DNA update

DNA Update, which you can also read dnalounge here...

further adventures in the service industry: insurance

Perhaps I've mentioned this before, but the rant about my fucking insurance company must continue. So, a few months back (April, I think) they sent me a check for $90, saying I had overpayed. Ok, I can believe that. I screw up sometimes. I have a bunch of auto-payments set up and generally don't pay too much attention to this crap, relying on the benevolence of the various bookkeeping departments to figure out when things don't add up.

So then the next month, before I've even gotten around to depositing the check, I get a nastygram saying "we didn't get your last payment for $90, so we're cancelling your insurance as of the day before we mailed this letter."

That's right -- they sent my check back to me, then threatened to cut off my insurance because they didn't have the money they sent back to me.

So I call them on the phone and left a message (since their business hours do not correspond with my awakeness hours) describing this, and saying "so I'm sending in a payment for $90 today, how about you hang onto it this time?"

A week later I get a paper letter from them "explaining" that the previous check was returned as "an overpayment on the previous term."

Give me a fucking break! I've had insurance with these people for like seven years, and suddenly I've hit this window where, if the check doesn't arrive on the right day of the month, it gets rejected as an overpayment of last year's policy, and not applied to this year's??? They have got to be kidding!

So I ignored them for a while longer, assuming that eventually they were going to come bitching about their $5 penalty some time down the line. But today I got another letter from them (well actually it arrived last week, but I only just opened it) saying that "they have no record of reinstatement."

So I think what this means is, I will end up not having homeowners' insurance any more, because I'm just completely unwilling to talk to these assholes on the phone. This is a recurring problem. I hate dealing with this shit so much that I just... don't.

I guess I don't really need homeowners' insurance anyway. I live in a fucking concrete-bunker condo. I'm not even entirely clear what my policy covers beyond robbery, since I think my personal ownership of the building ends just beyond the paint.

I need a lackey.

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"Go Capitalism!"

"Traders at the Chicago Board of Trade work the pits as President Bush is projected on a giant monitor speaking on corporate responsibility Tuesday, July 9, 2002. (AP Photo/Charles Bennett)"

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schadenfreude: the silent killer

I always feel this little burst of glee every time I hear about the stock market tanking, or some corporation self-destructing, or the economy otherwise going into the shitter. But then sometimes I remember, "oh wait, that whole stock market thing? That's my only source of income." And then I go, "oh, oops."

Oh, the conflict. Oh the irony of the post-pomo condition.

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Current Music: Whale -- Lips ♬

Mommy, spiderman's not wearing any pants!

Is that your spidey sense tingling, or are you just glad to see me?
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Current Music: Whale -- Lips ♬

Let them eat Larry cake!

Tasteful Funeral

Larry Hagman, of dimly remembered "Dallas" and "I Dream of Jeannie" fame, is spelling out his last requests in no uncertain terms.

"When I die, I want my friends to eat me," Hagman told celebrity researcher Baird Jones the other day. "I want to be fed through a wood chipper, be spread over a wheat field, then have a cake baked from the crop for all my pals to munch on."

Don't think he hasn't contemplated the alternatives.

"Cremation's fine, but it uses an awful lot of energy," Hagman says. "Burying someone in a steel casket doesn't do any good. I want to return to the earth as soon as possible."

Thus, the cake plan.

"I want the cake to be made of half marijuana, which makes people so much less violent than booze, and people should learn to eat pot rather than smoke it because it damages the heart and lungs less that way," Hagman opines.

Shocked at the aging actor's drug endorsement? Hagman contends you shouldn't be, bleating, "It's high time someone my age talked this way."


I am surprised to report that The Dead Zone series is not bad. I like the transitions they do into and out of the visions.

For some reason I want to like Witchblade, so I haven't given up on it yet, but it's really pretty weak.

Has Strange World been cancelled? That was a really good show, much like X Files in its prime, but based in closer-to-reality science.

Apparently Rollins is hosting a Twilight Zone knock-off. I saw one episode, and it was ok, but i just couldn't help giggling when Hank came on all spooky-like. How could I take Rod Serling seriously if I knew that he'd done a cover of Funky Town with Ru-Paul?

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bradfitz implemented RSS/RDF journals yesterday, so now my evil twin has a livejournal too: dnalounge. Nifty! Once there's a user interface to it, any site that provides an RSS/RDF feed will be able to be added to your friends list.

dnalounge is a feed of the What's New journal; there's another feed for the calendar overview, which is useful for Slashboxes. I don't think that kind of "calendar" feed really integrates with LiveJournal very well, though.

I remember when RSS was about to completely change the world: the web was going to work completely differently by the end of 1998 at the latest. It's nice to see that something useful is finally coming of it. The handful of sites out there like userland.com have all just seemed profoundly useless to me, but being able to dump sites I want to read daily into my LJ friends list is very cool. (Oh good lord, here's marca sucking guha's cock and comparing him to Gutenberg: TechVision Innovators! Shooooot meeeeee...)

One irritating thing about how it works today is that most sites seem to only provide titles in their feeds: for example, the slashdot feed only has the titles and URLs of the posts, not the front-page paragraph and its links; and memepool is even worse: that feed converts their news items to plain-text (all the links are gone) and truncates them to 90 characters or so.

Hopefully these feeds will improve now that the 800lb gorilla we know as LiveJournal is shuffling toward them...

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