Yippee! Lauren’s coming home in about an hour. I’ve got to leave and head to the airport as soon as Chip gets out of the shower. She’s in Atlanta right now and her connector should be leaving… well, about now. My basic plan was to get her from the airport, have something to eat and then take a nap until it’s time to go to Savannah Smiles tonight. I figured that would be a fun “group” activity to bring Chip to. I think Sarah might be coming along as well. I’m just glad to have Lauren back.
The couple times we talked on the phone this week she let me know that she had pretty much cemented a good portion of our wedding planning. We’re going to have our wedding at this “historic ranch/villa/complex” place. It’s actually pretty cool so I’ve been told. Complete with separate houses for bride and groom to get ready in on the big day. The best part is that the location does all the setting up, is the site for both the ceremony and the reception, does all the catering, entertainment AND you get the services of their entire staff of coordinators. And, since they’re a family friend of the Arolfo’s (Lauren’s family) we get a great price… or it might have been a good price to begin with and they just happen to be friends… either way, I wasn’t really sure.
So, all that’s left is to get the flowers and the photographer. We plan on meeting with our prospective photographer once next semester begins. Jason, one of my friends from the photo department is the person I’d really like to shoot our wedding. He’s got great black and white skills and I’d have that extra bit of confidence that the photographer wouldn’t mess anything up.
We also have to start registering and also meet with the priest for what was confusingly referred to as “a compatibility test.” I actually took great insult to this “test” until it was explained to me what it actually was. See, when I hear the word “test” I think of something like the SATs. You’re sitting in a small room, filling in little circles with a number 2 pencil and sweating your brains out knowing that if you “fail” this is the end of your existence. This is apparently not what a “compatibility test” is. They should really call it “meeting with the priest to talk about married life” or “getting marriage advice” because calling it a test makes me jumpy. Apparently, and this is a new concept to me, we get to talk to the preacher for a few hours and talk about things like joint bank accounts, how many kids we want, what conflicts might arise when we’re married, things like that. That I can see making more sense than a paper and pencil quiz. I have to admit that Lauren and I have already talked a great deal about things sticky issues like those and I feel confident that we’re mature enough to be married. I guess the talks are more for people who are going into it a little hastily, or at least that’s what I’d assume. It also dawned on me that it’s probably a final seal of approval, from god or the representative from god, in this case the priest, kind of a “if you think you’re ready, we want to be sure you’re ready before we let you commit to something like this” and in the eyes of the church and god, marriage is a huge deal. So they just want to be sure you’re ready and they want to see that you’re ready before they give the “all clear”. I feel better about it after thinking about it for a while. I guess my initial resistance was to the phrasing more than the meeting itself. Lauren reassured me that it was nothing to fear and more of a formality than anything else. She also mentioned that it’s lucky we’re not catholic because apparently they have to go through at least a month a marriage counseling and marriage classes before the church gives the thumbs up.
Anyway, so, we’re pretty much close be being done the planning phase. Now it’s getting close to the actual execution of the plan. We have to register, pick out party favors, get the invitations done, things like that. I hope I can be a help at some point. It’s common opinion that the groom is more or less useless through most of this and I’m starting to feel that way. Not that I’m being made to feel this way, it’s just that I don’t know anything about anything. If I knew what kind of cake to look for I’m sure I could help there, or if I knew what kind of parchment paper goes best with a particular style of envelope I’m sure I could be of some small help. I don’t, so I feel more of less useless.
Well, I’ve successfully typed until it was time to leave for the airport. I’m going to go pick up Lauren now. Tonight we’ll be having some fun at the piano bar, tomorrow Chip is leaving and Monday we start classes again. Wow, things are wrapping up fast. Hold on, ’cause here we go…
Well, last night was interesting. We had let the computer format itself while we were in Hilton Head and even that crashed. So, it was time for some drastic measures. We started ripping hardware out until we were down to nothing but the motherboard, CPU and RAM. That crashed. At that point we figure it was probably bad RAM and started swapping out sticks. I had 2 sticks of Crucial and 1 stick of Kingston and at this point the stick of Kingston seems to be the stable one. I got the two sticks of Crucial confused and so I’m not sure which one is the problem anymore. We’ve gotten 90% of the way into the reinstall and have device drivers, service pack one and some random updates. At this point I’ve done a SiSandra “burn in” test and it seems to be stable. I’m going to give it a little time before I start reinstalling software.
