Took last week off to get a little break after our big launch at work. It turned into a fairly busy period in between all the loafing on the couch. Highlights:
- Had a meeting with Ma and her giant dog rescue crew and got them introduced to my boss in case we can do some pro-bono work for them. We have a meeting scheduled for this Tuesday, so we'll see if anything comes of it.
- Took Mingus in for shoulder x-rays to see if anything joint-related was making him gimpy. Turns out the joints look pretty darned good. Hooray no surgery for the dog.
- I had a medical visit myself, but that warrants its own post... Coming soon... ;)
- Painted the kitchen a pretty little shade of blue with the help of The Wife.
- Spent the 4th at Brozo's, which is fast becoming tradition. Drank some beers, threw a couple bottle rockets, managed not to start any fires. Y'know, standard stuff.
- The next day we made it out to see the Burlesque As It Was troupe put on a righteous USO-style show. That Charlie Champale is something else, I tell ya. The girls were pretty fun, too. We liked it so much, in fact, we're going to see them again on the 26th at the Bluebird theater in Denver.
- Today's highlight was Rafa "Gun Show" Nadal finally finishing off Roger Federer in a marathon Wimbledon final. That and being able to buy a bunch of beer on a Sunday. Nice!
Other than that, I got to watch some Red Sox baseball, but really that hardly matters to me -- I don't really pay attention until September. ;)
So, the iPhone 3G comes out this Friday, eh? Hmmmmm...
Granted, he had become almost unwatchable recently - forgoing comedy for the grumpy old hippie shtick. I still love the guy, though. I can't get over the fact that he was only 71. He really seemed older and more tired than that in his more recent appearances. I'll always remember the first couple HBO shows I saw when I was a kid staying up too late to watch the funny guy cuss and talk about how your house is a place for all your stuff. Very formative stuff for this guy.
In memorium: The seven words.
As for me, we have a big push today at work. Assuming it goes reasonably well, I'm going to have a serious period of decompression for the next couple weeks.
Not that I'm greedy or anything. It just that I once again managed to let a holiday weekend slip by without doing anything worth mentioning. I got back on the exercise horse with short, awful runs on Saturday and Monday and Bowflex action on Sunday, but so what? I dipped to a new low weight for this weight loss effort, too, but bounced back up a pound or so.
My mother had a nice deck party on her brand new deck on Saturday -- that was pretty much the highlight of the weekend. She and her cohorts are now talking about starting a rescue not just for Danes but for all sorts of giant dogs. (I figure that'll make Miracle Ed smile.)
After Ma's I went to check in on my friend David's birthday party, but apparently it had just broken up after BJ Penn beat up Sean Sherk. Since the party (and DJ) were winding down, Erik and I went to his house to throw darts and play a little ping-pong. Yep. We're wild.
Sunday was a failure, as I decided not to ride my motorcycle figuring I would do that on Monday. Well, Monday turned out rainy, so no Bonneville time for me. This bummed me out since Erik had come over last week to help me get the Bonnie running well after a long bit of garage rest.
So it goes, eh?
A couple media notes:
- Don't waste your time with Revolver. Gah.
- Sweeney Todd, by contrast was good times. On Helena Bonham Carter -- Me: "I wonder what she's like day to day... You never hear much gossip." Wife: "Yeah, I don't know. I was just thinking she's got to be the oldest goth chick around." Me: "Still totally hot, though." Wife: "Well, yeah."
- Also, if you're cooler than me (by which, in this case, I mean you own a Blu-ray player), you might be interested in Amazon's Blu-ray sale.
Just FYI. I love me some GTA IV. If you can wrangle a couple friends to play the online multiplayer it all becomes worth it. My Xbox Live Gamertag is JakoBlah, but I won't be your friend unless I know who you are first.
Hillary is ... Guh. Never mind.
Do you ever feel like you've stopped having ideas? I can solve the problems presented to me with little effort, but I can't say I'm coming up with anything cool on my own these days. It relates to the paucity of posts on this here blog.
Later: Isn't that a coincidence?
Coworker Peter: ooooh, i was just about to ask you something but you answered me in the past! Coworker Peter: ur THAT good Jake: fuck yeah!
