Sunday, October 14, 2007

I think the time has come... forget about motorcycles.

Too many indications have pointed toward not getting a bike than have been toward getting one. And it's as simple as the thought that my son needs me more than I need an alternate mode of transportation. There's that and my elbow. It's not improving and I'm sure that it may never be the same even if I get some treatment other than what I had been doing, which led to the previous post...

Then there's the risk factor for my age group, which since the 90's has been climbing to where it now surpasses the past champion of risk, the 18-25 year olds. Mitigate all you want, but the numbers don't tell lies. I'm sure that I wouldn't be partaking in many of the risk factors that increased the statistics such as drinking, riding at night, riding beyond my ability and hooligan antics, but sometimes you can do all you want and still the blue hair in the Buick or the distracted soccer mom on the cell still crosses your path with disastrous results.

And I think when one is younger, one's reflexes and mental agility are better/sharper/etc, so that handling a bike in an environment such as commuter traffic the earlier one starts the better one has to gain the lifelong skills and knowledge that are a necessity under those circumstances or any other for that matter. I've ridden before, but that was 12 years ago and I only rode for a few years.

Some of what I'd read by riders made a lot of sense when it came to the mental state when riding, and that was if you felt it wasn't for you, then don't push it. Do what your heart and mind are telling you and enjoy what you've got and maybe one day that will change or maybe it won't, it's no big thing life goes on either way.

In the end it was a narcissistic idea to prove to the world I was still a tough and virile male ready for anything the world had to offer or throw at me. Well I guess I'll have to prove it some other way... Stamp collecting???

Saturday, October 06, 2007

I love pain

Please bring me some more.

Last Friday saw me in the ER with what turned out to be gastritis. I thought it was an abdominal blockage or a midget stuck in my gut trying to hack himself out with a knife, damn the pain! It was akin to kidney stones but without the shear intensity of stabbing that that ailment brings to the sufferer (and I have been one of them on several occasions).

The nurse gave me a cocktail of Lidocane (numb the surface of the stomach and esophagus), Simethicone (gas), Donigel (Bella Donna- muscle relaxant), some antacid (obvious) and Phenobarbital I think (to relax me?). It worked a charm, wasn't near as bad as the nurse said it would be and I was feeling myself soon after taking it. Yay drugs!

So how I came into this it seems was from extended use of NSAIDs for my elbow. I was using 600mgs of Ibuprofen regularly as well as aspirin on occasion to relieve the pain from this damnable tennis elbow (I haven't played in 30 years...). I had been trying to work the problem through with home remedy, but now I need to let the physicians have their way with me... or at least my elbow.

Now I have to lay off caffeine, spicy foods and booze for awhile. Damn.

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Get off my...


Tell me, is it me? Or am I just a paranoiac with over active adrenal glands.

Why do women ride my ass and ya know it's not just mine, I see them riding other's asses as well. I just can't figure this out. I see an occasional guy doing this, but mostly the other sex. Guys typically ride your ass then tire quickly of this and just move on. Women on the other hand will ride and ride, like it's a challenge to ride your ass and that they like it or something or it has a purpose like cheese toast or sandals.

'Cause you know, at 65-70 mph, I really like someone sniffing my ass in traffic, it's a comforting feeling like brandy on a cold night with a fire going in the fireplace. Fun like liposuction too.

Women, what the hell is your problem?

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

L'altra donna

The lure of the Italian opera is calling me again, and I may be near the breaking point and just pull the lever (um watch out for the puns). Damn the torpedoes, full throttle ahead! The biggest issues holding me back are cost and risk factor. The cost I can avoid by getting an clean older example of Bologna's finest, but the risk factor can only be mitigated by proper training and saddle time. I plan on taking the MSF course soon if I make acquisition, then it's riding time again with all the proper gear...

As far as bikes, I'm torn between an older era, low HP model in the Cagiva Alazzurra and a newer somewhat higher HP sport model such as a early 90's 750ss or a 2003 620ss.

