2:22 PM Tuesday, January 2, 2007
As planned, just couch time on Friday night. Actually, don't remember too much from Friday night. I think Tracy made dinner, or we had leftovers more likely. Then TV until early bedtime cause she had to work the weekend. Saturday went running again, exercising, until a noon shower with a step out for a gyro special while watching Veronica Mars. Good stuff. I definitely liked how they wrapped up the first mystery in the first 9 episodes. Although how are they going to break down 2 more mysteries in the remaining 11 episodes? Sunday watched some Eureka finally, and that's some good stuff. Oh, I plugged the MacBook into my old Cinema Display, and it wasn't that good. Could definitely see some blocks going on. I'm hoping the iTV will be much better. Oh, Tracy also got her mitts on a couple Bears tickets for Sunday night, so instead of me making her a fancy New Years Eve dinner, she took me to a Bears game. I'm getting married to the best girl ever. That was fun, even though the game was pretty horrible. Even though it didn't matter to the Bears at all, I assume ending the regular season like that doesn't feel good. Not sure if the 2 week layoff is gonna help them. Not that I really know. Also great was watching the game. Fun to see plays develop, and actually seeing the entire field, rather than the front 7. Very cool. Rang in the new year on the couch, since Tracy had been up since 5am. Monday headed out to Auntie Luz's for lunch, doing some last minute holiday shopping before hand. Did some asian grocery shopping at Mitsuwa, which is always fun. No idea some of the stuff we picked up. We dropped by RWIP to pick up Tracy's scarf from the PJ Party, and heard a bit about the casual ultimate party we missed. Ended up getting dinner at Cozy's Noodles & Rice in Wrigleyville. Good cheap stuff. But we sat next to some, I think Northwestern Students, Tracy thought high school. But some of the usual young'un banter. But then they started talking about the iPod, and why can't other companies do the same thing. I wanted to chime in, but I just continued eavesdropping. On the way home I told Tracy about it, and she also had no idea someone's trying to do the iPod. At which point I laughed, because Microsoft is obviously flopping with the Zune. Seriously. College kids had no idea. Mid twenty something professional with spendable income, no idea. And that makes me laugh. Microsoft is definitely doing something wrong.
2:16 PM Wednesday, January 3, 2007
Married life can't be all bad, can it? Came home from work yesterday to a nice home cooked meal made by my fianc´e; Korean BBQ beef, rice, kim chee, seaweed salad, peas in a sour cream/white wine sauce. Good stuff. More couch time, and while the TV was on, most of the time was spent going through wedding stuff. I tried to get more info into Address Book and iCal, setting reminders for payment dates and meeting setups. Still, 129 days or so and counting. Little over 4 months. Yes, it's starting to stress me out a little bit. Anyway, I'm still surprised a little at the lack of traffic in the mornings. I figured we'd be back up to rush hour going down Lake Shore, but that hasn't been the case yet. Probably be back to usual next week. Oh, and on book VI of the Wild Cards series, soon to be moving on, and I wonder what my limit's gonna be this time, or if I'll make it all the way to XI or XII, whatever the last one was. Might watch some more Eureka tonight.
12:53 PM Thursday, January 4, 2007
More of the same last night. Kind of getting repetitive. I'm sure things will pick up eventually. Watched a couple more episodes of Eureka. Had some more food cooked by Tracy before she left for work yesterday. That's always nice. Did some dishes, finished off VI and moved on to VII. Tonight starting up Dancing for Every Occasion II. It's an odd time, 8pm. I think it's too early to try and get a full dinner before hand, and by the time we get out at 9pm it's too late to eat a full dinner afterwards, so I'm not sure what we'll be doing. Maybe some tapas, some hors d'oeuvres, somewhere. Not too filling cause we want to be light on our feet. Invitation ordering needs to happen today or tomorrow. Tomorrow night should be headed up to check out Smoque, a new BBQ place up by RWIP.
12:22 PM Friday, January 5, 2007
Dance class was fun last night. Learned more Waltz. Good stuff. Small class, better instruction. Actually got some frame instruction. Only in the 9th week of class. Finally. Got some grub before hand at the Green Door Tavern just down the street. Then after we got home, Tracy and I worked on invitation wording. I'm sending out the order today, should get proofs next week. Headed out to RWIP tonight for some chilling and dinner at Smoque, some BBQ place up there. Tomorrow meeting with the event planner at the Bolingbrook Golf Club, then probably getting wedding bands, and dinner with Mina and Carl and the gang that night. Sunday starting to register, probably at Macy's. So yeah, lots planned. Hopefully it all gets done, and we make more progress toward the big day. Something like 128 days left.
12:20 PM Monday, January 8, 2007
Friday night headed up on the Metra to RWIP for some BBQ at Smoque. Because of the recent review, it was packed, so we got carry-out, or take-away, instead. Awesome stuff, but they got slammed, being only open for 3 weeks, favorable online review, and they run out of fries at 8pm. Worth it though. Really good. Also Bryan popped in Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby, so I finally got to see that. Good stuff. Saturday headed out to Bolingbrook Golf Club for an event planning meeting, which went well. We also checked out a couple hotels afterwards. We made it back in time for dinner with the gang at Kuma's Corner, which is the new Darwin's. Really good stuff there, too. Too bad it's not walking distance to anybody's place. Good to see Mina and Carl too. Sunday, finally started registering at Macy's. That was fun. But surprisingly a lot of work. Next up, Crate & Barrel and Williams-Sonoma. Tracy had a craving for Indian food, so I found a delivery place on GrubHub, forgot the name, but it was alright.
8:32 AM Tuesday, January 9, 2007
First off, condolences to Sarah, who has to deal with Russell after that shellacking Florida laid down on the Buckeyes. Seriously, even when not watching in HD, that was just inspiring. Someone came to play, and someone else didn't. I know no one wants to blame the 51 days between games for OSU, but I do. Seriously? 51 days? Almost 2 months? How much did Florida get? 30 days? Does 3 weeks really make that much of a difference? I'd say yes. Seriously, 7 weeks without playing a game. I don't understand how anyone could be game ready, never mind championship game ready after that long off. They should have played their own playoff series in the meantime. And yes, this is me talking sports. So besides watching bits and pieces of that last night over a Coke and Tombstone, I did 6 loads of laundry, since the laundry room was surprisingly, or maybe not so surprisingly, empty. And, of course, the big news for today is the Macworld San Francisco 2007 Keynote. That starts at 11am CST. Should be interesting.
8:21 PM Tuesday, January 9, 2007
So, got home from work, walked over to the bullitin board by the elevators, and there's a cable update notice posted. Awesome. Some guys are there talking about it. Guess what? That's right, the condo association has decided that our new provider, Inncom Cable, is in breach of contract, failing to live up to their part of the bargain, not providing quality service. So now what? We're getting a new provider, which they haven't figured out yet. Awesome. It would be really really funny if it ended up being RCN. But I'm hoping that it'll be Comcast, because I read today how Comcast is rolling out Tivo on their DVR boxes. That, would be awesome. But then again, maybe it's just another provider using DISH Network. Who knows. But it's been since September since I've had HD, DVR, or digital cable. And I would have gone for the full package, every single HD channel available. But no. Maybe the next provider. Sweet. Anyway, the TV's off, so I'm watching the iPhone introduction. Wish I could have been there. Must have been surreal to be in that audience. And yes, I want one.
2:20 PM Wednesday, January 10, 2007
So, do I get one? Do I wait? Of course I wait. And of course I'm talking about the iPhone. As of now, I'll be getting one, but not until November, when Tracy's contract is up with Cingular, and we can reup as a married couple, you know with all the good things that provides. But June seems like it's gonna be a big month for Apple. Good things for Apple stock as well, as it keeps going up, instead of the traditional drop off after Macworld keynotes. Surprising, and pleasantly so. The 100 or so I bought in December 2003 for $10.50 a pop is approaching 800% increase in value. That's awesome. Almost makes up for the Palm, Sony, and Krispy Kreme debacles. The Apple TV order went in yesterday. That should be a good birthday present to myself.
12:18 PM Thursday, January 11, 2007
Well, I'm back to HD. Sort of. A while back I picked up my old OTA HDTV Reciever from Akira, and finally yesterday picked up the old Square Shooter Antenna from Bjorn. Which means I'm back to watching HD, but having to move the antenna when I change the channel, unless I figure out the magical antenna placement to get it to work for all channels. No DVR still. But at least it's HD. That's something, right? Wanted to do some modding on Tracy's RIZR last night, but didn't have one of those USB to mini USB A/B, not sure what kind of plug, cables. Apparently there's a huge community for modding of Motorola phones. Basically, the only thing she needs is the calendar to start on Sunday instead of Monday. A setting I have on my cell phone, but not on hers. I would have wanted to do this Looptopia thing, but bad timing, it happens the night before my wedding. So that's probably a bad idea. More dance class tonight, learning some more of the rumba tonight. Should be fun as usual. We're meeting at Zocalo before hand.
12:51 PM Friday, January 12, 2007
Appetizers at Zocalo were guacamole and a Mexican carpaccio and a margarita. Good stuff. It's nice having small meals like that instead of a huge one later. Dance class was fun, again. It really is a pretty good class. Definitely enjoying it. Learned more of the Rumba. I like that one. Lots of good spin action going on. Lots of good latin spin action, some whipping around of the ladies. Good times. Foxtrot next week. Fun stuff. Really fun. My ghetto HD setup is more annoying than working. I did realize if I got a decent antenna, and after I get my Apple TV, I can set up a machine with my Eye TV 500 to record and auto transcode TV shows for use on the Apple TV. Which means I won't have to get cable ever again. Unless I want to watch Entourage. Interesting. Very interesting. Lisa and Ryan are in town this weekend, actually right this minute. Supposed to go dancing tonight at Club 720, lunch out in Minooka at Lisa's mom's place. Probably staying out at Tracy's, then lunch at Cebu with the parents, both sets, for some rehearsal dinner scouting. Also, got proofs for invites from Tag & Company, provided some feedback and comments. So, as always, making progress. Something like 120 days left.
2:17 PM Monday, January 15, 2007
Friday night on the couch. Lisa and Ryan didn't end up coming in, and Tracy and I were pretty tired, so just sleeping. Saturday visited with my parents for a little bit before heading out to Minooka for Ryan's birthday party/get together with some south siders. Played some Celebrities, fun as always. Stayed out at Tracy's cause on Sunday, after church, went to Cebu with both sets of parents, to discuss rehearsal dinner plans. That went well, and we've found someone to cater. Watched the Bears squeak out a win, did some quick shopping after realizing the ring place wasn't open on Sundays, and then ended up heading over to Espy and Jesse's to hang out with Lisa and Ryan some more. Ended up watching Snatch which was pretty good, over pizza. Biggest news was finding out about Jesse's biggest loser bet amongst his coworkers, and the Master Cleanse detox/diet program. I know it doesn't sound healthy, but at the same time, it sounds intriguing. I'm planning on trying it next week. So that should be, well, interesting. Except that I'm actually feeling a little sick right now, like real sick, not the fake sick I keep mentioning over and over again. This one might feel like a head cold. But again, we'll see.
1:41 PM Tuesday, January 16, 2007
Hey, go figure, it's winter. Thought the snow would have made it difficult or impossible to get out to Tracy's last night, but that wasn't the case at all. Probably because it was Martin Luther King Day, so less cars, and I didn't leave until 6:15 or so. But about 45 minutes, as usual, to get out there. I was smart enough to bring clothes though, so instead of driving back in then out last night and tonight, I just hopped on a train this morning, and will hop on one back out tonight. Super easy. There even was a nice little stand selling coffee and muffins and stuff at the Orland Park 153rd stop. Watched How I Met Your Mother and The Office last night off the DVR. Tracy had bought some pierogi, which were awesome. Much better than the last ones I had. Actual flavor. Tonight we're supposed to get some crab at Joe's Crab Shack. Looking forward to that. Got some rooms blocked out for the wedding, and a room found for the rehearsal dinner. Still looking for a florist.
11:28 AM Wednesday, January 17, 2007
I love taking the train to and from Tracy's. It's so easy. Granted, there aren't a whole lot of trains that run to Lemont, only 3 inbound in the morning, and 3 outbound at night, but there's more that run to Orland Park. It's so much nicer than driving, because I'm sitting there reading a book instead of getting frustrated by traffic and why slow drivers keep driving in the left lane when no one is in the middle lane. You know, things like that. Anyway, we had a craving for crab legs, so the Argaos picked me up from the train station and we headed out to Bolingbrook to Joe's Crab Shack, except, when we got there, the restaurant was dark. But there was a Red Lobster across the street, so we got our fix. Back at their place, Tracy and I provided some final comments on the invitation proofs. Hopefully we'll get that order in and finalized soon. Only 114 days or so. Got my deep scale cleaning tomorrow morning. Hoping that goes well. Oh, and started using my inversion boots for upside down sit-ups again. Totally works the upper abs and stuff.
4:15 PM Friday, January 19, 2007
Nothing too interesting from Wednesday night. Just frozen pizza for dinner, and couch time. But then Thursday morning I had my dentist appointment for a deep scale cleaning. 8am. That's no problem. IV Sedation. Ok. I get stuck, the next thing I know, it's 11:30, and I'm in bed. I have absolutely no recollection of getting out of the chair after the procedure, nothing about making a followup appointment a month later, which I actually have in my phone, or the walk back to my place. I only know this stuff because Tracy was there to get me back. Seriously, a completely blackout. I have no memories at all for those 3 hours or so. It's so crazy. I've never had that happen before. It's really really scary. Anyway, I've been battling headaches since the procedure, which I think it due to the anesthesia. Or my glasses, I can't tell. So I was in and out of bed all day yesterday, but we did go to dance class and learn more Foxtrot. And we grabbed dessert at Scoozi's. Still battled headaches today, so didn't go in to work, and did some computer stuff at home. Invites got ordered. And had spam and eggs for breakfast. Headed out to dinner at Adesso tonight and going out to Woodstock this weekend. Should be back in time for Bears watching at the Russells on Sunday.
12:34 PM Monday, January 22, 2007
So I'm not sure if my residual headaches from Thursday and Friday were from the sedation or the overly dry air in the condo. The headaches went away by Saturday, and I was away from my place until Sunday night, when, upon sitting back on the couch, I almost immediately got a headache again. I figured it might be something in the air, or, in this case, something not in the air, so I dug out the old big humidifiers and started one up in the living room. Almost immediate relief. Amazing. So I looked today for this thing to add humidity, but through plants, and came across the Living Wall System by ELT. That sounds pretty cool. And it might even be possible to automate the system, with alerts for low water levels, watering tank, and irrigation system. We'll have to see what the future wife has to say about it though. Saturday out in Woodstock was nice and relaxing. Quiet. Dropped off Aluminum for my mom to bring to the Philippines for my cousins. Hopefully they'll have a fast enough internet connection to some video iChatting. Mass, and dinner from Chop Suey Hut. Organized some more for the guest list for the wedding, got all the addresses from my mom. Sunday, chilled before heading back in to watch the Bears at the Russells. That was fun. Especially watching with the brothers. Love the fact that all the iPass lanes are done on my commute, which makes getting out to Woodstock and back super easy and fast.
2:18 PM Tuesday, January 23, 2007
Made dinner last night for Tracy, a Hash of the Chicken Variety, which was pretty good. Followed that up with store bought ready to back turtle cookies. I've been on a caramel craving, so besides the cookies, I bought some caramel brownie Haagen-Daz, even though it's the half fat version. I never buy the half fat anything. Tracy wasn't too enthusiastic about the living wall idea, which is too bad. Hopefully I can slowly bend her to my will. I just really like the idea of a living wall. It's cool. Tonight we're supposed to go to a movie, I think we're going to see The Queen, prefaced with dinner at Fox & Obel. I also think I'm going to start weaning myself off caffeine. That's gonna be hard cause I like coffee so much. Maybe just off the every morning cup of coffee to get going.
3:35 PM Wednesday, January 24, 2007
I forget how good films can be sometimes. And then I go and see The Queen. It's about Queen Elizabeth II and Tony Blair and the dealing with Princess Diana's death. Of course it's a movie, but just not sure how much of it was fictionalized. But either way. It's a good movie. Not oh my god that was so good I need to get all my friends to drop what they're doing to go see it, but a good movie. And there were a couple good previews before that I'm kind of looking forward to: Reign Over Me and The Namesake. The first is Adam Sandler getting serious again, but with Don Cheadle, but it looks good. Engrossing. And heart wrenching. The second looks fabulous, with Kumar, or, Kal Penn. It's by the same gal who directed Monsoon Wedding which I need to show to Tracy. And, another reason why I'm marrying the best girl, after a preview for Spider-Man 3 finished, she said we had to see it before our wedding. That's awesome. Maybe like a nice afternoon matinee, say, after the ceremony and before the reception? Or a couple days before more likely. Also a side note: who decided that a Spider-Man 3 trailer belongs in front of The Queen?
11:58 AM Thursday, January 25, 2007
Does it really count as social if you have an account with no friends? Relatively randomly logged into my Facebook account. I had no idea of the people that I know that are on there. Which is interesting, because some of the people I found weren't in school when Facebook started up. I just snuck on because I used an alumni email account, back when it was limited to school only users. Anyway, just interesting to see. Just too bad it doesn't go back to high school. Not too much going on. Watched an episode of Eureka again last night. Decided to buy Shopgirl when I noticed that it dropped to the magic $9.99 price point. Found out that when Apple says shipping in February, they barely mean shipping in February, as my Apple Store account lists my Apple TV as shipping on February 28. Which sucks. Made a reservation at Allen's - The New American Cafe for tonight before dance class, where we learn more about whatever swing dance we learned in the previous class. Also realized I should probably start working on that Wedding website thing. 107 days or so.
1:55 PM Friday, January 26, 2007
Pre dance class dinner at Allen's - The New American Cafe was good, but we ate too much. Place was too nice for just appetizers, so we ended up eating a full meal, which wasn't a good idea since we were learning East Coast Swing at class last night. Food was good, pretty fancy, used game meats mostly, I had the rabbit and Tracy had the duck. Next week we'll kick it old school with drinks and apps at Green Door Tavern instead. Much more low key. Class itself was pretty hard, especially since when we learned it in the Dancing for Every Occasion I, it was the night of the huge turnout, so we didn't really learn that much. And, I just don't really like East Coast Swing all that much. Go figure. I need to do some laundry tonight, before they get around to replacing the machines in my building, and I've got to remember to go to a meeting next Wednesday when they discuss the new internet provider, which will be onShore. They're supposedly sticking with DBS for cable service, not sure which provider, DirecTV or Dish Networks, and frankly, just don't care anymore. I did, however, sneak in another purchase before I get married for another gizmo, a new HDTV tuner set top box, which has the 5th generation tuner chip from LG I think, which should help me receive OTA HDTV signals. We'll see about that. Only got 106 days or so to keep buying my toys until the clamp comes down on my spending. And just looked up more info on onShore, and it looks like they provide DirecTV service as well. Awesome. Tomorrow going to PreCana at St. Monica. Dinner at Kuma's Corner. More registering on Sunday, and somewhere I need to squeeze in some Wedding web work.
12:39 PM Monday, January 29, 2007
Ok, so I didn't do laundry Friday night. Oh well. Threw together spaghetti for dinner. Watched another episode of Eureka. Finally getting into the episodes that I haven't seen yet. Saturday Tracy and I went up to St. Monica for PreCana. It's pretty much a one day couples counseling session for 50 couples. Not as bad as I thought it could be, and a little helpful. We made it back to my place for a nice nap before heading out to Kuma's Corner for dinner. I went with the mac & cheese, which was good, and Tracy went for their burger. I'm a little disappointed that they switched to an almost all burger menu, but I haven't had one yet, so I'll go back. Sunday, we did some registering at Crate & Barrel, some light shopping, trying to find me something to wear with my wool charcoal gray pants. Ended up buying 3 sweaters, all varying shades of gray, which of course were all on sale. A couple from J.Crew and one from Macy's, where I also picked up a flannel PJ set, for $7. Then we headed over, via bus and El, to Hot Chocolate for dinner. They do have a good dinner, and the desserts and hot cocoa was delish as usual. Then I helped pin Tracy's pants to get hemmed. Exciting weekend. I might have figured out what to do after we get married in terms of the Daily Dose: discontinue it but keep the Memex, and use that to power the main page, much like Wikipedia, with story of the day, what happened on this date, stuff like that. Of course, in the meantime, I'll keep posting, and then I'd have to figure out how to get my old Daily Dose posts into the Memex Daily Entry formats.
11:55 AM Tuesday, January 30, 2007
Just keep piling up the laundry. It'll get done eventually. Hopefully. Felt pretty out of it last night so just more couch time, watched some more Eureka, ate some leftovers, some chicken soup and PB&J. I did finally start working on the wedding website, based off the invitations. So at least that was something a little productive. Approaching that magic 100 days left mark. Which I guess isn't that magical, since we don't like decimal systems. Going to see Stomp the Yard tonight with Russell, 7:10pm, $5 movie night, City North, where I said I wouldn't see movies anymore, but why not. Tomorrow night there's a meeting in my building about the new internet provider. Hopefully I can get a static IP at home so I'll always have access to my email, and not necessarily through Gmail. However, sometimes it is just easier to look things up via Gmail, and the easy access to tracking numbers is awesome.
1:59 PM Wednesday, January 31, 2007
Drumline. You Got Served. I'm sure there's a couple others, any number of other movies that could get mixed in there, but throw those in a blender, or cut out all the plots, see how they all overlap, and turn it into a movie, and you get Stomp the Yard. And even though I've seen it lots of times, the same story, or parts of the story, it's still good. Still well done. Still actually made me want to dance. It was great seeing at City North. People were clapping and cheering at the end. Definitely added to the experience. After getting home, finished off Eureka. Looking forward to the next season. And, finally did laundry. 4 loads this time. Happy to get that out of the way. Of course, I traded that for exercising, since that got me an extra hour of sleep.
12:08 PM Thursday, February 1, 2007
So I found out last night, well, the only important thing is that I'll be using DSL to get online after February 12, instead of using a cable modem, like I had been using for the last 7 1/2 years I've been living there. That's the only real valuable information I got out of the meeting last night at my building for the introduction of OnShore as our new internet provider. Other things I learned that aren't important: certain assumptions and stereotypes I might have about the residents of my building are, in fact, true. So there's some basis for that. But it's not everyone. Out of ~700 units, only 180 were signed up with INNCOM, but I have no idea how many were signed up with RCN before they got the plug pulled. Supposedly we're still going with Dish Network, which will probably get rolled out on February 15. Oh, and INNCOM had horrible customer support, which I only called once to ask about upgrading my service and never heard back from them. And it would take a million dollars to rewire the building, which should get done at some point. I'm not worried. I'll still have internet access, that shouldn't get interrupted. It'll still be broadband. I probably won't notice a speed difference. But I should be able to connect to my home computer again. That'll be good to have. Otherwise, dinner was good, some frozen giant crab legs, baked potatoes, and asparagus. Tracy also picked up some chocolate covered sunflower seeds in a candy shell, like M&Ms, but sunflower seeds. Those are addicting. More dance class tonight, learning I think more Salsa.
11:13 AM Friday, February 2, 2007
So I'm really getting married. Wanna know how I'm sure of it now? We got the invitations yesterday from Tag & Company. Great place, by the way, if anyone's looking. But opened them up, they look great, and somehow, it's completely and totally official. I guess it's the first, in my hands, this is really happening, type of moment. I mean, it's physical proof, besides the engagement ring, and the fiancée. I was actually thinking about doing that whole unboxing thing, but didn't want to put everything back in. Anyway, really means I need to get the website completed. Besides that, had more apps at Green Door Tavern before learning more Salsa at dance class. Always fun. Finally got my new HDTV OTA box, a Samsung DTB-H260F High Definition Terrestrial Tuner. Plugged it in this morning, and guess what? I get everything except WBBM. Awesome. Anyway, it totally took care of any multipath issues I had. And I'm now a little less inclined to get every HD channel under the sun when Dish Network finally gets offered in my building. Oh, and also getting my Dad Akira's old TV for the upstairs condo. Figure that's a good way to upgrade without trying to figure out what new TV to get.
1:15 PM Monday, February 5, 2007
Yes, that's with a capital C. Friday night was a surprise going away party for Kevin, who'll be venturing back to the homeland in a couple of weeks. Had a little too much to drink, so slept well that night. A little hungover the next day. All we did was some more registering, this time at Williams-Sonoma. Tried making my fancy dinner for Tracy, since our dating anniversary, which I assume will fall by the wayside after we get married, was on Friday. The Beef Wellington was pretty good, the zucchini stuffed tomatoes were a little bland, and the chocolate souffles, well, those were spectacular as usual. We got caught up watching The Ron Clark Story, about some teacher in Harlem, which we couldn't just record because we didn't have a DVR, so we had to stay up to watch it. Sunday we watched The Debut, a cute Filipino-American movie, starring Rufio from Hook. Then we braved the Cold and headed over the Bryan's to watch the Super Bowl and see the Bears lose. Ugly game. Commercials weren't that entertaining either. Chili was good. Decided to do some computer work since it didn't seem like the Bears were coming back in the second half. Found out I can't VPN in to work at home, but have no issues at places with real internet connections. Thankfully that'll be changing soon with InnCom's exit and OnShore's arrival. Also started really doing some work on the Wedding website. Got the graphics down finally, and just have to work on the CSS] layout and stuff.
1:26 PM Tuesday, February 6, 2007
Snowing, but that's better than absolutely bitter cold. At least my face doesn't feel like it's gonna fall off after walking outside, and snow is kind of pretty. Couldn't really watch TV last night, so spent the night in the data center instead. A little more work on the Wedding website, getting colors down, found and bought the fonts used for the invitation, so that might help with addressing as well as the website. We're supposed to go get wedding bands today, but with the snowfall, it's looking questionable to drive out there tonight. Rummaged for dinner last night, dragging out a chicken breast from the freezer, some spaghetti, some sauce, and some herbs. Quick and easy. The sauce makes it good. I've got to remember to put it into the Memex. 94 days.
2:49 PM Wednesday, February 7, 2007
So this Wedding website is a little annoying. I'm not a web designer. I'm fudge around CSS trying to get things to look and work right, paying no heed to standards, how it might look in a browser other than Firefox or Safari. Don't care about Windows users, don't really think about anyone using a screen resolution lower than 1024x768. I probably should. And probably shouldn't use images for text in the menu. But I do, and it looks alright. Still working on it though. Need to add actual content now. Oh, and I also need make a theme for the Gallery so I can use that with the wedding website. Although I'm not sure if I want to add another installation, or embed it if possible. Not sure yet. Anyway, I did the work on that last night because I didn't drive out to Tracy's as I had planned because I hadn't planned and looked at the forecast. When Traffic.com says it takes 2 1/2 hours to drive what normally takes 1 hour, well, you cut your losses. But, headed out tonight.
3:08 PM Thursday, February 8, 2007
So we were supposed to go get wedding bands last night, but the James & Sons in Orland Park was closed when we got there. The whole strip mall it's located in was closed, I'm guessing due to some utilities problem, I didn't stop to read the signs on the doors. Instead we hopped on over across the street to Jared. They weren't very friendly. Not like at James & Sons. So Tracy did some looking and some trying, but it's a little difficult when she didn't have her engagement ring on her. Then we had dinner at Ruby Tuesday's. On the way out, Tracy commented that we're like an old married couple, especially one in the 'burbs, having dinner at Ruby Tuesday's in the mall on a weekday night. Anyway, we wandered over to Williams-Sonoma and learned a bit about the Japanese knives. Good to actually handle some to get some ideas on size and style. Back at Tracy's, I tried out Gallery for a possible overkill for the Wedding website. Headed back in and dropped something of for her brother. Tonight learning more Tango, not sure yet where we're having apps. Probably stuffing invites this weekend. Hopefully we'll get those out next week.
4:51 PM Friday, February 9, 2007
Apps at Green Door Tavern last night. Apparently it's the place to go before dance class, as we saw 2 other couples there who left for the 7pm class. What's funny is that one of the couples waved to us, well, to Tracy anyway, as they were leaving, like they knew us. We had no idea. Possibly from dance class, cause Tracy thought the guy looked familiar, and I vaguely thought the girl looked familiar, which makes sense in a dance class. But it bugged Tracy until we showed up for our 8pm class, and they were dancing away. And then I remembered they missed the 7pm class for something, and jumped into our class instead. And apparently from the one class they remembered us. Weird. Besides that, I got Tracy a new jewelry holder thingie made out of a Manzanita. It's pretty cool. She also brought over a bunch of pictures to use for our photo montage, which I guess we're doing. I've got an eye appointment tomorrow, and I'll be asking about Lasik. Probably headed out to Woodstock to see my parents, and my mom freshly back from the Philippines, which is only ~$800 round trip via Cathay Pacific if booked in February. Just throwing that out there.
1:15 PM Monday, February 12, 2007
After a weekend working on it, I finally got the wedding website up and running. Of course, let me know of any typos, poorly displaying content, and include OS and browser version info. And I hate Internet Explorer 7. Anyway, to get the full experience use Firefox. And now I know what I would hate being a web designer, because of all the different quirks dealing with IE. Seriously. Frustrating. You also might have had issues up till lunch today, as I tweaked it a little bit. But that pretty much summed up my weekend. Friday night Tracy made dinner and we watched Strictly Ballroom. Saturday would have worked out, but the gym was absolutely packed at 10am, so I skipped out. After my eye appointment, (I'm in good shape for getting LASIK), I went on home to Woodstock to visit my ailing mother. She picked up some GI bug on the way back from the Philippines, so I kept her company on the couch while working on the website. So that was that till Sunday night when I beat the snow home to Chicago. My mom's better, started cleaning and doing the bills. We got Pizza Hut for dinner, I picked up a Whopper for lunch on the way home, went to the teen mass at St. Mary, figured out some more wedding details. We're now under 3 months, at around 89 days. Invitations will go out end of this week. That's a promise. It's more of an issue because we never got around to sending Save the Dates. I'm getting DSL this evening. Which will be nice. Also means for 3 days I will have 2 separate broadband internet connections. No idea what to use those for.
2:15 PM Tuesday, February 13, 2007
Good news, bad news. Got OnShore DSL installed yesterday, but that allows me to VPN to work again. Found out the building is switching back to RCN for cable services. That's awesome. 5-6 months ago we switched away from RCN, gave up my perfectly working HD DVR for the promise of something that never materialized. Now, probably in a couple weeks, I'll be going back to RCN's HD DVR. Maybe they've got new boxes available. That would be nice. Doesn't look like it though. Oh well. Maybe I should splurge and get a TiVo Series 3 and some cable cards? Who knows. Whatever. Figured out how to print addresses on invitation envelopes. So that's closer to happening. Probably start printing out envelopes tonight. Oh, and the weather's pretty bad. Took me a long time to get to work this morning via the bus, so I'll probably hop on the El to get home, and hope it's doing ok.
