Thursday, December 02, 2004

Guess Who's Back -- Back Again: That'd be me. Back for a quick update.

First off, I was 3 - 2 in football picks, my worst week yet this season. Wouldn’t you know this was also the week that I actually wagered money on them, since I was in Vegas for Thanksgiving. Still you can’t complain about coming out ahead, and they did a bit to alleviate my horrible showing at the blackjack table. A full accounting is coming (both of the picks and the trip), but I remain jetlagged for the moment so I'll need a few days to get back to what passes for normal.

On this trip, I discovered a couple of things. Not the least of which is that I really need a better understanding of my camera. Virtually every one of the pictures I took of the strip at night came out blurry as hell. If it was just a few of them I could pass it off to the fact that it was bitter cold and I may have been shivering. But all of them? Nope. Either I'm doing something wrong or the camera is. I'm guessing me.

The other thing I realized is that my laptop is well nigh useless. This is a Dell Inspiron I bought a coupe of years ago. The power supply has always been flaky; sometimes after having been shut down for hours, it inexplicably boots up. Seriously freaky if it happens in the middle of the night when it seems like an eerie blue glow is emanating from the next room for no reason. Now I discover that it will only hold a charge for about 15 minutes. Which when combined with the fact that I could not get the hotel room connection working meant that I had to hunt down internet cafes on the Strip and the laptop was essentially a 10 pound albatross I got to lug through various airports.

Plus, the CD burner doesn’t work properly. It will duplicate entire CDs via Roxio, but can’t copy ad hoc files to a CD for backup. What a POS. When you combine this with the fact that my desktop is also on its last legs and recently needed a solid weeks work to reconstruct after a disk crash, it's clear it's time for me to invest in new computer infrastructure. Lucky I've been spending an insane amount of money on recreational travel.

Fortunately my employer provides interest free computer loans so it looks like I'm going to pick up a new IBM X series sub-three-pounder with built in wireless and take the hit over the next eighteen months as a paycheck deduction.

Anyway, I've finished reading The Moviegoer by Walker Percy. At the outset I thought it might turn out to be one for the Pantheon, but now I don’t think so. Not that it wasn't rewarding, but it is a difficult book to get a grip on and in the end, the objective is not all that exceptional. A wonderful main character, though, and some interesting perspective. I hope to do a full review.

At the moment I am reading The Whole Wide World, by Yvonne Castaneda, an author of my acquaintance. You'll get the scoop on that too.

But I really really really really really need some sleep. More soon.