It Was a Lovely Day

Posted by Cyn | Posted in Family, Home, Reading | Posted on 12-11-2007

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Please note: Yes, I am refer­ring to today, the 12th, which is my birth­day. Those close to me know that I gen­er­al­ly hate my birth­day, as it’s a reminder of mul­ti­ple mis­car­riages and oth­er nasty things hap­pen­ing around this time sev­er­al years in a row.

Sam and Katie man­aged to make #41 very nice, though.

Quotable Mug With Osho QuoteSam and I went out Sat­ur­day evening to Barnes & Noble, but I just could­n’t make a deci­sion. So many choic­es! We went over to Out­Write, too, which is always fun. I saw lots of adorable trin­kets there, and plen­ty of inter­est­ing read­ing and lis­ten­ing mate­r­i­al, but still could­n’t make a choice. I real­ly liked this mug, and it felt great in my hand, but I could­n’t find out if it’s microwave safe. (My favorite cof­fee cup was bro­ken recent­ly, vic­tim of my unre­li­able grip. Thank you, fibro/arthritis/CMP!) Have any of you tried a Quotable mug? How did it hold up?

Oh! On the way home, we start­ed to dri­ve past Krispy Kreme and Sam had a sud­den need for donuts, so we popped in there to sat­is­fy that. I’ve nev­er done the dri­ve-through there before, but things were real­ly crowd­ed in the store. The car line was long, too, but we had the advan­tage of pri­va­cy and good com­pa­ny while wait­ing in it.

We enjoyed being out, but I came home with­out hav­ing cho­sen any­thing but donut fill­ings. Sam threat­ened to pick for me if I did­n’t make a choice on Sun­day. I have a lot of trou­ble spend­ing any mon­ey on myself, or ask­ing for presents, and he thought that’s why I had­n’t cho­sen any­thing.

So we went out again on Sunday—leaving the house two days in a row is very unusu­al for me any more! I had final­ly decid­ed on exact­ly what I want­ed, and we tried to go get it, but found the place closed for Vet­er­an’s Day. My man insist­ed on tak­ing me to Bor­ders and buy­ing Kim Har­rison’s A Few Demons More, promis­ing that we’d also go to The Place again on Mon­day. Then he took me to Steak & Shake for din­ner, because when I saw the sign I had a seri­ous crav­ing for their mush­room-swiss burg­er. (Don’t both­er with the new Por­to­bel­lo mush­room burg­er, as you get far few­er mush­rooms that way!)

Katie and I (she’s home from school, sick) had a very nice, low-key day Mon­day, and Sam and I set out again after he got home. This time, suc­cess!

I asked for some­thing that prob­a­bly seems odd to most people—a non-res­i­dent library card so I can access the best library sys­tem in Geor­gia, Gwin­nett Coun­ty Pub­lic Libraries. But I’d checked, and they have 95% of the books I’m real­ly want­i­ng to read, and past expe­ri­ence says they’ll con­tin­ue to car­ry the fan­ta­sy and sci­ence fic­tion I love. They have a far bet­ter selec­tion of every­thing than Dekalb, where we live. (Okay, Gwin­nett has stopped car­ry­ing music CDs, because so many went miss­ing. Big deal.)

I want­ed the card instead of a few books, because this way I can read all of them! And, in fact, we came home with nine books that have all been on my wish list for some time, and two or three graph­ic nov­els for Sam.

Now I have a whole pile of new-to-me books, and A Few Demons More! They’re all way too tempt­ing to a girl who still has home­work to do, includ­ing a SWOT analy­sis that’s due for my man­age­ment class this week.

Thanks to all of you for the birth­day wish­es via Face­book, email, Twit­ter, LJ, etc. 🙂

The EM Curse

Posted by Cyn | Posted in Family, Geekery, Health, Home | Posted on 23-10-2007

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I’m view­ing this entry on my ginor­mous 22″ mon­i­tor. My hero acquired it via freecy­cle, tot­ed it from the pre­vi­ous own­er’s house to our car and into our house again. It has some insane­ly love­ly res­o­lu­tion and so on, and is so big that I can have the text size set to HUGE and still get lots of stuff on a screen (not that Win­dows does that text-size-chang­ing ele­gant­ly, but that’s anoth­er top­ic).

My video and sound cards are absolute­ly awe­some com­pared to what I was using in the lap­top! I can even go on Sec­ond Life with­out spend­ing all of my time wait­ing for every­thing to resolve!

