Friday, September 30, 2011

Sizzlin' Chicken Tikka


Very wise, Grasshoppah.


Fall. Leaves. It's starting already.

Tree Removal Addendum

The tree survives (barely) for a few more days. Wednesday is now the day she comes down. I'll take before and after shots if I can.

That Was Awesome!!!

I just got to visit my step daughter at school. It's grandparents and special friends day and she invited me. I loved every second of it!



Is it Today?

Is today the nearly dead tree's last day?


No word yet.


Thursday, September 29, 2011

Important Anniversary

One year ago today something unbelievable happened.  Well, unbelievable to me, at least.

Jen and I became home owners.

Remember this post?

We are home owners!

Bring on the movers!


If this were the 1790's I'd be able to vote!

Jenny and I own a house!!!!!

How about this one?

Someone is moving into OUR house.

Oh wait, it's us!

Oh what a great, glorious, historic day that was... one year ago today when we closed on the house and moved our bad selves in. 

Happy first homeownerversary to you, Jen!

Just Like Old Times

Hey Hey, the Gang's All Here... again.

Just like the ol' days.

Some things never change.

Red Sox = Choke.  Again.

I have seen some classic chokes in professional sports.  I rank the Red Sox in September of 2011 third behind the Bruins 3-0 playoff collapse against Philly in 2010 and the Yankees 3-0 playoff collapse against the Red Sox in 2004.  Those two were clearly as bad as it gets, although from my point of view one was a whole ton more fun to watch than the other.

This one though... they blew a nine game lead in less than 30 days.  It's pathetic beyond pathetic.  It's as bad as Bucky Dent and Aaron Boone, it's as bad as the ball rolling between Buckner's legs and Pesky double pumping the relay.  It's as painful as Williams hurting his hand in an exhibition game the day before the start of the World Series.  It's as bad as Yaz hitting a pop up to third to end the one game playoff.

I really thought that post 2004 I would not feel the pain of such things the way I did pre 2004.  I was wrong.  This sucks.  I stayed up for the whole thing last night.  Rain delay and all.  I felt that it was going wrong when Papplebon gave up the first two out double in the bottom of the ninth.  The best closer we've ever had was clearly setting himself up to choke.  When the second double came and Baltimore tied it, I knew there was no way in hell the Red Sox would win.  I just wanted the end to come quick, and sure enough it did.

There was technically still hope at that point.  Tampa Bay and the Yankees were still playing, but I knew without a shadow of a doubt that Tampa Bay was going to win.  Given their two outs and two strikes game tying pinch hit home run it was clear that karma was with them and they could not lose.  It was just a matter of time.

The Red Sox lost but they still had a chance if Tampa Bay would lose too, WEEI goes to commercial, WEEI comes back from commercial and informs us that Tampa Bay won.  The epic collapse... the choke of all chokes... was complete.

This morning there are Atlanta Braves fans feeling similar pain, but their collapse was only 8.5 games.  Ours was nine.  The Braves were bad but the Red Sox were worse.

Just like old times.


The Red Sox lost 4-3.

Papplebon blew the save, giving up two runs on three hits, all with two outs in the bottom of the ninth.

This is the most pathetic collapse I've ever seen.

The Yankees and the Rays are still tied at seven in the 45326th inning.

If Tampa Bay loses we will play them in a one game playoff tomorrow, but Tampa Bay is not going to lose.


Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Damn Asshat Prick Yankees

So the Yankees run up a monster 7-0 lead against the Rays.

Then they give up six runs in the eighth, and with two outs and two strikes in the bottom of the ninth with a 7-6 lead the asshats gave up a pinch hit home run to tie the damn game.

Screw you, Yankees.

In Red Sox news, they are clinging to a 3-2 lead in the bottom of the eighth. They have had two runners thrown out at second and in the top of the eighth had a runner thrown out AT HOME!!! Granted the Orioles had a runner thrown out at home too, but... Jeeze guys, could you stop running into outs?

Please, beat Tampa Bay you asshole Yankees.

