Monday, 26 April 2010


Been busy this past week.  Busy building THIS!


Awesome, isn't it?  Wires and circuit boards and motors and belts!  All hooked up to one of my many, many laptops?  Nerd heaven, ladies and gentlemen.  This little bundle of nerdtronics is actually a rapid prototyping machine.  Really it's a CNC hot glue gun.  The extruder isn't mounted in this photo but it goes above the orange plate and spews out hot plastic layer by layer to make a 3-D object.  And because it's a build-it-yourself kit, it costs a tenth of what a professional unit of the same size would.  It also means it's a tremendous pain in the ass to get working right.  So far, this is all I've been able to make:


Yah.  Still working on it.  Now, I should mention I didn't buy this thing.  I need to mention this so people don't phone the authorities to report the final confirmation of my much debated insanity.  I didn't buy it.  My employer bought it.  But only because I said I'd donate a weekend of my time to put the thing together.  So let the debate rage on.

I brought the unit into work today to get away from the distractions of tv and scotch.  Got some promising results before I left so I'm hopeful I can actually get a component finished tomorrow morning.  Good times.


Stopped drinking coffee this weekend.  Ran out of cream Friday and decided to shake things up.  Not an unprecedented move.  I seem to try this every couple years with varying degrees of success.  The longest I made it was six months.  And man, that first cup of coffee after six months is the greatest high I have ever known.  So for no greater reason than wanting to break out of a rut, I'm trying again.

Saturday, no problem.  Sailed through the day drinking nothing but water and green tea...and scotch (one vice at a time).  A word on green tea: "shit".  That is what green tea is.  I don't understand its appeal.  It is horrible.  If I need to break down I'll go with the orange pekoe.

Sunday, things started to slow up.  Sunday afternoon came the withdrawl fueled headache.  Not happy.  But I trundled along.  Monday would be better.

Monday, wasn't better.  I struggled today.  I was ready for a nap come 10 o'clock.  I made it to lunch and broke down and bought a blue monster.  Sweet artificial energy.  The afternoon sailed by.  But the monster effect has long passed by.  Everything is muted again.  Try again tomorrow.

Sunday, 25 April 2010

More Upsetting

Ach, the Sens turfed it last night.  After a brilliant game 5 they came back home and were leading 3-1 half way through.  But they couldn't hold them off and their season has ended.  Not too upset.  I think they definitely over-achieved this year.  They never had the firepower of teams past and got their wins by grinding and chipping.  And that style almost worked against Princess Sidney and the powerhouse penguins.  Disappointed in Alfredsson's play as he's usually the spark plug for the team in the playoffs but happy to see some potential in players like Regin and Karlsson.  But what can be done for next year?  And more importantly, what the fuck do we do with Kovalev?

And just a note about the officiating.  It was terrible.  Not blaming the refs for the Sens demise.  There were horrible calls on both sides.  But some of those calls were just blatantly idiotic.  Every game seemed to have one ref that was willing to let guys get away with anything and one ref who was determined to lay down the law.  Fucking comical.

Anyways, what's done is done.  Guess I'm pulling for Vancouver for as long as that lasts.

Thursday, 15 April 2010


WHOOOOO!  The NHL playoffs are finally here!  I was honestly surprised to see my beloved Ottawa Senators actually make it in.  Didn't think they had the depth this year.  But they did make it and what a start.  Taking it to the defending champs for a 5-4 win!  It was especially delicious because moments before the game I watched a sports show that had Barry Melrose on to explain hockey and he predicted a Penguins rout.  So, fuck you Barry Melrose.  Still a ways to go for a series win but it's nice to get things started with a win on the road.

But it turned out to be just the first in a night of upsets.  The Flyers beat the Devils?  Phoenix beat the Red Wings?!?  And holy crap, the Avalanche beat the Sharks.  Man they must be crapping themselves in San Jose.  If they exit in the first round AGAIN, there will be a purging of biblical proportions.  There are many a nervous playoff pool participant in the world this morning.  Except me.  The mark of a true fan, is he who has Chris Neil in his pool.

