February 2006 full listing

28. February, 2006 - no photowalk photos yet

No pictures yet. When I was heading home from work yesterday, I thought about what was in the fridge and freezer at home, and none of it sounded as good as a plate of nachos from the Sporty, so I stopped off there for dinner. While I didn’t tear the place up by any means, I didn’t figure playing with the computer was the best plan when I got home, so the new hard drive still sits in its box, which means no pictures yet. Maybe tonight.

Sunrise reflecting on downtown Minneapolis
Sunrise on downtown
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Okay. One picture. I took this one a week ago today on the way to work. It’s downtown Minneapolis with the sunrise reflecting off it. It’s handheld, and a bit fuzzy as a result, since I was using a 200mm (300mm equivalent) lens and pretty long exposures (this was the shortest at 1100 sec). Of the lot, I think this was the best, and it still took some tweaking in ACR and some pretty harsh cropping in Photoshop. Doing the math, something like a 500mm lens would have allowed me to fill the frame about the way I wanted from up on County C and Hwy 88 where I took this picture. I’m not ecstatic about it, but I guess I could have done a lot worse. And I really like the color of the sunrise reflecting off all that glass downtown. I may have to play with this one some more one of these days when I learn the tools better (and have the space on my drive to play with multiple versions).

So anyone want to help me get the cool lens I’m certain I need for shots like this (and which would be pretty darned handy for baseball season, too)? I added it to my Wish List.

27. February, 2006 - catching up

That’s the theme for this morning, both in the blogging and in real life. I’ll start with the easier part. Thanks to Margaret again for suggesting the photowalk on Saturday, and thanks to everyone else for being a generally fun gang of folks to wander around with. I had a ton of fun, and it was just the kind of thing I need to do more often. My pictures are still sitting in the camera though, since I got home and realized that having nearly a full gig of pictures in the camera, and less than 2 gigs available on my hard drive would make things uncomfortably tight. Combine that with weary feet from spending a few hours walking around downtown, and Saturday evening saw very little in the way of productivity.

Which brings me to Sunday. I woke up and hung in the 24 hours of TV chatroom for a while, then headed out to MicroCenter to buy a new hard drive for the computer. It’s still sitting on the dining room table, since rather than plopping it right into the computer when I got home, I logged back into the chat room to cheer the guys on to the end. When that was done, I felt as though I’d had enough computer, and plopped down in front of the TV for the remainder of the day.

All of which means that this morning I need to spend time sorting and paying the bills I was going to pay over the weekend and didn’t. Then it’s off to work for the day, and hopefully take some time this evening to get the new hard drive installed so I can start pulling in the pictures from Saturday. Plus all the pictures from earlier in the month.

24. February, 2006 - TGIF

So far this year, it seems Fridays have been split about evenly between looking forward to some weekend plan and being glad to be done with the work-week and ready to just spend the weekend sleeping. Today is both. A snarky comment yesterday led to tension in the workplace, and I find myself thinking that I’m happiest when I can just sit back and program, without having to deal with other people. On the other hand, I’m looking forward both to meeting some friends for dinner this evening and to meeting some new folks on the spontaneous walkabout tomorrow, and really hope the weather will be decent.

The one other thing that’s been rattling around in my skull is that I want to take a vacation soon. Not necessarily some grand trip overseas, but a week or so of getting out of town and away from everyday life. I wonder if I can put together some sort of spring-training trip, perhaps. Sounds like a good thing to investigate on Sunday.

23. February, 2006 - huh! stuff!

I was sure today was going to be one of those I’m lame and have no links for you days, but it turns out there’s a few things to point to out there after all.

Yesterday was one of those ball-crushing kind of days at work. Wednesdays usually are, since I generally have four hours of meetings scheduled on Wednesdays. And even though two of them were cancelled, I still felt like a vise was being applied to parts of me that don’t appreciate that sort of treatment. The worst part was that much of it was self-inflicted. I thought I’d had a pretty good morning, but one of my changes started crashing the application. And the debugger. Ugh. At least this will be one of seven-hundred-thousand google hits for crash and debugger, so I’m not exactly alone in my pain.

