Day 4 of internet blackout

Well, day four of the great Internet Blackout and things still look grim. To recap, we lost our Tranzeo CPE to our ISP in an intense thunderstorm last Friday evening. I fiddled with the connections and reset the power several times, but no LAN link to my switch. I unplugged it for the night and Jen and I walked down to the Chicken Fest to get some cotton candy. Saturday I called my ISP to report the problem, knowing full well they would not be in until monday, I settled in for a good rant about service and support. The ISP returned my call five minutes after I left the voicemail, I hate having a good snit ruined, but in this case I'll make an exception. I explained my problem with the CPE, but he thought it was still a problem with the uplink connection on the Delta water tower which took a close hit. He stopped out around 10:30am and confirmed the router on our end was shot. He gladly scaled the roof to get the CPE down which he declared dead. He had a spare CPE which he brought back later, but informed me I'd have to re-align the antenna to the downtown tower. The problem here is that it meant going to very top of our roof to remount the antenna mast. Let me just say, that is a long way up and very steep. I managed to get the mast remounted without severely burning my legs on the shingles and hooked up the new CPE...all for not, the "spare" he grabbed also appeared to have a defective LAN adapter (it was a used CPE, but it was better/faster then buying a new one). We called it quits for the day and went swimming at Jen's parents...

movie night

Well, it was actually last night...yesterday after work, Jen and I met up with Dave at the Showcase Cinemas in Maumee for movie night. Last nights entertainment was Batman Begins. Wow, I won't post spoilers, but I actually like Batman again, especially after what Joel Schumacher did to the last few movies...all I can say is thank you Christopher Nolan for a great alternative vision on what has been pigeon holed as campy comic book entertainment, and damn, I want a Tumbler...

After the movie it was darn near 9:00pm, not having had dinner (not counting the bag of popcorn) we headed out to El Salto in Maumee for some yummy mexican cuisine. We had dinner and chatted for a little over an hour before we called it a movie night will have to be War of the Worlds I think...

that warm fuzzy feeling

I find this somewhat funny and disturbing at the same time. I have lots of 2.4GHz crap in my house, the WAP to uplink to my ISP, my in-house WAP, the A/V transmitter, and of course the microwave oven. When we are listening to MP3s on the main stereo (via the A/V transmitter from my computer in the other room) and turn on the microwave oven, we get this horrid sounding interference on the speakers. That is unless you stand at just the right angle between the microwave oven and the A/V receiver and let your body absorb the radio waves being spewed from the microwave. I suppose I could try some k

90 in early June

Wow, the past few days have been impressively (or oppressively) hot. Today is supposed to be 90+ with an added side of humidity. I broke down and put one of the window air conditioners in on Sunday as I was sticking to everything from the humidity. I may have to put the other two in after work today. It's slightly funny that I just decided to turn my furnace off for the year about three weeks ago.

I had a great time this past weekend. Jen and I met up with Dave for brunch and a movie. We opted to see Star Wars Episode Three (my first time). I was pleasantly surprised after the previous two movies, and was really into the story line until the Darth Vader Frankenstein re-enactment ("Nooooooooooooooooo!") which I think I audibly chuckled at. Afterwords, we planted ourselves at Starbucks for several hours and chatted about everything under the sun and beyond, Dave can tell some witty tales. I realized the excess caffeine in my system needed something to be absorbed by something so we wandered down the street to Johnny Rockets for some overpriced hamburgers and fun harassment from the waitress. Jen and I made our way home where a bit of net surfing was done before turning in.

Stratford Roadtrip: or how I escaped the evil clutches of Michigan's highway system

Friday: the expedition begins

We slept in until about 8:00am, but had some chores to address before we could abandon the house for a few days. We eventually hit the road about 11:30am or so, but since the Friday night play was not until 8:00pm, we had plenty of time to make our way there. And it's a good thing as I was not expecting the ridiculous amount of road construction on every major highway in Michigan. I only have myself to blame for this, I should have checked the MDOT web site for current road construction areas, I should have double checked my directions and mapquest or some other service, I should have partially sedated myself, the list goes on. In my own defense, I was really not expecting to have several major on-ramps to I-94 closed for construction. We did get a nice detour through the ghetto, saw several hookers and gangsta looking folk, and after about 45 minutes, found an entrance ramp to I-94 that wasn't closed.

always trying to jack my stuff...

This morning started as usual, with the exception that I took the Toyota into work so I could have one of the tires checked for a leak, but otherwise normal. I get to the third floor of our building where there are three Maumee Police offices dusting for prints and taking pictures of the pried open door to my companies suite. I noticed a couple of police cars in the lot, but seeing as the main building tenant is a bank, that is not all too uncommon (there have been times where the building was briefly surrounded with officers walking the lot with shotguns). I thought the bank might have been having problems and thought nothing more of it.

