Tired of replacing lightbulbs every three weeks (and indeed, the fixture in the kitchen requires untoggling three bolts and removing nine pounds of glass from above my head), I ran my shiny new power meter on my power. Apparently, my 120V mains power is actually 125.4V power, which causes destruction in normal lightbulbs.

Home Depot to the rescue- they sell 130V lightbulbs (in blister packs of 24) in the "contractor" section. Lightbulbs follow a power curve when you overdrive them, resulting in a much brighter light for not terribly much more power, with unbelievably reduced lifespan. This results in me cursing and swearing roughly once a month as I go around the apartment, replacing lightbulbs. With the 130V lights, I should be under-driving them, which will result in a much longer period between bouts of taking apart the kitchen light fixtures.

At least, that's the theory. We'll see if it works. While the extra voltage is technically in-spec, it makes me very happy that the computers are on UPSes that do power conditioning.

(no subject)

What a strange day it's been. For the first time in a very long while, I didn't wear my watch.

I suppose this means that I'm very much a creature of habit, but I did some figuring, and I realized that today is possibly the first day in a decade that I haven't worn it. (given that the FIRST battery is still in the watch, on the order of twelve years later.. that's saying a lot.)

The watch has been on my wrist in the blistering heat of Mexico. It's been in sub-minus-thirty weather in Minnesota. It's been in countless swimming pools, the Pacific, the Atlantic, the Gulf of Mexico, and the Aegean Sea.

The entire day, things were a little off- just slightly so, but still, a wee bit off. I never realized how much I look at my Casio (classic G-Shock, not these crazy new ones that are like wearing a jellyfish) in the course of a day, but apparently, I do it a lot.

Given the size and weight of my watch, I liken the difference to one of those Dragonball Z characters. They're such crazy maniacs about their strength training, that they live in hundreds of pounds of weighted clothing to slow them down. And then in the middle of a fight, when they really need the edge, off come the weighted boots, and they start tossing SUVs around.
Sadly, no SUV tossing for me. The watch doesn't weigh THAT much.

Would you like an "H" with that?

Today, my team went out for lunch at the local Italian restaurant downtown. Our waitress was named "Sara H".

Now, there's a covert war going on between H-less Saras and H-endowed Sarahs. I don't know if you realized this, but if you hang out with a couple of Sara(h)s, you'll see what I mean.

So I asked her how she usually stood on the Sara(h) battle, given that she sorta splits the fence. She told us that people commonly screw up her name by adding an "h" and then realize that they goofed, and over-write the lower-case with an upper-case letter. Clearly, a unique solution to the battle of the h's.

frozen back north

I'm back in the frozen North, after a week in Texas (where it was also frozen and snowing, but much less so). I tried to put my car into the garage today, only to discover that the garage door is frozen shut.

Now, this is good and bad. The good thing is, I forgot to lock it, but I don't have to worry that someone swiped my can of WD-40. Also, it's good that my car is outside of the garage, and not frozen inside.

The bad thing is that I'd really like to move some things into the garage today... like my car.

(no subject)

Attempting to bless an OS 9 folder (no, seriously, that's what it's called) on my OS X machine last night, I managed to hose the boot record. And I still didn't get the OS 9 folder blessed so I could run Classic.

On the upside, now I'm running system 10.3. I was putting off the upgrade until I backed up the drive that the system is on, but once the drive was el hosed, I figured I might as well. Now I've got expose and other Panther goodness. Too bad it cost a night of slumber.
  • Current Mood
    tired tired

and it just continues.

So I walked into the local prom dress store. "Hello, I heard that you guys might know where I can get a fedora."
"What's a fedora?"

Sure, I figured that the "all the ballcaps under the sun" store was a lost cause, but I was holding out some hope here. The hunt continues.

... and yet, so far.

I just spent an entire day, driving around in an attempt to find a box for storing stemware. You know, the cloth semi-padded boxes that you'd put crystal glasses in? Or possibly the round ones for storing the good china?

