Tuesday, November 30, 2004

Interesting places09:13 AM - A link too good not to post

I was looking for the lyrics to an old school rhyme, and found this site, particularly the Songs section where I found the lyrics I was looking for. You absolutely have to check it out if you were a child anywhere in North America and would like a trip down the ol' memory lane. I don't actually recognize a lot of the stuff, but they have such old favorites as Bumble Bee, Miss Lucy, and Gopher Guts, with of course different variations sent in by different people. It definitely took me back.

And yes, I'll probably end up being spammy today. Must be feeling like making up for the sheer lack of posts lately, or something. I just feel... chatty.

Rants08:26 AM - Blargh!

Would it fucking kill them not to do really loud drilling and running a gajillion feet of cords through the fucking vents above our heads, when people are trying to fucking work? There are other shifts that people can be paid to do this shit on, after all... The super loud drilling started not long after I got here, and went on in really loud bursts for a half hour at least, and just now there was about 5 minutes solid of wires being shoved through the duct work or vents or something. Or on them, I don't actually know; they're apparently doing this from upstairs, which I'm sure has those people quite happy as well. Sheesh!

Bleh. Haven't updated in almost a week. I actually spend less time being internet-sociable (reading LJs and writing blog entries, being on IM, etc.) when I'm home, and I was home for 5 days straight, so... yeah. I'm still getting back into feeling like writing again. I had to rant though, just had to.

listening to: wires sliding and banging along vents
whining no longer being accepted

Wednesday, November 24, 2004

Life01:45 PM - Wheee

I'm very, very glad I took the day off today. It started snowing instead of raining by 11:30, and it's definitely coming down. That one inch they were predicting for us last night is probably going to be an underestimate unless it stops in the next half hour. Judging by the grass, we already have just about that. Of course, the thing I read at about 11am they said changing over to snow completely by 3pm. (Perhaps it's not yet snowing in the southern areas of St. Louis...) I had to get two scrips from Walgreens, too, so J was nice enough to take us in his nice shiny all wheel drive. :) I tell you what, we were a lot safer than if I'd taken my tiny, light, front wheel drive car. It's also good that it's just slushy wet on the roads so far, since it started with lots of people already driving on the roads and they really haven't gotten cold yet, and it's a bonus that we actually saw a MODoT salt truck out on our way back.

The Walgreens trip was worth it, 'cause they had these brush/scraper combos that don't suck, and we got two. They have a nice long handle, with the brush and scraper opposite each other both on the same end, with both being a good 6-8 inches long. And the plastic the scraper is made out of is good quality, thick stuff, so it won't snap so easily like the cheap ones with the 3" cheap scraper on the end and the brush along the side of the handle. (I've broken two of those scraping ice.) Then we decided to grab lunch before we headed home, since we're pretty sure we won't be going anywhere for dinner, and it's only gonna get worse out there. We went to Bandanna's barbecue because they're quite fast, and very good, then took our time in all the traffic getting home. Again, I'm very glad I don't have to drive home in rush hour from work in this nasty stuff.

The happy hour last night was fun. Trailhead Brewery, for those who've never seen it, is a large restaurant and pub, and has more fans than you can shake a stick at plus a very high ceiling so even when a lot of people are smoking (which they didn't seem to be last night) you really don't get the smoky bar environment. Our group was hanging out upstairs on the top floor, and we had an excellent waitress getting everyone's drinks & food. Their seasonal beer was a pumpkin spice ale, which I liked. It smelled more like pie than it tasted; it was sort of like their blonde ale with some nutmeg hints to it, which was nice. And of course their other stuff was good as always (I had their Trailhead Red amber ale and their raspberry ale as well).

A coworker of mine and his wife were able to come for a little while, and brought their 8 week old girl. I've seen her in person 3 times now, and every time she just gets cuter and cuter. You may be used to hearing people say all babies are cute, but we all know that's not a 100% given. This baby is absolutely adorable. Not to mention, she's a very good baby. Her mom says she only cries when there's something wrong (diaper, food, sleepy, etc.) but never just to be cranky. Anyway, they had ordered food, and about two minutes before it came, she started waking up, and they commented that always happens whether they're eating at home or out, and that it's rare for them both to eat at the same time, because she wants to be held at all times when she's awake. J offered to hold her so they could both eat, and her mom handed her over right then & there, didn't have to ask her twice. :) She snuggled right in on his shoulder, and it was the sweetest thing. She had her eyes open and looked around a bit from there, and yawned, but she was quite content in his arms. I'm still not ready for children yet, but I could feel that pang of "I want one!" when I saw that.

Time to play some games, perhaps some Diablo but perhaps not, and then maybe go soak in the tub for a while. I already washed my hair in the sink, to try out the "red kicker" shampoo again (I was told not to use it in the shower 'cause there'd be red stains all over, so I figured correctly that the stainless steel kitchen sink would be perfect for that with no staining happening). So it's just the rest of me that needs washing, and a cold day like today seems like the perfect time to run a steaming hot bath, soak in it and read for a while. Too bad our tub is so shallow though. I need to see if they make tubs with the same width & height dimensions, but about 6 inches deeper, and of course how much it'd cost to put it in. Probably far too much, but one can wish.

whining no longer being accepted

Tuesday, November 23, 2004

Web Quizzes10:40 AM - Which deadly sin? (meme)

You scored as Sloth.

  • Sloth: 88%
  • Gluttony: 50%
  • Pride: 44%
  • Wrath: 38%
  • Lust: 19%
  • Envy: 19%
  • Greed: 6%

Seven deadly sins created with QuizFarm.com

listening to: Alanis Morissette - You Oughta Know

Life10:39 AM - Alright, now for that real update

It was pointed out to me that I said I'd do this after lunch... however, I didn't say what day. And of course, I could twist that to say I'm posting early, since it's not yet lunch today. ;)

Anyway...

