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Memoirs of a Lunatic

The title almost says it all. I'm a little insane, like all folks, and I'm just putting down what I think about. Maybe some of it is funny, maybe some of it isn't. Just come read and find out for yourself.

Tuesday, October 31, 2006


We took my kids out for beggar's night tonight. The weather wasn't very cold, but it was raining off and on. We went over to Alex's house and I was late coming from work (traffic, aargh!), so the ladies took our three and their two out trick-or-treating. A light rain followed them up during their travels.

They got back shortly after I arrived and it was Alex's and my turn to take them out. Fortunately for us, the rain had stopped and we had a wonderful evening to walk the kids around.

My oldest dressed as a black cat, my 2nd oldest dressed as a good witch (pink outfit with black trim), and my son dressed as a spider. They were all so very cute and it was especially fun for my son to get so excited to get suckers. He didn't really care about the chocolate (yay, us), but he had 5 suckers this evening before we really caught on.

What a good night!


At 11/02/2006 10:28 AM, Blogger Princess21 said...

No pictures??? Must see those cuties all dressed up!

Sounds like a fun time...rain and all!

At 11/02/2006 10:33 AM, Blogger Guru said...

I don't think we took any during because of the rain. I should have them dress up again and snap a shot or two. I know they won't argue, they love their costumes!

At 11/02/2006 10:51 AM, Blogger Princess21 said...

You HAVE to have pictures! I mean...what will you torture them with when they are older and dating???

You know...when they are 30!

At 11/03/2006 8:27 PM, Anonymous nicole said...

Yeah, dude, pictures are MANDATORY any time costumes are involved. You'll have to do better next year. ;)


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Monday, October 30, 2006

Desperate Housewives

I am definitely one that thought that DH was going downhill this season. However, finally, they are starting to get into some interesting stuff. If you saw the preview for next week, you see that Lynette and Tom's baby mama are trapped in a store with Jackie from Roseanne wielding a gun.

They hint that someone gets shot and they show Lynette covered in blood at the end of the preview. I think that Tom's baby mama is the one who gets shot (and probably killed). Now that Lynette put that smack down on her last night, that character is no longer needed. Her death would allow Lynette and Tom to have the daughter with no other problems. Neat and tidy.

Any of you see it? Have any thoughts?


At 10/30/2006 8:38 AM, Blogger Gooey said...

I missed it last night to go see Saw III with some friends, though after seeing it I wished I had stayed home to watch DH. Gotta' check it out on sometime this week.

Heroes is where it's at tonight, baby!

At 10/31/2006 2:24 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

spoiler alert. the baby's mama gets the axe. it's true. i'm glad.

At 10/31/2006 7:52 PM, Anonymous nicole said...

I admit I stopped watching it after the first season. I also have to admit that I've recently stopped watching Grey's Anatomy. Somehow it's managed to turn me off lately.

At 11/02/2006 10:41 AM, Blogger Jennboree said...

I'm very pleased that DH has renewed its creativity and now I'm interested again. Last season was so snoring!

I bet baby's mama gets knocked off. She'd already been knocked up, so what's left for her to do?


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Sunday, October 29, 2006

What a Turn

Man, the first week of our youth thing (Plugged In) went great. The next week was a little less awesome. The third week (tonight) was downright awful.

The music beforehand is getting lame (the teens are almost snoozing) and the reality of learning an instrument is starting to wear on the students. Attendance is starting to lag.

I only had one of my two students show up this week and he seems a little disappointed that I'm not teaching him "cool bass licks" to play and am instead teaching him how to play songs in situations where he has never seen them before (a regular occurrence in the church's praise band). Someone has shown him how to play 4 or 5 note licks and he seems more interested in those than learning an entire song.

His assignment this week is to take what I've shown him about learning a song in its entirety and learn and play a song for me (with a cd) next week. Hopefully, that will get him a little more enthused about playing and respecting the work needed to play with a band.


At 10/30/2006 10:03 AM, Blogger Alex said...

I'm with you on this one. I am in disbelief that the two in control are letting this happen, and that it isn't obvious to them that the kids are BORED OUT OF THEIR MINDS!

At this point, I think it's best that we not say anything, but make the best out of our class. The kids in the drum class are enjoying, or appear to be, how the class is being taught. I have a broad skill range and it's becoming a challenge trying to keep the one girl interested while not intimidating the others with the skilled student.

We need to come back and evaluate the success, starting with a survey by the students, even those that dropped out, and find out why.

Next time, you and I need to have total control over this. Now I'm convinced.

