Even the NY Times feels my pain


From the New York Times op-ed page (during a very rainy summer)

August 5, 2003

And the Forecast Is . . .

By MICHAEL RUBINER

Wednesday in New York : Rain. Heavy at times. Followed by periods of precipitation.

Thursday : Lingering showers throughout the day. Chance of rain 800 percent.

Friday : Moist. Damp. Sodden.

Saturday : Rainish. Showery. Precipitacious.

Sunday : Light rain followed by heavy rain followed by pouring.

Monday : Unseasonably rainy in the morning. Uncharitably rainy in the afternoon. Unconscionably rainy in the evening.

Tuesday : Endless showers broken up by occasional flooding.

Wednesday : Remember “Waterworld”? Like that, only with more rain.

Thursday : Not sunny. The opposite of sunny. Just forget about sunny, O.K.?

Friday : Clearing just long enough for you to make weekend plans. Followed by obscene amounts of rain.

Saturday : Take a wild guess.

Sunday : Incessant, spirit-crushing rain. The kind of rain that makes it futile to get out of bed in the morning. The kind of rain that seems as if it will never end. And guess what? It never will. Ever. Do you understand?

Monday : Please go away.

Tuesday : Ample, brilliant sunshine throughout the day. Wait

Annual photo day

Every year, around her birthday, Steffie has a picture taken, which Helaine and I then hang in the hallway leading to our bedroom. Over the past few years we have started going to the mall photographer, with pretty good results.

Over the past few years we’ve also started bringing Ivy along, which causes some logistics problems. Malls aren’t exactly dog friendly.

Helaine made the appointment and we brought Ivy and Steffie in just before the mall opened and before the photographer was jammed with screaming little kids.

Once again, it’s a really nice photo.

He’s back

Just when we thought it was over, “Elden” returned, tapping, smearing, touching up. I have no idea what’s going on on my steps.

Meanwhile, Helaine and Steffie are leaving in a few minutes to see the first of two Rick Springfield concerts, this one in Westbury, NY. They are taking my Fuji S602z camera. I gave Helaine and Steffie some very brief lessons, but we’ll see. With a camera like this, it’s possible to take incredibly great shots… or touch a button and prevent you from shooting anything usable.

My friend Steve told me his DSL installation kit has arrived. I’ll probably help getting everything running. I’ve been tech support to most of the people I know, except the others I know who also do tech support. Helaine figures when I retire I’ll go door-to-door fixing computers and support myself that way. Why not? I enjoy doing it.

I forecast increasing clouds today… which have not yet arrived. I hate waiting. It’s weird having to have the limited perspective of hoping for deteriorating conditions just because I forecast them.

Front steps revisited

Yesterday, when “Elden” left, the stairs were draped with a tarp. So, we left it there and avoided all step contact. During the day, the tarp blew paritally off… guess what? The steps were complete! Oops.

He didn’t come back tonight (it’s his tarp).

Now all we need is the painter and paver to come back and finish the small parts of their jobs that didn’t go right the first time.

My front steps

A few months ago we refinanced the house and then used the proceeds to do some house repair. Nothing major… painting, new kitchen counter tops, more painting, a little roof work.

As it was ending, I noticed some cracks in the mortar on our front steps. We called in a man who had done some work for a neighbor. so far, it has taken as long as painting the inside of the house and it’s quickly approaching the length of the outside painting too.

Remember Elden from Murphy Brown!

Here’s what my beautiful, little, brick steps and landing look like today.

Bob Hope – dead at 100

Bob Hope died last night at age 100. It was announced early today.

Over the past few years it has been sad to watch the Hope family milk Bob’s memory. It’s not like they don’t have all the money in the world already.

It’s been pretty well known that Bob was in sad shape for the last few years. Still, on the occasion of his 100th birthday the family attributed a pretty good ‘ad lib’ to him. Even in his prime Bob was written for. At this moment, who would believe he wrote the line at all? Why not let him live in dignity, without making up things to make him seem even larger.

As far as I’m concerned the true judge of Hope’s stature was his treatment on The Tonight Show with Johnny Carson (I’ll use the show’s full name). Bob could walk in, at any moment, while any guest was on the air, and Doc and the band would play “Thanks for the Memories”, and Bob would sit down. And the other guest… too bad.

When Bob was done, he’d get up and leave. And he could do this anytime he wanted to.

That’s an achievement.

Publishing with Movabltype

I’m not so sure what was so difficult about it, but at 2:30 in the morning, whispering on the telephone to Peter Sachs, I got Movabletype configured on my server! Now, I can run a blog for me and a blog for the WTNH Weather Department. The same install will handle both separately. Best of all, it’s all free.

This program is very powerful with lots of customizations. Of course, I worry I’ll customize it into not working!

As it turns out, my original formatting, with photos two across, caused the blog to be out of format with a screen resolution of 1024×768 or less. It’s fixed now… I think.

Liza Minelli

So, the word is out that Liza Minelli and David Gest have split. I don’t know who’s been cheating, but I think we can narrow it down to another man.

Observation

Sometimes I think about what it will be like when Steffie goes to college… so I can go back to being an only child.

Dinner at Chili’s

We all (Helaine, and my folks) picked up Steffie in the Camry and Steffie drove us to Chili’s. I’m not sure who was more petirified, Steffie or Helaine. Stef did a great job though very self concious.

Good news Bad news

I went and picked my parents up at the airport. They’ll be watching Steffie. It was a good trip from West Palm Beach and an easy drive up and back from the airport.

Once I got home, Helaine wanted me to move some things in and out of our safe, including retrieving cash for the trip. I closed the safe, locked it, and then was told I had forgotten to put something in. When I came back, the safe wouldn’t open! It seems like the lever and bolt action are no longer connected. Oops. Luckily, it’s an e-ticket trip and I removed the cash.

Is this a good omen or bad?

Nice hair!

While packing my stuff (what will I leave home?) I was going through my desk drawer and came upon a 25 year old drivers license. Nice hair!

Car washing 101

On my way home from work, I stopped to wash the car. I’ve never had to wait to use the carwash at midnight, until tonight. Pictured, the car ahead of me.

I took my “Natural Disasters” quiz. I would have been faster, but I had to stop and write a note to the author of my textbook, questioning his ideas about flood control. Fifty two years old and I’m still a putz!

4th of July

It’s the 4th of July. I have to work on what is a hot and sticky day in Connecticut. There are a few thunderstorms on the radar, but not enough to really worry about. Helaine is packing. Twice, she’s had me get on the scale with a suitcase. Both were light (by airline limits that is). I haven’t done any packing yet. And, I still have a quiz to take to get ahead in my “Natural Disasters” class at Mississippi State.

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