Anyway, it turns out I didn’t understand the ownership policies on one of the objects I was working with and was deleting it. When the OS helpfully deleted it again for me, things went south in a hurry. All the memory-protection in the world doesn’t help when you’re a complete idiot. Found the problem and band-aided it just before the day-ending meeting, and I know how to fix it correctly after letting my subconscious chew on the problem overnight (and screw up my dreams), but I still have the feeling that it all would have been a lot simpler if I’d just stayed in bed yesterday.

22. February, 2006 - old news?

I hadn’t realized until this morning that I had such a backlog of links built up, but then I found there was a story about something that happend a full week ago waiting for me in the queue. Oops. So the plan is to blow out the cobwebs today. More links than I normally would have posted, and probably tomorrow I’ll have nothing, but at least we’re now all up to date again, right?

Got a new computer at work yesterday. It was a pre-configured system that the IT guys had set up for me. So I guess I should be grateful that it only took until 5pm to get it up and running correctly, right? Have I mentioned that I really don’t like Windows®? Oh well, at least it’s good to go this morning before I have to start the four hours of meetings that have been scheduled for me today.

21. February, 2006 - say no more?

It was two weeks ago today I did a set of links all about photography. Well, it appears that I’ve piled up a bunch more for today. It’s interesting. I’ve been reading and thinking about taking pictures a lot lately, but I haven’t been much with the doing. I think the problem is that I don’t take good pictures unless I have time to wander around and slow my brain down, and that time has been in short supply lately. Plus the weather hasn’t been especially conducive to long walks around outside.

So anyway, here’s a raft of links. And if the weather coöperates this weekend, I’ll probably be out and about and have some pictures to show y’all. Which might also prompt me to update the software on my server that serves up the pictures. Or at least get it back on the to-do list.

20. February, 2006 - it’s like a holiday

Some people have a holiday today. Like my bank. And the Post Office. Guess that means there’s little point it trying to pay the bills this morning, since they’d just sit here stampless until tomorrow anyhow. Other than that, it’s a pretty normal Monday following a pretty normal weekend.

The recap? Well, the blizzard threatened last week never hit here. The weekend weather was cold, and staying home seemed preferable to going out in the cold. Had a decent time taking mom out shopping and to the bar on Saturday, but I’m starting to see signs of the end of such outings. Plans to go down to the antique show fell through, which meant I didn’t stop by the gun show that was also at the convention center. On Sunday, Elliott Sadler finished highest in the NASCAR pool at work, which puts me in first place, but I’m kicking myself over not picking Jimmie Johnson. Pitchers and catchers reported, which excites me less than I think it should. And late Sunday evening, a canvasser for Sister’s Camelot stopped by. I’d almost forgotten about them, so it was good they had someone out. And that’s pretty much the weekend.

At work, it looks like this could be a productive week. I’ve gotten everything I need from others on the team, and now I can just plow on ahead with the stuff I’m supposed to be doing. That should keep me busy for the next few weeks, which is good.

17. February, 2006 - nothing much

Overslept this morning, so there’s no time to do the surfing needed to gather the links for the day. Perhaps this evening.

16. February, 2006 - snow?

There were fearful forecasts of a blizzard. I don’t know. Nothing out there when I woke up. Supposedly it’s going to hit about 10am, but depending on which forecast you look at, it might peter out in the southern ’burbs. I wouldn’t mind some snow, but it’s far enough into winter that I’m not very excited about it, either.

Had dinner last night at Masa with the reconstituted dinner club. It was a pretty good experience. The food was good but not great (I had the Pollo con Mole, and while it was tasty, the dark meat portion of the chicken was slightly undercooked). But our waitress (Andy) was attentive and cute and that never hurts.

Our group of ten spent about $400, so it wasn’t a cheap night (even though I suspect we under-tipped as a table). The company was interesting, since there were a lot of new faces, and it was a darned good evening. One of the interesting things was that I was the only one of the gang to pay with cash. Everyone else used checks or credit cards. Huh! I guess I’m a weirdo. Yeah, that’s a complete shock, I know.

15. February, 2006 - it’s like science

Life continues. Yesterday was a mixed bag. Got a call in the morning about more insurance stuff for mom. There wasn’t going to be time for the forms to travel in the mail, so we had to play some fax-tag with them. But everything’s in the right hands now, and theoretically the problem is solved. I think I’ve figured out where it all went wrong, too. The plan mom was in is the one that was the default, and sometime last year, I got a letter saying If you don’t do anything, you’ll end up in this plan. Since it was the plan we wanted, I went with my strength and did nothing. But then the county had no paperwork in hand, so things got confused… Anyway, enough about that.

