Monthly Archives: June 2002
But for too many of my colleagues, today doesn’t mark the beginning of the weekend, it marks the end of their IBM career. Fare ye well, one and all.
I don’t want one of these
Coming Soon: A ‘Telephone Tooth’
Tired of losing your cell phone? Having other people listen in on your conversations? What about all the times you’ve had to turn it off at public events, or leave it behind while swimming? Two British inventors unveiled a prototype of a device Friday that could solve those problems. But there’s a drawback — your dentist would have to install it inside one of your molars.
B’nai Mitzvah news
Our havurah has its first B’nai Mitzvah this weekend; it’s also a doubled B’nai Mitzvah (as Jeffrey’s will be), so we have more than one reason to attend. Planning for Jeffrey’s Bar Mitzvah is moving apace, too. Only 7 months…yikes!!
No big plans for the weekend other than going to shul; maybe I’ll have a chance to edit the photos I took on my last two trips. Or maybe I’ll just play Simpsons’ Road Rage some more.
So, not only am I playing Road Rage, I’ve started watching The Simpsons, too.
And today at work, I got a note from the Travel Expense Auditors telling me that they’d found a problem with my most recent expense account. I have to admit that I have a lot more respect for those folks than I did on Monday…and, fortunately, the problem appears to be easy to solve (I did something out of profile and forgot to write a note documenting it — so they flagged it, as they should).
But it could be worse. I could be at the wrong end of this conversation and be out $3!
On Sunday, I thought to myself, “that looks like fun,” and got him to show me the basics. I was right — it is fun! So we’re taking turns playing; he’s a lot better than I am, but I’m improving every run. And so far, I’ve managed to keep it from interfering with my driving in reality, too.
…and I’m home again.
The travel was worthwhile — it was good seeing everyone, both family and co-workers. And both my presentations went well, though we haven’t yet rid the world of spam, nor are all privacy concerns fixed.
I’m looking forward to spending time at home…the weather looks pretty good for the weekend, and the company is great. So it’s time to turn off the machine and enjoy!
This time, it’s a tour of the East Coast. The next couple of days see my department’s semi-annual planning meeting, this time in Greenwich, Connecticut, at my second-line manager’s palatial estate (or at least at his house…I’ve never seen the place, so I have no idea what it’s like). Then some quick family visits over the weekend, followed by the Global Internet Project’s Anti-Spam Workshop (I’m on the Policy panel). Then, after a day of INET 2002, I return home so I can drive to Sacramento to talk at a privacy meeting. And then I’m home for a while. I hope.
Updates may be sketchy and infrequent (so what else is new?) for a while. Worse, I’m falling behind in my weblog reading — I’m sure I’ve missed two or three controversies in the last few days already!
I have much to write about the CTRE — there were many highspots, including Wynton Marsalis giving a lecture on creativity, complete with demonstrations in jazz — but that will have to wait.
Tonight’s highlight is today’s partial eclipse of the sun. I didn’t have sophisticated hardware — just a handheld pinhole, a handheld piece of paper, and a handheld camera (yes, that did require three hands…fortunately, Diane had two of them with which to help me!), and the pictures show it, but that’s how reality is sometimes.
Thank you, Diane, for the 25 best years of my life…and counting!
Today, we drove from West Palm Beach to Naples; it was an easy drive. To make it more interesting, we stopped in Delray Beach and Boca Raton to visit our old haunts.
Our first stop was the house we bought when we got married; it took a while to find, because the approach streets had changed (I’m sure I would have remembered a Costco within walking distance!), and even after we got into the neighborhood, we had a hard time remembering where to go. But eventually, we found the place. Most of the other houses on the block looked more or less the same as when we’d lived there, but “our” house was completely relandscaped (huge coconut palms in the front yard, for example).
They’d also converted the garage into a Florida room (only appropriate!).
Then we drove to what used to be the IBM main site, where we spent the first eight years of our careers; IBM’s moved away and the place is now the “T-Rex” technology park. We wandered around for a while, walking by the pond in the middle of the site.
They’ve added a fountain since we left.
Then lunch at an old favorite — Jerry’s Pizza. The original owner had retired a few years before we left Florida in 1984 and his son was running the place then, so we were quite surprised to find Jerry himself back at the oven! He said he’d gotten bored with being retired and had come back…the food tasted great, too.
Finally, a trip to our second Florida house, this one in Boca Raton. It was easier to find, and easier to recognize (though they’d painted it a color we wouldn’t have chosen).
Then we drove to Naples and the Registry Resort, and we’ll be here the rest of the week. Tonight, we were supposed to have a poolside buffet…but it rained, so they moved it inside.
Tomorrow morning, we start bright and early — I have a breakfast meeting at 0700, but the rest of the day should be more enjoyable!
But Murphy is not to be denied.
The actual travel part of the trip has gone well so far — we got to the airport in plenty of time, we got upgrades on both legs, our flights left and arrived pretty much on schedule (in fact, it only took 10 minutes from pushback to wheels-up at DFW, which is amazingly fast), the luggage arrived quickly, and there was a rental car shuttle waiting as we walked out the door.
But Murphy is not to be denied.
I was waiting for the warm nuts to arrive on the first leg — but instead, the flight attendant handed out our choice of a packet of almonds or a horrible cheezy snack. And then, there was no choice of entree — the only option was pizza. And then they ran out of Diet Coke. This isn’t quite what I expect, even after 9/11. So I asked what was going on. It turns out that the airplane we were supposed to take to Dallas was going to be fairly late, so they switched us to a plane that was originally going to Vegas. A flight from San Jose to Vegas doesn’t need much catering because it’s so short…and they made the decision at the last minute, so they didn’t have much time to resupply the aircraft. So I guess I’m happy, since we made our connection in Dallas and might have missed it if they’d waited for the original plane.
Then, when we arrived in our hotel, we were greeted by a note telling us about the mandatory 72-hour “boil water” order because of a water main break. If I’d realized that it only covered a small area, instead of the whole town, I might have tried to change hotels, but I really wanted to stay at a Starwood property and get my 10th night in under their current promotion. So we checked in anyway.
Our room was on the top floor. And it was awfully warm. So I called Engineering. They came and said that the A/C was working, but that we might do better on a lower floor. So we got keys to another room, and, sure enough, it was a lot cooler. And here we are. We also have a large supply of bottled water, some of which will undoubtedly come in handy on our drive to Naples tomorrow.
But first, we’re going to wander around Delray Beach and Boca Raton and see what’s become of the place since we left nearly 18 years ago. I suspect it’s different.
Oh, and in case anyone from IBM expense accounting is reading this…it’s a lot cheaper to fly in and out of the East Coast of Florida than it is to fly in and out of Ft. Myers. Enough cheaper to pay for the rental car and the hotel.
There are times I wish I had access to the full server log, but then I’d have to run my own server, and that’s a pain to even contemplate.
I’ve been having fun playing with Radio lately; currently, I’m set up so that anything I post with Radio goes onto a secret subdirectory of my intranet site. Right now, that directory has a copy of my external Radio site, but that’ll change soon; I haven’t updated my intranet site for three years, and I think Radio may get me back into the habit.
But probably not this week — it’s a travel week, and I don’t plan to spend much time on the intranet. Or, if I’m smart, on the computer at all.
This afternoon, we’re going on a Jewish nature hike with the Rabbi, up to Sanborne County Park. Should be fun…and maybe picturesque. Afterwards, we assemble at Max’s Opera Cafe for a late dinner (or, more likely, just dessert). Good thing I went out for a run this morning!