Damn livejournal…

Silly me, wanting to change to Rich Text mode in the middle of an entry. No, I didn’t want to keep that entry or anything. Gyarr.

So, as I was saying before I was so rudely interrupted… Where the hell is the goddamn fuse?! I cracked open the computer, and the fuse is not where Aaron said it would be. I can’t seem to find it. Hopefully, he’ll be able to help me locate it this weekend, and we can go buy a new one at Wal-Mart or Ace Hardware or something. I hope it’s not actually the power supply itself, because that would suck. It doesn’t smell like burnt computer, though, so that’s good.

Although I did discover why you’re supposed to keep all the nice plates closing up the back of your computer. 🙂 Lotsa cobwebs. Jinkies.

I read something on CNN.com today which would explain some of my personality quirks. Scientists have found a relationship between teen depression and a small hippocampus, which is the part of the brain responsible for emotion and motivation. It’s possible that adolescent depression could actually shrink the hippocampus, they say. Maybe that would explain my reticence to get up in the morning, eh? —Oh, well. It was a good try, anyway.

And here’s a funny for ya: Maybe your parents or grandparents were involved in social or veterans’ clubs like the VFW, the Federation of Eagles (Fraternal Order of Eagles?), the Moose Lodge, or similar clubs. But have you ever heard of… The Fraternal Order of Orioles?! One of their local “nests” opened an account with Sky recently… which is probably more than I should tell you. Now I have to kill you.

Stupid computer

So, here I am, using this LiveJournal I signed up for. Why, you might ask? Well, because my computer blew a fuse during last night’s windstorm / power funkiness. I haven’t opened it up to make sure, but that’s gotta be it.

I’m currently on Aaron’s kick-ass Dell instead of my slower Power Mac, FYI.

I just didn’t want anyone to think I’d forgotten to post, ya know. So, here I am. On LiveJournal.

I had fun overachieving at work today, for once. There’s a bi-weekly report we have to compile for the banking centers, and up until now we’ve had to do it by hand. Print out individual reports, add up each entry, type it into a spreadsheet. We all maintained that there was an easier way, that Programming should be able to make it just go. And, this time, we thought we were golden. It still didn’t go into Excel, but at least all I had to do was type numbers straight from one to the other.

Then I found out—after I’d completed the spreadsheet—that the report I’d used may not be completely accurate, and that we may have to do it by hand again. Gah! So, while my boss was waiting to hear the word from Programming, I got a jump on doing the manual report. It wasn’t until late this afternoon that my boss got back with me and confirmed that, yes, we’d need to do the report by hand again this time. When I pointed out that I’d already gotten half of it done anyway, he said, “Staying ahead of the game, huh?” I told him I try.

But, yeah. So rarely do I get to make brownie points at work that this little incident made me awfully damned proud of myself.

Hopefully this LiveJournal thing won’t be a necessary part of my blogging for long, but I’m glad to know it’s here when I need it. 🙂

More Randomness

My stack of scrap paper with scribbled blog ideas is piling up, so I need to unload some random thoughts today.

Someone at work said last week that she’d heard from someone that gas prices would hit three dollars a gallon by summer. She was indignant and said, "Do you think the people of this country will stand for that?" Now, I don’t know about you, but I’m not precisely sure how I’m supposed to not stand for it. I can’t exactly stick it to the oil companies by not buying gas for my car. I’ll show you, big oil tycoons! I’ll ride my scooter to work! Ri-i-i-ight.

Are you ever disconcerted by your pee after you take some wicked strong vitamins? Swear to God, it comes out looking radioactive or some shit. This is not a color that normally occurs in nature. Of this I am certain. It looks like those ugly bright neon piss yellow School Crossing signs they’ve started putting up. Yikes.

And on the subject of health… it was bad enough when they came up with caffeinated water, but NicoWater?! I’ve got your NicoWater right here: just let my step-Gary ash his cigarette into the bottom of your Dixie cup. WTF?!

I’m suddenly kind of lethargic and blech, so I’m going to wrap this up for now. Have you noticed, o loyal readership, that I’ve been trying to update on a daily basis for the past couple of weeks? Even if I have nothing of daily merit to report? All six of you that check out my little page are getting the royal treatment. And, from referrers and ISP details, I’ve successfully identified Eric as a regular visitor and Dan and Garza as sometimes visitors. Somebody’s got Sprint that checks the site daily, Ameritech is Garza, WCNet is Eric, Comcast is Dan, someone’s checking from Elder-Beerman… and I don’t really feel like comparing logs to figure out anybody else tonight. Blah.

