Zac's Pad

Tech, Toys, and Tidbits

Woot!
I now have the first stage of my new computer. I’m still using some cast off/borrowed components that need to be upgraded/replaced, but at a state where I can boot it up and play! Wow is it ever fast! I can’t wait to see what it’ll be like in a few months when I’ve finished souping it up. Mostly, what I need to upgrade is the ram and hard drive. Planning on getting 4 gigs of ddr2-800 which should be way more than enough RAM, and a pair of striped Baracuda 500gig drives. That’ll give me a full terabyte of storage at ~170mb/s speeds.

Right now I just have a Core 2 Duo E6300. It’s the cheapest of Intel’s dual core offerings, but it’s VERY temporary. The motherboard it’s plugged in to is top of the line, and was the most expensive part. When the quad core chips come down to about $500 I’ll grab one of those to replace the E6300.

Oh, and lastly, here’s a pic of me over at Fishy’s, all dressed up for a client appreciation gala. It was a night of shmoozing with the clients at The Old Mill. The food was divine, the band was incredible, and the booze was flowing a little too freely.
Pic

So, I met with a personal trainer as part of my Y membership over the weekend…
I’ve never worked out in a gym before, so I had absolutely no idea which machines to use, and how to use them. My trainer was most excellent! He actually designed a work out schedule for me, and then walked me thru each day of the schedule making sure I was comfy with each machine/exersize. I’ve started with a 2 day/week schedule. After a month or three I may add on a third day, but I’m hoping 2 will be enough.

It was kinda funny… As we were going thru the machines, I was REALLY able to tell which parts of my bod I use, and which I don’t… e.g. My legs are strong from cycling, but my chest is sooo weak! For my arms I was fine if I was pulling down, since I still have some climbing muscle, but pushing up was haaard. I suspect it’ll be quite interesting feeling my bod get more balanced as I work out…

I’ve also been thinking of taking a full body pic of myself each week… Might be interesting to watch my body change shape, but I’m not sure I could maintain that level of vanity for very long, lol.

Planning on going Tues and Fri(or weekend) for now, which means I get to go back tonight. Looking forward to it, but I must remember to put some good tunes, and perhaps a new audiobook on my ipod before I go.

That’s it for my boring post… Happy Tuesday folks!

First thing in the AM… I am so not a morning person!

And this is the top of my new gym duds. Shirt feels soooo gooood!

Yup. Just joined the Y. Decided I need to start taking better care of my carcass than I have been. Oh, and Fishy to joined too! We’ve both been talking about it for a while, but we finally got off our asses today. Hopefully the combination of mutual peer pressure and wanting to get value for our money will keep us both going at least 2 times a week. 🙂

After the Y was done taking my pic and making my pass, I went out to buy some new gym shoes, cuz all my runners are old and nasty. Ended up spending twice what I expected, but that’s just because I bought a spanky new set of workout clothes… All high tech ‘n stuff. The shirt is soooo soft! It’s almost massless too! I’m going to have a hard time not just wearing it around the house!

Oh, and as part of my sign up package I get a session with a personal trainer tomorrow. Hopefully they’ll be able to put together a work out plan for me. I’ve never gone to a gym regularly before, so I have no bloody clue what to do, lol! Usually I get all my exercise outside, but that doesn’t seem to be happening much these days…

For the record, the sales guy at Running Room was great! Not only was he zero-pressure (never once asking me “If I wanted fries with that”) but he actually recognized the make/model of the shoes was wearing and immediately fetched 2 pairs of a similar type/style in my size. Even with the last minute outfit, I was in and out of the store in about 6 mins. I got exactly what I wanted and more. One of the most pleasant shopping experiences I’ve had in recent memory!

So a few co-workers and I went out on the town last night… Started at a place called Einstein’s, and ended up at the Silver Dollar.

It’s been a looong time since I’ve been that drunk, and wow did I ever need it! Got completely plashtered! So smashed, in fact, that I ordered AND enjoyed some deep fried pickles. Believe it.

