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WEEK 5 2007

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Saturday 3 February 2007

Saturday - it doesn't seem to have been malware last night, just some sort of weird process stuck running. I was trying to use the Canon software because the Olympus software always tries and fails to open an old directory upon starting. (That's new, Camedia Master is a simple but straightforward tool - I'll probably remove and re-install it). The Canon software, as I have mentioned in the past, has always been pretty awful.

My day: slept in, then went out to lunch with friends, hung out, and read a lot of Sci-Fi at home. Book #8 is The Green and the Gray, by Timothy Zahn. It was mildly interesting, in a "I'm too tired to go look for something better" sort of way. Zahn can do better, this was just a lame potboiler, much like his Star Wars books. Too bad, another decent author gone.

Somehow writing for a franchise just rots the brain. He was a decent writer once, towards the upper range of the Sci-Fi B-list, now at about mid to low C-list. So it goes.

I've arranged for a scuba dive service to clean the bottom of the boat. I was surprised last week to see the amount of grass on the bottom - I just had it painted and put back into the water in August. Apparently the modern anti-fouling paints...aren't. Maybe I'll sail to Mexico and get the good stuff. Copper, Arsenic, Zinc, the things that really work.

My brother came by and borrowed the Explorer - his truck has issues once again. Possibly the fuel pump?

The California Energy Blog. Synopsis: we're doomed in this state. But you knew that.

Friday 2 February 2007

Friday - The box of kitty litter bought the other day contains a trial bag of cat food pellets, and a tin of soft food. It's a stem-to-stern sort of operation, I guess, and I find it just a little weird. Hopefully there isn't any feline 'soylent green' sort of thing going on as well.

Dang, Sofia Sideshow is gone. Well, it looks like most blogs don't last too long. On the bright side, it looks as though Bulgaria has beaches. Who'd have thunk it? I should renew my passport.

Hmmm. Camedia is messed up, so I can't open images in it. I still have other tools, several, but something weird is going on here, 100% CPU utilization and such. Time to stop and scan for viruses and malware...


Thursday 1 February  2007

Thursday - I'm pretty tired, another long day. But the meetings are, mostly, wrapped up.

I tutored Algebra afterwards, for an hour or so. A nice full moon out, but it's getting cold again.

Book #7 was Six Frigates, by Ian Toll. Recommended. A well written, entertaining account of the beginnings (not always glorious) of the U.S. Navy. It covers ground I've seen before, Washington, Adams, Jefferson and Madison, and their fear of coups by a standing military, and the dislike of and inability to tax Americans to the extent needed to support a Navy. But, in fits and starts, the necessity for and the implementation of a real blue water force came to fruition. And it has some good accounts of naval battles.

I found myself getting angry over the Chesapeake-Leopard affair, which happened two hundred years ago thus June...

Wednesday 31 January 2007

Wednesday - another ten hour meeting on Ground Handling Equipment. Afterwards I 'repaired' to Black Angus with some friends, for a couple of beers. I think I earned them...

I got a joke from my sister:


Sally was driving home from one of her business trips in Northern
Arizona when she saw an elderly Navajo woman walking on the side of the

As the trip was a long and quiet one, she stopped the car and asked the
Navajo woman if she would like a ride. With a silent nod of thanks, the
woman got into the car.

Resuming the journey, Sally tried in vain to make a bit of small talk
with the woman. The old woman just sat silently, looking intently at
everything she saw, studying every little detail, until she noticed a
brown bag on the seat next to Sally. "What in bag?" asked the old woman.

Sally looked down at the brown bag and said, "It's a bottle of wine. I
got it for my husband."

The Navajo woman was silent for another moment or two. Then speaking
with the quiet wisdom of an elder, she said: "Good trade..."

I'm sure there are versions where it's a guy driving along. But it reminds me of another joke I heard recently-

A man walks into an auto parts store and asks: "Can I get a carburetor for my Yugo?"

The clerk ponders for a minute, then says "If you throw in some cash, too".

Tuesday 30 January 2007

Tuesday - went to a ten hour meeting on Ground Handling Equipment. It's about as exciting as it sounds. Though, really, it was sort of interesting - the logistical challenges of getting hundreds of people, and pieces of specialized equipment, from multiple sites across the country to work in unison , is tough. One of the meeting organizers', in particular, had a knack for getting people back onto the right track when they would drift off - which was pretty often. My part in the meeting was about two minutes of talking...

 Monday 29 January 2007

Monday - back to work. Went to meetings, worked on stuff. Not a lot to say about that...

Book #6 was Dykstra's War, by Jeffery Kooistra. Eh. Kind of a typical sci-fi potboiler, but an easy read during a rainy night on a boat :-) But there was an interesting spin on Fermi's Paradox, involving some of B.F. Skinner's ideas.

Has there ever been a mutiny's on American Ship?. The article doesn't mention the American Exploring Expedition, as Rand Simberg points out.

Sunday 28 January 2006

Sunday - I stayed Saturday night at tdhe boat - it was reasonably dry and tight, and I used the little electric heater kept it warm, turning it on once or twice during the night. I was afraid my neighbor might hang around and play his music, but he left early and I was able to go to sleep listening to nothing but the pitter patter of rain on the cabin top.

I heard someone trying to berth - approaching, revving his motor, moving away. These are familiar sounds to me - it's what I end up doing when attempting to berth, so I went down the dock and helped a solo sailor berth his full keel boat. We talked for a bit. John has been sailing out of Oxnard for years - he had some good pointers about the winds and tides hereabouts. The major suggestion being to avoid being just offshore at 4 or 5 pm, as the winds down canyon and heading offshore can be rather boisterous!

Picture of the Week
balloon going overhead

Photo Notes: A hot air balloon, passing over me.

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