I have to admit, I didn't know about this until a link was e-mailed to me. Apparently on the Bush Cheney website they had a sign generator where you could put your own slogan and download to print out. Didn't take them long to silence that form of free speech. But it was up long enough to produce some dandy signs. See them here in a flash presentation set to music.


Air America airs tomorrow

Air America goes on the air tomorrow (March 31). I'm excited about the personality line up with Al Franken, Janeane Garofalo, Lizz Winstead, and even ex-MPR host Katherine Lanpher, but where can we find it locally? Anybody in the know? The website seems supremely unhelpful in this regard.


I do, and I do, and I do for you kids.

This is the birthday cake I made for my kid's fifth birthday last April. (Theme = dinosaurs, if you can't tell). Today he begged and pleaded for a store-bought cake for his sixth birthday.


20 Years Later

Starting Monday, Peter Scholtes of Complicated Fun is beginning his month of tributes to 1984, featuring contributions from various writers. I for one can hardly contain myself. This should be some good reading. Check it out:

"I hate 1984 today because it makes all the other years look bad. Not that I haven't felt much, much better in the two decades since, or that things around me have particularly gotten worse. (Communism left, the Bush clan stayed, and we've still got a bomb and could all die here today.) But I've never been so fully engaged in popular culture as I was in that lonely year."

I know exactly what that means.


The power of the web

With all the geek talk about, I thought ya'll might enjoy this, seeing as an original may cost about $75 K nowadays, Buddha bless the web. ACTION COMICS NO. 1

I am Not The Crazy Sock Monkey Lady...

I know this because I saw the real C.S.M.L. today. She was at Beaners and she was wearing a crudely made (it had no ears!) sock monkey on a string around her neck. She was also sporting some hot pink slippers and matching lipstick.

Geek News

For you anglophilic geeks, such as myself, you will be happy to know the following...

Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy is coming to the big screen as a feature film and it starts filming in less than a month.

That "waaon waaon waaon" noise you here is the TARDIS materializing. The BBC is starting the whole Doctor Who series up again. The new doctor has been cast (Christopher Eccleston of 28 Days Later) and it is due for release in fall of 2005.

Oh, it's good to be a geek today.


Well I'll be.

So, I've had a little to drink. That's gonna happen. I'm where it's warm, and, by Mel Gibson's God... that ought to be good enough.

There really isn't that much to add, actually. I'm not anywhere fantastic or amazing. In fact, I'm where fantastic and amazing won't be caught dead, lest they be seen and become mortally embarrassased... thus forcing them to explain to everyone that they were probably mistaken and that they really weren't there... c'mon... seriously... would we be there? Pah! I don't think so.

People like that? Never.

What is it? Thursday? That feels right.

Where was I? What's this?

I'm afraid I've got the wrong number.

It certainly is warm in here, isn't it?

Also... Home Movies? Canceled. Unless you want to do something about it.

Paranoid? I think not.

So the Geek Prom poster is hot off the press, and it's absolutely beautiful and everyone is raving about it and Karl and the Hoopers are the new celebs in town and everything is sweet in the geek world.


I for one am very, VERY disturbed by the upper-left-hand portion of the poster. What IS that? This seems like a warning of some type, and it sends a chill through me like I've never felt. I thought I was rid of them, but apparently not.

Not the probe this time. Please. Not the probe.

A blog post about a blog...

This is an interesting site that has sparked quite a bit of controversy eslewhere, just curious what people here think of it. Warning: to some it may be disturbing.

secondhand suicide: an entirely true story

Hat Party

Friday night hat party after Art of Peace, @ 9:00 p.m., BYOB, all hats welcome. Got a funny hat? Oh yes you do.

Money money money...

From Chuck I bring you Fundrace.org, where you can check up on your neighbors political donations. Lots of doctors, lawyers and teachers giving money. Below are some names I recognize.

John M. Van Etta, Physician, St. Lukes | George W. Bush $2,000
Jeff Lyon, Internist, SMDC | Howard Dean $500
James Balmer, Attorney | John Edwards $500
Paul Sanford, Physician, St. Lukes | Wesley Clark $500
Andrew Baertsch, Physician, Northland Plastic Surgery | George W. Bush $625
James Fetzer, Professor, UofM | Howard Dean $300
Emily Van Evera, Musician, self-employed | Dennis Kucinich $250

On a completely unrelated note. Sometimes I like to go to this site. You can search all city properties for tax values, who owns a building and how much they payed for it.


