Does this scare anybody else? I for one enjoy my First Amendment freedoms, and I do not want the government taking any of them away in any form. The fact that the War Powers Act is getting a wide reading in current news and the idea of habeas corpus tossed aside like a nuisance bothers me enough. I don’t want Big Brother knocking my door down or blocking my IP just because I wrote online that Bush is an idiot.

The company organized a trip out to get our passport photos taken this afternoon. I haven’t decided if I look like an idiot or not yet.

Jen and I are heading north to see the folks again, so I’ll be away until next Tuesday. Everybody have a good Labor Day..

Date posted: August 30, 2002 | Filed under photo, travel | Leave a Comment »

After a long spell of quiet, I’m hearing from a lot of old friends. It makes me feel good inside to hear voices I’ve not been near for a long time. Matt is flying in for a visit in the middle of September, after being away from Baltimore for 3 years. Sophie emailed me to tell me she found the log. I miss the two of them, and secretly burn with jealousy when I think of them in S-F. I heard from Rich on my machine last night, the guy I can always count on for an off-the-wall message (sample: “Hello Bill….this is Rich’s computer….I don’t feel so good…”) and an hour of easy, hilarious conversation. Even my dad is in on the action; he emailed me about buying a Nikon Coolpix 995 on eBay and should have it in time for our visit Labor Day. I’m glad he went with my advice- it’s easily the best camera I’ve seen out there for the price.

There is a lot of speculation and hot air at work right now, but one thing is for certain: I am going to get my passport photo taken, hopefully so that it will enable me to take company-funded trips to exotic locales. Keep your fingers crossed for me.

And this is Sexy? Dept.: I keep getting spam about some videotape with the headline Girls Just Wanna Have Sex! OK, Fine. I’m all about that. But what is disturbing is the headline directly inside, where it says, SHE CAN PEE ALL DAY!

Date posted: August 29, 2002 | Filed under friends, humor | Leave a Comment »

In doing some work-related HTML cleanup, I took a long look at the CSS I’ve been hacking together for the past few years, and realizing it’s ass-backwards and ugly. I did some brush-up reading on it and have decided to implement new CSS in the next logpage (September) as it’s getting close to the end of this one and there’s a lot of text here. Maybe if I’m feeling bored one day soon I’ll go back and revise it.

I found this little blurb about a new app for the Palm to use it as a universal remote for your TV, DVD, etc. Interesting, and I’m tempted to download it, but I already have enough reasons to ditch the Palm once I buy an iPod.

Date posted: August 28, 2002 | Filed under design | Leave a Comment »

Not much to post today. I’m pretty tired and feeling blue.

One happy note: I made it through the dental appointment with a cleaning, a light scolding about flossing, and no major problems. Not bad after a two-year hiatus from the chair. Thank you, ancestors, for your good teeth.

Date posted: August 27, 2002 | Filed under general | Leave a Comment »

frederick, md, 8.24

frederick, md, 8.24

Well, the plan to see the Wings of Freedom airshow in Frederick on saturday were dashed when it became clear that I had gotten the wrong dates from two different websites (the airshow I initially found the 8.24 dates for was in Lancaster, PA.) But we did find a lone B-25 sitting on the tarmac under canvas, and took pictures of it. The rest of the day was spent antiquing and looking for clothes at the outlet center.

I am attempting to make a barrel in 3D today. It is much, much harder than I thought it would be.

Looking through the Blue Book value guide for a trade-in price on my car, I find that the Tortoise is worth about $1,580 as a trade-in. Selling it on my own, it tells me I could expect as much as $2,810. Of course there are the things I need to fix on it, like gluing the rear bumper back on, and washing it once this year….

So I’m pricing out PC’s for the house, and I’m looking through the Dell offerings, trying to get a system with some stones for under $900, without all the crap Dell wants to add with their order- stuff like XP, all the extended warranty stuff (why do I need a 4-year limited warranty with on-site technical support? Do you expect the computer to crap out on me?) and junky inkjet printers. About three years ago, Greycube bought me a blazing-fast 466mhz Celeron clone, and it still runs reliably… but there’s no chance it will run 3D Studio Max, which is a priority these days. Funny to think I’m also considering a new car right now too. I think after the research I did today, I’ll stick with the computer and increase my job security, and return to thoughts of a new car next year.

  1. Pay off Visa bill.
  2. Pick up OSX, a larger hard drive, and the FireWire enclosure. Back up the Powerbook
  3. Buy an iPod and celebrate the return to normal paychecks also an iRock for the car and the house
  4. Futon for basement; possibly a larger TV
  5. Computer for 3D Studio learning-Keep looking at
Date posted: August 26, 2002 | Filed under cars, geek, list, photo | Leave a Comment »

montgomery park, 8.23

montgomery park, 8.23

Todd and I took a trip down to the Montgomery Park office complex yesterday afternoon to check out the building. It is a huge (1.3M square feet) ex-warehouse on a B&O spur, built in 1923 for Montgomery Ward. As you travel north from Washington DC and rise over the hill to Baltimore, it sits off to the left, alone in a blighted landscape of industrial parks and run-down neighborhoods. It’s been empty for years, but sometime last year they started lighting it up at night, and everybody soon realized where it was and just how big it was.

