Monday, June 16, 2008

Devin's Lunchtime Witticisms

The context:  the comparison of sweet potato fried to Mutt Lynch's garlic parmeson fries.

Witticism:  That's like comparing apples to oranges.  No, wait, it's like comparing apples to apples when one of the apples is a pear.

Brought to you by It's Devo Bitches (aka Devin)

Saturday, June 14, 2008

120 Days and OUCH!

So I have officially reached 120 days of being 100% smoke free. Go me! It has been quite a ride lately, with all of the moving and new job stress, but overall it's been bearable and I have only had a couple moments where I truly missed smoking. Ironically, today has been a bit difficult. Have been hit by a number of fairly strong cravings that came out of (what seemed to be) nowhere. No I realize that withdrawal symptoms can be triggered by relaxation, or at least for me they can. Apparently some time hangin' on the beach is enough to get the stress levels to drop and the "oooo.....ooooo.....I want a smoke" to kick in.

On top of the 120 days of being smoke free, I can also say that I am 36 days 100% nicotine free. The 'fits' are improving with time (the are less severe and less frequent), but I tell ya', I am sooooo ready for this part to be over.

On a happier note, Tucker and I joined our new buddy from the office, Wes, for a day at Huntington dog beach. What an awesome place for dogs! I am really impressed that Huntington has dedicated such a large space of beach for the dogs to roam free. So many pups playing in the sand, digging holes, racing the waves, wrestling with each other, trompling people's beach blankets.

Tucker ran for almost 2 hours straight. I was so proud of him both wandering away and figuring out how to come back. His socialization skills have really improved and he actually initiated play with a number of big dogs.

After the beach, Wes took us for our first Chronic Taco experience. Yummy! Seriously, Yummy! mmmmmmmm

Only bummer of the day is this wicked bad sunburn on the back of my legs and the tops of my thighs (leave it to me to get the most uneven sunburn...errggg).

So, if you are ever in the SoCal are with your dog, I highly recommend checking out the dog beach. Your doggie will love it!

-kate pendley


Thursday, June 12, 2008

Broken Hearted....

I had heard the rumors.  But I refused to listen.  People kept trying to tell me.  But I would just walk away when they spoke.  It just couldn't be.  That was part of my life.  It constituted a significant part of who I was.  It black and round and had incredible ridges that would ride and ride and ride.

I don't want to accept it.  Vinyl is gone.

It honestly and truly breaks my heart.  


Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Social Sites - Neccessary But What A Pain

About a year ago I had to close down my MySpace account. Ever since, I have mainly focused on LinkedIn and my professional network. Which was all fine and dandy until it became important to re-establish my MySpace account and actually pay attention to my Facebook account.

So, wow. I mean wow. If you step out of the online social networking scene for awhile , man do you feel left in the dust. First, relearning the UI's is annoying because my brain remembers previous versions and isn't in the mood to learn new tricks. Second, it take a ridiculous amount of time to get your account set up. There is actual equity built into these things. I can't even remember how long I spent setting up my original MySpace account from years ago, but the effort invested in setting it up and maintaining it is nothing to laugh at.

For my friends in the music industry, I understand that MySpace has been one of their dream vehicles for marketing. And, I am starting to think the same goes for just us 'ordinary' folks. This is an advertising investment. And one that I can't catch up with in a single evening.

I am seriously waiting for people to start selling their profiles, similar to how virtual worlds sell 'fake' money in exchange for real money.

So it begs the question: when will our virtual selves surpass our real selves? Part of me thinks this has already happened. People's online identities seem so much more fully developed and architected than their actual identities. Maybe we are more comfortable with compiling ourselves online? Maybe we are all self-promoters deep at heart.

Too bad for us few who decided to take a break. Social networking sites are actually becoming a required part of the modern day existence. Don't have a MySpace account? Can't hack your Facebook? Well...damn fool...then you're just wack.

Validation of ourselves comes through a world that, actually, doesn't exist. Doesn't this seem a bit twisted?

As an advertiser and interactive peeps, I have to love the stuff. As a person, who likes to see and talk with people face-to-face, I'm on the outs.

So what does one do? Follow the herd. Follow the herd.

More on Cyber Bullying

The Kate Pendley Question of the Day: Cyber Bullying: Cause of Legitimate Fear?

The Kate Pendley Answer of the Day: Yes & No.

I realize that a next day follow up post about Cyber Bullying may be a bit premature, but the issue is really bothering me. Specifically, the issue of publicity for the stalker.

What do I mean exactly? Well, just like the tabloids I believe that cyber stalkers gain increasingly more control over their victims not directly by virtually inserting themselves into other people's lives, but by the traffic they receive by doing so.

Talk about life being unfair. It's enough to have seriously disturbed people out there tapping the internet for their own, demented self-interests, but to think that machines are cataloguing and ranking it all makes you feel a little cyber-queasy. My pity extends beyond myself when I realize that the more demented the post, the more traffic it will probably receive. Just like the tabloids. The more bizarre and outlandish the story is, the more traffic it receives, thereby increasing the celebrity of the stalker.

So what a nice little conundrum we have now. However, looking at it through a different set of lenses I can also see the irony of it all. The cyber stalker wants control. They get it through bullying and writing crazy things about the victim. The get traffic to their posts because they are....well...entertaining. Score one for the stalker. He increases the profile of the victim and controls that profile through what he posts.

