Day 348, walk, art, wedding

Oh, from the dinner last night, kids with phones.


Friday, 11/15/2019

Met Dennis at 6:45 to take a walk, his preferred daily exercise, and very sensible, too. We walked along the public trail/bikepath from the hotel, near the wharf, as far as the Aquarium and back, about 2.5 miles.

I then drove down to Carmel and spent an hour and a half walking around looking in art galleries. At the New Masters gallery I hoped to see a Linsky, as they represent him, but nope. I saw lots of splashy abstracts, lots of incredibly detailed photo-realistic still lifes, some plein-air California landscapes although none as nice as Linsky’s. Nothing I felt really attracted to.

I took the 17-mile drive back to Monterey, stopping several times to try to capture waves as they swelled up massively,


And then broke explosively.


Ansel Adams I ain’t, but it’s fun to try. (Here’s Adams’ version) Just as I was walking out of the garage at the hotel, I got a text from Dennis suggesting lunch. We ate at a place that emulates an English pub. He reminisced about a pub he found tucked away under one of the Thames bridges. I said I’d look for it on my trip.

Back at the hotel I dressed in my finery, i.e. my nice new blazer and slacks, and a white turtleneck. Walked to the wedding venue, The Barns. Was early. Here’s Judge Loftus checking out the microphone.


I didn’t try to take a picture during the ceremony, and was pleased to see only a couple of other people were holding up their cell phones. There will certainly be enough pics; there was both a professional photographer and a professional videographer around the whole time. Denise, the bride, was walking across the venue before the ceremony, a bit to the right of the above picture, and you can see how low the sun was. The pro photographer was trailing behind and I thought, oh, it’s lighting up her hair, and I said to him loudly, Get that back-light! He hadn’t noticed but that made him look, he lifted his camera just as she turned to look back,18848861_401 and I think he got an excellent shot. So, Denise: if there is a spectacular pic of you with the sun behind making you look like Cate Blanchett as Galadriel only with smaller ears? You can thank me for that.

So there was a nice short ceremony, the bride and groom read vows they had written for each other, very nice, very touching things and well-phrased, too; and that was that. Well, not quite; then came about 90 minutes of standing around under the pine trees drinking and talking. Or in my case, not talking. There was really nobody to talk to. I got a case of the shy’s, and just couldn’t seem to insert myself into any of the circles. In the old days, in similar situations, I would get first embarrassed, then resentful, and then leave. But I’m older and know myself better now. I just wandered around trying to look engaged and was a little bored.

I missed an opportunity at one point. There was a pair of women, one dressed a little butch so I presumed they were probably partners, and I noticed that they were not talking to anybody but each other. I have no idea who they were, presumably friends of the bride? but they reminded me of me and Marian at some parties in the past, neither one of us knowing anybody. I kept circling past them on my lonely orbit, thinking, alright, go up to them and say, ‘so are you friends of Denise, or Jason?’ and start talking. But every time I circled past them, they seemed to turn toward each other and talk more animatedly. I should have imposed, but I was afraid they were seeing me as the creepy old uncle wanting to hit on them, so I let it slide.

Eventually we went in to the Barn and had a nice supper. I had some conversation with the people next to me and across, so that was alright. Lots of toasts, nice things said. When the dancing started, I felt I could bail, and did.

Day 292, goodby Safari, art, lunch

Friday, 9/20/2019

First thing this morning, while sipping coffee and waiting for the newspaper to slide under the door, my Macbook said, you have updates. Fine, what? Oh, just a new version of


OK, install that.

When I set up Godot, I had opted not to use Chrome. For years I’ve had the habit of using two browsers: Firefox always open with my Gmail and some other routine tabs, and the other browser–which on the big iMac is Chrome–for general and ad-hoc browsing. On Godot I thought I’d use Safari for the ad-hoc browser. That worked more or less well but there were some problems.