Have a good one, y’all. I’ll shout out again tomorrow.

Ohayocon4

…was a lot of fun. Arrived at the Hyatt Regency Columbus at noon, got registered (after standing in line for a half hour), and ate lunch at the Subway in the hotel’s food court. (FYI, the Atkins-friendly Chicken Bacon Ranch wraps are yummy, and the actual wheat/soy wrap itself is really quite good, but the portion size leaves a little to be desired.)

After lunch, we hit the Dealer Room to spend our respective wads of cash. Two circuits around the Dealer Room yielded:

  • a Chibi Totoro plushie (the white one)
  • a Chu Totoro keychain (the blue one)
  • a deck of giant Totoro playing cards
  • Warcry: a book of Berserk postcards / art
  • a Berserk Dreamcast poster
  • a Gamera toy
  • an Aruru capsule toy (with Puyos—from the Puyo Puyo video game)

…and left us enough money for dinner later.

(more…)

Funny Joke for Today

Husband: How about we swap positions tonight, honey?
Wife: That’s a good idea. You stand by the ironing board,
           and I’ll sit on the couch and fart.

Later: I know only about six of you visit regularly (and I know this for sure now because of my happy SiteMeter), but I’ll post this anyway. Spread the word.

I was reading the news portion of Something Positive, and found this link to a friend of a friend of the artist. This woman, Rebecca, and her family and pets escaped their burning house this week, but lost all their personal belongings. There’s pictures and everything, and multiple people have cross-references from their pages, so I’m confident it’s not a hoax. I went ahead and donated ten bucks, and am planning to donate a few extra Sci-Fi/Fantasy books I had been going to trade up at Grounds. If you’d like to donate, I’m sure she and her daughters would appreciate any little bit.

Homebuying, Step 1: Complete

hello, keyword boy.It’s true: we’ve been pre-approved for a mortgage loan. w00t!

Now, Step 2 is finding a realtor and looking at some houses. John from NOIC is being nice enough to do some legwork for us and hook us up with a realtor. I’m sure it’s not just for our benefit, though; I’m getting a definite "you scratch my back…" vibe about his relationship with the realtors he’s researching for us. That’s cool, though. Whatever gets us into a house by April.

While I was looking for houses on Realtor.com the other night, I found this sidebar. Read the caption carefully. Then scratch your head at the randomness and move on.

We’ve found a couple nice homes on Realtor.com, mainly in the Wildwood/Reynolds Corners area of Toledo. We have a few requirements/preferences:

Three bedrooms (or two plus a den) • Attached Garage (preferably two-car) • Dishwasher • Central Air • Pleasant neighborhood (where we can safely take walks)

It would also be nice to have a washer and dryer included in the deal, but we can always buy those later. If push comes to shove, we could install central air later, too, like the Frieses did, but we’d kind of prefer to enjoy the first summer in our new home.

There are lots of other houses that don’t meet all our wants, but that are still pretty cool, too. I think we’ll find something right for us in the right amount of time and for the right price. It’ll be fun.

Weird-Ass Dream

I was living at Mom and Gary’s place in Parma, but my step-brother Philip and my cousin Michael were there. In the dream, I was 18 and a Senior in High School, Philip was an underclassman (age 16?), and so was my cousin Michael (age 14?). This is totally skewed from real life, where I’m currently 27, Philip’s 17 and Michael’s 19.

In my dream, it started out as late evening. My glasses were broken, and I knew I had to go get them fixed; The left lens had a clean horizontal break halfway across. But Gary informed me that I had to drive Philip to school, and bring Michael along (who, in the dream as in real life, had some mental/behavioral issues). I argued that I would be late for school if I did that; and besides, it was my car and I was an adult and shouldn’t have to ferry everyone around, etc, etc. My arguments didn’t fly, though, and I was stuck with the job.

Michael was taking a bath, and I checked in on him to make sure he was OK and getting clean. (No, I don’t think I’d have to do that in real life, FYI.) I explained to him that he’d be coming with me to the eye doctor’s and to take Philip to school.

