6-26-07 (09:40)
  • working on converting a few hundred vhs tapes to dvd for my dad. that'll take me a long while.

  • fish camp:

    just outside of fish camp at the "rim of the world" overlook

    saw this on the drive up the other day

    6-25-07 (15:43)
  • drove the corrado up on saturday and it did fine. along the way i stopped at channel islands national park to scout it out. didn't spend much time there because there isn't much to do without going to the actual islands (there are five of them), but i did talk with a ranger and look at their exhibits. it counts as a visit so i've officially been to all the national parks in california.
  • the drive took about 8 hours because i took the 101 freeway and stopped a few times to allow the car some time to cool off. yesterday meryl and i went to concord because that's where the nearest fry's is (i had to return something) and we took the corrado. it drives well and is such a joy. on the way back the coolant light started flashing. we pulled over and i topped it off with coolant and everything was fine after that. there wasn't any noticable leak so i'm not sure what happened. that car is so funny sometimes.
  • today i went and got a parking permit for it along with doing some other errands.
  • a while back meryl and i went to an a's/red sox game that went into the 11th inning and was ended by an eric chavez walk-off homerun. the next day i went to santa cruz and watched a little league game with luke. it was the a's vs. the dodgers and the dodgers won in extra innings with a walk-off homerun. later that night we watched a giants/diamondbacks game and the diamondbacks won the game in extra innings with a walk-off homerun. three extra inning games in 24 hours that ended with a walk-off homerun. pretty lucky streak.

  • 6-21-07 (23:38)

  • tuned in on time to see the top ten of the afi top 100 movies show last night. there were some major changes - casablance dropped one place, the graduate got kicked from the top 10 and raging bull got a major jump: from 24 to 4. i know that ebert places it in his top 10 of all-time (which includes foreign films). i also noticed that third man and several others are no longer on the list. perhaps they finally realized that third man was a british film, or maybe they just realized that it's overrated. i'm currently working on a list of the films and their rank on the original and most recent lists. vertigo is another film that has been getting a lot of hype in recent years and this is reflected in the list: it went from 61 to 9. it's also interesting to note that stagecoach was at 63 on the original list, but didn't make the cut on the most recent one. citizen kane was #1 on both lists and orson welles said that he learned everything he needed to know about directing from watching stagecoach. kurosawa also called john ford (director of stagecoach) "the master."
  • painting is finally moving along. the prep and priming took forever. the drywall sucked up about twice as much primer as paint.
  • finished the afi list. here it is.

  • 6-18-07 (17:48)

  • flew down to la on thursday night. later that night phil came over and picked up the corrado. he's going to a mechanic's school and they were looking for cars to inspect. the next day he drove it back and gave me the news - according to their inspection there are several problems with the car. a couple of the things are fairly minor (an oil leak that's barely worth noting, for example), a couple of things are worrisome and a couple things are bad. i'm mostly worried about the fact that the oil gets hotter than it should and that the electrical system seems to slowly drain the battery. today i worked on a couple of the minor things that had bothered me - the driver's side window doesn't roll up all the way, the trim on the passenger side window is loose, and the sunroof leaks. i fixed the sunroof leak - turns out that there's a drain on the roof that leads to a tube that leads to the front of the car where it drains. the drain and the tube weren't connected so i glued them together and the problem was fixed. too bad the mechanical issues can't be solved so easily.
  • on saturday i went to a dodger game with my dad. they played the angels so it was a pretty rowdy crowd and there was at least one fight. the dodgers lost 3-0. one couple sitting next to us showed up in the fifth inning with nachos, hot dogs and beer. around the sixth inning my dad got up and went to the bathroom. as he was walking by the girl (who didn't stand up to let him by) he accidentally kicked over her beer (which was mostly full). she sorta whined about it, but he didn't hear her. for the five minutes or so that he was gone she talked about it with the people around her, including me. she asked if he was my buddy and i said he was my dad. she asked if he was "a kind hearted gentleman" and i said yeah i guess. when my dad returned she told him that he knocked over her beer and that it was full because she had just purchased it. she insisted that he pay for a new one and my dad said that he didn't realize it and he was sorry, but he wasn't going to pay for a new one. he'd pay for half because she didn't get up to allow him room to pass and she said that worked for her. he handed her a $20 bill with the understanding that he'd get his change back. she left with her boyfriend to buy the beer and i thought for sure that my dad had seen the last of his $20. but they returned with another beer and even some change for my dad; though it wasn't the agreed upon $15 (a beer costs $10) - it was only $10, so he ended up paying for the whole beer after all. he didn't press the issue, though.
  • after the game we went out for dinner and then watched a movie (hostel 2). when we got back to his place we watched another movie - cool hand luke - and then i slept over his place because we had plans to go to another game the next day. cool hand luke is one of my favorite films of all-time and luke jackson is one of cinema's greatest characters. many of my favorite characters (in life and literature) are very moral, anti-establishment renegades of sorts - colonel dax (kirk douglas) in paths of glory, the aforementioned luke jackson (paul newman), tom joad (henry fonda), gandhi (kingsley), etc. they don't conform, yet they're not hopeless rebels like hopper and fonda in easy rider. sure, those two are symbols of freedom, and i appreciate them for that, but i don't see the purpose and greater cause behind their motivations as i do in the likes of tom joad or colonel dax.
  • sunday was pretty much the same as saturday. went to another dodgers/angels game and they lost (this time 10-4). afterwards i went over to james' place and we had dinner and watched a movie (another sequel - ocean's 13).
  • the plane ride didn't treat the laptop very well. when i opened it up and tried to connect to the internet i discovered that the network card wasn't receiving any power. i took it out and put it back in to no avail. i went to fry's and bought a new one, but it didn't work. apparently the pc card slot is dead. went back to fry's and stood in line for 15 minutes to return the card, then bought a usb wireless device, tested it at a nearby starbucks and it worked. brought it up to my grandmother's and i'm having problems with it.
  • one of these days i'll come to la and not have technical problems and not have to work on someone's house or computer or audio system. maybe.
  • upper back still hurts after sleeping six hours or more. this is a new-ish problem, but it's a relief from the lower back pain that has haunted me from time to time since senior year of college. it's not as painful or debilitating and it goes away once i walk around and stretch it out. so life's great.
  • got a call back from the construction place that i applied to last week. will call them tomorrow.
  • received word from sarah price herself that summercamp! will be coming to dvd shortly. great documentary done by price (who also worked on american movie) and beesley (who worked on that flaming lips documentary whose title i can't currently recall). summercamp! was screened at sxsw 2006 and 2007.