The Silver Dollar had a live bluegrass band, and holy crap they were amazing! Kept the place swinging till well after midnight! Apperent;y, they’re there every wed

This morning, however, I’m paying the price. No headache, but I feel queasy and slightly dizzy. Ah well, small price to pay I suppose…

Well, I’ve moved my journal to here. You can, if you wish, read older posts from my deadjournal at http://da-mute.deadjournal.com/

Well…
Time for a change of venue.
I've moved my journal to livejournal. You can find me at http://da-mute.livejournal.com/

I got a raise! Woohoo! Also sounds like my new role is going to be interesting once I transition in to it! Looks like I'll become the interface between the sales guys (the company owners) and the tech team for projects and new accounts. I'll have to gain a deep understanding of the client infrastucture, design the technical aspects of the project, and divy it out to the staff. I'll still get to keep my hands nice and dirty, but the work will be a lot more fun that fixing users printing problems!

Well. it seems I've been dumped.

The last I heard from her was “You're wonderful, hope to talk to you tonight” and now she's ignoring my emails and screening my calls. It's been 10 days since I've heard from her… I don't care how busy you are, you can take 30 seconds to send someone an “I'm crazy busy, talk to you next week” email.

So, I wrote this email, though I haven't sent it yet… Gonna let it percolate till early next week.
_________________________

M,

Deciduous tree
bending in a winter's gale
brown leaves blown away

Your continued silence carries but one message, and I do not understand why. One day you were telling me I’m wonderful and talking about going to the science center with me, and the next day you’re completely ignoring my emails and screening my calls. Did I offend or anger you in some way? What have I done to suddenly incur this hurtful treatment from you? If you didn't want to see me anymore, why didn't you just tell me? You should have told me. I thought you had more courage than this, and I know I deserve more honesty than can be wrung from your silence.

I’m not angry – so please don’t read this and hear anger, but I am hurt. I think I made it pretty clear that I was developing very strong feelings for you, M. I really wish you had let me know that they were unwelcome and unreciprocated. At least then this abrupt end wouldn’t have come as such a shock. Instead of being honest, you chose to leave me hanging/guessing with no hint that you didn’t want me in your life – quite the contrary, you kept talking about things we would do together in the future. To be honest, I feel totally led on by your behviour. Next time you hold someone’s heart in your hands, please try to be a little more considerate.

Your actions have completely confused me, and I feel like a fool (a very sad fool) for continuing to try to communicate with you. Is this how you would expect/want to be treated if our situations were reversed? I don’t know what else to do except to assume that this is Goodbye, M. You were too good to be true after all.

Regardless of the pain you’ve caused me, I sincerely hope you attain your goals and have a wonderful life full of love and happiness. I hope that you can take something positive from knowing me, as I will try to do so with having known you.

And lastly, though I fully expect that this email will be answered with more silence, I would greatly appreciate it if you could please mail me my Princess Bride DVD. Since you don’t want to see me anymore that’s probably the easiest way to get it back to me. Thank you.

Sadly, and with confusion,
Z.

_________________________

Too nasty? Telling her she's a coward is a low blow, as is the “too good to be true” line, but I feel kinda justified.
How fucking hard is it to be honest?!?!?

Kinda like the haiku tho. Haiku is quickly becoming my favourite form of poetry. 🙂

I think I'm done with this dating shit. Next time someone asks me out I'm just going to say “sorry, you women are all crazy and I can't take the emotional turmoil anymore.” Between “I love you, but am not in love with you”, “It's not you, it's me”, and this shit, I just don't see the point. Generally I'm a very happy person, and although I'm definately happier when I'm in a loving relationship, the brutal lows afterwards just aren't worth it. I think, on average, my happiness quotient is highest when I'm alone – despite the occasional bout of lonliness. Beats the crushing realization that the person you're crazy about could care less.

She cancelled our last 2 dates and now it's been a week since I've heard from Minta. She said it was because she's busy with school, but she can't take 5 mins to answer an email?

After fretting all day yesterday that something had happened to her while she was in buffalo I called her cell this morning from work. She answered, and was fine, but I think I caught her off guard. I suspect that if I'd called from a number she recognized as me she would have let it go to voicemail. Since the lines from work show up as a phone number she didn't recognize – she answered. I didn't keep her on the phone long. Just long enough to tell her I was worried, and for her to tell me she was really busy and stressed with school.

