Thursday, July 29, 2010

2010.07.29 Thursday

Getting dangerously close to the end of July. Oh time. Where do you go?

Work is in a weird state of being busy, but not being rushed. Just need to keep pushing through.
Tonight is the last softball game of the season, and unfortunately I will be missing it. I think that totals 3 games that I missed, so I played I think 50% of the games, not bad. What's my reason for missing it? Just a concert.

So a couple of my good buddies that used to live in the same neighborhood, and ended up going to the same high school, were performing at Stubb's BBQ. Yeah that's right. Sure, it might be just an indoor show, but Stubb's is a pretty big deal. Their band, The Window Theatre opened first. Their show included some new songs from an EP they will be recording in August. I'm pretty excited about that. They used a few cell phones to create some feedback and encoding distortion for one of the new songs; pretty damn creative and got the audience involved. They were followed by a couple of acts from Denmark, one of which was called Strawberry Blonde. I can't remember what the other act was, but it was just a lady and her piano. After that, a band called The Steps was up. They had some technical difficulties in getting their show started, but they rocked the F out. They seem pretty big in Austin.

Then the headliner, Danny Malone. I only sampled a couple songs the night before but still had no idea what to expect. KUT sent out a representative to give the band their proper introduction. Actually, I didn't know this before, but today is Danny Malone Day, according to the mayor. Danny actually doesn't play with a full band much, he just goes up with an acoustic by himself. The performance was amazing, full of nice little effects here and there, plus some crowd participation. I was definitely surprised and enjoyed every minute of it.

Happy Danny Malone Day.

2010.07.28 Wednesday

No kickball today. The weather decided to poop all over everything for most of the day. I actually checked out the radar and a good portion of the US looks like it's raining right now. This is one crazy wet summer.
The work day seemed longer than normal. Wrapping up lots of loose ends takes a while and seems to never end.

At home, I played some Ace Combat 6. I'm pretty close to having all levels on all difficulty completed. I still need to unlock one difficulty setting, Ace of Aces. Unfortunately, nobody is completely sure on how to do this....

According to this FAQ posted on Gamefaqs by Charles Guthrie, "Hader102"

Not much is known on what exactly Ace of Aces is or how to unlock it. Some speculate that it is 1000/1000 gamerpoints, and others think that it is going to be DLC in the future. Nobody rightfully knows, and we can only guess now.
UPDATE: Apparently it is going to be DLC in the future, as an article suggests. However the article does not completely confirm this either, so it may be that it is 1000/1000 gamerpoints. If it is DLC though it has not been released yet.

Helped out Habs with his motorbike again. This time we took apart the forks and drained the fork oil. Lots of parts all packed in there, and spring loaded, so it was a bit scary at first.

For dinner... well I pretty much had no food at home. Time to go to HEB. Shopping for food while hungry for food is the hardest thing I've had to do in a long time. Everything seems like such a good idea.

Got home, finished up my laundry. Dinner is shells+cheese with a pita chip + hummus appetizer. Watched Tosh.0 and mythbusters, then went to bed.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

2010.07.27 Tuesday

Couldn't really sleep much. I think I had too much sleep, or the driving did something weird to me.

Work was slightly upbeat. That "second half" I mentioned Thursday that I have to finish today went pretty smoothly.

Back at home, I helped Habs take off the wheels to his motorcycle. Well actually, we started working on it, then realized he needed more tools because we couldn't just hack away without the right tools for the job. Quick trip to Autozone, I grabbed an oil filter for my car (Autozone actually has a selection for the kind that I need, unlike other stores), Taylor got an air freshener, and Hab got his tools.

Quick pit stop at chik-fil-a for refueling.

Took the wheels off without much of an issue. We definitely need to remember to do everything as tight as possible when putting it back together.

Made myself a late dinner to supplement only having a sandwich at chik-fil-a. It consisted of macaroni noodles topped with a sauté of garlic and jalapenos. Turned out kinda gross and too spicy, but good experiment and was able to try out a homegrown jalapeno.

Monday, July 26, 2010

2010.07.26 Monday - South Padre

Everybody woke up in a pretty bitchy mood today. Excuse the French. Really just needed to focus on getting our stuff packed up and hitting the road. Does it matter how we get home? Not really. Some people would have you believe otherwise.

I drove most of the way home, Kelc continued playing with her new toy. Ate subway. Hit some rain and traffic once back in ATX. Mostly an uneventful drive, but I got through quite a bit of albums to put on my list. I'm getting dangerously close to 1000 albums.

