mellicious: Narnia witch in a carriage pulled by polar bears, captioned "OMGWTFPOLARBEAR!" (TB - tiny humans)
(One more in the previous post, because I was using it as a test.)

I drive by the old city cemetery (the signs say founded 1839) and rarely pay attention to it. But this week it's full to the brim of yellow wildflowers and it caught my eye, so I drove around the block and found the entrance. I went to one graveside service there years ago and I think that may have been the only time I'd ever been inside before now.

No wildflowers in this pic, because this one section had been mowed.


But this section has flowers and the one in the other post does too:

I took these a couple of days ago, and I drove Rob through it on the way home that day, too, because it looked so cool. For somebody who loves ghost stories, he's paid surprisingly little attention to that cemetery.
mellicious: Narnia witch in a carriage pulled by polar bears, captioned "OMGWTFPOLARBEAR!" (Xmas light gif)
Because I have mentioned this topic several times this month: I was surprised to see the Crown Princess in port in Galveston today, since I thought Princess Cruises were not coming to Galveston. Maybe wherever they're going to go in LaPorte - which is inland, up the Ship Channel - is not ready yet. But it was definitely here for today. (In fact, if it's on a normal cruise ship schedule it's probably gone by now. They usually leave around 4 or 4:30, far as I've ever been able to tell.)

It's quiet at work today, but not quite as much as I expected. Really not much more so than any Saturday has been lately. (Hospitals do have to keep functioning through the holidays, after all, though, so campus is never completely deserted, even on Christmas.)

I've been going gradually back through my old LJ entries and fixing keywords (and icons, which also got broken somewhere along the line) - it's interesting to read through those old entries. The keyword I was fixing today was "news" and some of those entries are a bit perplexing to read now. I was talking about current events to an audience who presumably knew what I was talking about at the time, and I didn't always bother to explain to any great degree (or sometimes at all). And most of the links don't work now, of course. Most of it I remembered after thinking about it a while, but there were one or two that I had forgotten about completely.

I also found a reference to the movie "Hollywoodland" which I had completely forgotten the existence of. I had to go look it up before I remembered what it was at all. I vaguely remember it now, but only vaguely. The George Reeves thing, yeah, but what actually happened in the movie? Not really. And yet I quite liked it at the time.

Oh, last night I found About a Boy in the $1 section of OnDemand, so I watched that. I remembered that I liked it, although not a lot about it, either - and Rob also wandered through and got interested, so he's going to have to come back & watch it later. It's a 2-day rental, so if he'll remember to do it we don't even have to pay another dollar. It really is a pretty good movie - it holds up better than a lot of Hugh Grant's movies. (Also, the "boy" of the title is one of the mutants of "X-Men: First Class." I would never have figured that one out without IMDb. He doesn't look much the same at all. And Natalia Tena is in it! - she did actually look the same once I stopped and looked at her, although she was 15 or 16 at the time.)

I did finally talk to my aunt. We are having Christmas dinner at my cousin Brittany's new house, which of course I haven't seen. She also has a new baby which I haven't seen either. (I'm pretty sure I never sent a baby gift, either, come to think of it. Darnit.)

(Yes, my cousin is much younger than me. I use "cousin" extremely loosely to refer to a bunch of first cousins and cousins-once-or-twice-removed and people who I have known all my life - or theirs, anyway - and usually don't stop to figure out my actual relation to. They may or may not be actual blood relatives, but they're all cousins as far as I am concerned.)

Come to think of it, I read the book of About a Boy once too - Nick Hornby wrote it. I remember that it was not quite so heart-warming but y'know, Hugh Grant movies of 10 years ago were required to be heartwarming, it was like a law or something. So not surprising.
mellicious: Narnia witch in a carriage pulled by polar bears, captioned "OMGWTFPOLARBEAR!" (Xmas - pink aluminum)
I'm not saying you're actually going to get 7 kinds of random here, but I'm pretty sure that the only way I'm going to get an entry out tonight is to loose the random.

Well, ok, let's start with some updates on things I've talked about previously: first of all, the Texans lost rather ignominiously on Monday Night Football. But hell, they had those injury problems that we had talked about, and it was New England in Foxboro in December and if you read between the lines when I was talking about it before, I wasn't really holding my breath for a victory there. But hey, we're still 11-2. Most teams would give their eyeteeth to be in the Texans' size 14 shoes. We'll see what happens with Indianapolis this weekend.

