Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

Still sunny

January 30, 2023

In the winter in Seattle, sunny means cold. We need the clouds to hold in the meager heat like a blanket.

But because the sun was out, a walk was mandated. I put the long underwear back on and added my winter boots. They really made a difference, but not sure they would be my choice for a long walk. For today’s 2 shorter walks they were just fine.

This pair of boots were purchased for the 2010 Vancouver Winter Olympics. As it turns out I didn’t need the boots there as it was especially warm. So warm that our standing room tickets to ski-cross were canceled because there was no snow to stand on.

I am a cold person, so bundling up and using blankets is the norm. Carl is a warm person, so he doesn’t pay as much attention to keeping cold at bay.

We have been working on a jigsaw puzzle gifted to us this Christmas. It was a tough one, but last night Carl stayed up and finished.

Note the extra piece off to the right. We both spent time trying to figure out where it went.

The chair by the puzzle table backs up to the fireplace, and more importantly a draft. He woke me up in the middle of the night saying he couldn’t get his feet to warm up. Since he’s rarely cold to the core, he thought he was getting sick. But an added comforter did the trick. And staying away from the fireplace today.

Time for a Walk

January 29, 2023

Two things we had this weekend. 1) Not much planned and 2) Not much rain.

Saturday’s walk was from home to Capital Hill Light Rail station, train back to Roosevelt station, walk home. It was a good walk with both downhill and uphill stretches, but nothing extreme.

Montlake Bridge in the distance
A park pre-populated with vehicles. Our grandson would be smitten if he lived a few thousand miles closer
Really big tree. Carl for scale
Bentley. In the higher end area of Capital Hill
Hood ornament close up
Close up #2, look at the reflection for the “B”

Sunday’s walk was from home, through Wallingford and Fremont, and up to a friend’s new house in Queen Anne. Then lunch at a Thai restaurant and a ride home with another friend.

Today’s walk was downhill and then uphill, but this time the uphill was extreme. 200 feet vertical in 1,000 feet horizontal. And then more vertical, but not quite as steep.

Looking back at the steepest part of the walk. But you can’t really see it because it drops off so quickly.
Shadow of the bridge crossing Wolf Creek ravine. It’s deep. Very hard to get perspective.

When we reached our friends house we were ready to take a break.

The fun part was seeing their new house. It’s still pretty empty, with only a few items moved in, and very little furniture. Notably a chair, bookcase (with books) and a few lamps. Their goal is to initially move only what they are sure they want in the new house, and then take their time adding more pieces that seem to belong. After that exercise, they will decide what to do with the leftovers, including the old house. I was actually excited about the possibilities in the new house, like it was mine.

Both days were brisk. I wore long underwear, but again, no rain. Maybe another short walk tomorrow at lunch, but I don’t think I’ll be hitting the 10,000 step mark.

A Day in the Life

January 25, 2023

No earth shattering news today.

Comments completed and sent out for review.

Costco shopped on the way home from work. We always purchase stuff for the food bank. Other than eggs and peanut butter, most of what we buy is focused on small children and women. Feminine products, diapers and mostly formula. Damn that stuff is expensive!

The only excuse for making a useless thing is that one admires it intensely. All art is quite useless.” —Oscar Wilde, The Picture of Dorian Gray

Carl has a project, or several, through which he shares arcane facts with his baseball buddies. Today’s fact was about George somebody, who once hit a home run on Carl’s birthday, and today was his (George something’s) birthday.

In looking for items of interest to share about George, he found that he was a backup to a player who earned the title, the human fan, while playing in Japan, because his ability to hit the ball deserted him. The player who was the human fan was Gary Thomasson. Not willing to play backup to a human fan, George asked to be traded. But the really fun story follows Thomasson.

A Japanese artist,  Akasegawa Genpei, decided to call objects that are completely useless but still carefully maintained a Thomasson. He had noticed architectural objects that no longer served a purpose, but continued to be maintained. Stairways to nothing. A gate with no fence. Of course, this happened to us at work when somebody stole the fence around one of our sewer lift stations, and only the gate was left.

In order to be a Thomasson, an object must be cared for even though it’s completely pointless. I think I will have to keep my eyes open for a Thomasson.