Schoolyard Logic from Rumsfeld

"On September 12, 2001, Donald Rumsfeld pushed to bomb Iraq even though they knew that al Qaeda was in Afghanistan. 'Rumsfeld was saying that we needed to bomb Iraq,' Clarke said. 'And we all said ... no, no. Al-Qaeda is in Afghanistan. We need to bomb Afghanistan. And Rumsfeld said there aren't any good targets in Afghanistan. And there are lots of good targets in Iraq. I said, "Well, there are lots of good targets in lots of places, but Iraq had nothing to do with it."'" ("Sept. 11: Before And After," CBS News, 3/20/04)

This is logic is amazing and something I wouldn't expect from my six year old. To paraphrase...

Sam: "Oscar hit me!"
Donny: "Let's hit Sally back."
Sam: "But Oscar hit me. Not Sally."
Donny: "But Sally is easier to find."

CBC News:Life of Brian returning to challenge The Passion

Yay; will be first in line if it makes it to Duluth

CBC News:Life of Brian returning to challenge The Passion


Planet of the Geeks

Here's a further question, and perhaps a more interesting one - How do you define "geek"? Of course, I'm speaking vernacularly here. I'm not talking about the narrow definition of a circus performer who bites the heads off chickens.

What traits do geeks have in common? Is there such a thing as geek culture? Is a geek merely someone who is unpopular or just someone who doesn't court popularity? Are geeks by nature introverted? awkward? socially inept? Are there different species of distinct kinds of geeks?

Avatars of Geekness

I received this today from Minnesota Public Radio:

"A few months ago, you sent an e-mail to MPR's Midmorning suggesting a program on geek chic. The idea intrigued us. I see that the Geek Prom is coming up in Duluth and wondered if you could elaborate on your suggestion a bit. Who might be some good guests for a call-in program on this topic? Authors, bloggers, other geek experts...?"

So who would you suggest?

I sent MPR a link to this site (Hi Jeff!) and the Geek Prom site so they'll be checking that out. Who do you think would be an interesting person for a call in show to discuss geekiness? I'll save my recommendations that I sent for later.

Hipsters Vs. Yuppies

What is the difference between hipsters and yuppies? Do yuppies just have more money? If you gave a hipster a million dollars would they turn into a yuppie? If you put a hipster into a little cage with some cedar chips would they turn into a hamster? What if you put a yuppie in a fish bowl?

i hrt the Dames.

Tony Bennett posted his memories of opening for the Melvin's this past weekend. It is a good read.


Re-election Campaign

[Conspiracy Theory] So sometime near November non-President Bush will be a) losing in the polls or b) not exactly winning anyway. When magically Osama Bin Laden will be caught. [level 2 conspiracy would be that it wasn't actually bin laden but some guy who looks like him and all records faked] Regardless of authenticity the results will be a stunning rush in Bush support leading to his re-election.

Or perhaps 2 weeks before the election his opponent's plane will crash, but that's a whole 'nother theory.



Hi - new kid on the block - actually new gramma on the block.
Getting my sea legs....

You never know

This is a bit of reading, but something I found fascinating, digital information found on vinyl records
Kempa.com: Vinyl Data


The Black-eyed Snakes/Muldoons/Cutlass show has been moved to the Spirit of the North Theatre in Fitger's. The other location in Superior was shut down due to fire code issues.

So good news if you didn't want to cross the bridge on a windy day. I myself was nearly knocked off my bike by a nasty wind gust. Shortly after that I was sandblasted. My skin looks great now.

See you at the show. Starts at 8:30 or so.

kathy griffin is a liar

sex in duluth.....yes please

Etiquette question

So I was in Dollar Tree yesterday picking up some cheap ear buds, and I noticed a woman coming around the corner with a q-tip hanging out of her ear. She was an older woman, probably in her 70s or maybe early 80s, and I could tell she wasn't entirely with it. She had a q-tip hanging out of her ear for example.

So, my question, do you alert this woman to this fact or casually look the other way?


