All posts by erik


slurpee So I’m on my way to play European Boardgames at a friends house, and I pick up a blue Raspberry slurpee for the evening, disdaining the usual cola products. Now, I’m not sure how things are done in your corner of the world, but here when we get slurpees we tap the cup a few times on the counter after filling to disgorge some of the air pockets from filling and top ‘er off. I only mention this, not only because this little ritual baffled a Bostonite, but it also lends to the story. I noticed that the semi-solid beverage did not settle in any appreciable fashion and little room for topping off was procured. I shrugged it off as just one of those things, and proceeded to the checkout counter.
Now I diverge here to mention the patron in front of me was a beeeeutiful woman in a fairly snazzy red dress and was worth the second glance. Unfortunately, upon that second glance I noticed she was wearing one brightly colored knee-sock with the other leg bare. Upon further inspection the supposed hosiery turned out to be an ankle-to-knee tatoo of some beach scene, or acid-induced cloud flight, or something. Tatoos cause me to lose interest in the fairer sex fairly quickly when they distract from a good scanning. It’s like taking a refreshing drink of a beverage, only to be jolted by an astringent aftertaste.
Which brings me back to the matter at hand. As I sat contemplating that magnificent dress with a texture that looked like three inches of soft crimson butter, I took a pull on my slurpee. “That’s odd”, I thought. Tastes a bit funny. But things do from time to time, and I moved up to the counter as the tatoo sauntered off. I caught the eye of the ubiquitous middle-eastern clerk who seemed stunned, almost to the point of speechlessness by the woman in red. But this was understandable, as from his vantage point he was not hindered by the distracting ink. Seeing what I took for a bit of embarassment at the overt distraction present on his face, I smiled, rolled my eyes a bit, and nodded my appreciation.
As I drove out of the lot and took another cool draught of the slurpee I started to formulate a theory as to the odd aftertaste. It seemed to strike some chord back from my past. Through the haze of the years a memory floated back of sitting in an emergency room as a nurse scrubbed out the inside of my bottom lip with a toothbrush. It seems back in my Junior year of highschool I had slepwalked out of my mothers van on the way home from work at about 25 mph. I’d landed on my head and done a fair job of removing all the skin from one side of my face. In the emergency room the nurse cleaned the asphalt out my wounds, including the one in my mouth with a toothbrush and…
There was soap in my slurpee, which was now about 3 inches from the top of the dome! Upon reflection I realized that the lack of compaction in my slurpee preparation ritual was probably due to surface tension in the soap in the slurpee. So here it is about 66 hours later and I’m still having problems, um… processing… solid food. Not that I’ve been that hungry. I did propose late tuesday that in the reversal of the Dawn ads from my youth that maybe a really greasy meal, say 4 strips of baccon and eggs, might help rid my system of the offending material. They said on the ad that the soap would, “..break up the grease, Actually surround it..” and finally I’d hoped the bacon grease would take the soap out of my way.
Such are the things I think when blood sugar gets low.


Perplexcity A while back Jack told me a little about this site that was kind of an online puzzle game. You can order these perplexcity cards and each one has a brain teaser on them of varying difficulty. Each card is part of a 4 card set and you earn points for solving the cards and bonus points for solving the sets. Between the hints on the cards and the clues you get from solving sets, along with online information you’re supposed to be able to figure out where the stolen Receda Cube has been hidden here on earth. If you find the cube you win $200,000. my rank Theres a map of Perplexcity on the back of some of the cards, so as you solve them you begin to get a map of the city with information about different buildings and areas of the city. Jack’s been ordering cards for awhile now and he’s handed me down his seconds, so I finally broke down and started figuring them out. It’s pretty addictive and some of the puzzles are really challenging so I’ve ordered a set just to see what I can do. So far I’ve solved 25 of the 256 cards and I’m ranked an even 4000. I’m not sure how many cards have been released altogether, but most of the cards from the third series have been solved. I’ve been showing the duplicates of the duplicates around and nobody has shown much interest, except Sam at work. He’s helped me with a couple and is curious enough to have looked into buying some, although I don’t know if he’s set up an account yet.
There’s a mountain of information to catch up on that has been published because, evidently, this has been going on since 2004. I’m not sure if I have it in me to do all the backstory research. I like the instant (or in some cases, eventual) gratification from solving the cards. I guess the bigger puzzle could be cool, but I’m not sure how layerd the rewards are where you can actually figure stuff out and have noticable progress after the cards are done.

The Kayak

So I forgot I had a blog and thought maybe this belonged in it…
Tuesday morning I had considered not getting out of bed in the morning because I felt kinda crappy, but finally dragged my sorry self into work because of a couple meetings I figured required my attendance. Jack thought we ought to go grab lunch and run to REI so he cold look at some insoles for his running shoes. When we got to REI Jack asked if I was still planning on getting a Kayak this year after I swore in my wrath that this was the year I’d do it. I kind of shrugged the question off with a “mrhh” noise.
I had lusted after kayaks but generally resisted the temptation due to the initial expense for quite awhile. Last year I decided to get one and really put some time into researching what I wanted and came up with the Perception Carolina 16.0 as the object of my lust. Unfortunately the 16.0 alone costs around $1000, and I’m still a starving artist. I just couldn’t find a way to get into a touring kayak last year and finally gave up on the idea mid-summer. This spring I began looking at cheaper models and wondering if I could find a used kayak of some kind to at least get out and enjoy this summer in some little way, unlike last summer.
This brings me back to REI. Jack wasn’t finding what he wanted and I wandered off towards the boats for a little moment of forbidden fantasy. A salesman approached me, asking if he could help. I told him I didn’t think so, that I had wanted to get into kayaking for some time, but hadn’t had the funding. He said, “Well, if you’ve always wanted to, this is the day to do it.” He led me around to the other side of the rack where they had a red Carolina 16.0 on the bottom rack with a 50% off pricetag. He told me that the $600-odd dollar price was due to them trying to get rid of a last years model before the season. I waffled for about 10 seconds, but realized that this was my chance, so I had him pull the pricetag so I could pay for it. He told me to bring back a hold sign from the register and I could pick it up after work when I had my truck. After payment I got back in time to disappoint someone talking to the salesman about the same Kayak. I guess I snaked it out from under him.
Maybe I’ll have something to write about if the lakes ever thaw.

Pacific Fighters

So I picked up a flight sim game because I hadn’t played one in a long time and I’ve been playing the Battlefield 1942 scenarios over and over where I could easily get into a plane. I’m not so sure I’m all that keen on the PF deal, but I did find out I could make quick-and-dirty skins for the planes without a whole lot of effort and thinking, so I kind of threw camoflauge to the wind and made some skins for random planes as they came up.
seafire skin   b-25
I do like the fact that when your fighter gets shot up it starts showing the damage.
blasted rudder

Face Recognition Software

So I saw a couple weeks ago or so on Slashdot (I think) that there was a website that you could upload your picture and it would show what celebs you looked like. I picked out a fine shot and waited for the results. I’m pretty sure it’s just random, and not comparative. But if you wanna give it a try it’s here:
But if you want to see the results
The picture of me I submitted:
My Doppelgangers
Top Row: Joseph_Conrad, Werner Herzog, Strom Thurmond, Perl Buck, Matthew Perry
Second Row: Paul Wittgenstein, Morton Stanley, Michael J. Fox, Melvin Calvin, Bing Crosby
Ya gotta feel sorry for the people that matched.