Friday, December 29, 2006

New Laptop

To the tune of "To all the girls I loved before"

To all the folks who gave me cash.
I bought a Dell and got a rash


Note: I did not get a rash...

But several people have given me money for my birthday or Christmas. Tuesday, I ordered a Dell Inspiron 6400 (it's the same system as the Inspiron E1505, which is more expensive) . Here are the high points.

  • Intel Core Duo processor T2050 (2MB/1.60GHz/533MHz)
  • 15.4 Inch TrueLife Wide-screen WXGA
  • 512MB, DDR2, 533MHz
  • 80GB 5400RPM SATA Hard Drive
  • Microsoft Windows XP Home Service Pack 2, English
  • 8X DVD+/-RW Drive
  • Dell Wireless 1390 802.11b/g Mini Card (54Mbps)
  • 85 WHr 9-cell Lithium Ion Primary Battery
  • Microsoft Works 8.5
  • 3 Year Dell Hardware Warranty Plus Onsite Service
  • Dell Wireless 355 Bluetooth Module (2.0 + EDR)
  • ExpressCard Media Remote for Bluetooth-enabled Notebook
  • Express Upgrade to Windows Vista Home Basic
It cost almost exactly $1000, but that's a great configuration which should last me years (I do plan to upgrade the RAM to 1.5GB).

Saturday, December 23, 2006

Bad Marketing 101

So, is the decapitated cat's head supposed to make the food more appealing?

Friday, December 22, 2006

Slow Day E

Slow Day E
Yesterday was a slow day at work and I found a completely new use for Notepad...

Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Mobile Blogging Audio Test

I've already tested the ability to send text and photos from myTreo. This test will be to see if audio and drawings work too.

Lunch at The Vortex

This is a test of the mobile blogging features of Blogger. This picture was snapped the other day in Little 5 Points.

(The above portion of this message was sent directly to Blogger via MMS (this is often called picture messaging). The picture existed on my Treo and I just added the text. I then sent it to Blogger and after claiming the address of my phone, it was placed on my blog with no other intervention. This will enable me to get back to blogging as my schedule hasn't really allowed it, but I have my entire lunch hour to blog now. That means you can expect to see more content (not better content - this has to do with quantity over quality)

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Blogger - Out of Beta !!!

Woohoo! Now everyone can add tags to their blogs and take advantage of all of the cool templates.

Monday, December 11, 2006

Another Bad Verizon Experience

You may remember that about 18 months ago, I purchased a new Smartphone (Treo 600). I have never been pleased with the voice quality of the phone, but I generally like everything else about it.

I have had several bad experiences with Verizon Wireless, some of which I have mentioned in this blog before and some I haven't. I will list them here to inform you and refresh my tired memory.

At the time of purchase, I was lied to a couple of times at the store, and contemplated canceling my contract. I didn't because another store made me a believer again.

After I started working for the company where I now work, I learned that I could get 25% off my bill. I filled out the paperwork and started getting the discount. However, I was only getting a discount on my voice service, not the data plan or insurance. I called Verizon when I noticed that they had a plan for $80, which included voice and data, so since it was a single price, I assumed (and customer service assured me) that I would get the discount on the full amount, At that tine, my two year contract had to be renewed to make that change. After this, my bill was virtually the sane and when I've complained, everyone has apologized that I was given bad data.

2-3 months ago, Verizon called me and said that my text messaging had gone over my limit and I should get a different plan, which would provide more sms / mms usage. That change never occurred,

Last week, Verizon called me and said that my text messaging had gone over my limit and I should get a different plan, which would provide more sms / mms usage. I made that change and before the guy hung up, he asked me how I liked my phone and I said I didn't and I was counting the days till I could replace it under the New Every Two plan. He said that I didn't have to wait and if I went by a Verizon store, they would make me a great deal because of the holidays and it would be even cheaper than if I waited until April.

Saturday, Amy and I went to the Verizon Store. I had narrowed my choices down to the Motorola Q and the Verizon (Audiovox) VX6700. I stood and waited for the next salesperson who said that I was due no discounts, so the Q would cost me $419 and the VX-6700 was $519, Now, if I were not a loyal Verizon customer, the Q would have cost me $99,

I really like the phone service that Verizon provides. Most of Amy's family is on Verizon and it works and save my minutes because 'in network' calls are free.

I am sick to death of the price gouging that I am enduring as a long time Verizon customer. I am considering what my options are (as I've discussed before), I could get a new phone from Verizon and get a PDA fron someone else (TMobile will sell me their version of the VX6700 for $24, a $495 savings). My plan is to go to a store and explain my situation and see what they offer me.

Tuesday, December 05, 2006

High School Football

Last month I mentioned that Amy's high school had completed their season undefeated for the second time in that school's history. A couple of days ago, I learned that my high school also completed the season undefeated. While the Fort Payne Wildcats were defeated in the second round of the state playoffs, the Lamar CISD Mustangs are still winning in the state championship and only have to win two more games to become the school's first state Champions.

Monday, November 27, 2006

AirTran Airways

One of the reasons my trip top Houston wasn't more frustrating was the airline I used. Sunday afternoon, I decided to fly out that evening and purchased a one-way ticket for $79. Tuesday, I decided to buy a return ticket for Wednesday (one of the busiest travel days of the year and was able to book it for $154. If you want to come visit us, AirTran seems like the easiest and cheapest way to go:

From their website:
AirTran Airways is one of America's largest low-fare airlines - employing more than 7,500 friendly, professional Crew Members and operating almost 700 flights a day to 50 destinations.

The airline's hub is at Hartsfield - Jackson Atlanta International Airport, the world's busiest airport by passenger volume, where it is the second largest carrier.

AirTran Airways, a subsidiary of AirTran Holdings (NYSE: AAI), is the world's largest operator of the Boeing 717 and has America's youngest all-Boeing fleet. The airline recently added the Boeing 737-700 aircraft, one of the most fuel efficient and environmentally friendly aircraft flying today, to its fleet.


More information available at Wikipedia.

Saturday, November 25, 2006

$ 9.82 meal at Hobby Airport in Houston

$ 9.82 meal at Hobby Airport in Houston
A plain hot dog and a pint (maybe) of Ziegenbock. The hot dog was tasty...

White Magnum

Dodge Magnum - Side
When I was in the Houston area, I rented a bright white Dodge Magnum wagon. I had signed up to get a Charger and got this instead. It looks like it should be fast. This one wasn't, but I'm sure it had the base engine, a V-6. It was very comfortable to drive and I was able to park it as easily as my pickup (which is to say: not very easy). I was a fan of the car before, but after experiencing it, I felt underwhelmed.

Shopping Cart Escalator

Shopping Cart Escalator
This is the escalator for your shopping cart at the two-story Target store in Atlanta, GA.

Some of the 50 states

In the past few days, I have been in multiple states almost every day. It's crazy!

