I'm just a guy at a house

It's a long story. :)

I'm looking forward to The Dresden Files. If it is as good as a lot of Sci-fi shows, I'm anxious to see it.

I'm always looking for a timer for things...this, that, and the other...anyway, I found one I like and I'm putting it here so that I don't have to always go and look for it. I'm going to put it in my sidebar too so that I won't have to search for this post every time... :)

Thanks to Johannes Wallroth in Germany for the code.

Here's the timer or you can download your own copy.

I was quite happy to see that Cat Schwartz is actively posting on her site again. For long-time readers, you know that I've written about her before. She's really interesting and I feel that she's really going to do well now that she's married and has a son.

I decided to go on a far and wide search for interesting reading tonight, while Jen plays 'The Sims' and bakes a pie.

Here's what I found that kept my interest for more than the time it took to click "Next Blog"... :)

Adventures of an Urban Cowgirl
Unbalanced
Top 99 Women of 2006
*Who compiled this? Yech! It's a bunch of scrawny chicks...18 & 12 are OK, and #1 I agree with.
Dorid's Dusty Roads
Restaurant.com bargain dining deal - I want to know if this is legit...somebody try it and let me know, ok? :)
You taco-ing to me? - I know his wife and mother-in-law, so I figured I ought to see what he's about...

Tired of reading...back to Age of Empires III.

I just saw on Digg that Barack Obama is making a run for president in '08. I'd heard his name, but didn't know anything about him, so I thought I'd check out his dot com.

Barack Obama

He's an interesting fellow. Sounds smart and inclusive, unlike Dubya. I wonder if he'll get it? This sounds like the first season of '24'...

It's freezing here! Literally. Ice and sleet are pelting the south Texas area in a barrage that would make Minnesotans put on their short sleeves. But seriously folks, it's a bit chilly out.

I took this picture of icicles on our picnic table around noon.



(click to zoom)


I saw some kid in a red car zoom up to our speedbump and put on the brakes to skid the last two feet. What a dummy.

We have gone outside a little, but roads are closed and things, so we'll be staying put for a while. Oh yeah, my work and the first day of classes got cancelled - Yahoo!!!!

I just love this!

Animusic's Pipedream

I tried to embed it like I usually do, but it didn't work...

I'm soooo excited! The people in the next neighborhood over already have these blue Automated Recycling carts, and we're going to be getting them soon.

We were the test neighborhood for the Automated Trash pickup carts (which I love) and I'm quite excited to get these too.



I try to recycle everything I can, so I'm happy that they're also expanding what kinds of recyclables they'll take. That means I can keep putting all the things in that I always have, but now I'm not breaking the rules! Good for me!


Juicy by ~wulfster on deviantART

I can't believe that this is a real photo and not a digital creation! deviantART is just such a great site to see amazing things like this on!

I just love this picture...

I found this screenshot online. Apparently it is from a software program called Azureus.


(Click to Zoom)

I always send myself emails about things that I want to post or remember, and I'm finally putting some of them up now. Here are a few things that interested me enough to send them to myself. :)

I'm too chicken to even contemplate ever climbing Mt Everest, but I
have always wondered how the view is from up there. Well, now I know!

The site also has tons of other cool QuickTime VR panoramas. Check em out.

This is the actual out of office message I used while I was off for 8 weeks for Andy's birth...

I am out of the office until about April 10th on "Daddy leave." If you need technical support, please contact the helpdesk at ext xxxx

Thanks,
Darrell

Q: Where was the toothbrush invented?
A: Tennessee. If it had been invented anywhere else, it would have been called a teeth brush.

Hehe. Anyone out there on the net from Tennessee? Do they even have Internet there? Just kidding...I know they do. :)

Here's the original Windows XP setup screen, before the Anti-trust lawsuit...


(Click to Zoom)

And here's a useful error message for business users.

(Click to Zoom)



Poor Guy...



Where's Ritchie Valens?

I never saw these myself, but I like the little bits of wisdom they impart...