At 10/31/2006 7:54 PM, Anonymous nicole said...

I admit I read that first passage as, "Man, the first week our young thing went great."

Something's wrong with my brain.


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Saturday, October 28, 2006


Pittman Running Wild Vs. Minnesota Gophers

My beloved Buckeyes certainly are on a roll, aren't they? Since allowing Indiana to strike first last week, the Buckeyes have put up 88 straight points while allowing none. So much for this being the year that our defense falters! In fact, statistically, this year's defense is better on average. They are giving up 7 less points per game, 10 less yards given up per game, and have 12 more interceptions on the season! Best part? We are still young and getting better. Watch out.

While Troy Smith kept cruising along toward Heisman land, our devastation yesterday left us to rely more on our rushing attack, led by Antonio Pittman who rushed 21 times for 116 yards (a 5.5 ypc average), with 2 touchdowns. Chris "Beanie" Wells did all right by himself, too. Beanie rushed for 90 yards on 15 carries (6.0 ypc average) and a touchdown. He does need to get his fumbling under control before Michigan, though.

All I've got left to say for this evening is Go Bucks!


At 10/29/2006 12:57 PM, Blogger Gooey said...

While I do like that we're undefeated so far this season, I must say it's been rather boring. Huge wins like yesterdays don't make for much viewing pleasure, and I lose interest in the game around the 3rd quarter. Lately I'll just head up to Press Start to hang out towards the beginning of the 4th, because they're usually so far ahead the other team can't do anything, and I can watch the rest of the game at Press Start.

Again, I love that we're undefeated, I just wish there were more intense and interesting games this season.


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Friday, October 27, 2006

I Was Wrong

I thought for sure that the Tigers would win. I was pulling for them to win. I was even sure before tonight that they would win the last three games and take the series in dramatic fashion. I blogged about why I wanted the win and I thought for sure that the Tigers would come through for me.

I mean, wasn't the National League uber sucky this year? Didn't the American League trounce them in head to head games and in the All Star game? I mean, the Cardinals only won 83 games this year. If you throw out shortened seasons, the Cardinals are the first team to win a World Series with that low of a number.

Freaking Tigers.


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Thursday, October 26, 2006


By now, most of you have heard about the fight that occurred on the Grey's Anatomy set. Supposedly Isaiah Washington used a non-PC term for T.K. Knight's sexuality in getting the altercation started.

Now, several "grass roots" Grey's fans are calling for Washington to get fired and his character replaced. Let me start by saying that I disagree with that. He messed up in a heated moment and the people he works with aren't calling for his replacement, so people need to settle down.

However, Shonda Rhimes said that "the [idea] that one black man was interchangeable with another seemed disturbing to me."

It is here that I think that Ms Rhimes went a little too far. People aren't calling for the replacement because Washington is black and they feel that "any old black dude" can fill the bill. I would just ask that she try to remember that there were two Darrens (Bewitched) and two Beckys (Roseanne) , so the fact is that people feel that any old actor can be replaced, regardless of race.

I just think people should calm down and remember how weird replacements are and Ms Rhimes should remember to slow down on playing the race card for when discrimination is really present.


At 10/31/2006 8:00 PM, Anonymous nicole said...

Heh, I'm sure people are making the same observation about my "Bigot Brigade" post. ;)

Now the media is so eager to outline each and every one of Isiah Washington's on-set blow-ups. Impossible to tell how many (if any) of these incidents were exaggerated. But, like you said, they'd probably do this no matter what race was involved.


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Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Pictures From the Game

I talked about going to the OSU game here. Today, I have the pictures that my friend took at the game. The actual pictures themselves are incredible, but they were 2.4 megs each and 2800 pixels wide. I reduced the quality and shrunk them in half for your consumption. Click on the thumbnails to see the full-sized (well, half-sized - but you get the point) image.

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Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Fantasy Time

This year, I drafted a pretty good fantasy team. I thought for sure that I would never lose even a single game. Well, injuries knocked out my starting QB and I got a little messed up. This week, though, I definitely laid the smack down. I beat my opponent 72-52 and I even left 32 points on my bench by not playing (what ended up being) the best people. I'm usually good at getting the maximum points from my team, but I got surprised this week by a few players.

Let's just hope that I keep up my winning ways!


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Monday, October 23, 2006

Great Game

Wow. The OSU game on Saturday was one awesome experience. Probably the best time that I've had at a game yet.

The morning started off early with me heading off to meet one of my co-workers at 8am. From there, we drove to campus and parked at a lot near the stadium. He dropped the $10.00 for the spot (maybe cuz I drove?) and we headed to the Alumni Band's tailgate.

