May 2004

31. May, 2004 - Memorial Day

Yesterday’s Saints game was a rainout. It rained heavily at about 5:30 (while dinner was cooking), then again from about 6:30 until 8, when they called the game. Fireworks were about 8:30, and after that, it had pretty much stopped raining. After standing around in the parking lot for a while, talking to Kohno-san (with Seigo translating), Scott & Kat, and Jim & I went to the Sporty for a few (more) beers before calling it a night.

Today, I’m up early (considering), getting ready for the double-header we get today. The forecast looks as though we’re going to see some rain during the day, but hopefully the showers will be scattered enough that they’ll still be able to get the games in. I do know that it was a glorious sunshiney morning at 7, when I woke up. I’m still wondering if my date for the game got the message that the game starts an hour earlier than planned, but I guess I’ll find out soon enough.

30. May, 2004 - rainy sunday

It’s another rainy day, and I’m feeling lazy. I probably won’t get up to mom’s for dinner today, but will postpone that for later in the week. There’s a Saints game this evening, complete with fireworks, but there’s a chance of rain, and it’ll almost certainly be cool and windy again. Right now, it looks as though my best plan for the day is to just crawl back into bed.

On top of the rainy weather, it’s Sunday, and over the past few years, Sundays have always been devoted either to an afternoon Saints game or lazing around the house. While that’s the plan for tomorrow, the sound of lazing around the house doesn’t sound at all bad to me today. Is that a nap I see in my future? I think it is.

29. May, 2004 - Happy Birthday Steph!

For the birthday girl: The Happy Birthday Song, or the MP3 version. Happy Birthday!

But I’m also feeling kinda cranky this morning. Waking up to rain does that to me sometimes. If you’ve got a good mood going and don’t want to ruin it, perhaps you want to turn away about now.

28. May, 2004 - Only 7 more days to the weekend!

One of the things I noticed this morning is that I haven’t even turned on the TV all week. I’ve noticed that the TiVo’s red “I’m recording something for you” light is on a few times, and idly wondered what’s getting added to the hard drive, but I haven’t been curious enough to even turn on the TV to see what’s piled up. I expect that when the Saints home-stand is done, I’ll spend a few evenings just deleting things and “thumbs-down”ing the misfires in the suggestions, and then a few more watching the various things that got recorded. But I think a real good measure of how much is going on in my life is how many hours of TV I look at, and this week, it’s been zero.

Last night’s Saints game looked like it was going to be another loss, as TC had a rough start, but then in the bottom of the sixth, the Saints caught fire. Ten runs, and a half-inning that stretched almost 45 minutes. Wow! Julio Perez and Chriz Chavez combined to keep the fish off the board after that. Fun game!

27. May, 2004 - busy week

It’s been a busy week so far this week (which I expected), and it’s showing no sign of letting up. So far this week, I’ve been to three Saints games; had my ex-co-worker Mark in town looking for a place to live when he takes his new job here next month; had lunch with Karl; done a little programming; dealt with three different clients on work on new websites; and read a book.

It doesn’t get any slower over the upcoming weekend. There are more ballgames to attend, more work to be done, lunch with Mom, and I need to help Mark coordinate getting his truck into storage and himself to the airport.

I’m not complaining about being busy. Hell, it’s been a lot of fun so far this week, even if the Saints have lost two of three, and the weather wasn’t very cooperative earlier in the week. It’s been a good kind of busy. But I can feel myself running out of energy, and the time I would have normally spent yesterday afternoon digging up a few more links to fill things out today got spent in an involutary nap. I expect I’ll be similarly short on links over the next few days.

26. May, 2004
25. May, 2004 - Saints season started
24. May, 2004 - the police are your friends, right?

On the personal front, yesterday was spent at home, reading. Mostly the web. Mostly Maciej Ceglowski’s Idle Words, once I calmed down after reading about the police bruatility. He’s a good writer, and runs the NITLE Weblog Census, which is an interesting project. Anyway, if you’re looking for seomthing to add to the list for a periodic read, you could do worse than Idle Words.

One of the spiffy things at Idle Words is Bolsheviks in the White House, an interview, originally done in French, then translated into Polish, and thence to English, with Daniel Cohn, a Green MEP. Cohn believed (the interview was done in early 2003) that the inflexible ideology of the White House is a big problem.

