Journal

@SchuminWeb

Journal Archives

  • 2021 (14)
  • 2020 (39)
  • 2019 (37)
  • 2018 (38)
  • 2017 (37)
  • 2016 (41)
  • 2015 (30)
  • 2014 (42)
  • 2013 (61)
  • 2012 (91)
  • 2011 (90)
  • 2010 (111)
  • 2009 (142)
  • 2008 (161)
  • 2007 (196)
  • 2006 (199)
  • 2005 (207)
  • 2004 (233)
  • 2003 (104)

Categories

  • Advertising (17)
  • Amusing (46)
  • Cell phone (20)
  • Commuting (13)
  • Computer (57)
  • DC trips (120)
  • Dreams (20)
  • Events (25)
  • Food and drink (79)
  • Internet (20)
  • Language (10)
  • LPCM (9)
  • Nature (6)
  • Religion (12)
  • Restrooms (1)
  • Schumin Web meta (193)
  • Security (18)
  • Some people (40)
  • Space (6)
  • Urban exploration (12)
  • Vacations (37)
  • Video Journal (18)
  • Work (79)

Car fire!

October 19, 2008, 2:36 PM

Just about 20 minutes ago, a car caught fire just down the street from my apartment complex. I noticed smoke and flames from my balcony door, and grabbed the Kodak to go down and see what I could see. By the time I got down there, the fire department had put the bulk of the fire out, and was working to make sure that it was completely extinguished before leaving. Check it out…

Spraying foam on the fire.
Spraying foam on the fire.

Continue reading...Continue reading…

Categories: Silver Spring

And so for those wondering how my birthday went…

June 4, 2008, 2:07 PM

My birthday weekend went quite well, thank you. I spent my actual birthday at home, where I wrote a Wikipedia article about October Rebellion. Yes, that October Rebellion. I had a great time writing that article, though it’s not often that I’ll sit down and write a new article from scratch and go hunting for reliable sources and such.

Then the next day, Mom and Dad came to visit – just for the day. We went to downtown Silver Spring, where we had a birthday lunch at Austin Grill, a restaurant that serves Mexican food. As we were coming in, rain appeared to be imminent, and yet some people still wanted to be seated outside, and stayed outside, even as the rain started coming down. There was a very small overhang that these people ate under, and I presume they stayed dry for the most part.

At the restaurant, Mom committed what would be considered a major sin if you like to stay in the good graces of your companions. She told the server that it was my birthday. Now I admit that she didn’t mean to let that out in front of the waitstaff. It slipped out unintentionally. But you know how it is… if you say “birthday” to a server, next thing you know, you have ALL of them marching in clapping, and singing happy birthday to you. Once we realized Mom’s error, we flagged the server again about the birthday thing, and good news – Austin Grill doesn’t sing. Very good.

Continue reading...Continue reading…

It’s like when worlds collide!

May 9, 2008, 8:32 PM

This was definitely a fun day at the office today! I got to meet my predecessor at Food & Water Watch, a woman named Lis. She left so much information for me as far as how to do the job while I got the hang of things, and now I finally got to thank her. Additionally, Leah, a former Food & Water Watch coworker, was also in town, and so with these two visiting, we had a little office get-together after work. So fun. Knowing they were coming, I brought my “duckie” camera to work – the yellow rubber-covered Vivitar camera. And so here you are:

Leah, Lisa, and Lis

Continue reading...Continue reading…

Categories: Silver Spring, Work

What the…?

May 8, 2008, 10:55 PM

Look what my neighbor and I found in front of our apartment complex upon our return from work today:

Continue reading...Continue reading…

Categories: Silver Spring

And the second day of the consulta went equally well.

January 28, 2008, 8:24 PM

The second day of the consulta went just as well as the first. We had a slightly smaller crowd, but it still worked. We couldn’t get into the Frederick Cultural Arts Center right off the bat on Sunday due to the fact that a church had services in there at 11:00, so we started out at the Frederick Coffee Company for the first hour and some. There, we discussed affinity groups, protest tactics, and even “protest fashion”, which was kind of like What Not To Wear: Black Bloc Edition.

