Un Cachito de la vida

Un Cachito

"Random" Archives

Un Cachito de la vida - A little piece of Cameron's life

October 30, 2008

MTV Music

Not many people associate MTV with any actual music. It's kind of a shame - I remember way back in the day when they played music video after music video. Well, whether you like A-ha, the Metallica Black Album or Britney Spears, you can see many of those long-lost videos again thanks MTV's new MTV Music web site.

Warning: this could be a serious time waster as you catch up on the 80's.

Posted by charr at 7:43 AM

October 14, 2008

Jack's Mannequin

Strangely enough, I was one of the first five callers on a little contest on a local radio show and ended up winning a new CD: The Glass Passenger by Jack's Mannequin. One review classified it as "piano rock."

I first heard a couple songs on my way from the studio back to my work and immediately liked some of the songs, which is a little strange because it usually takes a few repetitions. When I got back to work, I loaded the CD into my iTunes and have now listened to it a few times.

Basically, I like it. I'm going to keep listening to it to get more familiarized with the songs, but some of the songs I'm liking are:

  • Crashin
  • Spinning
  • Swim
  • The Resolution
  • Suicide Blonde (Not an INXS cover)

As an added bonus, there aren't that I don't like yet.

Posted by charr at 3:56 PM

June 9, 2008

Gas prices and income

I realize this is a little random, but everyone is aware the gas prices are somewhat painful right now (although much worse in most of the rest of the world). I saw this chart on the NY Times today that I found very interesting. There are 3 tabs showing 1) how hard gas prices hit people, per county income; 2) gas prices around the country per county; and 3) median incomes around the country, per county. One interesting thing I realized too is that while Utah has a reputation for fairly low salaries relative to other places, it's still not doing too shabby.

Posted by charr at 9:07 AM

February 3, 2008

Geography game

I like getting outside of the US and experiencing other cultures. And since I was quite young, I've been into geography. I've always enjoyed maps and knowing where things are. Fortunately, I've been able to take many opportunities to see and experience many other cultures, both with work and pleasure. In that spirit, I present you with a geography game I found. It gets hard toward the end, but I found it enjoyable. See what you get. On my first try after Level 10 I got 396,476.

presented by TravelPod, the World's First Travel Blog ( A TripAdvisor Media Network partner ) 

Posted by charr at 10:17 AM

November 14, 2007

Tour fraud

I wanted to avoid posting anything negative while I was on my trip-around-the-world. However, now that I'm back I do need to write a brief review of Victor Awasung, the operator of Equatorial Tours in Cameroon, and his bad behavior, in the hopes others don't get cheated. Josh wrote about it here and I'll add a few comments. We went looking for an exotic, off-the-beaten-path destination and we also wanted to see Africa; Cameroon fit the bill. We made it very clear many times that we wanted to help Equatorial Tours (EqT) and would write an honest but favorable review of them and try to help in other ways. Victor, the operator, seemed pleased at this. However, as he started to cheat us, he seemed to no longer care and had no regard for us, nor our finances, assuming we could easily cough up the $1300 he suddenly asked for. At first we thought there was a chance it could be legitimate, even though it was very hard to swallow. As Josh mentioned, we looked at many other options and finally decided to pay the extra money after we talked him down a little. The deliberations included the facts that we wouldn't get a refund for leaving early (thereby abandoning much of the pre-paid fee), that the cost of doing something else would be substantial and that we really wanted unique experiences like seeing gorillas in the wild. Now take the extra $1000 we paid, the hundred or so he borrowed and didn't repay, combined with wire transfer fees (that we shouldn't have had to pay if he had done his job correctly) and add some enormous phone charges (several hundred dollars). In all, Victor likely cost us over $1500 extra. That wasn't cool and his completely unrepentant demeanor implies he'd do it again without qualms. Perhaps he had exceptional circumstances on his end that helped him justify the thievery; I don't know. But we would warn any potential clients of EqT that in our opinion Victor Awasung and Equatorial Tours can't be trusted, which is a shame because they have some great employees as Josh mentioned.

Posted by charr at 10:08 AM

August 6, 2007

Movie Reviews

Friday was kind of a movie day for me, so I thought I'd write something up. I started out with Bourne Ultimatum at 12:01 AM and then Ratatouille that evening - though I was seriously thinking about watching Bourne Ultimatum again.Bourne Ultimatum is great. It has a great story line, tying up a lot of things, with constant excellent action sequences. I love Matt Damon's methodical and unemotional character. He doesn't laugh but he doesn't pout or get dramatical. He just does what he does best. There was only one significant thing I didn't like and one small thing. The big thing is the shaky camera action. It's the same in Bourne Supremacy and I didn't care for it then; I still don't. Some do like it, but I find it harder to understand what's happening in an action sequence. The small thing I mentioned is that there seemed to me to be a lot of faces to try to keep straight. Of course, it could just mean that it was 2 in the morning and I was tired, so I won't weigh it heavily. Given my distaste for the camera action (I'd rather keep the director from Bourne Identity), I would give the movie an A-. Ratatouille was also very good, though very different. I was pleasantly surprised at how entertaining it was. In addition, there was a pre-movie animated Pixar short called Lifted that was very charming. The movie itself had plenty of charm as well, in addition to plenty of humor and plot, assuming you don't get hung up on things like rats being able to understand English but not being able to speak it. Since I can't think of anyway to make this one better, I think I'd have to give this an A.

