Welcome Back To The Grindstone

Since we’re now well back from Thanksgiving break, overloaded with homework, and careening our way into Advent and the Christmas season, I thought this would be a good moment for inspiration.

To offer some, that is (though I wouldn’t mind recieving some, either).

Advent means coming, as I’m sure some of you know. Since we have a lot to look forward to in the coming days – finals, for instance, and, of course more finals, and Christmas break and home at the end of them – it is increadibly easy to lose sight of everything but the pin-prick of light at the end of the tunnel.

So take some extra time out with God in the days ahead. Yeah, I know, you have to study, you have to do this and that and the other thing. (By the way, my name is Kettle. Pleased to meet you.) This is an amazing season with an amazing story and it’s all to celebrate our Creator. I can’t fully comprehend it right now – I’m too lost in homework and doing stuff. I need to start talking to my Creator again.

So how are you doing? I don’t think God cares so much about the ecumenical part, even less about the gramatical – but spiritually, He is concerned with us. That’s amazing, too.

Crossposted at the USM IV blog.

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The Modern Wonders of Letter-Folders

Have you ever gotten a ridiculous sense of excitement and/or satisfaction from watching some mechanical gadget work? Do you know the exquisite feeling of childish glee when exploring some technological wonder?

It’s absurd, really. Why should I be so fascinated with the operation of an automatic letter folder? What is so riveting that I could sit, feeding paper into it, for hours? But there is so much satisfaction in the snatching “ka-chunk” and sudden exit of a magically folded piece of paper! The perfect creases! Ah, it is so beautiful! *sigh*

Why do I feel like a total geek right now?

Fanfare For The Common Blog

The Bad News: Doug TenNapel stopped blogging. That is, like, a serious bummer, man.
The Good News: I haven’t read the three years worth of archives yet.

Like many personal blogs, Doug TenNapel has (or had) a less-than-perfect grammatical style, sloppy spelling, and he rants about personal stuff, politics, and religion. Unlike many personal blogs, it actually was interesting and relevant to my life, too.

I’m not really sure why. All I know is that Doug has a knack for illuminating the weirdness of life in a humourous and relevant way. Maybe because he’s not blogging as some sort of “public service” his perspective is actually more useful… but I’m hyperanalyzing a good thing.

Anyway, Doug, I’ll miss the insight and (sane – sorta) perspective. Keep it up in your now more private life.

The Horrors Of The Everything Button


We just got a Samsung ML-2010 laser printer. It’s a great printer – cheap, compact….and it has an Everything button.

Truly, you cannot know the power of the everything button unless you have experienced it in person. For what can this innocuous grey button do? Everything! (Ok, almost everything.) It can cancel print jobs, print test pages, it can turn the Toner Save feature on and off, and it can change the paper feed.

I think Samsung might have labeled it wrong, though, the text underneath says “Cancel” and it only cancels a print job if the “On Line/Error” light is blinking. If you push the button in “Ready” mode, it turns the Toner Save feature on or off. But only if you press the button for about a second. If you just hit it real quick it doesn’t do anything.

Don’t press it too long, though – if you hold the button for two seconds then the printer will spit out a test page at you, informing anyone who cares the RAM size, CPU speed, and current settings of the printer.

Oh, you want to use one sheet from the manual feed tray instead of the bottom auto-feed tray? There’s a really simple solution. Just load a sheet and press the “Cancel” button.

The Saga Of The iMacs

We just got a new iMac. That is, if you count a 1999 Graphite DV/SE as new. It’s a University cast-off which Mom is particularly happy to have since the current iMac is a pile of disembodied computer parts under the printer shelf.

It is in such a state because that (formerly) Blueberry iMac’s Power/Analog/Video board died, and death of PAV boards pretty much renders the whole computer a large, 40-pound doorstop. Which, in a household as computer dependant as ours, is a distinct predicament. Thank God that there’s a lot of info on rigging an iMac board to run off of a regular PC power supply, because that’s what it’s doing and otherwise we’d be sunk. (Not exactly proverbially, either.) I can’t say I’m complaining too much, though, since we got that computer from an different local university for, effectively, the cost of a new logic board. (Read: cheap.)

We got that castoff Blueberry machine because the analog board in our original Rev. A Bondi iMac died. When that happened we could at least plug in an external monitor and use it, but using an iMac with an external monitor seems a bit of a waste of space. That machine was also getting, shall we say, rather dated and slow.

So here I am, shuffling files and parts around yet again to make everything work. I just wish you could move OS X system files around with the ease of OS 7/8/9. But alas, the days of simply copying a System Folder to another computer and having it just work are over. Oh well. I’ve learned more about iMac history and the innards of OS X in the past month than I ever knew before. That’s gotta be worth something, right?

Reasons That “Reasons My Life Is Lousy” Is A Lousy Title

Well, for one, my life isn’t really lousy. Sure, it has some quirks to it and there are bits that get on my nerves, but it isn’t really all that bad. Maybe it should have been “Things About Life I Don’t Like So Much”.

This is what I get for opening my blog-sized mouth before really thinking through it.

Reasons My Life Is Lousy, Part 1

There’s a stack of unread magazines on the bookshelf by my bed. A pile of sorted, but unfiled papers in front of the shelf, which is overflowing, and a couple half-read books are stacked on top. One of my computers is a pile of parts screwed to some metal legs, a pile of stuff is slowly covering the desk, including the laptop that I haven’t touched for weeks. (It’s ancient.) Don’t even mention the lists of miscellaneous things to do or read or think about. And I’m sitting here writing this instead of writing a memo for Technical Writing class.

I don’t have time for my life. Or at least I doesn’t seem like it. Homework? It’s not hard, it’s just not done. I’m apathetic. I haven’t really figured out how to manage things yet this year. I only have class four days a week! In between and around classes I have whole blocks of time! And I don’t know what where the heck it’s all going!

Then again, maybe it would help if I hadn’t gotten sidetracked looking up stuff on hovercraft for three hours last night.

This Is A Test Of The Facebook Note Import System

It’s really nifty how it imports your atom feed and all. It just seems like it ought not to take more than three hours for the post to come through. Interesting.