Archive for February, 2009

Pennsylvania waterfall

Friday, February 27th, 2009

Here’s a very young Loyal Reader Number One hanging out by a waterfall somewhere in Pennsylvania. Part of my famous Camping series.

I have a sneaking suspicion I’ve used that photo before. If any Loyal Readers care to find it, you’ll be fully rewarded by seeing your name on the actual Internet.

Went out to dinner with Loyal Reader Number Four this evening. Loyal Reader Number Two’s at the temple, so the mice are playing. We went to the Greek hamburger joint in town and had a pastrami cheeseburger. Saw our cruise partner Connie there. The burgers and fries were delicious. And huge. We’re both el stuffo.

Lots going on in the toilet community today. For one thing, they’re getting expensive. For another, they’re getting disgusting. And finally, the rest of the world is jealous of us! That’s what makes America great – our toilet paper technology is the envy of the world.

LRN4 and I are watching an old episode of Remington Steele. It was a cute show and still holds up pretty well, the 70’s haircuts and clothes notwithstanding. It’s on Hulu – check it out.

Drove the Miata to work today. The traffic was mediocre, but it was nice to drive the sports car. Hadn’t been inside it for a few weeks. I’m thinking of taking Loyal Reader Number Two over to the church parking lot tomorrow for a little manual transmission driving practice. Wish both him and the car luck.

Back to the show. Have a great weekend and I’ll see you on Monday.

East coast camping

Thursday, February 26th, 2009

Here’s Loyal Reader Number Four walking down the road in an east coast campground. The camping was certainly green and beautiful there. And wet. Part of my famous Camping series.

I have a serious problem with the Morrowlife blog. It’s taking way too much of my precious home time. That’s one of the main reasons why I bought the data plan for my phone – the hope is to get it done and posted during the evening commute every day, leaving me free to eat, do high council work, watch computer-based TV shows, and even possibly visit with my family. And maybe get to bed on time once in a while.

There is one small problem, though: the phone’s battery life stinks. Every night on the way home from work since I turned on the data plan, the phone has died from lack of chargage. I’m thinking of getting another charger I can keep at work. That would fix me up.

Or maybe it’s just that I’ve been playing with the web/texting/email too much during the day. Still, the battery ought to last WAY longer than that. Sigh.

Anyway. Not much else going on so far today. That’s about to turn around, though. My non-Loyal-Reader brother-in-law Ken is in town and is stopping by for dinner and (hopefully) an evening of chatting. He’s going home tomorrow, apparently, which is a good thing because my non-Loyal-Reader sister-in-law Melanie (AKA his wife) had surgery today to replace the elbow joint she broke a couple of days ago. She might like him to lend a hand for a few days.

Or maybe not. Friends of Ken will know that of which I speak.

But we’re looking forward to his visit this evening.

Loyal Reader Number Four and I selected our cruise side trips last night. We’re going ATVing at one place, visiting a glacier and salmon hatchery at another, doing something fascinating that I can’t remember right now but am tremendously excited about at another, and visiting the world-famous Bouchart Gardens in Vancouver. Should be a real fun trip.

I’m excited to be spending several days at sea on this cruise – we were ashore every day on the Disney cruise a few years back, which was our only other similar experience. I didn’t feel I had enough time to just explore the ship and relax. This time, we’re only off the ship for four of the ten days, one of which will only last something like six hours. So we’ll have plenty of ship time.

I want to play shuffleboard. Also recline on a deck chair, read a book, and watch the world go by.

Oh, I just remembered what the other excursion is. We’re getting on a little boat in the harbor and going to see an eagle preserve of some kind, a bunch of authentic totem poles, and a bunch of other stuff. I believe there’s also a bunch of authentic Alaskan food. Whale blubber and that sort of thing. Yum.

That’s about it for now. Work Friday tomorrow. See you then.

Whip store

Wednesday, February 25th, 2009

Here’s the place where I bought my Kazakh camel whip, if memory serves. That’s a cluster of them there hanging in the middle. I possibly also bought my green Kazakh robe there. That’s my former colleague James in purchasing mode.

Yet another pleasant sunny/cloudy, warmish day. More blossoms on trees, now including many of the orchards here in Lardville.

Read this interesting article today. The California drought question is a very relevant one around here right now. The news morons here in the Valley are touting the need to impose extreme rationing measures this summer. And the reservoirs are at 97% of average. Based on that, I suspect Our Masters in Government are among the few remaining people who still believe the Old Media. Sigh.

Anyway. Loyal Reader Number Four and I need to make our excursion selections for the Alaska cruise. We still haven’t had the chance to even look at the choices on the website other than a few minutes one Sunday evening. And I just don’t know when I’ll find the time. Fortunately, LRN4 has offered to make the choices on my behalf. I’m inclined to take her up on that. She usually has a better idea of what I like than I do myself.

