July 25, 2002

I arrived in DC around 1:00 am and worked at Washington Hospital Center until 5:00 am or so and then I headed out to Annapolis to get some much needed sleep. The guy that I was supposed to be working with at 2:00 am didn’t call that he had gotten in to work until 11:15 am. Just a little bit late. But I think that I got the work done that I needed to. I don’t have to go into the hospital today so I get to relax some and get some stuff done around the condo. John brought me breakfast this morning from the deli and then took off to drive down to Columbia, South Carolina where he is speaking at the ASHES convention. So, I have the condo to myself until I head for home Friday or Saturday.

We actually have a new “Letter to the Editor” that I am very excited about. It has been forever since someone has written to us with a real opinion. I will try to get that up today as well.

The new Rotel Preamp/Processor arrived yesterday early enough that I was actually able to hook it up and watch a movie. The new system is amazing. Johanna came over and we watched a few minutes of Blackhawk Down in Dolby Digital AC-3 Surround and that was pretty awesome but then I popped in Rush Hour 2 in DTS and that just blew me away. I can’t believe what the system is able to do. DTS really bad that system shine. I can’t wait to get back home this weekend and watch some more movies. It is like I have a whole new movie collection to watch. A regular movie theatre has very little ability to compete with us now. Especially now that we moved the larger television upstairs and put all of the equipment together. I still need one more Marantz MA-500 monoblock to make the whole system match totally and we need some new wire to tie it all together. Those will be the first things and will have to hold us for a while. But soon, I will be getting the B+W ASW 300 subwoofer and then the system will make a dramatic leap forward again. But I think that everyone will be quite happy with the system as it is for a while. When we move out from the house that we are in currently, I will need to purchase another pair of B+W 303’s for the rear channel because Nate’s 302’s are being used there now but that is a ways off.

Leanne yelled at me for never being mentioned on the site so I will mention her now. In fact, she was the first one of our loyal readers to submit an entry for the “Name the Llama” contest. We have’t decided what the prize will be, maybe it will be a small Llama of your very own from Ten Thousand Villages in Ithaca. Leanne and her husband Scott have recently purchased a new home (it seems the thing to do recently, doesn’t it?) and apparently just started moving in. Scott and Leanne live back home in exciting Perry. I haven’t had a chance to see their new house yet, in fact, I haven’t managed to visit them for over a year! Maybe Leanne will write a “Letter to the Editor.”

So, on my way to DC yesterday I stopped (as I always do) at the book store and I picked up some books on making films. I got one book on film-making and one on screenwriting and one on Anime (not making it, just a commentary.) Loopy and I have been talking about making a movie for years so maybe we will actually get our butts into gear and actually do it. I’m sure we won’t but it would be cool. If we do it will probably just be short web films and we will post them on here for you:) Someday, hopefully.

You may have noticed that we removed the Opera button from our main page. This is because we are hoping to join Opera’s referal program so that SGL makes some money for people who purchase Opera. We don’t make money any other way so we thought that it would be a good idea. Not that anyone will buy it, but at least that way if someone does…

Eric is teaching himself HTML now. He is actually working on the Nicklin Associates corporate webpage which hopefully will be up soon. Maybe we can convince Eric to work on a section of SGL. It would be nice to have more than one person providing content on a regular basis. As it is, the site is getting to be a bit unwieldy for just me to manage. The new “Letter to the Editor” is posted, I actually did it earlier than the daily update so you may have seen it already. I am going through the seperate letters as well and updating them to match the rest of the site. Slowly the entire site is starting to look the same. The pages download a little bit faster too, when I update them, for those of you on dial up connections. It cuts 5-10% off of the download time normally.

So, did anyone else notice that Yahoo! changed their email page today for the first time ever. Wow does it surprise you!

Ok, I am calling it a day and updating a little bit early again. I will talk to everyone tomorrow.