Unpacked. Feels like South Padre was just a dream, and I was just packing up a few minutes ago.

Went out for Applebee's and Ice Cream, Smallville and zzzzz.

2010.07.25 Sunday - South Padre

Breakfast at the Palms. Great place, looks out at the ocean, fresh food.

Today is mostly a shopping day. Had Italian Ice Cream. Went to the convention center for art exhibits. Some very cool artwork down there. Surprisingly, not many artists have websites. Seems silly to me since you can reach more people that way.

Drove to the north end of the island. It's surprising how quickly the shops die out, and there is nothing but sand dunes and a dinky 2-lane road.

Back at the hotel, went down to the beach. Built a sandcastle finally. Kelc and Nathan and I made a huge pile, then carved out a pyramid structure. It actually turned out pretty good.

Pirates Landing for dinner. They must have been understaffed or something because it took forever to get a table and get food.

Made drinks to try and finish up the alcohol. Watched Miss Congeniality II. Are those two things related? Maybe.

2010.07.24 Saturday - South Padre

Stayed in a good amount today. Kinda worn out from the sun and waves from yesterday.

Later, we played a huge game of keep-away; adults versus kids. Well, what exactly am I? I feel and act like a kid, barely do anything really adult-like. Played on the adult team since they needed the help, pretty much won.

Walked down to the beach late evening, didn't do much. Kelc and I went to a personal dinner at taco bell (fancy, I know). Shopped at Anna belles. Played a bunch of SSX back at the room when it was dark.

Had to get some Dairy Queen for late night dessert. Seems like everybody is wearing jumpers these days. I don't think I'm a fan.

2010.07.23 Friday - South Padre

First full day in South Padre. Slept in pretty well.

Skipped breakfast for some good beach time. The ocean was pretty hardcore today. Yesterday was rated to have 4 foot waves, which are kinda big, but today had estimated 8 foot waves. Heck yeah. Kelc and I couldn't even make it out to the second sand bar. Back on the beach, we wanted to build something in the sand, but couldn't figure out what to make, so we eventually gave up.

Went back to the pool area for a hot dog lunch. Took a mini nap next to the pool. I went to go get some balls, and before I knew it a huge game of (American) football was underway. We had young'uns, and a few old'uns. I think there were something like 15 of us playing at one point. Shirts vs skins... just kidding. We were all in swim suits, which made it pretty difficult to remember who was on what team.

Later Kevin and I went out to the second sand bar. The waves (8 on the scale) were ridiculous and relentless. I'm definitely going to feel it tomorrow.

Cleaned up and prepared for dinner. By the time we were leaving, I was already feeling exhausted from the hardcore waves. I might even have a slight concussion because I felt so out of it. We went to Daddy's for dinner. Table for 26 please....

Thursday, July 22, 2010

2010.07.22 Thursday - South Padre

The day is here. Well mentally I feel like I'm halfway gone already. Vacation time.

No wait, major events happening at work that need full attention and completion. Awesome. Too bad that I only can do half today and then half when I get back from vacation, meaning I don't get that fulfilling feeling of completion. Kinda blew right through lunch.

After work, Kelc's super early-bird birthday gift was finished charging. The electronics geek that makes up a majority of me was forced to play around with it. Kelc finally made it over, she promptly took over. I hurried myself to pack up a bunch of (unnecessary) crap to take to South Padre.

We were on the road by about 6:45p. Stopped at a Whataburger...somewhere. A couple more stops here and there... then we were on the island at 1:30a-ish. Unpacked a little, hopped into bed and hit the snooze button.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

2010.07.21 Wednesday

Curveball. Going to the dentist this morning. Awesome. My last experience was so great that I might as well go every 6 months to keep it up. They managed to tear up my gums pretty well this time (and every other time I go). I don't see why they think everybody has the exact same mouth as others. Some people have sensitive gums, some people have sensitive teeth, some people have "wisdom" teeth. Treatment of every mouth shouldn't be the same, but yet my gums are always too soft or weak, thus they bleed all over the place, and hurt for a few days after an appointment. The only thing the dentist does that I appreciate is the x-ray. I can't see intricate bone structures, so that's pretty awesome. What is not awesome... gagging on the apparatus that you have to keep in your mouth to take an x-ray.

