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Glad that’s over with!

February 28, 2005, 7:10 PM

Today I had a small surgical procedure done at Augusta Medical Center. Let me tell you… they’ve got quite an operation going in there for outpatient surgery. But it was quick and relatively painless. So that was good. And I arrived at AMC at 6:30 and was out before noon. So that was really good. And now I’m at home once again.

It’s interesting… it’s like a television studio to an extent. They have all kinds of furniture that they change out in your little cubbyhole throughout the time you’re there. We got to AMC and they called me and took me into the outpatient center, and we went to one of many of those cubbyholes. It was fitted with two chairs. There, they wheeled a little computer over and verified all of my information.

Then I went to a second little cubbyhole. This had a stretcher in it, and a chair. They gave me the hospital gown, and it was time to change into it. They closed the curtain and I changed. I did pretty well for the most part, but had quite a time with the sleeves, mainly because I had no idea what I was doing with them. As it turns out, the sleeves snapped up the sides. I don’t know what I was thinking when I was trying to put that thing on. Of course, I also had to figure out which end was up in the first place on that thing. But I managed to get it on, tie the string in the back, and then screw up the sleeves. If you can imagine this, I had my arms sticking out the sides of the sleeves. I thought maybe this thing was supposed to look like a Roman tunic. I had no idea. Then, figuring that didn’t look right, I unsnapped the upper snap and put my arm through the two snaps (vs. the top of the sleeve and the first snap). I was satisfied that it was right. Or so I thought.

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Categories: Fire alarms, Health issues

What is “Rosslyn Center II”?

February 27, 2005, 1:29 AM

This is a quandary, indeed. And one I’ve been wondering about for quite some time, since it’s a puzzlement. I’ve found a few locations online, including the usually-reliable Emporis that refer to a building called “Rosslyn Center II” that was completed in 2002. It lists the address as 1800 North Moore Street.

I’m wondering just what the deal is with this building. Since a few sources that I’ve found insist it exists, and according to Emporis, Rosslyn Center II is a 27-story building. So it should be quite obvious on the skyline, particularly from my usual vantage point when I go up there, which is Rosslyn Center, at 1700 North Moore Street. And it should be the tallest thing around, too. Definitely taller than Rosslyn Center, and would also be taller than the 24-story 1801 North Lynn Street building, which is the tallest thing around that I can find.

In fact, considering the similarities in height and age for 1801 North Lynn Street, and the alleged Rosslyn Center II building at 1800 North Moore Street, I wonder if Emporis or someone got some things mixed up, and that 1801 North Lynn Street is what they meant. Since that building was completed in 2002. I remember when that building went up, and have a photo of it as a steel frame somewhere…

Either way, it’s one of those things that makes me wonder. Since I know my way around Rosslyn to an extent, having explored it by foot a bit.

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Categories: Arlington

“I will gladly pay you Tuesday for a credit card today.”

February 25, 2005, 10:34 PM

My friend Katie was working a table in the front of the store today getting people to sign up for a Wal-Mart Credit Card, instead of working in her usual spot back in the Garden Center. So Katie was right near me, in my usual spot somewhere along the front end. So as I was passing by, I borrowed a line from J. Wellington Wimpy, better known simply as “Wimpy” from the Popeye cartoons, saying, “I will gladly pay you Tuesday for a credit card today.” Of course, Wimpy used to say, “I will gladly pay you Tuesday for a hamburger today.”

But it was still amusing. Some people got my Wimpy reference and were amused by it, and for others it went right over their heads.

Otherwise, though, my day was good. I read in the newspaper in the breakroom that NASA has figured out a way to prevent the Columbia disaster from reoccurring. If the shuttle is damaged so as to make reentry dangerous, the crew will wait in the International Space Station until another shuttle with a four-man crew can arrive. For this first launch, Discovery will be the shuttle going on the mission, and should something go wrong, they’ll send Atlantis after it. Then should something go wrong, they’d undock Discovery from the station and dock Atlantis. They would then ditch Discovery by remote control and send it to a watery grave in the Pacific Ocean. Then Atlantis would return with eleven people on board – a world record.