I unpacked the last un-opened box last night, and found my grandmother's crystal neatly wrapped in paper. Since I don't exactly have a break-front for showing off my stemware, I figured that I should put it away safely until I need to make it appear for use. (So to everyone who helpfully suggested today that I should be putting the crystal on display instead of carefully storing it for use, bleh to you. I live as a bachelor in an apartment. I have nowhere to display the stuff.)

I think I hit all the likely suspects in town- Marshall Fields, JC Pennys, Herbergers (Saks Fifth Avenue/Younkers/Carson Pirie Scott depending on where you are), and Tuesday Morning. I even hit most of the unlikely places (usually from suggestions at the afore-mentioned places) Pier One, TJ Max, Kohl's, and a couple of home decorating places that also had crystal and china.

At two of these places, someone knew what I was talking about. It's not like I was asking in the Juniors Clothing department either- I figured everyone in the local variant on a houseware/gift registry/stemware department was fair game. Among the people who knew what I was looking for, they still didn't know where to get said box.

Pennys had them in their catalog last year, but not this year. Tuesday Morning had some a couple months back, but have none in current stock.

Have people stopped buying nice crystal and china for their homes? Maybe it's just this area of Minnesota. Sure the town's got a Krispy Kreme Donut Shop but that's obviously not a good measure of "looks and acts like a large city." C'mon- the local Best Buy closes at SIX O'CLOCK on weekends. And that's actually why I gave up the search. There were a few more (highly unlikely) places to check, but essentially everything in town closes at five or six on a weekend.

I'm sure I'll figure something out, and until then, grandmother's glasses will be sitting on the kitchen table, casting rainbows on the wall.

Rules of Girls. Rule J (also known as the Rule of Motive)

When a girl thinks you've done something nice, sweet, or chivalrous, NEVER explain to her why you really did it. Your explanation can in no way be as thoughtful, polite, cute, or well-intentioned as the reason she just dreamed up to explain your behavior.

For example:
You buy movie tickets for a female friend.
Her: "Aw gee, thanks! That was nice of you."
You: "No problem I [collect movie tickets, and if I get two at once, I end up with an entire ticket after they rip half off || wanted to break a $20 || wanted to get through the line quicker]."
Her: "Way to ruin the moment."
  • Current Music
    Freezepop - Science Genius Girl

[why] are we still looking through glass?

I was driving home through the neighborhood down by the tracks, and looking at broken windows on the enclosed front porches got me wondering why we still use glass.

Well, back up a bit- I was driving through a neighborhood that isn't in the greatest shape.. Most of the houses are pretty small- I'd guess twenty feet, square (estimating that the windows are all three feet wide, which may be generous, given their age) and kinda old. Many of them don't look like they've seen a fresh coat of paint in my lifetime. Being by the tracks, it's not the greatest neighborhood in town.

But I'm in Minnesota, so these old houses not only have front porches, but enclosed ones (probably adding another eight feet to the size of the house for some of them]. The porches are fronted with shoulder-to-shoulder windows to allow the maximum light to enter the porch area. Many of these windows have a pane or two of glass that look jaggedly broken, with a patch of dark clean hole, contrasting against the streaks from the airborne road salt-spray, and against the yellowish glint of a setting sun.

So this brings me back to my wondering. Why do we still use glass in windows like that? Why not something that won't shatter like glass does, like plexi-glass, lucite, or lexan? Sure, I can see that if the cost of a sheet of plexi-glass was high, that I wouldn't see it going into the windows down by the tracks as a proactive action, but even in new construction, I'm pretty sure that I'm still seeing sheets of glass go in. [and as a replacement for shattered panes and store-front display windows] Am I missing something here?

(no subject)

Yup, it's cold(er) again. So cold that I saw the following in a chat room today:

[guy from San Diego] It's freezing here today.. must be all of 50 degrees!
[guy from Minnesota] Lucky you! That's almost negative ten times as warm as it is here.

Apparently, when it gets really cold, you also need to be careful when opening your car door, because the plastic handles get very brittle. So, they shatter when you pull up on them to open the door...