll watcher on Tuesday. If you're concerned about how close this election's shaping up to be, turn off your computer and go do something about it.

Go to and sign up to volunteer in your state (look for the pull-down menu box on the left-hand side labeled "Grassroots" and select your state). The campaign can use all the help you can offer, even if it's just an hour on the phones at your local Bush/Cheney headquarters.

While I'm gone, browse the blogrolls on the right side of the home page, and make time to read these:

Remember, due to the strain on the election system, all Republicans are asked to vote on November 2nd and all Democrats can go to the polls on November 3rd. Thank you for your cooperation.

I'm back


The trip's over, but I'm dead exhausted. See y'all tomorrow.

Short absence


I'll be out of town until October 3rd, so whether I manage to post anything will depend on the quality of wireless access on the road. Try these sites to fill the gap:

Hugh Hewitt is the dean of the center right bloggers (listen to his nationally-syndicated radio show here).

National Review runs The Corner as a group blog. Its writers and editors comment on politics and pop culture, with the occasional aside on the latest squirrel attack.

Redstate features posts by Republican bloggers both well-known and obscure. You'll find some real gems every week.

Lileks is wickedly funny when he's not chauffeuring his young daughter to the next playdate.

Drop in on The Belmont Club for thoughtful analysis of trends in world events.

To watch three guys in the northern midwest successfully take on the Associated Press, CBS News, Dan Rather, and the Minneapolis Star Tribune, read Power Line.

Temporary absence


I'll be out of town for the rest of July, so blogging will be light to nonexistent. See you next month!

Moving in ... pardon the dust


I just got settled in at this new address. Blogging will be light while I troubleshoot. Pre-emptive apologies to all.

Happy Memorial Day!


Honor the dead as you enjoy your weekend. There'll likely be no blogging during mine, so I'll see ya Tuesday.

Pardon my dust


I'm testing out a stylesheet today, so don't be surprised if the site changes its appearance several times before the day's over.

No posting for awhile


Fighting a nasty flu bug here. See you in a day or so.

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