Sunday, January 31, 2010

Whoa!

I watched the Twilight movie. It stunk so bad that I used an entire can of air freshener just to try and rid my house of the stench. Now, the story was exactly like the book--not too bad, but not very good, either. What was bad about this movie was the acting. To say the actors--especially the female lead, Kristen Stewart--aren't good, is an understatement. They make Keanu Reeves look like a Shakespearean/classical genius! (I LOVE Keanu Reeves--in the movies he's suited for. And THOSE are a bit few and far between.) Between the lack of acting skills and the 'longing, lovesick' looks--which were pathetic and looked more like the actors were about to hurl--that were supposed to BE acting, this movie has no right to be shown anywhere but on Mystery Science Theater. I would pay good money to see Mike, Tom Servo, and Crow completely and totally eviscerate this movie. Hmm, could it be so bad that it is actually good? Nah--teeny boppers wouldn't be interested if that was the case.

Saturday, January 30, 2010

Question

Isn't it just being pretentious to use the term 'films' instead of just saying 'movies?' The people who say 'films' are just trying to put those of us who call them 'movies' in our place--like we aren't cool enough to be in their club, or something. Sorry, but those people are total assclowns, in my opinion.


Not Always Right

This is why I could NEVER work with the public:

(A very elderly female customer walks up to the register and hands over an empty hanger.)

Me: “Excuse me ma’am, but what exactly was on this empty hanger?”

Customer: “This!” *very elderly customer lifts up shirt to reveal bra*

Me: “Oh…oh God.”

(via Not Always Right)


Thursday, January 28, 2010

I WANT!




The phone, that is. Although I wouldn't mind having EC, either. :D

Too bad this isn't an option for me--we don't have T-Mobile here. But that phone is awesomely gorgeous.

UGH!!!

Yeah, I spoke WAY too soon the other day when I said things were going well with the computer. Yesterday when I went to boot the beast up, I got a disk error and then everything went to hell from there. (This is the first time I have booted it up since yesterday--and I'm not sure if it will boot again if I turn it off. A brand new surprise every day!) I called the tech who had been here the day before and she recommended I call Dell and tell them I want a brand new replacement for this lemon--which I did. And they are happy to accommodate me--it is only going to take 2-3 weeks for it to happen! Oh, well. Hopefully the new one will work right out of the box and I won't need to deal with tech support--I'll keep my fingers crossed.

I don't really know where I can put the blame on this entire matter. I want to be mad at Dell, but they have been good about this whole mess. Unfortunately, when you make millions of computers, there will be some duds--this happens in ALL manufacturing. I want to be mad at Microsoft, but I'm not too sure there is an issue here at all with the OS. I want to be mad at FedEx and the possibility that the computer was handled too roughly, but I can't be sure of THAT, either. I still think the entire problem with this particular computer and all computers/software/etc can be laid at the feet of all of us. Consumers want the best, brightest, fastest, most powerful computer/software/peripheral/etc, and they want it NOW!!! THAT is why programs come out and they are buggy: People won't allow the companies to perfect anything before they are released to the public. We are our own worst enemies when it comes to technology--we allow companies to put out crappy products and we make excuses for them. This has to stop, but I don't see it happening any time soon. When we, as consumers, say enough is enough, maybe we won't have all of these problems with our technology--and then we won't need the tech support centers in New Delhi. In a better world, maybe. {sigh}

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

A Short Post

Today the tech came in and replaced my motherboard on the desktop. So far, so good. She said this isn't uncommon, as things can happen when computers are shipped. The jostling and moving around of computers can--and do--cause all sorts of problems. Anyway, she was here for about a half hour and the new motherboard has fixed my sound issues. On another problem: I moved the mouse/keyboard receiver to a front USB port and THAT seems to have taken care of my mouse/keyboard troubles. The only thing I have to do, yet, is continue migrating what I want/need to the new machines. Now that things are okay, I'm more willing to take the time to finish up. I'm STILL thinking 2015 is a good target date for all things to be completed. ;)

Sunday, January 24, 2010

On Computers, GYN Appointments, and...A Little Bit of Hockey

New computers tend to be a pain in the ass--at least MINE always have been. I have been having issues--both minor inconveniences and major problems--on these new machines. And slowly I'm getting everything worked out.

