Hornets and Toolbars

Yep. I’ve got a splitting headache.

See, my dad and I were outside doing yardwork today. We were preparing to dismantle and reassemble our fireplace thing when I noticed hornets and wasps flying around. I peered into some of the cinder blocks which make up the fireplace. Little too dark too see. I look over my sunglasses. Sure enough. I spot about four of the suckers. So I tell my dad this, and he goes into the garage and gets some hornet and wasp killer. As I’m crouching to get a good angle so I can spray this stuff into the openings in the cinder blocks, I go through the standard checklist:

Do I shake the can before use? If a hornet or wasp flies directly at me, will I be able to run away? Am I supposed to hold this can upside-down or right-side-up? When I press the button, am I going to get this stuff on myself? Which way is the wind blowing? Okay, the wind is going to spray this stuff on me — can I move in a way so that it won’t spray on me? Nope. There’s only one place to spray from, because I’m basically spraying into a tiny little cave, so if the wind gets me, it gets me.

And I press the button. And I basically get covered with a fine mist of highly toxic chemicals. Chemicals designed specifically to kill living things.

So after we had called it a day and I was sitting on the couch, I couldn’t figure out why I had such a splitting headache. Now that I’m in my room, away from a TV, I’ve had some time to reflect on the day and I can only assume that I killed about a million brain cells when I got sprayed with the old bug killer. So there you go.

In other news, Google now has a version 2 beta of its toolbar, which includes a pop-up blocker and a weblog updater. This sounded interesting to me, since I recently installed a pop-up blocker and wrote a post about it, and also because I have a weblog of my own. The thing is, the weblog updater on Google’s beta toolbar only works with Blogger. I actually ran the first version on Historical Context using Blogger, but I didn’t really love the interface or the fact that you were required to put Blogger’s logo on your site. I also found it strange that Google would endorse Blogger, since I can’t really remember Google entering an explicit partnership with anybody. As it turns out, Google purchased Blogger in February of this year. I would prefer that a toolbar button just open a text editor window and then append my stuff via FTP, but I guess that’s asking a bit much.

Anyway, although I like Google — it’s my home page — I just don’t want to add it on to my browser. Hell, I didn’t really want to install a pop-up blocker before I tried one. To switch gears a little, I think the fact that Google has created a pop-up blocker goes a long way to reinforce what I said a few posts back: Microsoft really has to add pop-up blocking to point release of Internet Explorer. And soon. Additionally, has anyone ever noticed that when you type in the address or hit the bookmark for certain sites, then switch windows while you’re waiting for them to load — BAM! That first site moves to the front when it’s done loading? I’m pretty sure that both ESPN.com and CNN.com do this. I think this is almost as annoying as more obvious pop-up ads, and only slightly better because you actually want to read that page. What to call this incursion? Bring-to-fronts? Snap-ups? Top-ups? I think I like “top-ups.” Make a note of it.

Hornets and Toolbars