Of course the rationale here is all over the map, I like the concept of the Alazzurra as something to get back in the saddle with and learn wrenching bikes all over again, but it's an older model and kinda rare but by all accounts though it's a decent handling bike with modest power and what not. And on the other hand the 750ss looks so damn nice that you want to ride even if you're tethered to an iron lung, but both of these are carbed models which have their high marks and flat spots... now the 620ss is fuel injected and gives one the feeling of needing to hit the road running and not looking back, all the while not having any of the quirks of carbed bikes, of which there can be plenty if one hasn't sorted them out.

I started this back last year with the latest Sport Classic models, but as they are at least 10k and just a wee bit outta my league, that was a non starter. Monsters looked promising, but I'm just not a street fighter. The 620 multistrada had has a really good chance, but the Terblanche styling still kinda rubs me the wrong way, and again the price is a bit more than I felt I could (or should...) hack right now unless purchased used. Both are very good bikes though by all accounts.

Well I guess we'll see how it goes for the next week as the fever builds up in my soul and I need to make a decision...

Thursday, August 23, 2007

One can only hope I suppose...

I guess I have something to look forward to...? Not there yet by a long shot, well OK maybe 20 years or so, but it's a start. Hell with some claims of 2-3 times a month I might even have a better one at that point in my life... Hmmm time will tell I reckon. Carry on...

Saturday, August 18, 2007

New iMac

And what a change it is, after maxing out the RAM, it's teh snappy as they say especially compared to the old mini. Hopefully it takes me to 2010, ah when we make contact...

Migrating accounts and such was a real gas, I do it so often I forget all the settings and options. At least Apple makes it rather simple.

The new keyboards are interesting, I'm not much of a typist so it seems fine. I type as poorly on this as I did on the previous style KB, actually I think I'm a little faster and confident, maybe it's all in my head. Usually is I've found. It certainly is quieter and less clunky feeling than most, oh the Dell KB at work is positively clunky and wobbly -and it's new.

Now I need to sort out all these hard drives and the data they contain. It's like a virtual garage, basement and attic combined. Thank gawd it's just bits and bytes, I'm still unpacking from the move this past March.

Monday, July 23, 2007

Time for a change...

T-minus some short amount of time and counting... and new keyboards as well... \/\/ øø†!!!!

What a difference a DAC makes...

A DAC, digital analog converter that is...

Let me tell you ladies, if your SO is the least into audio learn these words: Burr-Brown. Speak that to them and they will melt at your very sight (which they should already, but one always should have extra ammo on hand right?) this chips are the holy grail to audiophiles, well mostly... they're the shiznit. If my SO knew them I'd be putty in her arms (as it is I'm mud and cement mostly, but I digress...).

After an arduous install of an Alpine iDA-X001 unit into the daily driver, I remember my youth spent in rapt attention to detail wiring up various tube gear and gingerly rebuilding old tube mics to record real drum sets and upright bass and why sound mattered. But at some point I forgot all this (cough**children**cough) and just decided to go with the flow. Hmmm what was I thinking... Dunno, but I got some of the old spark back and will be diving in for more tomorrow at 5am on the way to work...

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

So much for that...

Nothing much to report, just that it's the middle of the month and some depression has set in to smooth out my year of self inflicted torture. But damn a guy can hope and dream right? So that I do and go on without much effort or finesse just keep on keeping on as it were without letting on too much or mostly none at all. It wouldn't be good if I did, so I'll just keep it to myself.

Goddammit, what ever happened to hopes and dreams? Where'd that shit get off to anyhow???

"Middle age gotcha boy, that's all...An' it aint' probably comin' back anyhow." said the old negro woman selling crab cakes on the pier, sweating it out in the hot, salty coastal Georgia sun with her crusted feet in flip flops, setting aside an old styro container full of crabs and all waiting for someone to revive her from the surf and sand induced catatonic state so as to maybe buy some crabs. Then everyone could all go home and enjoy the day somehow, somewhere and someway.

Saturday, June 30, 2007

Weekend wrap up...

So what's in the news... iPhone, iPhone, iPhone, rainstorms, iPhone, iPhone, more terror in Britain, iPhone, iPhone... I'll just ask you to use your imagination instead of me attempting some foolish analysis that inevitably falls short of the mark. Enjoy the holiday weekend.

Saturday, June 23, 2007

Spam, Spam, Spam, Spam...