I've no idea what happened. She went from being very warm and responsive, to being… well… absent. I've been going over things I said, and rereading emails I wrote looking for a reason, but can't find anything. I imagine next time I hear from her, IF I hear from her, it'll be one of those “It's not you, it's me” cop out phone calls/emails.

If you were still interested in seeing someone wouldn't you at least respond to their emails? I certainly would. So regardless of whether or not I'm dumped I'd say it's a bad sign.

Or maybe she's just really busy and I'm overreacting…

I guess now that I've stopped worrying for her safety, I'll just wait. The ball's in her court, so I guess we'll see what happens over the next few days. I'll give her another week, then start assuming I'm single again. Really, I'm just giving it a week out of hope. I think she's already made up her mind and didn't have the honesty to tell me. Just left me hanging.

*sigh*

I guess she was too good to be true after all.

Fuck, and she has my Princess Bride dvd. Guess I'll ask her to mail it to me. 🙁

There's so much going on I don't even know where to start!

First, I suppose, is this completely amazing woman I'm seeing.

We met thru work. She was my primary contact at a client, and the first time I met her I was mesmerised. I made some quiet inquiries tho, and found out she was already seeing someone. That fact, combined with a personal rule about not dating people I work closely with, placed her firmly out of bounds. Or so I thought! The client was the organizational team for a conference. Once the conference was over, so were all the jobs… There goes that rule!

So, on her last day there she comes up and asks me to come over to her place and set up a wifi router. “Sure! I'd be happy to!” say I, while thinking “dude, she's got a guy. She just wants her wifi set up.” I go over on the appointed day to set up her wifi, and we end up sitting around talking for a few hours. Turns out she's single after all, and I already know she's no longer a client. We made plans to see each other later that week, and now? A few weeks later?

Well… Now I'm completely smitten, and well on the way to being madly in love with this woman. She's smart, kind, calm, and absolutely beautiful. She's studying to be a teacher – which is a totally admirable profession. She's even talking about weaving green/environmental studies in to the fabric of her classes. Omg, I swoon! We see eye to eye politically too, which isn't really a surprise. (Can't really see myself falling for a pure capitalist, eh!) All our evenings together so far have been delightful – for both of us. That's the best part, really. I can tell that she's enjoying this as much as I am. Weeeeee!

Oh, and she made me Chicken Tikka Masala from scratch. From scratch, I say! I almost proposed to her when I tasted it! I'm gonna be all “Honeyyyy… I'll give you a one hour massage if you make tikka….”

Ummm… *cough* Second. Work.

Work is fuckin fabulous. FPP, where I spend the bulk of my time now, is a great place to work. The environment is big enough that they have fun toys to make the job interesting. The people are friendly without exception, which may be a side effect of charity work. There's (on average) enough work to keep me busy without being overloaded, which is nice. Makes the day go fast. Sometimes too fast! I've also started to get used to waking up earlier. Feeling less exhausted in the evenings now, which makes things easier.
That's all I'm gonna say about work tho. It already eats too much of my time.

What else? This guy I keep seeing around downtown.

He's homeless, I think. But instead of begging he walks around and picks up garbage. He has a sign on his back saying basically that donations of food/work/$$ will be accepted. Every time I see him he's picking up trash.
On the one hand, I'm thinking that he's got the right idea. He's almost removed from capitalist society, but at the same time he's helping to improve his environment. I don't imagine life is particularly good for this guy, but he's obviously a hard worker… Hell, he could probably do the same job with a city uniform on and get a salary and benefits. But, of course, then he has a boss. In a way, I kind of admire him. He's free, but still helping.

'[info]'gworfish thinks he should run for Mayor.

Oh, and an interesting though about religion too…

Ok… Bear with me… cuz I gotta talk about a mmorpg for a min.
As you may know, '[info]'gworfish and I played “Dark Age of Camelot” for a few years. Like most massively online games, the thing that kept us playing (and paying for!) DAoC month after month was the community. The other players in the game, our guild mates, were all real people. The places we were gathered, however, were not real. Not in the classical sense. They had no physicality, but to us – Tir Na Nog (A capital city) was and is a thriving metropolis. Our guild hall was a mansion that we had earned with our work and deeds. We enjoyed it's luxuries. We knew the fastest route from Innis Carthaig to The Cursed Forest. Even though those places don't really exist. At least not outside our minds and the collective game world.

