Archive for October, 2007

One social network/organizer/calendar to rule them all

Thank you Friendster, lj, Facebook, Outlook, Google Calendar, etc…  Enough already.  I get it.  Today is my wife’s birthday.

Germany in the AM

I’ve been waking up tired lately.  A situation unlikely to be improved by a 6am flight to Frankfurt tomorrow morning.

Another IV of Red Bull, stat!

I live life to the extreme. Latest proof: I just bought an iron.

Oh, yeah… you heard that right.

Phillips GC8261 steam generating iron

150g / per minute Steam Boost
5 Bar steam pressure penetrates deep into the fabric
Extra large 1.4L removeable tank for unlimited ironing time
120g / Per minute continuous steam

mumble, rant, mumble, mumble

(I’m over-ridding my inner censor and bitching a bit about work)
lame: presenting (over 3 days) at a conference in a hotel, and not having a room in said hotel.
lamer: instead being stationed in a hotel over an hour away.
(I understand this wasn’t the desired arrangement)

More on familiarity

As we tucked ourselves in last night, Deb announced she was feeling a bit unwell after the large, rich dinner (pan-seared duck breast…) she had earlier in the evening. She was actually a little more descriptive than that… which prompted me to ask: “So when we’re old, are we going to be talking frankly about our poo in regular conversation?” Deb knew exactly what I meant.

Until a few months ago we never really spoke of bodily functions, and did whatever we could to hide from each other the fact that we’re human animals (walking, talking, disgusting bags of meat.) Sure, we speak about gross things in the abstract or hypothetical sense (upper decker, brown hole theory, the Norasster, etc…) but never directly. But, I think all of our traveling together has broken down some of those taboos. We don’t have the luxury of 3 bathrooms when we’re on the road. The recent intestinal nightmare suffered on the Turkey trip didn’t help either. Extrapolating into the future it was obvious where things were headed.

Deb: “We should probably never talk about this again, right?”

Me: “Right”

Travel Stats

In the last year:

Days on the road (not at my primary residence): 152
Days on the road (not in Pittsburgh either): 94
Countries visited (not US or England): 11
Lost baggage: 0
Hours delayed: 2
Flights canceled: 3 (all United from IAD->PIT)

Not what I was going for

“yeah, you are a dick”  (I’m paraphrasing) wasn’t quite the reaction I was expecting or hoping for (Thanks mom.  🙂 )

Striving to be a bit less salty

During the trip to Austria I occasionally heard myself talking…  It’s something I don’t often do.  When you are an inveterate bullshitter you quickly learn to defensively tune out your own voice.  Sometimes I should listen, because when I’m really comfortable (i.e. with Deb) the filter drops and I speak exactly what is on my mind.

The problem is that I’d describe my emotional range as rather stunted.  Occasionally I experience boredom, contentment, and lust…   but like the Eskimos and their 100 different words for snow (apocryphal) most of the time I’m feeling one of 100 different types of angry.  I can normally transmute this anger into something external that is a bitmore pleasant.  But when I’m “speaking my mind”, it’s often dark, sometimes mean, and generally salty.   Too often (honestly, more than once is too often) I catch myself speaking to Deb in a tone that I’d never use with anyone else.  This makes me…  well, angry.   I’m always pointing out the widespread lack of respect that my fellow humans show each other… and then I turn around and don’t show any to the only person who really matters.  Luckily Deb is a bit broken too…  She just accepts her daily ration of shit, with little or no complaint.  I should probaby have her carry a cattle prod or similar behavior modification tool with her to help “remind” me when I forget who I’m talking to.

This isn’t meant to be a confession; just some observations on the dangers of familiarity.

Mr. Accomplishment

(the title is a joke you probably won’t get… don’t worry about it.)

4 weeks on, I appear to finally be over the ill-effects of my trip to Turkey.

The moment Mark broke his finger



The moment Mark broke his finger, originally uploaded by denovich.

On the southern shores of Turkey, as the rope ripped through my grip. I snapped the middle bone of my left ring finger in half.

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