This Day In History: 03/31

Monday, March 31, 2003

I've finalized my leaving date. My parents will be down on April 30th and we'll load and leave on Thursday, May 1st. All my singing exams will be done and I should have my final grades ready to turn in before then. I'll be back in Virginia and staying at my parents' house until I can locate a suitable apartment in the Chantilly/Herndon/Reston area close to work. I start working full-time at FGM on the day after Memorial Day so that gives me about three weeks to move and settle in. You only have thirty days left to play with my Booty -- take advantage of it while you still can.

Geraldo Rivera of FOXNews was ejected from Iraq yesterday. On live TV, he drew the location of his embedded unit in the sand and then showed where they were going to attack next. Excellent work.

Robber would benefit from a flowchart on how to hold up a store
Few missions are so selfless as the rescue mission here. Perhaps none is more quixotic.

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Wednesday, March 31, 2004

One more month is down for the count. A year ago today, Booty looked like the picture on your left and Geraldo Rivera was ejected from Iraq for drawing in the sand.

Yesterday evening, I set up an internal network at the house so people can access the Internet from either computer, and then finished painting the downstairs bathroom. So far, everything's gone off without a hitch. Tonight, I'll be painting the downstairs bedroom so a friend from work whose Ashburn townhouse isn't quite finished can move in for a couple months. I still haven't finished unpacking all the crap in the basement, but most of the necessities have been bought or installed now. I guess my next major purchases will be a propane grill and a lawn mower.

Poll: should I keep the birdbath with the cherub and his dog that's sitting in the front yard?

Yesterday's notable search terms:

    chester arthur god, jennie geisner, monaco fun facts, how do i transpose c into bb

File-Sharing No Threat to Music Sales
iPod users targets of mugging
Woman makes withdrawal from her safe deposit box
Shaving sticky pussies saves lives

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Friday, March 31, 2006

Friday Fragments

Where to come for all your weekend fragment needs

  • I think my left leg must be an inch shorter than my right. When I wear loose-fitting jeans, I always end up walking on the left cuff. There's now a big hole at the base of my jeans similar to the hole you would insert a lip disc into if you were one of those zany African tribesman. Despite this, I prefer loose baggy jeans because then I can wear a belt, and pliant leather belts are fun to wear.

  • The amount of clothes that fit me properly has a direct correlation to the number of female friends I have that buy me clothes for birthdays and holidays. If I didn't know any, I would be doomed to a life of threadbare duds that shrank in the wash.

  • You can now purchase the soundtrack from LOST and support Michael Giacchino, the talented composer of The Incredibles and Alias . I will be getting it simply because I like orchestrated scores and they're a rarity on television shows in this day and age.

  • Wednesday's episode of LOST was excellent. Next week it looks like it'll be a Hurley episode.

  • "If nothing else, I am so happy to be a part of the show's finale. Drew Goddard and Jeff Pinkner are writing the final script, and the final two hours air back to back. It's perfect. It's brilliant. It's exactly the way the show should end. And sitting around that table with people I've worked with for five years, and watching as we hash out the last hour of the series was such a powerful experience. 'Alias' was like getting my doctorate. Because of the accessibility of the producers and writers, I've learned more in five years on THAT show than 100 years in college. And it's nice to have five box sets of DVDs and point to it on a shelf and say, 'that is the work that I am most proud of.'" -- Chad Darnell on the upcoming series finale of Alias

  • I don't understand why there's so much packaging when it comes to chewing gum. Each stick of gum is individually wrapped in foil and then sheathed in white paper. All the sticks are then sheathed in a larger plank of white paper and then hidden inside the outer packaging. I'm guessing that my gum would be safe if I ever had a head-on collision with a bus, but I figure in a few years you'll be able to drop your gum on the ground and watch an airbag deploy.

  • Pet Peeve of the Day: Stand-up comedians who use their act as a soapbox for preaching and stop being funny. There's a tangible shift in tone when comedians veer too far out of laughs and into beliefs. I don't want you to make me think -- I want to laugh.

  • Even though the weather is toasty out, I can't leave my windows open very far because Amber will put her front paws up on the screen and then get stuck and require assistance to free herself. This is bad news for my screens, but it's quite amusing to see Amber stuck on the window with her paws in the air. Booty used to do the same thing in Florida, but she could make it all the way to the top. She was in no way induced to do so by the toy mouse Scotch taped to the top of the window -- that mouse came with the window.

