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- Wednesday, May 10, 2023:
List Day: 10 Family Routines
Rebecca tries to get to a yoga class on Friday evening and Saturday morning while I watch the kids. She then takes the kids to Riverside Church and the Farmer's Market on Sunday mornings while I get my own downtime.
We've had a regular babysitter who helps us about one afternoon per week (or a weekend date night) when not enjoying her retirement driving around the country. The kids love her!
After Rebecca picks Maia up from the school bus in the afternoon, Maia has an afternoon snack, some no-people downtime, and then usually heads outside to play with the neighborhood kids in the street or the yard (mainly with bikes, chalk, or balls).
Ian will always run to t...
- Monday, March 27, 2023:
Backlogged Side Project Status
7 months after this post
1) Swap out my PC power supply, which currently has a 40% of not turning back on after we lose power in a thunderstorm.
I upgraded my power supply last year, but unfortunately the power issue persists. When we lose power while the computer is on, something in the motherboard keeps thinking it's already on and prevents it from being turned on again. Mysteriously, the only workaround is to move the computer to another room and plug it into a different outlet (though still on the same breaker). Once I turn it on and off there, I can bring the computer back to my office and it works fine.
2) Become fluent in a non-Java programming l...
- Monday, January 16, 2023:
List Day: Currently...
Currently listening to... Friend Like You: Bliss n' ESO with the Brisbane Symphony Orchestra .
Currently reading... Gift of the Magi by Miles Cameron.
Currently playing... Overwatch 2 .
Currently considering buying... nothing.
Currently creating... nothing.
Currently planning... to learn the Kotlin programming language by redoing older Advent of Code puzzles.
Currently watching... Neil Gaiman's The Sandman on Netflix.
- Monday, November 07, 2022:
Vote BU 2022
If elected, I promise to enact the following changes in our society and daily way of life.
All dishwasher soap must come with its own built-in Rinse Agent.
LinkedIn users will be banned if they put a double line break between every single sentence in their post.
Alexa will no longer be able to tell you about all of the amazing additional skills she can do.
High efficiency washing machines will actually show the correct time remaining instead of staying at the 1 minute mark for 20 extra minutes.
Restaurants will no longer be allowed to call their tiniest orange juice "regular-sized".
All bagging area errors in...
- Wednesday, August 10, 2022:
List Day: 12 Backlogged Side Projects
Swap out my PC power supply, which currently has a 40% of not turning back on after we lose power in a thunderstorm.
Become fluent in a non-Java programming language (likely Python or Kotlin) in time for Advent of Code 2022.
Migrate away from Eclipse IDE for my polyglot projects, possibly towards something like VSCode or IntelliJ.
Restart work on my open-source library, Sparkour .
Update the URI! Zone's SSL handling to use free, auto-renewing Let's Encrypt certificates.
Update the URI! Zone's ancient reliance on Apache HTTPd, OpenLDAP, and Apache Tomcat, in order to learn more modern alternatives.
Do a v...
- Friday, June 10, 2022:
List Day: 6 In-Office Exercises Killed By Remote Work
The Half Crouch : When you enter a multi-person restroom and, without stopping, fluidly crouch down just far enough to see if any of the stalls are occupied.
Whole World In His Hand : Balancing a soda, mouse, and laptop all on one hand so you can reach your badge with the other to get through a security door.
The Uppercut : Again in the restroom, when you make a fist and punch upwards into the paper towel dispenser to make enough room for the bottom towel to come out without ripping it or pulling seven other towels with it.
The Leaning Tree : When you're in the elevator waiting for it to act upon your button press and you lean ...
- Friday, March 11, 2022:
List Day: Currently...
Currently listening to... Hadestown: Original Broadway Cast Recording.
Currently reading... Legends and Lattes by Travis Baldtree.
Currently playing... Fallout 76 .
Currently considering buying... a permanent sliding cover for my work laptop's webcam so I don't have to keep cutting out Post-it notes.
Currently creating... nothing.
Currently planning... a trimming strategy to allow our new-kid-on-the-block fig tree to gradually take over the space occupied by ugly box hedges.
- Monday, November 01, 2021:
Vote BU 2021
Having trouble deciding on your elected officials tomorrow? Write me in! Here is my eminently actionable platform, which I'm sure we can all agree upon:
Videos will not be allowed to leap free of a webpage and follow you down the margin.
Every time VDOT construction lane markings cause an accident in the rain or darkness, all Virginia drivers get $25 added to their EZPass account.
The teens will be renamed for consistency and ease of learning: ten, ten-one, ten-two, ten-three, ten-four, ten-five, ten-six, ten-seven, ten-eight, and ten-nine.
Logging in using Single Sign On will no longer flash through every page on the Internet in an epilepsy-...
- Friday, January 15, 2021:
List Day: 10 Vetoed Baby Names
Russel Sprouts Uri
Mormon Tabernacle Uri
Brown N' Serve Uri
Thick Sliced Uri
Mellow Yellow Uri
With The Fringe On Top Uri
Brother Bear Uri
- Monday, January 04, 2021:
List Day: 2021 Resolutions
Go into a restaurant and have a pint.
Put gas in my car.
Finish the last 2 puzzles in Puzzle Boat 7.
Visit my new office in Herndon which opened in April 2020.
Restart Monthly Poker Night.
Drop Maia off at the grandparents' for a week, month, or year.
Smell the BO of someone outside of my family.
Enter a Costco without feeling like I'm an extra in the prologue of an outbreak movie.
Have at least 1 barbeque.
Go down a grocery store aisle any damn way I please.