Those folks didn't play around. There were doughnuts, cookies, peanuts, chicken wings (freshly grilled), pancakes, some egg-and-sausage mix, and all the pop and stuff you could ever want to drink. There were Cornhole games all around and people tossing footballs in the parking lot. What a great time!

After being there for a bit, we headed to the Skull Session. The guy that I got the tickets from is "on the list" (literally) and we got to sit on the floor right beside the band and right behind the cheerleaders that came in and did their routine. I had never been inside the Skull Session before, and this was definitely the way to get indoctrinated! Here are some pictures from my phone.

TBDBITL Entrance TBDBITL Seated IU Cheerleaders IU Cheerleaders IU Cheerleaders IU Cheerleaders

After the Skull Session was over, we walked over to the stadium, found our seats and watched the band come in and perform and then do Script Ohio. Then, the game started. It was an incredible performance and I yelled almost every play. I was screaming when I saw how open Anthony Gonzalez was on his touchdown and I couldn't stop yelling when Brian Hartline nailed the kick returner with what is sure to be the Jack Tatum Hit of the Week.

After the game, we walked to our car and left with absolutely no traffic. I dropped my friend back at his car and headed home. I was back 40 minutes after getting to my car. It was a fantastic day.

My friend brought his digital camera (I forgot mine) and as soon as he sends me the pictures, I'll get them up here.


At 10/24/2006 8:02 PM, Anonymous nicole said...

Wow, awesome shots! My phone's photos suck!

At 10/25/2006 9:10 AM, Blogger Gooey said...

It was a pretty good game, even though it pretty much was a blowout. I was a little concerned when Indiana was doing really good in the first half of the first quarter, but remembered that Cincinnati was sort of the same way, and we shut them out as well. Definitely caused me to start drinking earlier than usual in a game, though.

Thank God Jim had ESPNU and let me come over to watch the game. Only thing that sucked was he had a 65" LCD HDTV, but the game was broadcast in 480i, and he stretched the picture to the screen (height only, not full widescreen). Still was a blast though.


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Sunday, October 22, 2006

New Phones

Well, I made the move. Two years ago, I got my first cell phone (4 years after my wife entered the normal world). Now, thanks to some really crappy customer service by Sprint, I have changed providers. I am now one of the 33% of Americans on Cingular.

I know that Cingular has really been trying to push the dropped call deal and all of that, but I never had any signal problems with Sprint. It truly was because every time that I needed something from them, they were rude, unattentive, and slow to respond. Now, my money is going elsewhere... too bad!

My New Phone, the LG CG300

I got the LG CG300 phone (as did Lo). It does not have all of the gadgets that many people want from their phones, but it more than meets my requirements. CNet tested it and found that it had 4.5 hours of talktime (3 hours is the advertised amount). That is good. It has games, internet access, plays MP3 ringtones, a camera with a flash, and most of all, has very clear phone capabilities. In fact, even the people who knocked it (those looking for "features") gave it credit for good phone qualities.

Really, all I want to be able to do is make calls, capture the occasional moment on "film", and play games while otherwise "indisposed" at work. This is a winner in my book!

Best of all, we are getting 200 more minutes a month - with rollover minutes - for $10.00 less a month. Who could be happier?


At 10/23/2006 9:26 AM, Blogger Gooey said...

Welcome to the Cingular fold. We can call each other and not waste minutes! I've got a Sony Ericsson S710a, which is a veritable Swiss Army knife of phones. Basically, it has much, "bling-bling." It's not really a smart phone, which I'm thinking will be my next purchase, but it's very good for what I paid for it. Only complaint has been the non-standard headphone jack, so I can't use it to play podcasts in my car through the stereo.

Oh well. Kyle's leaving for the Marines on Sunday, and I get to, "take care of," his iPod mini while he's gone . . . .

At 10/23/2006 10:07 AM, Blogger Trinity13 said...

Very cool phone!

At 10/24/2006 8:05 PM, Anonymous nicole said...

I originally submitted this to the WRONG post. Derr.

Let me know how that goes for you. I've had Sprint (absolutely sucked), T-Mobile (vaguely okay) and now Verizon (great reception, sucky everything else).

I've also had an LG phone before and didn't have great experience with them. The thing kept freezing up and glitching out on me so I eventually took it back. My father had the same issue with an LG he bought. Hopefully you'll have MUCH better luck. :)


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Saturday, October 21, 2006


Paint.NET LogoI've liked Paint.NET for some time, though at first it lacked the performance and some features to lure the casual Photoshop user away. It wasn't yet good enough to lure even the Windows users of GIMP. How times have changed. As Sarah pointed out, some members of the community at large are starting to really respect Paint.NET and even recommend it.

