Monday, November 28, 2011

Monday Visual Inspiration: (Funny) signs o' the times

There are plenty of websites that make fun of and showcase funny signs (WIN! and There I Fixed It come to mind), but while Guy and I fly back from Georgia today I wanted to share a few I've seen recently out and about. Little moments that make me laugh--some unintentional, and some meant to be clear and yet funny).

Restroom in the Cherry Creek Library. Meddle not in the affairs of English majors, for thou art ignorant and do not possess a red pen.

Sign on the door of a coffee/pastry shop in Cherry Creek. Fine, I'll go go poop and pee without paying in the Whole Foods across the street, then.

Sign on some paints in a craft shop in a historical district in St. Louis. Gotta watch out for marauding bands of historical sticklers....

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Happy Thanksgivin', y'all!

Guy and I are getting on a plane today to fly to Georgia for Thanksgiving (a Thursday flight was the only way to get the ticket price to a reasonable amount). We considered not going to Georgia for the holiday because Thanksgiving flying is more painful than sitting front row at a Miley Cyrus-Justin Bieber double-bill concert, but a) I like as well as love my family, and b) my sister hasn't been able to fly out to see me for nearly two years. So in order for me to enjoy my peeps and for Kitty and me to spend some sista-time, I must needs get my behind on a plane.

An unintended good consequence of flying on Thanksgiving is that we have our Thursday festivities on Friday, effectively bowing out of the Black Friday nonsense. Guy gets to sprawl on Mom's sofa with three cats on him and watch some football, and we annoy Mom in the kitchen while El Seebeno putters around in the yard with the dogs--not a frenzied shopper or overpriced plastic-thingy to buy in sight. Later in the weekend we might leave El Seebeno and Guy at a bar while we gals go doodling through a fabric store (again, mostly to annoy Mom) and then hang out at the farm to make Christmas cookies. Should be a good time, indeed. Here's hoping your holiday is a good time too, wherever and with whomever you may be!

Monday, November 21, 2011


We recently had a web-blocking/censoring-thingy type of software put on all the computers in our office. The idea was that the partners of DA and the head of IT/Dungeon Master wanted to make sure that we capped access to anything potentially flammable (political sites and porn sites, but then I repeat myself), and they wanted to prevent streaming of data so that the internet had bandwidth available for when we needed to download something from an FTP site. Overall, it's not terrible, but it's pretty annoying. For starters, we were working on a job for a commercial client (a distillery), and we couldn't even access their website because it had to do with alcohol. Excuse me? We're architects--everything we do has to do with alcohol. We also are unable to access YouTube, which means I can't watch my sister's chicken and kitteh videos, but those in the office that use SketchUp can't access the tutorial videos that SketchUp posts on YouTube. So much for trying to learn something.

Because sites like Twitter and Facebook are also blocked, we on the front lines think it's not just about bandwidth but also about funwidth. It would seem that one of the goals of this is to stop access to websites where people might waste time, but apparently whoever installed this software has forgotten that people have been wasting time at work long before Facebook was invented. The internet screening software has a fancy name, but we in the trenches call it Funblocker.

Picture the scene: a Friday afternoon with Pixie, Intern Kimmy, and Ingrid, a fellow architect who also happens to be a lesbian (a fact that will be more meaningful in a moment).

Ingrid: Kimmy, when you build models in SketchUp, where do you get your site from?
Kimmy: Um...Google Earth is your best bet, but it might be blocked.
Ingrid: 'Kay. I wonder if Funblocker will...[mouse clicking] you gotta be kidding me!
Pixie: Seriously? Is Google Earth blocked?
Kimmy: Yeah, I've had that experience too. But you can click that button and file a request to have the site unblocked and they'll unblock it for you.
Pixie: What, are they worried you're gonna spend half your day on Google Earth or something?
Ingrid: The hell would I do on it? [clicking through various windows on Funblocker's appeal website]
Pixie: You could play a helluva game of Farmville, I guess.
Ingrid: Okay, it's asking me to label what the site's content pertains to...[scrolling] Accounting? Advertising? Alcohol? Oh, if only...wait, "Homosexuality?"
Kimmy: That's a category?!
Pixie: [looking over Ingrid's shoulder] Ooh, say that Google Earth can be categorized as "Homosexuality"!
Ingrid: Hell yeah! [pretends to type] "I want...the gayest mapping site...I can have. MapQuest isn'!"
Pixie and Kimmy: [doubled over laughing]
Ingrid: [still pretending to type] "I to use...Google import a site...into my model which...I am modeling in FlameUp."