Made my way back home to get dressed and get things for work. Checked a few internet sites that I normally check daily, for deals and whatnot. Turns out the ONE DAY I don't check the sites early in the morning, is the day that they have a deal on a USB flash drive... free after rebate. UGH MR. CRENTIST, UGH.

Work flew by pretty fast. Next up, kickball game. And... dang. Another loss. This team only had 3 girls too, meaning they took an out every time there should have been the fourth girl. Bummer.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

2010.07.20 Tuesday

Groggy-licious. Again I'm super groggy and slow to wake up the day after working out. Not only that, but I had a hard time going to sleep last night. Why is this? I don't understand why my body is tired after I go to sleep, and not encouraging me to sleep earlier after participating in such strenuous activity. Some things I will never understand.

It's getting increasingly difficult to push forward with work. Just thinking about spending time out on the beach. Even the long-ass drive down to South Padre sounds like fun. Can't wait for sand volleyball, tennis, swimming, boogie boarding, sand castles, good food, great people. Work lately has been more about discovery of problems, and finding ways to get past these roadblocks.

After work, I took a quick nap, then went out to dinner with Kelc to meet up with Nick. He's back from Iraq. Pretty intense stuff. Sometimes I ponder about how different I would be if my life went in completely different directions.

Did random things around my room, then sleep.

Monday, July 19, 2010

2010.07.19 Monday - Polishing Aluminum Guitar Stomp Box Pedal

Funky headache when I woke up this morning, probably from the taco b last night.

Work went by rather quickly. Also got some gym time in. Pretty successful day.


Yesterday, I spent a good chunk of hours grinding away at medal, putting some blood sweat and tears into my DIY guitar pedal. Actually, I spilled no blood, and I only cried when I saw the final product :-P I got the 250+ kit from B.Y.O.C. (actually was a gift for my b-day) which comes with a bare aluminum enclosure.

My goal: Polish the top and bottom of the stomp box to (near) mirror finish.

Tools needed for the job:
-Something that you want shiny (needs to be non-anodized)
-Wide range of sandpapers (I personally had 200, 320, 400, 1000, 1500, 2000, and 2500)
-Hard surface, like a chunk of wood or some relatively flat paneling
-Metal Polish (I used Mother's Mag & Aluminum Polish)
-Dremel high speed rotary tool
-If you are Dremel-ing, highly recommend safety glasses

So how exactly does one go about getting some metal from dull to shiny? Lots of patience and elbow grease. I've done a little bit of searching around the internet for information on how to do something like this, but a lot of tutorials expect you to have big fancy tools. I don't have that, and I don't have the space for some of that stuff.

Here's the basic process.
1. Clean off the surface you'd like to polish with water and soap
2. Starting with the lowest grit, then gradually working up to higher grits:
A. Place sandpaper on hard surface, abrasive surface side up
B. Wet down the sandpaper
C. Place object with surface you want to shine against the sandpaper
D. Move object back and forth until all areas of surface appear to have the same "grain" and are smooth
E. Repeat all parts of step 2 EXCEPT each time you start using a new sandpaper, rotate your grinding motion (or rotate the piece) by 90 degress. Also be sure to rinse everything often.
3. Clean off everything by rinsing with water
4. Place some metal polish on the freshly sanded surface, and polish away.

There are a couple reasons to do the 90 degree rotation between grit levels. First off, if you visualize the surface as mountains, you grind away most effectively if you cut across the peaks and valleys. For instance, if these vertical lines are the peaks...
| | | |
| | | | <= grind them away this way =>
| | | |

Another reason to do the 90 degree rotation, you can actually see the difference between each level of sandpaper. You can see all the spots that have not been ground away from the previous grit. I'll show you in a little bit.

Now, the pictures. First up, this is what I started with. This is pretty much untouched aluminum. I have no idea how this was machined or created, but it looks pretty terrible. Even if I was going to paint it, I would highly recommend doing some base sanding, then priming, then painting, then clear-coating... but we will save that for another blog :-D

Here are all the pieces of sandpaper I had. I prefer having longer rectangular shaped pieces, and just grinding away lengthwise. I have (pictured from left to right) 200 grit, 320 grit, 400 grit, 1000 grit, 1500 grit, 2000 grit, and 2500 grit. This is just the back side of the paper. If I were to do this over, I highly recommend starting off with a lower grit (100 or 150), and not doing a jump from 400 to 1000 like I did (at least add a 600 or 700).

Here I tried to show that yes, the paper needs to be wet. It's called wet-sanding. Not only does it help keep metal dust particles from flying into the air, but it actually sands a bit more uniform since the particles can just wash away.