One was that Lastpass is essential to my browsing, filling in passwords and credit card numbers as required. Lastpass doesn’t work super-well with Safari. Unlike with other browsers, where it is simply a browser extension, with Safari Lastpass needs its app open all the time, and the app window often pops up annoyingly when it is trying to fill in fields in a Safari page. But I coped.

Another was that WordPress, where I post to this blog daily, had some issues with Safari, and would occasionally forget posts if I forgot to refresh its page carefully before starting a new post. But I coped.

This morning, when Safari restarted in its updated version 13.0, it put up a message: “Ublock Origin is not compatible with this version of Safari.” Nope. Nope nope nope. Ublock Origin is the best ad blocker, I have it everywhere. I will not try to use any alternative. Goodby, Safari. Chrome come back! All is forgiven! Google, track my every click, I don’t care. (Although I see that Chrome intends to restrict its API the same way, making UBlock Origin impossible there as well. At which time I will switch to Firefox for everything.)

So, at 9 I headed off to join Darlene and Jessea to view some


by Carol Aust. As I wrote before, I had originally planned to buy a painting, but it had been sold last week. We walked from D&J’s house to Carol’s which by pure coincidence was just four blocks away. It was a 1920’s Oakland place on a block were every other old home showed signs of remodeling. Definitely a neighborhood on the way up. Carol welcomed us in, and Darlene immediately engaged her in house-talk, comparing the ages of their homes and the details. Jessea and I walked around looking at the dozen or so large paintings she’d set out. Some of them had elements of the “Eight Pelicans” that I liked so much, but none resonated the way that had. So we chatted for a while and I gave her as many clues as I could about what I was hoping for, and we agreed she’d keep in touch. I think that by spring when the Hunter’s Point Open Studio event comes around again, she’ll have something I like.

From there we drove to the The Wolf for lunch. Formerly the Bay Wolf, and coincidentally, according to Darlene, just a few doors from where the Lacrampe family had a French Laundry back at the turn of the 20th century, where Marian’s parents worked a while early on.

Back home I did my laundry, taking two heavy naps while the first and second loads ran, the result of a heavy lunch and a beer.


Day 278, move, museum, echo

Friday, 9/6/2019

The day I’ve been anticipating almost since moving in 10 weeks ago has arrived. Angela, at the head of a five-person crew from Gentle Transitions, arrived on the dot of 8am. I showed them about the computer desk and we chatted about a few other things. I grabbed the shopping bag in which I had my day’s necessities, and we went off to a guest room on the first floor, where she took my #621 key (little does she know that I have another one stashed in my desk mwahaha), gave me a brown-bag snack pack, and left me to pass the day.

I putzed around reading until 11ish, then went off to the Stanford campus where two exhibits had just opened. One was works by Jim Campbell at the Anderson gallery. Campbell uses LEDs to make moving images. He hides the LEDs inside plastic beads or behind little metal shades, and animates them with (I presume) a microcomputer to make shifting abstract color blurs or moving images. The one I liked best was this very large one.

It’s large, at least 10 by 10 by 6 feet, with the LEDs in a cloud of little plastic balls, so it strongly suggests looking up through a depth of water, and the swimming forms pass across it at random times and directions.

Next door at the Cantor a chummy volunteer docent at the door talked me into joining the museum. I am now a member and got a thick book about Rodin as a prize. I had come to see an exhibit of the sketch books of Richard Diebenkorn. It turned out to be a very small exhibit, one painting and an interactive video table on which you could page through about 20 pages of sketchbooks. I’m afraid I just don’t get Diebenkorn. “And this is good… why?” was my mental refrain. Oh well.

I had lunch in the nice Cantor cafeteria, benefiting from my 10% member discount, yay. Then back to my purgatorio guest room to kill another hour and a half until it was time to go to PAMF and have a stress echo. I had last done one of these in 2007, it turned out. One walks on a treadmill at increasing speeds and slopes, while wired to the max for ECGs. Then when you reach your personal “Very Hard” effort level, which I did just into the fourth level, you lie down quickly and the echo tech takes pictures of your heart action. The only uncomfortable parts were, (a), patches of my chest hair had to be shaved to get good wire adhesion and (b), you have to “take a deep breath and hold” several times when you are panting from your run. But the two techs, one on the echo and one managing the treadmill, were both charming, and in general I think I aced the test.

