Sunday, August 26, 2007

Full Sunday....Chance of Random Thoughts, 100%

Back to School Hair

Tomorrow Alvis returns to school. She will be a big 8th-grader which in our area means she is a "senior" at her junior-high (middle) school.

Room is picked up (almost), hair has visited the beauty shop, the "outfit" has been laid out for tomorrow morning, and she is in contacts for the first time.

Lavie and Alvis figured on Friday that Alvis needed to "even out" the color in her dirty blonde/brown hair and add some shine. So they got a hair-coloring kit that matched her natural hair very closely.

Then good-old dad got roped in to do the actual hair coloring job. It was quite the task as Alvis has a lengthening head of hair.

I wasn't too intimidated by this as I occasionally get called upon to color Lavie's hair as well. But coloring long hair is much more work than Lavie's short locks.

Recliners are Evil

Last night Lavie went in for a sleep study and asked me to stay the night with her in the study room. I think she isn't getting a deep enough sleep (REM) for a long enough period. Since I couldn't share the bed with all her wiring harnesses, I was relegated to a faux-leather recliner for the night. I decided that I am not a big-enough guy to successfully sleep in a recliner.

Although the foot-rest pops up and stays, to recline the back you must lean against it and provide a certain amount of counter-resistant force to keep the springs from pulling it back up. And I had to stay in a constant state of tension against it to keep it down. Over the night I would try to relax to get some sleep and it would slowly return to an upright position. Somehow I suspect gentlemen of a certain weight don't have this problem. This has convinced me I am not a recliner type.

I ended up not getting any sleep which is funny as I was in a sleep center which was trying to help find out why my dearest bride isn't sleeping well.

Podcasts and Deauthorizing

While whiling the time away, I began trying to catch back up on my podcasts of Security Now hosted by Leo Laporte and Steve Gibson. I've gotten a number of months behind so it was fun listening again.

While I was syncing my iPod up, I realized a mistake I made when I did my hard-drive/system upgrade. I forgot to "deauthorize" that computer/drive before I replaced the OS and hard-drive.

When I had reinstalled iTunes after all my repairs, it picked up my music and library just fine. Even the purchased items were there. But when I went to actually sync my iPod for the first time since, it balked about sync'ing with the purchased music from iTunes Store.

I had to re-authorize the desktop system to my iTunes account to get them to sync.

About iTunes Store authorization and deauthorization

Make sure you deauthorize your computer before you upgrade your RAM, hard disk or other system components, or reinstall Windows. If you do not deauthorize your computer before you upgrade these components, one computer may use multiple authorizations.

Oh well.

Chores of Dread

I braved the Texas sun for a half-hour to trim back the hibiscus. It amazes me that despite all my attempts to whack, kill, ignore, and abuse the things, they continue to flourish and produce gorgeous purple and magenta colored flowers the size of saucer plates.

Laundry is almost done. I can't believe that I was so busy last week that I didn't even bother to fold them after washing. So this week I have about 1/2 a basket of clean clothes from last week and at least another basket-full for this week.

I don't mind doing laundry or washing dishes (by hand or machine). I don't mind folding. It's the putting away of the folded clothes or emptying the dishwasher that I hate to do for some reason.

Vacuuming is done. Who bothers to dust anymore? I think I am too tired to grocery-shop for the week tonight and am fed up with eating out. Think I will make some scrambled eggs, mini-sausages in rolls, and bacon on the side for dinner.

Soccer in Houston

Two weeks ago one of my co-workers asked if I wanted to go to a game put on by our pro-soccer team The Dynamo. Four of us went.

I enjoy watching soccer on TV but this would be my first MLS game attended in person.

It was a blast. I felt like I was in a different country even though they play at my Alma Mater University of Houston's John O'Quinn Field at Robertson Stadium.