Fun times in Reno

So, I spent the day today in Reno, Nevada, murder capital of the US. My sister and I went to this awesome little art museum there, the Nevada Art Gallery. You all would have loved it. It was chalk full of crazy contemporary art. One artist representing was Cindy Sherman. She does these weird self portraits where she's dressed as some character-sometimes from movies. The photo usually has to do with the subjugation of women or something, whatever. Anyway, they had this section where you could take your own portraits--Cindy Sherman style. You know, dress up with props, take pictures, and print them out. Oh you better believe we did--and we had a good ol' time. I think my picture there will be resurfacing as my blogger photo--keep your eyes peeled.

Poll Results

How do you want your eggs?

Over easy [12 votes, 23.53%]
Scrambled [17 votes, 33.33%]
Sunny side up [5 votes, 9.80%]
Hard boiled [4 votes, 7.84%]
Soft Boiled [2 votes, 3.92%]
Poached [11 votes, 21.57%]



Music and Politics

Two separate issues in one post;
1st. I have to comment MoveOn.org is pretty cool, I didn't $ contribute to Dean's run for nomination as I wanted to see how far he would go before committing cash. And, I won't send $ to Kerry, I most likely will vote for him but am not particularly bouncing up and down with joy over his candidacy... I may well send $ to MoveOn though, I like the blend of humor and outrage, if you haven't inferred this yet for me to give $ to anything politically aligned is a big deal (heck I don't even send cash to the Greens, which prob. Means I'll go to hell, or some other damnable place).

As for music... Does anyone understand the system by which an album is still considered new? I was at BestBuy (erk) the other day and their canned music program was promoing the Yeah Yeah Yeahs album as a brand new, fresh release, and the thing is at least a year old. Which I guess if they are getting some new attention for it that's cool as the album is good, but enough already.
and a little pop quiz, who has a song with the title of this post? (too easy?)
Sorry, kinda a lame post I guess, slow day at work... blah blah blah



I have a horrible memory. Let me just state that right up front. In some ways that is not a bad thing. In other ways it is horrible, like remembering peoples names or even remembering that you ever met someone.

I tell you this only as a disclaimer for the rest of this post. You may have visited some of the links on the right side of this page, or not. I regularly read all the Blogs listed there and one of my favorite local Bloggers is James Maryland. His Blog is called Fillmore Jive and he writes about music, politics, alcohol and lightning strikes. The thing is he is at every show that I go to and I am not sure I have ever met him. If I have I would refer you to the opening paragraph of this post and then apologize for not having name with face.

For a while I kind of liked not knowing. I have asked around at local liquor stores (he works at one) but with no luck. Well I think it is high time that we meet. Mr. Maryland I would love to buy you a drink. Oh and if you ever want to DJ at the Starfire Lounge that would be nice too.

Now I am going to have a Mickeys Big Mouth.

Rummie is a liar.

[via MoveOn.org]

A year ago today, the Bush Administration was making its final push toward war in Iraq. We know now that much of what we were told about the threat that Iraq posed was untrue. And rather than own up to their distortion of the facts, Bush administration officials are denying they ever said such things.

But this Sunday, Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld got caught blatantly contradicting his past statements, and we have the video clip. You can check it out at:


Congress' responsibility is to hold President Bush and his administration accountable for this pattern of deception -- that's why we have the Constitution. But instead, Congress today will debate a resolution congratulating Bush, for (they claim) making the world safer.

We must demand, at a minimum, that Congress censure the President. It's our Representatives' duty to formally reprimand him for misleading us. And we've got to demand it today, while they're debating their anniversary resolution.

Please call your Representative now, at:

Congressman James L. Oberstar
DC Phone: 202-225-6211

Make it clear that you are a constituent, then let the staffers know you expect nothing less than Censure.

Our campaign will be stronger if you let us know you're calling, at:


Today, we're holding a press conference at the Capitol, unveiling a new TV ad calling for Censure, and a New York Times ad on the same theme.

And we're taking our Censure petition, signed by more than half a million of us, to Congress, hand-delivering it to each Representative's office. The event is co-sponsored by Win Without War, True Majority, and Working Assets.

Please help reinforce this powerful message with a single phone call now.

Then, why not pass the Rumsfeld clip along to your friends?

Thanks for all you do.


- Carrie, Joan, Noah, Peter, and Wes
The MoveOn.org Team
Wednesday, March 17th, 2004


Not suprising.