This weekend was mostly relaxing. Played Diablo II some, read some. I got to drive stick on Sunday, up to the mall & back (no shopping this time). I did better overall, yet I killed it twice -- once pulling away from a light, with no one behind me (I think it was the light near the Civic Center on Parker Rd.), and once backing into the driveway, since I'd made it crooked and forgot to get the clutch all the way back in as I was letting off the gas to stop for pulling forward to fix it. :\ Could've been worse, and I didn't do too badly at the much more uphill light where you have to turn left to stay on Parker at Old Halls Ferry Rd. (if you turn right it's Old Halls Ferry, which turns south; turn left and you're on Parker, and two short lights later and you can turn left and be on Old Halls Ferry Rd. the other way, which goes west and goes all the way to Jamestown Mall; go straight and... you're in somebody's yard or something -- can't go straight there ;) ).

J cut his foot on the humidifier in two places, when he got up early Sun. morning to use the bathroom. :( It's an old style one that you just take the top off and full the large reservoir with water, then put the top on that has the cord & motor on it, which spins up (in theory anyway, it didn't work for some reason, probably needs cleaning) and pulls a mist of water into the air. So of course the lid has a lip that overhangs, which is nice rough plastic, and I guess his foot came up under it and slid against it. It looked pretty nasty, hurt even worse, and bled a fair amount, but two bandaids and some Mycitracin+ (the + is for topical anesthetic) and it was looking a whole lot better last night, though it's very tender still.

We went out Friday night for a couple hours with a friend from work and his girlfriend, which we'd been meaning to do. Went to a pool hall (Pink Galleon if you're curious), where we played a few rounds of pool & split a couple pitchers of Amber Boch. It was a good time, with us all getting home in a decent time still.

Saturday night we watched Secret Window. Good movie. :) I need to go back and reread the story though, 'cause I heard they changed the end of it from that and I can't remember how it ended in the story. Man, Johnny Depp + Stephen King. That definitely works. I'm reminded once again how much of a physical actor Depp is, coming up with little movements that pull a good (often odd) character together.

Sunday night J and I went and beat Duriel together. He threw blessed hammers at him while I started off by staticking him followed with running around with t-storm running and trying not to die. The brief times he'd not be chasing me, and be chasing either one of our hirelings (while they lived) or J's character, I'd throw chain lightning at him.

Last night we went to my parents' house to have dinner with them, my sister and her boyfriend, and my grandfather, and of course to meet said boyfriend as we hadn't yet. (They aren't going to make Thanksgiving so they came in yesterday instead.) That was a good time. My sister and I got in a game of "spit", and we all had generally good and varied conversation. Mike seems like a really nice guy, while definitely leaning towards the shy side. After that, I read on the couch for an hour or so, maybe an hour and a half, before dozing on the couch for a while and then going to bed. J meanwhile, played through the rest of act 3 of DII and managed to kill Mephisto as a level 21 paladin. Gonna have to ask him how he survived Travincal, let alone the other blasted Council Members. Hell, after those guys Mephisto can sometimes feel like a gentle breeze.

Tonight we're gonna head to the Black Tuesday happy hour a bunch of people at my work are getting together. (Named so because we don't technically get the Wed. before Thanksgiving off, but after attending said happy hour most people usually end up taking vacation or sick time that day. I'm nipping it in the bud already, since J's already off tomorrow, by already having asked for a vacation day.) It's going to be at the Trailhead Brewery in St. Charles, which is awesome. They don't do reservations, but they also have a full menu, so not only do we get to drink copious amounts of really good beer, we get to have a dinner that's not bar food. Yea!

listening to: Enya - I Want Tomorrow
whining no longer being accepted

Monday, November 22, 2004

This site10:39 AM - Busy little inspired bee

I was browsing DeviantArt some time last week and got inspired to do another theme. Not that I don't have a ton of other things I ought to be doing instead of writing that theme (including a revamp of the Forest theme, though I did also find a nice leaves tile for during my trawling of DeviantArt that I may use), but when creative inspiration strikes, one tries to obey. :p

I called it "Angst!" 'cause it's kinda angsty in its colors. I haven't yet added a description, screenshot, or the credit link & image (gotta create the image), but it's available. It was my first foray into using opacity/filter/etc. to create semi-transparent boxes with CSS. To be honest, I haven't yet tested it at all in anything besides Firefox 0.8, but I've hopes it'll be OK in those, at least. Hopefully they won't necessitate too many tweaks.

I'll get to a real update of the weekend after lunch some time.

Friday, November 19, 2004

Life10:10 AM - Possible loss of IM connectivity at work

I may not be able to get in anymore, though I'm not sure yet. I heard two coworkers, one of whom is a contractor who uses Yahoo IM to communicate with his company, talking about how he's not been able to get into Y!M anymore. The other said he'd read something about the company restricting access to AIM, ICQ, MSN -- which we use a custom version of that only works amongst employees, so I guess they mean the vanilla version, and "file transfers" (not sure what they mean by that... we already can't FTP outside the firewall anyway). He found the article, but I didn't butt in to ask for a link or even which company news source he found it in (there's company-wide, site-wide, and big-department-wide, and each is different). I heard him read off "goes into effect tomorrow" but since I don't know when the article was written, and haven't been able to find it myself, I don't know when that is.

If they've already put those restrictions in, say with the latest patch they pushed out, they ain't workin'. Not that I'm complaining, of course, but apparently they must have blocked the actual apps themselves (i.e. aim.exe, icq.exe, etc.). Or something. Because except that for the last few days, ever since I finally got them all connecting again, that I've had to remove my AIM connection from Trillian, shut it down, then open Trillian again to get AIM to connect, everything else works fine. About having to reconnect everything: if that is indeed due to the block going into effect, that would indicate that they're not just blocking traffic from specific executables, but that they're still not blocking it very well, and they're being very specific. I did change from a SOCKS5 proxy to an HTTP proxy in the settings, which I found out how to set by grabbing the actual PAC file our browsers use, then viewing it to see what proxy to use. That fixed most of it, and removing the AIM & ICQ connections, then restarting, fixed the rest.

