another misAdventure

"We are all of us living in the shadow of Manhattan."

Friday, September 30, 2005

Since I know you're all in suspense ...

I talked to Tony. He'll take care of the cats.

Ellen didn't want to board the cats, anyway, so she bought a new litter box that scoops itself.

Let me be the first to say that I, for one welcome our new robot cat-litter scooper overlord.

Also a new (not so robotic) auto-feeder for them. So, they would have been fine by themselves for quite a while, and Kalen probably would have dealt with them on the weekend to refresh everything. Anyway, alll is now taken care of.

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Pre-Vacation Tension

I guess the idea is to build up a lot of tension pre-vacation to have something to relax from? ...

At work, no real tension, thankfully. I have a few fixes that I have pending, mostly coded and tested, but I'll throw the code inspections over the wall at some folks and figure they'll be done then when I get back. None of the fixes are blocking, so I don't want to submit them until I'm around to deal with any conflicts that arise anyway. The only think I have to finish today is my annual performance review input, and that's mostly done already. Just have to see if I want to polish up some points. I always stick to the facts on that anyway, not reaching to puff up accomplishments like some do. If that has held me back in any way, I don't care.

At home, I have a list of stuff I need to do, but nothing that's particularly daunting. Just an accumulation of little stuff. The main thing still undone is getting someone to deal with the cats ...

So, would anyone who can please let Tony know I want him to call me! Tonight, if possible, any time. Or early tomorrow morning. If I can't reach him I'll probably have to board the cats. May have to anyway. (If you don't know a "Tony" that I would know and would be near my house, you can of course ignore that message.) :-)

I'd like to see "Serenity" tonight (now that I'm 100% up-to-date on "Firefly"), but that would just subtract time from that accumulated list of stuff I need to do. That'll probably just wait until right after vacation. I suppose I could see it at the AMC in Downtown Disney, but that'd seem like a waste of good WDW time.

Damn, "Firefly" was an excellent show that I totally missed on broadcast TV. And the very best episodes, IMHO, were the ones that didn't actually air. Go figure. DVD sets are a wonderful thing.

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Chemical Dependence

Primarily zinc gluconate glycine. Along with ascorbic acic, pseudoephedrine, and recently dextromethorphan...

In the form of Cold-Eeze lozenges, Robitussin Sunny Orange Vitamin C drops, orange juice, Sudafed, and Robitussin DM syrup. Yep, I caught cold, symptoms starting Monday night. I've been pounding it with the zinc lozenges and the vitamin C, and pretty much have been feeling fine. I was pretty much out of it Tuesday and took a half-day off work (and worked from home most of the rest of the time). By Wednesday I was feeling upwards of 85%, and pretty much fine since. Yesterday a cough started, so I added the Robitussin syrup, but I've only needed that twice. I should be pretty much over it by the time we leave on vacation. I'll probably take the zinc a day or two still after arrival, to fight off any rhinovirus that I might still pick up on the plane (a pretty easy thing to do).

OK, that was excessively cheery. I think I'll put other stuff in another post.

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Thursday, September 29, 2005

Small Peeve

It's annoying when blogs go more than a week without update.

Spoken as a man who has gone two weeks and two days since last update. Damn.

But I should have more later tonight. Watch for "Chemical Dependence", coming soon to this blog.

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Tuesday, September 13, 2005

Flipping Through the Family History

As noted previously, I spent the weekend in Missouri Valley, flying out to meet Ellen and spend a couple days with my mom and Ellen's family.

Friday I helped Mom get some things organized in her basement, identify what she had on her pantry shelves, clean out some stuff. Find fabric and craft stuff, store the stuff the needed stored, move upstairs stuff that would be used short term. We got a bunch done.

Saturday, Ellen went shopping with Beth (her sister) and Rachel (Beth's daughter). While they were out, I dug out some old pictures that were in my mom's basement so that Mom could identify the people (because there were but few that I would be able to).

Today I bought a scanner, with the intent of getting the pictures (at least the identifiable ones) scanned, tagged, and burnt to CD. Here's the first scan attempt:

OK, so the picture above has got to be approximately 100 years old. I'll pull out some of my genealogy and try to pin down the year a bit more firmly. But ... the little girl in the front of the picture, who appears to be about five years old here, is my maternal grandmother, Lola Genevieve Rankin (later Kincaid). The adults are my great-grandparents, Hugh Wesley Rankin and Martha Maddy Rankin. The rest are obviously my mom's aunts and uncles: (back row l-r) Worth, Lillie, Clark?, Ethel, (middle row l-r) Cora, Hugh, Martha, Guy?, (front row l-r) Forrest, Lola. I may have mixed up Cora and Ethel without looking at my notes, and Mom wasn't sure which was Clark and which Guy, though I may be able to sort that out by finding birth dates.

Anyway, I have a bunch pictures to scan, after which I'll set up some stuff with the genealogy records and burn to CD. I've got a number of pictures of my mom and my grandma at various ages.

