Friday, March 31, 2006

First We Kill all the Lawyers

I am so sick of trial lawyers.
On Wednesday Apple released an iPod software update that lets users limit the maximum volume on their iPod nanos and fifth-generation iPods. The move acknowledges a product flaw, according to lawyers who filed a class-action lawsuit against Apple in January.
The Sony Walkman hit the scene twenty-six years ago.
(B)y Spring of 1981, at least two dozen companies were selling similar devices, many of which were marketed with catchy names of their own. Toshiba had their Stereo Walky, Infinity had their Intimate, Panasonic sold their Stereo-To-Go, GE marketed their Escape, and even discount audio producer Craig followed suit with the Soundalong.
Where were the lawyers in 1981? The Walkman was just as loud as the iPod. In fact, having owned both products, I would venture to say that my old Walkman was even louder than my iPod. To be sure, we were not without our wannabe-nanny-worry-warts.
As with any fad, many groups raised concerns with the Walkman. Were we at risk while performing daily activities like driving or walking around town oblivious to the world around us? Would we go deaf or catch brain damage? Would we turn into anti-social creatures, encapsulated in our little personal stereo world?
Suddenly, in 2006, the lawyers have gotten a whif of cash, and here they come with a class-action lawsuit, designed to siphon millions from Apple, line the lawyers pockets with gold, and distribute pennies to the alleged "injured parties." Whether anyone has actually been injured is, of course, "irrelevent:"
A lawyer for the plaintiff said he didn't know if his client had suffered hearing loss, but said that's irrelevant. "He's bought a product which is not safe to use as currently sold on the market," the lawyer said.

Thursday, March 30, 2006

The Guest Worker (Illegal Alien) SAT's

In addition, to the $1000 fine. I think guest workers should be forced to pass a short handwritten quiz where they have to identify the current president, vice president, and number of states in the USA.

Let's call it the USAT for United States Acceptance Exam. If they can't pass it deport 'em.

Now some might scream that some Americans couldn't pass that test, well deport them too!

Wednesday, March 29, 2006

While there isn't much to recommend the Republican's these days, at least they aren't engaged in this kind of behavior.
Mr. Corzine won the Trenton statehouse last year by running as a tax cutter who'd raise property tax rebates by 40% over four years. "I'm not considering raising taxes. It's not on my agenda. We have a very high-rate tax structure. I'm not considering it," the then-U.S. Senator had vowed in October.

Well, last week Governor Corzine removed the Steve Forbes mask and submitted a record $30.9 billion budget that increases state spending by 9% and includes $1.5 billion in new levies. He wants to raise the already high state sales tax by 16% and extend it to services; hike taxes on cigarettes, alcohol and expensive cars; and create a new state water tax. And just so Garden State entrepreneurs don't feel left out, his budget would impose a corporate tax surcharge and a commercial property transfer tax. "There are no immediate plans," joked one local paper, "to tax the air we breathe--not this year, at least."
The article goes on to catalog Jim Florio's and James McGreevey's tax increases in New Jersey, and "moderate" Democrat Mark Warner's in Virginia. Now, newly elected, similarly moderate Tim Kaine is seeking to follow-up Warner's legacy with some tax increases of his own. Say this for the Democrats. On, tax increases, they're consistent. They oppose them while campaigning, but as soon as they assume power they reach for your wallet.

Hallmark's Rejected Card Ideas

The LA Times has picked up an AP piece documenting some Hallmark cards that never saw the light of day. I think these are better than some of the cards they did print.

Front: Spread some holiday cheer.
Inside: Or drink alone. Who am I to judge?


Front: My ex-girlfriend had a cat named Love because she said that's what it gave her.
Inside: So I called it Bloody Forearms. Hope no one gets you a cat for your birthday.

Front: I wanted to give you a body piercing for your birthday.
Inside: But I didn't think I could get you drunk enough to where you wouldn't feel the stapler!


Front: Did I hear wedding bells?
Inside: Or was that the natural disaster siren? Sometimes I get them confused. Whatever it was, it was loud. Congratulations ... or take cover!

Front: Marriage is a bond that is unbreakable except by two-thirds of the population.
Inside: But it's you top-third couples that give the rest of us hope.


Front: When I think of you, Mom, I swell with pride.
Inside: At least I hope it's pride. Otherwise, I'm pregnant again.