  • Saturday: Georgia -> Alabama -> Georgia
  • Sunday: Georgia -> Texas
  • Monday: Texas
  • Tuesday: Texas
  • Wednesday: Texas -> Georgia
  • Thursday: Georgia -> Alabama -> Georgia
  • Friday: Georgia -> Tennessee -> Alabama
  • Saturday: Alabama -> Georgia
  • Sunday: Georgia -> Alabama -> Georgia

No holiday spirits!

If you're ever in Adairsville, GA on Thanksgiving or Christmas, they ain't gonna let you buy any beer. They have a city ordinance banning the sale of alcohol on these two days. Odd.

Thursday, November 23, 2006

Back in Texas

Saturday afternoon, we went to see the Iron Bowl. After the game, we were at a party and received word that my mother had fallen and the people that found her thought that she had broken her arm and had called the ambulance, We were unable to learn anything about her condition until I spoke to her by phone late Sunday afternoon. By then, I had booked a flight to Houston and had rented a car. I arrived late on Sunday night and went to bed. The next morning, I went to see her about 7am and was able to speak to her and her doctor. She has a vertical fracture of her left upper arm. It will heal on its own, so there's no need for surgery.

She has sold her house and will be moving to Fort Payne, AL in early December, Yesterday, I got estimates from three moving companies to pack and move her, We now have that booked.

She's been getting stronger over the past couple of days, but she cannot (yet) reliably get up from a seated position without assistance. Because of that, she is moving to a nursing home for the next 10 days.

At that point, Amy and her mother will fly out and coordinate the packing and moving and bring Mom and her cat to her new home, which Amy and I decided to buy on Tuesday.

Helicopter flyover at 2006 Iron Bowl

Last Saturday, we went to Tuscaloosa to see the Iron Bowl. Before the game, these helicopters flew over. They seemed very close (see what you think about it)

Birthday Cake at the Iron Bowl

Iron Bowl Birthday Cake
At the Iron Bowl, there were 11 family members and five of them are Alabama fans and the other 6 are all Auburn fans. My birthday was the Tuesday after the game, so this is the perfect birthday cake for the occasion. In case you don't live in Alabama ... Auburn won for the fifth consecutive time.
Iron Bowl - 5 in a row for Auburn

Monday, November 13, 2006

How to Regain Control of a Spooked Camel

Yep. You read that correctly. This is an actual article on WikiHow. Issues:
  • What are you doing riding a camel ?
  • Did you ever really have control ?

Iron Bowl Satuday

This game has been made irrelevant for Auburn's chances to go the SEC Championship, but it should be a good game. Both teams lost this weekend, but at least Alabama put on a good show their loss to LSU. Auburn looked awful against Georgia, certainly not like the number 6 team in the country.

We have tickets and we're going to see the Iron Bowl in Tuscaloosa with family. There are 10 of us going, so it should be a hoot. It will cause us to miss the Ohio State vs Michigan game that should be fantastic.

Great Football this weekend

Friday night, Amy and I drove to Fort Payne, Alabama to see the Fort Payne Wildcats play in Alabama's Class 5A high school football playoffs. They were ranked #2 in the final Alabama Sports Writers Association state poll of 2006. It was a fierce game and both teams played at 100%. Fort Payne won!

Monday, November 06, 2006

Dinner and a movie comparison

You may remember that a couple of years ago, I wrote a post called Things I'll miss about Austin (if we ever leave).... Well, we've left. I really was hoping to find a replacement for the Alamo Drafthouse. For those of you who don't know, the Alamo is the best place in Austin to see a movie. Here's how they describe it:
The Alamo Drafthouse Cinema is Austin's only independently owned and operated movie theater. We serve a full menu of dinner and drinks to your seat while you watch the movie. The theater is laid out like a traditional movie theater, except every other row of seats has been replaced with a long narrow table for your food and drinks. Those who have never been to the Alamo may worry about disruptions during the movie, but we have devised an ordering system that minimizes interruption during the film, allowing you to order, eat and enjoy the movie with minimal distraction. We recommend arriving 30 minutes early so you can order while the lights are up (it gets tough to read the menus in the dark). seating begins 45 minutes before the show and there is always pre-movie entertainment on the screen while you wait for the movie. We have waiters that serve you at your seat; orders before the movie begins are taken in the traditional way. Once the movie starts if you need anything at all, there is paper and pencils at the table, write down what you need on the paper, stand the paper up on the card holder attached to the table. This acts as a flag, your waiter will only come by if he sees the card, otherwise he will stay out of your way so you can enjoy the film.
Last night we went to the Buckhead Backlot 6. This is an AMC theater which they described similarly:
Do you love movies? Do you enjoy going out to restaurants? How often have you done dinner and a movie? Then how would you like to do both simultaneously? At AMC Buckhead Backlot you can enjoy a first-run movie while having food brought to your seat by our friendly servers and staff. Located on Piedmont Road at Tower Walk, we offer a full bar-style menu, plus a wide range of draft and bottled beer, wine, and beer alternatives. Buckhead Backlot is the perfect spot for a night out with your significant other, or for a casual night out with friends.

Buckhead BackLot is also available for special events and business meetings. Details are available at the theatre.

If you would like to download our regular in-theatre menu, click here.
.

Here's how I would say they compare:
  • Parking: Backlot has a parking garage and they validate, so parking is free. However, it's a hassle and really only is an advantage when it's raining. Alamo just has a plain parking lot (like most other theaters). Advantage: Tie
  • Pre-Movie Entertainment: Backlot plays still commercials and trivia like most theaters. Alamo plays bizarre, old, film clips which may or not be related to the movie that you're there to see. Advantage: Alamo
  • Drinks: Both serve beer and wine and have a good selection: Advantage: Tie
  • Food: The Alamo has wonderful food. It compares favorably to restaurants in the area. Backlot has food. It compares favorably to frozen dinners. Advantage: Alamo
  • Waitstaff: The Alamo has perfected how to make their waiters blend in and not be obtrusive, that wasn't the case last night at the Backlot. Advantage: Alamo
We only went to the Alamo at mealtime, because we loved their food and it saved time, because you had dinner and a movie, in the time it takes to see a movie. We did have a nice overall experience at the Backlot and I feel sure that we will go back. We won't go at dinner time. Summary: Backlot is a nice theater and is probably great if you haven't been spoiled by the Alamo.

Saturday, November 04, 2006

Friday, November 03, 2006

Toby peeking out the front window

Eric ?


When I had my badge made at work, the printer wasn't working, so my badge is blank. It works and I hope to get a picture on it today. One of my new coworkers said he could save me the trip to security by just drawing a picture. This is that picture.

Monday, October 30, 2006

New Jobt

This weekend, I drove about a thousand miles from Austin, TX to Atlanta, GA. In about 90 minutes, I will leave for the office. Amy showed me how to get there yesterday and it took about 20 minutes. Today there will be some traffic, so I plan to allow an hour (don't want to be late on Day 1)

Friday, October 27, 2006

witty blog name goes here

Please check out a BUGDOG's blog,"witty blog name goes here". The URL is http://bugdog.blogspot.com/. This is a person I worked with until today and since they don't share their name on the blog, I'm not about to spill the beans here.

