January 15, 2006

I got up this morning around 9:00. At this rate I will be lowering my sleeping average over the course of this year! But I was awake so I got myself up. Dominica slept in until noon. Her Friday into Saturday schedule really wears her out and this is her chance to catch up.

Yesterday and today I have put in a bunch of time with dad’s slide scanner getting my massive slide collection put onto the computer so that I can get some practical use out of all of this chemical film archive that I have amassed over the years. I have previously scanned in the bulk of my prints because I had a flatbed scanner handy to me but the slides have been neglected until now. The slides make up the bulk of my images so this is going to be a long process. But it is nice getting a chance to go back through this huge collection and look at all of these pictures again and from now on I will have easy access to them so that I can do whatever I want to do with them. It will probably take me several weeks to get them all converted. It might even take that long just to find them all. Most of the slides are stored in special storage sleeves which makes them a little but hard to deal with in bulk form like I am doing now. So that will slow me down a bit. I will be selectively posting the images to Flickr when I get to some interesting stuff.

Dad came over for lunch after church. The three of us went over to the Omega as usual. Now that we are not going to church at LaGrange on Sundays we never go over to the Silver Lake Family Restuarant anymore. In truth, eating isn’t very much fun anymore because of this new diet. I am not having a problem staying on the diet but it does make eating very boring. There are only a couple of meals that work out as things that I actually can eat and that gets old really quickly.

Dominica and I spent the afternoon just relaxing around the house. We finished the last two episodes of Star Trek: The Next Generation Season Two. Then we moved on to watching Allo, Allo which we also finished as well. There were only two short seasons made of that show.

We were supposed to go up to Rochester today to hang out with Tricia but she never called to let us know when to come up so we just stayed home waiting for her to call. I kept working on the “Railroad Hotel” model that has been taking us about a week to put together. Dominica worked on her knitting.

Originally we had thought that Jeremy and I were going to be working on a job tomorrow but that ended up not working out so he is not going to be able to do the job with me on Tuesday which is really too bad because it was going to be a really good opportunity for him to get an actual IT contract on his resume even if it was just a little one for one day. So since he isn’t able to do it I called Tony to see if he wanted to have a go at it. I haven’t heard back from him so I don’t know whether or not he will be able to help.

So here is an interesting news item today. The Major Baseball League is attempting to get Federal approval for them to have intellectual property rights to statistics from their games. Now the big fight that everyone is talking about is between the league and the fantasy baseball organizations who use those statistics for financial gain. But I think that everyone here is missing the big picture. If fantasy leagues don’t have the right to use statistics that can be gathered by casual observers or from unconcerned parties who happen to read a newspaper then there may be wide reaching consequences. Any law that protects statistics from open use (statistics have traditionally always been history not IP) will also keep newspapers, blogs, television, radio, podcasting, etc. from publishing game reports. The media will have to license the rights to game information to be able to tell who played, who won and how they did. But this could go beyond sports. Imagine if you have to license the rights to report on anything. no one is allowed to talk about any event because the news is owned by the people who perform it. A criminal could make a fortune by licensing the statistics to the news media that tell how many people he has killed or how many banks he has robbed. If anyone wants to keep the media from reporting on anything bad they will simply make the licensing cost of that news too expensive for anyone to afford. This is more than a little fight about sports – this is a major attack on individual rights being attacked by major corporations with the power to own history and news! It is a good thing that I read the news and keep everyone informed about this stuff.

Around 8:00 I finally finished building the “Railroad Hotel”. By that point I was a bit woozy from the plastic cement fumes. Then it was Dominica’s turn again to start painting the parts to the next model. We started with a really complicated one with a lot of parts. The next one should be significantly easier to put together. I will hopefully be able to post some pics of the hotel by mid-week. I would do it tonight but you can’t ge a good picture in this until there is daylight in this house and I might not be around the house during the day until Wednesday. If I am lucky I might have some new railroad rolling stock by then to add to the pictures. The hotel is not actually quite done yet because I have to go back and add internal divisions and lighting. To make the buildings more realistic I plan to put in lighting that works in different sections of the buildings so that the entire building doesn’t just light up all at once which is completely unrealistic. I don’t have any lights here so that is something that I have to go shopping for yet.

Tomorrow Dominica and I are thinking about going out to Batavia in the morning to do some shopping at BJ’s Wholesale Club with dad who has a one day pass. Dominica has some shopping that she wants to do there. Then we are thinking about going on to Buffalo to spend the day hanging out out there. Just a nice relaxing day with just the two of us. There is a model railroading store out there that we want to check out. After our past experiences we don’t have a lot of faith that it will have anything much or take the modeling aspects of model railroading very seriously but it is our best shot this side of Syracuse so we wanted to give it a go. Plus we have been talking about doing a day trip to Buffalo for a while because it is such a neat city that is so close to home (less than an hour away) and yet we never go there and neither of us really knows our way around. We figured if we intentionally spent some time there that we might get comfortable with using the amenities of the city that we would eventually be able to take advantage of it. It is strange to me that I grew up just one county away from the city that just seventy years before I was born was the second largest city in the country! Buffalo is replete with history, architecture, culture, etc. I am extremely familar with Rochester which was only ten or twenty minutes closer to me growing up than Buffalo. I wonder why Buffalo was always considered to be a different region and so far away. Well, maybe we will find out.

Okay while working on the photographs I came across an awesome picture of Eric and I just could not resist posting it up here. So check out this awesome shot of Eric Millen taken in 1994 on his way to the York Central High School YCHS Junior Prom. He went to the prom with Tammy Hopkins. Mary Johnston and I went with them as well. Mary and I hadn’t been planning on going at all but my friends Lindsay and Jim were going together but barely knew each other and wanted us to go along so that they would have people that they were comfortable with to hang out with so we went.

Eric Millen going to York Central High School Junior Prom in 1994

That’s right. That is eighteen year old Eric. Can you believe that hair? More importantly, can you believe that he had hair?

Jeremy came over around 9:00. Originally the plan was for him to spend the night so that we could go straight on to work in Rochester in the morning but that fell through. So he just came over to hang out for the evening. He got a look at the “Railroad Hotel” that just got completed and now he is addicted to model railroading. That is all that it took. Once you see real modeling in action it is easy to get hooked.

Tony West called over around 10:00 to check in and see what cool new excitement is up in Llamaland. Tony is hoping to be able to work on the project on Tuesday that Jeremy isn’t able to do now. We should hear about that in the morning.

It was a long television night (television on DVD, that is) with us also watching the entire third season of Red Dwarf, Clue and then cracking open and watching some second season of Angle. There was a lot of model railroading work completed. The second building model seems to be coming along nicely. There is a lot of technique to be learned but I think that we are starting to get the hang of it.

Remember that tomorrow is a holiday so no school, banks or post.

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