Also, regarding the cruise ships, this was big news in Galveston this past week: Disney has decided to leave earlier than anticipated. (It looks like the rest of that article is behind a pay wall now, darnit.) Anyway, they're still staying through 2013, they're just not going into 2014 as they had previously hinted they might. And apparently the other suitor for those berths was going to be Princess Cruises, but they have decided to go further inshore and go out of LaPorte. (It's always possible that that will not work out, anyway; LaPorte has had a couple of flings in the past at being a cruise ship departure city and it never seems to work out too well. We'll see.)

I stayed home from work today because I had a sore throat. (I say I stayed home; I didn't drive to Galveston, is what I mean, but I ended up doing several hours of work anyway.) What I really was leading to here, though, was that I have been sick for pretty much the last month now. I'm pretty sure I caught a cold on top of my normal fall allergies, and I was sick for the 10 days or so immediately before Thanksgiving, and since then I've had trouble shaking it. I've been through bags and bags of cough drops. I am getting better, but really slowly. And every few days I get these sore throats, which are usually bad in the morning but then go away again. It's very annoying. I'm pretty sure it's just allergies, but with the way it keeps dragging on, you gotta wonder. (But then what is it? Strep throat? I dunno. I suppose I might should go to the doctor and see what they say. But I hate to.)

I started sending out Christmas cards, finally - I had 5 people on the TUS list who were out of the country, so I did them first, and they're all mailed, and today I started working on the rest of the list. TUS people (until I run out, anyway) are getting some of my precious hoarded cards that I made myself. I've been footling around with more homemade cards this year but haven't gotten far. Anyway, I'm going to use up last year's stash first, some of which are very cute. (I also have Grinch cards and... something else that was on the morbid side... that I'm really tempted to give to my elderly neighbors just to wake them up a bit. But I probably won't.)

Local again

Dec. 3rd, 2012 11:26 pm
mellicious: Narnia witch in a carriage pulled by polar bears, captioned "OMGWTFPOLARBEAR!" (Texans)
(Look! Texans icon! I made it myself!)

More Houston-Galveston stuff, some of which refers to yesterday's entry:
  • Aw man, I knew it was probably coming, but Jim Deshaies is leaving us for the Cubs. I adore that man. (But I'm not sure I adore him enough that I'll go watch Cubs games just for him. Of course, if the Astros are bad enough this next year, that may start to look like a more attractive option.)
  • In other (ex-)Astros news, Brad Lidge is probably retiring. Also, bonus footage there of the Astros clinching in 2005. (Rob and I were watching the faces and in some cases the jerseys during the scrum, and going, "Berkman! Biggio! Clemens!" Damn, that was a good team, even if they couldn't win a WS game.)
  • I had to go to Galveston today for a doctor's appointment, and the other Carnival ship was in today. I got out of my appointment right at 4:30, which I have learned over the past couple of years is about the time that the ships usually depart. You could tell that anyway, because when I got back downtown, half the passengers were lined up looking over the railings. To me this always brings to mind old black-and-white movies where the passengers line up to wave at their loved ones who are waving back from below. But nobody is going to stand around to watch you leave when you're just going sailing around the Gulf of Mexico for five days or whatever it is. Plus most of the passengers arrive on buses or park remotely, so there's nobody to watch, in any case. (I'm sure the passengers aren't really lining up for that at all, they're just watching the ship pull out. Still amuses me just the same.)
  • I said confidently yesterday that the Texans game was taping (by which I actually meant DV-R'ing, of course, but that just doesn't have the same ring to it) so of course when I got home it hadn't worked properly, and I only got the last hour or so. I didn't really care that much, anyway, but I really should probably investigate what happened there. It seems to have switched on at three o'clock or something, and our games are nearly always at noon. Honestly, U-verse, you're supposed to just read my mind! (And often it seems to. I'm terribly spoiled, really.)
  • Also, the Texans have serious injury problems. They coped with it pretty well, yesterday, but that was just the Titans. New England may be another story.
Note to self: 45 minutes is too long of a drive for a routine doctor appointment. (As the university knows full well, it's why they have about a zillion clinics scattered all over the north half of the county.)