Now a couple more hours of waiting and finally, Angela appeared to take me to my new room. The movers had done a really excellent job. They had gotten everything, every little object, and put it right back where it was, or as near as it could be given a slightly different room layout. All my plants were on the balcony, and they’d noticed the little sender for my indoor/outdoor thermometer. My Comcast modem and DVR and TV were all set up and working. They’d booted up my iMac and done a test print on my printer. I had forgotten to put away my coffee cup, and left it on the coffee table when I walked out in the morning. The cup, now washed clean, was in the same place on the coffee table in the new room. To the greatest extent possible they made the transition to a new room as seamless as it could be. Really nice job, folks.



Day 215, run, Warhol

Friday, 7/5/2019

Breakfast in my room off a bottle of Saturo and a cheese stick. Out at 7:30 for a run which went very well, thank goodness. Felt normal.

On this unscheduled day I decided I would finally get up to SFMOMA for the Warhol exhibit. There was a train at 10:23 that I couldn’t make, but on at 10:47 looked doable. Unfortunately I have never actually checked the distance from C.H. to the CalTrain station. I left just a little too late, and walked up to the station a minute after the train left. So now I had an hour to kill, which I did reading a book on Kindle on the phone.

In S.F. I walked the half mile from 4th and Townsend to SFMOMA. The museum was jumping, at least 20 people in line to buy tickets. I wonder if it was busy at the Computer Museum too, on this post-holiday Friday?

I’ve nothing much to say about Warhol. It was interesting to survey his career and different interests and subjects, but his work doesn’t move me. I also looked at another floor of SFMOMA that I didn’t get to last time, Day 44.

I took a Lyft back to the station where I forgot to badge-in with my Clipper card. So on the train home, the conductor lady came around and had to give me a ticket. It’s a $75 ticket, too. She helpfully pointed out it is easy to protest it. Just say you waved your card at the reader and it didn’t read, she suggested. Something to do on Monday.

I walked from the station back to C.H. and want it on record that I had 16,285 steps (7.4mi) for the day. However it is a good thing that I didn’t try to take a Lyft for that last half-mile, because Lyft had sent me an email complaining that my card had been refused for the preceding ride. Huh?

That’s my Hyatt card, which I use for most online accounts, to protect the Chase Sapphire card from online exposure. Anyway, why was it refused? I went online to check and — oh! I had maxed it out paying for my Road Scholar Greek Islands tour. So it was at its credit limit. I was going to schedule a payment next week. In the meantime I shifted the Lyft account to use another card.

Now I realize I had meant to go down and watch the last half of The Music Man, scheduled for 7pm tonight in the auditorium, and I got to futzing with the computer and forgot all about it. Pih.


Day 173, OMCA, realty

Cannabis report: taking 10mg/10mg had little, if any, effect. I woke up a couple of times around midnight and two AM, and both times noticed something possibly THC-related. As I’m falling asleep, I often “see” abstract patterns of light or color, which are entertaining and fun to notice. This night, I noticed that I was seeing unusually varied and detailed images, like a crazy slide-show of abstract art. I don’t recall now any of the images, only that they had a different quality, more varied and more detailed, than my normal falling-asleep experience. Could have been the THC — except that this was 3 and 4 hours after consumption.

Friday, 5/24/2019

Shortly after waking realized that it is just over a week to the six-month anniversary of Marian’s death. Which is significant in that, absent any firm offer on the house, I need an appraisal done to establish its value. I had discussed this with Chuck last week, and he assured me he knew an appraiser who would do a good job on short notice. At that time we were expecting a possible offer from Lawyer Lady so left it to “next week”. Well, I realized this morning, it’s the last day of “next week”, and there’s a holiday next week.