- Wednesday, December 09, 2020:
List Day: Labelled Years
As an update to my last attempt , here are the years of my life with summary labels.
1979: The Year I Was Born
1980: The Year I Came to America
1981: The Year I Lived Next Door to the Fishers
1982: The Year I Was Naturalized
1983: The Year Rosa Started Babysitting Us
1984: The Year I Started Kindergarten
1985: The Year I Started First Grade
1986: The Year I Started Second Grade / Skipped a Grade
1987: The Year I Started Fourth Grade
1988: The Year I Sta...
- Friday, November 06, 2020:
Maia Battle Report: Year 3 Month 4
Maia at age 3 is showing small signs of brilliance, like asking what's going on on the other side of the world when the sun goes down, or making a connection between something brand new and something we learned and forgot months ago. She is into a rhyming phase where she likes to string rhyming sounds together like "hocky, blocky, docky". She has definitely entered the WHY?? stage of life which is more irritating than I thought it would be. All it's doing is training me to hold back the reason for something I say so I'll have a follow-up ready for the inevitable WHY??
We're working on her joke abilities, and she has over a 50% chance to guess the punchline of jokes following a known pattern, like animal sounds...
- Friday, July 17, 2020:
List Day: 5 Fun Songs Written During Quarantine
I'm Good? by Hilltop Hoods
Parmas in June by Illy
Bored by Tessa Violet and Misterwives
All Together Now by OK Go
Wash Ya Hands by KT Tunstall, featuring Grace Savage and the Freelance Hellraiser
- Friday, July 10, 2020:
List Day: 10 Unlikely Perils that Childrens' TV Prepared Me For
Fake roads painted on walls
All of the animals escaping from the farm
Trains approaching while I'm in the middle of a bridge
Trains derailing because the track switch is toggled to the wrong side
Convicts trying to steal my vault of gold
Friends pressuring me into smoking cigarettes
Trapped in a cage with the key just out of reach
- Monday, June 15, 2020:
List Day: COVID-19 Cause and Effect
We used to use paper towels for everything... It became undesirable to shop at Costco for a couple months... Our paper towel supply ran low... We were forced to purchase name-brand paper towels in the grocery store whenever they weren't sold out... We found that these paper towels don't have the option to tear at 1/2 size so they're overkill for double duty as napkins... We bought napkins so we don't waste full-size paper towels... We bought weighted napkin trays so they don't blow away on our screen porch... We are now a napkin family.
I used to get enormous, fresh-baked bagels for breakfast at Safeway twice a week... During the early days of quara...
- Wednesday, June 03, 2020:
List Day: 10 Children's Books You've Never Read
An instructional text for young readers, reminding them that everyone occasionally gets constipated -- it's perfectly natural and nothing to be ashamed of. Light-hearted pictures illustrate the various ways to combat a backed up drainpipe, from bran muffins to enemas.
Gently normalizes the lifestyle of a single mother and her daughter as they flee from state to state, avoiding unsympathetic judges, and the custody rights of a deadbeat father.
A cautionary tale of a puppy's encounter with childhood obesity, from playing too many video games and watching Blue's Clues.
- Monday, June 01, 2020:
List Day: Screen Porch Features and Configurations
Elevated table fronts window to basement, allowing pass-through of food trays and drinks without having to open heavy doors one-handedly.
Plastic, lightweight chairs allow for quick rearranging based on where the sun is during the day (rollup shade for potent sunset sun still in shipping limbo somewhere between here and Georgia).
Minimal permanent furniture allows for easy conversion to summer yoga studio.
Small plastic bin for easy access to paper plates and plastic silverware rather than a permanent garishly wicker cabinet.
Overhead fan has 3 settings and a seasonal switch that goes from suck to blow.
Pleasant view of fores...
- Monday, April 27, 2020:
List Day: 10 Pandemic Business Ideas
Magic Pandemic Balls : Ask the Magic Pandemic Ball a question when you need trustworthy advice on adhering to competing local, state, and federal pandemic guidance.
Peek Costco : Take all of those "watch an eagle raise a family" webcams abandoned since 1999 and point them at Costco entrances. Charge people for online access to the camera at their local store so they know when the lines are shortest.
Flop Ten : Use an algorithm to unearth 10 awful TV shows that your streaming company really needs to recoup losses on, then advertise them on your homepage as "Top Ten in America Right Now!".
NO U REVERSE :...
- Wednesday, April 15, 2020:
List Day: Currently...
Currently listening to... Eyes Wide, Tongue-Tied by The Fratellis.
Currently reading... Network Attacks and Exploitation by Matthew Monte.
Currently playing... Elder Scrolls Online .
Currently considering buying... some delivery for dinner.
Currently creating... a work training session on using Slack.
Currently planning... to digitize my CD collection.
Currently watching... Money Heist, Part Four and Undone, Season One .
- Monday, March 16, 2020:
List Day: 8 COVID-19 Impacts in our Life
The line to get into Costco wrapped around the building last Friday (with an orderly queue enforced by two Loudoun County Sheriffs), preventing me from stocking up on corned beef and Guinness.
We ordered meals from our favourite local pizza place (Joe's Pizzaria) on two days in a row.
Rebecca did a 90 minute yoga class through her studio from the basement, streamed online over Facebook Live.
I did a 7 AM grocery run at Safeway on Sunday to find shortages in fresh greens, eggs, milk, and cleaning supplies. It was quiet, other than the ruckus over the stocker who had just run over his foot with a giant pallet of water and was awaiting an ambulance.  ...