Suddenly, the scene shifted to morning. My glasses were worse: both lenses were cracked and the glass was bent and curled, like melted plastic, with white opaque stripe-like sections along the breaks. But I had to drive with them, because I could see better with them on than not. I considered my strategy: my first priority was getting my glasses fixed, which I figured would take no time. I’d bring Michael along to that, leaving Philip at home. Then I’d swing back and get Philip and take him to school.

Unfortunately, we got a late start. It was about 10:00am before Michael and I got to the Optometrist’s office—partially from wrangling Michael, and partially because I could barely see to drive. I had expected the fix to take five minutes, after which I could swing by and get Philip to school late. But, after turning in my glasses to be fixed, we sat in the waiting room for a good half-hour (by the dream-time internal time-lapse clock, of course). I finally went up to the desk to check on when my glasses would be done… and saw two pieces of corrugated cardboard on which were written each patient’s last name, time in, and estimated time out. I found my last name, Schnuth, and saw that my glasses had been received at 10:15am. My replacements weren’t expected to be complete until 5:00-5:30pm. I was pissed that I’d just wasted half an hour, and just as pissed that I’d have to drive home with no glasses. Around this point, I think I woke up.

During the course of the dream, Michael was actually good company, and we had some "normal" conversation. This is something I didn’t really get to have with him much in real life, as I didn’t spend much quality time with him once he reached a good high school age where we could talk on the same level. Even at that, he has (or at least, I assume he still has) a bit of a communication issue where he speaks very loudly and broadly, although he has a big vocabulary and tends to use long words. He always sounds like he’s amazed (or thinks you should be), has his eyes wide, and uses broad gestures to explain himself. He’s also a bit nervous-seeming, due to his hyperactivity—he tends to fiddle and fidget and be physical, which is sometimes unwieldy at his current height of 6’6″, but was even so back when he was shorter than me. 🙂

He and my aunt moved south several years ago—I don’t think I’ve seen him since he was 16. Michael is now 19 and lives in a group home with other… well, other people like him, I guess. He’s high-functioning autistic. According to my aunt, he’s currently enjoying a part time job at a computer repair shop, where he’s well-liked. He’s also lost weight and is down to 250 (from 300+).

Last I heard, he still worshipped the ground I walk on, too. 😉 I’m not sure if that still holds, since I lost touch with him for so long, but it was intense enough before to be disconcerting, if flattering. I need to write him a letter and let him know I miss him.

I Miss My Friends

What’s the opposite of a fair-weather friend?

Some people complain about friends and acquaintances who disappear at the first sign of trouble. I seem to have nearly the opposite problem: some of my friends only come to me when they have problems. I don’t hear from them for months and months, especially if they’re in a fulfilling relationship; then, as soon as they have a major issue with their Significant Other, or they’re at an impasse about their next career move, a message from them shows up in my Inbox.

Don’t worry, it’s probably not you. Those few people I’m referring to don’t read my blog very often, I don’t think.

Anyway, I miss my friends. I wish I had more contact with everybody, and I’ll take what I can get. Hell, some people don’t even communicate with me at all anymore, not even to bitch. Some people I thought I’d become friends with—or at least close acquaintances—barely even give me a synopsis of the last few months of their lives when I catch them on IM. Which isn’t often, since I get such a lukewarm welcome anymore that I rarely log on.

I sent out Happy New Year e-mails to a bunch of people (those of you to whom I didn’t send Christmas Cards), and only got a few replies in return. I actually still need to respond to some of those replies… Oops. And here I am bitching.

But anyway, I’m going to continue plugging away at my little blog, hoping that my four hits a day are meaningful ones. Maybe some of my anti-fair-weather friends will read this and tell me how great their lives are right now. Don’t make me name names.

And here’s the quotable of the day, regarding Dick Gephardt dropping out of the Democratic presidential race following his fourth-place finish at the Iowa Caucus:

There wasn’t the enthusiasm for Dick.

Democratic Caucus? Sounds more like a lesbian convention to me.

MLK Jr. Day = Day Off Work

Gotta go back to work tomorrow. Don’t want to.

Spent today chillin’, cleaning the bedroom, French-braiding my hair (Go me! I done it!), watching TV, and making a Spearmint candle for myself. Did not spend today reflecting on the life of the country’s greatest Civil Rights leader. That’s OK, though, because when I get Presidents’ Day off next month, I don’t intend to reflect on the lives and achievements of George Washington and Abraham Lincoln, either. I’ll probably do pretty much what I did today.

