Tuesday, August 31, 2004


Thing1 is attending a private liberal arts school. It's also a Christian
school. It's not really in the budget but it seems like the right thing
to do.

Anyways the rooms are actually 2 room suites with a walk-in closet and a
bathroom for the occupants. 2 students per room so 4 per suite. Thing1's
roommate is(was) his polar opposite. Thing1 is quiet, keeps to himself,
neat, and very easy going. Likes loud music but wears headphones to keep
from annoying others. I may be bragging but I think the wife and I did a
pretty good job raising him.

The roommate on the other hand is very different. Loud, outgoing, and a
little messy. Gangsta rap at midnight at full volume does not make for a
happy thing...

Well Thing1 came home from a service project and got yelled at by the
roommate for not waking him. Later on he came back and roommate was
packing up and moving. Quiet for awhile. Hopefully the roommate finds
someone that he gels with so that he is a success at school. Time will tell.

Monday, August 30, 2004

Windows XP sp2

I like Windows XP. In my experience it is reliable, fairly robust,
secure (if patched as necessary), and generally easy to use (once you
loose the new interface). I use XP on 3 machines at home at 2 at work.
No problems that I can blame on Microsoft. Lots of little irrations but
nothing that compares to what I've 'enjoyed' with using Linux.

Service Pack 2 (sp2) is the latest 'patch' from the nice people in Redmond. 266MB of new applications.
I installed it the first day I could on a VMWare machine and had no problems. (For those who don't know - VMWare is the tool to use for testing) I then installed it on a couple of desktops at home and then my desktop at work, laptop at home, and then finally a old laptop at work. No problems.

So a coworker stops by my office and asks a question about a machine he
is building for his daughter to take to school with her. Based on a Shuttle box it was a new Prescott P4
with a Intel 865 chipset. Since he had installed XP Pro I advised him to
install sp2 just to stay ahead of the curve. Well he isn't talking to me...

What happened? sp2 installed without complaint, rebooted, and nothing.
Zip, zero, nothing. No safe mode nothing. Well the coworker was smart
enough to have Ghosted
the machine to DVD and restored it so his daughter could take it to
school. The coworker did some research
and discovered that there appears to be a problem with Prescott
core P4 and Celeron chips when coupled with the 865/875 chipsets. And
coworker talks to me again :-).

So Thing1 gets to college last Friday. Plugs the XP machine into the
network spigot and gets nothing. No DHCP response at all. Bummer - need
to register the MAC address. So we stop by the computer lab and ask for
the procedure to follow. The tech tells us to bring in the machine so
that it can be 'checked'. Checked means (for XP machines) sp2, some form
of antivirus and adware detector. Well Thing2's laptop is not taking
to sp2. The techs have been struggling for 3 days trying to install sp2.
We'll see what they say tomorrow.

On the other hand the iBook was back in a day ready to go...

Update on the Dell. The techs gave up trying to install sp2. Thing1 has it back in his hands. Can't get on the network with it... May need to go visit and see whats going on.

Update #2. After a long phone conversation we got both machines on the wireless net at school. Joy returns to Thing1's life

Sunday, August 29, 2004

The Day After

No - not the made for TV movie from the 1980s. And it was really two
days after. The wife, Thing2, and I went to visit Thing1 at college. We
attended chapel together (a excellent mix of traditional pipe organ and
hyms with comtemporay Christian Praise and Worship) and then delivered
the rest of Thing1's stuff. The room mates have all arrived and are
starting to settle in. Things are becoming more normal. After pizza at
the local Unos we walked around campus for a while, played some pool,
and just talked. Thing1 is a wonderful kid who is going to be a great
teacher. He surprises me every day with how grown up he is. And yet
still a child at heart.

I miss him.

Happy Aniversary

August 27th, 1983. A hot and steamy day here in Illinois. I spent the
afternoon in a church. Without air conditioning. Well worth the time as
the wife and I were married before God, family, and friends. The wedding
was followed by a excellent party at a local country club that was
enjoyed by all.

Fast forward to August 27th, 2004. 21 years of marriage has produced 2
children (well according to the wife I should be included in that count
making it 3), lots of memories, love, happiness, and challenges. Usually
I take the day off from work so that I can spend it with the wife. This
year was no exception. Except that we spent the day moving Thing1 into
his room at college. The wife and Thing1 are prety close. They have been
since day 1. The tension had been building for a couple of weeks. Thing1
couldn't wait to go. The wife didn't want to let go. But finally it was
time to leave. Thing1 was off to chapel and I had finished fixing the tv
antenna connection. A quiet ride home - except for occasional tears.
It's hard to let go...

Saturday, August 21, 2004

Bush vs Kerry

It seems strange to be that the Kerry campaign is calling on President Bush to condem the Swiftboat Veterans Campaign for Truth ads. JFK is also calling for the baning of the book Unfit for Duty. Hmmm... I don't recall the Bush campaign asking that the piece of fiction known as Fahrenheit 9/11 be banned? (See Dave Kopel's analysis for more) Ok maybe it's not complete fiction but Michael Moore is known for selective editing and omission in order to make his point.

Counting down ...

Less than a week till Thing1 heads off to school. The wife is getting nervous. Even the dog is nervous. I think even Thing1 is nervous. Well maybe a bit excited and a bit scared. (Think Owen Wilson's character in Armagedeon right before the shuttles lift off). Me - I wish I was the 18 year old heading off to school.

Wednesday, August 18, 2004

Back to school

Not me - my 13 year old daughter known to the world as thing2. (thing1 is off to college this year) Thing2 is attending the same junior high that my wife, thing1, and I did. Pretty spooky. On one hand it was nice to see the school. It had been gutted, asbestos removed and rebuilt. It is very nice inside. We walked thing2 through her schedule and, while she seemed a little confused, thing2 was ready to go. The strange thing was that both the wife and I rememberd where our lockers were. And we went there a long time ago. Thing1 and I were looking at pictures of the staff and one of the gym teachers was one of my classmates way back when...

The wife kept noticing boys looking at thing2. While she is an attractive young lady it was rather disconcerting. Time for a new gun. Or sword. Maybe both...

Thing1 heads off to college in just a few days. We are now officially broke. Don't make enough money to just write a check and make too much to get any real financial aide. It'll be tight for a few years but I just recall a bumper sticker that thing1 and I saw at the local gun store - "If you think education is expensive - try ignorance" Thing1 wants to be a elementary school teacher. And I think he'll be a great one. If nothing else a God loving, gun owning, conservative punk teacher might just shake up the teachers lounge a bit.