This is the results of the first level of sanding (200 grit). This part took the longest. Essentially, I converted some random gross surface to a uniform surface. You will want to spend the most time in the lower grits since they are most abrasive (they do more to the surface). I promise you, take your time in the first couple stages of sanding, and it will pay off later.

The next couple pictures show the 90 degree rotation I was talking about earlier. It's kinda hard to get a picture of this, but hopefully you get the idea. With the 200 grit (pictured above) the "grain" of my sanding was left-and-right. When I started the 320 grit, I started grinding away up-and-down. This hopefully shows how you slowly grind away at the peaks and valleys left behind by the other lower grits.

I'm pretty sure my camera started crapping out, and writing over it's own pictures or something. I've taken over 10k pictures with it. Anyway, this next picture is what things looked like after completing 400 grit. I did 200 grit with left-right orientation, then 320 grit with up-down, then 400 with left-right. Also, you can see that the metal is still a bit wet, but the lines from the "grain" are starting to become less prominent.
Here are the results after 1000 grit (up-down). You can see that some areas look a little off. I think the jump is too large between 400 and 1000, since this step took me quite a while, and didn't come out as well.

Back to the left-right with 1500 grit. You can see some micro-scratches in the middle. These happened because of the way I pulled off the piece from the sandpaper (see how tiny things can make a big difference now). Don't worry too much about micro scratches, remember we have the polish on our side.

And again, my camera didn't keep all the pictures, but here are the results from the left-right 2500 grit session. Notice that you can make out a blurry reflection, and can only barely see the groove from the sandpaper. If you took your time, you will have noticed that the lower grit sandpaper takes a long time, the high grit sandpaper takes barely any time. Also, the high grit sandpapers make a lot of black water rather quickly, make sure you keep that paper clean by rinsing often.

Here is the metal polish I ordered. I think the Texas heat heated it up pretty well, because when I first opened it, it spilled all over my pants. Not cool. Later when I used this, it was more of a paste. It worked well regardless of state it was in.

I did not take any pictures of the polishing process. I personally used a Dremel tool with one of the polish heads. I used it at the slowest speed possible too. The polish goes from white to dark-grey/black when it is doing its job. If this doesn't happen, something is wrong (that is what the container says :-) ). Things get really messy when you fling polish everywhere, so be careful and use eye protection. Enjoy the final pictures... ooo shiny.

If you have any questions, of if you need me to clarify something, just leave a comment. Also, I take no responsibility if you hurt yourself, or destroy your clothes or guitar pedal.

2010.07.18 Sunday

Woke up today and started grinding away at my guitar pedal. I'm going to put my blog to use, and write up a little picture guide of what all I did to get from start to finish. Check back soon for that.

For lunch, hamburger helper and leftover tortellini.

Kelc and I need to run some errands. First stop, Grandview. I had bills and junk mail piling up. Also got to check out my parent's progress on the the painting and remodeling. Good work guys. Seems like my brother is out with his girlfriend quite a bit, and my sister is in the process of moving, leaving my parents a house full of stuff and a cat. Went over to Kelc's to help her sister with some file management and figure out SPI plans.

Went to Target to pick up some supplies. Paper towels, dishwasher detergent, toothpaste, other nic-nacs. I also like browsing a lot when I'm at stores, but this tends to be hard on Kelc.

Kelc bought the movie Bram Stoker's Dracula, so we borrowed Hab's PS3 to watch that. Pretty good and bloody movie. After that, some Smallville (almost done with the 4th season).

To wrap the day up, what better than a late night taco b run?

2010.07.17 Saturday

Today is Kevin's b-day. Happy b-day Kevin.

What better day than today for some bacon. Mmm. That took up a chunk of the morning.

I convinced Kelc to help me find the last 4 gold skultulas for Zelda 64: OoT. Felt pretty good to get those last few. Spent another hour or so beating the final boss, then watching the credits. Now I can say that I finished the game roughly 100%. The only things I didn't do were some quiver upgrades, because my joystick was limiting me. Also, not terribly important to hold 40 arrows instead of 30. DONE. *fills in check box*

Grabbed dinner at Jason's Deli. Kelc and I had the exact same thing we do every time. The only reason I get the sandwich I do is because she gets the one that I originally want to get, and we can't get the same thing, that just looks weird. I also don't really go to Jason's Deli without her. Not high on my restaurant choice list.