Hat tip: Boortz

Tuesday, March 28, 2006

A Merging of Eras

A few months ago, while crying, drinking, and internet surfing, I dumped a rum and coke into my Bluetooth keyboard. I carefully removed each key, dried out what I could, but alas was unable to re-establish connection with my Mac Mini.

Tonight I finally gave up on the old keyboard and pulled the batteries out. In opening the battery compartment, I reached for the nearest coin on my desk and picked up - wait for it - a beautiful green 1898 copper Indian-head cent.

There is something oddly satisfying about pulling the batteries from a 2005 Bluetooth keyboard with an 1898 penny.
This truly is one BIG AD.

Sunday, March 26, 2006

Good Stuff

I am loving Overheard in New York.This post, overheard on the subway, is a classic:
Little boy: Hey mister, wanna hear a funny joke?
Old man: No.
Little boy: Okay, here it goes...A man walks into a bar..."Ouch!" Ha, ha, ha! Get it?
Old man: That's the weakest shit I've ever heard.

--A train

More Bond Stuff

In a rare mea culpa, I must admit that I was being unfairly harsh to the new James Bond producers for their casting of Eva Green.

It seems they have also cast the stunning Caterina Murino. This is apparently old news, but it at least gives me something to look forward to in "Casino Royale."

Saturday, March 25, 2006

Big Man on Campus: and we mean one man only

Anne Althouse has a really good debate going on in two posts about the NY Times editorial piece (registration required)on the affirmative action going on to help males get into college.

In a post in her comments I wrote:

I wonder how much of this all is the trend towards liberal arts colleges. It seems that a liberal arts education has become the 21st century equivalent of the high school degree. Many males used to drop out of high school because they didn't see it as necessary to be a factory worker or mechanic or house painter or whatever profession they aimed at. Is that why there are less men trying hard to get into college (by doing well in high school), because they just don't see it as necessary step to do what they want to do?
To expand on this rant:

I wonder how useful is the current liberal arts education nowadays?

You can make more money if you choose to become a plumber or electrician than with a Bachelor of Arts. The entry level liberal arts college educated job market has fallen apart as service industries become an increasingly larger portion of America's GNP or GDP.

And, yes, thanks to being forced to take macroeconomics at Cornell to round me out as an enginerd I do know the difference between GNP and GDP, although I've never been able to make a dime off this knowledge.

Nor have I found writing about music, philosophy, microeconomics, history of science and technology, or any other of my electives to be very financially rewarding.

Am I more well rounded and can I blather on endlessly diverse subjects while sipping wine and feasting on smelly cheese?

Yes, but would I have benefited from a little more time during my undergraduate years with a soldering iron, oscilloscope, and power supplies. Definitely!

Thursday, March 23, 2006

Inventions the really low point

I guess it has become so easy to get a patent, they're now making a reality show featuring inventors.

The creator of the show is the one and only Simon Cowell, creator and start of "American Karaoke" er I mean "American Idol."

People will watch anything.

Wednesday, March 22, 2006

A Little Perspective

Via Right Wing News comes some very interesting numbers on the relative casuality count in Iraq:
(I)n 2004 there were 1,887 US active duty military deaths. Keep in mind, that's the total in Iraq, Afghanistan, at home, abroad - everything. Guess how many there were in 1981, a year where we didn't lose a single soldier to "hostile action?" There were 2,380 deaths that year. How about 1983, the year we liberated Grenada? There were 2,486 soldiers killed.
Yes, folks, it's true. The military is a dangerous place, whether patrolling through Ramadi or parachuting over Fayetteville. And don't even start me on riding a sport bike down the I-264 HOV lane in a 65 MPH wheelie.

Patent Case SCOTUS

There is a patent case before the US Supreme Court regarding some B-vitamin deficiency test. Opponents have claimed the patent is written so broadly it basically refers to a natural body function.

For many years, the ability to own your ideas through a patent has provided incentive for everyone from garage inventors to big companies to innovate.

But the US patent system has become dysfunctional as technology and lawyers have left the USPTO in the figurative dust, dazed and confused, searching for a way out of the mess.

Perhaps no case better illustrates it than Smucker's trying to sue people for selling crustless peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, as discussed in this IEEE Spectrum article, an article which actually offers a possible solution to the mess.

