May 26th, 2013


Start of a long weekend

Could not justify getting out of bed this morning. Finally was woken up by the text chime on  the phone at about 10. It was a restless night, and I'm blaming the radio stations. Lately I have been going to sleep with WNEW (D.C. news station), and if they get too loud (car or mattress commercials) I'll switch to Portland's classical station. Last night I went through all my presets at one time or another when what was playing woke me up.

Went online, did some shopping. Time for another case of cat crack.  And diabetes doc suggested switching to oatmeal for breakfast so I ordered some of those one-serving envelopes in bulk from amazon. While I was there I ordered a $17 backup camera.  But then I read the Kenwood's $250 camera's write-up, and snagged one on eBay.

Up and dressed, looked at the box which has been sitting there all week with the exercycle, and went for a massage instead. There is a place in far off Menlo Park I had not been to for a while, it's a 20-minute drive. For a change I found parking right in front (the rear camera helped me || park somewhat, but not enough). Pushed the bell button, nothing happened. Noticed the sign on the door was not there anymore. I guess they are out of business.

Plan B was a place close to home, which turned out to be a good choice.

Home, nibbled the equivalent calories to lunch, watched some mindless TV till 5:30, then drove to Caltrain to catch the 6:10 which got me to Redwood City at 6:45. From there it was a 10 minute walk to locate the Dragon Theater. Backtrack to the new Old Spaghetti Factory which was mobbed. That's not going to getr me fed and out the door before 6:30. Ditto the bakery cafe. Found a new place called Fishes Wild, which specializes in ecologically progressive fish (salmon, troiut, etc.) but the first thing on the combo menu was BBQ beef short ribs, Korean style, so I got that. Best I had ever had. Friendly service, cute high school girls mostly.

7:30-ish, walked back to the theater, showed the print-out for my pass, but they only needed my name.

I had never been in there before, and it is a vast improvement over the little space they had in Palo Alto. I'm guessing 80 seats (compared to 48) and lots of places to hang lights. What's going on for the current three weekends is a play development "factory". Three locally written new plays, first reading this weekend (Fri-Sat-Sun) second and third readings the next two weekends. Feedback sessions after the performances, re-writes and edits by the next show.

Tonight was Sexbot 2600 by Jake Arky. After his second wife leaves him, the CEO of a computer games company develops a sexbot to keep him company. It has some serious bugs, and pretty much anything about the rest of the plot would be a spoiler. I enjoyed the play for the most part, it's much farther along than most of the first readings I've been involved with. At this point maybe the ending needs to be adjusted, but more than anything it needs the cast members to match the very specific physical descriptions in the script. And it needs to be staged - there is a lot of physical action which people standing behind music stands can't pull off.

I had to duck out during the feedback session to catch the 10:07 back home, and the door to the lobby was locked. I had a choice of going out the emergency exit (noisy!), going back into the theater and walking across to the other side to get out the other door (disruptive) or using the door to the adjoining sushi place.

I made it to the train with 5 minutes to spare. The train ride was entertaining - some Asian-American cheerleaders from Mountain View high school were practicing this chant, six of them in a pair of facing seats. After they left, there were some folks with Indian accents behind me taunting their son with reports of how many more minutes to go, every 30 seconds. In their favor I have to admit it answered his "are we there yet?"

Home, had a snack, wrote in the white board the stuff I ordered (I erase stuff as it arrives). Decided I can build the bike tomorrow or Monday. No plans for Monday yet.

Plans for tomorrow:
YOTB concert at 1:30. I try to get there by noon for parking.

Now what do I do?

It's a LONG time between 9 am and 12:30, so I dragged the box with the exercise bike into the livingroom, pulled everything out, and read the directions. "Some" assembly required, my ass. They did make it simpler than most bikes, but by the time I had everything laid out and had read the instructions it was time to stuff my baritone into the trunk and go to Shoup Park for the band concert.

The way the concerts work, we don't know what we are playing, or in what order, until we get there and grab a program. There are hints during the rehearsals, but this first month was also for trying out new numbers and reviewing old ones to see if they should be retired.

Since this is Memorable Day weekend, we did a lot of patriotic stuff. And this is the only time except the 4th of July when we play the Star Sprinkled Banana. I won't be at the 4th ceremonies this year, Westercon calls. westercon66

On the way home I stopped off at Draeger's expecting them to have the sheep milk cheese I like, but they didn't. They had some other stuff of the goat milk kind which I got. Next stop, The Milk Pail, which did have the sheep milk cheeses, and I also grabbed three chunks of fondue cheese and a sourdough bastard for tonight's dinner. In the back of my mind I thought there might be an ingredient which I also should have bought, but couldn't think what.

Home, tried some almond butter as a snack (Diabetes doc suggested it) but that stuff is not very tasty, I ended up making an & jelly sandwich with it. That worked.

Got down to assembling the bike, and hit a snag right off. The first thing to attach was the rear cross piece on which the bike stands. There is a similar front piece. In the instructions, the two pieces have different part numbers, but their drawings are identical. IRL one has wheel-like inserts, the other doesn't. After a while I just guessed. Managed to not miss any pieces until the very end. There is a holder which needs two screws to attach to the bike. I have no idea what it is supposed to hold. It is too thin to hold a water bottle. Maybe it can hold a cell phone or music player. Anyway, I can't find the second screw. When I vacuumed after the build (lots of Styrofoam bits) I heard what could have been a small screw get sucked up. I don't think it's worth digging for.

Time for dinner. Fondue requires more assembly than I remembered. And the thing I forgot to buy was white wine, but I still had half a jug of something cheap, so no worries. It took a while to grate all the cheese, even using the food processor.

It came out great, I finished about half a loaf of sourdough. There is enough left over for omelets, I just need some eggbeaters which are not past their expiration date.

I bought this particular bike because it's supposed to fold up for storage, but folded up it only takes up about 2 feet less room. :-(

I tried it out, it works well, has a smooth feel (magnetic traction) and I got the seat height right the first time.

Plans for tomorrow:
No clue.