Archive for the 'Life' Category

Dammit, Panda Express!

Sunday, December 23rd, 2007

They have adulterated my beloved Fried Rice.

Panda Express Fried Rice used to contain five things:

  • Rice (duh)
  • Bits of fried egg
  • Carrots, diced
  • Peas
  • Chopped celery (unthrilling, but tolerable)

Today, I bought some fried rice, and look what they’ve added:

  • Chopped red peppers
  • An orange unidentifiable fruit/vegetable chunk; either of another pepper of some kind, or of an underripe tomato
  • Exactly one slice of carrot (crinkle-cut), in addition to the diced carrots [Edit: When I went back to it to finish off the second half of it, I found another slice.]
  • Fucking broccoli

Don’t mess with my rice!

I can only hope that this was simply the result of having some spare parts that they needed to use up, and that another batch of fried rice (or another Panda Express) would not provide such contamination.

UPDATE 2008-01-06: I had lunch at the Costa Mesa store today, and they did not befoul my fried rice in this way. Good to know.

Thanks

Friday, November 30th, 2007
  • To Brent Simmons and Mike Lee.
  • To Matt Drance, who gave me a ride back to my hotel tonight.
  • To Colin Barrett, who gave me a ride back to my hotel (more or less) on Tuesday. (We did not go directly to the hotel.)
  • To Bill Bumgarner, who brought 33 pounds of delicious pork. I think our row of tables needed two more to seat all the people who came for it.
  • To Blake C., who is still the biggest fan of this blag.
  • To everybody, who knew exactly what I was talking about every time I said “blag”. I loved that.
  • To Wil Shipley and Brent for picking up a couple of tabs.
  • To Brent, for supplying me with Yellow Cab’s phone number, so that I could call us a cab back to the hotel. Also for paying the fare.
  • To John Geleynse for the invitation, and to Evan Schoenberg for forwarding it on.
  • To everybody who helped me with stuff at the event (including, but not limited to, Deric Horn, Michael Jurewitz, and Peter Ammon).

Let me know if you did something for me this week and I forgot to thank you, or if you want me to remove you from the list for some reason.

My Simpsons avatar

Sunday, September 23rd, 2007

What I look like as a Simpsons character.

Part of the website for The Simpsons Movie; found on Chad Weider’s blog.

Vacation numbers

Sunday, September 23rd, 2007
  • Days gone: 3
  • New mail messages: 75
  • New messages in RSS feed: 86
  • Miles driven (total): 133

How I learned Dvorak

Saturday, February 3rd, 2007
  1. Print out all the letters and some punctuation onto sticker paper. For a US keyboard, you’ll need the alphabet except a and m, and all of “-=[];’/,.” I’ve forgotten the font I used (it was years ago that I did this), but I can offer you this: On my keyboard (a Macally iKey), the letters are 4 mm tall. [UPDATE 2008-11-29: On my Apple Extended Keyboard II, the letters are in Univers, approximately 10 point.]
  2. Cut out the characters and affix each one to the matching key in the Dvorak position. For example, the ‘p’ goes on the QWERTY ‘r’ key (top row, fourth in from tab). Using labels rather than rearranging your keys allows you to easily switch back to QWERTY if you should need to for something.
  3. Hunt-and-peck with this arrangement. Do as much typing as you can arrange for yourself. Pay attention to the letter arrangement, which is not accidental—the vowels are all together on the left and many common digraphs (e.g. tr, nt, ?s, th) are on the right.
  4. When not at your computer, air-type in the Dvorak positions. This gets you used to the finger movements. Muscle memory is your friend. Anytime you daydream, or speak, or hear speech, narrate it in text on a keyboard of air. You don’t need your arms in position for this; at your sides/in your pockets will work just fine. It’s your hands that you’re training.
  5. At the end of about two weeks, the stickers will fall off of the keys, and you will not complain because you have ceased to need them.

It wasn’t much longer before I had matched my old QWERTY speed, and I’ve since surpassed it—I type around 100 WPM. (Curious as to your own WPM? Try this free typing test.) I’m rusty with QWERTY now, but I can still type it if I need to.

