In response to the social network paradox

Yet another view on social networking, albeit not in the mind of my employer, friends, acquaintances, random people I meet on the street, or anyone else you can think of. I'll try to keep this matter of fact and relate to experience where I can, but generally, it will probably be a bunch of bull. 1. Information overload, I get it. I post on Facebook that my kid just took a shit and then I check in on FourSquare at My House while Tweeting the toilet overflowed 2. Say, for instance, your kid is having problems taking a crap.  At this point, my post that mine did take one of those, er, craps, becomes relevant.  Maybe. 3. So now, I restrict my posts to communities, circles of people that I arbitrarily group by some Darwinian magic.  Maybe I make my circles as follows: Work High School Alumni Lawnmower Racers Family Girls I Would Like To Date 4. I now share my kid crapping post to Family only, because, well, that's a kind of a personal thing - not for me, per se, but I'm a tad embarrassed. 5. What I fail to realize is that in my other communities, there are "friends" that will benefit from the fact that I have concocted a careful combination of bananas, cheese and eggs that aids in kids taking a dump.  Since I have restricted my commentary to a specific community, regardless of how I know them, I am holding back relevant information, as crappy as that sounds. 6. I shouldn't share the fact that my kid poops with the Girls I Would Like To Date community, right, because that would potentially ruin my chances of the "would like to date" clause 7.  When you jump on the social network bandwagon, you are signing up for one of three things when interacting with your "friends" Consume and ignore Consume and acknowledge Consume and interact 8. Which brings me full circle in listing the posts that I typically despise "Going to bed with my honey" "I opened my car door" "I just put chicken noodle soup in the microwave" "My kid just took a shit" 9. But in all honesty, refer to #7, YOU ARE CONSUMING 10. In conclusion (that sounds like a load of bull), to round out the list (that sounds better), if your day to day is limited to a subset of your day to day, are your exercising your social-ness in your social circles, your social presence?  Can you predict what random facts of your life will bring together a whole new stream, a whole new group of people?  Can you predict through communities or social circles, who will benefit from your experiences, random rants and raves?

Have you ever

Have you ever 1. Listened to the sound of thunder 2. Counted the seconds between lightning strikes 3. And rumbles 4. Tried to replay the clouds notes 5. No two the same 6. Said holy shit as sparks fly 7. And enjoyed it 8. Wondered how to harness the power 9. Of Mother Nature's electricity 10.  And weathered the storm

The things they say and do

Occasionally, it's an altered perception of reality, other times a pronunciation issue, and sometimes just so matter of fact that you can't help but find humor.  No matter how you slice it, these just10things bring joy into my life through the eyes (and mouths) of my children. 1. Septical Tank - If not sure why my daughter was talking about the septic tank, none the less, it's full of crap 2. On frogs - The tadpoles have turned into little frogs in the pond.  My son brings one to me and asks if it is a frog or a toad which I answered with, "that is a frog, would you like to know how to tell the difference?"  He replied, "Daddy, hold this frog, I'll go get my frog book and SHOW you the difference." 3. Paleontoclogist - A 4 year old with a dream of digging up bones traveling all over the world, much better than the alligator trainer he wanted to be a few weeks ago 4. Godazilla - Yep, the movie monster with an extra syllable 5. Plogged up - both of my kids are guilty of this one, which shows that they do teach each other things.  Please use that in a sentence...  When I get on an airplane, after we take off, my ears get plogged up. 6. Earthcane - Timing is responsible for this one as we had an earthquake earlier this week and now a hurricane.  A 4 year old get things a little mixed up, at least both are natural disasters.  I really expected to hear Hurriquake next, but no such luck 7. Pissing Cup - It took awhile to get the meaning of this one out, primarily because I was laughing and also a little concerned that the "P" word was being used.  Eventually I got to the bottom of this and learned that this is the championship race in the movie Cars, correctly named The Piston Cup 8. On weather - How much is it going to rain?  How fast is the wind going now?  Can you pull up the radar again?  Never mind, I'll do it myself.  I admire the fascination she has with the weather and her understanding of what is going on. 9. On yard work - The neighbors kids showed up.  All 4 kids want to know if I will let them rake the leaves and branches in the yard after the storm is gone.  I really couldn't say no 10. Anfinnians - Yes, this is the class of vertebrates that include such animals as frogs and salamanders