Please, beat the Orioles you Red Sox whom I love dearly but who scare the hell out of me and royally piss me off all the time.


PS, the Sox just got out of the bottom of the eighth. On to the ninth they go, still up 3-2.

Please win? Please?

Screw you, Devil Rays.
Go Red Sox!


This is what I do at endless stop lights.

This Day in History -Or- Red Sox Inspiration

On this day in 1941, Ted Williams did what hadn't been done since 1930 and still hasn't been done since:  He finished a season with a better than .400 batting average.

The story of the last day is a great one.  The Sox were scheduled to play a double header against the A's (the Philadelphia A's... Moneyball was still many years away).  Before the games started his average was .3996, or something like that, high enough to round up to .400.  His manager gave him the option of skipping the final two games in order to guarantee finishing the year at .400.  Williams turned down the offer and got six hits in eight at bats over the two games, finishing at .406.

You would think that hitting .400 would make you a lock for the Most Valuable Player award, right?  Wrong.  Some asshat named Joe DiMaggio had himself a little 56 game hitting streak that stole some of Teddy Ballgame's thunder.  Joe's brother Dom had an all star season playing centerfield for the Red Sox that year too.  I bet the Red Sox/Yankees rivalry made things odd at the DiMaggio's house on Thanksgiving.

In a related story, on this day in 1960 Ted Williams came to the plate for the last time in his baseball career and slammed a home run over the right field wall at Fenway Park.  He wrapped up a career that was nothing special.  A .344 lifetime batting average (really, most great hitters go their whole lives without even sniffing at .344 and he averaged it for his career), 521 home runs, and, keeping with the Moneyball theme, a .483 lifetime on-base percentage.  Ya, nothing special.  Oh, and he missed five seasons in his prime while flying planes for the Marines in World War II and Korea.  Ya, nothing special.

If that doesn't inspire the Red Sox to win tonight, nothing will.

Go Red Sox!!

Red Sox

The Red Sox pulled out a skin of the teeth win last night.  They tried desperately to blow an 8-4 lead in the last two innings, but somehow failed and held on to win.  While we were trying and failing to lose, the Rays pulled out another victory over the Yankees.  When we need the Yankees to lose, they win.  When we need the Yankees to win, they lose.  Damn you, Yankees!  Another in a long line of reasons why we freakin' HATE YOU!

Today is the final day of the season.  Game 162.  Boston and Tampa Bay are tied at 90 wins and 61 losses.  One game left for each team, and the wild card clinching magic number is two.  If the Sox win and the Rays lose, the Sox are in the post season.  If the Rays win and the Sox lose, the Rays are in the post season.  If they both win, or both lose, they play a one game playoff in Tampa Bay tomorrow.

I have, on this very site, on a few occasions compared this season's disasterous collapse to that of the 1978 Boston Red Sox.  In '78, the Red Sox at one point had a 14 game lead in the division, only to blow it and lose the division in a one game playoff with the Yankees.  That's the infamous Bucky Effing Dent game.  I remember that game.  I really don't remember the September collapse that preceded it.  This year on September 3rd or 4th (not sure which) the Sox had a nine game lead over Tampa Bay in the wild card race only to blow it when Tampa Bay tied them on Monday with two games left.

Doesn't it just seem like the universe is going to force that one game playoff this year?  Can't you feel the deja-vu?  I can smell it and it does not smell good, let me tell you.

Please, Red Sox... Puh-Leeeze win tonight.  You know those jerkwad Yankees are going to roll over and give the game to Tampa Bay, so you just have to win tonight to have that one last shot.

Go Red Sox.
Screw You, Bucky Bleepin' Dent.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Jen's Windows Box

After some major surgery, a new mother board and a new processor and a new box, Jen's Windows desktop machine has come back to life.

Thanks Microcenter and

Reason #8367

Reason Number 8367 why I hate Summer's ending:

Last night, out of nowhere, my bottom lip started chapping and peeling.  This is a start of Autumn tradition for me that requires me to go drug store hopping, looking for the one type of lip goop that works for me.  I think I have a tin of it at home somewhere, leftover from last year's lip goop crusade. 

