A collection of rambling posts about gaming, running, and politics. (and, in 2009, photography.)

Saturday, January 31, 2009

Day 31: 4D6

From 365


The gang met up today for our Saturday Dungeons and Dragons game.

In brief, they've been asked by a humble village couple to find their daughter, who was kidnapped by undead servants of a necromancer, and on the very evening of her 16th birthday.

They charged off to the old battlefield cemetery where the necromancer makes his home. They passed through the challenge of the spiked gate, and soon learned the danger of straying from the path through the cemetery. This week, they were set upon first by giant shambling mounds of dead corpses. They destroyed the abominations, and reached the tower of the necromancer. Inside, on the first floor, they got ambushed by a group of undead mastiffs. Rawr!

Oh, and Robert rolled four six-sided dice (4D6) for damage, and got all boxcars (pictured above). We were all impressed with his dice fu.

Day 30: Liquor

From 365


Taken while shopping for some inexpensive wine. Yum.

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Day 29: Paintbrushes

From 365


Painting in the nursery continues. I admit that my old hangup problem of "excited about the big parts of the task, bored or uninterested with the smaller parts" continues to plague me. We've gotten probably 75% of the total work on the walls done. But 25% is still a significant portion. Now it starts to come down to mixing colors and touching up and all of the other details.

Hey, its still fun, its just more work now, and less play.

Climate Change

I may end up sounding completely crazy, or at least mostly crazy here.

I'll be honest, I've long regarded end of the world, and apocalypse scenarios as highly entertaining fiction. Escatology has, to me, been the domain of religious Revelations fans, and conspiracy theorists. So its alarming now to see it popping up in the headlines. Obviously people have been talking about global warming and climate change for some time, but this shit is getting scary.

Some estimates say that by 2013, there will be no ice left in the Arctic. According to these theories, not only will we get an increase in sea levels around the world, it will also result in the release of methane and carbon dioxide of sufficient levels to create a runaway greenhouse effect.

Granted, there are a lot of things about the climate that we not fully understand, or that we cannot accurately predict, but I'm not a big fan of gambling when the odds are Win Ten Bucks or Slowly Cook To Death.

I feel all wide-eyed and kooky, but frankly, this shit is terrifying. I don't know whether to start digging my Deep Underground Self Sustaining Biohome, or to just imagine that everything is peachy-keen, and that I'll be able to retire to the Bahamas when I'm 60.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Day 28: Snow Day!

From 365


Well, sorta. I ended up at work all day, despite the ice/snow.

Krissi and I have been going through our finances, trying to make some solid calculations for the coming months. Its tight, but we've got ourselves set up fairly well.

That's about all I've got.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Day 27: Cold and Wet

From 365

Day 26: Foccacia Bread

From 365


Krissi was kind enough to make birthday supper for me. Chicken Fettucini Alfredo and Foccacia bread. OH YUM!

Another year. My reminder that I'm not 20 anymore is that my metabolism has slowed. I've always eaten for two or three, and now that I'm in my 30's, if I don't keep up with a good exercise regimen, I end up picking up pounds. Looking back on photos of our little gang from the last 4 years or so.. it feels like we all look so much older now.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Day 25: Peanut Butter & Jelly

 
Posted by Picasa

(click for larger image)


I got a surprising amount of relaxing done today. We slept in, and I got up around 9:30 and made breakfast for myself and goofed on the computer (picasa problems already discussed), until Krissi got up, and then I made some pancakes for her. I felt the urge to get into the nursery and do some painting, but the energy and motivation was not there. I'm still in some kind of recovery stasis, where we've been so busy since christmas that I feel like I've barely had a moment's rest. For the record, I'm not trying to compare notes with new parents of twins. Anyway.

We did a brief bit of shopping, and then went to Maddie and John's place to see the gang and take those baby pictures. I'll be the first to say that I'm a newbie on the camera, but I'm fortunate to have a pretty nice camera, and to have read up a bit, so I've got some ideas about what contributes to good photos. I'm still working on it, mind you. So we threw open the blinds and used the overcast afternoon sun for lighting (yay!!) and took about 200 baby pictures. I'd be lying if I said that I was not pleased with my work, but I'd also be leaving out some truth if I didn't mention that I seem to have excellent subjects.

