Full listing for August 2005

31. August, 2005 - government help

Depressing news “out there.” On the home front, got the basement cleaned up enough yesterday that the guys can put in the new glass-block windows today. Also mowed the lawn, and got some work done. Today, the glass block, end-of-month administrivia, and probably something else from the long to-do list.

30. August, 2005 - overslept

Normally I try to have the daily post done by 9am Central time. Today, well, it was after 9 when I woke up. So things are a little late.

Last night’s Saints game ended the home season. There’s some sadness, but not too much, since I’ll see folks again during the playoffs, but there’s also a sigh of relief. I’ve now got a week off from baseball, and a chance to catch up on other parts of life. As a result, not too many links today (it doesn’t help that DNS seems to be flaky Hosting Matters seems to be down this morning, which takes a handful of the sites I read offline).

29. August, 2005 - almost over

Today is the last regular season home game for the Saints. It’s the time of season when I start thinking about all the folks I’m going to miss during the off-season. But it’s also the time when I’m pretty seriously ready for a break. There are still playoff games after Labor Day, but for now, I’m just trying to get through today without any major mishaps so I can get to the week’s work.

On top of that, I discovered that some hacker spent the weekend looking for a way to use my feedback forms to send spam. Man did that ever clutter things up around here. Plus I got to spend a half-hour figuring out if they might have been successful and how to close any holes. Not what I was hoping to do first thing this morning.

27. August, 2005 - saturday baseball edition

Yeah, it’s a semi-rare Saturday edition. There’s baseball to talk about, so I am.

26. August, 2005 - stormy

Well, there was a thunderstorm during the time when I normally do my morning update here, and I figured it was best to stay off the computer while the lightning was flashing around me, so things were delayed. Look for a real update either later today or over the weekend.

The Saints won again last night, taking three of four from the T-Bones. Woo! But tonight, some TV guy will be starting, taking away three innings from Darren Truty’s regular start. Also, Charlie Ruud will start in Mike Meyer’s spot on Monday while Mike recovers from his Wednesday night injury, and it’s rumored that Monday night will be the night that Seigo finally sings Turning Japanese.

25. August, 2005 - it’s all about the pitching

Saints won ’em both last night, and while Billy Munoz’s walk-off home-run to win the second game was great, the real story is in the pitching. In the first game Mike Meyer took a come-backer off his pinky, which tore the nail from the finger. He went to the hospital, but this is an injury he’s had before, and it sounds as though he should be back for the playoffs (knock on wood). The bullpen did a good job handing onto the game. In the second game, Charlie Ruud, a first-year seminary student at Luther and St. Olaf grad, who George had signed to a single-game contract, pitched a complete game (of seven innings), and came home with the win. This is the second time this year that a pitcher on a one-game contract, coming out of the MIAC, got the win. The first was by Aron Helm. There’s more on Charlie’s win from St. Olaf’s paper, and an excellent Profile of Charlie Ruud from the College Sporting News.

I’m still worried about the Saints pitching staff. George and Jason have done a great job patching together a staff as the season winds down, but I worry about what we’ll see in the playoffs. As I mentioned, Meyer will probably be back, but that still leaves us short on pitchers. And position players, too. We’ve got a spare catcher on the bench every night, and that’s it. The league’s transactions page suggests we may see Juan Camacho (.327 and 21 homers in 94 games with El Paso) and Coby Smith (.313 in 94 games with Shreveport) soon. I hear it’s been tough to sign more guys, but there’s not much season left to get the roster in order for the playoffs. Oh, and from the St. Paul paper? Just a regurgitated press release on the games.

24. August, 2005 - past my bedtime

Mornings have been rough this week. Monday, I was up early, but had a morning meeting to attend, and lunch with a friend, and I managed to get through it all without getting too tired. And then I was out too late Monday evening, leading to yesterday’s silence. Last night, the Saints lost a 14-inning game that went until quarter to midnight. This morning, I had to be up early again, since the tree service was supposed to show up around 8am (they got here about 8:15, and were gone by 9:45), and I need to show them exactly what needs doing. And this is just the start of the seven-day eight-game home stand. I predict a tired Dave by the time the Saints wrap up the home season next Monday.

23. August, 2005 - yes we have no bananas

Sorry. Nothing to say today.

