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January 29, 2002
Two days in a row,

Two days in a row, it's a miracle. I counted and realized I'd only posted about 6 times in January, a new low, so I'm making up for it these last couple days. Fascinating.

Well, I'm almost all packed up. I'm sitting here typing on my lap, as I took my desk apart. I actually only took the top thing off and could easily put the monitor back up on top and the keyboard on the desk, but I'm into this configuration, it's so geeky. When I leave here the room will be completely empty except my computer sitting on the floor running slapnose.com. I'll try to leave it here until I get DSL up and running at the new place, minimizing downtime. It's vital that I do this so the hordes of people who daily visit my site don't lose interest and start going to, say, luke's site. It's a fierce competition and I aim to win.

Hopefully ole Betty will stay up and running smoothly while we wait for the new connection, which will be, get this, faster!! You'll all appreciate slapnose loading two or three times as fast as it does now, in theory. That is, in theory it'll be that much faster, not in theory you'll appreciate it. Should it happen, you'll certainly appreciate it, non?

I still have to pack up the bathroom stuff and my clothes. That's about it. Oh, and dismatle the entertainment center stuff.

I feel a little woozy from the cheap mexican food I had for dinner, I think it was a bad idea. It was that or olive oil on Doritos, though; maybe I should have just gone hungry. Feel queasy. Maybe I'll have some water. I really feel pretty strange.

I'm excited to get into the new place and get all settled. I'm excited to play the guitar again, regularly. I'm excited to read, to write, to cook (at least to eat), to decorate. I'm excited to watch a movie whenever I want, I'm excited to wash my towels for free. I'm even excited to lower the key down to the street in a little bucket. I'm excited to say, "see you at home". I'm excited. Maybe that's why I feel like throwing up.

January 28, 2002
Two days later, this is

Two days later, this is hard. I got kind of used to providing weekly-or-so updates, which were boring, and now I'm trying to do it more often, and I can't think of anything to say.

I finished reading Fast Food Nation yesterday, for those of you who aren't keeping up with my sidebar over there. A fantastic book, one of those that makes me want to buy a case of them and give them to everyone I know. Everyone should read it. Here, but yourself one, and I get a little kickback. Isn't that nice? Of course you shouldn't take that to mean that I'm pushing it on you because I want the money. See, I was saying I would buy a copy for people and just give it to them, I think it's that important. So you have two choices; buy one yourself, I get a little money, or wait for me to buy one for you, I lose significantly more money, but you spend none. A simple choice, as I see it.

I'm not trying to be greedy, really, I really think it's a great and important book. If you want one for free, send me an email, and I'll get you a copy, promise. (Doesn't apply to random strangers).

Meanwhile, the packing moves along, I thought I had a lot of crap before I started packing, the reality of it is truly staggering. Need something? Drop me a line, I'm sure I have eight.

Just got out of my first yoga class, which isn't like me, but you know, I'm trying to be open-minded. It was a nice stretch, with phrases like "follow your breath to the sensation" and "push your heart up to meet your toes". It feels good to stretch. And if it gets me in good with someone's god or two, bonus.

January 26, 2002
People are telling me I'm

People are telling me I'm not blogging enough. Some guy stopped me on the street yesterday and said, "You're not bloggin enough." It was weird, but he was right. Enough for what, I don't know, but there's some kind of criteria, and obviously I'm not meeting it. I'll try to do better.

Packing packing packing. Did I mention that I'm moving? Moving on Thursday into our spanky new apartment!! Here! Some photos of said apartment!! Woo!

So the lease is signed, the utilities are coming, and the moving day is Thursday. I technically have until the end of February on my lease, but it makes no sense to wait, or we'll never be able to get the place together. So we're packing up Liz's place today and we'll work on my stuff tomorrow. I have far too much stuff and I'm thinking we should start with a nice bonfire on the roof.

Team Bar has been renamed Channel 61, and I'm the captain. Our first match was on Wednesday, we lost all three games. Had an unsettlingly familiar feeling to it, but I'm still happy to be playing volleyball again. I'm assuming that the team we played Wednesday was the best inthe division, and from here on it will be smooth sailing. No more losing, I'm sick of it.

