Every now and then, probably once or twice a year, I can’t remember a number. Last year, I was on a road trip and couldn’t remember my ATM pin number. I just couldn’t think of it. I knew basically what it was, but not the sequence. I tried a few times, and of course the bank shut down my card after a few incorrect attempts. This from a guy who uses his debit card for absolutely everything, and never carries more than $10-$20 in cash.
Last night, I couldn’t remember my cell phone voicemail password or my home alarm system code. Both of them just vanished from my mind, poof, just like that. I’ve armed and disarmed that alarm several times a day because I’m paranoid about stuff like that, and it just completely vanished from my mind.
What makes it worse, though, is that I never use numbers that mean anything to me, and I don’t use the same pin numbers for any two things. (Like I said, paranoid.) I pick these meaningless number combinations that translate into words – like “head” translates into “4323″ on a keypad – and no, that’s not one I’ve ever used. I try remembering the word, I try remembering my finger positions, but poof, they’re just gone.
I sat bolt upright in bed this morning and remembered the alarm one, but I still can’t figure out my voice mail one. The blinking envelope icon is taunting me from my cell phone screen saying, “Idiot. Idiot. Idiot.”
Well, it took a while, but birds finally figured out we’ve got a birdfeeder in the backyard. A bright day after several days of rain brought the birds out for feeding, and there you have it.
I bought MyThera.com from James Beatty this week, and I’m hoping to have some new content up soon. I’m loving my new Thera, and it makes a great cost-efficient PocketPC phone for geeks. It’s a first generation combination PocketPC and Phone, and while it doesn’t do a completely stellar job at either of them, it’s a good compromise. The value really stands out now that you can find them under $200 on Ebay.
Going to a Rockets game tonight with a couple of lawyers in my fantasy basketball league. I don’t aspire to a nicer car, bigger house, or whatever, but I do wish I could buy bigger season packages with nicer Rockets seats. That’s probably one of the milestones I’ll look back at in a couple of years: how will my Rockets seats have improved, hahaha…
I’m a Republican, probably even your stereotypical Republican, right down to my NodeDB license plate that says “I vote, shoot, and wardrive.” (Well, okay, maybe the wardriving part isn’t so stereotypical.) But I’ve never actually owned a gun. I fired a few back in high school, and I’ve wanted one for home defense, but not enough to actually shell out the clams.
I finally broke down and bought one this weekend. Not so much for home defense, though, as it is to just finish off a few problems around the house. Erika’s been bugging me to get some household projects done, and I got tired of her bothering me about it, so I let temptation get the best of me.
I live in Houston, so guns are easy to get. There’s two stores near my house, with plenty of models to choose from. I didn’t want to get a cheap one, because I’m concerned about the safety on those – I mean, who wants one of these just going off accidentally? No, I stepped up a little and bought a slightly more expensive model, something more durable because I think I’ll be using it a lot. Besides, those cheap ones looked a little femmy, like the kinds of guns girls would use. While mine isn’t manly by any means, it’s a nice gunmetal blue.
It’s electric powered, which surprised me. I’d never seen an electric one before, but that’s cool, because this one will fire twice a second if you need to really shoot some metal around.
I think I’ll go use it in the living room for starters. Some people might practice outside first, but not me. I’m the fearless type.
HappySnapper is a new online photo shop where you can upload your own digital masterpieces to share with friends, as well as sell prints and downloadable versions. They’re running a photo contest over the next 90 days, and the winner gets a quality tripod. I don’t know about you, but my shaky hands sure could use the gear. (I’m not quite sure why I’m telling you about it, dear reader, because it lessens my own chances.)
How did I forget about these guys? I was all over Semisonic for a couple of years, bought their first two CD’s, but they dropped off my radar. Last night I listened to All About Chemistry in completion for the first time, and I remembered why I liked them so much. The stuff’s witty, catchy, sexy, and easy to listen to.
I rarely research the bands I listen to, but for some reason I decided to hit the band’s web site, www.Semisonic.com. Bright, airy, informative – the way a band’s site should be. It doesn’t quite show off the sense of humor exhibited in their lyrics, but it’s close.
Erika’s down in El Salvador for a couple of weeks visiting her dad, so it’s Bachelor Pad Time up here in Houston. I’m a workaholic by nature, and with her gone, my wacko schedule is already rearing its ugly head. I was up this morning at 4am, watched television for an hour, and I’m settling down to work a little late – at 6am. I’m definitely at my most productive in the earlier hours of the day.
A good friend of mine bought a cell phone with a built-in camera a few weeks ago. He specifically went to the cellular company looking for a camera phone because he thought it’d be a nifty toy to have, and because he wouldn’t bother carrying around a digital camera otherwise.
This guy is a fairly smart fella: he’s worked a computer support desk for a few years, done technology integration, and knows his way around his laptop computer. He’s not a programmer, but as far as end users go, he’s about as knowledgable as they come.
He just now sent me the picture you see here. It’s been three weeks, and this was the first one he sent out. Not for lack of trying, either – it’s just such a hassle using camera phones to take pictures and email them.
Two things need to happen for camera phones to catch on. First, a new camera phone should instantly sync your email contacts with your laptop or desktop computer. No separate cables, no separate software – everything should be included in the box for Windows and Mac at least. Second, you should be able to take a picture and send it to one of your contacts within, say, five button presses. There should be a dedicated shutter button on the phone that instantly takes a picture, and from there, you should have one-button access to instantly Email This. The first thing that pops up after that should be your list of contacts – you choose a contact, and hit Send. If it’s any more difficult than that, it’s not worth it – especially at these dismal resolutions.
(And in case you can’t tell, it’s a picture of the big-screen TV in his living room.)
Time for another vacation again, this time for a long weekend in Paris. Erika’s got a boatload of vacation time and a hankerin’ to see the Romantic City, so off we go. She thinks I’ll be able to show her around from my vast experience the first time I went back in 1999, despite my ignorance of the language and the history. We’re pretty much just going to see the Louvre, the Eiffel Tower, and Notre Dame. (She doesn’t care to see the grand cathedral, but I think she’d appreciate it after seeing it.)
My webcam caught me in the act of checking my lotto ticket this morning. I smiled in glee because I actually got two numbers (out of the six, but hey, gimme some credit.)
I don’t play the lotto often. Pretty rarely, in fact. Come to think of it, I only play the lotto when work frustrates me, and when I want to dream of telling ‘em to take this job and shove it. I almost looked forward to that moment more than I did the actual $48 million payoff this week. Almost.
I guess it’s a good sign that I don’t play very often – my job can’t be that bad, eh?
Nothing goes better with Mondays than some funky music from Margaritaville. Or with Fridays, for that matter. Radio Margaritaville plays the kinds of stuff I’d play if I had more time to pick out music. I learn every time I listen.
Had a client almost lose a hard drive today, and when I chastised them about their lax backup schedule, I realized the pot was calling the kettle black. I purchased a SCSI tape backup and ten tapes about a year ago on Ebay, but never actually put them into place. Setting up backups is about the least glamorous thing I can think of about computer work, and I’ll usually find any task to do before I accomplish that one.
I also decided to set up software RAID, which is using two hard drives as mirrors. Windows automatically keeps both drives identical, so if one fails the other one can keep operating without the users realizing anything happened.
This is completely boring, and the only reason I’m putting it in my blog is because I’m waiting for the RAID to set itself up. Zzzzz….