another misAdventure

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

Friday, April 21, 2006

A few tiny things

It's a beautiful day today. It was yesterday too. Got the lawn mowed again yesterday, and I should go trim now. In a few minutes.

Mark Evanier's blog is always a wonderful place to visit, with fun or odd things. And sometimes, it points to an article that's really important. Like this one. Go read it, I'll get back to commenting on it later.

Adventure Hooks - go check the Adventure Hooks blog!

A few more things are after the break ...

Lawn trimming is now complete! (7:30pm update)

Good stuff in the mail (or from UPS) today. Babylon 5 scriptbook #6! The last of the Legends contributions! New shoes! (New Balance 609, size 9EE. Discontinued style, but as long as I can find them online... )

The doors that the girls and I installed on Sunday now have doorknobs (actually, as of Wednesday). For some reason, the older doors had a shorter distance from the edge of the door (looks like there are actually two standards), so the old knobs didn't work. Same style, but nice and fresh and new now.

Poking around Tivo tells that on next week's "Amazing Race" one team will pick up a hitchhiker. Now I wonder which team that would be?

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Monday, April 17, 2006

Moss Spring

Hey, now it really does seem like spring! Not that my title has anything to do with that. "Moss Spring" is the name of the paint that I put up on the wall of the downstairs bathroom. It's also supposed to be Brushed Suede texture, so my paint job isn't bad, you're supposed to see the brush strokes like that.

I've alluded to it a couple times, but I haven't really described what I'm doing to the downstairs powder room. I've needed to remodel that room for a while, but even more so after the infamous "New Year's Eve Animal Incident". So, finally, Ellen and I picked out tile and committed to remodelling the whole thing. I stripped everything out, down to the studs and subfloor, and have been slowly rebuilding it since. Here's the project checklist (completed items are checked and bold:

  1. X New sheetrock for walls, using water-resistant drywall.
  2. X Finish joints in drywall.
  3. X Prime walls.
  4. X Paint ceiling
  5. X Paint walls above new tile line (brushed suede moss spring)
  6. X Install new door
  7. Install new door casings
  8. X Install new basement door to match
  9. Install basement door casings
  10. X Install new medicine cabinet
  11. X Install new over-toilet cabinet
  12. Install wall tile
  13. Grout wall tile
  14. Install new subfloor
  15. Install floor tile
  16. Grout floor tile
  17. Re-install pedestal sink
  18. Re-install toilet
  19. Install new towel rings
  20. Install new toilet paper holder

Kalen and Kathy helped me get the doors up yesterday. In doing so, I smashed the tip of my left index finger (fortunately, only that one finger, just once), and that finger is nicely bruised and swollen now, but I think it's getting better quick enough. Kalen knows I just had a swear for a while and then get back to the job.

Other than the powder room, I also got the lawn mowed for the first time this spring (at least the back yard, the front doesn't grow as fast but I'll get it done in a day or so), and trimmed back the drooping bottom branches of the evergreen tree in the backyard.

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Tuesday, April 11, 2006

Spring Maximizer

No, I'm not back to creating titles from spam e-mails, though it sounds like it. No, "Spring Maximizer" is what Spring Green sprayed on our lawn today. (updated - I said ChemLawn earlier by mistake)

We didn't ask them to do it. They got the wrong address. But it's good that I hadn't put any other fertilizer or weed killer down yet this spring. And I probably would have if there hadn't been other things going on last weekend. Which is my segue to ...

How I spent last week:

Monday through Thursday I was in class. I was learning a new UML drawing/code tool we're using. The class was pretty much a breeze, as a chunk of it is designed to teach UML notation - which I already knew and have used extensively. The remainder of the course is on this specific tool, which wasn't that hard to pick up or that different from other such tools. I did pick up some useful stuff, though, and was able to generate programs from the tool, so it was worthwhile. Now we'll see whether we actually use the tool for more than drawing.

Oh, and a lot of the side conversation had to do with the announcement that Lucent is merging with (or being acquired by) Alcatel. So, we'll need to brush up on our French for future corporate announcements. As for how that affects me -- it probably won't much. We'll see.

Friday I took the day off work and went to the Cubs home opener with Bob. Good lunch, but at some point after my first plate I needed to sneeze, failed to stifle it, and instead wound up blowing particles of food all up into my nose and sinuses. Yuck. So, I was uncomfortable for the rest of lunch and couldn't eat anything more. That got cleared up before the game, though, and the Cubs played very well, did several little things perfectly, and won. And the game took just over two hours, so I was out of there quickly.

After the game I rode the 'L' out to my car in Forest Park and then drove straight to College of DuPage where CODCon was running. I hadn't volunteered to judge on Friday, not knowing when the game would get over, but I got there in plenty of time and wound up judging a table of "Time's Tide on Bright Sands" for a fun group of players. I then drove home and talked to Ryan a bit (home for the weekend to play on Sunday), and then Phil Thompson who was crashing with us for the weekend, and finally Ellen as she got home from work.

Saturday I judged three tables: "Phantoms on Bright Sands", "Touched by an Angel", and "Fallen Hero". The middle table was at APL 14, as high a table as I've ever judged but they weren't an insanely tweaked out group and the module combats are pretty straight forward (though I skipped one so we could get to the roleplay section that is the meat of the module). Everything else I judged over the weekend was either APL 2 or 4, low level players including several pretty new players.

Sunday I judged "Touched by an Angel" again, and almost killed a fairly new player. Actually, there was no 'almost' about it - I hit him for 20 points of damage when the character only had 10 hit points total (2nd level rogue with 0 constitution bonus). If it was someone's third or fourth character and a player who plays a lot I'd have let the death stand -- but it's no fun for the player if they get killed in their fifth game they've ever played, so I re-rolled one of the dice (hey, they were supposed to be working for a divine power) and let them still be alive (but at -8 hit points), and another player burned a VERY EXPENSIVE favor to get them all out of there.

In the second slot on Sunday I wasn't scheduled to do anything, but wound up wrangling the people who didn't yet have a table to play at and get them to agree on mods to play, since nothing that was scheduled had enough players (and more than half the attendees were halfway through two-round modules). After about a half hour of negotiating, we found we could split into two table with two modules people hadn't played yet, leaving only one player out (who wound up getting into a Living Arcanis table that started a while later - so all was good). I wasn't actually then needed to judge at that point, so I headed home and put another coat of primer along the edges of the walls in the downstairs bathroom. Ryan got back home and promptly headed back for Normal, and then Ellen and I went out for dinner at Carraba's Grill, and Italian place that opened down by Fox Valley recently (and she claims I'm supporting her diet!).

Monday - work and painted the ceiling in the aforementioned bathroom. Watched '24'. That's it.

I'll try to update again later, with details on what's happening in the aforementioned bathroom, after I actually try out the wall paint Ellen has picked out. It may be an experience, but that's for tonight.

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