Stupid chapped bottom lip.

Pointless Pic of the Day

Honeymoon Day 1 by robj_1971
Honeymoon Day 1, a photo by robj_1971 on Flickr.

Someone hit a bunch of the pictures from Quechee Gorge in VT today. They were taken on the first day of our honeymoon. What a great day that was!

Monday, September 26, 2011


My wife has just requested that I inform the interwebs that I, Robert have just eaten sushi.

I would like to add that I have not yet died from it.

Thank you

Addendum: I ate a few pieces of fried shrimp top. Still not dead, and no Rob was not abducted by aliens and replaced by some weird replicant.



Thank goodness. A new alarm clock means we have a snooze button again!

Monday, Again

My dislike for Mondays is epic.  Endless.  Eternal.  Also other words that convey vastness, many of which probably start with "E".

Today is my mother's birthday.  The team of doctors say she is in full remission, and I think that's a pretty sweet birthday present.  Wish my mother a happy birthday, would ya please?

I have a question for my legion of readers.  My wife has a bad back.  I don't know of anything that I can do that can relieve her pain.  Every time it gets bad all I can do is ask her if she wants some aspirin, or ask her to sit in the one chair in our house that has really strong back support.  Outside of that I am of no use to her at all, other than to be a gopher, which I gladly do.  Do any of you have any home remedies, ancient Chinese secrets, or tips handed down through the generations for easing major back pain?  Leave a comment and I am sure we'll give it a shot.

The Red Sox won last night.  The lead in the wild card is one game.  Their magic number is three and they have three games left.  They play the lowly Baltimore Orioles who beat them three times last week.  Tampa Bay plays the Yankees who will probably tank in order to help keep the Red Sox out of the post season.  We are still in the driver's seat, and can still clinch the wild card without having to rely on any other team... but given their pathetic play this month, to say that they are hanging on by the skin of their teeth is a vast overstatement.  Some might call the overstatement epic.  Endless.  Eternal.

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Please, Red Sox

It's 11:30. The Red Sox and Yankees are in the 14th inning of the second game of a double header. The Sox have not won a game since June (slight exaggeration) and a loss tonight lets Tampa Bay catch us in the wild card race. A win increases our lead to one full game.

Jacoby Ellsbury just hit a three run homer. They lead 7-4.

I have been very disturbed by the September collapse. I am doing all I can to stay positive. I'm waffling between begging and yelling, but I will not abandon my seat on the bandwagon.

Today I am taking the Captain Picard approach to the collapse:

"The line must be drawn here! This far, no further!"

Hopefully we will get into the playoffs and advance to the second round where we will face the Yankees and throw out another Captain Picard line:

"I will make them PAY!"

We go to the bottom of the 14th with a three run lead and a pitcher I've never heard of trying to nail down the save.

One out...

I cant bear it!

Pointless Pic of the Day


Raise your hand if you live near Lowell, MA and really wish you still had an AHL team.

Me too.



How do you get a hippo out of the bathtub?

Beat it with a hammer until it's mad enough to leave. Sure it will chase you and eat you, but it won't be in the tub anymore.

Pay Day

Saturday, September 24, 2011


What did one mushroom say to the other?
You are a fun-gi

Where do penguins keep their money?
A snow bank.

Thank you. Tip your waitress.

Pinappley Asian Drink


Is anyone surprised that I'm a pig?


Can you see the chipmunk? They are everywhere!

Friday, September 23, 2011

Mega Patches

She looks gigantic on the iPad screen.

Rt 90

Raise your hand if you love the Mass Pike...

No one?

Proud of Myself

I really don't have anything to say right now, at least not that anyone will care about.

I do, however, need to self motivate a little and think a little bit of self back patting is in order.

Slim Fast... Day Five:

Yesterday (day four) was messy.  I left the house without my breakfast and my lunch.  I could have just blown off the whole plan for the day, but instead I skipped breakfast, had lunch in the cafeteria, and then had a meal bar for supper.  That's right, kids.  I had the meal replacement for dinner.  Take that!