  • Some people have noticed that I use more pictures of Amber than Booty when illustrating my updates. The reason for this is that Booty is in her teenage years where she thinks she's seen and done everything worthwhile. Amber, on the other hand, is LD so you could continuously thrown pennies on the floor and she would run into the room after each one to see what the sound was. This means that when I take pictures of things, she is 80% more likely to be near or standing on the focal point of my picture.

  • I would like to be one of those bloggers that takes artistic digital photographs on a daily basis, but my photos never come out as good as I would like them to. I suppose I could learn to professionally touch them up in Photoshop, but that kind of defeats the purpose. Plus, I bet half the pictures I took would be of interesting cloud formations, and no one gives a rat's ass about those. (The other half would be of Amber).

  • My car has been making funny noises all week (peculiar-funny, not HAHA-funny), and the knowledgeable Anna "I used to work in a Honda dealership" Ahlbin said that Hondas have the squealy brake indicator go off before the brake pad is actually worn down. So after a week of thinking, "It can't be my brakes because the sound doesn't necessarily happen when I'm using the brakes" I'm getting my brakes done today.

  • My car now has 45,000 miles on it, which is pretty light for a Northern Virginian who's owned the car for five years. It's been pretty reliable so far besides the window that doesn't roll down in the cold weather and the three times the car didn't start on the first rev. I'm temporarily driving a tiny Mercury Tracer owned by my parents which floats across the interstate like a dory in a yacht's wake and requires a muscular workout to get up to 60 mph.

  • Last night when we were in McDonald's, Kim heard a middle-age mother tell her flock that it was "ghetto" that no one had refilled the ketchup dispenser. Indeed, if you happen to be walking through downtown Philadelphia and stop by the McDonald's, you will undoubtedly find empty ketchup dispensers to be the most salient feature. At least mom is hip!

  • I don't have many weekend plans other than to do Java Certification, and maybe train my Nintendog to roll over. Tomorrow is Cheryl Sherling's birthday, so happy birthday to her! Maybe, if the weather remains toasty, I'll go up to Great Falls and wander around or something, but I'll probably spend the majority of it inside and working.

  • Have a great weekend!

  • Use the race card to get out trouble when punching cops
    How my husband died in our Shania Twain sex game
    "She did not realize it had been written by someone else". Riiight.

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    Tuesday, March 31, 2009

    End of the Month Media Day


    See more March Festivities photos
    See more Home Improvement photos
    See more Ella photos
    See more Cat photos


    Ella SMASH (2MB WMV)

    South American armoured suckermouth catfish found in Leicestershire
    Pizza-making machine has chefs in a spin
    Lingerie firm offers women "liberating" loincloths

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    Wednesday, March 31, 2010

    Memory Day: A Decade Ago

    "Five million, two hundred fifty-eight thousand, eight hundred and eighty minutes" is long in both the temporal and literal senses -- it would not have made a catchy lyric for any plays about AIDS, but it does accurately represent how long it's been since my fourth year at Virginia Tech. I'm not even any taller today than I was back then, unless height can be measured in circumference.

    March 31, 2000 was the day after the VT Brass Ensemble concert, which featured too many trumpets, and four songs about cats. My parents were in town for the concert, which was followed by a parentless Delta Mu meeting at Andy's apartment in Foxridge, where a really shy girl named Paige was implanted into the circle of friends for the first time. (Paige now works as a spy for the State Department, traveling to Spain and Russia under the alias of Michaela Vaughn).

    April 1, 2000 was the original release date for Augmented Fourth, which I've already devoted far too much News space to, but which I like to pat myself on the back about as one of the few other massive projects I ever carried to fruition. Based on my low success rate, Fruition is probably a town just over the border from Motivation, and definitely requires an unexpired passport to visit. (Like an annal bookend, DDMSence v1.0.0 will be released tomorrow, exactly ten years after Augmented Fourth).

    On the academic side, I was still pursuing the double major at a stately pace (think Iowa, not New Jersey) starting with a morning session of Conducting II (which also suffered from an overabundance of trumpets). On the tech side, I was taking a course on 3D Computer Graphics, which advertised itself as a learning experience in OpenGL but ultimately turned into endless permutations of the phrase, "If the point is on the other side of the wall, you don't have to draw it!" I could have self-taught the material by filling a notebook with the words "viewport" and "pixel" and illustrating it with rhombuses.

    My other major class of the day was "Intermediate MIDI Applications", where we learned that MIDI was going to take the music world by storm very soon, or as Jack Bauer would say, within the decade!

    Life gets exciting when you get old
    Man doesn't quite get the concept of Prison Break
    Other man doesn't quite get the concept of Prison Break

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    Thursday, March 31, 2011

    End of the Month Media Day

    Many new pictures have been added to the Life, 2011 album. Enjoy!