I'm guessing changing the server for Y!M to connect, and picking different ports for AIM & ICQ may have helped as well, but I don't know. It's also likely that if I ever disconnected the ICQ connection, which I just leave on and N/A, I would have to remove it and start over then as well. However, perhaps not since viewing the logs for the ICQ status window, I got disconnected at 4:25am due to a "couldn't receive flap" error, and it reconnected on its own just fine. What's interesting though, is that I would always get that error at 00:13am every night that it was online, because of, I guess, a nightly proxy server reset. The last time that happened, it happened 2 minutes early on early last Wednesday morning (the 10th), then it connected right away, then it got it again at the usual time and couldn't get back in at all (I have it set for 10 attempts spaced 5 minutes apart). Then, I tried reconnecting when I came in, and gave up after the first error and left it until Monday when I realized there was still a problem.

So... yeah, if they're already blocking IMs, they're doing a bad job. Again, I'm very much not complaining. I hope they never notice. It's not as though I'm constantly chatting on IM instead of working (heh, if I'm burned out on something I'm doing at work I have plenty of other things, like posting here and reading the forums, that I usually end up doing), but it's nice to have, and I've been using it so long now it'd feel weird if it were missing.

whining no longer being accepted

Interesting places08:27 AM - The "Pitbull Problem"

This link is to a well put together flash video that illustrates the real problem pitbulls have, as opposed to the "problem" people think they represent. It will bring tears to your eyes if you have any compassion for animals at all, and will most certainly give you pause even if it doens't tell you anything you didn't already know (some know, some don't; I did).

listening to: Dido - Take My Hand

Thursday, November 18, 2004

Life10:21 PM - Big promo craft binder, or point-of-sale software anyone?

The house we're living in, we bought in April 2003, and moved into at the end of July 2003. Been here over a year now, right?

Well, the previous lady of the house ran a scrapbooking company (or something to that effect) from her home. About a week after we moved, she called to let us know that there'd been a package sent before they moved, and addressed with the house's address in part because they were building and not 100% sure where their address would be (they ended up at her mom's for a short while), and asked us to let her know when it arrived so she could come pick it up. (We also gave her stuff they'd missed when they were moving then and one or two other times.) That was fine.

So a couple months ago we got some package from some company, addressed to her company's name at our address. ??? I tried to find out how to get it returned, but it didn't really pan out. So I've just had it sitting there; we don't have her mom's number anymore, and they didn't give us their new number when they moved to their new place. Today, another package came for her. ???

I finally decided today that this couldn't have been stuff she'd ordered, because in a year's time I'm sure she's sent stuff to their new address and all that, and that these were companies that she either hadn't dealt with since moving, or that has a marketing department that really doesn't know how to talk to its sales department, sending her promotional type stuff. So screw going through a bunch of hoops to send it back.

I opened both packages this evening.

The old one was a box with software called POS-Partner. Of course, I look around till I found out that POS is indeed not for Piece Of Shit :p but for Point Of Sale. It's apparently some software that helps you sell shit, or something. I've no idea.

The second one was heavy. It contained a bigass binder, under which was a shrinkwrapped mess of pages to put in the binder, of all these scrapbook/crafty things the company sells. Company is called Provo Craft.

All this, to ask if anyone here is either interested in the software, and/or interested in having the binder shipped (I put it together -- it's over 400 pages!) or getting more info as to what's in the binder.

I took some (turns out pretty bad) pictures of everything so you could get a slight idea; maybe someone might recognize something, since I'd never heard of either the craft company or the software in my life.

Software pics:

Binder pics:

I have to say, their wholesale list is feckin huge. It's probably a quarter of the book, if not approaching a third. And it starts with a list with teeny tiny print, of which there's also another that came separate from the rest of the shrinkwrapped pages to put (I guess) at the front, which I did.

If you want more info, comment here or open a thread in my forum or email me. I really don't foresee a need for either of these products. The software is unopened, and the binder is only "opened" in that I took the shrinkwrap off the pages to see what was on a few of 'em and assemble them in the binder. I'd feel bad just pitching them in the trash, but I don't have an eBay account to sell them and could possibly, if not likely, get in trouble selling 'em anyway.

Sorry this is so long!

[crossposted to LJ & PvPForums]

whining no longer being accepted

Rants10:50 AM - Why be redundant?

Why do people say things like "10am in the morning"?! (Emphasis mine, in case you wondered.) both "10am" and "10 in the morning" make perfect sense. It's redundant and annoying to hear someone stick the "am" on the time, and then also say "in the morning". Duh. Do people say "7pm in the evening"? Almost every person I've heard use this always use it for times before noon. Gah!

(I've heard this probably a half dozen times just today, all from the same person. It's starting to get on ma nerves, and this is a much better way to vent about it than to go and bitch the person out or even mention it to him, 'cause that'd be rude & stuff.)

Tuesday, November 16, 2004

Games & Gaming10:35 PM - So, I'm back into Diablo II

Of course, the person who got me addicted (*ahem*, John... :p ) is now playing Wizards World of Warcraft instead. No biggie at all though, I'm fine playing by myself. In case anyone's curious, my character is currently a level 25 sorceress named Klerion on USWest; username there is still playfulsiamese (playfulkitten was taken). I even took John's suggestion of a lightning-primary sorc, though I'm using fire as a backup (fireball & warmth specifically), and it's been suggested I use just enough skill points to get a point into Frozen Orb plus a point in cold mastery, just for the sheer damage it can do when something's not immune.

