Monthly Archives: September 2004

Please return your schedule to its upright position

Ok, so I suppose it's later. So here I sit, about 1 hour from the end of this tour of midnight duty. I can't be more pleased. This is the first time I've done the two week stint of midnights, and let me tell you…. it sucks! Working 7 days straight is bad enough when you consider the things that go into it – screwed up sleep schedule, limited solar exposure, limited human exposure… you get the picture. Well, when you work 14 days straight, the same things apply times two, but everything seems to accumulate more. Phil mentioined quite a few times that he just felt himself turning almost antisocial, just wanting to snap at people all the time, especially at work. Well, I definitely got that too. Combine that with the nifty DoS event of last weekend and other things I won't mention, and it would be pretty safe to say that I was a grumpy asshole for most of the week. But, thankfully, it's almost over. My psyche and body will be happy to return to the realm of the living, but my wallet will be sorry to see the midnight shifts go. They are good for one thing – putting a good chunk of cash into the bank account.

Since things are slow (knock on wood) and there's nothing for me to do really except twiddle my fingers at this point, I suppose I can mention some things I've been meaning to mention. I've bought a few pretty sweet CDs over the past few weeks that I would definitely recommend. The first two were Evergrey CDs – 'In Search of Truth' and 'Solitude Dominance Tragedy'. I'd probably recommend ISoT more, but they're both sweet. ISoT is a concept album, which always seems to generate more interest on my part. The other disc I picked up was 'Comalies' by Lacuna Coil. This was a pretty sweet album as well, but all the songs were kinda slow. When they opened for Anthrax, I could have sworn they had some headbanging thrash songs in their repitore, but alas, they're not on this album. It's still sweet. Cristina Scabbia (their female vocalist) has a great voice, and it's kind of eerily haunting at times. And she's hot too. Does that affect her voice and the talent of the band? Probably not, but it never hurts to say it.

I might try to update some of the old stale pages on the site in my upcoming days off, and then again, I may not. I think I mentioned doing the same thing about 6 months ago, and I never touched them. We'll see I guess.


Yup, this is what happens when you're on your 14th straight midnight shift with no days off (more on that in a different post), and simple things like testing a connection to a mailserver become a tedious chore…

[root@[my workstation] /var/log]: telnet [ip] 25
Trying [ip]…
Connected to [ip].
Escape character is '^]'.
220 ********02***************************************
250 [hostname] talking to [my workstation]
500 Command unrecognized


Wow, another great spam email that floated its way into our helpdesk. Check this one out… I've removed all references to their website, because these assholes don't need any more exposure than this.

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What they don't tell you is that THE ANTIDOTE also cures impotence, amnesia, speeding tickets, depression, car sickness, and hangovers. I hear it's also great for battling computer viruses too.


What's that percentage you ask? Percentage of the world's collective population that want to see George Dubyah thrown into space? Perhaps… Percentage of your recommended daily fat content that eating a Whopper will consume? Nope, nothing that grand. That's how much of two weeks of night shifts that is behind me. Almost 60%. Thank god. They've been rather uneventful, which is a good thing. Saturday morning was a most painful exception to that trend though. A real shit storm that I had to weather pretty much entirely by myself. Not any fun. I came out alive, and I guess I'm stronger right? We'll see.

Being on the night shifts has once again sapped my will to do anything productive during the day. Cooking and cleaning have gone by the wayside, and my supply of provisions has become rather light. I've yet to get more than 6 hours of sleep after any given night of work, which makes me tired and unmotivated for the rest of the day. Most days I'll lay down at 8 or 9pm and nap until 11 or so, and then I'll get ready to leave. I'd much rather be dragging my ass out of bed at 7am than going to bed at 9am. Screw this.

One cool thing is that I hooked up the guitar setup to the computer in the basment and started doing some recording stuff again. I experimented a bit with recording straight out of the effects pedals instead of taking the line-out out of the amp. My reasoning is that it would probably be easier to dial in a good recording level out of the pedals because the volume coming out of them doesn't change, since I don't ever adjust my settings there. I've got my sound dialed in, and it doesn't change. I do, however, change the volume and tone stuff on the amp, which can cause the recording levels on the computer to be either too loud or too soft if I don't make corrections. Well, I wasn't very pleased with the sound straight out of the pedals. In short, it was weak. It was very treble-y, and had no balls. I prefer that my 'sound' be pretty hard-hitting, and it certainly was not that.

I recorded a couple of Metallica songs (yes, again… it's what I know) the other day with the out-of-the-pedals setup, and they turned out all right, minus the weak sound. For those that care, here they are. And Justice for All and Blitzkrieg. I also recorded another clip earlier tonight of random doodling, this time using the line-out on the amp. Sounds a lot stronger. Plus you can hear the sweet sound of the Fender-Lace Sensor that Phil let me have. Thanks Phil! Here's your random doodling.

Behold, the cycle repeats…

Yup, my tour of night shifts has begun anew. Two weeks straight of working 12am-8am. Judging by the condition of Joe and Phil after their night shifts, things have become a lot busier during the overnights, but having the new guy, Bryan, working 8pm-4am does help out. Last night was pretty slow… hopefully that trend continues.

I got bored today and decided to take another foray into faux-7-string guitar playing… I had a set of 7-strings laying around after my string purchase blunder of a few months ago, so I strung up the Strat with those. I doubt I'll be able to play them too loud though. I played for a bit today, and just about anything played on the low B made every metallic surface resonate like crazy. The effect was intensified when I switched towards the neck pickups. Unfortunately for me, the neck pickups sound coolest without distortion, and I've become fond of playing the opening part of “A Change of Seasons” by Dream Theater. So it's either quiet, or louder with more noise. Grr. I've been meaning to hook up the recording crap for a while now, so perhaps I'll do that while I'm on nights and everyone else is at work.

And by the power vested in me…

Yah, it's been a while. I haven't had a whole lot to post about lately. It's been crazy busy at work, which makes me a bit less likely to want to do something constructive on the site when I get home. Here's constructive for ya.

Jon and Michelle's wedding was this past weekend, and all went well with that. I was the groomsman batting clean-up, which means I didn't really have to do much except stand there and look stoic, and escort my counterpart out of the church when the time came. The wedding was very cool and laid back… unlike some of the other weddings I've been to. (sorry Catholics!) The reception was cool too… it was in this huge country club reception hall. Michelle, ever the cunning vixen, made me dance, even though combining me with a dance floor normally results in … well, nothing. We don't mix. I'm sure there are pictures abound somewhere, most of which I'll probably want taken down. The reception was a great time, except for the fact that they always seem to make me remember that I'm painfully single… the reminder was only strengthened by the fact that one of the bridesmaids who was sitting at my table happened to be pretty much my 'ideal' vision of beauty in a woman… Normally that would be an excellent thing, except for the fact that her 6'4″ and much-larger-than-me boyfriend was sitting next to her pretty much the whole time. Oh well… such is life.

Something else cool happened this week… I was publicly recognized by one of our customers for being “so nice”. Normally not a very strong compliment, but in this case I'll take it as high praise. I must be doing something right if I was singled out and commended in a public place. Check out bullet #9 here. Read the site too… Dooce rocks.