22. August, 2005 - older now

Yep. I survived my birthday over the weekend. The lion’s share of the excitement was mom’s. Saturday I went up to visit her, and she and her roommate took me out for lunch. Since they’re both on fixed incomes, this meant I got to buy. Since they’re in an assisted living home, they wanted something a little more lively, so we headed up to the Legion Post for some buck burgers and cocktails. Seemed to go pretty well until we were leaving, when mom stepped halfway off the curb and fell down. No major injuries, but she scraped up her hand and knee pretty good, and broke her watch in the process. After some first-aid, filling out the report at the home (so I couldn’t accuse them of abusing her, presumably) and buying a new watch, I headed back home, feeling kind of down because I couldn’t deal with keeping two eighty-year-old women safe on a trip to the bar.

And that was about it for the weekend. I had big plans, but none came to fruition. I had hoped to head out and go shooting with a friend on Saturday afternoon, but he beamed up for the weekend. I was thinking that a few beers with friends on Saturday evening would be nice, until the time rolled around, and I was feeling anti-social. I had planned to install my carpeting in my bedroom on Sunday, but found laying down the chalk lines to get the pattern centered too daunting. Instead, I spent the weekend perched in front of the brainsucker watching bad movies. And that was about it. The weather was beautiul outside, and I did get out for a few minutes, but the cooler weather this weekend has brought with it a full load of allergens, and I’ve descended into something of a medicated stupor to combat them, so I didn’t even feel like going for a walk.

19. August, 2005 - looming

Mixed mood this morning. It's Friday. Tomorrow I get older. The Saints won yesterday. Work stuff today. Shooting tomorrow. New carpeting arrives today. I have to install it. Ups and downs, not necessarily in that order.

And with that, I really should get on with the links.

18. August, 2005 - changes in plans

When I went to bed last night, I thought I had today figured out. I was going to get up early, and show the tree guys what needed doing when they arrived about 7:30, and then pack up and get ready for today’s Saints game. But when I woke up at 7, I noticed the rain. By 8, it was raining hard enough that I called the tree service and was told that yep, we’ll have to reschedule for next week. As for the ball game, I’m waiting to see what the weather brings, I guess.

Speaking of the Saints, following word that Tim Christman [was] traded to Somerset of the independent Atlantic League for a player to be named later (as was Adam Larson, last week), yesterday brought word that Saints acquire no-hit pitcher from Soliet in exchange for Chad Ehrnsberger and two players to be named later (the same two we’ll get from Somerset?). What the stories don’t say is that this left the Saints with 17 guys on their roster last night: seven pitchers (a four-man rotation with three relievers), the nine in the lineup, and only one player on the bench. (Hi Jeb!) I also got to talk to Chad briefly during the game, and he doesn’t want to go to Joliet. My understanding (from others at the park) is that he was traded because George was tired of his attitude, and Joliet’s where he’s going to go, since they’re the one team in our division that can’t make the playoffs. If nothing else, we saw a couple plays from Josh Renick at short that Chad wouldn’t have made, and that helped Bryan Gall hold Schaumburg to two hits through eight innings. With a little help from the bullpen, the Saints hung on for the win.

And that meant some more interesting situations for today. Word was that George was going to sign one of Jason Verdugo’s Hamline pitchers to a one-day contract to start today’s game. Part of me hopes the game doesn’t get rained out, but part thinks that it might be best to postpone this game until George gets the roster in order again.

17. August, 2005 - wet

The Saints lost last night’s game. They had the go-ahead run at the plate in the ninth, but just couldn’t get the guys home. Bummer. But the timing was just about perfect. I dashed from my seat at the end of the game, making a quick trip to the little fan’s room, and then as I walked out of the stadium, it started to rain. By the time I reached my truck, the rain was harder, and everyone else in the gang had either left or was on their way out. By the time I decided I wasn’t going to stick around, it was pouring, and on the way home, I had to switch the windshield wipers up to their most hyperactive setting at one point.

Four meetings/errands yesterday. Two with clients, one with the lawyers (just dropping off a document for the files) and one with the place that sold me my poker table. One of the chairs has started to come apart, and I was checking on the warranty return. Everything’s cool, and I just have to haul it out there sometime soon. But all that running around pretty much occupied the part of the day that wasn’t spent out at the ballpark.