I think it’s odd to hear them talking about ditching a Space Shuttle. The thought of this huge, expensive vehicle having to be “ditched” is just someting that struck me as strange. But it is a possibility, and it must be considered. I’m sure if they could do a rescue mission and then ditch Columbia, those seven astronauts would still be with us today.

Categories: Space, Television, Walmart

I might not have been able to go to DC, but I did get something accomplished…

February 24, 2005, 11:18 PM

I did actually get something accomplished today! Inspired by the umpteenth Email about pictures not working, or the odd state of multimedia on the site, I finally pulled out all my Webmaster’s tools and went to work hammering out that long-deferred new design for the Today’s Special site. In order to keep things neat, there will be a strong influence from the current version of The Schumin Web. To keep its Today’s Special character, the color scheme and a number of other stylings will remain from the existing site.

So let’s compare old to new:

Today's Special site, pre-redesign
This is the old site. It’s got a classic layout and look, but it definitely needs an update. But it is indisputably Today’s Special. Note the inclusion of details from the Children’s Department on the show along the top of the screen.

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As you can tell, there was no DC for me today…

February 24, 2005, 11:34 AM

If 2005 is the year of bad luck in the DC category, I’m going to be really mad. Out of a total of five planned visits to Washington, I’ve made a total of three, and one of them had a problem.

For the first DC trip of 2005, I overslept. As a result, I was 90 minutes behind where I wanted to be. Somehow, though, I managed to shorten that from a 90-minute delay to a 60-minute delay, mostly through shortening and elimination of my pit stops on the way up. Other than that, it was a good day.

Then the next trip was J20. Except for encountering some snow on the way home (and I was expecting this), that trip was absolutely flawless beyond my wildest dreams.

My third trip, as I mentioned in this venue in late January, was supposed to be with my friend Katie from work. There is a good reason why I discussed it, the day of the event came, and then you never heard about it again. Reason is that we didn’t go. That trip was cancelled due to my having an emergency come up.

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What kind of shoe are you?

February 23, 2005, 6:25 AM

Categories: DC trips, Winter weather

I knew I’d find myself a woman one day…

February 22, 2005, 10:59 PM

Yes, I had a woman literally fall into my arms today at work. She was a little stiff, though, I must admit. However, having a woman falling all over you is still a wonderful thing. I even had a picture made of the woman and me. Check it out!

Holding a large picture of a woman

Okay, now I admit – it was a picture of a woman that fell into my arms. We on the safety team at our store were doing a walk-through, and I noticed that the woman in question was hanging kind of oddly. So I bumped the sign to test its stability, and it came on down. Needless to say, that made for some interesting conversation at work today, though. I was amused.

But at least no one was hurt when the sign fell down.

Categories: Walmart

What would you say if it was me behind the wheel of your transit bus?

February 21, 2005, 1:42 AM

What would you say? Well, I can’t say you’ll be seeing me driving a bus any time soon, but I did get someone to take a picture of me behind the wheel of a Harrisonburg Transit bus on Friday. That will be my cover photo for March on the site.

Otherwise, though, photographing in Blacksburg on Wednesday turned out to be quite successful. I got a whole load of bus photos, and also various other non-bus photos. Plus I got to eat dinner with my sister, which was nice.

I also discovered that Coca-Cola is coming out with a new flavor – Coca-Cola with lime. This is regular Coke, with the lime flavoring. This is NOT a diet soda! This is regular Coke. I tried it. It’s got a good flavor. It’s not like Pepsi Twist. This is like Vanilla Coke – it’s there, but it’s not obnoxious, and you’d think that the two had been together for ages. Pepsi Twist honestly tasted like Pepsi with some strange-tasting lemon flavor in it. Only place I’ve found the new Coca-Cola with lime so far is the Wal-Mart in Salem, where I stopped to make a pit stop on my way down. I’m sure it will be around elsewhere before too long.