There are some zealots who will always hate that it was written in .Net with C#, and that is just too bad. [sarcasm]Yes, the people who wrote it (Microsoft employees) were soooo shortsighted to have their free application run on only 90% of computers[/sarcasm]. On top of that, silly people who think that it should have been written in Java to reach all markets are drugged up. Java desktop apps are slow to load and slow to work, why would a Microsoft team shoot themselves in the leg in order to reach that other 10%? Not all PCs have the Java Virtual Machine on them, anyway. I also realize that not all PCs have the .Net framework, but newer PCs certainly do.

That aside, Paint.NET loads more quickly than Photoshop, making it perfect for small edits and other tasks. It can't replace Photoshop in serious art studios, but most home Windows users will find it more than adequate.

Paint.NET's newest offerings can be downloaded here.


At 10/22/2006 1:23 PM, Blogger Alex said...

Paint.NET is the bomb, 100 times better than MSPaint but not as complex as Photoshop. For what I do, Paint.NET is what it's all about!


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Friday, October 20, 2006

Part of the Process

I'm excited. My boss has decided to include me in the hiring process for my company. I am now one of the people who does the pre-screen tech interviews. I've really wanted to be involved with the hiring for some time now and I'm honored that my boss feels that I would do well in this situation.

Thanks for listening.


At 10/21/2006 12:51 AM, Anonymous nicole said...

Wow, that really IS some responsibility. They obviously know you're one of the dependable ones. I'm so proud...and jealous. ;)

I just found out that I got screwed out of a promotion by my completely inept ex-boss. Fortunately I've moved to a new group so I think the evaluation process will be much more fair but it sucks that the last year of my working life was a total waste. :-\


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Thursday, October 19, 2006

OSU vs. Indiana

Ohio State vs. Indiana Ticket

This week's OSU game is only going to be shown live on ESPNU, which means unless you have a killer cable package, or get it and drop it, you will have to go to a sports bar or the like to catch the game. Well, there is one more way to catch the game live...

Go there!

A guy I work with who is someone special with the Alumni Band had extra tickets for this weekend, so he offered them up at cost to co-workers. I snatched one up pretty much instantly, so now my streak of at least one game a year will be intact!

The best part is that this guy has some killer tailgate connections (where guests are always welcome) and can get floor seats to the Skull Session pep rally almost every time. I'm looking forward to a slightly more "inside" perspective to the gameday campus traditions.


At 10/19/2006 3:30 PM, Blogger Princess21 said...

That is very cool!! And I am only a little jealous...which is strange because that means I must like watching the Bucks play! Oh my!! What is happening to me??? I like sports! :)

Go Bucks!

At 10/20/2006 8:32 AM, Blogger Trinity13 said...

You had better start practicing your corn-hole throw! :-)

At 10/20/2006 11:14 AM, Blogger Gooey said...

Well, aren't you the lucky one!

I may have to see if any of my friends want to go to a sports bar to watch the game. Three of us are, "legal," now, so it should make for a fun time.


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Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Encryption Stuff

I'm getting to work on some really exciting stuff with encryption at work. I've done a little bit in the past, but now I am working on something at a much larger scale than ever before.

I'm actually evaluating several add-in products and running benchmarks, as well as working on a homegrown solution for comparison. I have to admit that I definitely like the feeling of having so much sayso on a purchase/decision of this magnitude.

I'm also interested in doing some work at home now, writing my own encryption programs for my own knowledge. This site has a fairly simple algorithm that you can implement in the language of your choice as a great way to learn how to implement encryption from scratch. There is even an encrypted .gif file on that site that once you build your program, you can decrypt and keep as sort of a "certificate of accomplishment".

I know I'm a nerd, but learning new things is fun!


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Tuesday, October 17, 2006


I have worn shorts to work every single day since my boss allowed it back in May. Even this past week as it has snowed and been in the 30s, I've still faithfully worn shorts (because they are comfortable and that's my "steez"). I am about to be rewarded tomorrow as the high is supposed to be around 70. Thank God for crazy Ohio weather!


At 10/19/2006 8:48 AM, Blogger Trinity13 said...

I hear ya...I refuse to give up my flip-flops.

At 10/19/2006 2:11 PM, Blogger Guru said...

I just can't get into flip flops or sandals. I like the feeling of socks on my feet when I wear footwear.


