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Old 06-10-2011, 10:39 PM   #7801
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This lovely Friday evening I'm being actively and severly tortured.

Agreed to keep the 5 year old twin nephews in exchange for a weekend of their mom dog sitting.

I got the short end of the deal...they've been talking non-stop for almost 3 hours now at a decibel level I didn't think possible...and they're playing Kinect video games to boot so there is some extra screaming thrown in for good measure.

My blessed husband is now supervising cause I just couldn't take it any more.

THANK GOODNESS WE DIDN'T HAVE KIDS...I'd be a raving lunatic!
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Old 06-11-2011, 12:08 AM   #7802
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Our local investor's group had our monthly lunch today, and I was standing between: (1) a 64-year-old entrepreneur, the good friend who's tried to kill me twice by inviting me to hike Haleakala Crater with him, and (2) a 63-year-old architect I just met today. He rotates his time among Hawaii, Japan, and two other Mainland homes.

Two years ago my friend told me he can't imagine why I would not want to work on a challenge like starting a business. So from that moment on I said nothing about the book until today when I gave him a complimentary copy. He was gratifyingly surprised.

Then we chatted with the second guy:
(2): "So, what do you do?"
Me: "I'm a retired Navy submariner."
(2): "But what are you doing now?"
Me: "Well, I'm really retired, so I do a lot of surfing and learning about investing. I enjoy not working."
(2) (Wait for it!): "But... but... but you're too young to be retired!!"
Me: "I'm 50 years old, and I want to retire while I'm young enough to enjoy it! Retirement is wasted on the old!! I have to admit, though, that if I was an architect I'd have no reason to ever retire."
(2): "Only if you can actually get someone to give you work to do..."

So he would be happy if I was unhappily working, and he's happy that he's not retired but unhappy that he's not working.

I'm glad that I'm happily retired...
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Old 06-11-2011, 05:35 AM   #7803
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I've been getting calls/emails for 2 days about the roof drain clog/major leak/ceiling collapse that happened at my office on Thurs am. The last call was "come in and get everything out of your office". So I spent the day hauling 2 pickup truck loads of recyclable paper and one dumpster full of debris from my office. Not near the disaster fighting that Grasshopper is going through, but it was still raining through my ceiling as I took the last of 30 years worth of work/personal stuff from my office. It feels great to be one step closer to full RE.
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Old 06-11-2011, 07:04 AM   #7804
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Weren't you guys freezing in the miserable winter weather just a few weeks ago?

I don't see how the mosquitoes find the time to grow so big...
Yes, we have been been riding a roller coaster of temperatures and humidity levels.

As far as the mosquitoes - they have the evolved the ability to take advantage of a tiny slice of favorable weather and turn it into a massive breeding opportunity. Which is basically why birds migrate here to breed - huge waves of bug hatchings.

The poison ivy is doing especially well this year, too, thank you.
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Old 06-11-2011, 08:35 AM   #7805
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I've been down with pneumonia for the past week, and probably much of the next one, so I've had time to wander around the interwebs a bit more than usual.

For those looking for something to do, here's a great list of events:
Travel Picks: Top 10 wacky U.S. summer events - Yahoo! News

Some of them actually could be worthwhile. I attended the Gilroy Garlic Festival in 1983, and had a great time. (Mmmm... garlic ice cream)

But my personal favorite from this list is:
Quote:
Summer Redneck Games: July 9, East Dublin, Georgia
Travelers can get down and dirty in Dublin for this one-day event, which draws crowds of over 5,000 attendees each year. For those that don't find bobbin' for pig's feet appetizing, visitors can also participate in the hubcap hurl, mud-pit belly flop contest, or even test their talent for tossing toilet seats in a round of "Redneck Horseshoes." Winners in each event will receive a glistening, half-crushed, mounted beer can. Admission is $5 and free for children under seven
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Old 06-11-2011, 09:32 AM   #7806
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I had a three-hour gig last night, and my back feels OK today.



I had my roadies to do the driving and carry my special chair (Lena in the middle):



You can see the basic posture problem here. I am "stretch-sitting" on my special chair, but I can't seem to help the rolled back and forward neck.



