January 2010

So, being the last day of January, I think its time for my first blog post of 2010.

My New Year’s was fun, celebrated at the gate with Jenn and her friend Amanda from work.  The gate was very unorganized though, and never turned a single TV to the ball drop.  We found out it was midnight from the DJ’s cellphone, which is rather sad.  Jenn forgot about “bar time” and tried to celebrate 15 minutes early.

The first several weeks of the year were uneventful.  Applied for jobs, got rejected for jobs, rinse, repeat.

Wednesday the 20th Jenn and I drove to Bay City, picked up my Dad, Brother, and Todd and went to NAIAS.  We stopped at White Castle in Flint on the way down as I have had a craving since our honeymoon and trip to New Baltimore.  From there we continued to Detroit, parked at the Greektown Casino parking garage, and took the People Mover to Cobo.  Auto show was decent, but smaller than past years I have gone.  You can tell the economy is making a dent on the level of prototypes and concept cars.  The Ford Fiesta and Focus were pretty cool, as were the diesel Audis and VW.  The VWs are largely unchanged from Jenn’s Jetta though, which was a little disappointing.  Pictures of NAIAS are already up on FaceBook if you want to have a look.  After the show, we drove up to Joe’s Crab Shack in Auburn Hills then headed back to Bay City for the night.  Thursday we met up with Jenn’s parents so Jenn could get the Rav4 from them and do all the transfer stuff.  I hung out at my Mom’s then Dad’s, then we followed each other home.  We stopped in Evart at Connor o’Malley’s as we keep hearing about them and were interested.  We were expecting a sit down authentic Irish restaurant, but got  bar with some irish named food, rather disappointing.

Heard back on the 25th from my interview with TransNav, which was a no.  They said they may be looking for another person in a while though, so will keep my info handy.

Friday Jenn and I went down to Kalamazoo.  We stopped in GR first to drop my MacBook off at the Apple Store to get the palmrest replaced (for the 3rd time) and shopped Macy’s and Barnes and Noble a bit.  Then off to K’zoo where we started with some Cici’s Pizza buffet.  They were disappointing at first, as they were slow and had few pizzas out.  More people came soon after us though, and they quickly filled up the buffet for a better selection.  Buffalo chicken pizza was horrible (very bad sauce) and no mac and cheese pizza ever made it out, but the BBQ pork was good as was the apple streusel pizza.

From there we headed to our hotel to check in and rest, then went for  a bit of shopping at the mall.  This Macy’s had some good deals, including $150 Columbia coats for $37.50.  Alas, I don’t need a winter coat and wasn’t thrilled with the styles remaining anyway.  We shopped a bit more, I got a hat from Eddie Bauer, and we then headed for the Fire Keeper’s Casino in Battle Creek.  I broke even, which is an accomplishment for a Friday evening, and we headed back for the hotel.  On the way, we stopped for dinner at Steak n’ Shake, which was excellent as always.

Saturday we went to the Air Zoo.  We went in, were offered a tour but declined, and walked around for about 10 min and realized we had seen everything.  We headed back to the front desk and got tickets for the 4D movie (which was meh), then went and found a tour guide.  He was quite informative, gave much for info on the use of the planes than the technical specs, and took us though all but one item in the building (skipping the helicopter for some reason).  The SR-71B is the most awesome thing I have ever seen.  Unfortunately, the keep the lights strangely low so the photos came out weird, but they should be uploaded to FB sometime today.  there was a second building, but we had been there about 2 hours and decided to save it for another trip.

Next up, we went to Bell’s Brewery downtown for lunch.  We were expecting standard sit down, but from what we could gather you were expected to order and pick up your own food cafeteria style.  There were no open tables and no signs anybody was nearing leaving, so we passed and drove around, finding Olde Peninsula Brewery.  Turned out pretty good, though Jenn learned she doesn’t like red beers.  From there, we drove up to GR to pick up my MacBook, fully repaired, then on to home.

We were going to go to Sno*Drift this weekend, but due to memories of last year kind of sucking, we backed out.  Sounds like Jon and Greg had fun though.  Maybe we will go next year when I have a job and money.

I think that was it for January.

As far as job prospects, I have plenty of applications I haven’t heard back from, but no interviews scheduled or that I haven’t heard from.  I guess I am just waiting right now, and applying to more as I find them.  Ferris’s job fair is coming up in late March, though I would like to at least get an interview in before then.

Apple released the iPad last week, and I’m not sure what to think.  On the one hand, thinking about what I do on my computer, it would probably cover 80% or so of my needs.  On the other hand, if it had MacOS rather than iPodOS, it would cover about 99% of my needs.  Will need to wait for it to come out so I can play with one at an Apple Store.