3:04 PM Wednesday, February 14, 2007
Makes me crave Dairy Queen. Tracy made fajitas for dinner last night. Pretty good. We retired to the couch to watch Gilmore Girls and House in HD with the new OTA STB. So much nicer than analog cable. When I got home after work there were a bunch of RCN vans near the receiving room. Probably just putting back into place all the stuff they took out 6 months ago. Also I wonder if they will provide internet access again to the building, and what that mean for OnShore. Maybe I'll go with 2 connections. I was getting 3Mbps down consistently with the DSL. Only 500Kbps up though. Fixed some content issues on the Wedding website (typos, added story, grammatical stuff). Thinking about custom postage, but no time for the invites, but probably for the thank you cards.
1:35 PM Thursday, February 15, 2007
Seriously. Came home from work last night, saw that RCN had reps in the common room, walked in, 15 minutes later was signed up for everything I was signed up for in September with a promise of install by 8pm that night. Of course, that didn't happen, and I'm supposed to get it installed on Saturday, but seriously, getting cable and internet is supposed to be that easy. So yes, DVR, HD, movie channel goodness is returning. So more movie reviews, TV reviews, more time on the couch. Yay. In the meantime, I really figured out how to print envelopes on the computer, which involved setting the width to the height and the height to the width and changing the orientation to get it printing correctly. I also added print media CSS to the Wedding website, so when printing it out, it should look decent.
1:30 PM Friday, February 16, 2007
Dropped by the Paper Source on Armitage looking for paper to insert directions, since we didn't get direction cards made by Tag & Company, and thinking maybe we should have. Also, we're pretty contemporary with our invites, in that we went with single envelopes, instead of the more traditional double. And yes, I'm using a laser printer for the labels, instead of hand writing or hiring a calligrapher to write them out. Don't worry, it'll still look nice, but definitely not traditional. Oh well. So after Tracy and I didn't find any paper we liked, we moved on to pre dance dinner at Sai. But first we stopped in at Vosges Haut-Chocolat. Wow. I've been meaning to get to one of their stores for a while, but never got around to it. Wow. We like Ethel's Chocolate Lounge, but compared to Vosges, it's like a department store. Wow. So we picked up a couple pieces, and tried some samples. Wow. Moving on. Sai was great, as always. I think it was my first time in the middle room since they redecorated, which probably goes to show how long it's been since we've gone, but seems trendier. Good thing the food is as good as it is. We learned Samba at dance class. Good stuff. Fun. And when we got home I plugged the Samsung STB into the cable outlet, because with RCN pumping signals again, I could use the Samsung to tune some channels until the RCN DVR box comes. So I weeded through the found channels and set up the broadcast networks, and the one movie channel that gets through. It's awesome. So much better than standard definition. Dropped off Puck for an oil change this morning, got a haircut during lunch. Got my follow-up dentist appointment tomorrow, and dinner at Tru for my 30th that night. Meeting the parents on Sunday to buy a new MacBook that my dad's getting for a niece or nephew, for brunch because it's my dad's birthday, and to drop off invites for the Philippines since my dad is heading there at the end of the month and tax forms for the accountant. Then a party in the 'burbs for Tracy's sister-in-law's parents. Busy.
11:39 AM Monday, February 19, 2007
Friday night nothing too exciting. At least that I can remember. Saturday got my teeth checked out, just fine, then had RCN install the HD DVR, a better model than I had, this time a Motorola Dual-Tuner DVR High-Definition Set-Top DCT6416 which I think has slightly bigger hard drive, and a HDMI port if I had a TV that could use HDMI. Also got cable modem service turned on, and I started looking for a load balancer or a bandwidth aggregator so I can use both DSL and cable modem service. But HD is back, and wow, it looks great. The new RCN interface is annoying though. Tracy and I headed up to Evanton to look for paper choices for the map insert for the invitations. Didn't find anything too spectacular. Watched a bit of Maverick before heading out to dinner at Tru. Amazing. Great stuff. Early night after that though. Sunday morning finished up the 7 invites to be sent to the Philippines, met up with my parents, Auntie Luz and Joy at Texas de Brazil for my dad's birthday. Then helped him pick up a MacBook for a cousin. It's really easy to just walk into a store, buy and new laptop, and walk out. Seriously. Too easy. After that, Tracy and I headed down to the southern burbs, ran some wedding errands, then dinner at the Tongs for Chinese New Year's. Finished off the evening printing out the map inserts. I've got to print out envelopes the next couple of days.
2:43 PM Tuesday, February 20, 2007
Oh I love RCN, HD DVRs and Premium movie channels. Watched Date Movie and Eight Below last night while printing out the first set of invites. I'm about 25% done, but at least I've got a method to the madness established. I should be able to pop the rest of these out no problem. As for the movies, Date Movie was understandably horrible. Bad. Good background noise. Eight Below was pretty much what was expected: Disney family fare with animals, slight teary at parts, but quite enjoyable. What I'm finally looking forward to seeing is Doom which gets recorded this weekend. I forget what else, because I've got like 8 or so set to record in the next week. It's awesome. Seriously, I don't know how I was able to watch without HD for those long 165 days. Wow. Weather's been nice. Need to do laundry, again.
9:37 AM Thursday, February 22, 2007
Yesterday was a sick day. Tuesday night did laundry, which was my first time using the new machines in my building. They've raised prices, from $.50 to $.75 for a wash, and from $.25/25 minutes to $.50/first 25 minutes + $.25/10 minutes for the dryer. I mean, it's nice having new machines, and twice as many dryers, but wow. Definitely wish I had an in unit washer dryer, or lived in a building that allowed for in unit washer dryers. Also printed more invites, and I've come to grips with the lack of etiquette that goes along with that. They look nice. Also watched Running Scared, that Paul Walker mafia movie which was good, and The Squid and the Whale, that Noam Baumbach movie that also was pretty good. Wednesday night Tracy and I got delivery from Chen's, printed out more and started stuffing invites. Watched Gilmore Girls, How I Met Your Mother, and Shopgirl. Have I mentioned that I love having a DVR again? Oh, and there's no problem jumping into the middle of a sitcom season. HIMYM is funny no matter how many episodes you've missed.
12:07 PM Friday, February 23, 2007
Had our last group class at Chicago Dance last night after dinner at the Brehon Pub. Apparently they filmed some of Cupid at that bar, which is pretty cool. But nothing special about that place. Just another Irish pub. At dance class we learned more Cha Cha Cha. Fun. Might be the next group class after the wedding. Now we need to pick a song and a dance and start taking the private lessons. Picking up Puck tonight, then headed over to Bucktown for dinner with Russell. Headed up to the Dells tomorrow for the annual indoor waterpark weekend. This is the 3rd year for that. That'll be fun. Happy early birthday to my brother and anniversary to my parents (it's tomorrow for all of them). Otherwise, not much else going on.
2:37 PM Monday, February 26, 2007
For all the weather related travel advisories over the weekend, we didn't run into any of them. Tracy didn't get off work until 10pm on Friday, so I picked up Puck and came down and had dinner with Russell at Silver Cloud. Dropped by to say Hi to my parents upstairs, and chilled waiting for Tracy. I thought about heading up to the Great Wolf Lodge, but called Tony who suggested not to, which was genius. When we drove up Saturday morning, it was only 3 hours, much less than the 4-6 some people drove the night before. Anyway, waterpark goodness followed. I brought along my waterproof case for my digital camera, which worked. I was about to say it worked well, but a waterproof case either works or it doesn't, right? Got some pictures, ate some food, played some videogames, watched some movies, played some ball in the waterpark, rode some slides, bobbed in the wave pool, watched the snow fall. And the snow did fall. But the drive home on Sunday was only 3 hours as well. Tracy and I finished up stuffing and stamping invites, and they got sent home with her today. Just a few stragglers to clarify before sending. Also we managed to find out where we're going for our honeymoon: just a week long cruise in the Eastern Caribbean. Should be fun. So 75 days and counting.
3:16 PM Tuesday, February 27, 2007
Or so it seems. Just another Monday yesterday. Work, drove out to Tracy's, watched some TV (I miss the old interface on the Motorola DVRs compared to the crappy Passport software on the RCN boxes), had some dinner, figured out some remaining wedding stuff. First time in a while it felt like a normal night out at Tracy's, and we weren't wedding planning or organizing or something. It was nice. Granted, when I go out on Wednesday it's for looking at wedding bands, so it's short lived. Otherwise, not much else. I've started collecting Vitamin Water bottles on my desk at work. I'm missing Defense, Rescue, Endurance and Vital-T. Rescue is hard to come by, and I haven't seen Vital-T ever, and it's been a while since I've seen Endurance. Got to make some phone calls tonight, but not much else. Planning on getting a gyro and watching Doom.
12:54 PM Wednesday, February 28, 2007
Last night waited 25 minutes for a bus up to the Magnificent Mile to pick up an Apple USB Modem so I can fax documents from my MacBook which doesn't have a built in modem before hopping on a bus to make it home in time to vote and pick up a Vitamin Water Defense and a gyro for dinner while watching Doom and making phone calls to finish up invitations while watching Just Friends before finishing Doom while eating ice cream before bed and waking up to a humidifier that decided to humidify the floor rather than the air and making my way to work in Puck while listening to NPR podcasts on the iPod before heading out to Tracy's to look at wedding bands.
11:25 AM Thursday, March 1, 2007
Got our wedding rings last night. Awesome. That's definitely gonna take some time to get used to, having metal on my finger, but I'm so looking forward to it. Can't wait actually. Then we had dinner at Davidson's. That place is doing well, but I think their food isn't as good. The panini was a little too thick. Went running this morning, after a 6 day lay off, increased the speed again, since it's a new month. Rough. But good. Finding more and more movies to record on the DVR, which is so good. Can you tell how happy I am with working HD and a DVR? It's awesome. I'm scared to put the humidifier out on the floor again, so I just left it in the bathroom and turned it on. Hopefully it won't humidify the bathroom floor. Still not sure how it managed to leak so much yesterday. Oh, and tried looking for the missing Vitamin Water flavors I need to complete my collection: Rescue, Vital-T, Endurance, and I've seen a couple other ones, Perform and Stress-B, both Lemon Lime flavors. Couple places sell 24 packs online, but I only need a bottle. No dance class tonight, first time in 16 weeks or so. Strange. Oh, and people are actually receiving invitations already. So that's good news.
11:08 AM Friday, March 2, 2007
Mach 20. Just changed service for my RCN cable modem to Mach 20. That's 20/2 Mbps down and up. That's just awesome. Granted, I actually haven't tried it out at home yet, and I'm definitely curious as to how the upstream bandwidth is for syncing my email when not at home. But seriously, that easy and simple. Email contact with RCN, verification of account, verification of cost increase, and config push out. Super easy. I like big companies, established companies, that provide quality service, of course, at a price, but it's worth it because it works. Snowing, which shouldn't really be a surprise cause it's Chicago, even though it's March. Water main construction work outside my building up inner lake shore wrecks havoc with traffic. But it's fun to see buses lined up during inbound rush hour. Yesterday there were 3 135's lined up in a row, with the 3rd one just about empty. Awesome. And this morning I saw 3 152's starting out down Addison together. I can understand how they can bunch up at the end of a route, but at the beginning? Really? Planning on a farewell gathering for the Fortress of Solitude on Saturday, with recovery on Sunday.
1:01 PM Monday, March 5, 2007
Lots of TV watching this weekend. Friday night, Something New, Saturday, Jarhead, Hustle & Flow, Goal!, Varsity Blues, Summer Catch, and Shade, Sunday, Poseidon, Cheaper by the Dozen 2, She's the Man, Lucky 13, end of Flightplan, Get Rich or Die Tryin', Ocean's Eleven. Seriously. All of those. 4 of those were DVDs, the rest HD off the DVR. And DVDs? Really soft. Actually I can notice the lower resolution. Anyway, I've only got maybe 1 more of those types of weekends left before getting hitched, which was also on last night, Hitch, that is, which is like 2 years old. Anyway, after movies, food. Tracy made crab alfredo Friday night along with some well cooked scallops, Saturday had some Hecky's Delivery with Russell, and Sunday had some Chipotle after going to church in the afternoon. Not a bad bachelor weekend at all. Definitely need to get some new Dining room chairs, as at least 3 of them are pretty busted, and it wouldn't surprise me if more are on the way down. Not sure if that will coincide with a new table or not, but definitely not till after the wedding. Hmmm, maybe we can put something on the registry? Currently moving furniture around again, putting the TV back up against the wall to the 2nd bedroom and the couch against the windows.
1:18 PM Tuesday, March 6, 2007
Headed out early today for a LASEK evaluation from Chicago Cornea. Hopefully I'll be good to go, and get it done soon. It'd be nice not to have to wear glasses or contacts till I'm older. Last night I moved living room furniture around, and I do have to agree with Tracy that it's much more open, with a ton more space, in the standard layout. I really should have taken more pictures of the layouts, but oh well. I do need to rework all the wiring though, try and get rid of any extraneous, remember to have an ethernet run for the Apple TV, whenever that shows up. I did manage to watch Stick It last night, but after the glut of movies from the weekend, don't have too much to watch on the DVR anymore.
10:51 AM Wednesday, March 7, 2007
Well, the eval went well yesterday, I'm a good candidate, and I'm going under the laser tomorrow. Everything checked out, and the upcoming dates they had available were Thursday or April 12, at least in the downtown location. Seriously. So, I said yes to Thursday, and figured out the details later. So yes, getting LASIK. Appointment was fine yesterday, easy schmeasy, but having those eye drops that stop your eye from focusing was weird. Or maybe it was the dilation stuff. Either way, it was odd not being able to have near field focus ability for a while. But go figure, surgery tomorrow is at Illinois Masonic, pretty close to me. My mom's coming out on her day off to shuffle me around. So today's my last day wearing glasses. I've got to get some antibiotic and rewetting eye drops. Yes it's awesome. Yes it's scary. I'm gonna get parts of my eyes lased away. Seriously. Vaporized. Wish me luck.
11:12 AM Thursday, March 8, 2007
About a couple hours left before I go under the beam. Talked to my brother a bit about it this morning. My mom's cleaning, biding time until she goes with me. It's her day off. Watched a bit of Happy Endings this morning. Not bad. Quirky indy feel with a bigger budget. Like The Opposite of Sex. Also starring Lisa Kudrow. Watched Race the Sun last night. For a Disney movie from the mid 90's, it's pretty good. So yes, a little nervous. Picked up my antibiotic eye drops and artificial tears last night. And just waiting. Got my follow-up appointment with Dr. Saul tomorrow set up. Hope everything goes well.
9:11 AM Friday, March 9, 2007
So I'm not wearing glasses. I'm not wearing contacts. Yet I'm seeing. Pretty damn well too. So I guess it works. So my mom and I roll up in a taxi to Illinois Masonic, head up to the fifth floor to the eye surgery center, fill out some forms, then I get more pictures taken of my eyes, blood pressure which was pretty high, and some eye drops for dilation, then waiting, more pictures, waiting, then they cut the flaps. A little weird to have your eye open and then have the vision disappear. Wait 20 minutes. Then I go under the laser. Just got to look at the red flashing light. That's all. Can't really blink cause it felt like they put a clamp on to prevent blinking. After each eye, Dr. Epstein takes a quick peek at them, and I put on my black wraparound sunglasses, keeping the eyes closed, hop in a cab, put the eye shield on, sleep for an hour or two. Put in some antibiotics and anti-inflammatory eye drops. Eat some pizza. Keep the eyes closed, even though vision is available, if a little blurry. Start using artificial tears. About every 1/2 hour. Definitely trying to keep the eyes closed, but I could use them if I wanted to. Listen as Tracy watches V for Vendetta. More eye drops. Sleeping. Wake up, see the clock. I guess that's good. More eye drops. Eyes continue to work. More eye drops. Seriously. I can see. I don't think the full impact will hit me until later, but for now, it kind of feels just like I'm wearing contacts. I'd been wearing them for 14 years or so. And now, never again. Awesome. Headed out to Tracy's tonight, got a meeting with Fr. Larry tomorrow morning, then heading out to Woodstock to hang out with my mom, and thank her again for taking care of me yesterday, before coming back in on Sunday for brunch with April.
12:27 PM Monday, March 12, 2007
Eyes keep chugging along. One bad thing about getting LASIK: I've noticed how dirty the vent is above my shower. Seriously disgusting. Also something I've never seen before. So got the eyes checked out by Dr. Saul, my usual optometrist, and the surgery went well, as I checked out at 20/20. Then headed over to Tracy's, made some crab quesadillas for dinner. Saturday headed over for a meeting with Fr. Larry, the priest who's gonna marry us, and got some stuff to fill out. Then we went driving around looking for a breakfast place, and didn't find anything in Romeoville, Joliet, or New Lenox and ended up back in Lemont at the Pancake Cafe. We headed out to Woodstock to see my mom, went to mass, and dinner at Deeter's. Headed back in to the city and ended up watching The Pink Panther (the new one with Steve Martin) before heading to bed. Sunday we had brunch with April, stopped by Kozy Cyclery, then headed downtown to watch 300 and checked out Fox & Obel (the truffle frites are awesome) and got some hot chocolate from Vosges Haut-Chocolat before heading home and watching An Inconvenient Truth and leftovers for dinner. And all throughout the weekend I'm dropping the artificial tears. Good stuff. Oh, and found some Vitamin Water Rescue, so now I've only got a couple left to find.
2:06 PM Tuesday, March 13, 2007
Other things I've noticed not wearing contacts: don't have to worry about it being windy, also, I have no problems catching a couple winks on the bus ride to work. It's definitely sinking in more and more that I have good vision, the first time since maybe 3rd grade. Or possibly before that. It's so odd. I wanted to watch Into the Blue last night, but the DVR had already deleted it. I'm not sure what I want to do with the collection of Heroes that I'm gathering, as I'm still missing a couple episodes. I'm hoping for some reruns so I can pick those up and we can plow through the rest of the episodes. Or when the Apple TV finally ships maybe I'll go ahead and buy the season from iTunes. Same deal with Scrubs. Anyway, watched the end of Happy Endings instead, and ended up watching Benchwarmers, cause it was on. Tonight I plan on watching The Sentinel, and put the speakers in the right places, and print out the 2 last remaining invites to go out. And more leftovers for dinner. Random readings: Kevin's blog is pretty good, and David Thorpe's insights into players at ESPN is great, the kind of stuff that I love reading about, and not just game recaps.
1:47 PM Wednesday, March 14, 2007
Seriously, the Sports Gal should have her own website. And I want her and Sarah to hang out. Because I think they could totally be friends. That and Sarah needs to write more, Russell needs to as well. Hope Kevin keeps it up. I do like reading blogs so much more when it's actually people I know. But they never keep writing. Anyway, I actually did what I wrote I said I'd do last night. So that's good to see. Taking the train out to see Tracy tonight, and pick up Puck. Finally resized my Windows XP drive on Parallels, which allowed me to install drivers for the iSight which means I can use it in Windows, but that actually doesn't get me anything. Did some more backups last night as well. Chicago weather continues to be Chicago weather, with record breaking high temps yesterday and a 30-40 degree drop between then and tomorrow. Awesome. I figure there's another snow in store before the 2 weeks of spring. 59 days or so.
2:54 PM Thursday, March 15, 2007
Well, it's been a week without glasses or contacts. I just noticed last night that my glasses are sitting on the bottom shelf of my coffee table. I have my week later follow up with Dr. Saul tomorrow, but as far as I can tell, things are going great. A little dry-eyedness, but that's expected. Vision's good. A little bit of haloing at night, but not too bad. Is it really a life changer? Yes. There are definitely more and more "wow" moments, where it hits me that I'm not wearing contacts or glasses, or that I seem to be able to see more, or things seem clearer. But yes, great so far. So took the train out to Tracy's last night, got picked up. Tracy saw one wife picking up her husband, and they had the pickup down to a science, he was the first off the train, she rolled down the passenger side rear window for him to put his briefcase into the backseat before hopping in the front set and jetting out of there. We picked up some groceries, made dinner at home, watched some TV.
1:01 PM Friday, March 16, 2007
Got some carpaccio last night at Mia Francesca's on Clark. Ok, if a little busy. Tracy's been craving it, which transferred over to me, so I went looking online for possible venues. The other place I want to try is Bice, which has a supposedly good carpaccio. We're also tempted to try it at home, if we can find a nice butcher to get us a fresh enough piece of meat. Which makes me think, what foods would you never consider making at home but would order in a restaurant? Anyway, entrees were ok. Nothing too special. Desserts were good, and the cappuccino was especially tasty. On the way home we picked up some brisket for corned beef, with the flavor packet, and the trimmings. That's for Saturday. Tonight I'm gonna try and make some crab ravioli, some roasted zucchini, some garlic bread, I think. I also need to copy and replace the hard drive in tMac before dropping it off at the Oak Brook Apple Store tomorrow morning to get the power supply replaced. Maybe I'll talk Tracy into walking out with another computer, cause I don't like sharing mine. That's about it.
10:17 PM Saturday, March 17, 2007
Got the eyes checked out yesterday. Week later, all good. Actually slightly farsighted, which is good. As healing continues it'll even out. Also, I get to stop the drops, the antibiotics and anti-inflammatory. Now just the artificial tears from here on out. Got back to Tracy's, started making a backup of tMac. I thought firewire was faster than it was. I had to use it in target disk mode since it kept shutting down in OS mode. I made some crab ravioli (used wonton wrappers as a shortcut) for dinner. Not bad. Not exceptional, but didn't use anything too fresh, so that hurts. Also got some Green River in honor of the holiday. Saturday dropped off tMac at the Oak Brook Apple Store. They topped off the processor to see if it would shut down, and about 30 minutes later a nice electronic burning smell overcame the store. The machine never shut down, which was interesting. Upon taking a peek at the innards, some of the capacitors were starting to expand, one actually might have burst. Awesome. I was getting worried that it wasn't shutting down so I'd have to take it back without getting fixed. Anyway, Tracy and I did some shopping, I picked up some pants, sweaters, and jeans. Tracy got some cookies and some lotion. We got back to my place, started up the corned beef, and finished off The Office and Scrubs on the DVR. Watched Just Friends and The Family Stone.
12:44 PM Monday, March 19, 2007
Sunday was nice and lazy. Slept in, got up, Tracy made hash like Alton Brown said how to for lunch, watched Deep Blue Sea on TNT, (I don't think I've ever seen that unedited for TV), before finally heading out for a walk before church. We made it down to Pastoral and picked up a nice Goat's Milk cheese from France, partly due to it's strength and nationality (Tracy has a bias against domestic cheeses). After church we picked up some walnuts with plans to finally make some caramelized peppered walnuts but that didn't happen. We just ordered ribs from Hecky's, which weren't nearly as good this time around (I think because they were Chicago style instead of smoked), which we ate while watching Take the Lead, another ballroom dance movie. Not bad. We looked over the rest of our wedding stuff, and it doesn't look like we're missing anything. But of course that's not completely settling. There's only 54 days left. So yes, the stress is getting to me a little. Just scared that we're gonna forget something, that's all. And strangely enough, Tracy is nice and calm about everything, and I'm the one kind of freaking out. Whatever. I'm sure everything's gonna be fine.
2:13 PM Tuesday, March 20, 2007
Yay. Apple TV is shipping. I got my notice. Should get delivered by Friday. Sweet. Which means I get to watch Veronica Mars and Studio 60 on the big screen. Awesome. And we soon get to find out what it'll take to transcode DVDs for use with the Apple TV, which means I might finally find a use for all the hard drive space I have. Think about it, Varsity Blues on demand, Serendipity whenever I feel like it, all 5 seasons of 24 back to back to back to back and so on without ever having to wait for disc changes. Awesome. Anyway, Tracy and I went and saw I Think I Love My Wife. All I knew about it going in was that Chris Rock was in it, and the co-captain from Serenity was in it. That's it. Who knew it was about a married couple, the tribulations of getting bored, and a hussy. Not bad, but I didn't know it was written and directed by Chris Rock too. Definitely felt like a platform for him. And Steven A. Smith has a part. That's funny. I also got to finally eat some Dippin' Dots, which I've been craving ever since Great Wolf. The Banana Split's so good, which I settled for because the Cookie Dough was out. After the movie we finally went through the response cards we've received so far. No surprise, beef is the clear winner, but fish is ahead of chicken for second place.
1:57 PM Wednesday, March 21, 2007
I finally decided to close up the radiator valves in the condo. So it was cool, but I did it in anticipation of the 20 degree uptick following today's rainy weather. Made Lemon Chicken with Special Rice for dinner last night, at Tracy's request. Ordered up some wedding favors. Watched Chefography about Paula Dean, and How I Met Your Mother, that Barney does a great David Letterman impression which was odd because David Letterman got sick and couldn't do his own show last night. Anyway, we also caught the last episode of Sex and the City on TBS, cause it was on. Went running the morning, and it's not easy, even only with just about a week off. I tried using artificial tears from a bigger bottle, but I'm just not happy and went back to the preservative free individually packaged and sized versions. And it's much better. I always clean out the Walgreens whenever I wander in. I'm a big fan of the Thera Tears. I tried a different brand, but the delivery mechanism was all wrong (hole was too big so drops were too big). One of the Thera Tears eye drops boxes I got is new fangled, with fancy foil wrappers and the actual individual container has an angled neck, so it makes it super easy to get drops in. Besides eye drops, T-Mobile now carries the RIZR, which is tempting since my K750i seems to be showing its last legs, but I don't want to get anything big since I'll be getting an iPhone as soon as I can. Headed out to Bryan's tonight, getting Smoque for dinner. That should be awesome.
2:41 PM Thursday, March 22, 2007
So, my Apple TV is probably sitting on the floor in my foyer, since it got delivered today, a full day earlier than expected, according to FedEx. Awesome. Except that I won't get to play with it until 11-12 tonight, cause I'm headed out to Tracy's for the evening. Of course, that's after I spend a whole lot of time in traffic heading out to the Oakbrook Apple Store to pick up tMac, and maybe a new Airport Extreme Base Station. Beside that, I've got a new wedding favor to show Tracy, but that's about it. But I'm definitely excited to see what the Apple TV is like. I snuck in a haircut today, because Mabel was all booked up tomorrow. Probably get one more haircut in the next 50 days, probably 2 weeks before the wedding. Seriously, 50 days. In other news, my dad made it back from the Philippines yesterday, after getting stuck in Minneapolis due to weather for a bit.
12:32 PM Friday, March 23, 2007
Surprisingly heading down 290 to Oakbrook wasn't as bad as I expected, a mere 45 minutes from downtown. Picked up tMac. No problems there. Picked up an Airport Extreme Base Station, since I had an Apple TV sitting at home, and I got an upgrade card for Carbon. Buying things from Apple Stores is too easy. Pick something up, have a sales associate scan it with the Easy Pay doohickies, swipe the card, walk on out. So easy. Too easy. Get to Tracy's, put her old hard drive in, boot it up, no problems. Fan's a little louder. But it actually goes to sleep now, and doesn't randomly shut off anymore. Good times. While I did that, we watched Chefography on Giada De Laurentiis. I am amazed at how these chefs know they want to get into food at such a young age, like at 12? Staring at food displays and watching in the kitchen? Wasn't me, that's for sure. Foodieness bloomed late for me, not till late college at least. So we had to get some Italian food and went to some place in Homer Glen. It was just OK. Had to do some work, so Remote Desktop'ed in after dinner. Then got home, unpacked my goodies, played around with the Apple TV a bit. So far, in the brief time spent with it, kind of disappointed. But I need to spend more time with it. Tracy's working her last weekend, mom's coming in to help a bit more with condo cleanup, and I'm tempted to start that Master Cleanse diet thingie.
1:01 PM Monday, March 26, 2007
So the big news is that my mom came out and helped, well, more like I helped, clean out a bunch of my old stuff. So the closet has plenty of space now, things got cleaned up and room was made for wedding presents in the 2nd bedroom. I finally found a temporary use for those cinder blocks and plywood from the stadium seating living room setup: shelving for wedding presents. I'll have more room in the 2nd bedroom after I remove some additional old old computers for recyclying (15" monitors, old pc's) tomorrow morning, before I head out for a meeting with our ceremony music director. She was busy on weekends and nights through Easter, so I had to bite the bullet and take a morning meeting. Anyway, on to the weekend recap. Friday night Tracy picked me up from work on the way home from her work. We went grocery shopping, I picked up some Tilapia, and she went searching for crab legs and didn't find any to her liking. She ended up making a potato salad to go with her pastrami reuben from Samuel's Deli (she had a long day). I poached the fish in white wine with tomatoes and basil. I think I overcooked it a little. We watched an episode of Raines and might have watched something else, I don't remember. Saturday my mom came out, did some cleaning, and we went to a wake out in Franklin Park followed by dinner at Woo Chon. Sunday more cleaning and trying to get DVD rips on the Apple TV. We got dinner from Joy's before my mom headed home. I managed to watch Imagine Me & You (very sweet love at first sight movie), Into the Blue (pretty much what you expect), and Transporter 2 (likewise). Also started watching the last few episodes of Studio 60 on the Apple TV, which is growing on me. I'm liking it more and more. I was watching the Apple TV reintroduction part of the iPhone video podcast introduction on the Apple TV from my couch. Awesome. It's pretty sweet. The photo screensaver would make a great thing to loop at the reception for the photo montage. Actually, it'd be a super easy way to do the photo montage. Hmmmm.
2:07 PM Tuesday, March 27, 2007
Watched Brick last night. Great movie. Film Noir set in high school. Kept me enthralled for a couple hours. Picked up a pastrami reuben to eat while watching. That's because Tracy had one last Friday and I didn't. So I had the craving. Brought some old computers to the electronics recycling center, which is only open on Tuesday mornings, Thursday afternoons, and the first Saturday of the month. So opened up more space in the 2nd bedroom. Then headed out for the meeting with the music directory for the wedding ceremony. Got our songs picked out. Then drove back in to work. There was way too much traffic for 9am this morning on the side streets. Shouldn't all those people have been at work? Not to mention all the semis on the road.
1:43 PM Wednesday, March 28, 2007
45 days or so. Tracy picked some premade pecan encrusted chicken from Jewel for dinner, all she had to do was fry it up. It was pretty good. She also found some asparagus and wrapped that in cheese and prosciutto. Yum. Watched some American Idol, House, and a repeat of How I Met Your Mother from Monday. And that sums it up. Weather's taken a downturn, which is nice. I like it cooler. Otherwise, not much is up. Got more wedding favors in yesterday, need to get those out to Tracy's for staging. Her dress came in, and she's getting fitted for it next Monday. Got one bridal shower this weekend, and I'm also getting my first physical in a long long time this weekend as well.
11:54 AM Thursday, March 29, 2007
Got more sample wedding favors, and have to decide amongst the ones we have. Got an upgraded Airport Extreme card for Carbon, to do 802.11n, so I spent a good while taking apart my MacBook. Got stuck on two screws in the battery compartment. Very annoying. But finally got it apart and back together, and everything seems to be working swimmingly. So I take down my existing network infrastructure, my hodge podge mix of Linksys, Asante, and Xincom, and replace it with the Airport Extreme Base Station. So that seems to go well, except I seem to lose DNS after a while. Apparently, it doesn't pass through DNS requests on the LAN side, but rather forwards requests, because it is, itself, a DNS server. That's if it's set up as a NAT box. But after a little more troubleshooting, it looks like it's just on the wireless side, not the LAN side. So I've got some more tinkering to do. But it's much nicer having one box instead of 3 sitting on the desk. And that also makes me an almost all Apple house, with just a Motorola Cable Modem. Also started watching The Man in the Iron Mask. I just like the movie, another guilty pleasure I think. Headed out to Tracy's tonight, hopefully record some more RSVP's.