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Monday, October 16, 2006

Those Who Can't... Teach

So, we're teaching teens how to play instruments, right? Right. I'm in charge of bass guitar classes, right? Right.

Here comes the fun part. I only kind of know what I'm doing! Fortunately, this is a beginner's class and I am qualified to teach it, but my biggest problem is teaching them the right way to do things and not the bad habits that I picked up in my self-taught ways.

I am honest and up front, though, showing them the right way, then showing them how I do some things wrong, and how it hinders me in one way or another.

The good news is that we are off next week, so I'm going to get a chance to make sure that I am practiced up. I can't have one of my students come back and be able to fly through the scales faster than I can!!!!


At 10/17/2006 9:16 AM, Blogger Alex said...

This teaching thing is pretty cool. I now have 6 students with a couple of decent prospects, including a girl that already can play a little bit on the cans. I had them behind the kit on Sunday evening actually playing a simple beat. It's a little more aggressive than I would like to be teaching, but we only have 8 weeks, so efficiency is key!

At 10/19/2006 2:13 PM, Blogger Guru said...

I'm glad you are finding some talent. My two guys are both pretty green, but they both know another instrument (which means they already know what it takes to get proficient) and at least one of them seems very driven to do well.

In guitar, there are a couple of talented folks. We just may be able to field an all youth band yet!


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Sunday, October 15, 2006

Go Tigers

Okay, anyone who knows me knows that I follow Pittsburgh's pro teams. I love the Pirates, the Steelers, and the Penguins. However, I have been pulling for the Tigers since before this season began. Why? Because they hired Jim Leyland (former Pirates manager) to lead them this season.

Jim Leyland, in turn, hired Andy Van Slyke (my all time favorite position player) to coach first base, Don Slaught (former Pirates catcher) as a hitting instructor, Lloyd McClendon (former Pirates player and manger) as the bullpen coach, Gene Lamont (former Pirates third base coach) as the third base coach, and Rafael Belliard (former Pirates player) as his infield coach. So, as you can see, the Pirates are being represented well this post season.

Now the Tigers, who lost 91 games last year, 90 games the year before, and 119 before that, are going to the World Series to hopefully bring home the title.

I know they are from Michigan, but I'm granting them honorary Pennsylvania status, so GO TIGERS!!!


At 10/16/2006 8:06 AM, Blogger Trinity13 said...

Tigers? Never heard of them. :-P


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Saturday, October 14, 2006

Spartan What, Spartan Who

Ohio State vs. Michigan State
Wow. The Buckeyes went into Michigan State's house and smacked them in the mouth, peed on their floor, and then dared them to say something about it. I couldn't have been happier with how that went down if I had played in the game myself.

Troy Smith kept up his campaign for Heisman and Ted Ginn set the all time Big Ten record for punt returns for touchdowns. But, even more than that was the fact that the Buckeye defense gave up less than 200 yards of total Michigan State offense.

These are definitely good days to be a Buckeye fan.


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Friday, October 13, 2006

Christmas Come Early?

Wow. I arrive home and what do I find? In my mailbox is my latest ESPN The Magazine (a favorite read of mine), my first Spin magazine, and a bass guitar DVD that I had just ordered 2 days ago. Additionally, a book that I had been looking forward to getting in at the library had come in and my wife had picked it up and it was waiting for me at home on the counter (thanks, honey!). I don't know what to dig into first!

The Spin magazine was a free subscription that I received and I used to have a subscription like 12 years ago and I was curious to see what had changed. The bass DVD is from here and I'm excited to see what it can teach me. The library book is The C Programming Language THE book on C. I know C# and Java and Visual Basic and I've really wanted to learn a low-level language, so this is it.

I've got some nerdy times ahead!!!


At 10/14/2006 10:45 AM, Blogger Gooey said...

I could have swore you already knew C/C++ . . . .

At 10/14/2006 12:18 PM, Blogger Guru said...

I know some c++. I wouldn't say I was any kind of expert, but with my current knowledge and experience, I can get by. In fact, I've written a keyboard hook in c++ that I call in another C# program that I wrote.

I don't, however, have any experience writing very low-level c, and I would like to know it.

At 10/15/2006 1:40 AM, Blogger ghraper said...

I'm pretty good in DbMaj.


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Thursday, October 12, 2006

Stick It

Stick It
Last night, I watched Stick It, another gift from the NetFlix fairy. I really wanted to see it after seeing the trailer which had some great and funny moments in it.

The movie itself was really good for the beginning and middle. However, some things are left a little unexplained and the end of the movie becomes a commentary on judging in the sport of gymnastics. In spite of that, I still enjoyed it and I really liked how people came together at the end.

