Friday, December 21, 2007

Who Am I?

I have to admit, since Sawyer's birth, things have been a little crazy around the ol' MonkShack. So, after almost a week of Debra prodding and poking at me, I finally gave in yesterday to get out of the house and go see a movie. Our thinking was that a movie would be a nice, two-hour break from reality, giving me a chance to focus on something other than Sawyer and, as a bonus, it was cheap (well, cheaper than sending me to the mall at least....).

I'm not sure what I was thinking, but I thought that I Am Legend would be a good movie to see. Now, in all honestly, I had some idea what the movie was about, but I didn't do too much research into the plot, etc. That was a mistake. Here's a little pointer, just in case you ever find yourself in a similar situation.

If you've just had a baby and are emotionally and physically drained. Your internal reserves are near zero and you have trouble keeping a coherent thought in your head for more than a minute or two, do not, I repeat DO NOT, go see an emotionally draining movie about the end of the world. This will not help you or make you feel any better. In fact, if my experience has any reliability as an indicator, it will almost certainly make you feel physically sick and almost make you vomit in response.

Yes, I have no idea who I am or what I'm doing. I guess I had just thought that my old hardy self was still around and could withstand the abuse. I was wrong. Oh so wrong!

Maybe I should have gone to see Enchanted instead....

Thursday, November 22, 2007

new baby!

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Hey, I Know Her!

Sometimes the internet seems like a very small place...for instance, take this article from the GE Elfun Volunteers Binghamton Website,

I went to high school with her...but she was actually Christine Cheresnowsky back then...

I didn't know she could fly!

Saturday, July 21, 2007

Get da'Baby

I think my geekiness has completely rubbed off on my spouse. One of the first things she's done since finding out that we're adopting a new-born in October was to create a blog to share our joy with the world. (Yes, if this news to you, read more about it at

Now, correct me if I'm wrong, but that isn't something that non-geeks do, is it? I'm pretty sure that most people don't. Nor do non-geeks want to include naming polls on their blogs either. But we have both.

Go see for yourself....don't take my work for it!

Thursday, July 5, 2007

Desktop TD 1.5 Addiction - In Full Force

Okay, I've been struggling with Desktop Tower Defense. I've been frustrated, I've been thrilled. As Debra says "its all about hopes and dreams, hopes and dreams." Well, quite frankly, I've had a lot of dreams about completing just the medium level. And up until today, they've been just that, dreams.

I'm now please to say that I've graduduated. I've completed all 50 phases of the medium level! Hurray for me! (Lets face it, I'm sure you're not saying that, so let me have a little self-congratulatory praise for a minute...sheesh.) Although, even though I completed all the phases, my score still doesn't rival some of the board leaders. I'm a little confused...I only let 4 creeps through, yet my score is a couple of thousand less than the leaders. How is that possible? Can anyone clue me in?

Anyway, I figured I'd share my maze with you, although - after looking at hundreds of other mazes, I've come to realize its less about how the maze looks at the end than it is about how you put your maze together in the first place. And in what order you upgrade your towers. At any rate, here's what I looked like at the end...

Basically, once I'd created the majority of my maze, I just started upgrading one of each of the towers - one at a time. All of the little Pe towers you see upgraded (the ones that aren't fully upgraded, that is) I upgraded during the last phase, just to try to deal with the onslaught of creeps. Aside from that one breach of ettiquette, I adhered to my ground rules - one tower at a time until it was completely maxed out.

My advice comes with no guarantees, but if it helps you beat my score - more power to you! If it doesn't help, well, I just don't know what to say to that.

Wednesday, July 4, 2007

Taking the Dirty Work Out of Owning a Dog?

I'm in shock. I never dreamed there was such a service. Then, today as a matter of fact, I happened to be perusing the pets section on Craigslist, and I found this ad. There is actually a company that offers the service of cleaning up after your dog. No, really! I'm serious! I had to read it twice myself, then I actually had to go visit their website to see if it was a joke or if it was a real company.

As you may know, we have three big dogs and with big dogs comes big poop. Yep, I said it, poop. These dogs sh#t like its their darn job - and they do it with pride. (Come to think of it, maybe there's a dog union...but if there is, I guess we're doing ok, because none of them have stepped forward asking to have their wages increased or working conditions improved...then again, they don't do any work and they only get paid in bones...)

For the amazingly small fee of $25 a week, K9 Waste Management will come out to our house twice a week and clean up the dog poop. I think I must have died and gone to heaven. Now, how can we find $100 a month in our budget to pay for this...there simply has to be a way!

Thursday, June 28, 2007

My Personality?

I just took an online personality test. I don't know why, I just get suckered into these things. Anyway, I figured that I'd share the results with y'all...if for no other reason than it gives me something to blog about...yeah, its just been that kinda day.

Stability results were low which suggests you are very worrying, insecure, emotional, and anxious.

Orderliness results were moderately low which suggests you are, at times, overly flexible, improvised, and fun seeking at the expense of reliability, work ethic, and long term accomplishment.

Extraversion results were moderately low which suggests you are reclusive, quiet, unassertive, and secretive.

My trait snapshot:

messy, depressed, introverted, feels invisible, does not make friends easily, nihilistic, reveals little about self, fragile, dark, bizarre, feels undesirable, dislikes leadership, reclusive, weird, irritable, frequently second guesses self, unassertive, unsympathetic, low self control, observer, worrying, phobic, suspicious, unproductive, avoidant, negative, bad at saving money, emotionally sensitive, does not like to stand out, dislikes large parties, submissive, daydreamer

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

A Bear You Say? No way...

