more tangible than the internet
Friday, January 7 2005
The muscles clothing my ribcage ached this morning from all that snow shoveling I'd done yesterday. I hadn't worked like that since my September-October ditch project.
I had a housecall today in the sub-hamlet of Zena, which lies within the Woodstock township near West Hurley. The crossroads of Zena are marked by a building in whose window hangs a sign reading "Not a Store." Usually a sign tells you what a place is, not what it is not. So I always got a kick out of the "Not a Store" place. In getting directions to today's housecall, "Not a Store" was one of the landmarks. It turned out to be only a quarter of a mile from where I was going.
The job was mostly to set up a wireless network for a woman who had a cable modem and a wireless-capable laptop. She admitted somewhat sheepishly to leaching free internet service from open wireless access points at her place in Manhattan, and she said she wanted to have similar capabilities up here. So I created a wireless node called "not_a_store." If you wardrive down Zena Road, you should be able to log onto it from your car, if only briefly. The client thought it was a real hoot that I'd given it this name.
I also showed the client how to transfer files and print across the local network, two capabilities that she'd had no idea were possible. I'm used to it now, but even I was amazed the first time I printed from my wireless laptop, less than a year ago. People are always blown away by local network stuff because it's so much more tangible than the internet.
The client told me that the "Not a Store" place had once actually been a store many years ago. As I was going back home tonight I turned to look at Not a Store and I saw that the sign was no longer there. Now it was something again, somebody's "design studio." What a buncha wanks.
This evening I made yet another small swing lamp, nearly identical to the one I'd made for Gretchen about a month ago. This new one was to serve as my bed reading lamp and complement the one on Gretchen's side of the bed.
In other news, Gretchen was thrown into something of a funk after a phone call with a pair of Pitunia's potential parents. One of them told Gretchen that he didn't think his yard had a good enough fence for Pitunia because he'd read something "on the internet" saying that Pit Bulls can jump eight feet into the air. Mind you, this guy got our hopes up by responding enthusiastically to the site I'd made about Pitunia. He'd been a little reluctant upon hearing that she was a Pit Bull, but then had relaxed a little and even come up with a real name, Lucille, to replace her shelter name. But now he's trawling the tin hat district of the web and latching onto any claim that that makes Pitunia seem like a foolish dog to adopt. And since he can't find anything about Pitunia herself, he has to settle for dubious claims about the breed she might belong to. I don't believe any dog can jump eight feet into the air, let alone Pitunia (who can't even jump up onto our bed). On some level it would be infuriating to discover a mind working this way even if it didn't have a direct impact on our emotional well being.
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