So I texted Chuck at 7am to initiate the appraisal today if possible. He replied OK, but later I learned that an appraiser can be instructed to come up with a value “as of” a particular time. In this case, the appraiser will be instructed to state the value “as of” Marian’s death. Quite possibly that will be a higher value than the house will sell for in today’s market, with the result I might actually have a loss for income tax purposes.

Then it was off to Oakland to meet with Darlene to visit the Oakland Museum of California, or OMCA as they call themselves. The main reason was to view the photographs of Andrew Russell, who used a cumbersome wet-plate view camera to document the building of the transcontinental railway. He it was who took the iconic picture of the completion:


The pictures are amazingly detailed. They’ve taken some of the 8-inch square negatives and printed them 8 feet square and you an walk right up and count leaves on bushes.

Darlene was interested in the exhibit “Queer California: Untold Stories”, pointing to pictures of marches she and Jessea had participated in. We had lunch in the museum cafe and then I headed back, arriving home in good time for Chuck to drop by.

His main news was the official offer from the Lawyer Lady (her name is Daphne, I learned). We went over the offer, and then we penciled out a lot of numbers starting with my goal for net proceeds, adding all the fixed costs and taxes that will be charged in escrow, adding in 5% commission (2.5% to each broker). This gives my bottom-line number, and it is surprisingly close to what the other agent stressed was an absolute top-line number from Lawyer Lady. There’s a lack of clarity about whether the other agent expects to take her 2.5% commission out of escrow, or if she will be paid directly by the buyer and so not be dipping in the escrow pot. In the worst case we’re only 4% apart.

After hashing it around awhile, I want to wait and not counter until next week. This is because of a foolish hope that a better buyer might see the ad in the Daily Post and call Chuck over the weekend. If that doesn’t happen he will present a counter-offer on Tuesday.

Later I went to CH for supper. On the way through the basement from the garage I stopped at Angela’s office. She was in and could give me good news on the unit. The custom cabinets for the bathroom are in, and the top (not clear if that’s the top for the kitchenette counter or the vanity counter), and demolition should start soon. There should be no problem completing the job for the 6/15 move-in date. We talked about how she should let me know when she has scheduled the last step, which is deep-cleaning the carpets. After that I can start bringing stuff in, if there’s anything I want to move ahead of the 15th.


Day 168, coffee, Mary Jane, art, sky

Sunday, 5/19/2019

Woke to the sound of rain, the arrival of the third of a string of unseasonal rain storms. I’ll bet this will be the last rain we see until November. In fact I hope so, because I took the winter cover off the A/C condenser last week. It’s not used to being wet. (But then, IOMISEP.)

Started Sunday as usual with the NYT puzzle during which there was a blink outside. I counted slowly to six when BLAM! a very sharp and loud crack of thunder hit. So I drove to coffee through steady rain, instead of walking.

Back to the house I settled down to continue my research (which I started Friday but omitted to mention) into edible marijuana, and marijuana dispensaries. Probably the most informative tutorial was this one from leaf science. Key points:

  • Two major components are THC and CBD.
  • THC produces the psychedelic effects, ranging from euphoria all the way to paranoid panic.
  • CBD produces the soporific/sedative effects as well as pain relief.
  • Different strains of the plant have remarkably different ratios of CBD:THC, all the way from 30:1 to 1:30.

I thought this was a key paragraph:

When you eat an edible, THC gets slowly absorbed into your bloodstream through the stomach and intestinal tracts. THC then gets broken down by the liver, which converts THC to a more potent chemical called 11-hydroxy-THC. The result is a high that is more intense and psychoactive effects that last much longer.

So THC, eaten, is more impactful even than when smoked. And the general advice is “start low and go slow”.

I am not interested in getting high. (Really. I do not like the sensation of being drunk. I drink beer for the taste, and rarely finish a glass of it. Maybe a relaxed cannabis high would be nicer, I wouldn’t know–yet.) My principal interest is in getting longer and better sleep (presumably a CBD effect). But going forward, I might experiment with  a small amount of THC as a social lubricant. But that will take careful and cautious experimentation.