I've noticed a few rather irksome things while playing. The first two times I played, which were (I think) a week ago from last Saturday night and... I dunno, last Monday or Tuesday night? Anyway, those two times played fine. However, pretty much every time since then until tonight, I kept getting very nasty lag periodically. I gave up last night 'cause I was spending more time pacing in town, waiting for the game to smooth out, than I did actually fighting stuff. It didn't do it once last night though, so hopefully that's done with. Also, there's one thing about playing in windowed mod that sucks: it automatically minimizes the screen if you click outside it. Which is very easy to do by accident in the frenzy of a fight, which is probably the worst time for that to happen, since the game keeps right on playing as though you're still in it, which includes monsters throwing crap at you and such. The worst things though, only showed up with the 1.10 patch -- this is the first time I've played since it came out several months ago. For one, if you're using the shift key to hold still, or more often the alt key to light up items on the ground, it messes up the character movements. Some times my sorc won't move when I click an item to go pick it up (or when she's next to it, she just won't pick the damn thing up), and other times she'll keep doing whatever the hell it was she was doing even though you've let go the mouse buttons -- she'll keep running in whatever direction takes her towards the mouse pointer, or keep shooting her damn lightning in whatever direction the pointer's in, etc. That's hella frustrating, and came kinda close to getting me surrounded and killed 'cause she ran right into a group of burning dead. That gets really, really annoying every time it happens. And the bitch of it is, they're not going to fix it. This last patch is the last patch. Ever. So these instabilities in character movements are here to stay.

Other than that, it's still pretty fun after all this time. I'm currently messing around in the Canyon of the Magi, waiting till I've screwed up enough courage (and perhaps some good last minute items and one or two more level-ups...) to fight Duriel. I can keep Thunderstorm going to zap him, but it's only level 2 so far. I'm hoping I can get away with Static Field a few times to bring him most of the way down, but that also means getting a little closer than I like. I also need to remember to stock up on stamina potions so I can keep my little feet running circles like the dickens.

This site10:11 PM - Been doin' website updates

I finally got around to implementing a macro in MT that will put acronym tags and titles around specific acronyms (basically, anything I could come up with that I've used or might ever use, such as CSS, HTML, SASE, UMR, etc.), and also turns various things I commonly mention and also want to link to, into said links. What's nice, is the one I found doesn't seem to mess up the ones I've already done by hand, at least that I've found so far. I could change what color dotted line goes under an acronym instead of leaving the default, but all I felt like changing across all my stylesheets for it was to give them the "help" cursor, so that whatever that is for you it'll change that way. (I should mention, I have once="1" set on them all so they only get changed once per entry, so if I mention LJ in 5 different places in a post, it'll only make an acronym tag around the first one.)

I also added Peter Straub's "lost boy lost girl" book to my reading list. I'm going to finish the current book I'm reading in the Recluce Saga, then finish the Dark Tower series, then go back to the Saga, then fill in with Straub. After that, I'm hoping I'll have been able to borrow that next Sword of Truth series book from Will by then. (Don't worry, I have 3 books currently ready to return to you, and I expect that unless you bring stuff this weekend, I'll have at least one more if not two to add to that by the time you're next out. And really, I think we have even more Recluce books after the Order War one so that I'd only be interested in that one book and maybe what follows, at least for now. I really like the SoT series. :) )

I need to post an update that isn't about this site; I may or may not get around to that next. Well, probably actually two updates as they're separate topics entirely.

whining no longer being accepted

Interesting places07:55 AM - Recyclable toothbrushes

Thought I'd pass on a link I got on LJ: recyclable toothbrushes. The whole idea is that they send you 4 of them for $13 ($11 for Jr. ones), and you can get 'em in ultra soft, soft, or medium bristles. The kicker: not only will they send you two SASEs to send them back in, so they can recycle 'em, but they'll send them to you one every 2, 3, 4, or 5 months if you prefer, so you can have one sent every time you want to change toothbrushes. Also, if you want to buy them yourself they show you what stores in your state sell them. (Their big retailers seem to be Whole Foods, Wild Oats, and Trader Joe's, but they do sell at other local places as well.)

That's really tempting. I mean, they're recyclable, I can get them in medium-hardness bristles (it actually seems really hard to find anything but soft in places like Walgreens), and they're priced about the same as most retail toothbrushes. And $4.50 shipping & handling added isn't bad, considering they send you no-postage-necesasry packages to send them back in.

Monday, November 15, 2004

Life02:50 PM - Eep. :(

Those of you in the area may have heard of a horrible, horrible accident on the Martin Luther King bridge early Friday morning, that closed down traffic for several hours. All I knew at the time was that a van and a tractor trailer collided, possibly head on, and that it was a 4 car accident.

I found out today it was a commuter van with 7 people in it, 5 Boeing employees and 2 GKN employees (GKN was a piece of Boeing, which we sold off and is now its own company). Three of the Boeing employees died, as well as one of the GKN employees. They're still investigating; it was apparently after the initial accident that the van crossed the center line to collide with a tractor trailer, the driver of which was only injured. Don't know anything else except names and ages which don't need posting here.

I didn't know any of them, but I do feel for their families.

whining no longer being accepted

Interesting places10:51 AM - Droool...

Oh, to have gobs of disposable income.

listening to: Tori Amos - Jackie's Strength
whining no longer being accepted

Life10:25 AM - For those wondering where I've been on IM...

... I finally fixed it. A couple days after a W2K software update was pushed to us, I couldn't connect to AIM, ICQ, or Yahoo, with IRC being the only one that would connect in Trillian. A reboot over the weekend (full shutdown actually, power was out for testing something or other), didn't fix it.

Changing the server I use for Yahoo fixed it, but not the others of course. I had to (a) change the proxy I was using, (b) remove the connections -- twice in the case of AIM, (c) change the ports used by AIM & ICQ, and (d) shut down and restart Trillian, to get them working again. (Not necessarily in that precise order.) But, I'm finally back online.