Observations on the Mac Pro

Thursday, October 26th, 2006
  • Wow, this thing is big. So much larger than my Cube.
  • I need a DVI-to-ADC adapter to use my ADC-based monitor. Suck.
  • The Cube effect is yummy.
  • Finally, I get to play all these games and watch all these videos without asking to use mom’s iBook!
  • It’s nice to look at my CPU Usage (not-yet-finished 0.4) and see as many as three cores (did I mention that it’s a quad?) running at 0%.
  • I no longer need hubs. I no longer need the external USB speakers (with headphone jack) nor iMic, freeing up two USB ports (exactly how many my Cube had). So now I can plug my keyboard into the first, my monitor into the second, and my printer into the third. If I still need more ports (e.g. flash memory), I have two on the front.
  • Speaking of which, I no longer need my FireWire repeater either. I can plug my iPod into the front FireWire port.
  • The headphones also plug into the front, but they jut out too far for my comfort. I’ll buy an L connector at Radio Shack to avoid me shearing off the headphone connector in the jack.
  • The drive bay covers slide down, rather than flapping open like a drawbridge. That’s cool.
  • Computer name: “Four-Sided Cheese Grater”. (Did I mention that it’s a quad?)
  • Rosetta works well. ShadowIRC (PPC-only) doesn’t seem any slower on this machine than it did on my Cube.
  • Apps that behaved slowly on my Cube (e.g. QS) are quite fast on this one.
  • OmniWeb actually launches fairly quickly on this machine. Not like Safari, though: half a bounce.
  • I look forward to doing a make -j4 (or maybe more).
  • As Colin points out, I have gone from last to first in terms of Adium committer developer processing power. (UPDATE 05:57: Andreas Monitzer, one of our GSoC students, has a 3 GHz four-core Mac Pro; mine is only 2.66 GHz. Rats.)
  • I now have a much better reason for recompiling my various command-line utilities, as I tend to do whenever moving to a new machine. This time, I’m changing architectures.
  • The Mac Pro is wider than my Cube, making it a better platform for my headphones (each ear pivots, so I can stand it up on them rather than having to hang or lie the headphones somewhere).
  • In the box, there’s a 3″ DVI–DVI cable. One end is a female DVI connector; the other end is a male DVI connector. I see no difference in pinouts; therefore, I am at a loss to explain what this cable is for.
  • There’s no Eject button on the computer; you’re supposed to use the one on the keyboard for that, but I’d rather not unplug my perfectly-good iKey just to get an Eject button. So I’ll just have to add the Eject menu extra to my menu bar.
  • No more convection cooling. ☹
  • Startup time (from *bong* to loginwindow): 18 seconds. This compares to 45 seconds for the Cube. The progress bar goes from 0 to 100% in less than a second.

Death

Saturday, September 23rd, 2006

At about 9:20 on Thursday morning, we heard knocking and the doorbell. I woke up, got my socks on, went to the door. Mom was already there in her nightgown, looking through the peephole. She said that there were a couple of men walking away, one saying something about “scratches”; she guessed that they were repairmen trying to sell their services. (We still don’t know for sure whether this was the case or not.) I went back to bed; mom chose to stay up.

About twenty minutes later, we heard knocking and the doorbell again. I didn’t even bother with the socks this time, being more curious than that now; about when I got to the dining room, I heard a woman’s voice calling out my mom’s name from outside. Now this was very odd.

I opened the door, with mom behind me; it was our neighbor from across the street, with two men behind her. “These men want to talk to you.” Mom stepped out; I stayed inside the door (being barefoot, remember?), and noticed a sheriff’s badge clipped to the belt of one of the men. (Both of them were in plain clothes: each, a suit with no jacket.)

For awhile, we had a 1981 Audi parked in our driveway. It fell into disrepair, and we received a “notice of violation” since one cannot legally have an “inoperative” vehicle visible from a public road. We donated the car to a charity, but awhile after that, we received a letter reminding us of the violation. We paid it no mind, having already cleared the violation, but upon sight of the badge, I thought that this was another reminder about the car (I forgot that it wasn’t present anymore, so they probably wouldn’t have knocked on our door about it).

