Traveling

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Not as glad to be back

Tuesday, January 15th, 2008

A scant 5 days ago I was glad to be back in Seattle. Unfortunately I can’t same the same about being back at work the last few days. Aside from work it’s been showing (glad it started after I got back safe and sound) which always puts me in a bad mood. It’s cold, wet, and nobody here knows how to drive in it!

Glad to be back

Friday, January 11th, 2008

CES was an exhausting blast of a time, but I sure am glad to be home. I got home last night a little after 9 and hung out with Scott for a bit prior to passing out in my own bed. Skype was glad so see me last night, but I could tell he was a bit angry with me for leaving. By this morning that all seems to have melted away into his normal cuddly self.

I’m off through Monday which is nice – having 3 days to relax after CES is key to not collapsing into a sick little mess. I’m mildly terrified of the email nightmare I’ll be walking into when I get to work on Monday, but that’s the price I pay for taking a week off.

Tase me bro!

Wednesday, January 9th, 2008

When going to CES one expects a rough week involving countless interviews, hour after hour of writing, and defending oneself from PR reps from round the world. One thing you don’t expect is to get the living daylights shocked out of you. First and foremost watch the video below for a chance to see me get tasered. After all, it’s hard to pass up an opportunity to see some poor sot get tasered – particularly when they signed them self up for it (full waiver and everything).

Yes I’m OK. Yes I was a little numb for a while. And surprisingly I’m actually more pro-Taser than I was before this whole thing started. It’s effective at dropping you for sure, but really doesn’t leave lasting harm, and assuming you don’t have any weird medical problems it’s surprisingly safe from what I’ve read.

Oh yeah – and you can get the file here if you really want it. A longer version with far more details including what lead up to this will be posted to Gear Live in the next couple of days.

Update: The Gear Live video (which is over 7 minutes long and has a lot more lead up, comedy, and wonderfulness) has gone live. check it out, or better yet give it a digg.

2008 CES: I’m here!

Sunday, January 6th, 2008

I’m also exhausted – I could barely sleep last night with the excitement and ended up getting about 4 hours of sleep. That coupled with both of our flights getting delayed to get here has left me simply exhausted.

Had a great dinner with Chris from Bloghaus and partied a bit with some of the Monster Cable guys – but now the time to sleep has come. I’ll post more of my adventures shortly in the hear future – I promise! If you simply can’t wait you can always check out my Twitter feed for the minute by minute, blow by blow of my CES experience.

Prelude: CES

Friday, January 4th, 2008

It’s the Friday before CES starts and I’m finishing up the last details so as to be ready for a flight that leaves frightengly soon. I finished up work yesterday, set my OOF (Out Of Office) and checked out – for the next 11 days I don’t even have to think about work; something that hasn’t happened in a really long time.

So far I’ve actually made good progress. I made it up to Broadway to pick up some Gear Live branded business cards for CES, have done 5 loads of laundry, packed most of my stuff, and cleaned up. I still have a little work to do, but over all I’m feeling much better about leaving – thanks to Traskpro

Amazingly with all the CES stuff I did today I even found time to do a few usability tweaks to Traskpro. Now tags can be entered separated by spaces, commas, or semicolons, and tags can be marked as high or low priority by tagging them ‘high’ or ‘low’. I got some great user feedback from two of my users and hopefully this will make entry more intuitive for new users by sticking to the arching design goal of flexibility.

Not too sure if I’ll be doing much personal blogging from CES – I will be pretty busy this year between doing video production and writing up the sights and sounds of CES. Check out the Gear Live coverage of CES, or you can click to see Gear Live filtered to only my content.

Funeral for an aunt I never knew

Saturday, October 20th, 2007

Sitting in the crisp cold of an open-air stone mausoleum in Walla Walla lays the ashes of Tami Anderson, the estranged aunt I never knew. I’m a little confused as to how I should feel about the whole experience – I never knew her, talked to her on the phone, or really knew of her aside from knowing that my mother had a sister.

After getting the call nearly a month ago informing me that ‘Tami has died’ I’ve gone through a strange progression from barely knowing of her existence to slowly lifting the shroud of mystery that has long covered my mothers side of the family. I’ve reached to my mothers half-brother (trailer-park loser), searched the internet for her abusive and estranged father (rotting in a California Veterans Center, broke, drunken, and worthless), and sifted through death records looking for other half-siblings and blood relatives.

The more I learn the more I realize how my mother is a shining star – an amazing person who has made a name for herself, becoming a loving wife, mother, and friend. She has propelled her career to lofty heights, is a well-respected pillar of society here in Walla Walla, and has a network of friends that care for her. When I look at the rest of my mothers estranged family and compare it to the family I know and love it’s obvious that the two are night and day.

After attending the funeral today I feel strange about the experience. It’s weird sifting through all the photos of Tami and looking at her lives leftovers I feel like I should feel something, but I still not a spark of emotion or connection stirs.

I know my sister has some desire to reach out to the side of the family we never knew, but my brief brush with them has left me with a sour taste in my mouth. I have no desire to dig deeper into the depths of that particular branch of my family tree, preferring to leave it to slowly age from this earth, myself and my sister it’s only real legacy.

Not the best of days

Thursday, October 18th, 2007

Today is not my day in any way, shape, or form. I’ve gone from thinking I might be sick to actually being sick. Upon waking this morning I spent a good 15 minutes in the shower hacking up one of my lungs. Thank goodness I had a spare.

To make matters worse while driving to work today the check engine light lit up on my dash. With an impending trip to Walla Walla tomorrow for a funeral I’m a little nervous about it. I am currently calling University and Barrier Audi trying to get an emergency appointment so I can find out if it’s a serious problem or not.

Update: So I’m still sick, but I finally made it home to be sick in bed which is a marked improvement. On the way home I stopped by Barrier and they hooked up their diagnostic console to my A6. The good news is that it’s only an exhaust leak – perfectly safe to drive with on my way to Walla Walla this weekend. They set me up with an appointment for next week so I can get it fixed, and the only downside in the interim is that I’m spewing slightly more CO2 into the atmosphere than I normally would.

Off to bed – I need about 24 hours of solid sleep!

A new perspective

Wednesday, July 18th, 2007

Today sucked for a variety of reasons. I had a court appointment for a speeding ticket at 9am at the Walla Walla District Court that didn’t turn out like I had hoped, spent more than 6 hours driving in my car, got ambushed with presentation duties in a meeting upon returning to work, and to top it off there were several accidents on 520 on the way home making my commute worse than normal. I’m tired, hungry, very glad to be home.

That being said I feel pretty damn good about myself! Sitting in court for 2 hours waiting my turn at justice roulette gave me an opportunity to see a stream of inmates from the state penitentiary, and various other dregs of society parade before the judge all with problems far worse than my own. There is something highly sobering about seeing a man brought to court for a list of charges so long that it actually made sense to alphabetize them, and see the ridiculous scuffles neighbors get into aired out for the world to see in public court.

It’s days like today that remind me that I really do have a good life – I might get stressed out from time to time, but when it comes right down to it I’m a productive member of society, I have a decently paying job, I’m father to the worlds coolest dog, a ton of great passions, a mortgage, car payment, and in general have my life together. Things could be worse – much worse, and it’s good to be reminded of that from time to time.

Dear Anonymous,

Monday, July 16th, 2007

To whomever put the deliciously tempting German chocolate and cream cheese cake topped with cherries in the break room at work with a “take a piece” sign: my diet hates you. I don’t hate you, I love you in fact, but the case is clear: my waistline suffers for your gastric generosity.

Regards,

Sparky

P.S. Getting ready for trips sucks.

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