First, my desktop. It worked as soon as I got it put together. I got it online with no problems and set up Microsoft Live Mail in no time flat. After that, things got a bit iffy. At some point, it occurred to me that I wasn't hearing much, if any, sound coming from the speakers. I did the whole troubleshooting routine, to no avail. This meant I needed to talk to tech support.

Despite what Dell may have said, I don't think they have moved their tech support back to the US--at least, not ALL of it. If you buy an XPS or Alienware, then there is no doubt you have US support--and at the prices charged for those systems, it BETTER be the case--but not so much for those of us with value to medium priced systems. And so I have to deal with someone with an Indian accent. But, I began our conversation by telling him that I will have to ask him to repeat himself frequently because of my hearing loss. He was okay with that, thankfully.

Anyway, after discussing my problem, he asked if he could take control of my computer from where he is. WOW! Talk about a surreal experience! We did various things and the conclusion is that the motherboard needs replacing on this machine. (Something else needs to be replaced, but I'm not sure what it is.) This took place in the early hours of Thursday morning and by noon I had a call telling me that the parts would reach the tech that will be doing the repair job by Friday noon. Of course, NO ONE understands just WHERE my town is, so THAT didn't happen. Around 1:00 AM on Friday, I got the call telling me that my replacement parts were in Milwaukee and the tech couldn't get here until this coming week. Fine--what else COULD I say?--and we negotiated an appointment time. The tech was willing to come on Monday, but I had an appointment, so we settled on Tuesday. I'm expecting to have ALL hardware issues fixed by Tuesday afternoon. Period.

So, on to the other things I'm having issues with. I'm having a problem with MS Works--which was supposed to come standard and pre-installed. It DID come installed, however, I never received the CD. And when I tried setting up MS Works, I NEEDED the CD to complete the installation. I have been dealing with Customer Service on THIS issue--and it seems to be resolved: I will be getting the CD in the mail. My OTHER problem is the keyboard/mouse that I bought. Now, you would thing there should be NO problem with a Microsoft product being used with a Microsoft-based PC. WRONG! This combo freezes, lags, and all-around drives me crazy! I have the feeling that I WILL be sending it back and getting a Dell brand--something I should have done in the first place. My last keyboard/mouse gave me NO problems at all. But, I WILL troubleshoot first and then make my decision.

I LOVE Firefox and Thunderbird--and I have used them for years. However, they are the WORST programs to migrate to another computer. After two days of trying, I FINALLY got Firefox installed and working right on the desktop. Sadly, I STILL haven't gotten it installed on the laptop and neither machine has Thunderbird yet. I don't know why this has to be such a difficult thing. I guess I could just give up and use IE and Live Mail, but I don't like to admit defeat. Besides, I have all of my contacts and saved mail on Thunderbird and there is NO WAY I could rebuild my bookmarks if I gave up on Firefox.

The only other issue I have had with the laptop so far: It took me a few times before LoJack installed. Other than that, it has been fine, so far.

I MUST praise some things about Windows 7. I think I will be very happy with the improvements as soon as I get used to everything. Setting up the wireless home network was SO easy that 'even a caveman could do it.' I was impressed with the fact that I am able to print from my laptop without being connected with wires/cables. All in all, I think this will be a favorite purchase for some time. As soon as everything is working right. ;)

**********

So, I have talked about my new GYN and my upcoming appointment. And that appointment was made for tomorrow. And then I got the phone call on Thursday--canceling my appointment. The only explanation was that the doctor 'took an emergency leave of absence.' There is no idea as to when she will be back, so I couldn't re-schedule the appointment with her. This left me with a few choices: Find a new doctor, wait for this doctor to come back--IF she comes back, or make an appointment with the nurse practitioner. There really was no choice for me--I NEED to see someone quickly because I'm running out of my meds--so I chose to see the nurse practitioner. And that I will be doing on 5 February. I'm really, really afraid I'm going to have to find a new GYN--I'm not having a good feeling about this office.

**********

And we get to hockey. I won't talk about the Red Wings. At this point, there is no reason to. If things don't change soon, they are on course to NOT make the playoffs this year--something that HASN'T happened in the last 18 or so years. It started with them losing two full lines and two top D-men to long-term injuries--ALL AT THE SAME TIME. They still need to get four players back in the line-up--and they won't be full-strength till after the Olympics. It's been quite an awful season.

