Saturday, June 21, 2008

Jay: No Birthdays

Another day of no birthdays so soon?  Well, it’s only the 4th of 6 during June.  Seven, if you count as none the one where there was a birthday of an obscure relative, of unknown mortality, I barely saw fit to mention.

Presumably this is the longest day of the year, all 24 and a fraction hours of it.  It’s all downhill from here, but I guess we can take solstice in it taking six months.

Actually, looks like the solstice was technically the 20th, but at a minute before midnight, so yeah.

This is a work day for Deb, so for me it’s a day being nibbled to death by ducks, in the form of a slew of kids, while trying to get something, anything done.  As I get into a groove of more work that pays or generates money indirectly, I will definitely need cheap babysitting part of the time I am here alone with the gang of three.  The great thing is even that will have flexibility.  Even a day of it, in the absence of scheduled out of house work, would be helpful, and it shouldn’t matter which day, so if I have my mother come down, it needn’t interfere with the bit of sitting she still does for my brother.

11:02 AM | BirthdaysBloggingBusinessGeekeryKidsMoneyNewsWeatherTotally Random • (0) CommentsPermalink

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Jay: Gout Attacks

I haven’t had trouble with gout to speak of, lately, until today, when it came on suddenly and at least as severely as ever.

As I may have mentioned, from peak weight to recent low weight I lost 55 lbs, 45 this year.  The diet is a bit different, if not as much so as you might think, and more fully natural.  Still, I’d expect if I ate pinto beans for a few days, I’d get an outbreak.

My first thought was limited fluid today, though I drank plenty yesterday, and stayed in AC a lot, and the weather in general.  That’s likely a factor.

However, the cookout Sunday saw me sent home with a banana bread with cranberries, a bunch of sour cream bars, and most of a loaf of homemade bread.  Deb and the kids ate the bread, though I had a slice or two at the event itself.  However, I ate most of the banana bread and most of the squares in a binge of wanting them not to spoil and, hey, free food.  Kind of weird, as I don’t eat much for sweets these days, and even carbs are only moderately from bread.

I’m intrigued by the possibility that the binge on that stuff was a factor.  If anything, I’ve had less than usual that should contribute.  Heck, I had salad two nights in a row, so I suppose I could speculate about that.

I just hope it goes fast.  Now back to stuff I need to get done while I have the chance.  I started replying to a job solicitation around 10 hours ago and it’s still on my screen, partly written.  Figured I’d reply, even though I don’t think I have the qualifications they want.

11:47 PM | Food & CookingJob HuntingMedicalMoneyNewsWeather • (0) CommentsPermalink

Sunday, May 18, 2008

Jay: Betrayed By Weather!

Oh wait.  I mean, what a wonderful day it appears to be, and how nice it got for a large chunk of yesterday.  Hooray for sun and warmth, and their power to dry previously soaked grass.  Yeah, that’s it.  Assuming the 50% chance of precipitation, focused in the afternoon and beyond, is worth the risk.

Which means it’s looking sadly, I mean happily, like the family gathering Easter egg hunt thing will happen today.  That means getting a ride, which appears to be all set.  That means preparing and bringing something the baby can eat.  That means getting cash I can’t afford to contribute to the purchase of pizza, which means dairy, which means “hey, what’s Deb going to eat?” That means sitting here trying to remember what lyrics my brother wanted me to locate online and print for him, so I don’t have to be like “oops, forgot” or whatever.

But hey, it’ll make my brother and the other kids happy, so it must be worth it.

If it’s happening, and we have no idea for sure yet.  As of yesterday it was completely up in the air.  Not only does it depend on the lack of rain long enough for the grass to be dry, it also matters whether the grass was cut recently enough, or couldn’t be because mumble mower fixed mumble come do the lawn mumble, or it was too wet at the wrong time.

We also have no idea what time it is scheduled, since nobody in the family who schedules these things ever announces a time for them.  Apparently naming the date is considered sufficient.