The basic question is how do you protect Intellectual Property when it has become so hard to determine what is and what isn't patentable?

Right now the question is in the hands of 8 men and one woman, none of whom I believe (correct me if I am wrong) are patent holders, inventors, or even former patent attorneys, yet their ruling will decide the future of many US companies and independent.

Let us hope that their ruling or lack of one helps preserve the innovative spirit that has made America great, but also frees creative people from the parasitic nature of patent law today.

Monday, March 20, 2006

More cigarette madness

In Calabasas, California, the town council has recently banned smoking even outside.

According to this article it was the idea of a 19 year-old girl.

Perhaps, I can ban 19 year-old girls from talking outside in my town because I find them annoying and damaging to my nerves.
I don't smoke. But neither do I care if someone else enjoys their cigar, cigarette, or pipe. It's their life, let them find pleasure where they want. So when a group of smokers gather in a tobacco shop and light up, over a cocktail or and some beer nuts, why would I care? "Have at it," I say:
Many patrons on a recent evening were enjoying the lush atmosphere and freedom, they said, from dirty looks from nonsmokers. […]

Sitting in the lounge, Clay Beardshear and Clay Achee said they had traveled along the West Coast for several months recently and had a hard time finding a place to have a cigarette with their beer or coffee, because most of the cities they visited had smoking bans. […]

A group of young women who meet at the lounge every Tuesday evening said they are tired of getting heat from nonsmokers and are happy to have a place to relax among their own.
The problem is, the tobacco lounge is also serving the smokers snacks and drinks. And that galls the anti-smoking crowd.
"It's just another example of tobacco companies skirting the law," said Kevin Tynan, marketing director for the American Lung Association of Metropolitan Chicago.

Last month, city Alderman Edward M. Burke introduced an ordinance to close the loophole in the smoking ban, stating that venues that serve food and drink cannot be classified as tobacco retail stores. […]

"We certainly expect them to try to put these in other cities with bans," said Annie Tegen, program manager for the group Americans for Nonsmokers' Rights. "This is just another slimy trick by Big Tobacco to circumvent the system.
Oh, they claim to be interested only in protecting the rights of non-smokers, but that's not really what they are about. After all, what non-smoker's "right" has been harmed? No, the the real interest of the tobacco Nazis is in using the law to impose their idea of proper behavior upon a segment of the population whose habits they abhor.

Friday, March 17, 2006

New Blog

I have added Overheard in New York: The Voice of the City to the blogroll. It's terrific, featuring (surprise surprise) humorous conversations overheard in New York. Sample post:
Guy #1: So, I had this dream about Janet Jackson last night.
Guy #2: Yeah?
Guy #1: She told me, "Mitch, get your shit together".

--9th Street & 1st Avenue

Thursday, March 16, 2006

There is considerable high-profile blogosphere angst about the crashing and subsequent hijacking of Betsy Newmark's Betsy's Page blog. Michelle Malkin posts that Betsy is mighty ticked off at Blogger. Michelle's post has so far attracted nine trackbacks, calling Blogger "lame" and "evil," among other things.

Now I consider Betsy's Page a nearly daily "must read," but I am not so sure Blogger needs to be vilified for her problems. As a Blogger "customer" myself, I pay $0.00 dollars to host this silly blog. In the time I have run this thing, Blogger has added free image posting at no additional charge to my FREE account. If it crashes, what have I lost? My time, effort, and thoughts, surely, but I have contributed nothing to insure these things.

I simply don't believe that customers that don't pay own real estate from which to complain about bad service.
Deep Thoughts by Jack Handey
  • We tend to scoff at the beliefs of the ancients. But we can't scoff at them personally, to their faces, and this is what annoys me.

  • If trees could scream, would we be so cavalier about cutting them down? We might, if they screamed all the time, for no good reason.

  • If you ever fall off the Sears Tower, just go real limp, because maybe you'll look like a dummy and people will try to catch you because, hey, free dummy.
  • Wednesday, March 15, 2006

    Say What?

    David Brooks provides a reminder of the kind of stirring rhetoric and clarity of thought we could have expected had we elected President John Kerry.