What I WILL talk about is the Rangers--our local junior team. They are quite on fire and have bounced between first and second place all year. Right now, they are in second place, trailing by only one point behind the first-place team. We attend every game we can--I think we have only missed two games this year. And I am one of those people who wears her team jersey to every game, proudly. ;) I am very good, though--I am NOT loud, but I appreciate the team and all their efforts. And they put on a very good show. I have enjoyed every game we've been to--even the few they have lost. It will be great fun to see them in the playoffs--I hope we will be able to see some of those games.

There HAVE been several bad points to the games, though--and they have involved fans. Several opposing teams have had some very obnoxious fans, but there are a few that are just as bad--if not worse--for the Rangers. One fan, in particular, stands right over the opposing team's bench and locker room door. Throughout the entire game, he taunts the opposing players in an extremely loud voice. And he thinks he is great while doing it. Unacceptable, as far as I'm concerned. The other fans--who were pretty good last night--are new to the games. They are family of a new player on the Rangers--a local boy. The first game he played in, these people were so terrible, I almost said something. To begin with, they thought their boy was not getting the proper amount of ice time--even though his shifts were every bit as long as every other player's. They complained every time he was taken off of the ice, they bad-mouthed the coach, and they bad-mouthed the kid's teammates. I was absolutely appalled. I have been watching the kid and even though he HAS skill, he isn't as good as his family thinks he is. This past weekend it seemed as if he was struggling too much to 'prove' he is as good as his family thinks--and that kept him from playing his best. He seemed to calm down as the games went on, so he may do well despite his obnoxious family. I certainly hope this is the case.

**********

And I will end with the weather. We have had rain for a couple of days and now we are waiting for the cold/snow to come. It looks as if we will be paying dearly for the warm temps we had this past week. But, it IS winter.

Friday, January 22, 2010

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Yeah, People Are Strange

Talked to The Youngest tonight and, inevitably, the conversation turned to her work and the people she deals with. And she told me this story:

The clinic had to put down a cat last Friday. The owners made arrangements for the clinic to cremate the cat. However, the owners took the cat (DEAD) home for the weekend and brought it back today for the cremation. The Youngest DOESN'T want to know the answer to the question "WHY?"

Another story:

A month ago, the clinic put down a cat. The owners decided to take the cat home with them, so that it could be buried. (Against the law, but the clinic had no way of 'knowing' whether they intended to bury it in their backyard.) Anyway, The Youngest got a call from the owners today saying that they have to bring the cat back, because the ground was frozen and they couldn't bury it. Excuse me!?!?!?!?!? They live in Minnesota and they didn't know you can't dig a grave in THE MIDDLE OF THE WINTER?

Another story:

A while back, the clinic had to put a dog down. The owners knew it was going to happen and came in to be with the dog. Before they would allow the dog to be put to sleep, they 'decorated' the room with statues of saints, religious pictures and icons of all sorts, and lit candles. Then, and only then, did they allow the dog to be put down. Again, The Youngest didn't ask "WHY?"

And these people walk the same Earth I do. I think I'm scared.

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Updating

The FedEx site stills says that the new desktop will be here on Tuesday, but we'll see. I got the laptop on Saturday and have been noodling around a little, but there isn't all that much to do without being connected to the Gore. I want to wait and set up my network all at once, so I will wait till the desktop is up and running.

This migration has been a regular pain in the ass. This is partly due to the fact that I haven't backed up my data on a regular basis, but it is much, much more than that. I'm finding that the 'back up' app on this machine only goes so far and doesn't back up nearly enough of my data. So, that has meant a lot of searching, copying, pasting, etc, etc. I always worry that something will be forgotten and that I will lose it forever. (I plan on reformatting the hard drive on this ancient machine when I take all of the data I need off of it.) And it seems as if I am facing a deadline with this machine--it just isn't working right and is quickly going downhill. I think a lot of problems will be solved after the reformat, but time will tell. I'm STILL not sure what we're doing with this computer, but I'm sure K has something in mind. I will be sending The Youngest my old laptop--it is good enough for her to surf and do email. And they know enough people to help them upgrade, if that is the direction they want to go.

So, I will continue to be MIA for a few days. Other than reading as much of my mail as I can, I don't know when I will be back on here. Thank goodness for my phone--it keeps me connected. I just may double--if not triple-- my data usage in the next few.