July 24, 2002

I actually pulled myself out of bed around 5 am this morning but decided to hang out in bed till just after 6. Still, I am up pretty darn early for me. I know, I know, Eric gets up at 2am – whatever. This morning in my junk email I got some forwarded Lotus Totus thing. What the heck is this stuff? It says, this email has already been sent “around the world ten times.” First of all, what does that mean. It isn’t like it had to walk. I have a friend in Singapore, if she and I email each other with an attachment a few times, it would have “gone around the world ten times” and never have been read by anyone. Secondly, someone had to write that on that email. But who would know or have the authority to change it. Therefore it must be a lie because it was either added later by someone being smart, or more likely, it was part of the original email sent to the very first person who was probably only two people before me. I am still amazed that I haven’t gone out and started some weird chain email that makes everyone do a dance and visit Sheep Guarding Llama! Here is another one that I got this morning… “Send Your Resume to 50 Recruters in Your Area” – right. Maybe they don’t know what my area is. There aren’t 50 recruters in this area. There aren’t 20. Nice try though. I almost bought their product.

I just checked in with UPS and the new Rotel is in Ithaca and scheduled for delivery today as planned. I am very excited, can you tell? There are two Marantz MA-500 monoblocks on eBay as well. I only need one and the five channel home theatre is complete. It is very tempting to grab the first one that I can find.

I noticed that the second sequel (Broken Sword 3) is coming this year from Revolution. I hope that it is going to come out for the GBA as well as its other platforms. These are the best games that I have found yet for the GBA. Finally something to really sink into and get involved in. I did notice that the really, really old Amiga game Defender of the Crown is out for the GBA. There is a game that I thought was forgotten about in the annals of history. I forgot that that game ever existed by sometime in 1989.

The About page has been updated to reflect the change in the house roster that took place a few weeks ago.

The Hangar Theater crowd that is living in our attached house will be moving out on August 10th. They have made an interesting addition to the landscape here. We went for so long without neighbors that we forgot that it could even happen. The house that we face has gotten new tenents as well, a German professor with Cornell’s Vet School located just up the road.

I am definitely headed to DC today but I will be back on Saturday morning so that I can get to Tim and Becky’s wedding. Has everyone been shopping for a gift yet? They are registered at Sears and Kaufmans. I am starting to actually enjoy the drive down to DC because it gives me a chance to just hang out in the car and listen to some of my CDs. It isn’t very often that I get to do that so appreciate the opportunity. Maybe I will pick up another Sue Grafton murder mystery before I pull out. John has two books on tape that I need to remember to borrow, that will save me two purchases.

I watched Snow Dogs the other day. That movie was horrible. It wasn’t at all how I had thought it was going to be and the story was pathetic. I can’t believe that they are able to get crap like that in theatres. No wonder no one has any respect for anything that Disney does other than their cartoons and even those aren’t very reliable. A correction needs to be made to the “Most Watched” movie list, Army of Darkness is at 7 and accidentally didn’t make the list. Some movies get cheated because of weird multiple copy situations like Thumb Wars which has been watched no less than 15 times but there are four individual copoes and a house copy of the movie. The total collection now has only 41 never watched movies. I am working hard at getting that number down. Emily used to make fun of me when there were only like 5-10 unwatched movies.

Someone was asking me the other day about John Turturro and what movies he has appeared in that they would know. I don’t remember who was asking so I will post a short list here and hope that someone figures out who it was and lets them know. Mr. Deeds, O Brother Where Art Thou, The Big Lebowski, Rounders, Summer of Sam, He Got Game, Being Human, Brain Donors, Miller’s Crossing, Do the Right Thing, Color of Money, Gung Ho, Desperately Seeking Susan, The Flamingo Kid and Raging Bull. That is a pretty impressive list and is nowhere near all that he has done and the list that I got it from is not complete either since I own movies that he leads in that aren’t even on there. So he may have done a tone more than this.

Ok, well I am going to post pretty early today because I need to stop working on this and move on to everything that I need to do to get my butt outta this town. I will be around till mid afternoon if anyone needs to track me down. I might be out running errands during lunch so call the cell if you need me.

July 23, 2002

Boy did I sleep in today. I must be fighting off the flew or something, I managed to actually stay asleep until almost 11:30 this morning. I can’t remember the last time that I slept that long. I even went to bed a little bit early last night. This morning, I managed to come across four more pictures from the New Year’s Eve party. Of course, now I don’t have my awesome StarOffice 5.2 picture cropper so I need to find another way to cut them down to a reasonable size to put on the site. I will try to get that done today. They aren’t anything exciting, just some pictures taken from the balcony before the party got started. I am still looking for more pictures from all of you that were there and had a camera that night. No one ever sends us any pictures to add to the site!