Review: The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy (no spoilers)

Jen and I ventured out to catch a matinee of The Hitchhiker's Guide yesterday. I like the works of Douglas Adams, they are quirky and unexpected. I think the movie was properly brought to life by a combination of good acting skills among the cast and the advances in special effects. Yes, changes from the book where present, but I don't think it did any damage to the integrity of the story. And quite frankly, anyone who had to endure the BBC series should consider this a gift from God. That being said, I had a few laughs and a lot of smiles through the course of the movie, and to see the subtle use of irony like Deep Thought watching cartoons on a TV is something I still giggle about...

Review: The Golden Compass by Philip Pullman

Having no new Harry Potter book to read, Jen suggested I try The Golden Compass by Philip Pullman. The story is set in a universe closely mirrored to ours. The book hints at links to these universes and ultimately deals with trying to cross them. Being somewhat similar to Harry Potter, the story revolves around a young person trying to identify their past and what the future holds for them. But that is where the similarities end. There is no magic or warm feelings of camaraderie here. There is a good amount of struggle, anguish and death and you never really have a sense of who can be trusted as everyone seems to have their agendas This is the first in a three part series.

A walk in the park...

Having no solid plans, we stopped out to Harrison Lake State Park in Fulton County Ohio. It was a little past noon so we picked up a sandwich from subway and had ourselves a little picnic. We loaded up the kites but decided to take a stroll around the lake. Turns out it was about 3.5 miles around the lake, but it felt good to walk that distance. One of the events along the trail was witnessing a garter snake attempt to eat a bullfrog. That was one ambitious little snake, but there was no way it was going to complete the task, and the bullfrog looked more annoyed then anything. When we approached the feast, the snake was either startled or saw us as a bigger opportunity. It released the frog and eventually slithered back into the woods. To celebrate our unexpected exercise, we stopped for ice cream in Wauseon on the way home...

home again, home again...jiggity jog...

Cursum Perficio...

What a wonderful trip to Maine we had! We arrived home safely around 7:00pm sans luggage, I guess it decided to hang around in Cincinnati a bit longer this afternoon, but is expected to be delivered to our home around midnight. No big deal there...nothing I really need in the short term...

Thursday started out very well. I was able to score airline tickets out of Toledo Express rather then Detroit Metro. It meant a connecting flight in Cincinnati, but when I can park my car and be checked in with boarding passes in under five minutes, and be through security in under four minutes, it's usually well worth a few extra bucks...although it was cheaper to leave out of Toledo this time which does happen. The flights where uneventful and we had pretty clear skies on the way out. I booked Jen a window seat, but I think she got a stiff neck from looking around for hours.

Book: Da Vinci Code

I recently finished Dan Brown's Da Vinci Code, the second in a series of books outlining the adventures of the main character Robert Langdon. While the book does make references to the previous story Angels & Demons, I don't think it is integral to this story line. Being a fan of authors like Crichton and Case, I enjoy Dan Brown's writing style as well as the concepts and insight into religious history presented. I look forward to his other books Deception Point and Digital Fortress.

Dead Can Dance

Yay! Got four tickets just now...I'm so geeked for this. I never thought I would have the opportunity to see them live. We are going to see them in Toronto as Massey Hall in October...this is going to be fun!


We just got back from our trek into the big city. We had some late lunch at our favorite deli and stopped to say farewell to our favorite bookstore in the Toledo area, Thackeray's Books...and take advantage of 35% off all stock. I picked up a router tips and tricks book (the woodworking variety of router) and a few O'Reilly tech manuals for my office. After a pleasant shopping experience, we stopped down to Kohl's for some work clothes for myself and Bed Bath & Beyond to purchase the latest edition to our Calphalon Tri-Ply family, a 4 1/2 qt saucepan. It will be happy with the rest of the other pretty pots and pans on the rack. Last, we stopped to The Anderon's general store for some potting soil and seeds.

2.4GHz Progress

In my quest to make my own home-spun media system thingy, I purchased a 2.4GHz wireless A/V sender/receiver bundle so I can drive video and audio from my linux system to my receiver/television in a different room. This makes at least three 2.4GHz products in or near the house. My Tranzeo wireless router to my ISP (channel 6), my 802.11b access point our laptops use (channel 1), and now the X10 A/V which comes in around 2.473GHz (channel 12 I would guess). So I should have pretty good distance between the estimated 22Mhz bleed over, but I was still getting popping when I used my in house access point and the A/V at the same time. Today I repositioned the two units, putting some space and a wall between them and the popping has disappeared. I would guess it's a crappy antenna on the access point but my working knowledge of spectrum usage in the 2.4GHz is amateur at best.

Review: BSG Season Finale

OMG, I'm such a little faboy at times. I didn't think the series could possibly get any better, but it proves me wrong after every episode. There has never been a television show or movie that has made me gasp at the end of an episode. This rivals my beloved Babylon 5, which I still have a great affinity for, but not like Battlestar Galactica. This series has ruined Start Trek for me, it knocks down Star Trek and takes it lunch money. I can hardly wait for July to roll around so we can pick up on season 2.