Today I am starting on my effort to play without a backrest, on a normal piano bench.
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Old 06-11-2011, 11:20 AM   #7807
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I had a three-hour gig last night, and my back feels OK today.
I'm glad that you are doing better.
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Old 06-11-2011, 11:39 AM   #7808
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Al, great to see you getting about.

How about trying the Ray Charles or Stevie Wonder routine, toss the music sheets, look up at the world. Hey it is worth a try.
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Old 06-11-2011, 12:36 PM   #7809
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Yes, we have been been riding a roller coaster of temperatures and humidity levels.
As far as the mosquitoes - they have the evolved the ability to take advantage of a tiny slice of favorable weather and turn it into a massive breeding opportunity. Which is basically why birds migrate here to breed - huge waves of bug hatchings.
The poison ivy is doing especially well this year, too, thank you.
Somewhere between you and REW's "Texas Defamation League" there has to be a nice place to live. I'm thinkin' it's probably not Oklahoma or Nebraska, either...

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Originally Posted by TromboneAl View Post
Today I am starting on my effort to play without a backrest, on a normal piano bench.
Dumb question, but what are you looking at?

If you played the keyboard like Ray Charles or Stevie Wonder, would you be able to sit up straight without the neck hunch while you looked around the room at all the hot jazz chicks? 'Cause that's what the bass player and even the drummer seem to be doing!
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Old 06-11-2011, 12:46 PM   #7810
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Back from Guatemala...

Just a few lines about what we saw this time around.

We set up another clinic in one of the poorest parts of Guatemala. Three clinicians (including myself) saw a few hundred patients over 10 days. Many of them were children.

Patients waited to see us, in the cold, outside the clinic from 5am.

The poverty there is extreme, and hygiene non existent.

Some people, including children, eat grass in the fields (it is the rainy season now, which helps).

Many young girls are pregnant, and many of them will die while walking to the only regional hospital because they do not arrive on time for a C section. It is really tragic.

Words are failing me, I am so sorry.

It will take me a few days to get back to normal.

Take care everyone.
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Old 06-11-2011, 02:26 PM   #7811
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Back from Guatemala...............
Thanks for your work and for providing a window into another world.
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Old 06-11-2011, 04:45 PM   #7812
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nords

Dumb question, but what are you looking at?

If you played the keyboard like Ray Charles or Stevie Wonder, would you be able to sit up straight without the neck hunch while you looked around the room at all the hot jazz chicks? 'Cause that's what the bass player and even the drummer seem to be doing!
Like the drummer could read music! Ha.

I'm looking at my hands. I'm just not good enough to not look consistently. It's one thing I work on, but it has a lower priority than other things.
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Old 06-11-2011, 09:50 PM   #7813
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I'm looking at my hands. I'm just not good enough to not look consistently. It's one thing I work on, but it has a lower priority than other things.
Computer keyboards have bumps on the "home keys" to help you find your way without looking. (I spend 2-4 hours every morning typing in the dark.) I wonder why music keyboards aren't designed with something similar.

I guess another option would be a lower bench/stool. But then your elbows & wrists would be at the wrong angle. And I don't suppose there are ergonomic music keyboards like the specially-designed ergonomic computer keyboards.
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Old 06-11-2011, 10:41 PM   #7814
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nords
Computer keyboards have bumps on the "home keys" to help you find your way without looking. (I spend 2-4 hours every morning typing in the dark.) I wonder why music keyboards aren't designed with something similar.

I guess another option would be a lower bench/stool. But then your elbows & wrists would be at the wrong angle. And I don't suppose there are ergonomic music keyboards like the specially-designed ergonomic computer keyboards.
Well, it would have to be different. The keyboard is 4 feet wide, and you often need to pick up your hand and move it several feet then bring it down within .5 inch of the proper location. And you have to do it at the right time, and often with several notes at the same time. It can be done but not by me.
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Old 06-12-2011, 12:32 AM   #7815
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We spent a little time this afternoon at the home show.