(I was going to add a picture of the rather excessive holiday decorations around our apartment complex, but my phone isn't cooperating. Sorry.)
mellicious: Narnia witch in a carriage pulled by polar bears, captioned "OMGWTFPOLARBEAR!" (MST3K - mint flavor)

It's Sunday afternoon and the Texans are playing, and while I am generally fairly calm on the subject (most of the time), I am kind of into this whole Texans juggernaut thing. We've had a lot of bad years and it's about time we had a good one! And unfortunately I can't see any of the TVs from my desk and I can't really go wander around because sitting at this desk IS my job, basically, but luckily, I have my trusty iPhone and the NFL '12 app to inform me that the Texans just won 24-10 and they are now 11-1 for the year, so woot! (I watched a little bit of it at home and then listened to most of the 2nd quarter in the car, and it's taping so I'll probably watch the whole thing again when I get home. So you don't really need to feel bad for me on account of missing it.) So let's see... the math here is that there are four games left and worst case scenario if we lost the rest of them is we'd be 11-5. We certainly hope it won't come to that, although we have New England at Foxboro next week so that's sort of the acid test. We still have to play Indianapolis twice, that's all I know about the rest of the schedule off the top of my head. Actually that accounts for 3 of the 4 remaining weeks, doesn't it? (According to ESPN, the Texans did clinch a playoff spot today. I didn't think we could do that today, but I'm glad to find out I'm wrong! Now it becomes all about home field and such.)

Other Local Topics... )

Cruises

Dec. 28th, 2011 12:26 am
mellicious: Narnia witch in a carriage pulled by polar bears, captioned "OMGWTFPOLARBEAR!" (Mel - snow)
I had to go around a big traffic jam yesterday on the way to work, caused by cruise ships. Apparently the City of Galveston knows how to handle the traffic caused by one ship offloading and reloading passengers. It's when there's more than one that they start having trouble. And both of the ones that were there were really big ships, which probably makes a difference as well. Until lately, the main ship that did cruises out of Galveston was the Carnival Ecstasy, which is a considerably smaller ship. Cruises out of Galveston are a booming business (mostly because if you live in the Midwest you can generally fly to Houston a lot cheaper than you can fly to Miami), so the Ecstasy has apparently been assigned elsewhere, and now we have the Carnival Triumph and the Carnival Magic, both of which are very much larger. They never come in on the same day, though, so the ones there yesterday were the Magic and then the Mariner of the Seas, which I'm pretty sure is a Royal Caribbean ship. It's been around about once a week lately as well. (It's a very pretty ship, I think - its design is much more interesting than the Carnival ships.)

My life kind of revolves around boats these days, a bit. I can sure tell you a lot more about tankers and tugboats than I could six months ago, believe me. Although my dad was a commercial fisherman for a long time so I guess I've probably always known more about boats than the average person, whether I wanted to or not. The funny thing is that I don't even like being on boats all that much - I'm either sort of claustrophobic or maybe it's that I'm a bit of a control freak in my way, and it bothers me that when you're on a boat you're out of control, unless you're the pilot, and you can't just get off any time you please. I've never been on a cruise and I don't much have any desire to - I would go if my friends were going, maybe, or something like that. Other than that, well, Rob's not interested either so I probably won't. It's a good thing for Carnival et al. that everybody's not like me.



(Also, speaking of Cruises of a different kind, we went to see the Mission: Impossible movie tonight. I am not Mr. Cruise's biggest fan, by any means, but it was pretty good.)

mellicious: Narnia witch in a carriage pulled by polar bears, captioned "OMGWTFPOLARBEAR!" (nautilus)
(Written yesterday.)

Remember when I was talking about Buc-ee's? I went to Galveston for a doctor appointment this morning, and on the way back I spotted a new billboard on the freeway - for the Buc-ee's in Madisonville, 138 miles away. It said so on the sign. It didn't say Madisonville, I just happen to know that's where it is. It's sort of hard for me to believe that it's really cost effective to put up a billboard that far away from the destination they're advertising. Do that many people really leave Galveston and drive straight through Houston to Dallas? (which is some 250 miles, so the Buc-ee's is more or less halfway.) I think of most Galveston tourists as being from the Houston area but I know some do come further. (I didn't bring a camera so I don't have photographic evidence for the billboard, but it looked essentially like the one I posted before, anyway.)