23. May, 2004 - dreary

Once again, I woke up to the sound of rain hitting my windows. This weather is certainly good for the yard and garden, but it’s got me down a bit. I didn’t go to my friend’s birthday party yesterday, and I don’t think I’m going to go to either the going-away party another friend is having today, or up to Mom’s for dinner. It’s raining, and outdoor parties aren’t much fun that way, and the traffic on the way up to Mom’s is never pleasant, and the rain on the road will just make it worse.

I did finish off one book yesterday, and also finished the last of the Kung Fu First Season DVDs, and I’ve still got more books to work on today. Rainy days are good days for staying home and not doing much, I think.

22. May, 2004 - moist

More rain in the forecast for today, and the grey weather is definitely having an impact on my weekend. I’m feeling lazy and lethargic and not at all motivated to tackle the fairly large number of chores on my to-do list. Plus I’ve got a bunch of books I’ve bought (or had bought for me) lately. I have a feeling I may just spend the day lazing on the couch and reading.

Yesterday I ordered some window film (I got the “Translucent Rice Paper”) for my bedroom windows. I think it’ll be better than the mini-blinds that are currently there, since I can put it on just the bottom half of the windows upstairs and get some privacy, while letting through more light. Of course due to some bad math, I ordered twice as much as I actually need, so once it arrives, I’ll probably have a couple square yards of it to sell. If you’re interested…

21. May, 2004 - busy week, busy weekend

Argh. Once again I’ve got the my editor ate today’s post excuse. I’ve recreated most of the post, but dangit, this is getting pretty old. As soon as my fingers do the sequence that will crash the app, I know it and start cursing, because even though I can see the file with the data that’s going to be lost sitting there taunting me for five or ten seconds on-screen, there’s nothing I can do to save it before the app will crash. Most frustrating.

Today marks another day of being busy with work, but I’m hoping that I’ll wrap things up relatively early in the day. I was hoping to spend the afternoon out in the back yard, digging up some sod and planting some flowers, but the forecast looks like rain. Instead, I’ve got a bunch of inside stuff I can do.

This weekend is going to be busy, too. A friend’s 50th birthday party is tomorrow, and another friend’s we’re leaving town party is on Sunday. Plus I’ve gotta get up to visit Mom sometime. And I need to start shopping for groceries for the upcoming Saints home-stand. Ah well, at least I won’t be bored.

20. May, 2004 - more of the same

I’m still busy, but got quite a bit done yesterday, which helps. I'm feeling pressure to get a lot done this week though, since next Monday begins an eight-day Saints home-stand, and I know I’d better get the little stuff off my plate before then, or I’m going to feel swamped.

Today, it’s a mix of geek news and local politics. I guess it’s pretty much the normal mix, but for some reason I noticed the clear distinction today. I’m not sure having multiple foci is a good thing, but hey, it’s what interests me.

19. May, 2004 - busy

I’m getting back into the swing today in a big way. I’ve got a bunch of work to do for one client, a proposal to write for another client before the end of the day, a website where I need to inform the client that there’s more to the job than I initially thought, and yet another client who finally got back to us with feedback so they’re ready for an updated design for their website.

The auto-shop just called about my car, which is ready for me to pick up. The sidewalk guy is supposed to be here this morning to start tearing out the old sidewalk (though I’m suspecting that he’ll put that off for a day or two, since he hasn’t called yet). And the City Assessor is going to drop by later this morning to take a look at my house with an eye towards correcting the valuation of it on the city’s books.

And that’s just the before lunch things. Then again, with the almost-certain increase in property taxes on the way, I guess being busy is a good thing… Right?

18. May, 2004 - back to it

Well, whether I’m feeling better or not, I’m back into the thick of the work-week now. Yesterday I got a little work done, plus all the weekly administrivia I usually deal with on Mondays, but it was still a definitely sub-standard day. Today, I’ve got client meetings, and lunch meetings through the rest of the week (oops, one just cancelled). The ear infection may be starting to clear up, but I’ve still got one ear that’s plugged up. Regardless, I’ve got to have a good week, since next Monday begins a eight-game Saints home-stand, and I need to get a little ahead on work this week.

