Something Somewhere Sometime

Just before I was getting ready to leave Vancouver I noticed my laptop acting up, which normally is something I can deal with, in this case it was the precursor to my laptop having a catastrophic fail.  The video card gave up the ghost the day before I was supposed to get on a plane for Chicago, which given the nature of the gig it meant that the laptop failing when it did mean I was humped.

I did a quick search and discovered that I could spend about a grand in a short order on a new windows laptop, or I could spend about the same on a mac.  Well I went the mac route and as of today, I’ve done something I never thought I could get done.  As I write this on my MacBook Pro running Windows Vista on a separate partition.  So I’ve got a dual boot, which is not something I’ve done since Window XP and Redhat…

I’ve been told I should just embrace the Mac and roll with it, but over the years I’ve found that both Windows and Mac have their strong suits, while multimedia production on the Mac is much stronger, Office suite applications and CAD applications are stronger for the PC.  So now with the dual boot I have access to both the strong suits and that makes me very happy!  I’ve got CAD for my technical work and I’ve Lightroom for my photography and I only have to restart to have access to either of them.

I’m not a convert and I won’t preach the benefits of either platforms, but I will say that I enjoy aspects of both and will most likely continue down the path of dual boot for the foreseeable future.

An open challenge to myself

That’s right I’m challenging myself to write something on the old blog once a week for the rest of the year.  This may seem like a low goal to some and to others it may seem like there’s no point to this exercise, but it’s not for them it’s for me! 

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Rambling

mapmap2Yesterday was a great day.  Started out with an awesome ride in to the office. 

The ride isn’t the same as the ride I used to have in Seattle.  What used to be a 4.5k ride from my place in Seattle to my office is now a 9.8k ride from my home to my office in Vancouver.    It went from being pretty flat to being a hill climb, which is not to say I’m lazy or out of shape, but the first time I rode to work in Van, it almost killed me.  Double the length of the ride and add in a hill climb and there’s no need for coffee to get me started in the morning any more.

Ok so back to yesterday, the ride in was good, the weather here has been fantastic, high 80’s and clear for the last week.  After getting to the office I parked my bike, got onto a bus and headed for UBC and the Amazing Accessible Race (AAR) which is a series of challenges meant to expose an able bodied person to the trials of living with a disability. 

The highlight of the AAR was trying sledge hockey, which is essentially strapping an ice skate onto your butt and sliding around trying to play hockey.  All ten people on the team got the chance to try the sledge which was both good and bad.  My turn consisted of my trying to navigate the ice and the equipment as quickly as possible as the equipment reeked.

Once we got through with the AAR, we went back to the office long enough to eat some lunch then head to the play a little pitch and putt.  So in essence yesterday was a non-work day.  I swear I’m working really hard up here…

Holidays 2008 – post production report

The 2008 holidays started with my having to purchase new tires for my car…  It was needed but at the same time I was hoping to avoid doing it until after the first of the year, but as the quote goes, “Life is what happens while you’re making other plans".”  So I accept the fact i had to put $900 into the car…

I started the week of Christmas at work, it was a pointless exercise as my entire venue team was gone and I think the department I work in was the only that had more than 5 people there.  I couldn’t really get anything done, so I helped where I could and left a little early on Monday.  By 5:00 pm I decided I was going to drive down to Seattle on Tuesday, so I packed the car and a bag.

It was also decided I would give another couple of friends a ride to the airport on my way out of town, I don’t mind, it’s on the way to the border!  Speaking of the border, on the way there I passed by 7 accidents, mostly people just driving to fast for the conditions.  Something to remember, four wheel drive doesn’t equal four wheel stop on ice.  Thankfully none of the accidents looked like there were any fatalities, so that’s something.

Crossing the border is always a challenge and I especially like the question, “what are you doing in Canada and why are you visiting the us?”

After a very uneventful, but long drive to Seattle I met up with S and her friends.  They were a good bunch of people and they not only know theatre and darts, but they can drink with the best of them!  I’m glad to have met them and I’m looking forward to seeing them again in the future!

Christmas eve is always a bit of a challenge, but it was good to see everyone and especially my brother, the last J.  Having his birthday on Christmas eve is a little bad, but it’s life and you can’t get away from it!

