Tuesday, January 30th, 1996
Time flies when you’re trying to get some work done. Hello from a city that doesn’t look all that ready to host the Olympic Games. I was thinking about this some as I returned from the airport the other day the back way (to avoid traffic), which means up tawdry Stewart Avenue, around Northside Drive past the Georgia Dome, and across North Avenue to my neighborhood. Oh, by the way, there’s a live camera that looks down North Avenue across the Georgia Tech campus, covering some of this route. (The resolution is probably insufficient to see a grey 1985 Honda Accord putting up the street. And that’s a good thing.) A stone’s throw from the Georgia Dome you’ll find a huge collection of burned-out, hollow, former low-income projects (that’s the kind way of saying ‘slums’), surrounded by barbed and razor-wire fences. And immediately across from the GaDome, where they bulldozed a bunch of old houses in a neighborhood once known as Vine City, they (no, I’m not sure who ‘they’ are) built some apartments and cluster homes that are on first glance quite attractive, but on closer inspection, have alarming bulges deforming the sides of their vinyl siding. As I drove on, I noticed with some alarm the number of abandoned buildings within blocks of the Olympic Village. Unless there’s going to be a stunning last-minute flurry of cleanup and occupancy, I think the world will get a fairly good picture of life in a not-too-sleepy southern town.
Why am I telling you this? I’m really not sure. This, like many other of my attempts at WWW-connectedness, is a stream-of-consciousness effort, and right now, because of all the rain, my streams are a bit above flood stage.
Sammy (pictured all-a-blur, above) has been spending her weekdays in Athens being a full-fledged college student, living a bit of an ironic existence, driving the fancy truck and writing into her PowerBook as she has been staying at friend Margaret’s house, heated by a woodstove and, because the refrigerator isn’t working, cooling dairy products with bags of ice. Abe Lincoln may or may not be proud.
But here at the ranch the amenities are slightly more in place, although there’s always stuff that needs to be tweaked or fixed or thrown out or (my personal favorite) ignored.
My head’s been ringing with the songs of Joan Osborne and Alanis Morissette lately, and I own none of their CDs, so go figure. Something about the frequencies of their voices slapping around the insides of my cranium, I s’pose. Kids these days.
My last remarks (involving dreams and the smell of Steubenville Ohio) provoked quite a few remarks, mostly from friends who had their own, wierder comments to relate. (Tom Burton, for example, had this dream about people apparently having a yard sale in Avondale Estates and ended with Jimmy Carter and daughter in one of those perverse Calvin Klein spots.) And then there was a photo-altered comment from Steve Kowalewski, who thought the idea of me posed next to a sign saying ‘Thickly Settled’ was too funny not to comment on. Oh, all right. Your comments, visual and otherwise, are always encouraged.
I continue to enjoy getting my daily news from the web, and the New York Times does a fine job of packaging this, right down to the crossword puzzle (although as some folks have noticed, the Sunday magazine doesn’t seem to offer their pieces.) Also notably revised is the San Jose Mercury News, which, apparently feeling some corporate pressure from fellow Knight-Ridder paper in the twin cities, decided to offer more free content, notably some great coverage of the computer business. Interested in the twin cities? Want to know where the twin cities are? Check out the excellent ‘Pioneer Planet‘, which doesn’t sound like it should be a newspaper from St. Paul, but it is.
Friday, January 12th, 1996
I had one of those dreams last night–well, actually the last time I went to sleep, that was terrifying–mostly because it held together internally with a logic and clarity that sometimes escapes me in real life.
I’ve had an adjustment week, what with Sammy off on her (finally!) last quarter of classes at the University of Georgia. This leaves me in Atlanta with plenty of time to talk to myself, which isn’t always a good thing.
It’s also an adjustment week because I’ve been trying to get lots of overdue projects out the door, with varying degrees of success. As often happens with Life as a Television Graphic Designer, one’s best-laid plans can be messed up by obscure technical things–like a SCSI board on an Abekas that refuses to cooperate, or by things more related to the nature of humans–like a change of management at a client or facility that leaves one’s carefully-cultured relationship back at ground zero–or out the door. I’ve experienced all of the above in the past couple of weeks, and it can mess up schedules. Deadlines. And sleep rhythms. Add to this the very cold (for Atlanta) weather we’ve been having, and sometimes I find myself much happier in near-hibernation, sleeping the deep sleep of the circadian-cycle-shot and dreaming what seem to me to be big ol long-form miniseries dreams, taking place in vast fictional cities that seem to be expertly hewn together (if my brain does say so itself) out of snippets of real life. The hills of Seattle. Poor, flood-ravaged homes in Des Moines. The smell of Steubenville, Ohio. All seamlessly running together. If they get any more crafted, precise, and all right, beautiful–I may go tumbling past that median and begin to lose track of which half of my life is the dream.
There, I feel better. Thanks.
I’m writing this on my terrifyingly fast DayStar clone, using BBEdit, a wonderful text editor I’ve used for years. Now, it’s even better with the 3.5.2 update, because the fine folks at Bare Bones have gone nuts with adding HTML functionality into this industrial-strength Mac text editor. The update adds a terrific ‘HTML tools’ floating palette that enables me to punch in–or drag-and-drop all the arcane coding that makes HTML the unpronouncable format that it is. They’ve also added a spelling checker. It’s one fine piece of work. If you’re a Mac user, you should be using this pup for your day to day flow of words.
Yes, sometimes the photos at the top of this page have some relevance; often they do not. But more often than not my brain feels, well, thickly settled. (Now, for extra points, what part of this country uses this road sign, and what does it mean?)
Hey, here are a few protolinks…pages that are almost nearly up and running, or may well be by the time you read this. Finally–the folks at hometown Delta Air Lines have brought their schedules and such–and even a pointless marketing contest–to the WWW. Similarly, the great grey New York Times sneaks netward with some actual content beyond their daily downloadable faxed mini-version of their paper. One of my best friends from college is (last I checked) the head of public relations for the Cedar Point amusement park in Sandusky, Ohio. This represents, for her, the closest thing to a dream job–she has always been fanatical about rollercoasters. Some people are. Maybe you are. I am not.