The Dynamo lost, but watching them play the team (Club de Futbol Pachuca) from Pachuca, Hildago, Mexico Mexico City was spectacular. The fans were great, the weather from 9pm to past midnight was sweltering and stale. The game went into extended overtime and our team lost on penalty kicks. It was a sight to behold. I felt I was at a high-school football game. The seats were filled with an exciting cross-section of Houston. Business men in rolled up button-downs and ties, Hispanic fans, families with kids who looked like they were fresh in from the suburbs all cheering and jumping to their feet. Fans were evenly distributed on both sides of the teams. Afterward, everyone was smiling and clapping each other on their backs. If there wasn't a scoreboard it would have been difficult to tell who had won.

Georgia vs Japan (LLWS)

I'm ignoring the fact the dryer just went off and yet another load needs to be swapped out and folded.

I'm got the tele tuned to the 2007 Little League World Series. It's a great game with Georgia and Japan appearing very well matched. They had a factoid that said it cost the Japanese team over $115,000 (US) to bring all twenty-seven players, parents, coaches, and tag-alongs over here. Price includes all but meals and souvenirs. What is even more amazing is that they raised the money with fundraisers to meet the costs themselves. Warms my heart.

Why do we call our MLB championship game the "World Series"? Yeah, sure I think there might be a team from Canada, but I know a lot of other countries play baseball besides us at the professional level. Never quite understood the hubris of that...even considering just how much I occasionally enjoy and partake of a ball game from time to time.

The Wikipedia article I linked to above does say this:

The World Series itself retains a US-oriented atmosphere. The title of the event is often presented on television as merely a "brand name" in the same sense as the "Super Bowl", and thus the term "World Series Championship" is sometimes used. However, the origin of the term lives on, as with these words of Frank Thomas in the Chicago White Sox victory celebration in 2005: "We're world's champions, baby!" At the close of the 2006 Series, Commissioner Bud Selig pronounced the St. Louis Cardinals "champions of the world". Likewise, the cover of Sports Illustrated magazine for November 6, 2006, features Series MVP David Eckstein and is subtitled "World Champions".

A recent myth has arisen that the "World" in "World Series" came about because the New York World newspaper sponsored it. There is no evidence at all supporting that hypothesis.[3]The annual publication called the World Almanac was originally published by the New York World. Its ambiguous title and U.S.-centric content may have inspired the World Series myth, either facetiously or naively.

Humorist Ring Lardner, when writing columns about ongoing World Series in the 1910s (including the infamous 1919 Series) mocked the pomp surrounding the games he covered (as well as his own persona) by calling the event the "World's Serious".

Then I understand there is now a World Baseball Classic that has begun to pit baseball athletes from across the globe against each other. The last game played in 2006 saw the Japanese team ultimately winning. Next game will be played in 2009.

RocketDock minor issues

PunkSoftware recently released version 1.3.3 of the fabulous Windows dock tool (freeware) RocketDock.

I've had my XP and Vista systems running version 1.3.0 so decided to do the update thing.

No problems on any of my XP systems, but when I attempt to run it on my Vista machine I keep getting a dialog box saying that a C++ error caused it to shut down when I try to open the settings window.

So I've rolled the Vista version back down to the 1.3.1 build for now which is working just fine.

Thoughts clearing...clearly need to swap the laundry now.


Update: Oops! I forgot to name the guest soccer-team and flubbed up their home city pretty bad...thanks to my tipster for pointing that out!


Robert Moir said...

Hmmm I'm trying rocketdock thanks to you, thanks for the pointer. Looks like just the thing to keep my desktop tidy!

Love to know where they got the idea ;-)

Claus said...

Hi Robert!

Loved your 2nd part post on Defragging...been doing troubleshooting for a family member so I haven't had time to comment there yet. Thanks for the mention.

I like RocketDock for several reasons, especially the multi-monitor support.

I've downloaded a ton of high-res icon sets over the years. These are my fav 2 sources:

Free Windows icons - InterFaceLift

ICONS (XP) - PixelGirl

Pick some, unpack them and either set up a custom folder in RocketDock or just copy the ones you like the most into the same icons folder for the RocketDock ones.

RocketDock really gets awesome when you start using some of the custom high-res icons for your apps. Sure you can drag and drop the exe's from your apps to the bar, but often those icons aren't high-res.

Using some of the "custom" icons with RocketDock really makes it shine.

I keep finding new options to use in it as well.

Glad you are enjoying it!