July 18th, 2014


A full Day

Domino woke me up with a wet nose to the elbow, at about 8 am. Took my time, did not want to be on the road till 10 at the earliest. It's an hour's drive to Walnut Creek where the Celebration of Life was. Traffic was more than usually full of drivers cutting people off, and if I still had a temper and a .45, there would have been many shattered rear windows. My GPS kept warning me ab out traffic jams, but did not, as the manual promised, take me on a detour to avoid them.

Got there at 11 for the 11:30 event, found a place in the shade to park, and read some more of a novel named Nexus on my Nexus. Excellent writing, fully deserving of the Hugo it is nominated for. I may not have time to read any of the other nominees before voting ends at the end of the month.

As usual for a Peace Corps Volunteer alumni event, it started late. Which means the service at the Catholic church ran late, which probably means it started late too. Phil would not have been surprised, but he would have been mildly exasperated. I remember him as having much patience, also much personal integrity and consideration for others' time.

The Celebration was well attended, they ran out of tables and seats along the walls. There was a simple buffet lunch with massive dark chocolate covered strawberries for dessert. Several old friends from the NorCal group were there, almost everyone I wanted to see. And no one I didn't. And I finally met his wife. I had no idea he was married, she was not part of his Peace Corps life, they knew each other from working at Wells Fargo, and her thing has always been Loaves & Fishes, and food banks, which they did together. Many L&F people were there. No one from Wells Fargo, his wife said. Not so strange, he retired 13 years ago.

Stayed till 1, when it was clear that nobody was going to use the microphone at the front of the buffet area. I had some interesting conversations with people I didn't know, and was touched that when I said my goodbyes, his wife's last words were "Please remember Phil".  That I will.

Drove straight home, took a nap. Domino kept guard. Needed the nap because it had been a fitful night, late getting to sleep, weird dreams, unfinished business. Slept for an hour or so.

Took myself to Lowe's in search of Thyme to replace the strawberries as ground cover, but all they had was some faux German stuff which can't handle full sun. I got a new variety of mint and some lavender instead. Maybe this weekend will look elsewhere for thyme.

Heated up some fried chicken for dinner. Domino has been obnoxious, pawing my leg when I sit down to eat, even after I show her it's not something she likes. :-(

Glued in my teeth, loaded up the baritone horn and went to rehearsals. There were moments of in-tunedness, but not many. My lip survived better than most weeks because we played mostly in my range.

Home, my t-shirt project is on hold until the spring-loaded rods I ordered arrive. The screw-adjust one I started with fell down again, with only about 50 shirts on it. It is now apparent that I will need to move one section of Shirts I Never Wear to the 2nd bedroom's closet, joining the Jackets I Only Wear When It's Really Cold. T-shirts will replace those.

In chemistry news, the sourdough starter is going like gangbusters. Tonight instead of dumping half from each jar, I poured it off into another jar, fed it more rye flour & water, and put it in the fridge, for one of the tuba players. She will trade me some home made jam, next week.

Plans for tomorrow:
Stir down my two jars of starter & put in the fridge.
Maybe my insulin will be ready to pick up at Kaiser.
If yes, also go to Medical Records to have my records dumped onto a USB drive.

Need to get my nails done

Yesterday, actually.

Got bored at work waiting for Engineer to help me reproduce a difficult to find bug, so started up the test, put it in the background on the PC, brought up a fresh Word doc and created my travel doc. I used to always carry a little notepad, and had a doc formatted to the 2.5"x4" or something like that, of the pad, and kept an updated list of all my upcoming travels, with logos of the airlines, train, hotel, rental car co., etc. Quit a miniature work of art. I printed that out, and glued it into the back pages of the note pad.

Did away with the paper pad years ago, now keep the doc on my PC, and on my phone's SD card.  So now I have all the pertinent info in there, the only thing I think I'm missing is the train # & seat assignment for my London to Brussels trip.

Finished that, checked the test, no error yet, went to Kaiser to pick up my insulin pens & needle tips, this time they gave me enough 9 packs of 5, each pen is good under ideal conditions (no wasted shots) 2 days. So, 90 days, which is what they should have given me last time. So I have enough of both kinds of insulin to last through the trip and then some. I refilled all my pills too, I should be okay there also.

Forgot, sort of, about the meeting which I was afraid might result in Guy Upstairs Who Mumbles storming out because Guy Who Knows Everything doesn't know when to stop drilling down when he has made his point. Thank goodness Boss will be back Monday. I went to lunch at about 1:45 a couple of miles from the office, the meeting was scheduled for 2. I left a bowl of cole slaw untouched so I would be only half an hour late, but when I got there, no meeting. Canceled by Guy Who Knows Everything with a note in the email that basically he was giving into the "small groups" plan Guy Upstairs Who Mumbles wants to foist on us, as a CYA for him and his team not doing their jobs.

Had a moment of Zen. Our Israeli hardware head saw my Hebrew lyric on my white board, and got the joke. It's the final chorus from a well-known Israeli song of the 50's called "Tomorrow". In the song, it's the dream that tomorrow all this war crap will become peace crap, maybe tomorrow. If not tomorrow, the song says, some future tomorrow. In context of the company, it refers to when our "notwork" will become a "network".

I was up too late last night, again. This time, a package from Amazon was much bigger than expected. I had ordered a recording of the 1995 musical Baker Street to see how the amazing Ray Jessel wrote music/lyrics back in the day.

I thought I was getting a CD, but it is vinyl. So I cleared a space on the computer desk L (easy to do now that I have another table in the room), moved the turntable from the home theater system I had never bothered plugging it into, scared up a power cord, RCA cables and a stereo RCA-to-mini jack plug and tried to record in Goldwave from the read line input. Didn't work. Photo needs an amplified input. Move the plug to the front panel mike input, and it worked fine, except for a major 60Hz hum. I recorded both sides, will filter out the hum later. Goldwave has widgets for that. Will burn a CD and transfer to the iPod when I'm done. Low priority.

Also to be listened to is a CD which came with a script from a fellow I cast in Arsenic and Old Lace at the UW in 1969 (we were in a drama department children's play before that). It's a musical parody on 30-minute Hamlet. Trivia time. The man I cast as Einstein declined, he was only auditioning for fun, he said. Cold feet, I said. I was all out of men, so I cast a woman. She is now his wife. She found me on FB.

And in other media news, in the background, a 7GB Quicktime file is in the process of being converted into blu-ray format. Little Shop of Horrors from the Sunnyvale production I was in. Music director and the guitarist put it together, and they will have DVDs for us at tomorrow night's viewing party, but I had promised to burn Blu-ray for anyone who wanted. He was a little late getting me the file...his original FinalCut file was 108GB, which tells me he doesn't know much about video production. The reason the guitar player was involved is he claimed he had the madd skilz to mix the audio, but when I played the .m4v file I could hardly hear the audio. I may have to fix that.

Watched some of MTV's Virgin Territory about four virgins, but they are all boring lightweights. Turned it off after 25 minutes. The Christian woman and her faux Christian fiance are disgusting.

Plans for tomorrow:
Rocket Launch?
Shop for thyme plants?
Mulch from the dump
LSOH view party