The Great American Scam

This weekend we’re staying at my wife’s aunt and uncle’s in Omaha, NE. They live in a pretty nice neighborhood and right across the street from the Zebra pen of the Henry Doorly Zoo. But for some reason, last night someone thought it would be funny to smash the driver’s door window of my wife’s car in. It would seem simple enough to fix this, but we have insurance so it became a huge mess. First we called the police and were told that they would get back to us in 36 hours (I’m figuring they won’t do a thing, but we have to call them for our insurance company). Nice turn around, guys; it’s a rainy day, so we took pictures and covered the window. They’ll have to deal with that because I’m not waiting for them to show up and have the upholstery ruined. We got a call a couple of hours later telling us the police department was handing it over to “the investigators”. Sounds like bureaucratic nonsense to me.
Then I called the insurance company and found out that since the damage is only around $200 dollars, they won’t cover the damages (our deductible is $250). That’s great. We pay $75 a month for what? Oh, right, because the state of Iowa requires it. If we would have taken that $75 and stored it in a savings account over the last 8 months we’ve had the insurance on her car, we would have had enough money to pay for the damages. Instead, we have to pay $75 this month PLUS the additional $200 to the insurance company’s preferred auto glass company (which means they probably get a kickback from that as well). Sounds to me like I’m in the wrong business… I need to get into the legal scam business.
To top it all off, none of the “preferred auto glass” companies are open today (Sunday) or tomorrow (Memorial Day) so we have to wait until we get home to fix this which means a 4 hour drive with a plastic window.

Commercials

Is it really necessary to tell people that birth control pills/patches/injections don’t prevent HIV/AIDS/STD’s? Let’s see… it’s a pill/patch/injection that doesn’t cover anything up (like a condom does)… does it really take any more than common sense to see that this won’t prevent STD’s? To me, this is much like the warning on chainsaws that say “Don’t stop the blade with your hand”… common sense.

Still hope

So, it looks like Cowon/JetAudio/iAudio is coming out with a sweet looking Ogg/Flac/Mp3/etc. player with a color LCD display called the iAudio X5. It’s nice to see that someone can make a nice looking player that supports open formats (unlike some other companies). You can also order it from a German website :).

Flash sucks

I knew there was a reason I don’t like Flash. I can’t create a South Park version of me in Linux on PowerPC without using MacOnLinux to emulate OSX. Macromedia still refuses to take one PowerPC machine that they develop their OSX plugin on and install Linux so they can compile the Flash player/plugin for Linux for all of us PowerPC Linux users. This just goes to show that we really need a truly free (as in freedom) Flash player/plugin.