17. May, 2004 - prioritizing

Well, here it is, another Monday. I’m supposed to be getting back to work for the week (after missing most of last week), but I’m still feeling oogly from the ear-infection. It’s down to a low-grade oogly, but I’m definitely not at 100% and have been running out of gas fairly early in the day. There’s a lot to be done, but one of the things I’ve gotten better at in the past week is prioritizing things so I have a list in the morning of the things that absolutely positively need to be done (which I’ve been managing to complete) and the longer list of stuff I should do, but the world won’t end if I don’t get to it today. I think that’s a useful exercise in general, but it’s especially handy right now.

On a somewhat related tangent, I had a thought the other day:

The way to determine if what you’re doing is what you want to be when you grow up is to take a couple months off and do something else. If you’re hungry to get back to it after your break, it’s the right gig for you. If not, maybe you should be looking for something else…

Yeah, it’s not easy to take a couple months off from your job, but even a week or two can give you an indication. Besides, if you’re questioning whether you’re in the right line of work, isn’t it worth figuring out a way to get a couple months off, if the risk is spending the rest of your life in a job you don’t really want to be doing?

16. May, 2004 - tired

Two Saints games yesterday. Good time, and I’ve had plenty of sleep, but I’m just tired at this point (it’s a good kind of tired, though). I’m going to take it easy today, rather than diving into some project out in the yard (that’ll be getting my attention later in the week, when the sidewalk guys show up). My ear-infection probably wasn’t helped by sitting outside all day yesterday (it’s back to feeling like that ear is completely packed with cotton), but I enjoyed the day out, and had good company for the duration. Thanks, Jenny! I also got to see one of the five couples who split the seats to the right of me for the first time this season – Art & Emily showed up for their first game. They’re some more of the people that I only see during the Saints season, but I like seeing them and gabbing with them during the game.

Art & Emily are expecting another kid before the end of the season, too (in August). That got me thinking again about how long I’ve been going to Saints games and the people I’ve met there. There are a lot of kids who’ve grown up while I watched. While I definitely like the baseball at Saints games, there’s a community out there in the ballpark that’s at least as important as the baseball to me, and I can’t see going to enough games in the Dome to build that kind of feeling at Twins games. That’s a big part of why I prefer the Saints, I think.

15. May, 2004 - Yakyu

Today’s the day when the Saints play the Japanese All-Stars at noon. It promises to be a fun day at the ballpark. I don’t know that I’ll blog a lot about it or take a ton of pictures. I plan on enjoying myself, rather than documenting the having-fun part. It means there’ll probably be a few more days of light blogging as I finish recovering from the cold (which turned into an ear infection, but I went to the doctor yesterday, and have drugs that are supposed to clear that up) and get my life changed over into baseball-mode, but them’s the breaks. Today’s relatively light, but I’m at least trying to point to things with plenty of other links.

14. May, 2004 - bleagh

Crap. I just spent the past half-hour putting together the day’s update. Late, but it was going to get done. And then I did the thing that makes BBEdit crash, and lost the whole damn mess. Crap.

I’m not feeling well, anyhow. This is now day 11 of having either a cold or other illness. Today I’ve moved into the land of strep-throat and/or an ear infection. And the weather outside is crappy and cold, and probably will be tomorrow too. That’s going to play hell with my plans for going out to the ballgames.

13. May, 2004 - baseball, cold

Update #2:Hey, the ducks are back, and just hanging out on my lawn. I figured I needed a picture. And yes, this is the sort of thing that delays my getting started on work some mornings. But it also makes me a happier Dave, and that’s a good thing, I think.

Update: Cool! The UPS guy just showed up with a box from I was a little confused, since I was pretty sure I hadn’t ordered anything recently, but when I open it up, I see it’s a package from a reader who decided to get me some goodies off my wish-list becuase he’d enjoyed reading Mead Made Easy and had made some crazy-good mead that made him happy. Thanks for the goodies, Dirk!

12. May, 2004 - ugh

I’m not sure which is worse. The stuffed head from the cold, or the laying awake from midnight until 3am because the sudafed’s keeping me awake. Wait. Yes I am sure. Not sleeping much last night is going to make today a Very Long Day. I might have a full update later on, but right now I’m too tired to do anything but complain.

11. May, 2004 - still sick

Ugh. I’m done with this cold now. Why isn’t it done with me yet?