Friday, January 15, 2010

A New Keyboard and Mouse

Yesterday, I received the keyboard and mouse for our new desktop. I don't HAVE the desktop, yet, but I have the mouse and keyboard. I love the way things don't get delivered together. However, it could have been much worse: I could have gotten the desktop BEFORE the keyboard and mouse. ;)

Today I got an email saying that the desktop and monitor have been shipped. They are supposed to get here on Tuesday. This is much earlier than I was expecting. Before I put the order through, the preliminary shipping date was in February. Then it was 25 January when the order went through, but was changed to 27 January--until today. I don't ask questions, even though I don't understand this. The laptop is still scheduled to ship on the 19th, but that is subject to change, also. I have some work to do before I can make the switch to the new computers, but I should have the time to do that over the weekend. It will be nice to get it all taken care of, so I can start learning how to use the new operating system. The excitement is mounting! ;)


UPDATE: Got an email from Dell saying that BOTH computers will be here on Tuesday. But, as The Husband said, "Believe it when we see it." ;)

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Some LOLs

From Postcards From Yo Mama:


That Typo Makes My Day

Backstory: My mom and i live in different states and she was telling me about the family sledding trip yesterday and how she managed to stay warm on the hills.

Mom: i was layed so much i could barely move
Me: That typo makes my day.
Mom: Oops!


**********

From Not Always Right:


Even Rabbits Go Through Bad Patches

Customer: “Where can I find your carrot tops?”

Me: “We don’t sell carrot tops, but you can buy the whole carrot.”

Customer: “But I need to feed my rabbit her carrot tops!”

Me: “If people buy carrots would you like me to ask them if they’d like their carrot tops cut off and I can save them for you?”

Customer: “Oh that’d be lovely! I’ll come back next week after her therapy session. Her therapist thinks she has an anxiety disorder.”


Monday, January 11, 2010

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Pet Peeve

I'm not great when it comes to grammar--at least not anymore. Unfortunately, I have let Facebook, Twitter, and texting come between what I know to be correct and what I actually do. But I am seeing more and more of one of my biggest grammar pet peeves and I cannot stay quiet any longer.

WHEN will people--especially supposed professional writers--learn when to use 'I' and 'me' properly? Everywhere I'm looking these days, writers insist on using 'I' when 'me' would be the proper word. The last straw was today, while reading a hockey magazine, the writer wrote this: "However, I'm fine with making resolutions to improve organizations and people other than THN and I." Now, I realize that The Hockey News isn't a literary publication--and seeing all of the mistakes in it proves that point--but these ARE writers getting paid for their writing. So, I think I should expect some semblance of them using the proper grammar rules. In the preceding example, it should NOT be "...THN and I." but "THN and me."

There are many places (such as here and here) that will explain which word should be used in a sentence. Not really that difficult.

So, using the rule, here is how to determine the proper word to use in the preceding sentence. Do you say '...other than me.' or '...other than I.' Simple as that.

Another example: Would you say 'Come with Julia and I.' or 'Come with Julia and me.'? Separating the subjects will give you 'Come with Julia.' and 'Come with I.' and 'Come with me.' The proper usage is the word 'me' in that sentence, so the correct sentence is 'Come with Julia and me.'

Many people think that using the word 'I' is always proper English and that using 'me' is always incorrect. But, just because it doesn't sound 'formal' doesn't mean it is necessarily wrong.

Thursday, January 07, 2010

Took The Plunge

It's only taken me over a month since we decided to do it, but last night I FINALLY ordered the new computers. I think I got the best prices I could on what I wanted, so we'll see when they come in what I think.

First, I got a laptop. This will be SO different from the one we already have, as it will actually be able to DO things! The laptop we have was a purchase that we didn't think hard enough about. While we knew we wanted a laptop, we took an offer and it turned out to not be as good as we thought. Live and learn, I guess. But it definitely made me realize that I would have a hard time NOT having a laptop OR two computers in the house. And here is the new computer:




It's a Dell Studio 15 and I think I should be well pleased. It's got Windows 7, 3GB of memory, and a 250GB hard drive. It also comes with the rest of the usual things: DVD+/-RW drive, a wireless card, and Microsoft Works. I also got it Bluetooth enabled so that it will work with my cell phone. I didn't realize till after that it comes with a built-in webcam (don't know if I EVER will use THAT). I'm supposed to get it on 20 January.

I also ordered our new desktop--a Dell Studio desktop. I SHOULD see a great change in how fast things happen on this new machine. After all, it will have an Intel Core 2 Quad processor, so it should be FAST. It, too, will have Windows 7 and 6GB memory, a 640GB hard drive, DVD+/-RW drive,and a 21.5" full HD widescreen monitor. I should get THIS on 27 January.