10:33 AM Friday, March 30, 2007
Got my order from Dr Soda last night. Those 6 flavors of Vitamin Water that I couldn't find locally? Shipped from LA. Awesome. Which means I have a complete set. I'll drink a new one every work day, starting today with Vital-T, a nice lemon tea, until I complete the set next Friday. And then I'll post a picture. Odd thing, there were all earth toned colors. The liquids were anyway. It's just awesome. I might have to start doing some other obscure packaged goods shopping online. I think Cheerwine is available. Besides that, my Sony Reader came as well, thanks to my Sony Rewards Points. It's tiny, and super readable, in the light anyway. So I don't have to carry around any more books. Well, at least the ones I can get from their online bookstore, like the Baroque Cycle which will be my first purchase with the $50 credit I get. I love getting packages delivered. It's like a mini Christmas every time I open my door when I get home. Last night out at Tracy's, picked out placecard holders and ordered those and went through the rest of the received RSVP's. There's only one that we can't read. Still waiting on a bunch of my "friends". Found some Sudoku games for Tracy to play on tMac, since she'll be unemployed after 10pm this evening. And Akira asked last night, but RCN cable and internet has been stellar. No problems. Speeds have been fine. I don't do a lot of downloading, so I don't notice if I'm using enough downstream bandwidth, but I have no complaints. Slight audio dropouts on the DVR, but I can usually work my way around those with some tuner swaps, pausing and live tv button presses, or channel changes. AEBS seems to be working all right, didn't have any issues with it this morning. Headed out to Woodstock tonight, taking Puck, expecting to have to carry plunder home. Also got that physical, blood workup tomorrow. Of course I'm worried, I haven't had any of that done in a very very long time. Odd physical stuff, I last worked out Monday morning, and my calves are still sore. Odd.
11:12 AM Monday, April 2, 2007
Wedding Shower went well. Good time, and special thanks to Auntie Ann, Auntie Helen, Hazel and Jenny for hosting and running it. Well played. And thanks for everyone who came. So that was Saturday, and Tracy and her mom drove home, and I went back to my place, stopping by Whole Foods in Palatine on the way back to pick up stuff for the Master Cleanse, which I planned to start on Sunday, but have now decided not to do because of scheduling issues. Oh, and got checked out by Doctor Monje Saturday morning as well, blood tests and all. Waiting to hear back on that stuff. Sunday watched some TV while waiting for Tracy to show up. Then, more couch lounging with leftovers for dinner. Moved the desks around in the 2nd bedroom for more space for gifts, picked out some readings for the ceremony.
11:59 AM Tuesday, April 3, 2007
I completed my Vitamin Water bottle collection today. Couldn't wait until Friday on the bottle a day plan. The only odd thing? Essential used to be Orange-Carrot, not Orange-Orange like it is now. Just check the side of the vending machines. So I don't have that. Best flavor that's hard to come by? b-relaxed, a nice jackfruit+guava combo. Very tropical. But smooth. And endurance is a sweet treat, a peach mango that goes down easy. Anyway, picture up soon. Leftovers for dinner last night, turned into fried rice. Definitely feels like Tracy's moved in, which is a little odd. Wedding stuff is definitely in high gear it feels like, with only 39 days, 9 mins left. Getting in touch with photographer, videographer, and DJ. But getting there. Still have occasional DNS issues with the AEBS. Goes fine for a while, then I need to reboot it at some point. Starting to record lots of movies on the DVR. Not sure when I'll be able to get a chance to watch them. Might also get out to see Blades of Glory this week. Maybe tomorrow night.
11:35 AM Wednesday, April 4, 2007
Dance lessons have started anew, this time the individual sessions with Kelly, our instructor from Group classes. Looks like we'll be doing the Rumba, which is cool. Yeah, I know, giving away surprises. Got those scheduled out for the next 5 weeks, which is about how long till the wedding. Crazy. Sadly, some people apparently didn't get mailed invites, and stuff like that is hard to find out. I'm waiting till the end of the week before bugging the rest of my friends who haven't responded yet, giving the benefit of the doubt that it's in the mail. Otherwise, a fairly relaxed night at home. I came home to dinner, Tracy had made Italian meatloaf with garlic mashed potatoes, with a carpaccio appetizer, meat from Gepperth's Meat Market, so it's all good. Cleaned up a little bit more in the 2nd bedroom. And that's about it. Trying to switch into the domesticated mood a little more.
11:49 AM Thursday, April 5, 2007
Finally, upgraded the firmware on my 8 bay firewire enclosure, which means it shows up with no problems on Macs. Much better. It was getting annoying trying to get it working properly. Next step? Ripping the Battlestar Galactica DVDs to disk so I can start transcoding for use with the Apple TV. The Apple TV is what I wanted the Roku to be all that time ago. So if anyone's in the market for a Roku, let me know. Not sure what it'd be good for anymore. Dance lessons went well. Going through Dancing for Every Occasion I and II was a great idea, since we got the basic stuff down, and get to do some tweaking. Afterwards we went to dinner at Nacional 27, since it's been a while. So good. The Latin Steak Frites was especially good. Later that night Bryan dropped by to pick up the video camera to tape some of his brother's guitar teachings, so I went digging through tapes to see which ones were blanks. Funny stuff found, like Got Rice? footage from Poultry Days and Paganello footage from some year, mostly of Marc in an airplane, and some Kaze Nationals stuff. Oh, and I copied my brother's wedding video to some tapes, and got to see their first dance. Definitely some moves I want to copy. Or at least ask about. Going to see Blades of Glory tonight, way up there at Village Crossing 18 up in Skokie for a change. Just wanted to get out of the city for once. Start getting used to going to the 'burbs to hang out with friends. Because that's coming.
1:07 PM Friday, April 6, 2007
Saw Blades of Glory last night. Pretty good. That Jon Heder likes his slapstick. Good stuff. Not so sure on the Village Crossing 18 as a theater. I guess River East 21 is still the top dog, unless you want food and alcohol, which means Hollywood Boulevard, or funnel cake, which means Woodridge 18. Didn't get a chance to go running, as had to take care of some tasks late last night and bring down boxes to Tracy's car this morning. Got an eye appointment this afternoon. Marks a month since LASIK. It's awesome. Totally. I still catch myself taking my glasses off before taking a shower. I'm still pretty protective of them, still try and shield my eyes from any touching of any kind. Staying out at Tracy's until Sunday, then we're headed up for Easter with the Walls. I thought I had my Vitamin Water collection complete, but there's a new flavor, Charge (it's green) that I need to get my hands on. Found that out from BevNET. 35 days, 22 hours or so.
11:29 AM Monday, April 9, 2007
The eyes are still good. Which is great. Tracy picked me up and drove me out there, and we found a Joe's Crab Shack for dinner. Yum, crab legs. She's now gotten me hooked on them again. We stopped into the IKEA in Bolingbrook since it was on the way, and looked around. We might have found a closet organization system, so that's good. Back at her place, her dad had gotten the new all digital STB from Motorola, the 3412, which is interesting. Had to look up how to remove closed captioning. Ended up watching Little Manhattan from HBO On Demand, because they now get HBO for some reason. Saturday more shopping, some wedding related. Sam's Club, Orland Square. Picked up a couple more sweaters and finally a new belt. Mrs. Argao made Corned Beef and Cabbage for dinner. Much better than when Tracy and I made it. Sunday, Easter mass at SS. Cyril and Methodius before heading up to the Walls for food. A great spread by Mrs. Wall and others. Talked to Al a bit on the phone. Drive back into the city was a pain, 2 hours. But then caught up with The Office and 30 Rock before bed.
3:48 PM Tuesday, April 10, 2007
Got in touch with the last few responses for me that were missing. Why is it that a good portion of my friends are bad with mail? Maybe I should have just gone the evite route. Or sent them out closer to the return date? Either way, I would have been in the same boat if it was me. And another thing about my friends: no one wants to bring dates. That brings down my guest total a bit. Maybe I should extend the invitation out? The more the merrier. Last night had langonisa and tocino for dinner, watched Inside Man which was pretty good, interesting for the lack of a good guy, well, a completely wholesome good guy. Dance class today, and dinner at Sai, where Karl gets to meet Tracy. Yay, sushi. Running again today. That's good. Not necessarily losing any weight yet, but things are tightening up some, so it at least looks better, and I feel better.
4:13 PM Wednesday, April 11, 2007
Realized yesterday that it's Friday the 13th on Friday. Spooky. Sushi's so good. Definitely some quality fish going on last night. Good to catch up with Karl. Dance class continues to be fun. Meeting tomorrow with the DJ. Tracy's also going through a hair test run. Teeth got bleached this morning, with another 2 sessions left to go. Means I'm staying away from coffee as much as possible. Running again this morning. Scales are funny. I weighed myself before and after running and I had lost a pound but gained a percentage point in BMI. I think. Not sure how that works. Oh, and it snowed. And just read that the cicadas are coming out this year. Right around wedding time. Awesome.
4:11 PM Thursday, April 12, 2007
Got my at home blood pressure monitor. First try? 120/78, 58 pulse. Standing. I try it later, both arms, about the same, 48 pulse. Awesome. So maybe keeping away from salty foods and exercising often can make a difference. Does it make sense that it changed that much in 2 weeks? Don't know, I'll leave that for the doctors in the audience to let me know. Also, the percentage posted yesterday isn't BMI, but Body Fat percentage. I think. Again. I keep forgetting to look at the manual to see what it really is. But weight is trending down, but today was the forth day in a row for running in the morning. So that's probably got something to do with it. And that percentage is also trending down as well. So leaving healthy does work. Although I walked by a McDonald's yesterday and it looked so good. Same thing when I walked by a Dunkin' Donuts. My mouth started drooling. Anyway, leftovers for dinner last night, watched some TV, How I Met Your Mother and Raines. Just read that Apple's delaying Leopard until October. I actually don't think that affects me. The stuff I've got now seems to be working pretty well. Can't say there's anything computing-wise that I'm needing or wanting. Which is good.
9:49 AM Friday, April 13, 2007
Seriously, the future is now. I got a Sony Reader a while back, using my Sony Points. But it sat on the charging stand as I finished up my tree killer book, Debt of Honor by Tom Clancy. If it was available from the Connect Store as an ebook, I might have just rebought it and read it with the Reader, but it wasn't so I didn't and I just finished it last night. But that meant I got to start using the Reader. It's small, the screen's great, and I don't have to carry books in my backpack anymore. It's small enough to fit in my jacket pocket. Which means I pretty much have reading material wherever I go. And what's the first book I choose to read on my e-ink ebook reader? The Diamond Age, of course. I might reread Busting Vega$ before heading out there, or maybe I'll continue with the Neal Stephenson and do the Baroque Cycle. And I got Seven Seconds or Less too. And Cryptonomicon and Snow Crash. Seriously awesome. Don't think I've noticed anyone else using it on the bus ride to work yet, but I sat next to a guy on a Samsung Blackjack. Anyway, meeting with the DJ went well last night. We now have to start gathering our music together and making some choices. Afterwards, we had dinner at On the Border Mexican Grill & Cantina in Naperville. That town's changed a bunch since the last time I drove though, oh, maybe 5 years ago back when I took the wrong way to the Naperville Polo Fields for Tune-Up. On the drive back, I picked up a milkshake from Steak n' Shake. Good, and I know I slipped, but I was planning on running in the morning anyway, which I didn't do. Picked up the video camera that I lent to Bryan and watched a bit of Planet Earth. Wow. And then watched my brother's first dance, maybe to steal a couple moves. Dance lesson this afternoon. Cubs game tomorrow. Oh, and Tracy did a trial hair and makeup run yesterday. Went well. Took me a couple hours before I got used to it.
12:15 PM Monday, April 16, 2007
Friday night, couch bound. Tracy made a sun dried tomato pesto penne with chicken. Really good. I think we watched Wedding Bells. Last one ever, probably. Which is too bad, cause it was starting to grow on us. Saturday, got a work call for the first time in a long time, fixed that up, went running, then a Cubs game with April and Scott. Pre game lunch at that mexican place next to the liquor store right off the El stop. Game was good, but cold. And yay for churros. Nap time afterwards while Tracy watched Click. Then off to dinner at Kuma's Corner with the Russells and Carlo and Sally. Watched some National Lacrosse League, apparently the last game of the season for the Chicago Shamrox. Renewed the interest in going to one of those or a Chicago Rush game. Hopefully soon. Afterwards met up with the gang at Piece for live band karaoke and Rachel McCarthy's 30th party gathering. Sunday more relaxing, after going running, and finally watched Click before making dinner for Tracy's parents, brother Mike and girlfriend Amy. Good stuff. Then, instead of bed, we ended up watching the tail end of Dirty Dancing, and then practicing our dancing ourselves.
4:28 PM Tuesday, April 17, 2007
Thoroughly enjoying my Sony Reader. I put another 63 books on there, all I've owned at one time or another, that I'll buy if they ever become available on the Connect Store. But seriously, 63 books in a gadget roughly the size of Old Man and the Sea? Awesome. Spent some time last night getting the books properly formatted. Leftovers for dinner. Watched some Dancing with the Stars and a How I Met Your Mother rerun. Got to pack tonight for my 4-5 days in Vegas. Planning on bringing my running shoes to keep up the exercising. I'm starting to get addicted to it. Realized it's been a little over a year since my last trip there, and a little under a year since the last time I've taken a vacation day or flown on an airplane. Wow. That's a change from before. Also found my passport yesterday, just to make sure I don't have to get it renewed anytime soon (Next year). Dance class was good today, learned one of the steps my brother did in his first dance, the cradle. Tracy and I are gonna have to practice tonight.
3:32 PM Wednesday, April 18, 2007
Headed out shortly to Las Vegas. Online check-in via Southwest. Yes, I'm checking a bag. Don't want to worry about trying to find space, and I don't even think it's small enough to be considered a carry-on. Another teeth bleaching session this morning. One more next week. sinigang for dinner last night. Good stuff as always. Another blood pressure check last night, 124/80, pulse rate of 58. Got cold again, and I'm not sure what it's gonna be like in Vegas. Lunch with Tracy today at Caffe RoM, a nifty Italian coffee bar place with only a few locations in Chicago. It's pretty good. She brought me a Ziploc bag for my eye drops, since I don't know if that's considered a liquid to declare, especially since they're individually wrapped. Wait and see. Did some more dance practice in the living room last night, realized we need a nice consistent music selection as well as a bigger room to dance in. Got to practice the Waltz with my mom this weekend. 24 days or so.
3:44 PM Tuesday, April 24, 2007
Still need to catch up on sleep. But surprisingly not that out of it, yet. So Las Vegas was, is, and will remain to be awesome. Probably head out there once every year or two, with friends, family, or friends and family. The best part? 11 friends and family opening up a craps table at the Hard Rock Hotel and Casino and playing for 3 hours. Awesome. I did manage to pick up a nice black jacket, a grey zip up, and a yellow long sleeve in my shopping on Thursday. Note to self: don't fly Southwest to Vegas, use America West, because of terminal and gate choices. Even if it's more expensive, it's worth it. Also, try and fly out earlier on Sunday, or wait a day and fly out on Monday. Wednesday night late flight are pretty empty, I had a row to myself. Also, airport taxi line is pretty much non-existant on a Wednesday night. Very nice. Tracy picked up me, Bjorn, and Akira from Midway late Sunday night and drove us all home, which means I didn't actually get to bed until 3am. Then another late night last night after practicing dancing means I'm running on fumes. So early bedtime tonight. I haven't run for the past 4 days (I managed to sneak in a couple runs in Vegas on Thursday and Friday mornings, outside since Paris Las Vegas doesn't have an open gym for guests). And I do need to do that. I also have the final teeth bleaching session tomorrow morning. And it's like 18 days. Seriously. Wow. That's awfully close.
3:47 PM Wednesday, April 25, 2007
I really need to get lots of sleep. I'm still playing catchup. Worked a bit on the program text last night, sent that over to Tag & Company, hoping we can get it done in time. I might do a mockup myself just in case, and get ready to print it out since I slacked a little too much on that. Tracy made Chicken Parmigiana last night, which was good. So nice having dinner all ready when I get home. She also did laundry as well, which was awesome. Teeth bleaching this morning went fine. I guess I could have scheduled a touch up before the wedding, but I don't want to bother. I'll just stay away from coffee and other stainable liquids for the next 17 days or so. 17 days. Wow. Tracy also went out today to confirm flower arrangements. Also watched some TV last night, some Scrubs, House, American Idol. Background for me. Just did a weather check, looks like high 50's the week of. But who knows given Chicago weather and forecasting systems.
3:42 PM Thursday, April 26, 2007
16 Days? Went shopping at Water Tower last night with Tracy, then dinner at Grand Lux Cafe with her friend Yhumadah. Then home and a quick dance practice session before bed. Managed to drag myself out of bed this morning and go running, which wasn't too bad. I figured after 5 days off that it would have been harder. Weight continues to drop, which is nice. Otherwise, not much else. Plan on I think finalizing guest list and start table arranging tonight. Another dance lesson this afternoon, learned the alternate spot left turn, or alternate left spot turn. Went back over some salsa as well. Lots of learning going on, that's for sure. Definitely need to practice some more. Apple stock was flirting with $100 all day, which is pretty cool. I'm guessing another split's coming. Also seems like I'm using the artificial tears less and less. Figured I would have been all over them while I was in Vegas, but that wasn't the case at all.
4:29 PM Friday, April 27, 2007
Didn't end up doing any Wedding stuff last night. Whoops. Instead ate some leftovers, Tracy made some bruschetta and crab stuffed portabellos, and we watched The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift. Not a bad movie at all, considering how bad I thought it could have gotten. I still haven't seen the second one yet. Although I'm guessing I'm not missing much. So definitely have some wedding stuff to do, compiling guest lists, start layout design for possible stickers for the wedding favors as well as place cards, and start getting an order of the weekend together. Probably need to update the website with additional information. Got a meeting with Jill on Sunday, and the 'rents are coming out this weekend as well. I guess it's nose to the grindstone time. I'm just looking forward to finally sleeping in tomorrow. I didn't go running this morning cause I turned off the alarm before I got up, even though the alarm gave me plenty of time for exercise. Maybe tomorrow.
12:22 AM Tuesday, May 1, 2007
On Saturday Tracy's Aunt Linda passed away. We're headed out to California, I guess today, Tuesday, through Thursday for the wake and funeral.
3:08 PM Friday, May 4, 2007
Back from Cali. Wish I could have had a chance to meet Tracy's Aunt Linda, after all the kind words spoken at the wake. Got to meet a lot of Tracy's Dad's side of the family, including some that won't be able to make it to the wedding. So it was a sad but good trip. Special thanks to Tracy's cousin Gene for putting us up for those few days. It was my first time flying JetBlue, and having my own TV was pretty cool, even if I didn't use it on the way out (sleeping) or on the way back (working on the program and sleeping). And I liked flying into Long Beach airport, nice and small. But the turbulence was a much more than I've experienced in a while, and that was during cruising altitude. Not sure if it's a factor of the Airbus A320 or weather. Played Halo 2 for the first time with Tracy's brothers. Of course got an In-n-Out burger. And now we're in the home stretch, 8 days and counting. Headed out to Tracy's tonight to help putting together wedding favors. We'll finish up and start putting together programs. A couple more dance lessons early next week. Gotta put together music for the DJ as well. Go through response cards to double check counts.
1:49 PM Monday, May 7, 2007
Definite countdown. Definitely taking care of things. Friday night went out to Tracy's, rode with when she picked up her parents from O'Hare, had dinner at Olive Garden. Then at her place we worked on the wedding favors. Went out the next morning to get more ribbon to finish up the favors, as well as look for more program ideas. Finished off the favors while watching Monster-in-Law. Tracy made spaghetti for dinner for everyone. Back at my place, watched some DVR stuff, while working on table arrangements. Sunday did some more table arranging, after exercising, went out looking for paper for programs, found some at Paper Source in Evanston, put in a warehouse order for some cover stock, and finished up the placecards while watching Thank You for Smoking. Oh, and picked up some Papa John's for dinner on the way home. Good stuff. I think I like it so much because of the sweeter sauce. Need to finish off the programs in the next couple of days and assemble them. Not sure of how much info we should put in. I've also got to update the website with additional information. Another dance lesson today, last one before the wedding tomorrow. Also wedding party gifts are on the way. Also putting together checklist, which reminds me we need to finish up the photo montage. I might be using an Airport Express to pipe audio to the DJ system, instead of running cables. Something else to play with. Also, I'm picking up my own RIZR, in a couple of preemptive stikes. My K750i seems on it's last legs. Case is falling apart, and it's reception fades comes and goes, and it randomly turned off by itself 3 times last Monday. And I'm not getting an iPhone until Tracy's contract is up which is November, so I need something to tide me over, and prices have fallen on the RIZR enough for me to talk myself into it. I would have wanted a PEBL, but there's no EDGE on it, or stuck with Sony Ericsson and gotten a Z310a, but that's not available yet.
3:00 PM Tuesday, May 8, 2007
94 hours from now I'm gonna be married. Finished up last couple of placecards last night, just have to put those in alphabetical order. Finished designing programs and printed out pages last night. Just have to get around to cutting and assembling them tonight. And then some additional handouts, probably, to design and print out, verses to some hymns, and some things to do in the tween, that time after the ceremony and before the reception. Also updated the website a little, lightened the background a bit, added a downloadable program on Ceremony, shuttle times on Accomodations, updated directions and the map on Directions. Probably adding an Overview and a Vendors page soon enough. Had our last dance lesson before the wedding. Love the latin dances. I like how most moves are transferable between steps. Random financial note: Apple rocks. I'm off work until the wedding, which is nice. Just trying not to break anything. Weather's quite nice. Oh, also tried out the vitaminenergy, the energy drink version of Vitamin Water. A little too much I think. I'll stick with the subtler Vitamin Waters instead. Headed out for final meeting with Jill at Bolingbrook Golf Club tomorrow morning.
9:50 PM Monday, May 14, 2007
I'll get around to full write ups on the Wedding and Reception, but for now, I'll leave it in the hands of our filmographer, Joel Peregrine|Wedding Films: Ceremony Highlights (mirror).
2:58 PM Tuesday, May 15, 2007
Went out last night with Cousin Arnold and Zack and Noah, coin and ring bearers extraordinaries. They had gone to the Field Museum with Tracy and then we met up at the Bubba Gump Shrimp Company for dinner before watching Spider-Man 3 at the IMAX. Fun to hang out with new family before they headed back to San Jose this morning. Kids are adorable too. Got to play the repeating game with Zach. Awesome. Spider-Man was ok, seemed a mish mash though. Too much going on. Or maybe it was not staying true to the comic as much. Not sure what it was, but just not as good. Also, seeing on IMAX meant seeing lots and lots of pores. Special effects have gotten pretty good, and I only noticed a computer generated person when Spidey saves Mary Jane at one point. She definitely looked fake. Also opened up some more envelopes. Still got lots to open up, and got to get rid of old before bringing in the new.
12:49 PM Wednesday, May 16, 2007
So there's a movie filming downtown, something with Angelina Jolie, I think it's Wanted, which actually sounds like a pretty cool movie. Anyway, they're closing lower Wacker all this week after 7pm for filming, which makes getting around here on a bus a little difficult when it gets close to that time. So I took the brown line home last night. First time in a while for that. Anyway, filming for the next 2 weeks or so. Last night Tracy made Chicken Teriyaki for dinner. She'd also done laundry, opened up more presents. I think we could both get used to her being a housewife, but I don't think we could live on my salary alone. But dinner on the table when I get home? Nice. Not having to worry about finding open laundry machines at night? Sweet. Just enjoy it while it lasts, I guess. Watched some more stuff off the DVR, House, Scrubs, The Office, and How I Met Your Mother. Also worked some more on the Photo Montage, for inclusion on the Wedding DVD. Got to figure out a little bit on how to work in Garage Band and Quicktime Pro for soundtrack work. Also need to figure out how I want to handle photos of the wedding, cause I definitely want any guests to be able to upload pictures, but I don't want to run out of space, either. So still pondering that.
12:29 PM Thursday, May 17, 2007
Piling up all the old kitchen stuff on the dining room table. And wow, there's a lot of stuff I've accumulated over the years. Like a lot of stuff. But it makes me happy, because it's out with the old and in with the new. Gives me a chance to streamline. Tracy's been opening gifts, so that's how it's getting started. She actually used some of the stuff last night to make dinner (steak, asparagus, home fries, and a sauteed tomato salad). While we ate we watched Mission Impossible: III. Made me want to watch Alias, or kind of felt like I was watching a movie version of Alias. Anyway, pretty good stuff. The Rabbit's Foot is right up there with the Process from The Spanish Prisoner and the Briefcase from Ronin.
12:40 PM Friday, May 18, 2007
Well, a week goes by in married life. And still married. Tracy once again made dinner last night, a red wine stew. Yum. Watched some House and Raines. Looked over some Honeymoon stuff. Odd news, one of the diamonds on her wedding band popped out, and then she managed to find it on the carpet later that day, but even then, they aren't supposed to do that. Hopefully James & Sons will be taking care of that today. Headed out to the Argao's tonight, taking the train since Tracy's taking my car. Headed back in tomorrow to pack. More Gallery twiddling on the wedding web site. Photos take up a lot of space. I just need to work on the theme before I release it to the public, and hopefully then guests could start uploading photos. Sunday we head out to Ft. Lauderdale to hop on the Caribbean Princess for a 7 day cruise around the Eastern Caribbean. 2 Days at sea, followed by a stop at St. Maarten, then St. Thomas, another day at sea, a day at the Princess Cays, then back to Ft. Lauderdale. Should be fun. Get to use our new luggage. Oh, and I went to Macy's yesterday to pick up a Hotel Collection Nickle Micro Cotton Blanket, because I knew they had one, and they weren't showing up as available on line, like that color was discontinued. Otherwise, not too much else on the docket. Supposedly the ship has internet access and a wireless cafe, but I'm not sure if we'll get around to updating.
3:38 PM Tuesday, May 29, 2007
Back from the Honeymoon. In short, it was awesome. Been away from cruising too long. Seas were a little rough a couple of days, but got some sun, sleep a fair amount, read some, eat some, and hang out with the new wife. Got some snorkeling, some kayaking, and a little sight-seeing done on the islands as well. Like with the Wedding, I'll get around to doing a full write up on the Memex about it. Also, when I get around to finishing up a theme for the gallery on the wedding website, I'll get Honeymoon photos posted there as well. But overall, a good time, had absolutely no problems the entire trip. No bad stories to tell, didn't fall off the boat, didn't get sick. Just a great way to relax. Got back on Sunday, picked up by the in-laws. Ended up getting dinner at Olive Garden before heading back in to the city. Unpacked a little, repacked a suitcase with dirty laundry to bring back to the in-laws for a BBQ on Monday. Also worked on a DVD in iDVD for a Honeymoon photo slideshow. The wedding AV has turned out to be a showcase of Apple products. Showed that off on Monday. Hit some golf balls as well, and hopefully getting some lessons soon along with the Russells. Watched some TV in there at some point, and plowed through my feed subscriptions in Google Reader. Lots of stuff, but nothing too exciting. Not much on the horizon. With the Wedding and the Honeymoon out of the way, no vacation days till a while, it's just back to the grind and getting used to being married.
2:10 PM Wednesday, May 30, 2007
Tracy broke out the knives to make dinner last night, along with the new grill pan and press. Awesome stuff. She also washed some new sheets, a duvet, and we broke out the new pillows and comforter. This is the good part of getting married. Watched some reruns over dinner, 30 Rock, The Office, and I finally caught the musical episode of Scrubs. Pretty good. Cleaned up a little, set up tMac, since that will be replacing Argon, the Cube. But got some work to do there. Started splitting up household chores, and I got vacuuming and the bathrooms. Skipped out on going running this morning, I'll get back to it tomorrow. Also found out how to do SEEM editing on the RIZRs, so fixed a couple things there (Tracy's charge light shows up when charging, our Sundays in the datebook are no longer in red, and I get to switch between Dialed, Received, and Missed calls in the recent call list. Hard to believe I have to do stuff like that get to UI somewhat close to what I had with Sony Ericsson phones. Oh well.
1:33 PM Thursday, May 31, 2007
After dinner, that Tracy made of course, a stuffed chicken breast and corn on the cob, we actually ventured outside instead of plopping down on the couch in front of the TV. Kind of nice. I remembered by summer is a little annoying, because of all the bugs and stuff. But it was nice. Maybe we'll get into the habit. We'll see. I didn't go running yesterday, but managed to get a run in this morning. Contemplating training for a marathon, just to have something new to plan for. Also, as I was trying to get our Photo Montage and Honeymoon Slideshow converted for use on the Apple TV, I found that if you used any iTunes bought songs, you can't export from Quicktime any files that use those songs. Annoying. But there's always ways around it. If I can ever get around to figuring out how to switch tMac to OS X Server, I'll try and consolidate iTunes and iPhoto and movies onto one machine and one account, but of course something that's accessible to my wife as well. Ugh. Trying to normalize data files isn't as easy as normalizing a database.
12:23 PM Friday, June 1, 2007
Another day, another dinner by Tracy. Tortellini with chicken and peapods. Good stuff. Dinner over Cars, finally. I didn't think it was gonna be that good, wasn't really buying into it at the start, but about halfway through I was hooked. I'm impressed. No bloopers at the end, which was a little disappointing. But the trailers where pretty cool. Watched some reruns of 30 Rock and The Office. I'm impressed by the rewatchability of The Office. I mean, this was an episode from this season. Did some vacuuming, as best as I could with all the boxes out and about. Lent out my tent and sleeping bag and sleeping pad to Bryan for Gender Blender, one of those tourneys I never made it to. Also pushed off some more Paganello merchandise on him. Finally made some headway on the theme for Gallery on the wedding website. Expect that to go up this weekend, hopefully. Got another checkup for the eyes tomorrow morning, then we're headed out to Woodstock for the rest of the weekend. Bringing out a bunch of old kitchen stuff.
9:00 AM Monday, June 4, 2007
Finished up making Gallery look nice within the wedding website. So go here to see. If you have photos you want to share, you can do that too.
  1. Click on the Register link on the bottom of the page.
  2. Fill in the info
  3. An email will be sent to you from weddinginfo@abando.com (it might go to your spam/bulk email folder, so check there as well. You need to activate your account via a link in that email before you can log in. So click that.
  4. Then you can log in via the Log In link at the bottom of the gallery page.
  5. You will be taken to your personal album under the By Guests album in the Gallery.
  6. You can hit the Add a Photo link in the white box to start adding photos, or the Edit link at the bottom.
  7. Thanks for sharing
  8. .
