Monthly Archives: August 2004

In Memorium: Nina Harwell Lewis

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I just made it home a few minutes ago, and I had a good long period to think while driving home.

My aunt Nina was an amazing woman and had seen many amazing things. Thinking back, I can remember when I was in my teens listening to her telling me what it was like being a teenager during the Great Depression. Or leaving Waco to go to study at Colombia in New York in the late 20s. And even all of her travels well into her 90s

You know, I hope I can age as well as she did and show as much joie de vivre as she did.

I wish that there was some way that I could have introduced so many of my friends to her, she always had time to meet someone new and spend a little time getting to know them.

The best I can do is to give this link to her obituary.

Everyone, I would like you to meet my great aunt Nina, she has been a great influence in my life.

Well, I'll be in Waco on Thursday.

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I just got off of the phone with my father.

My great aunt, who had her 99th birthday last week, died in her sleep.

Nina was a character, after her husband died, she continued to live on her own.  In fact her one concession to getting older was that her grandson lived next door and he kept a key to her house as a just in case.  She even managed to drive herself around Waco, handled all of her shopping, and managed to take quite good care of herself. 

Her health started to slip a bit in the last few weeks, so I knew that this could happen. 

I am really going to miss her.

*blink* *blink*

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I had a lot I wanted to post about today. But events have marshalled against me.

I have learned one thing though.

If you get in the elevator, and look at the buttons, if they appear to be in some strange language that you have never seen before. . . .

Guess what?

You Are Tired.

And with that, I am going home and going to bed.

Wow! Three in One Day!

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dracodragontk – Happy Birthday! You are a lot older than you let on. May you never catch up with yourself.

mroctober – Happy Birthday to you as well! Personally I think you are way too hard on yourself. You are intelligent, gifted with the ability to turn a phrase, and quite handsome with a very warm smile.

paladincub21 – And a third Happy Birthday! Last but not least, I’m still just getting to know you, but you are really interesting and you make me think – and that, is very important.

Lemming! Lemming! Lemming! Lemming! Lemming! Lemming! Lemming! . . . . . . . . . ker splat!

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Memeage – We cut because we care.

W00t! We get to have a Grand Adventure!

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It looks like I may get to do something I have not gotten to do in several years – go spelunking! (If you are wondering what I am babbling about, take a look at one of my posts from yesterday

OK, with gramalkin, sweetirosi, dracodragontk, texaspenguin, mixincolors, and codecattx(myself) we have at least six people! Note that this does not close out who can go. I have a couple of co-workers who are interested and would like to see a large number of people all getting together and having a blast together.

So now we get to see what and when works best for everyone!

A couple of things to remember, the website reminds you that if you go on the Wild Cave Tour, you will be filthy at the end of the tour and should bring a full change of clothes. And we will want to remember to bring cameras – lots of them both for the pretty pictures so diziara can virtually join us and so I can hopefully get some cool “Wild Bat” pictures for saunteringdown.

I’m adding one more fun feature to this Adventure if people think they might enjoy it. – the Vanishing Texas River Cruise.

They have some two hour excursions down the Colorado River and through the Canyon of the Eagles – so named because this is where a large number of Bald Eagles winter every year.

This map shows just how close both of these venues are to each other.

And with no further ado – the Poll Of Doom!

[Edit: I omitted 11 September 2004 because I have promised my father that I would come up to the lake for the weekend and visit – Anyone want to come up and spend the weekend at Lake Bob Sandlin with me?]

And now, with no further ado!

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I would like to wish a very happy birthday to yellowroseoftex!

This is one spectacular and special lady, she is the mother of gramalkin, and lady_emerald, and dracodragontk.* Advisor to many people, artist, gifted with computers, independent, and not afraid to have her own opinion.

*bows down, then straightens up and raises a glass*

May you have warm words on a cold evening, a full moon on a dark night, and a smooth road all the way to your door. And may God grant you many more years to live, for sure he must be knowing, the earth has angels all too few and heaven is overflowing…

*hurls the glass into the fireplace*


‘Sláinte chuig na fir, agus go mairfidh na mná go deo.’

