Spending the long weekend working backstage at the Dickens Christmas Fair. And by 'working', I mean 'taking pictures of new costumes and doorwarding the Costume Shop'.
The Dickens Christmas Fair is going on until the weekend before Christmas. The Cow Palace Annex has become Victorian London, with Mr Scrooge and young Mr. Nickleby and the dance party at Fezziwig's Shop and the lowlifes around Fagin's den. Think of the ultimate literary cosplay. There are over 900 cast, vendors, and crew, in costume. The Costume Shop has to approve all clothing for the proper era, fabric, construction and look. And we record every one of them. So I've been sitting in the breeze, every weekend since Halloween, taking pictures and taking names. It's been a lot of work to a good purpose. I'll be happy to get warm again someday, though.
We got the check from the insurance company for the car that got totaled August 2012, when a real estate agent on her way to a deal pushed my son off the road (with my wife and her two-months-out-of-surgery ankle in the passenger seat). Two and a half years of the agents for four different companies playing circle jerk, and we got $616 for the car.
Which was just a little more than enough to pay for the plumber to come out on Sunday morning and snake out the main drain line, and his buddy the other plumber to come out on Wednesday night and replace the hot water bib for the washing machine, which had come loose from the pipe while I was trying to remove the old hose.
So I got my plumbing bills paid, with enough left over for a tank of gas. I suppose I should be grateful. Let the record show that I am sufficiently grateful.
I think it was Steve Wright who said, you know when you're walking down stairs and there's one more stair than you thought, so you step out and for an instant you're balancing for your life on nothing? I'm like that all the time.
Well, it's something like that, and it's true.
For my next trick I'll need a volunteer - Warren Zevon
The truth: I did all my grieving for Spock when 'Wrath of Khan' came out.
There was no promise of a 'genesis planet', no 'Spock saves the whales'. This was the end of the movie, and as far as I knew, the end of all Trek movies. I mean, how could they do more movies if Spock wasn't in them? So Spock was dead.
I was in middle school in 1966. Spock was who I wanted to be and could never be. Spock was able to take all McCoy's insults and suspicions and racism and let them bounce off. When someone tried to beat up Spock, they got their ass handed to them. He had the answers to the questions. He wasn't the hero, but he was there, and boy was his sex life a cosmic screwup, but that wasn't till later.
So my idol was dead. Heroically, which was great, but dead. And I had to deal with that.
Then, a few years later, they came up with another movie to regrow his body and shove him back in.
I was furious. They had killed him, and then they had the GALL to say, "Ha, ha, just kidding, look, here he is!" I still have never watched STIII from one end to another. It's got some great scenes, but I can't stand it.
After 'Spock Saves the Whales', I got used to him being around again. And I could see that Leonard Nimoy was a hell of a lot better Spock than William Shatner was a Kirk.
So having Leonard Nimoy and Spock around again was kind of a freebie. He had been gone, he was back, and he was still pretty cool. Kelley and Doohan passed on, and I mourned them appropriately, but I had never wanted to be a mad genius engineer as badly as I wanted to be a Vulcan.
STL:TNG did a damn good job of giving Ambassador Spock a way to be left behind but not forgotten. I consider the two new ST movies just another crude ST timey-wimey hack, and have not seen them. The car commercial was hilarious, though.
So, here we are again, and I am not mourning Leonard Nimoy, I'm grateful for having my Yoda back for a couple more decades.
A lie can be a short-term way of handling the world until you're ready to deal with the truth. "F*ck it all, I don't care any more" is just such a lie. You care, you know you care, and you know that lying about it isn't going to work very long. But the utility of the lie is that maybe it will let you keep going until you are ready to deal with the truth.
It doesn't work for long. Maybe it will work just long enough.
The Office has decided that all of us sysadmins need training in a vendor product that is used on systems that maybe three of us ever touch. The overt theory is that since we carry the on-call phone on rotation, the affected servers may go down when one of us ignorant ones is responsible, and the mail will not go through. The conspiracy theory is that the training budget has to get used somehow, and blowing it all at once is easiest.
So I will be at school at work, from 9 AM to 5 PM.
The problem with this scenario is that my usual hours are 6 AM to 2:30 PM. Driving to work so as to arrive at 9 AM means starting off on a fifty-mile drive JUST as the Bay Area commute clogs to a halt, and being behind the wheel for two hours instead of one. The same applies for the commute home, which is worse. The people who live on the Peninsula are not affected by this, as most of them get to work between 8 and 10 anyway.
So I am looking at five days of commuting during the worst possible commute time, arriving at work stressed already, and getting home very late with blood spurting from my eyeballs.
I am taking the coward's way out, and have booked a motel room ten minutes from work. On my own dime, of course. My Wife was away in Texas all last week, so I have had two days in her company and now I get to move out.
Last Friday, I had a performance evaluation meeting with my manager, and she said she had heard about this course, and, my goodness, that's a long commute, and ha ha maybe I should get a hotel room for the week. Thanks, mem-sahib, glad you're OK with it all.
For some reason, I have not been feeling particularly amusing or chatty for the last few days. Don't know why.
Uri235, a comrade from the CTC Forums, was on this side of the country to go to FurtherConFusion 2015. So I made arrangements to meet him there. I don't think I've been to a con in several years, but I remembered that FC was fun.
So, an hour down the road to San Jose.
Then an hour standing in line for registration. Really? An hour? On Sunday morning, it still takes ten to fifteen minutes per patron to register?
Now, the program. FC is being held over the MLK holiday, beginning on Thursday. The program on Sunday is ... rather scant. Well, OK, most patrons were probably up partying on Saturday anyway, but really, the offerings were kind of thin.
Went to a very good panel on the gods of Egypt. No wonder I couldn't keep it all straight: three thousand years of changes and battles and assimilations and heretics and empires kept rewriting the books. Good information.
Well, all the panels are closed for lunch, but the Art show should be cool. I'm sure it was, but it was now closed for all the pieces to be picked up by the auction winners.
Wandered the huckster room for a while, found a T-shirt, but the entire area was smaller than I expected. There was a booth specializing in hyenas, which should make Kathy Garrison happy.
Finally hooked up with Uri, who is Bucephalus. Went out for lunch, traded some gossip back and forth. He's OK, worth the trip to see.
Looking at the afternoon schedule, the only panel I was at all interested in is already half over.
So, back in the truck and up the highway to home. The timing was not good to see the con. I should have gone Saturday, but I had an Eagle project to work on. But it was cool to meet Uri.