Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.
Yep. I’m another year older. It was pretty uneventful. Which suits me more and more as I age. Bdot and I did some running around in Orangeville on my birth day. So much so we were hangry before we realized it. We settled on Thai from Bolton which was pretty delicious. We both filled two plates then collapsed in food comas.
Friday bdot was out most of the day shopping with my Mother and sister. Everyone survived and I think they got most of their shopping done. My Mom stayed over Friday and my sister and BiL came over for dinner Saturday night. I BBQed chicken burgers which I made earlier in the day. Before everyone arrived for dinner, while bdot was out getting her hair done Saturday I took my Mom for a walk on the Trans Canada Trail. It was colder than I thought it would be so it curtailed the walk a bit I believe. Otherwise it was beautiful. Well, except for the shifty creepy guy with the toddler we passed. He seemed really off. Was trying to hid his face and didn’t acknowledge us as he passed. Child seemed fine. Still, it seemed odd. We also came across a crow. This good sized bird didn’t seem disturbed by our presence at all. We called to him and he’d look at us but continued about his business. We carried on down the trail and passed the tree 15m later and he was still there. I’ve always thought crows were a pretty interesting/smart bird and there have been plenty of studies to back this up.
Dinner went over well. The five of us ate all the burgers I made. Two needed a refiring. Hmpt. My sister gave me some yummy teas and other foods. A tea sounds like a good idea actually… The battery I got with the e6420 I won off ebay was, of course, the lowest end battery available. Well at least it seems to last as if it were. A full charge lasts 1h5m?? Which is practically useless. I’ve ordered a 9 Cell battery which I’m hoping (praying?) will get me at least 5-6hrs of life. We shall see. It is in transit. It is remarkable the range of prices for the same battery from different retailers online. If you are looking to buy a laptop battery do shop around!
The exterior of the house finally seems ready for the festive season. It took a some cord and timer juggling to get everything set but I think we are there. We toyed with the idea of getting one of those laser light shows that seem to be the ‘new’ thing the pass couple of years. Ultimately we opted for a classic look with white LEDs with red and green flood lights. I love the night look of the house, both in the front and the backyard. Now if only we could get some snow to cover all the dirt….
Bills lost a pivotal game yesterday. It likely means missing the playoffs for a ‘sports franchise’ leading 16th season in a row. Oh gawd. At least the Sabres has strung two wins together and look competitive most nights.
My buddy Joe moved from Cambridge to Puslinch. Basically moving from a city to a rural area. We drove up for a visit to see his new place on Saturday. He now has a ton of property (or so it seemed to me) which includes a dense wooded area. We went for a walk into his ‘back acre’. The ‘women’ used the opportunity to gather branches for seasonal displays. (I think bdot is actually putting it together right now!) It was a fun evening. Monika fed us well and gave us a new appreciation for paprika. Pat, Jenn and Ava also made an appearance. More of the boyZ were invited, but as usual, we can’t seem to gather in one spot. The evening also included a nice fire until it started to rain. The rain continued all the way home which made for a miserable drive.
Sunday we did some shopping and continued getting the exterior in a festive mood. I think it is looking wonderful.
Remi is eating a bit more after the visit. We got some new food which she seems to like. Still… she is 18, which I read is around 88 in human years. So, she has had a good life. Would love her to stick around for another year or two provided she continues to eat but I’m not overly optimistic.
[Yes, the title is taken from President’s… song Peaches]
We just got back from the Vet. It seems remi has some heart issues. She hasn’t been eating regularly for a few days and has lost some weight. She is not her self at all. She has become quite sedentary. If she doesn’t start to eat soon then we will have to consider final options. We can’t bear to see her wither away to nothing. It is heart breaking. She has been my little buddy for so long. This year just keeps doling out the shit.
Bdot and I enjoy long walks and hiking. We choose the area we live in so we can enjoy the outdoors. One of the many great hiking trails near us is the Trans Canada Trail. I’ve decided to start longing our/my progress across the trail. I’m not sure how far I’ll get… but this adventure is all about the journey. This idea came to me recently… I’ve been using the trail for many years… so I’ll have to back track a bit. You can follow the progress here!
