Tuesday, January 30, 2007

"So Much To Say"

A hell of a lot's been going on. The internet at home doesn't work currently (damned cable modem), we have a new queen-size bed that rocks hard, and I left my cellphone at home this morning. Yeah, life's full of fun and adventure.


Song of the Moment: The White Stripes, "The Hardest Button to Button"

Monday, January 22, 2007

Snow Delay

Well, it's not a whole day off, but I don't have to be at work until 10.00, so that was a nice extra couple of hours' sleep.

Plus, each class is only gonna be thirty minutes long. That's all sorts groovy.


Song of the Moment: Young Fresh Fellows, "Barkey's Spiritual Store"

Sunday, January 21, 2007

"Like A Paper Tiger"

It snowed today, reminding us here in Northern Virginia that, despite the fact that December was a month of temperatures in the mid-60s, it is in fact still winter.

We only got a few inches of snow (maybe two or three accumulated), but now it's switched to freezing rain.

I don't think I'll be having to go to work tomorrow.

We spent the day helping Michelle's sister buy a car. We found a nice Hyundai (yes, Hyundai (does anyone else remember that old slogan? At the end of their commercials, the announcer would say, "Hyundai. Yes, Hyundai." I say that all the time when we're talking about cars, and folks just look at me like I'm from Mars or somethin')) for a really good price. They made me test drive the car (since it was already snowing pretty good), and it seems like it'll be a great car for her. Michelle's father has put out a tentative offer for Michelle to buy her sister's old car (the reason for this turn of events is a long story that isn't mine to tell), which would be great since Michelle's car isn't all that good anymore (it would also mean we could sell Michelle's old car to her sister's boyfriend).

Word from the folks back home in Oklahoma is pretty consistent: make it stop snowing. Apparently dad's been without power since last weekend and living in his office (which does have power). Clif, who lives in Austin, Texas (a place usually known for heat and dryness), has been experiencing flood-like conditions and didn't have classes last week because of ice and snow. I think Oklahoma's received more precipitation in the past two weeks than it got in the previous year. Wacky.


Song of the Moment: The Beatles, "Long Tall Sally"

Saturday, January 20, 2007

"Music On The Radio"

So I suffered a serious iPod issue on Friday. Since I have more music in iTunes than will fit on my iPod, iTunes created a special playlist of my selections that it would update to the iPod (rather than, y'know, trying to cram all the songs on there when they won't fit). Friday morning, I accidentally deleted this playlist. Subsequent plugging in of the iPod resulted in everything on the iPod being deleted and the system refusing to update the iPod again 'cause that playlist was missing.

Then it started saying something about corrupted files, and I feared my iPod was dead.

However! I was able to restore factory settings on the iPod, which fixed whatever was causing all the difficulty. I've got the iPod and iTunes set up to only update selected items now, and I've got everything I wanted on there now. All is groovy.

Unfortunately, it also means I can't carry all of my music with me at once. This is...unfortunate.

In other news, Michelle managed to get the wireless network up and running finally, even making my printer available on our network. So that's groovy.

Speaking of my wife, we've been married a week. Go Team Cottrell!


Song of the Moment: Tom Petty, "Casa Dega"

Monday, January 15, 2007

"We Got Married"

So, how was everyone's weekend? Enjoying the fact that, for many, it's a three-day weekend?

That's good.

Me? Oh, I didn't do a whole lot. Went to a Bed & Breakfast with Michelle. Lounged around. Got married.

Yeah, you read right.

As of January 13, 2007, Michelle Branco is my lawfully-wedded wife. So while the rest of you slackers were under a couple of inches of ice or just lolly-gagging around doing jack squat, I was tying the knot with the woman I love.

The ceremony was short, sweet, and to the point. With pictures, champagne, cake, and the whole she-bang, it took 45 minutes. That includes the ten minutes we wandered from spot to spot in the yard of the B&B to take various pictures and all that (the weather was fantastic; mid-60s, just enough light for everything to be even but not so much that we had to squint, and the rain held off until after we'd said the "I do's"). The vows were nice (we got to keep a copy), the cake was tasty, and my woman looked gorgeous. I'll have pictures for ya later this week.