The other night I FINALLY backed up my present computer in anticipation of this purchase. After having the external hard drive for a only couple of years. (No one ever said I rush to get things done.) Before the new machines get here, I really need to clean up and organize my music and pictures. Whether I ACTUALLY do it, is up for debate. ;)

I don't anticipate everything being up and running right until the beginning of February. With the laptop coming in first, I won't be connecting to our network until after the new desktop is here. I want to set up the network for both machines at the same time, so I will just be using the laptop to learn Windows 7 for the first week. I think there will be a bit of a learning curve, as I haven't even used Vista. I'm sure it will take a bit of time, but I WILL master it eventually. Oh, the excitement.

Wednesday, January 06, 2010

Police Log

--9:45 PM, report of female screaming in the area: she screamed because she saw a bug.

HOW loud did this woman scream? We are in the middle of winter here. EVERYTHING is shut up tight against the cold, so she HAD to scream bloody murder for anyone to hear her. And it obviously had to be inside--there never was a bug that could possibly survive our temps!

--11:00 PM, unruly 9-year-old; child spoken with and is now brushing his teeth.

This just brings up SO many questions. First, what parent calls the cops because his child is 'unruly?' And was the 'unruliness' his not wanting to brush his teeth? Why would the fact that he was brushing his teeth even be part of the police log? I guess the biggest conclusion I come away with from this: some people should NOT be parents.

Sunday, January 03, 2010

It Is Done

It took me FOREVER, but I finished putting away all of the Christmas decorations last night. Of course, it took me so long because I ate dinner, read the paper, and watched the hockey game in the midst of everything. However, I still worked way too hard and pretty much was a cripple when it all was over with. Unfortunately, I live a far too sedentary life and I feel it every time I do a bigger, more physical project like the Christmas decorating/undecorating. So, I guess I have to do something about it.

I have had the Nintendo Wii for quite some time. I own pretty much all of the Nintendo game systems that they have come out with--mainly so I could play The Legend of Zelda games. Zelda is, by far, my favorite game/s to play. But then came the Wii. It is very different because you are expected to actually do more than get tendinitis of the thumbs--most games make you MOVE. The system comes with Wii Sports--very fun and you can get quite a workout. I totally rocked boxing. And I was doing well, but quit playing for one reason or other.

Then, a bit ago, Nintendo came up with another way to make more money--the Wii Fit. This consists of a balance board and activities/exercises to help one get into shape. Of course, I wanted one. And, of course, I couldn't get one. While I didn't actively seek a Wii Fit, I did get one the first time I found it on the store shelf. That was this past summer. And it stayed in the original packaging until this Christmas when The Youngest and her husband finally tried it.

Of course, Nintendo couldn't leave well enough alone, so just before Christmas they came up with an upgrade to the Wii Fit. The Youngest and her husband asked for the Wii Fit Plus as a Christmas gift. I was able to get myself an upgrade to my Fit 1.0--at a radically lower cost, but a cost nonetheless. And after all of this, I STILL haven't used the Fit.

All of this brings me to my point, finally. I am going to attempt, again, to get into better shape. I hold no illusions that I could ever get back to where I was before I had kids, but I can become much better physically and weight-wise than where I am now. I NEED to get better. I am on several different medications for some medical problems, so it would help a great deal if I lost weight. I may possibly be able to get off of some of what I'm taking if the weight came off. I guess I have my reasons to get serious about losing weight. I know all of this intellectually, just as I knew I had to quite smoking--I just wish I could grasp this emotionally, as well. Until the idea that I WANT to lose weight becomes a part of me--and can get very serious about it--I'm afraid I may be doomed to failure. Until I can get on board with this healthy life-style, I'm going to try and fake it till it takes hold. Lord help me.

Saturday, January 02, 2010

Banished!

Lake Superior State University, for the past 35 years, has put out its List of Words Banished From the Queen's English for Misuse, Over-use, and General Uselessness. Even with 'banishment,' though, the words don't always fall out of favor. The list for 1993 included 'state of the art' and 'happy camper.' Banished in 2000 was '24/7.' 2004 found 'LOL' on the list and 2008 had 'it is what it is.' Unfortunately, all of these words/phrases are STILL being overused. Hopefully, this year will find some of these words falling out of favor:

--transparent/transparency
--czar
--sexting
--tweet
--app

The rest of the list for this year is here. have fun trying NOT to use any of these words in the next few days! ;)