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Bad Sun

Today, I ate at lunch at Taco Cabana and I saw a woman with a black T-shirt that said "We may suck, but we're better than Creed" on the back. Right under that, it had the band's website (http://www.badsun.net). I was too curious, so I checked it out and they're good. At the site, you can download 3 of their songs, so be sure and check 'em out.

Monday, October 23, 2006

Mozilla Firefox v2

If all goes as planned, this should launch tomorrow. You can download it at www.getfirefox.com.

Sunday, October 22, 2006

Round Rock Pine Pre-Lit Tree

Round Rock Pine Pre-Lit Tree
I've lived in Round Rock for 11 of the past 13 years and have never seen a Round Rock Pine. At least, I don't think I have. I guess it's possible that I've seen one, but couldn't tell the difference between that and an ordinary pine tree.

I can say with no uncertainty, that it was definitely not pre-lit.

This is almost a cliché.

Classic Inflatable Santa riding a chopper with broken forks
I'm sure that by the time Christmas rolls around, I will have seen hundreds of inflatable Santas riding choppers with broken forks, but this was the first.

So much for Santa being a role model! I would have expected him to wear a helmet.

Santa, who knows when you're naughty or nice ?

A clean truck is a happy truck

A clean truck is a happy truck
I tried to prepare my truck for the 956 mile ride home. Today, I had it washed, had the oil changed and cleaned out the interior and the toolbox. It looks great.

Thursday, October 19, 2006

Now this is variety!

Picture442_19Oct06
3 Sizes
  • Regular
  • Double
  • Triple
Scattered on the grill and...
  • Smothered --Onions
  • Covered -- American Cheese
  • Chunked -- 'Hickory Smoked' Ham
  • Diced -- Tomatoes
  • Peppered -- Jalepeno Peppers
  • Capped -- Mushrooms
  • Topped -- Bert's Chili
  • 'Scattered All The Way'
Waffle House rules. (I just had then scattered and covered)

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

RIP: CBGB

CBGB (Country, Blue Grass, and Blues) was a legendary music club located at 315 Bowery at Bleecker Street in the borough of Manhattan in New York City, New York, United States. Founded by Hilly Kristal in 1973, it was originally intended to feature its namesake musical styles, but became legendary as a forum for American punk and punk-influenced bands like The Ramones, Television, Blondie, and Talking Heads. The club closed on October 15, 2006, following its final concert by Patti Smith on the same day.

Legend of War Eagle

A lotal reader asked me recently about where War Eagle came from. He wanted to know why the Auburn Tigers use it as their war cry. I couldn't answer and according to my sources, I'm not alone. This from the Auburn Tigers website.
Whenever Auburn people gather, the battle cry "Warrrrrrr Eagle!" is almost certain to be heard. Although little is actually known about how the battle cry originated, it has been a part of Auburn's spirit for more than 100 years. Since the first War Eagle, there have been five other birds throughout Auburn's history which have served as the school's symbol and kept alive the legendary battle cry.
At Wikipedia, I learned why the eagle we saw at the Auburn Arkansas game was introduced as Nova, rather that Tiger (two different birds). At AL.com, I learned that explanation given by Auburn may be the most popular legend, but there are others...

Here are the lyrics to WAR EAGLE (FIGHT SONG)

War...Eagle, fly down the field, Ever to conquer, never to yield.
War...Eagle fearless and true. Fight on, you orange and blue.
Go! Go! Go!
On to vic'try, strike up the band,
Give 'em hell, give 'em hell.
Stand up and yell, Hey! War...Eagle, win for Auburn,
Power of Dixie Land!

Monday, October 16, 2006

I'm finally moving to Atlanta

I start my new job two weeks from today on October 30th.

Google Maps for Treo

Google Maps is now available for the Treo. If you have a Treo (check!) and have ever been lost (check!) then be sure and check it out at http://www.google.com/gmm/treo.

This is the worst score ever

I noticed this yesterday on the CBS Sport site. Can you imagine how discouraging it must to be losing by two points to a team that hasn't even scored once?

Thursday, October 12, 2006

Football Quotes of the Week

Terrell Owens: "My way of venting is going out there on Sunday, trying to win ballgames." This priceless quote occurred while T.O. "spoke the entire 45 minutes the locker room was open to reporters"

Terrell Owens: "Get the ball in the playmaker's hands." T.O. utterred this gem after a game in which he caught 3 of 13 passes thrown to him.

Read more about this overpaid jackass at Fox Sports.

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

Busy Weekend

Thursday: Work until 2:00PM. Go to airport. Fly to Atlanta. Dinner with Amy. Watching Lost (it's Tivo'd, don't ruin it for us).
Friday: Job interviews at 10:00, 12:00 and 12:30. Lunch at some point. Drive to Auburn, AL.
Saturday: Watch Auburn beat the Razorbacks of Arkansas. Tailgate with family and friends.
Sunday: Brunch with Family. Head back to Atlanta. Anniversary dinner with my lovely wife.
Monday: Fly to Austin. Take care if ticket.

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

A digital camera and a refrigerator

Things you shouldn't hand to a 3 year old...

Monday, October 02, 2006

The Most Lame of all the Carnivals

The Most Lame of all the Carnivals
Mom: Hey, Joey! We're going to the carnival!
Joey: Woohoo!

This trick will work exactly one time.

Sunday, October 01, 2006

Political Fortune Cookie

I went to China Wall today and got the following fortune:
In silence man can most readily preserve his integrity.
On the other side, it said:
Vote Nov. 6 for Prop 4
Invest in Austin's Creative Economy
I just haven't seen a fortune before with a political agenda. The worst part of the whole experience is that it seems like the fortune was urging me to keep my mouth shut about the whole sordid affair.

Free University of Texas Basketball !

The first two games this years for both the University of Texas Men's and Women's basketball teams are free this year. Here are those games. We went to see a University of Texas game last year and had a hoot. If you go to a Men's game, be sure to cheer for Round Rock hero, A. J. Abrams.
10/31/06Men'sLenoir-Rhyne(Exhibition)Austin, TX7:00 pm
11/02/06Women'sHouston Jaguars (Exhibition)Austin, TX7:00 pm
11/06/06Men'sXavier (La.) (Exhibition)Austin, TX7:00 pm
11/07/06Women'sTrinity University (Exhibition)Austin, TX7:00 pm

Saturday, September 30, 2006

I got a ticket

I ran several errands this morning and on the way home, I got a ticket for going 60 in a 45MPH zone. Before you think I'm a dangerous driver, this was on a freeway, in a construction zone, where nobody was working. The officer was standing beside his car and pointed to me and the car behind me to pull over. I wasn't wearing my seatbelt, but corrected that quickly.