“I’m afraid we have some bad news to tell you.”

So much for that. I knew at this point that something had happened to my dad. The man speaking was not the one with the sheriff’s badge; we would find out in a few minutes that he is an Investigator in the HBPD.

“Your husband” — the officer was addressing my mom — “was killed this morning.” Text doesn’t adequately convey it; he seemed pretty shaken up about it himself. “Oh God”, responded my mom.

We were given my dad’s backpack and a paper bag containing the items on his person — money, ID, watch with its band broken (and its bezel blood-stained), among other things. We were also given a form giving a summary of the incident, and the business cards of both men. The senior of the two told us that the autopsy would be done that afternoon. A woman was with them; I think she was a grief counselor of some kind, but she didn’t say anything that I heard (although I did go back inside briefly to get my socks on).

Newspaper clipping: “PEDESTRIAN DIES · An unidentified man was killed about 6 a.m. Thursday when he was hit by a minivan at the intersection of Brookhurst Street and Yorktown Avenue in Huntington Beach. The driver wasn't cited.”
Clipping from the OC Post (another newspaper, run by the Orange County Register).


My dad took the bus to and from work every workday. At 5:54, he was crossing Brookhurst Boulevard to get to the bus stop, when a van hit him; the impact was fatal. The driver stopped and called police.

Dad was pronounced dead on the scene; presumably, the rest of the three-and-a-third hours between then and the time that the officers arrived at our door was spent interviewing the driver, towing vehicles, recovering personal effects, and cleaning up the scene.

Note: This is a good argument for always carrying your ID with you, if you live with anybody. Dad had his California ID card on him, so the officers knew where he lived and that he was married, making that location (i.e. our house) the logical place to look for next-of-kin.


A little later, the same neighbor from before and one of our next-door neighbors came over to see how we were doing. He gave us his business card, and I gave him one of our phone numbers (I’ve forgotten which one); she said she’d ask a friend of hers about urns, that friend being an employee of a nearby mortuary.

He came by later (while I was taking a nap, since my sleep had been cut short) to drop off a printout of an HB Independent article (and there’s an article in the Orange County Register, too). She came by even later than that (waking me up), and gave us a tray of Honeybaked Ham (spiral-sliced ham, regular-sliced ham, and turkey, along with baked beans, potato salad, cheese potato, and creamed corn). It was an awesome dinner (and we still have plenty of it to eat), and satisfied my longtime curiosity as to exactly how good or not Honeybaked is; obviously, though, that isn’t the way I wanted to try some Honeybaked Ham.


So, my father is dead. Once the arrangements are made, we’ll invite family down for the viewing, and then his body will be cremated.

It hasn’t quite sunk in yet. I know, objectively, that my father is dead, but it isn’t real for me yet — I don’t feel it, if that makes sense. I expect that it will hit me at the viewing.

I haven’t written any code since the incident, and may not for several days yet (if not longer). I’ve been on IRC the past couple days, after staying well away from it for a long time in order to be more productive.

That’s all I can think of right now.

How to securely destroy your card

Thursday, July 13th, 2006

Earlier today, I destroyed an extra check card that I didn’t need. I don’t know if anybody’s ever done it this way, though. I had my mom take photos (thanks, mom!), and I created a webpage with the step-by-step information. Here it is: How to securely destroy your card.

Technorati tags: , .

W00t

Monday, May 1st, 2006

I got my California ID card today. :D

Boring personal stuff #2

Monday, April 24th, 2006

Filed for my state ID today. Supposed to arrive in “about three weeks”. Next on the list will be passport.

Change of plans

Tuesday, April 18th, 2006

Driving is hard. Recognizing this, I’ve decided to get a plain state ID for now, and work on the DL later. A DL will take too long.

Monday, Monday

Saturday, April 15th, 2006

Full grammar changeover is complete starting Monday at 00:00 PDT. This includes IRC, the last holdout.