Among US presidents who have run the country over the last 50 years, George W. Bush appears to have the lowest Intelligence Quotient (IQ). His IQ has proved lower than that of the average American citizen. According to the British press, the finding has been obtained by researchers from the State of Pennsylvania. Mr. Bush-s IQ makes up as little as 91 points, which is exactly half of his immediate predecessor Bill Clinton-s IQ (182 points). By the way, Mr. Clinton takes 1st place in the US president list by this parameter. Interestingly, Democrats prevail on the list.
In calculating the IQ, the scientists analyzed the following indices: academic performance in school and college, independently (without anybody-s assistance) prepared publications, speech lucidity, and psychological parameters.
The mean IQ value of man varies within the range of 100 points. Apart from George W. Bush, this level has not been exceeded by only one ex-president, his father, Mr. Bush Sr.
Below are IQs of 12 US presidents, starting from 1945.
Bill Clinton v 182, Jimmy Carter- 175, John F. Kennedy v 174, Richard Nixon- 155, Franklin D. Roosevelt v 147, Harry S. Truman v 132, Lyndon B. Johnson- 126, Dwight D. Eisenhower v 122, Gerald Ford v 121, Ronald Reagan v 105, George Bush v 98.

I took an online IQ test, I'm right between Roosevelt and Truman with 138 (taken at tickle). Anyone else?


Act III, Scene I, Line 84

Et tu, Brute! Then fall, Caesar.

The Place of Bad Men

There was a railroad trestle in my neighborhood when I was a kid. It was a huge, ancient, wooden structure that separated my neighboorhood from the more civilized parts of Duluth. Beneath there was scrubby woods, and a shallow, polluted crick full of shopping carts and suckerfish. Next to the crick was a dimly lit path through the sticker bushes, and this path was the fastest way to get to Grand Avenue.

The thing was, this path was also a Place of Bad Men. These men were mainly just stew bums finishing off a bender in the weeds, but there was a pretty good number of pervs there, too. Though nothing extremely awful ever happened there to my recollection, all of the teenage girls in the neighborhood had stories of being flashed.

Still, we all continued to use the path, because the only other way to get to Grand was to walk around the trestle, which was a several blocks long. And walking around meant you had to walk back. Eventually, the trestle was torn down in the 1980s when they started putting up businesses in that area.

Anyway, I wonder. Were there places of bad men in your neighborhood? Places that, as an adult--especially a parent--make you utterly cringe? When I look back at all the dangers I was only vaguely aware of at the time, it's amazing that we survived. But then when I look back again, I realize that not all of us did.


Get your Geek on...

I'm building up my geek points for Geek Prom.

I just started a fan film review website and you are all invited to the grand opening. Yes, that's right, I'm reviewing fan films and having a fun time doing it to. For those not initiated into the fan film phenomenon, I'd suggest starting out with Troops. It's the granddaddy of Star Wars fan films.


Trying to Get to Sacramento...

So, for the past few days I've been trying to find a cheap airplane ticket out to Sacramento, Ca. You see, my sister is in a band called Madam Moustache. They were just recently asked to be the opener for none other than PJ Harvey. It's their biggest gig to date (their second biggest being the opener for Pete Seger). The show is on Wedenesday, St. Patty's day at the Capital Garage. I've never seen my sister's band play live, and this seems like the chance of a lifetime. I'm still hoping to find a cheap ticket, but $380 is about the cheapest I have found yet. I'll gladly take any suggestions about how to find cheap airline tickets.

Poll Results

Why do you read PDD?

For the humor [9 votes, 12.50%]
For the rumor [3 votes, 4.17%]
For the infighting [19 votes, 26.39%]
Homesickness [12 votes, 16.17%]
Duluth scene info [14 votes, 19.44%]
Professor party info [3 votes, 4.17%]
I'm a troll [12 votes, 16.17%]


Gotta Get them Evil-doers

Found this flash animation on pixelred.com. Check out the other animations there too, especially, for you geeks out there, the Dark Side Switch Campaign.


It is South by Southwest (SXSW) weeekend in Austin, TX. and I am whiling away my morning reading about peoples adventures.

1. Chuck and Lorika are there. Chuck's website was nominated for an award in the Weblog division and he is going to interview Joe Trippi on Sunday.

2. Lars and Amy are there probably taking a million pictures and eating awesome Mexican food.

3. Peter Scholtes has a wonderful primer on the festival.

The first year I went I took the train down and payed extra for the sleeper car which is worth every penny. The festival itself is completely overwhelming for a music fan. You can buy a wristband or a laminate to get in to the SXSW shows but you can also pay a cover for each individual club. The best way to go however is to search out the free daytime shows hosted by record labels and magazines. Free beer and food usually accompany these events. MMM free beer.

