November 22nd, 2006

wombat

A glimpse of half-forgotten history

Virginia Postrel excerpts a section from Simon Winder's The Man Who Saved Britain to illustrate just how glamorous Commander Bond was to Britons in the postwar era, an era marked by continuing hard times as the Empire began to disintegrate in the wake of the Second World War. It reminds one that Orwell didn't have to work his imagination too hard to come up with the dreary, damaged cityscapes of Airstrip One for 1984, because the reality wasn't too far from the vision at that point. I'm thinking I really ought to pick up Winder's book, at least from the library; in some ways, the twilight period of the British Empire is even more foreign to me than the Regency years, even though the Empire was finishing up the process of collapse when I was still a wee young wombat. (Instapundit)
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Boss Coffee

The fires raging in my soul

Well, that was a wild ride on the emotional bells. The wire from Ameritrade hadn't shown up by noon, and when I called them to find out WTF was going on I got a garbled explanation that amounted to "Oh noes! The process is wedged, no money for you until Friday!" I expressed my displeasure in mild terms (since I work in a cube farm, and my bosses would almost certainly object to a full-on spleen vent) and hung up. Fifteen minutes later somebody else from Ameritrade calls back, fixes some things that were apparently causing flags on the request, and got said request into the processing queue...and now I have my cash. Which is good, because I have a few things to do before everything closes tonight.

Today was busy; the Controller once again showed mercy and released us at 1430 on account of the holiday, but since I was waiting for the wire and had work to do anyway I stayed until 1600 and finished up part of the balancing process. This earned me some badly-needed brownie points with my supervisor; I'd earned a couple of "oh, shit!"s earlier in the day due to some billing files that didn't get processed and an entity that had disappeared from the balancing spreadsheet after I'd set it up in April. The decks are all cleared now, and I can get the hell out of here.
the mark

They're playing our tune

Stopped by the Wal-Mart on the way home to pick up prescriptions and an SD card for the TX, since it's obvious to me that the Carbon is dead, dead, dead. Got a 1 GB card, since I can get a 4GB online for the price they're asking for the SanDisk 2GB, took it home, and after fumbling around a bit finally got the thing loaded with almost 1GB worth of MP3 files. Fortunately, this covers most of the bands I like, especially James McMurtry, Poison and Blondie, so I'll be happy with it for a while. As for the standard media player software, the controls are pretty intuitive so I should be pretty well set.

Spent most of the evening cleaning up the place a bit, flipping the futon and changing the linens, and tweaking Pandora in between excursions into the odd corners of Wikipedia. Man, the Soviets sure shoveled a lot of people around until Khrushchev showed up. It's a wonder anyone (non-Russian) in the former USSR knows where home is.

Currently reading: Landscape Turned Red, by Stephen Sears and Solzenitsyn's The GULAG Archipelago.