6/28/10 (21:32)
  • idea for obama's reelection campaign: montage of obama speaking about important legislation and actions taken thus far - healthcare, bp $20 billion in account, etc. then john lennon's song "give peace a chance" starts playing with people in a large crowd singing along and instead of singing "give peace a chance" they sing "give change a chance." people would eat that ironic shit up.
  • got a note from "a neighbor" the other day. basically said we should paint our house and mow the lawn more often. i think the stuff we've done to date has been (mostly) a higher priority than making the front of our house look nice, but it's a matter of perspective. so i mowed the lawn and did some weed wacking this weekend. exterior paint will wait til next year.
  • stucco patching was finished sunday by noon so that was good.
  • cousins and aunt ended up visiting yesterday as well. we watched a movie and walked around jack london square a bit.

  • 6/26/10 (17:57)

  • usa soccer played pretty well today in the loss to ghana, but not well enough. again it was an early goal that doomed them.
  • rafael started working on the stucco today. got a later than expected start because he didn't bring any materials so we had to go shopping. hopefully he can finish tomorrow. he's taking his time on this one and he left about an hour ago, not sure if he's coming back.
  • cousins and aunt should be coming here tomorrow, but not certain about that.

  • 6/25/10 (17:05)

  • interesting story.
  • i don't know what my favorite album is, but i know that incunabula by autechre has been near or at the top of the list for the last 8-10 years.
  • once i get all my songs rated i'll be able to make some pretty kick ass mixes. i'm guessing it'll be another year before i have all that sorted out though.
  • one of the saddest days of the year passed the other day. summer solstice means it's all downhill from here. less daylight everyday. depressing. then it'll be fall and it'll be dark at noon (or whatever) again.
  • rained last night a little bit. fuck that shit.
  • michael chabon was on fresh air today, actually it was a replay, but they talked about writing and his life. chabon said he knows he's writing something good when he gets uncomfortable, she asked for an example. he gave the example of when he wrote about when he was 15 and he had sex with one of his mom's friends. at first this seemed odd to me of course. then i think the reaction can go one of two ways: awesome, that kid was a pimp. or, wow, that sucks to be raped at that age by your mom's friend. they didn't talk about either possible reaction, just about him writing about it and then about his mom finding out (after she read the book) and them talking about it matter-of-factly. pretty messed up that if the genders were reversed it would be a victimized girl and a man in jail and labeled a pedophile/sex offender for the rest of his life. but it's a young boy and an older woman so we can laugh about it on the radio. awesome. when it's an older woman we're able to think about it as a shade of gray - he probably wanted it and she was showing him the ropes (ala meet the fockers) so it's not as bad as it seems. again, reverse the genders, though, and we assume it's totally different.

  • 6/24/10 (14:02)

  • went to play basketball with jon the other day. picked him up at the bart station and we drove to the place nearest my house that i know of to play basketball. we played a bit and then a guy with no shirt and jeans around his thighs came up and asked if he could play with us. i said yes and we spent much of the next hour trying to play ball with him. we was definitely out of it and we quickly surmised that he was likely a crackhead. once it was obvious that he was just looking for some companionship rather than to rob us, or otherwise give us a hard time, i tried to teach him some things about basketball. his movements were extremely deliberate to the point where it would take him a full minute just to take a shot. it was one of those oakland experiences that show you the full range of humanity's potential. if we had caught this guy on a bad day he would have been robbing us to get high, but we got him on a day when he didn't need a fix. he was totally out of it, but you could see glimmers of happiness when he started to understand what we were teaching him. for people like this, bp and afghanistan and office politics are so completely irrelevant. it's something we all know, but interactions like this remind you.
  • speaking of basketball...meryl got me a backboard/rim for my birthday. hope to install that in the next couple weeks. going to wait for stucco (saturday rafael is coming over) on garage to be done. then will prime and paint the front of the garage and mount backboard.
  • took off a chunk of skin the other day with a belt sander and 36 grit paper. in general we've been pretty good about injuries while working on the house. hammered my fingers a few times and stepped on a couple nails, but nothing more serious than that.
  • never wrote about the celtics/fakers game. it was one for the books and it didn't go my way (again). fucking hate those guys. the only good thing about it is that my former favorite player (artest) is the one who bailed out the kobes. the celtics played a fine game and a great series, but misses shots haunted them. the rebounding in game seven was also awful, though some of that is because perkins wasn't in the game.

  • 6-23-10 (16:19)

  • it occurred to me last night that i don't have an official favorite jazz album. then it occurred to me that sonny sharrock's first record (black woman) is probably my favorite though i had never thought of it in those terms. with rock, hip-hop, and electronic i have a list of a few albums off the top of my head that would be in the running, but i hadn't ever thought about it for jazz.

  • 6-23-10 (10:47)

  • fucking brilliant game this morning. usa put on the pressure all game long and it finally paid off in extra time. we haven't lost a game yet so we're looking pretty good. fucking refs have it in for us, but they can suck it. so exciting. it's like waiting to jizz for 90 minutes and then it finally happens with the prom queen. what a game.
  • brazil and argentina are looking real good. we'll see how good brazil is when they play portugal.

