August 2010
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I am The Cyberwolfe and these are my ramblings. All original content is protected under a Creative Commons license - always ask first.
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Archive for August, 2010

On being a Gemini

Posted in Life on August 26th, 2010

Have you ever had an argument – with yourself? And lost? Ahh, the joys of mild schizophrenia.

Here I am, already a JOAT (Jack Of All Trades) with enough varied interests to skin a cat, and here I am wanting to start up yet another hobby – and an expensive one, at that.

Well, expensive if I do it the way I want to, anyhow…

Lately I seem to have caught a bit of the blacksmithing bug, and have been doing a lot of reading online and watching various training videos on the subject. I’ve learned some good stuff (someone finally made a nice vid of an actual Japanese master bladesmith constructing a katana) and gotten a little frustrated by not being able to go out to the garage and pound something with a hammer.

Something tells me the city might complain if I built a forge on the sidewalk…

Your Gub’ment At Work

Posted in Life, Politics on August 24th, 2010

Got a letter from a lawyer’s office today, which is always a bit freaky. “what the hell did I do?” you think to yourself.

It turns out, it was more of what I didn’t do. Apparently, in 2004, I was supposed to have paid $9 in income tax and didn’t. (News to me, I have no recollection of 2004 at all). So, since I was so late with it, they added a $10 penalty.

And hired a legal firm to collect.

Now, it probably took said legal officers about 15 minutes to set up an account in their system for me, print out the letter, hand-address an envelope, run it through the postage meter and then drop it in the OUT box. With my understanding of the average legal fees, that probably cost the county $25 to collect $19.

Oh, wait, make that $18, there’s a discount for paying online. I hope the County gets a bulk discount for the other 20,000 people that owe them 10 bucks.

Okay, I understand that the legal firm is probably only charging the County a percentage of the funds collected, but still. It seems kind of a silly way to go about it, since the County could just as easily have tasked an intern with calling or mailing people to let them know they owe something before sending them to collections.

Cuz really – 6 years, and this is the first I’ve heard of it? Oi.

August Camping

Posted in Life on August 23rd, 2010

We’ve been missing camping since we haven’t been doing SCA stuff this year, so we decided to head out to a regular ol’ campground for a few days to get at least one use out of the tent this year.

We ended up choosing Lazy Bend Campground on the Clackamas River because:

  1. It was available for reservations – I hate the stress of walk-up camping
  2. It has flush toilets. Every other camp in Oregon has vault-type toilets, which are amazingly somehow worse than a porta-john.

There was also an entry in a guidebook saying how the camp was far enough away from the road that you wouldn’t be able to hear passing traffic, and that the site rated an 8 or 9 out of 10 for scenic qualities.

They lied about the road.

Really, either that or they managed to get all of their notes out of order when they sat down to write up their review. The highway is only between 25 and 75 feet away from all the sites in the camp, and a few of them are visible directly from the road which gets traffic at all hours, including semi trucks. The saving grace for about half of the sites is that the river is also really loud due to the rocky shallows it passes through and it drowns out the traffic.

There was another bummer in that we were hoping to get some swimming in, but the river is low, fast and rocky at that point (not to mention bone-jarringly cold) so that wasn’t an option. Promontory Park is about a mile down the road though, so you can drive down there if you feel like leaving the site.

The biggest disappointment for me, however, was arriving on-site just past check-in time to discover that not only had someone screwed up the reservation cards attached to each campsite, the Camp Hosts had changed their days off and were not in attendance. Tolerant and I were forced to drive the 10 miles back to Estacada to get a signal and make a few calls. We did eventually get things figured out, but it took until the next morning to finalize the arrangements and could have gone much easier if the Camp Host wasn’t such a crotchety old coot.

Thankfully, Tolerant and I were accompanied by one of our best pairs of friends, and we still managed to get a fair amount of fun packed into an extended weekend. We’re going to plan farther ahead for next year and reserve a site early at one of the really popular sites like Detroit Lake where we know they’ll have all the amenities we’re looking for.

Music Meme: 5 songs

Posted in Media on August 11th, 2010

What the Hell – Da Roomie did it, I may as well follow along. He told me to use the letter “O”, since I am such an Oingo Boingo fan.

1. If you’d like to play along, reply to this post and I’ll assign you a letter.
2. You then list (and upload or link to the video, if you feel like it) 5 songs that start with that letter.
3. Then, as I’m doing here, you’ll post the list to your journal with the instructions.

On with the meme, then..

  1. One Little Victory – Rush
    …because Neil’s octopus impression is just hard to beat. (No link, as there are no official videos, just crappy bootlegs.)
  2. One Vision – Queen
    Originally found on the Iron Eagle soundtrack, it always makes me think of fast jets.
  3. Only Happy When It Rains – Garbage
    Redhead with a Scottish accent for the win.
  4. Owner of a Lonely Heart – Yes
    Indeed, I am a child of the 80’s, and I can remember staying up late to watch Friday Night Videos when this particular video first came out. (Wow, I found the actual video for this one.)
  5. One Love – Prodigy
    This is a dangerous song for me to be listening to when I drive, but it is a truly essential part of me proving to the rest of the morning commuters just how good I am at doing physics on the fly. (Hmm, gap in traffic ahead – if I increase speed by 12% within the next 10 seconds, I should be able to squeeze through with a foot to spare, which will set me up for passing that damn minivan…)

Somehow I managed not to include any Boingo in there…