Thursday, December 29, 2005


You can pick a banjo and you can pick your friends, but you shouldn't pick your friend's banjo.

Owokee Beer

When I was in college, I was living in the dorm for the two weeks between the spring semester and summer. I thought that I was the only person in the entire dorm. One morning, I walked out of my room and saw another guy putting out his garbage. We were both shocked that we weren't the only ones in the building, so we spoke. He asked if I drank beer and I said I did. He said he had some "Owokee" beer and I should come by after work and have one. All day, I looked forward to this exotic beer from the Orient that my new Asian friend would expose me to. The friendship was short-lived however, because when I showed up handed me an Old Milwaukee.

How to switch to GMAIL

How to switch to GMAIL (documented by Google):
Switching to a new email address can be a pain, but it doesn't have to be. To get personalized help on how to switch to Gmail, enter the domain for the email address you no longer want to use, and click 'Help Me Switch'. Or view general instructions on switching from any email address. Change is good. It can be easy too.

Monday, December 19, 2005

Glad it's over...

U-HAUL in the rearview mirror
Today, for the first time since Thursday morning, I don't see the above image every time I look in the mirror. The truck should get about 35% better gas mileage without the trailer on the way to Houston on Saturday.

Sunday, December 18, 2005

The Mighty Mississippi

The Mighty Mississippi
I took this from the Visitor's Center in Mississippi at about 5:30PM yesterday. I used the night vision feature of my new camera (Canon SD450) and love this shot.

908.2 miles in one day

We left Round Rock, TX at about 7:45 yesterday morning. We arrived in Fort Payne, AL this morning at 12:15. That means we averaged about 55MPH. We started with a full tank of gas and filled up once in each state (Texas, Louisiana, Mississippi & Alabama). We were asleep as we hit the pillow and were both up by 8:30 this morning.

So, to recap:
Miles: 908.2
States: 4
Average Speed: 55
Bobcats observed: 1 (ask Amy)

Thursday, December 15, 2005

Goodbye, Doug.

Thanks for all of your help. Amy and I wish you the best of luck in Atlanta. We'll try to make it there to visit you!

Stupidest email ever

I got an email yesterday at work that went to 167 people. The person that sent it was trying to figure out if their mailing list included everyone it should. She asked us to "Please let me know as soon as possible if you ARE NOT receiving these!".

My "Stolen" Hotel Clock

My wife gave me a clock for my desk. It came with a subscription to TIME magazine and it has a place for a picture. On a previous trip to Alabama, we stayed in a Holiday Inn and I kept the access card (electronic key). Amy didn't provide me with a picture to put in the clock, so one night I got bored and cut up the access card and put in the place for the photo. It now sits on my desk and several people have asked me where I got the clock and I always tell this story because everyone thinks I stole the clock.

Iraq's Election & Laundry Baskets

I noticed that Iraq held free elections today and I laughed at how low-tech they were. They had a big Tupperware container with the lid attached with Zipties. A slot was cut in the top. Then I remembered that the last time I voted in Round Rock, I put my ballot in a locked metal box with a slot cut in the top. The big plastic tub just looked funnier.

I bet it wasn't even Tupperware. It was probably Sterilite!

Business Card Rant

5 Things that will make me throw your business card away:
  • Format the phone number with periods. (800) 555-1212 is the correct way to format a phone number. 800.555.1212 is not.
  • Make it slick and shiny.
  • Make sure your picture covers 33% of the surface area.
  • Put a registered trademark after your job title. The one I'm looking at says "REALTOR®"
  • Put some information on the card with such a small font that it looks like a squiggly line.
The business card a friend handed me a couple of days ago for a realtor meets the last four, but the phone number was formatted correctly.

Sunday, December 11, 2005

Craftsman Toolbox

Red Craftsman Toolbox
We've really made great strides at getting our house clean and organized. One of the worst areas are my workbenches. This is the answer to that. I bought both pieces for $149 (normally $219) at Sears.Com.

It was a fantastic online shopping experience. I ordered it Wednesday night when I got home from work (for store pickup). Friday, I ran by the Sears at Hancock Center. I walked to the (unattended) merchandise pickup area. There was a kiosk and I scanned the card I'd used to make the purchase. My name appeared on a TV on the wall with a timer that showed how long I'd been waiting. I had been there about 5 minutes, when a guy brought out the chest and cabinet on a hand truck and rolled it right out to the Jeep and loaded it.

I've ordered online for store pickup from other companies and it seems that each time, there's 5 minutes of confusion, followed by someone saying "OH! This is an online order!". This is after I've told them that I'm here to pick up an order that I placed online. Sears has this down to an art. I'm glad to see them doing things well, as I worked for them for almost three years while I was in college.

Friday, December 09, 2005

Sissy up your truck for the holidays...

Sissy up your truck for the Holidays!

iPod 101

For those of you who will receive (or have already received) an iPod for Christmas, Apple has put together all you need to know. Check it out at iPod 101!
"If you're a new iPod owner or simply need a refresher course on how to get the most out of your iPod, you've come to the right place. Welcome to iPod 101: Your guide to rockin' out, gettin' down, and boogieing with your iPod, iPod nano, iPod mini, or iPod shuffle."

Tuesday, December 06, 2005

TV Shows available on iTunes today

iTunes Music Store enhanced their television offerings this morning and the following shows are now available.

  • Lost
  • Desperate Housewives
  • Night Stalker
  • The Suite Life of Jack & Cody
  • That's So Raven
  • Law & Order
  • The Office
  • Surface
  • The Tonight Show with Jay Leno
  • Late Night with Conan O'Brien
  • Alfred Hitchcock Presents
  • Dragnet
  • Adam-12
  • Knight Rider
  • Battlestar Galactica
  • Battlestar Galactica Miniseries
  • Monk

Saturday, December 03, 2005

YFML is coming today!

Welcome to Texas!

More storage, faster

I went to Fry's last night and picked up a Seagate 200GB hard drive. It was originally marked $139. It was on sale for $99 and there's a $50 rebate. I also bought an Airlink+ External USB 2.0 Enclosure for it for $35. This will give me a portable 200GB drive for $85. That's a great deal

Thursday, December 01, 2005

Conversion to iTunes

I have never completely moved our CD collection to the computer. I've started and stopped a few times, but now that Amy is getting an White Apple 4 GB iPod Nano for Christmas, I am using iTunes to rip and convert our entire CD collection. We have more CD's than I thought, I've been working on it for a few evenings and I'm just now completing the C's. I'm using Amy's system and it has two optical drives. I have iTunes set so that when I insert a CD, it rips it, converts it to AAC format, then ejects the CD. Because of the two drives, it's working almost continuously.

Once the album has been stored in the iTunes Library, I run iTunes Art Importer to capture the album art. This way, the screen on the Nano will always show the album cover on the CD.