Otherwise, I have confirmed that my sister is coming with me to DC on April 16! Though it might be more appropriate to say “A16”, considering what we’re going to a big demonstration on third-world debt. This will be my sister’s first big DC demonstration! Awwww…

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Blacksburg!

February 16, 2005, 1:01 PM

I’m in Blacksburg today, taking photos of the BT, formally known as Blacksburg Transit. I’m also visiting my sister later on in the evening.

I’ve been really successful today with my BT photos. Only disappointment is that Blacksburg Transit doesn’t run their Flxibles in regular service anymore. They run their New Flyer low-floor buses on regular service, and only pull out the Flxes for special events. Still, I’ve done fairly well, taking a huge amount of photos of the BT’s buses that are running. I also got an interior photo of one of the buses (can’t remember the bus number offhand, but it’s in the photos). So that’s good.

Meanwhile, I recently found out that a long-time fan of mine, Rodney Anonymous, found the Web site A Little About Everything, run by a Mr. Randy N. Townley. I can see why he’d say “evil twin”, but I tend to disagree. Though it seems that the “evil” part fits. I quote from his response to Rodney Anonymous’s original message:

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I got my scanner hooked up again, and the monitor is lifted.

February 15, 2005, 5:39 PM

Somehow, I managed to make it work. So now my second monitor is a good eighteen inches higher than it used to be, and the scanner is hooked up beneath it. And it only cost me about seven bucks.

So what, pray tell, did I do? Well, after work today, I went hunting around my own Wal-Mart to find something. I’d previously gone hunting in the Wal-Mart in Manassas on my way up to Washington DC the last time I was up that way, and found nothing. But that store is a “regular” Wal-Mart. Mine is a Supercenter. So it’s a bit bigger. And I found these plastic shelves in the Hardware department. So I bought them.

For those of you who are interested, this is the Durashelf 9133-01, which is an expandable shelf design. So I took one out of three shelves, and attached four legs to it, and there you have it. Then I just put it under my monitor, and it worked! Perhaps it’s a little high (my father made that comment on it), but it seems to work. I’m actually writing this Journal entry on the second monitor, which isn’t bad.

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Categories: Shopping, Walmart

Happy Singles Awareness Day

February 14, 2005, 10:23 PM

Today was a day that I could have easily pulled my hair out. Today was Singles Awareness Day, more commonly known as “Valentine’s Day”. And I could have pulled my hair out not only because this is the holiday for lovers – and with me being totally single.

First of all, about being single – I don’t mind it. See, I saved money by not having to buy any of the Valentine’s crap we’ve been selling. The only thing I bought was a heart-shaped box of chocolates for the box design. For ME. I thought it was cute because it says “Choo Choo Choose Me” and there’s a picture of a train. I bought it because it reminds me of the classic Simpsons episode where Lisa Simpson gives Ralph Wiggum a Valentine that says, “I choo choo choose you”.

Now, about today. I was ready to pull my hair out because it seemed that everyone and their mother was buying flowers and cards for their significant others. And flowers don’t like to scan. Seriously, they don’t. I was surprised when I could get a flower to scan. This is when we wish flowers were sold a different way, like by weight or something like produce. Just toss ’em on the scale and put in a number and voila – flowers.

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Categories: Holidays, House, Walmart

“Do you see what I see?”
“I don’t know what you see, but what I see is me!”
“I see me, too!”

February 14, 2005, 1:35 AM

This snippet from the Olsen twins’ movie It Takes Two basically describes my reaction to finding a picture of me from J20 on not one, but two Web sites.

About finding pictures of me, it’s interesting the way I see it. First of all, simply having a picture of me on the Web is no longer a big deal for me. I have a bazillion pictures of myself on the Web already – most of them on here, and taken with the intention of using them here. Finding pictures of me on other people’s Web sites that originated from my site is interesting, but still not as interesting, since it’s nothing new photographically. I’ve already seen all the photos from my site, thank you very much.