It will be expensive. I think it will cost me $104 plus a defensive driving class to keep it off my record. That's about the same amount to just pay it, but that might cause my insurance to go up.

Coinstar

Today, I decided to go cash in all my change. I figured I'd use Coinstar and use their free service to get an iTunes gift card. You might remember that I mentioned this service earlier in the year. I got over $23.00 worth and followed all the right selections. At the end, it said there was a technical problem and I would be given a regular voicher (with the service fee of 2.07 removed). I took the voucher to the register and got my cash.

I went out to the truck and decided that I had been wronged. I called the company and spoke to Matt in Customer Service who was very helpful and is speeding me a check for the $2.07. He not only made me feel like they cared, he also gave me the technical explanation of the problem and how they are changing the service to fix this.

Wonderful experience, in spite of the problem.

Typing About Technology – Treo Replacement

I’ve spoken many times about my cell phone, the Treo 600. It’s a multipurpose device which I carry daily. It provides the following functions for me:
  • Phone
  • PDA
  • MP3 Player
  • Web Browser
  • Camera
  • Games

Some of the above tasks are performed better than others.

  • The phone is not great. When using it without a headset or headphones, the phone gets warm against your ear after 20 or 30 minutes. If using headphones, the sound is OK, but the sound quality that the other person hears isn’t great.
  • The PDA is excellent; it is as good as Windows Mobile. The problem is that the synchronizing software (HotSync/Pocket Mirror) is not nearly as good as ActiveSync which is what Windows Mobile uses. For example, all my Outlooks contacts are categorized and when I sync them to a Windows Mobile device, those categories are honored. All my contacts, calendar, tasks are included here and are sync’d daily to my desktop PC.
  • The MP3 Player is good. I use it to listen to podcasts, almost exclusively. I listen on my commute and usually at lunch. This gives me 2 or so hours of entertainment that I can’t get without carrying an MP3 player. I use an application called Pocket Tunes, combined with a 2G MiniSD card. This gives me enough capacity for several days worth of podcast listening. I do have to manage moving the data to it manually, but I have a pretty good system for that which has been perfected over the last couple of years (I was using the same system pre-Treo)
  • The web browser that ships with the Treo is called Blazer. It is quite elegant, especially when using sites that are made for tiny screens. It is reasonably fast. There are some websites which make this browser even more valuable which I will talk about in a later article. I have a plan which allows unlimited data transfer, so I can use this feature as much as I want.
  • The camera is lousy, but almost always available. Even though my Canon SD-450 can take nuch better pictures, having this camera around has been great for the blog, I have posted quite a few pictures taken with the Treo (even to my Flickr account).
Now comes the fun part. On April 22, 2007, I will be eligible for a $100 discount on a new phone. I would like the new device to provide all of the above functions and clear up some shortcomings. These include:
  • Better screen – The resolution on this one is 160x160 and even when the characters are big enough to read, they’re sufficiently blocky to make reading it difficult.
  • Larger screen – In addition to wanting a screen with a higher resolution, I also want a larger screen.
  • Bluetooth – When the Treo 600 came out, this was not something that was available to any real extent. When I bought the 600, I could have gotten the 650 (which includes Bluetooth), but it was $150 more.
  • Camera – I believe that any device I would be considering would have a better camera.
  • Ability for the media player to sync with desktop, so that my manual process can go away.
  • Wifi – If the phone I choose has WiFi, I might be able to do without the data plan, saving me $40-$50 per month. 802.11b will be sufficient for connectivity
These are only the options and prices that are available today. Chances are that in the next 7 months, these options will change.
  • Motorola Q – This device is closest in physical appearance and spirit to the Treo. Runs Windows Mobile 5 Smartphone OS, so it doesn’t include a touchscreen, something I like about the Treo. It doesn’t have 802.11b. It has better resolution than the Treo 600, and the screen is slightly larger. Cost to upgrade: $ 319
  • Verizon VX6700 – This is larger than the Treo. It has much better resolution (320x240) and a larger screen. It also has 802.11b wifi, so I would have Internet service where wireless service is available. The screen is large enough to watch videos as well. It has a full slide-out keyboard. Cost to upgrade: Cost to upgrade: $ 419

Sunday, September 24, 2006

No substitute

There's no substitute for a Uniformed Safe Key Attentdant (except for possibly a coin box)
Picture310_15Jul06
That ain't a lot of job security, huh?

Women in hats

The best this hat will ever look
Amy tried on this hat at the Puma store and she didn't buy it. This is the best that hat will ever look.

Dodge Ram SRT-10

Dodge Ram SRT-10
This is the first SRT-10 I've seen and this one was a four-door. It's a Dodge Ram 1500 with a Viper engine creating 500 horsepower. $52,710 will buy you this pickup (well, that's the base price, this one may have had options).

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

1dn 4up

The above is a Texas license plate. The first person who leaves a comment that explains what it says and what that means will win a special prize.

Thanks Mom & Dad !

Today, I locked my keys in my truck at work. I called AAA and they sent someone out within 30 minutes or so, who made quick work of the job.

Twelve years ago, my Dad got me a AAA membership for Christmas and he and Mom have done that every year since. My dad passed away more than three years ago, but today my life was made easier because he always looked out for me.

Saturday, September 16, 2006

Thursday, September 14, 2006

Forget the TV and watch the web

Lifehacker has a great article about how to stop watching TV and enjoy content on the web.

Movie Review: A Scanner Darkly

Sucked. Bad. Awful. Confusing. Retarded. Wierd. Long.

Real tech support conversation

Me: Does it give you an error message?
User: No, it just said “file could not be found”

(happened today)

I feel like a million ducks!

Monday, September 04, 2006

Cool portable camp chair

The Trail-Sling™ Ultralight's patented collapsible frame makes it a portable genius! When packed down in its handy sack, the Trail-Sling™ Ultralight is as small as a water bottle! In addition to its amazing compactability, the Trail-Sling™ Ultralight unfolds to create a remarkably comfortable off-the-ground seat with back support, ideal after a long day of outdoor activities. The Trail-Sling™ Ultralight's small size is ideal for backpacking but it's so comfortable you'll use it for all your outdoor activities!

Portable Furniture - GCI Outdoor - Everywhere Chair, outdoor chairs, lawn chairs

Friday, September 01, 2006

5 Tribute Bands !!!

Check out the Beer and Whiskey Fest. It's happening in Atlanta a couple blocks from our house. They're having 5 tribute bands! We might go...

Thursday, August 31, 2006

Airline Meal

Picture351_30Aug06.jpg
Peanuts, crackers, cookies, and Diet Coke. I believe that none of the four food groups are represented...

Wednesday, August 30, 2006

Back to my home in Atlanta

That seems like an odd subject. My home is in Atlanta, but I just haven't been living there. The reason for my return is that I have an interview tomorrow at 10AM. I really feel like I have to nail this job, so wish me luck!

