Archive for June, 2003

bloglust — digital camera style

I don’t know when this started, but recently I’ve been lusting after one of those phones that have a built-in camera. I know the quality is going to suck on the pictures, but for blogging, who cares? Some folks over at blogplanet.com have already written a java program (for the Nokia 3650) to upload your blog entry and picture at the same time, so moblogging is merely a $150 purchase away. (Plus whatever fees AT&T would add on the top for the data transfer charges. Hmm, looks like itÂ’d only be $0.02 or $0.03 max!)

Another quick search reveals that someone is even looking at porting an SSH client over. Now that would be sweet. Hell, I could work from my phone! It would be that much more perfect if I could just plug one of those Palm foldable keyboards up to it.

juggling politics and opinions

I try and stay out of politics. Generally they just disgust me. And this is no different, but it is a glimpse into the wonderful world of the International Juggler’s Association. For those of you who have no idea how anyone could spend two or three nights a week doing that whole “juggling thing”, this should be an enlightening read.

http://www.takebacktheija.org/

Just shows how a relatively good-natured and fun-loving tiny-microcosmic society like the “juggling community” can still be split into warring factions.

If you’re really getting into it, read the Reclamation Projects’s response to the IJA’s Open letter to the Membership. The IJA’s letter seems so close to propaganda it’s silly.

smellie poopie brother-ie

My sister has some kind of weird poop fascination, don’t ask me why. She is 15. Anyway, she and I had this hilarious email exchange today. I had to post it. (You’ve got to read from the bottom up to get the order right.)

======

Date: Thu, 26 Jun 2003 13:01:53 -0500
From: Christy
To: marty
Subject: Re: to my smellie poopie brother-ie

Ewww
that is the grossest thing i have ever read.
no more
christy
oh and by the way, if youre gonna make me look something up, spell it the correcct way! its viscera not
vicera. smart one.

—– Original Message —–
From: marty
Date: Thu, 26 Jun 2003 12:40:08 -0500 (CDT)
To: Christy
Subject: Re: to my smellie poopie brother-ie

> That description was so disgusting that it could only have been thought of
> by someone who was looking at that very thing… IN THE MIRROR!!!
>
> Not only are you that gross and vile, but you have open sores oozing puss
> and bloody vicera (look it up!) on your hands and feet, so that when you
> try and type on the keyboard, you have to keep wiping it off so you can
> see the letters (because of course you don’t know how to type without
> looking) and when you walk, every step you leave a puddle of red and white
> slime behind you. Yes, you are a walking zombie of the dead, and your
> brain is rotting too, that is, the part of it that hasn’t been eaten by
> spiders and maggots already!
>
> good luck finding the delete key when you read this,
> -marty
>
>
>
> On Thu, 26 Jun 2003, Christy wrote:
>
> > Oh really!?!
> > Well, every time I look at you, you remind me of a yummy popsicle…
> > Gone bad…that was turned into a lumpy and brown hump with fumes
> > escaping the cracks, while bubbles thick and gooey escape the large
> > crevice that a rotted stick got jammed into.
> > That’s what i think of you!
> > christy the prinncess
> > (top that!)
> >
> > —– Original Message —–
> > From: marty
> > Date: Thu, 26 Jun 2003 11:54:54 -0500 (CDT)
> > To: Christy
> > Subject: to my brown-brain sister
> >
> > > Hello poop-monger,
> > >
> > > You obviously have poop-on-the-brain. Your thoughts are poop-a-licious.
> > > You are a pooptastic plastic poop-thinking-machine, with poop oozing out
> > > your ears and hair follicles.
> > >
> > > -marty
> > >
> > >
> > >
> > > On Thu, 26 Jun 2003, Christy wrote:
> > >
> > > > hi poopie head!
> > > > hey big poop momma!
> > > > what’s happinin’ poo brains!
> > > > wazup ‘large and in charge’ poop!
> > > >
> > > > write me back you ho!
> > > > christy
> > > >
> > >
> >

how I read blogs

I read blogs mostly at work. You know, in the five minutes here and there–between projects, between bathroom breaks, lunch breaks, games of chess. Yeah, ok, so it’s just one of the many ways I procrastinate at work. I’ve stopped reading them at home almost entirely. I can’t remember the last time I had a late-night session with my laptop and fifty blog-tabs open. (OK, it wasn’t that long ago that I can’t remember it, but I can’t remember when it happened.)

There are blogs I read regularly, some I read semi-regularly, and then there are the rest. To be honest, I only read 4 or 5 blogs more than once a week. But, as you can see if you’ve looked at the list of blogs I read (a category in my bookmarks), there are quite a few that I think are decent. That is to say, there are a lot of them that I’ve read more than once, and found interesting more than once. (I don’t add them to the list the first time I read ’em.)