Had a long text message conversation with Loyal Reader Number One this afternoon. He has a great super-secret iPhone/iPod/Mac project just getting off the ground. He’s doing it for a coding contest, and I think it has an excellent chance of becoming a pretty popular app. Good luck, LRN1! And be sure to support your aged parents when you strike it rich.

Situation otherwise pretty much average. Let’s see if there’s any toilet news this afternoon, shall we? Straight from Dave’s blog – it’s cold out there.

How about some controversy too? Is this thing crazy, nutty, or merely loony? I report, you decide.

See you tomorrow.

Dirty mask

Tuesday, February 24th, 2009

Here’s Loyal Reader Number One doing his Michael Jackson imitation. Except not as weird. Or sick. Or disturbed. Or anything. Look at all the dust on that thing – I wouldn’t want that in my lungs. Photo courtesy of LRN1. I think.

Pretty day out. Plenty of clouds, plenty of sun.

Well, I did it. Ordered a Voip setup from a company called Ooma. The hardware should be here in a week or so, after which I need to activate it, order my phone number transferred to it (if possible, which I believe it is), wait for the transfer for a week or two, and cancel our POTS. I’m excited about it.

Ooma hardware is pretty expensive at 200 bucks through Amazon (retail is $250). The monthly charge is quite reasonable, though: zip. Nada. Zero dollars and zero cents. They want to upsell you their premium service, and they might succeed with me. The standard service includes everything we have now plus voice mail. The premium adds some pretty cool stuff like voice mail sent to you via email and multiple lines. We’ll have to see.

I first tried ordering Vonage. Didn’t work out so well. I was able to place an order via their website, but there was some kind of “processing error” that they couldn’t explain that canceled my order but kept my account. They were unable to redo the order using the existing account name and I was unwilling to start over again, so we agreed to part as friends. I can’t recommend them, though.

Anyway. I’ve already spent the entire amount of the savings. I turned on unlimited text messaging for the family and unlimited data service for my cell phone. I hoped to get data for Loyal Reader Number One too, but the price was high. We’ll have to see if we can figure something out. They sure charge a lot for that stuff. But it’s really cool. I’m more worried than ever about my phone’s short battery life, even with the mega battery. Sigh.

So what else is going on? It’s semi-massive meeting Tuesday. My meetings don’t start until 7:00, so I rode the train and just left the office an hour early, but the last meeting doesn’t start until 9:00, making for a late night. Survival is likely, however.

Loyal Reader Number Two has great, momentous news: his braces were removed yesterday! He looks great and feels the same. Congratulations, LRN2!

No toilet news, no controversy. It’s late.

See you tomorrow.

Dynamite cut

Monday, February 23rd, 2009

Here’s something that just looks like a bad idea. That’s dynamite. And a pocket knife. Two things you don’t normally want to see together. Picture courtesy of Loyal Reader Number One, who survived the photo opportunity.

Nicer day than expected. I went to work prepared for rain and got mostly-to-partly cloudy. No complaints. The temperatures are back up into the 60s during the day and 40s at night. The hills are mostly green, although not yet as velvety as they’ll be in another month. Springtime is breaking out.

No post on Friday. Even though it was Off Friday, I failed to plan. Loyal Reader Number Four and I went to the temple that evening and then it was bedtime. So no post. I pity your suffering, Loyal Readers.

Loyal Readers Numbers Five, Six, and Twelve (I really need to come up with a shortcut for them) were here for the weekend, which was nice. I hope they’re enjoying their visits these days, because I know we are. Anyway, the weather wasn’t conducive to Suburban detailage, so LRN6 did a few odd jobs on his truck and relaxed some.

As did I. I worked for quite a while to get Larry set up as a proper media center. All I lack is a remote control. And a final decision to cut the cable.

I think the thing I’m worried about most is losing the ability to channel surf. But I really doubt any of us will miss it all that much. There is just a ton of free stuff on the internet, including lots of good old shows we definitely like. Think Dick Van Dyke. The Addams Family. McHale’s Navy. Bob Newhart. Bullwinkle. Monk. Psych. And many, many others.

And yes, as Loyal Reader Number One asked in the comments, I did install Miro. It easily links to any Hulu page, which is very cool. I also have MediaPortal, which is pretty neat. Especially for the price.

The big question is whether a remote control will effective navigate Hulu and Miro, which is the source of much of the good stuff. I guess I just need to buy one and verify. Then we cut the cord.

I’m also about ninety percent convinced to cut off the house phone and go with either Vonage (or somebody similar) or that $25/year service I was thinking about before. Or even just our cell phones. That’s a problem, though, since our signal at home is so poor. Anyway, I’m thinking of using the savings to buy text messaging and a data plan for the cell phones. Seems like a good trade to me.

Opinions, Loyal Readers?

Yes, I know – you can’t stay awake with this fascinating monologue going on. Well, let’s liven this thing up a little. Today’s controversy: How do I get in on this deal?

See you tomorrow.