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(no subject) [Jan. 1st, 2009|10:42 am]
I'm sitting in the "business center" of the Holiday Inn in northern New Jersey. I've been here since Sunday for work, and will be here through the end of next week.

I haven't actually done much work, but I've been standing out in the cold waiting to every day this week so far. There have been nothing but problems with half of the rock coring project, so they finally decided to give up on that part for this week and sent my coworker home and I will finish up the work he started this week. I sort of wish I were going home, since it's damn cold here, but it's nice that he gets to return to Washington on his anniversary.

I looked at the forecast for today in the city where we've been doing the rock coring. It says the current temperature is 16 degrees Farenheit, and feels like 3. Glad we have today off.

Other than attempting to purchase a magazine or two to read on this, my day off, I think I'll just hang out in my room and drink the two cans of Jones Lemon Lime soda the flight attendents on Alaskan Airlines gave me.

This would be a very enthralling picture post of the past year, since it's been about that long since I last updated, but I don't think I want to put photos on this computer....

Happy New Year, everyone!
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(no subject) [Dec. 22nd, 2008|08:21 pm]


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(no subject) [Nov. 13th, 2008|10:48 am]
I've returned!

After my computer being in a very strange state of disarray (thank you malware from MySpace) for at least 6 months, I finally just paid someone to simply have it back up and working. And here we are, intarwebbing again!

I just got back from court, contesting a parking ticket, and am not set up for a picture post just now, but here's some of the highlights:

I don't have to pay the parking ticket, the judge lady was really nice to me, and I'm eager for a nice opportunity to let the bitchy parking nazi lady up the street know she's officially wasting her time.

I'd hoped to be sent to New Jersey or Pennsylvania for work, both drilling jobs for horizontal directional drilling, but they gave it to the Mormon girl who started about a year ago because she's salaried and I'm not and if things slow down too much they can send me home and not pay me.

Things have slowed down quite a bit.

I may still get to go to Sacramento in January for a piling job.

I got to operate the pile driving equipment at Emerald Queen Casino this week.

I got to operate the dill rig at the Port of Aberdeen a couple of weeks ago.

I'm still trying to get my company to pay me back for the cost of the hotel for the time I was staying in Aberdeen.

I now own about 40 Tokidokis. And I love every one.

Jasper is 1 year old this month, and Belle will be 7 in February.

I can't wait to go to Comic Con next summer and see more of San Diego, now that I know better how to work the system.

I had a great time visiting Jane and Christy a few weeks ago in Dallas and would love to go again sometime and see the things I didn't get a chance to this time.

I am already done with Christmas shopping and now only need to wrap things. But I will probably think of more things I want to get for people before Christmas arrives.

I think I'm going to have a gyro for lunch.

...and that's about it for now...
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(no subject) [Feb. 3rd, 2008|12:07 pm]
I hardly even realize it's a different year than last year.

While I hate to be a sourpuss, it's not been a really great one.

My car was broken into outside my apartment the first week of the year. Nothing was taken because there was not much of value. The person knew what they were doing, though, and had a master key to the rebuilt liftgate. That's the only way I figure they could have unlocked it, crawled inside to the front seats, crawled back out, then shut it all again without the alarm going off.

Work has been slow, so I've spent much of my time on training sessions. I did my 8-hour refresher for the Hazardas Work and Operations (HAZWOPER) program, which involved Christina getting dressed up in full HAZMAT suit, oxygen tank and all, and taking a walk around the block to fully experience it. The best thing about the suit, though, is that you cannot tell who is inside of it, so it's not like anybody will make fun of you for it afterwards. She still wouldn't let me take a picture, though. I've also completed the two-day training for erosion control (CECSL), so now I can go tell people they've messed up in all kinds of new ways.

Actually, I don't really agree with a lot of the erosion control "best management practices" (BMPs), or the excessive use of acronyms in all of these kinds of courses and areas of study. I've always figured that if something has a lot of acroynms, it's because they're overcomplicating things, think too much of themselves, and have too much time on their hands, which is why they just come up with abbreviations for everything so they'll sound important. But maybe that's just me...

In case anybody hasn't had enough abbreviations, I attended an ASCE meeting a couple of weeks ago in Seattle to see a presentation by Peter Nicholson, a geotechnical engineering professor at UH on O'ahu. He was part of a crew put together to work on a sort of retroactive study of the levee systems in New Orleans. What a lot of it boiled down to is that, given what they knew and what they did, the locals were basically asking for it. How one can live in a loosely established bowl under water and just "hope for the best," then be flabbergasted when all hell breaks loose is beyond me. I'm sure everyone will be happy to know that the shoddy construction of the original levees is being fixed so that they should now withstand the design flood event they were initially intended to withstand. (As a side note, though, the design flood event is extremely small in terms of a major event, such as Hurricane Katrina, and the intended lifespan of the entire system should expire in just a few decades.) But try and tell them how to spend their money and all you'll get is an earful. I guess they want to continue to learn their lessons the hard way.