16. August, 2005 - if it ain’t one thing, it’s another

Got a few things done yesterday. But mostly I’ve been trying to figure out what the heck to do about the lack of work. Or rather, the impending lack of work. I’ve got enough to do right this instant, but the multiple projects I’ve been working on are looking like they’re all going to finish up about the same time, and I’m going to be faced with more down-time if I don’t find something additional soon.

But hey, the Saints are back in town tonight, and won two games (out of two) in Kansas City, so they’re in better shape. Hopefully I’ll get to see the team playing in something closer to playoff form this evening.

15. August, 2005 - ABE, party, slug-fest

The weekend? Friday, after a day of work, I went to see the Auto Body Experience over at the History Center. I had fun, and ran into a reader I hadn’t ever met in person before, plus saw a bunch of folks that I haven’t seen for a while. As for the show, well, I’d hoped there would be a review at How Was the Show, but there isn’t. My short review? It was exactly what I expected. Scott forgot the lyrics to the second song on the set-list, getting that out of the way early, and the rest of the show went pretty well, with any gaps being filled by making fun of Scott’s memory (we kid because we love). There was a party at Dixie’s afterwards, but I just headed home to get some much-needed sleep.

Saturday, there was a gun show, where I didn’t find much. Just a couple books, and a cheap soft gun sleeve. And a gun-show-hot-dog for a mid-afternoon snack. Broke the $10 mark by getting the hot-dog. Returned home, puttered around for a bit, and then it was off to Mark’s Party, where I spent a while gabbing with people. After a while, I realized that I wasn’t really thirsty for more Guinness, plus there was no tonic, so Amanda and I made a beer run. We found Zima Hard Orange, among other things, and decided we needed to procure some, since neither of us had tasted that flavor before. We discovered that it tastes almost exactly like orange Fanta (the US version, with synthetic flavor, as opposed to the European version with real orange juice). Beyond that, I helped Sean (or is it Shawn?) tend the grill, mostly taking finished bits of food inside from the grill, and bringing out more raw meat to keep things going. I had a fun time, talking with various people about various things and forgetting it all almost immediately, as one does at a party. I enjoyed meeting some of Mark’s cow-orkers, and talking with Spencer about home improvement.

If you’re a regular reader here, you can probably guess that with that kind of a Friday and Saturday, I almost certainly spent Sunday being a slug. You’d be right.

12. August, 2005 - trust the newspaper?

The first part of this was written a few minutes after 8am.

A story in the St. Paul Pioneer Press caught my attention this morning. The headline read Saints cap series sweep of Joliet. Which I found odd, because I’d been at all three games this week, and clearly remember the Saints losing on Tuesday. Heck, even the Saints recaps of the games point out Tuesday’s loss. Now I know from seeing the From news services at the top of the article that this is one of those cut-and-paste jobs, basically cobbling together press-releases, but how the heck does the Press-Patch blow it on a game that happened three days ago?

I shot an email to the sports editor at 8AM today, pointing out the error, but he won’t arrive until 9AM. It’ll be interesting to see how long it takes to get a correction issued. And yeah, I know this isn’t really all that important in the larger picture, but it would still be nice to see the St. Paul paper at least get the results for local team correct.

The regular update will follow, but I wanted to post this early enough that you might have a chance to see the old version of the story. If you can’t see it, I took a screen-shot.


Update: The correction was up at 9:04, pretty good, given that the sports guys don’t get in until 9am. Kudos to Mike Bass, who’s the sports editor over in St. Paul.

While I poke some fun at their expense, and understand they can’t afford to have a reporter at every game, I still find myself wondering why the PiPress doesn’t work out something creative to get good information on every game. If I remember right, press credentials at Midway mean you get free parking, and I find myself thinking that that might be enough of an incentive for me to file a report every night when I get home from the game. And Dave Wright might even go for it. Wanna talk, Mike?


Update 2: Mike replied:

Thanks for the offer, Dave, but the Saints provide us information and we put it together here. Take care.

I’m not sure if I’m up for it or not, but last year, I thought about scoring all the games I attended. I’m pretty sure I could do a daily update on the game, and the big thing holding me back is deciding how I would pay for the added effort. But I think there needs to be an alternative to the copy-and-pasted press releases that the PiPress carries.


11. August, 2005 - another long game

Another long game in St. Paul last night, this time with a better outcome. As I suspected on Tuesday, this is the same crew that I complained about back in July, and they haven’t gotten any better. The ball and strike calling wasn’t too bad last night, but Tuesday’s drama, which led to the Saints losing the game was, I suspect, as much due to who was behind the plate as anything.

