Silent Shenanigans

Notice the almost total silence on the upgrade adventure in progress – replacing my desktop (a slow, late 2008 MacBook) with a more modern Mac mini. The process has taken almost a week, so far.

We won’t talk about the fun, that is not, of adding a second hard drive to a computer that you have to completely dissemble to get to the second drive bay. Or having to buy a mounting kit (some screws, a cable, and a couple tools) because, although the mini has a port on its motherboard for a second ATA drive, Apple doesn’t expect you to use it. It’s only there to save them a couple $$ by using the same motherboard for all the Mac mini models (except for the CPU), one of which is a server model,with 2 drives.

Upgrade Shenanigans

I was running out of space on the SSD In my mid-2012 MacBook Air. Plenty of room when I bought it. Now? Not so much.

So, I bought a higher capacity SSD from Other World computing (OWC). They specialize in Mac upgrades. I’ve upgraded a number of Macs using parts from them.

Putting the new SSD in was easy. Remove the bottom of the machine, unplug a cable, unscrew the old SSD, put in the new one. (They even have instructional videos. )

And then… The adventure began. Needed to copy everything from the old SSD to the new one.

I bought an upgrade that includes an external USB case for the old drive.

Tried to use the OS X Migration Assistant (install OS X and then use that to copy documents, settings, and applications to the new disk.)

Every time I upgrade hardware (disk or new computer) I attempt this route. It SHOULD be the best way. But… Half the time it doesn’t work. Didn’t work this time either. First time it didn’t copy my apps but got everything else. 2nd time? Nothing.

The Mac kept losing contact with the external SSD. Not good.

So, I tried Carbon Copy Cloner (30 Day free trial). Froze. After 3 minutes.

On my second attempt. Replaced the USB cable with a known good one. Haven’t had a bad cable issue in years.

20 minutes in, so far so good. 1/4 copied. Fingers crossed.

If that doesn’t work, I have a TimeMachine backup I did right before the upgrade. It would take four times as long to rebuild from that. Hopefully not.

Watching the game

I’m not a huge sports fan, I just don’t have the attention span (mind share span?) to devote time to any specific team/sport.

But I have been watching the World Cup. More soccer this month than I’ve seen in years. As a bi-yearly event… Fine. I don’t expect this exposure to result in watching between World Cups.

One of the good things about it… Not a lot of commercials, though I prefer to watch it on ESPN. The ABC Sunday broadcasts felt kind of clunky and overly commercial. ESPN was about the game. Mostly.

This week has been kind of low on game watchage. Most of the games were while I was at work. Or down to the last 20 minutes by the time I got home.
Missed the US game against Germany.

They couldn’t have night/evening games? And the rest of the games will be the same. No game starting later than 4PM eastern. Which means they’ll be over by 6PM. So I’ll miss most of the US game against Belgium next week.

But at least I can watch the weekend games.

Record them? No thanks. I don’t like watching sports with a time delay. It loses the excitement of immediacy. IMO anyway.

Because… Maleficent!

For the first time, ever, I actually went to a new movie on its release date (sort of. Went to a Thursday evening showing of Maleficent. The “official” release date is today, the day after. )

Verdict? I enjoyed it (acknowledging that it isn’t perfect and critics who gave it low ratings aren’t completely crazy)

But what’s up with those cheekbones on Angelina Jolie (Maleficent)?

And why do the 3 fairy god mothers have such huge heads in their pixie form?

And what must the producers/directors/writer have thought when Frozen used a similar method to break a spell? (Spoiler). “Oh, cr*p!” ??

TtH was down! Again.

For almost 24 hours.

No idea what was wrong, though from the outside it looks like a database issue. Which could be anything.

Note: to the best of my knowledge, it had nothing to do with that OpenSSL bug ( Heart-something). That is a completely different issue.

The Rude Pundit vs CNN

I occasionally wander over to the Rude Pundit’s blog. He’s loud, almost always rude, and very often very funny, in a far left of center, George Carlin wouldn’t use that language, kind of way. Here’s what he had to say about CNN and their obsession with that Malaysian Airlines flight that disappeared .

(Fair warning – it’s a rant full of NSFW language and if you accidentally wander into any of his political rants it’s not my fault. )

Note: I don’t watch CNN. Haven’t in years. In fact, the only time I watch TV news is for the weather, when it’s supposed to snow or something. I’d rather hate watch “Ancient Aliens” or “Man vs Food” than network news. At least “Ancient Aliens” is entertaining.

Catching up on the backlog

I’m not sure how many people read the fics as posted here anymore but they are a bit out of date. I’m still working on them but haven’t kept the WiP’s current for at least the last year.

