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Category: one more time...

05/21/06 04:31 - 47ºF - ID#36705

Back log

I might have to quit this site. These California people posting all the time are getting on my nerves. Oops, never mind. ;-)

I'll make this quick. Tried to post last weekend but gave up after technical difficulties. Now it's a freakin' mission.

Saw some fireworks sponsored by a local radio station from an amazing vantage point last Saturday. We took a boat across the Bay from Berkeley.

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Also a good vantage point to see the new earthquake-resistant eastern span of the Bay bridge, in progress.

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Somehow my camera got set to B&W mode. Oops.

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The fireworks actually were in color.

Met some friends for a picnic at Bakers Beach the next day -- which turned out to be a picture perfect beach day. We don't get many of those here. It may not get cold in the Winter, but it also doesn't get hot that often in the Summer. Last Sunday was hot.

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Plus, I had my first craigslist sighting! I know it's not as exciting as an (e:peep) sighting, but it's all I can reasonably expect. I recognized this guy at the picnic who always posts his picture on his ad. I couldn't remember his ad (or why I remember it but never responded to it) so I didn't bring it up with him. Although he was cute, and seemed nice, and he went out of his way to get an introduction to me, and brought up how hard it is to meet people to date in the Bay Area. Yeah, maybe I blew it. We'll see what I think when I find his post again. At least now I know he looks just like his picture, haha.

Then today more than 75,000 mostly costumed (or au naturel) participants surged past my block in the 95th annual Bay to Breakers 12k race.

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View from my front steps

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And up the block at Alamo Square

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Closer up

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The stragglers and the street cleaning crew, turning donuts at each intersection.

It's pretty much a 7.5 mile block party, where everyone who lives along the route hangs out their windows, fire escapes, roofs, front porch, blaring whatever music they think is the appropriate accompaniment. And toss treats the naked people running by. Kind of like Mardi Gras.

Although even the mayor complained there weren't enough naked people this year. I couldn't help noticing that too. Still interesting to check out the pix.

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Category: work

05/18/06 11:32 - 50ºF - ID#36704

ACTION NEEDED!

I'm not sure if I'm cut out to be a contractor. I seem to care more about this project than anyone else.

Case in point. Being the conscientious little content migrator that I am, I raise the issues that are keeping us from doing our work in my weekly status report. (Of course I also bring them up with my boss right away, but she never seems to do anything about them.) So when my boss's boss reads about them she decides these issues are so important, I should submit a daily status report so they can get on them right away. Ok, fine. I do that for 3 days, and still nothing happens.

So then my boss's boss decides, hey! These issues are so important, as soon as they come up you should broadcast them to this distribution list of people who apparently signed up as the project movers and shakers in the last executive meeting. Somehow I don't think they really knew what they were signing up for, and now I don't want to be the one to deliver the message. But this all goes down Friday at 5:45pm and I have to get the fuck out of there. So, against my better judgement -- and already clocking 1.5 hours of overtime for the week I can't even bill for -- as instructed I submit my first ever "ACTION NEEDED!" (caps theirs) email outlining what needs to happen for us to get our work done.

Maybe that doesn't sound so bad, but keep in mind this is at 6PM on Friday, everybody is gone for the weekend, my boss hasn't done a damn thing about any of these issues all week, and now I look like a contractor b!tch on a power trip or something. I mean, you don't go from being a behind-the-scenes "can you fix this?" type person to an "ACTION NEEDED!" type person overnight without some kind of explanation. Plus, I still have an aversion to using caps ever since I got yelled at for putting ONE word in caps for emphasis in a trouble ticket (is it my fault textarea form fields don't have any way to format for clarity other than capitalization? Good lord, I'm never going to live that down.)

So yeah, it's not really the way I would have gone about it. But at least now I've been given an account on the bug tracking database, and I've been invited to the daily QA meetings, and the project manager invited me to a meeting with the developers to talk about some of this stuff. And even though I'm still not supposed to bother the developers, they now come to my cube on a regular basis (Steve says my cube is like Grand Central Station). It's about freaking time!

Which reminds me. ACTION NEEDED: PAY ME MORE!!! ;-)

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Category: dreams

05/12/06 11:23 - 61ºF - ID#36703

T.G.I...

Whoa. This has been a totally weird week. The company I'm contracting for announced they're being acquired by Wachovia. So either I'll be asked to clean out my desk (won't take long) next week, or they're extending our contracts through August 25th.

Either way, I'm signed up to dog sit in Alameda May 27-June 29. Don't even ask me how that happened.

And this morning I was asked (again) if I would be available for an interview for an article with Alameda Magazine about -- which seems to be on the brink of disappearing.

I keep trying to get back to the right place at the right time. Thought I was back on track, but now not so sure.