  • 6-20-10 (14:18)

  • ran a 5k today. by the old chris standards i ran an awful time, but by the standards that i've only been running again for a week or so it wasn't too awful. started running months ago to prep for the race then i got sick then it looked like the race wasn't going to happen so i stopped running and then i started back up again in the last week or so. at the end i felt like i had more left in the tank too so that's a sign that i should have run a bit faster. running isn't fun, but racing is.
  • worked a bit on the bathroom this weekend. reversed the swing on the door and that's mostly dialed in now. also worked on repairing the ceiling. still waiting on the shower diverter so we can do the rough-in plumbing and then bring the tub back in.

  • 6-16-10 (10:05)

  • did some page updating. updated recommendations and movies reviewed pages.
  • hope to get a lot of little things done around the house today. was hoping that the stucco guy could come today, but i don't think he's coming until monday. our conversations are always pretty tough since he speaks only slightly more english than i speak spanish.

  • 6-13-10 (17:43)

  • watched a frontline documentary on the war in iraq, specifically one platoon based in colorado that had a high suicide rate and a couple of the guys went onto to prison for the murder of a fellow soldier. it was yet another quality documentary that brings home the realities of war and what we're asking these guys to do. i think it's far too easy to forget about these realities and sacrifices and the long-term consequences that war has on the soldiers. we make the easily seen costs of war too easy to miss. it's like shopping at wal-mart: we see the low prices, but none of the downside that those low prices have on the workers in the supply chain or wal-mart locations. perhaps we should bring back the draft for this reason, but a real draft where guys like cheney can't get around it just because they're in school. if you're a man or woman and you can walk and between the ages of 18-45, you're eligible.
  • i know a lot of people who voted for obama and i don't think i know anyone who has a family member who has gone to war in iraq or afghanistan. how about instead of a draft we make people who vote for bush and obama go into the wars that they start or perpetuate? seems fair to me. it's easy to take the soldiers for granted or to write them off as ignorant, poor, or hawkish, but in seeing a host of documentaries on these most recent wars i don't find that to be the rule. mostly it seems like they're (mostly) guys who don't have a lot of options and want to make a difference. we've betrayed their trust for the last ten years with wars of choice rather than wars of survival and self-defense, which is the only time i would feel comfortable sending someone off to possible death or murder of another.
  • dad was over this weekend for a bit. watched a movie and spent time with sarah. showed him the place, he hadn't seen it in months.
  • celtics pretty much have to win tonight. technically it's not a must-win situation until the other team has three wins, but i feel like this is a must-win because winning two on the road would be damn difficult for boston.
  • didn't get much done on the house this weekend. started the rough-in for the electrical.
  • my true calling in life may have been to be a bug killer. in the last couple weeks i've dispatched flying bugs in the following ways:
  • mosquito hawk flying around at home. meryl scared, i'm reading a book. flies in front of me and i wack it out of the air. it's stunned and bouncing around on the ground a few feet away from me. i close book and throw it into the air an onto the ground where it squishes mosquito hawk. it's dead. i've done this before with another flying bug, but that time i used a tissue box instead of a book - not as loud, just as effective.
  • my favorite method is the catch and clap. i'll often catch moths and gnats out of the air with my hand and hold it inside my fist. then i'll clap that hand with my other hand and kill it. highly effective and it keeps me sharp.
  • bug in office flying around everyone's head and being a general nuisance. i hit it in midair and stunned it. it bounced around on my desk for a couple seconds and landed on my stapler. i slammed the stapler down and killed it by impaling it with a staple. probably the greatest achievement of my life. stapler has been around 100 years and probably only one person a year has killed a bug in that manner so my guess is that in the history of humanity killing a fly with a stapler has been done about 100 times.
  • not thrilled about the prospect of the pac-16. it'll instantly make it the number one conference in the country in football and several other sports. i like rooting for the pac-10, but i wouldn't be able to do that if it included texas and oklahoma. i'd become a pac-8 fan at that point, which in the most likely scenario would be known as the pac-16 west. once again it's all about the money and there's a lot on the line so every day it looks like more and more of a possibility, but i can't say i like it.
  • nba finals have been very poorly officiated. this last game wasn't as bad as the previous four, but it wasn't great either. worst officiating i've seen since stern fixed the kings/lakers series in 2002.
  • boston played well tonight. shut down gasol which was a big key to the game. the announcers didn't really pick up on it, but they didn't give him anything easy. a couple times they poked the ball away from him, they blocked a few of his shots, they fouled him and made him earn his points. it was the kobe show and that was it. ray allen needs to get back on track with his long jumpers so they can spread the defense, but other than that i don't have much to complain about.
  • now they have to close it on the road. should be interesting.
  • yesterday was johnny's birthday. today was my late grandpa's birthday.

