January 6th, 2008


Cleaning up the Mac

Cleaning up my homedir on the mac: I think it's about time that I did a fresh install, and I think I'm going to make the jump to Leopard and dual-boot with Ubuntu.

THe last 24 hours of having evilwm running have reminded me how much easier it is to limit distractions using virtual desktops. The ease of using the keyboard for things that I do commonly under Linux is so much more than it is in Mac (for example, accessing application menus which don't have built in keyboard shortcuts), and I can also do so much more without there being an expectation that I'm using the mouse.

I still like OS X. I think it does things -- especially for non-power users -- that I like. But I think that for at least some of the time, there are tasks that I can be doing more effectively under Linux -- not the least because I find that my current setup makes it much easier for me to bury myself in a task without being distracted.

I've not yet found a virtual desktop application on the mac which is as easy to use as evilwm has always seemed to me, and even if I did, I've not yet found one that will let me keep my Adium/AIM connection entirely on a different desktop: I've always got that silly duck in the menu bar, waiting for me to respond to people.

I'm sure many people will tell me I'm crazy either way :) But I'm likely to give it a shot anyway.

I've spent most of this morning cleaning up various things -- ensuring that they're checked into SVN, or moving the TV/Movies/etc. that I had grabbed only to my mac off to the PC. I'm running out of drive space again -- I've had to mount my spare 80gb drive, and I'm filling that up at an alarming rate. (Filling this up would mean that I have about 400GB of media saved up.) I think that means that it's time for me to start looking for a cheap 500GB hard drive to add in.

Roller Skating and Dinner

Went roller skating with the girls. Alicia did great, Julie was... not so great. She loved walking around in skates on the carpet, of course, but the second I took her into an area of actual skating, she was terrified.

Unfortunately, the only carpeted area at Roller World is in the seating and connections to the actual rink, so anywhere she could be, she was in the way -- and since she was unable to move without pushing herself along the wall, she was constantly bumping into people by not looking where she was going.

Eventually, I convinced her that she should go with me on the little rink that they had for people learning to skate. (Probably 10ft x 50ft, with ~5-10 kids on it with an adult each.) She wasn't really convinced, but I wanted her to try out actually rolling. She did fine, with nary a slip, and then went back to rolling on the carpet.

Now, those of you who have met me know that I like to move. I can't leave Julie alone for more than 2 minutes at a time without her talking to everyone around her, so this essentially led to me feeling uncomfortable leaving her behind and skating for myself. After another 30 minutes of this, I convinced her to take another trip round the little rink.

She was doing fine again, but threw a tantrum halfway around, screaming bloody murder. By this time, I'm tired of sitting around and letting her have her way, so I take her back, sit her down, take off her skates, and tell her that we're sitting there until Alicia is done.

After fuming for about 10 minutes, I realize how stupid this is: the fact that the kid is scared of roller skating is not really her fault, especially since she was willing to give it a try, and was still scared (regardless of how irrational it was). I put her shoes back on, returned her skates, and had her sit, while I went out and skated. I still spent a lot of time sitting next to her as she interacted with various people around her, but I got in 20-30 minutes of skating off and on, and was pretty happy.

At the end, Julie sat next to a goth guy (died black hair, fingernail polish and the like) who took the worn wheels off his skates and put new ones on. She had fun stacking the wheels in all kinds of different orders, and arranging them by color (old were black, new were purple) and the kid (and his girlfriend) seemed reasonably happy to have her playing with the wheels, so I got a solid ten minutes of skating in.

Ali had a ton of fun, Julie did okay other than the actual skating part. I probably will take Ali again, and leave Julie behind.

We stopped at Friendly's for dinner. I had Mozeralla Sticks -- they were as good as ever. The girls got ice cream, and I had their cookies and cream: I had convinced myself the 'cookies' must be Oreos, but when it got there, they were clearly not Oreos. (I should have known better, since there was no Oreo brand stamped on it.) I must sound like a snob, but in my ice cream, it's oreos or nothing -- I can eat generic chocolate oreo like things anywhere but in ice cream.

Ali actually broke her little dish of ice cream eating it -- the waitress was amazed and took it around to show everyone. I tipped reasonably well, and as we were walking out, the waitress practically gushed a thank you at me. (Seriously, when an extra $2.50 can make the difference between someone being happy and ecstatic, why the hell would I not just toss it in?)

The snack bar at the roller rink had a $10 minimum (and of course, I had no cash). I almost never care about this, but I forced myself to buy pretzels to try and meet it when we stopped to get drinks while skating, and my tongue is now singed by stupid pretzel salt. :/ I think that minimums are illegal on Visa -- I'm almost frustrated enough by it to call someone and complain (which I've never done before). I can't really decide if I should.

(Goldenrod, our ice cream place in NH, is the same way, but Jess always gets Ice Cream while I get a meal, so we never fall under it.)