This whole thing might seem kinda sudden, but it just felt like the right time. I honestly can't imagine not having this woman in my life, and marrying her seemed like such a no-brainer that I'd've been mentally deficient not to have done it. We didn't see any reason to wait around when all we were gonna do in a few months was what we did this weekend anyway. Honestly, why wait the extra two months when (1) you know this is it, (2) there's less difficulty with scheduling 'cause she didn't have to ask off for work, and (3) it's not like we were gonna decide to have a big blowout wedding between now and the end of March anyway. And now I can get her on my health and car insurances, which is a big plus.

So yeah, that was my weekend. I'm currently working on today's comic (just need to scan and upload), a program for MLK Day for school tomorrow (more on that later), and putzin' around with the iPod. Michelle's over at her folks' place doing something, but I'll be joining her over there soon enough I'm sure.

In other news, I have the world's coolest wedding ring. It's titanium. If I ever get my finger caught in something, they'll have to cut the finger off 'cause the ring can't be cut. Oh yeah.


Song of the Moment: Sting, "The Secret Marriage"

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

"While My Guitar Gently Weeps"

If anyone wants to get me this, I wouldn't say no.

In fact, I'd probably say a definite "yes."

Seriously, who wouldn't want the handwritten first draft of one of George Harrison's masterworks? Hell, I'd settle for something penned by Ringo.


Song of the Moment: The Beatles, "While My Guitar Gently Weeps"

Monday, January 08, 2007

"Thinkin' About My Doorbell"

We're still trying to find Michelle a job. She's applied to dozens of places in the past week, but hasn't heard back from anything yet. I'm not worried, though: I'm sure she'll get something soon.

However, we're facing a conundrum: since she doesn't have any health insurance, what if (as often happens to her) she gets sick? We're currently pursuing possible ways to maybe get her on my health insurance, though that'll be expensive (at least she'll have it, though).

We also want to try to get her on my car insurance, as that would save over a hundred dollars a month for us (about $120, actually, which is a pretty sizable chunk of cash by the end of the year).

I got a subscription to eMusic over the weekend. I burned through my 25 free downloads in a heartbeat, and I've only got 5 of my 75 monthly subscription downloads left for this month. Curse you, eMusic, for having stuff by Jay Farrar, My Morning Jacket, the Autumn Defense, and Moxy Fruvous!

Okay, so maybe curse is a strong word. Bless you, perhaps, or maybe even may your praises always be sung.

In somewhat related news, the iPod is almost completely full. I have lots of kick ass stuff on there, though, including some Blind Willie McTell (more eMusic). Mmm, acoustic delta blues...


Song of the Moment: Blind Willie McTell, "Statesboro Blues"

Monday, January 01, 2007

"Found A Flat, After That..."

So 2006 decided to smack us with a parting shot on Friday: Michelle was laid off from her job. This has made her (understandably) upset and frustrated, but we're doing our best to tighten the belts and work around the issue. She's already started applying for other jobs, gotten in touch with her headhunter, and applied for unemployment so she at least has some money coming in (it's actually pretty good, too: about $300 a week for 22 weeks). It'll be rough for a month or so, but we'll get through this. We don't think it will take her long to get a new job, possibly one that pays better.

We spent New Year's Eve just hanging out at the apartment. Her sisters and a friend of ours came over and relaxed with us. We played some Trivial Pursuit, chatted, ate junk food, watched Seinfeld, and I played quite a bit of Final Fantasy XII (as I have over the past week...like 10 or 11 hours' worth this week alone). It was a low-key, laid-back New Year's...which is fine by me. I don't really like big parties or large crowds.

I have to go back to work tomorrow. Also have to return to education classes. To say that I'm not happy about that is to grossly understate the case. However, I can, tomorrow, sign up for the Fairfax County Public Schools Teacher Fair. I fully intend to do this, because an extra $10,000 a year would do wonders for securing our finances and making it possible for us to do what we want to do (like buy a new car in the next year or so).


Song of the Moment: Bob Dylan, "All I Really Want To Do"