Checkout FriendFeed if you're one of those types who has accounts on (and actually uses, at least occasionally) Flickr, Twitter, del.icio.us, Facebook and whatever else (like your's truly -- here's my FriendFeed, yo). More to the point, get your over-broadcast friends to get on FriendFeed and save you some clicking.
It's a one-stop feed shop! ;)
So after successfully waiting for the release of Leopard (the latest version of OS X), I ran out the other day and plopped down my rewards-earning MasterCard to purchase a 24" glass and brushed aluminum sculpture known as the iMac. It's the 2.8GHz CPU with 2GB of RAM, and the 500GB hard drive, and it's the tits. I even dig on Apple's new waffer thin keyboard, somewhat to my surprise.
As I type this, I'm in the middle of the 2+ day operation of shifting my ~145GB iTunes library around on my decrepit PC in preparation for the big copy to the iMac. This is what I get for not opting for the default storage location. (I'm actually not sure all this is even necessary, but I'm doing it anyway.)
Once I do that and decide whether or not I can live without Quicken (I only use it for bill scheduling and the forward-looking calendar/bar chart widget -- There's nothing online that offers that feature. For anything else, Mint and the online banking offered by my bank does the job.), I'll be able to format the drives on my PC and burn the thing. Or research whether there's a convenient drop-off for computer/computer component recycling, I guess...
This is a homecoming for me, as I was a Mac user back in my college days. Having been convinced that computers were evil by my Pascal programming classes, I opted for a PowerBook Duo - one of the coolest units to come out of the House of Jobs in the 90s. After that, I switched to a Gateway PC almost completely based on price. Then I was always using PCs for work (as I, ironically, moved into my career as a web "programmer"), so I always stuck with PCs at home, too. The advent of OS X was a big deal to me, and I'm been lusting for a new generation Mac since then.
I've always kept The Wife running on Apple hardware, though. She finished her Masters degree with a G3 iBook and got upgraded to a Mac Mini not too long ago. (Her brother is rocking a Mini these days, too.) The iBook is still limping along as our living room computer.
Since the beginning of this year, I've been lucky enough to work on a Mac Pro five days a week, so the transition back to a dying PC at home was hurting me more and more. All this adds up to me spending a chunk of change for a big white box that was heavy enough to wind me by the time I lugged from the Apple store to my car outside the mall.
I'm almost free!
Well, really there's not much to report. The drive to Vegas went quickly and easily. We literally did nothing in Vegas -- In fact, we we most excited by the fact that the Luxor has two Starbucks. Party animals we are not.
The second leg of the drive into Los Feliz also went without a hitch. From then on it was just the usual sort of "hang out with Chris, Kate, and Chowda" sort of scene. Highlights as I remember them:
- Best of all, we got lots of quality time with Scot & Matt. We love those kids. You might recognize Scot. Thanks to both him and Kate, I have a Bacon Number of 3!
- Casa Bianca has the best sausage pizza I have ever consumed. I am curious as to whether it's the sausage or the pizza. I cheese pie trial needs to happen someday.
- The Museum of Jurassic Technology is supremely weird. A must see if you're in LA (and like weirdness).
- Friday poker: In spite of playing like an idiot (and in doing so, pissing Scot off a bit when I rivered and ace to beat his pocket kings), I managed to finish in second place. I had a chance to do better than that, but Matt's crazy enough that I shouldn't have tried to scare him out of a pot by going all-in with ace-high.
- Saturday was Chris' birthday cookout/party in which Chris ended up doing all the cooking... *shrug* Staggering amounts of Guinness were consumed, and I got to see some of my favorite people.
- The Wife and I hiked up to Griffith Observatory a couple times. It's a steep little hill, let me tell you!
- Lots of dining out, but not as disastrous as usual. Though, we totally had to hit Tito's Tacos.
The drive back was fairly ordinary except for a crazy huge moon we saw rising over the Utah desert.
Today, when I came back into work, I found a strange Japanese swan phallus thingy on my desk. Thanks to Miracle Ed, I now get the reference, but nobody here has owned up to actually putting it on my desk...
Random, unrelated crap follows ...
In sporting news, the Red Sox managed to hold off the Yankees and will face the Angels in the ALDS, the Rockies are actually trying to get in the playoffs, the Broncos finally got the trouncing they've deserved after stealing their first two wins, and hockey season is about to get fired up.