Hung out with Habs and Tay for the evening. Smoked some hookah (new flavor, Summer Melons, or is it Summer's Melons), watched some Mean Girls, played Apples To Apples, and drank jolly rancher vodka and ate bacon popcorn... all at the SAME TIME. What? YEAH!

Then, bed.

2010.07.16 Friday

One of those Friday's, eh? One of my co-workers didn't show up to work today, which kinda left me and another guy to figure out a bunch of crap at the last minute. The scary part is that he didn't call in sick or take the day off, he just completely didn't show up to work.

That screwed up my lunch plans and time allocation for different tasks, but Taylor and Habs were generous enough to still pick me up some food from Torchy's Tacos. I had the Republican and I think the White Trash. Both pretty good, and relevant.

Today was a good day for me, maybe not good for the cleanliness of my room. I acquired some electronic parts that were going to be tossed, or sold for practically nothing. There is a huge rat-nest of parts that could use some organization. Now I just need to figure out what I can do with this stuff.

Later on, Kelc and I went over to Milburn Park to play some sand volleyball. Super fun, and brought back some memories. I used to play sand volleyball all the time with friends on campus, mostly dorm buddies. We played until the sun went down on Friday afternoons, then everybody went their own ways for parties and whatnot. Lots of fun. Also, I remember having to run after balls through grassy areas, and I stepped on a stick just the right way to puncture my foot. That was fun when it got infected and I had to take gross antibiotics while limping around campus. Anyways, we played the normal way of scoring (serving team can either score a point, or lose the ability to server), not rally scoring (whoever scores gets the point AND the serve). There was an added twist that the serve to win must be a "spin serve", and also we could use any methods necessary to keep the ball in the air. Fun times.

Went over to Tyler's house after. Played some Wii Rock Band (didn't know until now that the different systems have slight differences in tracks). Ate some pizza, watched some of New Moon with rifftrax. I didn't realize how terrible the twilight movies are. I was saving watching the movies until after I read at least the first book (which I can't do now since Kelc took the book away). Not that the books are any better...

Thursday, July 15, 2010

2010.07.15 Thursday

Derp da derp. It's Thursday.

Today at work felt a bit faster than yesterday. Can't say that my work ethic is any better from any other day this week; it's like I have mono or something. Wish I had stereo.

Left from work to go straight to the softballs fields. Oh wait, it's not at the normal softball fields for some random reason. Oh wait, the fields we are going to are right next to a "correctional facility"... yeah *looks behind back* I guess that's cool. Nah I'm messing around. It wasn't really that scary being close to a facility; it really seemed like nothing was going on there, and that made me sad for people who spend years in such a place. Things must get pretty darn boring.

Our first game, we had 8 people just barely show up in time to play. We played the blue team (hex 0000FF blue), "Menace To Sobriety", and they had plenty of team members, most of which had most definitely swung a bat in a more competitive environment. For those who don't understand what I'm trying to say there, I'm saying that they were not at a super social level, and they had 2 more players on the field than we did. Amazingly enough, we managed to score a few runs on them, and I still had a lot of fun. The sun was right in my face though. Working on that tan...

So yeah, lost the first game, then we had a nice break until the second game of our double header. In this break, Taylor volunteered to play with another team who was a shorthanded. This team was lucky enough to also play the blue team. I think after the second inning, the score was something ridiculous like 12-0, Blue obviously winning. That's all fine and dandy, but when you know you are going to win like that, a polite thing to do is back off on the competitiveness some... Blue doesn't play that way.

Eventually our next game was ready to start. The sun was almost in the worst spot ever (right behind the pitcher) for this field. We were able to get a few more team members and got up to 10 players. I can't even believe I'm saying this, but we won this game. First win with softball. It was a pretty darn good match honestly. We played against "Playgirls", who was more of a hex 0x0090FF. Both our teams were in it for the fun, while also being slightly competitive. We were only up by a few in the last inning and we had to hold them for the win, and we did. Good times.

After that, the next game on that same field, one of the teams was down two players, so Habs and Taylor volunteered to fill in. I got to hang out with the umpire, who at first was pretty intimidating, but ended up being a pretty cool guy.

One thing I forgot to mention that could change how you envisioned this, since I spilt metal polish all over my black athletic shorts, I had to wear my burnt orange "dazzle" shorts and a bright pink t-shirt the entire evening. Pretty amazing outfit.

Wendy's for dinner, then sleeeeep.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

2010.07.14 Wednesday

Today is one of those long days. Staying late at work to save gas on the convenient location of the kickball fields. This week already feels terribly long and monotonous.

