Tag Archives: correspondence

Time dilation

My 9 hour workday seemed to pass by in 15 minutes or so.  I continued my work on the PowerPoint slide deck for the training session I’m leading in mid-March.  I started as soon as I got into the office, worked on it nonstop until lunchtime.  I paused at lunch to eat, read more of Steal Across the Sky, and nap.  Then it was back to work on the slide desk and suddenly my phone was ringing and it was 4 PM and time to head home!

For dinner tonight, I made strausmouse ’s recipes for Thai Salad and Roasted, Spiced, Sweet Potatoes.  Both came out really well and we enjoyed the meal. 

Got the 400th issue (April/May 2009) of ASIMOV’S in the mail.  Also the latest issue of NEW SCIENTIST.

Forward progress, part 1

I did pretty good at sticking to the schedule I planned for today.  There’s a lot to get done this weekend and I felt like I needed a schedule and list to help get it all done in the time I’ve got.

I slept pretty well last night.  When I went to go to bed, two of the cats were curled up on my side of the bed.  So I went to lay down in the guest room for a while, and an hour or so later (when I woke up not quite sure where I was), I found that they had mostly relinquished my side and I crawled into bed.  I was up at 7 am, ate breakfast and headed to the gym.

After my shower, I started on the house-cleaning chores.  I cleaned all of the bathrooms (and poured Drano down the sink in the master bathroom in order to clear out a slow drain).  I swept and mopped the kitchen, bathrooms, and the landings.  I cleaned out the cat littler, took out the trash, cleaned the kitchen counter, and cleaned the sliding glass door, both inside and out.  When that was all done, I vacuumed the entire downstairs.  By then, it was just after noon and I took 50 minutes off for lunch and to do a little reading (plus what amounted to a 10 minute nap).

Sarah came by just after 1 pm and we headed off to Babies ‘R Us, where we registered.  Kelly got one of those little scanner guns and Sarah (who had a list of Much Needed Items from her sister) led us through the store, showing us what we needed.  We picked out clothes and bedding, car seats and toys, all of the paraphernalia one needs when one has a newborn.  After we left with our list of items, we headed over to Pier 1 to pick up a piece of furniture in which to hold all of these items.  They were out of what we were looking for but we ordered it from the warehouse and we should have it in 9 days or so.

Back home and I spent an hour doing work:  reading and fleshing out a test plan document for my Big Project.  When that was done, I set about planning out our dinners for the next 7 days so that I know what to get at the grocery store first thing tomorrow morning.  I ate a late dinner and then was craving cookies so I dashed over to the grocery store to pick some up.  We watched last night’s episode of Battlestar Galactica, and then Kelly headed up to bed.  I was supposed to be doing some writing this evening, but I’m not in the proper frame of mind so that will have to wait until tomorrow.

Got the May issue of ANALOG in the mail today.  Yesterday, Kelly got her new social security card (with her name change) only one week after going to the social security office to change it.

I have a nearly equally long list of things to do tomorrow, but some of the items are catch-up items and I don’t think the day will be quite as hectic.  Besides, tomorrow is Sunday and I try not to distract myself with the Internet on Sunday.  I’ve been staying "offline" on Sunday’s except just before bed on Sunday evening to do my blog update.

I’ve got a glass of chocolate milk sitting here and I’m going to read more of The Way the Future Was.  I’d like to finish by Tuesday, when I’m expecting Nancy Kress‘s new book, which I am very eager to read.

Early night

I’m finally crashing and so there’s a chance at a decent night’s sleep tonight.  Work was busy all day long.  I even worked through lunch, but I completed an important milestone on my project and that felt good.  At 4 PM, there was a memorial service for Susan held in the office and lots of people came to remember her.  Kelly came by at about 3:30 or so and she was there for the memorial, too.

After work, we headed home and then immediately went out into the warm (mid-60s) weather and walked to the grocery store to pick up some bed.  There was a strong spring-like wind blowing.  It was really nice.

Got a package from 

  secret santa in the mail today which contained two t-shirts from Powell’s books.  The first one was a great t-shirt that I can wear to work on Friday.  The second one was an adorable yellow "one-zee" for Zach that reads "Book Monster" across the front.  Awwwwwwww!

Though it’s 7:40 PM, I’m in bed.  Going to read for a little while and then likely crash for the rest of the night.  I’m tired.  And I’ve got a full lower body workout in the morning.