    I will be traveling to Arkansas tomorrow for a wedding, so updates will resume next week, probably on Tuesday. Have a great weekend!

    Burmese pythons win against the cold
    Secret X-37B Space Plane Spotted Again by Amateur Skywatchers
    Bellaire Man Found Stuck in Chair Dies at 43

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    Monday, March 31, 2014

    End-of-the-Month Highlights Day

    New photos have been added to the Life, 2014 album.

    • Events
      • I missed a trip to Oklahoma but rearranged the house instead.

      • We went hiking at Keys Gap with Annie and Marc, then hit Doukenie Winery and Lost Rhino Brewery immediately afterwards.

      • We did our taxes and found that we actually owed Virginia money this year because investments are improving.

      • We had an anniversary dinner with both sets of parents at Maggiano's, and then went to a fun St. Patrick's Day party in Arlington.

      • It snowed all over the place.

      • I had my first migraine of the year and, hopefully, the last.

      • We went to Marv's birthday party and ate bacon.

      • We had a Game Night with the Smiths and Ahlbins, and experienced Bonchon.

      • This weekend, we met the Cranes for dinner at Delmarva's, and also took a rain hike through Algonquin Park, getting thoroughly wet feet by trying to circumnavigate the flooded areas of the park.

      • Rebecca went to some ritzy art show in a dilapidated church, and started a round table group for her PTA friends also working in nursing homes.

    • Projects
      • No new projects this month, although I'm continue my Information Security class.

    • Consumerism
      • We watched House of [Cards|Lies] and started the third season of Game of Thrones. I finally slogged through My Name Is Earl and am now watching Newsroom on the treadmill.

      • I've been listening to K-OS and La Roux, with some Lenka occasionally mixed in.

      • We got two new TVs as hand-me-downs from my parents, and rejected one other TV from them that would have been larger than our house.

      • On the games front, nothing but Diablo and Hearthstone.

    March's Final Grade: B+

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    Tuesday, March 31, 2015

    End-of-the-Month Highlights Day

    New photos have been added to the Life, 2015 album.

    • Events
      • It snowed massively on H 3/5.

      • We went on a weekend getaway to Sperryville on F 3/6, just in time for Daylight Savings Time.

      • Sydney the cat moved in temporarily on M 3/9.

      • We had a St. Patrick's Day / Pi day party on S 3/14.

      • Went to Joe & Katie's for Crafts Night on S 3/21.

      • Hiked 10 miles in Sky Meadows Park on S 3/22, then had dinner in Reston Town Center.

      • Took an impromptu Spring Break staycation from T 3/24 - F 3/27.

      • Went to a cooking class where my truffles came out like poo pellets on W 3/25.

      • Went hiking on South Mountain on S 3/29, followed by a Crooked Run flight and Fire Works pizza.

    • Projects
      • Opened the month with an out-of-control software deployment at work.

      • Passed the AWS Developer certification on T 3/10.

      • Surged to write a proposal response about clouds.

      • Passed the AWS Architect certification on W 3/25.

      • Cleaned and organized the entire house.

      • Started moving the URI! Zone INTO THE CLOUD.

    • Consumerism
      • Watched recent seasons of House of Cards, Lie to Me, and The IT Crowd.

      • Enjoyed another Hilltop Hoods album and a related Pandora station.

      • Bought round-trip plane tickets to Geneva, Switzerland for a summer trip.

      • Continued to play Hearthstone and Far Cry 4.

    March's Final Grade: C+, a little too much work on the work-life balance seesaw will pay off in laziness credits during the coming months

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    Thursday, March 31, 2016

    End-of-the-Month Highlights Day

    New photos have been added to the Life, 2016 album.

    • Events
      • Released a new open-source project on Super Tuesday, 3/1.

      • Enjoyed a hint of snow on H 3/3.

      • Went to the Smiths for Bonchon and Settlers of Catan on S 3/5.

      • Performed invasive surgery on my Dad's computer, obliterated by a Windows 10 install, on M 3/7.

      • Went to the Lowrys for meats around the outdoor fireplace on S 3/12.

      • Did our taxes and ended up owing very little on S 3/13.

      • Hosted a wild St. Patrick's Day party on S 3/19.

      • Porch Burger Night with Michelle on S 3/26.

    • Projects
      • Spent much of my free time learning Spark, R, and Scala.

      • Got HOA permission to enlarge the front porch next month.

    • Consumerism
      • Discovered no new hit shows or albums. Got tired of a few in-progress shows, including Love and Mr. Robot.