A day of goodbyes

Once again, it's time to move on.  You land, you meet people, you build relationships, you work your tail off, you network, you leave.  Today, I say goodbye to a little town in mid-Indiana that I had written off before I showed up, and then realized that it's a pretty awesome town. The architecture of Columbus, IN has been "ranked 6th in the nation for architectural innovation and design by the American Institute of Architects" with a population of only 39,000.  Not only does this town deliver on architecture, but is a great destination for the foodie inside.  My favorites: Papa’s Deli | 412 Washington Pieper’s Gourmet Catering | 423 Washington Power House Brewing (The Columbus Bar) | 322 4th St Columbus additionally offers a great downtown communal space, The Commons, that includes a spectacular living statue, Chaos, and an awesome playground that was really hard to resist. Indiana was a pretty friendly place, welcoming you as if it were your home.  This was apparent in the team I interacted with on a daily basis for almost 3 months, it was hard to say goodbye.  This was evident in the hotel staff, the car rental agents, even the flight attendants that I spent a few hours with a couple of times a week.  It was hard to say goodbye.  It was also discovered in a hostess at the airport restaurant once a week when I was promptly directed to a table.  What she didn't realize what that she was also the one responsible for wishing me safe travels home with a smile. I've done this enough times now, sometimes a week, sometimes a month, occasionally 6-9 months, and it's always the same.  You get over the place, but you hold onto the people.  So tonight as I weather out a hurricane on the east coast, I raise a glass to all I have encountered, east coast or not, and hope you have a safe night.  Cheers! Tunes consumed on the last day in town:
  1. Violet Hill by Coldplay
  2. Back to December by Taylor Swift
  3. The Cave by Mumford and Sons
  4. Let It Rain by David Nail
  5. Tough by Kelly Pickler
  6. Baggage Claim by Miranda Lambert
  7. Hello World by Lady Antebellum
  8. You and Tequila by Kenney Chesney
  9. Take a Back Road by Rodney Atkins
  10. One More Drinkin Song by Jerrod Niemann

There is an object in front of me

1. It has a silver cap 2. It is made of plastic 3. It contains inside a liquid substance blue in color 4. It was invented prior to QWERTY 5. It will fit snugly in my shirt pocket 6. It may leak there 7. It opened up the door for the pocket protector inventor 8. It glides effortlessly across paper 9. It can be an extension of your thoughts 10. It is a pen