    Kerry on the first Gulf War:
    There is not a right or wrong here. There was a correctness in the president's judgment about timing. But that does not mean there was an incorrectness in the judgment other people made about timing. [...] Again and again and again in the debate, it was made clear that the vote of the U.S. Senate and the House on the authorization of immediate use of force on Jan. 12 was not a vote as to whether or not force should be used.
    Kerry on Somalia:
    The choice for the United States of America is not between two alternatives only: staying in or getting out. There are many other choices in-between which better reflect the aspirations and hopes of our country. [...] I think that the president today made the right decision to try to establish a process which will maintain the capacity of our forces, protect them, and to disengage while simultaneously upholding the mission we have set out to accomplish.
    Kerry on Bosnia:
    It is important to remember that this resolution does not authorize the use of American ground troops in Bosnia, nor does it specifically authorize the use of air or naval power. It simply associates the U.S. Senate with the current policies of this administration and of the Security Council.
    Kerry on Iraq during the Clinton era:
    We know from our largely unsuccessful attempts to enlist the cooperation of other nations, especially industrialized trading nations, in efforts to impose and enforce somewhat more ambitious standards on nations such as Iran, China, Burma and Syria, that the willingness of most other nations — including a number who are joined in the sanctions to isolate Iraq — is neither wide nor deep to join in imposing sanctions on a sovereign nation to spur it to "clean up its act" and comport its actions with accepted international norms.
    Huh?? George Bush may be less articulate than the self-important Kerry, but at least you know where he stands.

    Sunday, March 12, 2006

    I Hate it When That Happens

    It was 85 sunny and glorious degrees in Norfolk today, so I slathered on some SPF 15 and threw a leg over the Harley for a little ride.

    I am cruising at about 45 mph along Shore Drive, headed towards the Virginia Beach Oceanfront. Ahead of me is a soccer mom in her mini-van, requisite magnetic soccer ball on the tailgate. Apparently she peered in her rear view mirror and decided she couldn't see the bugs on my teeth clearly enough, so she turned on her rear window washer.

    The wiper tossed the fluid into the wind, and I got a nice bath. At least my headlight and sunglasses were clean!

    Governor George Allen: a Republican or is he?

    I am watching Meet the Press this morning, and the presidential hopeful who just got stomped 14% to 10% by the Stormin' Mormon Mitt Romney in the Tennessee silly straw poll.

    There is something eerily familiar about him, and then it strikes me he speak moves his hand and if his hair was grey would look just like Bill Clinton. I never cared much for the Bill, Hillary, and Monica "Three's Company" White House, but now I know!

    Yes, Bill Clinton has an evil Republican twin and it's Gov. George Allen (R-VA).

    Saturday, March 11, 2006

    Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance

    Getting blog etiquette out of the way, here is the requisite link. That done, my riding skills are steadily improving. Today I took the Harley out and managed to top out at 65 mph. In a strong headwind.

    Turning aroung 3K rpm, barely cracked the throttle in fifth gear. This is an impressive machine. I'm not comfortable yet cruising the interstates, but I am now sure the weak link is me and not the bike.

    The Peoples Republic of Massachussetts

    Attention citizens of Massachussetts:

    We, your duly elected government, being superior to each and every one of you, will now require you to register with your government in order to possess knives that we, your superiors, have determined to be dangerous to you inferior and second rate citizens.
    Any individual who requires a machete for the purposes of cutting vegetation shall register the machete with the local police department on an annual basis and, upon payment of an appropriate annual registration fee as determined by the local granting authority, shall be issued a permit authorizing him to possess the machete solely for the purposes of cutting vegetation.
    First, we couldn't trust you with the guns. Now it's the machetes. Please, please, don't make us take away your carving knives. Or steak knives. Or razors. Good God, people we will register and fee you to death if you don't wise up and behave in ways we deem appropriate. That is all.


    Your The Imperial Government.

    Wednesday, March 08, 2006

    The Widow's Diet

    Over the last three months, I have lost nearly twenty pounds. Sure I have been running, but the big difference has been my diet. The widow's diet. Can I sell this in a book?

    Breakfast: Wake up staring at the ceiling. Realize it's time to go to work, but that's better than looking at spouse's shoes in the closet and realizing you need to throw them away. Since you're not really hungry, drink bottled water on the ride to work.
    Lunch: A pack of Nabs and a Coke (spring for the real Coke because you need the sugar rush).
    Dinner: Cook a hamburger on the grill. There are no buns in the house, or bread of any kind for that matter, so eat it plain, with a couple potato chips and a pickle.
    Dessert: Listerine before bed.