Slow Motion Home Depot

I first linked to the guys at Improv Everywhere well over a year ago. This time they altered time at a Home Depot store. The employees took it all in stride, unlike when they pulled a similar stunt at Best Buy and the employees freaked out.

Monday, August 28, 2006

KnowYourStuff.Org

The Insurance Information Institute (III), has made available Know Your Stuff Home Inventory, a program to keep track of your home inventory. This is great for insurance purposes and provides a place for serial numbers, replacement cost, pictures and other information. It's freely available and requires Windows 2000 or XP.
Welcome to KnowYourStuff.org, where you can download the I.I.I.'s new home inventory software for free! This software makes creating a home inventory fun and easy. Once you have completed your inventory, it is easy to keep your information up to date.

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

New 'Survivor' to group players by ethnicity

CNN.com - New 'Survivor' to group players by��ethnicity - Aug 23, 2006: "New 'Survivor' to group players by ethnicity"

I went to the above link and voted in the poll, "New "Survivor" twist: Is it offensive to divide teams by race?". Please vote if you have a strong opinion one way or the other.

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

Are your windows up ?

Almost every time, it starts raining, somebody runs through the building saying "It's raining. Are your windows up ?". It's almost always someone who keeps their windows down asking. It seems like one of the only mistakes one can make that they like to advertise. So I always want to ask "What kind of idiot leaves their windows down ?"

Best fortune cookie ever ?

You possess exceptional commanding and leadership ability.(sic)

My new favorite reality show



KISS YOUR EXPECTATIONS GOODBYE. Dad is Gene Simmons – the legendary, tongue wagging demon of KISS. Mom is Shannon Tweed -- former Playmate of the Year, actress and model. And their kids, Nick and Sophie, are, well...surprisingly charming, well-behaved teenagers dealing with the trials and tribulations of adolescence, even though Mom and Dad are truly like no one else’s parents. A&E Network presents the original series GENE SIMMONS FAMILY JEWELS Mondays at 10 PM/9 PM C.

Monday, August 21, 2006

New Blogger Beta / New Template...

Blogger has a new beta version which integrates with Google (Google owns Blogger). You may now use your Google login to access Blogger. There are a couple new templates and many a few new features. I am now part of the beta.

The new template looks great in Firefox on my PC and I hope it looks OK on your computer & browser. Please leave a comment either way, so I'll know.

Blogger finally supports labels! This is the one feature that has made me think about upgrading to a different blogging platform for a long time. This means I can tag a post with TREO (for example) and you can use the keyword feature to show only TREO labeled posts. This will take a while to implement fully, as I have to go back and tag 659 previous posts...

Sunday, August 20, 2006

Windows Live Writer

Windows Live Writer

This is a test of the Windows Live Writer, a blog post editor from Microsoft.  It works (obviously) with Blogger, as well as Windows Live Spaces (and others).  If this posts to the blog correctly, then I'm gonna give it at least a thumbs up.

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

Adam Fresco is an idiot

Before:
He's certainly not the only idiot involved in this fiasco (fiasco/fresco - interesting...). The following items he reported he later recanted.
  • Passenger had a screwdriver
  • Passenger had matches
  • Passenger had a note that referenced al-Qaeda
  • Passenger had "vaseline on her"

Enough bashing of Adam. Let's look closely at the rest of the story. The woman in question was 60 years old, unarmed and tied up. The plane was diverted to Boston and was intercepted by two F15 fighter jets.

Wow.
After:

Not bad...

You are a 66% True Southerner

You are trainable and in time, you would probably like it here. Your options would be living in a suburb of a larger city.

Are You a Real Southerner
Take More Quizzes

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

Philip K Dick...

I bought a book of short stories by Philip K Dick, called The Philip K Dick Reader. This book has the stories which became the movies Paycheck, Scanners, Minority Report and Total Recall. I read the first two stories and they're good. I'm hopeful that this will make me want to read more.

Traffic stinks...

Thursday, my plan was to go see Jabarvy with a friend. I got off work at 5:00pm and headed home. There were multiple problems on the freeways and side streets and it took me 90 minutes to get home (normally 30 without traffic, 45-60 minutes with traffic). I got home and planned to leave about 8:50 to meet a friend at the bar at 9:20 or so (it's about a 30 minute drive at that time of night). I finally arrived at the bar at 10:20.

Within just over 5 hours, I spent 3 hours in the truck and went no more than 25 miles. I could have driven to Houston or Dallas in the same amount of time.

Duh...

I talked to a woman yesterday on the phone and I asked her what her name is. She said "Sue. S-U-E".

Possible punch lines:
  1. Thanks so much for spelling it out, I never would have thought of putting the "S" first.
  2. You lost me at "U". Could repeat that more slowly ?
  3. So, you're not an Indian tribe ?

Sunday, August 13, 2006

Another New Blog...

I learned about VOX on the Inside the Net podcast. It sounded like fun, so I signed up for an invitation last week on their site and received it this morning. I'm not sure what I'm going to use it for yet. In the short term, if I post something to my VOX blog, I will also post it to my Blogger blog"

Saturday, August 12, 2006

Fortune Cookies from Tuesday


  • You will receive an unexpected gift from an aquaintence

  • If given a penny for every kind act, you'd be a millionaire

The second is really an affirmation, rather than a fortune. The first one is a fortune and did come true on Thursday night. When I went to see tee Jabarvy, I was one of the first 100 people and they gave me a cool discgear CD case with the band's logo.

Wednesday, August 09, 2006

This test might be broken...

You are 77% REAL Texan!!

You're way more Texan than average. You're parents were probably from here too. We're glad to have you. You probably go to the border for Christmas shopping and are well versed in BBQ, Mexican Food and .. well thats pretty much it.

How Texan Are You?

Actors say the darndest things...

Often, we hear about actors who put their foot in mouth. Tom Cruise's opions on post partum depression and Mel Gibson's alleged racist comments are just two examples.

What I don't understand is why anybody cares. These are people (in this case, men) who get paid to look pretty and pretend to be someone else. Why would I get my information on post partum depression from the star of Top Gun? Why would I expect the star of Mad Max to not have human flaws like the rest of us? I have (on more than one occassion) had too much to drink and had to apologize to someone I offended.

Thank goodness that each of us doesn't have to live their life so publicly. Who hasn't said things they wish they hadn't? Who hasn't said things that could be taken out of context? Who hasn't told a joke they wish they hadn't?

The unreasonable people here are not the actors (and other celebrities), but a society that hangs on their every word.

Tuesday, August 08, 2006

Jabarvy CD Release Party

I guess I know where I'm gonna be on Thursday night. It's a late show, so I may have to sneak in a nap at some point.
Jabarvy: "AUSTIN, Texas, August 10, 2006 - Following a number of live recordings, Austin-based jam/funk band Jabarvy is set to release their self-titled, debut studio album in Austin, Texas, on August 10, 2006, 10 p.m. at The Parish.