Wednesday, 7 April 2010

Criminal Minds: Los Angeles

There is nothing more horrifying on television than the awkward birthing of a series spin-off.  I had barely recovered from the trauma of watching NCIS sacrifice it's last remaining scruples for the sake of giving Chris O'Donnel and LL Cool J a short-bus trip to prime time.  And now this.  Tonight's episode of Criminal Minds featured the introduction of Forest Whitaker and his own team of crime fightin super heroes.

First off, what the fuck happened to Forest Whitaker?  He's all fucking skinny now!  It just looks...wrong.  All that skinny really accentuates that fucked up eye of his.  And boy is he earnest.  INTENSELY earnest!  Earnest like a mother fucker!  And guess what!  He doesn't follow ANYBODY'S rules!  FINALLY!  At long last we have a character on television that flouts authority and just gets the job done, DAMN IT!  When he showed up in this episode, I really hoped it was just a guest appearance to promote his new diet technique.

Sadly, we were soon introduced to the rest of his team.  There's Guy With British Accent, Other Guy, and Girl.  And whenever they are together there's always some intense techno music in the background that clearly indicates how awesomely they are working together.  But they don't just rely on background music for character development.  Over the course of the episode we find out that Guy With British Accent has a mysterious past involving the British Secret Service and that he REALLY likes rooftops, we discover that Other Guy spent over 6 years serving time in San Quentin, and we were shocked to learn that Girl is smart and young.  These characters are so varied yet so intriguing and compelling!  Why doesn't somebody give them their own show?!?

And that's what they're going to do.  A check on Google shows that Minds 2.0 (I'm fucking serious, that's the name) is a go for this September.  And when that day comes, I will be sad.

Saturday, 3 April 2010


The Easter weekend is here and the weather is amazing.  And how is TBone enjoying this unseasonable gift?  By lying on the couch and trying to set the record for continuous coughing fits.  In the past six months I've managed to avoid swine flu, bird flu, rat flu, and every other zoological form of flu.  But the weather turns nice and bam, I get sick.  Awesome.  It's like buying a snowmobile and expecting snow come winter time.

Thursday night was the worst.  Got two hours of total sleep.  The last round of coughing was at 4 a.m. and I gave up on trying to get some sleep and decided to concentrate on leveling up on Call of Duty instead.  Didn't help with the headache any but kept my mind off the hacking.  By nine o'clock it seemed like a trip out for meds was unavoidable.  I slugged my way over to the Shopper's and picked up some Advil, some Halls, and a bottle of Buckley's.  Oh, the Buckley's.  It's been the treatment of last resort for any cold with cough.  Vile, disgusting stuff.  If you've ever had the Vick's Vapo-Rub treatment,  you'll recognize it immediately in liquid form.  But it definitely seems to work in quelling the coughing.  My theory is that it actually kills off whatever bodily tissue is causing the cough spasm.  The first spoonful you can kind of fool yourself  into thinking that it wasn't as bad as you think you remember.  But the foolin stops as soon as you gulp that juniper flavoured varsol.  It is that bad.  And you've got one more spoonful to go.  It took 2 whole minutes of staring at that second spoonful of runny snot looking poison, debating whether to kill the cough or dump it down the sink like any sane person would.  But I was so god damned tired.  So tired of coughing.

The whole experience got me to thinking of a new ad campaign.

Man walks into pharmacy, approaches counter where three other customers are hanging out.  The pharmacist stands behind the counter.

Man: "I'm looking for something to fix a cough.  Something special."

Pharmacist: "You want a Buckley's."  Hands the man a bottle.

Customer #1: "A hundred years ago, something that wretched would have been considered withcraft."

Customer #2:"If Buckley's had a sound, it would be of a man vomiting."

Customer #3:"The French actually say it the best: OH SWEET JESUS IT BURNS!"

Pharmacist:"Take the worst day of your life...and put it in your mouth."

The good people at Rickard's may complain but I think it would work much better for this product than theirs.

Ack, back to the hacking.