My Zunivers

24 May 2009

How Long the Return?

Where have I been? I've been doing some maintenance on the blog, so what little time I've taken for the blog has gone into that. I figured there is enough to say today that I might as well actually post something.

I've been sick for almost a month. The illness was playing with me-- two days bad, one day better, two days bad, and so on-- so it took me a while to be motivated to go to the doctor. Actually, my ear got messed up, so I had to go. I'll cough and sneeze all day but if my ear gets stuffy I haul myself straight to the professionals. The day I went to the doctor I intentionally skipped my asthma medication and decongestant, so that the doctor could get a good idea of what was happening. The doctor I saw was squeaky voiced and full of sympathy. I think she was actually happy to have a sick person on her hands. She apologized profusely for looking up my nose with a tiny bit of wax on the attachment on the looking into orifices thingy.* She also reported that my lungs sounded absolutely awful and my ear was infected. The x-ray machine was down so she decided to just call it pneumonia and send me home with two antibiotics and a steroid. The steroid has its good and bad points. The good point is that it has opened my lungs. The bad point is that it will make me fat. Of course, that is countered by the antibiotic, which has wiped out much of my gut colony. So life isn't terrible except that I still can't hear from my right ear and some things normally solid are not quite so solid.

Last weekend I got to have lots of fun in New Hampshire. The people up there were great, both the locals and the family members of those wed. We stayed at the lovely Camp Spofford near Spofford Lake in the lovely environs of Keene. The wedding took place at a farm-turned-facility, and The Kid had lots of fun looking at the animals. ("What are those?" "Shee!" "What do sheep say?" "Baaa!" "What are the sheep doing?" "Eat supper!" "What are they eating for supper?" "Gree grass!") The food was quite good, too. Lots of Turkish stuff, I think it was. And of course the late nights with the bride's extended family were lots of fun, because she has a great extended family. Her grandfather, who raised five daughters, gave me a bit of advice on taking care of a flock of girls-- "Watch your ladder." The story is too long to explain here.

I managed not to get any Moxie while I was up there, but I did get two more states on my sister. I only needed one to prevent her from pulling the New England Road Trip tie. (She has AL, MS, LA, NM, and AZ and before the trip I had CA, CO, WY, KS, MO, MN, WI, MA, CT, and RI. Now that I've added NH and VT she'll still be one back even if she takes back all of my New England states and adds ME for herself.)

This week my family, minus my sister, came up to visit for a couple days. That was fun. The Kid loves chasing her uncle all over the place. Mom and dad brought foodstuffs, so we got to eat a bunch.

On Friday I took my wife to Maryland so she could go along with her family for a week in the mountains in eastern Tennessee. I will enjoy the week at home. In fact, I already am enjoying the week at home. Today is the biggest single day of the year in auto racing, with the Monaco Grand Prix, Indianapolis 500, and Coca-Cola 600. I missed Monaco because there is no reason to get up that early just to watch prissy European racing**, but the Indy 500 is on TV now. There was just a car on fire in the pits. (That's not as bad as it sounds, because they use pure ethanol for fuel. Ethanol, unlike petroleum fuels, is water soluble, so you put out the fire by dumping water onto it to dilute the ethanol.) I have a fridge full of protein laden foodstuffs, so I'm set.

Tomorrow I will probably go to work. Yes, it's a holiday. But I have data coming off the computer cluster like crazy, after having the jobs queued for about ten days. So I need to get started analyzing that.


* Or whatever it's called...

** Actually, F1 is pretty hard core. Some teams, which must build their own cars, spend upwards of $400,000,000 a year. But you need to do that to run a car with almost three times its own weight in down force and running on a naturally aspirated 2.4L V8. No, they aren't prissy. But FIA did remove all the North American races form this year's schedule, so I'm just a bit bitter.

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