Archive for October, 2009

Verizon + Android Finally

Wednesday, October 7th, 2009

Maybe I will take Verizon up on their frequent calls and emails informing me that I am eligible for a new phone upgrade “within a matter of weeks” when they finally “will be launching two Android handsets,” Android handsets being the technical term for a damn phone worth owning! It’ll be exciting to both have coverage and have a cool phone, and it only took 4-5 years of waiting.

Got one! Blogging from it!


Monday, October 5th, 2009

All this singing, and the fact that it seems right up my ally lead me to give the new tv show Glee a chance this season. Episodes one and two were good, but in three they broke down the, this is not really a musical, but a show about music barrier, which is kinda bad. And in episode four someone got pregnant; this breaks one of my rules, but I did watch episode five which was better than three and four. But really can’t we just have some fun, I know you want to go for the Emmy with a teenage pregnancy, but every show does not have to deal with a weighty issue in season one!


Monday, October 5th, 2009

Since my friend Sparky got a job at Harmonix Thursday night games has frequently involved playing Rockband. I was never very good at Guitar Hero, and I was never a huge fan of the songs it came with but Rockband is awesome for two reasons:

  • Lots of great songs as downloadable content, which Sparky picks up for us.
  • Singing!

I have never been very musical. DDR and Guitar Hero proved that rhythm is not my thing. We’ll, the amount of concentration it takes me to clap in rhythm proved that long ago, but they reinforce it well. I’ve also never been good enough at singing to earn any sort of accolades for it. Thanks to my elementary school drama teacher for making me an understudy every year to get that little lesson across. But I still enjoy it, and I can apparently fake it well enough to make a machine happy, which makes me happy.

But I’m only any good on songs that I’ve heard before, so I have added the Rockband 1 & 2 songs to my usual playlist, so that I get used to them and learn what they sound like. I’ve been consequently paying more attention to all of the songs on my playlist and thinking about them in the same way as the songs that I’ll someday have to perform in from my friends to the satisfaction of the machine. It’s a lot of fun. I just wish that you could take any old song and play it in Rockband, as there are pleary of songs I already love to sing that aren’t options (pretty much all of Avril).

The other good thing about Rockband is that its introduced me to some new music. Avoiding advertising really cuts down on access to music pop culture. Well for those of us too cheap for satellite radio, and whose musical tastes are not well captured by Pandora. Anyways so lots of the new songs on the latest revision of my car mp3cd are from rock band. You know, i should really put my car mp3cd under subversion control. Anyways some of them are:

  • Panic at the Disco – Nine in the Afternoon
  • Weezer – Say it Ain’t So
  • The Main Drag – A Jagged Gorgeous Winter
  • Silversun Pickups – Lazy Eye

But my two favorite songs these days, both oldies from the ’90s, that I really wish were in Rockband are:

  1. Alanis Morissette – That I Would be Good: I’ve had a cropped short version of this song for a long time, but the full length one is even better.
  2. Aimee Mann – You Could Make a Killing:This is the only Aimee Mann song that I even approach to liking, but it is great. She was in an episode of Buffy and even that association couldn’t make me like the song she sang in the show.

Speaking of oldies, Beatles Rockband. I’ve always had an issue with the Beatles. I love the parts of their songs that I remember from my childhood, listening to oldies radio, but the songs I never heard, and even the non-choruses that I don’t remember I don’t like very much. A couple weeks ago I went to Beatles Rockband night at Improv Boston, entirely because of a girl, but while I was there I noticed that I like a lot more of the Beatles catalog than I realized. Last week at Thursday night games we had an actual singer, Ethan, and so I eventually settled into providing some harmonies while playing the drums. I can actually drum to the Beatles with some sort of competence on easy mode! It was way more fun to drum when I didn’t suck at it.

Summer Panoramas

Friday, October 2nd, 2009

I have not yet replaced the camera that I lost. Part of this is because I’ve had a very busy summer and I haven’t done my research. Part of it is because I want the quality of an SLR without the price or the bulk. I took a lot of trips this summer on which I wish I had taken a real camera, but all I had was my cell phone camera, which is bad as cameras god but great as cell phone cameras go in my opinion. So here are some camera phone panoramas from the summer.

July 3rd, 2009: Red Sox Home Game #36

Red Sox July 09
The sox lost this game (my second) to the Seattle Mariners in 10 innings, and it was close all the way to the end. At one point early on David Ortiz stole home base from 3rd on a wild pitch. I have never seen that man move so fast before. This is currently the highlight of my Fenway Park experience. I had a surprising amount of trouble finding someone to come with me to this game, because Mary, who’s a Mariners fan, was in Washington state at the time. Eventually I convinced Briana to come with and we had fun.

July 4th, 2009: Pops Goes the Fourth Fireworks

July 4th Boston
This was the first full day of summer in Boston following a rainy awful June. The night was perfect for fireworks, and we had a prime viewing spot on the Cambridge side.

August 30th, 2009: White Sands

White Sands
This view of the White Sands of New Mexico is from a road between Cloudcroft and Sunspot in the Sacramento Mountains looking west into the basin.

September 9th, 2009: Provincetown, Massachusetts

These dunes are located at the far end of cape cod just beyond Provincetown to the west. Beyond the dunes that reach all the way across the scene is the beach. I somewhat enjoy the differences in color that remain in this one. All the images were taken within two minutes of each other, so the color differences are due to issues with the camera not changing lightning. In the distance on the left lighthouse can be seen. That lighthouse is also pictured here:

Cape Cod Lightouse