I almost never shut down my computer at work. So most of the time when I find a blog I have enjoyed, I leave the tab open to come back to it later. Then when I come back to that particular tab, a day or two later, I hit refresh, and read the new posts. In the last couple of days I’ve added a few more to the list. I will never read that list on any regular basis. There’s just too many good blogs out there… but occasionally, I spend an hour or two going back through some of the blogs I’ve linked, reading the latest stuff, finding out what people are doing, what technologies are hot, what blogs are still going strong.

Well, aside from slow blog updates, here’s the skinny: It rained hard last night, and my roof still leaks. I’m starting to get all the ebay items I ordered last weekend in the mail. I also had a gameboy player on pre-order, and Laura was kind enough to pick it up for me last night. I’m on page 55 of the new Harry Potter book, even though I don’t own a copy. I have been gaga over the new G5s announced over at apple, and will be installing Safari 1.0 later today. I’m swamped at work. I’m double booked for tonight’s evening of fun and entertainment, and will probably have to call Merlin to cancel.

house repairs and blog neglect

I don’t know what to blame for my lack of blogging interest these last few days, but among other factors, I have been on another ebay binge. Close to seventy-five bucks later, I have won about 7 or 8 auctions in the last two or three days. Part of my interest began when I started looking to hook all the game systems up properly once and for all. I am waiting for another n64 connector cable (to fit into the Super Nintendo Multi-Out port) and I will have all the systems but two hooked up and ready to play at the push of a button. (The two are the Sega Genesis, and the old Nintendo, which is mostly for show anyway, but I would like to get them ready to play instantly in those fleeting nostalgic moments. Unfortunately, we don’t have shelf space for the Genesis. It might also be time to re-arrange the shelves.)

I also purchased extension cables for our PS2, so we won’t have to keep it permanently on the living room floor.

Oh! And I discovered that there is a version of Chessmaster just released for PS2! I hope that arrives soon!

Laura’s collection of “All the Kirby games ever released!” is also near completion.

On Saturday afternoon Laura and I hit the tiny Renaissance festival being held about an hour away in Elk River. My brother has been juggling there with a good friend of ours and I was pleasantly surprised by how well their routine has come together.

On the way home we stopped at Menards and picked up the piece I needed to fix the bathroom sink. I am a home repair Guru now!

RHF envy

I had an odd thing happen to me today. I bought video games, and it felt like work!

In fact, I was getting paid to buy them. The company I work for is building a “game room” where I work. The powers that be decided it would be cheaper to buy TVs and console gaming systems than it would be to buy arcade cabinets. (And of course they’re right, but somehow they decided (or were coerced into) buying all the latest systems. So we’re going to have 2 TVs, and a gamecube, xbox, and PS2, all in one room (with the foosball table and lounge chairs). Now, I didn’t get to buy the systems–apparently we had some kind of hookup for those… but someone had to go out and buy all the extra controllers and some games. My buddy Nick is on the “committee” in charge of this whole gameroom project, so he got elected to buy the extra stuff. So we went out and bought 6 games for PS2, 6 for gamecube (the x-box we got already had 18 games with it, that’s another story), and enough controllers so every system has 4. Choosing the games was what felt the most like work. What had (before stepping out of the office) seemed like an incredibly fun waste of time was suddenly turning into “how to buy great games that will please the greatest amount of people”. We managed to keep it down to 1 sports game per system, and pretty much get one game of every genre that supports multiplayer. That is, racing, FPS, Fighting, Puzzle, etc. I won’t list the games we got, but let it suffice to say, it was hard work!

Now, as everyone knows, PS2 only has 2 controller slots, so we had to buy the multitap. And of course we bought some memory cards. (Oooh, I think we may have forgotten to buy one for the gamecube.)

Nick also happened to be in charge of buying the stuff to make any of the game systems playable on either TV. That was a task in and of itself worthy of quite the deliberation. Unfortunately, there are not devices made for this task. However, the price of “input selectors” has plummeted since Nate and I bought one when we got our second TV. Unfortunately, they still only have one output. So we went the way of the RCA splitter cables. (Does RCA refer to the cable itself, or the three cables together?) Anyway, one splitter for every cable, that’s nine, and then the splitters were super short, so we needed extension cords… the total was over $850. CRAZY.

So the funny (haha) part is that the whole 2-TV-setup is almost exactly what I have at home… and I think I can do almost exactly what Nick and I bought for about $100. (with some cables and stuff I already have at home.) So I’m off to best buy for the second time today. Wish me luck!

new server wonderland

OK, it’s done. And MT works even!

