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Below are the 20 most recent journal entries recorded in whelpdog's LiveJournal:

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Tuesday, March 24th, 2009
9:41 pm
things I am forswearing:
1) cigarettes

2) library DVD's

Number one is for all the usual reasons, plus I'm tying it in with my renewed job hunt, as I believe/hope that capacity for change in one area carries over to others. Giving myself a more realistic goal, I have declared the period from March 20-April 20 entirely tobacco-free; beyond that maaaaaaybe bumming one is ok*.

I'm actually doing quite fine wrt cravings; I have distracted myself with all the crap I've been ignoring during the day, then watching TV & movies at night.

About the movies, though: Christ Almighty, people have no respect for electronic media these days. Borrowing a library DVD is just a recipe for disappointment and frustration. Got 10 minutes into There Will Be Blood before the first epic fail, then a whole hour into The Golden Compass before it all went to shit.

God dammit, I need a smoke.


Just kidding, folks; sugar's doing me just dandy.

*wrt bumming, see next entry
Thursday, March 20th, 2008
5:08 pm
Laptop recommendations?
So, there's major changes in my work life happening, and one of them requires that I write much, much more.  My desktop at home is a piece of crap, and I need to be able to write outside of my house (it's cold, dark, and too easy to slack.)  Plus, I am planning to travel around the country for a bit, and would like to retain access to the cybernet.

Capabilities I need:
-word processing
-music/movie management (disc burning is nice too)
-light photo manipulation (croppping/resizing etc)

The basics, basically.

I'd like something good for travel (balance the weight/durability), with a full keyboard/screen, and which hopefully won't break in a year (or has a decent coverage plan)

I'd be willing to make the switch to a Mac (plus I have some hookups for discounts).

Anyone have any specific recommendations/deals to look out for?  Failing that, pointing me to a trustworthy review site would be helpful.
Friday, January 25th, 2008
1:27 pm
Fancy dress party time
Anyone going to the Edwardian World's Fair(e) tonight? 

I'm going to rock it so hard that the kids at the Edwardian Ball are gonna need steam-powered stilts to climb over the bar I set.
Friday, January 18th, 2008
12:36 pm
The agenda for the weekend:
-Pack furiously when I get home
-See Dr Katz live (with Maria Bamford, Bob Oedenkirk, and Brian Posehn!)
-Catch some of Chicken John's circus show at 12 Galaxies
-Drive in the middle of the night to a house in Grass Valley for the weekend
-Chillax for 3 days
-Return to the world.

Things have been relatively hectic for the last 2 months or so (I could complain about specifics, but that would just piss me off again), and I really need this retreat.  Spending the 3-day weekend with a special friend won't be too bad either :)
Tuesday, January 15th, 2008
9:40 am
Goodbye, Thursdays
I've been asked to take over the organization of the cooking classes taught at my cafe. Overall, this is a great thing: a little more prestige, some variety in my workweek, an experience for future projects (such as the cooking show I'm making with Roland and Cubes).

The downside: I'll be getting back rather late on Thursday evenings from now on.  Meaning I'm going to miss out on next week's Will Franken show at the Eureka Theater (part of the SF Sketchfest).  Anyone want a pair of tickets?
Monday, January 7th, 2008
3:21 pm
Some things to keep in mind for bedroom decoration
-The thicker variety of candles is prone to having their sides collapse after burning too long.

-Memory Foam is rather flammable.

-You will regret using beer to douse flames, even if it was the closest available liquid.
Wednesday, December 26th, 2007
7:30 am
Holiday notes

My parent's place is certainly familiar, but I would no longer refer to it (or New Jersey in general) as "home".

Most older and younger people cannot handle the level of garlic and chiles I like to use in broccoli rabe.

Do not ever buy pre-cut fruit salads, unless you are a fan of half-rotted fruit and wasted money.

You can get some pretty decent fried calamari with a shallow-fry, rather than the full-on bucket of hot oil.

Snoring may be passed down from father to sons.  Try not to sleep in the same bedroom.

You can make a pretty decent French Toast/bread pudding with stale bagels.  The sesame kind especially.  Custard proportions: 6 eggs, 6 egg yolks, 6 cups half & half.

When you have purple hair at Christmas mass, people will reserve their scornful stares for when you are not looking.  (And nieces are a good second set of eyes.)

When you really want something for Christmas, it's best to just tell your buyer directly what you want (and show them the best places to buy it).  Woot new Elph camera!

I bought a lot of really shitty comic books in the 90's.  At least I managed to escape puberty; I wonder if Rob Liefeld or Todd McFarlane ever did.

Wednesday, November 14th, 2007
2:55 pm
Barack Attack
Obama's having a "Fireside Chat" at Google in half of an hour, approximately 50 yards from my desk. 

Even if I had the time to go see him, being in the same room would be impossible: there's about 500 Googlers waiting in line to get in the auditorium, with more coming.