Other stuff from the weekend: I got Lojatek set up for cat sitting, rode the trains out to Midway, got there way early, ate a mediocre Chicken Parmesan at Harry Caray's at the airport, and rode the 1/3rd full flight to Omaha (I guess that 'A' boarding pass wasn't really necessary). Friday I pretty much covered. Saturday, besides going through pictures, Ellen and I went out to dinner with Ellen's mom, Beth, Don (Beth's husband), Rachel, and Carlos (Rachel's boyfriend). Then returned to Beth's house for a game of Hawaiian Rummy, where Carlos beat me by five stinking points! Sunday we went to church with Mom, drove over to Blair for Runza's, then drove home, timed to have dinner at the Amana Colonies. A good weekend overall!

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Monday, September 12, 2005

The Meme's the Thing

According to the "Nerd, Geek, or Dork Test" (via Tony's blog - Luigi's Mansion of Dreams - where you can see Tony's, Kalen's, Ryan's, and Matt's results), I scored: Modern, Cool Nerd: 69 % Nerd, 65% Geek, 34% Dork. I can live with those results. At least I'm not a dweeb.

But there's more meme goodness (?) ...

Via Mike Norton's "Miraclo Miles", I came up as:
You're...Brainiac 5!
You're Querl Dox, Brainiac 5!

In the Which Legionnaire are you? quiz brought to you by Quizilla. This will be comprehensible to Ryan, Dwight, and maybe some others who I don't know are reading this. The rest of my kids will probably be stumped by the quiz. (The quiz is actually pretty funny if you know your Legion history.)

And, via Narf's "Luigi's Tiny Hut of Dreams", we have
Thorough Infiltration Machine

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Thursday, September 08, 2005

The week behind, the weekend ahead

Little bits of stuff:

I got my submission done for work yesterday, just before the deadline. Yay. Unfortunately, I'd found problems on Friday, couldn't figure them out in a few hours on Saturday, and Sunday I turned into a potato for a while, addicted to a puzzle game on Neopets that Kathy left up on my laptop. Neopets - Aaargh! But it was a fun little puzzle that I just had to finish (addicted), and I earned her a much of Neopoints. Yippee.

Anyway, I emerged from potato-hood on Monday, got Kalen car seat fixed so that it could be adjusted back and forth (so someone other than Kalen could actually fit behind the wheel). Then had lunch and shopped with Ellen, Kalen, Kathy, and Ryan. As the kids were getting ready to go back to Normal I went back to work and pounded through the problems I was having with the code submission. Which meant I stayed until 2:30am. But it got the submission to the testers so I could get the green light to submit (which I got yesterday).

Tuesday, conference call in the morning and then I saw Ellen off as she went to go visit our mothers in Missouri Valley. I then went to work and finished some of the details in closing out my code inspection. After work I stopped to grab some dinner and got a call from my brother -- could I come up and stay with him for the night? His back was causing problems and the chiropractor that day only seemed to make it worse. He was calling from the chiropractor's table, where he'd been for two hours, unable to move without intense pain. He wasn't sure he'd be able to make it out of bed in the morning without help. So, I went home, took care of some things there (fed cats, took out garbage, returned a call from Matt, etc) and eventually drove to Deerfield. Got there about 10pm. Bob was clearly in pain, but at least he'd made it home.

The next morning, it turned out that Bob's back worked itself out in the night, at least for now. So, no problems. Back home, fed cats, took care of laundry, and back to work. Was able to finish submission and start looking at some other bugs that had come up in the product (not my submission, whew). Went home, got everything tidied up so I could leave today, called Lojatek (see below), took care of some business for Narf, then waited until midnight so I could print my Southwest boarding pass for tonight (an important step when flying Southwest -- get that 'A' boarding pass), and then crashed hard.

So, today, I'll work a half day, do some other errands including getting this week's comics, then meet everyone's pal Lojatek who'll be cat sitting for the weekend, and have him drive me to the train station. Then, take the train downtown, switch to the 'L' for a ride out to Midway, and then a late night flight to Omaha. Then I can relax for the long weekend in MV, driving back with Ellen on Sunday.


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Friday, September 02, 2005

Your Blood's No Good Here

Apparently, Lifesource doesn't think I have Hepatitis C. Which is good, because I don't. Nor could I begin to imagine where I would have picked it up.

They tested my last blood donation, and their initial screening test indicated it was positive for Hepatitis C.

They then put it through two more accurate tests. Negative. No indication of Hepatitis C (or, presumably, anything else).

They then send me a nice letter telling me all this, and saying that I apparently don't have Hepatitis C.

HOWEVER, because of the one false positive on the screening, I'm ineligible to donate blood in the future. They didn't actually say that in so many words, but it was implied strongly, and implied that it was the fault of federal regulations.

Doesn't this sound awfully goofy and over protective? Yes, I understand they don't want Hep C in the blood supply, but you'd think that the better testing that cleared me would then raise the green flag for future donation. The only reason I could understand it is if my blood were somehow more likely to raise false positives, and thus the cost of collecting the blood isn't worthwhile. But I've donated dozens of times in the past, and never had any such problem.

Anyway, this is why I'm generally against employment drug tests and other such wide screenings. I've never heard of one that deals sanely with false positives.

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