Otherwise, work continues. But just as I thought it was appearing as though I’d get through the week pretty well, managing to keep everyone relatively happy, and making money along the way, I got a call from a client who got talked into switching all their web, mail, and connectivity services to RoadRunner. Apparently the client didn’t understand that this meant they’d be moving everything away from my business, and I’m probably going to end up spending the morning helping someone sort this out, and lose a client out of the deal. Grumble. It’s probably my fault for not being more pro-active with my existing clients, since I’ve made something of a business out of helping the technically clueless, but damnit, this was not how I had planned to spend my morning.

10. August, 2005 - late

Got a bit of a late start this morning. The game last night went long, after a Big ninth lifts Joliet over Saints. It didn’t help that the umpire had tossed our starting shortstop so there was a pitcher covering first base. Only one of the five hits might be attributed to him, but when we needed power in the bottom of the ninth, you don’t exactly want a pitcher hitting. Why the lineup troubles? Well, Jeremy Frost got tossed on Sunday (we think for a two-game suspension), Nick Gretz has some viral infection, Billy Munoz has a sore leg, and Adam Olow was already batting as the DH. Sigh. And here I was hoping that maybe we’d get a chance to make up some ground by playing Joliet.

Work seems to be going pretty well. Oh, there are the usual headaches and hang-ups, but everything seems to be moving forward, which sometimes surprises me, especially when I realize that I’ve done work for four five different clients already this week. I don’t necessarily like juggling multiple jobs but it’s what has to be done right now, and I seem to be keeping all the balls in the air for now. Of course now that I’ve mentioned that, everything will probably come crashing down, but I’m not going to worry too much just yet.

9. August, 2005 - productive

Yesterday went pretty well, I think. I did updates for a couple clients, and handled almost all of the administrative work I needed to get done for the day. The thunderstorms that rolled through in the morning and evening didn’t really disturb the work, and I mostly ignored the fact that it was brutally hot out there. There are a few outdoor projects I want to get done soon, but it looks like tomorrow we’ll see a break from the humidity, and if today goes as well as yesterday did, I should be able to get to them tomorrow afternoon.

So why is my mood a bit off this morning? I’m not sure, and the more I think about it, the more I convince myself I should be feeling pretty good about things. I’ve got work to keep me busy for a couple days, and leads on some more. It’s not enough that I can completely relax, but it is enough that I don’t have to sweat where next month’s mortgage payment is going to come from. That’s just about perfect, actually, since it means I’ll stay on my toes in the hunt for more work. So why the malaise? I’m just not sure, but I guess the best thing to do is just keep plugging along and let it sort itself out.

8. August, 2005 - catching up and slacking

The Weekend? Well, I let a lot of things go on Saturday. Pretty much just went to the ballgames and that was about the extent of it. Which was fine. There’s stuff to be done, but realistically, most of it is just stuff that I need to do for me, and putting it off for a few days won’t make any difference to anyone but me. And a couple days of taking it easy sounded a lot better to me than taking care of stuff.

That’s about it for the weekend. The Saints won two of three from Lincoln, and really should have won all three. The weather keeps getting hotter. And as a bonus, the allergies I get like clockwork every year in August have kicked in. I’ll try not to gripe about ’em too much, but I don’t much like the idea of being sniffly from now until the first hard frost.

5. August, 2005 - busy weekend

Lots to be done this weekend, including three Saints games. They’re home from the road trip, after a good attempt to catch Joliet for last place in the Southern division. They even helped Edmonton pull within two of Sioux Falls, possibly sending the Canaries back to the cellar. There’s other stuff, too, and it comes just as I’ve actually got a few small jobs that need to be done relatively quickly.

And on top of it all, I started reading a book last night, thinking I’d be asleep pretty quickly. I ended up four-hundred odd pages into the book when I finally dropped off at 3:30 AM. I like good books, and this is shaping up to be one, but why do I always start reading one just when things are getting busy around here? Because you’re an idiot. Oh yeah, that’s it.

4. August, 2005 - meh

Some mornings, nearly every story I read seems like it’s worth blogging about. Other mornings, nothing seems worth the effort. Today is one of the latter. I eventually managed to find a few things, but it felt like work.