On the booze-review tip: If you enjoy a good shiraz (I like to say "shih-RAZZ" because it's Australian, after all.) you should give the 2006 Mollydooker "The Boxer" a go. It's one of those uber-hip Stelvin cap jobbies, so no cork-screw needed. Also, it seems mollydooker is Aussie for left-handed, though as of yet, I've been unable to confirm it...
The Wife and I will be on our way home from LA within the hour. See you in a couple days.
Update: Free intarwebs at the Super 8 in Green River, UT. W00t!
Update the 2nd: Home again, home again! Jiggety-jig!
Just when you thought posting couldn't get any lighter here at the ol' Blah and Stuff, LLC, I'm here to tell you that it will do just that. Time has come for The Wife and I to bundle into our Honda Civic and hit the open road to that glittering city known as Los Angeles for our annual road trip to see The Brother-in-Law and Auntie Kate. This time around it looks like we'll have extremely limited access to teh intarwebs, so the best you'll probably get out of me is a few tweets and some goofy pictures (both of which I can do with my cell phone, you see?).
For the record, my fame spotting abilities are next to useless. In all my trips to LA I've only seen the back of Zach de la Rocha outside Fred 62 and Melissa Joan Hart at the Suss yarn store. And those were only because somebody else pointed them out. I have hope, though -- the last episode of LA Ink showed Corey Miller discussing his impending vasectomy with his wife at Home, which is right up the road from Chris & Kate's house. Maybe I'll get to take a blurry phonecam pic of Kat Von D or my current tattoo TV crush, Hannah Aitchison, while I'm there.
We leave at the crack of Sunday, stop over at the Luxor in Vegas for a craaaazy night of not-doing-anything-in-Vegas, and arrive in Los Feliz on Monday sometime after grabbing that first In-n-Out burger and strawberry shake in Barstow. Plans are to leave LA on Wednesday, the 26th, in order to have plenty of time to decompress and do stuff around the house before heading back to work on October 1st.
We're very excited. Updates as they are possible.
Yeah, finally got to go in and start the greenman tattoo. I'll have two more sittings to finish it. We only managed to do the line work today. It's that effing HUGE! ;) I'm seriously amazed he managed to do Ed's shading (even though Ed went back for more a few days later, which... Ouch!). There are a lot of lines in this puppy.
Update: More of the same at my Inked, Inc. blog.
And on the Inked, Inc. blog: Green Man Is Go!
It's worth noting (especially for my friends who like to show up and call me when they hit they airport) that Fish's weekend slots are booked out at least a month. Of course I could have gotten in sooner if I could get down there by 4pm on a week day, but I can't really.
Also super-exciting: Fish is working on a line of tough and sexy men's wear.
The motorcycle gods are conspiring against me this summer. My social calendar has been packed (for me) lately, and the combination of that with a) trying to get back in shape and b) fairly regular afternoon thunderstorms (or at least the threat thereof), and c) projects around the house has kept me off my Bonneville for the most part. I've only had the poor thing out twice this year and that was in the Spring.
I'm not too worried, though. I'll get my chances eventually. Plus, I much prefer riding in the transition seasons than in the blast furnace that is Summer in the Denver metro.
In other news, I'm going in to talk to Fish about my next tattoo in a couple weeks.
Anyone else reading The 4-Hour Workweek? I'm listening to the audiobook on my commute. It strikes me as incredibly meta. There's a definite undertone of
"Here's how you can make yourself and expert and sell information to other people -- just like I did with this book! (Sucker.)"
He also explains everything he's doing ("tricks of the trade"-wise) on the book's companion web site.
That said, it's also quite interesting, plenty entertaining, and disturbingly inspirational. (Lord help us...) It's really not as slimy as I'm making it sound, but it's in there.
Let me know your thoughts if you have read it, are reading it, or plan to read it. I actually think I might pick up the dead-tree version in order to cement my own feelings about it.
So... I guess it's recommended...?
My dear mother knows this about me (nor does she judge), so when she heard about a night of ukulele music at her favorite guitar shop, the Pickin' Parlor in Olde Town Arvada, she pinged me. So it happened that The Wife and I were with our mothers last night taking in a quite enjoyable show centered around that diminutive stringed instrument of the Hawai'ian Islands featuring some local talent.
The thing about shows like this that happen at wonderful instrument shops like the Pickin' Parlor, is that they are often accompanied by lessons and workshops. Such was the case this time.