If you go I suggest bringing a bike. It is a much quicker way to get around and the weather in Texas in March is perfect. 70's in the daytime 50's at night. We won't see those temps in Duluth for another 3 months.


Parsley, Sage, Rosemary and Thyme.

Actually Basil, Thyme and Rosemary. V-Nick and I are starting an indoor herb garden underneath the cool grow light that someone gave me. There is one tiny sprout that popped up today. How very exciting.

Exorcist in 30 seconds

Angry Alien Productions, Sase and Topsie (via MeFi)

this is fucking funny


The Secret of the Tab

So, you might not know this, but you know that little tab near the opening of your ear? Well, Starfire pretty much doesn't have one. It's true. And, it prevents him from being able to use the "earbud" style of headphones. Check it out.

So here's Scott's ear. Notice the absence of tab. Notice also the need of haircut.

Now here is V-Nick's ear. Notice how the tab is so pointy. No problem with earbuds here.

Ok, here's Ca-chee's ear. It's no surprise that she and V-Nick have the most perfectly formed ear tabs, as with everthing else. Bitches.

Paul Lundgren's ear is compact and concise, like everything he does. I bet he spent months on those ear tabs.

Finally, here is my ear. The tab is long and thin, which is not too surprising. Never mind the two earring holes which are remnants of earlier times.



If it has been a while since you visited the Geek Prom website I have a deal for you. Adam the Webjërk has updated the site and it is HOT. Check out the complete photo booth galleries for your Geek Prom outfit ideas. Get all this years event info while you are visiting and stay tuned for Geek Judge and band bios which will be released soon.

Geek Prom³-Cubed for your pleasure


Whoa! That was close!

I took this pic today while I was on a walk with my (ahem) new iPod.

[confidential to P.A.L. ... I coulda been so good to you.]
So how about that faq?
I've searched everywhere; both on this site and at barrettchase.com. Your email addresses are nowhere to be found. So.. what are they? They would look good in the faq too.

Coincidence Collection Project
More importantly, I've been working on a collection of coincidences, and would really like to get more submissions. They can be found at [http://www.pepper-land.net/coin/]. If you have a coincidence of any sort I want to hear about it! Send any and all coincidences to ccp@pepper-land.net.
hey duluth..

so i read my best-friend is comin' to visit ya.

here's some tips/ideas and such from ace duece.

best wishes!

from dc with lead, .k.

It's official.

Below is an email I just sent out to musicians, friends, press and club owners:


I am writing today to inform you that I will no longer be organizing the Homegrown Music Festival. When we started Homegrown I never thought a little party on my birthday weekend would get so huge.

I have been pondering ways to scale back the festival and I have come to the conclusion that I can no longer muster the enthusiasm needed to organize an event of this magnitude.

I want to thank everyone that has helped over the years and I hope that out of the ashes of Homegrown can grow something bigger and better. Duluth has so much talent and potential. I have no doubt that brighter days are in the future.

Thank you again and keep on rocking the free world.



This one cracks me up:

scuse me guy,

check-out itty-bitty tteeens squirted in their faces with wide mouths open by many guyys at the same time.  Hope you like it.

yours truly,


God Hates Shrimp!

Yea, verily! A pox unto shameless merchants of shellfish! You shall perish in the flames and lemon juice will be poured upon your open wounds!


Get your Geek on!

Geek Prom³is fast approaching. This years Prom will take place at the Great Lakes Aquarium on Saturday, April 17th. More details will follow soon but in the meantime watch this short video montage.

[12.8mb Quicktime movie]



The dogs are running tomorrow (er today I suppose). Main marathon starts 1pm Ordean School.


Poll Results

Nader for Prez?
Yes [21.98%, 20 votes]
No [78.02%, 71 votes]


hungry anyone?

I visited my friend today who just had a baby. She chose to have her baby in her home with a mid wife, which I thought was really great. The natural way, you know? Well, after giving birth to the baby, the midwife asked my friend if she wanted to keep the placenta. My friend thought that it was a little strange. What was she going to do with the placenta? Well, apparently it is becoming more popular to keep your placenta. Some people eat it. A lengthy discussion followed. I couldn't believe that mothers would eat their own afterbirth. But it's true. There's recipes for placenta lasagne, spaghetti, stew, and more.

hello all

Just another soul stuck near the lake. I've tried to fight it. Futile. I've now embraced it. It's much easier on the back this way. Just wanted to say hello.

