Voice of Truth

Comes in six flavors: up, down, charm, strange, top, and bottom. Cones and cups available.

Much Love for TI 29 July 2009

Filed under: Uncategorized — Aly @ 4:37 pm

As anyone who follows me on Twitter knows, I have a deep-seated hatred for Acer (and Hrithik Roshan, the Bollywood actor who was/is a spokesperson for them) because my laptop is really shitty. As a side note, I was in the UWF library one day with my laptop out. This one dude came up and asked me how I felt about Acer. His daughter wanted to buy one. I told him, on no uncertain terms, that it was not a good decision (I feel bad for losing Acer a sale, but at the same time, I don’t want someone else to buy a lemon on my account!).

Anyway, I feel obliged to call out a company for its awesomeness when circumstances require. Right now, they require.

Ever since like March or something, my beloved TI-Nspire stopped working. Just — stopped. It was terribly scarring, of course. I borrowed Mrs. Nagel’s 83 for the rest of the year, and I kept putting off calling the TI people. Today, I bucked up and stopped procrastinating.

The process was simple and painless. I simply called the customer service number, 1 -800-TI-Cares. After listening to a voice mail system that told me to stay on the line for assistance, I got connected to someone. I told them my problem, and after trying a few remedies that didn’t work, she told me they would send me a new calculator! And, they will arrange for Fed-Ex to pick up my old calcultor. It was great! There weren’t even any questions about warranties (I don’t have the receipt, but it was within the warranty period), registering the calculator, nothing. I will have a new, working Nspire within the next week or so.

<3 Thank you, TI! You just made my day!

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WTF Do I Call This? I Suck at Titles. (Really.) 26 July 2009

Filed under: Uncategorized — Aly @ 1:03 am

I have been in a very linguistics mood lately, since I am taking Spanish I at UWF. It’s fascinating comparing Spanish with the other languages I know (English, French, Gujarati and kinda-Hindi). It is really interesting.

I was reading about bilingual babies and how they are better at learning new languages today. I was telling my mom about it, and then she started telling me about what I was like when I was little. Apparently, up until I went to school, I used to speak almost entirely in Gujarati. Also, I used to be able to understand Bengali (whaa?) because my babysitter used to speak to me in it. Is that not hilarious? There was a five-year gap, between when I was three and when I was eight, during which I did not go to India at all. That basically decimated my Gujarati. (more…)

 

Veejay from India Gets a Job! 25 July 2009

Filed under: Uncategorized — Aly @ 7:16 pm

I am currently reading Thomas Friedman’s The World Is Flat. It is intriguing and I am learning a lot. I totally loved this quotation, and wanted to share it with someone, but no one who would have appreciated it was online! :( Instead, I share it with my dear readers, of which I possess, on a good day, perhaps ten. *ironicfistpump* Awesome.

‘”Every IT manager was told to get the same amount of work or more
done with less money. So guess what he does? He says, ‘You remember
Vijay from India who used to work here during the boom and then went
back home? Let me call him over in Bangalore and see if he will do the
work for us for less money than what we would pay an engineer here in
the U.S.'”‘

Why is this so funny? I am not entirely sure. (It sure was fun doing the quadruple quotation marks, though!) I just like the whole image of randomwhiteguyinsuit saying, “Hey, remember Veejay [that’s how white people pronounce it] from India? We should call him up!”

But this section is surely interesting, because it is all about how India became so crucial to American companies. It all has to do with Y2K and the dotcom boom/bust. It is truly fascinating stuff. I am only perhaps 20% into the book so far, but I like it.

Yeah. You should read it.

 

Crime Shows and Talking to the Cops 21 July 2009

Filed under: Uncategorized — Aly @ 10:15 pm

I was watching an episode of Castle (mystery story author helps a detective solve cases) the other day, on hulu.com. After the detective questions a man accompanied by a lawyer, Castle (the author) comments to the detective that things go much smoother without lawyers. The characters in TV crime shows treat attorneys as nuisances, people who hinder investigations by instructing their clients in their best interests.

Castle plays up its newcomer-to-police-work angle by having Castle offer commentary on various “real-life” practices that are different from things seen on TV. Castle is shocked to learn that police officers can lie to people during interrogation. “We caught your accomplice, and now it’s only a matter of who breaks first,” or whatever.

The plots of so many crime shows rely on people allowing the police to search their house/car without a warrant. So many depict those who demand a warrant as people who hinder the investigation. These shows promote poor legal decisions. If you allow the police to search your house without a warrant, you are basically an idiot. (More on that in a bit.)