When Mom sent me the email about thee show, I saw the workshop and thought about it for a good ten seconds. The uke is one of a few musical instruments I've fleetingly tried to teach myself, you see. As it turns out, I'm just no good at teaching myself how to play much of anything, musically. When I let my mother know that I had considered it, she went running back to talk to "Uncle" Kit and sign us up for the beginner session.
We'll see where that gets me.
I'm not sure where this came from, but recently I got a sudden impetus to so some "spring cleaning"... of my bar. The Wife and I throw the occasional party. Also occasionally, I used to host a poker game now and then (others in my crew have taken over those duties lately on the rare poker night). Luckily for us, our friends are as much boozehounds as we are, so they tend to bring over bottles of liquor almost as often as they bring us bottle of wine or sixers of beer.
This tends to leave us with a densely populated bar, but often the citizens of that population are riding low. This is where I've recently gotten in trouble...
I was looking at the vast spread of booze on our counter about a week ago and decide that this would not do. Some of these bottles were years old! Time to cull the herd, I thought to myself, and I promptly poured myself a tumbler of Talisker (which I followed with another soon after, thus killing the bottle).
Since then I've been on a reasonable tear. Nothing too disturbing, mind you, but I have had doubles or triples on four of the last 7 or 8 nights...
Here's my progress so far:
(It's worth noting that the middle bottles will definitely be renewed soon.)
Sadly, I'm almost done with the low-riders. (OK, a check of the bar actually found some good candidates.) I guess I'll have to get more ambitious now... ;)
The last weekend featured a lot of interaction with real, live human beings, which is a bit odd, to be honest. On Friday, I had poker with the boys. The games have been extremely rare lately, and I missed the last one, so this was exciting. Of course, I lost my pants, but that's not the point. ;)
Saturday was my darling mother's birthday celebration. (Her actual birthday was Sunday.) The Wife and I drove down to enjoy Hockey Night in Canada with Mom and her pack of "adopted" kids (plus three Great Danes, two other dogs, and two cats). Beer, hockey, and good-natured smack talk made it a super fun evening. If nothing else, I demonstrated the obviousness of the fact that I am my mother's son. The only bummer is that we missed the opening bout of the Rocky Mountain Rollergirls' new season, which happened to be on the same night.
Sunday wasn't as public, but we managed to not sit on the couch all day.
And I didn't even touch WoW for the whole weekend.
Near the end of August in 2001, after a four month period of being unemployed, I finally found a job with a Boulder company called e-InfoData.com (Holy internet cliche overload!). We'll round the ensuing passage of time up to five and a half years for the purpose of this discussion. In that period the company changed it's name to InsightAmerica, moved its office to Broomfield, and eventually was acquired by a corporate giant (name uselessly withheld). The basic "job" of the company never really changed, and the work was mostly interesting on a nuts-and-bolts level (I still think we regularly pushed ColdFusion well beyond its normal bounds and managed to make it work.), even if the bigger picture at times gave me the heebee-jeebees.
At a more micro level, I've had the opportunity to work with some amazing people (particularly within the technology teams - but outside that, as well). In fact, most of the people I currently consider my best friends were first coworkers.
On a work level, there have certainly been ups and downs, but on a personal level this job has been nothing but positive.
You've probably already guessed that I've decided it's time for me to move on.
- I'm going back to Boulder. (meh. I'll miss my 10 minute commute, but I only think I'm doubling it.)
- It's a very small company. (sweet! I enjoy the dynamic of a small company much more than a megalocorp.)
- I'll be working with an old friend. (yay! This is actually the only reason I applied for the job when I saw it come across the wire.)
- I'm going to be working daily on a Mac. (w00t! This excites me unreasonably. Not to mention the HUGE monitors they use.)
- I'll eventually get to work with Ruby on Rails professionally. (double w00t!! I've been a fanboy since the early days, though I've never actually done anything with it.)
I'm also leaving a lot of friends behind. Hopefully I'll be able to keep in touch - the Denver Metro area isn't a very big place, really. Some of us already have outside-of-work connections, but I want to cultivate more of those.
So, yeah... That's what's going on with me.
Let's have Nina Simone carry us out, shall we?
Its a new dawn Its a new day Its a new life For me And I'm feeling good