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Pencil sharpener and clock - The online computery journal thingy of a turtle

Mar. 15th, 2007

12:17 am - Pencil sharpener and clock

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Today I went out to look at pencil sharpeners and clocks. My old electric pencil sharpener (which used to be Dad's) finally started crapping out after many years of use. Also I wanted to see if I could find a clock that actually does set itself from a radio signal like I thought the old one was supposed to.

So once the rain slacked off, I headed out to Office Depot to look at pencil sharpeners. I had trouble finding them; there was only a small display, it was on the bottom shelf, and I walked past it three times. Which one did I want? Decent-looking machine for $20? Maybe. Sharpener with built-in digital clock? That's all I need, ANOTHER friggin' clock to have to set! Heavy-duty motorized sharpener from X-Acto for $40?

YES!

Now that I'd found what I wanted, the store seemed to be entirely devoid of cashiers. Finally a cashier showed up (she'd actually been helping another customer who was checking out, and for some reason they both had to leave the counter to deal with whatever stupid crap I don't care about so finally I got to buy the dang thing and leave the store. The sky was very dark with threatening clouds. Could I make it all the way to the Galleria before the next storm cell hit?

Nope. On the freeway, the rain came down HARD. Visibility was so bad that traffic slowed to a crawl, and it wasn't even very heavy to begin with. I had to keep stopping because I kept losing sight of the lane lines on the road. The rain hitting the car was so loud I stopped the CD player, since I couldn't hear it. I think there was even some hail! I still wasn't far from home, and I considered giving up and just going home, but I figured that if I got off now, I'd get stuck in floodwaters. The initial burst of rain finally slacked off, and I continued on towards the Galleria.

When I got there, I parked on the second-floor level of the aboveground garage, rather than the underground garage where I usually park, just in case it might flood down there. I checked my car for hail damage; didn't find any, fortunately. I called Mom to let her know I was OK, and she told me the power had gone out in the house. Now I was really glad I didn't go back home! After sitting in the food court for a bit, I went to the Radio Shack to see if they had clocks. Sure enough, they did! Two of them even used the radio time signal! One was your standard bedside alarm clock radio configuration, and the other was a wall-hung clock with a big LCD screen showing time, date, and temperature. I considered getting both, but the wall-hung one takes batteries only, and has no plug. No thanks. I want a clock I can plug in once and never have to touch again. So I just got the clock radio.

Then I sat around in the food court, working on the next few pages of the diary (which will be up soon!) and listening to music, which I had to crank up so I could hear it. The place was almost unbearably LOUD and NOISY! There were a lot of kids there, and some of them were having a birthday party in the food court. You know how loud a bunch of kids can get, right? I SAID, YOU KNOW HOW LOUD A BUNCH OF KIDS CAN GET, RIGHT? If I become a billionaire and decide to build a mall, I'm gonna put that anechoic corrugated material all over the walls and ceiling.

When I was done drawing, I had a burger at Chili's and ice cream at the Marble Slab Creamery. There's also a Coldstone Creamery, but it's waaay over at the other end of the huge mall complex. Then I headed back to the garage. I checked the weather; it was still drizzling a bit, but it wasn't too bad. Taking the chance that the streets had drained, I started the car, turned on the CD player, and heard whatever song had been playing when I got stuck in the deluge on the freeway earlier. The first thing I heard was OK Go singing, "Let it rain, let it pour." NOOOO!

Then I drove home and had to reset a bunch of clocks AGAIN, jeez, DST just started this week! The power had been out for about an hour and a half. I struggled to get my new clock plugged in, and it sprung into action, loading up the current time, date and year! It was an hour ahead because it was set for Eastern time, so I reset it to Central. By this time I was tired and just wanted to relax in front of the computer. But the computer decided to annoy me by having updates available and then giving me no feedback during the downloading process. Is it done yet? Do I reboot yet? What's the deeeeal? Stupid machine. Anyway I finally got it figured out and here I am, and yaaay I have a new pencil sharpener and radio-controlled clock.

Current Mood: tiredtired
Current Music: OK Go - Let It Rain

Comments:

[User Picture]
From:nefaria
Date:March 15th, 2007 11:42 am (UTC)
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I know how you feel about the Windows updates, I had those go off three days in a row, and yesterday's had that annoying "Can I reboot yet? No, okay.... How about now, can I reboot now? Yes? No?" Ick.

I'm just sticking with my dumb digital clocks. I figure it'd take more effort to go out and buy new clocks than to reset them twice a year (especially since I don't have a car).

Hey, I think you sent me your torrential rains this morning, take them back!
(Reply) (Thread)
[User Picture]
From:deckardcanine
Date:March 15th, 2007 05:55 pm (UTC)
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So the CD jinxed you for a bit, eh? Tell me, do any of your local stations play "I Can See Clearly Now" every time it rains?
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[User Picture]
From:kinkyturtle
Date:March 16th, 2007 12:52 am (UTC)
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I dunno, I stopped listening to the radio years ago.
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[User Picture]
From:yakko
Date:March 15th, 2007 08:55 pm (UTC)
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Windows Update has some stupidly annoying failure modes.

Normally, it's supposed to let you look at the download progress (hover over the yellow shield before it asks you to install) or let you look at the install progress (click the shield to view the progress dialog). But sometimes, that damned shield in the systray DISAPPEARS without notice or warning. You can probably just run a command line and run wuauclt /detectnow again, or just play like you're going to turn the machine off, where if the updates are downloaded, one option should be "Install updates and shut down." Either way, the updates get installed.
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[User Picture]
From:kinkyturtle
Date:March 16th, 2007 12:37 am (UTC)
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That last thing is what I did. I stared at the screen for a few minutes, waiting for some sign of life, then I selected Turn Off Computer, and the Turn Off button had that little shield icon that makes it install updates before shutting down, so I clicked that, and it did that, and I restarted, and everything seems to be fine.
(Reply) (Parent) (Thread)
[User Picture]
From:woyro
Date:March 15th, 2007 10:25 pm (UTC)
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i recently got an indoor/outdoor weather station from Radio Shack. it has a clock that is synched up with the radio time signal. pretty nice. it monitors changes in the barometric pressure and gives a pretty good indication of the oncomming weather.


woyroswarren.podshow.com
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