* And a fine job she did with them too!

I want to do this.

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OK, people.

I rarely set my sights on something but this I want. But it is going to take some brave souls to come do this with me.

I want to get a group of people together and do some “pseudo-spelunking

I’m calling this psuedo-spelunking because this is a cave that is open to the public and it will be guided by an experienced guide will take us to primitive parts of the cave not seen on the regular walking tour. We will even get to view formations that were only seen by professional spelunkers up until just a few years ago!

Of course, that takes a minimum group of six people, if I can’t get such a group together, I’ll be happy with a regular one and a half hour cave tour as opposed to the two hour spelunking. I have been too long out from underground.

Even better would be to get a group together for their special Geology program. This would take 10 people, but that includes a one-hour 25-minute geological tour of Longhorn Cavern, a 30-minute geological seminar, and finally a field trip to a local road cut.*

For more information, here are some links – Longhorn Cavern State Park

The Longhorn Cavern State Park Tour Company Website

Longhorn Cavern Hosting Bi-Weekly Concerts

And finally, data blurbs from the cavern calendar.

Wild Cave Tour – Every Saturday. Explore the caverns the way the early spelunkers did. Our experienced guide will take you to primitive parts of the cave not seen on the regular walking tour. You will crawl, climb and scoot through tight spaces. Special equipment, hardhat (required), flashlight, elbow and kneepads highly recommended for this tour. You may bring your own or rent the whole package from us for $15. No children under 12 please. 3:15-5:30 p.m.; fee $35 per person; reservations required (877) 441-2283 or (512) 756-4680

Simple Sounds Concert in the Cave – A unique way to enjoy the park in the “original indoors.” Local acoustic artists bring the “live music capital of the world” to the beautiful Hill Country. Concert followed by a coffee and hot chocolate social where you get to meet the artists. For more information visit 6-8:30 p.m.; fees $10 Texas State Parks Pass members, $12 non-members, $11 senior citizens, $8 children 12 and under; reservations required (877) 441-2283 or (512) 756-4680.

Here is the Entrance to the Cavern

This is what it looks like in the cavern during a tour.

Now come on people, I will even be happy with just getting out of town and away from work for a day and doing the regular tour without any extraneous science, so what say you? Who is up for a grand adventure?

* OK, so sue me. I am a science geek and I would find this facinating.

Oh and before I forget . . .

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Happy Birthday to gramalkin!

Oh my! This is a whole new level of strange!

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Cher keeps male models in a chicken coop 

Cher’s spokeswoman says she keeps a chicken coop full of male models backstage when she performs.

Liz Rosenberg was responding to rumours linking the 58-year-old singer and actress with underwear model Gabriel Aubry, 27.

Rosenberg told the New York Post: “She’s been dating many male models but she doesn’t usually ask their names.

“She also has a chicken coop backstage and her manager gives out passes to the cutest guys, and Cher makes her selection from the coop.”

A spokesman for Calvin Klein model Aubry denies the pair are dating and says they’ve never even met.


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*Gets Deekin to sit still and start playing a somewhat familiar tune*

*takes a deep breath*


*tries again and takes a deep breath*

*singing as off key as possible*

Happy birthday to you,
Happy birthday to you,
Happy birthday dear diziara!
Happy birthday to you!!!!!!!!!

*Deekin runs screaming from the room clutching his ears*

Well, that seems to be it for my musical accompaniment.

OK, blame kobold for this one!

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Pete’s Craft Name Generator

Based on the Silver Ravenwolf theory of naming, your new craft name is:

Platinum Falconweasel


*tries to look serious*


*rolls eyes*

*dies laughing*

As yes, the precious and rare bird. And why is it so rare? Because it flies around searching for prey and then forgets to keep flying when it sees something shiny.

(Flap, flap, flap)

*must find something to kill and eat!*

*Must . . . . OOOOH! SHINY!*

(Plummets from the sky)

Julia, bon appétit!