We also managed to make it to my mom's place for birthday festivities with James and Keshia. I came away with some sweet coffee and an excellent running shirt, and Fallout 3. Woooooooooooooot.

Um, and finally, since its my birthday tomorrow, I'm celebrating by drinking Blue Moon, which is like, the only beer for me these days.

A board game that I want to play

This board game may already exist. If so, great! Or, it may not exist, and I may be forging bravely ahead into uncharted territory, and will be able to soon retire off of the millions and millions that I'll make when I publish my board game. Now I'm being silly. Anyway.

After playing a [seemingly longer than necessary] game of Dungeons and Dragons 4e, and a game of Shadows Over Camelot, and having recently played games like Tomb, and Order of the Stick, and having read some stuff about old school 0e Dungeons & Dragons.... I'm getting to it, I promise... I want to play a game that is an even mix of boardgame and D&D.

Since I'm brainstorming this, here's what I'm looking for.

Each player has a character. Each character is somewhere between Munchkin and D&D4 in complexity. Like, you may be the thief, and you'll have a few stats, but not reams and reams of them. And while each player will have a character, the party doesn't get to split up, there'll be a party marker for the dungeon, which I'll get to right now.

There'll be cards, dungeon tiles, if you will. Much like the street cards in the Zombies game, where you flip them over and line up the streets to create the town. In this case, they'll be dungeon corridors with rooms and stuff. You'll have cards for monsters and traps and treasure and so forth. Instead of being hugely static, there'll be some randomness to it, to simulate D&D's random encounters and random treasure and traps and so forth.

I'd want players to be able to do stuff like disarm traps, or solve somewhat simple puzzles. My first stab at it is to have a trap card, which the player would not see (one player would be the GM), the player could choose to use Strength, Cunning or Dexterity to try to disarm it. One would be a great deal more likely to succeed than the rest. Somehow the player would have to figure out which to use. I wouldn't want it to be totally Gygaxian random, but I don't know how you'd give them clues without completely removing the guesswork.

Fights against monsters would have to be somewhere between (again) Munchkin and D&D4. Maybe a few dice rolls.

I'd want it to be scalable, and have campaign play. Treasure and some kind of XP could be kept, and it could totally take the place of your regularly scheduled D&D game. You could find some stairs and go down to the second level (!!!), and continue the adventure, and so forth. In order to not have hundreds and hundreds of cards, you'd have to have some way for the monster cards and stuff to scale.

You know, after having typed all of this up, I think I'm talking about 0e Dungeons and Dragons. Maybe I just need to cool my heels and read my Rules Cyclopedia. Maybe that'll be the fix I need.

Picasa Debacle

omfg.

So I'm not a violent person, but this time when I say that I want to Punch Someone In The Face, I'm really serious. And this time, its Picasa.

First- I love Picasa. I use it for my offline photo database, because it rocks. I've used it for awhile for uploading some photos to picasaweb. And recently I've used it for my 365 project, to upload pics to picasaweb, and then linking them from my blog.

This morning I woke up, loaded up picasa, and it started to index my photos, as though I was introducing all of these photos to picasa for the first time. I thought it was kindof weird, but I was not crazy concerned, until I noticed that it only had 4 entries for 365. I looked a little harder, and sure enough, it only shows 4 photos in my 365 album in picasa. Odd. So I check the online picasaweb album, where all of my 365 pics are linked from, and OH HEY! only 4 photos! Which means that of course all of the photos on my blog are now broken. So, frantically, I begin trying to re-sync my web album, and I notice that while I'm doing so, its intermittently fixing my broken photos links. Some are magically returning, while others remain broken. So, I spent an hour and a half this morning uploading photos to Flickr and editing/fixing my posts. Grr!

For 'Well it could have been worse' perspective: I'm glad it did this in January, instead of waiting to ambush me months later. Fixing ~20 posts and photos is far more simple than fixing ~100 or so.