Posted by charr at 11:12 AM

June 22, 2007

Human Tetris

Nothing serious, just some live Japanese human Tetris entertainment

Posted by charr at 10:04 AM

April 18, 2007

Thoughts on gun laws

By now everyone has heard of the great tragedy that happened at Virginia Tech on Monday. I've read a lot about it the last few days, but today it seemed to have an increased impact as I looked at a table of victims' pictures put together by the NY Times. These were young, bright and promising kids who were senselessly murdered. It doesn't seem fair. It's not. But I believe God sorts things out at a later time.Anyway, this attack has me thinking about gun laws. While I've never owned a gun, I've always been pro-gun in the sense that it is in the constitution and some people hold the right to bear arms as sacred, so let them exercise that right. Plus, I've been shooting and small-game hunting many times in my life and it can be an enjoyable outing.On Monday, when the news broke, a colleague who is not from America asked me about the reasoning behind American gun laws. I know from talking with others as well that many people see Americans as cowboys, loaded up with guns. At any rate, I explained that it is in the constitution, and he expressed the thought that isn't that 2nd Amendment right for times past? It's a question asked by many, but I stick with the status-quo given there is no clear re-interpretation. At the same time, I can understand to some extent the frustration and disappointment voiced by anti-gun advocates who see guns frequently as a source of death for innocent people. In that context, I expected to see a lot of immediate anti-gun commentaries following the tragedy at VT. However, I was pleased to see that so far gun-control commentary has been generally muted until the emotion has worn off. One argument that has been mentioned is that it's too easy to get a gun in Virgina. The problem however, is that this doesn't seem to be applicable in this tragedy. Virginia laws state you can't buy more than one handgun in a month, but one of the guns was apparently purchased in Feb, showing some premeditation (so a longer delay wouldn't make a difference). Also, Mr. Cho (the perpetrator) had a clean history. Unless you do a psychological profile on every customer at the gun store, you wouldn't have found anything. In summary I don't see gun laws being the problem. It's a very tiny percentage of lawful gun-owners that get into gun trouble anyway. The trick is how to stop wackos and criminals from getting guns, and that doesn't fall under gun laws. What do you think?

Posted by charr at 9:59 AM

December 17, 2006

Happy trails

...And you thought your roads were bad?! Check this out.I especially like the Gravity-Assisted Mountain Biking.

Posted by charr at 9:26 AM

October 10, 2006

Bubble 2.0?

"A profitless Web site started by three 20-somethings after a late-night dinner party is sold for more than a billion dollars, instantly turning dozens of its employees into paper millionaires. It sounds like a tale from the late 1990's dot-com bubble, but it happened yesterday."
This is from this article on Google's purchase of YouTube for $1.65 Billion. By the way, that's a lot of money.Is the boom/bubble of the 90s back? Obviously, there is a difference betweeen a boom and a bubble, but such an exorbitant price is suspicious. I gotta say that I found this paradoxically funny:
"YouTube's founders decided to have lunch on Wednesday with Google's co-founder, Larry Page, and its chief executive, Eric E. Schmidt...at Denny's near YouTube's headquarters in San Bruno, Calif. The Google executives threw out an offer of $1.6 billion..."
$1.6 Billion at Denny's? Who'da thunk?
Posted by charr at 8:59 AM

October 3, 2006

Crash at 37K'

When two planes crash in midair, you generally don't get to hear from the survivors - there just aren't any. But this is an amazing story about how a brand new private jet was hit at 37000 ft by a large Boeing 737 over the Amazon and was able to land. Tragically, the 737 didn't make it, losing over 155 people.

Posted by charr at 5:00 PM

September 9, 2006

Incredible bike show

A guy at work passed around this video of a girl performing bike stunts. I know people have probably seen too many "Ya gotta see this..." emails, but I have to say that I was impressed. I wonder if you just need lots and lots and lots of practice to do something like this, or if there is some supernormal ability (like anti-gravity) needed to do this.

Posted by charr at 1:24 PM

August 27, 2006

The Canon

Maybe you've seen it already, but...
1) Wow!
2) Pachelbel's Canon as you've likely never heard it.
3) Look at them fingers move.
4) Wow!

Posted by charr at 9:40 AM

June 27, 2006

Highway info

I was in a meeting at work and we were trying to determine what the exit number was close to our work. I had some guesses, but figured I'd turn to the omnicient Internet. I was basically looking for an I-15 exit map and it was harder to find than I thought. I searched UDOT's site, to no avail. Google gave me more.In the process, I found this I-15 site which has quite a few interesting history tidbits I never knew about Utah and its highways. It also contained the I-15 exit mapping I was looking for.

Posted by charr at 3:04 PM