Driver training, part 2

Thursday, April 6th, 2006
  • Turning is hard. It’s easy enough in concept, but it’s hard to do a sharp turn that doesn’t cut into any other lanes.
  • I’m not used to the idea of braking gradually.
  • I drive slowly. Defies the stereotype, for sure. The instructor asked me “How old are you?” “21, going on 22.” “You drive like you’re 90. Speed it up.” Keeping the speed of the car below the speed limit, safe for traffic, and above 10 kept me very busy.
  • Mirrors are another thing that keep me busy.

My main problem was that the instructor kept giving me a constant feed of low-level directions: “Apply the brakes, signal, mirrors, look over your shoulder, now gas, let off the gas, turn, brakes, …” When we were done, I suggested to him that he should just tell me what to do (e.g. “Turn right here”) and let me do it. Catch me if I get something wrong, but otherwise, let me do it, and I’ll probably get it right. Otherwise:

  1. I’ll be following him, instead of thinking and acting on my own.
  2. I’m not going to be able to get along when he’s not there.

Lesson 3 of 3 is today. Here’s hoping I don’t need more.

Driver training, part 1

Wednesday, April 5th, 2006

As I remarked to my instructor, “Driving is easy. It’s all the other cars that are the problem.”

Status report after lesson 1 of 3: Turning corners and handling intersections are my current weak points. I’m also not too good about keeping a watch on my rear-view mirror. Other than that, I’m doing well. Especially considering that it was raining the whole time.

I do wish that cars would come with rear-window (including passenger windows) wipers standard. You’re supposed to look out of it before making a right turn at an intersection or pulling away from a curb. But I could barely see anything for all the water drops there. The mirrors were working much better for these purposes.

Two more hours tomorrow.

My name is… My name is…

Tuesday, April 4th, 2006

Slartibartfast.

OK, not really. My name is Peter Hosey. I am 21 (almost 22) years old, and I currently live in Huntington Beach, California. And this is what I look like:

My face.

This is the official curtain drop. If you already knew my real name, this post means that you are now allowed to tell it to others. The secret has ended.

Updates to my profile on Blogger, Digg, various Tracs, and elsewhere to follow.

About my grammar

Friday, March 17th, 2006

Most of you are used to me not capitalizing the first letter of sentences. I’ll still be this way on IRC, at least for a little while longer, but you should get used to seeing me capitalize. I’ve been doing this in the past couple days with my replies to emails sent to the Adium feedback list, and starting today I’ll be doing it with other emails and blog posts too. I’ll be doing it with everything eventually.

You know, I actually used to capitalize when I started on the internet. Guess I got lazy. Funny how things come full circle, huh?

Boring personal stuff

Friday, February 24th, 2006

I got my SSN last week. I got my provisional driving permit yesterday. I’ll go to driving school next week. soon I’ll have my driver license.

once I do that, I’ll:

  1. drop the curtain. I’ll announce my real name and post a photo.
  2. seek a substitute for the high-school diploma I never got. (I was home-schooled.)
  3. look into getting money for my code. first choices are Google and Apple, although I want to find some job that isn’t in California.

farther in the long term, I want to get a university education and settle down somewhere.

How not to retain my business

Thursday, January 5th, 2006

So last night, we had KFC for dinner. We went to a different KFC from the one we usually go to. This didn’t work out so well.

  1. Give me the wrong order

    Part of our order was three crispy strips, chicken only. We got three barbecue strips. Smelled good, but it wasn’t what I ordered.

  2. Give somebody else half their order

    The person who was in line ahead of us ordered two meals—one for him, one for his wife. He got one meal—and an empty plate. How does THAT happen? He complained, and received the second meal that he was owed.

  3. Be apathetic towards customers’ property

    Specifically, their car batteries. I saw that the car next to us had its lights still on. I went in and told them about it. Their response was essentially “So what do you want us to do about it?” I suggested that they could make an announcement or something, but they didn’t seem interested. (Yes, I know I could have made the announcement myself. I thought of this on the way out of the parking lot.)

We shall be going to our usual KFC from now on.