The big day started with a phone call at 4:30 AM from E, she still has problems with the whole time difference thing, but it was excellent to hear from her!  If someone has to wake me up at 4:30 AM on Christmas day at least it was her and not some niece or nephew and the whole “Santa’s been here!”  Yes, I know I was the first one up for years, but I’ve grown out of it so leave me be in the morning!  It was great to have a quick catch up with E and I hope to hear from her again sometime soon!

The day itself was good, a nice little nap in the afternoon, a huge turkey dinner and a showing of The Dark Knight!  I’m not sure my aunt knew what she was getting into to, but it was fun to watch with my sister, her husband and my brother.  Of course I think I’m the only one who watched the whole thing, everyone else fell asleep sometime during the movie.

Boxing day found me driving back to the other side, the other side is the non-island side of the water as my folks live on an island.  I headed back to S’s house and a boxing day party.  It was a little exciting getting there, but I had a blast with S’s friends and the two who I had met at the beginning of the trip were at the party, so it was good to see them there and have a few more words before I headed north. 

I managed to get back to Van on Saturday and didn’t leave the house until New years eve.  It was great to just relax and not have to be anywhere or have any plans.  Some would call it lazy, but I would just call it a holiday in my own apartment.

New Years Eve was a bit off, I wasn’t feeling like partying much, but I made the effort.  I guess I hit a stride at about midnight and went a little nuts at the pub.  I’m pretty sure we closed the place down and I didn’t get to be until at least 5:00 AM…  I didn’t manage to get out of bed until Noon and I didn’t feel right until about 8:00 PM.

I’ll give the 2008 holidays a 8 out of 10 for an overall score.  It’s really an average, but I’m glad I was around this year for the family as who knows what will happen for the 2009 holidays, after all it’s going to be pretty busy for me as well as a lot of friends.

Work + Alcohol + Brain = Bad Dreams

I’m surprised I woke up as early as I did this morning…  I was up and ready to go by 5:00 AM?  What the hell, 5:00 AM is not a time I need to worry about for at least another year.  Something must be wrong with me, besides the obvious things, here I am up at the crack of doom.  Not only that but I had really crazy dreams last night as well.  They included people from my past, present and I can only assume my future, moving furniture and cake.  Throw all that together in one alcohol soaked brain and what you get is some seriously messed up dreams.

The sad part is I don’t really have anyone here that I could talk to about the dreams.  Or to be more specific I don’t have anyone here who has the history to understand the comments about the people from my past which was the weirdest part of the dream. 

Oh yeah on a really great note I have to buy new tires today, which is an expense I was not looking forward to having at this time of year.  At least most of my shopping is done…  Doesn’t make it any better that I have to buy tires, but at least I knew it was coming.  I just hoped I could have done it in the new year rather than now.

Water

I went swimming tonight at a friends place.  It’s the first time I’ve been in the water since I went to Hawaii with S.  I realized over the last few months I’ve been getting more and more uptight.  I couldn’t put my finger on it until tonight while I was swimming laps.  I’ve been missing the water.

When I was growing up I swam a the pool across the street, it was comical really I feel like I spent more time there than anywhere else during the season.  I found peace in the pool, the repetition of the stroke, the breathing, the turns and most important the singular motion needed to stay floating and alive.

It’s amazing how good I feel after that swim tonight, mentally not physically…  Right now it feels like my shoulder is on fire, but I have a clarity I’ve not had in a long while.  It constantly amazes me when I remember to do the simple things and how good it feels to do something like that.  The simplicity of swimming…  I’ll have to find a way to thank K & B for letting me borrow their pool.

Politics – Why?

So I’m normally a person who votes their mind not a party. This year I was looking over my ballot and I discovered I was voting along a specific party line and not necessarily my mind. I had to take a step back and do some research on why I was voting along a specific party line. After taking the time to do some more reading on the issues I got my head back into the game. I voted the remaining ballot based on my conscience.

I’ve grown up in a very liberal house, one could call it extreme left wing, but I think it was not that bad.  As I got older and was able to start thinking critically about the issues myself I was finding myself a moderate compared to my parents.  Now as I’m a voting adult I’ve discovered neither of the popular parties really reflect my values and I seem to not be the only person.  I’ve been an independent, not picking sides.  I’m the voting equivalent of Switzerland.  Of course that targets me as one of the candidates most valuable votes, I’m the guy they have to work to convince and I’m not easy.