      • Bought nothing new this month other than restaurant meals and a $94 SSL certificate.

      • Played plenty of Overwatch, and am finally getting good at it. Played Hearthstone with Rebecca just once this month.

    March's Final Grade: B-, Nothing wrong with it but nothing amazing either, kind of like a Brahms symphony.

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    Friday, March 31, 2017

    End-of-the-Month Highlights Day

    A few photos have been added to the Life, 2017 album. Google Photos sucks.

    • Events
      • Spent the weekend in rural Manassas for a birth class on F 3/3 and S 3/4.

      • Alice came to visit from South Carolina from H 3/9 - M 3/13. We visited Crooked Run Brewery's new Sterling location and had dinner at Chuy's on F 3/10, then had Michael and Taje over for Game Night on S 3/11. On S 3/12, we introduced Alice to Bonchon.

      • It snowed weakly on T 3/14 and immediately melted.

      • We hit our first milestone at work to rave reviews on W 3/15.

      • We had our local friends over for St. Patrick's Day on F 3/17.

      • We purged a ton of archived junk to make room for future inhabitants, resulting in two trash cans of detritus and a car-full of donations on S 3/19.

      • We tried and enjoyed our new local Thai restaurant, Siam Spice, on T 3/21.

      • We donated three massive boxes of books to the public library and then attended Sara's birthday party accompanied by strawberry and Nutella tortillas on S 3/25.

      • We had dinner with Tammy and Chris on S 3/26.

      • We tried out Miller's Ale House on T 3/28 and enjoyed our experience, even if it wasn't anything super special.

    • Projects
      • Averaged 60 hours per week at work through a successful first milestone mid-month, and am enjoying the 11 minute commute to Herndon.

    • Consumerism
      • Got to level 579 in Overwatch, with 592 hours played and a 51.5% winrate.

      • Enthralled with the Oculus Rift.

      • Started registering for baby nonsense.

      • No new music or TV shows to speak of this month.

    March's Final Grade: B-, a little too much work, and I'm anxiously awaiting an end to see-sawing weather patterns

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    Wednesday, March 31, 2021

    End-of-the-Month Highlights Day

    New photos have been added to the Life, 2021 album.

    • Events
      • Lake Anne visit with Rebecca's parents on W 3/10.

      • Birthday dinner with my parents on S 3/14.

      • First fire pit fire on F 3/19.

      • Another visit with my parents on T 3/22 so they could finish watching Hamilton.

      • Maia spent a weekend with the grandparents, F 3/26 - S 3/28.

      • The Smiths' cats joined us for the week on S 3/27.

    • Projects
      • Had a new patio built, T 3/9 - H 3/11.

      • Blazed a trail to our secret daffodil patch in the common area on S 3/13.

      • Gave a company-wide presentation on Business Development at work on F 3/19.

      • Spent most of my free time working on another website project, to be released next month.

    • Consumerism
      • Got back into gaming for the first time since September of last year, starting with Doom: Eternal.

      • Enjoyed new music from AJR and Von Smith.

      • Nothing amazing on TV these days.

    March's Final Grade: B, Things continue to improve!

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    Friday, March 31, 2023

    End-of-the-Month Highlights Day

    New photos have been added to the Life, 2023 album.

    • Events
      • Went to the company leadership development program graduation at Dulles Hilton (as a mentor) on F 3/3.

      • Had Tammy and Patrick over for dinner on S 3/4 (vegetarian soup).

      • Family dinner at Cafesano on T 3/7.

      • Catherine Hicks and her granddaughter came up to visit on S 3/11.

      • Took Maia and Ian to Frying Pan Farm to see new piglets on H 3/16.

      • St. Patricks' Day corned beef dinner a day late on S 3/18, after taking Maia to get fitted for her first pair of glasses.

      • Elizabeth and Steve stayed overnight, S 3/19 on their way south.

      • Had my parents over for dinner on S 3/25 (rotini with meatballs).

      • Had the Whitmer clan over for belated St. Patrick's Day (corned beef) on S 3/26.

      • Maia got her first pair of glasses on T 3/28.

    • Projects
      • Did our taxes on S 3/5.

      • Got my car inspected (60k miles in 11 years) on T 3/14.

      • Rechipped the common area trails behind our house in anticipation of Spring on T 3/21.

      • Continued learning Kotlin by redoing Advent of Code puzzles from 2018 - 2020.

    • Consumerism
      • Still playing Overwatch 2 and getting into the "Mystery Heroes" game mode.

      • No amazing new shows, games, or music this month.

    March's Final Grade: B-, lots of sick time within the family

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