Current plan is to spend March updating them but for now anything updated/completed can still be found on TtH, AO3, and

I also plan to redesign the fic pages though that might take longer.


I started using Scrivener during NaNoWriMo and hopefully can use it to output stories for the archive here instead of the old manual process I’ve been using for years.


We’ll see what happens.

And so ends 2013

Not much to say.

I’ve been burning off some vacation time, that I would lose otherwise. Nothing exciting to end the year. Had some dental/gum work done (by a dentist with a laser) right before Christmas and have been living on pain killers for the last 2 weeks while it (slowly) heals. Been eating mostly bland food. Bleah.
Done a little bit of post-NaNoWroMo writing but certainly not the amount I’d originally planned.

NaNoWriMo 2013







It’s a wrap. 50,034 words of story. 15,000 in the last 3 days (Yikes! )

Unfortunately, the story itself, a sequel to last years story, needs a bit of work to really be complete. Going to take a month to fix it up before posting anywhere.

So far…

I’ve watched more ‘network’ TV in the past week than I have in years. Too many commercials. Blech!

Agents of Shield episode 2 – Not bad. More action than the first episode. (One reviewer complained that there was less action this episode. Not sure which show he watched but it wasn’t this one. Also, in a 40 minute show there isn’t a lot of time for much to happen anyway, especially super hero antics. Not sure I like the obvious character being a mole. Hopefully it’s some double agent stuff. Fury showing up was a nice touch.

Crazy Ones episode 1 – okay for a pilot. Hopefully the next episode will have a calmer Robin Williams. It was like watching two different shows crammed into one. I prefer the SMG side. RW can be funny but he wasn’t leaving much room for actual plot. Or what little plot there is in a comedy.

Elementary episode 1 – recorded but didn’t watch. Summary didn’t sound too exciting. A trip to London? Still a couple episodes to catch up on from last year. I’ll probably just buy the season off of iTunes and catch up later.

Fall TV Season is Go!

Just finished watching the pilot for ‘Marvel’s Agents of Shield’, a new show from Joss Whedon and the gang at Mutant Enemy. Basically an ‘Origin’ story. I will be watching the next episode.

Next up – Thursday – the new Robin Williams comedy w/SMG. And Glee (which I’ll DVR but probably not watch). And Elementary.

Nothing else in the Fall lineup that I really want to watch.


A Cloned Life

I’ve been collecting Lego mini figures for a while. (Which means buying some Lego building sets of course). Over 200 unique figures so far.

There are other companies that also sell mini-sized figures. Usually, licensed characters that are more ‘realistic’ (looks more like the actual character/person than a Lego mini figure would.). So far, I have KISS (from K’NEX), some Mario Kart/Wii figures (also by K’NEX), and now some Scooby characters (Scooby, Shaggy, Velma, and some monsters, so far. ) The figures are, in theory, Lego compatible. This means they are approximately the same height (the Mario figures are approx. 10% larger but the rest are much closer to Lego mini height.) and they have holes in their feet that are Lego brick hole size. And they have some sets of bricks to go with the figures.


There are other Lego ‘clones’ but my impression so far:

K’NEX – I have KISS and Mario Kart Wii figures. They have others. And seem to own Lincoln Logs and Tinker Toys now.

Bricks – cheap, flimsy imitation of the real thing (aka Lego). Mini figures – okay. They have a complete, older, line of non-Lego cloned building toys.

COBI (Polish company. They do a log of military themed sets. And Scooby-Doo. The ones I’ve been buying at Toys-R-Us are actually re-packaged by some British company – Character Building. Same characters and building sets but different packaging. It’s possible Toys-R-Us has a special deal with them/COBI – like they do with Lego for some sets. The set I bought from Toys-R-Us combined 2 COBI sets. The British company also does things like Doctor Who but I haven’t seen those locally yet. )

Much better clone of Lego than K’NEX. From the Scooby sets I’ve assembled, most of the pieces are actually identical. A couple are slightly different. And the sets are much simpler than current Lego. Closer to what you’d buy from Lego a couple decades ago. But cheaper/harder plastic.

It’s a festival!

Watching some music festival on TV (on Paladium) – Five hours of highlights from the 2013 Glastonbury Festival. And some older.

Mostly music I don’t normally listen to so it’s really been background.


Who is/are HAIM? 3 sisters and a drummer. Not sure I like them but they seem to be having fun – this looks like it was written by a fan -


Kenny Rogers was there. He looks old (And he is). So much for memories. Wasn’t a huge fan but I remember him from some TV movies in the 80′s. He sang his signature song, and all I could think was ‘Someone get that man an oxygen mask!’ He didn’t have enough breath to really sing. Very sad.

Just over there