Today I managed to remember to bring breakfast and lunch with me but when 1:00pm came around I strongly considered blowing off the plan and getting a burger or something for lunch.  Instead I took out a meal bar and ate it as slowly as I could stand.  That is making me feel like I've earned some serious self congratulations.

Of course, I'm still absolutely starving so there's a chance I might not make it through the rest of the work day without hitting the candy machine.  I suddenly feel like Samuel L. Jackson at the end of Pulp Fiction.  I'm trying real hard to be the shepherd to stick to this diet.

Oh no.  Some one near me just came upstairs with their lunch.  It smells soooooooo good.  I don't know what it is, but it smells sooooooooooo good.

Be strong, fat boy.  Be strong!

On a slightly related note:

Give this article a read.  I'll wait for you to finish...  Liposuction A Boon For Your Health

Done?  Okay.

I KNEW IT!  I totally knew it.  My friend Larry and I have been talking about how liposuction HAD to be good for you for years.  It just had to be!  Mostly I believed that because I am fat and lazy and am always looking for an easy way out, but I still believed it.

How could it not be good for you?  They take a truck load of potentially harmful fat cells right out of your body.  How can there not be some positive side affects to that?

Overcome with Sadness

Well it's happened.

It was inevitable, of course, but I still did not want to see it come.

Today is the first day of Autumn.  Fall has arrived and Summer has departed. 


I said it before, I have nothing against Fall.  Fall is fine and dandy.  The colors, the holidays, the MLB playoffs and the start of the NHL season.  These are all things to be happy about.

But still it sucks.  I love Summer.  Everything is possible in Summer.  Everything is alive and vital in Summer.  In Fall everything is dying and ominously foreshadowing Winter.  Hell, one of the biggest Fall attractions here in New England is celebrating billions of dead leaves.  How depressing is that?

No offense, Autumn, but I wish you would stay away this year.  Let's give Fall and Winter a miss and jump right back to Spring.


Pointless Pic of the Midnight Hour


The Mighty Spicket

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Please, Not Yet

Am I right in thinking that today is the last full day of summer? I am not ready for Fall. I don't have any problem with it in general, I just don't want it to be here yet.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011



Okay, it's panic time for real.

The Red Sox just lost to Baltimore AGAIN. They blew a lead late in the game AGAIN. They are 5-16 in September and the wild card lead is down to 1.5 games.

Oh, and the next three games are against the Yankees in New York.

I am by no means off the wagon. That will never happen... But holy cripes do we suck ass right now.

Sad Day for Rock and Roll Music

R.E.M. has split up.  They've called it a career.

And the Rock and Roll world is worse off for it.

I saw them in '89 at the old Boston Garden.  Mike and I sat behind the stage.  We could see maybe a third of the action.  It was a surprising set.  They skipped pretty much all of the hits and stuck mostly to the back catalog.  It was a great show.

As great as it was, though, a few months later at Great Woods was even better.  That time they spent more time with the A list songs.  We were right in the middle of the crowd and actually got to see the band.  They were off the wall fantastic that night.  I would like to think that they were pushed to a higher level by their opening act, Throwing Muses.  The Muses were spooky and frantic and wonderful and the perfect band to match up with R.E.M.  It was college radio rock bliss.  That show will always be on my short list of favorites.

For my money, R.E.M. in the recording studio had a streak from about 1982 through 1992 where they never missed the mark.  From Chronic Town through Automatic for the People I loved every second of just about every song.  They seemed to get a little unfocused with Monster, although it was still a great album.  After that they started losing me a little.

Still, Life's Rich Pageant and Document may be two of the best rock and roll records ever made.  You can throw Green and Reckoning in their too.  Near perfect records. 

The music industry is falling apart all around us, and not having R.E.M. anymore just makes the future look that much bleaker. 

Thanks for the great music, guys.  Must appreciated.

