Thursday, May 31, 2007


So I got into a really bad funk yesterday. Well, really it's been building for a couple of days. Work is stressing me out big time. First of all, why do people insist on trying to cram five days worth of work into a four day week? What's the point of a holiday if you're going to kill yourself when you come back. And I've got so much work to do that I don't know where to start. And that semi-paralysis means the work is piling up more and that only stresses me out more.

Then I had to go into the hospital for a FNA and was feeling kind of sorry for myself. It's probably nothing, but it felt weird and just didn't contribute to my great mood yesterday.

So I bail from work early (which sadly means I put in only 8 hours) and go home to just lay down. Which doesn't help. So I try to eat my way through my emotions. I say try because apparently the "Everything but Mushrooms" pizza I ordered from Stoney's included anchovies. Egads! Well, the pizza was ruined. Even after I had picked off the evil little fishes, it was still inedible. I had one piece and thought I was going to hurl. I did managed to suck down some cookies from Whole Foods, so I had that whole bloating thing going for me.

I try to work some more, but I'm basically in shut down mode mentally. So I crank up my Tivo and watch some Stargate Atlantis. Which is some nice mind candy. In one of the episodes I watched, one of the characters needs to relax, to meditate, so he can "ascend" or else he dies. And he can't. He's your type A to the T and after laying down for a milli-second he bolts up and says, "I can't let go!" And wow, I'm so there. And I know it's not healthy at all.

Anyways, the funny thing is that this AM I woke up and I actually felt okay. Not stressed out, not wigging about the gazillion things I've got to do. Just sort of calm. Maybe I'm in a weird state of denial. Maybe I'm in the eye of the storm and it will pass and I'll be back in the maelstrom of my life. I'm not sure. But in the meantime, I'm just going to go with the flow and see how long it lasts.

Care to take any bets?

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Monday, May 28, 2007

Memorial Day 2007

To all those serving in uniform, at home or abroad. Thank you.

To all those who have been hurt or injured defending America. Thank you.

To all those who have lost loved ones in the service of America. Thank you.

May we one day have . . . .

Good Morning!

So it's 5AM and I'm at the Colorado Springs airport to start the journey back to DC. Yep, 5AM. Ugh! But the COS airport is kind of nice and it has free wireless which rocks! Hint: DCA, ORD!!

So last night I achieved a significant milestone in my life. I beat my Mom at Scrabble!!! Seriously, I think this is the first time I've ever won. My mom's an old english teacher (and if she corrects my grammer one more time I'm going to . . . . ) and a cross word puzzle fiend, so she usually clobbers me. So that was fun.

Coming home isn't that bad. It's all about eating and napping. Two things I enjoy quite a bit. Mind you, it's not necessarily good for your waistline, but I do love a nice post-brunch nap. If I could only figure out a way to nap every day I'd be in heaven. And yes it messes up my sleep pattern but my sleep pattern is messed up anyways.

My dad has a saying, "You can tell a (insert Mom's maiden name), but you can't tell them much." He's says that when Mom is stubborn and doesn't listen to his advice. Umm, hello kettle, meet pot. I tried, several times, to convince him that climbing on top of the deck was not a good idea but he wouldn't listen to me. He's frakken 78! So I held the ladder prepared to catch/break his fall if he fell. He didn't. Then I climbed up. The waterproofing stuff he has is not going to work and I think I've gotten a promise from him that if the skylights continue to leak to get professional help. But we'll see.

Anyways, it's back to DC.


Saturday, May 26, 2007

Home for the Holiday!

Yep, I'm in Colorado right now. I have seen the rentals since my touch-and-go at Christmas, so I thought I would come out for a quick visit. Interestingly enough, we were both in Chicago on Thursday but at different terminals. I was on United, they were on American. I landed about 2 hours before them and then took advantage of the free internet at the COS airport to get some work done before they landed.

So far, so good. Yesterday was a nice lazy day. I spent about half the day trying to fix Mom's PC. It's AGONIZINGLY slow. And it's a bit better, but I think she needs to bring in a real IT guy to look at it. And I showed Dad how to download his digital photos to his PC. It's baby steps around here, okay?

