My daughter Esme was born this afternoon. What a crazy feeling to see her and hear her for the first time. It’s just amazing to me that she has never experienced things like color, cold, or night. My wife and I are really excited. I set up a website about Esme.
I’ve been trying out twitter for a couple weeks. I didn’t think I had anything to say using short frequent text-based messages (not “text messages” because I still get charged for those, but messaged consisting only of text). I think I was missing the point of twitter; I think saying some very simple things is pretty useful. I’m also finding that I *do* have things to say. Compare reading just one newspaper article to reading no articles but all the headlines.
I started brewing my own beer over the last couple months. It’s quite an enjoyable process involving simple ingredients, a reasonable amount of effort, and positive results. Much like baking bread, there are very few ingredients but infinite variety in the finished product. It’s also a hobby that requires cool equipment like giant stainless steel pots, tubes, siphons, bottle cap crimpers, etc. Brewing has great colors too: lots of copper, brown, and shiny silver (the stainless steel).
My first brew was a bock, which did not turn out that great (something about lack of cold-aging, “lagering”, that I didn’t do). The second brew (pictured) is a Belgian Dubbel that turned out great. I’m still a beginning brewer so I’m using malt extract as one of my ingredients. In the picture here I’m pouring the syrupy goodness that is malt extract into my beer. Over time, I plan to amass an arsenal of brewing gear, which I’ll use to expand into “all grain” brewing.
I got married on September 2d at the DeCordova Museum in Lincoln, Massachusetts. Getting married is a great experience – entirely positive except for the cost – yet well worth the expense. The ceremony was absolutely beautiful and I was happy to share the moment with lots of family and friends. Most of all, I’m happy to have Karen as my wife! Thanks Karen – I love you!
Weddings are typically followed by honeymoons – and mine was not an exception. We went to Barcelona and nearby Sitges to enjoy the fact that we had just been married and had saved up vacation days all year. I had been to Barcelona before, but it’s much different as a honeymooner with a job than as a traveling student. This time I actually went inside the Sagrada Familia and Casa Batlló. It was a fantastic trip.
Thanks to all who came to the wedding – and to old friends and family who couldn’t make it for being there in spirit – we’ll catch up another time.
On the scale of things, getting engaged is significant news. I’ve been together with my fiancée for almost five years now, and it’s time for a legal union. Getting married is really evidence of a life-long commitment. I think that commitment itself was made a long time ago, but now we’ll make it official.
We’ve been planning our wedding for a couple months now, and it should be fun. I’m learning all about the wedding business, which capitalizes on the once-in-a-lifetime mentality of engaged couples. I have that mentality too, which is unfortunate for my savings account.
Over the last half-year I’ve done two other things of significance, although these occupy a distant second and third place to getting married: (1) I bought real property, and (2) I started driving. I’ll hopefully post more about these soon.
After over five years in New England, I finally hit the frigid slopes this weekend. It’s been a long time since I’ve been on skis, and since I was renting anyway, I thought I’d try boarding instead. I’ve actually gone boarding one other time, but it’s been over ten years and, well, it wasn’t like riding a bicycle.
The interesting thing about today’s snowboard lesson was the instructor, Chickie Rosenberg, a sixty-seven year old grandmother who has written two snowboard books and is “sponsored by Burton”. She has lots of news clippings on her website.
I’m back from an amazing trip to Peru. I have wanted to visit South America for years, and honed in on Peru several years ago thanks to encouragement from Nick and Thomas. It took quite a while to finally make it happen, but I’m happy to have finally made it there (and back).
I took hundreds of pictures thanks to cheap batteries and generic memory cards, and you can view a lot of pictures on Flickr.
I saw an amazing Grant Lee Phillips show a couple weeks ago at TT the Bear’s (that’s a real picture of the show from my cell phone). I went to the show alone, which is something I don’t usually do, and Grant really brought me back. I realized that I’ve been listening Grant Lee Phillips / Buffalo for over ten years (evidenced by my approaching ten year high school reunion). I used to always bring Copperopolis as travel music for my trips in a case that only held ten CDs. I think that puts Copperopolis in my top ten, if I had one.
So Grant’s songs have been there from high school to college, to England, to SF, to Boston, the Netherlands, and countless trips in between. There are others of course, but Grant endures with the best.
It’s been a nostalgic couple weeks for me with the Grant Lee Phillips show, a trip to my old college town (haven’t been in five years), and multiple emails from old friends with no apparent correlation to each other. It’s great to step back and look at life-thus-far as a whole. It is, after all, one continuous flow even if we mark sections by time and place.
…and if you don’t have Copperopolis, it’s just $0.75 on half.com.
I’ve finally become a victim of the “Identity Theft” problem we hear so much about. Thankfully, my self-identity remains in my possession and only my credit card number has been compromised.
The thief made out with two months of AOL service and something from eBay (probably a gift certificate, that’s the only thing I can think of that eBay actually sells). One might question the cognitive abilities of someone who steals a credit card number and rushes out to buy AOL access, but I think this was actually an intentional decoy. Strange AOL charges lead people to suspect… AOL, not a credit card thief. Indeed my first reaction to seeing the AOL charge was to blame AOL, even though I’ve never signed up or given them my credit card number. This threw me off the scent for a good two hours before I discovered the other unauthorized charge. I suspect the thief used AOL’s signup form to test random numbers until one of them worked.
In any case, my experience was fairly painless. I called the credit card company and got connected to India without wait, and they quickly resolved the problem. My only complaint is that the second time I called (when I realized that this was not an AOL scam but actual fraud) the customer service representative tried to sell me fraud protection before transferring me to someone who could actually reissue the card. I was certainly not in the mood for a sales pitch.