The Compleat Simile
Posted in Books
Last dog watch, 8 bells (8:26 pm)

Yesterday I started reading a book by Keith Laumer called The Compleat Bolo, written in the 1960s with a follow-up story in the mid-80s.

I've only gotten about 55 pages into the book, but I had to stop and talk about this. Laumer uses similes. A lot of them, sometimes even in the same paragraph. It's crazy. For instance:

A sound brought me awake like an old maid smelling cigar smoke in the bedroom

My chances had been as slim as a gambler's wallet all along…

Without them it was no more dangerous than a farmer with a shotgun—

…towering over its waiting escort like a planet among moons.

The broken arm hung at my side like a fence post nailed to my shoulder…

…but they slid aside for my electropass like a shower curtain at the YW.

These are just some of the similes I've read in the last 10 minutes or so, finally forcing my hand and making me quote them. I want to keep a pad of post-it notes with the book now so I can mark them all.

Is there something about the "YW" and their shower curtains that is different from everyone else's? Do they have some newer sliding technology that the common 1960s home lacks?

Busy Days
Posted in Tech
First dog watch, 2 bells (5:23 pm)

I haven't posted much for the last two days—things have been busy around here. I've got a lot going on at work, which isn't unusual, but things are hopping a bit more than they normally are. We're nearing the end of a development cycle and I've spent much of today in various meetings, some to discuss additional development on "feature frozen" software. Typically you don't want to do that, but in this case I believe it may be justified. I can't go into much detail about it, but I think we'd solve a lot of customer service issues with some of the changes we've been discussing.

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DM of the Rings
First dog watch, 4 bells (6:13 pm)

I just happened across The DM of the Rings the other day, and it has given me many laughs, so I thought I'd share it.

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Bonjour?? Goodbye!
First dog watch, 3 bells (5:55 pm)

I was reinstalling Apple's Bonjour service (it's a zero-conf implementation) to test a problem for my boss. During the installation, I got the following error message:

Bonjour error message on Windows

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A Better Picture
Posted in General
Forenoon watch, 5 bells (10:31 am)

Here's a better picture to supercede yesterday's picture post.

White Sand by Alfred Gockel

Translation FAIL
First dog watch, 3 bells (5:32 pm)

To keep the Internet meme going, here's my contribution to the rash of FAIL blog pictures I've been seeing everywhere.

German FAIL:
German translation FAIL

Captured from this site. Perhaps this is why it's a free program…

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More Art
Posted in General
Afternoon watch, 8 bells (4:27 pm)

Today we had another delivery. I'm still waiting for my bookbinding tools, but my favorite painting came today. It's by Alfred Gockel:

Alfred Gockel original

Sorry about the crappy colors, I took the picture backlit with my new iPhone, it's not as color savvy as other Apple stuff apparently. I'll post another picture I took with my nice camera soon.

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Blogging via iPhone
Posted in General
Afternoon watch, 4 bells (2:22 pm)

I posted this picture via my iPhone. It's of my desktop at work. I love my monitors. I think I may use this feature once in a while, but I don't like the way it posts the information to my blog, so I still end up editing it, but it works well enough. It didn't post immediately, but it wasn't too delayed, either.

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Uncomfortably Numb
Afternoon watch, 3 bells (1:41 pm)

My jaw has been numb since 9am. Yesterday I had my semi-annual dental checkup and cleaning. I had lost the top of a filling last week or so, and it had to be repaired. I have a new dentist, since my old one retired. I'm now older than my dentist.

That aside, my new dentist is a nice guy. He uses a new anesthetic to which I found I'm as equally resistant as the old stuff. Unfortunately, the way to find that out is to get a shot of it, then have the dentist start drilling. He instantly hit a live nerve. So he gave me a second shot and a few minutes for that to take effect. Then hit the nerve again. I got a full third injection after that and about ten minutes later was completely numb. I am just now starting to get some feeling back on the right side of my face.

The sad part is he had to drill for literally five seconds, just enough to clean up the edge of where the partial filling fell out. The whole thing cost me $20 after my insurance cut in. It really was almost no work! Such a high price to pay in numbness though.

I missed out on a nice free lunch too because I didn't want to bite my tongue off or take a chunk out of my cheek.

New Phone!
Posted in Tech
Afternoon watch, 7 bells (3:34 pm)

I'm posting this from my new phone. Yes, Scurvy Jake is now officially an Apple customer now.

Now I just have to figure out how this iPhone works…

In Case You Were Wondering
Posted in General
First watch, 1 bell (8:41 pm)

It was the art.

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Happy TLAP Day!
Posted in Pirates
Forenoon watch, 1 bell (8:35 am)

Happy Talk Like a Pirate Day, everyone! Lorien and I are off to Portland for a weekend family visit, but not before we get some delivery from FedEx. It's either my new tools or our paintings, I don't know which, but I suspect it's the art at this point.

Today's message is brought to you by the letters R and I.

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Herbie’s Deli
Forenoon watch, 4 bells (10:05 am)

Yesterday we had a lunch meeting, and food was delivered from Herbie's Deli. Those people that ordered sandwiches were happy with them, I had a grilled chicken caesar salad. It was okay, but it was the first time I ever had a grilled chicken caesar salad with Italian dressing. If that's the way they serve it, it's weird. If they screwed up, well then, they probably shouldn't have. I won't be going there myself anytime soon.

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It Looked Integrated Anyway
Posted in Tech
Forenoon watch, 3 bells (9:34 am)

Last night my wife's cousin came over with her new computer. It just arrived yesterday, but the wireless functionality was missing (it's a desktop, HP Pavilion s3500z). I took a look at the Device Manager but it only showed the wired NIC. I then thought perhaps it was disabled in BIOS (the antenna comes out of the back where the motherboard is, it's not a PCI card or anything). The BIOS was the most sparse I think I've seen in ten years. There were hardly any settings available to change, and nothing about the wireless adapter.

Turns out it's a USB device, and it's screwed in to the back plate where the other motherboard connectors are for PS/2, video, LAN, etc. The device was either never connected, or had come loose during shipping, because it wasn't plugged in. After getting their support on the phone to try to track it down, we finally figured it out. The guy said I have the record for taking one of their cases apart. I told him I've done it a few times before. Probably before he was even in High School (I didn't tell him that part).

Anyway, once I popped out the optical drive (the internal USB connection was obscured by the drive), got the device plugged in good, put everything back together, things were shiny.

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Pirate Freedom
Posted in Books, Reviews
Afternoon watch, 5 bells (2:40 pm)

I started reading Pirate Freedom the other day, and it's very different from most books I've read. Despite this (or perhaps due to it), I find it both interesting and engaging. I'm not even half way through the book yet, but can't wait to pick it back up.

It's about Chris, a priest, who somehow finds himself transported back in time from his monastery in Cuba to the heyday of pirates in the Caribbean ocean. Chris finds himself becoming a pirate, and tries to reconcile it with his faith he grew up with. It's written backwards, as a memoir after he returns, although (so far) the method of transport through time is not explained. The book seems to have plenty of action and is excellently researched and written.

I highly recommend it, even though I'm not even finished with it yet. I find myself wanting to read other books by Gene Wolfe, although this is the first I've read of his works.

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