/angry rant

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Day 24: Shadows Over Camelot

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John picked up Shadows Over Camelot recently. Various gaming shops had been pimping it to us, going on about its qualities as a coop board game, where most are very competitive.

We played two games over it the other day, which were okay. We played again this evening and all had a blast with it. We worked well together as players and coordinated our efforts, and achieved a narrow, but well deserved victory. It was a blast.

We also got together earlier in the day for some D&D. In a fortuitous turn of events, while Maddie and John are away from the game, my cousin Robert has joined us. We worked together to create a 7th level warlock for him, which took two and a half hours. We got some playing done though, the group of them are off trying to track down a villagers daughter, who's been kidnapped by a necromancer.

Not that its different than any other session, but today, combat felt like it dragged on for. ever. So much so that it made me daydream about converting the whole campaign to 0e.

Finally, as a I ramble my way to a close, I noticed that some of my blog posts and photos are being picked up by the Main Street Journal, a local-to-Memphis print and online publication, which I thought was pretty darn cool. As an added plus, one of their folks is an avid board game nerd, like the rest of my crowd. Woo!


PS Happy Birthday to my sister-in-law, Keshia!

Day 23: Silo

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Thursday, January 22, 2009

Day 22: Drum Pads and Duct Tape

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I'm a monster on the drums [on Rock Band]. We didn't fall into the Rock Band trap until well after it was released, when I got a wild hair and talked Krissi into getting it for us so that we'd have a good group activity for the Williams clan. And its been a blast. We've sunk a fair bit of cash into both the product itself, but also the excellent download songs. We don't play as a group very often, but I still pull the drums out every other week or so, and burn a few hundred calories. You'll note that we've got after-market drum pads on there, and those are held down with duct tape.. which has been shredded by countless hours of slamming away at the drums.

Day 21: Wang's Mandarin House

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Back when Krissi and I lived at Lynnfield place, Wang's at Park and Ridgeway was our place to go for Chinese food. The location was convenient, and we just liked the place. We never went for the karaoke, but we LOVED the sweet & sour chicken. On Wednesday we ran into Memphis to talk to chat with a financial counselor and then of course, the questionable decision of paying for restaurant food. But it was delicious, as always.

Also, apparently Day 21 is when the novelty wears off for me. I only snapped a couple of photos, and only when I consciously determined to, and then looked for stuff to photograph.

In which I withdraw the previousy mentioned punching

So I recently mentioned that someone at Comcast needed to be punched in the face. Well, I have to withdraw that. A guy named Mark contacted me and then in turn got April to get in touch with me. Thanks Mark! April got me all sorted out, and it turns out I'm going to be saving a few dollars after all.

Huzzah!

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Someone at Comcast needs to be punched in the face

We are trying to tighten our belt, making small sacrifices to reduce our unnecessary expenses every month.

We picked up HBO a couple years ago so that we could watch Sopranos, and Rome, and some other stuff. Last month, we decided to go ahead and nix our HBO subscription.

I put a call in to Comcast, and said "Hey, we'd like to cancel HBO." I was told that we'd been grandfather'd in during the transition from Time Warner to Comcast, and so the rates for some of our services were costing us less than they were currently priced at. Still, we eventually established that we could save about ten bucks a month by going ahead and getting rid of HBO. Done.

Or not.

This month's basic bill is almost ten dollars higher than it was previously. That's right. We dropped HBO to reduce the amount of money that we were sending to Comcast, and now our monthly bill is more. Looks like in the process of canceling HBO they moved us from Plan Somethingorother, to Plan Somethingelse. So sometime today I get to call in and try to explain this to someone who doesn't get paid enough in the first place. I have a sneaking suspicion that this is going to be like pulling teeth.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Day 20: WOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO! (Obama!)

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I was thrilled to watch the inauguration on my PC at work, while listening to in on NPR. Sadly, I was nowhere near as cool as Lindsey, who got to go and stand on the Mall during the ceremony.