As I mentioned before, we had gone to Hilton Head yesterday. Before that however, Chip and I went bowling with Nagle and a few of his RA friends. After bowling we picked up Sara and headed North to the island. No one really wanted to go and had no real opinion as to where they wanted to go. All I knew was that I wanted to eat at Fudruckers, a tasty burger joint. After we got there and ate we headed quickly to Old Navy because I needed a pair of pants. I only have 2 pairs of jeans at any given time and one of those pairs is getting “thin” and is probably going to blow out a knee or rip sometime soon.
So, fixing computers has taken up most of yesterday and this morning. The puppy is also back. Melissa has more or less decided to keep it but she couldn’t take care of it today so it’s hold’up in Jason’s room in an attempt to keep it, well, away from me. Not that I dislike puppies in any way, it’s just that they make me sneeze. So, yah, the puppy is here.
Oh, and we’re also at war. Incase you have been living in a cave for the past day or so, we’ve started bombing shit. Not really much of a surprise but it’s disconcerting none-the-less.
Oh, and if all this isn’t enough to stress me out today, there’s a Tornado warning for Chatam and surrounding counties. Apparently there’s a big spinning cloud of death headed this way. Fun!
Actually, the sky just got real dark and the thunder is getting closer so it’s probably time to shut down these computers for a little while.
Yes… it’s 3:30am. I’m still awake. I’m quickly copying files from my computer which is on its death bed. It’s gone from “crashing randomly” to “blue screen of death on every boot.” It’s pretty ugly. Chip and I have been looking up the “Stop: Error” numbers that it’s been giving us and all of them make reference to horrific driver problems. Unfortunatly none of them mention which drivers or even what type of drivers might be to blame. We’ve uninstalled and reinstalled everything we can think of and nothing has helped. At the moment I’m blaming Age of Mythology. Ever since I installed it I’ve been having problems and if I remember correctly, it required a reboot when it was installed, indicating to me that it installed some sort of driver. A driver which more than likely has been left in the system folder after I uninstalled the game. I can’t think of anything else I’ve installed in the past 3 days that even remotely used or changed drivers. So… it leaves me with only one option: reinstalling EVERYTHING. This doesn’t exactly come at the best time. At the height of spring break gaming goodness my computer decides to pull this shit. I’m not very pleased. I’m backing up everything I can but memory dumps and bluescreens are popping up every few minutes. I’ve also transfered things over to my older system, mostly my mp3 collection. Tomorrow I’ll wipe the drive and then reinstall. I suppose I should get some sleep now. It is 3:30am… and I’m very tired… of all this.
A most interesting day around the ranch. We started with a little cold leftover pizza and some video games. Followed up by a “tour” of downtown. I’m not very good at giving tours and I don’t know much about the historic parts of Savannah so I’m sure it was pretty boring for Chip. Most of the tour consisted of “this is that place that I did that thing that time.” Oh well. Afterwords we wondered over to B&N so I could pick up the new PDN and see if there was a new book to catch my fancy. I’ve been looking for something new to read for quite some time. I picked up “The Summer of ’49” which retells the tale of the 1949 baseball season which was essentially the Yanks vs. the Sox. After that we went over to Best Buy so that I could get one of those wrist support things since I’ve been developing carpal tunnel (sp?). From there we came back to the apartment and tried to diagnose some serious problems with my computer. It’s been locking up and restarting without warning since yesterday. We’ve calmed it down with a few (bios, MB, video card and windows) updates. I’ve also unplugged a few USB devices because one of the alleged fixes (as mentioned in the Microsoft knowledge base) could be that there isn’t enough USB bandwidth and devices need to be removed. I’m down to the keyboard, mouse and printer and things seem to be going ok.