  • 6-12-10 (10:13)

  • ran this morning. getting back into the swing of things.
  • dad's in town this weekend so probably not going to get much done on the house. we do plan on going around town to hopefully find the shower hardware so i can do the rough-ins.

  • 6-7-10 (17:26)

  • work on the bathroom is moving, but not especially fast or slow. finished the subfloor, tile prep is next for the floor. will probably use a self-levelling product to take some of the slope out of the room as well as fill in some of the small valleys. not settled on ditra vs. backboard. thinking ditra at this point, but it's a bit more expensive and i've never used it before so there's the unknown. definitely using schluter kerdi on the shower walls, but unsure of the thinset type because we're using glass tile. ask schluter and they say unmodified, ask thinset manufacturer and they say modified. read about it and glass usually goes on with modified. we'll see how that pans out.
  • waiting on shower diverter before plumbing the rest of the bathroom supply lines.
  • wrist hurts.
  • a.f.5 is a great program for people who like organization in windows explorer because it has a powerful, yet simple, interface that allows you to change the name of a large number of files at once. i use it all the time when working with mp3s that aren't named in a format that i like. i like: artist - album - track number - song title - year of release.mp3
  • celtics game was a good one. kg and pierce were zeros, but allen carried them in the first half and then rondo came on in the second half. they have a great team concept, a defensive emphasis, and a lot of the right guys which makes them a force in the playoffs. the fakers have more talent and supposedly a better coach, but it's definitely a winnable series for the celtics, i just think they have less room for error. tomorrow should be fun.
  • my dad has seen over 200 movies in the theater so far this year.
  • sad to see john wooden gone. it goes without saying that he was one of the greats in basketball history, but he was an even greater mentor for the many young men whom he coached. unlike a lot of people in the industry now, he realized that life is more important than basketball and for that reason alone he's irreplaceable. his pyramid for success and ideas about competitive greatness and teamwork are blueprints for success in a variety of arenas (sports or otherwise). from a sports philosophy point of view he could very well be likened to plato who is considered the father of western philosophy to the point that it has been said "(western philosophy) consists of a series of footnotes to Plato." everything that coaches are teaching today is just a footnote to what wooden said 50 years ago.
  • reviewed 8,610 out of 34,487 songs so far. itunes uses a 5 star system whereas media monkey allows half star ratings and a bomb rating for a total of 11 categories. once again, itunes is limited. itunes won't recognize ratings left in media monkey so i have to rate everything with a whole number from 1-5. 1 star means it comes off the ipod. 2 stars means it's fine. 3 means i like it more than average. 4 means i really like it. 5 means i love it. i've been doing this for about 5 months and i'm 25% of the way there. it's also the easy 25% because i took some of the low hanging fruit (like much of the beatles catalog) and rated it without having to listen to it. most of the rest of the stuff i'll have to listen to before i rate it. i do about 100 songs a day when i'm at work. i figure i'll be done right about the time the ipod breaks or apple comes out with an ipod that fits 200gb. on the weekends i listen to my podcasts instead of rating songs. here's the breakdown so far:

    stars # of songs % of total
    1 481 5.5
    2 4979 57.8
    3 2098 24.3
    4 691 7.7
    5 361 4.1
    8610 24.9

    6-3-10 (21:47)

  • oil spill seems like it might be coming to an end, at least they've tried something and had it work so i guess that's a good sign. my idea was to further crimp the damaged pipe to restrict flow, then pump liquid hydrogen in there to freeze the oil which might allow enough time to fix the leak. that was the best idea i could come up with.

  • 6-2-10 (22:43)

  • on our trip we saw three dwellings that were radically different. the first was the forestiere underground gardens, but it's really more of a home than a garden. he did sleep there, after all. the other two were also quite large by average dwelling standards. the two mansions were awesome to look at, but i had a lot of respect for the one guy with a good idea and a lot of patience who dug out a home for himself. as much as i respect the intellect and skill and vision of hearst and julia morgan and even mrs. winchester, i'd much rather be friends with a guy like forestiere.
  • had an ear doctor appt. today. they didn't come up with anything to solve my ear cracking issue so i guess i have to live with it. more annoying than anything else, but it'll be fine. found out i have hearing loss at the 4-6khz range in my left ear. that's not unexpected and may have been the case for the last 15 years or so because i think i remember having a hearing test before that found something similar. i generally do a good job of wearing ear protection when using my power tools so i just gotta keep that up.
  • made a replacement drawer for our office dresser. we got it for free and it never had a functional drawer on the lower right hand side. so i took the face of the drawer and fashioned a new box so that it would be functional. took me about an hour and it's the kind of project that is easy when you know what you're doing and you have tools like a table saw and pneumatic staple gun. if i didn't have those tools it would have taken a lot longer and wouldn't have turned out as well. it's done now so i increased the available storage by about 15% and it looks better now that all the spaces are filled.

  • also got to work on the bathroom floor so we don't fall between the joists when we're working in there.