Guess I'll just have to watch the video tomorrow *sigh*

On the upside, Tracey and I are seeing Of Montreal and Grand Buffet at the Great American tonight.  Rock on.
Thursday, November 8th, 2007
9:41 am
I'm spoiled, part XX
Corned beef hash is excellent when it's made from real corned beef, and not dog food.
Monday, October 22nd, 2007
2:36 pm
Do you remember Matchbox 20?
Apparently someone does; they're appearing at Google today at 5 for a chat and acoustic set.

I do not plan on sticking around for this.
Sunday, October 14th, 2007
3:09 pm
Cover your balls, 'cause we swing Kung Fu
I'm really getting into TV On the Radio. 

It's yet another band that I didn't like at first, but suddenly clicked for me (much like Radiohead, The Dismemberment Plan, Decemberists, ...)
Friday, October 5th, 2007
12:24 pm
Calling all fans of good comedy
Will Franken is moving to New York City.  Tonight will be his last show in SF for a while.  He's playing at the Purple Onion, and I'm catching his 8 PM show.

I cannot recommend his act highly enough.  He's like a one-man Mr. Show/Kids in the Hall/Monty Python.  Go listen to one of his podcasts for an idea.
Thursday, October 4th, 2007
2:04 pm
I got a call last night
"Is this Mister Michael Whelpley?"

Who calls me Mister?  Is it a telemarketer?  Wait, that's a 609 area code; must be Princeton.

"Yes, it is indeed."

"My name is  ___, and I'm a freshman at Princeton University, and I'm calling to - "

"Oh yes, I hope you're making good use of my donation to the Annual Giving Campaign from last year."

I gave them 22 cents.  He knows this, as the cold-callers have a list of your donations over the years.

"Umm, yes, and -"

"- and I'll be quite happy to donate less than a dollar to Princeton this year.  Have a wonderful evening, sir."

"Uh, you too."

12:28 pm
Arms! Noodles!
The gym at work was offering free personal training sessions this week, so I signed up for one yesterday.  It's been a long, long while (6 months?) since I've used any sort of weights or exercise equipment, and now my body is one big mess of stiffness and hurt.  Mostly in the arms. 

Despite this, I'm feeling great.  With this and the yoga class I started on Tuesday, I'm feeling more powerful, more alive.  I think I'll be ready to start capoeira in a few weeks at this pace.

Unrelated musings:

-Picked up the album "No Shouts, No Calls" by Electrelane.  Heartbreaking and beautiful; and I can't stop listening to it.

-The new season of "Avatar: The Last Airbender" is solid gold.  Fuck all the haters.

-Ditto, wrt "It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia"
Sunday, September 30th, 2007
9:05 pm
A bit of unwelcome nostalgia
I've finally had to bring work home.  I'm still on hourly pay, but I promised that I'd get this cafe newsletter ready for publishing by tomorrow morning.  It's pretty much a fluff rag that nobody reads, but if it has my name on it, and I want it to be somewhat decent.

It's really not that much I have to do:
-write 8 paragraphs on our new daycare center (it's actually very impressive)
-explain Biodynamic gardening in 3 paragraphs
-reprint a recipe for a vegan Mexican Chocolate Coconut Ice "Cream" (protip: heavy coconut milk makes tasty vegan desserts)
-lay it all out on an MS Word template

None of this is very difficult, but I need to be in a proper state of mind to nail it down.  Folsom was great, but it's not helping here.

SO, it's back to the hs/college tradition of ingesting massive amounts of caffeine until inspiration and desperation collide at 3 PM. 

Might as well match some cartoons before that.
Tuesday, September 25th, 2007
12:35 pm
Choices, choices
Like any major city, the Bay area give a large number of options for weekend entertainment.  Usually, the choices are pretty clear to me, but right now I'm at an impasse:

On Saturday, October 6th, there is:

-the Hardly Strictly Bluegrass Festival

-Battle Fucking Royale

What to do, what to do?
Monday, September 17th, 2007
4:53 pm
The Treasure Island Music Festival yesterday was just about perfect.  I headed over with Andy, Vanessa, and Roland on the surprisingly efficient shuttle service, we set up our homebase in a spot with a reasonable view of the stage, declared the sovereignty of Ro-Land, and saw some damn good music.

Built to Spill played a solid set in the late afternoon; Spoon provided the perfect soundtrack for the transition from night to day; Modest Mouse rocked a damn solid set in the evening.  I still regret leaving before the inevitable encore.

The best part was that I scored the tickets for free, thanks to a contest on sfstation.com .  I still won't bother using your site, but that was nice.
Sunday, September 16th, 2007
1:22 pm
Booty Island
I'm off to the Treasure Island music festival; give me a ring if you're going to be there.  Vanessa, Andy, & co. will be setting up a home village of sorts.
Wednesday, September 12th, 2007
8:48 am
I knew it had to happen eventually
We're getting napping pods.

 I can almost guarantee that kitchen employees will be banned from using them.  I guess I'll have to keep finding empty conference rooms.
Saturday, September 8th, 2007
12:45 am
It's been a while since I've done this ...
                       Posting drunk from the DNA Lounge.  It's been quite a while since i've been hereabouts.
PS: If you just got out of the Underworld concert, call me: 415-680-5629           
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