Wednesday, December 26, 2007

I'm back home (my house) now, again, thankful that all the festivities are over with for now.

Wouldn't you know it, a fresh look at the computer issue enabled me to stumble through fixing it. Not exactly sure how I fixed it, but I'm happy I got it done. Word on the street is that the chickens I was planning to sacrifice to the mischievous gods of the Internet are enthused as well.

Wait 'till they hear what I'm planning for dinner later this week...

As bad as I might be interneticallastically speaking, is it wrong that I feel kinda good about my relatively huge base of knowledge when speaking with my grandma? She asked me at one point what was an e-mail. I thought she might have been kidding, but when she asked about postage for the letters, I realized that she honestly didn't know. I hope my future grandkids think of me fondly as I do to my grandma when I ask them some techocrappie question 50 or 60 years from now.

Nah, they'll probably think I'm a goober & off my meds, or something.

I'm kinda looking forward to getting back to work again, feeling like I've been out for a long, long time. I figure about 3 days of actual work should take care of that.

One of the things I like about the current work situation is the number of former military guys there. Always good to hear old war stories from the other services, and to compare and contrast jacked up missions, situations, and whatnot. One of the things that I've told many people is that in some ways, I think it's easier for the guys deployed than the families that are left behind. Whatever the situation, however messed up, outrageous, or humerous, you can bet that someone else has gone through the exact same thing, or worse. This was demonstrated in conversations from some of the guys who had lost some of their own family members.

How they came across in the conversations was kind of touching, in its own way. I think my favorite talk (in just about its entirety) was something along the lines of, "It's a kick in the nuts, huh." from, of course, a former old & salty sailor.


Monday, December 24, 2007

A sad twist of life, I suppose, when I heard about another death recently.

I don't suppose that it'll come to too much of a surprise that I'm not terribly in the Christmas spirit this year, my thoughts have been much more into sad reminiscing, bitter-sweet happier memories, and concerns about others. In my thoughts of my father, one of the things that I come back to often is music. Dad wasn't much for actually playing, heck I'm not even sure that he even knew how to read music. I do know that he played a little guitar in his youth, but he occasionally commented while looking at my sheet music that the notation was like another language to him.

He of course, supported my musical learnings, and would comment on different songs, which of course, I would immediately hunt down the music for and learn to play.

He introduced me to some different sounds such as Eva Cassidy, The Ventures, Piero, Los Iracundos, John Denver (?!), Abba (!?!?), Roy Orbison, and the like (if 'and the like' could apply here).

"Thank you for the music, and your stories of the road.
Thank you for the freedom when it came my time to go.
Thank you for your kindness, and the times when you got tough.
And papa I don't think I said, 'I love you' near enough."

--- Dan Fogelberg, Leader of the Band

Te quiero, viejo.

I miss you. so. much.

Sunday, December 23, 2007

I'm back. Kinda sorta. Not really.... Crap.

So a couple of days ago I go to power up the laptop. I didn't really have any plans for the day, just wanted to make sure that the suspicious squealing and wheezing that I've been hearing from the ole checkbook and debit card aren't signs of any more holiday catastrophes. To the bank's website, ho! (Yes, I said 'ho').


Crap, looks like the server's down.

S'ok, I had an e-book downloaded, so I read some of that for a while. Computer issues happen every once in a while, and for all that I know it's due to the alignment of the stars or the fact that I've been neglecting the sacrifices to the internet gods. Reminder to self; buy two live chickens for next weekend...

Aside from my blog roll (fun/informative) and the occasional news site (comedy/tragedy) , I'm not really much of one for reading on the 'net. This book turned out to be pretty good, and I got into it for a while. After an hour or so, I tried the 'net again.


In the grand scheme of things, definitely not the end of the world, so I managed to find other things to occupy my time. I think there was some navel gazing and ear-pickin' in there somewhere...

A few days later and I was kinda concerned about the bank account. I really needed to figure out what I had to transfer over to checking, so I tried the laptop again.

Still nothing.

Perhaps it's the delusions of grandeur re: my so-called fixitability, but I decided to try my hand at figuring out what was wrong with the computer.