Some of the best parts of the movie were the dialog. Here are some examples:

Haley: Stop being so nasty, Joanne.
Joanne: It's not called gym-nice-stics.

Joanne: Call me!
Poot: Stalk you!

Haley: I'm so sure I'm practically deodorant.

Let me also say for the record that my enjoyment had nothing to do with the pretty girls in leotards or sportsbras and short shorts who were omnipresent in the movie. This review is based solely on the merits of the art.

Thank you.


At 10/12/2006 2:46 PM, Blogger Princess21 said...

We watched this last weekend. And I was not surprised at all that A managed to stay awake during the whole thing! :)

The phone thing was my fav! Ahhh...teenage girls! So fun!

At 10/12/2006 4:59 PM, Blogger Guru said...

The phone thing was awesome. I especially liked that the one girl kept repeating what Haley was saying even though Joanne could hear the whole thing!

That led Joanne to say, "What is with all the closed captioning? I'm not mute!"


At 10/13/2006 9:06 PM, Anonymous nicole said...

Wait, so because the ending centered around gymnastics judging makes it less likable? Say it ain't so! Dude, I LURVES me some gymnastics!!!

And I have to say the clips looked pretty funny. But I don't think Eric will let me rent it. ;)


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Wednesday, October 11, 2006

It Was An Accident

Man, I usually get to do some interesting people-watching from my window seat at work, but today was especially eventful. I don't know why no one in my office heard the crash, but I happened to glance to my right and spot this little doozy.

Accident in Delaware, Ohio

It seems that the silver and the white cars had an accident (I think one of the cars ran a light) and then the silver car got spun out and hit the tan truck that was just sitting. It was definitely a bad scene.

I don't understand why people just can't drive when it gets wet!


At 10/11/2006 10:30 PM, Anonymous nicole said...


But I'm with you on the non-driving in the rain. I've actually been on the road when the rain started and SEEN the cars suddenly slow down. Northern Virginians do NOT do precipitation in any form.

At 10/12/2006 10:49 AM, Blogger Guru said...

At one time, I lived in Southern Virginia (Chesapeake) and I know what you are talking about. A dusting of snow down there caused widespread panic.


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Tuesday, October 10, 2006


Last night, instead of practicing, my band decided to see what we could record, given the equipment that we had available to us. We practice at our church, so we had a sound board and two recording devices.

We had three options for recording. We could have just tried to set levels and record everyone playing at once, we could have recorded each instrument individually and then mixed it with computer software, or we could have recorded in "layers".

While the best sound would have come from option 2, we went with option 3 and it turned out pretty good. Eventually, I want to do the second option and really work the song together, but for our time limit and setting (there were 5 kids there), we chose the best option for the day.

Alex laid down the drums first, then we looped that back through, found the best levels, and Alex laid down the bass. In fact, the recording we have with just drum and bass sounds great. In case you were wondering, Alex played bass (instead of me) for 2 reasons: he is better than I am, and I was manning the recording at the time.

Then, we looped that recording back, set levels, and recorded the acoustic guitar. Alex usually does some acoustic guitar for us as well, but in the interest of not giving him a big head :-), we had a friend come in and play it for us. His interest in the project was that the praise band at the church is interested in recording some things and wanted to see how viable it is.

Finally, we looped that recording, set levels, and recorded Megan's vocals. Finding the right levels for the singer was the hardest part, but I think it ended up great. Contrary to her earlier problems of being a bit shy on the mic, Megan's problems last night were that she was just too loud and I had to keep turning her down in the mix. She has really made great strides in her vocal projection.

So, I brought the finished song home, ran it through some quick paces in Audacity, and sent it off to the people who were interested in what could be done.

Now, if I could just get some record executive to accidentally hear and love a copy...


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Monday, October 09, 2006

Plugged In

Plugged In Logo
As Alex has already written about, our church kicked off a youth worship ministry last night. The goal is actually two-fold.

First, we want to get the youth more involved in worship, especially with musical styles that they are more comfortable and familiar with (read: louder and harder!). Secondly, we are holding instructional classes to teach the youth to play instruments so that they can one day lead their own worship time and ultimately become a part of the worship in the big church - both as youth and as they get older and need to find a way to get involved with the church as adults.

I'm co-teaching the guitar/bass class (my part is the bass). We had a very good turnout for our class. There were 10 teens there to learn guitar (acoustic and electric) and 2 teens there to learn bass. We obviously won't be able to teach them how to be experts, but as the guitar teacher says - we want to teach them how to teach themselves. So much learning with an instrument comes from self-study and practice. We just need to give them a foundation to build on. We are also going to have more classes later as we grow, some of them covering more advanced topics.

