My Dreams are Freaky

Monday, August 29, 2011 14:52 Posted by Leo Saumure 0 comments

Ok, so I had a bit of a strange dream last night.  I was back in High School with all of my friends, but instead of being people, we were all cartoon versions of opossums - as you'd expect.  However, I wasn't like all the other opossums, as I had a missing tail and I had to wear a prosthetic tail, which caused me no end of shame. Added to this was the fact that it looked like I was suffering from mange.  So all in all, I wasn't the best example of a hunky male opossum.  Anyway, my good opossum friend and I were discussing my secret mega-crush on Keri Adams, who despite being in High School (opossum high school), was still anchoring Global News in Vancouver - not the opossum version of Global news, which has seen its numbers dwindle over the years, but rather the real Global News.  Which I think spoke to Keri’s professionalism - I mean the network must have truly believed in her right?  How often do you see a marsupial anchoring a newscast for a large metropolitan area...that isn’t geared towards other marsupials?

Anyway, my good opossum friend had arranged to set me up with Keri to go out on a date.  Now being an opossum with a bad case of mange, and a prosthetic tail, I was quite nervous about our date as I was sure my good opossum friend had told some little white lies about me in order to have Keri go out with me.  So in order to make as good an impression as possible, I wanted to wash my car before the date.  But as my convertible Mercedes was invisible, I couldn't locate the spot where I had parked it, so I spent a large amount of time walking around seemingly empty parking spots pressing my key fob in order to hear the beep-beep once I had stumbled upon my car.

I finally found my car, and then the scene fast forwarded to me picking up Keri and we were off to the restaurant we had chosen.  All the time in the car, I had steered the conversation into asking her open ended questions in an effort to keep her from discussing my prosthetic tail.  She seemed to have the good manners enough not to discuss my mange, which I think was a classy move.  A little further into the drive, we seemed to have veered out of Vancouver's city centre onto the High Level bridge in Edmonton, where we saw a large 747 had mistakenly misconstrued the bridge for an airport runway; which is kind of strange as the airport was clearly right next to the bridge.  Luckily, I had seen the plane coming in early enough to take evasive action and steered onto an off ramp (of which the High Level bridge had many), and quickly drove down below the bridge and out of the way of the falling debris from the 747.  We were just missed by one of the Rolls-Royce engines, which I helpfully identified to Keri in an effort to show her my broad range of knowledge, but the car was clipped by one of the wing tips.

At that point, I woke up.

While pretty close to real life, you’d have to admit that there are a few things that seemed a bit off here.  I mean, off ramps on the High Level Bridge?  Come on...

Four Pair of Shoes

Kristie and I do a tonne of walking since moving to NZ, as such whatever we save on petrol and tyres, we end up spending on shoes.  Today we headed out to Dress Smart to see if we could get a good deal on a pair of shoes.  Well long story short, we both bought two new pairs.  The prices were too good to pass up though.  Shoes, like everything else here, are pretty expensive; imagine paying about $240.00 for a decent pair of runners.  That is why we like going to Dress Mart, we can usually find a really good price on what we need.

I bought an identical pair to the last trail runners I bought last time, except they were grey in colour rather than black, and Kristie picked up a pair of the women's version of them too.  I also found a pair of basic brown runners that I think will do well for my lunch time walks.  Kristie's second pair was a pair of walking shoes; you know the kind that have a curved sole to help in your walking gait.

We are both stashing the trail runners for future use as our trail runners seem to be in good shape at the moment, but better to buy when cheap.  I'll be wearing my new brown ones to pick up the movie this afternoon, and Kristie will be wearing the walking shoes.

...and no, the ones picture here are not the ones we purchased.

Webapps Need Longer Shelf Life

I love the idea of web 2.0 technology; having not only your data, but also the applications you need regardless of where you are or which computer you're using.  The problem I see with this is that many applications disappear into the ether never to be heard from again.

I have tried so many promising webapps that after a very short period of time, end up closing up shop because of lack of interest/funds or even worse, the companies created the apps sell out to bigger companies, and those bigger companies simply discontinue the product.  I have a big problem with both scenarios:

1. Regard the lack of funds, I really don't understand how this is happening in today's day and age.  Amazon offers very cheap server technology/space and storage for entrepreneurs.  And it is elastic in nature (hence the name E2) which means that you only pay for what you use.  So why is it so freaking expensive to operate and stay open?

2. Selling out to big companies is one I have a big philosophical problem with.  I don't doubt that one of the reasons that developers create apps for the web is to make money.  But I always thought that the underlying issue was to provided a great product that everyone would rave about and wouldn't be able to live without.  So these companies get buyout offers from corporations and simply give up on their idea, leaving the early adopters, the people that actually believed in the product, in the lurch!

I believe that short sighted decisions such as these are going to do a great deal harm to the webapp adoption process in the long run.  No one will trust that their application, much less their data, will be there for them in the long run.  Here's a hint: If you've got a great idea, make sure you have a business plan, and the belief in your product not to sell out.