I hadn't been to Galveston in a couple of months - there are still pockets of destruction visible but things are back to some semblance of normal, at least, and the tourists are back in force. It's that time of year, though - as a former tourist industry worker, I would say the peak tourist season in Galveston is about July 1st to mid-August. The minute the kids go back to school, it's over. Wanna visit Galveston with the warm weather but without the crowds? Do it after school starts.

The doctor's visit was mostly about prescription refills, so nothing much interesting to report there. Oh, except that I learned that my doctor lives in one of the few areas of Galveston which did not flood, lucky woman. I hadn't seen her in a year, so we had to catch up on the (massive) changes in all of our lives since then. Things at UTMB are edging back towards normal a bit, too.  The office was busier than the last time I went, for sure, and the clinics in general were, too, but still nothing like it used to be. I hear the ER is about to re-open, though, so that will push things back towards normalcy some more. (If you're not entirely getting the connection, it's because the ER is a big driver of admissions and clinic visits and all that stuff. So "getting back to normal" as far as volume of business at UTMB can't really happen at all without it.)
mellicious: Narnia witch in a carriage pulled by polar bears, captioned "OMGWTFPOLARBEAR!" (breathe)
I know some people have seen this article already - and the thing is, I don't disagree with a lot of what she says. But I went to Galveston right after I read it yesterday, and I thought, "Hell, this place isn't dead." It's going to be a different city for a while, and it may end up a smaller city, but it ain't gone just yet.

I drove down Broadway, and there's still a ton of trash piled up out there, but apparently that's because Broadway is technically a state highway and the city isn't allowed to pick up trash there. (It's been in the paper, lately, which is why I know the answer to this. The state said they were held up by having to award contracts for the trash pickup and it will be done "soon".) But things are clean behind the trash piles, for the most part, and the stoplights are all back on and the businesses are starting to reopen in force. In general I was pleasantly surprised.


I went to Galveston because I had a check to put in the bank (a very belated estate check) and then my boss kinda did one of those, "Well, while you're going..." things, and I ended up going by the office. Which ended up being rather heartening, too, really. The rumor lately has been that our building wasn't going to be ready to move back into until January, and I'm sure there's some reason for that that I didn't see - but honestly, our office looked fine. The elevators were working (the front ones, anyway - I didn't try the ones in the back of the building and I suspect they are not functional) and the a/c was on and the toilets were working, although the bathroom lights were off, for some reason. And most of the plants were alive, rather amazingly, after all this time. I think a couple of my co-workers have been up there at various times and have watered them.

Well, anyway, I want to be able to enjoy working at home for a bit, before we have to go back, so I'm not trying to rock the boat. And like I said, I'm sure that for some reason the building is not approved to be open. But from the looks of things it's perfectly okay, at least in our area.
mellicious: Narnia witch in a carriage pulled by polar bears, captioned "OMGWTFPOLARBEAR!" (Default)
This is one of those things where I'm not sure if the article is publicly available, and so I'm posting it so you guys can see it. I know Col in particular has been interested in this.

Biosafety lab passes disaster test

Texas facility cleared to analyse lethal pathogens.

Rex Dalton

Galveston, Texas

 

On 11 November, US officials will dedicate a new research complex containing high-containment labs for deadly pathogens: the $175-million Galveston National Laboratory in Texas. Yet even as questions arise over the safety of other biosecurity research facilities, the cornerstone of the new complex survived its biggest test yet: Hurricane Ike, which devastated Galveston Island last month yet left the new biosafety level 4 (BSL-4) lab intact.

The Galveston lab is one of several BSL-4 facilities that have sprung up since the terrorist and anthrax attacks of 2001. Last week, the US Government Accountability Office released a scathing report on the security of the others. Two of the five current BSL-4 facilities, the report found, had security problems ranging from poor guard facilities to lax camera systems. Some members of Congress have called for the construction of new labs to be halted until such issues can be addressed. For now, the Galveston facility seems to be coming out the best — despite being located in a hurricane-prone zone.