For those who never saw any of the Burma Shave signs, here is a quick lesson in our history of the 1940's and '50's. Before there were interstates, when everyone drove the old 2 lane roads, Burma Shave signs would be posted all over the countryside in farmers' fields. They were small red signs with white letters. Five signs, about 100 feet apart, each containing 1 line of a 4 line couplet...... and the obligatory 5th sign advertising Burma Shave, a popular shaving cream.

Don't stick your elbow
Out so far
It may go home
In another car
Burma Shave

Trains don't wander
All over the map
'Cause nobody sits
In the engineer's lap
Burma Shave

Don't lose your head
To gain a minute
You need your head
Your brains are in it
Burma Shave

Drove too long
Driver snoozing
What happened
Next is not amusing
Burma Shave

Brother speeder
Let's rehearse
All together
Good morning, nurse
Burma Shave

Cautious rider
To her reckless dear
Let's have less bull
And more steer
Burma Shave

Speed was high
Weather was not
Tires were thin
X marks the spot
Burma Shave

Around the curve
Lickety-split
Beautiful car
Wasn't it?
Burma Shave

No matter the price
No matter how new
The best safety device
In the car is you
Burma Shave

A guy who drives
A car wide open
Is not thinkin'
He's just hopin'
Burma Shave

At intersections
Look each way
A harp sounds nice
But it's hard to play
Burma Shave

Both hands on the wheel
Eyes on the road
That's the skillful
Driver's code
Burma Shave

The one who drives
When he's been drinking
Depends on you
To do his thinking
Burma Shave

Car in ditch
Driver in tree
The moon was full
And so was he
Burma Shave

Passing school zone
Take it slow
Let our little
Shavers grow
Burma Shave



It's Harry Potter and Fluffy...how cute!

German Coast Guard to the rescue!

Kitaro is one of my very favorite musicians...



The look on both their faces makes me wonder where exactly he's tappng him...

This was on 2006's PCWorld worst 25 tech products list. I had one and I loved it. I miss it so much...one little piece broke and now it is useless...

I've just written a complaint to Mr Gatti's. We spent almost $30 there, and I'm just not happy at how the whole experience turned out.

We visited location #701 last night and I was very disappointed. One of the drink stations was broken and the drink line was quite long. Only half of the available space on the pizza buffet was filled, despite the line there being very long too. Almost half of the games in the arcade area are broken, and the area was not adequately staffed. There was an attendant at the bumper cars, but not at the carousel, for instance. It seems to me that Saturday night would be one of your busiest and that there should be enough staff to handle everything. Also, only TWO of the 7 or 8 ticket eater machines was working. That's just unacceptable. We haven't been to Gatti's in a long time, and if this is representative of the typical location, it certainly doesn't encourage us to come back.

I'll report back as to whether they reply.

Last evening we went to Mr Gatti's (my choice) for Pizza. I always want pizza 22 meals a week, and my pizza meter had hit zero. The pizza was OK, but there were a few teensy issues there. None bad enough to make me leave, but it wasn't the rollicking fun evening I was hoping for. It was still nice to get out of the house though.

First there was a sign up that said "Our A/C is out due to theft." Who the F would steal an air conditioner from a business, I want to know. Oh well, it wasn't hot, so we went on it. The Pizza was OK, and I got some that I liked, but they seemed to concentrate on pepperoni (no surprise) and sausage with an ass-ton of onion. Yech!!!!! Oh well, the dessert pizza was ok. Oh and by the way, we sat in the Cartoon Network room, which has The Fairly Oddparents on when we got there. I wouldn't say I like that show, but I at least tolerate it and once in a while get a laugh. That was over about 5 minutes after we sat down and then a freakin SpongeBob Squarepants marathon or something came on.

I HATE SPONGEBOB!!!!!

