June 27, 2004
Boston International Film Festival, Day 2 and Day 3
Michael wrote up an entry about all the movies he saw on Day 2 and Day 3 of the Boston International Film Festival. I think he was rather generous in his feedback of "The Hillz", a movie that Paris Hilton showcases her (surprise!) terrible (or lack thereof) acting skills.
June 25, 2004
Now that's customer service, VisiBone!
A long time ago (September 17, 2001) I exchanged email with Bob Stein about accepting PayPal payments for his VisiBone products. He just sent me an email to let me know that they are now able to accept orders via PayPal. I'm impressed he saved my email. I have a few of their HTML and CSS foldouts that are quite nifty and useful.
June 24, 2004
Boston International Film Festival, Day 1
The Boston International Film Festival began today with festivities and films at the John Hancock Hall. David Baeumler, the husband of Sandy, my best pal throughout high school, had his "I Cannot Understand You" short film chosen for the festival. It's screening Friday, June 25th 12:30-12:36pm. They're in Norway for the summer so he gave me his all-access passes. Starting tonight I saw some great films including the feature length "Guarding Eddy", a very heartfelt (yet not at all cheesy) movie about a sassy NBA rookie and Eddy, the 18 year-old kid with mental disorders that he befriends. The lead actor/producer, Brian Presley (who plays Eddy) and actor Kiko Ellsworth were at the screening and took questions from the audience -- mostly other film people who asked great questions. They are daytime soap actors most of the time and put the film together based on someone that Brian got to know in Los Angeles. Great film ... highly recommended! Tickets are still available for a whole bunch of films being shown through Sunday night.
Transcriptionists of the world, unite and take over
(OK, maybe The Smiths' tune didn't go quite like that.)
As I was about to log in to my meetup.com account, I noticed the link on their homepage announcing "Transcriptionists, Hyderabad, India meeting now!" I guess everyone needs a meetup. There are 228 transcriptionists around the world who have signed up to meet through meetup.com. Hyderabad has the largest group with 50 members. I wonder what they talk about.
In my senior year of high school in 1991 (Scribner, Nebraska) I was in most every activity club, including FBLA -- Future Business Leaders of America. Each Spring we attended the state convention and participated in various "competitions" including transcription. Somehow I managed to get signed up for that one. So, I took the test and placed number two. The winner of each competition advanced to the national convention/competition that was taking place in Anaheim, California that summer. Apparently the person who came in ahead of me had also won another competition and chose that one over transcription for the national competition. So, there I was with an opportunity to travel West for the first time. I don't remember all the details but I think the FBLA group helped raise some money to send me. My advisor wasn't able to go so another group adopted me. I basically spent the entire week hanging out by myself in Anaheim and Disneyworld except when I had to participate in group events and the test itself. I bought my first Smith's CD, "Louder Than Bombs", at a local used CD store. It was an amusing way to get to California.
June 23, 2004
Free WiFi at Marche Movenpick
Marche Movenpick at the Prudential Center in Boston has been offering free WiFi for a few months and I finally had a chance to try it out. I'm typing this down at Caveau, their cozy wine bar/bistro and it reaches here, too. Fun!
A year ago with Howard Dean
Seems hard to believe that it was just a year ago that Howard Dean made his official announcement that he was running for the Democratic nominee for President of the United States. I remember sitting at my desk at Nokia watching the video of the speech he gave in Burlington, VT to a huge crowd of supporters. It was exciting -- the first time I ever felt inspired to get involved in politics. As much as John Kerry is not really all that inspiring, I do not want to share my birthday (inauguration day) with George Bush next year!
June 22, 2004
Photos of George's Island
I don't know Bob, but he sure took some excellent photos recently of George's Island. I haven't been there in several years. I mentioned to j a few weeks ago that we should do some sort of blogger outing there sometime this summer. It's a fun area to wander around in, especially the underground tunnels.
June 21, 2004
A dinner party for my Gmail invitees?
Since most everyone I know already has a Gmail account, I decided to post an ad on (Boston) Craig's List this morning in the free category to get rid of my 12 lingering invites. Several people are posting ads charging for Gmail account invites. Too funny. I received numerous emails from people delighted that I was giving them away for free. Several people told me their sob stories dealing with Hotmail. Another person turned out to be a friend of the human I more or less moved to Boston for ten years ago. I posted the ad with an anonymous CL email address so it turned out to be an amusing surprise for both of us. Someone else recognized my last name and asked me if I'm from Dracut. I've heard there's another Susan Kaup in the Boston area but we haven't crossed paths yet.
I'm thinking it might be fun to have a dinner party/outing with everyone I've given Gmail invites to. Some people are pals who I sent invites to directly and then the rest are random people who responded to the ad on Craig's List. Might be fun!
Update 6/23/04: I gave away that last batch of invites and now I've got more. So, if you still don't have a Gmail account and you want one, send me a note.
Want a Gmail account?
UPDATE: I have no more Gmail invites.
I have twelve spare Gmail invites available. It seems like most of my friends have one by now. If you want one, let me know. And in case you have been living under a rock the last month or so, Gmail is Google's new webmail service. It's got a nifty interface and uses Google's search technology. I especially like how it groups related emails into a conversation. And the 1000 megabytes of storage is nice, too. I've moved all my mailing list subscriptions to it, etc. They do a good job of addressing privacy concerns, too.