Ah it's that time again blog fans (are there any here today, yesterday, anyday...?) for Spamcetera! Here's the latest and greatest:

Good Day,

My name is Mr Feng Zhao,an external auditor for the United Overseas Bank,Singapore,working as part of a bigger team that
covers the entire Asian region.

An investor died without naming a next of kin to his fund in my bank.The amount is $15.7M and banking regulation/legislation in
Singapore demand that i notify the fiscal authorities after three years.The above set of facts underscores my reason to seek your
permission to have you stand as the next of kin to the deceased investor.This funds will be approve and release in your favour as
the next of kin if only you will adhere to my instruction and cooperate with me in one accord.

I have all the legal and Banking details of my deceased client that will facilitate our putting you forward as the claimant/beneficiary
of the funds and ultimately transfer of the $15.7M plus interest to any bank account nominated by you.I am prepared to
compensate you with a 20% share of the total funds for your efforts.The final details will be given upon receipt an affirmation of
your desire to participate.

Please contact me through my email private addresses below as time is of the essence in this business.Also endeavor to forward
the underlisted details below to my email address.

I wait in anticipation of your fullest co-operation.


I do expect you prompt response.

Thank you,

Mr. Feng Zhao

Here let me give you that urgently requested personal info so you can deposit all those funds into my account(s) and I can get on with my life and $3m or 20% of nothing...which ever is more realistic...

Here is that info:

FULL NAME: Hugo Z. Hackenbush
DATE OF BIRTH: 06/06/1944
OCCUPATION: Nigerian Scam artiste
TELEPHONE NUMBER: 1.800.555.1212 x666
FAX NUMBER: 1.800.555.1212 x0000
AND POSTAL ADDRESS: 1600 Pennsylvania Ave Washington DC 02121

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

The object of my desires

Interesting, very interesting. But stupid...

None of this around my HQ, just the "I object to sex um" maybe...

The iBook lover really cracks me up. If you've ever read through any Mac-centric sites or posts about Apple products and then seen what the comments section is filled up with, you'll certainly appreciate this part of the article.

Read on. Me? I'm going to fondle (con-sensually) my iBook.

Saturday, May 12, 2007

Vacation plans

It's been almost a year since the last road trip and now I feel the wanderlust building up again. With enough time off saved up I think it's time to venture further out and for a longer period. 2 weeks should be enough to meander through the west and up to the old homestead. Zion, Bryce, Yellowstone, Little Big Horn, Rushmore, Devil's Tower. Ambitious but what the hell, what have I got to lose but gas money and some tire tread.

The thought of car travel doesn't jibe with the SO, soooo... we no go joe. Oh well so it goes...

Thursday, May 10, 2007

Out of the blue

...Then out of the blue
Love came rushing in
Out of the sky
Came the sun...

And so out of the blue, there you were again. Not that I'd asked the gods for you to show up unannounced and in fine form. But there you were nonetheless. Those times are gone and whatever remains is all in my head. Oh well so it goes...

So without further adieu I'll let Mr Ferry croon out the rest of this post:

Both ends burning
Now my course is plain as day
Running bold across to play
Both ends burning with a strange desire
That feeds the fire in my soul tonight...

Tuesday, May 01, 2007

Happy Mayday comrade!

Пролетарии всех стран, соединяйтесь!

Sorry you missed the fun Fidel...

Tuesday, April 03, 2007

Hi Fi, why fi?

So with the visuals having been taken care of (mostly...), the audio had been sadly lacking(non existent), but that has been sorted out for the most part by some wise ( I feel) purchases.

First off I needed speakers and I had thought I'd settled on B&W for that. Well after an audition at an local retailer, I found was wrong. The models I looked at were for the sound quality heard, somewhat overblown and overpriced and given the room I heard them in I was not at all impressed and not interested in spending any money with them for anything at all. So I went looking... I found too many options to keep up with but then a friend offered up a pair of older Boston Acoustics needing a woofer. Easy fix, ordered those up from MCM and now I needed an amp to power them up once the parts arrived.