I sit here in Canada, staring at the news trying to get a pulse on what’s happening back home and the direction the country is going to go.  Will we be forced to hang our heads as ex-patriots or do I get to be proud to be an American?  It’s funny to say something like that given my track record of not really lying but not telling people where I’m from when asked.  Proud to be a citizen of my birth country, what an odd concept.  I don’t really think I’m going to hinge that pride on who is elected, more like on how we show the world we can actually have a fair election that isn’t swayed by the top 1%.  How each and every citizens voice can and will be heard and we will all make a difference today, and no matter how you vote you have a duty as a citizen to make your voice heard.

The only debate on Intelligent Design that is worthy of its subject

Moderator: We’re here today to debate the hot new topic, evolution versus Intelligent Des—

(Scientist pulls out baseball bat.)

Moderator: Hey, what are you doing?

(Scientist breaks Intelligent Design advocate’s kneecap.)

Intelligent Design advocate: YEAAARRRRGGGHHHH! YOU BROKE MY KNEECAP!

Scientist: Perhaps it only appears that I broke your kneecap. Certainly, all the evidence points to the hypothesis I broke your kneecap. For example, your kneecap is broken; it appears to be a fresh wound; and I am holding a baseball bat, which is spattered with your blood. However, a mere preponderance of evidence doesn’t mean anything. Perhaps your kneecap was designed that way. Certainly, there are some features of the current situation that are inexplicable according to the "naturalistic" explanation you have just advanced, such as the exact contours of the excruciating pain that you are experiencing right now.

Intelligent Design advocate: AAAAH! THE PAIN!

Scientist: Frankly, I personally find it completely implausible that the random actions of a scientist such as myself could cause pain of this particular kind. I have no precise explanation for why I find this hypothesis implausible — it just is. Your knee must have been designed that way!

Intelligent Design advocate: YOU BASTARD! YOU KNOW YOU DID IT!

Scientist: I surely do not. How can we know anything for certain? Frankly, I think we should expose people to all points of view. Furthermore, you should really re-examine whether your hypothesis is scientific at all: the breaking of your kneecap happened in the past, so we can’t rewind and run it over again, like a laboratory experiment. Even if we could, it wouldn’t prove that I broke your kneecap the previous time. Plus, let’s not even get into the fact that the entire universe might have just popped into existence right before I said this sentence, with all the evidence of my alleged kneecap-breaking already pre-formed.

Intelligent Design advocate: That’s a load of bullshit sophistry! Get me a doctor and a lawyer, not necessarily in that order, and we’ll see how that plays in court!

Scientist (turning to audience): And so we see, ladies and gentlemen, when push comes to shove, advocates of Intelligent Design do not actually believe any of the arguments that they profess to believe. When it comes to matters that hit home, they prefer evidence, the scientific method, testable hypotheses, and naturalistic explanations. In fact, they strongly privilege naturalistic explanations over supernatural hocus-pocus or metaphysical wankery. It is only within the reality-distortion field of their ideological crusade that they give credence to the flimsy, ridiculous arguments which we so commonly see on display. I must confess, it kind of felt good, for once, to be the one spouting free-form bullshit; it’s so terribly easy and relaxing, compared to marshaling rigorous arguments backed up by empirical evidence. But I fear that if I were to continue, then it would be habit-forming, and bad for my soul. Therefore, I bid you adieu.

source: http://abstractfactory.blogspot.com/

Mushy in the middle

routeIn an effort to get in better shape and to combat the high gas prices I’ve recently decided to start riding to work.  It’s good exercise and it’s actually a nice ride. 

The route takes me past some nice little sights, the Fremont bridge, some nice marinas (something I’ve taken a more active interest in since I’ve started working for the boat show) and the new south lake union park.  

I sat at the bridge yesterday watching some boats float through.  It was peaceful even though I had a terrible day, read yesterday’s post for information on that, and it was nice to be able to disconnect from everything.  Something driving doesn’t really give me the opportunity to do, but I’m glad for on the bike. 

I can hear myself breath, can smell more clearly the flowers on the way to work (some of which are my favorite kinds of roses) and just feel better at the end of the day.

The sickness within

I’ve been home for the last three days, I only managed to get enough energy to venture out yesterday to pick up some more NyQuil and more juice, other then that I’m going slightly stir crazy.  I have some form of a virus that my nephew gave to me when we all met up at the parents house last weekend.  I had started to feel bad Wednesday, but I decided to try and tough it out, bad move on my part.  I tried to make it through practice Wednesday night even though I was feeling less and less good.