feren: Feren in profile (sakuranym_profile)
... who lost his own beloved black cat today, I share this to the journal to memorialize her passing and try to find some solace of my own.

"A Cat's Prayer"

A Pets Prayer
If it should be, that I grow frail and weak,
And pain should keep me from my sleep,
Then, you must do what must be done
For this, the last battle, can't be won.
Don't let your grief stay your hand,
For this day more than the rest,
Your love and friendship stand the test.
We've had so many years,
What is to come can hold no fear.
You'd not want me to suffer, so
When the time comes, please let me go.
Take me where my needs they'll tend,
Only, stay with me to the end
And hold me firm and speak to me
Until my eyes no longer see.
I know in time you'll see it is a kindness you do for me
Although my tail its last has waved,
From pain and suffering I've been saved.
Don't grieve it should be you who this thing decides to do.
We've been so close, we two, these years,
Don't let your heart hold tears.
SMILE, FOR WE WALKED TOGETHER FOR AWHILE.

-- Author: Unknown

He didn't make this choice; he had no warning. My friend had nothing that could have prepared him for his sweet girl's passage from our world to the next. Bast called her home, and it was very hard. The circumstances are such difficult ones that, if I could, I would take them from him. I want to take his pain, his grief, his anger and his regret away... but I cannot. All I can do is stand beside him and offer to help carry the burden that I've already known.
feren: Feren smoking (atomicfiction_ferensmoking)
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Tearing apart [livejournal.com profile] datahawk's motorcycle is how I spent my Sunday. It was productive. We now know what the plan of action should be, because now we know for a fact what (one of) the (biggest) problem(s) is.

feren: I AM THE MAN (Default)
Best wishes to friend and coworker [livejournal.com profile] markvd as he celebrates another year of riding this planet around the sun. Sorry I didn't get to go out to lunch with you today, man. I'll make it up soon.
feren: Feren smoking (atomicfiction_ferensmoking)
I need to post a quick HAPPY BIRTHDAY to one [livejournal.com profile] tarinfirepelt. I've known Koz for ... something like ten years now, and can't think of life without his ability to deliver devastating puns and embarrassing sketches of Feren's ass. Happy birthday, m'friend.

Friday night was dinner with [livejournal.com profile] ottr, [livejournal.com profile] roho, [livejournal.com profile] genet, [livejournal.com profile] wyldekyttin, [livejournal.com profile] lady_curmudgeon, [livejournal.com profile] datahawk, [livejournal.com profile] foxish, Devin and Vlad. We went to BD's and had beer and vast amounts of Mongolian stirfry. Afterward, Data, 'mudgeon, Devin, Ottr and myself went to Safari Land for bowling. It's an indoor kid's amusement/theme park (I dare you to guess what the theme is) but when you get there at 10PM there's not a lot of kids, and we adults enjoyed the bowling alley. We chose that alley because of the theme park, and because it has the lanes rigged with radar guns that tell you how fast the ball is rolling (in miles-per-hour) when it strikes the pins. I average somewhere around 17 m.p.h., which is a damn shame compared to the peak speed of 22 m.p.h. that Ottr was able to achieve. We had a lot of fun. The only real disappointment that evening was the alley closed earlier than the rest of the place! We closed down Safari Land, chatted outside in the rain for a bit and then went to our respective homes for well-deserved rest.

Saturday we all slept in, finally getting up around late morning. Data and Ottr joined 'mudge and I for a meal at a local family restaurant. The plan was for Ottr and I to head down to Mega Sports to get some time on their gun range. It wasn't until we were about to leave for Plainfield that it was discovered that we could also bring 'mudgeon and Data along with us! Everyone piled into my truck, I tossed the Bag o' Fun in the back and we hit the road. The afternoon was full of uncertainties! Data had never handled a firearm before, nor had Curmudgeon. I had never been to this particular range before, so I didn't know what to expect either. All of us were pleasantly surprised by what we found. While almost double the cost of the Outdoorsman Sports Shop that [profile] roho and I have gone to in the past, the experience was well worth the money. Datahawk and Curmudgeon were instructed/"mentored" by Ottr and myself as we were responsible for their time on the range. As mentioned, neither had shot before but both were willing to give it a try, which I think made Ottr and I both quite happy. Curmudgeon spent most of her time with my S&W Sigma SW9VE 9mm, and decided she liked that one best. Data liked both my Taurus PT-1911 and the S&W 9mm, which Ottr and I both own and are generally disillusioned with. Ottr fell in love with both the Taurus and what Roho has dubbed the "Hand Cannon," my Ruger Blackhawk .357 magnum. All told I think we were there for almost two hours. Everyone had fun, and we topped the evening off by travelling back to Ohana for a really nice steak and potato dinner.

