Things that suck

When I moved in with rothko, we bought a vacuum cleaner. At the time we were living in a fully carpeted apartment in Malden, MA. Money was tight, so I did some research via Consumer Reports and bought a Sharp vacuum cleaner. Unfortunately, I overlooked one detail. While excellent on carpets, the vacuum cleaner was entirely unsuitable for hard wood floors. After a couple of years we moved into an apartment with wood floors, and the Sharp took up residency in the basement.

Flora and fauna

I just went to weigh myself, and a tiny gecko shot out from under the scales and crawled part way up the wall. I’ve managed to catch him and reunite him with his lizard friends on the back porch. I’d love to know how he made it upstairs. The squirrels have been leaving us alone since we came back from England. I wondered if they were sulking, but then I saw that the trees were all suddenly bearing black walnuts and live oak acorns.


I’ve had a stressful couple of weeks. At work, on the 1st we rolled out a brand new replacement I had built for a heavily-used database system. It’s now in use across the USA and Latin America to manage high profile events leading to multi-million-dollar business deals. Everything went fairly smoothly in the end, but still–stressful. Then last week I had a business trip to Chicago. My hours there were pretty much 100% filled; although the scheduled meetings ended early on the second day, I then had a server crash and some network problems to deal with, plus a new server build that I confirmed was OK just in time to get in a cab and dash to the airport.

Random thought

The Church of Scientology is probably the only place where you can take a personality test and fail.

You’ll believe chickens can fly

Look into the eyes of a chicken and you will see real stupidity.—Werner Herzog Next door’s chicken didn’t get the memo. Not only does it run from me when I try to catch it and return it to their yard, it has now taken to hiding under their car so I can’t get at it. It has also developed its flying skills to the point where it can fly over the fence and into our back yard.

Apparently it’s WTF week

Yesterday, a server died. Turned out it had bad RAM too. Today, someone deleted 100MB of files from an important database, and I had to do another restore on the System i. This afternoon, it was noticed that some config documents were mysteriously not restored by my previous efforts. After investigation, I discovered that someone had helpfully copy-protected a random assortment of configuration documents. I have no idea why.

Now on YouTube…

Experience how much Blu-ray sucks, without spending $1,000 to do so. And that’s after installing the mandatory firmware upgrade to reinforce the DRM.

Navel gazing

I rarely pay any attention to web stats for my personal site. I think the last time I checked was 2004. At that time, I was getting about 800 page views a day. I just checked again, and it’s now about 10× that, with a page-to-visitor ratio of about 1:2. It seems to have leaped up since I switched to WordPress, which suggests that either typo was more unreliable than I was aware of, or that WordPress is doing a better job of pinging aggregators, or quite likely both.

“It sucked. Can I have my £1m now?”

A couple of months ago, 15 UK troops were taken hostage in Iraq. They were eventually freed. Then I started seeing news stories about how everyone was furious because the troops were selling their personal stories to the highest bidder. Maybe I’ve been in the US too long, but I didn’t understand what people were upset about. I still don’t. Those troops went through a hideous ordeal. Why shouldn’t they be allowed to get money in return for telling people what it was like?

At the cutting edge of pedagogy

CNN: MURFREESBORO, Tennessee (AP) — Staff members of an elementary school staged a fictitious gun attack on students during a class trip, telling them it was not a drill as the children cried and hid under tables. The mock attack Thursday night was intended as a learning experience and lasted five minutes during the weeklong trip to a state park, said Scales Elementary School Assistant Principal Don Bartch, who led the trip.