Not so shiny, not so happy monsters…

Last night was our monthly patch night at work. This is basically the scheduled night were after most of the college is closed certain IT staff and myself stay and patch servers with the latest security patches. Typically the three of us involved go for dinner and a movie to pass the time between 4:30 and 9 p.m. Last night was no different.
For this months flick we ended up seeing Daybreakers. It was an interesting vampire flick that as long as you didn’t put to much thought into it it was watchable, at least no one sparkled. To be honest, we were all already pretty tired so its probably getting more credit than it deserves… I did discover something about myself though. I have either lost my startle reflex, or was just to tired to have one. There were a number of scenes where the typical OMG something jumped out directly into the camera. Just about evryone in the theatre flinched. I sat there compleetly unefected. The only scene that had any physical effect on me was the obligatory projectile vomit scene and that was only because I cannot stand the sight of vomit.
The movie did have one interesting twist to it that we all felt deserved far more exploration. One of the main problems with this movie was that it tried to be to much of everything… One minute it was a political / economic comentary, one minute it was horror flick, one minute it was an action flick complete with rediclious car chases and stunts to fill a mythbusters episode, the next minute it tried to be a deep symbolic piece… Hey movie pick something and stick with it!
Without spoilers there were quite a few “seriously? That doesn’t make sense! Why wouldn’t he do ___ that seems more logical for his character” moments. Plus a few symbology moments that just didn’t make sense. I also spotted scenes copied from a handfull of other movies… Oh well…
It was nice to see Sam Neil on a big screen flick again and I did manage to ocassionally feel some amount of distaste for his character.
Product placement was a bit blatent at least as far a Chrysler was conscerned. They might as well have inserted a commercial in the middle of the movie. “Chrysler, the car of Vampires everywhere”
I did get a little fustrated with the movies vampire lore… The movie was primarilly a science type vampire movie, where they focused on vampirisim as a virus… Except they left in all the mythical traits too… No reflection, stake through the heart kills them, err I mean turns them into an exploding fireball… They never mentioned how that was supposed to work…
Ok I’ll stop now… Go see it at the $1.50 theatre it’s worth a good ribbing, and does have an interesting twist to it. It also has some great makeup, courtsey of weta, although I’m pretty sure I saw gollum lurking about a dozen times 🙂 complete with his precious!

Open Mic Night

Tuesday night was open mic night at the Stonefire pub in Yorkville, IL. I’ve been attending it for almost two years now. Last week we discovered that the man resposible for organizing it is no longer working at the pub. The pub has decided to continue open mic night though. I ended up filling in as MC.
When I arrived this week I was asked to host again. Things went pretty well I think. We had a halfway decent turnout and had a lot of fun. I even ended up singing 3 songs.

Software fun

We had an update to our library system again today. This one was on the test server. Once again the vendor insisted we don’t have a test system. I spent another five minutes of my life arguing with them to convince them that we did indeed have the system that they installed incomplete six months prior. This is at least the fourth time I’ve had to argue this point with them. Yet again today it is supposedly now entered in their inventory system. We will see what happens next time I have a problem.
The upgrade itself went fine, however as expected, it wouldn’t run because the system was never fully setup initially. After a few hours of work the upgrade tech did manage to get it working though. I took the opportunity to ask what she did and replicated it on our production system so it now works correctly too.

October? Really?

Holy cats, I haven’t updated this since October?!?! I guess that’s the danger of having quick easy access to facebook as I do on my cellphone. I guess I need a good wordpress app for my blackberry to make this more convenient. Actually what it boils down to is that I just need to make this more of a priority.

The past few weeks I’ve been really in a funk. It’s my typical winter one I suppose. I love snow, don’t get me wrong, but what bothers me is the general bleak skys you see most of the winter here in Illinois. It’s very hard not to let that seep in and begin to permeate your thoughts.

Another part of my overall blah has been a general frustration over things of a technical nature. I spend all day at my job writing code, solving technical problems, and dealing with general computer problems. I get home from work, and I’m wiped out, my brain needs a recharge and needs to decompress. I get so tired of people calling me wanting me to fix their computers. I get especially sick of it when that is the ONLY time I hear from them. Is it to much to ask for an occasional phone call with the sole purpose that the person on the other end just wants to say “hey, how are you?” and doesn’t ‘cleverly’ work the conversation into a “oh hey… i’ve been meaning to ask you…” or “..Oh I bet you’d know…” followed by a request to fix their email, or remove the latest virus or malware… I wonder if people, when finding out someone is a surgeon, ask the surgeon, “oh hey do you mind taking out my appendix here? No rush just when you have some time off or something?”

This past weekend, I escaped for the whole weekend. I posted on facebook that I would not be answering my phone, and was going to just get away. I recently re-connected with a couple of very dear friends who live south of me and accepted their gracious invitation to come visit for the weekend. It was truly the most relaxing, enjoyable weekend I’ve had in YEARS. Not once was I asked to look at a computer, or even answer a computing question. We hung out, ate well, watched British comedies, shared stories, entertained the cats (I mean really, isn’t that a “peoples” job, to entertain and serve cats?) and just generally had a good time. By Sunday morning I felt at peace, for the first time in a long time.

A compleetly unexpected side effect of that was that I slept well last night. For the first time in what seems like an eternity, I slept peacefully and did not wake up multiple times at night with various panicked thoughts running through my head. I didn’t lay there awake for 3 hours trying to force myself to unwind enough that I could sleep. I just rolled over pulled the blanket over me, and slept.

I need more weekends like this last one.