I saw a rerun of The Mentalist a few days ago. The murderer let slip a detail only the killer would know, and thereby aroused the suspicions of the investigators, eventually resulting in her arrest. If she had only waited until she was with a lawyer, she might not have made such a mistake.

I came across this blag post a while ago, and watched the accompanying videos. The videos come to almost an hour put together, but it was a very enlightening hour. You should go watch it … now. The two persons in the videos, a criminal defense attorney/law professor and a former cop, explain why you should avoid speaking to the cops as much as possible.

They suggest that cops can take any of your statements and twist them into a case against you, even if you are innocent. They can take seemingly harmless statements and manipulate them to act as evidence against you. You should never speak to the police unless you have been arrested and your lawyer is beside you. Any other type of interaction with the cops could turn them on your trail, even if you are innocent. Or worse, they could knowingly manipulate your statements and make it seem as though you are guilty.

Though I do not plan on committing any crimes soon, I plan on following this advice. It may seem suspicious to a jury that you refused to speak to the police until your arrest, but it would be far worse if you ended up making an incriminating statement instead of taking the fifth.

 

Oops… 16 July 2009

Filed under: Uncategorized — Aly @ 2:58 am

I feel kind of stupid for not mentioning this, but since my post, I Am Jealous…, Kay added me to his blog (at which I posted twice), and I added him here (though he still has not posted anything — and neither has Julie!). Not only did I omit links to my posts, but I also forgot to add Kay’s blog, Redtidesucks, to my blagroll. That has been rectified, dear readers!

Also added to the blagroll are a variety of other sites I have started following that I think are cool, including Holly’s blag, Beneath the Lemon Tree! :)

 

Ladybugs in Amber 15 July 2009

Filed under: Reading — Aly @ 2:52 am

I went to the beach this weekend. I was there with Aditi, her parents, and my dad. The stated purpose was to watch the Blue Angels (the Navy fighter planes that are based in Pensacola) do an airshow on the beach.

Aditi and my dad both got really worked up about taking pictures of their show. And it was another reminder of something I have realized recently. (more…)

 

What I Am Reading: Somerset Maugham, pt. 2 10 July 2009

Filed under: Reading — Aly @ 6:31 pm

[See pt. 1 for my thoughts on Of Human Bondage.]

Liza of Lambeth

This one is rather short, at least in comparison to Of Human Bondage. It tells of Liza, a slum girl who falls in love with Jim, a married, over-forty man with several kids who just moved into the neighborhood. Liza and Jim’s relationship becomes more and more apparent to the neighborhood, who shun Liza. Jim’s wife becomes particularly pissed (and with good reason!), and vows to get Liza back.

Liza’s friend Sally gets married to Harry, who seems sweet at first. Soon, however, he comes home drunk and beats Sally and her mother. Liza returns home from Sally’s to find Jim waiting for her. He is drunk and annoyed that she kept him waiting. He gives her a black eye.

Later, Jim’s wife confronts Liza on the street and a fight commences. Both are hurt, though Liza is clearly worse off.  The fight breaks up as Jim and Tom, a man who has loved Liza for a long time, both show up. Tom takes Liza home, and repeats his offer to have her in marriage. She reveals that she is preggers with Jim’s baby and then collapses into bed after drinking with her mother some.

Jim tries to choke his wife for what she did to Liza, but he is stopped by a woman who rushes to his wife’s aid, after his daughter panics and runs for help.

It eventually becomes apparent that Liza has had a miscarriage and will not survive. Jim comes by and pays his last respects. As Liza is unconscious, dying, but clearly not dead, her mother and a neighbor have already begun discussing her funeral and life insurance policy. There was definitely irony in that bit; indeed, throughout the piece. Anyway, Liza dies.

I can say that I enjoyed Of Human Bondage better, but Liza certainly was not bad. It was a bit tiresome and perhaps hard to relate to. As I said before, this work was chock-full of irony. The only good man in the entire story was Tom; every other man described or mentioned was an abuser and insensitive. Tom even offered to marry Liza despite her preggers-ness. He clearly loved her.

I suppose a theme for this book could be “love doesn’t last”. Every romance in the story petered out relatively quickly. Tom’s unrequited love for Liza was probably the longest-lasting. Liza and Jim, Sally and Harry, Liza’s parents, Liza’s neighbors, Sally’s neighbors; they all experienced domestic abuse and even outright murder attempts, in some cases. The honeymoon stage ends, the story seemed to say, and then you discover the true meaning of marriage.

Oh, that sounds so grim. Fear not, for while my words are unhappy, I am not! :)