Oh well.  Guess I’d better start frantically scrambling to be ready to go, rather than taking advantage of what for me is a work day with someone else to help redirect the kids.

I relaxed when my look at the weather told me it’s likely to be raining again by 2:00, but I’m told we should show between 12:30 and 1:30, so I really do have to scramble.

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Friday, May 02, 2008

Jay: Sunday

Was supposed to be the annual Easter egg hunt for the little kids, at my grandmother’s house, but I don’t even need to discuss it with anyone to know it’s off.  The weather is, well, the kind of weather that makes us do this well after actual Easter in the first place.  Cold.  Rainy.  Completely unsuited to scampering around the yard on a search and consume mission for plastic eggs and their contents.

My mother would be handy in a drought.  Pick a day, have her plan an outdoor event on it, and voila, rain.  It’s very nearly uncanny.

01:06 PM | HumorKidsMassachusettsNewsWeatherTotally Random • (0) CommentsPermalink

Friday, March 28, 2008

Jay: Dreams Are Weird

I haven’t seen my stepsister in years, yet she was in dreams two nights in a row.  Night before last, there was a mishmash of stuff that included one of my father’s houses, the dream version of it, which in the dream she’d ended up buying.  Last night’s dreams included a scene in which I was telling my stepsister about the dream I’d had the night before.  Very meta, self-referential, or whatever you want to call it.

The seemingly lengthy end part of the dreams last night involved being somewhere to the north, like NH, ME or VT - the highway I drove down was a generic stretch of what looks like northern New England highway that seems to recycle in dreams where it’s needed - and there being a giant snow storm.  I needed to get home, apparently for work, and was trying and trying to get through it, leaving when I shouldn’t have, getting in shoveling scenarios, trying to bash through a snowbank a few feet taller than the car, that sort of thing.  Eventually I gave up and stayed in a motel, though even that was a matter of getting a room, then continuing to try to flee.

In the motel, which seemed to double as one of those side of the highway tourist rest stops and the offices of some business (for that matter, in part it looked like a miniature section of some airport terminal, in rustic), there was the challenge of getting something to eat.  People were strangely open, but not open, at a lunch counter and small store.  I found my way into the dining area, where someone had just been served a sandwich, but most people were just hanging out, and was told they would be serving starting at a specific time.  An odd time, though I forget when.  It was at the motel where I ran into my stepsister, as I recall.

Fast forward and I am driving down the highway in the morning, bright, sunny, and not a speck of snow, immediately south of where I had stayed.  I was fuming at having had to spend the money and time to stay over.  I was also alone, but then I wasn’t, because Deb and a kid, presumably Sadie as a baby, were with me.  This would fit with the blizzard when we had to stay an extra night at the Park Plaza for Arisia, when Sadie was less than 4 months old.  On the way, we discussed the state of the credit cards, and which one I’d used for the stay, and how it sucked to have needed to do that because we so couldn’t afford the $40.

Next thing I know, pressed for time, I was driving straight to work with family in tow, which is odd in that we’d gotten almost home when I got onto the highway going north from here.  In reality, I’d have had to pass work on the way there, then changed my mind and not spent an extra 10 minutes dropping them home.  Then there was a bit of fuss about where Deb and the kid would hang out at the office, which was a cross between my former large client, a larger business, and the motel I’d stayed at in the dream.

That was about it.  I woke up, amused at the whole thing, and started coffee brewing.  I certainly hope we don’t get any snow, and that dreaming about my stepsister has no prescient bad significance.  However, this wasn’t like one of those “dreams that happen” dreams, or like when I flashed “this could be the last time I talk to her” out of the blue and sat to converse with my grandmother at length less than 36 hours before she died.