You in the back, shut it, I can hear you laughing.

See, every year around this time, I get voluntold to repair or construct new gifts, stuff to be re-gifted (what a concept!), and miscellaneous crap. Dunno why people think that an average Marine is going to have a good ability at fixing stuff up, but that's the way it goes.

As a personal general rule, I'm great at breaking stuff. Fixing it... not so much.

If I have a set of directions, a decent drink, and a scarcity of delicate ears to hear any profound words of dubious wisdom, I can usually stumble through the odd assembly or two. Case in point, I recently finished the assembly of a computer chair complete with massaging er... thingies. Felt pretty good, too, or at least 'till I got kicked out so she could give it a 'test ride'.

Back to the computer question, I turned off the laptop and somehow managed to restrain myself from tossing it through the window.

I then shuffled over to the desktop.

Due to the shuffling, I zapped myself pretty good *Crap, that hurt* when I turned on the light in the computer room / spare bedroom / extra junk that'll never get tossed out room / library. I turned on the pc to notice pretty much the same issues as the laptop.

For a mental picture, imagine yourself going down to the local zoo, signing out one of the resident chimps, plopping Bobo down in front of your computer, and telling him to get to work. That about describes me to a 'T'.


Lights on and or flashing on small thingy in the back? Check.

[Scratching head]

Wireless network up and running? Nope.

[More scratching of head, some knuckling of keyboard ensues]

Router still alive and kicking? *clunk* Check... I think.

Internet? ... Internet?... (Bueller?).... Nope.

(By the way, I'm currently writing this from my mom's house, down south. That might kind of indicate the result of this particular story...)

At about the time when I was going to start hopping up and down flinging my poo, I happened to look down into the jumble of wires that pretty much takes up the entirety of the space beneath the desk. Amazing how, apparently all on their own, a collection of wires can spontaneously form knots of invincible properties, just by the fact of their existence. Two wires seemed to be disconnected...

This was about the time when I should have called it a day and resigned myself for getting someone much more knowledgeable to fixy-fixy... like the neighborhood 10 year old computer uber-geek. Heck, I probably could have settled for his 7 year old semi-computer literate sibling.

Forty-five minutes later of attempting to trace wired from their various outlets & surge protectors (?) later, and I was getting nowhere in a hurry. I decided to get creative and try to organize / untangle / destroy some of the chaos that was down there.

I think I killed (as in permanently) the printer. Darn things should be more resistant to an unexpected gravity test, especially when gently tugging on cords brings the thing down upon my noggin. Never fear, the gouge that it dug out of the wall on the way down slowed it enough to only slightly dent my brain housing group.

Don't you just hate it when after disassembly and reassembly of... just about anything, you finally get back to the starting point only to realize that you have screwed up and / or are missing some small component? I felt that way with those damn wires.

End result? Anything not needed for powering of the 'puter has been disconnected (or broken) and 'set aside' (read: tossed with accompanying color commentary) on the spare bed (only action that things seen in a while) for the time being. Computer is still not up and running. One sore head, various choice words on the state of technology uttered, and one drink refill.

I called the bank on their 1-800 number to find I had a balance of $25.32 in checking.

Oh, the holiday joy.

I should just go ahead and move the entirety of my 'Oh Shit' fund into checking, seems like it's all going there anyways...

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

A Thank You

... for all of the kind and thoughtful comments, e-mails, and blog posts over the past week or so. I'm still trying to wrap my mind around this situation, and I know it's not going to be easy, but I just wanted to convey my thanks to all, for all.

To my lazy Monday afternoon conversationalist, a special thank you, I needed that.

I'm back home now, all the initial details have been taken care of, and now it's just time to wait for the last of the paperwork, payments, notifications, etc. to come through. I suppose that this is where the getting over/through/on/whatever is supposed to take place, as well. Truth be told, it has already started, but with a frustratingly sense of slowness. It'll come...

Blog stories are still on standby for the immediate future, but I'm already getting back around, cruising the blogroll, and getting back into the swing of things.

Thank you, again.