It’s been interesting watching the reactions to the picture I put up on Sunday. Most of the guys who’ve responded have had some variant on WTF!?, while most of the gals have been complimentary. There’s been exactly one guy who complimented me, and one gal who reacted with shock. I don’t know what that means, but the clear distinction caught my attention. Karl points out that the WTF!? reaction is probably due to bafflement, since most guys haven’t picked up on whatever bigger change it was that drove me to cut my hair. I guess that could be it, but I haven’t even plumbed my own motivations yet.

10. May, 2004 - stormy

On the cold front (and not the weather), I now have a sore throat and earache. Damn. The cold has migrated and looks like it’ll be hanging in there longer than I’d hoped. I’m hoping I’ll be able to work through it, but the way I feel right now, that’s far from certain.

9. May, 2004 - Happy Mother’s Day
lawn with violets
lawn with violets

It’s mother’s day, and coincidentally, I cleaned out my camera yesterday and had a picture of flowers growing in my yard. This was before I mowed the grass last week, but about half of them were short enough to survive. Anyway, it’s like buying flowers for mom, right?

Anyway, I’m continuing to try and get healthy from the cold. I think I’m past the contagious stage and should be safe to go buy mom dinner and not infect her with it. If you’re one of the people I sneezed on earlier in the week, I’m sorry. This one hasn’t been much fun.

Oh My God!Here’s the shocker for the day. After my last haircut in 1982, I’d decided I’d had enough. My hair went uncut for over twenty years, with mom periodically asking when I was going to get it cut. Well, yesterday I got it chopped off, and took off the facial hair, too. I’m still not sure who the face in the mirror is, but hopefully it’ll make mom happy. And for me, it makes the world feel about five degrees cooler (at least for now), and doesn’t slap me in the face when I drive with the window open.

(Yes, I know it’s not the most flattering picture, but I suck at taking pictures of myself. It should give you some idea of the reaction I’m still going through, though. I expect quite a few confused looks over the next few weeks as people see me in person for the first time. Maybe posting it here will make it easier for some of you to adjust.)

8. May, 2004 - Twins back on TV

Well, the cold continues. A steady diet of decongestants have almost drained my sinuses, but I wasn’t feeling exactly chipper yesterday. I spent a lot of the day sleeping, and will probably have a long nap this afternoon. Tomorrow’s Mother’s Day, and I haven’t even gotten a card for my mom yet. I’m sure I’ll figure something out, but I’d rather not be shopping in the gas station tomorrow morning, but it’s looking possible.

7. May, 2004 - It’s not allergies

This morning I’ve convinced myself that the head-full of snot I have isn’t allergies, but rather a cold, mostly by the complete lack of effect that the Claritin had. Pfui. And since I’m not feeling well, you don’t get as many links as you usually would on a Friday.

6. May, 2004 - baseball? soon!

I’m starting to get excited about the Saints season starting. After eleven years of going to games, there’s a real community of folks there that I generally only see during the baseball season, and it’s something I look forward to every year. But this year, I’m wondering about just how busy my summer is going to be.

I’ve been trying to plan for the summer. As Evan points out, the tech market is picking up and that’s meant more calls from people wanting me to do work for them (I’ve got four jobs in stages between the initial contact and actually signing up to do the work, plus all the work I’m already committed to do over the summer). On top of that, I’ve now got a house to maintain, a lawn to mow, and a garden to tend. My normal plan for the year is to put in extra hours over the winter so I can take more time off between Memorial Day and Labor Day, but this year my winter was occupied with moving in and with home improvement projects.

I’m not trying to complain, but it’s a challenge juggling all these things right now. It brings on days like yesterday where I lost a big chunk of the day because I didn’t buy allergy drugs until I was a sneezing, snotty mess, and then had to wait for them to have any effect. I’m not sure how the summer’s going to play out, but I expect I’m going to disappoint someone who was expecting me to jump at some work this summer.

On the home front, I mowed the lawn for the first time yesterday evening with my new lawnmower. There are some details I’m going to want to change about the yard, I think. There are too many small patches of grass, separated by narrow strips of lawn. It makes my small lawn feel a lot bigger than it actually is. I think the longest straight-line shot I get to make with the lawnmower is about 28 feet, which is barely time to get moving before I have to turn around again. The slope in the front yard down to the sidewalk wants to be terraced and planted with something I don’t have to mow. I’m improving things a little by turning the one patch of garden back into lawn, but I think I’ll be wanting more changes. I just haven’t figured out what all of them are yet.