But Brendan loves it, it seems, probably because I won't let him watch it at home. Oh well, it's not as bad as I originally though, but I still don't like it. Anyway, then we went back to the games. We'd bought $10 worth of tokens, but a lot of the games were broken. Not quite half of them, I'd say, but almost every one that wasn't a video game was out of commission. The mini bowling type where you roll the ball up the lane and get it in a certain ring...almost all broken. I really like that game too. Jen had to get the attendant twice for game that either took our tokens or didn't give prize tickets. She's really good about that, whereas I would have probably just walked away. Thank you Jen for taking the time to get things corrected. So, we putzed around in there until we blew all the tokens. Brendan got to play several driving games with him steering and me holding the gas with my hands. That was fun, but his ears are sensitive and all of them were too loud for him. Finally we went to cash in the prize tickets. Out of about 7 or 8 ticket eater machines, only TWO were working. Jen just went up to a little girl and gave her all of our tickets and we left. But not before drinking one final glass of soda. Ha!

So, we had some fun, but let me recommend that you don't go to Mr Gatti's #701 at 410 and Marbach in San Antonio. Certainly any other location is better.

Now that I've finished that rant, here's something funny to enjoy.



This is such my kind of humor. :p

Here's Andy's first typing. He was sitting on my knee batting around an empty water bottle, and hit the keyboard, so I thought I'd let him give it a try.

He's not as prolific a writer as Brendan was, but that's OK.



He's going to be a web designer, since her has the HTML for Unordered List...oh yeah!

I need to record some important stuff, but my inner author is still on Christmas Vacation apparently, so here it comes in more or less list form. I'll be annoyed at myself later, but this is better than forgetting it. And I know I will if I don't write it down.

* We were at Sun Harvest (natural food store) yesterday and Jen was admiring the flavored coffee beans that you buy in bulk and grind there (or at home I guess if you go for that kind of thing). Brendan went down the row ahead of us a bit, and opened and bin, glanced at me, took out one bean, glanced very slyly at me (as if to say "ya gonna stop me?") and smiled. I knew what he was about to do, and we've advised him not to do this many times, so instead of being the good father I really am 99.5% of the time, I said "Go ahead...". He snickers, and pops it in his mouth. Chomp, chomp, chomp...and then it hits him that this chocolate candy doesn't taste as nice as it smells. Then it hits him that he really doesn't want to have it in his mouth any more and he sticks out his tongue and makes a dirty face and kind of starts the cough-cough I'm gonna puke thing. Oh shit, I think to myself, and just go for it. I wipe my hand across his tongue to get the nice coffee grounds out, and then do that again, and then get a wipey. Normally I would not recommend that anyone wash their kid's tongue with a wipey, but in this case, I think he preferred the taste over coffee grounds. :) The Jen pulled out the emergency bottle of water that we always carry in case we have to feed Andy a bottle and let Bren drink some of it. What a good mother. Oh yes, I forgot to mention that I was laughing my ass off through most of this, but it was that funeral laugh where you try unsuccessfully to keep it quiet and it usually burst out and ends up being worse than if you'd just gotten it over with normally. Anyway, it was that kind of laugh. So after it was all over we both knelt down and reminder Brendan gently to ask mommy and daddy before eating anything that we didn't give him. It worked until later when he snitched a choco covered raisin (or something that looked like one) off the tray below the bulk foods and ate it. Fortunately it was a candy that time, but I reminded him again about the "yucky chocolate" he had before, and he didn't act up again while we were in the store. Man that was funny. Don't tell Child Protective Services.

* That was a damn long bullet.

* Also in Sun Harvest, I put three of Mom's business cards up on the bulletin board that they have for that and took one for CitizenRe and one for Point of View Photography in return. P.S. If Scott D Smith ever reads this: Scott, can I redo your website for you? You photography is great, particularly this one, but your website is uggggly! I say that in the most "constructively criticising" sort of way I can, my friend. Back to mom's website, she's had her first order, but it is from an acquaintance, so I'm not sure it really counts. Money's money, I guess.

Yummy Sorbet
* I haven't typed this much in a long time and my hands are hurting. I'm gonna eat some Whole Fruit Sorbet, Strawberry of course, and that will surely make them feel better!

* Re: "You photography is great" above: My typing is suck.

* More Shortly (clicks publish)

OK, rested...