Sing like you mean it, sing like it’s your last day

1. There's this certain crowd that, when let loose in the streets of New York, through strange gravitational energy and cosmic fermentation, is always drawn to the belly of some karaoke bar in a private room piled tight on the perimeter bench around a table full of empty glasses and thousand page song books and the beloved song remote.  And it always starts the same, only a few will sing, and it always ends the same, everyone joins in, everyone knows the words, everyone's a rock star.  And she sang like it was the last day, hell, we all sang like it was 12.21.12.  We sang with such passion and emotion that during a few songs, you could hear the drops of tears splashing in the sake above the pulsating rhythms of music. 2. There's a magic buzzer on the wall, and if you hit it just right, you can  ask for scented candles and another glass of sake, however, hit is slightly wrong and you get a can of Febreeze and a pitcher of domestic light beer, but you are always greeted with a "Yes, yes." 3. There's a point in the evening where you start to question yourself, or your ability to roll right into the next day and make an early morning flight to return to reality in only a few hours. 4. It took two cabs to get back to the hotel.  One to get close to the hotel at which point the cab driver argued that there was no such hotel on the street and refused to take me any further.  A second cab was needed to get from one end of the street to the hotel that supposedly did not exist.  The elevator was a challenge. "And in the morning, I'm leaving" 5. Summer is drawing to a close, school starts next week.  I suppose the official end, Labor Day, is still two weeks away, but at this point, I may as well call it "see you next year."  I did not make it to the beach as much this year, maybe I haven't needed as much sand between my toes therapy, salt water bath soaking, skin crisping sun baking, as I have in years past.  It's not that I no longer need the ocean, however I think I'm close to achieving a balanced life, well, as balanced as it can be.  I still need to get a couple more trips in before the waters start to cool, maybe next weekend. "One is one too many, one more is never enough" 6. If you ever come over for dinner or a glass of wine after a long week, I just want to give you a little warning.  There's this monster that lives in my house, you see.  He's the kind of monster that does laundry, however, only folds the clothes needed for the following week's travel, and leaves the rest of the clean clothes in a pile on the floor.  If you acknowledge him, he will not harm you, I promise. 7. It's a freakish thing when you have a song stuck in your head with not enough lyrics to identify it, and if you were to hum it, well, Google does no good with humming a search, so you are stuck.  Until.  After hours of trying different word combinations to various snippets of a tune you think might be right, you end up determining that it was Hall & Oates You Make My Dreams Come True, really? 8. If OSHA ever watched my kids play, I would probably have a hefty fine.  I encourage them to eat dirt, don't enforce the helmet laws and never properly bandage a boo boo.  My reasoning in front of the judge, I'm still alive.  How does that sound for a defense? 9. Strange morning going through security today.  The agent took my ticket and passport, looked me straight in the face and asked me my name and where I was traveling to.  I almost got both wrong.  I then went and ordered a Bloody Mary to assist in regaining cognitive skills 10. I can't dance,  let's dance

Connections disconnected, now with solution

The frustrating thing about installing software is that sometimes, the installation just doesn't want to go your way.  I'm honestly blaming the operating system this time.
java.lang.IllegalArgumentException: Malformed \uxxxx encoding.
1. My first thoughts were logical, somewhere in my installation response file, I had not properly escaped a character in the install path.  I went back and meticulously replaced every \ with \\ (this ain't your flavor of Linux folks, it's the other OS) 2. Another failure.  I'm still thinking logical, lets try the other fix for the \ character, so I switched them all to / which should be legal, but the install came to a screaming halt at 2 minutes 34 seconds 3. Need log files, need a stack trace, oh error message, please let me peer deeper within your nested inner-ness
org.apache.tools.ant.dispatch.DispatchUtils.execute(DispatchUtils.java:116) org.apache.tools.ant.Task.perform(Task.java:348) org.apache.tools.ant.Target.execute(Target.java:357) ........ Caused by: java.util.Properties.loadConvert(Properties.java:532) java.util.Properties.load(Properties.java:371) org.apache.tools.ant.taskdefs.Property.loadFile(Property.java:458) org.apache.tools.ant.taskdefs.Property.execute(Property.java:391) org.apache.tools.ant.UnknownElement.execute(UnknownElement.java:288)
4. This is not deep enough, even with the full 88 lines in the stack trace.  My assumption thus far is still that somewhere along the way, I have an illegal character, what I'd like to know is where might that be. 5. I'm beginning to get a little frustrated, time to get a fresh cup of coffee and "think, think, think" (a reference to Blues Clues in a post about software installation, pathetic) 6. OK, I'm ready to beat this thing like a polka dotted poodle.  Let's use the response file generation option with the graphical installation, maybe I've fat fingered something 10 times.  This task yields a variety of representations of my friend, the whack (a \ character) , from the old days of MCSE classes where we called UNC shares whack whack server whack share - \\server\share... Don't ask, sorry for drifting off topic, but it has kind of stuck in my head), so I take it we need a combination of a single whack, double whacks and back whacks.  That's whacked! 7. With this new response file, I'm off and running, this is going to be perfection.  Failure. 8. I've lost my mind at this point 9. So I start trying stupid things, changing the encoding of my response files.  Failure.  Double checking all non-visual characters in my response files.  Failure.  Try another server for the installation.  Failure.  Turn on verbose logging.  Failure.  Stand up when kicking off the install.  Failure.  Sit on my desk while starting the install.  Failure.  Singing We All Live In a Yellow Submarine will trying yet another install.  Failure, although it brought a small crowd to my cubical. 10. ***UPDATED***  Apparently if your Windows TEMP path starts with the letter U, the installation will fail.  After resetting TEMP to C:\Windows\temp and rebooting, Connections installs like a champ.  Hmmm.... I'm not sure I believe this one, but too much time was lost and I really was beyond experimenting to prove or disprove this. Happy installing!