5. May, 2004 - Saints training camp opens

The Saints cancelled their midnight-madness training-camp opening last night, and things get going today. I’m not sure if I’m going to be able to make it over there or not. I’ve got work to do, plus the lawn has gotten to the point that I need to mow it pretty soon, or it’s going to be a lost cause. And I woke up this morning with my head completely stubbed ub. I guess that means allergy season is here for real and I have to get to the store to stock up on various drugs. Ugh.

Yesterday had some good fun. My ex-co-worker from Apple, Mark was in town and we ran around during the afternoon as I showed him some areas of the Twin Cities. He’s interviewing for a job over in Hudson, so we ventured into the suburbs east of St. Paul and then wound our way back along the river, culminating in dinner down at Tuggs. As we were sitting outside, I got tapped on the shoulder, and who should be down checking things out but my old boss, Larry Lukis, who was investigating the Segway rental office down in St. Anthony Main which is run by another ex-co-worker, Bill Neuenschwander.

I generally have a fun time playing tour-guide around Minneapolis, and chance meetings like the one with Larry yesterday make it even more fun. And we got to talk about the 3-D lithography stuff that Larry’s making a business out of, which was cool. Apparently they’re doing real well, and I found out about another ex-LM person that Larry just hired.

4. May, 2004 - busy-tired

I’ve been alternately busy and exhausted lately. Friday was busy. Saturday was a day of rest. Sunday was busy (there was the party where many of us fans picked up our season tickets for the Saints, followed by various bars with old friends I haven’t seen for too long). Yesterday was pretty lazy. I looked at a bunch of work, but I’m mostly tracking down bugs at this point, and just wasn’t seeing the clues that would lead me to the real problems. It’s the kind of work that requires some sharpness, and I was having an off-day.

Today, busy again. I’ve got a friend from Apple who’s in town today and tomorrow for a job interview, and I plan to spend some time showing him around town. Then there’s a group of ex-cow-orkers who are meeting for dinner and drinks this evening (and can hopefully provide him with any advice about Minneapolis that I forget). And I’ve got the work that I should have gotten done yesterday to think about, too.

On the home-front, I think I’m starting to wind down on the major work around here. It’s lawn-mowing and baseball season soon, and I’ve also realized that I’ve spent a lot of money on projects already and need to be more careful with the budget. On top of that, the sidewalk contractor who was going to put in my new sidewalk this week (or so I thought) hasn’t gotten back to me to schedule the work, and I realized that I didn’t really care. I’d like to have the new sidewalk and patio done, but I just can’t get excited about spending the money to do it at this point. Maybe in the fall…

I’m hoping I can find the energy to get my bedroom painted so I can put in the carpeting and move in there, and I’d like to start the work on the kitchen, since both of those are relatively low-cost projects that just take time to finish (aside from having to buy the carpeting, but that will fit in the budget as long as I don’t get too fancy), but I think that’s probably going to be about it until fall.

3. May, 2004 - more on copyrights

I seem to be making a habit of late updates lately. Sorry to those of you who usually read me before work in the morning, but I seem to be in a pattern where I’m actually able to sleep later than 5am, and I’ve been enjoying the extra bits of sleep for now. It probably won’t last.

2. May, 2004 - free culture
1. May, 2004 - Snow?

Last night interesting (at least for me). Rather than sitting home and watching the tube like I usually end up doing, I did some work on b2++. I actually fixed one problem I’d been having with redirects in it, and am about ¼ of the way through on making it not need register_globals. That took me from about 8pm to 10:30pm, at which point I normally would have gone to bed, but I was kinda wired from actually solving the redirect problem, so I headed over to Manning’s to see the folks who hang out there on Friday evenings playing trivia. About midnight, Jim showed up, since his roommate had told him that I was making a rare Manning’s appearance. Just about last-call, we headed over to the Sporty for one last beer, and got to gab with Joe for a while. And then it was home for one more beer, that somehow keps me awake until 4:30. Sheesh. I had fun, but I wonder if I’m ever going to realize that I’m too old for this crap.

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Copyright 2009, Dave Polaschek. Last updated on Mon, 15 Feb 2010 13:56:49.