Being Friday and not having had it early enough to mail it, I have to make arrangements to drop money to the landlord.  We may look like we’re sitting around watching soaps and playing with the kids, but each week we have to come up with $250 or $300 toward rent to defer eviction proceedings.  The drop-ins by people who are bringing food donations and don’t care what the house looks like at any random time are welcome but are still disruptions.  Visits that are just visits on a couple hours notice tend to get “well, this is really a bad day” pretty uniformly.  Friday is especially bad with the actual rent delivery, but today I need to make a post office run - a small contribution to our finances a couple weeks hence because someone bought a book, I need to go to Wal-Mart and figure out how to stretch $30 beyond all recognition - including a couple bucks for yarn for a custom order to help our finances in a week or two, stop at my mother’s for a special crib mattress cover a cousin got us for Henry not to be allergic to the crib anymore (she’s allergic to everything herself, apparently), reply to the person who is offering temp work that’ll be great if the interview Monday doesn’t work out, figure out whether I need $8 or $16 for the train Monday and walking directions from South Station to my destination, help unbury and select clothes sealed in the leaky closet for the winter, continue my office organizing project, make banana bread, figure out what’s for supper and start it ahead of time if needed, and probably some things I’ve forgotten.  Like e-mailing someone who might want me to do a computer cleanup Sunday, or Monday evening, and might have others who could use that, if she’s recovered enough from surgery.  A few of those and it’s close to another rent week.

And I still haven’t worked on the giant “we’re back” fundraiser edition of Carnival of the Capitalists, but I should, because that could contribute to groceries or to the rent on the 11th.  Or gas for the truck, because even if you take six weeks to use a tank, eventually you need more.

And with that, off I go, because the day is getting no younger.

12:20 PM | BooksFor SaleBusinessCarsFood & CookingJob HuntingKidsMedicalMoneyNewsWeatherTotally Random • (0) CommentsPermalink

Saturday, March 22, 2008

Jay: Randomness and Resume Repost

I think I’m going to spend part of the day cleaning the office before I get back into job hunting.  Well, that and I need to run to the store for milk and peanut butter at some point.  And I may toss a chicken in the oven from the freezer, with low heat to thaw and cook it slowly and warm the house, though the next two days are supposed to be colder.  I seem to be having a problem with having lost warming fat with all that weight, because in what should not be uncomfortable conditions, I am bundled up and still cold.  If I don’t do the chicken, I might get yeast and try bread without milk.  The recipe I’d been using calls for milk, but that’s not universal.  We’re putting back the wheat for Deb before we put back the milk.

Anyway, the point of this random post, going up here because I don’t have any birthdays to be filler, is to post my resume again, partly in case there is any traffic from  I’ll maybe also link the resume near the top of the sidebar.

This is what I’d call a general technical and managerial resume.  I need to create one (well, a new and improved one) oriented toward online content, editing, writing, etc., for those prospective options, which really don’t overlap much with the ones where mentioning blogging new media can be detrimental, or at least not helpful.

Word format
PDF format

01:08 PM | BloggingBusinessFood & CookingGeekeryJob HuntingMedicalMoneyNewsWeatherTotally RandomTV • (0) CommentsPermalink

Monday, February 18, 2008

Jay: Obligatory Post for the Day

Seems weird to get this far into the day with nothing here.

I did one of my reposts, this from April 2004, over at Bizosphere: Introversion As Business Challenge.

That follows the previous reposts Partners, Friends, And Uncommon Goals and Business Lessons From Gilmore Girls.  I’m also thinking about finding and reposting my drumbeat of posts over the years about the housing bubble.

I should post some kid pictures.  even without some of the exceptional ones I know haven’t come off the camera yet, there are plenty.  Then again, I think we’re obligated by Parenting Law to give Henry the full third child treatment, so he’s lucky to be in any pictures, let alone have them shown off to the world.

Okay, back to work.  I think we have this weeks imperatives and well into next week’s covered without selling the dead cars yet, but I should post those.

Also need to start supper.  Well, should have a couple hours ago, come to think of it, as I was thinking crockpot, but 3 hours is not enough for that.  Hmmm.  Perhaps instead of beef we’ll have chicken brocolli alfredo.  Main thing is not to run the oven, as it’s hot and steamy from being 60 degrees out.

