Friday, June 30, 2006

Thursday, June 29, 2006

I Should Learn to Love Gazpacho

I made a reflexive decision today during lunch.

I was sitting at my computer desk, as usual. I took a big gulp of my Campbell's Creamy Tomato(TM) soup, (which I usually allow to cool for about 10 minutes, so it is sippably delicious).


My mouth screamed "SOUP TOO EFFING HOT!" and proceeded to spray tomato goodness everywhere.

In a desperate attempt to save the life of my defenseless laptop PC, I pivoted at the last possible millisecond, spraying the wall, my left shoulder and arm with "Soup, Too Effing Hot".

The computer is fine, though he did hyperventilate for a few minutes there.

As for my poor, frail human limbs.....Good thing I'm right-handed.

Wednesday, June 28, 2006

Direct From Websters

I'm a bit of a word geek. As I'm going along minding my own business, a certain word will jump out and ask me to look up its etymology.

Today it was 'replenish', which most people pronounce as if there's a T in the middle. (But, my brothers and sisters - there is no T).

Here's the Webster's definition -

Pronunciation: ri-'ple-nish
Function: verb
Etymology: Middle English replenisshen, from Middle French repleniss-, stem of replenir to fill, from Old French, from re- + plein full, from Latin plenus --
- - to fill with persons or animals


Is it just my imagination, or is that last line a bit strange? I know it's the archaic form, but still.

Tuesday, June 27, 2006

I call him Petey Junior

There are two reasons that I like Florida. One of them is the super cute (one might go as far as to say Uber-Cute) little lizards - ranging from 1 inch to 4 inches - that you find everywhere.

They can walk up walls and hang there, relax in the sun and get their nappy on.

As I said, they're everywhere - Including our laundry room. One of the Ultimate Cute baby ones dropped on Cindy yesterday as she was in the laundry room (which is outside on our patio, of all places) and apparently I missed quite the startled yelp.

Doing my own load of laundry today, I met the baby one that surprised Cindy. Aint he just scrumptuous? Cute lil guy.

Monday, June 26, 2006

Tilty Tetris!! My Opus!

As you may know, I love me some Tetris.

I most certainly do. I was thinking that a version of Tetris where the blocks had weight and made the bottom tilt from right to left would make the game more challenging.

You'd have to adjust the tilt of the piece as it fell, so it would fit correctly. And if the tilt became too great, you might be unable to reach certain areas.

Get a load of this demo pic I made of the idea!...Zang!

Friday, June 23, 2006

Real Life Conversation # 4

"Ugh! Did you just drink out of the Listerine bottle?"

(Swishing Listerine, can't talk) - eyes communicate doubtful look.

"Well obviously not drink. Drink was the wrong word."

(Swishing Listerine, can't talk) - Nod agreeably.

"You know, the cap is like a little cup, so you don't have to drink - er, sip from the bottle itself."

(Swishing Listerine, can't talk) - Focus all willpower to carefully avoid rolling eyes.

"You're thinking that being Listerine, it's a self-cleaning bottle."

(Swishing Listerine, can't talk) - Grin slightly, dribbling Listerine down chin and onto shirt....Dammit!

Thursday, June 22, 2006

Yabba Dabba Doo, Bitches!

A caffeinated face if I ever saw one.  And I do, every day - in the mirror.

Dear U.S. Surgeon General,

Hello. I'm sure that somewhere online or in some paper pamphlets you warn against suicide, and suicidal tendencies.

Just a thought - You might want to put something in there about the positive and powerful effects of caffeine.

Maybe something like: "If you're considering jumping off a bridge or slitting your wrists - stop by Starbucks, toss back a few double expresso's, wait an hour and give it a second thought."

I think that we'd see a glorious decline in ill-considered suicides.

MC Etcher

Wednesday, June 21, 2006

Nothing happened. Not a thing.

Have you tightened the screws, bolts and other fasteners holding your desk chair together?

Have you done it lately?

You should do it now.

Why?...Uh...No reason. I just care about you guys, that's all.

Tuesday, June 20, 2006

It's my own fault

I did my bit of web surfing this morning, then went out for an errand, and came back home to find the internet connection "no workie" (as we say in the high-tech biz).

Some folks may have picked up the phone to their cable company at that very moment, but I like to cover all my bases before I call for help. Is the problem a loose cable? A bad cable? A conflict between the LAN and wireless connections? Is Ad/Spyware hijacking my connection? Is my PC's ethernet port dead?

After almost an hour of trying to solve the problem on my own, I called Adelphia - only to discover a message saying the entire area was suffering internet 'no workie' and that they were working on it, and not to complain about it because they already know, dammit, and they're working on it, OK?

Those people who walk into a store an instantly ask for help (often leaning over the very product they're seeking to ask for it) or who won't even take a moment to make sure a problem isn't their own doing get on my nerves. So I try not to be one of those people.