I’m not here for long, I’m just here for fun

1. Bunny hops are those raised seams in the road that cause your car to do a little up and down motion as you barrel down the highway at jack rabbit speed. To relieve boredom, I counted all 84 between the office and the airport this morning 2. I know it's only 11 in the morning, but I could go for a nice glass of wine in a rocking chair with some lazy conversation. Maybe it would be more appropriate if I wait until dusk... if anyone is interested, you know how to find me 3. I wonder how many cell phone chargers I have lost over the last 4 years of traveling, left in hotels, rental cars, customers offices - I need to stop and buy YACC (Yet Another Cell Charger) once I get home, I think I left this one at the hotel 4. I still have 2 weeks with my current customer, but I'm already getting that sense that this will be another one that's going to be hard to leave. I will, finally, as long as all the ducks are really lining up this time, be NYC bound for hopefully a long term commitment (and no, it doesn't involve iron bars or straight jackets, although sometimes I feel like I need the latter).  Bittersweet, I suppose 5. I've decided that the jet bridge looks like a leech sucking the souls out of planes.  Sometimes, the leech gets sick and throws souls back up into the plane (after they have been digested by security, or course) 6. "1/2 your age + 7" and "Why didn't he just buy his own sheep?" have been two very interesting comments that have come out of after work casual meetings/social gatherings 7. I was that guy on Monday, you know, the one with a laptop and cup of coffee in hand, backpack slinging uncontrollably, roller bag in tow with a cell phone balanced between ear and shoulder trying to shove said roller bag in the overhead compartment, not spill hot coffee, and simultaneously answer specific questions on the phone. So to anyone I may have knocked in the head or otherwise harmed in this absurd shenanigan, I deeply apologize 8. I had an interesting dream last night of the most vivid kind. I was in the market for a new house, downsize a little, and went with an agent to look at a pink, yes pink, house. I can still visualize the layout and the condition. The kitchen cabinets needed replacing, the linoleum replaced (with hardwoods). The fireplace was in shambles and there was this strange contraption of water heater, furnace thing that involved quartz lights and a pizza oven control unit to test the system. The octopus legs of exposed wires and capacitors was for sure in need of reworking to be a little more safe. The same went for the rooftop deck with no railing and the steps leading up to it were barely 6 inches wide. The end of the dream brought the owner into the picture, whom has been asleep in her bed the whole time we were examining the house. I was going to offer 35k based on the condition and all of the work that was needed, however, I woke up. I can't even begin to fathom what the intended purpose of his dream was, so I will accept the fact that I had a dream about a pink house and move on 9. One thing about the BWI (Baltimore) airport is that when I return home from flying through here, I always feel like I smell like a crab 10. New quote to add to a list of favorites goes something like this: I love getting older, because it allows me to remember things I once needed to learn - Klosterman in Eating the Dinosaur Tunage:
  1. Tough by Kellie Pickler
  2. Baggage Claim by Miranda Lambert
  3. A Good Run of Bad Luck by Clint Black
  4. Barefoot and Crazy by Jack Ingram
Drinkage:
  1. Just a Miller Lite, nothing fancy right now