At kickball, let's just say we tried our best. We had a double header this week; trying to make up for the rain cancellations we've been having lately. We lost Ro-Sham-Bo on both games, which meant we were kicking first (the top of each inning). If you didn't know already, there is an advantage to being the kicking team last. We played really well both games, but a couple mistakes can make a big difference. Oh well. I'm still happy. I really just enjoy playing, getting out, and a chance to catch some rays. Winning is just icing on the cake.

After the games, went back home. Cooked up some tortellini for dinner. Whilst I ate, I watched some Tosh.O where they interviewed the kid that freaked out after his mom cancelled his WoW account (here). I really enjoy the follow-ups that Tosh does. Can't wait to see him for Tosh-Tour-Twenty-Ten.

I finally got some aluminum polish in the mail. Just a warning to everybody out there, this polish is NOT REALLY A PASTE, and it is quite liquid. That's not a bad thing, but when you open it with a slight tilt, things get messy. Maybe it's because I shipped it through the Texas heat... I'll have to take some pictures and show you this metal polishing bidness.

And zzzzzz.........

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

2010.07.13 Tuesday

It's been a while since I updated everybody on my music statistics. So far, I've been as diligent as I can be in trying to get accurate data, but I have missing pieces here and there, so things like time are less than they should be.

Started 02/02/2010
Album Count: 850
Tracks Listened: 9912
Average Number of Tracks per Album: 11.661
Average Year Album was Released: 1999.543
Time Listened: 677hrs 8mins 42secs
Days Listened: 28.214 days
Digital Size of Music: ~??.?GB

Today went by pretty fast. At home, I vacuumed and mopped the downstairs, cooked some pizza, took out the trash, converted more music for my mp3 player, and continued cleaning some vinyls. All in all, a pretty productive and active day. That's probably why it went by so fast.

Monday, July 12, 2010

2010.07.12 Monday

Ah, a 5 day work week. I won't see another 5 day work week for another 6 weeks. SWEET.

Finally pushed myself back to the gym. Well I actually went on Thursday last week, and then I worked on bikes Friday, plus watersports on the lake Sunday... so I'm not doing too bad about getting myself active. However, my strength levels have dropped some. Poop.

After work, went out with some work buddies to Main Event. Bowling, games, laser tagging. All fun. To all those who spawn camped.. you are uber lame. Have some dignity. It's just lasers.

Grabbed some delicious Taco C for dinner, then pretty much went straight to bed. Long day, short blog.

2010.07.11 Sunday

Today: Lakehouse day.

Spent the heat of the day inside watching some of the World Cup finals and playing SSX tricky. Sorry world, but SSX tricky is about 50 times more entertaining than the world cup. I still can't comprehend why professional soccer players typically miss the goal each kick. I played intramural soccer in college, which I know is many many times different than professional, but I scored the first time I played. And that was against people who had played before. I on the other hand, never played as a kid in any type of league or any regularity. I was more of a kickball and basketball kid, then eventually added football to the mix.

Later on, went out on the boat. Got a good amount of time kneeboarding; will be paying for it tomorrow. Finished up the night with Hand'N'Foot, and smallville.

2010.07.10 Saturday

Today was mostly and errand-running day, and also some Smallville time. Went to Barnes and Noble, Michael's, Home Depot and Auto-Zone. I'm starting to feel like auto-zone is one of the best car places ever. Sure, some of their stuff is slightly more pricey than walmart, but the selection they have is so much better. I found exactly what I needed, the employees there knew exactly where everything I needed was. They also do free tire pressure checks, check engine light checks, and battery testing. Badass.

I picked up some titebond II, woodglue. Started trying out this "magic" technique of gluing the surface of a vinyl to help pull out all the contaminants. It kinda sorta works, not a cure-all.

Went over to Kelc's house for dinner. Steaks and potatoes, mushrooms and zuchinni, bacon bits and butter. After that we danced off some calories with Wii's Just Dance.

2010.07.09 Friday

Woke up early. What for you may ask? Well, I'll tell you. Today Kelc Habs and I drove up to Fort Hood to build bicycles. Woo woo. Work volunteered to build bicycles for families of the 3d Armored Cavalry Regiment. Good times, free donuts and lunch. All in all, about 30 people built something like 350 bicycles. Spending some time on a military base really puts things into perspective, even if only for a few hours. Lots of people going to the gym were in pretty fantastic shape.

