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Holding Down the Fort

Lara has checked into the Hyatt Regency in Perth for a much needed break from on-going mama duty and the accompanying sleep deprivation and aggravation. That means it’s just me and the boy here at home. He’s sleeping right now, which comes as a mixed blessing. I have no chance of using the computer for anything other than playing Worms Armageddon when Logan is awake, and now that he’s down I have the opportunity to take a much needed shower. Unfortunately, he did not take a nap this afternoon and he went to sleep on my lap sometime during the Simpsons, which runs from 6 to 6:30 pm. He usually goes down for the night around 9. Will he sleep thru the night or get up at four? As my friend Mike would say, this bodes.

I sent the broken hard drive from my old IBM laptop to a data recovery specialist in Perth. After several attempts, he finally announced that the patient had passed beyond the reach of his powers, which is to say that he couldn’t get the hard disk spinning, and unless he can do that, he has no way to read the contents of the disk to see if my data remains imprinted there. He suggested that I send it to a company in Sydney. We plan to leave Australia in just a couple of weeks, so I don’t know if I’ll have time to give his recommendation a go.

To Lara and me, recovering that data, which includes digital photos from trips to Peru, Mexico, Thailand, our travels around Western Australia and several cross-country road-trips in the US as well as images of our house in Port Ludlow, our friends in the Seattle Area, and Logan’s first two years of life, remains a priority of the highest order.

It’s as if an enormous photo album has been placed in Schrödinger’s box, and I have yet to find anyone capable of lifting the lid to see if the photos have been incinerated or not. Until someone can get the hard disk spinning, my photos languish in some funky state of quantum indeterminacy, neither fried nor un-fried.

Still no Photoshop. Even so, I could write some comic scripts, but I haven’t. Every time I sit down to do so, I draw a few images of the characters and jot down a few lines of very rough notes, and then Logan climbs onto my lap and takes command of the pen and notebook. Even if he doesn’t, I either just write a journal entry or wander off task and end up reading a book.

Speaking of books, I checked out the Diamond Age: A Young Lady’s Illustrated Primer from the Fremantle Public Library because Lara has been meaning to read it for quite some time now. Rather than start on it though, she re-read the latest Harry Potter book for the nth time and then started to re-read A Year in Provance. As she was re-reading old favorites I started to re-read the Diamond Age, and if anything, I’m enjoying more now than I did the first time I read it, which was probably in ’97. Eventually, she picked it up, read the first few pages. I saw her reading and scowling, and I asked her how she was enjoying it. She wasn’t. She found it a very disagreeable read and didn’t get past page 10.

She said she’d give it another 20 pages, but by the time she left for the Hyatt she still hadn’t read any more of it, though she took it with her. I hadn’t finished it yet. I’d gotten to the part of the story in which Nell has sussed the mystery of Castle Turring, and Hackworth has served his sentence and liberated his daughter from the stultifying life of a Victorian schoolgirl in the realm of the Software Khans (formerly known as Redmond, Washington). I’m anxious to get back to it, but in the meantime, I’ve been reading The Mind’s Sky: Human Intelligence in a Cosmic Context. I’m finding it engaging and easy reading, but a lot of what the author has to say seems old hat to me. Published in 1992, before the advent of the World Wide Web and the common acceptance of the word “Internet” into everyday speech, the book goes into sudden quaint mode when the author, Timothy Ferris, diverges from his ruminations to explain the concept of a computer bulletin board. Here’s a sample:

When accessing a bulletin board one customarily is presented with a menu of options. Some menu choices enable you to send and receive electronic (“e-mail”) messages; these are similar to ordinary faxes or phone calls. But you can also obtain (“download”) programs that have been contributed (“uploaded”) to the bulletin board by other users.


Eleven years ago, these things needed spelling out in a book written for a general audience. Funny how time flies. Faster and faster and faster.

Comments

( 8 comments — Leave a comment )
sweybella
Apr. 4th, 2003 08:51 am (UTC)
Logan is a awesome name. when i have baby-ies, for a girl, Mackenzie or Melania for a boy, Blue. but shush it's our secret.
venusflytrap
Apr. 4th, 2003 05:17 pm (UTC)
Diamond Age is on my reading list. But I am burdened with a long to-read list already. Right now, I am reading The Moral Animal by Robert Wright. It's fascinating and un-put-downable even though I am not terribly impressed with evolutionary psychology..its vastly speculative at best....or so it seems to me on initial impression. We have a virian bookclub now. We picked up an online book.(http://www.kuro5hin.org/prime-intellect/mopiidx.html) Today(9.00 est april 4th), the author joins us for a discussion and general bashing. It is loosely based on the singularity..sorta..you'll know if you read it...there has been much criticism about the idea...but it survived the first reading...a book club... even an online one..cant be a bad idea..right?

leaving Oz for where? I thought you were going to don farmer's clothes and do unspeakable things to the local sheep population. Best wishes to Lara.(I hope she is off that ghastly supplement thingy...the news channels are clogged with gory details about its effects...) Muchos love to Logan. You have been visiting the minds of quite a few people recently.
kmo
Apr. 5th, 2003 11:09 pm (UTC)
Back Up Top
Hi Venus,

When we leave Australia, we'll head first to Costa Rica (by way of Bangkok and Seattle, with a few days spent in each city to attend to business and renew social contacts), and then we have it in mind to move to Spain for a while.

I don't have much truck with sheep, but wherever we end up, it will be a place where I can have a compost pile, chickens, and a garden.

Lara has long since stopped taking Hydroxycut. For me it had very noticable and disagreable side effects. For Lara, it had no detectable effect at all, and it cost big dollars, so she never bought a third bottle.
sgnp
Apr. 4th, 2003 05:33 pm (UTC)
I know several people who were so turned off by Budd that they never got to the other characters.

I'm almost done with Bridge of Birds.

It's AWESOME!
kmo
Apr. 5th, 2003 07:25 am (UTC)
Bridge of Birds
Jeff, a former fellow graduate instrucute in MU's philosophy department, gave me Bridge of Birds when I left Columbia. It sat on my shelf unread for years. I think I sold it to a second-hand book dealer. Sounds like I missed out on something good.
sgnp
Apr. 5th, 2003 12:08 pm (UTC)
Re: Bridge of Birds
I enjoyed it very much.

I'd loan it to you, but right now Bret Fetzer's got it.
lvp
Apr. 7th, 2003 05:49 am (UTC)
HELLO
SOMETIMES MOM'S NEED A BREAK. IT IS GREAT THAT LARA WENT TO HAVE ALONE TIME. BY THE WAY IT'S ME LESLIE. I HOPE YOU DON'T MIND. I WANTED TO SEE WHAT LIVE JOURNAL WAS ALL ABOUT. I LIKED IT SO I SIGNED UP. I HEARD YOU MENTION SPAIN. I MAY BE GOING THERE IN NOVEMBER. I HAVE NEVER BEEN OUT OF THE US BEFORE SO I AM LOOKING FORWARD TO IT. TELL LARA TO KEEP IN TOUCH. TAKE CARE.
kmo
Apr. 7th, 2003 01:14 pm (UTC)
Re: HELLO
Hey Leslie,

It's good to hear from you. Maybe we'll see you in Spain. Lara wants to attend culinary school there. I'll tell her you've started a LiveJournal.

Take care.

-Kevin
( 8 comments — Leave a comment )

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