I need to work on CotC, beyond merely having screened the entries.  I need to continue Val’s story, though at least that’s percolating in the back of my mind.  I need to start on the tax stuff.  I need to work on the resume variants I have in mind.  Being underemployed is no barrier to being thoroughly occupied.

Looks like my brother will be staying with us Wednesday night after he flies in from Ohio and drives down from New Hampshire.  That’s always cool.  He makes it tempting to move to Ohio, or nearby in Kentucky or Indiana.

Okay, back to whatever…

07:50 PM | BloggingBusinessCarsFood & CookingGeekeryJob HuntingKidsMoneyNewsWeather • (1) CommentsPermalink

Wednesday, February 06, 2008

Jay: The Sixth Already?


That means it’s Ronald Reagan’s birthday.  Or was when he was alive, rather than doing a lively spin in his grave when his name is invoked this year.

Henry is either a great accidental talker or he makes the girls look verbally slow.  He’s extroverted and vocal in the first place, and obviously bright, so he may be going in for earlier language.  “Hi da da” is pretty surprising, but so is “I did,” which he apparently picked up from Valerie’s “I did it!” as the equivalent of saying “yay!” Totally in context, and not the first time he has clearly said “hi.” Or enthused about seeing me.

I think there’s a post office run in my today.  Books, this time, though it would be great if something sold from Deb’s crochet shop first thing and made it a two-fer.  So I’ll probably run to the store as well, for a small pack of wipes.  Annoyingly, it’s rainy and I still haven’t looked up how to replace the wiper blade online, in a size I can actually read.

With CotC done, I have a rapid succession of money-related things to do.  The old big client wants to hire me personally to do some web site updates, which I had suggested because I saw nobody had taken it over.  There’s e-mail out to clarify the scope, which will either be adding, removing, and modifying the list of attorneys and their profile pages, or will be that plus adding a news section.  If it’s only the former, I may add a static page where the news section belongs.  Well, it could entail removing links that imply a news section, come to think of it.  We’ll see.

Maybe more at the business site.  Ads for the business site, on our various sites.  Perhaps an e-mail to people soliciting work.

Already have a second e-mail out to an advertiser, in case the contact isn’t there or my first one didn’t make it there.

Modify the existing resume and create another one.  Start posting it online.

There’s more, but no need to list it all here, and some will depend on how other things flow and momentum.  Big thing is I don’t have CotC to work on, even if that was a promotional opportunity, and I can run through some other stuff.

01:10 PM | BirthdaysBooksBusinessGeekeryJob HuntingKidsMoneyNewsWeather • (0) CommentsPermalink

Tuesday, February 05, 2008

Jay: Today

I have to finish this edition of Carnival of the Capitalists, which is actually well timed for self-promotion.  Thankfully I have a good host for next week, and I hope more will volunteer for subsequent editions.  The ones who have done it so far have been great, and seemed at least as happy and enthusiastic as when people hosted at their own blogs.  I enjoyed going out and finding items for it, though I wish I’d had more time.  Or perhaps not, since there are an awful lot of them.

I need to send some e-mails.

Already did my first checks of OnForce work orders, which appear not to be that frequent, and the domain auction, which promises to go exactly nowhere.

I may do more work on the digital coaching and tech support business site, or at least post at the blog.  That also needs to get some promotion across our various sites, probably in the form of a homegrown ad that came to mind yesterday.

Probably yesterday’s list continued, basically, including resume work and posting same here and there and updating LinkedIn and so forth.

Perhaps add some books to our book sale that so far includes pregnancy, birth, and parenting books for sale.  Probably some mint computer-related books, among whatever else.

Okay, off to more coffee and CotC.  The latter is likely to provoke a string of efforts from the list that tie into it being a self-promotion venue.

I could do without such gloomy weather.  It looks like it’s 4:00 in the morning.

02:03 PM | BloggingBooksBusinessGeekeryJob HuntingMoneyNewsWeather • (0) CommentsPermalink

Friday, February 01, 2008

Jay: Yasoft? Microhoo?

No birthdays.