Ike, which hit on 13 September, caused at least $700 million worth of damage — including $275 million in lost hospital revenues — to University of Texas facilities. That includes more than $400 million for clinical facilities at the University of Texas Medical Branch (UTMB), and at least $18 million for UTMB research labs. Lower-floor laboratories were flooded, and hundreds of animals had to be destroyed after auxiliary power systems failed.

But a sterling effort meant that staff moved dozens of freezers of samples to safety. No infectious agents were released, almost all frozen specimens were saved, and highly sensitive colonies of exotic animals were unharmed. For instance, the UTMB saved a colony of mosquitoes — Culex taeniopus, which transmits Venezuelan equine encephalitis to humans and horses — by rigging up a temporary fluctuating-light system to mimic sunrise and sunset for mating, says virologist Scott Weaver, the UTMB's vice chair of research.

Across Galveston Island, research facilities at Texas A&M University's marine centre also suffered after losing power. For example, the state laboratory that tests the popular Galveston Bay oysters for enteric pathogens lost a freezer of research samples. This is the final hurricane season that the A&M centre will spend in the 70-year-old building; a new facility with better back-up power is under construction.

Flooding, not winds, caused most of the damage in Galveston — as did Tropical Storm Allison at research facilities in Houston, 75 kilometres north of Galveston, in 2001. Accordingly, at the new national laboratory in Galveston, the bottom two floors are built of sealed concrete, and a back-up power system — with a dedicated natural-gas line for fuel — is located 11 metres above sea level. The new BSL-4 labs are on the top floors. Indeed, the new facility came in handy as staff rushed to fill its −80 °C freezers with research samples from elsewhere on campus before the storm hit. Other UTMB facilities, such as offices and wet labs, were built on lower, more vulnerable levels — mainly for cost reasons, says Stanley Lemon, director of the Institute for Human Infections and Immunity, the UTMB operation within the Galveston National Laboratory.

The university's current BSL-4 lab was safely positioned on the second floor of an older building. "We didn't lose the core," says Clarence Peters, the virologist who directs the UTMB's Center for Biodefense and Emerging Infectious Diseases. "If we had, it would be like starting all over again." Still, he jokes: "I thought I was going to have to snorkel into my office." Located in the basement, it was waist-deep in water by the time he got there.

The vulnerability of BSL-4 labs is a hot topic in America these days. A second BSL-4 lab is under construction at Boston University in Massachusetts; its location, in South Boston, has triggered complaints from neighbourhood residents who worry about containment. Galveston, by comparison, is far less densely populated, and its history as a centre of tropical-disease research is more ingrained in the community.

The new lab at Galveston will be inaugurated with a lecture by Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases in Bethesda, Maryland, which funded two-thirds of the facility's cost. It is meant to be certified and ready for operations this autumn.

Meanwhile, the federal government is to select by the end of the year a site for the $450-million National Bio and Agro-Defense Facility, which will replace the Plum Island infectious-disease labs off New York. One of the five finalists is a low-rated site in Mississippi. It is inland, not immediately on the hurricane-prone Gulf Coast — but still is near the delta of the mighty Mississippi River.

 

Plans

Aug. 16th, 2007 09:53 pm
mellicious: Narnia witch in a carriage pulled by polar bears, captioned "OMGWTFPOLARBEAR!" (umbrellas)
Inspired by that scary-looking track for Dean that came out this afternoon, we went and spent a godawful amount on groceries - we were going anyway, but we bought extra canned stuff and so forth - and we came up with a tentative plan for what we'll do if we have to evacuate. There's no question of staying here if it really comes right at us - it wouldn't take much of a hurricane to flood this place - but we do have Mom's place, which is also in a flood zone, if it came to anything major, but which is 25 miles or so inland, at least. So that would be the first stage, going there. Yeah, it's half empty, but it does have a bed and some furniture, and electricity and water. No cable, no phone, so it's not exactly a long-term plan, but it'd do for somewhere to sleep. And we might repair further inland, to my aunt's, if it becomes anything big. (Also, as I said to Rob, if we end up getting several days off, we might want to go there just for something to do. It will get boring fast with no internet and no cable.)

Yeah, I know this is early. Dean is still a long way off, but it never hurts to have a plan.

