December 1st, 2012


Not so fried

One of the things I dislike about the new apartment is it is a 2-block walk to the other side of the complex to get the mail, and it usually isn't worth the trip. Especially today, in the rain, with nothing but a Christmas ad.

Worked from home this morning because I woke up at the crack of OMG with a splitting headache, which I think actually stared when I discovered at about 2:30 am that after I told the new Squeezebox radio in the kitchen to synchronize with the not as new one in the bedroom, when I turned on the one in the bedroom at low volume to the easy-to-sleep-to Thai easy listening station, the one in the kitchen would tune to the same station, at its last known volume which was LOUDER. And using the remote to turn it off also turned off the one in the bedroom, so I had to walk out to the kitchen and turn off the power switch. And back in the bedroom, un-synced them.

Tried to get back to sleep after taking 2 Anacin, but Domino thought it was snack time, and my subconscious thought it was time to remember last night's lap dance at the strip club. Her stage name is
totally wrong for a petite blonde with next to zero knowledge of Egyptian deities.

I finally dragged myself out of bed and did the morning rituals, including treats for the feline, went to the PC and sent email to the team that I would be working from home. And went back to bed.

I did eventually remote into my work PC and get a lot of cut and paste work done and at noon-ish had lunch and then went to the office and finished the job. And then ran some tests which I could also have done from home, but are easier without the extra layer of network lag. A new engineer came by for some clues on how to use an encryption feature I've become an expert with, which I did have to be in the office to do. 

Ordered an electric fondue pot on amazon, using some of my Discover card cash back bonus.

Just as I was getting ready to leave for the weekend, my calendar popped up a reminder that I needed to write my weekly report, which would be longer than usual because it had to cover the last 2 weeks.

Wanted to go straight home and watch the Stanford game, but needed some stuff at Safeway. I can't believe they don't carry windshield washer fluid anymore. And I forgot the whipped cream. But I did find little flasks of Kirschwasser and some nice goat brie.

Am pissed at George Takei. I pre-ordered his new book, which means a downloaded pdf, but they password protected it in the stupidest way - every time you open the file you need to enter the password. It is gobbledygook mixed case and digits and not easy to type into the Kindle. And no way to store it on the Kindle to cut and paste. So that's one book I will not be reading.

Watched the last quarter of the Stanford game, which was very exciting, apparently much more so than the previous 3 quarters, and they won, which sends them to the Rose Bowl. Good thing, because it's kind of redundant to send UCLA there.

Plans for tomorrow:
Surgical strike Shopping: A different Safeway for whipped cream and French onion soup mix, Trader Joe's for fondue, maybe Bevmo for a real bottle of Kirschwasser, and maybe Milk Pail for sheep brie. It's a long drive, but there's a TJ and Bevmo in that shopping center. And Safeway is across the street. And an auto parts store across the other street.

Sci-fi readers/writers meetup in the evening, if they announce a location.

Shop and Awe

Stayed in bed till 10, with Domino yowling at me early and often, but I was sleepy. She even jumped up on the bed and got in my face once. It didn't work.

When I finally did get up I saw she had barfed on the recliner seat. She's not suppose to do that. I keep it covered with a towel, so all I needed to do was throw the towel in the washer, but still...

Did my usual FB stuff, then remembered I had a groc list on Evernote. The targets were:
Safeway (whipped cream, French onion soup mix)
Trader Joe's (Fondue)
Bevmo (Kirsch, and if they had it Sabra liqueur, and, if they had it, Anthon Berg tiny booze-filled chocolate bottles)
Milk Pail (sheep and goat cheeses)
Any auto parts store (RainX washer fluid)

Thought about it, and realized that all those stores are within a block of each other in Mountain View, so hopped on the expressway (which was almost deserted) and headed there.

Bevmo - check, all three items, took forever to find because no help from staff and cleverly hidden on bottom shelves in not-quite-the-right-sections
Milk Pail - check, three small packages of my favorite sheep cheese (it's all susandennis's fault!), a couple of goat cheeses, a round loaf of sliced asiago sourdough bread, a couple of their fondue mixes complete with ceramic bowl - on sale for $3.99 each)
TJ's - check, two fondues and two sourdough mini-rounds)
Safeway - check, two packets of Knorr French onion soup mix, and two cans of whipped cream. Had to buy the real stuff, they have stopped stocking light and replaced it with chocolate, caramel and peppermint flavored.
O'Reilly auto parts - check, two jugs of RainX washer fluid on sale.

Got email from a friend who lives in that neighborhood, asking if I wanted to come over or meet her somewhere for coffee. I had promised to hook up her Comcast adapter box, so I went over.

As of today, Comcast no longer sends analog signals on their cables, but they are required by law to provide signals for all the locally broadcast stations. So what they have done is replace the signal on channels 2-13 with a message saying you need an adapter box to see these channels.

What they don't say is most of those are on the cable in HD digital form, just not always on the same channel number.

My friend has a mental block against trying to understand anything new in technology, and threw a fit when she saw channels 2-13 give her this ugly page of text instead of video, and there was no understanding that she can skip those and simply up-channel to 2-1, 3-1, 4-1, etc. Well, not quite because 3 is actually 11-1 and I never did find 4 because she kept yelling at me. So I hooked up the converter, and now she gets the same old ugly analog signal further uglified by the conversion, on the channel numbers with which she thought she was familiar. But not quite, because she did not know that NBC moved to channel 11, which is cable channel 3, in 2001. She thought NBC was still channel 4, and was livid that it was not 4-1 on the TV tuner.

And then after I got her hooked up the way she wanted she insisted that I change the TV settings to stretch the 4:3 images to 16:9, because why did she buy a wide screen TV if the picture won't fill the screen?  Arghhhhh.

Finally she had a hissy fit when the universal remote I'd set up for her several years ago (so long ago I forgot I'd done it) can't control the channels on the Comcast converter.

Sheesh. She rarely watches TV, she mostly plays DVDs on it, using the HDMI input. The Comcast box uses a coax cable connection. Stupid of them.

Home, just in time to watch 3/4 of the Wisconsin drubbing of Nebraska. Something is seriously wrong with a ranking system in which an unranked team can put up 70 points against #12. It was a fun game, though, the cornholers managed to score 30 by the end of the game, but by that time the Badgers had their 3rd string defense on the field.

Also caught the exciting last half of the Kansas State - Texas game. KS was ranked #17 TX #18, but the game wasn't that close, Texas looked like they were on Quaaludes half the time.

Watched the ends of the games and the wrap-up show while having TJ's fondue with sourdough chunks, apple chunks and banana slices. Mixed in about 1/4 cup of kirsch and it was yummy. The alcohol mostly evaporates off, leaving a hint of cherry.

Chocolate chip cookie dough ice cream with whipped cream for dessert. Whipped cream for Domino, against my better judgment.
Oh, and I bought a few of didjiman's breathtakingly beautiful calendars. You should too.

I've received about four thank yous for my calendar from friends & relatives, the mailman seems to have gotten them around the left coast and upstate NY. One less international mailing because the one which went to Russia last year was handed to a person at work who was re-hired a few months ago.

Plans for tomorrow:

Photo shoot in a Union City studio at 10 am
Maybe find a Lion supermarket and see if they have Blue Dell tomato sauce.
Sit on the patio and watch the rain, and read from the Kindle.