Speaking of insane living conditions, I've been reading about Venice. It's funny that people will dub it the "sinking city," then attribute the flooding to "weather conditions" with not-so-subtle undertones of GLOBAL WARMING. In reading a bit of history, the exact opposite of the problem was true when lowering water levels left the city disconnected from ships. Whichever the case, I'm impressed by the ability of wood piers to withstand the weight over time that they have. Apparently the lack of oxygen and general organic activity is what has kept the piers from rotting for the most part. Exposed piers today, though, during construction are treated with boron to prevent rotting and infestation.

I wonder if boron would work to eradicate the powderpost beetles that are eating away the wood floors under my bed. Nice as it was for my landlord to finally tell me of the problem AFTER putting antique furniture in there that they would attempt to resolve the issue by use of a bug killer injected into each of the little holes, that doesn't do anything to ensure that they have not spread to my furniture. Judging by the pattern of little holes, however, it looks like they prefer lighter wood and are fine in the floor. I'd be more interested in eradicating the rowdy children from upstairs, though, truth be told. Five people in a one-bedroom apartment does seem excessive to me, but then they, unlike the bugs, are paying rent. Supposedly.

Most of my field work lately has been comprised of monitoring pile installation at East Blair Waterway at the Port of Tacoma. They are working 12-hour days, which has been split up into two shifts for those of us who monitor the installation. We have been recording the number of blows per foot as they drive each 143-foot concrete piling into the ground. Basically, it's mind numbing and boring, but at least I'm outside the office and where nobody really bothers me. The most exciting part of the process, though, is when they change the plywood cushions that protect the rigid pile from the 17,000 pound hammer, which hits it about 2,000 times over the length of one pile. Because of the pressure, it heats up and begins to billow smoke, and is occasionally flaming as they knock it off the top of the pile into the water.

There are also some nice views on good days.

I don't know how they managed to put thousands of piers under Venice when we use this kind of equipment to do it now.

Also, my Aerogarden is doing very well.

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AeroGarden, Day 3 [Dec. 31st, 2007|11:47 am]
I've added two tiny pots of strawberry seeds (impulse buy at a store the other day with Marsha) and we'll see how they do.

AeroGarden 07-12-30 (1 of 2)

And I have a tiny little sprout on the Basil! You can barely see it, but it's the greyish thing that blends in with the foam.

AeroGarden 07-12-30 (2 of 2)
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AeroGarden: Day 1 [Dec. 28th, 2007|12:54 pm]
I spent part of my day off Friday (last week) going to The Indoor Gardener store on 6th Ave. to see what they had. I wanted a lamp to hang from my ceiling over my hibiscus, since it's not been thriving for quite some time. I bought a bulb, and will need a fixture, but I also found kits for the AeroGarden thing I had seen around in magazines and online. They are about twice the size I had thought they were, which explains in part why they are so expensive, but decided that it was right up my alley and a fantastic way to make a real leap into actual indoor gardening. (Incidentally, they also said that corn does not grow well indoors even under optimal lighting conditions, so my rather failed attempt was not anything unusual.)

Anyhow, I finally planted it today, on my lunch hour, and would like to document the progression in photos. Maybe I won't keep up with it, but here is day one:

AeroGarden 07-12-28 (1 of 2)
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The Big Bag Post [Dec. 25th, 2007|08:01 pm]
I don't call it an obsession. (But I don't know what I DO call it...)

Le Sportsac Tokidokis!

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(no subject) [Nov. 5th, 2007|06:38 am]
This was on the calico cats journal. I had to pass it on.

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(no subject) [Oct. 21st, 2007|10:19 pm]
I was looking at my bank statement online and came across a series of charges I find rather funny:

I typically travel about 800 miles per week. I need to make a better effort to walk to work.
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Wish List [Sep. 18th, 2007|08:46 pm]
So I generally find wish lists a little tacky and gimme, but I'm giving in this year. I've got a long list of things I'd like from web pages, and people always ask what I want, so on the off chance that somebody has the inclination, these are a few of the things I'd like for my birthday, seeing as how it's a month and two days away...

Mark Berube's "Sketches from the Sidewalk" CD (I heard him play "Puffed Candy" at Fantasia in Bellingham on the accordion and it was GREAT)

A Mirror of Erised (because I need a mirror for my entryway, and wouldn't this be a cool one?)

Also, I'm a dork and want a snitch necklace

An Alto Ocarina (because they just strike me as neat, and I think it'd be fun to learn to play it while I sit in my truck at work and am bored watching people do things with dirt)

A couple of blocks of Grade A White PZ Kut (since I've never used ANY PZ Kut EVER, and that's simply a travesty)

Grade A Orange PZ Kut (for much the same reason)

A bunch of stuff from Individual Icons, because jewelry made out of hardwear is too cool not to have:
Wishbone Level Earrings
Ruler Bracelet
Compass Bracelet
Chain Mail Bracelet
Phillips Head Post Earrings
Magnifying Glass Necklace

Art Nouveau Sculptural Wall Shelf

Unfortunately, not much that's cheaper than $40, and that's before shipping. (Be glad I didn't post the Tokidoki LeSportSac in Foresta, typically going for about $250 on eBay...) But, there you have it.

I also like paper.
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