Monthly Archives: March 2009

Day 1 or You won´t catch *me* drinking a glass of raw eggs!

I woke up this morning … and I went back to bed!1 Not the most auspicious start to the beginning of training, but there is some ol’ chestnut about beggars and choosers that probably applies here. After hitting the snooze some inappropriate number of times, I dragged myself out of bed and began to stretch. And stretch. And stretch some more. Hmm. Is that as far as I can go? Didn´t I used to be able to do more? How disappointing. I have really let myself go to seed.

I did some situps. OK. Not bad. Better than I feared anyway. I used to do about a hundred of these every morning. Today I could only do about thirty. Well, best not to overdo it the first day. Tomorrow I shall use the Iron Gym that I bought over the weekend to do some pullups. It is a coincidence that I bought it. I had no idea that I would be getting back into juggling.

What about a quick spot of juggling? Just to see what I can still do? I picked up a banana, a bean bag of the earth, and a defunct cell phone … and promptly dropped them on the ground. OK. I still have ¨the drop¨2 down pat. Can I actually juggle them?

The answer was a resounding, ¨no.¨ Oh sure, the timing was fine. The motor skills though? Not so much. Looks like we´re gonna havta start at the beginning. Fundamentals. Heavy on both the ¨fun¨ and the ¨mental¨ in this case.

I looked at the time. Hmm. I will have to finish practicing either at work or when I get home tonight. It is time to start getting ready. So I showered, grabbed some breakfast, and typed this post. Off to work!
But, I should probably actually get dressed first, shouldn´t I?

[1]All due respect to ¨Weird Al¨ Yankovic´s ¨Generic Blues,¨ of course.
[2] The very first lesson from that wonderful tome, Juggling For the Complete Klutz. At finer bookstores everywhere.


And so it begins

Apparently, I have a co-worker who has an attitude problem.

This is no surprise. Most places have at several. I have not met the person in question, but I have been told of him. His problem is not with physics, engineering, or something that you would normally associate with particle accelerators though.

His problem is with juggling.

Ah, now you can see where I might get involved.

I have been told in no uncertain terms by several co-workers that I must meet this man and put him in his place. I have taken such words with a grain of salt. After all, I do not feel the need to challenge anyone. I am secure in my ability to juggle and have no need to prove myself.

But this guy tends to belittle people who are learning. The exact antithesis of my approach. I believe in encouraging people. I believe in spreading the madness so that everyone who can juggle shall. It is an infection and I am proud to be a carrier.

One of the Crew Chiefs came and spoke to me today and began juggling the hacky sacs that I keep on my desk just for that purpose. He told me of this guy. He told me of how the aforementioned juggler simply described the crew chief’s skills as “adequate” despite the fact that the Crew Chief was nearly on the same level. I saw some of the tricks that the CC did in front of me. Not bad! He’s not professional by any means, but he could do some three object razzamatazz and it was fun to watch and in the end, that’s what matters.

The CC told me that he really wants me to put the other juggler in his place. I have no intention of doing that unless there is a challenge. And even then, only if it seems like it would be fun. Or if I really believe the guy needs to be taken down a peg. Or two.

And I have to admit, it sounds like this guy needs it.

So, just in case, it is time to start practicing again. I shall take out my old Anderson, Bruford, Wakeman, Howe CD and begin the crawl back to adequacy. It has been a long time. And I am quite rusty.

I am the greetest!

I finally have a new cable modem! Internet! In my apartment! Woo hoo!

OK. So Windows will still not connect, but I prefer my Ubuntu anyway. I was debating about getting rid of the windows side and completely switching.

And yeah, I still have not quite gotten the wireless part working, but with time … That will be a good project for today. I am curious. Why is it that when I actually have a day off, the weather consistently decides to make it cold and full of precipitation? Do the weather gods read my schedule beforehand? Or perhaps they are the ones who make my schedule! Either way, no exploration today. I have no real desire to wander about in the last snowstorm in March just to explore Chicago.

Now if I can just get the smoke alarm fixed, this will be a red-letter day!

So, this is hell …!

I finally got a saucepan! And mixing bowls! And a baking sheet!

I decided to finally cook! Yes! Food! My own food. I have been waiting so long for this!

I wanted pancakes. Oh wait. I’m out of milk. Oh well. At least I can make eggs and bacon! I put some bacon in the oven (yes, I bake my bacon … deal with it) when the smoke alarm went off.

For the record, there was no smoke. Still, I had to open the windows. And the door. And turn of the oven.

Gah! I can’t cook in here. Anything I make sets off the alarm! 😦

Sweet bongos of the Congo!

The entire Cosmos series is available on Hulu! That series is one of three things (outside of my family) that influenced me to take up science. I would say what the other two are, but I am curious whether anyone either: a) knows me well enough to give the answer or b) can give an educated guess.

I can give a hint though. They are both popular culture icons.

Stand Aside!

The only way that I could love this comic more would be if he had put in some sort of reference to physics or astronomy … alternative energy revolution

On the third night of owl shift, my poor brain said to me …

“… Owen! You must have coffee. By all that is holy, if you do not indulge in caffeine, you shall have to pry open your eyelids with a crowbar and keep them propped up with toothpicks!”


I just finished Fool by Christopher Moore

bad timing

I’d file this article under things I should not read while working the evening shift.