Oahu's construction/decorating businesses put on two shows a year-- one by the BIA and "this one". This show was only interesting for its lack of participants, hence the "little" time. For example a half-dozen photovoltaic companies showed up, but another half-dozen were missing-- and nobody was showing a solar water system.

There weren't as many contractors, and I don't remember any lenders. Nobody from the state agencies that oversee contracting & building. No talks on "build it right" or "how to finance".

At least a quarter of the space was taken up by hot-tub companies, massage-chair companies, and a host of holistic crystal/magnet entrepreneurs. Not quite what we had in mind for re-roofing the family room.

The BIA will host their home show in August. It'll be interesting to see the difference.

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Well, it would have to be different. The keyboard is 4 feet wide, and you often need to pick up your hand and move it several feet then bring it down within .5 inch of the proper location. And you have to do it at the right time, and often with several notes at the same time. It can be done but not by me.
Sounds like a fascinating problem in human-factors controls design. I know music keyboards have changed tremendously over the last century but it seems you still have no tactile cues to put your fingers in the right place. Heck, your trombone slide probably had more tactile cues.

You'd think hand placement would be a function of practice time but, yikes, it seems like you spend a lot of time on the keyboard already. How much more time would you want to practice for that skill?

How do other musicians (like your piano teacher or other performers) avoid crushing their vertebrae while keeping an eye on their fingers?
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Old 06-12-2011, 10:48 AM   #7816
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I've found some really good info on fixing the forward head problem, basically stretching chest muscles and strengthening neck muscles. I'm optimistic.

As for designing a better keyboard, it's a tough problem.
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Old 06-12-2011, 06:43 PM   #7817
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DW wants the downstairs bath redone, so today was spent getting tile, tiling supplies, paint, fixtures, and related odds and ends (rubber gloves, ibuprofin, etc). Ready for demolition...

The bath is pretty much untouched (except for cleaning...) from it's contractor-grade origins 25 years ago. This was the 'kids bath' most of that time.
I did the demolition and cleaning yesterday. Today I painted, and set the tile. Some 3,888 little tiles. (Don't tell DW that they came in big sheets. )

I'm about to check the meds for correct temperature. Tomorrow is grout & plumbing day.
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Old 06-12-2011, 07:12 PM   #7818
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I did the demolition and cleaning yesterday. Today I painted, and set the tile. Some 3,888 little tiles. (Don't tell DW that they came in big sheets. )

I'm about to check the meds for correct temperature. Tomorrow is grout & plumbing day.
I love ceramic tile. It is not that hard to do and is so beautiful and long lasting. I tend to super analyze the job before I begin to make sure all the tiles will be square and there will be no slivers at the ends. When I see a tile job with narrow slivers or worse, very wide grout, it makes me sick.
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Old 06-12-2011, 08:49 PM   #7819
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Worked on socializing my recent batch of super shy foster kittens. I've had them a week and have made very little progress to date.

Today, instead of trying get them to let me hold and pet them, I played with them like I was a kitten. Batting toys around and pitty pattying with their paws. I know it sounds silly (after all, I'm a 50 something-ish woman), but I think I made real progress today. It's like you have to become one of them to win their trust. Plus I came bearing super cool toys and yummy food. I've been worried they're too old (9 weeks) and too far gone to tame into house kitties. Now I'm feeling optimistic.

Don't want to jinx it. Please let them come around...please, please, please!
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Old 06-12-2011, 09:03 PM   #7820
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I did the demolition and cleaning yesterday. Today I painted, and set the tile. Some 3,888 little tiles. (Don't tell DW that they came in big sheets. )

I'm about to check the meds for correct temperature. Tomorrow is grout & plumbing day.
Oh baby, been there....before and after on our bathroom:
Attached Images
File Type: jpg Bath remod.JPG (436.9 KB, 17 views)
File Type: jpg 1010251.JPG (468.0 KB, 14 views)
File Type: jpg Bathroom3.JPG (422.7 KB, 15 views)
File Type: jpg Bath Tile.JPG (449.1 KB, 15 views)
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