The rest of the day was ups and downs. I was pretty productive again, but I’ve got a number of tasks in which I need feedback from someone else on my team. Unfortunately after they were out at the conference all last week, they’re getting sick this week and I still haven’t gotten the responses I need. So I’m rapidly running out of things I can do without risking heading off in a wrong direction. I left from work a little early as a result. Today I have four meetings scheduled, and I’m torn. Normally I wouldn’t want to spend half the working day in meetings, but I need some answers, so I’m actually hoping for none of the meetings to be cancelled. Wish me luck?

14. February, 2006 - blah

Yesterday was not the day I was hoping for when I woke up. Got to work about the usual time, and started trying to work. But I had to deal with multiple government offices once they opened for the day to deal with mom’s Medicare Part D coverage, which had been helpfully cancelled by someone (it’s still not clear exactly what happened) after we’d gotten it set up back in December. The phone calls rapidly turned up the frustration level to the point that I gave up on getting any work done and took personal time for the rest of the day. I came home and spent all afternoon playing phone-tag, and finally got things resolved about 4pm. Well, kinda resolved. At least the right forms are supposed to be in the mail to me, and it should all be sorted out for March. Ugh. And even that wouldn’t have happened without the great gal at the Senior LinkAge Line® who guided me through the process and spent almost two hours on the phone with me, making something like eight different three-way calls.

As I mentioned yesterday, I don’t have any plans for today. I’m probably going to try and work an extra hour or two to make up for being out all yesterday afternoon. Pretty romantic, eh?

And in a bit of followup, multiple readers pointed out to me that DFL stands for “Dead F***in’ Last”. Thanks for the help. I had a mental block because I kept thinking of Minnesota’s Democrat-Farmer-Labor party, and couldn’t figure out what in the world they had to do with the Olympics.

13. February, 2006 - Monday the thirteenth

St. Valentine’s Day Eve. Strikes fear into the heart of many guys: Oh Crap! Is it that time of year already? Me? No worries this year. Nobody to make plans with, and no real urge to make any plans. I could go out and hang out with the bitter singles somewhere, but I suspect that since tomorrow’s a “school night,” I’ll just stay home. Oh, and get my hair cut. For some reason it was pretty easy to come by an appointment tomorrow evening.

The weekend? Pretty quiet. I didn’t leave the house, and liked it. Felt a little bad that I’d missed the flickr meetup on Saturday and the Paintings on a Sunday gathering on (surprisingly enough) Sunday, but not so bad that it got me out of the house. The only excitement, if you want to call it that, was a set of three phone calls to my cell-phone at 1:30 AM on Sunday morning. Since the phone was in the charger, it was close enough to my sleeping body to wake me up. Grr. I wish there was a way to flag numbers (or calls with no caller ID) so the phone wouldn’t ring at all. Let it blink lights or whatever, but I don’t want to hear the rings from the people who are calling for Hussein any more. Heck, I’d even be happy with the phone being smart enough to shut off the ringer during certain hours. That’s just not the kind of thing I think of when plopping it in the charger before going to bed.

10. February, 2006 - Friday fun

One of the things I’ve noticed about having the office virtually to myself this week is that it’s tough to stick around if I’m not actively working on something. I’ve stalled twice during the week, waiting on an email from someone else, and both afternoons that happened, I finally gave up and headed home early. It didn’t hurt that the snow yesterday was looking like it would completely snarl rush-hour, either. So now that leaves me with a Friday where I’m still waiting on one email (maybe it’ll be there this morning, but I’m not hopeful) and I’m a couple hours short of my allotment. And there’s supposed to be more snow today, which means shovelling a bit before going to work, and again when I get home. Somehow I suspect I’m going to come up short on the forty hours for this week.

9. February, 2006 - closer to the end

Of the week. Of one project I’m working on. Of my “reader’s block” in finding new links for you. Whatever. It’s Thursday, and I can see the weekend, complete with much lounging about on the couch and perhaps a session of percussive therapy from here. Sure there’s still today and tomorrow to be gotten through at work, but today is the last day of the all-company conference I wasn’t invited to in California, so everyone will pretty much continue leaving me alone, and tomorrow they’ll all be in airplanes or whatever, and again, I’ll have a quiet day.