I ordered a couple books from Amazon using my Harrispoll points.  Scats and Tracks of the Great Lakes and Edible Wild Plants of Eastern and Central North America.  Both look good so far.

Alright, thats all for now, and will update if anything fun happens.

Spring Break

Being that I have never really done anything Spring Break-like, and this is my last Spring Break, Jon and I are trying to come up with something.  We have no idea what, and it has to be decently cheap.  Will let you all know if it’s anything fun.

I called Apple and requested repair on my MacBook, since I can live without it for the next week.  The damn palmrest cracked again just after Christmas break, so need that repaired, again.  If I need to send it in a third time (very likely, probably about May) I am going to bitch that I want it FIXED, not just repaired, and if that means I get a new aluminum unibody MacBook, then so be it.  Apple has opened repair to all MacBooks, including those out of warranty, and though it is not publicly stated, they obviously recognize this as a know issue.  If they know it’s an issue, why should I have to send in my computer every 6 months for repairs?

Speaking of my computer, I added a new program/service last week.  It’s called DropBox, and it’s like a virtual thumb drive.  You sign up (name and email, thats it) and download the software.  It makes a folder on your computer and anything up put in it gets upladed to their servers.  You get 2GB for free (2.25 if you follow my referral link), and an additional 250MB for every person you refer, up to a total of 3GB.  You can also pay them money for more space but I’m cheap, and 2-3Gb is pretty good.  Note: you wont see your 250MB bonus until you actually download and install the software, it won’t appear when you first sign up.  It’s worth a try, right?

I cleaned the aquarium, holy crap was it dirty.  I mean, I do a water change and vacuum every week or 2, but I actually pulled and rinsed all the gravel and wow, there was a lot of crud in there.

Started watching more movies again.  Get Smart, Dead Like Me – Life After Death, Stranded with Les Stroudt (the prelude to Survivorman) in the last week, with a few more to go.  Trying to get them watched and free up space on the HD so it will be easier to do a Backup before sending computer off.

I also started reading The Watchmen.  I am through the first chapter and addicted already.  Have heard mixed reviews of movie, but hoping having read the book will help me enjoy the movie more.

Unfortunately no job yet.  Still looking though.  Market is not good, but all I can do is keep trying.  I graduate 2 months from Monday, is almost time to start freaking out, but not yet.

And that would be it for this post.  See you next time.

Book Review

So, I finished up my book last night (World War Z). To anyone considering reading it but on the fence, go get it. It wasn’t what I thought, not that that is bad. I had expected a history book like recount, with highlights and a story. Instead, it was a narrator interviewing some of the prime players in the Human – Zombie War. If you do undertake the book, be prepared to want to re-read it. The narrator re-interviews a few people and it can make you want to go back and check who a certain person is. I figure I will wait until about Christmas to try my reread, just so it is at least a little out of my head.

Something I wanted to mention last time: As I had mentioned, the iMac is now aluminum. This makes the MacBook the last polycarbonate Mac remaining. Now, as the low end portable this may last for a while, but I think it is just one step closer to my prediction now about 18 months old, that the MacBooks will eventually go to anodized aluminum enclosures, similar to that or the ipod nanos. Maybe not, maybe just regular aluminum, but there is a chance. Either way, by the mid-2008 update, it will be very hard to resist buying a new computer. Between new iLife just out, OS X 10.5 in October, Office 2008 in January, big upgrades due to the MacBook line, and my iBook turning 5 on December 5th, it will certainly be hard to resist.

OK, that’s all I have. As I said last time, we will be in Alpena for the weekend. Probably leaving in the next 18 hours or so at some point. Will update when we return, whenever that happens. Hopefully no dead fish to report on.

nick

Reminder Reminders

Just in case anyone forgot, Feasting on Asphalt 2 begins tonight at 9 on Food Network, lasting 6 weeks. Tuesday at 9 on Discovery is the Mackinac Bridge episode on Dirty Jobs, and Friday at 9 on Discovery is SurvivorMan Season 2.

I just finished making my first batch of pickles of the year, we will see how they turn out in a day or 2.

Tour de France finished with Team Discovery taking 1st and 3rd. Alberto Contador took first, Cadel Evans was 23 seconds behind him, and Levi Leipheimer (my fav to win, the american on an american team) was another 2 seconds off. Fourth place, Carlos Sastra, was a full 7 minutes and 8 seconds off of first. It was a sad Tour, with Vinokourov stripped of his yellow 3/4 through by being fired by his team, doping scandals all around, and still no real answer as to who won last year.

We ate at Bob Evan’s tonight, which I think is the first time I have been there in about 4 or 5 years.

A new poll will be coming up soon, I just didn’t see the point over the summer, with people having different schedules.

I started reading World War Z. It is pretty good so far.