I was suppose to meet up with the Boyz downtown at the Moose Saturday night for beers and burgers. Alas, my ride bailed and I didn’t want to drive downtown, drink then drive home. Strangely there are no GO buses or trains from King station to downtown on the weekend. Hmmpt. Bdot was making at her sisters so I was on my own. As usual that means a long dog walk. I’ve wanted to do a section of the Trans Canada trail for awhile. So off I went. I did a beautiful section of the trial between Humber Station road and Old Church road. Along the trail were many little ponds and interesting scenery. I always do hikes that make a loop so the walk was about 5km. It was getting dark, so it felt like enough for one night.
The evening was spent watching the Sabres and enjoying Fish and Chips. 🙂
Sunday was a beautiful, warm November day? Hmmpt. Bdot and I spent most of the day working in the backyard. The main task was getting the Christmas lights up. Normally this is a pretty painless process. However… we put gutter guards in a few weekends ago so the light clips are particularly difficult to insert now. After some trail and error, Bdot found a decent way to attach the lights. We both really enjoy the lights, so this was a nice win. We even have lights in the backyard now, so the backyard is really becoming an impressing and enjoyable space at night IMHO. I’ll post a photo soon. After a well deserved soak in the hottub we relaxed with Jurassic World. It was pretty much what you would expect. Solid visuals and many scary dinosaur with lots of teeth.
The terrorist attacks on Paris certainly have shook up perceptions around the world. I’m seeing a lot of Fear being expressed in various social media. Many of these fears involve ‘the refugees’ ‘Islam’ and ‘Muslims’. It is a serious and complicated issue. The stakes are huge. Freedoms and the very principles of democracy are being challenged. Leaders in democratic countries around the world have huge decisions ahead of them. I’m not sure what tomorrow will bring…
I’m sickened to hear the events unfolding in Paris. Murderers attacked a small venue during a Rock concert. Reports are still emerging but some are saying possibly 100 people were killed… at a show…
We live in a world where someone woke up this morning and planned to kill innocent people at a concert.
It was a small venue. It is similar to many I’ve attended where a few hundred fans gather to hear some music they love. I’m finding this event very troubling to hear. I’m hoping the reports are wrong but it sounds like it will be an horrifically tragic night.
Well, that was a waste of time. When I initially got the Summons for Jury duty selection, I wrote a letter to be excused so I could focus on my job search and maintain my availability. I thought it was a pretty convincing letter. I didn’t hear back so I had to go to Brampton this morning. I waited in a few lines to find out I was deferred from jury duty and was ‘free to go’. Sigh. So because they couldn’t e-mail or call I drove in for nothing. Oh well. Back to the grind. I’m glad this is resolved anyway.
So there is a chance I may sit on a jury for several months. I find out (I guess?) on Thursday. While it would normally be interesting, the timing is absolutely crippling as my persisting situation is anything but normal. Sure it would mean a few dollars but it means further delays and another frustrating sidetrack from the job search. You can’t ditch it. You can only hope you aren’t picked. I wrote the jury clerk to get out of it but I guess the government doesn’t care about my situation. *SMH*. Certainly feeling a little trapped by this. Anyway, will know more after Thursday.
I’ve been playing with my Ideapad K1. Somehow (?!!) the password got set to something I couldn’t figure out. I tried every number that made sense to me. It was incredibly frustrating. So I did a lot of reading and determined, somehow, I had to install a new ROM.
The first part of the process was to get a computer to talk to the K1. The only option available to me was APX mode. Getting into this mode was easy. Getting Windows to understand this mode WAS NOT. I’m not sure why… but only a fresh install of Windows 7 even detects APX mode. It labels it as APX in Device Manager with an unusable driver. Fortunately I was able to locate a driver that works. You basically got one shot to fix the ROM. For whatever reason… Windows won’t correctly detect an APX connection after you disconnect the first time. This might just be me. But it always happened. So once an APX connection is made you can reflash the ROM. I found an awesome CyanogenMod 10.1 (Android 4.2.2) build for my tablet and it works really well. It even has a wonderful windows.bat installer that does everything to get the OS up and running.