Come to think of it, not everybody knows where I live, so let me explain exactly why it's so much of a concern. After the 1900 hurricane (aka Isaac's Storm, if you've read that), they built a seawall in Galveston, right? It's 12 feet high, and they basically jacked up the whole town to match - and I mean that literally. They put everything up on stilts, and filled in underneath it. All of the east half of Galveston starts out 12 feet above sea level on the Gulf side and then slopes back towards the bay. However, where we live wasn't in town at that time, it was out in the country, and the Seawall didn't come down this far, originally. And later, when they did extend it down here, they didn't do the filling-in part, it just slopes right back down on the back side. And that's where we live, right behind the Seawall, a couple of hundred feet from the Gulf. And I don't know how far we are above sea-level, exactly, but it's not far. Five feet, maybe, at a guess. (Maybe. I wouldn't be a bit surprised to find out it was two or three.) And we live in a first-floor apartment. Galveston doesn't normally flood in any major way, because of that sloping-back-to-the bay business, but there's still storm surge. So this is not somewhere you want to be in anything but the tiniest hurricane.

(We were discussing something today that I'd practically forgotten, though. We came to a hurricane party at these very apartments, long before we lived here. Well, it was more of a tropical-storm party, really. We sat in somebody's third-floor apartment till about 4am and got drunk and played Jeopardy! as I recall. And I remember looking down at the pool, and they had taken all the poolside furniture and sunk it in the pool. Wonder if they still do that. Seems like getting it out would be a bitch.)
mellicious: Narnia witch in a carriage pulled by polar bears, captioned "OMGWTFPOLARBEAR!" (Christmas: snowflakes)
It's gotten warm - 70-ish in the daytime - which I don't like in the winter, because it usually means fog. I hate fog. I understand that this happens because when it's warm this time of year, the air is warmer than the water - and since we're completely surrounded by the damn water here, guess what happens. Today it was foggy in the morning, burned off for a while, then rolled back in after lunch. Ugh. I'm ready for a cold front. Not that we're supposed to have another one any time soon.


My boss went downstairs to get coffee this morning and came back saying they were having a press conference in the lobby. I think I mentioned the big donation UTMB got in the BP settlement when it was first announced, but apparently it became official today. The local paper did a good article yesterday about the work the burn unit does (warning: more info than you may want to know about burn treatments there), and that's where the money is going.

(Also, here is the 60 Minutes segment about the BP explosion. Which is pretty mind-blowing, and Incidentally, was also apparently Ed Bradley's last piece.)


Galveston basically has that amazing burn unit because there are industrial areas all around us, so there's lots of burn patients to learn on. Even out in the water, there are oil platforms, and patients get brought in pretty regularly from those by helicopter, I understand. On the land side, there's Texas City, and if you read the Galveston Daily News article, you saw that the burn unit was founded after the other Texas City explosion, a much bigger one over 50 years ago.

After we watched the 60 Minutes piece, I said, You know, I coulda told you the BP plant probably needed updating. It's right on Highway 146 so you drive right by it if you go to Texas City or anywhere further up Galveston Bay. That plant is old, it's very obvious. But we're all so used to seeing it we don't pay any attention, normally. And it refines, I seem to recall, a significant portion of all the oil sold in this country. Kinda scary, once you do think about it.


(I intended this entry to be about Galveston, and it got a little sidetracked. I'll talk about that another day.)


Holidailies gold
mellicious: Narnia witch in a carriage pulled by polar bears, captioned "OMGWTFPOLARBEAR!" (Default)
I said some time ago that I was going to write about what's going on at work. I never did it, and I'm not sure I'm ready to now, but here's two links that will give you a good general idea of the state of things around here:

[note: I tried so you don't have to: the links no longer work.]

Lawmakers concerned about UTMB's direction

We're havin' some fun now.
mellicious: Narnia witch in a carriage pulled by polar bears, captioned "OMGWTFPOLARBEAR!" (nautilus)
Once again, it's bedtime and I'm writing an entry. The only reason it isn't past bedtime is that I don't have to go to work tomorrow, so I can stay up a bit later. I'm getting my car worked on instead, oh joy. (Mostly routine stuff: inspection, oil change. But I'm going up to the dealer in Houston so that they can tinker some of their past work, which is still under warranty. Thus the need for a whole day off.)