But that's exactly what my parents saw yesterday! In their backyard! Of course, they live in the heart of the Endless Mountains in Northeastern Pennsylvania, so bears aren't all that uncommon, but their backyard?

Don't believe me? Check out the video clips they captured for proof!

Bear + Parents in Towanda = Panic

Monday, June 25, 2007

What Would You Do...

if this message was on your voicemail when you came home? Trust me, these two parental units aren't going on American Idol anytime soon, I hope you find that somewhat reassuring!

Truth be told, it's a very sweet and endearing gesture! I was also amazed that they (and my Aunt Totsie - the real person and not our feline-namesake) managed to send cards that were both delivered today. How do people do that?

Yes, for those of you who know me, it's really a two-part question. First - how do you send something these days? I don't even know what the price of a stamp is... Second - how do time it so that it actually gets delivered on my birthday? Is it luck, or is it simply being a master of the ins-and-outs of the U.S. Postal Service? Is there an online guide somewhere that will help you figure mail delivery time? I'm so confused...

But at least I'm there's a consolation prize for you.

Friday, June 22, 2007

Feed My Zune!

Ok, I know I've been complaining about my Zune to just about anyone who would listen...The inability to sync content with Windows Media Player, the poor battery life, blah, blah, blah... Well, at least one of my complaints appears to be resolved - the inability to subscribe to podcasts and have the content automatically loaded on my Zune.

In fact, I was just griping about this very fact earlier tonight (while also accepting an offer to trade a chandelier for an iPod mini). Then I come home, my complaint fresh on my mind, and plug in "video podcast zune" (my version of a hail-mary search) in Google and what to my wondering eyes should appear, no, not a miniature sleigh and eight tiny reindeer, but something called FeedYourZune (interestingly enough at, go figure).

Well, I've just downloaded it, but I'm not sure I want it on my laptop, so I think I'll probably try it on my workstation first. (All 300+GB of my MP3s are housed on a dedicated server - for the obvious reason that they don't fit on anything else, duh! - and my Zune is primarily linked to my workstation so it can take advantage of the gigabit network connection when transferring content.)

All I can say at this point, is that I'm so excited that I might actually be able to get some decent video sync'ed to my Zune that I can barely contain myself! In fact, the only reason I'm writing this on my laptop is that due to a power outage earlier this week (thanks DP&L - I appreciate that...) one of my HP NetServers is beeping every second and I haven't had the energy to fix it. I think I've figured out what it is, but I need to reboot it and check some of the bios or NetRaid settings and I don't have a monitor or keyboard hooked up to it at the moment. I know, I really should have a KVM, but I just haven't gotten around to it...(although, someone once did give me a round tuit, but I'm pretty sure I lost it. Anyone know where I can find another?)

That's my story, and I'm stickin' to it...

Sunday, June 17, 2007

Delayed Flight = Happy Dogs

Delayed Flight = Happy Dogs
Originally uploaded by monkshac
What can I say? The dogs were thrilled with the fact that I came back from the airport so quickly! Not a frown could be seen, despite the fact I told them my flight had been cancelled but I was now leaving at 11:42am.

I guess in their opinion - any time at home with them OK in their book!

Monday, June 11, 2007

A Year in the Making...

Toward the end of last summer, Debra approached me with an idea. Usually, her ideas are pretty scary and involve the purchase of a mini-horse. (Thanks for that, Amanda!) However, this time, I have to admit that I got wrapped in her idea, and as usual, made it a much more complicated affair.

Put simply, Debra wanted a video that she could air on FlyerTV, UD's campus channel, that would provide some publicity for her office, the Office of Community Standards & Civility. She wanted something subtle and funny. One afternoon, we took the video cam out and spent about two hours driving around in the setting sun filming for her video. Yes, I did make her sign a release - no illegal, hidden spycams here, no siree bob!

Then the editing began. That's pretty much what delayed the release of her video until today. I happened to be cleaning out some old hard drives and found the 75% completed video and decided it was high time that I actually finished it for her. I hope I've managed to build some kind of suspence and excitement about just what her idea was...cause I've run out of vague, ambiguous terms to describe it.

So without further ado, here's Debra's first starring film role (at least on a public release!):

Sunday, June 10, 2007

Pics from Alice & Audrey's Wedding! (finally!)

Yes, I know you've been very patient waiting, but I've been working to resolve some technical issues (and some time issues), so without any further delay - here's Audrey & Alice!

So, was it worth the wait?

My Family!

Some pics from Steve & Jessica's Wedding!

Aren't they all so cute?

Addicted to Current TV

What can I say? I'm hooked. For the Current-virgins, Current TV is (as far as I can tell) a relatively new channel. (Or at least, I've never noticed it, which could be a distinct possibility as Tivo generally rules our household's television with an iron fist.) It unique broadcasting format is perfect for those of us with short attention spans who are turned off by network news that continually airs the same, biased stories in 10-15 minute rotation.

Current TV airs 3-7 minute pods of content in constant rotation. I hardly ever see the same pod twice (thank the blessed stars!). The really neat thing is that the pods are user-created - they use the term viewer created content. It's almost a professional-version of YouTube. Anyone can create an upload pods, the everyone can vote on the pods to determine which of them will be aired. It's awesome!

Want to see if your cable company offers Current TV? Check out their web site at and start uploading, voting and watching!