We few, we happy few

Busy day at work today, one of those days where time flies by virtually unnoticed.  I got fed up with a project that seemed to have lost all forward momentum and so I took charge today, and I felt good about that.  I think things will start moving again.

After work, Kelly went to the gym and I walked to the grocery store.  I needed some kind of exercise.  It was cold, but I walked quickly.  There were some dangerous patches of ice on the sidewalks but I navigated them safely (nearly sliding to the pavement only once).  I lugged two large grocery bags home and felt that I not only got a decent cardio workout, but that my shoulders and arms got a good workout as well.

Lots of miscellaneous mail:  stuff from the accountant, some bills from various doctors, the latest issue of AOPA Pilot.  Still no word from ANALOG.  Tomorrow will be 60 days, I believe.

Read more of Dick Winters’ book, which I am really enjoying.  Watched the new episode of Smallville and then decided to watch the first episode of Band of Brothers.

Another busy day in the office tomorrow.  Looking forward to Saturday evening.  We have theater tickets to Les Miserables at the Signature Theater in Shirlingon.  That should be fun.

Time keeps on slipping, slipping, into the future

I was busy most of the day today–another cold day here in the metro DC area–and even as the day ended there was no relief in sight.  I managed to talk my way into a meeting that I thought started at 2 PM, and did start at 2 PM, only in the wrong time zone.  So I rushed home from the office in time to call into a two hour meeting that lasted from 5 – 7 PM.  By the time it was over, I was hungry.  I had some tomato bisque soup for dinner and made a grilled cheese sandwich to go along with it.

A few odds and ends taken care of today.  I managed to squeeze in a haircut this morning.  I finally got around to adding Kelly to my auto insurance.  She can cancel hers tomorrow.  I also met briefly with our financial adviser to begin the process of planning for the coming family expansion and all that it entails.

The February SCIENTIFIC AMERICAN came in the mail today, as did the March ASIMOV’S and the December/January BULLETIN of the Science Fiction Writers of America.  Also a few statements from the insurance company, indicating that they have now paid for some of our OB doctor appointments.  (Originally, they were trying to bill Kelly’s insurance first, but since she canceled her insurance when she got on mine, there were some delays in payment until the computer records were sorted out.  It has all now been resolved.)

No reading today.  No writing either.  I’d like to get started on the second draft of "Homecoming" so that there might be a chance that I can finish it and get it in the mail in the next 10 days.

As I write this, I notice that the counter in the kitchen is a mess and that’s my fault.  I need to get it cleaned up.

And I need to get back to the gym.

And…

Time to relax!

Good work day today, very productive.  Bad weather day, lots of rain and general nastiness.  We stopped at the grocery store on the way home to pick up some things.  I made ravioli for dinner, mine with pasta sauce, Kelly’s with chicken soup broth.  Yum!  It hit the spot.  No interesting mail today.  I got some writing done earlier while Kelly did some work (she brought it home with her this evening).  Just before 8 PM, I headed over to the gym and did a 40 minute cardio workout.  It felt good.  I haven’t started back up on strength workouts yet.  I’m easing back into it.  That’s what I tell myself.  Spoke to Dad for about 30 minutes this evening.

Now showered and done for the evening.  It’s finally time to relax.  I’ve barely been able to start The Best of the Best, a mere 2 pages into Greg Bear’s "Blood Music", but I plan on making some progress tonight.  With some cookies and milk and a fire in the fireplace.  Peace! 

Good day back at work

The holidays are over and it was back to work today.  Kelly and I overslept slightly (10 or 15 minutes) but we heading into work and got started with the day.  I set out 4 goals for myself to get done at work today.  I got three of the four things done.  The last one got a little more complicated as I went along, but I hope to get it wrapped up tomorrow.  I napped for half an hour at lunch and really fell into a deep sleep.  Kelly met me after work at 5 PM and we headed home together, as usual.

Got the latest issue of NEW SCIENTIST in the mail today, but no other postal excitement.  I’m through 722 pages of The Hard SF Renaissance, having just finished Ted Chiang’s "Understanding" earlier this evening, which I really enjoyed.  Going to squeeze in some more reading after I hit the shower and before heading off to bed. 

A quiet evening at home

I was surprised how many people were actually in the office today, considering it was Friday and everyone had yesterday off.  Still, it was a pretty quiet day, overall.  The predicted snow never manifested.  Chalk another one up to the weather department.