Checking out local retail outlets with Yelp I settled on Harborside in San Jose. They have a very extensive online selection of products, and offer in-store pickup or delivery. Checking edible products, I found the following interesting:

I set up an order for a bottle of 10 soft-gels in the 4:1 ratio, a bag of the 3:1 gummies, and one bar of the chocolate. After I uploaded a picture of my driver’s license, they texted my phone to say the order was in progress, and a few minutes later that it was ready for pickup. So I drove down to their store. You have to show the back side of your license to be scanned at the door. (I never knew that the back side of my driver’s license has an elaborate bar-code thing.) Then I used a debit card to pay for my $90 worth of edibles and was out again in minutes. The whole excursion took less than an hour.

My plan is to try one, 4:1 soft-gel at 9pm tonight, and I’ll report on the effects if any later.

With a lot of Sunday left, I headed out meaning to visit the Cantor Arts Museum on the Stanford campus. After I parked and walked along the Goldworthy Snake sculpture toward the Cantor, I was deflected by signs to the Anderson Collection. This is an entire new building to house the collection of the Anderson family. The building has been constructed since the last time I was inside the Cantor, so clearly that has been a while. Anyway, I opted to visit the new collection on this visit. It’s all modern, non-representational, and mostly from large to heroic in scale. The work I most enjoyed looking at is this Untitled acrylic dome by Robert Irwin.


It’s fascinating how your eye has trouble finding the edges of it, which seem to turn into a haze. The camera has less trouble so it looks more defined in the picture.

After walking through this collection I noticed that the sky was what I think of as “English”, lots of big loose cumulus with blue sky beyond, and sun-breaks sweeping around. It’s a common look for English skies but rare in California. I decided to drive up to Palo Alto’s Foothills park, to Vista Hill, in hopes that it would be puffy cumulus to the north and maybe the City shining out. Sadly, no. The lovely blue and sun-streaked sky was only here in the South Bay, the north was still under rain clouds. I took a panoramic shot but it’s not worth uploading.

Day 161, disassembly, market, art

Sunday, 5/12/2019

I managed to sleep almost to 7am (and without getting up in the night, either). Yay me. Did the NYT puzzle and wrote yesterday’s blog post. As a result when I got to the coffee shop the almond croissants were just out of the oven, and that’s a good start to the day.

My plans for today were, first, to attend the Sunday Assembly, and then in the afternoon to drive to the City to look at the current exhibition at the Palace of the Legion of Honor. I figure to time that so I get back to Palo Alto around five, and find supper somewhere to kill the time until the potential buyers have cleared from the house.

Sunday Assembly is an international secular organization that sponsors Sunday morning meetings under the slogan “Live better, help often, wonder more”. They try hard to create the sense of community that is (I think) the main reason religious services exist, but without any supernatural trappings.  I and Marian attended a couple of their meetings back in 2017. Marian didn’t think much of them. I attended once with Dennis, also. I haven’t been to one in at least a year, and I thought I’d try it again.

I’m afraid that Sunday Assembly is not doing well; there were fewer people in attendance than I remember from before. I don’t think they are setting up as many rows of chairs at the Masonic Hall as they used to, and there were a couple of empty rows anyway.

As usual the meeting began with group singing. The speaker today was a person who was a counselor and leader of the secular summer camp movement, Camp Quest. So the theme was “adventure” and we opened by singing summer camp songs: “There’s a hole in the bottom of the sea,” “If you’re happy and you know it,” etc. That was fun in a mild way.

Then came a strange episode that I’m still processing. This of course is all to do with me, not a reflection on Sunday Assembly. The next activity was introduced as “We always start with an ice-breaker and here’s <name I didn’t get> to lead it.” Well, I can live with an ice-breaker, at least, times I’ve attended a Mass, I could shake hands with strangers around me during the “kiss of peace” ritual. But in this case, the very enthusiastic <name I didn’t get> tried to explain this quite complicated thing in which people were to pair up and you would say your name and point to the other who would say “Yeah!” and say a sentence about yourself and point, “Oh, yeah!” and trade off — there was more to it than that, a really complicated three-stage thing.