So what if that's what God is? (S)He/It exists only to the people who have access to the medium – The Church. You can't prove he exists to anyone who doesn't have access to the church/belief system, but to those who DO have access – God is real. As real as Tir Na Nog is to me.

I'm not saying “I've found God” or anything like that. I just think maybe I understand a little more now, and am going to try to soften my attitude a little. Instead of thinking “That person believes in God – They must be stupid.” I'll think something more along the lines of “That person has access to a medium that I have very little interest in.”

And how could I forget! School!

I'm gonna go! I looked in to a bridging course at UofT, and figured out what I need to do to get in to the astronomy program. I need to get high school Calculus and Physics, plus this bridging class. I'm trying to get in to the bridging class that starts in January, but it's taking a long time to get my high school transcripts so I may miss it. If I do, I'll just take the Calc/Physics first. No problem. 🙂
I'm excited, and scared, and can not believe I'm giving up more of my free time, when I have so little as it is. But… I gotta do this! I'm gonna be Dr Da'Mute, Astrophysicist! W00t!

Think that's about it… I hope your lives are all going as fantastically as mine is!

Well,
I'm sitting here on Fishy's couch, and I'm in wifi range of my network… He's just moved in directly across the hall from me. He was unsure about where he was moving to, but at the last minute this apt came up and he grabbed it! W00t! It's gonna be fun having him so close! Today I ran a network cable across the hall (up in the ceiling, all invisible like) between our apts so we can share internet, and more importantly – be on the same network so we can see each others media shares! 🙂 Fun fun!

Work is going really well… Got a mini promotion last week, and the owner has blown sunshine up my arse a few times now – even told me I'd be getting a big raise when my probation is up. They've hired 3 more new folks in the past 2 weeks, and (according to our manager) I'm the best of the batch. Yay to me!

The waking up every morning has become easier now that I'm used to it, though I'm definitely noticing the lack of free time I have now. Ah well, I'm also noticing the radical increase in income, so I can't complain too loudly!

Hope all's well with all of you!

Well,
I knew it was gonna be hard doing a full time gig, and sure enough…it is!
After 2 weeks, I'm ready for a holiday, lol!
Still, ALL our clients are non profit. United Way, Foster Parents play, Aids 2006 Conference, Canadian Cancer Society, etc. Kick ass! Seriously beats the shit out of having IBM send me to a bank to fix their network… The people I get sent to work with are folks I'd want to help anyway! Woot!
So, though I am tired, I'm also quite pleased with life. 🙂

Just getting ready for a family picnic today… The whole fam damily on my Dad's side is gathering at my aunts farm. Probably be about 50-60 folks there, most of whom I haven't seen in 5 years. Should be a riot, and I'm sure I'll have some interesting stories afterwards. 🙂

Bought myself a new router. Very exciting! Linksys WRT54GL. The L at the end is for Linux! Installed linux on it, and now I've turned my router into the cheapest little workstation you've ever seen! Can run a command prompt, and I'm thinking about installing a web server on it just to see it work!

That's about it… Running out the door now. More later!

Been too long since I've updated, but holy crap have I been a busy lil beaver!

One of my clients moved. FunFunFun! They didn't move very far, but the new place had zero infrastructure, so we had to run net cable, install jacks at one end and the patch panel at the other. The electricians who pulled the cable thru the walls for us didn't label either end, so figuring out which cables went to which desk was a real pain in the ass. Hours of tracing cable. Still, I got it built and made a few months living in the process.

Oh, and the guy who moved the phone system? He was drunk the whooooole time. Not just tipsy, or inebriated, but slurring & staggering drunk. It's a miracle that he got the system up and running. Poor Claire checked in on him at one point and he was walking around in circles unable to decide which problem to work on first. She had to tell him 1 thing to fix, then come back in 45 mins to give him the next thing. Had to ride his ass the whole time. Shoulda seen her laugh when his invoice came, lol!