We spent a quiet evening at home.  Our stroller arrived at the concierge, but when I went to pick it up, they couldn’t find where they’d put the box and asked me to come back tomorrow; they said they’d have it sorted out.  I guess we’ll see.  No mail of interest today.  In fact, it was all junk.  I did manage some more reading and I’m just over 600 pages through The Hard SF Renaissance.

Spoke with Jim at work this afternoon.  Spoke with stubiebrother  this evening.

Kelly and I are making some weekend travel plans–one weekend in January and one weekend in February.  Still working out the details.

More research and outlining

I’ve spent hours this evening doing more research and outlining for the story–which still does not have a name.  I’ve got my timeline down pretty good, and now I’m filling in details that will help the plot move along.  I think I’ll be ready to actually start writing the prologue of the story tomorrow.

Stressful day at work, in the sense that I spent a lot of time trying to understand how a fairly complicated asset system integrates with CMDB and only toward the end of the day did I see where the main integration points were.  At least it was some progress.

I returned the library books after work and Kelly and I stopped at the grocery store to pick up a few items.  Got the January 2009 issue of SCIENTIFIC AMERICAN in the mail today.  Also got a holiday picture card from strausmouse  and rmstraus .  Ironic because I sent out their card today.  (I also got three other holiday cards squeezed in today.)

I picked up a small Moleskine notebook for keeping notes on the story when I think of them and I’m not near the computer.  Haven’t used it yet, but I imagine it will come in handy.  (Yes, I could use my iPhone for this, but the technology doesn’t work fast enough for me.  It’s much faster for me to pull out the pad and jot down my thoughts.)

Spoke with Dad this evening.

Cleaned all of the bathrooms this evening.  I’ve got to vacuum upstairs tomorrow night.

Today’s reading: NEW SCIENTIST (December 13), and some more of The Hard SF Renaissance.  I’m turning to the latter again now before I go to bed. 

Monday wrap-up

An unusually warm day today.  Temperatures were well into the 60s!  I had to run an errand early this afternoon and I went outside without my jacket and it felt great!  Back to winter weather tomorrow, however.

Lots of mail today, including the February 2009 issue of ASIMOV’S and the December 13 issue of NEW SCIENTIST.  Also, a package from stubiebrother  containing a bunch of books for expectant parents (and mostly for dad’s).

This evening we watched the remaining episodes of Dexter, Season 3.  Well, I watched them all; Kelly still has the season finale to watch.  She was tired and had to call it a night.  Still a good show after three seasons.  I still have to actually see the first season, although at this point, it would be all back-story.

I’m 315 pages through The Hard SF Renaissance and really having a ball reading it.  Tonight, as I finished up Robert Reed’s "Marrow", I thought about the stories I’ve read, and I don’t think I ever wanted to be a science fiction writer more than I did at that moment.  True, I’ve got one professional sale under my belt, but these guys–these guys are the big leagues, they are the real pros and I so want to be able to do what they do.

I had a kind of mental list of tasks to take care of today, and completely blew it off.  Better luck tomorrow, perhaps.  I’m going to try and squeeze in one more story before calling it a night.

The Hard SF Renaissance

I’m in one of those phases where I can’t decide on what I want to read.  I read and enjoyed Jack McDevitt’s Cauldron.  I was looking for something more like that (based on my mood), but I was also yearning for short fiction.  I started on C. M. Kornbluth’s short fiction collection, His Share of Glory, but decided thatwasn’t quite right for my mood.  So today, I started on The Hard SF Renaissance, edited by David G. Hartwell and Karthryn Cramer–and I think this is what I’m looking for.  I’ve made my way through 50 pages of the 960 page book so far, and so far, it’s just what the doctor ordered.

Meanwhile, I’ve had another story idea in mind for the last few days, and I can’t seem to get it out of my head.  The idea is really catching fire with me.  I think it may be part of the reason I got only a few hours of sleep last night.  Couldn’t get it out of my head during the day today either.  I’m making some notes tonight or tomorrow.

I spoke with he11o_sunshine  today and she sounds great.  We talked for 10 minutes or so.

After work, we headed over to Potomac Yards to pick up some cat litter.  Watched the latest episode of House.  Kelly is making brownies for her holiday party tomorrow.