Big news this morning: Microsoft bidding big for Yahoo!  Not unexpected per se, but landscape shifting.

Erm… let’s see.  Just trying to dump what’s interesting and can be typed fast so I can move along.

Today I need to run to the post office to send a package to Australia.  Seems like not only will there be more business from there, but also Deb has found a winning focus for her shop.  Which you’ve visited, right?  See the sidebar.  Also need to hit the store.  Should try to get outside before the rain hits.  Need to put at least one of the new wiper blades on the truck.  I seem to recall they were a pain to install last time.

I need to correspond about an upcoming job wiping and reinstalling a computer that’s had way too much trouble for the owner and I would have flattened, or flat out replaced, long ago.  Friend of mine doing the support for it free for a friend of his, now lives a few states away so for the hands on they’re paying me.  Thought it was going to be a while, but it’s moved up to almost immediately.  Which also means I need to review the dump of support correspondence between my friend and Microsoft and Adaptec and be sure I am firm on the situation.  Though as much as anything I figure I’m the knowledgeable hands on-site, with my friend doing some of the driving otherwise.

I need to continue the web site updates and flier project.  Actually, I should do sample fliers and show them to my landlord, who suggested the concept. 

I need to compose another e-mail soliciting work from a few dozen people.

Then there’s another e-mail I need to compose, that could result in money.

Today or tomorrow I’ll want to make a pea soup.  My mother and grandmother had a plague of ham bones and already made three in rapid succession, so the basically insisted I take home the one they had in the freezer, plus a bag of peas.  That’s thawing in the fridge.

Enough typing.  Gotta get rolling.

03:06 PM | BusinessFood & CookingGeekeryJob HuntingMoneyNewsWeatherTotally Random • (0) CommentsPermalink

Monday, January 28, 2008

Jay: Blargh

Woke up way too early, before 5:00, couldn’t get back to sleep.  Now I feel like I’ll keel over, at the point when everyone else is about to start waking up.

Our coating of snow yesterday turned into a coastal thing that dumped real snow out there, enough that I may have to go shovel.  Or not, since three days of temps are supposed to be 35, 44 and 48.

Made an amazing blueberry pound cake with some frozen blueberries Sadie got from her grandfather.  She loves blueberries.

Made bread for the first time ever, with a recipe from my brother that he e-mailed me in 2001, which turns out to be almost identical to the CIA bread recipe I found online to try to determine the amount of sugar to use, as that wasn’t listed.  I screwed up the steps at a key point, but still ended up with something about as good as anything we’d buy.  When it calls for putting the warm milk mixture in a bowl and then adding flour, it says to put in 2 cups then mix, then add the yeast water.  I put in all the flour, then saw what the directions actually said.  Decided to cut the yeast into it anyway, and hope for the best.  Fudged it with a little warm water to make it mix in better.  It rose stubbornly, but it did rise.  The loaves ended up perhaps smaller and heavier in texture than they would have.  In my travels I learned about skimming versus not skimming the milk to make it fluffier or heavier.

Making bread was easier than I’d expected.  I routinely cook things that are more time and trouble than making a couple loaves of bread, so I’ll do it again for sure.  I want to figure out what the ingredients cost, versus buying, say, a couple loaves of Italian bread.

I also made chili yesterday, slightly heavier on the beans than usual, but still meaty.  The girls devoured it, and in fact gave it preference over the bread, despite having tried and enjoyed tastes of the bread beforehand.  I also experimented with giving them glasses of water with supper.  They have sippy cups of milk, watered juice, or lemonade all day, but usually have nothing to drink at the table with a meal.  Figured it was time for them, especially Sadie, to learn to drink from a regular cup better.  She loved it.  Valerie, who drinks expertly from a bowl, had, or pretended to have, trouble.

Sadie has also started using big kid toothpaste you have to spit out.  For some reason, that resulted in her having me brush the teeth for her, but she wants them to be properly clean and admires them in the mirror afterward.

I think I’ll lay back down after all.  I have the can’t stay upright feeling that’s like being sick as much as sleepy.