You can go here to read all about my Movable Type frustrations, but they only took me a few hours to work out, and I learned a bunch about shell scripts in the process!

About the new server. I’m getting hosting from a friend who runs waste.org. He’s a great guy, and I’m super grateful.

I do want to eventually serve this baby from my house, but every step of that process just seems arduous. Someday… someday.

the BIG move

Here it is, moving day. I’m flipping the switch, pulling the lever, pushing the button.

My other two site moves were amazingly transparent, but I’m a little worried about the movable type application itself. So things may look great, but underneath may take a while to sort out. Hopefully you’ll never even notice.

BUT, the point is, don’t bother commenting anymore. Anything you post from here on out will just revert to the way things were/are immediately after I make this announcement. So if you comment, it’ll get lost. I’ll be sure to let everyone know when it’s safe to comment again.

See you on the flipside.

tar, baby!

OK, so roofing went like this: We got up there about noon on Thursday. The sky was gray, but in a way that only hinted at rain, didn’t shout it or anything, so we decided not to do the whole quarter-roof as we’d planned. Instead, we just tore off the shingles from the part of the roof that was obviously water damaged, (sagging in about three or four inches from the rest of the roof). Once we were under the three layers of shingles (plus a layer of shingle-like ice dam near the edge of the roof, so four layers for most of it, and one of the layers were those old wooden cedar shingles) we hit wood that was so wet and rotting that much of it felt and broke away like wet paper in you hands.

We cut out the offending paper-wood, and put in about three layers of plywood in its stead (to put it up to the same level as the rest of the roof). Then we put on some new shingles, using copious tar as we went, and that was it. I missed the TCUC parade I was suppose to be in that night, but we had everything cleaned up and had even eaten dinner by sundown (which was about nine oÂ’clock). I felt a hefty sense of accomplishment, and rewarded myself with some Baileys on the rocks and episode VIII of Cosmos, (which I almost stayed awake for).

That night it rained, but I’m not sure how much. There was no sign of drippage in the laundry room, but I’ll reserve judgment till after the next big rainstorm.

It was a good day. The next day, Friday, we were done with my roof, so my dad convinced me to go help him with his. There was no cloud cover, and the sun was scorching. He was lucky to have my brother and I up there (on this huge garage he put in at one of his rental properties) for about an hour and a half before we bailed. I took him to take his driver’s test, but we didn’t have a reservation, and only showed up about 2 minutes before they closed, so it was no dice.

Saturday, I have no idea where the day went, but KR and I were scheduled to perform at balls. She asked me to write this piece for her to dance to, and I think it turned out better than I thought it had immediately after writing it. We got lots of compliments, but she did invite her whole family, and a bunch of her friendsÂ… it was fun anyway. I’m excited to see the video that a friend of hers took with his professional setup.

Finally, we’re to today. I slept until 2:30 (balls goes ridiculously late, and I didnÂ’t get in bed till 4am). I played some Zelda: Wind Waker, and then we went to Fujiya for dinner. I still have a hint of wasabi in the back of my mouth somewhere, but maybe its just stuck in those stupid wisdom tooth holes.

how marty’s distraction works!

So I fire up the ‘ol web browser to write a blog entry, and end up on memepool. Memepool is one of my favorite websites, but I hardly ever visit it because there is really no point. No point at all. OK, the real reason is that I just don’t often find myself thinking “What website should I visit now?”

Well, from memepool, I found myself at HowStuffWorks.com. And that, my friends, is where I spent the last hour. I learned a ton of stuff! My two favorites so far were How Power Grids Work, which taught me a bunch of stuff about electricity that I didn’t know, including what fuses are, and then How Hypnosis Works, which was mostly stuff I’d known or read various places, but seems very comprehensive and authoritative. The next time I have the “is hypnosis real” debate with someone, I’ll know where to point them!

One question I didn’t find the answer to (yet) is What is electricity? I’ve always wondered this. They talk about it in terms of volts and amps and waves, but what is a volt? What is an amp? And is electricity basically the same as sound, just smaller? My inquiring mind wants to know! (Of course, if I really wanted to know, google is less than a click away.)

Tomorrow I get to find out how to replace my roof! (This time my enthusiasm is faked.) It will be nice, however, not to have to put down pots and pans in our laundry room every time it rains. My dad is coming over to help me, and with any luck there’ll be a couple of other guys here as well. (If my loser brother doesn’t show up I’m going to have to kill him.) I’ve taken thursday and friday off, so this roofing gig will be full time for the next two or three days at least. Wish me luck!