Because I’m always late on these kinds of things, I won’t make you any later. American Gods
, by Neil Gaiman is out in paperback. If you haven’t read it already, run out to your local bookseller and get it. It’s amazing. I haven’t finished it yet, but it’s the most fun I’ve had reading a book in a very long time. It’s original, funny, exciting and thought-provoking. It’s an incredible story, and I can’t wait to see how it ends, though the whole while hoping it never does.
There are so many movies and books and albums to talk about that I’ve just not had the time to tell you all about. I know you’re upset about it. I keep meaning to catch up, but just haven’t gotten to it. And I swore I wasn’t going to do a Best/Worst/Most Mediocre List for 2002 because everyone else is doing it, and I just have to be different. So, I will do nothing and just tell you that I’ve lost ten pounds in two weeks and dropped my blood pressure twenty points. Not bad for dieting over Christmas, huh?
We did nothing today. I tried to go buy a lighter bowling ball (why kill my back bowling when I can throw something light with an amazing amount of force?), but the drill press was broken at the sporting goods place and I don’t feel like waiting two weeks for a new ball. I got lunch, and brought it home. That was the extent of my accomplishments today. Max and I played with his new Matchbox cars in the basement while we watched Full Metal Challenge. We played and played and played. Then, he ate dinner. Jen read to him, we played a little more, then he went to bed. Now, Jen’s watching Felicity (her new filler now that she’s seen all the Buffy‘s ever committed to video). I’m surfing and trying to recover from a week of family, frivolity and trying to keep on my best behavior.
I’m been whooping it up family-style all week, what with Chistmas and all. Christmas was fun, mostly because Max is three and had a ball. With all this family around, he’s been unstoppable. He’s got this endless supply of energy, and this wicked three year-old sense of humor that just catches me off guard.
He taught his Uncle Tim to do jumping jacks and it was the funniest thing I think I’ve ever seen. Max’s jumping jacks are basically jumping around while spinning in circles and waving his arms frantically as if he’s trying to be the world’s first human helicopter.
And, back to the main topic of the past couple weeks, I have good news. In about ten days (over Christmas and many many big family dinners mind you), I dropped three pounds and dropped my blood pressure 20 points. How cool is that?
I’m gonna go sleep for a week…
My brother and sister-in-law got in this afternoon. It’s so weird how everyone just slips into their familial roles, and the newer additions just flow in and fill in the gaps. It’s nice to have them here.
As if it needs to be said, posting may be light as I’m off celebrating all that Christmas stuff.
is a neat RSS
feed reader. Ok, wait, step back. Don’t know what RSS
is? Nevermind. It allows you to read the most recent posts from some of your favorite blogs (and other newsy sites) without having to fire up your browser and load all those pages. This is the first newsreader I’ve used, and it’s incredibly easy to use. It’s smooth, fast and easy to find new content to add.
The one question this raises is how this fits those “pay for content” business plans out there. If you’re RSS-ing your site, and you expect people to pay, how does that work? I’m sure there are people thinking about/around it, like only posting snippets, only posting whole posts older than X days, or just not RSS-ing anything.
I’ve been thinking about my crazy business ideas I come up with while driving, or in the shower, while doodling in meetings. I think I’ll start blogging them so you can all share in the wackiness.
I’m feeling the stirrings of that design inspiration I’ve been seeking for the past couple months. I want to do something totally different. There are thousands of blogs out there, and lately, they all (rash generalization, there are those that don’t, and you know who they are) look alike. Mine looks like everyone else’s now, and it didn’t use to. Everyone has a white background with black text, a semi-interesting header (and a lot of people using photos of musicians or actors, which bothers me for some reason), a menu with the standard bloggy content (last X posts, blogroll, links to photos, etc – ummm, just like me), and sometimes a third column (because three column layouts were the big trend this year) containing often useless information. Some people resort to a fourth column with even more useless info which I don’t think they realize causes all kinds of problems in non-maximized browsers. See, it’s all the same. The problem is partly that there’s only so much you can do with bloggish information. You have your posts, comments, links, etc and there are only so many different ways to display them.
There are other ways to do things. I honestly believe someone will do something completely original with a blog in the next year that everyone will copy (poorly in most cases). So, what’s my inspiritation? Which sites inspire me? Here’s the list, and why:
- Jeffrey Zeldman: Everyone knows who Zeldman is. If you don’t, you probably haven’t been playing in the design/web-building arena very long. I love his most recent redesign for his decision to use a middle-o’-the-spectrum color in a not-too-dark shade, and then use text that’s really not that much brighter. It works better than any of my attempts at the same thing. If you’re interested in design at all, start a new habit and read his site daily.
- k10k: Their semi-recent redesign shows you CAN do four columns well. It’s not a blog, but the right-hand column is semi-bloggish. Also, it’s a great place when you need to feel inspired. The links in the News section are a wealth of designatory goodness.
- Six Apart: From the folks who brought you Movable Type, it’s just a great subtle design job (as is Movable Type). I love the subtle background image in the top header. They also perfectly balanced the padding between page elements. Nice, clean, professional (not that I’ll use any of those, because I’m D: None of the Above).
- Daring Fireball: Minimalist, grey, usually things I hate. But, there’s something that really works about the design of this site. The spacing between that spartan logo and the beginning of the content is just great. I love the warmth of the grey background. Just groovy.
Now, I’m not planning on using any elements from these sites, but all of them have given me ideas and spurred me to think about different things I can do with this site. I may not do any of them here where you can see them, but I’ll get around to it (another reason I love OS X – I have Movable Type and a copy of this site running in my local copy of Apache).
There’s just something wrong. What’s wrong? I have no idea. I’m taking the blood pressure medicine (started on Wednesday). Today, I just feel worn down and low. I’m not tired, I just have no energy – listless would be a good word for it. We went out to lunch, and eating didn’t feel good (that part is psychological, I think). Funny, I just did some research
and apparently, depression and fatigue are both known side effects. Funnier still is that my doctor wants me to lose weight, but all I want to do now is curl my fat self up on the couch with a warm blanket and a pint of Ben & Jerry’s Phish Food
I’m depressed that I’ve cut out a third or more of my daily calories for a week and haven’t lost a pound yet according to my bathroom scale. I’m worried that I’m not going to be able to stick to this diet and that I’ll always be fat and die before my time (if I stay fat, my “time” could be “any ol’ day now”). It’s a crappy way to be at Christmas, don’t you think?
Ho ho ho
After our marathon meeting this morning, the folks in my group headed over to Banjara
for some Indian food. Why? I suggested it because Jen doesn’t like Indian food and I had a terrible jones for it. I’d never been there before, and I was pleasantly surprised. The lunch buffet is stocked with really good stuff. Their Tandoori Chicken is the best I’ve ever had, and the other dishes were excellent. There were four main dishes on the buffet, Tandoori Chicken, a salad, six different chutneys, four or five appetizers and a lovely garbanzo bean salad. It was all excellent. If you’re ever in Ashburn, VA and need some Indian food, definitely check them out.
And, without caffeine, and with a buffet in me – I’m sleeeee-eeeepy.
For those of you using OS X, and who upgraded to Jaguar, boy do I have good news for you!! Fink has been released!! It now supports 10.2! You can use all your favorite Unix programs like ncftp, emacs, etc from the comfort of OS X.
Ok, why isn’t today over yet? It’s only 4:50, and I can’t keep my eyes open. I’d give anything for a Code Red or Dr. Pepper right now. I think it’s a great sign of my commitment that I haven’t had one already.