Jadin [http://www.pepper-land.net]

It Keeps Getting More Outrageous

Bush-Cheney Ad

President Bush:
One of the things that must never change is the entrepreneurial spirit of America. This country needs a President who clearly sees that.

Laura Bush:
The strength, the focus, the characteristics that these times demand.

President Bush:
And as the economy grows, the job base grows and somebody who's looking for work will be more likely to find a job. I know exactly where I want to lead this country; I know what we need to do to make the world more free and more peaceful. I know what we need to do to make sure every person has a chance at realizing the American dream. I know what we need to do to continue economic growth so people can find work, to raise the standards at schools so children can learn, to fulfill the promise to America's seniors. Americans are hard working, decent, generous people. I'm optimistic about America because I believe in the people of America.

President Bush:
I'm President Bush and I approve of this message.

Ad entitled
"Safer, Stronger"
January 2001: The challenge:
An economy in recession.
A stock market in decline.
A dot com boom....gone bust. Then...
A day of tragedy. A test for all Americans.
Today, America is turning the corner.
Rising to the challenge.
Safer, stronger.
President Bush. Steady leadership in times of change.
President Bush:
I'm George W. Bush and I approve this message.

Voice Over:
The last few years have tested America in many ways.
Some challenges we've seen before.
And some were like no others.
But America rose to the challenge.
What sees us through tough times?
Freedom, faith, families, and sacrifice.

President Bush. Steady leadership in times of change.


Nice roll.

[1.8 mb Quicktime Movie]

thanks Barrett

More pictures.

I got my old fashioned film developed from the weekend. Enjoy.

Tour photos



Formal/semi-formal friday night BYOB party this week. Thanks.

Lets get this party started.


The Blog has been a bit stagnant as of late so I offer some of my weekend Low tour pictures to start your wednesday.

Tour Album


IPOD Resurrection

Strange things started happening to my beloved Ipod recently. The battery would not hold a charge, so I researched the problem and found I am not the only one having this problem. I found a solution which I will share "y'all".
The nonreplaceable internal chargeable battery in Apple's Ipod was advertised to last a lifetime, but many are dying after only 18 months. Apple's response was to charge the loyal consumer $250.00 to fix it after the 1 year warranty ran out. (to their credit I know people who had theirs repaired under warranty quickly and for free). The Neistat brothers found this unacceptable and vented their anger and frustration in the form of some brilliant "anti-advertisments" (cf. www.ipodsdirtysecret.com) which ultimately changed Apple's policy to a $99.00 battery replacement.
I still found this price too high for the replacement of a component which should not need replacing. I tried to buy just the battery from Apple for less, but no go. They said user replacement would void the warranty, but mine had already expired. I found several web sites that offer Ipod batteries for both the older "scroll wheel" Ipods and the newer slim models, so I ordered one from Mobile Knowledge Group (www.mkgsoft.com/batteries/ipodbattery) for $55.95 plus shipping. They were cool and it arrived quickly with a tool and instructions.
Here's what I did:
Drained the old battery. Opened the Ipod case with the PLASTIC (do not use metal) tool they provided. Carefully removed the metal backing and exposed the inner workings. Unplugged the old battery, removed the tape holding it in place, put in the new battery and reconnected it. Carefully snapped the silver backing back on to the unit. Recharged the battery for 3 hours and IT WORKS!!
Actually the whole process took less time then changing an inner tube on my moutain bike (damn Texas thorns).
I love Apple, and my powerbook G4 never leaves my side, but I am pissed about their handling of the Ipod battery problem. Admit fault, offer free replacement and keep the customer comng back. My Ipod has saved my life. I use it daily in the morning through my stereo, on my drive to work, or on my bike ride to school, all day and night studying and my beautiful peaceful late night bike rides home on empty streets. It saved me travel hell on transatlantic flights, 14 hous bus rides through central Turkey, and everyday working on boats inthe Mediterranean. Enough said. I assume there are others who share my love for their Ipods and hope you do not have any problems. If you do, I hope this info is helpful. E-mail me with any questions and I will try to help.