  • 6-12-07 (17:16)

  • ended up not going to the ranch because luke was busy. worked out pretty well because meryl was feeling pretty crappy yesterday and she took the day off. also got the opportunity to run a bunch of errands which had been piling up for a while. for someone who doesn't have a real job, i sure seem to keep busy.
  • going to la in a couple days. looking forward to getting the car up here and painting my grandma's old bookroom which has recently been converted into a rentable area. will hopefully finally stop by channel islands national park on the way up.
  • dropped off an application for an apprentice position at a construction company in oakland. also looked into a construction program at laney college in oakland.
  • watched two films from 1951 in the last two days.

  • 6-10-07 (16:43)

  • spent most of last week working on the ranch. did a lot of cleaning and mowing. going tomorrow as well.
  • this weekend we went to tuolumne fish camp near yosemite with meryl and her parents. played a lot of board games, did some crafts, read, and just relaxed in general. it was a good time.
  • getting to the campsite took longer than it should have because of excessive traffic on the eastbound 205 freeway. when we finally got to the campsite a honda odyssey slowly drove out into the middle of the road and caused me to stop behind him in the middle of the road as the driver figured out what the hell he was doing. after a short pause he put the car in reverse and drove within inches of my front bumper. as i went to change gears, meryl reached over and slammed on the horn. unfazed, the driver continued in reverse towards my front end. luckily i floored the car into reverse just before he hit us. afterwards he stopped, and went forward down an adjacent road, completely ignoring us the entire time. meryl guessed that he came within one centimeter of hitting us, i think it was more like 2 inches.
  • today meryl feels like crap because of some prescription nsaid medicine she's taking for her knee. talked with a triage nurse and got the scoop so she should be okay by tomorrow.
  • haven't been very good about updating or watching movies because of my transient lifestyle. also haven't gotten a great night's sleep in over a month.
  • this weekend i'm going to la to pickup the corrado and bring the annoyance up here. there are a couple minor things to fix which i should be able to do myself, but that's assuming i can get the parts. damn that car.
  • nba finals are pretty boring. i hate how much people focus on individual players like lebron and duncan. i think this undermines the fundamental truth that these games are team games. even in game five when lebron scored something like 25 of his team's last 26 points, the team is essential. he didn't get every rebound or defend every player, and that was only one, spectacularly unusual, game.

  • 6-3-07 (10:47)

  • the eastern conference finals were competitive, but disappointing. game 5 saw a great performance from lebron and showed that sometimes one person can defeat five. i have absolutely no interest in watching the finals. lebron is way too over-hyped and san antonio is boring and full of complainers. flip saunders isn't a very good coach.
  • hamburger dave's has the best hamburgers in the east bay, at least in my limited experience thus far.
  • monday i'm finishing up my aunt's dining room.

  • next weekend i'm going with meryl's family to something called "fish camp."