Archive for March, 2005

March Summary

It’s been a hectic few weeks.

My grandmother went into the hospital a few weeks back, weak from her medication and dehydration. Fortunately, she was staying with my parents at the time, so they were able to get her to the hospital. She’s in rehab now and may be home by the end of the week, but has battled some coughs, pain, and the general difficulties of an older person fighting cancer. It looks like she’s pulling through OK, though, something she keeps doing no matter how battered she gets. What a lady.

On the other side of the coin, Huyen’s grandmother passed away at age 90 last week. The funeral was yesterday. Of course, it’s tough on her family, but they’re all dealing with it well. Huyen lost her grandmother in Vietnam last year.

Not quite sure how to make this transition, but today I had my toe cut open. A few weeks ago I stepped on (I think) a shard of glass that we somehow missed when cleaning up a broken glass in our kitchen a few weeks before that. I thought the glass had come out of my foot since it bled pretty well, but as time went on, it became clear I still had something embedded in my foot. So I went to the doctor today, he numbed up my toe, and hacked away at it for at least 15 minutes, looking for the glass. At one point, I asked him, “Have you gotten through to the other side yet?” He wasn’t sure if he got it out or not, so he prescribed me some antibiotics (because, he said, he “went in pretty deep”), taped me up, and told me to get it x-rayed so we could see if it’s still in there or not.

We had the family in town this past weekend for Easter. It almost didn’t come together with everything going on combined with illnesses throughout the family, but thankfully everyone was able to get together for a bit. We made a trip to the farm and brother-in-law Matt made the amazing discovery that the beer in our basement (from our wedding!) hasn’t gone bad yet.

Huyen and I have been planning a trip to New York and finally booked our room. I am so psyched to get back to New York with nothing but time to explore, try restaurants, and just hang out. Looking forward to meeting up with Eric (and Mike?), Hashim, and possibly Isa and Talia. Thanks to Meredith for pointing out a Greyhound New York special fare that I missed that will allow us to travel for under $70 total. Vive la cheap!

(Nearly) finished up a mini-project for a co-worker. If you like modern folksy singer/songwriter stuff with violins and stuff, check out Where’s Aubrey.

We got 1/3rd of our furniture order in today. One chair down, two sofas to go.

Tomorrow: back to work after a few days off.

ABC’s proofreaders are idiots.

Just seen on 20/20 across the bottom of the screen:

“Give kids lot’s of attention.”

Lot’s.

Is that short for “lot is” or does the “of attention” belong to lot?

A Note To Anyone Who Works In An Office

I’ve noticed that some people have a really annoying office habit: leaving dirty dishes in the sink. Sure, there’s a sign that says, “Don’t leave dirty dishes in the sink. Rinse them and put them in the dishwasher.” But when people see the dishwasher is either clean or full and dirty, they just leave their dirty mugs, bowls, and silverware in the sink.

As far as I’m concerned, that’s really disrespectful. Despite what some people may think, it’s not an administrative assistant’s job to do your dirty dishes. If the dishwasher’s full, take three seconds and wash ’em yourself! There’s dish soap and a scrubber right there. It doesn’t take long, I promise.

Instead, they let them “soak” (the polite way of “letting dishes sit there because one doesn’t feel like dealing with them”… I do it at home) and figure they’ll get put in the dishwasher the next time it’s emptied. What ends up happening is a sink full of mugs and bowls. It’s foul.

So, people, please… wash your dishes.

I predicted David would go all the way. Dude was amazing.

Tonight I missed the American Idol results show because I opted to watch King of Queens instead of a 30 second moment stretched to 22 minutes. I flipped over once and saw the three least talented singers in the batch on stage with the least amount of votes. Seemed right to me, and I was ready to see any of them go.

I didn’t see the results, so I hopped on the show’s site and they hadn’t announced who got the boot yet. Figuring the message boards would have instant reaction to the show, I headed to the “community” section. I was right. The crap-ass Lindsey was the one who went. Fine. But check out this message posted to the forums:

Everyone one of you know that Lindsey deserves to be on American Idol and Mikalah should have been the one to go.

Did y’all notice that it was all white girls in the bottom three. Why do you think that is? I’ll tell you why? Because all the blacks voted for the blacks plain and simple. This is a racist show and it is very obvious to me who will take home the title – a BLACK person – that’s who!!!!

Let’s see 3 out of 4 AI’s have been black – that should tell everyone something right there.

Lindsey, honey, we love you and we don’t care that you lost – we’ll have a big old party for you when you get home. You are our AI!!!!!