For those who are interested (I know that Loopy, Dominica and Eric are…) Broken Sword on the GBA is awesome. The graphics are the best that I have seen yet and the game play seems to be very similar to King’s Quest and Monkey Island. It looks like it will prove to be a lot of fun. The animations are really exceptional. It is really amazing how much different the GBA is from the older Game Boy Color.

I am doing all of the laundry today that I have been pushing off doing for forever. I mention this because I don’t want Eric to feel like he is the only person who ever has to do laundry. Although he is still the person who does the most laundry. I am expecting that the new Preamp / Processor for my stereo and home theatre system will be arriving tomorrow. It is supposed to be arriving tomorrow by UPS but the tracking number that I have is invalid so I am trying to find out what is going on now. It would be really nice if it would arrive before I have to leave for Maryland because I would like to have at least a little bit of a chance to play with it. I spent some time yesterday listening and measuring as much as I could trying to get the speakers into the right places. I think that I have them pretty good now. They seem to be sounding really good and they are all symmetrical. We have the center channel mounted underneath the television like they do in a lot of pro setups but it is so low that we had to use some rubber cushioning to tilt it upwards. I think that we have it pretty good now.

For those of you who hang around much at the house, you are aware that I have an awfully extensive laserdisc and DVD collection (much of the LD collection is now available for purchase for anyone who is interested – a player can be found on eBay for as little as $10 – $15. What a great way to start a serious movie collection!) And in addition, I also track how many times each movie is watched allowing me to determine which movies have been the best purchases and how much money I am spending for each time we watch a movie. So, since all of this work is being done, I decided to share with you the “Most Watched” list generated by the movie database.

Movie Title Times Viewed Format

Raiders of the Sun 11 LD
Bulletproof 10 LD
Alladin 9 LD
Happy Gilmore 9 LD
My Blue Heaven 9 DVD
Chasing Amy 8 LD
Jurassic Park 7 LD
Liar, Liar 7 LD
Muppet Treasure Island 7 LD
The Truman Show 7 DVD
Coyote Ugly 6 DVD
Dragon Fire 6 LD
The Game 6 LD
Mallrats 6 LD
The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh 6 LD
Shooting Elizabeth 6 LD
Tenchi Muyo OVA Episode 1 6 LD

I know that you are all so excited to see this list. It really shows, though, how much we used to watch laserdiscs. I have had an LD player since late 1994 and some of those discs have been around a long time. Raiders of the Sun (which is terrible) has been around since 1995 and is just so funny to watch how bad it is that it manages to keep finding its way into the player. It is our first What! movie and is totally a classic. Nate and I first discovered it so long ago! My Blue Heaven and Coyote Ugly are the only recent additions to be on the top 17 list. There are a ton of recent DVDs that have been watched 5 times. The big jump seems to come at 6 times. This will eventually increase as the discs are watched more and more. Effecting things a lot is that Dominica watches a lot of movies but is not willing to use the LDs and so she only adds to the DVD counts. As many of the LDs get replaces by DVDs you will see the DVDs taking over as well. I am going to miss those LDs when they are gone. They have become like friends to me. They get watched so little now that I forget many of the ones that I own. There are many duplicates as well. Those I will be weeding out shortly. Some to sell, some to trade, some to give away. I want to have as few LDs as possible before moving again because there are so many that they are way too heavy to deal with. Moving them three times in the last three years was torture enough. If anyone is interested in taking over a large portion of the collection, just let me know.

Here are the movies that I know are available right now, Army of Darkness, Chungking Express, Anne of Green Gable and LA Confidential. Those are all duplicates that I don’t want to be storing. They area all in excellent condition. Let me know.

More movies! I picked up K-Pax, Life as a House and Zoolander today and Dominica got Harry Potter 1. We watched Zoolander tonight (it was awful) and The Big Lebowski which Dominica had never seen. I watched Notting Hill this afternoon. That is one of my all time favorite romantic movies. Goodnight everyone. I leave for Maryland tomorrow so the updates might be a little belated but I will keep working on the site.