I was prepared to spend 700 bucks or so and it's easy, if one desires to spend well beyond this amount, so I needed to keep it where I planned. Looking around town yielded little results, but one Friday after work I made my way to a shop close by home and found what I'd seen online. So I dropped the coin on a decent integrated from NAD and some speaker wire (under budget by $300) and sped home to hook it all up. Of course I didn't have anything yet that worked, so I just looked at it and waited...

The following Monday the woofers arrived and without too much ado I installed one of them and AB'd the 2 speakers (stock and modified). Interesting comparison, but in the end useless because I only had one stock and no original replacement and 2 new paper cone woofers with cast frames, shielded magnets and steel phase plugs. The replacements had more clarity in the mids and were smoother overall. The original had more punch in the mids, but that came at the cost of a harsher, cardboardish tonality ( I think the plastic cone was the reason).

All in all a good choice so far of the replacements. The price was right and the fit was pretty close. Some tweeter damping in the 7k area seems to be needed, but I'm partially deaf above 7-10k anyway and the thought of some woofer shims to attempt a simple time alignment has been considered. For now this will have to do to stave off the lust for a pair of B and W Matrix 801's and a Krell or some such...

Saturday, March 31, 2007

Boob tube

OK, the flat panel is installed and showing a loverly HD image. After much debate in the corners of my mind and searching for a good deal, I dropped the coin and drove off into the night with a reasonable Toshiba LCD. It's only 32" (I'm confident that the size will take care of the needs, much like something else...) and tunerless but the cable box will take care of that and since it has an HDMI input I can run the digital signal into it and let the DVD run on the component input and clean things up visually.

Now the fun begins with respect to getting stuff (movies, photos...) from the computer onto the screen. I had thought a while back about getting into the HTPC scene, but all of that seemed fraught with compromise and excessive tech-geekery, which is not necessarily beyond me but that I'm not all that interested in all that mess. So Apple has this Apple TV media extender just out and that may suit though it's limited in what video codecs can run though it, but the hacking is rapidly changing all that. But maybe it's still not what I want out of such a device so the HTPC concept hangs out in the back of my mind taunting me with possibilites and promises of better days ahead. Decisions, decisions...

Ah the things we think about to forestall the inevitable sloughing off of the motal coil...

Thursday, March 15, 2007

Kiss me I'm Irish mostly German...

...but kiss me anyway you fool.

Yeah so I have an Irish surname, but my grandfather was half Irish and half German (and served in WWI as a translator plus was gassed there by his kind), and his wife was totally German and my mother's family is German, Dutch and French. So while I have a bit of a the old Teutonic touch to me, I still have a romantic penchant for lazily idling my time away while knocking back some whiskey or a black and tan and dreaming of better days ahead.

Beware the Ides Of March...

Funny how the mind is sometimes. Walking from the cafeteria back to the office this morning it felt like it did 30 some years ago when I was a kid in Minneapolis. I don't know why maybe the foggy, overcast sky and the cooler temps mixed with the barren trees gave me that feeling of nature lying in wait, ready to blossom in the spring once the temperatures rose above 40 degrees and the snow and ice receded like a glacier. The feeling engulfs you like a blanket as the senses determine the location, then all in an instant as your conscience recognizes the flood of memories it's gone not to return no matter how hard you pause to reflect and recall them. So it goes, nice as it was...

Saturday, February 24, 2007

Numbness in my extremities

Mostly in my psyche... The migration has me at a loss in more ways than one. First off I can't find anything, and second off I'm not sure where anything will go exactly should I find it.

Cable is finally on and I can watch 155 channels of nothing on, buy some pay-for-pr0n, surf the net and dream of a big screen LCD and media center. But alas Time Warner has questionable service with regards to Roadrunner's setup and execute. I don't recall much ado when setting up my Cox accounts but it seems that the login and password T/W provided are not working so I can't setup my email app.

Oh well big deal, there's boxes of shit to unpack, furniture to buy, beer in the fridge and a motorcycle to consider.

Thursday, February 15, 2007

Done deal!

The loan is funded - \/\/Ø؆ !!!

Let the moving begin (followed by Miller Time ®)!

Thursday, February 08, 2007

The great migration

Ah yes so now the fun begins, addresses both real and virtual must be ordered, created and changed, new phone number and area code and then remember who I should inform of these changes. That's the fun part. Oh yeah ordering up all the necessary services and what not, then getting to know the surroundings.