I'd figured I needed to reboot, especially after the software push nagging me to do so anyway, but I didn't think it'd be that big of a pain afterwards as well. Oy!

listening to: Tori Amos - Spring Haze
whining no longer being accepted

Friday, November 12, 2004

Life10:32 AM - What would you like to know?

(Gotten from a friend (lupabitch) on LJ, though I'm too sleepy and foggy headed to come up with any questions for her yet.)

This is a problem with LJ and blogging in general: there is an illusion of intimacy, but in actuality we may know nothing about each other. This meme might help. If you like, ask me something (more than question if that is what comes to mind) you think you should know about me. Something that should be obvious, but you have no idea about. Ask away.

You may also post this in your LJ and find out what people don't know about you.

Thursday, November 11, 2004

This site09:26 AM - Couple additions

I finally got around to making a screenshot for the Tori theme, and I have now finished adding links to screenshots of all the themes, after creating a screenshot for the Tori theme (I'd already done the others weeks ago), and redoing the Grey Windows theme after deciding to make it a two column layout instead of three.

whining no longer being accepted

Wednesday, November 10, 2004

Life10:52 PM - A real update for a change

I haven't been posting "real" stuff of late, and I've got lots. For some reason I haven't felt like posting unless it's been a link or a meme or a quiz or some such. But I've decided I need to stop putting it off, or it'll be a 3-4 page monstrosity, and none of us want that, hehe. :p

I managed to chip another tooth Friday, if you can believe that. And I wouldn't have even gone to check in the mirror if my tooth hadn't gone and chipped itself Monday night. I was finishing my salad, and somehow failed to notice I had my fork sideways, and bit down with my mouth planning on closing around a 16th of an inch of fork, rather than an inch or more. That hurt! My teeth themselves didn't hurt, including the one that chipped; rather the jarring and sudden early impact with metal hurt up to the gums. So, because it was a pretty damn hard bite down, and because of my mysteriously chipped tooth Monday, I went and looked in the mirror, and sure enough I'd gotten another one. This time it was the left of my two top front teeth. It's not chipped as badly, volume wise, and chipped in front instead of in back, but the corner adjacent to to the other front tooth is so thin that it's a bit translucent -- I can see the difference between when I do and don't have my tongue right behind it.

Soo.... yeah. That one was my own damn fault, and I must have been completely brain dead that evening.

Saturday was good. We went out to J's grandma's house to visit with her, J's uncle and one of his cousins from Wisconsin who'd driven down, and J's parents and brother & baby sister. They were just finishing up a late lunch when we got there, and then everyone went back out to finish yard work. (Her yard is gigantic -- she lives in farm country, and has a whole lot of yard and lots of trees.) That consisted of raking leaves into piles (most of which was done by then), stuffing piles through a chipper shredder with the resultant leaf crumbs being blown into a leaf bag, which when filled was emptied into trash bags. Plus, J's cousin drove the riding mower around. I didn't really have anything I could help with, so I mostly just hung out with and kept an eye on his baby sis, and of course made friends again with J's grandma's cat Fritter. She luurrrvvvves me, which is evident in the cluster of scratches on the back of my right hand, and one or two on my back, neck, and shoulders. :p (She started as an indoor kitty so she's super friendly and purry and craves attention, but is an outdoor cat at his grandma's and thus has very sharp claws. And, she loves to play.) She loves scritchies, but she also loves to flop on her back and play viciously when you pet her belly. I did make sure Elizabeth knew not to play with her because she could get hurt, and she got the idea and says she'll play with her when she's older. :)

So anyhow, then that night when we got home, J had his friends over (he'd initially called to tell people not to come out 'cause he usually has them out starting around 3-5pm depending on how late a start we get, but they were still interested so he told 'em 8:30 when it was about 8pm and we were on the home stretch on 370). They played Risk for a while, I think. Also, John was over hanging out with Mark (who's staying with us for a little while till he can get an apt), and he showed me some nifty CSS + Javascript stuff, and said I should get into Diablo II again. More on that last bit later...

At some point, they said they were gonna watch a movie called Go, and I ended up coming in a half hour into it. What an.... odd movie. Granted I was a little lost from not having seen the beginning, but not much since they kept doing the same few hours of a night from a different person's perspective each time, so between that and a couple quick comments to fill me in during brief lulls, I had a pretty good idea. Mannnn, not sure what I think about that movie. It didn't suck, but I can't say wholeheartedly for sure that I liked it. It was definitely messed in the head.

Sunday, I got to drive J's car again -- third time in his car now, I think. We drove to Jamestown Mall via Parker Rd. the whole way (yes, for those who know the area, this is the long way around, but it is also the way with far less traffic and lights). At the first light I got to, I was worrying so much about letting the clutch out too fast that I left it in too long, which revved the hell out of the engine and stunk up the clutch (a hot clutch definitely has a unique odor). I did better after that, including at the uphill light where you have to turn left to stay on Parker; I didn't kill it or even nearly kill it, nor did I roll back much at all. And, I did a whole lot better on the drive back than the drive there. Apparently I still need "warmup time" since I haven't driven stick frequently or many times yet.

We had lunch at the Dillards Tea Room rather than out in the food court, which was nice and quiet at 2:30 or so in the afternoon. Then, since we had no idea what to get anyone for Christmas yet (it's a shame; I'd much rather get Christmas shopping done well before the crowds go crazy post-Thanksgiving), and J needed some things, we hit the men's department. He got a couple jeans, since he was down to two pair, a pair of nice khakis so he had a pair that fit and also still had their front button, and some white undershirts (t-shirts, not tanks), so he could stop using inside-out patterned/logod white t-shirts. Then we headed back.