The doors to this highly-anticipated CD-release party open at 9 p.m. Cover is $5, or guests may pay $10 for entry and the new CD. The first 100 people in the door receive a free gift, and there will be free food and drink specials all night long. At 10 p.m. jazz/funk band About:Blank plays the opening set. Jabarvy takes the stage at 11 p.m. to debut the new album."

Sunday, August 06, 2006

How to shut up a homophobe...

Homophobe: Are y'all blessed in your church with not so many gays ?
Me: Our church is one of the most gay-friendly churches in Austin and on any given week, "the gays" might outnumber the rest of us.
Homophobe
: Oh.

How to shut up a beggar...

This happened yesterday at a convenience store in Richmond.

Beggar: Hey, can you give me a couple of bucks? I'm out of gas and I'm trying to get back home to Pasadena with my wife and kid.
Me: Here's two bucks. That's all I can spare.
Beggar: Come on. Can't you do better than that ?
Me: I can take those two bucks away from you if you don't need 'em.

Wednesday, August 02, 2006

MTV turned 25

The Stage | News | World's first music channel MTV turns 25. I missed this yesterday. I started watching MTV in its second year and stopped about the time they stopped playing videos.

It's Official: "Batman 2" Gets A Title

It's Official: "Batman 2" Gets A Title (August 1st 2006)
The title will be The Dark Knight. Oddly, they've chosen Heath Ledger as The Joker. The movie will begin production next year.

No longer homeowners....

Yesterday was the closing on our house. We got our check and are glad to have one less thing tying us to Austin. I'm sure we'll miss the house, I lived there for almost 9 years. I got married while living there. I hope the new owners nothing but the best and hope that the house is as perfect for them as it was for us.

Tuesday, July 25, 2006

Your call is very important to us....

The one thing that should be clear when you hear the above sentence, is that the people you are calling couldn't care less about your call. If your call was truly important to them, you'd be talking to a real live person. What the message should say is "We're doing something more important than helping you right now. We fully expect this to frustrate you and we understand that some of you will hang up before being helped. We've already laid a couple of people off because of that."

Welcome messages....

It seems like lately, my blog has consisted of just welcoming family to blogging. I'm gonna try to do better so I don't get left behind in the race for blog supremacy...

Welcome Susan to the Blogosphere

Please check out my sister-in-law's blog,"My HOME'S in Alabama". The URL is http://susansalabamahome.blogspot.com/.

Angel

Angel
Taken at Glenwood Cemetery in Houston, TX.

Welcome Sara to the Blogosphere

Please check out my mother-in-law's blog,"Open for Renovation". The URL is http://openforrenovation.blogspot.com/. For those of you who don't know, Sara is YFML (a frequent commenter on this blog).

Thursday, July 20, 2006

..with a little help from my friends..

That earlier post about my move from Round Rock to Atlanta to Austin might confuse you. So, if you're out of the loop on our ongoing plans, here it is in a nutshell.
1. Our house should sell this week.
2. Last week, we moved to Atlanta
3. This week, I moved back to Austin to stay with friends (thanks BigMac & HeidiMac!), until I can get a job in Atlanta.

Welcome Amy to the Blogosphere.

Please check out my wife's blog,"More Social than Work". The URL is http://moresocial.blogspot.com.

The Blog is back...

After a hectic week of moving from Round Rock to Atlanta to Austin, I am finally back and ready to BLOG. I guess I could have just started blogging, but then you would have missed this brilliant post.

Wednesday, July 05, 2006

Tuesday, July 04, 2006

PodShow+ is getting here

I'm in the Show!
I've been listening to Adam Curry's podcast (The Daily Source Code) for nearly two years. About a year ago, he started a company called Podshow. Here's their About Us page:
Podshow was created out of total frustration with current audio programming. The same songs, the same messaging, the same programming, everywhere, all the time, with no exceptions…

Welcome to PodShow, where you get to choose what you listen to and when and where you listen to it. We have thousands of programs ready to be heard on every topic imaginable, waiting to be downloaded, played, and enjoyed by anyone, anywhere, anytime. It’s your choice 100% of time.

Tuesday, June 27, 2006

34 oz Beer from Pluckers


34 oz Beer from Pluckers
Originally uploaded by eschulz.
If you go to Pluckers in Round Rock and order a Michelob Ultra, they bring you the bottle on the left. If, however, you order a Shiner Bock, they ask if you want a large one. The large is 34 ounces and is on the right. It is a bargain at $5.50.


Corrected: I thought it was 36oz, it's only 34oz.

The Blues Brothers ? Gay ?


The Blues Brothers
Originally uploaded by eschulz.
Imagine my surprise when I saw this article on the relationship between having older brothers and being gay. I mean Jake ? Elwood ? The Blues Brothers ?

This changes everything.

Monday, June 26, 2006

Luis Abreux

We made a new friend last week, who's dating a friend. He's an artist from Cuba. Check out some of his work at his website and at The Gallery on Greene in Key West.

It's really amazing art.

FunStart.org

Starting today, you can access this blog via http://eschulz.blogspot.com or http://funstart.org or even http://www.funstart.org/. It should be clear to you now that the fun will eventually start.

Items for sale...

These are all listed on Craig's List - Austin

Ice Cream Shoes....

Ice Cream Shoes
A friend at work always wears the latest hip tennis shoes and I've never seen him wearing something I could pull off. The other day, he was wearing these Ice Cream (brand of Reebok) shoes which are black with lime green dice on them. These I could wear...

Sorry for the lack of updates

We're moving in less than two weeks, and I'm trying to finish sorting/packing/discarding boxes of stuff that have somehow multiplied over the last 8 years. Our DSL was also down for a couple of days; I have it working now, and if it will just hold together for a little longer...

Monday, June 19, 2006

Odd Search

Someone found my blog by searching Google for the following keywords:
housewifes in atlanta looking for fun
I was the 22nd most popular match.

Sunday, June 18, 2006

Thanks for everything, TXU

Thanks to TXU's blazing speed in responding to our power outage, we were without power for only 15 hours. Here's my timeline.

  • 5:45am I wake up and see that there is no power in the house. I assume it's a temporary issue and go back to bed
  • 6:55am I wake up again and see that there is still no power. I call TXU's automated emergency outage number and report problem and get confirmation number.
  • 9:00am I walked down to the convenience store to get a paper and they were closed due to the power outage. This was my first indication that it was a larger problem.
  • 9:15am I call to check on outage. I explain that I reported an issue 2 hours earlier. He asked if I had heard an explosion at the same time as I lost power and asked if I had checked my breakers. I explained again that I had a confirmation number from when I callled it in earlier. He said that I didn't and he will put in a trouble ticket and report the issue. He said he has no way to look up that number and that the ETA to resolution was 2:00pm.
  • 9:45am I called back to see if the problem had actually been reported this time. It had.
  • 2:05pm I called back to get an updated ETA. He said that the ETA was still 2pm. I asked for a better ETA. I explained that that the problem was with my whole block. He asked if I had checked my breakers. I explained that there aren't breakers for my entire block, but that I had tested my home's breakers.
  • 4:00pm I called back to get an updated ETA and was told that they couldn't give me an ETA for resolution, but that she 'guaranteed' it would be resolved today.
  • 4:30pm The temperature in the house has been rising steadily all day and it was 85 degrees in the house. We went to a friends house to wait.
  • We saw on the news that the problem had been resolved at 5:00pm.
Nobody I talked to at TXU Energy was interested in sharing any information. There job was simple (to tell me something I wanted to hear and get me off the phone). They should have put an announcement on their emergency outage number that explained that the following areas were impacted by a power outage caused by a failed transformer.


