October 29, 2014
Filed Under (Uncategorized) by transom

Many, many years ago, I was hired as the second employee of a consulting firm in my home town. We grew and I hired my friends from college to join us (it saved time by skipping the interviews and we were young, oh so young.) Not long after Ed Reed, Rich Edyvean, Larry Zaiser, and I started our own company (and got sued in the meantime.)

Over the next three years we grew a business. It wasn’t pretty or even overly successful. We got lucky and a F500 company came along and saved us from ourselves.

Ed and I stayed with the F500 company for number of years. Rich went on to a senior technical role for an oil company in Texas.

That was almost 40 years ago. Tonight Ed shared the sad news that Rich lost his battle with pancreatic cancer. While time and distance has separated us, the loss is no less painful. My thoughts are with his wife and family tonight.

July 03, 2013
Filed Under (Uncategorized) by transom

This video is a beautiful time-lapse of the fog that rolls in and around the house where I live. A reminder of how beautiful this area really is.

May 22, 2011
Filed Under (Noted in passing) by transom

A tweet today with the picture of a friend’s daughter prompted to me to finally write this post. The daughter at the grand old age of 20 months was running her (father’s) iPad with the dexterity of a college senior. It was quite cute and left me bemused.

I had been meaning to write about my “first” gadget. I have an iPod Touch for which I was looking for a software equivalent of the HP 12c Business calculator. I love the HP12c. I bought one when I was a sophomore in college. It was so expensive that I took out a bank loan (with my father as a co-signer) for the grand sum of $400. It was so new that I had to get permission from my professors to use it to calculate present value (rather than using the big book with tables you’d look up the values.)

To this day, the HP12c is a favorite. I have an app on my computer that is a perfect emulation and now my iPad Touch shows me the same interface for interest calculations.

I wonder if my friend’s daughter will remember her first gadget? Probably not.

March 12, 2011
Filed Under (Life in the PNW, Noted in passing) by transom

In 1996, I adopted two kittens from the Humane Society in Lancaster, PA. At the recommendation of my sister, I had the attendant help me select two males from the litter of 8. I named them Bob & Ray after the radio team of Bob Goulding & Ray Elliott, who I only knew from the Letterman show (and not their lifetime Radio performances). A trip to the vet a few days later, assured me that I was the proud new father of healthy male kittens.

In a miracle of science, when it came time to have them neutered, the vet told me that he would be unable to neuter Bob. Bob needed to be spayed. Apparently it is hard to “sex” a kitten before – Bob was actually a female. So faced with the naming débâcle, I quickly punted and decided that Bob was short for “Roberta” and we’d keep the name. Not that it mattered, it wasn’t like she came when you called.

Bob on Her Garden Throne

This week after 15 years together, I had to make the decision to euthanize Bob. The decision itself wasn’t hard. She had suddenly stopped eating two days before and the vet confirmed that the ravages of hyperthyrodism (which had taken Ray three years earlier) and a failing kidney left no room for a good outcome. She had been clearly exhausted and only wanted to be curled up next to me.

Her death hasn’t been quite as hard on me as when I lost Ray. Ray’s death was unexpected and came in such a way that guilt and grief compounded the pain. With Bob, I was able to be present and be with her all the way and there to comfort and hold her in the Vet’s office. Instead, the tears come when I look under the bed to find toys and balls of paper that she secreted away while playing or find yet another jar of cat treats stuck in a corner.

Bob wasn’t as attention-focused that her brother was. She barely had a need for me. But from the moment I brought her home until last Monday night, every night her place at bedtime was curled up leaning against my right hip. That is until the sun came through the window and she realized it was time for breakfast. Then she took on the role of a reverse alarm clock – poking me in the face like a un-snooze alarm until I realized it was time to feed her.

I don’t have the words or the space to express how much these two small souls have meant in my life. They have been confidants, caretakers, the cause of amusement and frustration, and founts of joy and love regardless of what else was going on in my life.

I’ll never be able to replace them but one day, I’ll adopt two more kittens and start the adventure again.


November 12, 2010
Filed Under (Playing on iTunes) by transom

Perhaps your iTunes library suffers from “Why won’t these match up into one album”. Turns out to be a sorting issue with UTF/Internation characters. In my example, Mel Tormé (with the accent) as the Album Artist almost always broke this way.

My solution, change the Sort Artist field to Torme, Mel (without the accent). Everything snapped back into place.

July 17, 2010
Filed Under (Playing on iTunes) by transom

My OCD prefers that I keep my iTunes organized by artist (with each artist arranged alphabetically by last name.)

But I am faced with a grammatical quandry – how does one file “Ghostface Killah” – as shown or as “Killah, Ghostface”. It is quite the conundrum.

December 20, 2009
Filed Under (Cracks Me Up!, Playing on iTunes) by transom

I have to start this post with “I think the world of Bob Dylan”. I find him inspirational and extremely talented. There are a number of his tunes that I have rated with multiple stars on my iPod.

But what were they thinking having Bob record a Christmas album (Christmas in the Heart). Bob’s particular song styling now tend to put him in competition with the Chipmunks for Novelty Christmas album of the decade. It just doesn’t work – on any level. This just smells of crass commercial pandering – Bob sells well, Christmas albums sell well – voilà a Dylan Christmas album must be a winner.

Errr, not so much. But good for a giggle.

September 10, 2009
Filed Under (Playing on iTunes) by transom

Recently my playlists have been filled with accordians and gypsy jazz. It started with seeing Pearl Django in concert again (in beautiful Anacortes). And again this week, when a random tweet sent me off to this silly video And next thing I know, I am searching out Elbow’s music.

When will the madness stop? Next I’ll probably start listening to klezmer bands. (Not that there is anything wrong with that.)

June 02, 2009
Filed Under (Life in the PNW) by transom

I love this time of year. The Northwest has an amazing number of outdoor venues. And the lineup this summer is pretty good. I am looking forward to Chris Isaak, Sheryl Crowe, Al Green, Melissa Etheridge, and Pink Martini.
funny pictures of cats with captions
see more Lolcats and funny pictures

March 25, 2009
Filed Under (Noted in passing) by transom

It was kind of bitter-sweet but in the long run, like prunes, it is going to be good for me.