After all that, things got a little interesting. I heard a kid crying outside and went to investigate and found a little kid cowering on Jason’s car afraid to get down. I got Jason and we went outside to see what was going on. The child was apparently afraid of a puppy. Yes, a puppy. It was wondering around down by Lauren’s apartment and was just sitting there minding it’s own business. Jason took hold of the puppy so that the kid could run away in safety. So, now we were holding onto a puppy. We decided we’d go to the rental office to see if it was anyone’s because it was neutered and looked well kept and well behaved but had no collar on it. The rental office had no idea who’s dog it was and suggested we visit Animal Control and the Humane Society. So, that’s where we went. The entire time the puppy didn’t make a sound and was generally pleasant and playful. It’s a shame I’m allergic to dogs, otherwise this would have made the perfect pet. We got to the animal shelter around 5:30 and found out it had closed at 4:30. Luckily the humane society next door was open until 6. Problem is that they don’t take stays. The Animal shelter takes them, checks them out and then turns them over for adoption. So we’re stuck with this dog for the moment. Jason called Melissa when we got back and she’s going to take it for the night so that’s good. They’re actually at the store right now buying it food or something. I feel really bad for the dog, it’s far to well behaved not to be someone’s pet and if I wasn’t allergic to it I’d almost suggest that it be our pet, but that’s couldn’t happen. We did manage to take some pictures however. These are a few from Chip’s camera and I’ll get Jason’s off his camera later. I’m sure Chip has posted about this as well. He suggested that I use “trackback” to link to him but I prefer the old fashion way myself.
That’s about it for excitement around here. Computers crashing and being fixed, new books and stray puppies. What more could you ask for in an afternoon?
Well, not so much a “lounge” per-say since that would involve a smoking section and a liquor license, but we certainly are sitting around playing video games. We’ve decided to try a little bit of everything and see what catches our fancy. So far Freelancer has been a big hit with Chip, leaving him addicted until 8am the other day. As a group, Guilty Gear X (for the PC) also seems to be holding our attention. Need for Speed also got a little play. Both Age of Mythology (while enjoyable as a single player experience) and IceWin Dale failed to cut it. IWD is quite possibly one of the worst games I’ve seen in a while. If you know anyone who was “addicted” to that… hit them with a stick and tell them “no, bad gamer.” We’ve still got a few left to try but I feel like taking a bit of a gaming break today to work on either some wallpaper or a new website design. Both would have similar inspiration. I think a wallpaper might be the answer since it brings a bit more instant gratification to the table. I’m also going to create a new mix for Chip for his drive home. He said he listened to my old mixes on the way down.
On the opposite end of the spectrum, today is St. Patrick’s Day and here in Savannah, the capital of St.Patrick’s stupidity, it’s raining. When I woke up this morning I did a little happy dance because I know that all of the drinkers will have to be wet and miserable and it’s their own damn fault. I’m not exactly a fan of this holiday. While it’s fine for average joe-frat-boy, the art community as well as the local people seem to dislike green beer as much as I do. There are of course a few cross-over groups. The art school athletic teams I would assume would be partaking in the festivities, the stupid people would be there as well, the freshmen since they don’t know any better, groups like that. Don’t get me wrong, I like drinking, but only in complete control and moderation. If I go out for Mexican I might have a margarita. If I go out for “drinks” I’d have a Jack & Coke and that would be it. I don’t see the need to go out, get drunk, puke and fall asleep naked on a park bench. While this seems to be a regular occurrence (not sure about that park bench) in college, I’ve some how avoided the bug. I thought for a long time that it was maturity based but I could never be sure. It’s the weirdest feeling to be playing a video game, acting like a 12 year old, only to start thinking about what it was like “back in the day” and how you’re getting old. It messes with your mind… and requires another Mt.Dew.
Anyway, that’s about it. Chip and Jason are still asleep so I think I’ll tinker with Photoshop for a while. Later.