01 Dec. 2006
SETI League
PriUPS Project

Things That Take Too Long

I spent yesterday in computer and microwave hell.  In trying to install a microwave link, I had to climb an antenna tower four times.  As towers go, this isn't an unduly impressive one.  It's only 40 feet high.  Even so, a forty-foot tower will kill you sooner than a taller one, since you hit the ground in even less time if you don't observe safety precautions, i.e., use a tower climbing belt.  I have a tower climbing belt.  I used it each time.  I didn't fall off.  I didn't die.  I didn't suffer any injuries at all, in fact, other than a slightly-skinned knuckle.  Any current and near-future immobility must be attributed to the unaccustomed exercise.

I mention this activity because I spent a lot of the day running around, getting and forgetting tools, planning, re-planning, and in general trying to do something unusual that requires both physical and mental effort.  It would have been less unpleasant if the world hadn't conspired against me in terms of un-downloadable programs, slow or downright recalcitrant computers, and a host of additional impedimenta.  For example, I had to use computers that I don't normally activate, all of which pleaded with me for upgrades.  When I tried to fulfill their longings, they repaid me with sloth. 

I am not vindictive, and even if I were, computers were pretty much designed to be crushed and so don't take it personally.  The fact that I am therefore going to transfer the computer's sloth to you, the reader, should not be viewed as my being vindictive, but rather as my being out of time.  And already barely able to move.  In place of another shrimp tale or some discursive ramble, I slothfully offer two complaints about other things that waste my time, and a quick "something new."

  • My stupid cellphone, some random Motorola confection, won't just turn on or off.  No, it has to play a tune!  What is it thinking?

  • The Prius has buttons on the doors to lock them when you walk away.  You close the door, press the button, hear a short "beep" and off you go.  Except sometimes.  About one time in ten the car emits a long beepperhaps as much as a second long, and the door doesn't lock.  In this instance, you have to stop in your tracks, return to the car, and press the button again.  What is it thinking?

Something New:  The "NP"

I'm a member of an internet list devoted largely to the discussion of music.  It is customary to end a post with an NP, which stands for "Now Playing."  I inevitably listen to music while I compose these blogitems.  Why not share what I'm listening to using the NP?  Why not indeed?

NP:  "Tommy" - The Who

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