Today was another day for sleeping in late. I mowed the front lawn, trimmed the boulevard tree and cut down some saplings that were growing in the flower bed. I'm planning to take the rest of the day on a minute by minute basis, relaxing as much as I can. Tomorrow I'm back at the office and I already have a day full of work waiting for me.
feren: Feren in profile (sakuranym_profile)
Friday night: [livejournal.com profile] lady_curmudgeon and I drove up to the Naperville hotel where DucKon was being held, so that we could hang out at [livejournal.com profile] wyldekyttin's birthday and room party. We lounged around until around 2300 hours or so and then drove home for the night. Saturday it was up to Kenosha for doctoring, then back home in the early afternoon. I took a nap for a few hours and got up in time for dinner. Once we'd eaten and medicated Jazz for the evening it was back to the DucKon hotel to hang in Kyttin's room party again, arriving right around 2000 hours when the room was open to the private invitees. We stayed until around 0330 on Sunday morning, chatting and snacking and drinking with the various folks that came through. I particularly enjoyed talking to "Gus," a fellow who looked like Silent Bob.

We got home around 4 in the morning on Sunday, slept until around noon and then texted the crew back at the hotel to see if they could use a hand packing up and loading out. Our offer was rather enthusiastically accepted. We arrived around 1340 in the afternoon and by 1530 we had both rooms fully loaded out. Of the three cars I was first to arrive back at Ohana so I had the stage, drink coolers and sundry unloaded with ample time to help unload the other vehicles when they arrived. Curmudgeon and I stayed around for a while, just hanging out with folks and having idle conversation. At about 1815 we bid everyone a good evening, drove home, enjoyed some Subway foot long sandwiches and generally relaxed for the evening. Unfortunately for me, because of the late nights we'd had Friday and Saturday I didn't actually feel tired until around midnight, which was when I climbed into bed.

Today it's back to the grind at work.
feren: I AM THE MAN (Zhivagod - Feren_silly)

Feren at sushi
Feren at sushi
A number of us went out for all-you-can-eat sushi this afternoon to celebrate [livejournal.com profile] rissani's birthday. After observing how I managed to jam an over sized piece of spider roll into my mouth, [livejournal.com profile] genet felt compelled to sketch this up on one of the place mats. All the others at the table were impressed at how my head unhinged as well. Raoul, well, he just managed to get added for comedic value. Sushi leads to these sort of things.

feren: I AM THE MAN (Zhivagod - Feren_happy)
Today's birthday wishes go out to [livejournal.com profile] captain18.
feren: I AM THE MAN (Default)
It's before midnight Eastern time so I can wish [livejournal.com profile] spoothbrush a happy birthday and not be late!
feren: I AM THE MAN (ashryn-lurve)
Many of you know that over that last decade I have endured several touch-and-go periods with Ra, where Ra became very sick and I wasn't sure he would still be with me the next day. Two years ago [livejournal.com profile] lady_curmudgeon and I had to put down one of her cats, Smudge, after Smudge suffered renal and liver failure. Because of this I'm always sensitive to when a friend's beloved pet is having health worries. Tonight, I send my thoughts and my best wishes to [livejournal.com profile] urocyon, as his elder pooch had emergency surgery today for a twisted stomach. I'm hoping for her to pull through tonight and make a recovery....
feren: I AM THE MAN (Seskata - Feren)
I got a phone call around noon from [livejournal.com profile] chebutykin saying she was on her way home from Ohio and that she'd be passing right through our area. Did [livejournal.com profile] lady_curmudgeon and I, along with some of the local crew, want to do dinner?

Hell yes we want to do dinner.

Alas, [livejournal.com profile] genet and [livejournal.com profile] roho won't be able to attend. More tasty stir-fry for us!

T-minus about 45 minutes until she arrives.
feren: I AM THE MAN (Zhivagod - Feren_silly)
I got this from my coworker, "Marlok," because I made him type it up and mail it over after he told me the story over our traditional cup of morning coffee. Marlok has one child with his wife and, until somebody gets sterilized, doesn't want to risk another kid. He works long hours like I do and several health conditions generally leave him exhausted by the time he gets home. This puts him in a state not unlike that of one Al Bundy, such that intimacy of a sexual nature with his wife is about the last thing he wants to be woken up for after he goes to bed.


SUBJECT: Words to make it end

Words to end all forward pursuit and wreck the mood.
Wife: Sooo, you want to, you know, mess around?

