August 29th, 2005

wombat

The Sunday night report

God, what an insanely huge collection of crap. I never realized I had that many boxes of useless stuff in the closet.

First of all, apologies to all of you who showed up expecting everything to be ready to roll. I really should have spent more time boxing things up, because as thorough as I thought I'd been, I wasn't nearly as close to being finished as I thought I was, and so a lot of people sat around waiting for things to happen that should have already happened. Still, after much sweating, straining and somewhat fewer vile oaths than one would have thought, we're MOSTLY moved out. Major thanks to redmartel, stuckintraffik (who I thought were going to kill themselves hauling big & heavy things), tjstriker, tokenfanboy, jamestrainor, the Berkner brothers, Joella, and if I missed anybody you still definitely have my gratitude.

At this point most of Scott and Melody's stuff is gone, which leaves just a few things to be thrown into the demo dumpster that management has so kindly left where we can get at it and a few more things to be stuffed into the Kia and brought over to the apartment. There are very, very few things left for phoenixalpha to bring home to her duplex - couple of books, some barbells, plates, bowls and silverware. That ought to be all wrapped up by Tuesday night, which is when I'm turning in the keys and saying the hell with it. I am confident that we'll be all cleaned up and squared away by then, though I still expect to get wanged on the deposit.

In other news, I got the broadband switched over in less than a day (like, about 5 minutes) but apparently I'm going to need a router of my own since the laptop's not okay with just being plugged into the cable modem. More money down the tubes.
  • Current Mood
    tired tired
WTF

We get signal...but cannot process

This post on illegible words by Ann Althouse reminded me of some conversations I'd had from time to time with people who had done Morse intercept work (Army MOS 05H, later 98H) and after a while wound up hearing random bits of code all around them. Most Morse code transmission takes place in the HF radio band, which is just full of static and random noise anyway (as you can tell from listening to an old AM radio, especially at night) and the ditty-boppers got used to straining meaningful code out of the roaring stream of noise flooding through their headsets. So it wasn't too surprising that every so often they'd hear things in the background noise of daily life and be driven a little crazy by not being able to get the whole message, just the random code groups produced by the noise.

On a related topic, jamestrainor and I were talking this weekend about WordFind puzzles and how you could occasionally find words in the matrix that weren't in the list of words you were supposed to be looking for. I've never been able to do well at that kind of puzzle, mainly because I got used to trying to dig data out of matrices in accordance with the way the Soviets encoded the data and got confused when the words went in straight lines instead.