I'm excited for how this has begun and excited to see where God takes it.


At 10/09/2006 10:21 AM, Anonymous nicole said...

I wanna learn (re-learn) some instruments but I realize I've got two strikes against me:

1) I don't live anywhere near you.
2) I'm by far NOT a youth.

Oh well, I tried. ;)

At 10/09/2006 10:37 AM, Blogger Guru said...

Maybe we can knock out two birds with one stone and I can get you hired at my job and then you can come (you look young enough) and learn to play an instrument on Sunday night!

At 10/09/2006 12:15 PM, Blogger Alex said...

It was definitely good times last night. My class went pretty well, considering there is nobody with any kind of drumming knowledge, so I am in a worst case scenario situation. But that will benefit me in the next month when I start giving private drum lessons, giving me experience working with those from the very ground up.

At 10/09/2006 1:15 PM, Blogger Guru said...

Sitting under Alex for drumming lessons would be like sitting under Einstein for physics lessons!

At 10/09/2006 2:54 PM, Blogger Alex said...

Ahhh, shucks...


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Sunday, October 08, 2006

My Fault

Okay, it has to be my fault. I bet lunch on the Steelers game again and again I lost. Things were going so well at the beginning, but then it all fell apart. I even was given the 3.5 points!

Freaking A! I must be jinxing them. How else could such badness be happening?


At 10/09/2006 9:19 AM, Blogger loelsh said...

Stop betting and they'll win!

At 10/09/2006 10:11 AM, Blogger Guru said...

I know. Except for the remaining bets that I made before the season began, I'm not going to make any more. I'm tired of costing them the game!

At 10/09/2006 10:24 AM, Anonymous nicole said...

I had to stop watching Redskins games because I swear every time I'd even LOOK at one they'd lose. They'd be up by like 16 points but the minute I stumbled into the room everything would go downhill.

Maybe you're suffering from the same condition?

At 10/09/2006 10:38 AM, Blogger Guru said...

Dr Nicole, I think you may have hit the nail right on the head. I have Chronic Steeler-Jinxitis


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Saturday, October 07, 2006


Today started off well. I finished fixing a computer from a GAP i.t. job and dropped it off. The customer loves G and I and talks well about us to everyone she meets. It is pretty cool to be appreciated to that degree.

After that, I got some lunch with the fam and then went home to watch the Buckeyes roll on to victory. Lo has some relatives in town, so we went and visited them after the game.

After leaving there, we headed home and G called me. Even though it was pushing 10pm, I headed over there to work on some music stuff and re-borrow his acoustic guitar. G showed me how to play some difficult parts on a song and then we just jammed together for a bit on songs that I knew (one of which he didn't know, but picked up immediately).

So, big thanks to G for his time this evening (and his guitar) and all-in-all, this wasn't a bad way to spend a Saturday!


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Friday, October 06, 2006

Pump Me Up

I just found out today that my boss is officially buying memberships to World Gym for anyone in the company that wants it. Not half off, not a special deal, free. I'm pretty excited about that. There is a World Gym 7 minutes from my house and 4 minutes from my work.

People I work with are excited, too. We've already agreed to work out together after work on some occassions. I'm sure that all of you know that it is easier to work out when peeps are pushing you.

Even though it is official, I don't have the membership in my pudgy little hands yet, so I'm hoping that everyone is still excited to do some work when we get them. Maybe I'll even have something closer to a six pack than a keg!


At 10/09/2006 10:25 AM, Anonymous nicole said...

OMG, first I've gotta stalk your church and now I've gotta stalk your JOB???? So much work! ;)

At 10/09/2006 10:39 AM, Blogger Guru said...

I am really very fortunate and blessed to work at such a great place. Like I said above, maybe you should come work here, though it would mean leaving the East Coast the all that that entails.

At 10/10/2006 9:24 PM, Blogger Kristi said...

Wow! That is fantastic. I know I could use a free membership to the gym to get rid of these pesky pregnancy pounds.


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Thursday, October 05, 2006

Math Problems

Last night, my daughter brought home some weird math problems. She is in 4th grade and this is an example of the hardest of the problems that she showed me.


We were given no clues as to what the letters were, but had to solve for o, p, and t.

Here is how I solved it for her.