I have to admit that since his victory in the election, I have had a ridiculous fascination with all things related to the Secret Service, and to his security. I could stare at grainy photos of secret service guys in dark SUVs with submachine guns all day long. Call it a weird voyeuristic concern. So yeah, articles on CNN about his armored bunker limo, and counter snipers and stuff just gets me all quivery. Seriously, for some reason I feel like personally involved with this dude, and am terrified of the thought of someone managing to do some harm to him. I read enough to know that there are some assholes who would love to do so. So yay, Secret Service!!. For real though, my stomach was clenched the entire time that he was walking during the parade.

Also: John, whenever you catch up with your feed, I hear that one of his first acts will be a 130% flat tax. So you'll have to pay him all of your income, plus take out loans in order to meet the 130%. Sorry man. I know you tried to warn us.

To stem my Obama-fanboi-ness for just a second, I know that he's still got a lot to do, and a lot to prove, and a lot to live up to. We have.. ridiculously high expectations for him. I'm excited and terribly optimistic about the next four years. Best of luck to our new President. I think he'll need it.

Day 19: Emergency Room

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So everyone had a good scare, when M&J's twins were taken in for their scheduled postnatal checkup, the doc told them that their weights were a little low, they were a little dehydrated, and then, that their temperatures were down, and to take them straight to LeBonheur Hospital.

Switching viewpoints for a moment, I got a heads up from Krissi around noon or shortly after that they were headed there, but it seemed to be Nothing Crazy Scary. Then M called me at like 3 or so and told me about how's they'd seemingly stopped breathing shortly after arrival at LeBonheur (!!!!!!!!!!), and that they were hooked up to all kinds of machinery and such... so I went up there, kindof expecting the worst. I saw M just briefly, obviously they had their hands full. I made some arrangements to take care of their animals in case they were going to be there for awhile and then left. I headed back to work, and then eventually, home for the evening. I waited around on pins and needles for a few hours, till finally I heard from M around 7:30 that they were stable, and the Big Drama Trouble was past, and that they had some serious jaundice, and that they were testing them for infection and so forth.

Anyway, Big Scare time is over, and hopefully they'll be out of there on Wednesday or Thursday.

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Day 18: Stroller Shopping

From 365


So, with Maddie having recently delivered, we are acutely aware now of some of the things that you'll need, and what its like... when the babies come.

Just to get out of the house, we went and ran some errands, and stopped by a baby store to put our hands on some of the strollers that we were thinking about.

Baby stuff is expensive, and there is a TON of it.

Day 17: Cthulhu

From 365


Jason gave me Munchkin Cthulhu and this cool Cthulhu dude. Saturday we were going to get together to discuss plans for our Dungeons and Dragons game, but we were down two out of five players, so instead we played Munchkin Cthulhu and Citadels. It was good fun.

Ph'nglui mglw'nafh Cthulhu R'lyeh wgah'nagl fhtagn.

Friday, January 16, 2009

Day 16: Rum

That's rum and sprite zero actually.

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Strangely, I have developed a taste for rum with the sprite zero instead of the regular sprite. I mixed with regular sprite recently, and it tasted... weird.

I love this stuff.

(too much, some times. Does alcohol make anyone else stay up until crazy hours of the night? Everyone else claims that alcohol puts them to sleep, but me? no, I'm up all night, sending out crazy emails and IM's and such. Maybe next year will be Project 365 Drunk Haiku Year. Woo!)

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Day 15: Hot and Cold

Holy crap, it's cold today.

From 365



Close second here.  I saw a freaking hawk eating another bird on a little manicured patch of grass right by the road out of the hospital.

A few times now, I've second guessed myself, either minutes, or days later, and wished that I'd uploaded a different photo for my pic of the day.  I've also seen some AMAZING photos recently online, specifically, here, though these are windows desktop backgrounds really.  Still, they're awesome photos.  I've been looking a little bit through photos on Flickr as well, especially ones that other people have taken with the same camera I have.  I'm trying to dissect them a little, and figure out what qualities make them beautiful.  Cause I want to take photos like those.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Day 14: The Moon

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I stopped to take this because the moon was fat and gorgeous. It was yellow and partly hidden by clouds, but by the time I found a good spot to stop, it was a little higher, and more clear, and the clouds were gone. It would rock to get a shot of it that was clear and could see the features of the moon.