I was talking to somebody the other day about how Galveston was still sort of seedy, but not necessarily in a bad way. (It was because of Columbine's Pensacolas Past entry.) I don't think it's in any real danger of losing that quality any time soon, but there are two large demolition jobs going on on the Seawall, and both of them make me sort of sad. One is the old convention center, which was ugly and unused, and I'll mostly be glad it's gone, except that it's where my uncle Ted (who's now dead) graduated from medical school back in the 60s. I was 6 or 7 and that graduation was one of the first things like that that I was allowed to go to. I remember feeling very grown up. I think UTMB has their graduation ceremonies on campus these days.

The second one was an old, very very seedy motel that had become a haven for prostitutes and drug-users, and so I probably shouldn't be too sad about it either, in a way, but on the other hand it was a very cool-looking hotel in its time - all retro-late-50s curves. (I can't even think what the name of it was - seahorse? sandpiper? some kind of beachy name like that - jesus, my memory is so terrible sometimes.) It even had a double-decker round bar. And I'm sure both of those places are going to be replaced with some sort of chain motel, or maybe a restaurant. Yeah, we need more of those.
mellicious: Narnia witch in a carriage pulled by polar bears, captioned "OMGWTFPOLARBEAR!" (m15m: deus ex machina)
I finished Jonathan Strange and Mr Norrell, finally. Yay, me! (Now I'll probably start it again tomorrow. Because I kind of adored it.)

This is the first weekend of Mardi Gras, which means horrible traffic. Although it might not be too bad, I'm hoping. Next week I might have to make some sort of alternate arrangements for going to see Mom - or just spend the night up there. Because last year it took me about an hour and a half to get back into Galveston on Saturday night. Seriously.

2-2

Oct. 17th, 2004 11:40 pm
mellicious: Narnia witch in a carriage pulled by polar bears, captioned "OMGWTFPOLARBEAR!" (baseball quote - fascist)
My non-work life right now is Kingdom of Loathing and baseball. That sounds rather sad, doesn't it? But oh well. Baseball will be over in a couple of weeks - after that I typically turn my attention to regular TV for a little bit.

Anyway, the Astros and Cardinals are tied 2-2. If we can win the last home game tomorrow, we'll be in pretty good shape. Essentially we're playing best two of three from here out, and tomorrow is the sole home game in that new series. Backe is pitching - the hometown boy. (He is from Galveston.) Well, we'll see. If worst comes to worst at least we didn't disgrace ourselves in the NLCS. And I'm too superstitious to even talk about best case.

What is it about baseball that makes you superstitious? I'm not a superstitious person in general, but when it comes to baseball I tend to get that way. I have seen a theory (somewhere or other) that it has to do with the large number of games in a baseball season. That might be part of it, but that doesn't come close to explaining it for me. Anybody have any theories?

I did go see my mother yesterday, and I actually talked to my dad on the phone today. I haven't talked to him at all in ages; I have been theorizing that he was mad at me. But I guess he's getting over it. (This went on so long that I was starting to get a little worried about him - the man has cancer, after all. But he finally sent me some e-mail, and then my sister did talk to him on the phone, so we knew he was alive. Neither of us is really close to him, as you may have guessed.)
mellicious: Narnia witch in a carriage pulled by polar bears, captioned "OMGWTFPOLARBEAR!" (cat - yuck)
I forgot to mention that we have been completely awash in bikers all weekend, because of this thing. It's kind of fun having them around, on the whole - they're certainly more colorful than your average tourist - but my god are they noisy. Since I don't have a functioning air conditioner in my car I generally drive around with the windows open, and I thought they were gonna split my eardrums a couple of times. I gather making your engine quieter is not a big priority with the Harley-riding set.

Profile

mellicious: Narnia witch in a carriage pulled by polar bears, captioned "OMGWTFPOLARBEAR!" (Default)
mellicious

October 2017

S M T W T F S
1234567
8 91011121314
15161718192021
22232425262728
293031    

Syndicate

RSS Atom

Most Popular Tags

Style Credit

Expand Cut Tags

No cut tags
Page generated Oct. 22nd, 2017 07:58 am
Powered by Dreamwidth Studios