I noticed first that the "ones" digits had p + t = t, so logically, p must equal 0. That made the problem now

Next, I noticed that o + o = 0. That means that o must be five, since if o equaled 0 also, the problem would work out to be 000 + 000 = 000 and that didn't make sense. So, that left the problem as


Now, the 5 plus 5 in the "tens" column of this carries a one, so we really have 2t+1=5 in the "hundreds" column. That means that t = 2. So, the math problem is


Ta da!!!! That seems like hard work for 4th graders, doesn't it? It took some leaps of logic that I don't know that 4th graders do routinely. Oh, well. Better to challenge than coddle.


At 10/06/2006 7:44 AM, Blogger Alex said...

That does seem a little out there for a 4th grader, that's very algebra-like, which I didn't touch until 8th grade.

At 10/06/2006 7:56 AM, Blogger Trinity13 said...

Looks like something from Wayside Stories

At 10/06/2006 3:59 PM, Anonymous nicole said...

Would you believe that I was fine until you started turning the letters into numbers? Then you TOTALLY lost me! ;)

At 10/09/2006 10:13 AM, Blogger Guru said...

Alex: They are trying to instill some kind of logical problem solving. If it works, I'm all for that.

Trin: Yes, that is where it is from. I found that out after the 3rd day when the teacher sent home a note saying that if the *parent* didn't understand and couldn't do it, they could send a note back with the child stating that. She also sent home some photocopied pages from the books, explaining how to do them.

Nicole: Don't lie. You knew the answer before I even got to the first step!


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Wednesday, October 04, 2006

A Good Day

Well, today was finally a good day. A successful day.

I finished a major milestone in my project and delivered a meeting on it and declared it ready to use. All of the things that were proving to be difficult got solved and we are now ready to move on to another phase.

I had been very bogged down with this project and now I have turned a major corner. I hope to never be this unproductive again!


At 10/06/2006 4:02 PM, Anonymous nicole said...

You're so wholesome and productive. So full of integrity and drive. Actually being happy about "turning corners" in "major projects". Managers must LOVE you! ;)

At 10/09/2006 10:13 AM, Blogger Guru said...

Wholesome. Are you mocking me?

(Managers do love me.... :-) )


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Tuesday, October 03, 2006

A New Day

So, the accident that screwed up my trip home last night really was a big deal. Multiple cars and a fuel spill and one fatality. You can read about it here (Local news link, don't know how long they keep stories up).

Then, on the way in this morning, there was an overturned car on the freeway and it took me an hour and 10 minutes to get in. I was so full of the road rage at my misfortune....

Then I got to see double rainbows this morning and it looked so nice that I just had to take a picture. Maybe it is a sign that stuff is going to look up now! Or, maybe it is a sign that sunlight was diffused through water vapor. Either way, here is the picture.

Two Rainbows


At 10/04/2006 11:40 AM, Blogger Trinity13 said...

Very cool pic!!!

At 10/06/2006 4:00 PM, Anonymous nicole said...

Awesome shot of the rainbow. I don't think my picture-taking ever does them justice.

There have been a number of fatal accidents out this way too. What's really heartbreaking is hearing the traffic people talk about it like it's no big deal. As if someone's life wasn't lost.

At 10/09/2006 10:15 AM, Blogger Guru said...

Trin: Thanks.

Nicole: I just got lucky taking that quickly out the window at 60 miles an hour with my camera phone.

It is sad about how people react to the news of fatal accidents, and I have to admit, I am callous about it more often than not.


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Monday, October 02, 2006

Long Day

Wow. So, I left for work at 7:30am. I worked hard all morning, then had some meetings. After that, I took my co-worker to El Vaquero (Delicious!) to pay off the Steelers' loss to the Bengals. Then, back to work for more grind.

I ended up staying until 10:20pm. Luckily, my boss bought me dinner (yay!), so it didn't seem so bad. I'll tell you what was bad... the drive home! You might think that driving home at around 10:30 at night would be smooth sailing, but no! A section of the freeway was closed down and we were forced off at some stupid exit. I had to find some crazy way home, dragging out my trip. In fact, I didn't get home until about 11:30pm.

7:30am - 11:30pm. That is a long day!


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Sunday, October 01, 2006

Where Did the Weekend Go

I don't get it. How is it Sunday night? Where did my time go? Friday night blew by, Saturday was almost non-existent while I looked forward to the prime time Buckeye game, and today just shot by, as well. I didn't do hardly anything that I wanted to do. I didn't even really get to rest. What the heck did I do?

I'd almost be happier to hear that I blacked out or something so that I had an excuse for this loss of time!


At 10/02/2006 10:08 PM, Anonymous nicole said...

Newsflash: it's Monday night. Is that any better than Sunday?


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