OK, I think that is good for now. More after the weekend.

nick

You’re Not Reading This

Nobody has read this in, well, a while. Scott is on a leave from the Navy and hasn’t had internet, Sarah is in Bay City or Traverse City with no internet, and Jenn isn’t being counted. That leaves googlers and spiders, and nobody else. I just wanted to point that out to nobody.

So, we have the new sofa, love-seat, and mattress, and they are all very nice. We ended up needing a new bed frame too, as the old one was apparently partially to blame for jenn’s old mattress dying.

Scott is supposed to arrive in Bay City today, until Friday morning. He was supposed to spend a day coming to see me, then going on to see his sister in Wyoming, but she has moved back to Bay City. So, somehow, I am supposed to go see him, but I am not sure enough about my car to be willing to drive there and back. I could take Jenn’s vehicle tomorrow, but I don’t know if Scott has tomorrow free or not, and that is the only day this week Jenn has off and I would be able to take her vehicle.

Apple released new MacBook Pros today, as well as restarting the free iPod with computer purchase promotion. Sadly, the MacBooks are just not up to what I would be willing to buy, and the ones I want will probably not be out until November. The WWDC begins next week, and there have been rumors of another MacBook coming out then (MacBook Thin) that may fit what I want, so there is a chance with that. Either way, I don’t have the money to buy a computer anyway, and if I did it would need to go toward a new car, not a laptop.

I installed Windows XP on Jenn’s MacBook yesterday, since I will need it for school in the fall. I had installed it under Parallels, in emulation, but it was rather slow. I have it installed with BootCamp now, running fully native. You just need to hold the option key while starting up, and you get your choice of OS X or XP. It runs much faster than emulated, and is actually one of the fastest Windows computers I have used.

My present to Jenn for our anniversary (which was actually last month, but was the day before we moved, so we postponed) came in today. I still need to get her a birthday present by the 19th though.

I haven’t started reading either of my books yet. Not for any particular reason, I just haven’t. I think I feel bad sitting here reading while Jenn is working, but I really haven’t cleaned and organized as much as I did earlier last week. I think I was better off without cable or internet, it gave me no other choice but to be productive.

During this post, I am passing 130,000 words. That’s kind of fun.

If you haven’t noticed, the gallery has been totally pulled from my site, and is now only on Picassa. I think I mentioned that before, but just wanted to re-highlight. I posted some pictures of our apartment, and the various views outside. Once inside is neatened up some, I will post some pics of that too.

OK, I suppose that is all.

Enjoy your week.

nick

Merry Christmas

Merry Christmas all. Since my next update isn’t until Friday, I wanted to say that now.

Major updates to the website. I added 6 new pages and modified all the others. I have finally figured out how to do the sidebar in JavaScript, so now I can just update the script that prints the sidebar in a single file, rather than make whatever change on every page. The new pages are Annoying JS, Legal, and Short Stories (which is more of a section). I expect to make more updates before my vacation ends.

I have begun reading The Art of Deception by Kevin Mitnick. Good book, hope to have it done before break ends too.

Still haven’t seen LOTR:ROTK yet. Should within about a week, hopefully this weekend maybe.

Today is Jason’s Birthday, so happy 21st to him.

Grades for Delta will be posted on myDelta tomorrow, so any of you who care, now you know.

And I don’t know what else. I have been kinda busy with website, so didn’t put much thought into this blog entry. I do have a kinda special edition for next time, but might be put off till next Monday. We will see.

I hope to see some of you that were away to CMU, NMU, GVSU, etc… before vacation ends. So email me, IM me, call me, whatever.

And I guess thats it.

Til Friday,
Merry Christmas,
nick

If you can’t beat’em,
Beat’em up.

Missed a whole post!?

Well, I competely missed the last post. I was out at Jason’s, and have been rather tired the past few nights, so decided rather than making it late I would just skip it. So, here it is, my newest post.

Lets see, hmm, Harry Potter. Wow, why the heck would anyone sit in a bookstore at midnight for a book this bad? I’m sorry, but I just don’t get it. Oh well, we will just move on.

The Apple G5 Spec leak. Wow, I hope you didn’t miss it. For whatever reason the specs for the new G5s were released on the Apple Store at about midnight last night, and disappeared by 12:30. The specs can be found online at several places, so I wont bother repeating them here. Weather they are the true specs, we wont know until Apple wants us to. Was it a hack? Was it a goof? Was it steve screwing with us? Only time will tell.

What else. My brother has a vehicle now, but no license yet (where as I have a license but no vehicle, maybe we should get together more often?). Its a 1978? K5 Blazer. Its this weird gold color and silver. Its not bad shape for what he payed, and seems to be a decent vehicle.

Ok, like I said I’ve been tired so thats all for now. Sorry about leaving you all (all 10 of you) waiting for the update only to make it so small.

See ya,
nick