I've actually been busy at work lately, an amazing feeling. I've been busy in spurts before, but this was a bit different. I had a project that I was responsible for making myself, on a deadline, and had to make sure it was done right. Sure it was just a silly contest, 10 html pages, but it's my first project. I'm excited to have something up on the web that's mine, that I created "professionally". I have all this crap up here now, but this doesn't count. I can do whatever I want here. I'll put the link up when it's ready and you can all bask in the glory of the Daily Remix Fashion and Fame Contest.

Pizza's here.

January 21, 2002
It seems like I just

It seems like I just updated, but it's been 5 days. I promised pictures from ice-climbing. Here they are.

True Story:

A couple of guys upstate decide to go ice fishing. They load up their Cherokee and set off for a nice frozen lake, bringing their faithful Labrador Retriever along. They figure they might do some bird hunting too, so they have shotguns loaded with birdshot. The lake is frozen solid, so thick that they can drive right out on it, and they do. Now they need a good hole in the ice to fish through. Now I'm no expert on ice fishing, I learned most of what I know from Grumpy Old Men, but it's my understanding that most people use a saw to make the hole. Some kind of ice saw. Not these guys, they have a much better idea: Dynamite.

Their first idea is to light the dynamite on a nice spot, and then run. Seems logical. But then one of them strikes on a better plan: Throw it. So, one man lights the stick of dynamite and hurls it across the frozen lake. Remember the dog? They don't call them 'retrievers' for nothing. The dog takes off after the dynamite. The guys don't want to see the dog blown up, so they do the logical thing, they shoot at him. Birdshot. The first shot doesn't really get him, the dog looks around, scared and confused, but keeps after the dynamite and gets it. Now he's running back, like a good dog, with the stick in his mouth. The men shoot at him again and this time he's hurt. What do dogs do when they're hurt? They hide. In the middle of a frozen lake, where's the only place to hide? That's right, under the Cherokee.

So, now these geniuses are in the middle of the lake, shotguns in hand, no dog, no truck, and a nice big hole in the ice.

That story was told by Ian, our ice-climbing guide. I'm not really sure that it's true, but seems likely enough.

January 16, 2002
My updating skills are shit-poor.

My updating skills are shit-poor. Is that a saying? There’s a saying like that.. shit-poor, ass-poor, something. You’ve got dirt-poor and cash-poor, too. Oh yeah, piss-poor. That’s the one. My updating skills are piss-poor lately. I’m trying desperately to maintain a once a week thing.

Work doesn’t bear updating; I haven’t even been there very much lately. I think my new job will be interesting, once it really gets started. So far I’m not doing much except trying to bring myself up on the things I’m going to have to do. That can be hard for me, since I don’t have an actual project, and must motivate myself. Ha. Ha. Ha.

On to the good stuff.

This past weekend Liz and I went upstate to go ice-climbing. I have to admit I was a bit intimidated at first. I’ve done some rock climbing, but it’s been years, and I was never particularly good at it. Ice climbing? It seemed like something people only do on magazine covers. Axes, crampons, little purple helmets; it didn’t seem real. But I went along. “Sure, we’re going ice-climbing. I’ll climb some ice. What the hell.”

We drove up to Keene, NY, about 300 miles north, on Saturday, arriving in the mid afternoon. We checked ourselves in to the Rock and River lodge, finding the process so easy that we couldn’t figure it out at first. There’s no desk clerk, you just look at the bulletin board, find your name (the only one there), and go to the room. Key’s in the door, see you in the morning for breakfast.

We drove up to Lake Placid and spent the evening wandering around, eating, taking pictures. We wandered into a snowboard shop and wandered out 2 hours later with 2 new snowboards. Pattern?

On Sunday we drove up to Whiteface Mountain to try out the new boards. To say they made a difference over rental boards is a huge understatement. It was like a whole new sport. The new boards were faster, easier to turn, required much less effort. It would be like playing baseball with a wiffle ball bat and then someone hands you a nice piece of ash. That goes for riding on a real mountain as compared to Butternut and places down here too. I should live in the mountains.

Monday was the big ice-climbing day. We met our guide, Ian, in the morning, had breakfast, and decided to go to “Pitch Out Left”, a small ice wall up the valley where we could get warmed up and see how I did. Since I was the beginner, what we did the rest of the day depended on how quickly I picked it up. Which in turn depended on how strong I was. Which is not very. Add to that the fact that Ian is an elite Marine of a class usually only read about, and I was under a little bit of pressure to perform.

I cracked.