P.S. I am aware of many webapps that ARE sticking around, but I think they're more the exception than the rule.


Tuesday, August 09, 2011 16:51 Posted by Leo Saumure 0 comments
My friends Lynn and Paul Bagnall breed Burmese Mountain Dogs.  Well, they probably leave the breeding to the dogs themselves, but I can't be certain.  Anyway, in the last litter of puppies, one of the dogs was born with a cleft pallet and couldn't feed.  Luckily they took the puppy to a vet for proper care and now, after five days, the puppy is back with her mom.

The story captured the hearts of a lot of people and The Edmonton Journal set up a puppycam.  Paul and Lynn have been trained on how to bottle feed the pup, and hopefully everything will work out well!

Pulling Weeds

Monday, August 08, 2011 15:37 Posted by Leo Saumure 0 comments
Pulling Weeds
Today, being Monday, is my day off from work where I get to do domestic duties such as laundry, dusting, vacuuming, baking, etc. (Today I made Peach Pie muffins).  But because we were having friends over for brunch yesterday, other than Laundry, there wasn't much to do in the line of housework.  So today, I put on my old, grubby shorts and a ratty old shirt and went out back to pull weeds.

Right behind the house we have a small area that pretty much just fits a laundry line, and the surface is all pea gravel.  Well over time, and much neglect on my part, I had let the weeds and grass build up to such a point where it was difficult to even see the gravel.  So today, sitting on a collapsed cardboard box, to protect my butt from the hard gravel and bugs, I spent about two hours just pulling weeds and grass.  It looks a lot better back there, but now I have no motivation to keep it clean.  I'm just going to have to burn anything that may come up now.

Getting Ready For Brunch

Dining Room Chair
Kristie and I are having some friends over for brunch tomorrow, and along with our regular weekend traditions, we are getting ready for tomorrows brunch.

Tomorrow's menu is home made granola, two types of yogurt (not home made), hash browns, fruit salad and french toast bread pudding.  We're doing a lot of it beforehand.  For instance, we're making the granola and fruit salad tonight as well as preparing the fixins' for the bread pudding and the hash browns.

To prepare for tomorrows brunch, we went to the Lower Hutt Farmers' market for all our fruit and veggie supplies.  After that we stopped off at Vast furniture to purchase a couple of chairs.  A few months back we had bought a new dining room set that had really nice red leather benches and high backed chairs.  At the time, we just purchased the benches and the table, but now that Vast had another sale today, we purchased the high backed chairs.  Now we're all set for brunch tomorrow.  We've got food to eat, and a place to eat it.

The final thing we've got on the agenda for today is going to the Wellington Film Festival.  A few weeks back we purchased some tickets for the film festival, and today we're seeing Hot Coffee.

Four Scores Today

Friday, August 05, 2011 16:51 Posted by Leo Saumure 0 comments
Poblano Pepper
Today was a really good day for four reasons

1. I found a poblano pepper at Moore Wilson

For the last two weeks or so, we have been unable to find chili peppers here. They are out of season, so any we would find, would have been imported.  Even so, there were no peppers to be found anywhere.  Today, I popped into Moore Wilson, a boutique kind of market, and managed to find some newly shipped chili peppers.

2. I got to work from home after lunch.

This isn't that big of a deal as I am allowed to work from home occasionally, but it is still great to come home early and work from home.

3. I picked up a newly released movie we have been wanting to see for a while.

The Lincoln Lawyer was suppose to open to limited release here a few months back, but the release date kept getting pushed back until they simply removed it from the listings at all.  Kristie was quite upset at this as she was very anxious to see the movie.

4. Our package arrived from Eddie Bauer.

Finally, last week Kristie and I ordered a couple articles of clothing from EB, and they arrived today.  Kristie got an Assent, thermal wind breaker, and I got a thermal shirt.

All in all, a great day!


I attended a workshop for work today at Hutt hospital.  We were presenting to many staff members there, making a case for using trained interpreters.  But that isn't what this post is about.

For morning tea, they served these little tiny muffins, and what looked to me as cold pancakes, sans syrup and butter.  Turns out, they were indeed serving cold pancakes, sans syrup and butter.  They call them pikelets (pronouced pie-clets), and you eat them with your hands rather than with a knife and fork.  To their credit, you can also dip them in whipped cream, which I did...a lot!

Long Time No Post

I thought I should get back into blogging.  Even though no one actually reads them, I could start using it as a diary of sorts.
Ok, quick catch up first:
Kristie and I will be going on holiday in about 2 1/2 weeks.  We're going back up north again; not as far north as last time, but still past Auckland.
We managed to book a couple movies at the Wellington Film Festival: Jig an Hot Coffee.  Both are documentaries.  Jig was about Irish dancing competitions in the Spellbound tradition, and was absolutely wonderful.  We're hoping Hot Coffee will be just as good and will be going next weekend.
As Angus is scratching to go outside, I will have to cut this blog entry short.