Today I'm actually going to be doing some house work. Pulling a dead ivy off the side of the house. And then climbing up on the roof of the deck to cauk the sunlights. My dad doesn't want me to do it, saying he'll do it instead. I'm sorry, but if anyone is going to be climbing on top of the roof, it's going to be me. My insurance is better than yours and my bones will heal quicker! He's just crazy that way.

Amazingly enough I've been having some conversations that border on gay issues, and she seems okay with it all. But we'll see.

She's off to Altar Guild right now at Grace CANA. We were talking around that last night and she said that the altar guild is decimated and she feels like she has to go, regardless of what is happening in the church. And I'm okay with that. We both agreed that there are a lot of people, especially older people like my parents who don't understand what is really happening are just collateral damage in this situation. It really is sad.

I hope everyone is having a great Memorial Day Weekend!

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Sunday, May 20, 2007

Partial Orthodoxy

So I’ve been blog surfing a lot of religious blogs to keep up to speed on the turmoil going on in the Episcopal Church (TEC). Obviously I like some of the more liberal blogs, such as Father Jakes, but I also read some of the more conservative ones, such as Titus One Nine. As much as I like reading the blogs, it’s the comments that intrigue and fascinate me. It’s interesting to hear other people’s comments and their perspectives. But considering the fact that we are all Christians, the animosity and vitriol being put forth in some of these comment driven conversations is quite sad and upsetting.

Lately I’ve see a term that keep popping up on some of the more conservative blogs, and that’s “reappraisers.” That’s the term used to describe some of the more liberal Episcopalians and definitely those who support the full inclusion of GLBT members in the church. And trust me, it almost leaps off the screen as a curse word the way it is used by some bloggers.

But here’s the deal, for all that the conservatives decry the “reappraisers”, they really aren’t totally orthodox either. They’ve done some form of reappraising themselves one way of the other. If you’re truly an orthodox Episcopalian (or any religion) and believe that every word in the bible is the word of God, then you don’t believe in evolution. You don’t lie. You don’t touch pig skin. You don’t wear two different types of cloth. You don’t commit adultery. Women are considered property. Owning slaves is okay. Etc. There’s a lot of rules and proscriptions in the Bible on how you should live your life, so I won’t list them all, but you get my drift.

So unless you are truly living according to the literal interpretation of the Bible in ALL ways, you’re a reappraiser. You may do work on Sunday. You may covet they neighbors Lexus. You may have gotten a divorce at some point in your life. So I would argue that all of those conservative Episcopalians who throw the term “reappraiser” are a little bit hypocritical.

Hypocrisy is one thing, and we all have done it from time to time, but bigotry and prejudice are another. For the conservatives who claim that homosexuality is a sin and that it precludes the full inclusion of GLBT members from the church, I want to know why? Why is this particular rule in the Leviticus Codes so important over the rest of them? Are people who eat shellfish not fit to be clergy because the Leviticus Codes also say that’s a sin? Why are you elevating this one rule to prevent a group of people from serving God? Explain that to me. Please.

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Saturday, May 19, 2007

2 for 22 and Other tales

So, for the record, I guess I do understand in an abstract way that southern California does have some weird weather including cold and grey Mays and Junes. And I did live in SOCAL from July-December in 1989 when I attended Basic Surface Warfare Officer school, but when I think of leaving hot, humid, DC and going to SOCAL I think of sun, beach, and warm weather. But as usual facing cold reality was well . . . cold. ;-)

So the first night I land and go to my ultra-chic hotel in the heart of the gas lamp district. It's probably 9ish, so after midnight east coast time. I pull in and the valet comes up to take the car. I'm tired and I give him the keys and go to check in. At the reception desk, I ask how much the parking is: $30. YIKES! Sure I got a great priceline deal on the hotel, and I can expense the parking on my travel claim. But it just seems wrong. The next day I find a parking lot two blocks away. How much for overnight? $8!!! Yep, I walked 2 blocks and saved the government $22. I know, big deal, but still.