Also just did something crazy… I was approaching a local outsourcing company about doing some overflow contract work with them, and they wouldn't let me leave until I'd agreed to work for them. The work sounds like great fun, the pay is excellent, and the company seems to good to be true… They do a lot of free work for charities and non-profit companies, have no interest in going public, pay well, have great benefits, and they're even giving me a company metropass ( local transit pass, for you non-Torontonians ) to get to and from clients! It's a full time gig (eek!!) but they're letting me take days when I need to service my other clients!

It's been a looooong time since I worked m-f. I'm a little freaked out at the prospect, but the thought of not having to deal with all the billing, selling, etc, is balancing me out some. Plus, if I keep my cost-of-living about where it is now I'll be able to save up a large wadge of cash in a small wadge of time! W00t to that! Guess that means I'm selling out, lol, but fuck it!

I've also been thinking a lot about going back to school. Becoming Dr Zac. Not medical doctor, though. Doctor of astrophysics, or cosmology, or something like that… Space baby! Space! So, my thinking right now is any money I save will pay for an edu in a few years, but I may just snap… you know… buy a sailboat and go to Peru or something. 🙂

My apt is still a disaster area. Comically enough, even though I've made multiple months of living in the past few weeks I'm currently flat broke. I think I have $4 in the bank, and maybe $10 in my wallet, so… No cash to get picture hangers, shower curtains, etc… But the cheques are in the mail, and I'm a patient fella. 🙂

Took a Lovely Lady over to the island on Friday for walks on the beach. Spent a lot of time sitting on the rocks quietly listening to waves, and walked all over the place while talking. Was a thoroughly enjoyable day. Even ran in to (and ate with) Tim & Val & Gwynn & Claire & Zeke when we stopped for dinner. Gwynn demanded I come sit with them, and I just can't say no to a 5 year old! Lovely Lady took it all in stride tho, and didn't mind chowing with a bunch of folks she'd never met. In fact, I think she may want to move there, lol!

Think I'm going alone over to the island again tomorrow for a round of golf… The past few times I've played has been with people who were new to the game, and I'd like to play a round with some people who're better than me. Should give me some inspiration, and keep my ego in check. :p

Ummmm…. What else? Nothing. Hope all's well with all of you. 🙂

I know death isn't supposed to make me happy, and that I'm a terrible Buddhist because of this, but….

Wooooo! Another crooked capitalist bites the dust. I almost wish I believed in hell so I could imagine him rotting there. Greedy fucker.
Kenneth Lay, Rot In Pain.

Oh… just in case y'all don't know who he is… He was the head of Enron. Came up with great ideas like faking brownouts in cali to drive up energy prices, among a long list of other winners. Guy was evil, plain and simple. The pinnacle of the capitalist ideal. May Darwin prune off his branch of the human tree.

Whew…. What a weekend!

There was a fiasco with MaBell, which knocked me offline till Monday morning… There were 2 dialtones on my jack. So, I'd dial a number and hear ringing and busy signal at the same time. DSL was soooo offline as a result. *cry* I had to go a whole 3 days without internet!

Got all moved in to my new digs. It's the smallest apt I've ever lived in, but I'm thinking of it as 'cozy' while I try to find places for everything.

Fishy said “It's nice, everything is in arm's reach.”

The place is a disaster right now, of course….

All my clothes, hardware bits, and media are put away. The couches are in place, and my computers are humming away happily.

The kitchen? So small I'm not even sure where the kettle is going to go.
Windows need curtains, badly.
My art is still just piled up against a wall.
Oh, and I need a closet door/curtain, apperently.

Still, I think I'll be comfy here. 🙂

I'll snap some pics once the place is a little more presentable. 🙂

Holy crap!

There's a new sport/martial art called Parkour or Freerunning. It's absolutely mental!

Vids:
Urban Ninjas and
Insane Russian Dude!

If you're only going to watch one, watch the Russian dude. Guy has no respect for his own mortality.

I'd try to describe it, but… Vids will say it all for me. Bloody amazing though.

So sweet!

Norway is building an international seed bank in the arctic! Here's the BBC article.

There's a close-to-zero ecologic footprint house being tested in Toronto. Thing filters it's own water and waste, runs on wind and solar, and isn't tied in to the power grid. Totally amazing! I want one like that – with a satellite uplink – in the middle of the wilderness somewhere!