Then we went over to an area about a block away from the Arts Center, and had lunch, courtesy of the local Food Not Bombs. There, they had a selection of vegan food, as well as what’s called freegan, meaning it’s stuff that was obtained for free after being cast off by the primary purchaser.

From there, we got into the Arts Center, and prepared for a workshop on police tactics. However, before that got going, while everyone was setting up, Jeff and Maddy had a chance to be wacky with a cart that was in there.

Jeff pushes Maddy around on the cart
First Jeff pushed Maddy…

Continue reading...Continue reading…

Categories: Activism, Frederick

Day one of the “Unconventional Action” consulta went very well!

January 26, 2008, 9:39 PM

Day one of the “Unconventional Action” consulta in Frederick, Maryland went quite well, indeed. The main thrust for the consulta was to prepare for the protests outside the Democratic National Convention in Denver, and the Republican National Convention in St. Paul, as somewhat indicated by the banner inside:

Consulta banner

However, with Denver and St. Paul being out of range for many of us (I have neither the time nor the funds to go), it also worked well for things to apply in that hotbed of activism that’s right in our own backyard – our nation’s capital, Washington DC.

We discussed a lot of stuff, too, mostly related to protest tactics and community organizing. We started with discussion on how to combat gentrification (with handouts!), took a break, and then moved onto discussion about the logistics of the RNC and DNC. Bridges, hotels, locations of various buildings, perimeters, etc. Very interesting stuff. And lots of handouts! I like handouts.

Continue reading...Continue reading…

Categories: Activism, Frederick

Several hundred bad words later, I have a new dresser.

July 29, 2007, 10:14 PM

First of all, let me preface this story by telling you that Mom came up to visit this weekend, and we went to Ikea in College Park. I’ve finally just about figured the place out, and so it’s no longer as intimidating as that first trip was back in May. Mom wanted to get some more silverware and various other odds and ends. In the end, we came out with a dresser for me, since I’d mentioned I needed to look at dressers since my present one was too small.

In the bedroom department, they had dressers coming out of dressers. Mom and I found a dresser that matched my bed – the “Hemnes” style. Very dark wood. And this dresser was really big, too. So after perusing the “marketplace” where Mom got more silverware and various other stuff, we went into their big warehouse and fished out the two boxes that the dresser came in, checked out, and brought it home in the Sable.

By the way, it’s a real you-know-what to carry that stuff up three flights of stairs. Just thought you ought to know that.

Continue reading...Continue reading…

A whole bunch of miscellaneous stuff I’ve been meaning to show you…

June 17, 2007, 10:07 AM

I realized recently that I’ve gotten a little bit of a backlog of stuff I’ve been meaning to show you that I’ve captured with my cell phone over the last week or so. So here we go.

A deer in the vacant lot next door to me
So there you go – photographic proof that deer do wander through the vacant lot next door. Apologies for the blurry picture, but this is the cell phone, and not Big Mavica.

Continue reading...Continue reading…

What a lovely day with Mom today…

June 16, 2007, 11:58 PM

Mom came to visit this weekend, and we had a wonderful time. She came up on Friday, and took the Metro down to Dupont Circle to meet me right after work. We rode back to Wheaton station, where Mom parked, and then went back to my place, where we brought some stuff in. She brought me my computer chair (yay!) and also a coffee table. Mom replaced the coffee table in the family room last year, and so now I have the old coffee table. I love it. It looks so good in my living room, and it will certainly enhance the way things look.

Once we brought everything in, we ordered pizza from Papa John’s. There’s a Papa John’s not far from here – in the same shopping center as H-Mart. We got a pizza that could best be described as unconventional – their spinach alfredo pizza, which has an alfredo base rather than a tomato base. We also got mushrooms on it. I don’t even want to think about how many calories that thing had, but it was good. After dinner, we watched TV, and then went to bed. Mom became the first to sleep in my bedroom on a cot that she brought, and then I slept in the living room on the futon (as always).