So the roof top bar was nice and everything, and the little open fire pit things were good to ward off some of the chill, but the view was kind of crappy if you actually looked down. If you looked over the ledge, you had a great view of the parking lot. Nice. But I did have a drink or two there. It's also a good place to meet someone for an assignation.

So United. I've signed up for the EasyUpdates or some such crap where they will call you to let you know that you're plane is on time or late or whatever. This morning for example, at 6AM I got a call on my cell phone saying my flight was on time. So that's a good thing. One less thing to worry about, but to be honest with you, I hardly ever check to see if my flight is on time. I usually head to the airport anyways. If the flight was delayed, would I not go to the airport as soon? If the flight was cancelled, would I not go to the airport at all? Hell no, I'd be pacing up and down the airport trying to work the 1-800 number, the check in desk, or whatever to get where I need to go. Anyways, I land in Chicago and my flight to DCA has been cancelled. I go to the customer service desk. The two other flights to National are overbook and they've booked me on the first flight out in the AM. Umm, try again. Dulles? If I must. So I'm wait listed for a 4PM and 6:30PM and confirmed on the 915PM flights. I get on the 4PM flight, business class! Get to Dulles, no luggage. Then it's the usual logistics hassle to get home. ON MY HOME PHONE IS A CALL FROM UNITED SAYING THE FLIGHT'S BE CANCELLED!!! Yeah, no shit sherlock! So you'll call me on my cell to let me know the flight is on time, but if the flight is cancelled you call my house? While I'm in the middle of a trip? You people just make it hard for me to like you. If I didn't have a gazillion frequent flier miles on United I'd switch to another carrier. But they pretty much all suck these days.


Friday, May 18, 2007

Sunny Southern California?

Yeah, not so much. It's been cold and overcast the whole time I've been here. And I brought one, ONE, long sleeve shirt. You've got to be kidding me. I was sweating when I left DC on Wednesday and now I'm cold. Go figure.

So I'm out in SOCAL because one of my projects is in meltdown phase. Too many chefs spoil the soup? Try too many government people who can't decide on an architecture or requirements. But details, they aren't the ones who have to build the software. Look I don't care what we build, but if a decision isn't made soon then there's no way I can meet any sort of realistic timeframe. We need to get off square 1 and go in A direction, ANY direction.

Anyways, I try to think that I'm a good traveler, though GreekBoi would disagree. But lately I've noticed that I'm getting a little bit anxious about flying. It's the take off. I just don't really like the fact that especially out of National you go up and then immediately bank hard to avoid the no fly zones over DC. I keep having this mental picture of the banking turning into a roll with a nice nose down descent into terra firma. On Wednesday I kept looking at the weather. Thunderstorms were predicted in the PM and I was like, I've got to get to Chicago so I can connect to San Diego. I did, but that wasn't the problem. Try thunderstorms in Chicago. We get on the plane and we're told that there's a big storm out west. Lots of wind shear. Not good. Actually, so not good that they are not allowing any planes to take off to the west. We sit and wait for awhile and I can see the dark grey clouds rolling in. Finally they say that they are going to let us take off to the EAST, head south, and then avoid the storm. Which all sounds good in theory. So we take off and it's like we're on an E-ticket ride at Disneyland. Usually the plane goes up rapidly for about 2-3 minutes, then goes into a more gradual climb. Nope. This was a hard climb for a good 20 minutes. And banking. Oh yea. A couple of real hard banks, and at the incline we were at? I'm looking down going, "Hello Mr. Earth." It was just not fun at all.

And then we ran into some turbulence coming into San Diego. Why is it that whenever I'm on a plane with turbulence it's really warm and naseous inducing? Why can't it be COLD? Anyways, I was glad to get off the plane to the nice cold evening in San Diego.

So yes, there's no making me happy when it comes to weather. ;-)

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Sunday, May 13, 2007

Seduce and Destroy

and then self destruct. But I'll get to that in a minute.