A Thomasson
A different Thomasson


January 23, 2023

That describes 90 percent of my day. I am just now sitting down to relax. Slightly different than sitting down to work. Luckily, what I couldn’t focus on this weekend I was able to focus on today. To the point where I didn’t want to stop until I finished and could send if off for review and critique. That is commenting on my comments to comments recieved. In truth I have yet to respond to non-agency comments, but hope to get through those in the next day or two.

There was a walk at lunch. Thank you Carl. It was brisk, but sunny. I walked on the sunny side of the streets, adding maybe a degree or two to the feels like temperature.

Looks like a rather skeletal face. In other words, lunch.

Sunday Walk

January 22, 2023

At least part in the park. Green Lake Park to be exact. We walked to the park, and partway around the trail. There was a young busker at one bench site along the trail. He was about 8 by my guess, with a drum set. Music on a boombox that he accompanied. Tow the Line was the selection as we went past. Carl joked that this was how his parents could enjoy a little quiet at home.

We also saw a small raptor in a tree. Maybe a small hawk or kestrel. I did take a picture, but it is not worth sharing.

After a bit more along the lake path we cut back up into a neighborhood. Eventually we passed one of my favorite houses.

And then a newer more modest addition.

For the non-rainyness of the day, we didn’t run into many other neighborhood walkers. Perhaps they were all watching football.

Signs of spring were poking their noses up to test the air. When we finally made it back home, about 7500 steps later, I checked our yard. Low and behold…

Happy Year of the Rabbit

Weather Day

January 21, 2023





Snow, not enough to try packing


January 20, 2023

When I was working on my Master’s thesis, my professor told me it takes at least 7 re-writes to get a good product. That, and to not use the word “that” so much.

I am going through comments to my big project update. In response to requests for clarification of some points I am rereading parts of a chapter. Who decided this was fit to print?!? I understand why they are a bit confused. It looks like it might be at version 4.5. I know what it is trying to say, and can successfully read between the lines, and around the paragraphs. For others it probably appears to be a mind-map just splattered onto the page.

Please do not try to decipher

And then as the day wore on I started questioning the data in the tables in the chapter. Attempting to verify what I should say in the edited version I opened up multiple 2-3 year old databases and spreadsheets and thoroughly tied myself in knots. About to panic I suddenly realized the columns were discreet, not cumulative, and why some of the figures were higher than expected (by me). Like I said, the chapter description really needs some additional information.

A bit after 4 PM my boss stopped in to say he was leaving. He suggested I do the same as I looked intellectually spent.

So I did. Even had to put on my sunglasses, although the sun had dipped behind the Olympic Mountains before I really got headed west.

Time for a little something. The rewrite can wait for the morning.


January 19, 2023

🎶Get me to the work on time 🎶

I got to work just before 8 this morning. I wasn’t late, but right on time. I usually get to work around 7. And to top off my almost lateness, I am working from home today.

The occasion? I read late last night, finishing The Help.

It was a really good read, and I just didn’t want to stop as I neared the end. The events seem like they should be so long ago, but the story is set during my lifetime.

I don’t think I have seen the movie, at least not the entire movie. Perhaps a bit here and there on TV. But now I will look for it. Although this could be one where the book is just better. I feel that way about The Martian, but completely enjoy the movie as well.

Working from home I have been trying to manage without turning the thermostat up to my comfort zone. But I am a cold person, and it’s just a bit difficult.

Blanket and gloves at work

Abstract Thoughts

January 18, 2023

At work, looking at capital budgets for the next 6 years, and realizing that I may not be here to work through some of the projects. Should I feel, “ha-ha, it’s somebody else’s problem”, or, “oh my, I won’t be able to see how it comes together.”

Non-work work event at lunch today. Happy New Year! The lanterns being assembled.

Some people

January 17, 2023

I spent almost all day today working on looking at comments on the big Plan. Answering the comments and in some cases making edits to the Plan. So far the comments have been reasonable and reasoned. And from agencies. One more set of Agency comments and then I get to deal with the non-agency comments. Generally I don’t mind these, but three of the five are written in a manner that is exhausting to decifer. I have to pick through to see if there is a comment, question or request, and then figure out whether to paraphrase or not. It will probably take as long as all of the agency comments put together.

So that was a bit of a rant.

Tomorrow will not be the day I can finish because I have about 1 hour free and the rest is back to back meetings. And lunch. We are finally having our “Holiday ” lunch. It may be tasty, but I am hoping to get a chance to chat with some of our newer folks.

And in the almost exciting category, the W2 has arrived! Let the tax season begin.