Maybe it’s me. Maybe I’m just dumb, or don’t speak English correctly, or have a short attention span. Whatever the case, I can’t make heads or tails of the Baltimore County Land Records website. All I want to do is get a better copy of the plat for our property, so that I might begin the process of understanding exactly where the fuck my lawn ends and where the neighbors’ begins. The copy of a fax of a copy I have shows a trapezoid with vague and blobby notations of distance, but no point of triangulatory reference for anything except the west corner of our road frontage. Which means our garage could be in someone else’s yard. And there’s no mention of actual distance from the pavement to the beginning of our property, just a smudgy line which could be our hedgerow. Apparently I will need to hire a surveyor, at the approximate cost of one months’ salary, just to nail a ribbon on a tree and say “It’s here”. Before I can do that, I have to get the plat, and in order to do that (as far as I can tell from this suck-ass website) I have to make an appointment, with… somebody. There are names and numbers listed, but none of them say “I’m the guy who will help you get that thing you need”. Searching on their website for the obvious stuff, like “copy of plat” returns a “Google Custom Search Result”, which is quickly becoming Internet shorthand for “we don’t give a rat’s ass about you, and we’re too cheap to catalog anything properly.”

* * *

Sick Macbook

In the meantime, I’m shopping for a new laptop. Idiot Central, the 17″ MacBook Pro I’ve had for four years, has only sported half a usable screen for the last month or so, and I’m tired of not being able to use it without an external monitor. I’m also really sick and tired of opening my bag to find that it mysteriously woke from sleep and cooked itself like a Hot Pocket. The trackpad button has been sticking in the down position, which means it’s always wanting to select something. It’s still a good, fast machine, so it’ll likely end up as a production unit on my desk, but its days as a primary computer are done. I use a laptop mainly as a travel rig these days, so I’m looking at a 13″ MacBook Pro as a replacement. It’s portable, small, and fast, and I don’t have the extra $500 to pony up for a 15″.

Update: It gets better. Remember how I was talking about the trackpad sticking? I did a little poking around this evening. The trackpad sits directly under the battery compartment.

Battery FAIL

See that bulge? That means the battery is fooked. It’s been swelling in the center and putting direct pressure on the trackpad above. I guess it bulged to the point where it finally disabled the trackpad completely. The funny thing is, my boss at work, who also has a 17″ MBP of similar vintage, just had his battery replaced today at the Apple Store due to the exact same issue. I have to see if he got it replaced under warranty or not, because I think we may be heading to the Columbia location this weekend, and we may be walking out with a new iPhone, a MacBook Pro, and a replacement battery.

Date posted: August 11, 2010 | Filed under apple, Baltimore, house | 1 Comment »

One Response to The Runaround.

  1. Linda says:

    FWIW: in Texas, individual counties are the property tax authority, and as such they have the most accurate plat and lot diagrams. For the more populous counties, those images are part of the online tax rolls.