That evening we went to my grandfather's house (it's still so unusual to say "grandfather's house" rather than "grandparents' house") for dinner 'cause it would've been my grandmother's birthday that evening. It was just J and me, my parents, and my grandfather, and it was a nice evening.

Haven't done much productive this week, except today. And today I even had a two and a half hour nap! Mark helped me set up a circle of 4'x16' half-inch hardware cloth (wire mesh in squares, in this case half-inch squares) in the back yard, using plastic zip ties to hold the overlapped ends to the body of it, and little cheap metal hook things (4" or so long, with a sharp bend at the last 3/4" or so) to hold it on the ground until it has enough leaves. Then his dad picked him up so he could go out and get Halo 2, and I started on moving the leaves from one corner of the yard, up in a little nook area where there's a short bit of fence coming from the house to the length of the fence on that side, to the opposite corner of the yard in front of the wood pile. I used our second trash can to haul them, one load at a time, and dump 'em in the circle. I got about halfway through, which includes a little of the leftover leaves from last fall that had composted themselves a lot since then, as well as most of the fresh stuff. I stopped 'cause it'd gotten dark and I'd already turned on the back porch light, and J got home, at about 5:30. Problem is, it's already 3/4 full, so we'll have to see if J can get the trashcan (or something else) to smoosh them down any tighter, or break down and cut the zip ties to expand some of the overlap in the hardware cloth and reattach them. (Issue with that is that those darn things are hard enough to put on when it's not anchored to the ground and empty, let alone now that it has leaves in it and it won't be feasible to lift it off the ground.)

Also, upon its opening and use, the bruno board has been getting once-daily signups of users only wanting to get their (often .ru) websites clicked. My first step was to set it so that all new signups had to be confirmed by me, but that didn't stop them. So tonight I finally got around to altering the query in phpBB so that the newest user shown can't be a non-activated account, and so that non-activated users don't show up in the member list. Plus, I'd only done the first part of that for my regular forum, which has been enough to stop the problem there, but I went ahead and did the second pard in my forum as well. So now hopefully idiots will stop signing up just to spread dumbass URLs (oddly enough, none of them have been pharmaceutical sites).

I neatened up my computer space a bit as well, though most of that happened Tuesday when I bought and put together a 5-cube x 3-cube cubby shelving unit (24" wide, a little over 19" tall, and a foot deep). I still haven't quite gotten set up for enough space for dual monitors, but I'm considering asking J if I can put the printer on his computer desk since he hasn't used it himself for his computer in a long, long time, so I can free up a good amount of room that way.

Man, and this has still been a long-ass entry.

Oh yeah. I forgot to mention one of last week's highlights. Rremly arrived! :D

whining no longer being accepted

Life02:26 PM - Idiot WRX driver lies about wreck w/ house on busy Subaru forum; receives much ridicule: film at 11

The first couple pages of the thread at the NASIOC forums is him saying what happened and others saying what a bummer, and then the posts start trickling in, then pouring in, about how his whole story is complete bullshit. The summary is that he drove into and through a house's closed and empty garage, then still has enough steam to plow through the back of it, through the yard, and through the back fence and a neighbor's fence. His claim is that he had just gotten into 3rd at 30mph, pressed the gas and it suddenly stuck, taking him in an incredibly short distance all the way up to 80mph, and that standing on his brakes after trying to pry the gas pedal up did no good.

Right.

The summary of the reasons it's obvious he's lying:

  1. A Subaru WRX, even modded as much as his was, can't accelerate in the short distance he claimed from 30 to 80 all in third gear -- it's laggy at that speed 'cause the RPMs are so low.
  2. Even if it could accelerate that fast, foot to the floor, for the accelerator to stick it'd already have to be to the floor, which he didn't mention and also shouldn't have been doing in a residential neighborhood.
  3. A few people mentioned a recall issued by SoA on the cruise control causing the gas to stick, but the rest pointed out that it only had that problem when the cruise control was actually activated, which is unlikely in this situation and also something he never mentioned.
  4. He has two prior accidents, which he posted about and claimed were not his fault, including one where he claims he slid in water at 12mph which magically spooled his turbo early and caused him to crash into a parked car. First of all, you have to be doing at least 20mph to hydroplane, and second of all, the turbo only kicks in when you're mega stomping the gas. (I know the latter first hand, from J purposely kicking it in on his. It doesn't kick in at that low a speed unless you have your foot mashed down pretty noticably.)
  5. Other WRX drivers tested both how well they could accelerate from 30 to 80 in third gear (no 2nd gear for the first part), and how well stomping on the brakes worked from 80mph. For starters, they needed at least a good 8-10 seconds because there was no real power for the first 10-15 mph. Then, the brakes were more than adequate on smooth pavement and without having to hit them hard enough to trigger the ABS, to stop them fine in plenty of time. So not only would he have to have been going faster than 30 from the get-go, he had to have already been joyriding to accelerate to 80mph+ that fast (80mph coming from him saying he'd nearly redlined it) if he was really that close to the house, and standing on the brakes would have been more than enough to stop him before he plowed the house, and he wouldn't have kept going through the house and the yard and the fences.

Personally, I think he was going too damn fast, showing off or just messing around, then panicked and stomped on the gas. He's quite young, has little experience driving, and has only been driving a stick for ~ 6 months, all by his own admission.

I hope he loses his license, personally, and has to pay for the cost of all house repairs no matter how long it takes him to pay it back (whether to the insurance company or to the family). He was even laughing about it, even knowing a little girl lives there and easily could've been playing in the yard and been killed, and refuses to admit he did anything wrong other than "not reacting well enough".

whining no longer being accepted

Tuesday, November 09, 2004

Web Quizzes01:10 PM - What kind of warrior are you?

My sphere is Guardian (Person of great Love and Altruism), and my class is Defender (Peaceful, yet Potent).

I am a Warden.