12:27 PM | Food & CookingKidsNewsWeatherTotally Random • (0) CommentsPermalink

Monday, January 14, 2008

Jay: Neatly Tangled

It’s back, and fixed except lost blogroll links that were in a widget.  Those I seem to have recovered, messily, from the SQL file backup of the database.  Actually, neat trick; I copied and pasted from the file into an e-mail to Deb and where it converted the URLs to links in among the garbage, they will be easy to pick out.

Deb’s e-mail at that domain works now, too.

Now I need to work on CotC!  And snow shoveling, for which I don’t think I have more than another hour of delay.  They plowed in the other side of the street, and when ours is plowed in it will be time to at least clear the steps and a walk and the end, even if it’s not that deep.  It appears to be deadly wet.  We’re in the 4 - 8 zone and it’s supposed to be largely done in about an hour.

Also need to upgrade Dan’s WordPress, but that can wait until later.

Also need to do post-upgrade backups of everything, but that can wait until later.

Dammit, I have to do something more directly monetary this week.  Sheesh.

04:03 PM | BloggingGeekeryMoneyNewsWeather • (0) CommentsPermalink

Sunday, January 13, 2008

Jay: No Birthdays

The next one I have on record is for our friend Weekend Pundit Deb, during the upcoming week.

Why is Sadie bringing me random coasters as if they are offerings?  I don’t think I need to be appeased.

Anyway, it’s been a fun morning so far.

Expression Engine rocks in many ways, and of course backtracked to having a free version.  In some ways, WordPress has just caught up with things it can do.

It lacks anything like Akismet, for comment spam.  It attracts little comment spam, and the spam must be entered manually.  Usually it’s not there more than a few minutes before we delete it, and there are perhaps a few per week.  Which makes it about the same as what gets past Akismet on the WordPress blogs.

Early this morning we got slammed with 24 spam comments from China, some coming in even as I was deleting the others.  I ended up deleting them by IP address, to be efficient.  Then I blocked the IP address.  Then another IP address submitted a few more.  Blocking the second IP address brought it to a halt.  Still, it was disturbing.  Not sure what set them off.

Last night I got some of the WordPress sites upgraded to the latest edition, after finding there was a security hole along the way that could allow them to insert links into a WordPress blogroll.  Still have to do Bizosphere after I post this.

CotC is the gorilla on the agenda today.  I need to go through the entries.  Ideally I need to go find some host picks in the spirit of the new format.  I wanted to write the post about blog carnivals being dead before now, but it remains a couple paragraphs, days old, in my offline editor.

Anywho, to work I go for a while, then lunch of fried mashed potato, with scrambled eggs for me and the girls, leftover scrambled hamburger in sour cream gravy for Deb.  Maybe some leftover butternut for Henry.  Then back to work, mainly on CotC-related stuff, perhaps a post or two of kid pics thrown in here this afternoon.

02:12 PM | BirthdaysBloggingBusinessGeekeryKidsNewsWeatherTotally Random • (1) CommentsPermalink

Thursday, January 10, 2008

Jay: Gack

Somehow managed to get sick overnight.  You’d think the weather was crazy and the kids made sleep interesting or something.

02:33 PM | KidsMedicalNewsWeather • (0) CommentsPermalink

Wednesday, January 09, 2008

Jay: You Would Think…

That whacky warm weather would be a grand thing.  And it is, when I think of the heating bill, but it’s unsettling, uncomfortable and odd otherwise.  We only opened one window for a good chunk of yesterday.  We could have used another couple of them open.  But then, I found myself thinking that the more heat trapped inside, the longer until the heat ran again.

Yesterday was almost 70.  Today is predicted to be 60 for Boston and 62 around here.

Just as well, I suppose.  The other day when I walked the kids to the post office there were still humps of icy snow in spots on the sidewalks here and there.  Nothing you couldn’t roll over or around, but it still needed a day or three of melting.

02:51 PM | NewsWeather • (0) CommentsPermalink
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