Drove home. Everybody else slept, so I cranked the tunes. Once we got home, I got my chance to take a nap. Kelc got to take 2 naps. *glare*

Woke up eventually. Went to Pei Wei, Half-priced books, and the bank. Grabbed me a few vinyls somewhere in there.

Later on, played some guitar hero and rock band and just jammed out.

Thursday, July 8, 2010

2010.07.08 Thursday

Exactly one month after my b-day is ... two of my friends b-day. Awesome. Happy b-day Trey and Andrew.

Good day at work. Wrapping up the week. Went to the gym for the first time in a long time, then followed that with two lunches of BBQ. Yum.

Softball game is today.. no wait, just kidding. It's raining pretty good. Better luck next time. I'm actually kinda glad the game was cancelled because I didn't feel like going out and playing today.

Instead, I moved my desk about 15 inches to the right. Adjusting my free space some and also centering my speakers a bit better. I still feel like I need to de-clutter my life, but I always manage to get myself into projects that make things get messy and cluttered. I also have lots of stuff that I keep around just because I feel like it's a waste to toss it. I remember last time my family participated in a neighborhood garage sale, they spent hours setting up tables and putting out nic-nacs, only to sell about 4 items. So yeah they made money, but was it worth the effort to try and sell it? Maybe. Gotta just take the jump and clear away things, can't be afraid. Clear workspace = clear mind.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

2010.07.07 Wednesday

Dang, already hump day. I'm not even ready yet, silly week, going too fast.

For lunch, some rudy's that other people didn't finish eating. For dinner, leftovers from Habibi's brisket. I think that's enough protein for a couple days.

Stayed late at work so we could just roll over to the kickball fields. Ended up feeling really tired and fatigued for the game, could it have something to do with the my diet? We ended up losing, but at least we kept our high spirits. Especially Whitney.

I tried out installing Ubuntu Studio. It seems a bit more sleek and clutter free than Musix, and also much more error-free. But less clutter typically means less features. The installation took probably twice as long, but startup and shutdown times are pretty darn quick. Maybe the time wasted during installation is made up for by the super fast startup and shutdown times.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

2010.07.06 Tuesday

An early start to today. Kelc needed to catch a flight back to DFW and get her car out of parking there. I can't imagine how terrible a parking bill must be if you somehow manage to forget that you parked a car there. Actually, once they closed down Mueller Airport (after they opened ABIA), they figured out how many cars people had ditched at the airport. Honestly, that's pretty smart. Why bother figuring out where to ditch a car when you can rack up an imaginary bill on it too.

Made it to work pretty darn early. Yay. Had to restart my computer to push some updates or something...20 minutes to reboot. Not yay.

Cranked through my work and headed home. Had an unexpected passenger on the way home. Sometimes, cables just, ya know, snap.

Spent a good deal of the evening trying to get a nicely flavored Linux dirstro up and running on an older computer. It's called Musix and just happens to be based in spanish, but is also translated to english quite well. Unfortunately, the wireless adapter I've been using with ubuntu doesn't work well with musix, and I couldn't get the sound adapter to work, and I was getting some weird errors about the OS failing to gain root access when it needs it. Otherwise, the OS seems pretty cool. When you log in, it has different profiles, or interfaces you can choose from depending on the type of work you want to do. Very cool.

Old vegetables and leftovers for dinner. Yum.

2010.07.05 Monday

Got to sleep in quite a bit today. Felt pretty awesome. The lake house has less background noise than most places I sleep.

Used this downtime to beat some SSX tricky and Ace Combat levels. Ate some leftovers for breakfast.

Left late afternoon for home. Grabbed some chik-fil-a for early dinner or late lunch. THAT'S RIGHT BEACHES, got to end the weekend with chik-fil-a. How often does that happen?

Watched some smallville, showered and zz'zz'zz.

2010.07.04 Sunday

The plan was to wake up around 10:30-11 and clean up any messes and get things ready for family and friends. Actually woke up to the sound of car doors closing and vehicles leaving. Whoops.

Did a quick run around to pick up some stuff, but not too much longer and people were arriving.