R.E.M "call it a day" after 31 years, many hits

Operation Slim Fast: Day Three

Have you ever taken a psychology course?  I took one at Middlesex Community College that was called Intro to Psychology.  I got an A and I learned a little bit about how the brain works.  Just enough, in fact, to be annoying in group conversations.

One thing I can't remember though is the little factoid about how many days the human brain needs to repeat an action before it becomes a habit.  For instance, how many days do I have to faithfully follow the Slim Fast diet plan before it becomes a habit and I can do it without thinking about it.

The answer is probably more than three days, but after three days I am still doing okay.  Although I am SERIOUSLY HUNGRY RIGHT NOW I tells ya.  Seriously hungry.

Oh, and Coke Zero is good... but not that good.  Know what I mean?

Go Slim Fast!  

The "R" Word

File this under "Best News Possible."

My mother is in the hospital for another chemo treatment.  She spoke to my sister yesterday and my sister relayed this message to me.

She told me that Mom's doctor used, "The 'R' word."


She'll get a few more monthly chemo treatments just to be safe.  For now at least it looks like the cancer really is gone.  Now all we need to do is make it stay gone.

Worst Things Imaginable

Two of the worst things imaginable have happened within the last 8 hours or so.

First, the Red Sox blew their seventh inning lead in the eighth inning last night and lost to the pathetic Orioles. Who's pathetic now? They are 5-15 in September.

I was too young to remember the epic collapse in 1978, although I have clear memories of Bucky Bleepin' Dent, so I can't say how this year's pain compares... But it's got to be similar. This blows.

Second, and much more distressing, the snooze button on our bedroom alarm clock has been acting strange lately. Sometimes you would have to press it 5-6 times before it would work.

This morning it appears to have given up the fight completely and just stopped working at all.

How are we supposed to survive without a functioning snooze button? The horror at the thought is overwhelming!

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Testing the Instagram Update

Pointless Pic of the Night

June 6, 2008 - Hollywood Studios and a Night Out

I'm actually kind of proud of myself. The Star Wars Blu-ray boxed set is out and I have not emptied my life savings to buy it. (do we call these versions the special-special-special editions?). I'm going to put the super box set with the 40 hours of extras onto my Christmas list and let Santa take care of it.

How responsible of me.

Two pieces of good news from the world of Boston sports:

First, the Red Sox are winning in the seventh inning. Barely. Hang in there, Sox.

Second, Bruins defenseman and convicted woman assaulter Joe Corvo left today's black vs white scrimmage game with an injury. Reports are that he is day to day, but I'm hoping for season ending so we Bruins fans won't have to root for the kind of asshole who would beat up a woman.

Go Red Sox!
Go Bruins!

Don't Scare Me MLB!

I just had the baseball crap scared out of me.

Normally around this time of year I write a lot of boring and meaningless posts about the Boston Red Sox playoff race. Over the past month+ I have wanted to, but it has just been too painful. Loss after loss after loss. What was a nice lead in the division has been reduced to a tiny lead in the wild card.

Yesterday I had tickets to the first game of the double header but... Well... I couldn't find them (they were originally for a game in May, so they've been bounced around the house probably a dozen times and... Well... They're just gone) so I stayed home and put it on the tube. I had the volume off because I was recording music, but it didn't stop the escalating panic as they lost to lowly Baltimore.

We watched the second game while playing WoW. I told Jen we had to watch because this game was going to be the start of the turn around. The ship shall be righted. The lead in the wild card was down to 1.5 and the September collapse is of epic proportions, but as Captain Picard once said, "this far, no further!"

Fortunately they came through with a very large win. Whew. This morning I checked the MLB11 app and almost shit a brick. It listed the lead over Tampa Bay as one measly game! As if the Sox lost game two! Panic!

It was an error. The lead in the wild card is two games and two games is a whole ton safer than one.

Whew, indeed!

Monday, September 19, 2011

Still Another New Song

This comes from my first time ever playing with GarageBand. Initially it was just meant to impress my step kids. That's it. I forgot about it until I was looking through my files today and decided to finish it off. I added two guitars and two vocals and now it's a crappy new song.


