Sunday, June 29, 2008

Pinball, pt. 2

I'd like to say that my pinball machine was shiny, pretty, and functional when I got it, but that would be lying. The paint had worn off the playfield, it was incredibly dirty, and as you can sort of see in the picture below, it was somewhat broken. I guess I melted the coil for that score reel and it wouldn't move anymore.

You know, I think I like broken things more than things that work. I'm not so sure I would have been motivated to poke around and figure out what was going on inside this thing if it had been entirely functional. I'm naturally curious about things, but not curious enough to willingly take a go at THIS...

Luckily I've been able to find some really cool people who are willing to explain the "what the hell is this?" and the "why is this broken?". It still takes an epiphany for me to figure out anything though, heh heh. Every time I fix something (even if it's incredibly minor), or it just starts working and I pretend like I fixed it, I do a giant victory dance. Mmm, sweet satisfaction.

Pinball, pt. 1

When I was little, we used to drive into the city to visit an arcade/jungle gym/center of everything fun center for a day. It was almost, if not equally as exciting as Christmas. To this day, I still love crazy climbing contraptions, laser tag, arcade games, and pinball.

Every winter, when I get bogged down by coursework and cabin fever, I tend to fantasize about these things. Stress just keeps building up until suddenly I find myself hanging upside down off of playground equipment outside of who-knows-where at 3 in the morning. Last winter, instead of the usual, more mundane stress relief, I ended up buying a pinball machine. Thank you, Craigslist, for fulfilling my childhood fantasies.

As soon as I saw the ad I knew it was destined to be mine. Apparently I called the poster 20 minutes after he put up the ad. He asked if I was sure I wanted it, or if I wanted to go visit and try playing it first, but I knew. This was destiny. So, one mooched truck later (thanks, pals!) and a drive across the city, I had a pinball machine. I think the best way of describing my feelings about this would be, "EEEeeeEEEeeeeeeeeEEEEEEE!"

Monday, June 23, 2008

Why I'm the coolest nerd EVAR

This is my baby.

I had always been entertaining the idea, deep inside my mind, that owning a pinball machine would be AWESOME. My rational, higher brain told me that I was full of baloney and that I would get bored of it and disenchanted over time. I really need to stop second-guessing myself.

People on the Train, Part II

I love little old ladies. Well, not really, sometimes they're kind of terrible. But it's so adorable how they always put so much effort into their appearance, carefully preserving their perms so that they don't have to wash their hair all the time, powdering their skin, and wearing those horrifyingly matching outfits. You know, the ones where everything is made from the same eye-gougingly ugly material and there's a matching brooch, pair of earrings, gaudy necklace, and hat to go with it.

I've seen meticulously groomed old men, and dirty disgusting ones, but I have never seen a disgusting old woman. Case in point: There was an ancient drug addict at the train station this morning. I wouldn't have been able to tell that she was an addict, were it not for the fact that SHE MATCHED THE COLOUR OF PAINT SHE WAS HUFFING TO HER CLOTHES. Pink blazer, skirt, necklace, and paint stains on the face. Now THAT's co-ordination.

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Why nerds should stay inside

I walked home from work the other day because I felt guilty taking the train when it was so nice out. Hours later (ok, maybe just hour later), when I was nearly home, I saw a couple of little green caterpillars drop down from the trees, suspended by threads. And all I could think was, "Aww, they look just like Metapods."

Friday, June 6, 2008

Cut me a deal, yo

This afternoon I went to the mall to try and convince a telephone company to let me switch my old phone onto their network. It's a phone from a different company, but both companies are using the same standard. I'm sick of paying all these stupid system access fees and whatnot, which double my bill, for a cellphone that I only use a few times a month. Yes, you heard me correctly, a few times a month. Not a few times a day or a few times a week.

An employee flocked to me like a moth to a candle and started trying to pitch their new phones. Maybe I should cut in here and describe the employee before I go any further. She had cutting scars up and down her forearms, AND A FRESH CUT. A FRESH CUT. VERY RECENT. At the end of the day! While some of her coworkers wore long sleeves, she chose to wear short sleeves. Is this hygenic when you're BLEEDING? In most occupations, you have to cover up an open wound while you're at work. Regardless of how you came to acquire said wound, it's dangerous and irresponsible to bleed on other people! And wouldn't you want to hide the fact that you've been cutting from your employer? In retrospect, I hope her employer notices and helps her find a therapist or someone else who can help her with whatever problems she may be having that are leading her to cutting.

Anyway, I explained to her that I already had a phone, I just wanted to switch it to their network because their phone company offers employees from my company a special (read: awesome, no system access fee) plan. Long story short, she could not understand this. She explained that her phone company does not offer employee discounts to employees of other phone companies. I do not work for a phone company. Somehow in the conversation the word "Firmware" comes up, and she says, "Oh, your phone has no firmware because it can't take pictures."

Eventually we sort things out, or so I think. Sadly, I can't use my current phone on their network because it's GSM and the network isn't. So, I made the mistake of looking at phones in a store full of salespeople on commission. They actually refused to sell me the cheapest model to protect me from myself because if I bought such a plain, simple phone I would inevitably end up miserable and unpopular and forever resent myself for making that decision. Is it really so strange to want my phone to make and receive calls, my Ipod to download and play songs, my camera to take and share pictures, and my computer to surf the internet? I don't want some overpriced stupid thing that does all of those things poorly.
I tend to veer off on tangents. Pick your tangent from the menu on the right.