Husband: Sure... why not [Voice dwindling in volume followed by an under-the-breath sigh]

Wife: [Slowly invading Husband's personal space]

Husband: Who Runs Barter Town... Say it!!

Husband: [Slower now with more inflection] Say it!!

Wife: OK, I am done... A vision of an old midget perched atop a retarded Goliath, standing knee high in a pig shit factory is not exactly doing it for me. [Wife visually disturbed and backing away slowly out of Husbands personal space]

Husband: [Falls back asleep with a grin, dreaming. God Bless Mad Maxx]


This is a true story.
feren: I AM THE MAN (Sakuranym - Feren_profile)
This morning I received a surprise invitation for [livejournal.com profile] lady_curmudgeon and myself to join [livejournal.com profile] datahawk and [livejournal.com profile] ottr for brunch-type foods at a restaurant in the area. I'd never been there and Curmudgeon wanted to get out of the house, so we readily accepted. We made good time to Wheaton, where the restaurant was... and then I had an attack of the Self Doubts, which lead us to leave the restaurant and pursue the other location, which is not where we were to meet up with our friends. Thankfully we were only a little ways away when the call was returned and the address verified.

We met up outside the door to the restaurant and that's when the trap was sprung - Data and Ottr handed Curmudgeon and I some wrapped-up gifts. SURPRISE PRESENTS! Unacceptable. My revenge will be without warning.

Inside things were hectic, obviously it's a pretty popular place. We made our orders, drank coffee and kibitzed while we waited for the food. It wasn't long before Curmudgeon and I were pressured to open our presents. To my complete delight and surprise I received season 2 and season 3 of Robot Chicken, and Curmudgeon got two boxed seasons of Pee-Wee's Playhouse. Pretty cool!

After our meal we made a stop at Fry's Electronics. While there we discovered that Ottr wasn't going to get his Nintendo DS from them as their inventory was completely ravaged last week, prior to Christmas. We also learned that there's an AirSoft pistol made to look like my Sigma SW40F. Pretty darn neat, and it puts the BBs out at something akin to 315fps. Not bad, though I've no idea if it's CO2 operated or what (Edit @2133: It's a spring!). While in the toy aisle I found a metal Slinky in excellent condition (the last one I bought from there was completely twisted and ruined, but I never got around to returning it). We also wandered around the store to pick up a set of USB extension cables for Mudgeon's computer. On the way to the check-out line I had a minor altercation with the father of a young boy -- the kid (around 8 or 9) was tromping around and, as he went past, kicked over the toy trains on display next to me. I made a sharp comment and told the kid to pick it up, which brought his dad over with an attitude, demanding to know if I "was his father?!" I said nope - but the boy's being incredibly rude by not picking up what he's knocked over, at which point I gestured to the wreckage of the display. I was surprised to see the dad turn to the boy and ask if he'd knocked it over. A mumbled "I don't know," was met with the father asking again, more strongly, "Did you knock it over?" The kid admitted yes, he had. "Then pick it up!" And within a few seconds the display was put back to half-assed rights and the family continued on their way. Good enough for me.

Since Ottr didn't have anything to buy and the hunt for a Nintendo DS was now officially on our group parted ways, with Data and Ottr heading off to shop at my retail nemesis (Best Buy) while I checked out with Curmudgeon. Shortly after that we were home and I tore apart the passenger-side wiper arm on my Expedition. It had frozen in place on Friday and didn't seem interested in moving anymore. I found that luckily I hadn't stripped the splines on the motor shaft, the arm had just come loose. I cleaned up the connection point with a bit of paper towel, jammed it back in place and tightened the nut down. A flick of the wiper control later and I had proof that all was once again right with the world. It's good to have windshield wipers! Especially with all the wacky weather we're having...
feren: I AM THE MAN (Zhivagod - Feren_happy)
Didn't post any photos for Photo Phriday because I was too busy doing Halloween things. Wore my Toy Soldier outfit to work (as did [livejournal.com profile] markvd and coworker Marlok), though our badges proclaimed us as "Security" for the hospital set our department created for the annual costume/scene contest.

After work it was back home to pick up [livejournal.com profile] lady_curmudgeon and head North to Ohana House for their party. We had a blast! I got to catch up with [livejournal.com profile] rcking, whom I haven't seen in ages. Curmudgeon got corralled by Kyttin, who put a rather saucy and fun skirt on Mudgeon that nicely augmented her impromptu costume. We met a lot of new folks and caught up with many of our friends (too numerous to name here). Drinks, snacks and conversation were had until the later hours of the night. It was rather reluctantly that we left at midnight or so, but Mudgeon rightly pointed out that we had an early-ish morning today for doctor appointments.