However, the occasional spoof is amusing, such as that which was done on Spinnwebe, which used an exaggerated version of my style to create a photo set about a trip to Starbucks. There, they used original photos. On that topic, though, I still find it amusing to read this line: “About the most interesting part was what wasn’t there, which is who the hell am I and how the hell did I get his phone number.” Reason that wasn’t in there was twofold. First of all, I already knew who Spinn was and knew about that which was Spinnwebe for some time, having first discovered his site via Dysfunctional Family Circus (the DFC). I thought it was funny as hell, too. Twas a shame to see the DFC go away, though I understand why it did. And as for how did he get my number? This was in my Potomac Hall room at the time. At that point in the year, there was only one place to find my number: JMU’s Web site. Kind of narrows things down, doesn’t it?

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So very amusing…

February 11, 2005, 2:42 AM

It’s interesting what my friend Katie and I ended up doing after work this evening. We ended up going to her house, and worked on getting the treadmill that she recently bought working correctly. It’s one of those push-it-yourself models, and the belt wasn’t moving very well. It seems that the belt was not properly lubricated, after I took a test walk on it. It took me considerable effort to get it moving, and then once it started, it practically flung me right off.

So I got on the floor with this silicone oil that came with the treadmill and went to work. I put “a few drops” on the surface beneath the belt as the directions specified. Still no luck, after a test run.

So I tried a plan B, which was to put some more drops of oil on there. In squeezing the bottle, the dropper thing came off the end. I guess you weren’t supposed to squeeze like that. No problem, though. I got some oil where it was supposed to go, and we gave it another test run. No go. Still wasn’t running smoothly.

Meanwhile, Katie’s laughing her head off, watching me practically fly off the back of the treadmill whenever it unexpectedly started.

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Categories: Katie

Old friends, new friends – that best describes my most recent DC trip…

February 11, 2005, 2:23 AM

I went to Washington DC on the first-regular-trip-after-a-big-demonstration trip on Wednesday. And yes, this being the first trip after a big demonstration is significant. I’ve always found that those trips, which I’ve experienced three times in the past, always feel a bit odd. On those trips, the most recent DC memory is of a big demonstration, and not whatever regular antics I get into. Who knows. Hard to describe, but it always feels a little strange.

Anyhow, the trip could be best described as a day of meeting old and new friends. But before meeting anyone, I first took some close-up photos of 1117 19th Street in Rosslyn, which is currently undergoing demolition. Recall, from my J20 Life and Times set:

This building at Rosslyn was in the process of being demolished at the time of my visit.  What will replace it?  Who knows.  Let's admit, though - it was not a particularly nice looking building, and I can't say I'll miss it.

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I found out now why I have so much junk…

February 7, 2005, 6:48 PM

I’ve been cleaning out the tubs in the floor today, and my father came by. Now we know why I’m such a pack rat. I inherited that trait from him.

Here’s how it came about. He says, looking in one of the tubs, “The garbage can is your friend.” Then he goes into Sis’s room, which I’m using as a staging area for junk. He looks at the stuff. “You’re getting rid of this?”

I eventually put it to him nicely, this way: “Now I know why I have so much junk. Now shoo before you get me to keep something else I don’t need.”

The garbage can is our friend. And I haven’t even gone near the closet yet.

And on an unrelated note, I visit DC once again on the 9th. This marks nearly three weeks since J20, the last time I went to Washington DC. My friend Katie and I had to cancel our February 2 trip because of an emergency that came up, and so we didn’t get to go. Katie and I will reschedule. I’m going on Wednesday. I know I’m going to go to Union Station again, if nothing but to reminisce, since besides being a fun place to go for the railfan, the shopper, and the architectural buff, which I first photographed two years ago in my appropriately-named Union Station photo set, I’ve now been to a demonstration there! The Freedom Ball was held at Union Station, and I was outside with Code Pink demonstrating. So Wednesday ought to be a fun DC trip. We’ll see what I do this time.

Categories: House