This is thanks to Sam, who acquired and set up this com­put­er for me. Thank you, sweet­ie!

He was actu­al­ly doing this already, part­ly because he want­ed me to join him on SL more fre­quent­ly, but then it became a real neces­si­ty, because we’ve expe­ri­enced some sort of odd electro­mechan­i­cal curse recent­ly.

Those of you who read Sam’s jour­nal know that he lost all the infor­ma­tion on both hard dri­ves in his machine recent­ly. That meant all the back­up infor­ma­tion was gone. We did­n’t ever find an expla­na­tion, but I think it was the hard dri­ve con­troller. In any case, we had to upgrade to SATA because that was more eco­nom­i­cal­ly fea­si­ble than try­ing to find EIDE dri­ves, and he has­n’t had more prob­lems since then.

What I can do from home/school/medical what­ev­ers has been fur­ther lim­it­ed now by the loss of my lap­top. It just died a few months ago. It had been going in lit­tle pieces—the PCMCIA slot did­n’t want to work for NICs, then the SD card read­er became unre­li­able, then the eth­er­net port lost the lit­tle tab that keeps the cord plugged in, and final­ly the place where the pow­er cord plugs in to the case got weird and the cord just would­n’t stay con­nect­ed well. I think all the pow­er prob­lems screwed with the oth­er parts at the end (yes, ter­ri­bly tech­ni­cal lan­guage there). The hard dri­ve was read­able, hap­pi­ly.

Unfor­tu­nate­ly, I’d just moved all my data else­where because I was about to rebuild the soft­ware on the lap­top, and the SAMBA server’s data dri­ve fell down and went boom. It’s sor­ta read­able in an exter­nal hard dri­ve enclo­sure if mount­ed with Ext2Fsd on a Win­dows machine. Of course, we can’t find the pow­er sup­ply for the exter­nal hard dri­ve enclo­sure, although it was right there with the enclo­sure just a few weeks ago. ::Sigh

When we try to put the dri­ve in the rebuilt Lin­ux machine, the machine (which is run­ning a very dif­fer­ent dis­tri­b­u­tion now) keeps want­i­ng to imme­di­ate­ly do some­thing to the boot sec­tions of the dri­ve, and I’m afraid that’ll make it total­ly unread­able. Yes, I said, “do some­thing” because Sam tried that part, not me. I’d rather not give details than be wrong.

I don’t know what the serv­er used to run. I used Red Hat. When Sam took it over, he tried sev­er­al dif­fer­ent things and I can’t recall what he set­tled on (to end users, it hard­ly mat­ters, which is how it should be). The rebuilt machine runs Ubun­tu.

Yes, we do use UPSs. No, there was no mal­ware involved. All phys­i­cal fail­ures. (Most of) the equip­ment was old. So we’re down a few machines and a lot of dri­ves.

Oh! The microwave! It went out dra­mat­i­cal­ly, with a big sound and flames and all! I’m glad I missed it. Hear­ing about it was all too excit­ing.

Then the toast­er decid­ed that it may or may not pop up its con­tents, and it might or might not have toast­ed them in the mean­time. It’s a Schrödinger’s toast­er, appar­ent­ly.

Oh, then there were the cell phones. Mine, then Katie’s. Just stopped work­ing one day. Okay, dif­fer­ent days, but you get the pic­ture. Both have been replaced now, but she and I were shar­ing one there for a bit, which Was Not Fun.

Katie has an inter­est­ing new art project, the Dis­cor­dian PDA. She’s going to get advice from her (won­der­ful) art teacher as to what kind of paint would work well on a Palm. That’s a good way to use one that won’t keep it’s time or date reli­ably any more. Or charge. It’s pret­ty much a paper­weight, so it might as well be love­ly to look at it. Not ter­ri­bly use­ful for keep­ing cal­en­dars, con­tacts, and so on, and our phones don’t sync with the rest of the world so well (ah, to have Tre­os!), so we’re down a PDA.

My car­pet steam­er still just won’t coop­er­ate (I think the ex screwed it up when she was “fix­ing it” with­out hav­ing ever seen one before), so I’m almost ready to toss it. I can hope to acquire one via freecy­cle, or wait ’til they go on sale, but repair of such things is sel­dom worth­while unless the shop can imme­di­ate­ly say, “Oh, that’s the (com­mon thing) and it’ll be (amount). I can have it done in two hours.”

I know there was some­thing else, or sev­er­al of them, that died dur­ing this time, too. A/V relat­ed, I think.

Any­body wan­na come remove a curse?