July 22, 2002

Craig arrived late last night. He is crashing here for the day to make sure that all of his furniture and stuff gets delivered and then he is going to Perry to work from there until his and Emily’s house in Spencer is ready for them (in about a month.)

In addition to some new CD’s that I picked up to go with my new stereo, I also picked up my first Game Boy Advance game since I got the system. There aren’t a ton of interesting looking games for the GBA yet but “Broken Sword” has been on my to get list for a long time. It was once rated as one of the best adventure games ever so I have been looking for it on one platform or another for a long time. Having it on the GBA (it was an ancient PC game) is a really handy format to play with it on. I will let you know how it is. I am down to just a couple more games that I want to have – the top one being the Nancy Drew game. Maybe I will find it on eBay. You can get some amazing deals there. There are a couple of new copies on there now that I might have to grab. Other than that, Golden Sun is the other big game that I am interested in.

I really hope that some classic adventure games like King’s Quest, Space Quest, Monkey Island, The Faery Tale Adventure and the like get ported over to the GBA. Those games had so much thought go into them and would work perfectly on the GBA – they wouldn’t push it for graphics or sound – and would be so much more fun than many of the silly games that get made today. I think that the GBA is the perfect “retro” platform to play many of the great ’80’s games on since it is more powerful than any computer that I ever used in the 1980’s.

I finally got a copy of Evil Dead over the weekend. I have had ED2 and ED3 for a long time but not the original movie. So I looked around and managed to track down what would appear to be the ultimate copy of the movie complete with a 7.1 Digital soundtrack and two audio commentaries. Now I have the entire series from Raimi.

Due to some things not being ready for me in DC, I may be staying in Ithaca for another two days. I have to be in DC later this week because on Friday was are moving to our new office and we will be moving all of our servers as well (like this one) so we will be down for a little bit on Friday. Hopefully not more than half an hour or so.

Don’t forget that Tim and Becky’s wedding is on this Saturday. Eric was busy this past weekend being Best Man at Mark’s wedding. These last two years have really been the beginning of the big wedding boom. I guess we are getting to be that age now.

After putting this new stereo together, I have decided that I am now able to put together a good high end system for under $1000. Nothing outrageous but a good, clean, simple high end stereo complete with everything from amps to CD source, wires and stands for the speakers, etc.

I am working around the house this morning. I actually managed to get a paper done that needed to be taken care of. I have a ton of work for school that I need to do that I haven’t gotten to yet. That really sucks. I did archive May and June today. This Daily page was getting out of control. The 2002 archive page has now grown so large that it is now larger than the 2001 archive page 40K. So, by the end of the year, the 2002 archive will likely by three times the size of 2001. I may have to start breaking the page into seasons or something because of how long it takes to download.

Canadian FlagFor those of you who have been following the MyMiranda.net website (the link is right over there on the left,) you will be happy to know that Loopy has finally updated the site so you can go back and check it out again.

I have done a ton of random updates to the site so be sure to poke around and look for stuff that has been updated. Just little things here and there but I am always striving to make the site a better place than it was before and to keep everyone coming back all of the time. Be sure to tell all of your friends about this cool web site.

I watched Bruce Campbell’s commentary on the Evil Dead today. He is hilarious. It is hard to believe that he made that movie 24 years ago. There are so many funny things that you don’t pick out of movies that you only find out if you watch commentaries. For example, Bruce mentions that a towel in the movie has the name of the summer camp on it that Sam Raimi (the director also of Spiderman fame) used to go to. I recognized the name of the camp from the movie Indian Summer which is a movie about that camp and Sam Raimi plays the boat dock guy in that movie. (He is also in Spies Like Us but I will let Nate figure out where.)

July 21, 2002

Dominica is addicted to high end stereo now. Loopy and I spent hours last night hooking up the new system in the living room. It is a huge improvement over the old one. Bigger sound, better everything. There is a ton more speaker and power now. There just wasn’t enough there to drive that room before.

I had to run to Rochester today to deliver the speaker that Josh bought off of me. While I was on the road, Loopy ran out and got some more speaker wire to hook up the rear speakers because we didn’t have enough before. He and the gang also move the big 32″ Sony Trinitron upstairs and moved the TV stand into the middle of the room so the room is set up much better now than it was before, in addition to all the new equipment.