What makes it more annoying is when you do call for tech support, they have to ask stupid questions like "is it plugged in?" and "is your electricity working?" and "are you a moron?" because so many people are intentionally dim. (As compared to a good person who just doesn't know how things work - I'm fine with these people).

Next time, I guess I'll call before spending an hour trying to fix it. Thpptt.

Monday, June 19, 2006

In the buff, as they say

Last night, mere minutes after we turned off the lights to go to sleep, there was a bright flash from outside.

He: Was that lightning?

She: I didn't hear any thunder.

He slips out of bed and leaves the room, returning a minute later.

He: It's not raining. I don't think it was lightning. I unplugged everything just to be sure.

She: Good. Maybe it was an alien spaceship?

He: I thought about that as I was crawling naked under the computer desk to unplug it. And how the aliens would laugh - that the brave human male was cowering nude under the desk when they beamed him up.

Thursday, June 15, 2006

I totally stole this from BoingBoing

I'm busy busy today, so here's a cool piece from -

Slate commissioned designers to produce six vintage pulp-fiction covers for classic novels like Moby Dick, The Iliad, and Alice in Wonderland.

Wednesday, June 14, 2006

No, I do not have the munchies

So you get some stylish rice paper, and you put a cut-out stencil of some words down on top of it - such as:

"Save the whales"


"Be My Valentine"


"Look - I'm sorry I slept with your sister, get over it already she wasn't that good anyway"

On top of the rice paper and stencil you put a row of mushrooms (stay with me, I'm getting to the point) and let it all sit overnight.

The next morning you remove the mushrooms and the stencil to reveal your message written out in teeny little mushroom spores.

How cool is that? It's like getting a romantic song played with an apologetic vocal intro by you, "Come back to me Veronica. That naked mole rat meant nothing to me." on a radio show hosted by Mother Earth herself. Hot damn!

Folks could fill out an EtcherCo online order form for their custom Mushroom Message - easy! You could even plant the message in soil, and under the right conditions you'd end up with a bouquet of fresh 'shrooms.


Tuesday, June 13, 2006


Yes, that is a bed-like thing, for to nap and whatnot
I ordered Flightplan from Netflix - it's that Jodie Foster shakes on a plane extravaganza - because I'm a big fan of the A380, (pictured here) which I just assumed they used for the plane in the movie.

Turns out they used the "Aalto Air E-474" whatever the hell that nonsense is.

Some very cool configurations are possible with all the room available on the A380, and I can't wait to ride on one. (Yes, even in its most likely configuration as a sardine tin).

You may have heard me bemoan the fact that I'll never get to ride The Concord from NY to fair Pearee. This fact causes me actual physical pain. Even now.

Yeah, I like planes.

Monday, June 12, 2006

Guess whooo?

Somehow, few years ago – we began naming dinners. It all began innocently enough…

Sloppy Joes (You might have heard of this one)
Sloppy Jills (Egg salad sandwiches)
Dirty Girl/Christina (Dirty Rice and spinach-stuffed tortellini)
Wilbur Sleepover (Pigs in a blanket)
General Chow (An assortment of leftovers)

These names can lead to some offbeat conversations, as you might have guessed -

“Guess who’s coming to dinner?”
“Anyone but General Chow.”

Friday, June 09, 2006

Credi-Bull #13

Credi-Bull - a news item that might be fact, or might be fiction..

When playing, please avoid definitive answers like "I know this is true, I saw it on the news last night."..Instead, couch your vote as a "guess" - this will help ensure that everyone gets an unbiased chance to play!

The folks from Cyan Worlds and Ubisoft (who brought us the amazing Myst games) have begun work on a music-themed PC game set in the 1970's. Based entirely on 'The Eagles' album Hotel California, the game will feature all members of the band (for that album) - Glenn Frey, Don Henley, Joe Walsh, Don Felder, and Randy Meisner.

The story centers around the mysterious Hotel California, where the band arrives late one night seeking shelter from a storm. The hotel is a nexus of dark otherworldly forces, and once inside, the occupants can never leave.

The hotel itself is based on the architecture of the historic Hotel California in Todos Santos, Baja California Sur, Mexico - and is a network of secret doors and underground passages. Players will control each of the band members in turn, all with a ghostly puzzle of their own to solve - each song on the album being a puzzle.

The lyrics are the clues - such as these, for the master puzzle -
We are all just prisoners here / Of our own device / And in the master's chambers / They gathered for the feast / They stab it with their steely knives / But they just can't kill the beast / Last thing I remember / I was running for the door / I had to find the passage back to the place I was before / Relax said the nightman / We are programed to recieve / You can check out any time you like / But you can never leave...