For the first two hours, we hung around this ice wall, probably about 50 feet high and roughly vertical, while I struggled up the first 15 feet or so. I was doing everything wrong, using my arms more than my legs (not using my legs at all), and after about 4 moves, my left arm would completely turn to jelly. I could no longer grip my tool, let alone swing it, and eventually would rappel down in frustration. Everyone offered tips (“Don’t use your arms so much.”) and I kept trying. Throughout, my saving grace was only that I kept trying.

Eventually everyone wanted to go somewhere else. I broke a heel bale (see glossary), so we had to get a new one anyway. We eventually decided to try Roaring Brook Falls (I think), a 350 foot frozen waterfall. This is a 3 pitch climb, meaning we had to climb it in three stages. Ian would lead, climbing free with a rope attached to him, then set up a belay from above. I climbed next, trailing another rope like a monkey tail (a very heavy monkey tail) to be used to belay Liz, bringing up the rear. Pressure: rising.

If I couldn’t do it now, nobody could. Ian could probably haul me up a few feet if I got really stuck, but not much more. If I couldn’t make it, we’d have to quit. And getting down wouldn’t be easy either. Really, it was a beautiful situation, one that I don’t find myself in nearly enough. I had to do it. And when I have to, I will. It’s amazing what you can will yourself to do. Clear your mind of questions and just climb the damn ice.

And I did. I climbed a 350’ frozen waterfall. There’s nothing like the feeling of standing on top, looking out over the frosted Adirondacks. It wasn’t a very difficult climb by ice-climbing standards, but the feeling is the same. For me it was the top of the world. There were moments when I didn’t think I could make it over the next bulge, but I did. Color me self-satisfied.

We had to break our “no alcohol for a month” regimen that night to celebrate, but I don’t feel bad. The point wasn’t deprivation, it was to change and examine habits. After a day like that, a beer with the folks you did it with is de rigueur. That’s French.

Tuesday we went snowboarding again at Gore Mountain, had a great time on the unbelievably empty mountain, and came back to the city. Leaving behind the beauty of the “north country” for the city is hard, but it’s nice to be home. I’ll get out there again soon.

More stories to come, as well as some photos.

January 10, 2002
A week. Too long. And

A week. Too long. And this one isn't going to be good. You might as well skip it. Take my word for it. I can't type on these weird Mac keyboards anyway.

So far my new job is just like my old job, meaning I have very little to do. I will soon, though, and it will be harder and more challenging than I'm used to, and, in a certain sense, that will be good. I'm supposed to think that's good, so I'm trying to do so.

Ummm... Half of what I say is meaningless.

I said some stuff recently, I think, that would make some good bloggin', but I don't remember any of it. I think I may have written some of it down, somewhere, but I forget where. It had something to do with "figuring it all out" or "the great answers to the great questions". Or maybe it was the ridiculous answers to the great questions, or maybe the great answers to the ridiculous questions. Maybe the questions were meaningless to begin with. Sort of like this paragraph.

I'm on a meaningless roll.

Maybe a new car, a new apartment, new places, new sights, new modes. I like it. Fear the rut.

I want to plug in my electric guitar, see if it still works, make some loud noises. I want a 4 track recorder to make some songs. I want to learn php.

Oh and then there's the clean month project. I'm not drinking or anything else this month, see what that's like. So far, what, 10 days, it's been nice. I don't sweat while I eat anymore and I've discovered 4 forgotten ways to be judgemental.

It's working out for me just fine, thank you very much.

January 3, 2002
Happy New Year. Maybe I'll

Happy New Year. Maybe I'll say that in lower case. happy new year. Not that i'm trying to diminish its happiness, just looks better.

So, a new year... I made no resolutions; not specific, "new year's resolutions" anyway. Sarah made funny ones, maybe I should make funny ones. I resolve to make funny ones. There ya go. It's not really very funny, but it's sort of ironic, or self-referential, or something.

Wow. A total blank. I'm tired and should probably do this another time. You're not, I'm not, interested in the little details anyway. "I went to Connecticut for New Year's, did some snowboarding, some drinking, some eating, revelled. I started a new job today, but didn't do anything." Stuff like that. It's just too boring.

Maybe my resolution should be to discover the purpose of this here blog-y. What, exactly, am I tyring to do, say, find, communicate here? Certainly not stuff like, "I finally found a good program for getting rid of red-eye in my photos. From drab to fab!!" Certainly not stuff like that.

The real news comes to you in the form of the quote of the day: "Ahhh, dropped the L-bomb."