Oh and that's it for today. I still don't have calluses on my left hand and all this guitar noodling has my finger tips burning.

Another New Song

The third of possibly four songs written either just before or during Hurricane Irene's visit. Not sure If I am going to bother with the fourth one.

New Song

Nothing special this time.

Still Got the Bug


2011-02-08 More Snow 060 by robj_1971
2011-02-08 More Snow 060, a photo by robj_1971 on Flickr.

This photo got a hit on Flickr today and it made me sad.

Really, really sad.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Love the Hat

I love that hat.

I love the woman in the hat even more.

More than anything.

Mission from God

Slowly but surely we creep toward the goal that some of us have come to desire.

Slowly but surely we creep closer to gettin' the band back together.

Let's get the band back together!

Oh, and there might (stress, MIGHT) be new music tomorrow.  We'll see.


Coconut M&Ms? Offensive!

Saturday, September 17, 2011


We saw what was causing both the holes in the tree and the sawdust.

I never would have guessed in a million years.


Jen saw dust blowing away with the breeze so we went out to investigate. At first we saw nothing, but then I saw the dust blowing away too and tracked it down to a specific hole.

As we watched the whole would fill up with sawdust that would after a second or two get pushed out. Clearly something was in that hole borrowing deeper. We both feared we were witnessing termites in action.

Then as the dust was finally pushed out of the entrance to the hole the culprit showed itself. It was an ugly yellow and black striped tail. A yellowjacket. Clear as day.

I really never would have guessed.

Later we finally got our first estimate from a tree removal service. We expected it to be insane and it was. We have yet to say yes or no to them, but we're going to have to get rid of this dying sucker soon.

I'll let you know.

Lunch Cam

Army of the Patomac

The Yankee army has camped at the library in Salem, NH.

Oil Change Day

It's a big day for our new car. Her first oil change. Awww.

To bad she's seventh in line. Awww.


All of the algae on the fish tanks walls is gone! Success! Way to go, algae eating catfish! Woohoo!

Friday, September 16, 2011

King Richards Fair

412 by robj_1971
412, a photo by robj_1971 on Flickr.

we were thinking of bringing the kids this year, but someone is beating us to it. I sorta feel like the knight being flipped. Bummer

Pointless Pic of the Day

2010-02-28 - spicket flood level 082

So Much for That Idea

So much for that idea...

I posted yesterday that the Red Sox information webpage states that cameras are allowed in Fenway Park.  It said nothing about any restrictions, and for a little while there I was thinking I'd be able to bring my DSLR in to Monday's game.

Then I figured I'd better ask about larger cameras, specifically those with detachable lenses, to see if there are any restrictions on the camera policy that aren't mentioned in the posted camera policy.  I was hoping I was being paranoid.


I sent a message via the Red Sox Contact Us page asking if cameras with detachable lenses were allowed into Fenway Park.  I just received a response.  The answer is a big fat smelly no.  (I expected it, really)

The responder said that the camera policy posted on the information page needs to be updated and that he will work on getting that done.


Morning Moon


Jen and I get a huge bonus tonight.

A few weeks ago the kids went to a concert with their father and step-mother. The concert was on a mommy night so we didn't get to see them at a regularly scheduled time. That doesn't happen often, but when it does we have the conflicting feelings of being happy that they are doing something fun and exciting, and sad because we miss them.

This time though it was a trade. Dad got them on one of Mom's nights in exchange for Mom getting them on one of Dad's nights. That night is tonight!

Woohoo!! Bonus kid night at our house! Awesome!!

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Camera Policy

It turns out the Red Sox have a Fenway Park information page that includes their camera policy:

Cameras and video cameras are permitted inside Fenway Park, but cannot be used to reproduce the game and must not interfere with other fans' enjoyment of the game.

That is good news. It says nothing about specific cameras being banned. I have been to a couple of hockey arenas that allow cameras, but ban those that have detachable lenses.