    Breakfast: Starbucks Venti.
    Lunch: Turkey and lettuce on a bagel with a bottle of water.
    Dinner: Havarti on crackers.
    Dessert: Rum and diet Coke.
    Nightcap: Listerine before bed.

    Breakfast: Orange juice. Rinse out last night's rum and coke so you don't dirty another glass.
    Lunch: Work on cataloging your spouse's estate for probate. Hold head in hands in disbelief. Moan quietly under your breath and hope your co-workers don't hear.
    Dinner: Tortilla chips and salsa.
    Dessert: More rum, thank you very much.

    Breakfast: None. Oversleep instead.
    Lunch: Grilled cheese sandwich and a bottle of water.
    Dinner: Tortilla chips and salsa. Again.
    Dessert: Surf the internet. Avoid dangerous and potentially expensive websites like, the Apple Store, and eBay.

    Breakfast: Don't be silly. It's Friday; get the hell out of the house.
    Lunch: One eggroll.
    Dinner: Sam Adams Boston Lager with TGIFriday's frozen potato skins.
    Dessert: Sleep.

    Breakfast: 8 mile run. Feel normal for the only time all week.
    Lunch: 20 oz Gatorade and a pack of Nabs.
    Dinner: Plain pork chop cooked on the George Foreman Grill, if you remember to defrost it on Friday. If not, hit KFC.

    Breakfast, Option 1: Watch "FoxNews Sunday."
    Breakfast, Option 2: Watch "Meet the Press." This will generate additional weight loss, as you will throw up last night's pork chop when Russert opines on the merits of "Big Russ."
    Lunch: A bowl of cereal with skim milk.
    Dinner: Go to a restaurant and finally get a real meal, for crying out loud. Do not accept the table by the waitress station or the one near the men's room where they try to isolate single diners.
    Dessert: Sit around the house actually crying out loud.

    Start over.

    Coping by Spending

    While my wife Suzy was alive, I never had a "mid-life crisis." I was also cheap. Very cheap.

    Since she died, however, I have been spending money like a teenager on an expense account. I suppose I am trying to fill in the gaping void she has left, but still! I should be more grown up than this. In a little over two months, I have bought:

  • A 60 gig iPod
  • Songs and videos for the iPod
  • 1000 thread count sateen bed sheets
  • An HDTV off-air tuner
  • A Harley Fucking Davidson motorcycle
  • A USMC regulation "high and tight" haircut (okay, that one was only seven bucks)

    Oh yeah, and my Mom died last week. Prior blog language restrictions are obviously rescinded.
  • Tuesday, March 07, 2006

    More Tomcat stuff

    The F-14 Tomcat was always Suzy's favorite ("I love it when they turn into triangles!"). With her in mind, I reproduce this essay by Sports Illustrated author Rick Reilly:
    Now this message is for America's most famous athletes: Someday you may be invited to fly in the back-seat of one of your country's most powerful fighter jets. Many of you already have ... John Elway, John Stockton, Tiger Woods to name a few. If you get this opportunity, let me urge you, with the greatest sincerity...

    Move to Guam.
    Change your name.
    Fake your own death!
    Whatever you do ..
    Do Not Go!!!