Then on Saturday, we went to Ikea in College Park, where I finally got that new bed. I got their Hemnes brown-black bed with a nice, comfortable mattress. Queen-size, and all for me. We’re getting that delivered. Mom got some furniture as well, and we also got a chance to look all over their showroom. The place was not nearly as busy as it was on Memorial Day, and so we got a chance to stroll around a bit. Plus, considering that this was my second trip to Ikea, I was not nearly so overwhelmed.

Continue reading...Continue reading…

Well, that was fruitless.

May 28, 2007, 5:12 PM

Turns out I can’t order any of it online. It’s all in-store only. Drat. It means I have to brave that which is Ikea in person again. Well, I’m going to be sleeping on the couch for a while, since I’m not going back there today. But at least I have my list. Next time, when I’ve properly prepared myself mentally for this adventure, I will get the stuff.

And I’m going to go with someone next time I go, I believe. Mom’s likely going to come up on the third weekend in June, and so maybe we can go to Ikea then.

Still, though, I’m just glad that everything’s starting to come together in the apartment. It’s starting to feel like home.

I went to Ikea. That was a touch overwhelming.

May 28, 2007, 4:54 PM

First of all, hello from College Perk coffeehouse! I went to Ikea in College Park today to go bed-shopping. Talk about an overwhelming experience. First of all, the place is bigger than a Wal-Mart Supercenter. And it’s two floors. Then I got over there, and the parking lot was full. I mean full, like park-in-the-back-of-the-lot full.

I went in, and went up the escalator to their showroom. I saw the map coming in, so I kind of knew where I was going, or at least I thought. I got in, and got a bit disoriented. Lots of partitions made it less than straightforward about getting to the back where the beds were. I did find it, though I had no idea what was going on. I ultimately found a salesperson, to whom I admitted I was overwhelmed, and he was quite helpful and helped sort me out. I ultimately did figure out what was going on, though.

Bed shopping is interesting, though. To properly shop for a bed, one must try it out. I’m sure I looked amusing testing mattresses. The way you test them out is to get on them in a sleeping-type position and feel it. It reminds me of a scene from Today’s Special‘s “Shoes” episode. Jodie walks past a row of shoes, and comments on each pair:

Too big! Too small! Not right… at all! Too loose! Oh, too tight! Ah… (puts shoes on) these feel just right!

Continue reading...Continue reading…

So far, I like living up this way…

May 15, 2007, 5:28 PM

I’ve been up in the DC area continuously now since Saturday, and I have to say, so far, I seem to like it. I won’t get Internet service until next Tuesday, the 22nd, however, so I’m writing you from the Infoshop, though I’m using the Lappy. The Infoshop is seven blocks straight east on P Street from the building where I work, through Logan Circle.

Speaking of Logan Circle, I had a little accident there on the walk from work to the Infoshop. I was turning to cross the circle, stepped on a curb wrong, lost my balance, took one very unstable step to try to regain my balance, and then splat. I hit the asphalt. I skinned my elbow (ouch!) and tore a few small holes in my pants pocket where my keys are – enough to consider the pair wrecked. So now I have to buy a new pair of pants. Not my idea of fun. But at least it was nothing major – I got right up and continued on my way.

Otherwise, since last we spoke, I got to go grocery shopping for the first time on my own. That was interesting. I went to Giant in Wheaton, and did my best. I think I did all right, but I was going through this store and basically thinking to myself, I used to work in a grocery store, and I still have no idea what the hell I’m doing! But I think I did well enough.

Continue reading...Continue reading…

Sable is packed to the gills…

May 11, 2007, 9:53 PM

I don’t think I’ve filled a car so full since I left Potomac Hall at JMU for the last time back in 2003. Back then, I had the Previa stuffed to the gills with my junk from the dorm. Now, I have the Sable filled to the brim with my stuff, headed for Silver Spring. That car is literally packed full. The back seats are folded down, and I’ve put stuff in every possible spot. There’s even stuff sitting in the passenger seat. I just hope the car doesn’t think it’s a passenger and sound the seat belt alarm when I get going. That would look odd to have the seat belt buckled over there, to keep the alarm quiet.

