Archive for February, 2005

Operatic heights

February 17, 2005 - 8:49 pm Comments Off on Operatic heights

That was strange.

The dogs kept barking and barking, and I kept hollering and hollering for them to shut up. Finally I went out there to see just what in the hell was wrong with them, and I heard opera singers. Apparently it’s my next door neighbor’s birthday (for I later heard them singing to her), and they had a really good classical pianist and two sopranos over there singing. I put on a coat and camped out in the back yard to listen. I feel like I got a little culture. Or something.

Don’t Panic

February 16, 2005 - 4:41 pm Comments Off on Don’t Panic

I’ve been quite dubious about the upcoming Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy movie. I’ve been a HHGG fan for a long time. My original nom de net was Trillian, actually. I was lucky enough to have my Trilogy signed in person by Douglas Adams several years ago in Austin. And I thought that there was no way in hell they could turn the books into a big-budget Hollywood movie without utterly destroying the spark that made it so fantastic.

The trailer has somewhat convinced me otherwise. Looks like there might be a cheesy love plot with Arthur and Trillian, but other than that, it actually looks… pretty good. I am keeping an open mind.

More bling

February 14, 2005 - 11:30 pm Comments Off on More bling

I’ve been saving pennies for the last couple of years for a color change garnet. I wrote to Richard Homer, who famously facets gemstones concavely instead of in straight planes, to see if he ever worked with them. He said he was just about to go to the Tucson gem show and would be happy to look around for something there. Well, he found an excellent stone and cut it for me just today! It’s got a 100% color change and is a VVS clarity, which he says is quite rare in colored stones.

The neat thing about these garnets is that they act like Alexandrites in that they are one color in daylight or fluorescent light, and another color in incandescent light. Some turn pink to brown, some turn pink to red, but I think the most dramatic shift is in the stones which turn from green to red. This stone turns from a teal hue to a raspberry red, and I think it looks really nice!

Now I have to figure out what I’m going to do with it, and where to wear it. Tough life, huh?


February 13, 2005 - 1:21 am Comments Off on Precogs

“They had, it appeared, detected that an event of historic importance was about to take place before the terrorists had even boarded their fateful flights.”. – Can This Black Box See Into the Future?

I’m blown away. I remember reading something about this a couple of years ago but did not realize the implications were so far-reaching.


February 11, 2005 - 1:39 am Comments Off on Nondental

Jo and I went into the dentist’s office this morning. They gave her a little cup with some Valium in it for sedation. About 5 minutes after she had it, she started feeling it; 15 minutes and she was a limp noodle lying on the waiting room couch. She starting gnawing on her hand for some reason, and I had to tell her to stop it quite a few times. They gave it a full hour to take effect, then I carried her back to the treatment room and they put on the nitrous mask and started to take x-rays. And Jo started to freak out. She didn’t want the mask, she didn’t like the flavor of the topical anesthetic, she didn’t want anyone messing with her mouth, and she was crying. The dentist said that we could either hold her down and do the crowns while she lay there and screamed, or we could wait and schedule it under general anesthesia at the hospital. You can guess what I chose. Who knows if the medical insurance will cover it or not, but especially after reading Badgerbag’s horrible heart-wrenching experience with her child at the dentist and the guilt she felt about it after, there was just no way I could make any other choice. After reading her entry about it, I walked in there with the mindset that at the first sign that Jo was not okay with what was happening, I was going to grab her and run.

I was lucky, and the dentist (Dr. Singletary in Austin) talked to me before jumping in. Then tonight around 8:30 she called us at home to make sure Jo was doing okay after having had the sedative this morning. I think she’s a keeper. Jo’s pediatrician did something similar; called us every day when Jo was in the hospital as a newborn, then called us afterwards to make sure she and we were okay. It’s stuff like that which makes parents fiercely loyal; even though her pediatrician is a 20 minute drive with no traffic, we appreciated him checking up on us so much that we don’t want to find a closer doctor. I think the same will hold true with the dentist.

Dental blues

February 9, 2005 - 6:53 pm Comments Off on Dental blues

My 5 year old gets two crowns and a root canal tomorrow. For some reason, one set of molars didn’t form properly and basically had no enamel when they came in, and they’ve just worn away. Poor little kid. It’s hard for me to deal with, since I’ve never even had a filling!

History repeats itself

February 4, 2005 - 11:43 pm Comments Off on History repeats itself

I am sitting and listening to my daughter read Hop on Pop out loud; the first book she has ever read by herself. It’s the very same first book that I ever read, too. I’m sappy. I’m crying.


February 1, 2005 - 3:53 pm Comments Off on Viva!

We went to Las Vegas over the weekend to attend SHOT Show and meet up with some friends of ours. A quick foodie rundown:

Thursday night we had a group of 11 and went to Cafe Ba Ba Reeba, a tapas restaurant in the Fashion Show Mall on the Strip. It was good, but not outstanding. The bill was daunting – $550.

Friday for lunch we went to Lotus of Siam with vpisteve from ARGN. We’ve been there before and it’s a must-see whenever we go to Las Vegas. Absolutely excellent Thai food. Really, really good. I can’t recommend it enough.

Friday for dinner we went to Andre’s Restaurant. While it was tasty, the portions were quite small and it was extremely expensive. If the prices had been half of what they were, I would very much recommend it. As it is, I think they are quite overpriced.

Saturday for lunch we went to the Grand Lux Cafe in the Venetian, where we were staying. It was decent food; a bit overpriced.

Saturday for dinner we tried to go to Quark’s Bar at the LV Hilton, but we had a group of over 25 people and they could not accommodate us. Unfortunately I ordered a $25 Warp Core Breech, which is a fishbowl of a drink with 10 ounces of booze in it, and drank it on an empty stomach whereupon it gave me the most godawful bad case of heartburn I’ve had since I was pregnant with my second daughter. Therefore, I was unable to eat a meal at the Triple 7 in Main Street Station, which is where we ended up eating dinner. Hub says it was tasty though.

Sunday for brunch we went back to the Grand Lux because it was easy. I didn’t care at all for my corned beef hash. Far too many bell peppers.

Sunday for dinner we went to Hugo’s Cellar at the Four Queens downtown with the Konas. All I can say is WOW. It will definitely be a must-visit from now on. Their lamb was to die for, and my Veal Oscar was excellent. Along with the entree, you get so much extra food that even though the price looks quite high, it’s actually pretty reasonable. Four of us dined and drank wine, cocktails, and after-dinner coffee for $300.

As for the show, it was enormous. You could walk through it all 4 days and still not see it all. The Las Vegas Convention Center is 3,200,000 square feet! We did stand in line to meet R. Lee Ermey (host of Mail Call, who you might have also seen as the Drill Instructor in Full Metal Jacket):

I also shook hands with Wayne LaPierre, CEO of the National Rifle Association, and we saw Ted Nugent there. Additionally, we got to meet up with new friends and old friends and have an excellent time. Here we are with the Konas after dinner at Hugo’s:

I wish they lived closer. We had a blast! We stayed to watch the Freemont Street Experience and I got a neat little movie of part of it.

For all we tried to cram in, I think we needed an extra 3 days. We barely got to gamble at all, although I did hold the dice for about 30 minutes at Main Street Station. Hub and I walked away from the craps table four figures richer!