Nothing to note in the home-life lately. The heat-wave has broken (we’re up to 21 days over 90 so far this year, as compared to three last year) for now, so today I’ll be concentrating on outdoor things like mowing the lawn and weeding the garden.

3. August, 2005 - hump-day fun

Let’s have something lighter today, okay? Some baseball, some comics, and some just plain fun stuff. Seems like a good thing to do. I’ve been trying to catch up on some fun around here in between the work and searching for work, too. Updated my quotes page, for example. Added sixty-some new ones to it.

In other news, I had a pretty good time at the National Night Out thing last night. There were four of us there from my block, and the three women from my block all expressed interest in any spare grape tomatoes I might have, so I told them to help themselves. I spent a while talking to another neighbor who also isn’t biking as much as he’d like this summer, and we might go out for a ride soon. We’ll see, I guess. He sounds like he’s one of those people who likes to ride in a hurry, so it might not work out so well, but maybe it’ll get me out. When I returned home, I took a peek at the garden. There had been a couple-dozen tomatoes ready for picking out there, and they were all gone. Excellent! With the Saints games this weekend, I should be able to unload any more extras, as well as some of the tabascos that are starting to ripen, as well as the bird chiles that might be ready. Both of these are somewhat surprising to me, since I didn’t expect they’d do especially well in Minnesota, but the extended hot-spells we’ve had have been great weather for peppers and tomatoes. Yum!

Oh, and catching up on the Saints, they’re 6-11 after a loss to Edmonton who’s similarly stinking up the standings in the other division. About the only consolation we have is that Joliet is even worse in our division, but this is kind of what I feared would happen when the Saints won the first-half. A couple players have been picked up by the bigs, there’s been no hurry to bring back the injured guys, and generally they don’t seem to be playing to win, no matter what George might say. I worry how they’re going to do in the playoffs, but I guess that’s still a month away, so I won’t panic yet. But I might book a conference that runs during the last weekend of the Northern League finals….

2. August, 2005 - meetings

Today looks like a day of meetings. Got one this morning with a client who wants to talk about some programming work, but probably not enough for me to get terribly excited about. Another client is having a meeting (which I won’t be at) where it will be decided what work I’ll be getting from them over the next few months. Again, I suspect the answer will be not enough. There’s some work to do for that first client in the afternoon, and probably a bit more questing to try and keep my schedule full. Finally, PapaScott is in town, and I may hear from him this evening. There’s a chance of a beer, perhaps. It’s shaping up to feel like a busy day, even if I don’t get a whole lot done.

On the home front, I got out and got a few things done yesterday. Sprayed some Weed-B-Gone on the crabgrass, but Home Depot didn’t have the Crabgrass killer in stock, so I got the regular stuff, and I’m not sure how well it’ll work. At a minimum, I hope it doesn’t kill off too much of the lawn, and didn’t drift onto the garden in the light breeze that kicked up after I started spraying. Speaking of the garden, I picked another dozen grape tomatoes, and a few more romas. The grape tomatoes get eaten as snacks, but I’ve almost got enough romas to make up a small batch of red sauce. I’m hoping I can maybe do that around lunchtime today and not heat up the kitchen too much.

1. August, 2005 - hot again

The heat kicked in again over the weekend. It had been creeping up all last week, but this weekend was when we got the really hot days.

Saturday I took my mom and her roommate up the the American Legion post in Pine City. A good time was had, and they both got to say hello to some folks they haven’t seen for a while. Their first drinks were perhaps a bit weak, so they decided to have a second drink each, and for that one, the bartender poured the drinks a little heavy. By the time I got them back to the senior home, they were both in a pretty darned good mood. It was a good day out, but by the time I got home, I was pretty tired.

By the time I woke up on Sunday it was already hot and sticky out. I had planned to get some yard work done in the morning, but overslept, and ended up just spending the day inside. But I had some yummy sweet corn I'd bought on Saturday, and cooked that up. Two ears Saturday evening, two with a sandwich for lunch on Sunday, and two cut off the cobs and stored in the fridge for use in something today. I'd almost forgotten how good fresh sweet corn is, especially since it's so hard to get it really fresh here in town.

This week looks like a busy week, too. It's going to stay hot through Wednesday night, and I've still got that yard work to do. Plus there's work stuff. Mostly trying to find some new work, I guess.

Last Month
Copyright 2009, Dave Polaschek. Last updated on Mon, 15 Feb 2010 13:59:27.