News Flash!!!! (this just in from Larry)

Buzzcocks will be at Mezzanine Thursday, July 27; tickets go on sale on Saturday, May 20 at noon. They are also going to be on the bill of this year's Warped Tour, at Piers 30/32 on Saturday, July 8 (the day after Rev Horton Heat plays the Fillmore), along with Joan Jett and a host of others.

Ok, I've got a waypoint plotted back to the right place, right time. I'll just hope for the best.

So, I had this dream last night that (e:PMT) came to visit me (a peep can dream, can't she?) and I was so excited they were going to stay with me and I could finally show them around San Francisco.

Flash forward to Thursday night in my dream. I'm driving home from work and all of a sudden I realize, OMG!!! (e:PMT) have been here for almost a week and they've been trapped in my place and couldn't go see anything on their own because I took the car to work! I was so freaked out. In my head I kept calculating just how much of their time I had wasted -- and wondering why didn't they come last Friday or Saturday so we could have a couple weekend days first? But it all boiled down to me taking the car.

So I get home, ready to make amends, and there's (e:PMT) with my Dad. I don't know how Dad got into this dream, but he's grilling a huge steak for us to eat, so obviously I have to let him stay, haha. Dad loves his meat rarer than rare, but for some reason, it's taking a long time to grill this one. Since it's already 11pm and I know I have to work again tomorrow, I decide to sneak out and plan a sightseeing itinerary for (e:PMT).

I wish you could have been there for this part. It's the typical harrowing gamut of all things feared in your life. I'm thinking, "I can't map this out for them! I know how great the view is at the end, and even I don't want to go here!" Then I realized I had also forgotten my camera, so I couldn't even take a picture for them.

For some reason, I was convinced they couldn't see what I wanted them to see unless I showed them, or took a picture. And I was also convinced I couldn't change my schedule so I could go with them myself.

It's kind of like this whole long-distance blog thing, when you think about it. haha.

So anyway, if anyone decides to visit me here (before hell freezes over, that is), I really am a dedicated tour guide. Mi coche es tu coche.
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Location: San Francisco, CA


Category: city life

05/06/06 12:02 - 44ºF - ID#36702

Food Stamps at the Farmers' Market

I just got back from the Fillmore Farmers Market which finally reopened for the season today. I was bummed to find out it wasn't open year-round, but I still have the market at Civic Center for the "winter" months. Anyway, I noticed for the first time they take food stamps. Is that unusual? I don't think I've seen that at other farmers' markets.

I'm ashamed to say I did not ride my bike, even though chatting with (e:Ladycroft) inspired me to at least think about it. My excuse was I also needed to refill two of my gallon water jugs at the Safeway next to the market and I didn't want to schlepp them back on my bike. Although when I worked at a 7/11 in high school I used to schlepp two gallons of milk home many a night after I got off from work. Not to mention an ice-cream sundae for mom when she got that midnight craving.

God, I am so old and lazy now. I rode my bike every single day in Alameda. But that was easy, low-stress riding. I think I need to get my city street chutzpah back. When I moved here from Boston, I took to the streets of SF with reckless abandon. I knew how to avoid every hill to and from work. (They can be killers out here.) (e:j3sse) and I would sometimes arrive at work at the same time -- last one into the underground parking lot of our building careening down the ramp and screeching to a halt inches from the bike rack. Nothing like making a grand entrance first thing in the morning to get the adrenaline flowing.

God knows I could use an adrenaline rush these days. Not to mention the exercise, haha.

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Category: killall firefox-bin

05/03/06 11:20 - 54ºF - ID#36701

Random peep sightings

Just kidding! Damn, I wonder if I'll ever get to say that for real?

Hey, maybe I will! Get your [inlink]joshua;149[/inlink] little (e:butts) out here!

So I have quite a backlog of things I wanted to post about, but this damn job keeps getting in the way. And with absolutely nothing to show for it. I'm realizing more and more I'm not cut out to being relegated to the periphery of a project when there's something valuable I can contribute. I don't care if I get paid the same either way. It's driving me nuts.

I should really just abandon this post altogether. The moment is so lost, and I can't recapture it now. Apologies to (e:mrdt) who managed to leave a comment during the nanosecond it was live before. I can't go into the back story now, so I'll just return to our regularly scheduled blogging, already in progress.

The main theme was going to be how tolerant people are out here. When they say, "it's all good!" they actually mean it. The first few times I heard that I was like, "what do you mean 'it's all good'? That flies in the face of everything I know to be true!"

Well, now I know better.

I really can't possibly explain this in a post. You'll just have to come out here and see for yourself. And this is from the most hardcore cynic I know.