John from NOIC also had the day off, so he wasn’t there when I tried to give him a buzz. Hopefully I’ll get some news at work tomorrow about the mortgage. Gah. We need to get going on this shit so we can find a damn house and close on it before March 31st.

My boss has this week off. So, it’s entirely possible that my e-mails and phone calls will increase exponentially starting tomorrow, since he left contact information in his voicemail and e-mail for each division of Quality Control specifically. He oversees not only the Patriot Act issues that I work with, but also Bounce accounts, Deposit Verifications, Kiting, and some other stuff I’m not sure what is. I hope this week doesn’t suck. At least it’ll be short.

Saturday is Ohayocon in Columbus. This year, unfortunately, I won’t have a point-and-shoot camera to bring along, but there were plenty of people last year who posted pics online after the fact. So, I will once again be able to post about the weirdness that ensues.

You know, if I weren’t on the Atkins Diet, not yet to the point of adding alcohol back into my diet, I might have given this a go tomorrow night.

Thanks! I’m listed!

Unfortunately, it didn’t occur to me that the link would a.) only link to blog.htm, and b.) be titled with the lame-o title I gave the page, "ye blogs!" Ah, well, I’ve got a link off of Bob’s blog. And I’ve changed the title of this page to "dianaschnuth: ye blogs!"

Hey, random surfers? (I doubt I’ll get any hits, but hey.) You should really check out the full iFramed site — you may currently be missing some vital navigation and design elements. 🙂

I’ve got a lot of random shit to unload again. You should see all the little scraps of paper with snippets of blog ideas scattered on my desk.

I told Deb, my co-worker, that I’d finished a website for selling my soy candles. She’d seen and smelled one of the Chocolate Java Bean candles I’d made, and I’d told her how fragrant it was while burning — a little three-ounce candle filled my whole living room. So, when I told her I was selling them online, she asked how much I was asking. When I told her about five bucks, she said she might be interested in buying one of those. I ended up showing her my webpage (which was the whole reason I told her in the first place: to get some feedback), and she browsed my list of fragrances, asking how certain things smelled. She was also amazed at the copy I wrote, describing my candles. "Enjoy the rich, sweet fragrance of amaretto," and crap like that.

When she found out I had designed the entire page myself, she was duly impressed, and wanted to see everything else I’d put online. So, I figured, WTF, and I surfed off my directory page, showing her all the stuff I’ve got online. It really surprized me how excited she was to see my work. It was like I was some sort of hero or miracle worker. Seriously! She even told me how cool it was to know someone who actually could do all this.

I recall telling her, "This is what I do. I work at Sky to make money, but this is what I do." And it made me feel good to say that and mean it. For once, I really felt like a Web Designer, instead of a hack Photoshop twiddler who makes web pages, or an amateur photographer who puts stuff on the web, or any number of other jacks-of-all-media I’ve felt like lately.

Moving on with more randomness from work… One of the ladies who works in the same room with me got in a car accident last week. She’s OK, but since the airbags deployed, the car is considered totaled. That’s not the best part, though. The best part is that it’s her fault, because she took her eyes off the road to answer her cellphone. A truck had made a right turn to pull in front of her, and was about to make an immediate left, and due to her distraction, she only had time to slam on the brakes and swerve into the ditch. Now everyone she knows is forcing her to use a hands-free headset when she drives. 🙂

Amusing stuff I find while researching clients’ bank accounts for my work: There’s a place in each account where the teller can post notes or warnings on an account, for multiple signers or legal issues or whatnot. One I came across said, "customer has medical condition that may cause mood swings." Wow.

More about my co-workers: Deb’s daughter (one of four children) is in the first grade, and is having trouble with her reading. Turns out that she can write and recognize certain words, but doesn’t know all her letters. The kid’s learning backwards somehow, learning shapes of words by rote without knowing the letters that make them. How bizarre. I don’t remember learning how to read, so I can’t even comprehend that. Once Aaron and I have kids, we’ll have to read to them constantly like our mothers read to us, so our kids will learn to read like we did. 🙂

I’ve got plenty more randomness to report, but I’ll save some for later.