I've already uploaded photos from my Uncle Luis and Cousin Ron and Tracy's Cousin Arnold. Also available are some photos from our Honeymoon. I finished that up Friday night while watching something. I don't remember. Saturday the eyes checked out fine. Finally heard some cicadas. Haven't seen any swarms yet. Of course, haven't ventured into any fields or forests either. Did some shopping at Oakbrook Center, stopped by Prime Outlets in Huntley for some more shopping, all while Tracy and I had matching outfits on (light blue shirts with khaki shorts). Nice dinner of steak and crab legs with my parents, watched the Cavs win the East while my dad's H20 DirecTV receiever kept rebooting. Did some work on Sunday morning, more food from Mom for breakfast, before finally heading back into the city the scenic way, stopping by an REI in Northbrook to get Tracy a bike lock and helmet, and some grocery shopping at Treasure Island. Dinner was more leftovers from Mom's dinner from Saturday night, while watching Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest. You know, just another weekend of married life.
10:34 AM Tuesday, June 5, 2007
Sorry to all the Internet Explorer users who tried accessing the Wedding Gallery yesterday. I never tested it out under IE. Until yesterday, when I noticed it was severely broken. Looks fine in Firefox and Safari though. So you should all switch. Anyway, figured out some of the problems, uploaded a new theme last night, so you should at least be able to view the gallery in a decent manner now. Hope that hasn't stopped any of your from registering and uploading photos of the wedding. I've forgotten to mention that I'm currently reading Can I Keep My Jersey. Not bad, but a little repetitive. More leftovers for dinner last night, watched some TV, fixed the wedding gallery for IE. That's pretty much it. Supposed to start the marathon training today. I'll be trying Hal Higdon's Marathon Traing for Novices. Best part, I won't actually be training for a marathon, just want to be part of a training schedule. And get to eat what I want again.
1:21 PM Wednesday, June 6, 2007
Went for a 3 mile run. Indoors on a treadmill last night to start my Marathon Training. Exciting. I've got to calibrate my Nike+iPod before I start running outside, which I should be able to do after finally finding out where the 1/2 mile markers are along the lake front running path. Although the treadmill is nice because there's a TV there. I might have to convert some DVDs again for the PSP to watch while running that way. Made Lemon Chicken for dinner last night. Quick and easy. Easier than ever I think. I went running while Tracy watched John Tucker Must Die. I did catch the beginning and the end. Seemed pretty cute. Also put together Tracy's new bike, a Dynamic Bicycles Runabout Easy-Step. Had a couple issues with a few of the accessories and attachments which I don't think were tested on such a small frame or a step through frame. Need to get her a spot in the bike storage room in the building. It'll be kind of nice to have her riding along when I'm going on the long runs over the weekend.
4:25 PM Thursday, June 7, 2007
Ok, so I tried running on the lakefront path to calibrate my Nike+iPod, but I didn't go the right way, and never found the distance markers, which upset me when I was out last night, but now that I realize it's my fault, well, I just have egg on my face. Anyway, I'll try and do it right this time. Just need to follow the signs, that's all. Tracy's dinner last night was a nice pasta with Shiitakes in a lemon sauce with some of Amy's Sausages as well. Watched American Dreamz. That's Dreams with a z. Odd movie, funny in parts, and seems to end rather abruptly. Tracy took her bike out for a ride, and liked it, so I went ahead and ordered myself one as well. A Sprint that is. I'll start looking into what it would take to do some commuting, and looks like I could jet down Halsted, since that has bike lanes, or down the lake front path. Not sure. We'll see if that happens. But getting closer.
12:34 PM Friday, June 8, 2007
Sounds like another song by R. Kelly. But I found the lake front running trail going north (it bends towards the lake at Montrose). So I think the Nike+iPod is calibrated. But I think I need to do it a couple more times to make sure. And maybe reread the instructions. But after the 3mi last night? I was exhausted. Good thing I get today off before my first long run on Saturday: 6mi. That might be the longest I've ever run in one session. Exciting, I know. Ribfest this weekend. Wonder if Gale Street Inn will represent again, and take my title for best ribs? Tracy did some shopping yesterday, got us a laundry cart, broom, and other household stuff, along with a new tennis racket for me, so we can play tennis, or more accurately, so she can make me run all over the court. Watched Step Up with dinner, marinated flank steak and guacamole with Mojito's. Date night tonight going to see Knocked Up.
11:24 AM Monday, June 11, 2007
Friday night was date night. But a date night of second choices. I hopped on the 124 which I think slightly changed routes, so it's actually faster to get to River East now than before. Supposed to get dinner at Lizzie McNeil's, but the patio was packed, and we were hungry, so we went next door to the Chicago Burger Company. Yeah, a fast food place that's part of the Sheraton. Not that good. Did get some Fat Tire though. That was good. Wandered over around 7:45pm to get tickets to see Knocked Up. There was a showing at 8:15 and 9:15. So the next available show is 10:15. Awesome. So instead, we see Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End. Of course, it's not the DLP version, but rather a quite small theater. Odd for a huge summer blockbuster. But movie was good, and caught a bus home. Saturday went for my long run, 6mi. Rough. Tried calibrating the Nike+iPod, failed again. I'll just go by the mile markers on the running path. Afterwards, went to a local bike shop to see if we could get some rack extenders to get the rear rack on Tracy's bike, but didn't find any, but was able to fit it on anyway. Watched Accepted. Went to Ribfest via bus, met up with Jespy, got some ribs, drank some beers. Sunday had some tickets leftover, so Tracy and I rode bikes out back to Ribfest. It's still good on the second day. Got to see the Purina Dog Show. Want to get a Border Collie. If I had a yard. Still like Gale Street Inn. Watched a couple episodes of the Loop. I also have a some computer troubles, as I deleted some backups without realizing it was my only copy of some stuff. So I'm hoping I can track down the rest of it. But I think it was just music, most of which I have on CD, or from the iTunes Store. So I'm not that worried. Just don't have a consistent backup scheme. Which isn't good. I'll have to work on that.
1:40 PM Tuesday, June 12, 2007
Apple's WorldWide Developer Conference started yesterday with Steve Jobs giving the keynote. Haven't watched it via Quicktime yet, and probably won't get around to it. No need. Nothing too exciting. No hardware to get excited about. It was interesting to see the stock price drop $4 almost immediately after the keynote ended. I did try Safari on Windows though, and it's buggy. Not sure why I'll be using it. I did figure out a little bit more about my backup lost music and shows issues. Only missing a handful of episodes of Studio 60 and Veronica Mars, and those are on the Apple TV, so I can get to them if I need to. Joined up to a new bittorrent tracker site, which has a Dale Brown torrent which I've been jonesing for. Otherwise, not much else. Dinner was macaroni and cheese and kielbasa. Watched the last couple episodes of House, which seemed like a fitting series finale, except that it's a season finale.
12:28 PM Wednesday, June 13, 2007
Week 2 of Marathon Training. Simple 3 miles. Never realized that was to halfway between Diversey and Fullerton and from my place. Good to know. Not too bad, but I'm definitely a slow distance runner. I keep thinking that if I had to sprint with any of these runners passing me by, that I'd smoke 'em, but then again, maybe not. Maybe I'm just slower in my old age. Got a new bike, a Dynamic Bicycles Sprint, put that together. Need to get a rack and some panniers for commuting. Doing a lot of research on what to get. Wonder if I could someday bike out to Woodstock for fun. But I think I finally found a brick and mortar store to check some high quality touring bike stuff out at, Lickton's in Oak Park. Maybe we can make a run out on Saturday before Randolph Street Festival. Tracy made meatballs (recipe from Michael Chiarello), I made hotchocopots (recipe from Nigella Lawson) where were very similar to the Hot Molten Chocolate Cakes I make, (recipe from Emeril, I think). Watched some cooking shows like License to Grill where we found out you can grind dried mushrooms for spice rubs.
12:30 PM Thursday, June 14, 2007
Sorry to all the RSS readers. Had some disk quota issues with my hosting provider that I think should be cleared up now. Thanks to Russell for pointing that out. Another 3 miles running last night. Easier than Tuesday, that's for sure. I haven't been doing my other exercising (sit-up, push-up, pull-up routine), but I might have to start again. Tracy went to the Green City Market, brought back various sundries. And she had a craving for chicken salad so that was dinner (the kind with noodles). Tried to watch some Creature Comforts, which is kind of amusing, but got sick and tired of the audio drop outs from my cable box, so just quit that. Wish I could just get a Tivo. Or at least a cable box that didn't have audio drop outs. More frequently now, but I think it might have something to do with the 7-8 HD movies we've got saved on there. On a computer related note: I moved almost all my music off Carbon, so I now have lots of free space, which makes the machine run much faster, so much so that it feels like a new machine. Who would have thought 5GB of free space isn't enough for swapping.
12:10 PM Friday, June 15, 2007
Another 3 mile run last night. Went straight down inner lake shore and met up with the running path after Belmont. Super easy. Oh, forgot to mention that I stopped taking the bus home because of traffic. Roughly takes the same amount of time to take the El and walk, but at least I'm moving that way. The bus is fine for getting to work though. Leftovers for dinner, watched some TV. Date night tonight, going to wait for a table at Lizzie McNeil's and going to see Once, which I saw the trailer for last night. Looks good. Tomorrow going to try and catch Michael Chiarello at the Custer Street Fair in Evanston before heading out for a BBQ at Tracy's parents place. Then on Sunday headed up to Woodstock, err, Huntley, for another BBQ and Father's Day with my dad. Also, we'll be switching cars, and I'll be leaving Puck at my parents place, and bring Tracy's Volvo back to the city. Want to try and hit the Cascade Drive-In Saturday night, but not sure if that's gonna happen. Oh, and need to fit a 7 mile run in Saturday morning. Busy.
3:57 PM Saturday, June 16, 2007
I know, a Saturday post. Go figure. Didn't go to the casual ultimate birthday party last night. Date night instead. Got to Lizzie McNeil's early enough to snag a patio seat. Nice. Menu's a little light, but the chicken fingers Tracy had were pretty good and the ham and cheese on a croissant I had was decent, maybe because of the horseradish. But they had Bass and Harp so that's all good. Afterwards, saw Once. Fabulous movie. Indie style. But I'll be getting the soundtrack. Definitely. It's really good. I love when the creative process is captured and shared. Goosebumps. Today went running, 7 miles for Marathon Training. Rough. Don't know when I'm going to call it quits, but I wouldn't be too surprised that I couldn't make it. Then we went to Custer Street Fair up in Evanston. Got to see a Michael Chiarello cooking demonstration. Seems like a guy I'd want to hang out with. Funny. Real. Didn't get any real festival food, no funnel cake, elephant ear, or corn dog. Then headed down to Tracy's parents place for a BBQ tonight.
2:29 PM Monday, June 18, 2007
To finish off the weekend, BBQ at Tracy's parents place Saturday night for Father's Day. Nice dinner on the deck. Sunday morning tried to find someplace to get some breakfast, ended up at Pancake Cafe, where someone switching stations in the kitchen resulted in our order getting lost, a 45 minute wait for food, and getting comped by the manager. That kind of sucked. Then headed up to Huntley for the FVFACM picnic and to see my parents. Good times. If a little too hot. Then back into the city, only in Tracy's car, (my mom drove Puck back to Woodstock). Watched Kiss Kiss Bang Bang which was really good, along with The Loop, Entourage, and the Star Wars episode of Robot Chicken, which wasn't nearly as good as I hoped. Tracy and I are thinking of going for a bike ride tonight, if it stays dry.
10:38 AM Tuesday, June 19, 2007
Didn't go for a bike ride with Tracy last night, since it started raining on my way home from work. Maybe Friday or this weekend hopefully. She did make some orzo concoction with mushrooms which was pretty good, and she had pan seared scallops with a balsamic reduction, while I had a breaded halibut fillet. Watched last week's Hell's Kitchen, then How I Met Your Mother, before I did a Factory Reset on the DVR, hoping to get rid of the continued audio drop outs on HD channels. Annoying. I just realized that Lost is available in Widescreen from the iTunes Store, previously it wasn't. That's good. Tempting. Oh, and I've started reading the Death Gate Cycle. My Sony Reader is definitely getting a workout. It's interesting seeing all the trailers around downtown for the filming of The Dark Knight. I walk down Randolph, pass a bunch of lighting set up on the street, and did some reading that supposedly the Tumblers are in the garage near Franklin. Still, haven't seen anyone famous yet.
1:06 PM Wednesday, June 20, 2007
More Marathon Training last night. Only 3 miles. Again. Hard to believe that I consider that a short run now. Go figure. Tracy made chicken soup (with real stock) and some bread salad from Michael Chiarello's cooking demonstration from last weekend. Good stuff. Watched most of Eight Below as well. Had some halo-halo. Decided to go ahead and get Lost:Season 3 and Heroes from the iTunes Store. I had some gift certificates leftover, so went ahead with that. Also need to really figure out my media storage layout issues. Omnigraffle to the rescue! Or at least pretty pictures of the layout anyway. 4 miles tonight. Lots of iPhone news and activity, and Apple stock is all over the place. Hard for me to get excited when I know I won't be getting one for a while. Bought chips and cookies to store at work for lunch, so all I've got to do is bring the sandwiches.
12:51 PM Thursday, June 21, 2007
For some reason, well, maybe not quite unknown to me, I was exhausted last night. Went for a 4 mile run after work for Marathon Training and then Tracy and I rode our bikes to Yak-Zies Bar and Grill for dinner. Tracy was craving wings. Note: the mediums are like fried chicken wings, the hot are pretty good. But after that? Exhausted. Maybe it was the bike ride, but it's not like we went very far, nor pedaled very hard. Also, it was the first time taking out my new bike, so I was scared the entire time of having it stolen. But that didn't happen. We also got to use our lights, which was pretty cool, but useless to us for seeing, but good for being seen. Also, as I looked up, it's the law. I think I also need a rear reflector, but I think that depends on the language of the law. Hoping to finally check out some panniers this weekend, if we get out in time. After I get some of those, and a rack, I'll be all set to try commuting to work. So there's the whole The Dark Knight filming going on near work, right? Well, there's a couple threads on SuperHeroHype Boards about filming in Chicago. One of them actually reference one of my posts. Odd seeing that. Anyway, I haven't seen anything really new. Just that they had directions for extras last night on the corner of Franklin and Washington to food and stuff. Didn't take a picture though.
10:13 AM Friday, June 22, 2007
Nice to know that I'm not running tonight. Need it. The short 3 miler last night was pretty rough. Good thing it's only a 5 miler tomorrow. The joys of Marathon Training and having an outlet for whining. Tracy made dinner, as usual: pork chops with a mango chutney and a spinach salad. I had halo-halo for dessert, after picking up some creamed corn to give it that extra umph. Watched The Office marathon, and Tracy realized that Jim and Pam are the new Ross and Rachel. So, next season they'll get together, break up at the end of the season, dance around it for the rest of the seasons, and get together at the series finale. Whoops, did I just spoil Friends for anyone? Running into space issues on the Apple TV, considering that I've got 2 full seasons to go through, plus the second halves of Studio 60 and Veronica Mars, and no real easy way to make playlists to sync that make sense (say, unwatched episodes in episode order?), makes me think about upgrading the hard drive in it. Another movie night tonight, finally going to try and see Knocked Up. Not sure where dinner's gonna be though.
3:16 PM Monday, June 25, 2007
Finally went and saw Knocked Up on Friday night. Go figure, had to wait in line, like it was a premiere or something, before they'd let us up into the theater. Also, the 8:15pm on a Friday night, 3 weeks after opening, it sold out. I'm impressed. Granted, I think it's a pretty good date movie. I think. Anyway, we went to India House for dinner before. The movie was funny, but I expected more, I guess. Not as funny as my expectations. Hard to see Marshall as anyone but Marshall. After the movie we walked down to Randolph and Franklin to check out the filming of The Dark Knight, but it was too early, and nothing really was going on. So we just went home. Saturday did my 5 miles in the morning, lounged about for a bit before heading out to Oak Park so I could check out some Ortlieb panniers. They're pretty cool. I'll be getting some soon. Then wandered around a bit before heading back in and stopping at Sam's Wine and Spirits looking for some Raki, which after looking it up is like Turkish Ouzo. Tracy had seen a Thirsty Traveler episode on it. We got some Arack instead, which is from Lebanon, so it's not the same but of the same family. She made mechado for dinner, and I whipped up some chocolate mousse for use with the puff pastry and whipped cream maker to make Napoleons. We watched The Weather Man finally. Love Chicago based movies. Sunday more lounging, headed out to check out the Gay Pride Parade, did some cleanup, watched Waiting... and Entourage. Tracy was gonna make a run out the 'burbs today, and we're headed out to dinner with my parents for my mom's birthday tomorrow.
2:31 PM Tuesday, June 26, 2007
Went for a 3 mile run last night for Marathon Training because we're going to dinner at Lou Malnati's for my mom's birthday tonight. Tracy made fried rice for dinner. Watched Annapolis, The Loop, and Good Eats. Looks like the iPhone hype is out and about. The guided tour and Macworld Video Podcast intro look great on the Apple TV. Took me a while to figure out how to take a video podcast and turn it into a regular Quicktime movie (so I could make it part of the fake iPhone TV Show for use on the Apple TV. Anyway, looking forward to playing with one, eventually. I wonder how they'll be on display at Apple Stores. Sad to see Apple stock taking a little hit today. Seems a little odd. Getting close to having an organization system for media and media backups. Trying to organize picking up my dad's new TV before the RWIP party on Saturday. Picked up some more Thera Tears eye drops, preservative free, because I was running out. The ones with preservatives just don't do it for me. And I'm trying.
11:56 AM Wednesday, June 27, 2007
Three times. That's how much longer it took to get out to Lou Malnati's in Elk Grove Village. I thought, with the Cubs game, and evening traffic, that I'd avoid the highways. So I took the back roads. Bad idea. Up to Petersen then over to Touhy and then 72. And instead, 2 lights were out on Petersen, the major one at Petersen and Cicero. Awesome. 1 1/2 hours. Took 30 minutes taking the highway back, and that includes a slight slowdown at the O'Hare interchange, where the traffic sign noted an accident and at the end, No Smoking. Seemed a little odd until we passed all the emergency vehicles and caught a wiff of gasoline. That would explain the No Smoking line. Anyway, my parents and Joy ended up waiting an hour before Tracy and I got there, but we were only a half hour late, they were a half hour early. Food was good, but they didn't realize there's Lou Malnati's all around the Chicagoland area, including some that deliver to the condos. The original is actually in Lincolnwood. Watched another episode of The Loop and Good Eats before bed.
11:40 AM Thursday, June 28, 2007
Really? Doing a 4 mile run for Marathon Training last night and managed to turn my left ankle in the first mile. Awesome. Finished up the run though, didn't think it was that bad. And it's fine, if I'm walking in a straight line on level ground. But going down the stairs to catch the bus? Not very happy. Running to catch an empty 135? Not happy. I hadn't sprained an ankle in like the last 2 years of playing ultimate, and I do in my 4th week of marathon training. Go figure. But walking from the bus to work, I found it amusing that both my ankles hurt, the right from the Potlatch injury from 2004 and the left from last night. Awesome. Dinner by Tracy was homemade pesto and fried chicken. Watched Four Brothers and more Good Eats. Started working on the Apple TV upgrade. Kind of annoying making sure that I have valid backups of my iTunes Store purchases. Have to double and triple check that files are in places that I think they are. One instance where the Windows Explorer would come in handy.
12:13 PM Friday, June 29, 2007
Didn't run last night, instead wandered over to Northerly Island for the first time, met up with Tracy who brought the picnic spread to hang out and eavesdrop on the Ben Folds Five and John Mayer concert. It was cold. Good thing I had my sweater on me, but I really wish I had a hat. Lots of kids about. No wine though, the cops were actively checking. It got too cold, so we got up and walked around to warm up, and to get away from the kids, saw a bunch of bunnies playing, heard Ben Folds start up, set up again on the marina side of the island. After Ben finished up, there were firetrucks, ambulances, and the scuba team that showed up, along with a helicopter. Not sure if it had anything to do with the concert. Also, I haven't seen any news about it on any websites yet. Odd. But we left around 9:15pm to head home. Caught the 146. Noticed the line at the Apple Store already. Amazing. Made some pastry cream, baked some puff pastry, used some squashed raspberries Tracy got from the Green City Market to make some dessert. Easy and good. Watched another episode of The Loop. Also tried to keep track of the NBA Draft via Opera Mini. Kind of annoying. Would have been great to have an iPhone for that. Flying out of MDW tonight on Southwest to Dulles (IAD) to visit Lisa and Ryan for the weekend. Back late Sunday.
3:35 PM Monday, July 2, 2007
Thanks to Lisa and Ryan for putting us up this weekend. Good times. Flew out Friday night, saw a little bit of the iPhone mayhem at the State St. AT&T store. Still haven't seen one in person, or actually even on the street yet. Got in pretty late, hung out till 3am or so, then sleep. Woke up after sleeping in, which is more than I could do at home, and Ryan had made breakfast. We then headed to the Mall where there was some Folklore festival to check out, except it wasn't like a Chicago street festival, with alcohol and food on the streets. Nope, they had designated areas, named by Ryan as Alcoholland, for food and drink. The rest of it was little educational booths about the 3 different cultures, this year Northern Ireland, Mekong River, and Colonial Virginia. So pretty educational. Then we found out who the Smithsonians were named after, and then wandered up towards Dupont Circle to maybe catch a comedy show, which ended up being sold out, so we followed Tracy in her quest for a bar with a huge beer list that she vaguely remembered from her time there. And she found it. It's the Brickskeller and the beer list is huge. Tracy might have found her new favorite in Xingu, a black lager from Brazil. Afterwards, we went searching for food, and found a nice Indian place. Jackpot. Managed to get the car out of the garage before it closed for the evening with 20 minutes to spare, and then went through a sobriety checkpoint, my first ever, without stopping, because they weren't stopping people yet. Sunday another breakfast by Ryan and then some supply shopping to steam some blue crabs. That was awesome. Then a dip in the pool before heading back to Dulles for the flight home. Odds and ends: I thought I didn't have my sunglasses, so I ended up buying a pair from Target on Sunday, and when I looked for them after we got home, I found them in my backpack. I played with their cats, Honey and Hobbes, all weekend long. EDGE via the RIZR bluetooth tethering to the MacBook isn't that bad. Definitely usable. There was a Southwest flight from Dulles to Midway that left 15 minutes before our Southwest flight from Dulles to Midway. My only frame of reference for DC is from movies like The Recruit or books by Ludlum. One annoying thing about my Sony Reader: having to turn it off when taking off or landing in a plane because it has an on/off switch. Forgot to mention that we got a burrito from Taco Burrito Palace II on the way home, and it was super busy at 11pm on a Sunday night. Crazy.
3:57 PM Tuesday, July 3, 2007
Dinner by Tracy last night was lamb chops with a basil/mint rub/spread, couscous and spinach with prosciutto and caramelized onions. We watched the rest of the The Loop, which is now over, which is sad because it had some pretty sweet HD views of Chicago, but it wasn't that good of a show. But on one episode set on an airplane Sam sits next to Mark Cuban, who was flying coach. Really? Mark Cuban? On a sitcom? How does that happen? Keep seeing previews for New Amsterdam, which looks pretty interesting, along with Kelsey Grammer in Back to You. Also went down to do some bike maintenance, blow up some tires, check on Tracy's brake cables. The regular. Would be nice if I could do it in a backyard, or a driveway, or even in the condo with a bike stand, but nope, down in the garage next to the bike parking lot. Supposed to go check out some fireworks tonight. I'm having a little issue with upgrading the hard drive on the Apple TV, which is annoying, but I'm gonna try a factory restore and see if that works.
12:50 PM Thursday, July 5, 2007
Tuesday night had some coconut milk adobo by Tracy for dinner before heading out on our bikes to check out the fireworks from around Diversey Harbor. Ok place, but the buildings kind of got in the way. I forget if I need to get a bell to be bike legal in the city, but I put one on Tracy's. Wednesday was a lazy day. Got up, kept working on upgrading the hard drive in the Apple TV, made some waffles with one of the many wedding presents we have, and plopped in front of the TV. Finally watched Idlewild, which wasn't nearly as good as I thought it'd be, and ended up falling asleep for the last half or so. Took a nap. Made some beef/pepper stir fry for dinner while watching The Office before bed. Finally successfully upgraded the Apple TV following the Awkward TV wiki instructions. Going to Taste of Chicago tonight. Going to see The Police tomorrow night at Wrigley Field (stumbled across some tickets from a friend of a co-worker).
12:58 PM Friday, July 6, 2007
Went to the Taste of Chicago last night. Got some goat from a couple places, which was pretty good. We were looking for some of the more unconventional food, you know, something that isn't Italian or carnival food, but didn't find too much. The curry fries from Abbey Pub weren't that good, not a whole lot, and not enough curry. So kind of disappointing. And tonight Tracy and I are on the field for The Police concert at Wrigley Field. Should be fun, and I think, my kind of crowd. Also nice that it's down the street, we can walk, and don't have to worry about any kind of parking. We're supposed to look for closet organizers this weekend, checking out The Container Store somewhere. And I'll be pushing to get to the drive-in, even though it is far away. They're showing Transformers and Live Free or Die Hard. Sounds ideal for a drive in set. Was planning on running the Muddy Buddy with Russell for Tony's birthday, but registrations had closed so not this year. Oh, and it's Sandblast this weekend, but I probably won't be stopping by.
11:55 AM Monday, July 9, 2007
Official Photos from JR Geoffrion are available in the Wedding Gallery. With that out of the way, a recap of the weekend. Friday night The Police concert. Awesome. I haven't listened to some of that stuff in a while, and got introduced back in Jr. High or High School by my brother. It was a trip hearing that music live. Seriously. Awesome. Also interesting was the crowd makeup. But the people there were definitely into the music. Also, the crowd in the stands didn't really seem to get into it until one of the more popular songs was played. Then they stood up. We, on the field, had been standing since the start. Took some pictures with the phone, and I'll try and get them up soon. Also, saw my first iPhone in the wild, some guy a couple rows in front of us had one and was taking pictures. Just had frozen pizza for dinner before and after the show. Saturday did a test commute to work on my bike, which was pretty easy. About 30-40 minutes. Not bad. And depending on traffic, faster than a bus or the el. After that, ventured up to Northbrook Court, lunch at Taco Bell, finally played with an iPhone (verdict: I can wait), then headed over to The Container Store to check out some closet organizers. Got one planned out, but had to recheck the measurements because the ones I had didn't make sense. Ended up the closet is kind of misshapen. Tracy's dinner was steak and green beans and mashed potates. I tried making brownies, but ended up over cooking them so they came out a little dry. Watched The Devil Wears Prada. Always odd to see Vincent Chase in another movie. Sunday went up to Wilmette to pick up wedding photos from JR. They look awesome. We'll soon have a link to a more professional online place to order prints from. Then another trip to The Container Store to actually buy the closet organizer, then a trip to Highland Park for lunch at The Corner Bakery while looking at a slideshow of the photos, before picking up the closet organizer and then home. Tracy made dinner of gnocchi alfredo with broccoli rabe and a tomatoe basil salad and grilled chicken breast. I tried to make pecan tarts, but overcooked and caramelized them instead. Watched The Office, Entourage, and Trojan War. Put the Tubus Cargo rack on the bike, setup the handlebar bag, gave it a test run. This morning rode in to work on my bike. Awesome.
10:54 AM Tuesday, July 10, 2007
Need to get fenders on my bike. The commute into work was nice and easy. I'm going to enjoy riding. Riding with panniers makes it a little harder though, but super easy to haul things around. I had checked the forecast, saw that it was supposed to rain, but only a 40% chance. And when I looked out the window, the sun was shining. So I went for it. Of course, around 3pm or so, the skies darkened and opened up and it started pouring. Sweet. Maybe it'll clear up by the time I had to ride home. No deal. So I rode home in the rain, not bother to change into workout clothes. I put my clip on red taillight on the rack, loaded up the bike, and away I went. No problems, except that somewhere along the way I lost the taillight. Whoops. And the dirt up my back from the rear tire without a fender. That kind of sucked too. But other than that, it was OK. I think I need to cut over from Dearborn on Huron or Chicago. The panniers are definitely waterproof, which is good. But I'm gonna like biking. As soon as I get fenders on it. Which might be today. Anyway, after getting home soaked last night, took a shower, had dinner by Tracy, the Filipino ground beef, potatoes and peas mixture over rice, while watching Monsoon Wedding with an Almond Cream Soda which tastes like cotton candy. Took the bus to work this morning which broke down after getting onto Wacker, so I just walked the rest of the way.
3:08 PM Wednesday, July 11, 2007
Got off the el at Wellington on the way home from work yesterday. Was looking for GuS for Tracy at a couple places, and instead picked up Xingu from Binny's along with another sparkling sake. I think that's a new thing. At least to Chicago, but then again, I haven't perused the liquor aisles in a while. Also stopped by Johnny Sprockets to pick up another Blackburn Mars 3.0 taillight to replace the one that fell off my bike on Monday. Leftovers for dinner. Watched Glutton for Punishment on the Food Channel. Fairly interesting about a guy that's uber competative, and in this case, took part in a chile eating competition. The episode I'm looking forward to involves wine drinking and running. Sounds like Paganello. Then I spent a couple hours putting fenders on my bike. Annoying. Don't think it was made for fenders. But I finagled a way, and got them on. Should probably get some P-Clamps instead of zip ties for the front fender. And I looked up the instruction manual today and realized I forgot an additional piece which might help with fitting on the rear fender. Whoops. So, with the fenders on, I biked to work today. No rain forecasted, but I'm completely prepared. Supposed to head up to Hopleaf tonight for dinner with Russell, probably bike up there too. Al and Nicole are in town for a conference or something. Dinner with the family on Friday.
4:39 PM Thursday, July 12, 2007
I like bike riding in the city. Of course I'm late to the party, and I never really took it that seriously before, but it's awesome. It's a great way to get around the city. Up and down to work is easy. Went to Hopleaf last night, just up Clark, that was easy too. Hopleaf is great. Good food, not that expensive, and good beer list. Had myself a couple Ephemeres. Good to see Russell again, hadn't seen him since the wedding. Otherwise, had a teeth bleaching session this morning that ran a little long. Biked in to work, stopped by Home Depot to pick up some bike supplies: zip ties, p-clamps, and loctite. Took a lot longer to find that stuff than I hoped. Was a little worried about the rain, or more like looking forward to the rain today, since I have fenders, but no such luck. That's what I needed the stuff for from Home Depot, front fender attachement. Always nice to cool off in the server room after biking in. Other news? Joined my first ever fantasy football league. Sweet. Should be interesting, for me and my lack of sports knowledge and experience.
