Saturday, July 19, 2008

Is That Suppose to be on Fire?

So, I finished my book report and made a bunch of notes on my trip report, so I rewarded myself with a spontaneous drive to Galveston. I took the "scenic" route, which passed a LOT of power lines and a couple of power plants. At one point, I noticed flames coming out of the top of a tower at a power plant (or did it have something to do with oil?). Unfortunately, I had my camera set to low resolution, so it's hard to see, but it's right in the center of the picture. When I drove back later, the fire was out. So... is it suppose to do that?


Quote of the Day - July 19, 2008

...[t]he Pentagon wisely decided not to pick a fight with the tortoise lobby.

- Simon Winchester, Outposts


Friday, July 18, 2008

Procrastinating in Houston

I'm supposed to be doing a homework assignment involving sextant measurements, writing a book report, and writing a trip report, all while I'm here in Houston on business. I've had more downtime than I had expected, so I was able to get some rest yesterday (much needed, since I managed to read about five pages of my book one the 3 hour plane ride down here). After setting up some equipment for a test next week, extracting a bit of information from the locals for my trip report (check it out! work's actually helping my schoolwork for a change!), and catching up on e-mail, I sequestered myself in my internet-free hotel room and started reading my book in earnest.

Hours later, I've made it through only one British Territory out of eleven discussed in the book. And the writing style is getting into my head, so you'll forgive any superfluous adjectives and wistful sentences that pad my post.

Deciding that I needed a break and would really prefer not to have to sit in the lobby to access the internet, I headed for the front desk and told them again that my hardline connection was not working in my room (wireless is only available in the lobby). It seems the fact that the brand new cable they gave me yesterday didn't work never resulted in a maintenance request and, oh, look, the guy who would fix it already left and won't be back until Monday. Ummm... I used my best patience and kept my voice at a low tremble (as opposed to the loud bark that's come out of my mouth much too often lately) when insisting that I had reported the problem and the failure of all attempts to address it short of calling maintenance the day before. Yesterday, they were too booked to give me a new room. But today, they had a room down the hall on the same floor. And then, randomly, as one person was getting me new room keys, another was grabbing a goody bag for me. A bottle of water. A can of Sprite that had obviously been stored in a hot place at some point in its life. A bag of jalapeƱo chips. Microwave popcorn. Some Nabisco products with absolutely no nutritional value whatsoever. And a handful of chocolate coins. The "sorry for the inconvenience" chocolates were added on top by the woman getting my key.
And I just got a call offering me a free movie. Should I ask them to tap the bulge out of the bottom of my Sprite can? It looks a bit precarious sitting on the desk like that.

So, obviously, I'm procrastinating at this point. Taking pictures of tilting Sprite cans can't be a good sign. I don't really look forward to wasting a weekend in Houston on homework. I still hope to bust out at least half of both reports tonight (since when does anyone actually read a book when doing a book report anyway...), sleep in tomorrow, and catch some sights. There's a certain movie coming out this weekend, but tickets are probably sold out from here to eternity. I might hold off on watching it until next... next w... next we- no, no! I'll have to avoid the internets for a week if I do that! Spoilers everywhere!

But if I go see it, I'll want to stop by the Lego store to pick up the Tumbler, which is the only one of the more recent sets I don't have yet. And then I won't have room for real souvenirs.

(But ticket prices are probably way cheaper here than in D.C.)

But I've never been to Texas. I need to get out.

(The sun does eventually set. Not as much to see in the dark.)

Yes, and that's when homework is best done. When I'm busy having insomnia.



(Versus Zombie Joker)

Perhaps the parenthetical voice and I need to have another chat.

(You're a freak. Just like me!)

I think we're done here.

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Quote of the Day - July 18, 2008

sorry for the inconvenience premium milk chocolate

- label on a piece of chocolate from the hotel

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Thursday, July 17, 2008

Quote of the Day - July 17, 2008

Houston, we have a problem.

- Jim Lovell, Apollo 13, simplified from the original exchange

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Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Quote of the Day - July 16, 2008

Look, I'm just trying to change the world, okay? I don't have time for a grudge match with every poser in a parka.

- Dr. Horrible, Dr. Horrible's Sing-along Blog, Act I

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Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Dr. Horrible: The Musical

Joss Whedon is... well, I believe there's a t-shirt for that. Anywhoo, way back in the days of season sux six of Buffy, he did a musical episode in which all of the characters sang about their innermost feelings. And random extras sang about their dry cleaning. Anyway, Joss apparently got bored during the writer's strike a few months back and hatched an evil scheme. He decided to do a supervillain musical and release it as an internet miniseries (for free until July 20, then you must pay. PAY! How evil!). It's absolutely silly and looks like the kind of thing you would throw together with your friends over holiday break. And that's kind of exactly what it is.

Dr. Horrible's Sing-along Blog stars Neil Patrick Harris as Dr. Horrible, a would-be supervillain who's perhaps a bit too nice to really be in this line of work (he scolds a would-be opponent for challenging him to a fight near a park with children in it). He has a crush on Penny (Felicia Day), the do-gooder girl from the laundromat. And Captain Hammer (played with maximum camp factor by Nathan Fillion) is his arch nemesis.

And you better believe Joss's rabid fans crashed the server on day 1. Bwahahaha! (I'm still working on my evil laugh - it's all about standards)

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Quote of the Day - July 15, 2008

It's curtains for you, Dr. Horrible. Lacy, gently wafting curtains.

- Captain Hammer, Dr. Horrible's Sing-a-long Blog, Act I

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