The sheer size of the place overwhelms you—each floor is a cavernous forest of high ceilings and thick, fat pillars lined up in rows. Some of the floors are totally renovated, and others are barely cleared. There is a courtyard with a building in the center, sporting a living roof, and the whole building catches runoff to be recycled into the wastewater system.

We were both very impressed with the space, and sort of overwhelmed with it all. There’s too much size to be comprehended there. But we were glad that the developers decided to retain a lot of the original details- the windows, the pillars, the cielings-instead of plastering over them.

Date posted: August 23, 2002 | Filed under Baltimore | Leave a Comment »

Browsing through some friends’ sites today, I found a travelogue on my old work buddy Jason’s site. He took an Aprilia across the country with a digital camera and documented his travels, then posted it all when he got back home. Yeah, his spelling is bad, but the writing is fun and the pictures are gorgeous. It makes me wish I had the time/money combination to do the same thing.

I also found out via Mike that MICA finally updated their site, after a long, confusing, 404-laden six years.

I was able, after waiting three days for them to dry out properly, to raise the first three crossbeams for the trellis last night. Last saturday I got the two 4×4 side posts permanently anchored to the wall, levelled, notched, and hung the beam between them. Now I’m slowly getting the crossbeams up; this afternoon when the sun is at about a 60 degree angle I’ll be able to see just how much of a sunbreak it creates. I have to return to Home Depot this evening to buy four more 2×6’s, and hopefully they will already be dry.

Date posted: August 22, 2002 | Filed under friends, house | Leave a Comment »

My mother, in her incredible foresight, collected everything I ever brought home from school. Even stuff I don’t remember. My report cards from K-4, soldiers from the same army, tucked neatly in their manila envelopes, represent the longest continuous attendance of any one school in my life. There is a series of typed sheets from 1977, when a brilliant 1st grade teacher transcribed our thoughts and recorded them for our parents to keep. Then there is a pile of construction paper covered in crayon, or my favorite, a tabloid sized sheet with lines at the bottom and acres of drawing space above.

firetruck, undated

firetruck, undated

There is a refreshing looseness to all the drawings, and also a distinct need to tell a story as the years go by. Somewhere in the third or fourth grade a stylized character appeared, and it’s funny to see how I tried to reconcile the different sizes, expressions, and even angles to make it work. The writing is secondary, existing only so that I could draw pictures of the Blob, car chases a la Dukes of Hazzard, or planes from World War 2.

I have results from the PSAT’s, SAT’s, a pile of California Aptitude Battery Tests taken through my travels in the New Jersey school system, and even an ASVAB sheet (looks like I would either have been officer material or a clerk/typist) which led to an embarassing amount of calls from bored Armed Forces recruiters who were mortified when I told them I wanted to go to art school.

I also found an entire binder of fiction writing, done from about the 9th grade to the end of High School, scratched out in my illegible script on three-ring looseleaf. Reading that made my head hurt, but it also remains as a record of what i was thinking about and what I wanted to be.

There is a good chance that I am doing something wrong, but I wasn’t able to get Appletalk over IP working this morning. And I even have the same router this guy does. There must be something I’m missing.

Date posted: August 21, 2002 | Filed under apple, history, photo | Leave a Comment »

The company publishing the project I was working on decided to place an ad in the trade magazines this month. Ordinarily I would be thrilled about this, but I took a look at the ad yesterday. It took my breath away, in its stunning poor taste, lousy execution, and flawed concept. I will post a scan of it later today so that you may gaze upon it for yourself.

We’re never going to sell a copy of this fucking game.

Date posted: August 20, 2002 | Filed under art/design | Leave a Comment »

hidden driveway, laurel md., 8.18

hidden driveway, laurel md., 8.18

I read a bunch of stuff on today, and really enjoyed some of the stories. I’m thinking about a few story ideas and possibly submitting something with some illustrations. Also, this weekend, A List Apart posted a great article on writing for the Web, which has some points that I need to take to heart. (for those of you who are asleep, my apologies.)

Jen’s sister broke into her apartment last week. Jen called me from her house, livid and raging, unable to make sense of her feelings. She told me the story and I got more and more upset, because I knew that not only was she mad with her sister, but that she felt completely unsafe in her apartment. Her sister left that day with a halfhearted apology, and called back from her car later, completely unable to grasp why Jen was so upset with her. I got off the phone with Jen so that she could talk with her. At the time, I was driving (badly, all over the road) and I felt my pulse strong in my arms and body. My face was flushed in the rear-view mirror.

Coming down off the anger, I felt completely powerless to help, total anger at her selfish, stupid sister, and frustrated with the whole situation. We have been struggling mightily this year to make the ‘She’ and ‘Me’ into ‘Us’, and this incident illustrates the problems with our current housing situation.

John brought the server in to the rack at his office, so my connection suddenly got a lot faster. It’s wonderful again. Appletalk over IP is a beautiful thing. This past month has been a blur of freelance work, some outdoor work, and wierdness at the office. Definitely an interesting August.

I got an email from Jen, and she wanted to add this to my comments above: “…I had no trouble making sense of my feelings. I knew what I felt, I just felt guilty for responding the way I did at the time. The fact that we are sisters really greyed the lines for me.”

Date posted: August 19, 2002 | Filed under family, photo | Leave a Comment »