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From the Horse's Mouth Below are the 10 most recent journal entries recorded in the "murakozi" journal:

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October 22nd, 2014
02:25 pm


IKEA and Halloween
IKEA in Singapore got a little clever with their Halloween commercial

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July 31st, 2014
01:50 pm


Being responsible sucks
It's been 7 years since my last cat, Katie, died.  It's only been in the past year or so that I've been able to consider adopting another cat.  Even then, I kind of figured that if I was meant to have another one, one would end up dropped in my lap in need of help.  That's how I got 2 of the 3 cats I've had in the past.  They were strays who needed help.

Back on Tuesday, I swung by the pet store for some fish food before going to the grocery.  When checking out, I noticed one of the staff over by the adoption kennel things they put in last year.  Those've been empty whenever I was a the store during the past few months.  Perhaps foolishly, I went over to see the new arrivals.  The upper level had two brothers who were less than a year old.  Cute lil guys.  The lower level had a single young adult female black cat.  She was quite affectionate and seemed content to cheekrub forever against any fingers one'd stick through the holes in the plexiglass.  I talked to the woman there who said they'd rescued the cat from a beach a couple days before hurricane Arthur came up the coast.  Her name is Sandy, which is kind of weird for a black cat, but fits in with being found on a beach.  She's somewhere around 2 years old, laid back, loves to play with toys both by herself and with humans, and likes to cuddle in with folks.  They say she doesn't seem to mind being alone but does like being around people.  The woman did say she can be a bit talky at times.

I was seriously considering arranging to spend some time with her in one of the rooms they have for that purpose and even was persuaded to leave with an application.  Of course, I had to figure out costs and think about other aspects of having a cat again, which is where the responsible side of me had to open its big mouth and point out reasons not to go any further.  There'd be the up-front cost of supplies and such since I no longer have anything of Katie's aside from some of her favorite toys and a ceramic water dish.  Then there'd be the $95 adoption fee, and a pet deposit for the apartment, and on top of that monthly pet rent.  That was $15 when Katie was still alive.  I think it's up to $25/month now.  Of course, there'd also be vet bills and recurring costs for food and litter and stuff.  Normally, I could probably budget for that and make the other lifestyle adjustments that a new kitty would entail, but...

There's a chance that the sale of the company I work for will happen around the end of September.  That could mean drastic changes and I could even get laid off.  Definitely not a good time to have the added expenses of a new pet. Thinking about it for a couple days, the responsible thing to do is to not pursue things any further.  She seems like the kind of cat who'll get adopted pretty quickly, and odds are by someone with whom she'd be better off than she would be with me.  I guess it's best to go back to the view that if I'm destined to have a cat, the world will drop one in my lap.

Being responsible and doing the right thing can really suck sometimes.

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July 24th, 2014
10:31 am


Pamplona has the Running of the Bulls

Herndon has the Walking of the Geese

This isn't the first time I've seen a large group of geese walking through the parking lot outside work.  Now and then I spot them going to or from a pond by the hotel that's attached to the office building.

I didn't have much time to get a picture of 'em when they were all in view, hence the annoying reflections of stuff on the windowsill of a coworker's office.   As they went further down the lot (and out of camera range) the birds formed into a proper straight line.

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June 10th, 2014
04:19 pm


There comes a time when one needs to seriously rethink everything.

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August 23rd, 2013
09:29 am


It's kind of annoying, but I can't listen to the first movement of Beethoven's Symphony #6 without thinking of the 'going home' scene from the movie Soylent Green.  Instead of the  intended peaceful and happy mood it's supposed to reflect, it evokes something a little more sad. 

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March 19th, 2013
09:15 am


Products nobody needs
Last night I was talking to a couple friends online about the people who live in 'tv commercial land.'  These are the fictitious people you see in commercials who seem to have an insane amount of trouble doing normal, everyday tasks such as cooking pancakes, eating during a blackout, cleaning their ears, or pouring milk over cereal.  I pointed out that, since I can do all these things without any real difficulty, I'd be like a god in TV Commercial Land.  "Bow down to me as I prepare waffles without coating the entire kitchen in batter!"

Anyway, this morning I came across a link to this commercial, which I think wins the gold medal for the stupidest product to date:

A machine that slowly poops out eggs on a stick.  I don't know how they can top this one.

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March 1st, 2013
10:50 am


It's no secret that I'm a fan of a lot of silly, older movies.  For years, I've been looking for an mp3 version of a phone that was used in Our man Flint and its sequel, In Like Flint.  A slightly different version of it was used as an homage in the Austin Powers films.  I never found one and would always procrastinate when it came to figuring out how to snag the sound from one of the movies myself.  Something got me thinking of the films again recently and I started poking around online.  This time, I found what I was looking for.  Yay internet.

So, at least for now, this is the ringtone on my cell:

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February 28th, 2013
09:22 am


Right now, my company has the entire 5th floor of the building we're in.  Since there are a lot fewer people than there used to be, the plan is to move all of us in the north half down into the south half, thus saving a chunk of money.  It almost seems backwards that this means moving a bunch of people from the south to the north for a while, but that allows some crews to rearrange walls n such down there.

So the cleaning out of empty offices around mine continues at a heightened pace.  Now and then, someone will poke their head into my office and ask if I know what something they found is.  Yesterday, it was this:

Considering its age, I wonder whether that thing was running a 5.25" or a 12" drive.  It probably cost a fortune 30 years ago.  Length and height-wise, the thing is bigger than a lot of high end video cards are nowadays.

Like a lot of the ancient stuff being found, the controller is probably headed for the dumpster.  I doubt that even the electronics recycling company we use sometimes would want the thing.

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February 15th, 2013
01:55 pm


Trying to get some gov-related stuff straightened out at work today.  Gotta do X to get access to Y, but can't do X unless Y is already approved, but Y can't be approved without X....

So yeah, I find myself identifying with Darwin in this clip:

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January 29th, 2013
03:07 pm


What the heck is it?
An admin assistant at work was cleaning out one of the unused offices today.  Nobody had been using the office for a number of years and it had kind of become a dumping ground for furniture and stuff that people didn't want in their offices any more.  It's not too uncommon to come across some unusual items when cleaning such rooms out.

In this case, the admin found a camera.  Since the room in question is a couple doors down from my office, she asked me to come look at it.   Turns out it's sort of an old Kodak DCS200, which is a digital camera from the early/mid 90s that Kodak made by slapping a digital back onto a regular Nikon film camera body.  I say 'sort of' because in addition to the lens on the body, there's also a second, much larger one mounted beneath it.

Anyone got any idea what this huge secondary lens is?

Sorry about the image quality.  Between the light from the window and the ones in the office, my phone's crappy camera wasn't producing any really good shots

The thing has what are obviously data and power connectors on it as well as a calibration knob and rocker switches labeled Power and Data.  I'm half tempted to hook up the power supplies in the case and see if the thing turns on.

EDIT:  I originally thought the view through the viewfinder was a composite image from both lenses.  Looking again, it's only a view through the lens on the camera body.  My bad for not actually manually focusing the thing the first time I looked through it. 

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