Also, sunsets are crazy gorgeous, but also, SO cliche'd. And I've already done one.

Day 13: Twins!

What a long ass day. Krissi and I were up and at the hospital at 6am on Monday. By 4AM, Tuesday morning, Maddie's epidural had worn off, and she was doing some pretty serious contractions. Everything proceeded just as its supposed to, and shortly after 7AM on Tuesday, she gave birth to two beautiful babies, a boy and a girl. Krissi had to leave and go to work shortly, while I stayed at the hospital. It really becomes a blur. Also, slightly amusing from an organizational standpoint for my 365 blog. I'd established that a day is measured from my waking to my going to bed. Well, this was a two-day day. Anyway, it was exhausting. And I didn't even have to give birth.

I'm also very slightly cheating on this picture. I passed the camera around, and JYounger took a number of photos with it, and I think that this was his. I took a ton as well though! But it seems that all of the good photos of Maddie with the two babies were taken by him. Anyway, I'm just sayin'.

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Also, I accidentally posted both of these to my baby blog, instead of to here. That is now fixed, obviously. Also, sorry if you get this twice on your feed reader.

Day 12: Labor and Delivery

Shortly after 6AM on Monday, we got the phone call. Maddie's water had broken at about 4:30, and they were at the hospital. Krissi and I made arrangements for work and headed up to the hospital. Everything was looking good, and Maddie was in good spirits. She was contracting, but slowly, and so we all hung out, goofed off and played some board games. Sometime around mid-afternoon, the contractions started to get serious. They got more and more painful, and finally she went ahead and got an epidural. Afterward, she was in much better spirits, and we all chatted till sometime around 4AM, when the epidural wore off, and she began doing serious contracting again.

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This is some of us standing in the hall, waiting to be let back in as they change her linens and such.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Day 11: Tomb

Tomb is a board game that our friend Todd introduced us to some time ago. Lately John has been on a huge board game kick, and we've been able to play a goodly bit of Agricola. Today John and Jeremy ended up with Stone Age and Tomb, respectively.

Its pretty fun. Its very Dungeons & Dragons in mindset. Basically each player is an adventurer, out to bust open crypts, kill monsters, disarm traps, and get treasure. You can recruit other adventurers in the inn, get spell cards and item cards and so forth to help you, and you go out and bust open crypts. It's pretty competitive, and while not directly player-versus-player, it can be pretty cutthroat.

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Saturday, January 10, 2009

Day 10: Horse Show

We were back in Germantown today, working on taking care of more of my maternal grandmother's things. I ventured out beyond the back gate, and walked through the park that I used to play in when I was a kid, visiting at grandma's. It sure has changed. The horse show place had always been there though, even though it had undergone a facelift or three in the intervening decade.

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Friday, January 9, 2009

Day 9: Sunshine

That kindof rhymes. How fun.

View from my driveway. I love it when its 65 degrees in early January. If I was less of a fat ass slacker, I'd have run a mile or three today. But I didn't. I did, however, play some Victoria, drink some Blue Moon beer, and watch Sneakers with Krissi. (Setec Astronomy!!!)

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It occurred to me, after taking this picture, "Will taking pictures of the sun damage my camera in some way?". The answer so far is: I don't think so, but I wouldn't stake my life on it.

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Day 8: I'm So Behind

So far this year, I am tired. I am tired, and far behind. I have a half dozen pressing things to do around the house, and a few dozen things that need to be done at work. I feel spread too thin. But I'm okay. I'll just keep at it, and get it done. Yeah.

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Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Day 7: The Sky is Burning

I love a pretty sunset. I'm a huge computer nerd, so I rarely take the time to enjoy one. I'm usually inside, trying to figure out the best way to invade the Soviet Union or some such nonsense. To be honest, I didn't really stop and enjoy this one, as much as I stopped and snapped a few photos of it, and then went inside. Heh.