Unfortunately, at least one of the projects I’m working on there has stalled. I need some answers from a guy who was supposed to make fifteen minutes for me this week, but couldn’t even do that, so a full week of delay has been put into that pipeline. I’m not bitter or anything, but it does make it a little harder to get excited about that particular project.

8. February, 2006 - thinning out

I continue to find nothing of note in the morning, so I’m about out of links. I’m also running late this morning. Sometimes more sleep is a very good thing.

7. February, 2006 - snap snap, grin grin

Maybe I’m not in such good shape for the week after all. This morning’s reading produced exactly nothing I wanted to link to, so I guess it’s a good thing I had stocked up over the weekend. This set of links is all about photography.

Work is odd this week. From our office of 40-some people, all but five are out in California for a conference. It’s pretty odd having things that quiet, especially since one of the guys is on the late schedule, and we only overlap by about an hour. On the other hand, the remaining population is two gals and three guys, so it doesn’t feel like the usual sausage-fest around the office. Plus because there’s none of the usual lunch-crowd around, I’m taking quick lunches and getting home earlier. Gotta like that.

6. February, 2006 - long weekend

The weekend was one that felt both long and short at the same time. I cut out of work a bit early on Friday, having wrapped up most of the tasks I was working on, and not wanting to dive into anything substantial with only a few hours left in the week. Plus I was feeling a bit run-down, and figured that a quiet evening at home wouldn’t hurt at all, so that’s exactly what I had.

Saturday saw some errands and then the monthly poker gathering. We managed to get a quorum, but found out that the game conflicts with Surf Night at the Hexagon, which meant a few arrivals were late and drunk. I ended up talking and drinking with one of the attendees until after sunrise, which I’m pretty sure wasn’t the best plan in the world. Slept until mid-afternoon on Sunday, and watched some more TV before getting back onto the normal schedule again for the work-week.

I still feel as though I’m living on the edge of having a cold. I’m not exactly sick, but I’m not feeling 100%, either. At this point, I almost wish I would get sick so I could get healthy again, but that doesn’t appear to be in the cards.

And I think that’s going to do it for today. I hear there was some football game over the weekend, but hadn’t heard the result until I read Dave Winer this morning. It feels odd to get my sports news from Dave. I’ve got a fair number of links piled up from the time spent on the couch surfing the web Friday evening and yesterday, so the week’s blogging looks like it should go well. Heck, I may even find time to do some other work on the site, but I’m not going to promise anything, since that would probably doom any such project. Have a good week!

3. February, 2006 - winding down

I knew I should have saved more stuff for today. Ah well, it’s the end of the week, and I’m not only running out of links, I’m running out of steam, and think I’m coming down with yet another cold. It’s nice having people around to talk to at work, but most of them have kids, and are continually hauling in one infection after another. In previous winters, my strategy was to hibernate at home when people were spreading illness, but I don’t have that luxury this year.

Yesterday felt super-productive at work until about 4pm, when the network completely shit the bed. Since I was in the middle of trying to write an email in Outlook (if I don’t use that, I don’t get information about meetings I’m supposed to be at), which kept trying to check the network and giving me the hourglass. After about a half-hour of frustration, I gave up and called it a day. This morning, I’m wishing I’d stuck around work a little longer, since I was also building a “private build” for a tester, and need to go in today to post it to the server. If I’d gotten that done before leaving yesterday, I think I might just stay home and in bed today. But instead, I’m going to head in, and keep telling myself that when it comes to germs, ’tis better to give than receive.

2. February, 2006 - lighter fare

Time to dump some of the funnier and lighter links. Usually I do this on Fridays, but I guess this week Friday comes early.

1. February, 2006 - some windbag on TV

In spite of the title, I have very little to say about the State of the Union speech last night. It was about what I expected, and my expectations were pretty low. I got pretty tired of Bush’s smirk by the end of the speech, but self-medicating with a bit of bourbon helped.

Last Month
Copyright 2009, Dave Polaschek. Last updated on Mon, 15 Feb 2010 14:00:26.