It reminds me of a rhyme by Muffy from Today’s Special:

There was an old woman who lived in a hat,
With fourteen kids and one smelly cat.
The hat was bulging, filled right to the brim,
And inside, things were looking mighty grim.
And then when the woman came back with one more kid,
The hat shouted, “Fifteen!” and blew its lid!

That was then followed by the top flying off a nearby top hat. But yeah, I think if I put anything else in there, the car will shout, “Fifteen!” and blow its lid, too.

One thing that I will really appreciate with this run for stuff is the lamps. Those four torchiere lamps that I have are coming, and will be placed in strategic locations in the apartment. It’s helpful because there are few light fixtures in the apartment, and lots of switches attached to electrical outlets. Thus since I brought no lamps on the first run, I had to kind of find my way around in the dark upon leaving the apartment, feeling for walls and furniture, to avoid running into them, and the subsequent cursing. And I don’t particularly like to swear, though I’ve been known to let them fly fairly easily.

Speaking of swearing, I remember something I did for a professor at JMU that both the professor and I found amusing. He said that we could write whatever on the tests themselves, “Just don’t write any swear words.” So I decided to be a bit of a wiseguy. I wrote “SWEAR WORDS” in all caps near the top of the test paper. Not actual dirty words – literally the phrase “swear words”.

All in all, I’m excited about living in the DC area…

A little housing update for you…

May 11, 2007, 8:24 PM

Just so you know, I am now partly moved into a one-bedroom apartment in Silver Spring, Maryland. It’s nice, too. It’s right up the road from Glenmont station, and also close to shopping. Westfield Shoppingtown Wheaton is very close to where I live, and it’s home to a two-story Target store.

By the way, shopping with a cart across two levels is interesting. There are two escalators. One for you, and one for your cart. Basically, you put your cart in the special cart escalator, and then you ride (roughly) next to it on a conventional escalator. Shopping in a two-story Target is certainly something, but it’s kind of fun. Target is also so much cleaner than Wal-Mart, which always impresses me when I shop there. They also trust that their customers will do such simple things as flush the toilet and turn off the sinks, which Wal-Mart does not. Wal-Mart has automatic sinks and flushers which don’t work half the time. Target has faucets with handles, and flush handles on the toilets.

By the way, I outfitted much of my apartment on my first trip to this Target in Wheaton. I blew $300-some on stuff for the apartment, across two shopping carts. That’s the most I’ve ever spent at Target. Prior to this, I don’t think I’ve ever spent more than $20 in a visit to Target.

Continue reading...Continue reading…

I did go out, and I certainly covered some distance!

July 30, 2005, 10:59 PM

Yes, I did go out on Thursday, and it was quite a road trip, for that matter. I drove up to Pennsylvania and back via I-81.

I left the house at around 10:30 AM. The outfit was black shirt, blue shorts, and flip flops. Also unshaven for that matter, but the last time the razor and I had spent some quality time together was Tuesday morning. So I could almost pass it off as one of those thin beards that some men wear. Moving along, though, one look from Mom at how I looked leaving the house got this reaction: “You’re wearing flip-flops?” I’m like, “Yes…”

I still don’t understand what Mom’s obsession is with my shoes. After all, I’m an adult, and I can wear what I want, and look as sharp or as dumpy as I want. I decided to go for “casual”, thus no shave and the flip-flops. Still, the objection to it was weird, but expected. But it’s rare that I’ll wear flip-flops. Normally, I’ll wear my chucks or my real sandals (with socks, of course). Never flip-flops with otherwise bare feet. So that was a surprise for Mom, but lately on my off-days when I’m not doing anything too important, I’ll wear that. It’s quick and easy.

Moving along, though, I ran this like DC to an extent. But obviously, the destination was not DC this time around. The 10:30 departure, for one thing. Still, I went to Mt. Jackson on the way up and enjoyed some grub at the Sheetz there, which I do on the way up to DC. It was busier there, though, since it was around 11:30 when I got there, vs. 7 AM or so when I go on my DC trips.

Continue reading...Continue reading…