To be a Warden is to be the ultimate Guardian. Whether a physical Guardian or an essential Guardian, is up to you. You may be both. To be a physical Guardian is to be a living, breathing testament to the love you carry for a person, or people, whose lives you will always defend if you possibly can. To be an essential Guardian is to be a living, breathing testament to the security that your wards seek, and will look to you for your always kind, always nurturing support.

What kind of Warrior are you?

Dominent class, secondary sphere
Retainer (class Defender at score 3 + sphere Knight at score 2)

Dominant sphere, secondary class
Protector (class Rogue at score 2 + sphere Guardian at score 3)

Secondary class, secondary sphere
Henchman (class Rogue at score 2 + sphere Knight at score 2)

Monday, November 08, 2004

Life11:05 AM - Christmas cards anyone?

Here's the deal:

Okay, so here's the deal: If you can see this, I'll send you a holiday card. But I can only send it if I know where to send it to, so if you'd like one, put your name and mailing address in your reply. If you don't want one because you already have enough mail cluttering up your counters, then that's cool too. Comment screening is on.

Since I can't lock stuff here like I can on LJ, everyone can see it so I'm makin' some rule changes/additions. First off, I reserve the right to ignore a request if it comes out of the blue from someone I've never seen here or somewhere before. (I.e. if you're a PvP forumite or someone on the Bruno forums or something, just so long as I have at least a vague idea of who you are. If you normally lurk blogs to post Viagra spam, and try to spam Viagra and get a card for it, don't expect anything but a nice lump of coal in your mailbox.) Obviously, if I've met you in person, or if you comment here or on the forums regularly, you'll more than fall under that category. you'll more than fall under the "I have a vague idea of who you are and will send you a card" category.

Second, I can't "screen comments". So if you post your address in the comments, it will be available to the entire internet-viewing public. So if you prefer, feel free to grab my email addy from the email page and send it to me that way. I promise I won't give away your address to anyone; my husband wouldn't even have enough curiosity to try and find it amongst my email, and he doesn't use my comp anyway, so even he won't have it.

No other rules. Have fun! (I'm hoping this will also get me to send Christmas cards to family & close family friends for a change. We've yet to do that, and I've been thinking that now we're actually married and have over a year in our house, it might be a good idea.)

Thursday, November 04, 2004

Web Quizzes06:46 PM - Best religion for you meme

Here's a shocker...

Take the quiz: "WHAT RELIGION BESTS SUITS YOU?"

Agnostic

You've probably studied loads of different religions, but you're just not sure if any of it is true. Evolution makes some sense to you, but it doesn't satisfy you. Lastly, your personality is one of question, but you won't go out of your way to find -The Truth- It's more of a hobby.

I lean mostly towards atheism, but with a touch of what-if thrown in. I actually tied in score with New Aged/Wiccan though.

Complete scores:

  • Fundamentalist Christian: 0
  • Holy Roller: 0
  • Average Christian: 0
  • True Christian: 0
  • Modern Satanist: 0
  • Theistic/Traditional Satanist: 0
  • Luciferian: 0
  • Devil Worshipper: 0
  • Atheist: 2
  • Agnostic: 3
  • New Aged/Wiccan: 3
  • Pagan/Occultist: 0
  • Discordian: 0
  • Category Unknown: 2

Wednesday, November 03, 2004

Life03:04 PM - Speaking of old shows...

Several of J's friends were over Saturday as per usual, and we were at Kriegers for a late dinner. At one point the discussion turned to old childhood remembrances of kids' TV shows, such as The Letter People, Sesame Street (before it got "modernized" :roll: ), and the like.

I asked if anyone remembered something about a show or something Bill Cosby did involving "picture pages", of which I could only remember a very slight bit of the theme song. I kinda got looked at like I was a bit nuts in the head: no one else remembered it at all. Granted, J and I are older than most of the group there by 3 or 4 years, which can matter when you're referring to something you think you saw on PBS when you were 3-5 years old or so. But not even J knew what I was talking about. All they could come up with that they remembered from shows Bill Cosby did years ago was Fat Albert, and later on his "The Cosby Show" where he played Dr. Heathcliff Huxtable.

I meant to look him up on IMDB, but I forgot about it until just now. Sure enough, I'm not completely nuts. PicturePages (or, Bill Cosby's PicturePages) was a series of shorts he did in 1984. From IMDB's plot summary:

This fun short program features Bill Cosby, as he draws pictures and plays games with the help of a smiling, noise-making magic marker named "Mortimor Marker." Ran for several years on Nickelodeon during daytime hours, and was even on video during the mid-eighties.

I'd never known (or never paid attention) that the marker had a name, but I do vaguely remember it made noise & stuff. I also didn't know there was an actual activity book that could be bought (this, from the main page):

PicturePages was a short (10-15 minutes, I think) program in which Bill Cosby helped kids with activities in an activity book. You could buy the activity book and play along.

I just knew the few times I saw it -- it was on infrequently, being a short, and usually really early in the morning on a weekend was when I saw it -- I was fascinated by it. It was a lot of cute fun. Now that I think about it, I wonder if the local PBS affiliate still shows it every once in a while. Then again, they probably don't show any of those, including the old Schoolhouse Rock, etc., that I remember as a child. These were often wedged in amongst Reading Rainbow (which absolutely rocked! LaVar Burton ruled in that, man), Sesame Street, The Letter People, etc. All shows I remember fondly but haven't seen in years upon years.

*sigh* Now I'm feeling all nostalgic again. I should write PBS and ask them what they did with all those.

Life News Links09:09 AM - Sigh

Looks like the only way Kerry wins is in the extremely unlikely event of him getting Ohio. Which probably isn't going to happen.

I'm not gonna get all "Well, Goddamnit! All those Bush supporters should be shot!!!111" on everyone, don't worry. I'll content myself to being bitter and melancholy, and disappointed in most of the rest of my state. Then again, we're talking about a state where we just overwhelmingly voted to add a state constitutional amendment to ban gay marriages or any kind of union that isn't between one man and one woman. So I'm really not surprised.

