October 6th, 2005


Bye Bye Cinco de Octobero

In half an hour or so we'll pass the fifth. Don't bogart that bottle...

It's been a day.

Started the morning loading tunes to Sony's ATRAC3 format, four hours of audio fits onto one hour of mini-disk space, and I have nine 80-minute disks. Discovered a limitation Sony's Bet MD box - after a certain number of tracks, somewhere around 50, the device stops creating separate folders for each CD, and also stops attaching CDDB data to the track list. So I have all these discs which have unidentified albums and untitled tunes.

The alternative is to switch to the higher quality audio format, which will give me fewer than 50 tracks per disc, but that means carrying around more discs, which kind of defeats the purpose of having a small footprint audio player. But then again, I don't care about titles and labels all that much, it's mostly for the plane rides and an hour or two of 2nd class sleeping berth train time before I fall asleep.

Anyhow, troubleshooting this problem made me rush through the usual morning ablutions, and skipped making breakfast at home, packed some peanut butter and jelly into a snap-cap container for breakfast, and put a couple of bunches of grapes in zip-lock bags for lunchtime dessert and snack and booked to work.

Work was kind of quiet for me, when I arrived the other tech and the IT guy had taken over that hacked customer case, and two different engineering groups needed to use my two servers to duplicate bugs I'd reported, so I couldn't play with them. About the only useful thing I did was explain to one of our sales guys why there was no such thing as a "quick start" class for our latest product. It took me about half an hour just to show him why the class couldn't be taught in an hour. He got the point.

Got a call from a headhunter with the perfect job for me, except it was a contract and didn't pay enough to cover my medical insurance. Oh well, I'm not really wanting to leave till the end of the year anyway.

Perl class was good tonight. She lectured for an hour and 40 minutes, a new record, and explained a lot of things better than the book did. Sometime during class I had voicemail on my cell phone, and when I checked it, it was REI calling to say my bike was ready to be picked up (a day early) and they were open till 9. It was now 8:30. Mission College to Saratoga should be 15 minutes, I thought, but I hit every light on Lawrence Expressway, and got there in 25. But that worked fine, it only took a minute to do the paperwork, and the final cost was $40 less than the estimate. Very affordable, and now the bike has shiny new tires, a new front gear shift cable, and a thoroughly cleaned chain and gear system. They also washed the bike, so now I know it really is white & purple and not a hazy shade of brown. I think tomorrow I'll take it out at lunchtime and make it dirty again.

Got the election pamphlet in the mail. Lots of issues which appear to be personal issues some folks have with the Governator. I don't think I'll bother to get an absentee ballot.
  • Current Music
    Top of the World Carpenters
Inigo Montoya

Family Day at the Hospital

It started on Sunday with me telling Mom to go to emergency Monday, and her compromising by saying she would call the advice nurse. Tuesday I sent email offering to send my folks concert tickets for their anniversary - Sarah Chang, my favorite violinist, was performing with the Seattle Symphony on their anniversary. This morning Dad replied that they couldn't make it, Mom had spent Monday night in the hospital, and they don't go downtown at night anymore. And call my sister in Baltimore, she's been in the hospital too.

So I call my sister, and she is just out of the hospital with a whole host of issues, including a twisted spine, super-high blood pressure with a super-low pulse rate, and assorted chemical imbalances. I asked if I could call her Twisted Sister and she told me it hurts when she laughs. And she said our aunt had been in the hospital this week too, when something went terribly wrong after a colonoscopy. And aunt's grandson was in the hospital with meningitis. All of this on Rosh Hashana. Coincidence?
  • Current Mood
    distressed distressed
Inigo Montoya

Is It Dead Yet?

Killing time while the first batch of yellow curry chicken drumsticks is wokking. That'll be my contribution to the Peace Corps alumni potluck Saturday at Lafeyette reservoir.

Also happening in the background is some major uploading of photos from Shoreline Park taken during the past two weeks. Much Critter Goodness there. There's a hawk perched at the top of a tree, pelican group feeding madness, very close-ups of a squirrel, a screaming seagull, Great Blue Heron in a swamp, assorted waterfowl, the obligatory burrowing owl photo and a series of photos of a pair of crows who were pulling up the freshly-placed sod to get the insect goodness underneath.

Also uploading are the shots I took on my bike trip from Oakville to St. Helena up in Napa Valley.
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As with all my photos, you can find them here in my gallery pages
  • Current Music