Are you freaking kidding me?! That right there is someone with a serious chip on their shoulder.

So, to you, President Bush, I say, get over it. Lindsey’s gone.

A Golden Girl in the making

Lysse dancing to the Golden Girls theme

From my sister:

had to tell you..lysse [who is 2 1/2] knows how to open windows media player on our computer and start playing the golden girls theme ;) I caught her singing and dancing to it a little while ago….

ahhhh golden girls..what kind of horrid childhood would one have w/o it?

I’m so proud of my niece.


Remember when VH1 never played videos by anyone that was black?

Happiness is six hours of old school hip-hop videos and Yo! MTV Raps clips on VH1 Classic this weekend. While they didn’t play anything super obscure (no Stezo, in other words), they did manage to get a Geto Boys video on there I hadn’t seen before and some other goodness.

I’d love it if they started airing old episodes, in whole, on a regular basis. I never got to see the famed final episode of Yo! MTV Raps Today in 1995 and have been itching to catch it ever since.

Stupid Windows

Here’s a tip: never highlight all the files in the c:\windows\fonts\ directory and click “Properties” expecting to get combined information about the files. Instead you will get an individual property box for every one of the several hundred fonts you may have installed.

Tip #2: you can move quickly through the windows that pop up by holding down ENTER.

NY, we’re coming back

Huyen and I have been planning a trip to New York for a few days in the coming months. When I was there in November, I wasn’t ready to come back home, so I vowed to return again before long and visit all those other restaurants, record shops, clubs, and museums I wanted to hit.

In the course of planning, though, I’ve found some interesting things, as well as one really annoying thing.

First of all, the annoying thing. I’m trying to book a room at the Jazz On the Park Hostel. I go to their reservations sections, tell it I want a room for five nights and give it the starting date. It returns a grid of what types of rooms (private, dorm, etc.) are open for those nights. I see that there’s a Twin Private room (two beds for two people, the only type of private room they have for two) that’s available all five nights. So I tell it to book it for two people. I get back an error that reads “NOTE: Insufficient beds available in the room you selected, we have selected rooms with enough beds to accommodate your group.” The reservation has been changed to a 12-person mixed dorm room. I don’t think so.

So I tried booking a twin private for one person. Same error. A single private for one person. Same error. I want to give these people my freaking money and they won’t let me. I’ve e-mailed the site that handles the booking to see what they say. Otherwise I may have to see if they take phone reservations.

Figuring out how we want to go is the next issue. I decided to price out all forms of travel to see which is the cheapest. Here are the options from most expensive to least expensive (prices are for two people):

  1. Most Expensive: Amtrak – $320, plus we’d have to find our way to a station. The closest is 45 minutes away.
  2. Independence Air – $230 + between $20 and $40 to get from the airport to the city
  3. Driving – about $220 ($30 in gas, about $150 to park at the Port Authority bus station ($25/night), about $40 in tolls)
  4. Driving, renting a car one-way up and back – about $148 $167 ($108 $127 for the car, about $40 in tolls)
  5. Greyhound – $116 with 7-day advance purchase.
  6. The infamous Chinatown buses – $40

Greyhound also leaves not far from our house. However, it requires a switchover in DC (which I’ve done twice in the past and both times it’s been a debacle) and their time schedule for the days we want sucks. One way is about 7 1/2 hours, though I’ve always found Greyhound always gets to their destination early. Yeah, the bus sucks, but that’s quite a savings versus flying or the train.

Viren suggested what turned out to be two of the three cheapest options. I actually really like the renting a car idea, one-way in each direction (unlimited miles). Gives us a little more flexibility and, yeah, I’d have to drive in the city for a short bit, but I think I could handle it. Plus, if we wanted to stop off in Jersey to visit my family on the way back, we could.

I love planning trips (and no, that wasn’t typed in a sarcastic tone).

Laze in South Africa

Apparently, I was quoted in a South African newspaper, The Financial Gazette: Morgan Heritage: reggae’s first family (and a slightly more readable version).

Now how the heck can I get a print copy?

The Lightening of the Wallet

Just got back from dropping a few grand on furniture. I’m still limping from the pain.

We spent a couple of weeks trying to decide between two sofas (one was a “chofa” and I swear to you I will never use the word “chofa” again on this site). Being the indecisive pair that we are, we decided to buy both and use one for the living room and the other for the family room. Considering we haven’t purchased any furniture since we moved into our house five years ago (and that was only a bed for the guest room), it’s not really all that painful to drop some dough.

Now comes the 8-12 weeks of waiting.