We’re back for a whirlwind couple of days before we leave again, this time to Ohio for a graduation which might not even happen. (More details on this as we get them.)

Lickdale, PA

Getting upstate to see the family was great, and long overdue. My parents hosted my grandfather’s birthday party at their house, and apart from a minor crisis involving aluminum foil, butter, and forty ovens worth of smoke, everything went off without a hitch. The weather even cooperated enough for us to get a few peaceful, warm hours on the front porch, something I always look forward to when we’re up there. Grampy enjoyed the party and kept us laughing through the entire celebration, even though he hasn’t changed the battery in his hearing aid this year and is as deaf as a post. Luckily he always had one of his children sitting with him and translating whenever anyone posed a question from across the room.

Back here in Maryland, we have finally picked up our new rug for either the blue room or our bedroom, whichever it looks best in. Choosing carpet is difficult at best in flourescent light, with small paint chips, and under the watchful, predatory eye of the carpet salesman, so we narrowed the possibilities down to two rooms. Unfortunately, the room it’s most likely to go into is also one of the least used rooms in the main section of the house.

I’ve spent the last two days alternating between paying work and computer maintenance; the parts for Jen’s Powerbook came in while we were away, so I stripped it down to the bare frame to replace the DC/power board and both display cables. I spent many nervous hours consulting various manuals and writing notes to myself while organizing tiny screws in yogurt containers. Strangely enough, what took me about six hours to disassemble took only two to reassemble, and it was with a deep breath and a long prayer to the Sky Pilot that I pushed the power button. I got the lovely startup chime, a few minutes of nothing, and then…the same two-thirds-black screen I had before I started.


Rooting around for answers, I’m hearing that it’s the LCD itself from a parts vendor ($300), or could be the inverter board itself, the only part I didn’t replace ($60) when I had the monitor assembly open. I’m now about $500 into this thing and the prospect of spending another $300 does not please me.

However, we did find a workaround for Jen to be able to run InDesign CS and CS3 on the same machine (to recap, CS3 takes control of all InDesign documents regardless of their creator version after it is installed and run for the first time, making it impossible to re-edit them in CS) by creating a second user on the same machine and using CS as that user. Not elegant or ideal, but it gets the job done for now. Adobe gets the big Middle Finger for that one.

Meanwhile, I have been afflicted with record-player disease for the past few weeks: this is when a snippet of one song repeats endlessly in the back of my head, all day long. Last week, it was Rental Car by Beck, which wasn’t so bad, but this week I got the chorus to a Counting Crowes song stuck in my noggin when we heard it in the Korean grocery. I hated this band when they were big, and now I am cursed with the melody of their second-rate hit day and night. It got so bad yesterday that I stayed up until midnight to try and resuscitate our music server, which suddenly up and died a few weeks ago. From what I can tell, it stopped booting completely, so I transplanted the drive into a spare, only to be met with a flashing questionmark. This was too much to deal with at midnight, so I tested the third machine and realized it was my old work music server, the one with about 65% of my collection on board. Good enough! The main drive with all our music is fine, but it just won’t boot in that particular machine. Strange.

Date posted: May 9, 2007 | Filed under family, geek, music, travel | Comments Off on As far as my rental car can go.

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