11:57 AM Friday, July 13, 2007
Dinner by Tracy last night was the rest of the gnocchi with a mushroom/onion sauce type thing, green beans, and grilled chicken breast. Good as always. Watched The Office, Scrubs, and some Good Eats, cut down my front fender support a little bit, vacuumed. Pretty simple night. Took the bus in this morning, since the family is headed to Nacional 27 for dinner tonight. Tracy and I might try and be extras for Rory's First Kiss, there's a call for extras tomorrow morning. Figure we'll try and hit that before heading out to the wedding of one of Tracy's former co-workers from CVS. I think the Chicago Speedway is getting some use this weekend so that might make travel down 55 a little difficult. Headed out to Woodstock on the way to Lake Geneva on Sunday for another family dinner. Got to start putting together the closet organizer, might get that started while Tracy goes to visit her brother in North Carolina next week. That and watch all the movies that are collecting on the DVR.
12:13 PM Monday, July 16, 2007
Friday night walked up to Nacional 27 after work, had a Mojito at the bar while waiting for the family to show up. Found out that Al and Nicole had their first date there 9 years ago, and there wasn't much up in that neighborhood at the time, and the inside of the restaurant looks pretty much the same. Food was good, as usual, but their sorbets were fresh, too fresh, like the Key Lime was too tart for my taste. Got dropped off at home before the doctors all went back to Woodstock. Saturday Tracy and I went down via bike to sign up to be extras for Rory's First Kiss, then rode up to Bucktown for lunch at the Northside Bar and Grill. Found a couple places that sell GuS (The Goddess and Grocer and Olivia's Market). I think I found Violet Crumble at The Goddess and Grocer, but I haven't tried it yet to be sure. That's exciting. Then back home where I finally got around to making sure that Tracy's rear brake was fit properly and wasn't engaged all the time. So that should make her bike riding experience better. Then we headed south for the Daphne's (one of Tracy's techs from CVS wedding). Afterwards we got some more food from El Mariachi in Calumet City, one of Tracy's favorites from her time down there. Sunday we headed out to Woodstock, had lunch with the family at Chop Suey Hut, managed to spill grease from fried chicken all over myself, napped a bit, then drove up to Lake Geneva for dinner at the Grandview Restaurant at the Geneva Inn. Good place, great appetizers, great food. Would be tempting to go up for a weekend, but it's a little pricey. Drove back into the city, watched some Entourage. Taking forever to import photos to create a Wedding album via Mpix. Rode the bike in this morning, and actually hoping for some rain, so I can see how effective the fenders are.
1:39 PM Tuesday, July 17, 2007
No rain yesterday on my bike ride home. No rain on my way to work this morning. Starting to wonder when I'll get to test out the fenders. Tracy made Nilaga for dinner last night, she's a big fan of bone marrow that turns to butter after cooking. We watched Burn Notice, Tracy worked a little on our wedding polaroid album, and I tried to work a little on where to go for a wedding photo book. And then she had to pack, cause she left today to visit her brother in North Carolina for a week. So, that means I'm on my own for food and entertainment. If it doesn't rain, I'll be headed up to City North to see Ratatouille with Bryan, otherwise, I'll head home to watch stuff on the DVR after getting soaked. Tempted to get a cyclo-computer because I have no idea what my cadence is, but that seems like a silly reason to get a computer, except the cheap ones are pretty cheap.
10:21 AM Wednesday, July 18, 2007
So with Tracy gone for a week, returned to the Fortress of Solitude: closed up the blinds, started watching TV, picked up some bachelor food, frozen pizza, mac & cheese, ice cream, and settled in for the evening. Watched All In, which I recorded because the little info sounded interested, a medical student uses her poker skills to pay her way, and then I started watching, and it stars Dominique Swain, which is interesting, and then in the opening scene there's Mark Cuban sitting at the table. Seriously? That's the second TV entertainment program that I've seen him on, Loop being the first. Weird. Anyway, it's a bad movie. I should have just watched Rounders again instead. Watched Eureka too. Pretty good as usual. Wish they'd put up a season pass on iTunes Store, then I wouldn't have to record it anymore. Also wish they'd do the same for Burn Notice. I actually think things look better from the iTunes Store compared to non-HD cable. Finally uploaded some more photos to the gallery, had a little issue on the server side before. Had to do some work stuff as well, which took longer than expected. Still waiting for the rains to come. Oh, and just had leftover nilaga for dinner last night.
12:53 PM Thursday, July 19, 2007
Didn't get rained on yesterday on the ride home from work. Storms started after I got back inside. No rain this morning on the way in. I probably would have taken the bus if it was raining. Not sure if I'm comfortable walking through the lobby and into the elevator at work dripping water. Mac & Cheese and kielbasa for dinner. Was going to get a gyro, but it was raining out. Watched Beerfest, funny movie. Or course I was drinking a beer while watching. Otherwise, not much going on.
12:10 PM Friday, July 20, 2007
So I finished up my first full week of commuting by bike to work. Awesome. Weather was great today. I decided to skip on the panniers and just go with a handlebar bag. No need for rain gear, and cool enough that I didn't feel like bringing a change of clothes. And it's a Friday. I just need to put on the lock holders on my frame, instead of strapping them to the rack. But I left about an hour later than usual, and I saw way more bikers than I have seen all week. Amazing. Couple things I noticed: I'd say 15% wear helmets. That's just stupid. And maybe 7% stop at stop signs. Also stupid. Mostly backpacks, only a few panniers. Lots of SS/Fixies too. Anyway, I'm gonna try and keep it up. It's a good way to get my exercise in. Especially since I've stopped my Marathon Training. Yeah, I've stopped that, ever since I heard about how Lisa and a friend of Ryan were never them same after running, and that I should listen to my body, and if it hurts, I should stop. So I stopped. And I'm in to biking now instead. My right ankle still hurts, but it might forever hurt, but nothing else does, no impact jarring joints, and I spin in a lower gear (instead of mashing in a higher gear) enough that my knees don't bother me. Biking's great. Watched In the Mix last night, finally got my gyro. Got to go back up to The Container Store tomorrow to pick up one last piece for the closet organization system. Also need to remember to take before and after pictures. I plan on getting some Sparkling Sake from Trader Joe's and check out the iPhone again while I'm up there.
1:29 PM Monday, July 23, 2007
Friday night had leftover nilaga for dinner, watched A Scanner Darkly and The Oh in Ohio. Saturday had to do some work for work after trying to take the existing closet apart. Figured out I needed some paint, and a mini crow bar, so picked that up when I had to go get the last remaining piece for the new closet system, a jewelry box shelf. Also got some garbage cans at The Container Store, picked up some more Sparkling Sake from Trader Joe's, didn't go to Apple Store to play with the iPhone, stopped by a Lowes for the hardware stuff, dropped by REI since it was there and finally got myself a bell for my bike, along with a CO2 inflater. Picked up some Burger King on the way back in. Took apart the closet, which is much easier when you have the right tools for the job. Spackled and painted, watched, Mystery Men and a couple episodes of Veronica Mars. Sunday after mass made some turnovers, let the oven self clean, put another coat of paint in the closet, watched Scarface, then installed the closet system. Interesting that the wall isn't completely flat, it bows out slightly, which means the hanging standards aren't flush against the wall. Amusing. Also, the wall between the closet and the bathroom is very thin. But got it all up and hung everything up. Need to get a nice stepping stool for the closet to reach the high shelves. Had some pizza and watched The Guardian before bed. Need to watch Miami Vice tonight, clean up the kitchen, before Tracy gets back tomorrow.
4:24 PM Tuesday, July 24, 2007
Yay! Tracy's back in town. We're supposed to hit the Chicago Outdoor Film Festival tonight for Double Indemnity, but her flight was a little late, but I think we'll still make it. Last night did my exercises, greased up the bikes hoping to fix the odd clunking sound coming from my bottom bracket, pumped up the tires, made myself a frozen pizza and watched Miami Vice. On the ride in the bike still clunks, so did some research, and might be a loose cup in my bottom bracket. Hoping to figure this one out on my own. Also cause bike shops are supposedly fearful of shaft drives. Also left a little later today, around 7:30am, and saw more bikers, so the increase in bikers I saw is due to the time, and not necessarily the weather or day of the week. Closet is still hanging, which is good. I forgot to take before photos, but I'll take some after photos when I get my camera back today. Also I've started looking for a new digital camera, just looking though. I realized that a large part of what makes a photo look more professional is a large aperture to layer focus levels. Point and shoots, for the most part, I don't think handle that very well, but I could be wrong. Not that I'll be getting a new camera anytime soon.
9:02 AM Wednesday, July 25, 2007
Didn't end up going to the Chicago Outdoor Film Festival last night. Tracy didn't get back till later, so we just stayed in. Ended up watching Little Miss Sunshine and Entourage instead. I had leftover frozen pizza for dinner, Tracy made some sauteed spinach with some North Carolina barbecue pork she brought back. Really need to take a look at my bottom bracket, but I think I need some tools to do it, but first I need to figure out what kind of cranks I have. Probably end up getting some more bike tools including a bike stand, so I can do some more of our own maintenance work. Also, I should start documenting it, since there's not a whole of info available online. Wish I had my own garage or backyard to work in, though.
1:27 PM Thursday, July 26, 2007
Didn't ride my bike in to work today. I'm getting worried about the creaking in the crank. Now it creaks when I put weight on either pedal. Ugh. I'll see if I can drag it over to the bike hut by the Lake Shore Path soon, or a bike store maybe. Besides that, I thought it was going to rain today, which of course it didn't. It's beautiful out. I should have rode in anyway. But the bus wasn't bad. Caught the second in a pack, got a seat. Got to read, which is good. Or course the ride in was never the problem, it's getting home that takes forever. Last night Tracy and I went to the Whole Foods that opened up on Halsted. Awesome. It was opening day for them, so they were pretty busy, lots of people just walking around it seemed, trying out samples, not necessarily buying anything. Definitely be going there pretty often. We made meatballs for dinner, wanting spaghetti, but we didn't have any, so it was some other pasta. Since that's all we were craving, couldn't justify going out for that. Watched Burn Notice to cap off the night. Also saw that Apple stock jumped in after hours trading after they announce quarterly earnings last night. Should have bought in with the $3-4 drop earlier this week. Today, it's up right now around $8.
1:34 PM Friday, July 27, 2007
Went out last night. Tracy made dinner, tapas style: carpaccio, filet, mashed white beans, some bitter greens, corn tomato salad. Good all around. Watched Glutton for Punishment, 30 Rock and part of The Office before Lisa and Ryan showed up. Had a drink, then went out to meet up with one of Lisa's friends, Jessie and Dan (I think). Wandered west looking for someplace to get a drink, found Joe's on Broadway to be too much of a neighborhood bar, Lakeview Broadcasting Co to be too clubby, and ended up at Murphy's Bleachers in time for them to stop outside seating and start to sweat inside. Ended up going back to Jessie and Dan's place just up the street to hang out some more, and play with their dog Teela. Got to tire her out playing tug-o-war, which was awesome. On the walk back to our place picked up some mexican food. Lisa and Ryan just ended up sleeping on the floor/couch. Not much planned for tonight, as I'm pretty tired, and tomorrow heading out to Venetian Night, hopefully early enough to grab some good seats, spend some time outside, play with some friends. Also want to bring the bike over to the little bike hut on the lake shore path across Lake Shore Drive to get the cranks checked out, hopefully tomorrow.
2:06 PM Monday, July 30, 2007
Friday night headed home a little earlier, stopped by Binny's and picked up some more Xingu. Don't remember what was dinner, and I'm sure we watched some stuff on TV before bed. Saturday slept in, did some grocery shopping, made some food to bring to Venetian Night, which ended up being just Tracy and me. We rode our bikes down the lake shore path, up until Navy Pier, when the foot traffic got bad enough we had to walk. And this was around 6:45ish. We settled down in a spot on the grass just north of Buckingham Fountain on the east side of Lake Shore Drive. It was pretty packed already. Didn't end up a good spot to view the boats, not sure where that might be, and we had a partially obscured view of the fireworks too. I'm thinking we'd have to show up in the afternoon to get prime seats. Instead of trying to fight the crowds north on the lake front, we went into the city and took my work path home, up Dearborn over to Wells, Lincoln, and Halsted. Not necessarily the smartest thing to do with Tracy for her first ride through city streets, but we survived. Also ended up using the bigger Back Ortlieb Classic Rollers panniers instead of the front ones I've been using for commuting. Awesome. Between the two of use we could bring a pretty healthy picnic spread by bike. Sunday more sleeping in, watched The Illusionist, went to mass, a couple more grocery trips in there, had some crab for dinner, and watched some of the My Boys marathon in prep for the second season starting tonight. Also finally compiled gift lists and will start doing thank-you's.
2:58 PM Tuesday, July 31, 2007
I think my bike maintenance tools and stuff got delivered today, which means I'll finally get a chance to figure out what's creaking on the bike. Hasn't stopped me from riding it though. Tracy made a crab salad for dinner last night, made me go out and get some bread to eat with it. Watched Entourage (funny because I first heard of furries way back in college) and another episode of My Boys. I showed Tracy how to use the small panniers on her bike, so when she brings stuff down to the Chicago Outdoor Film Festival tonight, she won't have to bring a backpack or anything. Of course that means I'm packing the big bags, which is fine. Helps me to be prepared for any eventuality. Anyway, that's what we're supposed to do tonight.
10:08 AM Wednesday, August 1, 2007
So we did make it to the Chicago Outdoor Film Festival last night to see Written on the Wind. Pretty good movie, with the guy from Unsolved Mysteries and Airplane! in a more serious role. Rather interesting to see. I showed up after work around 5:45pm and snagged a great seat pretty close to the screen. And we managed not to get any chairs to sit in front of us while waiting the 3 hours for the movie to start. Impressive. We snuck wine in, like a lot of other people, which was a Moscato D'Asti, which was supposed to be for Bellinis. Really sweet. Tracy made finger sandwiches of mozzarella and sun-dried tomato pesto, almond chicken satay, salad rolls, assorted cheeses and some brownie bites. Pretty good picnic spread. We do need a new picnic blanket though, as the fleece one we're using now isn't really suited to it. Other things to note: it really was humid, and as the sun went down and the temps dropped things got damp. We rode bikes and used the free Chase Bike Valet service at Monroe and Lake Shore Dr. Awesome. The ride back was sweet, and probably my longest non-stop ride, up the Lake Shore Path. Pretty quiet, lights on, cool enough, just cruising. Very nice. Got my bike tools, but realized I need a torque wrench. Al and Nicole are coming in to town tonight for 10 days or so. Only plans so far are I think family dinner on tomorrow night, Fogo de Chao on Friday night, and the Chicago Architecture Foundation River Tour on Saturday morning.
9:37 AM Thursday, August 2, 2007
Another bike ride, more creaking, but I actually fixed it this time. Ended up the front gear box covers are screwed on too tight? when I loosed them up a bit, no more creaking. Didn't even have to try and take the cranks off, or peer into the bottom bracket. Which is good. Still want to eventually. Next is trying to fix Tracy's first gear on her bike. It's slipping. So riding in this morning with no creaks? Awesome. Just need to find the intermittent rubbing from my front fender, and then it'll be nice and quiet. Of course, when I figured that out, something else had to break. A new firmware update for the Sony Reader came out a couple days ago, so I tried to update via Parallels last night. No go. Seemed like I had bricked it, too. Not good. So I brought it in to work, did the firmware upgrade from a real Windows XP machine, and no problems. Kind of annoying. Maybe I should look into Boot Camp? Maybe when Leopard rolls around. Tracy made spaghetti for dinner last night, I tried to make a peach cobbler, but burned the top a bit when I tried to brown it under the broiler. Turned out ok though. Watched and caught up on My Boys. Dinner with the family tonight upstairs.
11:32 AM Friday, August 3, 2007
Biking is much nicer when it's quiet. However the bike started to creak a little bit again on the way home last night. So yes, definitely need to take the cranks off and take a peek into the gearbox. Al and Nicole are in town, and the whole family gathered in the upstairs condo for dinner last night. Good stuff, home cooking, and dessert from Ambrosia, a bakery, err, Euro American Patisserie out in Barrington. Had my first cup of coffee for the day before dessert. When I don't go out to get breakfast and munch on granola bars in the morning, I don't get coffee. Gave Nicole some display cables since she had to give a presentation at some medical conference something or other this morning. Got to see photos of their new house, or something like it, in Austin. Looks great, and can't wait to visit after it's finished. Watched Burn Notice before bed. Even though there haven't been that many episodes, I'm starting to get tired of it. Not sure if it'll last for me. Headed to Fogo de Chao for dinner tonight, Chicago Architecture Foundation River Tour tomorrow morning, and headed out to the burbs on Sunday for Tracy's parents 35th wedding anniversary.
11:58 AM Monday, August 6, 2007
Friday night dinner at Fogo de Chao was good, too good. Couldn't do much else afterward. Did stop by the Apple Store to play with the iPhone for a bit before catching the bus, oh, and we stopped to get some popcorn from Garrett Popcorn Shops. Tracy and I watched Burn Notice before heading to bed, which was a good idea, as sleeping with all that meat in the belly would have been a bad idea. Saturday made our way down for the river tour, which was pretty informative, at least about the buildings. Had a slight mixup with the tickets (had 2 for July 28 and 4 for July 4), but that wasn't a problem at all. We stopped by Fox & Obel thinking of having lunch there, but they were switching over from breakfast at noon and wouldn't have any hot dishes available for 45 minutes. So we wandered over to P.J. Clarke's for lunch. Did some shopping at Water Tower Place before heading up for mass at Our Lady of Mt. Carmel. Family split up after getting back to the condo, and Tracy and I watched Last Holiday before gathering upstairs for dinner, which ended up being Joy's Noodles for dinner, with a pizza as well from Marcello's. Watched a couple episodes of Seinfeld off my brother's iPod output to the TV before bed. Sunday met up for brunch at Ann Sather's before heading out to the 'burbs. Also snuck in a nap. Tracy measured out the hallway closet and we brought wood out to cut for additional shelving. All in all, a pretty full weekend.
4:07 PM Tuesday, August 7, 2007
Can't seem to cook anymore. Biked to work and back. No issues. Still haven't gotten rained on since putting on the fenders. Got home, wanted to make yakitori from a recipe I read in Google Reader except I forgot to star it, so I couldn't remember where it was from, or how long ago. All I remember is that it had honey has an ingredient. So I used some other Food Network recipe instead. Didn't use fresh ginger or scallions, and used too much of the powdered stuff. So dinner didn't turn out so well. Watched The Prestige. That's kind of a depressing movie. Funny to see or know so many of the Batman crew working on that one, but still, pretty sad. No biking today, going to Piece tonight for a gathering to see Matt Flynn who's in town. Also thought it'd be raining, so that's why I also didn't bike, and also because I wouldn't want to lug around my bags with me off my bike. But of course it didn't really rain, and I might have been able to get away with using the handlebar bag. Oh well. It's still hot out and wouldn't be nice to get all sweaty for going out. New or upgraded iMacs announced today, along with iLife and iWork '08. I'll eventually get the family packs, maybe when Leopard rolls out. No need for it now.
9:53 AM Wednesday, August 8, 2007
Good to see Matt Flynn again. And the rest of the guys I hadn't seen in a while. And Piece too for that matter. Good pizza and beer. Always hard to hear though, so lots of shout talking. My throat didn't feel all that good when I got home. Ended up watching an episode of Entourage before bed. Screwed up trying to fix the stuttering DVR for Tracy who was watching Like Water for Chocolate. Ugh, annoying. Now have to wait until the 19th to record it again so she can finish watching it. I bet a TiVo HD wouldn't have those problems. Tempting, of course, but that's more spending that needs to be curtailed. Headed out to the 'burbs tonight for another family dinner, this time at Yu's. Hopefully traffic won't be as bad as the last time we tried to get out to the 'burbs for dinner with the family.
11:37 AM Thursday, August 9, 2007
Dinner at Yu's was good last night. The crab in black pepper was pretty good, very tasty, enought to just go ahead and eat some of the shell while I was at it. I even ate the eggplant, because it was crispy instead of mushy and soggy. I left work early to leave early thinking traffic would be really bad and it would take forever to get out there. Also I was hoping to ride home in the rain finally to see how my fenders hold up, but no, it stopped raining by the time I left work, and it only took 45 minutes or so to get out to Schaumburg for dinner so I was impressed. Another cool thing about Yu's is the windows to the kitchen, so we got to watch woks at work. Maybe someday in a fancy kitchen I'll have a wok burner or something. That'd be awesome. Made it home easy as well, watched an episode of My Boys while I had to do some work stuff.
1:33 PM Friday, August 10, 2007
Had a slight front fender issue with my bike before leaving work yesterday. Kind of annoying. Wish I could put cantilevers (brakes) on it instead of the calipers I've got, but no luck. Or maybe I just need some long reach calipers. Or I'm just making stuff up. Anyway, I just tightened it up and no problems. Although my fenders are definitely the cheaper sorts, so I may have to look at some SKS ones eventually. But I ended up leaving much later from work, and it was nicer leaving downtown, but not so much when I got up into Old Town and Lincoln Park. Lots of cars stopping in the bike lane, cabs, parking, waiting or so on. I also switched out the lenses on my sunglasses to the RC30, just to try it out. Seems to, as they say, enhance depth perception. Things seemed sharper, that's for sure. Tracy made dinner, porkchops with a dry spice rub, sauteed spinach with cheese and garlic, and sauteed peppers and onions. Watched some of Ugly Betty and Grey's Anatomy before we actually turned off the TV. Tracy started organizing the gift list/thank you notes again. Oh, earlier this week Tracy put up some additional shelves in the hall closet, so now I have a place to put my panniers instead of in the hallway. Much nicer. And this weekend I get to finish the closet up with another shelf up top, which will be nice. For Saturday we'll try and finally open up a joint checking account, and Sunday maybe see the U.S. Women's soccer team play New Zealand at Soldiers Field. Besides that we need to actually do the thank you notes and I need to start clearing out the 2nd bedroom. That pretty much means I just need to throw out a bunch of crap. Oh, and we're gonna try and finally see Transformers tonight. Which is why I didn't ride my bike in.
10:03 AM Monday, August 13, 2007
So Transformers is really good. A quality summer blockbuster. Can't wait for the sequel. Or, if the CGI becomes cheap enough, how about a TV series? That'd be awesome. Now I'm hoping that the G.I. Joe movie that's been fast tracked will be as good. Tracy and I went after meeting up at the Apple Store where I was playing with the iPhone again and the new iMac, except I never got around to trying the new iLife or iWork. Guess I'll just have to go back. After the movie we just went to dinner next door at Niu Japanese Fusion Lounge, which wasn't too bad. It's pretty new, and service shows, but still, pretty nice. We saved up room cause we went to oENOlogy, a wine and cheese and chocolate bar at the Hotel Intercontinental. That was pretty nice. Tracy found a nice cheese with truffle in it. The Dark Chocolate flight was very tasty, and paired well with the Champagne flight we shared. Saturday was pretty busy as well, finally opened a joint checking account at Fifth Third Bank, picked up some cilantro at the Nettlehorst School Farmer's Market, breakfast at Melrose Diner, then some housework. Cut off the visible screws in the bathroom from the closet install, tried installing a new top shelf in the hallway closet, had to get a planer to make it fit, started switching out the light switches. Tracy made a roast chicken for dinner, I finally got some sherbet, watched Practical Magic and I converted some more books for my Sony Reader. Sunday made waffles for breakfast, finished some switch work, watched The Marine, finished Syriana, Entourage, Burn Notice, Feasting on Asphalt, some Food Network. Still have to purge the 2nd bedroom though.
12:16 PM Tuesday, August 14, 2007
Forgot to mention yesterday, but got a phone call on Saturday from Rory's First Kiss casting, that Tracy and I went out to one Saturday a while ago. And we're gonna be extras. Seriously. Granted, I won't be able to write anything about it, confidentiality agreements and all, but wow, there's a chance I could be up on the movie screen sitting at a table in the background, or walking across the street. And I get to find out what it's like making movies, or at least a scene, hoping it's a scene with some principals. Anyway, that's this Sunday. And they had lost Tracy's paperwork, but I think we managed to get her included as well, so that's awesome. It would have been a little annoying to be there 6am-6pm by myself, gawking at the filmmakers. That's why I spent some time converting books for the Sony Reader over the weekend. Rode in the morning, after the rain stopped. It was quite cool and not busy at all, which was nice. Didn't get stuck behind any slower cyclists, got passed by a couple though. And fenders work! No spray up the back, feet were almost completely dry. We're supposed to go to Movies in the Park tonight, hoping the weather holds up. Last night had some macaroni & cheese and Kielbasa for dinner, and watched No Reservations, Bizarre Foods, Good Eats, and Human Weapon.
4:58 PM Wednesday, August 15, 2007
So old movies are really good, if a little slow in parts, at least for my MTV attention span. Got to Movies in the Park around 6pm, got a much closer spot, Tracy showed up soon after, and we settled in for a couple hours to wait for Butch Cassidy and The Sundance Kid to start. Some guy in front and to the left of us had a whole portable DVD setup, watching some John Wayne movie and he had two sets of speakers. Odd. Also lucked out and got no folding chairs in front of us. Just need to pack it in to make sure there's no room for a chair. That and get a bigger blanket. Ride back was nice and slow, just cruising on up. Today got to have lunch with Bryan over at Elephant & Castle. I had the bangers and mash. I love that stuff. I love English pub food. I was really interested in the Ploughman's Platter. I need to get there when I can drink a nice pint as well. Looks like I'll get to ride home in the rain today, so that looks like fun.
11:53 AM Thursday, August 16, 2007
Not a real rain on the way home, maybe a slight drizzle. Again, disappointing. I like riding in the rain. Otherwise, pretty uneventful. Did some exercises while Tracy made moussaka for dinner. Watched Slap Her... She's French and the end of Batman Begins. Converted Piers Anthony Incarnations of Immortality for the Sony Reader. That's pretty annoying. Most of the books are scans that were OCR'd, and it's annoying to have page numbers and/or page headers and footers to delete. I just wish I could just buy these as eBooks instead. Hopefully someday.
3:03 PM Friday, August 17, 2007
Finished up the Death Gate Cycle last night. Always a good read. Did some more conversion clean up on the Incarnations of Immortality series, and did Silver Tower by Dale Brown. That's what I'm currently reading. Maybe the Piers Anthony stuff after, or William Gibson's new Spook Country. Or finally get around to the Baroque Cycle by Neal Stephenson. Love my Sony Reader. Full week of commuting by bike completed today. Next week I might try bringing a weeks worth of clothes on Monday and stop packing the panniers every day. Except I like being prepared by packing heavy. Read somewhere about using Tyvek underneath tents when camping, and realized we could use something like that for Movies in the Park or other picnic type situations. Just leftovers for dinner last night, and watched Man of the Year.
12:11 PM Monday, August 20, 2007
Friday night came home to Tracy getting the meat out of Snow crab legs for crab cakes. Those were good. I started digging through old emails, working on my Ultimate Timeline page, and came across the old Paganello photos from my first trip. That was a while ago. Also managed to get the names of all those players from that first year. Wonder where they all ended up. Saturday did some housecleaning, wrote a few thank you notes. We need to figure out a storage design for those closets in the second bedroom. Also I got rid of a bunch of stuff I had been packratting. Next step is the old computer/electronic stuff to bring to recycling. It's really all about letting go. Some of the stuff I might try and get on Craigslist, but I've never sold anything there before. Made some crepes for lunch. Meatloaf for dinner, watched the end of Scary Movie 4. Sunday did that extras thing. Don't have to do that again. Not sure when I'll get around to writing about it, because of the whole NDA thing. Got some delivery from Chen's for dinner, and they forgot the teriyaki chicken, so they had to send it back out. Definitely need to find someplace to drop off old science and math textbooks as well as some novels, and find some time to get out and drop off electronics at some point.
12:10 PM Tuesday, August 21, 2007
Had my first flat (back tube)on the way to work today. Didn't have any issues replacing it, which was nice, considering it's the first time I changed a tube on a bike, any bike. I did find the little thorn/metal shard that caused the flat. I wonder if I had my Schwalbe Marathon Plus tires if that would have happened to me. Also, I replace my Schrader tube with a Presta valve one. I like it better. Also I just used my hand pump and not the CO2 inflater. I need to remember to bring my pressure gauge and at least 2 tubes with me from now on, since I'm carrying all my stuff anyway. Didn't take too long, and the longest part was getting the rear fender to not rub at all. So that was exciting. Last night moved some of the storage stuff around in one of the second bedroom closets for organizational purposes. And I'll start using the label printer. Watched some TV with leftovers and some garlic fried rice by Tracy. Got to do something tonight, but completely forgot what. Also need to prep for the Speaker City Flag Football Fantasy League Draft tomorrow night.
12:05 PM Wednesday, August 22, 2007
Rode the bike in to work yesterday, but Tracy picked me up, and I put my bike in her trunk for the ride up to Tango Sur for dinner with the family cause Scott was in town. Lots of meat, and pretty good, but nothing spectacular, and it was kind of loud in the restaurant. Some of us got Cold Stone after for dessert, and I wanted some Dairy Queen but the line was out the door, so I just finished off Tracy's Cold Stone instead. Watched My Boys before taking my bike out of her trunk and back together again. Front fender is rubbing again, which is really annoying. That front fender also made it harder than it could have been to put the bike in her trunk. Rode in again today and tonight will be heading over to Vessel Ideation for the Speaker City Flag Football Fantasy draft. I splurged and got the ESPN Draft Analyzer, because I didn't want to have to think about the draft. I wanted to draft based on height, specifically short players, but there's no easy way to pull that sort of info together. Oh well. Had some computer issues, did a Carbon backup, got Argon back up and running, except either Cyrus or Postfix is dying and can't send emails or something, so my home IMAP server is down for a while. Not sure what I'll be doing about that yet.
11:11 AM Thursday, August 23, 2007
Yup. Did my first ever fantasy football draft for Speaker City Flag Football. Interesting. The ESPN Draft Analyzer was providing some rather interesting suggestions, and a couple times I went out on a limb, so it should be interesting, that's for sure. I did draft short a couple times, and I went young as well, so we'll see how that pays off. Which it won't, but is entertaining, at least for me. Now of course I get to try and keep track of all that, which means I will know the players on my roster very well, and no one else. Definitely will be interesting. Finally got back my Buffy the Vampire Slayer Season 7 back from the Wangs, not that I'll be watching it anytime soon, but good to have it back. Gave Akira back his Battlestar Galactica DVDs that I had borrowed but haven't watched yet. Now I'm a little annoyed with getting Heroes from the iTunes Store because the DVD set has the extended pilot. I wonder if they'll offer it for free from the iTunes Store. Also gave Carlo the old Kaze tattoos. Riding back from Vessel Ideation was a long ride for me, pretty much straight up Halsted. No problems, but I definitely need to get the fenders on properly. They're rubbing, again. Ugh. I might have to take off the fenders just to see what it's like without them. I should also go for a ride without panniers to remember what that's like. I made it home last night about 5 minutes before the sky opened up. As I was riding North, I kept seeing lightning flashing, but it never started raining. Watched some Veronica Mars (Tracy's started watching it) before bed.