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2008 recap/2009 look ahead

If I don't do this now, I feel as though it will not get done.

I'll be as brief as is possible.

2008 has been a pretty good year for us. Not a whole lot has changed. But that's about to change too. No major job changes for Krissi or I. No housing changes, no family changes (sortof, see '2009'), no deaths or any major events in my immediate family, though my maternal grandmother passed away the very end of 2008. In early 2008, I brought our werewolf game to a close, and then picked up a D&D 4e game that has been a real blast. I always wish that I got more gaming done, but really it comes down to time and attention, and it seems that I have only enough of those things for one real game at a time. I almost lied about no job changes. Although neither of us have changed jobs, we both took pay cuts this year. Neither of these were 'demotions' or performance related, instead our employers are trying to stay afloat. It sucks, but I'll gladly take a pay decrease over a job loss. Running sortof sucked this year for me. Naturally, I quit when it got cold, and to be honest, I don't feel like I really got good and into it even when it was warm enough. I'd intended to do the St Jude Marathon in 2008, but it did not happen, partly due to me being a slacker about my training schedule, partly due to financial constraints. Oh - we paid off a lot of debt in 2008. We now have only one big nasty outstanding credit card, and its on its way out the door as well. I think that it will be paid off around March or April. I'm sure a half dozen things will come to mind within 10 minutes after posting this, but that's my quick wrapup for '08.

2009.... it'll be a year of major changes, that's for sure. Maddie is bound to have twins any second now. Krissi is due the beginning of April. I feel like we're on a roller coaster poised right on the brink of the huge downhill plunge. If I seem completely terrified, as well as excited, that's because I am. Having a child is terrific and exciting for me. Feeling like *everything* about my life is changing is completely terrifying. Speaking of my life and changes, I'd love to do some more gaming in '09, and I am sure that it will happen, but I'm going to be pretty conservative in my goal setting for this year. I would love to be able to continue our D&D game. I would love to run some Shadowrun here and there. We're hoping that in 2009, Krissi's job situation will take a turn for the better. I'm hoping that we can leave these economically troubled times behind us. Oh, I nearly forgot, I'm super excited about Obama being in office. Oh, and I'm looking forward to Hearts of Iron 3 coming out in 2009.

Okay, that's as brief as I can make it. Thanks for tuning in!

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Day 6: Rainy Day

It has rained for like 4 days now.

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Message Skipped

I gotta share this.

We have a salesperson up in the northeast who has a blackberry cell phone, as well as an IP phone in his home office. The IP phone is connected back to our main company phone switch, and behaves pretty much as though it was any other normal phone at our company.

Note that he has voicemail both on his IP phone and on his cell phone. This is important later.

Because he travels a lot, we have setup the voicemail on his IP phone so that if he receives a message, it will call his cell phone. It goes something like this:
Joe leaves a message on Salesguy's IP phone.
Salesguy's cell phone rings.
Salesguy answers and hears "This is the phone system calling, if you are Salesguy, please press pound to continue."
Salesguy hits pound, the system asks for his password, and then he can listen to Joe's message.

Well, Salesguy told me some time ago that its not working right. He can't get the messages. On further investigation, he says that when he's prompted to hit #, he does so, and hears "Message skipped", and never gets the voicemail message.

Huh. Weird. So I got my hands on his phone and tested it myself. I called and left a voicemail on his IP phone. His cell phone rang, I heard the voicemail system, pressed # when directed, and it worked like a charm. No problem.

I chalked it up to user error.

Well, he tells me that he is STILL having the problem. So I make a note to get with him when he's down next and sort it out.

Today, I get this email:

"My cell phone said I have 7 messages. The first one didn't prompt me to press pound if I was the correct person and just played my voice mail. The other 6 messages all prompted me to press pound and when I did, it announced that message as having been skipped. The same was true for all six messages."

DING!

I got it.