Oh, and a note about my usersound for the audio-impaired:

The Cranberries "Free To Decide"    

It's not worth anything more than this at all
I live as I choose or I will not live at all
So return to where you've come from
Return to where you dwell
Because harassment's not my forte
But you do it very well
I'm Free To Decide, I'm free to decide
And I'm not so suicidal after all
I'm Free To Decide, I'm free To decide
And I'm not so suicidal after all (at all, at all)
You must have nothing more with your mind to do
There's a war in Russia and Sarejevo, too
So to hell with what you're thinking
And to hell with your narrow mind
You're so distracted from the real thing
You should leave your life behind (behind)
I'm Free To Decide, I'm free to decide
And I'm not so suicidal after all
I'm Free To Decide, I'm free to decide
And I'm not so suicidal after all (at all, at all)
I'm Free To Decide, I'm free to decide
And I'm not so suicidal after all (at all, at all)
At all, At all, At all

p.s. - I actually am a bit suicidal after all. But that's firefox/safari/Mac's fault.

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Location: San Francisco, CA


Category: travel

05/01/06 11:29 - 62ºF - ID#36700

Life Lessons

This has to be quick because I think I'm about to post a rare w4m ad to help round up an audience for my friend Paul's show at the Makeout Room tomorrow night. It's a sacrifice I'm willing to make for a friend, haha.

Believe me, I realize how lucky I am my parents set a stellar example to "live for today" even with four kids. I took it for granted as a kid, but now that I'm of the age of deferred gratification, I can see how valuable a lesson it really was. My mom died at age 60. If they had put off their dreams of traveling until they retired, she would have missed out on Ecuador, the Galapagos Islands, South Africa, Australia, the Soviet Union, Yugoslavia, just to name a few. Of course, if it had been left up to Dad, she would have spent her lifetime vacationing in a tent [inlink]twisted;229[/inlink] within driving distance of home (albeit, with Dad driving, that could be a long way). But she wisely became a travel agent when they moved from Baltimore to South Carolina, and from then on found an affordable way for them to travel.

Unfortunately for me, I had already left for college by then. So my youngest brother was the benefactor of Mom's resourcefulness. Yeah, I still haven't been to South Africa, Australia, Ecuador, the Galapagos Islands, among others. But he has.

So all I'm saying is, how stupid would it have been to wait? I'm not saying everybody's thing is to travel. But if you want to see the world, just get out there. We're all going to leave this planet one day. See it before then if you want to.
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Category: family

05/01/06 12:09 - 56ºF - ID#36699

My Dad is still insane

Just in case you were wondering.

I mean, the relentless traveling since he retired is one thing. I'm talking just in the past 12 months or so: sailed to the Bahamas on a friend's sailboat Feb 05; 3 weeks in Austria/Germany Mar-April 05; 10-day family sailing trip in Antiqua June 05; camping with grandkids July 05; one month in China Sept. 05; road trip with German relatives to New York and Washington DC Oct. 05; Christmas in New York, Massachusetts, Maine and Tennessee (another road trip in the Jetta) Dec 05; 7 weeks in New Zealand/Australia Feb 06.

Is that over the top or what? I'm like, Dad! Did your doctor give you 12 months to live and your forgot to tell us?

If you think he's doing all that because he's rich and can afford to, you're wrong. I'm not even going to argue with you. Believe what you want, I don't give a shit.

So he gets back from NZ/Australia and goes directly into scheduled surgery to replace his hip. Something he's been putting off way too long. (We've been watching him contort himself to get up and down and around for the past 2 years. But as my brothers point out, it's hard to argue with someone who hobbles onto the tennis court looking like a lame old man but then whips your butt.)

In typical form, he gave us a matter-of-fact, blow-by-blow account of the procedure -- highlighted by his post-op dinner menu. Then -- and this was something new -- he sent us a picture of his scar. Now, I'm no doctor, but I'm pretty sure I know what part of him they had to open up to replace his hip, and I really didn't want to see a close-up of that part of him. But just to prove he really is entering his eccentric period, he wrote to say he saved the seven staples from his surgery after they were removed and will give each of us one of them. Gee thanks Dad! Just what I always wanted!

Well, I guess if the tooth fairy had to handle my baby teeth the least I can do is give him a shiny quarter for one of his staples. But do other peeps Dads do stuff like this?

Anyway, I thought Dad might finally enjoy some down time after the surgery, so I sent him a copy of "1,000 Places to See Before You Die" (he's into morbid humor) -- figuring he would have to be an armchair traveler for a while. Wrong! They've already booked a 15-day trip to the Netherlands/Germany/Switzerland in July, and another camping trip with the grandkids before that.

I give up. When do I get to retire? lol.

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Dad & Jean, Bahamas

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Dad & Jean, Antiqua

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Camping with the grandkids

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Comparing bellies with Budda.

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Dad's hip scar. Hey - if he doesn't want a picture of his butt on the internet he shouldn't send it to me!

p.s. - anybody want a staple? haha!


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