Storms knocked out Round Rock power

6/18/2006 6:33 PM

By: News 8 Austin Staff

Nearly a thousand people in south and southeast Round Rock spent most of the day without power.A transformer was hit by lightning around 2 a.m., TXU said.The outages also affected the Dove Creek, Green Slopes and Cushing areas.Power was restored just before 5 p.m. Sunday.

News 8 Austin | 24 Hour Local News | TOP STORIES | Storms knocked out Round Rock power

Blogged with Flock

Thursday, June 15, 2006

Understanding lyrics...

Before you cover a song, be sure that you understand the words. I hate it when someone records a song and clearly don't 'get it'.

Example1: Turn the Page by Bob Seger and the Silver Bullet Band from the album "Back in '72"



Original Lyric:

Most times you can't hear 'em talk
Other times you can
All the same old clichés
Is that a woman or a man ?
And you always seem outnumbered
You don't dare make a stand
Covered by Metallica on the GARAGE INC.
Most times you can't hear 'em talk
Other times you can
Oh, the same old clichés
Is it woman, is it man ?
And you always seem outnumbered
You don't dare make a stand


Notice it ? The change is subtle. "Is that a woman or a man ?" is a cliche. Every guy who had long hair in the seventies heard that sentence directed at them. "Is it woman ? Is it man ?" is just a stupid line that doesn't fit the lyric.

Saturday, June 10, 2006

Our friend, Jeff


IMG_4763
Originally uploaded by Rayisawake.
I couldn't really think of anything to say...

Thursday, June 08, 2006

Deckplans.com

Deckplans.com - Deck plans for pool and custom decks: "Welcome! If you are purchasing decks, building a deck, or looking for ideas to add value and enjoyment to your backyard experience, our Deck Plans site can help. We take great pride in listening to our customers and have created this site to address your needs. Don't miss our Plans section where we have free Architectural Deck Plans to aid you in adding a deck to your home."

Wednesday, June 07, 2006

Hillbilly Housewife

Hillbilly Housewife: "The focus here is on low-cost, home-cooking from scratch. The recipes are all tested in a real kitchen with hungry children, stalking cats, begging puppies and a playful husband underfoot. The ingredients are affordable and readily available in most areas."
Lots of good stuff here.

Tuesday, June 06, 2006

06-06-06 06:06:06

For those of you that are frightened about what today may bring because of the religious connection: Keep in mind that 616 may be the Number of the Beast.

Saturday, June 03, 2006

"Centre" of the Universe


IMG_4767
Originally uploaded by Rayisawake.
A friend of ours took this picture last night in Centre, Alabama. Please click on the picture to see his Flickr site. This picture is one of a series of ten taken of this wonderful sunset.

Republic of Texas Biker Rally

Republic Of Texas Biker Rally
The Republic of Texas Biker Rally is in full swing. This weekend, the streets, freeways and parking lots in Central Texas are full of cool bikes like these. This is the twelfth annual event and 200,000 bikers were expected.

North By Northwest


NXNW
Originally uploaded by eschulz.
Last night, we went with a large group to one of our favorite restaurants in Austin, NXNW. It is definitely my favorite microbrewery. I had their seasonal brew, which was called the Cézanne 500. It was described as a hoppy hefeweizen. It was a hefeweizen, but it was not hoppy. It was the best beer I've had in years. Amy tried it and loved it (and she's not really a beer drinker). I'm guessing on the spelling of the name and the 500 indicates that it is from their 500th barrel.

NXNW is one of the places we'll miss most in Austin.

Thursday, June 01, 2006

Obscenities....

Eric:
Charles: ?????????????????????????????????????
Eric: SAME TO YOU!
Charles: you sent me a blank one first.
Eric: But that was before you let loose with the Obscenities
Charles: I love that you capitalize "obscenities" as if it's a proper noun, or major crime.
Eric: I think it would make a good band name. I think that will be the name of my next band.
Charles: the line about a proper name, or major crime would also be a good line about a band.
Eric: The new album "Proper Noun or Major Crime" from the hot new band. "Obscenities"

Wednesday, May 31, 2006

Freeware for Palm phone and PDA's

This is a new site for Palm freeware. The search is very good and I've downloaded several apps from them.
Freeware for Palm phone and pda, PalmOS free downloads.: "Welcome to the largest Palm freeware downloads archive. More than 8,300 free software titles for your Palm OS powered Thungsten, LifeDrive or Treo phone."

Sunday, May 28, 2006

Dodge Coronet 440 (Maybe 1966)

I took this picture this morning in the Travis Heights neighborhood in Austin. It's always been one of my favorite Dodges.
Dodge Coronet 440 (Maybe 1966)
When I was in college, my two roommates and I worked at Sears in Huntsville, TX. Ron and Randy were (usually) the appliance delivery guys. I worked all over the store. This was during the early 80's.

Randy was looking for a car to buy (he didn't have one) and Ron and I were both Chrysler fanatics. Ron and I were working in the tire center one day and a Dodge Coronet 440 drove by and he and I took off running after the car. We finally caught up to it and asked if he wanted to sell it. He did. We got his name and number and gave it to Randy and told him that HE ABSOLUTELY HAD TO BUY THIS CAR. I'm not sure if he ever called, but since he didn't really have any money, he wasn't able to buy.

Ron and I were disappointed, because we knew that we'd probably have been allowed to drive it. We were even more disappointed when we realized we'd have to continue to chauffeur Randy around for the foreseeable future.

TripHub

TripHub is a web application which makes it easy to plan family vacations and any travel that groups of people might take. Amy's family has taken some large family vacations in the past and this might have streamlined the process. The following info is from their site.

Have you ever been the organizer for a reunion, wedding, get-away with friends, retreat, or any other group trip or event? If you have, then you are familiar with the challenges (headaches!) involved in keeping track of who’s coming, making group decisions, and coordinating plans.

Today, TripHub makes it easy to:
  • Invite people to join your trip and keep track of who is coming
  • Research and discuss hotel options in over 350 cities
  • Share travel itineraries from any source or supplier
  • Send e-mails to some or all members of the group
  • Track who owes money

    Saturday, May 27, 2006

    Pandora

    I just registered for the free version of Pandora, a music streaming service. It doesn't require a standalone player. It uses Flash and plays in a browser, so it's a cross-platform solution (Windows, Mac, Linux). I heard about it on the Inside the Net podcast #6.