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Julia Child, the celebrated cook, author and television personality who elevated the nation’s culinary standards, died in her sleep Thursday night in her Santa Barbara, Calif, home. She was 91.

What a day!

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Let’s see here, my day today started with the alarm clock going off at 06:00 as per normal.  I was sitting up in bed with my glasses on trying to convince myself to get up when little Banzai decided for me.  She jumped up onto the bed and then proceeded to hack up a wondrous hairball in the middle of the bed clothes.  So about 06:15 saw me doing laundry.

Fast forward a couple of hours and I am on my way to work.  When I get to work, I find out that the work that I wanted done the night before didn’t get done.  *sigh* 

After getting that resolved, I then dived in headfirst.  In addition to my job, I am also covering for one of my teammates while he writes up the documentation for a new customer – so today I am actually doing more than I would normally be doing. 

Five code pushes to the test environment, three code pushes to the production environment, three major issues for my own customer, and several minor issues for other customers later, it is after 20:00 and I am out the door, with my manager apologizing for all of the extra dren on my plate.

I’ve made it home and finished dinner, now I can hear my bed calling to me (now that I have clean bedclothes to sleep on that is).

Not fair

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I have lots of things I would like to say but I am too sleepy.

At least I am slowly catching up on my sleep deficit, and I have been able to leave the office before the sun was completely down.

Whatever happend to Fae Wray?

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Actress Fay Wray of `King Kong’ Fame Dies

You will be missed lady.

For all of my str8 friends. . . . .

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Oh – and tygerversionx, they did do something to your beloved Pikachu . . .

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I give you Str8Boy

Well, I think crzydemona may find this interesting. . .

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Fiennes to Play ‘Potter’ Villain
Aug 4, 9:07 PM EST

The Associated Press

LOS ANGELES — He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named has been named. Ralph Fiennes, who played memorable evil guys in “Red Dragon” and “Schindler’s List,” has signed on to portray the wicked warlock Voldemort in the next “Harry Potter” movie, Warner Bros. announced Wednesday.

Voldemort is so bad that the magical characters in author J.K. Rowling’s stories do their best not to speak his name aloud.

In the first three installments of the saga, a deadly magic spell meant for a baby Harry Potter backfired and deprived him of a body. So only his spirit wrought havoc in “The Sorcerer’s Stone,” “The Chamber of Secrets” and the recent “Prisoner of Azkaban.”

But Voldemort finally returns in the flesh in part four: “Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire.”

Filming has been under way on “Goblet” since June 25, mainly with star Daniel Racliffe as the boy-wizard, and co-stars Rupert Grint and Emma Watson as his pals Ron Weasley and Hermione Granger.

Fiennes has not yet filmed any scenes.

Other additions to the cast include Brendan Gleeson (“Troy,” “The Village” and “Cold Mountain”) as Potter’s new Defense Against the Dark Arts teacher, the fearsome Mad-Eye Moody, and Miranda Richardson, (“The Crying Game,” “Sleepy Hollow”) as Rita Skeeter, a gossip columnist for a magical newspaper.

The cast also includes Robert Pattinson as Hogwarts student Cedric Diggory, Stanislav Ianevski as Quidditch star Viktor Krum, French actress Clémence Poésy as the heart-fluttering visiting student Fleur Delacour, and Katie Leung as Potter’s love-interest and Quidditch rival Cho Chang.

“Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire,” directed by “Four Weddings and a Funeral” filmmaker Mike Newell, is scheduled for theatrical release in November 2005.

Ahhhhh! Music!

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You know I really enjoy just about every kind of music ever hatched.

But this music really touches deep places in me.

This is the music of Mary Jane Lamond. She sings traditional songs with a mix of old and contemporary instruments and sings them in their original Gaelic.

This music both lifts me up and relaxes me on many levels.

I have pulled out three of my favorite of her songs with the music both in the original Gaelic and English.

We Cut Because We Care – Sparing You a LOT of Text incase you are not interested.