Information SuperDuperHighway

For a brief period of time, we have both Cable Internet and DSL in the house.

My brother ran some performance benchmarks yesterday evening on the Cable, and got ~7Mbits download and 850 kbits upload.

Not too shabby. I shall not mourn the passing of DSL, which is advertised as 1.5Mbits download, 256 kbits upload. What we get is not that, though.

DSL is the same price as cable internet.


Random thoughts on a sick day

Roan and I are at home today, as the Pink Eyed Monster has struck. I may have it, not sure. I don’t see red, Stacey does.

But Ro is getting over it, so home we are.

He’s watching an old Micky Mouse cartoon, back from when they used actual ink. It’s an episode where Minnie Mouse is trying out first aid on Pluto and a cat.

The odd thing is, when she looks in her first aid book for reference on how to bandage an eye, the subject in the picture is a human being.

I hadn’t even realized there were human beings in this alternate Mickeyverse.

Does anyone else’s handwriting vary wildly depending on mood? Seriously, my handwriting is all over the map. Any one of the various styles is recognizable as mine, usually, but there is a wide variety between the modes of writing… I think I have multiple handwriting personality disorder.

To write consistently, even on the same page, or through a single sentence, takes an enormous amount of concentration for me. Almost like I’m drawing the sentence instead of writing it.

Handwriting analysis is about the only far-out thing I believe in, sort of. I think handwriting tells you something about a person, I just haven’t a clue what. Whenever I see two similar samples of handwriting from two different people, I always wonder what it is that links those two together. Is it just the handwriting, or is there some fundamental aspect of their person that is similar? Dunno.

Even more bewildering are people who’s handwriting is bizarrely consistent, almost like they write in a font. I don’t know what it says about the person, but I find it humbling, like I’m in the presence of a great artist.

Last night, I had some modest success duplicating a grilled scallion (cebollitas) recipe I’ve had in a mexican restaurant in New Orleans. My friend Josh, who is back in New Orleans, went to the restaurant for me and grilled them (no pun intended) on the recipe. It’s simple, deceptively simple: toss scallions in oil and salt, grill for 3-4 minutes each side, then toss with lime juice, serve.

I had thought there was vinegar involved, which led me down the wrong path for years. Plus, I was adding lime juice before grilling.

Live and learn.

After lunch, we’re going to tackle a boatload of errands, so if you notice people at the Comcast payment center, Lowes, Krogers, and Best Buy looking like they recently got pink eye from a young child… well, I’m sure I don’t know how that happened.

Book Log – Shameless Exploitation in Pursuit of the Common Good

Shameless Exploitation in Pursuit of the Common Good: The Madcap Business Adventure by the Truly Oddest Couple by Paul Newman and A.E. Hotchner

A delightful and witty tale of the adventures of Newman and Hotchner in starting and running Newman’s Own. At least, purportedly so.

You never know about autobiographies… how much of this is spin or exaggeration? By the accounts I’ve heard, Mr. Newman is a down-home, grounded sort of guy with a good sense of humor. I want to believe they furnished their offices with pool furniture, and that later, when it looked like the business was going to make it through the first year, they bought new pool furniture for the Newman house.

At any rate, this is an entertaining and interesting story, and the letters from purchasers of their product and recipients of the proceeds are funny and poignant. You can’t help but get a little teared up at times.

I feel like travellight recommended this one many moons ago… if so, thanks. If not… uh… then you should read it, travellight.

New word for the wishy-washy optimist

A coworker passed me in the hall, saying “Hey, how ya’ doin’?”

I experienced a sudden decrease in ethusiasm midway through the sentence for some reason1, because I responded, “I’m doing gr-ood.”

So, grood. Better than good, not quite great.

1 Actually, I know the reason. I am about to head the lab to debug a problem with a prototype, and while I started with my usual “great”, I realized partway through that that was not completely honest, and if things were truly great, the prototype would be working already.

Landlines, who needs ’em?

I’m thinking about ditching DSL and getting Cable Internet, thus allowing us to ditch our landline. The cost of cable internet is equivalent to my DSL right now, or so I recently realized when I saw that our ISP (speedfactory) has starting charging an extra $10/mo because we have computers networked to our router, allowing all to access the internet instead of just one.

The only downside I can think of is updating all those hundreds of official documents out there in the universe that have our home phone number on it.

Anyone else know of a snag?

Why We Lost

Tonight, in TheatreSports, the opposing team beat us 74 to 36.

Sure, they played a better game than we did, but I believe the real reason is that they named their team “The Don Nappy-Haired Hos”.

They even held a moment of silence for Don Ho (though not for Imus).

I mean… really. Who can compete with a double super-relevant pop culture reference pun?

Not us, I tell you… not Team Nostrildamus.


When I went down to fetch lunch just now, a woman explained to me that what I wanted, she had, and in addition, what I needed she also had.

Her simple request was that I give her a little respect when I get home.

And I thought, that seems reasonable.

I can’t imagine how she knew my kisses were sweeter than honey, though. She must subscribe to my newsletter.

Everything Is Mundane

On This American Life, the recent Nice Work If You Can Get It episode, they interview astronauts.

Apparently, when astronauts return from a space mission, they have to fill out an expense report.

The box you check for space shuttle is “Government Air”.


They are alloted $3.50/day for incidentals. You know, in case they have to pick up dental floss while they’re up there.