Thursday, May 13, 2010


Ha ha. Almost forgot my 750 words. Since this is day 36 in a row, that would have been a shame. So let's see how quickly I can rip off some drivel. I would have never used that word if it weren't for Steve Martin's book "Pure Drivel" that I own a copy of. Very good. Thanks to my wife I also have an early copy of the "L.A. Story" script. Sadly, I'm not sure of its exact location at the moment. I suspect it's in a box at work. I should buy a safe to keep it in or something.

Yeah, today was a good day. I woke up just before 5 am and realized I wasn't going back to sleep. I probably could have gone downstairs, turned on Soundscapes and gone back to sleep, but Comcast has had a bad habit lately of putting those annoying tests of the Emergency Broadcast System in at really poor times. Usually it's when I'm just about to drift off to sleep on those rare nights where I end up sleeping downstairs because I'm having trouble sleeping in my own bed. Sometimes the fan is just too loud.

So, yeah, I decided I was just up. So I walked for an hour while responding to emails. I had been out yesterday, so it had piled up. And then I decided I needed a better system for being informed of upcoming meetings. So I wrote a little system that displays my schedule for the day. By the time I stopped messing with it, it was a two-column deal. The left column displays in really large numbers how many minutes it is to the next meeting. (After -3 minutes, then it flips over to the next one.) It also shows what meeting I'm currently in, if any. On the right side, it shows all of my future meetings for the day. It starts out in dark big font and then the font grows smaller and more faint for each additional meeting, a nice effect.

So when I got to work, I pulled out a spare laptop and put it up on that. But the stupid thing kept going to screensaver or to the lock screen where you have to enter your password. I tried a number of things, like hacking the registry and the group policy to no avail. I even tried downloading a program that would intercept the screensaver but it didn't work. Another program from that same company was supposed to simulate mouse movement so that the screensaver would never kick in, but it kept getting flagged as a virus and deleted. I did finally find another one that would randomly make the mouse move every few seconds so that the screensaver never kicked in.

And then I realized I ought to just put up all the stats screens I used to have running on a different computer that someone else took. It was a Mac so it didn't have the same screensaver/lock issues. So I resurrected those stats screens that keep track of the social media aspects of our site (who's sharing what, who's tweeting about us, the Reuters News Alert feed for natural disasters, the health of our ecommerce platform, etc,) and added my upcoming meeting schedule, so it appears every so often amongst the other stats.

Then I decided that was more suited to sit next to me where I could more easily see it. So I had to start cleaning off a shelf. It was a serious mouse/cookie thing going on. But I don't think it was really wasted time because I had done so much this morning and because there is value in it.

And my family came for lunch and we had salads that were tasty and healthy and I was responsible for feeding Ben and after a slow start, he suddenly became an eating machine and ate pretty much everything I gave him. A complete switch from yesterday.

The afternoon was good, too. The weather was awesome. I only got to experience a little bit of it during the drive to and from work, but it was so nice that even the views out windows at work and home were really nice. It was the kind of weather I enjoyed in the San Fernando Valley, those days where it was crisp and clear and the weather was in the 70s. We had that to some degree in the San Gabriel Valley, but it wasn't quite the same.

Tonight Lori had choir practice so I got them both ready for bed all by myself. We had a nice time. I helped Ben with his bath and then helped Rachel wash her hair. We played together, and after I read to them from the Bible, Rachel read us both another Bible story and then another story, though we kind of missed a lot of those because when she's reading aloud, she will drop down to a murmur after awhile when she gets really engrossed, and because I was tickling Ben so much I couldn't always hear her.

After putting her to bed, I let her read in bed for about 15 minutes. She's had problems going to bed and not getting up and reading books. Of course, she still kept doing that, we had hoped letting her read for a little bit would help her get it out of her system and help her to wind down. No luck.

I painted another coat on the shelves in the garage. I don't know how long we've had this stupid Ikea bookcase now, but one of these days, we'll be done painting it and we'll get it assembled and the family room painting finished. Dang... we've had that bookcase almost two years. We bought it at Ikea after Ben was born and before we went to Southern California. I remember that Tamara and Jesse also had that bookcase and Ben was only three months at the time. Problem was it came in black and white, in three massive boxes and they were mostly tied to the top of the car and Ikea was closing when we realized we had purchased the white one and wanted the black one, so Lori said we should just paint it. And that's taken forever only because I hadn't had much time to work on it. But we're probably two more coats away from being done. I'm pretty sure I still have all of the instructions and parts that will now be necessary to put together the thing. Ugh.

So, yeah, that's some good quality drivel, that is. One of these days I need to try writing in the morning like they suggest.
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