Real or Fake?
(Vote in the 'comments' section, answer to be revealed there on Monday).

Thursday, June 08, 2006

Probably a good thing
I was six paragraphs into a weird rambling post about same-sex marriage, sex with and marriage to humanoid robots, (and the naughty accessory attachments they would have) and how real boys and girls would start to get implants to compete with the sexual capacities of these robots...
And then Blogger hiccuped and I lost the whole post. It's probably a good thing.

Wednesday, June 07, 2006

Don't Cha (Crazytalk Nerd-Max ReMix)

When your jock boyfriend buys you the wrong format blank DVDs - AGAIN

When you ask your jock boyfriend if his peripherals are PS/2 or USB and he thinks you're talking about video games...

When your jock boyfriend can't reinitialize your TCP/IP settings (bet he doesn't even have the Default Gateway memorized - pshh!) to get your internet connection running again...

Don't you wish your boyfriend was a geek like me
Don't you wish your boyfriend was smart like me
Don't cha
Don't cha
Don't you wish your boyfriend was XP Certified like me
Don't you wish your boyfriend knew DOS like me
Don't cha (haah aah)
Don't cha
Don't you wish your boyfriend was a geek like me

Tuesday, June 06, 2006

New Day, New Thunderstorms

This is the weather report for today in Miami - It's a good thing that I don't depend on electricity for my job. Or work with sensitive equipment that could be easily fried by a power surge. Or be without a job if my laptop were zapped.

Wait a moment - all of those things are true!

We do have surge protectors on every important outlet (would it help to plug a surge protector into a surge protector? Twice the protection, no? No?) but I'd be happier with a few heavy duty
UPS units - or even better, enough of them to run my laptop for up to eight hours, (my laptop battery lasts about an hour and half) in case there's an all-day storm. But what are the chances of that?

It happens about twice a week, it turns out.

I have two computers running side by side - My laptop, which I use to do my testing, and a crappy old Win98 box that I use to type out notes and do the actual bug writing with. It's a huge pain and a timewaster to jot everything down on paper, just to type it in again.

To avoid using two keyboards and two mice, I bought a
KVM switch which has worked out pretty well. I use a separate monitor, just so I can watch the game as I type the notes - it makes stepping out a bug a lot easier.

I'd like to recommend the
KVM switch I bought, the USB/USB (F1DG102U) - I was worried that using a Win98 system as one of the PCs would cause problems, but it's worked great. I've had it a week, and no problems at all. There's this ever so cute little button that you use to switch between PCs (some KVM switches use shortcuts on the keyboard, but I wanted to make sure this software wasn't interfering with the game testing).

The actual switching process takes about 5 seconds, once you hit the button. It seems like forever sometimes, but it's 5 seconds - so it's not designed for very rapidly jumping back and forth. You learn to adjust to the lag time.

Monday, June 05, 2006

More candles than cake

Since we have to move again very soon, we went on an expedition this weekend to scout the area - near Ocala Florida.

(From the Ocala
Wikipedia entry - The surrounding farms are famous for their thoroughbred horses, in terrain similar to Kentucky bluegrass. Ocala is also known for nearby Silver Springs, Florida, site of one of the largest artesian spring formations in the world and one of the earliest tourist attractions in Florida).

The area where we'll be moving is very very cute and charming - a large retirement community. The little 'main street' (actually an outdoor shopping center) looks like something Disney might make, and maybe they did - it is Florida after all. All these cheerful old folks were zipping around in golf carts - there were golf carts everywhere, and there were even parking lots just for the golf carts.

There many worse places to live - hey, I'll bet the hospitals are top notch. I might have to put my name on the waiting list for one of these pimped out rides.

Friday, June 02, 2006

Real Life Conversation # 3

"So what was he like?"

"He's about as subtle as an after-school special."

Thursday, June 01, 2006

A NaNoWriMo Theme Song

Natasha Bedingfield's song, 'Unwritten' would be a perfect theme song for NaNoWriMo - which is just six short months away! The song is just so darn catchy and uplifting.

According to the iTunes song play counter, I like the song more than a bit. I watched as it ticked over...97...98...99...'too damn much'.

These are the lyrics -

I am unwritten,
Can't read my mind
I'm undefined
I'm just beginning
The pen's in my hand
Ending unplanned

Staring at the blank page before you
Open up the dirty window
Let the sun illuminate the words
That you could not find
Reaching for something in the distance
So close you can almost taste it
Release your inhibitions

Feel the rain on your skin
No one else can feel it for you
Only you can let it in
No one else, no one else
Can speak the words on your lips
drench yourself in words unspoken
Live your life with arms wide open
Today is where your book begins
The rest is still unwritten

Oh, oh, oh

I break tradition
Sometimes my tries
Are outside the lines
We've been conditioned
To not make mistakes
But I can't live that way