In case that is still mysterious to you, let me analogize it. You pick up the phone and call your friend Dave. You get Dave on the phone and say "Hey man, do you want to run to the comic shop with me?" Dave says "yes", and you go pick him up, and off to the comic shop you both go.

Or.

You pick up the phone and call your friend Dave. You get Dave's answering machine, and you say "Hey, just wanted to see if you wanted to run to the comic shop with me." When Dave checks his answering machine later, he hears your message. To which, for some reason, Dave answers by saying into the phone "yes", which obviously you cannot hear, because Dave is talking to his answering machine.

.
.
.

So what was happening was that he was getting voicemail on his IP phone. The phone system was calling his cell phone, but when he didn't answer or was out of the service area, it ended up in his voicemail, where it recorded a message asking him to press #. Which he did. Which the cell phone voicemail did not understand.

Monday, January 5, 2009

Day 5: Pickles

Today we're experimenting with using Flickr.

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As though this even needs a description. We're going through my grandmother's things, and found these jars of pickles. The labeling makes these jars look about 30 years old, and we found stuff in the house that's that old, but apparently these are a brand.

Project 365

I'm so behind.

Still to do: 2008 recap blog post. 2009 anticipation blog post. Clean my house. Drive to germantown for like the eightieth time.

Anyway, its worth mentioning that I'm engaging in Project 365.

Observations thusfar: Its tough to take pictures of stuff. Obviously I don't just mean 'stuff'. I could easily take hundreds of boring photos of any old stuff, but neither you or I want to see plain old pictures of my car, or my bathroom sink. But...

I've never taken a photography class, though I'm tempted to try to audit one, or do one of those continuing education things at the local college campus. Back in '04, I had a little digital camera that I took tons and tons of pictures of stuff with, mostly trips, and my friends and I goofing off and drinking way too much, and its tons of fun to look back on them. Now I'm rambling about why I'm doing this, and even I'm getting bored with this post. So- moving right along.

Each day, measured by when I wake up and when I go to sleep, not midnight to midnight, I'll take photos, and upload one. I'll try to upload frequently. No promises.

A few more thoughts, and then I'll wrap this thing up.

Taking halfway descent photos is tough. Like I said. I hope I'll get better at it as the year passes. I've been using picasaweb for the photos, but I'm going to try flickr out. Do you ever have ideas that are hard to catch and grasp? Yeah, this one is like that. I can't help but feel like there's a *good* photo everywhere you look - its just a matter of figuring out how to shoot it right, that makes the difference between just another pic of some stuff, and a good picture.

Day 4

I keep having at least two or three that I'm torn on...

Today you had either "bird on a wet branch" or "angel thing on my concrete patio"

Here you are.

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Saturday, January 3, 2009

Day 3 (commentary added)

2009_01030028


There's a story to this, but mostly, I'm still experimenting. I'm experimenting with the camera itself, and with the pictures that I take, and with the pictures that I'll end up using for my 365. For now, I seem fixated on Macro shots of close up stuff.

This chain is holding shut the back gate on the chain link fence in my grandmother's yard. She died on December 31, 2008. We were not especially close, but it was good for me to be with my mom, to help her out with stuff during this time. That back gate separated my grandmother's backyard from a large park. It's almost got a Narnia feel to it. The very back of my grandmother's back yard was thick with pine trees and shrubs, so getting to the gate always felt a little like a trip into the woods, and then through the gate was this park with a huge wooden kid's jungle gym/adventure fort kind of thing. Also, a tennis court, one of those metal spinning deals that you can get on, and then try to hang onto while someone else spins it. Also, a horse showing arena. And eventually, when dusk arrived, we'd go back through that little gate, shut it behind us, secure the chain and lock, and leave the park behind us.

Friday, January 2, 2009

Thursday, January 1, 2009

Day 1: Fireworks

Dear Earstwhile Reader,

I need to sit down and do an end-of-year-2008-wrapup post, and a here's-what-I'm-looking-forward-to-in-2009 post, but I haven't had time for either. I'll get to them.

This year I am doing Project 365, where I use my camera every day, and upload a photo for each day.

Without further adieu,

fireworks