Areas of Unrest
27 May 2001 - It's Chocolate! It's Vanilla! It's Endangered!
QOTD: "If a cat can kill a rat in a minute, how long would it be killing 60,000 rats? Ah, how long indeed! My private opinion is that the rats would kill the cat." - Lewis Carroll
Reading: Bill Bryson, In a Sunburned Country
Listening to: A Nod to Bob: An Artists' Tribute to Bob Dylan on His 60th Birthday
The title of this entry has nothing to do with the entry itself but was a comment that came up in a punny conversation the other day, referring to panda popsicles. You really don't want to know.
Anyway, this has been a rather frustrating week. My computer at work did, indeed, decide to die while I was away. It took two days and four people to fix what turned out to be some sort of chip set incompatibility. Along the way, the software guy insisted that somebody must have broken into my office and messed with the hardware while I was gone. While the hardware guy insisted that I must have gotten a virus. (There were two hardware guys, actually, but one of them didn't express an opinion since he appeared incapable of speaking English. The fourth person involved was the only person in the known universe who understands the intricacies of our local network, which functions differently than every other network within the corporation.) That the computer worked fine when I left (well, as fine as anything running Windows can be said to run) and that my office door was locked did not seem to convince them. I learned that my mail folder on the hard disk was not being archived and the software guy has still not been able to restore it from the backup he made before his futile attempts to fix things by reformatting my hard disk. So I may have lost a few years worth of archived email out of the whole fiasco. Fortunately, our network guru had backed up my disk just the day before I left, minimizing other damage.
The biggest problem was that this mess meant I was confined to my office without being able to do any significant work. I did catch up on magazine reading and engaged in a few rounds of telephone tag. Some of that may lead to an opportunity to work on a fun project, involving infrared star catalogs. (The short version is that we used to think we just needed to correlate observations with visible star positions. In the past several years, we've learned that doesn't work because we really do see different objects. In the longer IR wavelengths, you start seeing more dust clouds and star formation processes.)
I was too tired to really get caught up at home, which added to my malaise. The sleep deprivation of London was worth it (the choice between sleep and Robert being an obvious one, to paraphrase something very sweet he said to me), but I'm still not 100% recovered from that either. It's not like I got to sleep late this weekend, since my apartment door was being painted yesterday morning. That meant having to keep the door open for several hours, so I had to hang around the living room. (Which also meant that I missed a game day at Lonny and Lauren's.) This morning's early rising was my own fault. I drove out to Redlands (a bit west of Palm Springs, a good 75 miles from here) to do a Volksmarch. It was a lovely walk, past several historic houses. We even got to walk through the Morey House (built in 1890 by a shipbuilder turned orange grower and filled with amazing woodwork). The other major mansion on the route was Kimberly Crest, where the Kimberly in question is Kleenex family. The house itself didn't open until later, but the outside was impressive enough, as were the grounds. The weather was dreary, though I suppose the drizzle was better than the intense heat that would be more normal this time of year out there.
About the only other thing I've done this week is some minor retail therapy. On the way to Thursday night's Bards meeting, I stopped at Toys R Us and bought this year's Nomar Garciaparra action figure. That was followed by a minor CD binge - the Bob Dylan tribute album and new CDs by Old Blind Dogs and by Uncle Bonsai - and a slight book binge. What I really need to do is shop for shoes, as my beloved Rockport pumps are getting a bit scruffy and my walking shoes are starting to reach the stage where they're only suitable for casual wear. But shopping malls on holiday weekends are too dreadful to contemplate. I plan a lazy day at home tomorrow instead.
Copyright 2001 Miriam H. Nadel
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