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March 16th, 2013

I Need To Get Out More

Spent all day indoors, 9:30 am - 6:30 pm. And it was apparently a lovely partly cloudy, warm day, if Yahoo Weather is to be trusted.

Got to work within the on-time window, put the 3/4 of a pie which I had not eaten last night onto the counter where the microwave and coffee maker is. I had to re-arrange the two half-filled boxes of Krispy Kreme. Fridays we get either bagels or donuts, I guess this was not bagel day.

From there I went right to trying to figure out why I couldn't reach any machine in the lab from my desk last night. Looked like it was fixed, except when I logged into the test machine and went to the GUI page which showed the video outputs (I had set up 384 of them), it snapped back to the home page before I could see what was configured. And it kept doing that. So I looked at the alarms page, which stayed up just long enough for me to read the first alarm, and then it snapped back to the home page. The alarm was saying the machine was over its bandwidth limit.


I has set up 384 outputs, each reserving about 25MB/s. That's about 5 HD programs. Should have set them to about 2.5 each. Or 1.5. Anyhow, the machine locked itself up (and my route to the lab) being so overloaded. I had to telnet into it and zap the configuration through the back door to get it back to normal. And then re-write last night's script to not use the default settings.

By then it was 12:30, and I'd been nibbling on some prepared cuttlefish shreds, which I took into the break room so I could watch Automation Guy play in the quarter-finals of the ping pong tournament. He threw all three games. Said his allergies were killing him, which they were, and he just wanted out of the competition. He has had this problem for a year, so I told him to see an allergist, because his doctor should have sent him to one in the first place when Claritin didn't help. He has plenty of PTO time to do this.

Pretty soon it was 2 pm, time for the boss' boss' team meeting. He always gives up a ton of interesting info, shows us the most cluttered slides on the planet, and some fool always turns off all the lights, which means I fall asleep, even when it's interesting.

That took till about 4, and Automation Guy said it was time for lunch, so I grabbed my cooler and joined him, finishing off most of the snacks I'd brought in case I didn't get a lunchtime break.

Back to my desk, past time to do my weekly report, almost done when boss calls me into his office. He commented on the late lunch "now dinner", and then told me he had my new salary info and also info about the annual merit bonus. The raise was about 2%, but the bonus comes to a month and a half of salary. :-)

Finished my report, then took off. Went to the Starbucks nearest home, and stayed till about 8. Lots of eye candy, but mostly take-away orders, and/or with an SO.

Home, got the mail, and there was the check from the Boskone art show. $100.  Two out of three photos which sold went for more than the minimum bid.

Dinner was home made chicken soup with store-bought frozen matzo balls. Yummy. Ate that while watching the latest Elementary. Lucy has been getting bigger parts, not just another pretty face.

Did a bit of laundry - the sheets & pillowcases. Microfiber, very light. Replaced them with the yellow microfiber set, bought at the same time as the blue but never used. Kaan helped me by diving under the fitted sheet as I was fitting it. And then escaping that to dive under the cover sheet while it was being deployed. He stayed there until both the quilt and the fleece half-blanket was on, and I was out of the room. It only took him a few seconds to follow me.

Plans for tomorrow:
Pick upRefuse the long-delayed package of Scottish fudge. North Carolina company emailed that the order was en route 2/28, and that's the last I heard. Monday I emailed asking the status, and in a few hours there was a shipping notice from UPS, it was being sent 2-day air, which took 4 days (because the Scottish Grocer hadn't actually sent it to UPS yet). The next day their email came explaining that the order never got sent to the warehouse, and they were shipping it right away.

So, bad review for The Scottish Grocer for having either the world's slowest email server or a craptastic shipping system. Or both. I wanted to cancel, because I'm sure I can find the stuff locally. Maybe I'll tell the apartment reps to return it.

Plans for tomorrow:

Wait around for the headboard to be delivered. I'm not sure if it will make it tomorrow, it was still in Utah this morning. Need to call Fedex to get an updated ETA.
Looks like great weather. Find something to do outdoors
Try making Thai crab cakes for dinner - I found a better recipe. What I was really looking for was fish cakes but made with crab & shrimp. Not New England style fall-apart mostly crab thingies. Tod Mun Pu.


The Circle Of Life

 My Baltimore sister and her husband started the afternoon in a hospital waiting room and ended it as grandparents. Nephew's wife had a boy. Tomorrow they go to the funeral of our friend. And so it goes.
Mostly wasted day for me. Called Fedex to see when the headboard was due to be delivered, they say between noon and 2, probably. It was 10:30 and I could have gone shopping and gotten back by noon, but instead I played on the PC and with the cats. Fedex did not arrive until 4:10, and the guy dropped the big box , scanned it and took off like a shot. Brought it inside and saw why - the box was torn in several places, had water damage at the top corner, a triangle about 6" on a side. Took the headboard out and the part under that damage was crushed. Tubular part, takes a lot to bend it, and a foot of it was staved in. photos behind the cutCollapse )
Phoned Fedex, they said the company from which I bought it has a special arrangement with them to not accept returns. Went online at Hayneedle and applied for an return for a refund and a package pickup - there is no way I am bringing this monster anywhere.

That pretty much nuked my whole day. I did some online stuff looking for alternatives, but my heart was not in it. Finally went for a massage, and then shopping first at Lion then at Ranch 99 to get some items in the new crab cake recipe I didn't have. Neither of them had kafir lime leaves, so I made do with the dried ones I have.

Did not follow the recipe exactly because it seemed to be too much work for what I was making, so I basically threw the garlic, cilantro, cut long beans and chopped scallion into the cuisinart and chopped it all, threw in about 10 frozen shrimp and chopped some more, then added the crab and made a lovely greenish paste, then the limes leaves, red curry paste and egg whites. It looks like St Patricks Day seafood paste.

Heated my cast iron skillet with about an inch of oil, maybe 2, and plopped a spoonfull of paste in. The oil wasn't hot enough and I got lots of crab cake particles. Next batch was better, quit after I'd made a dozen. There is plenty more to make tomorrow.

They look like hell, but taste really good. The crab comes through,even with the curry and other stuff. I have enough crab for one more try, next one I'll just blend the shrimp and crab into a paste with the egg whites, and add the chopped stuff without bending it in. Probably just stick to some cilantro and scallion greens. And they really need to be flattened, not dolloped. Don't know when I'll try that, though.

Got another note on the door, the new owners will be drastically cutting back the apartment's office hours, making it not feasible to have packages delivered there anymore. Must look for a mailbox service.

Plans for tomorrow:
none. Hopefully it will be sunny and I'll play outside.



Once again someone living outside the US won the auction for the cell phone which is not allowed to be taken overseas. Last time it was the Maldives, this time Hong Kong. Both times last-minute bids at the starting price.

I will try re-listing it one more time, but at a low price with a reserve price just high enough to make it worth my while.

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