* Brendan's sense of humor continues to develop at a very amusing rate. Tonight I was in the hallway talking to Jen who was sitting on the bed breastfeeding Andy (WTG Jen, almost 5 months of gloriously free baby food). I just started walking toward the kitchen when Brendan bolts around the corner and we both jump and scream like little giiirrrrls! Then we both laugh hysterically at each other and he says, "I scare you!" and I say "And I scared you!" and then we each say "Sorry!" and laugh and hug. It was great.

* Andy is smiling and laughing a lot these days. He loves being held and looking at that other baby that sometimes appears on certain parts of the walls, aka mirrors. When he sees himself in the mirror, his eyes widen and he touches the mirror trying to feel that other baby. It is so cute. He smiles at anything and thinks the world's best comedian is Brendan. Anything Brendan does is hilarious to Andy. I was carrying him in Sun Harvest and he just laughed and laughed at Bren playing in the aisles. Kids are great. Have some. Andy also plays under his little gym by himself for a good long time now, giving mom a break.

* We want a Nintendo Wii really bad. It looks like so much fun!!! They're not cheap on eBay, and not in stock anywhere else. Doh! Not that we're seriously considering spending that kind of money. We don't have it to waste on gaming.

* Conversely, I've had an ass-ton of consulting since we came back from Christmas. All but one of my big consulting clients has called me since Jan 2. I've been working every night practically, and made some good money to help pay bills. I even was given a junk computer that I might be able to use for parts. That was cool.

* I met Brad Badger and his wife and cuuuutttte little girl lately at someone's house. This guy is a giant and his wife is a pretty, petite gal; to see the two of them together is really amusing as he's sooo big and she's so not. Despite probably being able to pop this nerds head off with two fingers, his handshake was gentle but firm. Nice guy.

* Brendan continues to enjoy his Nintendo DS black, but he doesn't enjoy multiplayer very much in Mario Kart DS. It's always "wait for me, wait for me." I guess I should rephrase that. He enjoy it when he's ahead of me, so I usually don't try to win anymore. Rather, I try to crash him or hit him with Koopa Shells. Sometimes he just laughs, but other times it pisses him off. Just depends on the day. hehe.

* About 2/3 of the Christmas lights are down, thanks to Jen. I still have to take the ones off the edge of the house.

* We found some copper sheeting while cleaning the garage and sold it at the recycle place today. Made $27.30 thanks to the previous owner of the house leaving that for us. I also found out they buy Ethernet cable for about 60 cents a pound. Nice!

* Have to talk at an Orientation tomorrow morning, so I think I'd better get to bed (I'm writing this at 11:38, but changing the post time to make it readable in relation to the one above...)

I was reading Ash_B's blog today and found something so outrageously great, so interesting, and so me-like that I couldn't believe it:

When I was playing Final Fantasy X I learned to read and write in Al Bhed, partially so I wouldn’t have to waste my time looking for the dictionaries in the game, but also just for fun.

That's truly great. Al Bhed is the language of the future. Hehe. At least for Final Fantasy fans like me.

I don't know why I write down stuff like this that won't be of any importance to me in five years. I should be writing down all the great, cool, and interesting stuff that the kids are doing. That's the next post since Jen is sitting beside me playing "The Sims Complete Collection" which was given to use for Christmas.



In honor of Delurking Week, I humbly request that everyone who reads this please post a comment.

Haute Literature not required; I'll appreciate anything. Leave a witticism, a cool link, or even a rude word if you like (you know who you are) Hehe.

Thanks lots!!!! Hope you have a great 2007!

We gave Brendan a Nintendo DS black for Christmas and he's really getting into it. We've even played Mario Kart together via the integrated wireless. (I have the DS white to match my iPod). I love devices that talk to each other!



We make him wear headphones so we don't have to listen to it though. Suppose all parents do that. Hehe.

Today we spent our fourth day cleaning on the garage. Maybe one more say, and we'll have it nice and organized. We've put away some of the Christmas light and decorations, as well as moved a big old china cabinet that we don't use. And my workbench is now cleared off so that I don't have to work on PCs on the kitchen table. That's good for Jen. Plus, I hung my two anime posters over the table where I'm going to work. I've had them for years, but never had a place for them at this house.

Finally, we found something really interesting left by the previous owner of the house in the rafters of the garage - a spinning wheel.