    I know. The U.S. Navy invited me to try it. I was thrilled. I was pumped. I was toast! I should've known when they told me my pilot would be Chip (Biff) King of Fighter Squadron 213 at Naval Air Station Oceana in Virginia Beach.
    Whatever you're thinking a Top Gun named Chip (Biff) King looks like, triple it. He's about six-foot, tan, ice-blue eyes, wavy surfer hair, finger-crippling handshake -- the kind of man who wrestles dyspeptic alligators in his leisure time. If you see this man, run the other way. Fast.
    Biff King was born to fly. His father, Jack King, was for years the voice of NASA missions. ("T-minus 15 seconds and counting ..." Remember?) Chip would charge neighborhood kids a quarter each to hear his dad. Jack would wake up from naps surrounded by nine-year-olds waiting for him to say, "We have a liftoff."
    Biff was to fly me in an F-14D Tomcat, a ridiculously powerful $60 million weapon with nearly as much thrust as weight, not unlike Colin Montgomerie. I was worried about getting airsick, so the night before the flight I asked Biff if there was something I should eat the next morning.
    "Bananas," he said.
    "For the potassium?" I asked.
    "No," Biff said, "because they taste about the same coming up as they do going down."
    The next morning, out on the tarmac, I had on my flight suit with my name sewn over the left breast. (No call sign -- like Crash or Sticky or Leadfoot .. but, still, very cool.) I carried my helmet in the crook of my arm, as Biff had instructed. If ever in my life I had a chance to nail Nicole Kidman, this was it.
    A fighter pilot named Psycho gave me a safety briefing and then fastened me into my ejection seat, which, when employed, would "egress" me out of the plane at such a velocity that I would be immediately knocked unconscious. Just as I was thinking about aborting the flight, the canopy closed over me, and Biff gave the ground crew a thumbs-up. In minutes we were firing nose up at 600 mph. We leveled out and then canopy-rolled over another F-14.
    Those 20 minutes were the rush of my life. Unfortunately, the ride lasted 80. It was like being on the roller coaster at Six Flags Over Hell. Only without rails. We did barrel rolls, snap rolls, loops, yanks and banks. We dived, rose and dived again, sometimes with a vertical velocity of 10,000 feet per minute. We chased another F-14, and it chased us. We broke the speed of sound. Sea was sky and sky was sea. Flying at 200 feet we did 90-degree turns at 550 mph,creating a G force of 6.5, which is to say I felt as if 6.5 times my body weight was smashing against me, thereby approximating life as Mrs. Colin Montgomerie.
    And I egressed the bananas. I egressed the pizza from the night before. And the lunch before that. I egressed a box of Milk Duds from the sixth grade. I made Linda Blair look polite. Because of the G's, I was egressing stuff that did not even want to be egressed. I went through not one airsick bag, but two.
    Biff said I passed out. Twice. I was coated in sweat. At one point, as we were coming in upside down in a banked curve on a mock bombing target and the G's were flattening me like a tortilla and I was in and out of consciousness, I realized I was the first person in history to throw down.
    I used to know cool. Cool was Elway throwing a touchdown pass, or Norman making a five-iron bite. But now I really know cool. Cool is guys like Biff, men with cast-iron stomachs and Freon nerves. I wouldn't go up there again for Derek Jeter's black book, but I'm glad Biff does every day, and for less a year than a rookie reliever makes in a home stand.
    A week later, when the spins finally stopped, Biff called. He said he and the fighters had the perfect call sign for me. Said he'd send it on a patch for my flight suit.
    What is it? I asked.
    "Two Bags."

    The End of an Era

    This is something it might be worth taking a few hours off from work to watch:
    The Navy's last two squadrons of F-14 Tomcats are heading home, ending the final combat deployment of the Cold War-era fighter jet that flew into the danger zone with Tom Cruise in "Top Gun."

    Fighter Squadrons VF-213 and VF-31 - 22 Tomcats in all - are scheduled to fly to Oceana Naval Air Station on Friday, one day before the aircraft carrier USS Theodore Roosevelt is to return to Norfolk Naval Station, the Navy said Monday.

    Monday, March 06, 2006

    My God is better than your God

    Having lost my wife and mother in the space of two months, it is amazing how people react to me these days. Most don't know what to say, so they just offer sympathy. Which is fine.

    Others say they "understand what I am going through," which is just plain silly. A third group, however, decides I need more God. Specifically, more of their God. In recent weeks, I have been asked, implored or told I need to partake in numerous religion-centered activities with various people, from prayer groups to large scale revival meetings.

    Now I don't think any of these folks have anything but good intentions and kind thoughts, but none of them has asked me if I already have a church or faith of my own. The implication, then, of such invitations, is that any spirituality I may already have is either insufficient or incapable of dealing with my situation; their spirituality, by contrast, will be of real use to me.

    Sunday, March 05, 2006

    Site Hits Will be Dropping

    The Pool has lost one of its readers.

    My mom went into the hospital last Sunday. I had planned to drive down (six hours to WIlmington, NC) and see her Friday afternoon. My brother called Friday morning to report that she died overnight.

    I made the trip anyway to spend some time with my brother and his family. Two months after losing my wife, I have lost my mother. I am relieved she didn't linger for months in a nursing home, but it kills me that I didn't get there in time to see her and tell her again that I loved her.