    All of the other streaming stations base what they play on songs that you've rated. If you've rated a particular song. they look at other users who like that song and recommend songs that those people like. Pandora is a completely different service. It grew out of The Music Genome Project. They have 40 musicians who listen to music critically, and map hundreds of characteristics of each song. It then suggests other songs that are characteristically similar to the song that you give it to start.

    Once music is playing, you can click on the album cover to get the menu shown here.

    Pandora Menu Screenshot

    "Pandora is a music discovery service designed to help you find and enjoy music that you'll love. It's powered by the Music Genome Project, the most comprehensive analysis of music ever undertaken. Just tell us one of your favorite songs or artists and we'll launch a streaming station to explore that part of the music universe."

    Thursday, May 25, 2006

    Dell Diamond Panorama


    Baseball
    Originally uploaded by mzhummina.
    The Dell Diamond is located in Round Rock, TX. It is the home of the Round Rock Express. This is a great panaromic image of the park I found. It was taken by Tara Hacker. Be sure and check out a larger version on Flickr.com.

    My Linguistic Profile

    Your Linguistic Profile::
    75% General American English
    20% Dixie
    0% Midwestern
    0% Upper Midwestern
    0% Yankee


    I was proud of my results, until I noticed that my linguistic profile only adds up to 95%. Not sure about the other 5%. I've seen others get the same 95%, so it might be a bug...

    Coinstar - Free Coin Counting


    visiting the coinstar
    Originally uploaded by xzasporated.
    I have used the big Coinstar machines several times in the past to generate folding money from a huge jar of change. Hasn't everyone? The percentage they take has always been significant, even exorbitant. I think when it started, it was about 7%. I think it's higher than that now.

    However, Coinstar now offers free coin counting, if you are willing to settle for gift cards or eCertificates instead of cash.

    They offer the following vendor's gift cards and eCertificates.
    • Amazon.Com
    • Virgin Digital
    • Borders
    • Linens'n Things
    • iTunes Music Card
    • Starbucks
    • Pier 1 Imports
    • Hollywood Video
    This is not available at every Coinstar machine, but you can use their Advanced Machine Locator to find the ones that offer these extra services. If you're here in Round Rock, it looks like all the Albertson's have them.

    You can also use Coinstar to donate to charity using the Coins That Count Donation Program.

    You have to respect a company that can take such a mundane service and make it compelling.

    Wednesday, May 24, 2006

    Clifford Antone 1949-2006

    KGSR is playing nothing but the blues this morning. Yesterday, Clifford Antone died of an apparent heart attack. For those of you don't know who Clifford Antone was, he founded Antone's, the greatest blues club of our time.

    Story links: Houston Chronicle Story, News 8 Austin

    From the Antone's Night Club Myspace About Page: Antone's, the first club on 6th street, opened its doors in the summer of 1975 with the great Clifton Chenier. The venue, now located at the corner of 5th and Lavaca Street, was founded by legendary promoter Clifford Antone and has hosted such blues "greats" as Muddy Waters, B.B. King, Buddy Guy, John Lee Hooker, Pinetop Perkins, James Cotton and countless others. Antone's has helped launch the careers of Stevie Ray Vaughan, Jimmy Vaughan, The Fabulous Thunderbirds, Los Lonely Boys, Ian Moore, and Bob Schneider to name a few. Antone's stage has been graced by everyone from Bono & The Edge, to Billy Gibbons of ZZ Top, to Eric Clapton, to Dwight Yoakam to Bruce Willis. The venue has won countless awards including numerous Austin Music Awards, as well as being named nightclub of the year by USA Today and the W.C. Handy Awards. The venue is all ages all the time and offers an unforgettable live music experience for everyone.
    People are leaving comments at the Myspace page.

    The DVD for Antone's - Home of the Blues will be out in a couple of weeks. Here's a quote from their page:
    Some of the biggest blues legends in the business have stepped onto the stage at Antone's in Austin, Texas. This documentary takes a look at the history of the club.


    You can also read about my favorite Antone's music experience.

    Tuesday, May 23, 2006

    Won't You Be My Neighbor?


    In 1969 the US Senate had a hearing on funding the newly developed Corporation for Public Broadcasting. The proposed endowment was $20 million, but President Nixon wanted it cut in half because of the spending going on in the Vietnam War. This is an video clip of the exchange between Mr. Rogers and Senator Pastore, head of the hearing. Senator Pastore starts out very abrasive and by the time Mr. Rogers is done talking, Senator Pastore's inner child has heard Mr. Rogers and agreed with him. Enjoy.

    Monday, May 22, 2006

    Wish her luck!

    My wife is flying to Atlanta tomorrow for a job interview on Wednesday. Please leave a letter of encouragement as a comment to this entry (or email her). Thanks!

    Cork'd

    "Cork’d is a free service for wine aficionados. You can use Cork’d to catalog, rate and review wines you’ve tasted. You can also keep track of wines you’d like to try and buy as well as subscribe to what your buddies have reviewed. It’s a new way to discover and share wine — and we think it’s perfect for people like you."

    Sunday, May 21, 2006

    The Oasis at Medina Lake

    The Oasis at Medina Lake .
    Friday, we went to a wedding at The Oasis at Medina Lake. This shot was actually taken from my chair at the wedding. It was hot and the wedding was too early, but it was a beautiful site.

    Leaf

    Leaf
    This picture is a wonderful example of what you can do with a 5 Megapixel camera. This picture was originally taken with my Canon SD450. The resolution of that image is 2592 x 1944. The picture was bad, it was very out of focus (except for the leaf). I cut out the worst parts of the image and concentrated on the leaf. Now the picture is 608 x 703 pixels and it still has enough detail to be interesting.

    Ultimate Cage Match


    Yesterday, Amy and I went to Petco in Round Rock and saw these kittens. Amy picked up the two that are fighting in this clip. She handed me the black one and it relaxed in my hands. Amy kept the white one and it climbed all over her and scratched her 5-6 times. If we didn't already have our limit on cats, ...

    FJ Cruiser

    Yesterday, I saw one of the first Toyota FJ Cruisers in Round Rock. It's a unique looking vehicle, and I was interested since the review in the April 2006 issue of Car and Driver. Here are a couple of pictures of it. Just below the pictures is a quote from Toyota.com.
    Toyota FJ Cruiser #1
    Toyota FJ Cruiser #2

    Toyota.com : Vehicles : FJ Cruiser: "The all-new FJ Cruiser is the latest in a long line of celebrated off-road vehicles from Toyota. And in the tradition of the legendary Land Cruiser family, the FJ Cruiser is not only engineered to conquer anything Mother Nature has to offer, but keep coming back for more."