February 1st, 2014

Inigo Montoya

E Before I

Doing my part to alleviate the California drought, I skipped taking a shower this morning. I did not skip the deodorant.

Just as I was totally out of anything to do at work, boss assigned me a bug to look into. It's one QA really should not be working on because it's a tech support/field engineering issue. Neither of them was able to replicate a customer's issue in our lab, and after many months they asked the customer to send a pair of machines, or more, so we can test in our lab using the equipment which is experiencing he problem. We have a feature in our device which lets you set up a backup unit identical to up to 10 production units. If a production unit has a serious problem, the backup will take over. Apparently the customer's backup has been taking over at the wrong times.

Boss say see one of the support guys for the customer's units, so I do. But (a) he only has one unit, (b) it is from a different customer site and (c) it's for a different issue and (d) there's only one and both issues need at least two to run the test.

So I continued to have almost nothing to do until it was time to write my weekly report.

Lunch was at Amarin Thai's hole in the wall place near Mission College, where the challenge is to arrive late enough to find parking but not late enough to be turned away because they close at 2 pm. I had the garlic rice with garlic spinach and duck. There did not appear to be any garlic in what they served, but it was still pretty good.

Back at the work parking lot I phoned Sassy Nails and made an appointment for 5:30. I didn't make it out the door till 5:25, which should have only made me 3 minutes late, but traffic was slow and more than the usual inconsiderate slobs were wedging their cars across two lanes, blocking intersections, not letting people through the commuter lane to make right turns. Whoever decided that commuter lanes in the bay area expressways should be the right-hand lane needs to meet a violent end at the hands of a sober driver.

Ms. Sassy (not her real name) waited for me, because she had made me an hour late last time, and I was her last client of the day since they were closing an hour early for Chinese/Vietnamese New Year, which technically was last night. It still took too long because she was interrupted every 3 minutes to answer the phone or greet a customer (to say they were closed). She needs to hire a receptionist.

Went from there next door to the massage place, only went in for a 1/2-hour session. Good masseuse, in her 40s, ended with a face massage which felt better than I thought it would.

Home, there was a package by the side door - a pack of 3 Jockey briefs.  And two in the mailbox - a peephole wide angle lens for the front door and  2014 America The Beautiful quarters proof sets, one for me and one for my little sister.

I was going to install the peephole, I knew it needed a 5/8-inch drill bit which I thought I had, but all I found was a super-long and a normal 1/2" and a 1". And a 2: hole saw.

During the day I did some research online on the latest wireless standards, which claim to be able to equal (or come close enough to not matter) 1Gb streaming. And ended up buying an ASUS router and a PCIE card for the big PC. Did not get a USB adapter for the laptop because USB can't keep up past 800Mbps at best, more like half that IRL.

Allstate sent me a note asking me to fill out a customer satisfaction survey. I was not satisfied at all with how they handled the insurance on the new home, but they did okay on auto. After about 5 pages, it was clear the survey was not set up to cope with anything so complicated. I gave up after 10, having become completely dissatisfied with the survey itself.

Dinner was a Safeway Select mac-n-cheese-n-bacon, followed by most of a wedge of soft French cheese spread on slices of steamed sourdough baguette. Took two Lactaid pills just in case.

Looked at the SJ Astronomical Society's web site for events where I might get some pointers on how to take photos through my telescope, and they seem to meet twice a week for informal stargazing and helping the unwashed. Membership was a mere $20 so I joined, and put the next two sessions on my calendar.

Finally got the invite to audition, but in a roundabout way. I did not renew my howierd.com domain, it is due to expire in April. It;s sole purpose is to send an auto-reply to tell people to spell "weird" correctly and try again. The email was sent to howeird@howierd.com. So he should get the auto-reply, and if he's paying attention will re-send the message to right address. Since it took him three days to get back to me I'll give him a day before replying.

Plans for tomorrow:
Buy a 5/8" drill bit
Install the peep hole lens
Photo shoot at 2 pm
Janice coffee klatch at 5:30