So last night Greekboi and I went to go see "Underwater". It's tag line? "Organic electronic sound and visual performance that takes you out of ordinary." Now skipping the whole "organix electronic" oxymoron, it did sound rather intriguing. So we got tickets and went.

It was in an unfinished space in the bottom of one of the new buildings on 14th St, just folding chairs, with lights and projectors. We got there a bit early so we got pretty good seats. The whole performance was interesting and good. Some of the music was a bit odd, but thats to be expected I think. In addition to the electric organ, they had a violen, sax, and some drums. One of the pieces was a take off of James Bond and they took some license with the theme music. During the music, there was a visual component showing on the screens mixing spy type icons with photos of DC. "Seduce and Destroy" was one of the lines they used. It was cool.

After the show, I proceeded to self destruct. Well, I ate a big lunch, and no dinner. Had a beer at the show, then we went to the ultra-hip lounge where I had not one, but two cosmos. So now I'm flying. And if I have any hope of going to Blow Off, I need to eat. So I go to Stoneys and get something greasy and bad for me. I take it home to eat, then catch a cab to Blow Off. I arrive around midnight, and it's not really that crowded and no one's dancing. Which annoys me. Now mind you, I'm slight inebriated at this point, and full from eating that greasy sandwich. So what should I do? A vodka and redbull. Oy vey, what a mistake. I don't last long at Blow Off and finally head home. It was not a good ending to the night at all.

Oh well. Andrew had this funny clip for Mother's Day, and when I looked at some of the other clips from these guys I found this. So smooth!


Friday, May 11, 2007


Love this. And I've never even watched this show. Hat tip to Andrew!


Wednesday, May 09, 2007

And now . . . . . .

. . . . . back to our regularly scheduled program.

So I've been caught in a serious work vortex and have given in to my workaholic tendencies. To the point where I'm getting annoyed that friends are calling me at night because I have work to do.

But as they say, recognizing you have a problem is the first step towards recovery. ;-)

And the only reason I not working tonight is that I went out to dinner with my customer and had a nice steak, a great milk chocolate mousse, and about 4 glass of a nice Malbec, and I'm not even a red wine drinker.

Oh let's see. The US Attorney scandal continues. The Army is saying that the "surge" will last till April 08. Several republican presidential candidates actually admitted that they don't believe in evolution. The Queen came, and went. Did I miss anything else?

Oh wait, I did go to a baptism last weekend for NoKarma's god/step children last weekend. It was just amazing and both little boys were just precious. It's been a while since I've been to a non-baby baptism (they are 6 & 9 years old). When asked if they would renounce Satan, instead of saying "I will" they responded "yes" in that oh-so-familiar little plaintative voice that I recognize from my nephew when I ask him if he was good in school. It just killed me.

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Wednesday, May 02, 2007

Conference Chaos

So I'm in Nashville (yee-haw!) for a conference. And it's just weird. First of all, how in the hell do you throw a conference for 3400 IT professionals and NOT HAVE WIRELESS INTERNET ACCESS!?!?!?!?!? Look, some of us don't have crackberries but still need to do work while we are here. So I "conference" all day and then spend my evenings doing work. (Of course my other option is to go to a country bar. Pass!)

Anyways, I haven't been to a conference this big before and it's interesting. The conference is for all of the people who support the military industrial complex in the IT world, so it's a rather conservative group. So, one would think there would be rules for proper attire, right?

One rather humongous defense contractor had all of their people in jeans and denim shirts. Some of the guys had red hankerchiefs around their arms. I'm fairly certain these people are NOT aware of the hanky code. Or maybe . . .

Oh, unless you are the CEO of Sun Microsystems, lose the pony tail. Yes I understand that you've retired from the military and now you can grow you hair out, but you're 50 years old!!! Try to act/look like.

And, honey, unless you are working the conference, try a skirt that's a little bit lower. It's not some Adult Entertainment Convention.

Of course, the Borg were here, in matching black suits, white shirts, and all of the drones even used the same hair product. It was quite scarey.

Of course, I think the suits are better than some of the cheesy shirts with the company logo's on them. But that's just me.