It seems like a lot of stuff has happened and I haven’t had (or taken) the time to post. Overall, I’ve been having a pretty good time, although I’ve been super tired.
KrisDi and I have both been stressed out and tired — her because of school, me because of work. Both of us have a LOT of stuff to do, and not a whole lot of time to do it. Lucky for KrisDi, her stuff is over in a week or so. Mine’s not.
But anyhow, what about the fun stuff, you ask?
Well, Ben finally did come over for soup, and it was good, although KrisDi thinks she’s done better. I wasn’t complaining, that’s for sure. After dinner, we looked at books and were generally dorky. Which is always fun. For some reason, he still doesn’t want to spend a half mil to move into our neighborhood. Our immediately neighboring house’s prospective buyers dropped out, so for the time being, we still have no neighbors. Which is nice.
The Popes invited us over for Seattle Public Library system’s “we don’t want these stinking books” sale (cheap!) and chicken ‘n dumplins (yummy!). We also met some of their friends (with one of whom I had been acquainted in Oklahoma). One of them shared gossip about several of my old, unloved engineering professors, which is always nice. It was a good time. Eventually the Pope and I will sit to play Scrabble and drink scotch (speaking of which, the scotch the Pope gave me [Glenkinchie] is delicious).
KrisDi’s and my old mini boss, Ted, came to visit us recently. He introduced us to Lena, his German/Belgian fiancee, and brought us a couple of very tasty beers from Belgium (Leffe Brune, Leffe Radieuse, neither of which are available in the States, to the best of my knowledge). Damn those Belgians know how to make some good beer (and apparently how to drink it, too)! They’re hinting that they’ll invite us to the wedding, in either Germany or Belgium, which would be awesome. I’ve still never been to Europe. I’d jump at the chance.
Last night we actually socialized with neighbors! Two houses down from us lives a couple with a ~1 year old. We ran into the patriarch in the parking lot at the grocery store when we went there to buy breakfast stuff, and learned that it was his birthday, and that he wanted us to come to his place for a small party. It was fun. They had a few friends there, and their wives, and their collective plethora of children. Neither of us has done shots for a long time, and KrisDi has barely drunk at all for a long time. She got hammered, and had an unpleasant experience today (not unlike my unpleasant experience just before my last post, wherein I drank too much beer at Brouwer’s and suffered most of the following day). I got drunk and had a headache, but I only regurgitated once. It was fun, though. It’s nice to meet neighbors. It’s also good to feel like we can get along with them.
This weekend, we started doing work around the house again. We planted some stuff in the back yard. Two azaleas, two gardenias, and replanting KrisDi’s daffodil, Daisy. She bought it at Ikea very cheap, and it promptly died. When we moved into the house, Daisy promptly returned from the dead, with gusto. So, we de-potted her and replanted the eight bulbs she’d spawned while undead. I started to make a paving stone path from the driveway to the back gate, and I’m discovering that it’s much harder (and heavier) than I would have expected. We calculate a need for 30 paving stones to get from the driveway to the gate; we can only fit 16 in my trunk, with three bags of paver base. Poor Junior (my Saturn Ion) looked like the back half had been lowered. We’re going to need a lot more paver base. The three bags were enough (or a little less than enough) for nine stones. So KrisDi and I are sore from all that work.
Last, but not least, I created a system of pulleys and rope so I can hang my bicycle above my car and lower it without a ladder. So that’s pretty neat. I half expect to hear a crash as my bike (Bodo) crashes through Junior’s windshield.
— Wherein snaotheus, on Wednesday of last week, invites Ben for chicken tortilla soup, as repayment for picking snaotheus and KrisDi up from the airport after Christmas when Ben was ill with the plague:
Feeling better? Soup?
Need chicken tortilla soup?
It has been so long!
I got graffitied.
I think that’s five syllables.
Spray paint on back fence.
— Wherein Ben replies:
When! When! When I say?
Tortilla soup is very good.
Exciting to me.
This Weekend not good
Hiking in olympics then
also not this week
— Further scheduling ensues:
How’s next week Wednesday? // pronounced “Wensday”
KrisDi’s class Mon- and Tues-day.
Soup day is always.
— On Monday, after a lengthy session parsing snaotheus’ terrible hai-ku, Ben replies:
Wensday bad for me
weekly roleplaying is then
thursday, tuesday ok
sorry for delay,
I thought wednesday was good
at first but was wrong
— snaotheus snappily responds that he must okay the re-scheduling with management:
Thursday is not good
KrisDi has class til sixish
after that, maybe?
I am getting quite
Anxious for delicious soup
The wait has been long
I told KrisDi that
soup be Wensday regardless.
Hope for a reprieve!
— Ben reveals further details:
Could do thursday
six is too early for me
work, it sucks a lot.
— snaotheus demands the facts!
Later than six? ‘Kay…
When when hoo ben hoo hoo when?
Impart your schedule!
— Ben proposes a concrete schedule:
KrisDi controls all.
anytime is good, seven?
can come whenever
— snaotheus finalizes:
We’ll serve at seven.
Wow, you really do work late.
See you on Thursday!
So, I did something today that I’ve never done before (besides going to work with the new title of System Engineer): I cleaned my keyboard.
To clean my keyboard, follow these eighteen easy steps:
1. Disconnect keyboard from computer.
2. Remove all key caps.
3. Remove all buttons.
4. Place all buttons and key caps in a strainer.
5. Place a heavy plate on top of the strainer.
6. Place the strainer, buttons, key caps, and plate inside the dishwasher.
7. Begin dishwasher cycle.
8. Spend an hour or so wiping the rest of the keyboard with alcohol, paper towels, and q-tips.
9. Remove the strainer, buttons, key caps, and plate inside the dishwasher.
10. Shake the strainer, buttons, key caps, and plate thoroughly to remove some of the excess water.
11. Place all buttons and key caps into a small mesh-like laundry-style bag.
12. Firmly and securely tie small mesh-like laundry-style bag shut.
13. Place small, firmly-tied-shut, mesh-like laundry-style bag containing buttons and key caps in laundry dryer.
14. Begin a 40 minute dry cycle on medium heat.
15. Help KrisDi’s younger brother with his Java homework.
16. Remove small, firmly-tied-shut, mesh-like laundry-style bag containing buttons and key caps from dryer.
17. Meticulously re-install buttons on keyboard.
18. Meticulously re-install key caps on keyboard.
The reason my keyboard is worth all this effort to me is that I have the awesome, ultra-clickety, IBM Model M keyboard. Yes, my keyboard is so incredibly terrific it has a Wikipedia entry — written by someone other than me! What’s especially valuable about this keyboard is that it has key caps on top of all the buttons, so that no matter where you place the letters, the keyboard’s basic contour is retained. This is contrary to current standard keyboards. This allows me to actually have my letters in the Dvorak layout without making my keyboard uncomfortable for typing.
I can thank Monocular Ben for introducing me to the model, and the electronic scrap piles in OU’s engineering building’s basement for donating mine, which is model number 1391401. It was born on June 14th, 1991, so its seventeenth birthday is coming up soon (just two days before KrisDi’s harrumffth birthday). It’s been in my possession since probably around 2001 or 2002. Hard to say.
Maybe, if you ask really nicely, I’ll photographically document the cleaning process the next time I do it — in about sixteen more years.