According to this electoral map of Missouri, St. Louis City voted overwhelmingly for Kerry, St. Louis County voted moderately but somewhat close for Kerry, and one other county in the Kansas City area voted moderately for Kerry, and the rest of the state voted in varying strengths for Bush. I figured a little more of the KC area would've voted for Kerry, and that St. L. County would've been a little more strongly Kerry, but it doesn't matter anyway. (More states should assign their electoral college voters each a section of the state, with each voting how their section votes. Sure it wouldn't make it as easy to for the news outlets charting who won what state, since a candidate wouldn't necessarily win an entire state that way, but I think it'd make it a little more in line with the popular vote while still at least somewhat preserving the idea of not having the highly populous states getting all the say-so in who wins.)

I'm glad I'm not a lesbian, for I would not be welcome in this state legally. I'm glad I'm not likely to be in a position in the next few years of needing an abortion1, because if the federal mandate not allowing states to outlaw abortion outright is reversed I'm sure Missouri already has laws on the books that would take effect again as soon as that happened, and if not legislators would be rushing to add them. I'm glad I'm not in the military, and no longer have any family members in it. I'm glad I don't live too close to any heavily industrial area. I'm glad I make enough income that I can afford all my taxes.

1 That's certainly not the most important, let alone only, reason I'm glad not to be likely to have an unwanted pregnancy. Please don't take it that way. I'm on Depo and have been for years, so if I'm successfully raped -- which would probably necessitate a gun, by the way -- I probably won't even need a morning after pill, and when I go off it it'll be specifically so my husband and I can have a child; if I'm successfully raped then, I will be getting a morning after pill right away, reporting to the police, going to the ER, the whole nine yards.

whining no longer being accepted

Monday, November 01, 2004

Life09:08 PM - Now this too?

We went to my parents' house for my sister's birthday dinner, since she was in town to vote tomorrow, and overall it was a nice evening (I absolutely love the shirt she was wearing -- I'm hoping she'll see it available in the store she found it in so I can get one too). Somehow, after dinner, when I was just sipping tea and white wine, my right of my two lower middle teeth chipped itself. I didn't chip it on anything, dinner didn't have anything that would do that. It just... did it. It felt like I had something somewhat sharp (somehow) caught between my teeth. I tried with my nail a couple times to get it out (no one was really watching, everyone was done eating, etc.), and it wouldn't, so I went to the bathroom to look at it in the mirror, and there's a noticable chunk missing from the left corner of that right-hand center tooth!

It's not enough that I can feel any pain from it, so it probably won't need anything done to it (all the dentist would probably do, I'm told, is grind it smooth). But now I'm worrying it with my tongue. I can't stop messing with it. And I'm worried that it's jagged enough that I could somehow be more likely to catch food on it (accidental bones, or trying to get meat off a bone while eating, or whatever) and make it worse. I'll probably call the dentist anyway and ask if I should be super extra careful or whatever, though I'm sure he'll tell me not to worry about it as long as it doesn't hurt, and to call if it does. Grr. (You may be able to tell in the pic that there's a teensy, tiny chip in the back of the other bottom center tooth. That's been there a looong time, and is only the back part of it, rather than the overall top of it, so the tooth has a tiny spot where it's slightly thinner back to front. And I never noticed it right when it happened, so it's never been sharp that I know of.)

*sigh*

Ah well, back to picking up my clothes. I actually started in on The Pile, at about 5pm or so, after trying to let Idiot know he had a wrong number, talking to Mark, and wrapping my sister's gift. Right now the bed is about 3/4 covered with separate piles, all except for one being folded stuff with the other being hanging stuff that I'll do afterwards. I made a sizeable dent in The Pile, so now I just have to finish folding everything (or putting stuff in the hanging pile), putting folded stuff in their drawers or on their closet shelves, then just hang stuff up. Gotta finish now, since it's hard to sleep in the bed with clothes stacked all over it. :D

whining no longer being accepted

Rants04:31 PM - Jeezus, people

Some dumb motherfucker called 3 times this morning right in a row, and never noticed he didn't recognize the people (us) on the answering machine. First was a message of "Hello? Helloooo??? Hello! It's Al. Hellooooo???" and shit. Second was a hangup. Third was him saying "It's all, call me on my home number..." Of course, the idiot can't be arsed to enunciate worth shit, and so in an attempt to let him know he never reached whoever it was, I was greeted with that awful bee-bee-BEEEP the phone company uses. So, I played it again and had put in what I heard, definitely. However, as it turns out the last number was a 2, not a 3. (How one manages to make a 2 sound like a 3 I'll never know.) So, I called that, and it rang... and rang... and rang... then eventually I was just silently disconnected -- no answering machine, no one home.

It gets better: I tried the number he used (it gave his full name and #, so it wasn't a company, etc.). I get what sounds initially like both the answering machine, and a live person saying "Wait! Wait" as though he'd just picked up at the same time as a machine. Only it's a recording, and followed immediately after with some short preachy message. Then I get "this user cannot receive voice messages; to leave your number..." Well, shit. I hope he's figured out his mistake by now, 'cause it'd get real old, real fast, to have more "Hello?? Helloooo!!" crap on our answering machine. Two Three morals of the story: If you want people to get hold of you, make sure they can. And it's not fuckin' funny to have your answering machine make it sound like there's a live person on the other end, just to keep people on long enough to hear your preachy message. And ferchrissakes, actually listen to the goddamn message on the machine to see if you really reached who you think you did, and don't be all "Helloooo...." for 2 minutes on it, just leave your damn number and be done.

Oh well. I did more than my duty to help him figure out his wrong number. It's no longer my fault if he's still an idiot, at this point.

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