Monday, November 14, 2011

Monday Visual Inspiration: Things are looking up

Skylight in the shower in a guest room at the Amargosa Hotel and Opera House, near Death Valley, CA.

After having finished my CD deadline and a huge addendum deadline for Gestalt's Uber MOB, I'm finally feeling like I'm coming up for air. It looks like I'll be doing some design work on a small healthcare project we just scored, plus I'll be working on some big overall stuff for Design Associates' healthcare practice (some marketing, some organization of a database of all of our healthcare projects under a certain size, etc.) I'll be hopping in and out of the CA on Uber MOB as questions come up about the departments I worked on, but mercifully I won't be leading the day-to-day CA on the project. While I'm excited to work on all these things, it also looks like at least for the next couple of months, I'll be back at about 40 hours a week. That is strangely the part to which most I look forward. I need a little break as we wind down towards the winter solstice and I start putting my efforts towards a few visits back home as well as taking better care of the house and myself (and my two evil kittehs, one of whom appears to have put on a lot of weight in the past year).

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

O yayz! Iz Kitteh's Birfday! Lolz!

YAYZ! It's mai sister's birfday! Wishing luv and lulz and kittehs and a better job than what she's having to do now and a munniez and naps and MOAR KITTEHS!

Monday, November 7, 2011

Next on The Bachelorette: Pixie cleans the house

Guy left Sunday for a week-long trip for work, and I suddenly found myself in a quiet condo--no football on TV, so beeping and clicking of playing a video game on the computer, no shuffling through the house occasionally to get some Kool-Aid from the fridge or see what I was reading/doing/fiddling with. After I kissed him goodbye following a quick breakfast at Einstein's, I was met with a wall of strange, discomforting silence. So I did the only thing that felt right--I called my sister and started cleaning the house.

Guy has gone on business trips before, but it's been a long time (maybe two years, at least?) since he's been on one. Usually, those business trips are overnight--gone on Wednesday, back late on Thursday. I was now staring Guylessness in the face for five days, which was practically unthinkable for some reason. It was almost embarrassing to admit, especially since I had initially greeted the news of his trip with some relief. I figured some time apart is always good for us, since we do spend a lot of time together, snuggled down in the TV room every evening and within 20 feet of each other most of the weekends. I figured, with him out of the house for a stretch, I might get some cleaning done (me and my cleaning fetish!) and I won't have to watch whatever nonsense is on TV--sports, science shows, more sports, or the latest aliens/Doomsday show on History Channel, which has of late become enamored with alien-based and apocalypse-based programming.

So I talked to my sister for a while, and we went over everything that has happened to us in the past two weeks, and I cleared a great deal of clutter from the main areas of the house, even the TV room. I mopped and swept and Swiffed the hardwood floors and wiped down counters and put dishes in the dishwasher. Then I called Mom and painted my nails while we caught up on what all the critters, young and old, were doing around the farm. I polished off an entire book in one sitting (well, three sittings if you include getting up to go pee twice)--it was Beautiful Unbroken: One Nurse's Life, and it moved me to tears many times. And as I put the book down finally after finishing it and got up to feed the kittehs, I realized that the house...was still heavily quiet.

So I took a shower, heated up some leftover Chinese, and watched Sunday Night Football while waiting for Guy's call to say he'd made it to his hotel room all right. Sunday is a day for comfort, after all.