June 18, 2004
The Automatic Mix Tape Generator and Rufus Wainwright
The Automatic Mix Tape Generator over at Tiny Mix Tapes came in very handy last night while putting together "Instant Pleasure", an iTunes playlist named after the sassy Rufus Wainwright tune. And speaking of Rufus, how did I manage to overlook his music until last weekend? He's spectacular! I think Rufus and Rose Polenzani should sing a duet together.
North America Rail Pass
Sometime this Fall once lingering debt has been taken care of, I'd like to take off for a few weeks and travel around the country via Amtrak. They've got a 30-day North America Rail Pass that is $495 for 30 days of unlimited travel throughout the United States and parts of Canada. The price goes up to $699 during peak months.
June 17, 2004
Why You Stay
Some people have deep introspection when they turn 30. That never really happened for me last year. What seems to be the big moment (or lingering series) has moreso been the anniversary of the month I moved to Boston ten years ago. Everything changed May 1994 when I landed here. Some good, some not so fabulous ... all interesting. I've been wanting to write about the related observations, changes, etc but haven't really taken the time to do so yet. While poking around my pal Frances' poetry archive, I found this little gem of a poem that does an excellent job summing up part of my "ten years in Boston" restrospective.
June 16, 2004
Fox News review of 'Fahrenheit 9/11'
Fox news reviewed Michael Moore's new film 'Fahrenheit 9/11' yesterday: "As much as some might try to marginalize this film as a screed against President George Bush, "F9/11" as we saw last night is a tribute to patriotism, to the American sense of duty and at the same time a indictment of stupidity and avarice."
What can't you find online?
I've been wanting to have some sort of Nebraska-themed BBQ/picnic with East Coast pals for a while. Thanks to the Internet, you can not only have Runza ship you their sandwiches but you can also (!!!) order Dorothy Lynch salad dressing (made in Columbus, NE), too. Excellent!
June 12, 2004
24 Hour Dotcom
Four letter words on Gmail
A friend sent me an invite to create a Gmail account and I was hoping I would be able to grab the username "sooz." Unfortunately it needs to be at least six letters so I had to add a few zeros. You can send me notes, iBook naming suggestions, etcetera to email@example.com. (That's four lowercase o's in the middle.)
June 10, 2004
The iBook lives
So, as of late last night, I thought my iBook was dead. After only having purchased it on May 30th, this was quite sad. I went to the Apple Store tonight with a sigh and a hopeful smile. Surely they'd just give me a replacement since it had been less than two weeks and it had already died. They were very nice. Listened to my blathering story and obvious sadness. Then I turned on the computer. And it booted up just fine. That was curious. Brian, the tech at the "Genius Bar", said he recognized my email address and thought he may have been to my website via a link on Adam Gaffin's Boston Common. Fun! He suggested that I not run File Vault since (as far as he knew) I'm not in the FBI or CIA. Apparently that application can act up. Who knows if that's what was going on when it went into its coma. Oh, and he's got a weblog, too. Fun! It's over at recently.rainweb.net that he runs with his conspirator, Jake.
Now I just need to come up with a suitable name for the computer. The last one was Zippy. Something that starts with "Z"?
Benjamin Franklin's Goals of Virtue
Jay McCarthy posted a list of Ben Franklin's "Goals of Virtue" the other day. Good tips, overall!
In other news, I got a new computer and the new computer died after 12 days. I'm not all that amused and hopeful that when I return it on Saturday that they'll exchange it for a new one and not expect me to wait for it to be sent in for a checkup. Twelve days! I suppose it's better it happened now and not the day after its warranty is up. At least not having a computer around at home means I'm getting all my stuff unpacked in the new place. I've been reminded of what life was like before I got online.
June 08, 2004
Sun viewing tips during the Transit of Venus
We’re putting this before the section on how you can view the transit of Venus, because it’s important. Do not look at the Sun. Repeat: do NOT look at the Sun, whether during the transit of Venus, or at any other time. Do not look at the Sun while wearing sunglasses. Do not look at the Sun through exposed film. (Color film doesn’t protect your eyes. Properly prepared black-and-white film containing silver does, but a lot of modern black-and-white film does not.) Do not, for Pete’s sake, look at the Sun through binoculars or a telescope. Do not look at the Sun through a camera. Do not look at the Sun through polarizing film. Do not look at the Sun through CDs or other computer media. Do not look at the Sun.
June 05, 2004
Adventures in New York City
Happiness is leaving work two hours early, catching the Fung Wah Bus from China Town to New York City, eating a fabulous meal with Josh and Jesse at Good World (mmm Swedish food -- spectacular Swedish meatballs and a perfect chocolate martini) and then wandering a bunch of blocks to The Living Room to see Rose Polenzani and her band perform. And hey, it's only Friday. That means 1.5 more days of curious adventures.
June 01, 2004
Good advice and a good move
When I was packing up everything for my move this weekend, I found this fortune on the floor. Usually fortune cookies are lame but this was a good one that was worth keeping.
Happiness begins with facing life with a smile and a wink.
Yesterday's move from Medford to Somerville went very well. Many thanks to Josh, Michael, Craig and Shimon for all of their help. And thanks to Pimm's for making a tasty beverage that made packing a more enjoyable experience. It may go down as one of the shortest moves ever.