I've never seen one of these in person and have no idea if I'm running it too fast or even in the right direction. Hmm, now I just need a sheep...here sheepy sheepy sheep. I've got a surprise for you!

By the way, this is the first Quicktime Movie I've embedded into my blog. I really like how easy it is to take video with my new Kodak Z710 and Lexar Platinum II 1 GB SD card. Love it, love it, love it! It took me some time to figure all all the params to embed a .MOV, but now I get it. :)

More to come; probably too many.

I feel sorry for the poor folks at AT&T's marketing department. They are really trying hard to show how much better than Cable Internet they are...but they're failing. Here's my rebuttal!


Click to zoom

I must say that despite ridiculing their advertising, I've actually improved my opinion of them in the last couple months. I installed DSL at a friend's house and she was quite happy with it.

Basically, I've always said that cable is better because DSL makes you sign a year contract. And if you're Darrell, contracts=bad. But now, they've lifted that and don't require it any more. I do like that. They still make you buy the modem at $49.99 and then give you a mail in rebate though - good luck getting that!

But for the price ($14.99 per month for 768 Kb) it's a pretty good deal. If you have AOL dialup and are paying $21.95 per month, this is really the way to go. Really, if you have any dialup, anything better is the way to go.

Writing about that, I was wondering how many people actually have dialup still. According to a
Pew Internet & American Life Project study, of the 70 Million adults online at the end of 2004, 60 Million had a fast connection at home. I don't think I really believe that. Other stuff I found says that it is between 45 and 55 percent of households. That's a bit more believable, I think.

Even that 45% of homes have it is really telling for the state of the Internet. YouTube probably wouldn't exist if we all still had dialup. I sure wouldn't be on it. My poor mother can't even watch the videos that I put up because she has stinky 26.4 kb (average speed) dialup. She's too far away from town for anything faster except satellite net and that is cost prohibitive at $99 per month. Oh well.

Interesting stuff. I'll be sticking with Cable Internet, thanks. It's Earthlink or Roadrunner for me!

What a great tool both for artsy, webby people and just to play with. Try it!

Kuler

I did a few surveys today that I had waiting for me in my email. I always have to laugh when I get the Alzheimer's question like I did today. I always dream that some survey designer will not be paying attention to what they are doing and present me with this.


Click It...

I like this: DyLinn

I was looking around for events in San Antonio that I might like to attend and ended up at Brown Paper Tickets, which has several listed. I went from there to The Church Bistro & Theatre, which I know as the Alamo Street restaurant. That was its old name. Anyway, DyLinn did their website, and has a nice one of her own that I browsed for a while...

I particularly like the Spirits page. You'll see why.

Here's something that I watched here at work today and enjoyed. It's kind of a quiet slow day here, so I'm looking at a few things on the net...

Hitachi True Stories

Weekend: here I come.

Was away for Xmas, but now I'm back.

I have so much to write about, but at this rate will never have time. Have had consulting jobs every evening this week. Good for the bank account, bad for the relationship; sorry babe.

Had a great holiday. Brother moved into a new house. Got the Kodak Z710 I had been wanting. Yay!

More later.

Happy New Year!!!!!!!

Do you know Wesley Autrey? No? Well where have you been?!?!?!



(AP) Autrey risked his own life by jumping down on to the tracks in front of an oncoming subway train, then pulling Cameron Hollopeter, a 19 year old college student, into a shallow ditch between the rails to safety as the train passed just inches overhead. Earlier in the day, New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg presented Autrey with the city's Bronze Medallion, New York's highest award for civic achievement.

Kudos mate, you are a real hero!

Link

Me, briefly

My photo
North Texas, Texas, United States


This is the story
of a man named Darrell
who was working
and bringing up a family.

This is the story
of his lovely family
with 3 kids and wife
all at home.

We're a happy family!
Yes, we're a happy family!

Interesting:

Visit Where's George?
Visit Where's George?


The Internet Traffic Report 
monitors the flow of data around the world. It then 
displays a value between zero and 100. Higher values
indicate faster and more reliable connections.

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