[Taken January 13, 2006 | Fire Fingers | Centerville, OH]
The weather has gotten very cold. Frigid, in fact. Clear, bright, icy cold with nary a snowstorm to soften things up.
I got back this weekend from spending half a week in St. Louis (where it realy wasn't to much warmer) where I was starting to get up to speed on a new project that I am starting with a new and different division of the company. As a bonus, I got to see my brother Kevin for dinner, since he lives in St. Louis. I think that the St. Louis trip will become a regular occurrance, so I may get more chances to hang out with my brother in the future.
In addition to being suddenly super busy with work, dance has suddenly gotten a heck of a lot crazier as well. Starting tomorrow, and going every night through Sunday, a whole bunch of us are going to be dancing at the Schuster Center as the floorshow/pre-show entertainment for Aida. From 7:00pm until curtain (7:45-8:00ish) we will be in full cabaret regalia, entertaining the opera goers. Not having much in the way of cabaret regalia myself, I borrowed a couple of costumes from Kira, just so I won't have to wear the same thing all night each night... being able to affect the occasional costume change is , as Martha Stewart would say, a good thing. So life will get even crazier for the next little bit. Hopefully somewhere in all of that I will find the time to eat and sleep.
As payment, we are all getting comp tickets to the opening night performance of Aida tomorrow. I hope that we get decent seats.
[Taken December 24, 2006 | Smoke-Ring Gun | Dayton, OH]
The holiday season is overwith and cleaned up after, and I am settling back into the pace of "real life".
On Saturday I took down the tree and packed away all of the ornaments and decorations. The tree is currently on the back patio, waiting to be chopped up into firewood. I actually think that we could have left the tree up longer, if we really wanted to... it still smelled great and was still really healthy looking (it had dropped hardly any needles at all) but since we put it up on Dec. 9, I figured that having it up a bit over a month was long enough. And, really, we probably would have taken it down sooner, but we wanted to leave it up at least until John's family visited (they were here the weekend after New Year's).
Work is resuming its normal pace. I wound up (and in some cases am still winding up) my projects from last year, and am finally starting to get my full project load for this year. Last week I had a week of training (in Adobe Flex Builder 2.0) which I had a blast in - and which I think would be a great tool for rapid prototyping and visualizations of complex data sets - and now all that remains is to convince the powers that be that it a worthwhile investment to actually purchase the tool so that we can make use of the stuff that we spent a week learning.
Dance started up again after several weeks of downtime in December. The first monthly dance party of the new year was this past Friday, and served to sort of kick start everything. Among other things, there was a conga line... and at the head of the conga line was a bagpiper. He was a pretty good bagpiper, too.
[Taken December 13, 2006 | Brooklyn Bridge | NY, NY]
John and I celebrated the date change by going out to dinner with Sarah and Mike. We went to Amor de Brazil down near Cincinnati and were hugely impressed. That restaurant is just all about the meat. Even the salad bar was mostly (much more then 50%) meat – lobster bisque, sashimi grade tuna, cocktail shrimp… I put together a small salad (with bacon) and had some asparagus, but soon abandoned that in favor of the main course - meat. It was a never-ending stream of meat… the waiters (“gauchos”) just keep coming around to your table with a wide variety of delicious cuts and styles of meat on spits and slice off portions for you. Mmmm.
After we had filled to bursting with meat, we went back to Sarah and Mike’s place and sort-of watched the Dick Clark New Year Special at Times Square while playing Munchkin Bites. Then we did the countdown and toast. It felt pretty anticlimactic, but after all of the meat, pretty much anything would have felt anti-climactic.
I know that I keep going on about the meat, but damn, it was good. Definitely one for the list of restaurants that I must be sure to go back to. (Tip for next time: wear loose-fitting clothes.)
New Year’s Day the office was closed, so I spent the day largely in my pajamas and sort of puttered around the house. In some sense I would have made a good 1950s housewife, because for me “puttering around the house” usually translates into “cleaning and/or home improvement”.
Oh, and if any of my one or two readers noticed that my site was all kinds of messed up over the past week, rest assured that that problem is (or very well should be) fixed by now. I switched from one hosting service to another, the transition period was a little more fraught then I expected, and I needed to do some script-fixing and other long overdue site maintenance. So, presented for your consideration in 2007, my new website, which is more or less exactly the same as the old website.