If I decide to go to the game Monday afternoon I will probably bring a print out of the info page with me.

I might call them to confirm too. If I go.

Nothing Special

Nothing special this morning.  Nothing spinning around my otherwise empty head... which I guess implies that my head is completely empty today.  I'll buy that.

I've been really tired the last few days.  I got a good night's sleep last night, but I fear I will need another one tonight before I am right again.  Here's to hauling in the Z's.

We have Red Sox tickets for Monday afternoon.  I took the day off.  Jen's not going to be able to go.  I could go alone.  I guess.  Or I could stay home and play guitar all day and maybe get a couple more new songs onto  Or maybe I could go into Boston with my camera in the morning.  Can I take a DSLR into Fenway Park?  I should look into that.  It might influence my final decision.

I guess my brain isn't empty today after all.  Just mostly empty.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Pointless Pic of the Night

Sands/Land's End/London Bridge

Does the blogger app handle HTML? Probably not. Let's see...

Woohoo, it does!

Something That Makes Me Happy

File this under "life's simple pleasures."

I love it when I come home and park the car in front of the house, and when I look up through the windows I can see my wife inside.

Sure it's a little thing, but it makes me so happy. I love it when that happens.


In response to yet another round of changes made to the Star Wars movies (specifically, Return of the Jedi), here is a few Sympathetic movie moments.

If you don't know what I am referring too, watch this.

Meow Meow

How much is that kitty in the laundry...

Sing it with me!

Eat More Algae!

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Grats, Wake

It finally happened. It only took 344256 tries, but tonight Tim Wakefield won his 200th game.

The Red Sox just finished destroying the Blue Jays. The (Devil) Rays have already lost tonight. The Yankees are playing in Seattle and just started. All we can say about that is, go Mariners.

Congratulations on your 200th win, Tim Wakefield.

Happy Programmers Day

Today is a holiday I can almost get behind. Hell, I should have had it off!

It is programmers day. Also known as the 256th day of the year. That's 2 to the 8th power for those of you who did not have classes with Prof. Maloney at UMass Lowell.

Have a happy one, where applicable.

Should We be Worried?

I use Flickr to host all of my pictures.  All of them.  More than 6,000 of them are viewable to people I give "family" level access to.  More than 13,500 are public.  I do not generate a lot of traffic, I probably average a few hits a day, but that's not what I want from my account.  I want a place where I can host an unlimited number of files in a somewhat organized way, and I want most of those files to be available for me to display on other sites.  Sites like Blogger, for instance.  I also want the ability to upload and edit large batches of files at a time.  For the last 2+ years I have been willing to pay a small amount of money for those services.

Prior to buying a Pro account on Flickr I was using Picasa Online.  It did most of what I wanted, but even if I had purchased additional storage capacity I was never going to even come close to being able to host an unlimited number of files.  I was actually posting to 4-5 different Picasa accounts at the same time.

So I moved all of my stuff to Flickr.  I have been very happy with the service.  I haven't had a single complaint in over two years.  It's been great.

But is that about to change?

Flickr is owned by Yahoo, and Yahoo is looking like the corporate equivalent of a sloppy mess right now.  Their Chairman fired their CEO over the phone while she was at a conference.  She followed that by going to the press and dropping some eff bombs and referring to the Chairman as a doofus.  They started a relationship with a new company... I think it was a marketing firm, but I'm not sure.  This new company immediately recommended that a number of board members resign, and suggested if they don't they should be canned.

Until very recently I don't think I noticed a single new feature being added to the site.  That changed when they brought in Lightbox not too long ago.  I thought that was a waste of space when I first used it on my laptop, but it's really cool on an iPad.  I'll give them credit for that.  Still though... Flickr almost seems like an afterthought to Yahoo.

So Yahoo is looking bad, and Flickr seems like a forgotten project...

What am I going to do if Yahoo collapses?  Or cuts Flickr?  Or eliminates the unlimited storage?  Or sells Flickr (or all of Yahoo for that matter) to another company who guts the services?

Who is my back-up plan?