3:31 PM Friday, August 24, 2007
Totally got caught in the second storm last night. There was a lull after the first one rolled through, and I thought I had enough time in the gap, but it started coming down somewhere north of North and Wells. It was awesome. I was all lit up, which was fine, but the rain started coming down. Seriously, I had a blast. Bike just cut through puddles. One thing I needed were my sunglasses with clear lenses, cause the pelting rain didn't feel so good on the eyes. Otherwise, I can't wait to do it again. And the panniers? Everything was completely dry. Love it. I should probably grease and lube stuff up this weekend though. Otherwise, Tracy made some chicken and pasta with some Porcini mushrooms, which was pretty tasty. Watched some more Veronica Mars. Setup a pickup time for my dad to finally get his TV from Akira on Saturday. I was looking forward to riding home through the rain again, but doesn't look like the weather's gonna cooperate today. Oh, and riding home, came across a fallen tree on Cornelia between Halsted and Broadway and another 2 blocks away on Pine Grove between Addison and Brompton. Wow.
12:25 PM Monday, August 27, 2007
Let's see, Friday night nothing too notable, Tracy made dinner probably, watched some Veronica Mars I think. Saturday finally hung up that circuit design wall candle holder thingie in the bedroom. Very nice. Also finally put the light switches back in the wall receptacles. Then went with Wilson and my dad to pick up the TV my dad bought from Akira way back when for their upstairs condo. No problems getting it down the back stairs of RWIP, into the Santos minivan and on a cart and up to my parents' condo. Looks good. Would look better with HD, and I probably have to work some cabling magic, since some of the reception on the lower channels is pretty bad. Not sure if the OTA HD receivers I have might work or not. We'll see. Also brought up the PS2 and the single DVD player I had, which means a couple less things we have in our place. Went to mass and had dinner upstairs as well. Played a bit with my godson. First time really that KJ and I have interacted one on one. He's adorable. Sunday went to Dim Sum with the Tongs and the Argaos since Sanya was in town. Even that early it's good stuff. Phoenix now has this picture menu with English names for dishes which is a great idea. Watched some more Veronica Mars and did some more purging in the closets in the second bedroom. Moved the boxes out and filled the shelves in the closet with wedding presents and took down the homemade shelves in the room. Definitely got rid of a lot of wires and old electronics, which I need to take to the recycling center. Getting closer to actually having a usable second bedroom. Finally saw The Departed last night and second to last episode of Entourage for this season. Forgot to mention that I ran into Jess this morning riding down Wells. It was nice to see someone I knew and catch up a bit.
3:41 PM Tuesday, August 28, 2007
Another Monday. Rode the bike in, rode the bike home. Having air in the tires is a great thing. Always seems to take me a little while to get the pump seated correctly. Kind of annoying. Did my exercises, dinner by Tracy: red beans and rice with sausage and garlic and rosemary infused corn. She's also stopped letting me make desserts again, and this was after I saw the chocolate cake episode of America's Test Kitchen. Maybe in a couple weeks. Tracy did paint the wall out of the kitchen in the hall to match the others, as well as one of the pillars in the living room. And she did laundry. Man, am I gonna miss that when she goes back to work. Then we settled in to watch some Veronica Mars. I think 3 episodes last night after dinner. It's good stuff. Tonight gonna try and head out to Kuma's Corner to see Cho and Brady. I will try and eat beforehand though, don't want to get caught jockeying for a table. Also, not sure if I should try and bike over, as there aren't any real bike lanes out that way.
11:30 AM Wednesday, August 29, 2007
Rode the bike out to Kuma's Corner last night to meet up with Cho and Brady. It was interesting. I'm totally used to riding with panniers, which lower the center of gravity and increases inertial mass. So when I was riding last night without them, bike sway when out of the saddle seemed exaggerated. Otherwise, nice night for a bike ride. Getting there I did a loop around Wrigley since there was a game, going North to Grace and over to Southport to Roscoe and straight over that way. Roscoe Village seems like a nice quiet place to go, and after that it was a pretty wide street. Came home via Belmont riding with Tun for most of the way. I think that's my second social outing via bike. Very nice. Also eliminated a creak or something by tightening the left front gearbox. Also found the source of the clinking, a loose something on the rear axle, probably put together wrong when I had to fix my first flat last week. Definitely need to take the time to take it apart, clean, and lube stuff up. Watched an episode of 30 Rock before bed after I got back with Tracy.
11:18 AM Thursday, August 30, 2007
So the old 22" Cinema Display I had hooked up to the Cube? Going away. It's amazing how much space that opens up when a huge display goes away like that. I'm gonna try and hook the cube up to the TV, which means I don't need a monitor to take up space anymore. For the rest of the home servers, if any, I end up getting, they'll definitely hook up through an existing TV. I really don't see a need for a real monitor anymore. Especially with laptops. Speaking of which, Carbon is getting a little long in the tooth, which is sad considering it's just over a year old. Which means I missed my chance on getting AppleCare for it. Which is fine. I had dropped it a while back, and put a small dent in one corner so that the wrist area is slightly raised on the right, not a lot, but enough. Anyway, part of that wrist area is starting to flake a little. Annoying. I wonder how much a new case might be? Probably too expensive. Might as well start saving the pennies for a new one. Maybe one to match the iPhone I'll eventually get. Otherwise, had chili for dinner last night, Tracy had made it last night when I went out to Kuma's. Watched some TV, Glutton for Punishment, The Office, Scrubs, Bones. Tried to set the Cube up, but that's gonna take a lot of playing around with to get working. And it's not as quiet as I thought it was. Stupid hard drive whine. Definitely have lots of old electronic stuff to sell or recycle.
3:30 PM Friday, August 31, 2007
Last night tried to hang some Crate & Barrel floating shelves above the TV area, but the old cordless drill I have is too weak, and the Dremel I was using doesn't have a big enough chuck for the drill bit I'm using, so I get to go out and buy and new drill today. It is tempting to get a fancy DeWalt cordless with those big honking battery packs, we think the reliability of a corded drill is worth the inconvenience. I mean, it's just going to be used within the confines of the condo, so I won't be that far from an outlet. Got picked up by Tracy around lunchtime to make a run to UIC to drop off CD jewel boxes and DVD cases at a recycling center. That was a nice break. It's weird to be on a college campus again, in a student union having lunch. Not much planned for the weekend, more household stuff, more cleaning, more throwing stuff away. It's also Tracy's last weekend before she starts work again on Tuesday.
11:30 AM Tuesday, September 4, 2007
On the way home Friday night dropped by Home Depot and picked up a DeWalt corded drill. Fit into the pannier too, which was nice. I should probably start packing some sort of rack strapping system for times when things won't fit into the panniers. So got home, drilled some holes, found some anchors to put up the floating shelves. Ended up redrilling and remounting the shelves on Monday, but that's besides the point. And we started watching Heroes with the steak and potatoes Tracy made for dinner. Saturday made some waffles, watched more Heroes, and did some more cleanup. Sunday watched more Heroes, went kayaking through Kayak Chicago up at Montrose Harbor, did some grocery shopping at Whole Foods. Tracy made pork chops with some sort of sauce/glaze that included orange juice, and a lemon sauced chard side dish. My contribution? Stove Top stuffing. I did try and make a chocolate/coffee duo of mousse, but couldn't find a real coffee mousse recipe, and tried winging it, and combining two different onces, and failed pretty miserably. Maybe I just need to find a basic mousse recipe and stick with it. Monday finished up season 1 of Heroes, did more paperwork cleaning, watched some TV. We had bison burgers on the grill pan for dinner, which we originally had planned to try and grill out with. Tracy picked us up some Pastrami Reubens from Sam's Deli for lunch. Today is Tracy's first day at her new job, so I'm gonna try and make dinner. Except she'll probably end up beating me home, even though she's coming from Indiana.
4:25 PM Wednesday, September 5, 2007
Made a return to cooking, so Tracy wouldn't have to after her first day back on the job, except that it wasn't working, it was orientation, and she got out early. Anyway, I roasted some chicken pieces and some zucchini and made some risotto. Risotto takes way too long to make, like 45 minutes or so. Good, but annoying. Watched Feasting on Asphalt after dinner. That looks like it was a fun show to make, driving around and eating. That's it. Also got to go to bed early last night since Tracy had to get up again. It's the start of early bedtimes for the Abando household from now on. Very nice, I've been looking forward to it for a while. Also, started reading the Baroque Cycle by Neal Stephenson on the Sony Reader. Pretty interesting so far. Today tried to keep up to date on The Beat Goes On, Apple's press event about the iPod family. Speaking of which, I found my receipt for my original 5GB iPod while doing paperwork cleanup over the weekend: November 16, 2001 from the Woodfield Apple Store, roughly a month after it's release. That's awesome.
11:43 AM Thursday, September 6, 2007
I put the old iMac G5 in the kitchen. It just fits under the cabinets, and the white color scheme fits in pretty well. This will come in handy for recipes and keeping me entertained while stirring risotto for 45 minutes. Also, I plan on hooking up the EyeTV 500 to the Cube on top the of AV Rack, which means I should be able to watch some TV via CyTV. Somewhere down the road, I think I'd want to get a SlingBox of some kind, so you can be watching something on TV, and then when you check on food in the kitchen, you won't have to pause it and won't miss a beat. That's the plan anyway. In the meantime, I'll be able to keep using Google Reader while keeping Tracy company in the kitchen while she's cooking dinner. She made some chicken in tomato sauce for dinner last night, which was some filipino dish apparently. It was good, of course. Today's her first real day on the job, starting at 7:30. Awfully early. Rode in today using my new Arkel Tail Rider, a rack trunk, instead of the panniers. Smaller, and easier to carry off the bike, for when I'm going to Home Depot to get an RF Splitter and air conditioner extension cord after work.
10:51 AM Friday, September 7, 2007
Oh, 3 years later. Got an RF splitter from Home Depot on the way home, which I find myself doing since it's on the way home via bike, which was easy because I didn't have to worry about my panniers cause I carried the Tail Rider in with me, which is why I got it. So, with my splitter, I plugged in the EyeTV 500 to Argon sitting on top of the AV Rack next to the TV and to the cable outlet, and a short time later, I have lots of channels. Took some time to fully associate the channels with guide data from TitanTV, but got the ones I wanted. Awesome. What does this mean? With my disk enclosure, I should be able to record an entire seasons, and with the software, it will automatically encode for the AppleTV and import to iTunes, which will automatically sync with the AppleTV. Of course, this is only one tuner, so we're stuck if we have more than one season long series to record that's on at the same time. Awesome. I've been wanting to do this since I got the EyeTV back in October of '04. I'm planning on doing this for any NBC shows, since I won't be able to get them off the iTunes Store, like Heroes. Now if only it could cut out commercials automatically like MythTV supposedly can? So besides that, I tried out CyTV which allows me to watch the EyeTV across the network, so that the iMac in the kitchen can now watch TV. Seriously awesome. And only 3 years late. Tracy made a pretty good pasta with mushrooms and zucchini, and of course I needed some meat so I broiled a chicken breast and a plum tomato as toppings.
11:22 AM Monday, September 10, 2007
Friday night headed over to RWIP for a Tea & Strumpets reunion type thing, which really was just an excuse to go over and eat some of Bryan's food, and see Raz. Saturday did some more cleaning, took down the computer desks in the second bedroom, filtered some more paperwork, then headed out to the Windy City Wine Festival which was pretty cool. Nice grassy area, $25/10 sample sizes, I thought a good amount of booths. Tracy wanted to go because we'll be out of town this weekend and can't go to the Wine Crush in Old Town. Afterwards, we stumbled over to Brasserie Jo for some French fare. Classic Steak Frites, so good, Tracy had the rack of lamb, like butter. And the mussels and escargots was tasty as well, along with the warm baguette. I was a little disappointed that they didn't have a tartar as an appetizer, cause I wanted Tracy to try it, but they only had it as an entree, and I wanted cooked steak instead. Sunday was more cleaning, and vacuuming, and throwing stuff out and putting stuff away as we had the Russells over for a couples afternoon to watch the Bears. Good company, but bad game, and they didn't put Garrett Wolfe in. Hopefully sooner rather than later. Sarah brought over the Hanky Panky's, which were tasty, and Tracy made a couple dips (guacamole and a roasted pepper) and meat on a stick. But the place with most of the stuff gone, well, it seems empty now. Nothing in the hallways. The second bedroom is quite expansive. I do still have more boxes of stuff to go through, and I still need to get to the HazMat and electronics recycling center (only open on the first Saturday of the month, and Tuesdays and Thursdays) to get rid of some old stuff, but seriously, so much old stuff is gone. Like a clean slate. It's nice, and about time.
1:56 PM Tuesday, September 11, 2007
So my RIZR no longer wants to iSync with Carbon anymore. Annoying. Makes me want to just run out and buy an iPhone. I know that would sync up perfectly. I should have just gotten another Sony Ericsson instead of a matching RIZR. Of course, that was during a lull in product releases. Or maybe I just should have stuck with a lower end phone that had full support in OS X. Anyway, just more frustration until I can get my mitts on an iPhone eventually. Of course, because we'll be dictated by contracts, that I'll sign up about a week before upgraded models come out. At least it'd work. So besides trying to get that working, again, had a pot roast for dinner last night that Tracy started on Sunday night, watched How I Met Your Mother, The New Adventures of Old Christine, and Idiocracy, won my first ever matchup in fantasy football, which means I'm gonna goof off for the rest of the season, since I don't have to worry about going winless. I did figure out that I can use the MacBook to export EyeTV programs off the Cube, since the Cube is way too slow. Not quite as seemless as I'd hoped. Weather's definitely colder, fall's on the way, and I need to find stuff to wear on the bike ride to work. Gave up all my ultimate related cold weather gear, so I need to go shopping again.
11:41 AM Wednesday, September 12, 2007
The weather gets colder, and I start wearing pants while riding my bike and thus is a reason for getting a shaft drive: I had no worries about getting chain marks or grease stains on my pants. Anyway, besides pants, rode with a hat under the helmet and a hoodie. Got a little warm towards the end of the ride, but totally worth it. Definitely have to start wearing the hat, maybe even gloves. Thought I was coming down with some sort of head cold last night which I attribute to the lack of headwear on the commute the previous two days. Aside from that, it's quite nice for a brisk bike ride in the cool morning air. Took part in my Fantasy Football League's first trade, the usual, selling low and buying high after week 1. Standard fare for a newbie. I did make dinner last night, a pulled BBQ chicken, au gratin potatoes from a box, and frozen corn. Pretty good, although something in there did a number on our bellies. I blame it on the potatoes from a box. Also used CyTV to watch the Food Network while cooking. Quite nice, except for the overly loud fan in the iMac G5. Watched some Veronica Mars with dinner as well. Grocery shopping and laundry tonight.
12:26 PM Thursday, September 13, 2007
Somewhere past 2 months of biking to work, which roughly puts me at around 400 miles of commuting so far, and the one thing that kills me? Freaking headwind, sometimes both ways. Of course, this is Chicago, the Windy City, but still, kind of annoying. It'll be interesting in what to wear/pack for commuting for the next couple weeks as Chicago tries to figure out if it's summer or fall or winter or spring. Also need to look into cooler weather cycling wear. Tracy made a stew from the leftover pot roast from Monday. We watched Bones and No Reservations Las Vegas and I did some work from home. Didn't get around to doing laundry, hopefully, tonight.
11:58 AM Friday, September 14, 2007
That's how much change had collected over the years in the living room. Seriously, that's a chunk of change. Did that when we went grocery shopping last night. Impulse buys? Eel roll and a small apple pie baked in a bag. Tracy made stuffed bell peppers for dinner, as usual sans recipe, but we looked it up after and just needed to cook them twice as long in the oven. Next time. We watched 30 Rock and The Office with dinner, then did a late night laundry run, since she's working now and isn't around during the day to do laundry. And that was my first time back in the laundry room, well, probably since May. Watched Dreamland while doing laundry. First time in a while that I've just flipped to some random movie and watched it the whole way through. Also it was a little artsy, but good. Something about that Justin Long guy seems very personable. Went with the Tail Rider on the commute to work today, thinking of stopping to do some shopping on the way home. Thinking of getting some baskets so I could, for example, stop at Binny's and pick up some Xingu on the way home when I don't have my panniers. Headed out to Kansas this weekend for my cousin Rosanna's wedding. Early flight tomorrow, later flight Sunday night. Also happens to be Wine Crush weekend, so it's sad we're missing that.
1:00 PM Monday, September 17, 2007
Went out to Kansas for the weekend for my cousin Rosanna's wedding. Good time, interesting time. Flew out early early early Saturday morning, getting in to Kansas City International around 8am. Find out I get to do all the driving for the weekend. I was hoping to get some sleep on in the back seat. Oh well. Driving was super easy, a Toyota Sienna with 7 people total, and my dad's new toy, a Garmin nuvi 200w. It's really cool. Using it this weekend, to find a couple different shopping malls, hotel, and airport, well, made me wish I had one back in college and for any other frisbee trips taken throughout the years. But got in to the hotel in Topeka around 9:40am or so, missed out on a tour of some kind for wedding guests, took the car shopping since it was freezing, and pretty much no one expected it. Picked up a $6 messenger bag from the Gap, which is better than the $100 or so I was looking into for a Timbuk2. So I've got a man bag again, and it's actually pretty manly this time around. Had lunch at some BBQ Steak chain place, which are all over the place. Went to the wedding, reception, which was a little odd because a) no dancing, and b) ended around 7pm or so, while it was still light out. So my parents had us go get some wine at a liquor store, and pulled some chairs together in the lobby (kind of an atrium, or indoor promenade, I think Kansians like their promenades), and chilled with some relatives for a while. Tracy and I watched another wedding reception in the hotel, which we dubbed engaged and underage, and how the bride spent more time out in the atrium than in the banquet hall. There was another reception as well, our age I guess, which we called the taupers, cause that was the bridesmaids' dress color. Called it an early night, and got some sleep on. Didn't make it to free breakfast in the morning, went to mass, then drove back towards the airport and spent a couple hours in a shopping mall, and lunch/dinner at another BBQ/Steak chain place in the mall. Watched my fantasy players not win. Only an hour delay at the airport, and got to see the Bears win and Wolfe miss his chance at scoring a fantasy point because Grossman can't throw a screen pass. Drove home after arrival, picked up a slice of pizza on the way, and tried to catch up on my online reading. Quick, busy, full weekend for sure.
4:18 PM Tuesday, September 18, 2007
So leaving work yesterday, get down to the bike rack, pick the bike up off the rack, put it down, notice that my front tire is flat. Odd. Wasn't flat this morning. Change the tube. Pump it up. Seems a little flat a block away. Pump it up some more. Get all the way up to Wrightwood, notice it's going flat again. Don't feel like trying to patch it. Pump it up again. Make it to Wellington. Pump. Cornelia. Pump. Home. Patch the tube. Put on my Marathon Plus Kelvar belted tires for puncture protection. Heavy, a little hard to put on the first time, but eventually get the knack for it. Use the bike stand again. Still awesome. And no problems on the ride in today. Feels slower though, since the tires are heavier than my previous ones. Also, hot spell. I was getting used to wearing pants on the way to work, now I have to back to shorts and change in the server room again. Had Hamburger Helper for dinner last night. Watched K-Ville, which was good if predictable, and I don't like the use of the shakey-cam, no surprise there.
11:30 AM Wednesday, September 19, 2007
I got a Sony LocationFree Base Station LF-B10 with my Sony Points, thinking I could use it instead of CyTV on the iMac G5 in the kitchen to watch the same stuff the TV is watching. But I didn't do my homework, and the Mac software, which is made by IO-Data, doesn't work with the newer base stations like mine. Awesome. Oh well, I can just use my PSP around the house instead. Not yet. Didn't seem to be a way to set it up via the PSP. Actually, now it looks like the PSP is slightly off, as I never got a Network Selection list. So then I install the the Windows software under Parallels. Doesn't run because of some DirectX issue. I read today that I just need to get the updated version from the Sony website to get it to run. Great. If this was an Apple product? say like an Apple TV? Plug in, turn on, shows up in iTunes, and easy schmeasy. Not so much for Sony. Ugh. We'll see if it actually ends up working. Still biking to work. Went grocery shopping last night. Had salad for dinner. Watched New York episodes of Bizarre Foods and No Reservations.
11:55 AM Thursday, September 20, 2007
Finally got the LocationFree working last night, no help from the Sony support website though, and all the help from a couple different forums. Upgraded the Windows LocationFree player to get it working under Parallels Desktop after reading on the Parallels forums. After that found out on the PSP forums that I needed to download the registration file from the base station's setting webpage to get the PSP registered. So yes, it's working now, and it's actually pretty sweet. I want to try it out outside the home, but I need to find a free open hotspot to log on to. But being able to watch my DVR from anywhere with a network connection? It's pretty sweet. Tracy made dinner, again, a rolled up skirt steak with turkey, cheese and rosemary over a salad. I made some almond jello, which wasn't solid enough by dessert time. So that'll probably get eaten tonight with the teriyaki leftover skirt steak she started marinating last night. Watched Zoom, the other kid superhero movie. Not bad, but not very creative it seemed. Not as good as Sky High.
12:24 PM Friday, September 21, 2007
Friday. Beat Tracy home last night, so I got to cook dinner. Just cooked the teriyaki beef and wrapped some asparagus with some sliced beef as well. Good stuff. Watched the pilot of Back to You, another predictable sitcom, nothing too knew there. Also watched a little of Beauty and the Geek. Parts of that show make me sad that there are actually people out there like that. Ended up watching The Office instead, to get all excited about the 4th season next week. Expect a lot more TV show notes as the new season is starting up. Got lots to record on the DVR, and I want to pick a couple series to record the entire seasons of using the EyeTV, and I just need to decide which ones, because it's easier to record them all and watch them en masse in the spring, until I get a Mac mini to replace the Cube at least. Maybe Heroes? Lost? Chuck? The Unit? Reaper? Maybe I should do NBC shows only, since I won't be able to get them via iTunes? Decisions, decisions. Got my 6 month eye checkup after Lasik on Saturday. Still good there. Gonna do some shopping afterwards. And that's about it.
10:34 AM Monday, September 24, 2007
I'm a neophile. I like new stuff. Especially information. Especially tech information. And I've become addicted to Google Reader. I use it way too much. So, I'm cutting back. For now, I'm gonna try and see if I can just quit cold turkey. I may, after a week, just unsubscribe from all the feeds and pick a few to keep track of. We'll see. But there's not really anything I need to stay that up to date on. Hope I don't get the shakes. Otherwise, another relaxing weekend. Friday night Tracy made a pork, squash and green bean dish with coconut milk and we watched some Veronica Mars. Saturday went out to the 'burbs to get the eyes checked on (they're OK) and some shopping out at the outlet mall in Aurora, dropped by her parents place to say hello, picked some more stuff up at Orland Square, drove back in a had dinner at that Tapas place on Halsted and Cornelia. Watched some more Veronica Mars before bed. Sunday did some grocery shopping, laundry, watched Flushed Away and Fifty Pills and had lamp chops for dinner.
1:39 PM Tuesday, September 25, 2007
So even with cutting Google Reader out of my diet, I'm still online an awful lot. Well, last night I had FantasyCast open to check on Vince Young (on my Speaker City Flag Football League, while Tracy and I watched Monday Night NBC, Chuck, Heroes, and Journeyman. All three right now are must watches. Chuck and Heroes are self explanatory, while Journeyman was a surprise. Started out like a confusing time travel, but made the jump towards the end that I'm totally interested now. I'm a sucker for teases of things being bigger than what they seem. Although, that seems to be a trend these days. Just had leftovers for dinner. Oh, and VY didn't pull it out, and I lost by 2 points, an interception. Time for me to take it a whole lot less seriously. Oh, and I thought I had really bad leg cramps yesterday, left calf and right quad, but it hurt again this morning when I was going down the stairs, so maybe I actually did something to them. Odd. Oh well.
2:30 PM Wednesday, September 26, 2007
Bones and House were great last night. Bones set up what appears to be a season long mystery, which is right in my wheelhouse, a possible Illuminati conspiracy, and House is just good. It's got the funny stuff, which is funnier than most sitcoms where the funny is strained. It's much better, I think, when it's just part of the character. Maybe because it's more believable? So Mondays are locked up, and now Tuesdays too. Doesn't look like Wednesdays will be full up though. But not sure. Last night Tracy brought home some pancit made by a co-worker for dinner and cooked up some portabello mushrooms as well. She also started marinating some chicken adobo for tonight. Didn't get rained on the bike commute yesterday, and it was cool enough today to forgo the panniers and just go with the trunk bag and ride in pants. Need to start looking for colder weather cycling gear, namely some sort of windproof jacket, although I did some some Pearl Izumi arm sleeves which could have come in handy today.
11:36 AM Thursday, September 27, 2007
Been a while since I got some DVDs. I had a longstanding order at Amazon for TV Season DVDs which I got yesterday. So I finally have an official copy of Kitchen Confidential (tv show), Season 2 of The Unit, and Season 4 of Las Vegas (tv show). So I went ahead and started transcoding Kitchen Confidential for the Apple TV. I'll do it with the rest as well. It just so much easier watching via the Apple TV than on DVD. No need to change discs, just point, click, and watch. Just wish I had a faster machine to do the transcoding. Other than that, had chicken adobo with rice and a cucumber salad for dinner, and Tracy was craving granola cookies so I jumped on that (since she doesn't crave desserts all that often) and whipped up a batch. We watched K-Ville, How I Met Your Mother, Private Practice, Glutton for Punishment and Back to You. I'm about ready to move Back to You off the list. All our TV Shows seem to be hour long shows, which just takes up so much time. We bumped Kitchen Nightmares for Bionic Woman on the DVR, so that clears up a slight logjam.
2:52 PM Friday, September 28, 2007
Finished off transcoding Kitchen Confidential (tv show). That only took about an hour and a half per episode. I'm processing The Unit and that takes 4 hours per episode. Seriously. Should take 4 days to process all the episodes. That's annoying. Wish I could get a faster machine, or some magic method of faster transcoding. After that, maybe the first season, and then maybe Las Vegas (tv show), or I could just watch those via the DVD player. Tracy went grocery shopping after work yesterday, and she made chicken alfredo and a broccoli salad for dinner. We watched Bionic Woman, The Office, The Big Bang Theory and 'til Death. Might be finally going to see Superbad tonight. Couples dinner at Gale Street Inn tomorrow night. I've been trying to make some trades in the Speaker City Flag Football fantasy league, but either unfair blockbuster trades that were vetoed or just no takers. It's getting boring, and I'm losing, so I want to roll the dice. Oh well. And NEWSFLASH: Just got a trade acceptance from Whitney. Now it just has to pass league approval. Wheels turning people, wheels are turning.
10:39 AM Monday, October 1, 2007
Friday night Tracy and I attempted to go see Superbad at River East. We wanted to get some dinner beforehand, so we planned on going to Nuit. However, traffic was really bad down Michigan, I think because of Critical Mass, but I'm not sure. Anyway, too late for Superbad, and ended up just going home after dinner after we split a bottle of sake and Tracy tried some bonito flakes before knowing it was fish and had to take some Benadryl. So she slept when we got home, and I watched SherryBaby, some Kitchen Confidential (tv show), Gossip Girl, and some other stuff I don't remember. Saturday we biked down to the Green City Market, picked up some hen of the woods mushrooms, some apple pears, some shallots and garlic. We stopped by Pastoral on the way home, and finally picked up some cupcakes from Cupcakes, which were fabulous. Watched some more Kitchen Confidential before heading out to couples dinner with the Russells and the Wangs at Gale Street Inn. Ribs were awesome, company was pretty good too. Grown up night might start to happen on a more regular basis hopefully. Watched Failure to Launch when we got back. Sunday made some waffles (the Good Eats recipe which I won't use again because we aren't fans of the buttermilk) and watched the Bears lose. Finished up Kitchen Confidential, had leftovers for dinner, and finally watched Reaper, which was pretty good and stays on my list. Forgot to mention that The Unit and How I Met Your Mother are both on iTunes Store, which is great. Another couple things to get season passes to. Almost done transcoding Season 2 of The Unit. And transcoding DVDs for the Apple TV look fabulous on the Apple TV, and better than the stuff from the iTunes Store. But, for me, can't beat the convenience. Oh, and there's a chance that Tracy might want an iPhone as well. So here's crossing my fingers.
1:33 PM Tuesday, October 2, 2007
Dropped by SportMart on the way home from work yesterday, looking for another UnderArmour ShooterSleeve to create a matching set so I have something to use while biking. Or I could get some other sort of arm socks. Or start wearing long sleeve shirts, or a jacket. You know, all of those would probably work. Anyway, didn't find anything. Got home, Tracy was making a chicken marsala (sans marsala) for dinner with the hen of the woods mushrooms from the Green City Market. A little too woodsy for our tastes. But it was worth a try. Watched Chuck (tv show). Eh. Watched Burn Notice Season Finale, since a bunch of things on the DVR had the hourglass (soon to be deleted) icon next to them. Made me go out and get a HDHomeRun, so I can record everything and not really worry about space too much. Hopefully. I image I won't actually run out of space for the season. Also, found out that Tracy hasn't seen Fight Club yet, so I might make her watch that tonight. Not sure what to transcode next for the Apple TV. Maybe some movies.
3:29 PM Wednesday, October 3, 2007
Stopped by Kafka Wine Co on the way home yesterday and got a bottle of Chardonnay. I figure we should keep up the wine stock, so whenever we use a bottle, got to get a bottle. Which means we should have 3 bottles, not including dessert or sparklings, available at all times. Maybe we should increase that to a bottle of each major type, or at least the ones we like, Malbec, Shiraz, Chardonnay, Vouvray, Reisling, Pinot Noir, maybe a Chianti. Or just Red and White, meat or chicken, hot or cold. Whatever. Heated up some old bistek from the freezer and cooked and burned some langonisa for dinner last night, as Tracy did her exercises. She actually used the in-building gym for running. Maybe I should start that. Or at least keep her company. Watched The Big Bang Theory, which must be doing something right because Tracy laughed at one of the bits, Grey's Anatomy, the next generation, and Bones and How I Met Your Mother, oh, and a missed episode of Burn Notice, but that was less watched then just played in the background. Had some work to do from home, got that done. Bought an album (new Dashboard Confessional) off Amazon MP3 for the first time yesterday, ended up cheaper than iTunes Store, but then bought another album (new Missy Higgins) off the iTunes Store because that's where it was available. Go an install appointment for tomorrow night to get DSL working in the parents condo. It's more of anything a backup in case my cable service ever goes down.
12:38 PM Thursday, October 4, 2007
Why are all the shows in the 2007 Fall TV Season that I want to watch an hour long? That's a lot of time. Also, I also have another reason for preferring to buy seasons on DVD or through iTunes Store: I'm not so good on the fast forwarding through commercials, so I'm always over, and skipping back, which means I'm always seeing stuff before it happens. Also, it's not so much a seamless experience like watching a movie. Anyway, I like it better. And usually worth it for me. Tracy and I just ordered delivery from Giordano's for dinner last night. The thin crust wasn't thin enough for Tracy, so we're on the lookout for a pretty thin crust pizza that she likes. Watched Heroes, Journeyman, Carpoolers, Reaper and Big Shots. Pilots still on the DVR that I want to check out and need watching: Life, Pushing Daises, and Dirty Sexy Money.
