The 11th Hour...

Harold B O'Brien 1915 gold ratio crop

I won't be doing this at the top of the hour, but at least I'll make it during the hour.

Anyway... I have two relatives who I know fought in The Great War.

Up there is my paternal grandfather, Harold Bruce O'Brien. Written on the original photo is: "Harry O'Brien in Phillipines, 1915."

Which raises an interesting point. See, I have two extant birthdays for Harry. One is from his later records at the Boston PD, for whom he worked for decades after The War. That's Dec 4, 1896, which would make him 18, perhaps 19 in this picture. But then there's this record, which purports to be a copy of a birth certificate, which states him as having been born Harry Raymond O'Brien, on Dec 4, 1899. Which would make him 15, perhaps 16, in this picture.

I suspect Harry changed his name and birthday to get into the Army, and then stuck with it the rest of his life.

The other relative is my maternal great-grandfather, Addison Bright Evans. He joined the Canadian Army -- Service Battalion, CDF, 48th Highlanders.

1917 addison evans canadian army back

He joined on August 5, 1917. Which is strange in a bunch of ways. He was naturalized as a US citizen on July 5, 1917. The US entered the war April 6, 1917. So... was he waiting for his naturalization papers to clear? Why did he join in Canada? Why did he give his birthplace as Canada when up until then he'd been saying England, which he'd also say later?

Hey... Who's asking, you know?

My family. Obviously I come by it honestly, from both sides.

Happy Kayleeversary!

kaylee petfinder 03

One year ago today, we picked up Kaylee from Saving Great Animals, a pet rescue group. The original intent was just to foster her until a permanent home could be found for her, but... we became that permanent home.

I'm glad we did.

Up there is one of her original shelter photographs, showing just how goofy-looking she was presented. Here's a picture I took the 2nd day we had her:

Kaylee on the office floor

I don't think she would have languished for 90 days in the shelter if my picture had been used, rather than theirs.

But now... Too damned bad. She's our dog, and you can't have her. So there.

Here's a link to all the pictures I've posted of her at my Flickr account.


{Originally posted at http://www.halobrien.com/ }


Nate Silver reports that Washington's senate race may well have national implications this year:

"(T)he most important state of all (in assessing the Republicans' chances of gaining a majority in the Senate) was Washington. Republicans won Washington 88 percent of the time that they won the Senate by a single seat, but only 41 percent of the time that they fell one seat short. The difference there is 47 percent. Washington makes the difference between success and failure almost half the time."

Perhaps there are those who think the differences between the Democrats and the Republicans are no more significant than those between the Blues and the Greens in Byzantium.

I am not among them.

I have faith in the robustness of the American republic, and believe it can survive the turn of the wheel that must inevitably happen and return the Republicans to power eventually.

Still, I hate waste. If the waste of time, effort, blood, and treasure that will ensue after the Republicans' return can be held off legally and ethically as long as possible, through the strength of reason... I can only lend my voice to that call.

Please vote for Patty Murray, and then mail in your Washington ballot, if you're a voter in our state.

The Yankees did what they do best

Which is, they lost a postseason series, this time to the Texas Rangers.

This isn't anything unusual for the Yankees -- after all, they lead Major League Baseball in having lost the World Series 13 times. But their postseason record in the 21st Century is one of unmatched futility:

2010 -- Lost to Texas Rangers, 4-2 in the ALCS
2009 -- Beat Philadelphia Phillies, 4-2 in the World Series
2008 -- no post season
2007 -- Lost to Cleveland Indians, 3-1 in the divisional series
2006 -- Lost to Detroit Tigers, 3-1 in the divisional series
2005 -- Lost to Los Angeles Angels, 3-2 in the divisional series
2004 -- Lost to Boston Red Sox, 4-3 in the ALCS
2003 -- Lost to Florida Marlins, 4-2 in the World Series (their record-setting 13th such loss)
2002 -- Lost to Anaheim Angels, 3-1 in the divisional series
2001 -- Lost to Arizona Diamondbacks, 4-3 in the World Series

So that's a record of 1-8-1 so far this century.

The commissioner should put them out of their misery, and break them up. "For the good of the game." Who can stand seeing any team fail so badly year after year after year after...


This originally appeared at my other journal, http://www.halobrien.com/

Self-referential to LJ

We went and saw The Social Network tonight. I liked it, and nodded sagely when many of my thoughts about advertising were being echoed by Aaron Sorkin in the voice of the character Mark Zuckerberg.

But that's not why I'm writing.

No, I'm writing because of a highly amusing piece of schtick in the early part of the movie. See, Zuckerberg blogs about having just broken up with his girlfriend, in 2003. His venue for his various vents is... LiveJournal. Specifically, zuckonit.

If you go take a look at the profile for that account, you'll see, "Created on 2010-09-16... last updated 2010-10-02." Which would be the opening day of the movie.

There is only one entry. It says, in its entirety:

"So, how did you like the movie?"