Kev was really energetic about doing some diving. His dad had other plans for us initially. We helped fix a post that was cemented in the ground, but ripped out by the power of wind and water (just happen to be my two more-favorite of the Alchemy Index Thrice Albums). After that, we cooled off with a plunge to the bottom. Well, walk out about 15 feet from the shore and you may be up to your knees. After a little bit more out, it gets about 5ft deep; then right after that there is about a 6-7 foot drop (some very interesting rock formations to explore aquatic life with). Eventually we were able to find what we call our "Pier". It's a large rock structure that we built both above and below water (because the lake fluctuates a lot). What purpose does it serve? Well, when it's completely above water, it's pretty big and amazing that we moved those rocks into place. When it's below water, it becomes a nice habitat for marine life. When the water level is right below the top of it, it can double as a jumping point.

After that, we tried our luck at resetting one of the anchors for the dock. One of the previous anchors snapped right off the thick wire line, causing the dock to float closer to shore (putting the boat and jetski at higher risk for damage). Of all the people I have gone to the lake with, only Kevin and I bother with diving and exploring the waters. Also, not trying to brag but Kevin and I have gotten pretty good at conserving air for extended underwater pillages. I think I can hold my breath slightly longer than Kevin, but he has the ability to re-set his ears for the change in pressure. Once you hit about 20-25 feet, trust me, it starts getting quite painful. If only we could combine forces...

Took care of business. Then gathered a group together for a boat ride. We cruised up the lake and found a bend that seemed to be avoiding the high winds of all the storms rolling through. This allowed us to get some knee-boarding in. I only went for a few minutes, but man am I out of shape. Out of my two runs, I wrecked really awesomely on the first. I went out of the wake, did a spin, then was coming back across the wake and hit some weird edge, causing the board to shoot up and out while I did some weird starfish-style sideways cartwheel across the surface of the water. I could tell it looked awesome, but surprisingly didn't hurt that badly. My second run, I got those spins and wake crossings down better, even caught some minor air before calling it quits.

Back at the dock, I convinced Kelc to take a ride out on the jetski, just us two. We cruised around as quickly as the choppy water would allow. Also, we are both a bit timid about catching air with that thing.

Ate dinner and played games with everybody. For the sake of your ears and the health of those around you, please refrain from letting Korey do vocals on Guitar Hero or Rock Band.

Played some table games, then everybody left. Except Kelc and I...

2010.07.03 Saturday

This weekend started off as a mass of uncertainties. I was either doing something, or figuring out what would happen in 5 minutes or so.

Kelc just got into town. I'm trying to figure out what everybody's plans are.

After a ton of errands and running around like a mad man, I think we figured it out. To the lake house batman.

A handful of us went out to Kelc's place to watch fireworks and possibly do lake activities. Well, only a few of us were able to actually do lake activities (jetski) before a nice dark grey cloud rolled in to say Hi.

We played some games, ate lots of MEAT. The rest gets kinda hazy, both in the weather and my ability to stay awake.

Friday, July 2, 2010

2010.07.02 Friday

For those of you with blogs of your own, you may have noticed that blogger is starting to make some changes. Both good and bad, of course. Bad that I'm now slightly slower at posting, but good in that the interface has more features. Time was never really an issue anyways, so for you this will seem like normal.

Also was able to see some statistics about my viewers around the globe... or lack thereof. Tell all your friends!!! LOL just kidding around. Do people really want to hear me rant about things, talk nonsense, or just blabber on about boring life? A handful do. Maybe some lurkers too.

Work went by pretty quickly. Lots of people are taking off early to get a start on their weekends. Don't really blame them.

I ended up passing out once I got home. Everybody else went off to grab drinks at the bar while I fell asleep to some Science Channel show about building stuff. I'm so cool.

Eventually woke up and made myself some dinner. Friends came over and games were played. Can't really argue with that.

2010.07.01 Thursday

Whether you like it or not, the year 2010 is halfway over.

Weather, you like it or not?

Starting to feel like I need coffee/caffeine to function. Guess I screwed that up. I started drinking coffee at a pretty early age, and probably had way too many sodas through high school thanks to band.

Today I learned that coriander is the more official name for the cilantro plant. Thanks Mark. Also didn't know that you can consume the roots and seeds/fruit from said plant. The more you know...

Speaking of plants, I went home in the evening to hang out with the family for a bit, and pick up some items. My dad already transplanted the extra tomato plant I had, and replaced it with jalapeño plant. Sweet. Now I just have to keep it alive and growing.

Prior to leaving for my parent's place, I called to check if they were going to be around. The instant we hung up, it started pouring outside. Later on, I drove back to my place and parked, about to go inside, and it starts pouring again. WHAT HAVE I DONE TO DISPLEASE THE RAIN GODS?