The only problem was no Google Apps. Really a tablet without the app store is pretty useless. So more reading. The trick to updating Google Apps was getting the tablet into recovery mode. I tried a bunch of rebooting holding down key combos and nothing worked. Eventually I found this page which had all the answers. I downloaded the correct .zip then found the trick was using the terminal emulator to reboot the tablet into recovery. The command was adb reboot recovery. It worked. Rebooted into recovery. I guess some versions of the recovery app use the power button as ‘enter’ the K1 does not. This was initially confusing. The K1 uses the ‘Home screen/Back’ button on side of the screen as ‘enter’. Once I figured this out it was pretty easy to flash the gapps zip and voila! the K1 was ready to rock! It is a little dated and heavy but it is streams really well and is still a great little media consumption device.
The best media app is Kodi. Which I was shocked to find isn’t compatible with the K1. Apparently the K1 GPU is the Tegra 2 which is NON-NEON instruction based. All new Kodi builds require NEON instruction capabilities. What?! To quote from the Kodi site: “x86 (Intel) or NEON compatible ARM processor, (for example: Nvidia Tegra 3 and newer are fully supported by Kodi, while Tegra 2 and older Tegra probably will never be supported because its processor lacks NEON instruction set compatibility).” Barf. But wait… some wonderful dev somewhere made a NON-NEON port of Kodi! So after some googling I was able to locate a functional 14.2 version of Kodi for the K1. Huzzah!
It was a pretty quiet weekend. Bdot was away Saturday night with friends so I chilled out with a mediocre movie. I wanted to take the dog for a nice walk but wow… 5PM is now dark… and by the time I got outside and drove to the trail head – it was dark and I couldn’t see a thing. Wah-wah. Sunday we spent most of the day installing leaf guards on most of the gutters on our home. With the investment into the drainage solution – the least we could do was try to keep leaves out of the system since they really muck things up. It was pretty cold. After an afternoon of snapping in panels we were both pretty stiff and tired. We cheated dinner and hit A&W. *smirk* Bdot did make a wonderful beef soup however.
Finally a good weekend for Buffalo sports teams. The Sabres beat Miller for his return to Buffalo and the Bills beat Miami.
Still full of leaves in November. Stubborn tree. It is in the right yard.
Trudeau elects a diverse, representative cabinet for Canada.
— CBC News Alerts (@CBCAlerts) November 4, 2015
Huzzah! Good Riddance!
We spent a good part of Saturday in the backyard. Bdot was a planting machine and finished getting all the plants and shrubs we bought for our ‘back hill’ into the ground. After the plants get established I expect it should be quite striking. We have a lot of red with Coneflower and Ivory Halo Dogwood Shrub and Brilliant Red Chokeberry, bright yellow from Black Eyed Susans, Serviceberry shrub, and even some accent grasses: Sedge and Avalanche Reed Grass. Even with all those plants and shrubs there is still a ton of space free which will eventually be filled with Sumac. We stung up while lights along the back fence line which I really like the look of at night. It gives a nice sense of depth and warmth to the space. Bit by bit it is really coming together.
We got a typical number of kids for Halloween. It did rain a bit so it may have deterred some trick or treaters. We realized we need to up our Halloween game. Most of our neighbour’s put on a fairly impressive display… tombstones, lights and a ton of Halloween decor. We had a pumpkin. The clear standout lame house. Hmmpt.
Unfortunately the side stone steps buckled and will have to be fixed in the Spring… Otherwise the yard is wonderful.
Sunday we spent most of the day at the nephew’s. Not that we saw much of him… he hid away most of the time up in his room gaming. That gave us a lot of time to hang out with Barb’s sister and Brother in Law. The Men spent most of the time outside putting a fence up and The Women worked inside on the loom. It sounds like a sentence from a century ago. Wow… I played with Bell Vibe a bit as well. You can stream ALL your channels to practically any device. It is was awesome. You had complete viewing freedom to go anywhere on your property. Bell seems way ahead of Rogers on this one. Not that I would concern going back to cable… but it was impressive. It was a relaxing afternoon and it was great to see everyone in Aurora.
I’m really enjoying the recent signs of life from the Sabres. They look organized and well structured and the effort seems fairly complete in the past 4 games; of which they won 3. Winning fixes everything.