1:11 PM Friday, October 5, 2007
Cubs season on the verge of being over. Which means no more Cubs traffic to deal with until next year. That's if they lose on Saturday, and the game's at 5pm, which could make getting out to see Tony compete in the Cut & Paste Digital Design tournament in Logan Square on Saturday night a little difficult. Deciding on whether or not to ride bikes or drive. Riding bikes I think means heading down Diversey, although Roscoe is nice too. And it's at night with Tracy, so we'll see. Last night she made some ground beef concoction which was pretty good, and I had DSL installed upstairs for my parents. Well, and for me when I go up to visit with them. Watched Private Practice, Bionic Woman, 30 Rock and part of Life (tv show). I've forgotten to mention that I tried out a couple flavors of ice cream from Vosges Haut-Chocolat that are really intriguing. The curry/coconut? It's curry, but in ice cream. I can't decide if it's desert or I should put some chicken in it. It's great and confusing. The other is the spicy chocolate. Kind of odd, but intoxicating. Also confusing. Why is my mouth hot and cold at the same time?
10:57 AM Monday, October 8, 2007
Friday night Tracy had a craving for Mexican, so we wandered down to Cesar's for food and drink. Watched some stuff on the DVR. Saturday I went and dropped some old electronics off at the recycling center, stopped by Erehwon to check out jackets for colder weather biking. Watched more stuff on the DVR, to the point where we cleared it pretty much of new shows. Then we headed out to Logan Square for dinner and drinks at El Cid before checking out Tony competing in the Cut and Paste Design Competition. Definitely felt a little unhip. Took some video of his work in the first two rounds. His first round was awesome, and seriously head and shoulders above the rest of the group. Second round, not so much. Stopped by the grocery store on the way home for supplies. Sunday, Tracy and I made our separate breakfasts, watched The Covenant, the Bears win this time, and Smallville. Tracy made dinner of steak and pesto mashed potates and sauteed mushrooms. Oh, we also painted another hallway wall, and went down to Michigan Ave. to do some shopping, picked up some picture frames from Crate and Barrel. Pretty good weekend overall. Oh, also started transcoding Two Guys and a Girl so Tracy can watch on the PSP while working out.
1:56 PM Tuesday, October 9, 2007
Got my HDHomeRun last night. Didn't get around to playing with it until 10pm since I had stuff recording on the DVR so couldn't unplug any cables until it was done. And, once again, I'm reminded of what is not Apple. No plug and play. Still, pretty easy, but for some reason I couldn't get a TV listing from Titan TV. I did the first time, then not anytime thereafter. No error message, just no listing to choose. Then remapping by hand of Clear QAM to channels in the program guide. Annoying. If Apple ever did get around to making some sort of set top box to work with cable companies, it wouldn't work like this, that's for sure. Annoying. Leftovers for dinner. Dropped by Binny's on the way home from work and picked up some gin, since we ran out, oh, 7 years after I bought the first bottle. Also picked up Tracy's 'scripts from CVS. Didn't get rained on, but it did start to sprinkle a little. Not sure when I can get around to setting up the HDHomeRun to work with the Cube, since I don't want to mess with my existing system. Although the only thing I'm recording tonight with the Cube is Reaper.
10:12 AM Wednesday, October 10, 2007
Yay. Got the HDHomeRun setup last night. Not sure if recording 3 things at once won't result in any stutters or drop outs, but we'll see eventually. If I wanted to, I could record 5 separate shows (2 on the DVR, 2 via the HDHomeRun and 1 via the EyeTV 500) at the same time, each major broadcast network if I so desired. Good to have that as an option. Tracy made soup last night. We watched Chuck (tv show) and Heroes. Both were, eh, ok. Definitely got a lot colder, had to wear my under helmet hat on the ride to work this morning. And it's supposed to rain today, so I probably should have brought the rain pants, but didn't, just the rain coat, I think. It was cool rolling up to the empty bike rack this morning. Felt like an accomplishment.
9:03 AM Thursday, October 11, 2007
It's pretty cold for biking. I really need some colder weather gear for biking. Something windproof. I wore my rain jacket on the way home, didn't feel any wind, but my shirt was soaked by the time I got home. Not sure what to get, I'd prefer something that I can fit a sweater under when it gets colder, but maybe something light enough that I could wear a t-shirt under when it's not so cold out. On the prowl for that. I guess I should have gotten something from that Pearl Izumi outlet store out in Aurora. Maybe next time. I made dinner last night, some easy make oriental chicken stir fry where one of the ingredients is a can of soup. Not bad. Watched Desperate Housewives, Bones, and Pushing Daises. Daises is very very quirky. It's not really like much anything else on TV these days. Kind of refreshing, like a sorbet. I'm trying to put iTunes tags on The Unit episodes I've transcoded, and it's annoying how long it takes. I'm assuming it's because the entire file has to be rewritten when a tag is changed.
10:41 AM Friday, October 12, 2007
No commute by bike this morning since I'm taking the train out to the 'burbs for dinner with the in-laws, it was the mother-in-law's birthday yesterday, or is it today? I should know these things now. I'm headed to Tinley Park, which means I'm leaving from the LaSalle St. Station, which is a first for me. So that actually meant taking the bus, and I don't remember the last time I took the bus. Actually, I just looked it up, and the last time I took the bus to work was August 10th. Huh. Wow. I should keep track of how much money I've spent on bike stuff and find out when I'll break even vs. public transportation. It'll be a while. Last night Tracy made some more nilaga and we watched House, Private Practice and The Office. This weekend we're headed out to Woodstock to see my parents, and do some shopping. Tracy's on the lookout for shoes, and I want her to take a peek at a new laptop, and I'm looking for shoes as well, and cold biking gear, so that means Woodfield on the way out and maybe REI on the way in. And we'll try and do some laundry out there as well.
10:49 AM Monday, October 15, 2007
Taking the Metra out to the 'burbs is actually kind of nice. As is the nice open spaces and slow small town atmosphere. Tempting. Friday night went out to Tinley Park, got picked up by Tracy, had dinner with her folks at the Cooper's Hawk Winery & Restaurant. Not bad. Got to sleep on the way home while Tracy drove, which is not the usual M.O. Of course, after my nap, stayed up to watch Journeyman while Tracy went to bed. Saturday headed out to Woodstock via Woodfield, trying to get Tracy to check out the Sony laptops, if needed, which actually might not be, and just random shopping. Made it out to mass, then dinner by my parents. Good stuff as always. Started the laundry, mom finished it (thanks mom!), and we watched some TV including some Food Network in HD, since my parents have DirecTV. Sunday got up, started feeling like I was getting whatever illness Tracy's fighting through, breakfast by mom, watched the Bears lose, created a DVD via iDVD of my parents vacation photos, and packed up to head back into the city. Stopped by REI on the way in, got myself some colder weather cycling stuff, arm warmers, gloves, jacket (nice and bright yellow), hat and blinkie. Still wouldn't mind an actual jacket, and not a windbreaker, and I'm awfully excited about the arm warmers. Stopped off at Whole Foods, got a pumpkin pie and some pumpkin gelato. It is fall after all. April came over for dinner, borrowed some internet, dropped off her wedding present, watched some TV. And I found out that I won't be getting an iPhone until mid to late November, since Tracy's contract doesn't end till then. Ugh. More waiting. I just want a new toy to play with.
10:40 AM Tuesday, October 16, 2007
So, had another problem with my disk quotas at Prohosting, which means I couldn't write to my rss feed, so things weren't getting updated. Thanks to Russell for letting me know. I'm also on a month to month basis now, instead of yearly prepay, so I'm looking for options. Speaking of which, Leopard's release date was announced today. Of course it's tempting, and I've been waiting on it, as well as maybe updating some additional machines/network around the condo, but I actually have to run it by the wife first. Wouldn't have had to do that if I was single. I'll have to try and come up with some convincing arguments. Leftovers for dinner last night, watched Bionic Woman, Grey's Anatomy, The Big Bang Theory, How I Met Your Mother, and Samantha Who?. I also made espasol for Tracy, which was pretty good. I think I've got a head cold, but it hasn't gotten that bad yet. I'm kind of surprised, as I'm usually flattened by an illness, but then it goes away. So this nagging type of cold is different.
11:53 AM Wednesday, October 17, 2007
I need some better arguments to try and convince the wife that we should switch out the Cube for a Mac mini in the living room. It's smaller and it's faster didn't work all that well. I'll keep trying though. Should have preorder this stuff in April. Finally watched Borat: Cultural Learnings of America for Make Benefit Glorious Nation of Kazakhstan last night. Pretty funny. Not really up for repeated viewings though, once is enough. Had chicken adobo from my mom for dinner. That's about it. Also, been getting a lot of trade inquiries in the Speaker City Flag Football League. That's amusing. Most of it is for the same 2 players. I think it's because last week the players I traded away so far had outstanding weeks. I hope they all get injured this week. Even the ones on a bye. But I'm guessing I'm a good trade partner, because I'm giving away value and not taking nearly enough in return. At least, that's how I feel about it. Or course, I'll probably get around to trading eventually, just probably not this week. Especially since interest is so high on one of my players. Thinking about dropping by Patagonia on the way home from work today to try out a jacket.
4:02 PM Thursday, October 18, 2007
Rode my bike in to work today. Kind of looking forward to the rain, but didn't get any on the way in. Of course, the weather report looks a little bit nastier than just rain. Hopefully I won't have any tornadoes or hailstorms to worry about. But even that might be a little fun. Wore the new rain jacket on the way home last night. Nice, but a little suffocating, since it's waterproof. Not overly so for a rain jacket though. Tracy made spaghetti for dinner, and we watched Smallville and Chuck (tv show). I forgot to mention that Chuck gets bonus points for using a Cake song in the intro. That's cool. Happy to see others doing some trading in the Speaker City Flag Football League, henceforth known as SCFFL. I think they're filming something else on the block near work, but I don't think it's Rory's First Kiss again, at least I don't think so, although they are set up in the same location. Equipment doesn't look as nice as the last time they were around. Continue to be nagged by the cold, but it doesn't seem all that bad this time around. It's certainly no flu, that's for sure.
4:51 PM Friday, October 19, 2007
No major storm on my ride home last night. A brief rain shower, but that's it. Roads were actually dry closer to home. Tracy made chicken Masala and Palak Paneer (from a box or a pouch) for dinner, and I made another batch of espasol. We watched Private Practice and Pushing Daises. Went grocery shopping separately at different times, and I came back with some impulse buys. Not much planned for the weekend. Didn't sleep too well last night, as I was coughing a lot, so I think it's the tail end of the cold. I think I've got a source for Apple discounts again, so maybe that will help with the ongoing plea to upgrade computers at home. I should put together a budget presentation to try and see if that might work as an argument. I also started looking at some additional hard drives for the firewire enclosure. HD takes up a lot of space, as do files for the Apple TV.
11:41 AM Monday, October 22, 2007
Friday night leftovers. I think we watched Bionic Woman and maybe Grey's Anatomy. Saturday had breakfast, watched some cable, went to Navy Pier via bikes, went grocery shopping, Tracy made porkchops for dinner, and we watched the rest of Veronica Mars. Kind of ended on a whimper. Oh, and I finished transcoding Firefly for the Apple TV, so I started watching that in bits and pieces. Wow that show is just plain good. Also did some food prep for Sunday night football watching. Sunday another grocery shopping trip, a little clean up, watched A Lot Like Love on the Apple TV, started watching football, had Jespy and April and Scott over to watch the Bears, and they won in the only exciting minute thirty of the game. I watched a couple players I dropped in SCFFL score pretty well, including Rob Biornas 8 FG for 29 fantasy points. I played him the previous two weeks. Seriously, I've got to be in the running for most inept fantasy manager ever. However, I did pull out the win over Bjorn. I am no longer in last place. Finished off the night watching Desperate Housewives and Journeyman.
2:50 PM Tuesday, October 23, 2007
Started using my arm warmers while biking, on the way home until I switched to the jacket when it started raining last night, and on the way in to work this morning. Kind of nice, but now I think I need a vest. I like the ventilation, but not the cold chest aspect. So vest I think it is. Maybe I'll stop by the Performance Bike shop on Halsted for a vest on the way home. Tracy made some fried chicken cutlet thing from the chicken breasts flattened by me. Watched some more Firefly, How I Met Your Mother, The Big Bang Theory, and Samantha Who?. Almost finished transcoding the first batch of movies for the Apple TV, about a quarter total of the ones I want to do. Now I have to repeat the process of ripping DVDs to the external drive, then setting up a queue in Handbrake to transcode. Wish it could be more automated than that. And Firefly is just such a good show. Like astonishingly good.
10:44 AM Wednesday, October 24, 2007
Hmm, Gmail now does IMAP. Interesting. I've set up Google Apps for Domains for abando.com, and I'm tempted to switch email over. Of course I'd need to get all the users, that is, my family, to use gmail+imap to get their email, but then they'd be able to use gmail for webmail, when they aren't at their computer. And they wouldn't have to worry about downloading. Hmmm. And I wouldn't be dependent on a hosting provider, and I could upgrade the Google Apps to premium and get 25 GB of space for email, so I could upload all my email. Yup, I think I'll do that. Too bad I couldn't do something like this with .Mac, I'd rather do it all Apple Style, but you really can't beat Gmail, I don't think so anyway. Definitely getting colder out, and I'm feeling like a wuss for getting bundled up on the ride home last night, and it was 50 something. That's nothing compared to the winter. I actually put gloves on this morning for the ride in to work. Had a frozen chicken stir fry for dinner last night and we watched Firefly, Smallville, Heroes, Carpoolers and House.
1:25 PM Thursday, October 25, 2007
I now dislike the Windy part of the Windy City. I hate getting a head wind both going and coming from work. How hard is it to keep the wind blowing in the one direction? It did get pretty bad in spots on the way home last night, and it's days like that that I am grateful for the drop handlebars, so I can tuck in and decrease my wind resistance. Ugh. Annoying. Ordered up some more hard drives for the firewire enclosure, because I ran out of space recording stuff via EyeTV. Which means I missed last weeks episode of Reaper. I also forgot to setup automatic recording of Dirty Sexy Money so I missed a couple weeks of that too. But that's annoying because it's been starting at 9:02 pm, and I'm not sure if that's a continuing thing or not. So I had to move around some files, and realized my iTunes drive is almost full up, so I might have to rethink my strategy of letting iTunes maintain control over file structure. I might have to split it out over multiple drives. Except that I am getting a couple new 500 GB HDs. Storage is really cheap these days. Puts me up around 2.6 TB. Continued ripping DVDs for transcoding to the Apple TV. Put the first 10 or so on last night. Totally awesome to be able to queue up a movie in DVD quality with just a snap of the fingers. Might be tempting to just have the Apple TV live off the iTunes library of the Cube, since that will always have the full source of TV and Movies available. Anyway, finally getting to an all digital fully on demand media lifestyle. If I could just get a new machine to do EyeTV - Apple TV transcoding, that would complete the circle I think. Tracy made salisbury steak and mashed potatoes for dinner last night. Watched Firefly and Bones. Headed up to hang out with Bryan and Russell tonight, and get some Smoque while I'm up there. Also checking on UPA Championships, just cause.
11:09 AM Friday, October 26, 2007
Did more biking than usual yesterday. Went up Milwaukee and met up with Russell and rode up to Bryan's. Picked up food from Smoque, and I think I still smell like BBQ. Good stuff. Got see to Tanguay as well. Been a while. Watched Survivor and got to play Wii Tennis and Golf for the first time ever. Fun stuff. Rode a nice convoluted route back home, cause I don't know of a nice and easy way to go East/West. No problems though. Might have talked Tracy into getting a Wii, except she does bring up the point of whether it would get old quick or not. So yet another thing to table for a bit. Got my new HDs for the firewire enclosure, thinking about reorganize the drives this weekend, and the AV Rack as well, clean up the wires and stuff. Finally getting the piano tuned on Sunday. Definitely been a long time for that. Otherwise, nothing else planned.
11:49 AM Monday, October 29, 2007
Friday night Tracy finally got her wedding ring back from the jeweler, so she didn't get back till 9pm or so. I watched some Firefly and actually cooked dinner again, some chicken roman style or something. It was ok, but when we had leftovers on Sunday night, Tracy made it better, adding some sour cream and some other stuff. Saturday we watched some TV before heading out on foot for some shopping down Broadway, stopping at The Gap, Cupcakes, Best Buy, that mall in the Landmark Theaters. Just a nice stroll on a cool fall day, checking out neighborhoods and houses. Came back, watched some TV, then headed out for dinner at Socca. Saw some people headed out to Halloween parties in costume. Finally got around to watching Smokin' Aces. Sunday finally got the piano tuned. Supposed to use a humidifier, since it actually dropped in pitch, or tone, whatever it is it was flatter. Then more couch time, watching football, eating frozen pizza and leftovers. Also got around to watching Casino Royale finally. Didn't really organize the firewire enclosure, but did manage to get the new drives installed. Just not sure how I want to keep things organized. Still plugging away with transcoding movies to the Apple TV. Ended up watching more Firefly and The Core off it this weekend.
1:24 PM Tuesday, October 30, 2007
Wow. Halloween tomorrow. Go figure. Didn't stop by Binny's last night because I wasn't sure if I had Lillet Blonde. Checking at home I found out I had Pimm's No. 1 from the last trip there. So, Lillet Blonde tonight for a Vesper with dinner. Tracy doesn't trust me grocery shopping by myself anymore, with good reason, so we get to go together if I get back in time. Leftovers for dinner last night, finished off the cupcakes from Cupcakes. A little too much buttercream, I think, for my tastes. Watched Journeyman, Chuck (tv show), How I Met Your Mother, and another episode of Firefly. Got 4 more and the movie left there. Might be time to start watching The Unit, or start transcoding Las Vegas (tv show). Oh, and there's that whole Leopard release from last Friday. No, I haven't upgraded yet. I will eventually. No rush. Nothing there I'm dying to get. Probably in a month or so. Hopefully by then the iPhone notes syncing will get all squared away. Still need to try Gmail IMAP access to see if it's any good. On the lookout for a new Windows laptop for Tracy.
12:29 PM Wednesday, October 31, 2007
Picked up some cable claws at Home Depot, planning on using them to quick attach folding Wald metal baskets to the bike, but didn't find the baskets I'm looking for at Performance Bike on Halsted, so I plan on dropping by Village Cycle Center on Wells tonight to see if they have what I want. Also picked up some Lillet Blonde from Binny's and made myself a Vesper with dinner. Eh, it was ok, but I'll stick with regular martini's from now on. Also met up with Tracy for some grocery shopping. Nothing too exciting there. Made a quick and easy chicken pot pie with puff pastry and a can of soup. Watched Bones, which wasn't as good as I'd hoped, and Heroes. Really wish the season was over and I could watch all the episodes back to back. Then I don't have so much of a problem with the slow setup during the early part of the season. I should get around to reading the PDF comics though. Oh, started marinated last night some asian BBQ ribs for tonight, and Tracy's gonna make some wontons, so asian theme for dinner.
8:42 AM Thursday, November 1, 2007
So no asian food night last night, instead Tracy and I went to Whole Foods for dinner, because we were going to meet up with April at Duffy's (she was on some Halloween trolley package something). So we had to come up with a costume, so we went with preppies/country club: khakis, white polos, and purple sweaters. And we didn't have to buy anything, as we already owned all of it. Just wish my pants had pleats. That would have been better. So we head down in a cab, and get out in front of Duffy's where there's a huge line. That's a negatory. Instead, we go down the street to the Galway Bay Pub, where Yak-Zies used to be. Was nice and quiet, only a few people in costume, but then something must have happened, because a bunch of costumed people started showing up. Also got to play some Cricket (darts). A little out of the ordinary for us to go out on a work night, but we had fun, so that was cool. But hopefully asian food night tonight, and the ribs should be better, since they've been marinating for 2 days now.
12:09 PM Friday, November 2, 2007
Finally got around to making the asian BBQ ribs last night. Not bad. Not great either. Kind of winged it with the recipe, so I don't think it's exactly how it's supposed to be. Tracy just put together some stuff for the wontons, which were good, especially the fried ones, but they were definitely missing something. I thought scallions, but not sure what else. She did get the sauce pretty much dead on though. Probably make an appearance as an appetizer the next time we have company over. Watched Firefly, got a little weepy during the episode The Message, with Mal and Zoe's former comrade Tracy. Also finished up watching Samantha Who?, The Office and Scrubs. Had to shut down the MacBook since the Handbrake movie transcoding kept crashing. Seems to be going OK after a little break. Just a few more left. Forgot to mention that I tried out IMAP for Gmail. Not bad. Seems to work. Now just tempted to switch over abando.com to it. Maybe over Thanksgiving?
2:04 PM Monday, November 5, 2007
Friday night Tracy and I were lazy, and ended up ordering Japanese delivery from some place. Ok, but it's no Sai. Watched some TV, finished up Firefly. Saturday watched Serenity to complete the series. Took our standard Saturday walk down Broadway, hit up CVS, checked out Gap. I'm thinking it might be time to get some blazers, as they seem to be on the tail end of the style spectrum, and hoodies are on the way in, at least from my fashion sense (which entails looking at store displays). Then, headed out to Piece to see Leo Wang, the MD/PhD one from Yale, in town for the first time in a long time. Good to see him. Ended up heading back to RWIP to play some ping pong and hang out. Sunday did some grocery shopping, made crepes for breakfast/Tracy made the sausage, then headed out to Old Orchard. I found a new home for the Think Different posters I had, so we brought them up to Bryan. More window shopping, and didn't really get anything interesting. I did get Tracy to figure out which Sony VAIO to get based on screen size, construction, keyboard, and stuff. So ordered that up for her birthday. Got some stuff from Target on the way home, did another grocery shopping run. Tried making butternut gnocchi, but I think I put too much flour in, and they weren't very pillowy, but fairly dense. Not quite how I remember the potato gnocchi I had made before. Still messy and pretty intensive to make though. I'd like to try again. Tracy made the sauce and pork to accompany, which were pretty good. Watched some football, but that's about it. Finally finished up transcoding the movies I really want to have available, and started up transcoding the Battlestar Galactica episodes finally.
9:22 AM Tuesday, November 6, 2007
Feels like fall, almost like winter. Still biking though, but bundling up. No problems there. Otherwise, Tracy made steak and potatoes for dinner. Good stuff, as always. Watched Ocean's Eleven on the Apple TV. Guess we could start The Unit again as well. Also watched How I Met Your Mother and The Big Bang Theory. Also, I won for the third time in SCFFL and broke 100 pts for the first time all season. I'm happy, again. So, might be time to blow the team up through trades, again, except I'm not so sure if I'll be able to find any partners. Also, not sure if I have a whole lot of trade value. The Writers Guild went on strike yesterday. Wonder how long that will go on. Also, the last time they went on strike was in 1988, and I wonder how that affected movies and TV for the following seasons/years. And for the matter, how long is the usual timeframe from pitch to release for a motion picture? Anyway, could be watching a lot of movies or old TV in a couple months.
10:58 AM Wednesday, November 7, 2007
No bike ride in this morning. Tracy gets off work early, so we're going to go see Bee Movie tonight at River East, and it's all about the bus instead. Which is fine. A little different to get to work not sweaty at all, and with less to carry. And I got a Mountain Hardwear Transition Zip T for cooler weather commuting last night, and I don't even get to wear it. Until tomorrow. Should be much better than the rain jacket I've been wearing. Not really breathable at all. So looking forward to it. We had crab legs for dinner last night, and Tracy made more of the butternut squash soup with the little leftover we had. Good stuff. Also, I moved the iMac G5 from the kitchen back into the second bedroom. It's on the desk, which puts it a little high, so I had to track down a VESA mount for it, and after that comes in, I'll get a wall mount of some kind so we can lower it down a bit, although I'm not sure if the walls will support it. Should be interesting to see. But electronics charging takes place in there now, iPods, PSP, Sony Reader. Also after Leopard gets installed, will be able to use Front Row to watch any TV or Movies I've set up for the Apple TV. So we'll have other places to watch things.
1:11 PM Thursday, November 8, 2007
Noticed this morning that I only have 512 MB of RAM on the iMac G5. Odd. I thought I had upgraded the memory, and I'll have to dig around and see if I took it out for some reason. If not, I'll have to get some, and maybe that'll help speed things up a bit, and maybe cool things down? But installed Front Row on it, and I should use ethernet instead of the BG network I'm using with it now, if I want to be able to watch movies off a network share. But that just means I can watch stuff in the second bedroom now. Went and saw Bee Movie last night after dinner at Fox & Obel. Not bad, not great, and I was expecting more of the funny. I thought it had been in production for a long, so I was expecting something spectacular. Rode in this morning, and the Transition Zip T is absolutely fantastic. I started looking for a vest, and they used to make one in the same material, but looks like it's been discontinued, and no one has it in stock in my size anymore. Annoying. Maybe I'll go with just the Windstopper Vest, but that'll just wait until the spring. I'm also in the market for a winter jacket, so I'll be looking this weekend.
2:04 PM Friday, November 9, 2007
Been playing a little with Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud, or EC2 recently. It's pretty cool. Thinking about replacing the gallery and possible this hosting setup with it, eventually. We'll see. But it's pretty easy to use. The only hard part is making sure data gets backed up to Amazon Simple Storage Service or S3 and then pulled back off when an instance gets started. And of course making sure backups are handled all the time. Things to play with. Speaking of which, I think my bike is pretty much complete. I picked up those Wald Folding metal baskets for the rack from Village Cycle Center, which I think is my new favorite local bike store. Attached them before dropping by Home Depot to pick up some extension cords, which I dropped right into the baskets. Super easy. I love it. Did some more cleaning in the second bedroom, put the cinder blocks and plywood sheets from the stadium seating to good use as shelves in the closet. Also used the extension cords so the iMac G5 isn't connected to the light switch anymore. Tracy made fat sausage patties for dinner, and we watched Desperate Housewives, Chuck, and Samantha Who?. Got hair cuts scheduled for tomorrow. Oh, and some other movie production home base is in the empty lot behind my work building. I think it's Eagle Eye with recently arrested Shia LaBoeuf.
12:15 PM Monday, November 12, 2007
Friday night, watched some TV, had frozen pizza for dinner, a nice lazy Friday night in on the couch. Saturday had grits for breakfast, got our haircuts at Robert Jeffrey Hair & Skin Studio on Halsted. I think that's my new hair place, wasn't too expensive, and walking distance from home. My old stylist, Mabel, hasn't come back and started Salonique up after an injury break, so I had to find a new one. Also went to the Gap. Didn't get anything. Started cleaning up some more in the second bedroom, organizing and stuff. Definitely closer, with only 2-3 boxes of miscellaneous stuff to go through. Ended up going to dinner at Mrs. Murphy and Sons Irish Bistro. Eh. The Guinness and Onion soup was the best thing we had. We also sat in the same dining room as the guv'nor, Rod Blagojevich, as he was having dinner with his family and some friends. On the way out we passed his Suburban still running with driver inside. Poor guy. Hope they brought him some food. Watched A Night at the Museum when we got back. Good, funny, fairly wholesome movie. Sunday watched some Journeyman, made oven puffy apple pancake for breakfast, wandered down to the AT&T Wireless store on Diversey to ask about Tracy's account status. We think her family plan contract with her brother is up, so she should be available to start one up with me, but they just told us to call customer care to find out. Annoying. Don't think I can do it online either. So yes, switching to AT&T Wireless, but I think I'm going to hold off on the iPhone. It's been 11 months since it was announced, 4-5 months since release, 2 months since the price drop, and only another 2 months till MacWorld San Francisco. And even with all the updates, it still doesn't do everything I need, mainly sync Notes and handle multiple calendars like iCal. So I'll wait. In the meantime, I'll get a free Sony Ericsson phone for starting up a new contract, which means I can get some syncing back until the iPhone is good enough for me. Or, maybe I'll just cave and get one anyway. Either way, I'm switching. Did some grocery shopping, watched some football, Tracy made chili, cleaned up a little, did some laundry.
2:03 PM Monday, November 12, 2007
I don't usually do this, but it's too good not to. Here's something to read that's very fitting:
The Nerd Handbook.
Yup. Uh huh. Right on. Correct.
10:24 AM Tuesday, November 13, 2007
Finally got a VESA mount adapter for the iMac G5. Been wanting one ever since I got the iMac. Of course I waited to make sure it was the right one, and fit on the iMac before getting the actually arm to mount it on, but ordered that up yesterday. Seriously, can't wait to have a computer mounted on an articulated arm. It's gonna be awesome. Tun came over last night to do a little work on his website, and I need to figure out how to do some different archives in WordPress. For that matter I need to get reassimilated with WordPress. Watched Desperate Housewives, How I Met Your Mother (episode title Spoiler Alert was quite fitting), and The Big Bang Theory. Leftover chili for dinner. Forgot to mention that Tracy and I have been married for 6 months as of yesterday. And I now have only 6 more months to get the long overdue thank you cards out. Yesterday was my deadline, which passed, so I'm now on borrowed time. End of the week. Honest. Except that I'm going to Duke of Perth with Russell tonight instead of writing more of them. Whoops. Only 3 1/2 more pages of guests and gifts to go through.
12:34 PM Wednesday, November 14, 2007
Duke of Perth is a really nice place. Except they took the Scotch egg] off the appetizer menu. Kind of annoying, as I was looking forward to getting one. And that place is really close to home by bike. Not even close to sweating by the time I got home. And still a pretty early night at that, I guess that happens when you get older. Watched Bones, House, Samantha Who?, and Carpoolers. Polished off another page of thank you cards. Tracy had a chiropractor appointment this morning, so she got to sleep in a bit. She also has to pick up her parents from Midway tonight, and she'll be staying out there instead of driving all the way back in then out for work tomorrow. But this gives me a chance to work on her laptop which was delivered today, you know, clean off all the extra unneeded programs and bloatware. Of course, this means I have to fend for myself in terms of food. Not sure which way I'm gonna go though. Not in the mood for sushi, even though that'd be a great option. Oh, and I went through the ATM drive through on my bike this morning. No problems there.
12:12 PM Thursday, November 15, 2007
Riding home last night was a pain. It was really windy. Stupid windy city. But I did make it home, but didn't get any junk food or anything for single night. Ended up making frozen pizza and drinking a can of Coke. That's all. Did open up and prep Tracy's laptop, not sure what we're gonna call it. Windows Vista? Odd. Windows in general? A little annoying. Took me a while to figure out how to get it to connect to my home wireless network with hidden SSID's. Couldn't connect to the 802.11n, so just connected to the 802.11bg that I have for everything else, and then I found out the 5.0 GHz radio wasn't turned on in the network card, so I had to do that with some Intel Wireless Radio tool. Annoying. Not to mention that I couldn't use passwords and had to use equivalent network keys, long hexadecimal strings. Annoying. But uninstalled a few programs, installed Firefox and iTunes, let Windows Update run (only 52 updates!). So it should be ready for her to use. And that means we'll be sitting on the couch, both on laptops, watching TV, chatting with each other but not talking. Sweet. Need to figure out how to get her music, well, the music she wants, onto the machine. Worked on it while Sneakers and The Incredibles played in the background. Also got some new shoes, Merrell Relay Drive.
