I hate National City, except for one employee named Laeticia who's the only person I've been in contact with there that can get anything done. In summary, my card's finally been activated for use as a credit card, my cable bill went insane but has finally been paid (though they still don't send me bills or statements or anything) and I've got that more or less under control. Incidentally, in checking that I was giving them the right zip code (as I gave them the address when I'd just moved here and the whole zip code system in Chicago was still somewhat mindboggling), I noticed that the USPS zip code finder requests that you put enter a zipcode. It's not an actual inconvenience, but seems as though something that shouldn't be.
Two tests next week (Monday and Tuesday) followed by Thanksgiving, and the quarter system is becoming more and more effective at giving me an ulcer.
I don't usually comment about the whole Iraq thing, because there are thousands of other bloggers that already do that and I'm really not that interested in trying to add even more to that. That said, the US Army said today that white phosphorus incendiary shells were used in the fight for Falluja as weapon against insurgents (as opposed to the original stated purpose, illumination), which the BBC is claiming runs somewhat counter to the campaign against Iraq's use of chemical weapons. The WP rounds aren't banned by any treaties to which the US is a signatory and it is generally regarded as less bad than most true "chemical weapons" unless aimed at civilians, though white phosphorus does cause pretty nasty burns if it comes into contact with, well, anything. Daily Kos is freaking out about this whole issue, some others aren't saying anything and I'm trying desperately to land somewhere in the middle. WP weapons were used in the Second World War extensively by the British (in the Dresden firebombing campaign and in premade Molotov Cocktails assembled in case of a raid by the Germans according to Emsley's The 13th Element), but if your campaign lists "use of chemical weapons" as part of its raison d’être it's probably not the best idea.
Jason Bay agreed to a four year extension, which is...good. If the Pirates are actually going to try to build an offense, they'll need Bay.
New steroid policy, incidentally, which the players have agreed to which sets much harsher penalties for steroid use (50 games for the first offense, 100 for the second, set on fire for the third) which is long overdue. Pat of WHYGAVS is right in that it's only a start (as it doesn't include blood testing, which is the only way to detect Human Growth Hormone), but it's a good one. It shows that they're at least somewhat serious about trying to eliminate this problem.