Monthly Archives: December 2005

‘Tis the season…

Yep, it’s that time of year again. Christmas Eve is tomorrow (today?), and I’m burnt out. I’ve been working a lot, playing little, and according to the way I feel, not sleeping enough. It’s all good though, for the time being at least. Tomorrow I will be able to visit with my mom’s side of the family, and it will be fun and festive, as it always is. I guess that I’m lucky that I have a family that I enjoy being around. Not everyone is so lucky.

After Christmas though, that will be less fun – I’m moving, once again. My current living situation just hasn’t worked out. I’ve never really felt at home here – more like I was just crashing at someone else’s place every night. So, I’m moving on. I’ve secured a two-bedroom apartment in a complex where I’ve lived previously. It has a nice view of a large wooded lot, free of ugly things such as cars, buildings, roads, or reflections in the mirror. The price is pretty good too, so I can’t complain. Not as good as sharing the bills with a roommate, but I’ll take that hit in the name of living solo.

I get the keys on Monday, and I hope to have the bulk of my crap moved by late tuesday. It seems that my parents and I have become pretty good at moving me around, with the many MSU-related moves and all. They both have large vehicles now, so that should help things too, as long as I can keep their gaping maws fed with boxes and furniture and the like. (The vehicles, not my parents…) This should also allow me to move all the crap out of Greg’s basement that is still around from when I lived there. I’m sure he and Carl will be pleased to see my junk go.

I won’t have internet service until thursday at the earliest, so my online availibility might suffer. It’s not like I talk to more than 5 people consistently online anyways… 🙂

Merry Christmas to all, and to all, I’m going to bed.

Whatever you do, don’t open the box

Last week, Mike sent me a link to a cool music service called Pandora. It kind of scared me at first, because the email that was sent was one of those generic “Tell a friend” kind of emails, and didn’t have anything mentioning that he sent it. The email said something about someone creating a stream called “Iron Maiden Radio”, and I happened to be listening to Iron Maiden at the time. I was creeped out, and was partially worried that my workstation was compromised somehow. I talked to Mike the next day, and I was happy to learn that he sent it.

Anyways, what makes this thing so cool is that it can provide you with a bunch of music you may like based upon an artist or song that you enter when you load the page. Entering the artist/song creates a “station” of music that shares similar characteristics to the artist/song you entered. Each artist/song is classified based upon characteristics of the music, and the recommended songs are chosen based upon similarities to those characteristics. For instance, in my “Nevermore” radio station, I was presented the song “Unholy Confessions” by Avenged Sevenfold (which is actually a band I’ve been wanting to check out), “because it features hard rock roots, a subtle use of paired vocal harmony, mild rhythmic syncopation, varying tempo and time signatures, and demanding instrumental part writing.”

You have the ability to tailor each “station” by providing feedback on each song that’s played, so in theory, you can avoid stuff you won’t like. It will only allow you to skip over a certain number of songs per hour, and you have no way to choose exactly what bands you want to hear, but that’s part of the whole “station” scenario. It’s kinda like radio, but it’s much more focused on what you want to hear.

It’s a very cool concept, and I’ll probably use it a lot more in the future. Right now the Flash client that they run on your machine is not efficient at all, and totally makes my browser crawl. Hopefully it’ll get better.

Weak in the knees

Yah, I’m really behind in posting, but oh well, it’s my site, my perogative.

Two weeks ago, I had the eye injection that Dr. Saxe hopes will help bring the stupidity inside my eye under control. It was an experience to say the least. The drug he injected is called Avastin, and it’s normally used in cases of rectal/colon cancer. I’m not sure how I feel about having something injected into my eye that’s normally associated with one’s ass, but hey, if it works, it works.

The actual injection wasn’t that bad, although I must say it was weird to be conscious during the procedure. I was able to see the injection entering my eye, which was very strange. The only parallel I can draw is that it was like looking through a whirlpool from underwater. The fluid was swirling around quite freely, which was very strange since my other eye wasn’t experiencing the same effect. The whole injection process took less than 30 seconds, and seemed to be over just as quickly as it started.

What happened afterwards was quite unexpected though. My mom and I were waiting in the exam room for a while so the staff could take pressure reading on my eye to make sure things were kosher. They said they had to wait for ten minutes after the injection to take the reading, so we were just killing time. All of a sudden, I started feeling lightheaded and queasy, and I asked my mom if she could get me a drink of water. Well, before she could finish standing up, I fainted. I collapsed down in the chair and kind of lurched over to one side, hitting my head on the vertical pole that supports all of the ophthalmological examination stuff. My mom had to catch me to keep me from falling to the floor. Apparently I was only out for about 30 seconds, but because of that I had to stay around for quite a while, just so they could make sure I wasn’t going to zonk out again. I didn’t, and after a half hour of nurses buzzing around I was able to leave.

I went in for another checkup a week after the injection, and everything was stable at that point. My sight had apparently improved to 20/50, but I didn’t really notice a difference. I go in for another checkup in early January, so lets hope things are better by then.