10:52 AM Friday, November 16, 2007
Picked up Hooters wings and fries on the way home. Just put in my folding baskets and rode on home. I feel bad if anyone was riding behind me since I was most definitely leaving a buffalo wing smell trail. Awesome. And it worked out well enough, popping them in the oven when I got home to warm them up, and Tracy still liked them. So that's a go on that process. Watched Private Practice, Chuck, and 30 Rock. Tracy played with her new laptop, ShinyBox. That's what she named it. She's working the early shift today, so I got up early enough to have some coffee with my morning feeds in my bathrobe. Good times. Almost tempted to get a refurbished Mac mini 1.83 Core 2 Duo for $500 bucks. Have to get up early to find deals like that on the Apple Store refurb section. About 5 minutes after I first saw it, I checked again and it was gone. So tempting. No plans for the weekend.
11:27 AM Monday, November 19, 2007
Managed to not leave the condo this weekend. Friday night came home, Tracy made pork chops and we had some leftover gnocchi for dinner. Watched some TV. Can't actually remember what we watched all weekend in terms of TV, but the DVR is almost cleaned off again. Saturday nothing too exciting, as I was determined to finish off the Thank You cards from the wedding that was 6 months ago. Tracy spent the time getting her new computer all set up, which basically was bookmarks, music, and photos. She did it at the dining room table, so I set up shop there as well, and it kind of looked how I imagine it would be if we were still in school, with the laptops, papers and such on the table. We had frozen pizza for dinner, Tracy got the cheese only and put her own toppings on, in this case pepperoni, garlic, mushrooms and red peppers. I just went with sausage. More TV. Sunday, more of the same, had grits for breakfast, watched some football, watched Because I Said So, more TV, and yes, I finally finished the Thank Yous. Go expect those soon, after I run to the post office this afternoon. Also, I started reripping a few movies to the Apple TV, since they were missing like the last chapter. Annoying. Amazon Kindle got released today. Looks rather interesting. Just hope they can get more publishers and authors behind the whole eBook thing. And definitely switching over abando.com email to Google Apps over Thanksgiving.
9:26 AM Tuesday, November 20, 2007
Well, a Mac mini 1.83 Core 2 Duo was once again in the refurbished Mac section of the Apple Store for $499 and I was once again tempted, even to the point of putting it in the shopping cart. Ugh. And then I removed it. Sooner or later. Now my excuse is to wait until it uses the Santa Rosa chipset. Excuses excuses. Made spaghetti last night for dinner. That's right, I cooked. Watched Journeyman, How I Met Your Mother (fabulous), and Samantha Who?. And watched my bench for SCFFL totally outscore my lineup behind a big comeback game by Vince Young. Of course I'd given up on him this season. Of course. This morning finally got an invite to Hulu. Try Kitchen Confidential to see what it can do. Seriously. I'll put up the entire series for that one. Tonight dinner at Geja's Cafe, finally.
10:21 AM Wednesday, November 21, 2007
Happy Birthday to Tracy. Went out to Geja's Cafe for dinner. Pretty good, but we'd probably only go back for the cheese and chocolate. I might be willing to go back for the entrees if Tracy lets me bring our own batter for some frying action. Otherwise, Tracy had her appointment with the chiropractor who laid out a treatment plan, lots of visits over the next 4 months or so to get things straightened out. She asked to get the x-rays of her spine on DVD so she can show them off. Hopefully this will help. Didn't actually watch any TV last night. I have started ripping more DVDs to the Apple TV and forgot to mention or write down where I was finding cover art. I've been using CoverDig which searches Amazon for images. Works pretty well. I did ride in to work today, which should make the ride home a little interesting. And we're supposed to drive out to Woodstock tonight for Thanksgiving, but we'll see what the weather holds.
9:02 AM Thursday, November 22, 2007
Riding home last night was hard. Strong headwinds, and I was in fourth gear most of the time. Good workout though. No snow, just some rain. I do have to get some better rain pants, because by the time I got home my legs were soaked, not because of the rain, but because of the sweat that had accumulated. Annoying. Did some dishes, Tracy got back from her chiropractor appointment, we packed up and headed out to Woodstock. No really bad traffic, and the weather wasn't too bad. We made pretty decent time. Got home, had dinner with the family, my mom, even with all the Thanksgiving preparations, still had time to make chicken tetrazzini for a birthday dinner, and dad, Al, and Nicole picked up a cake from Ambrosia, actually, it was probably a gateau, Got to see a bit of their new practice stuff. Not bad. Have to wait on setting up abando.com with Google Apps email because I want to reuse a username I had deleted previously. I couldn't decide between longer or shorter usernames. Oh well, next time. I did manage to put Photo Booth on my parents iMac, so that might be good for the kids. 26 people coming, 3 tables set up: parents table, kids (where age average is roughly 30) and kids where the age is much younger. Should be a good time. No idea when we're headed back in since Tracy and I have to work tomorrow.
11:23 AM Friday, November 23, 2007
Thanksgiving was good, if busy. 26 people is a lot of people. Props to mom for pulling it off, and doing it all while fighting off a cold. Always impressive. Drive back in was quick and easy. No traffic. Watched a little bit of Dodgeball and The Incredibles and a rerun of The Office before bed. Rode in to work this morning, a little chilly, but not that bad. Definitely no traffic today. Also took a slightly different route in today, going down Larabee as I was Bjorn do once. Pretty nice, much fewer stoplights. Not sure where I should cut over to Wells though, as today I did on Illinois, but I could probably cut over sooner, maybe on Chicago. I should look into better winter pants and a balaclava (ski mask). I have been walking up congested lately. Also start getting congested the second I lay down in bed. Odd. Still waiting to switch over abando.com to Google Apps. Hopefully this weekend. We're headed back out tomorrow for some more family time. Al and Nicole fly out Sunday night, so we'll just drop them off on the way back in to the city.
10:17 AM Monday, November 26, 2007
Lots of food this weekend. Friday night had leftover turkey from home, but I had to go searching for Ocean Spray Whole cranberry sauce, not the jellied kind, for Tracy. I struck out at Jewel, so I wandered over to Treasure Island and found some there. Also managed to find some Stovetop Stuffing for Turkey there as well, which they also didn't have at Jewel. Watched some TV after Tracy did her exercises. Saturday drove out to Woodstock, picked up cupcakes from Cupcakes on the way, and stopped at the Des Plaines oasis for gas and lunch. Also stopped by Prime Outlets in Huntley on the prowl for a blazer from Gap, which they didn't have. Also went looking for a winter coat, which I didn't have to do, because my parents had gotten one for me when they went shopping in Kenosha on Friday. So that's a bonus. Went to mass, then dinner at Courthouse Grill in Woodstock. Great dessert in a skillet cookie. Couch time and watched Happy Gilmore and some MadTV. Been a while since I've seen MadTV and we weren't sure if they're new style is because of the writers' strike or that's just how they do it now. Sunday was breakfast at home, with a discussion on illegal immigration. Watched some football before going to Yu's Mandarin for an early dinner before dropping off Al and Nicole at the airport. Watched the Eagles almost beat the Patriots. Rode in to work today. Not too cold or chilly. Brought back more leftovers.
2:17 PM Tuesday, November 27, 2007
Still riding. Forgot to mention that I did a little bike work on Sunday night because one of my brake levers was loose. I wasn't sure how they worked, so I just took it apart. Realized I didn't have to do that to tighten it up, but now I know. Ended up taking off half the handlebar tape off, so I'm riding lopsided now. But I figure it's a good time to put some cross levers in so I can brake while upright. Also about time to get some new brake pads too. Anyway, dropped by Home Depot on the way home to pick up a tube so I can fill the humidifier tanks without putting it in the tub. I still need to find some sort of attachment method so that I don't have to hold one end up to the faucet. Also picked up another bottle of wine, since we had a bottle of white last week. Leftover turkey for dinner, watched Chuck from last week and this week and How I Met Your Mother. Also found out that chiropractors are expensive, and we should stick with the insurance that pays for it.
2:45 PM Wednesday, November 28, 2007
Yup. Broke the bike last night. Started cranking on Cornelia to hopefully make it to Broadway when the light turns green, something snaps, and the pedals spin freely. Not good, but nice that it happened not so far from home. Before taking it apart to see what exactly is wrong, I ran an extension cord in the coat closet so we can charge Tracy's phone while it's still in her purse. This way I won't forget to put it back in her purse when I take it out to charge it. Makes it easy. Back to the bike: I got the cranks off, but couldn't get the front gearbox covers off. It's not the rear bevel gears, because I took the cover off and saw that those are engaged. I'm guessing it's the crank axle or gear. If I could get the front gearbox covers off, I could find out for sure. Not sure how to get it off though. Also I'm waiting to hear back from the Dynamic Bicycles people on warranty or spare parts. I also took a crack at the the old mountain bike to see if I could figure out what's wrong with the rear shifter. Ended up something with one of the springs, but I couldn't figure out how to get the shifter apart. So maybe I should just get another one, or ride it as a single speed. I do need to get better tires for it though. In the meantime, it's back to the bus for me. I do get to read the Sony Reader again though, so that's exciting. Otherwise, Tracy made crabcakes for dinner, she watched Grey's Anatomy, which was notable only because it's the first one where I remember noticing a nurse. Three seasons and the first time? Definitely odd not being on a bike, and not being able to just go, and having to wait.
10:35 AM Thursday, November 29, 2007
Heard back from the wedding videographer, and he's only 5 weddings away from ours. I'm actually impressed he's that close. I imagine he's been booked since the spring, with the only time to work on things during the week. And editing takes time. And I hope he takes time off during the week. So yeah, that's in progress. Heard back from the guys at Dynamic Bicycles, and they're shipping out a new shaft, which is what they think broke. I'll have to take a look at it to see if that's actually the problem tonight, but wait and see. And heard from the people I ordered the VESA arm for the iMac G5 a couple weeks ago, and that should be on the way shortly. Should be calling soon about switching over to AT&T Wireless, since Tracy's brother called and gave permission to move her number from their family plan to my new family plan. Still plodding through transcoding DVDs for the Apple TV. There's a 250 GB notebook drive, which is awfully tempting. I'm actually running out of room with the 160 GB. More about the bike, I just ordered some other things, like new brake pads and handlebar tap. Anyway, leftover spaghetti for dinner, made way too many noodles, and watched Housex2 and Shrek the Halls. Puss in Boots is absolutely adorable. If he had his own movie, I'd watch it. An entire movie of computer generated kittens? Awesome. Also Gingie's version of Night Before Christmas? Also awesome.
9:02 AM Friday, November 30, 2007
Was gonna head over to Bryan's last night to watch some football, but wimped out. Tracy had just worked out, it was cold out, and we actually do have the NFL Network. So we passed. Had frozen pizza for dinner, watched Grey's Anatomy to pass the time while the DVR recorded the game, then tried to fast forward through as much as possible. I think I'd either rather just watch highlights, or just watch it live and do other things, then deal with working the remote. Either way, didn't play Patrick Crayton in SCFFL, again, and of course he scored some points. Awesome. Also tried calling AT&T Wireless to get set up, but they were closed. Probably do it this weekend. Supposed to go to the FedEx Tennis Shootout at the UIC Pavilion on Saturday, but I'll wait and see what the weather's like. Although could see Pete Sampras and Todd Martin live. Oh, and using a new machine at work, and haven't installed Flash yet, which makes web browsing a whole lot less flashy. It's nice.
9:43 AM Monday, December 3, 2007
Friday night Tracy made an asian/mexican pork tenderloin with asparagus and rice for dinner. We watched something on TV, maybe Heroes] and Pushing Daisies. Saturday tried to call and transfer Tracy's number and set up a new account with AT&T Wireless but couldn't because my full name wasn't on the permission left by her brother on his current family plan account, but Tracy was able to set up a new account, but couldn't set up a Unity account because the land line was under my name. So now Gabe has to call back in, leave permission to my full name to take financial responsibility for Tracy's number. Annoying. Although with the way things are working out, I might just end up activating my iPhone, which was finally ordered on Friday, instead of picking up an additional phone for cheap through AT&T Wireless. Tracy did go with her other brother to a meet and greet with Pete Sampras and Todd Martin at the Midtown Tennis Club. We didn't go to the FedEx Tennis Shootout because of the weather, and instead walked over to Kanok for dinner. Saw some beautiful looking ice covered trees on the slippery walk over. Stopped by Treasure Island on the way home and picked up some bubbly (on sale) and mochiko flour. Oh, made some espasol Friday night as well, a little gummy though. Watched some more TV, 30 Rock, Samantha Who?, Notes from the Underbelly, and Scrubs. Sunday was a quiet gloomy day with the weather and all. Grits, bacon, eggs and fried rice for breakfast/lunch. Watched some football. Did some work on the bikes, took the shaft drive out of the Sprint, moved the fenders to the mtb. Tracy made more pork and sweet potatoes and mushrooms for dinner.
9:54 AM Tuesday, December 4, 2007
Took the el home last night, got off at Wellington, walked over to CVS to pick up Tracy's prescription and lotion, stopped at Argo Tea to see if they had any green tea with brown rice (Genmaicha) or roasted green tea (Hojicha). Picked up some Genmaicha and an infuser. Picked up dinner from Chipotle. All on the walk home. And it wasn't that cold out. I do notice all the bikers though, and I'm jealous. I should be getting slicks for the mtb tomorrow, although with all the snow we're getting might be better to just leave the knobbies on for now. The shaft drive should also be getting in tomorrow, so I'll have my choice of bikes then, and I can get back on the bike. I do miss commuting, but I am enjoying reading again. I'm now finally halfway through the first book in The Baroque Cycle. Did some exercises with Tracy. Watched Chuck and then the Patriots not lose to the Ravens, the final 5 minutes or so I was pretty anxious about. Gonna try and get home in time to call AT&T Wireless tonight, but should be interesting with the weather. And Tracy and I might have to find something else to do, as TV Shows are going on winter hiatuses, unsure of when they'll come back with the writers strike. Can always watch 24 or rewatch Alias, but would be nice to get those transcoded for the Apple TV.
8:14 AM Wednesday, December 5, 2007
Well, snow on the ground, and I'm not allowed to bike anymore, not that I was with the missing shaft drive and stuff. I do see people biking though, and I still get jealous. I even opened up the box of bike stuff I had ordered, new brake pads, cross levers so I can ride upright and still brake, and handlebar tape, and a balaclava, all in preparation for cold winter biking. Maybe it'll get warm enough for the snow to melt, and I can start again. But we'll see. Took the el home because of the snow yesterday, thinking that Lake Shore Drive would be slow and full of traffic. No idea if that was the case. Watched Heroes, Tracy made dinner. There's a chance I could get my Apple order in today, so I really need to call and setup AT&T Wireless tonight. Also, my mom is coming in tonight for a conference in the city for the rest of the week.
9:35 AM Thursday, December 6, 2007
Finally, finally, got an Family Plan account with AT&T Wireless. Took a while, and yes, had a bunch of hoops to jump through. Had to get permission for me to take financial responsibility of Tracy's number from her brother's family plan, then the usual credit check, which is probably the longest part of the process, then set up a plan, got an account. Then had to port my own number online, getting a new discounted phone in the process, and now have to wait for that to come in. So after my number gets ported, use that for a few days, then finally upgrade to the iPhone, which is sitting, in the box, on a table. It's taunting me. Seriously. Also got the software updates, family packs all, of Leopard, iLife '08, and iWork '08. I'll probably update the iMac G5 first, see how it goes, and then I'll do a backup on the MacBook, wipe it clean, and nuke and pave. I also want to try and clean out my .Mac sync, so that should be interesting. All things that might happen this weekend. Also got my replacement shaft drive from Dynamic Bicycles, so I can get Sprint back up and running and sitting on the bike rack for the winter. Mom's in town, and we'll have dinner tonight somewhere. Tracy made pesto stuffed chicken breasts for dinner. We watched Family Guy and Notes from the Underbelly.
9:54 AM Friday, December 7, 2007
Bus to and from work. Had to wait a little while for a bus on the way home after I just missed one. Traffic still isn't as bad as I remember it, but that may be because it's winter and no one is headed to the beaches or the parks this time of year. Had dinner with my mom upstairs, delivery from Joy's Noodles. Watched a bit of the Bears game. They really need to get a cable box, maybe even HD upstairs. Almost a waste of the TV without it. Finally took the iPhone out of the box and plugged it in so it'll be fully charged whenever I get my number ported, which looks like Monday or Tuesday at the earliest. Still more taunting. Dinner tonight at Gaylord India Restaurant. Hair cut tomorrow at Robert Jeffrey Hair & Skin Studio. And then Tracy and I are starting a Master Cleanse on Sunday. Exciting. Maybe I'll have time to do some upgrades as well.
9:27 AM Monday, December 10, 2007
Dinner was good on Friday, food and company was good, ambiance, not so much. Not that it's bad, it's just not, well, what I expected I guess. Saturday, haircut and some shopping down at DSW Shoe Warehouse, then home, and leftovers for lunch. Then we went out to Orland Square for some more shopping, Tracy was on a search for boots. Saw Bryan briefly, he was pretty swamped, but still managed to hook us up with an iPod Radio Remote for Tracy, (Thanks Bryan!). Headed over to her parents house to pick some stuff up, and went out to dinner with her parents at Joe's Crab Shack. First time heading up the 355 extension; pretty nice. Picked up some lemons on the way home. Sunday started the Master Cleanse. It's not bad. So far. This is only day 2. About halfway through day 1 I was already thinking about the things I'll be eating when it's over. Watched football and Elf. Monday was up early doing my part of the cleanse, and had time to upgrade Carbon to Leopard and all the other software. Also, SIM card and new phone should show up today, so my number should get ported. Which means iPhone activation should happen in the next couple of days. Finally. Market Track Holiday party tonight. Should be interesting since I can't eat anything.
10:44 AM Tuesday, December 11, 2007
Day 3. Still going strong. Haven't been hungry. Started losing weight. Definitely started craving food, and smelling food. I wonder if food will taste better after the Master Cleanse. That'd be pretty cool. Still, can't actually wait to eat something. 7 days away. And then orange juice. And soup. Awesome. Didn't get the package with the new phone and SIM card last night, instead got it this morning. Didn't work just popping the SIM card into my unlocked RIZR, so I left it, and I'll try it tonight. Or I'll try just activating my iPhone instead. Maybe that, so I'll have something to play with. Market Track holiday party at 10pin was fun. Bowling always is. My quads always hurt afterward though. Never got very consistent with a ball or a release point. Actually, might have gotten pretty consistent with my hook, so I always nailed the 10 pin only. Got home in time to pick up some more lemons. Also watched How I Met Your Mother and Samantha Who?.
9:24 AM Wednesday, December 12, 2007
Yup. Activated. It's in my pocket right now. Got home last night, tried using the SIM card in the Sony Ericsson W580i from AT&T Wireless, no joy. Called in, they fixed something, phone starts working. Awesome. So now I'm with AT&T. I log in, register my number, and yup, there it is. Awesome. So, watch some Bones, do some exercises, then decide, oh, why not, let's activate the iPhone. Plug in the dock. Put the iPhone in. Go through the activation process which is pretty simple and straightforward, since I have a current AT&T number. And I'd say 5 minutes later, I'm done, the iPhone is on, and I've got all my numbers. Awesome. Put it on the wireless network, and I'm browsing away. I get to work personalizing all the widgets, adding my bookmarks. Had some issues pairing the iPhone Bluetooth Headset, just had to reboot the iPhone, and some other issues with iCal and calendars, and had to import exported .ics files instead of restoring an iCal backup from a previous version, and find some photos to sync up, but otherwise, it's awesome. It fits slimmer in the pocket. I do have to get used to the keyboard though. Not super easy with my stubby thumbs. Watched House and Notes from the Underbelly. And now on Day 4 of the Master Cleanse. 30% done.
10:56 AM Thursday, December 13, 2007
Day 5 of the Master Cleanse. Don't ever go to a grocery store, especially one that has hot food self serve area, when you're on a cleanse. Awful. I had to pick up more Grade B Maple Syrup for the cleanse and so had to go to Whole Foods. Also, close to halfway done. And I'm never gonna do this again. I like eating too much. Even healthy eating, like celery sticks, sounds and probably taste, even that little celery taste, like ambrosia. At least right now. Anyway, picked up some bottle lemon juice, all organic, not from concentrate. It was pasteurized however, so it's not the same. And it isn't. It doesn't have the same tang as fresh squeezed. So I've got to pick up more lemons today. Which means another foray to the grocery store. Otherwise, watched Journeyman and Pushing Daisies. Also got some music on the iPhone. Also, all my transcoded DVD rips for the Apple TV? Unplayable on the iPhone. Annoying.
10:09 AM Friday, December 14, 2007
Day 6 of the Master Cleanse. Halfway there. I think it helps on the weekend, because we don't have much to eat in the house. Although I still have to get up for the SWF. Ugh. No sleeping in for me. Switched over abando.com email to Google Apps last night. Switched over my parents, hopefully my brother has no problems switching over either. This also means my Google chat is different, since I'm no longer signed in with my old gmail account. Oh well. But I do get to check email via my iPhone now, which is pretty cool. And I'm getting better at using the keyboard. Watched some TV last night, and for some reason Smallville didn't record, even though it was a new episode. Odd. Stupid DVR from RCN. Also did some exercises. Got a couples date for Sunday with the Russells to see Juno. Otherwise, might get out to do some more shopping.
9:39 AM Monday, December 17, 2007
Day 9 of the Master Cleanse. So close. Only 1 SWF left. Awesome. Not too much going on. Saturday, actually left the house and went and saw I Am Legend at River East. Not bad. Did get to see The Dark Knight trailer, which was pretty awesome. Totally looking forward to that one. That and Jumper. Dropped by Fox & Obel, Tracy wanted to see if there were any gift options there, so we picked up some. Of course drooled at all the food I wanted to taste and eat. Might pick up some American Kobe Bone In strip steaks for dinner for Friday. Also managed to finally watch Catch and Release which was pretty good. Sunday made it out to see Juno, a very cute flick, with the Russells at Landmark. Good to see them. Did some more Christmas shopping, or trying to anyway, on the way home down Broadway, and stopped off at Jewel for the last lemon pickup.
9:27 AM Tuesday, December 18, 2007
Yippee! That's right, today's the last day of my 10 day Master Cleanse. Just get through this last day of lemonade. Had my last laxative tea last night, my last SWF this morning. Might need to pick up enough lemons for dinner tonight, but that should be the last lemons I pick up for a while. Breaking the cleanse is a whole other story, that I won't be looking forward to. Last night watched the Bears lose. Awesome. My Big Ten team beat Carlo's Pac-10 team in SCFFL, which is good. Got a couple more movies from Amazon along with the Jabra EarGels which were the reason for the order. Basically they're for the iPhone Bluetooth Headset, which doesn't fit in my huge ears. I've also been watching Studio 60 on the iPhone while doing the SWF. Such a good show.
8:35 AM Wednesday, December 19, 2007
Ok. So the Master Cleanse is over, and now I need to ease myself back into eating solid foods. Exciting. I'm supposed to do nothing but orange juice on the first day, but I'm cheating and I might start with some soup either at lunch or at the very least dinner. Just mostly broth though. Can't wait to taste something salty. Still haven't had anything solid to chew on yet. So looking back, it was OK. I did feel a little better. The old ankle injury seemed to not hurt as much. I don't think I fully detoxed, because I still have a tongue coating. Didn't have any mucus for the 10 days either, which was nice. And I managed to lose about 10-12 pounds. The real question is if I can keep it off. I'll try and stay away from overly processed foods, but I imagine that's gonna be difficult. I also should try and stay hydrated, as that's something that the cleanse definitely made sure of. Never gonna do it again. Watched some TV last night, reruns mostly.
11:14 AM Thursday, December 20, 2007
Well, no real problems breaking the Master Cleanse. Had more soup for dinner. Bok Choy is so good right now. Tracy made nilaga, no beef though, for dinner. Good stuff. Watched Private Practice, House, and tried to watch Notes from the Underbelly that was recorded at 1:30am, except the sound mix was off, so the vocals were really low and the background music overpowered it. We tried watching with closed captions, but at some point even that was out of sync. Tracy also found out about Xenon, since I snuck that purchase in under her nose, but it was refurbished. Anyway, I'll be able to get ride of the Cube. I'll also finally turn on Time Machine, so I'll get to see what that's all about. Need to resync the Apple TV with Xenon instead of Argon. Also would be a good time to clean up the rats nest of wires in the corner of the living room. All about streamlining. Next step at some point is to switch out the iMac G5 and go with an all Intel Mac house. But that's way down the road. But everything seems to be back to normal after the cleanse. Although I did manage to lose another pound yesterday. Odd.
9:53 AM Friday, December 21, 2007
So Wednesday night, I miss the bus going home. Fine. I wait for the next one. Let it go because I know there's probably one behind it that's got available seating. Wait some more. Traffic's bad. I get on the next one. We get to LaSalle and Lake, and it stops, like the engine dies. Tries to restart. Doesn't work. Everyone gets off. I walk back to the bus stop at LaSalle and Randolph and wait for the next one. No problems with that one. All in all, waited 45 minutes before I got on the bus that took me home. Thursday night. Get on a bus going home. Exit at Belmont. Bus stops. Gets restarted. Bus stops again. Gets restarted. Bus stops as we're making the turn from the exit ramp onto Belmont. Coast under the underpass. Finally gets restarted and stays running long enough to get me to Cornelia. This morning. Just miss the tail end of at least 2 buses. But another one's coming. Pretty empty, I get a seat. 30 seconds I notice I'm sitting in a wet seat. Awesome. Seriously bad bus luck. Anyway, had a real dinner last night, Tracy made chicken and orzo. Watched Journeyman, some other TV. Talked to my brother. Not much planned for the weekend. Probably some eating. Supposed to pick up a really good steak from Fox & Obel for dinner tonight. Might be going to Wilde Bar & Restaurant tomorrow night. Might see Russell on Sunday. Probably should finish up the Christmas shopping. Also need to install RAM in Xenon, and move Argon into the second bedroom for the time being, before I get all my old email transitioned over to Google Apps.
11:39 AM Monday, December 24, 2007
Here at work. Awesome. Bus was pretty much empty on the way in, and took me 30 minutes since there wasn't any traffic. Pretty nice. Except that Specialty's was closed. I was kind of looking forward to a breakfast pastry of some kind. Anyway, Friday night Tracy brought back some Filipino food from her work potluck for dinner. That was nice. Saturday had to go in to work. Had some Spam and eggs and rice for lunch when I got back, before heading downtown to Macy's on State Street for some last minute Christmas shopping. Pulled that off and headed up to Fox & Obel to splurge on a holiday dinner. Actually bought a black truffle for Tracy for Christmas, which she shaved a little onto our American Kobe New York Strip that we split for dinner. Yum. Tracy also went with a fruit tart while I went with a milk chocolate tart for dessert. Watched Dreamgirls with dessert and coffee. Sunday went out and saw Walk Hard: The Dewey Cox Story at the Ghetto Plex with Russell. Had corned beef hash, eggs, and rice for dinner and watched Irish Jam after doing some exercises while waiting for Tracy to get back from hanging out with her family. Continuing to transcode DVDs for the Apple TV, this time using Xenon, which is nice. Also pushing my archived emails up to the new abando.com Google Apps mail server, except I need to slow it down because I got the "Lockdown in Sector 4" error message. My parents are coming out today for dinner and mass, and we'll be headed out to the Argaos tomorrow night. And it's pretty cold outside.
9:47 AM Wednesday, December 26, 2007
Christmas came and went. Christmas Eve left work a little early, had dinner (Cornish Hens) with the parents upstairs, then headed out to a Great Mass with musical prelude at Our Lady of Mt. Carmel. It was pretty good, but long, we were there for about 2 1/2 hours. Then bedtime because Tracy had to work on Christmas Day. I got up with her, though, and started laundry. Had breakfast with the parents. Finished up laundry, iChatted with Al and Nicole, took a nap, watched Ghost Rider, then headed out for Christmas Night at the Argaos. Good food and company. Then eventually back home again, bed, and back to work. Should be nice and quiet this week. Bus again was pretty empty, and actually took me 15 minutes from home to LaSalle this morning, which is about 1/3 to 1/2 the time it usually takes. Awesome.
10:23 AM Thursday, December 27, 2007
Gotta love that week between Christmas and New Years. Nice and quiet downtown, easy to get to work and back, not really any lines for food. Last night finished up Love Actually and watched some live reruns, Pushing Daisies and Private Practice and some Two Guys and a Girl episodes. Talked briefly with Jessica Jenkins on her layover at O'Hare. Had a leftover cornish hen for dinner. Did some exercises, and added jump rope to the routine. And, of course, my calves are sore today.
12:41 PM Friday, December 28, 2007
Had to stop by CVS to pick up some prescriptions last night, and originally was going to take the el and get off at Wellington and walk over, but then got tired of waiting and found out I could take the 134 Stockton/LaSalle Express and walk over on Barry, but then I just missed it, so I just hopped on the the 135 and walked down from Belmont. I actually like taking the bus better than the el right now. Tracy made crabcakes for dinner, watched The Office, 30 Rock, Private Practice, Studio 60, and some more Two Guys and a Girl. That seems like a lot of TV, but it actually wasn't. I've also decided to continue ripping/transcoding most of the DVDs in the DVD changer, so that's a pretty big task. Supposed to get some sushi at Sai with the brothers-in-law. Lisa and Ryan are supposed to be in town, some partying in store on Saturday night, also for Carlo's birthday, and no idea if I ruined any sort of surprise there.
10:51 AM Monday, December 31, 2007
Another year winding down. Friday night got home, unwrapped some goodies, an Elgato Turbo.264 and an iLift. Gabe and his friend Eric came over before heading out to Sai and meeting up with Tracy's other brother Mike. Great food and company. I love that place. Also got a new piece of nigiri to try, the sweet shrimp. Saturday cleaned a bunch after heading down to the Gap where we picked up some wool pants. Found out the gathering at Tony's was a potluck, so decided to make some meatballs, mashed sweet potatoes, and some cookies. Headed over there, hung out for a bit. Always good to see people, even if it doesn't happen very often. Lisa and Ryan crashed at our place afterwards. Sunday morning Tracy and I had to head up to Niles to meet up with my family at Filipiniana Restaurant, my cousin and family are in town visiting. After that, headed home and stayed on the couch, watching football. Had to bring Knocked Up back to the Redbox in front of the Jewel, and while renting on Saturday afternoon was a pleasant experience, returning on Sunday night not so much, and I remembered why I don't like renting. There was a group in front of me trying to find a movie to rent, and there was a line forming, and the couple behind me was getting quite testy about having to wait. And that was annoying. Anyway, continuing to transcode DVDs for the Apple TV, but actually might start running out of space, and might have to move things around. Or upgrade the drives in the firewire enclosure to some 500 or 750 GB drives. That'd be nice. Headed up to Lisa's friend's place way up north for the evening, not coming back until tomorrow.