All told the party in the evening was a great time and we are both very pleased to have been invited. Looking forward to the next one!
feren: I AM THE MAN (oCe - Feren_Photography)
On Sunday the [livejournal.com profile] lady_curmudgeon and I met up with several of my out of town friends, such as [livejournal.com profile] spoothbrush, [livejournal.com profile] captain18, [livejournal.com profile] jdm314 and a whole slew of others I don't know the LJ names for. We all met up at the local mini-golf course, where we were also were joined by [livejournal.com profile] roho and [livejournal.com profile] genet. I've got a bunch of pictures to share but have been too busy with work to do much of anything with them.

However, after we got all the sun and mini-golf we could stand we went off to have dinner at BD's Mongolian BBQ, where I tasty food and beverage was had. Such as...

Raw food
Raw food, which then becomes...

cooked food!
Cooked, tasty food that goes well with beer.

Spoothbrush food
Spoothbrush had food, too. And a blue drink that called itself a "Moodring."

Dessert of doom
The dessert of doom. [livejournal.com profile] tarinfirepelt, this one is all for you.


And that's all I've got to say about that. More detailed writeup and photographs to be had when I'm not working until 1 in the morning.
feren: I AM THE MAN (Default)
Yesterday after work I picked up [livejournal.com profile] lady_curmudgeon and we went over to see our friend H.K., who lives only a few miles away. Our purpose was two-fold: first, to see how she's recovering from her surgery and give her some company. Second, to rescue her sanity! It seems H.K. has been without Internet service for quite some time now, as the last time the local Bell technician paid her a visit they managed to rewire her NID (Network Interface Device, the place where the telephone company's wiring is cross-connected to the wiring inside your house/condo/apartment complex), ostensibly to address some signal quality concerns. Ever since then? No DSL service and no dial tone anywhere in the house. How nice is that?

It didn't take me too long to figure out what the problem was -- the installer was a wank and he cut out pretty much everything she had wired in herself, replacing it with only a connection to the standard red/green wires of pair #1 -- a pair that is not used anywhere in her house. What did take me a while was identifying the wires that served her office and kitchen, then figuring out how everything was supposed to be connected -- the Bell technician made a right mess of things, interconnecting two or three pairs with lots of button crimps. I hate button crimps.

It's been a long time since I worked with telephone service but it felt good to get back to the basics, as it were. Telephones (especially the push-button multi-line telephones) were fascinating to me when I was young and they are what eventually sparked my interest in networking. It was a happy coincidence for me that computers were moving in that direction as well. When I started college for my B.S. in Telecommunications and Management, my first classes focused around voice communications and the various laws and theories that drive this ubiquitous service. In fact, that's how H.K. and I first met -- she was the TCom Lab supervisor who helped set up my first class's lab final. It was a "practical" exam where I had to troubleshoot and repair 3-5 different problems that were keeping an analog telephone from working (a cut phone line, cotton in the receiver, a disconnected Tip line, etc). Funny how 12 years later I'm coming full circle, isn't it?
feren: I AM THE MAN (oCe - Feren_Photography)

Quintessential Chebutykin
by *panfah on deviantART

Shot at CONvergence 2008, we see Cheb posed here with her Action Trilobite Purse from Ikea. I'm not sure this is what hte designers had in mind.
feren: I AM THE MAN (oCe - Feren_Photography)
A photo narration of how to go from volleyball to pyromania in a few easy steps. Includes some gratuitous food porn shots.

Picture-heavy, naturally )
feren: I AM THE MAN (toga)
Belated birthday greetings to [livejournal.com profile] frysco as well. Sorry about the delay, m'friend!
feren: I AM THE MAN (chilly-smiling-feren)
Happy birthday to The Voice, otherwise known as [livejournal.com profile] datahawk! I'd threaten you with birthday spankings, but somehow I imagine you would hardly find that to be credible (or worrisome)...

In other news, yesterday afternoon I received a call from my parents to let me know they were packing up and planning to leave Florida pretty shortly. For the last two weeks they had been down there working on the largest remaining part of my grandfather's estate: the house. On their way home to the farm they plan to stop here for the night (even if I can't put them up in the guest room right now) just so they can spend a bit of time with [livejournal.com profile] lady_curmudgeon and I. Since I have plenty of vacation time to burn I figured I'd just stay home for today -- the only major thing that's going on at the office is the holiday party that $EMPLOYER puts on every year and I don't think that compares to having family visit.

Knowing how my father drives I expect that they'll be ringing my doorbell sometime later this afternoon. If things work out well our friends Heather and Garry K will be joining the four of us for dinner, maybe over at Cheddar's.

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