So, where the hell have I been for the past few weeks?
Well, aside from the usual goings-on (pool league, etc). About three weekends ago, I took a set of coupons that I got in the mail to Best Buy to see what sort of stuff I could pick up. Imagine my surprise when I saw that they were selling DirecTV DVRs (a.k.a. TiVo) for 93 dollars. Given that I was at the Perimeter store, and they had already sold out of all their units, I had them call around to the other stores in the Metro Atlanta area, and eventually drove like a madman over to the store in near Cumberland Mall to pick one up (for 84 dollars with a coupon :). I went straight home that night (completely bypassing the stop at Target I had intended to make to pick up some more socks) and tried to hook it up...
Unfortunately, since I live in a condo serviced with two or three DirecTV dishes for the whole complex, just connecting the thing wouldn't work. I did a search on tivocommunity.com, and found out that I've got a stacked and diplexed setup (ask me if you need to know more) and I would need about a hundred dollars worth of additional equipment to get it running smoothly (i.e. with two tuners so I can record two things simultaneously). I bought everything online (at about a 60% discount than your usual brick-and-mortar stores), and it all arrived last monday (the 20th). From there, I had to wrangle a bunch of RG6 cable to connect everything correctly as well as get a signal amplifier so as not to lose about half my channels.
After Thursday of last week, I got things hooked up clearly. So now I can grab Angel
, Jake 2.0
, and The O.C.
all at the same time, and not have to worry about re-setting a VCR if the power goes out.
Of course, every silver lining has a dark cloud...
Tuesday of last week, I learned that our main client wants to cut down on our billable hours. I suspect that this has something to do with budget crunches and missed forecasts, but what it ultimately means is that where my company could bill x
hours of work is now chopped to x/4
This doesn't bode well for the company's future. As well as seeking new business, we're also looking at different ways of trying to squeeze more money/productivity out of the situation we're currently in.
In the meantime, however, my mom and brother have this trip to China planned, and since we don't have enough hours to cover a single person working for a full-time week, everyone concerned, from my supervisor to my boss, thought it was a great idea for me to join them on their trip. Towards the end of last week, I had to send a bunch of money and express mail my passport to someplace in Houston, so I could get a visa approved to visit China (I'll tell you more about this after my trip). I received my passport with the visa and everything last night.
I've got mixed feeling about going to China, however--firstly, my father says it's heavily polluted over there, and it'll wreak havoc with my allergies. I've already got two boxes of Claritin ready for my daily consumption. The plane ride, as well, I figure will be anywhere between 14-18 hours long. I hate flying.
But I will get to see the Great Wall, as well as the buried Terracotta warriors, and that's pretty exciting.
In other arenas, I wrote this CrazyGoNuts Drabble
for the sunday100 Masks