Archive for September, 2006

Honeymoon (part 3)

September 29, 2006

I have a lot of ground to cover, so I’ll resort to the ever efficient List of Things:

  • We flew to California and spent 9 days with Evelyn’s family. I got to meet most of the people that knew her before college… 60 people turned up for the open house.
  • I got a chance to meet a former classmate of mine, Alerik, whom I haven’t seen in person for almost 6 years.
  • We visited the La Purisima mission just outside of town via the long walk on the aqueduct trail to get there. Welcome to lizard country! Have I ever mentioned how much I like lizards?
  • Evelyn’s Grandma Frieda had some unusual coins in her change bins… a few Eisenhower dollars, a Franklin half-dollar, quarters from before Washington back to 1897, and a nickel from 1901.
  • Larry showed me his coin collection too. Mostly international stuff (Swiss, Greek, Israeli, French, Mexican, etc.) and wheat pennies from 1909 onward. I got to hold the oldest coin I’ve ever held – a French coin from 1854!
  • We got a sneak preview of the Lompoc Civic Theater’s next production, A Sting in the Tail.
  • 9/11… never forget. This day should be a national day of remembrance.
  • Evelyn bought a bicycle! We’ve done two rides so far, 9 and 13 miles. The Arlington bike trails are fantastic!
  • We finally got a library card for Arlington County. It’s about time!
  • I’ve become obsessed with the Strauss-Howe generational cycle theory. Bottom line… things are going to get worse, then they will get better.
  • Seabiscuit and Big Fish are excellent movies! BTW, I’ve got a collection of movie and book reviews online.
  • Amusing Internet distractions: Line Rider and Anousheh Ansari’s blog

I’d like to send a big Thank You to all of those who came to see us in California, and for those who offered their hospitality. A great trip was made better by your efforts!

Nifty Wikipedia Thing: Stanislav Petrov

Music of the Moment: "Velvet Waltz" by Built to Spill

What I’m Reading: "Frankenstein" by Mary Shelley


Brickfest 2006

September 4, 2006
We went to Brickfest 2006! Sharon wanted to take Avi there, and thought that us engineers would love to come along. There were all kinds of neat things to see there. There were starships, shipwrecks, and sculptures. There were sumo fights. There were claymation-styled Lego films. There lego playrooms for kids to build in.

But the coolest part was the main showroom. There were all kinds of models from castles to spaceports and everything in between. There were working machines, motorized statues, and elaborate group projects. Along the center of the room was a line of world-famous skyscrapers. To the right were the sculptures and sci-fi models. To the left was Brick City and the Great Ball Contraption. Brick City was a sprawling metropolis with several trains, a roundhouse and drawbridge, a maritime terminal and an airport, a rock concert, and many recognizable storefronts. The Great Ball Contraption is a collaborative project, the fruit of over 30 individuals each contributing a module or two of a Goldberg-esque machine whose sole function is to move Lego soccer balls in a circuit. Also nifty was a robot on a turntable that would always orient itself with magnetic north.

Avi loved playing in the Duplo building area. Evelyn was exposed to the vast potential of Legos, which she always considered to be nothing more than static bricks. She also got in a thoughtful discussion about how to make Legos more female-friendly. And I took lots of pictures which can be found in the Brickfest 2006 photo gallery on my site. Enjoy!

I’ve been playing lots of Attack Sub and Give Me the Brain lately. My boss gave me some good feedback about Ferrball’s Mansion that I’ve incorporated into the game. We’ve been watching lots of movies too. I’ve been writing movie reviews of films I’ve seen. And on Friday, we’ll be flying out to California for a week to visit Evelyn’s family and friends.

Nifty Wikipedia Thing: Arizona hurricanes

Music of the Moment: "Protocol" by Gordon Lightfoot

What I’m Reading: "Wahoo" by Richard O’Kane