I did scope out the gas station and grocery store, 2 important suburban life requirements and there's a reasonable looking Italian place in that same mini mall along with a donut shop, independent video store and a host of other stuff that should prove interesting from a reconnaissance angle. I haven't seen any bars or lounges of note yet, but there's plenty of time for that soon enough.

The boxes are piling up at the condo and are eagerly awaiting transport, I am not eagerly waiting to move them though. Does anyone ever enjoy moving? The change is good, but the getting there is sometimes a bear. Last time wasn't too bad and hopefully this one won't be either. And don't be prayin' for rain...

Tuesday, February 06, 2007

Time to be moving on...

Looks like a northerly direction will be in the cards, and if things don't work out then it's on the buyer's dime not mine. I guess I'll miss the old place and all that came and went with living here. A lot has transpired and a lot of nothing as well. I never made my first million, didn't bag 'The Big One', Haven't won the lottery. I did how ever manage to survive some dismal periods of my life with relative success and came out on top almost without trying. I must be mostly Irish after all...

We tried to recall some of the past residents the other day, some both of us remembered, some only either one of us did, and their cars and habits as well and some we both had a hard time recalling much of anything about that person. Tried to remember the residents at the previous place on Palm as well, funny how time flies and memories fade. A good deal of people that were here when we arrived are still here, still plugging away at life. Some have of course moved on, some have died; Here's to Joe the WWII vet, Arlene and the lady in 24 who the HOA had to place a lien on her place after not paying the HOA fee for some time, and to Richard whom I went to high school with and never met him 'til I moved a few doors down from him. Oh well so it goes.

And after 4 years of being an HOA board member and putting up with the typical crap, I did see the place get painted (oh what a battle for something so simple), the parking lot resurfaced twice (currently ongoing second resurface), new management company (a near disaster), numerous notices to residents, 4 years of Christmas trees in the dumpster after 4 years of notes telling them to do otherwise. New mailboxes and new laundry equipment (of course just as we're leaving the place) thanks to yours truly and plenty of other nonsense that I hope to avoid in my future as a renter.

Also during the past 4 years I have scraped, textured and painted the ceilings. Painted just about every surface at least once. Installed a new stove, dishwasher, AC unit, ceiling fan and kitchen sink. I did not install those low E vinyl frame windows we had discussed very early in our stay or add a washer/dryer area anywhere within the 999 sq feet we called home. I did break a plate glass window in a fit of rage and then paid $66 to have it repaired after removing it and taking it to the place while I waited. And then in another fit I punched a closet door and had to repair that. The key is using expanding foam and Bondo. After it's dried, sand it smooth, primer and paint. You'll never know I lost my temper into that door.

Yeah I guess I'll miss the old place, but I will have my memories and though we'll reminisce from time to time, those too shall fade... Somewhat.

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Sacrificial ham for the gods

Oh gods of relocation how might I appeaseth thee?? What? Ok, say nothing you say? Yes oh great and glorious gods of relocation I will truly and absolutely keep my festering gob shut. Thanks...

Thursday, January 11, 2007

Back to square one...

Well the Cookie monster dealt the death knell on the deal, by not calling our Realtor back and paying off the assorted escrow fees. Oh well so it goes. Start at the beginning, pass go do not collect $200, whatever the hell... Relisted on Tuesday as a 'just in case', plan B now plan A, and plan C now plan B. Plan B now refi... On a positive note or maybe a not so dim one, the fed probably won't be moving the rate one way or the other so if it comes down to a refi within 3-6 months maybe things will hold together. Oh and maybe the Israelis will keep their pants on about attacking Iran.

Sunday, January 07, 2007


Jan 5 came and went without the anticipated event, glad I didn't hold my breath... It seems Salvatore bought another house and the loan company wouldn't approve anymore money for him. Putz, thanks.

Maybe the backup will pull through if Cookie gets her shit in line and produces the paperwork in a reasonable time frame. But if it's like the last time around, she'll drag ass and piss us all off in the process. Relisting today as a backup. And if the dump gets no action, refi will be the only course. Oh joy!