Archive for July, 2011

Geek Cred Intact

Saturday, July 23rd, 2011

So far today I have:

  • Discussed D&D miniature color schemes via email.
  • Watched The Man Trap streamed over the internet in Dolby surround on my TV via Netflix.
  • Noticed that the planet orbit scenes in same were remastered CGI.
  • Was actually disappointed by this (but not disappointed buy the sound cleanup)
  • Watched Season 4 of The Guild via internet streaming to my PC via Netflix
  • Am about to hack numberless goblins online.

Oh yeah, AND: filled the kiddie pool, took N kite flying, swung wildly on the swings, pushed N&R (at the same time) on the swings, ate two (cooked one) grilled meals on the patio, played three games of dominoes and read Chapter 9 of Charlotte’s Web at bed time.

How was your Saturday?

What?! Time Warner actually wants money now?

Tuesday, July 19th, 2011

So we’ve finally received an actual bill from Time Warner again. This bill, due in August, is for the sum of $6.50. We have finally exhausted our forward payments as a result of cutting the purse strings of the larcenous grand duke of television.

So figuring that our last payment in April (for May’s service which was cancelled) was $114.76 and our current monthly bill is now only $34.95… we received the expected 3 months without a payment (May, June and July). In addition, since we cancelled slightly before the end of the April payment period we were pro-rated some amount of that payment. Rather shadily, Time Warner only issues a statement when you owe them money, so the exact machinations that went on in the May payment period are not available to me. I even called back in May only to have them explain “You don’t owe anything so there’s no statement.” To which I replied “So how do I know how much money you’re crediting… or taking?”

So the tally is now:
Four (and a bit) months savings (including August bill) on Time Warner: 3.25*($115-$35)=$340
Four months subscription to Netflix:[1]: 4*($8)=($32)
Live hub hardware: ($180)
PlayOn subscription: ($60)
Dr. Who TV Show Subscription: (~$35)
Universal remote: ($40)
HDMI cable: ($5)
USB TV Tuner: ($25)
Dozen or so DVDs to wipe out or VHS collection: (~$80)
———————
($117)

So after only 4.25 months we’re within $117 of breaking even… and that’s including the extra hardware we bought AND the DVDs.[2] My initial prediction of 6 months looks to be right on track even with all of the extra expenses along the way.

My only complaint so far is that the Netflix service has been somewhat unreliable in the last few weeks. We’ll see if this persists.

  1. We are unaffected by the recent controversial pricing change as we had not subscribed to the DVD service. You may recall that we no longer have a DVD player in the entertainment center. []
  2. I realize that this was a bit of an OCD thing since by the time we ever watch them on the Hub, they’ll probably be available for streaming via Netflix. Whatever. Many were had from Goodwill via eBay so the money will go to a good cause. []

Washington Part 2 (finally)

Sunday, July 17th, 2011

Before driving back to Syracuse from our weekend in DC we stopped in at a mecca of aerospace technology. We’ve visited several times before in 2004 and 2007. We’ll definitely be scheduling another trip in the future after STS Discovery is added to the exhibits.

The hanger is somewhat dim even on a bright day like the one we had, so the shots are a bit rough, but a tripod is a non-starter with a 4-year old pulling your leash.

Here are some highlights to send you mind soaring:

IMG_1615 IMG_1618 IMG_1641

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IMG_1666

Many more, as always, in the gallery.

Family Portraits

Sunday, July 17th, 2011

Back in June[1] we had family portraits taken by Jennifer Wolsey, a local photographer. K wanted some portraits taken because a) I’m hardly ever in our family pictures and b) it’s nice to see someone else’s perspective for a change.

We bought the digital images which I’ve uploaded a portion of to our gallery.

Here are some of my favorites:

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  1. Yes, I know. []

Mainely Back to Reality

Saturday, July 16th, 2011

The Schierer family has returned from their awesome week in Maine. We managed an entire week with sunny weather.[1] We all had a great time visiting K’s folks and K&I enjoyed a few days and nights to ourselves in Ogunquit.

Personally, I deem the trip a success because I managed to get all the way through my book[2] AND spent some part of five consecutive days on the beach.

I’m way behind on posting pictures. So stay tuned for the remainder of the DC pics AND the pics from the Maine trip. We also had pics taken by a local photographer (so I could be IN them instead of ‘behind them). K has shared these already, but I’d like to get them up on the Gallery for completeness.

Also , for those in CNY, the Caz Community Band will be playing in Manlius, NY, behind the Swan Pond at 2PM tomorrow (Saturday 17 July).

  1. Technically, there was rain on Wednesday but it interfered with none of the day’s activities. []
  2. Storm of Swords by George R. R. Martin []