Answer:  No one.  At least not at the moment.  I have most of my account backed up.  Only the most recent sets and a big chunk of iPhone related stuff are missing from my back-up folder.  That's easy enough to fix, but as for hosting it all in the event of a collapse?  I haven't a clue.

Should I be worried?

Summer's End

I'm in one of those listen-to-audio-books-while-driving-to-and-from-work phases.  Lately it's been a string of Stephen King books that I read ages ago and are deserving of a re-read.

Right now it is Insomnia (although it's hard for me to imagine that I just mentioned having read a book that was published in the 90's as having been read "ages ago") and just a few minutes ago Stephen King perfectly described my feelings on the summer of 2011.

I tried to force myself to memorize the exact quote as I was driving, but I already forget most of it.  Let me see how close I can get:

Summer came to an end as it usually does in Maine, almost unnoticed.

 I can't remember if that's correct, but that's the gist of it.  Change the word Maine to Massachusetts and you have this summer summed up perfectly.  Back in June it arrived to great applause and anticipation.  Then I blinked once and the leaves had started turning.


Monday, September 12, 2011

Pointless Photo of the Night

2010-09-14 - Rush at TD Garden 412 This got a hit on Flickr today. It seems fitting to randomly post it for no good reason as the Mrs and I have the R30 Blu-ray on the tube as we speak. She wanted to play World of Warcraft tonight and I agreed if we could have Rush in the background.

Rush seems a fitting band to listen to (in any circumstance whatsoever) while playing Warcraft. Don't you agree?

Monday Again

Mondays are getting more and more difficult.  I hate Mondays, but so does everyone else so what can you do?  At least I was at my desk by 9:00 today.

Yesterday was a lot of fun.  We had planned to be responsible and do chores and errands and things and be productive and such.  We actually piled into the car and headed to Market Basket to buy food for the week.  Just like a responsible family should.  As I was looking for a parking spot, Jen quietly mentions that there is a store in Salem that sells games and she'd never been there and maybe we should go find a game to play as a family instead of being responsible. 

My response to that was, obviously, screw responsibility!  Let's go play games!

We didn't find anything at Myriad Games in Salem.  Everything was a little too grown up for the kids, or way too expensive.  We changed plans and headed to Toys-R-Us.  There we bought a goofy game called Kids Battle the Grown-Ups.  There was a stack of questions for the kids to ask us, and a different stack of questions for us to ask the kids.  It was fun and silly.  We played best out of three and the kids completely smoked us in the first game.  It lasted all of about 4 minutes.  That's all the time they needed to blow us off the map.  Jen and I regrouped and won the next two.  They were long, dragged out battles complete with numerous lead changes.  Fortunately for my fragile ego, the grown-ups prevailed.

Next we played Parchisi... although it really wasn't anything like I remember Parchisi being.  A couple of times I found myself wondering if maybe we had the wrong game in the box.  I didn't complain though, we had fun with it.  Jen won a very long and drawn out match where she out strategized the kids.  She was able to block them while still moving her pieces closer and closer to home.  She played like a master.  I only mentioned her outplaying the kids because I was a non factor.  I kept getting pieces bounced back to the start and I rolled and rolled forever but only rarely was I able to get my pawns onto the board.  I got smoked.

Now we're back to work.  The weekend is over.  Depression sets in.  We don't see the kids again until Wednesday.  Maybe on Wednesday we'll be able to play Payday, the other game we bought at Toys-R-Us.  Maybe I'll be able to vindicate myself there.

Sunday, September 11, 2011


Parchisi Gridlock


Family game night has turned into a Parchisi traffic jam.


Rubber Match

They are about to beat us. Again.

This is War

Kids vs Grownups. This game is a battle royale of trivial knowledge.

It Really is Tug of War

The Battle Begins

Death by Berry?

These things are growing in the back yard.  Does anyone know what they are?  Can the deer eat them?  Are they poisonous?  Is our yard going to be littered with deer corpses?

2011-09-11 - Out in the Yard 003
2011-09-11 - Out in the Yard 006