But, here's the catch: The stalker takes what he is saying/writing very seriously. "It happened that way, I swear!" (you get the gist). So seriously, that he is incredibly diligent about dedicating an abnormal amount of time to the victim (which now truly qualifies him as a stalker) and establishes fairly elaborate ways to publicize his mission.

And, as traffic builds and his stories increase in popularity online, I am sure he gains a good amount of satisfaction and pride. Maybe even encouragement to continue stalking.

But here is the problem with it all: the only reason people are reading the stories is because they are so bizarre. Not because they are enlightening or full of fact, but because they are entertaining, ridiculous and downright strange. And, we all know (check the latest sales of the Enquirer) that people LOVE strange.

So, some advice from victim to victim:

Look at it this way, your stalker thinks he is gaining legitimate power when, in fact, most people look at him like he is a three headed chicken.

He is not any less dangerous or insane or worthy of prosecution. But, his posts are ridiculous, most people seem them as ridiculous and that's why all the attention.

I still believe that stalkers and cyber bullies should be stopped. I still believe that there are laws against slander, malice and liable for a reason. But, everything should also be see for what it is. There is no power to be gained by being a nuisance. There is no control that comes out of cyber stalking or bashing or bullying. It's pathetic, bottom feeding that should be illegal. Or, if not, be associated with a stiff penalty of being repeatedly smacked upside the head until the nonsense falls out.

Any content providers willing to step up and put a stop to this?

Until later, keep each other safe.
-kate pendley

Parallels & MS Word - Don't Do It!!

So, I am diligently banging away on a business strategy piece for work and am having the rather unfortunate experience of having to create the document in MS Word via Parallels.

A word to the wise:  don't do anything too fancy lest you might crash the whole darn thing.

Appears to me that MS Word (being a beast of a program even in its natural environment) is not suited for the replicated environment.  It freezes like crazy, splinters and acts like it has pretty much gone out its mind. Rather annoying when you have an EOD deadline and its the only word processing software you have on your computer.

If anyone out there has advice as to how to optimize MS software within parallels it would be greatly appreciated.  And, no, the answer is not:  Just stop using MS.  Don't have that option.

-Kate Pendley  




Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Online / Cyber Bullying - Is it time for new law?

Kate Pendley Question of the Day: Why is it that the new online bullying laws only apply to children and teens under 18?

Kate Pendley Answer of the Day: Because of that pesky thing called the First Amendment.


I once contact Blogger.com about having a slanderous post about myself removed. See, ever-so-lucky, little ol' me kate pendley managed to go and get herself a mentally ill stalker who has tremendous skills with the internet. The posts were inappropriate, skewed and just a tad bit scary. Basically, I felt threatened.

So, out of curiosity, I contacted Blogger.com and attempted to appeal to their rational side by providing proof of the LIFE TIME restraining order that had been issued by this guy (these aren't easy to get, by the way, and usually signify that the stalker poses a serious threat). The restratining order demands that he never had an electronic communication with me. Blogs count, right?

Apparently not. Since I am not a minor and do not have an additional gag order by a judge, they basically said that his first amendment rights (last time I checked, the 1st amendment doesn't cover slander or liable.....right?!?!?) were more important than my safety.

We there you have it folks. Welcome to the 21st century. Where a man can virtually harass and intimidate a woman, have a criminal record, have an arrest record for battery, have a certified mental illness and STILL be allowed to harass people online.

But, then along came a poor little girl in Missouri (read more here).

And then the world woke up. Well, for all of us adults and unprotected victims of cyber bullying out there, I would like to say: Come on!

Why are they pushing for laws ONLY for minors? Every type of person deserves to be protected from this crime. It is not only children and teens who are the victims of cyber or online bullying and it DOES lead to frustration and fear in adults. Sure, maybe we are better able to blow it off. But, I will tell you this. The things that were written about me (and perhaps others) by this guy are not only false, they truly speak to the level of how disturbed he really is.

Meaning: This guy is dangerous. People in town know it. The police know it. The mostly- broken-mental-health system knows it. So why, may I ask, after being presented with a legitimate case of harassment and cyber bullying, would Blogger.com not even considering reviewing the case to have his blog removed?

While I am not a fan of blaming or passing judgment on the networks and websites that simply provide the gateway to content (MySpace, Blogger, etc.) I am slowly starting to understand and accept that there is culpability in being the provider.

People will be people. Yes, I get that. This is America and we protect free speech. Yes, I get that as well. But, there are limits. Free speech is not and cannot be limitless. But, it appears that Blogger and some of the others are more afraid of being sued over free speech than for doing the right thing.

A couple times a month, I am reminded that (1) the mental health system in America is TRULY broken, (2) the rights of attackers are often more protected than the victims and (3) we have a long way to go in the country.

We need to tighten the laws on Cyber bullying and bullying in general. They need to cover adults, men, women, children.....Everyone!




(this blog belongs to kate pendley and is the sole property of kate pendley. if you feel like it, you can contact kate pendley at katependley@hotmail.com).

Landing in So Cal

So, here I am. I sunny Southern California. Weather is beautiful, location is superb and, overall, things are rather nice in this laid back land. Despite getting the stomach flu and an ear infection on the trip out here, all is actually going better than it was. For awhile I was having some bad technology Voodoo, but that seems to have corrected itself.

Anyway, Kate Pendley is here....surfs up! Let there be no more ice storms and tornadoes!





(this blog belongs to kate pendley and is the sole property of kate pendley. if you feel like it, you can contact kate pendley at katependley@hotmail.com).