Even as he’s explaining and demonstrating this supposedly fun ritual I am thinking (I may have actually muttered aloud) “I ain’t doing that.” I was just swept by a negative reaction, an instant “Nope” as they say on Reddit. Nope nope nope! I don’t want to do that, I won’t do it well, I’ll feel like an idiot: in just a few seconds these barely-coherent feelings came over me. Plus, I’m sitting alone in a back row, there’s nobody near me to pair up with. So I instantly apprehend that I’m not going to have a choice, somebody in the row ahead is going to come up unpaired and look back at me and I don’t want to do this but I’ll be stuck. So just as the leader is saying “OK, let’s pair up and…” I just swept up my hat from the seat beside me and strode out of the room. Out the door, to my car, and drove away.

In hindsight there’s something familiar about that instant, strong, emotional rejection of a group activity. I haven’t felt it in many decades I’m sure, but now, a couple of hours after, I think I can relate it all the way back to grade school. It’s like the awful feeling when you are required to participate in a sport that you are shit at, but have to go out on the field anyway, knowing you will only humiliate yourself. So, I guess I’m still in touch with my inner third-grader. I’m not sure that I want to be! But maybe I should start to think about how to nurture that pathetic little guy.

Driving home along El Camino from the Sunday dis-Assembly I realized that it being Sunday, the

California Avenue farmer’s market

would be on. I haven’t been to that in four or five years. Marian and I always did our week’s food shopping on Sunday, and for several years we always started at the California Avenue market. For the last few years we found it more convenient to go to DiMartini’s farm stand in Mountain View; so it’s been a while. Just for the heck of it I parked and walked the length of the market.

This Sunday market, I’m pleased to note, is thriving. Walking it made me a little sad, however, because I really have no excuse to buy. Well, today I bought a box of Medjool dates, half a pound of cherries, and a bottle of apple-pomegranate cider. These are things I can consume in my bachelor life-style. But looking ahead, living in a facility with full meal service really means having no connection to food prep at all. This isn’t a new feeling. One of my very first realizations, like within 24 hours of Marian’s death, was that I’d probably never cook a proper meal again. But this was a reminder, a cold wind blowing on the raw surface where that “shard” of the old life has fallen off.

Anyway, 2pm I headed for the city for the

Early Rubens

exhibit at the Palace of the Legion of Honor. Drove myself, it being a Sunday, rather than using the train and Lyft. Took a few pictures.

Nice Jewish Girl


In an early “Annunciation” Rubens caters (no doubt) to the expectations of his Amsterdam audience, giving Mary a lovely head of blond curls.






This lady was I think not quite getting what she wanted. But I like my composition, the diagonal line from subject’s eyes to artist’s.






Here, the spotlights make Rodin’s “Three Shades” into six or nine.




So drove on back to Palo Alto, had a burger and a beer at The Counter, then over to Midtown for a dish of ice cream. Answering texts from Chuck all along this route, as he relayed questions from the clients. “How old is the roof” and so forth. Later he said both parties were very favorably impressed. I’ll meet him tomorrow afternoon to learn more.


Day 154, Art and stuff

Sunday, 5/6/2019

Did the NYT puzzle at home in hopes of being late enough to the coffee shop to get an almond croissant, but had to settle for a cinnamon roll instead. Walked along as customary admiring the  sky and thinking about being a widower, being consciously aware of being single and thus (a) free and (b) lacking a partner. The “free” part was underscored when, yesterday, I was reviewing the old Scandinavian travel blog. Its text does not mention health issues, but I remember how on that 2014 trip we were already somewhat handicapped by Marian’s lack of stamina; avoiding stairs and long walks. I swear I never felt the slightest resentment at how her declining strength limited our activities. Finding a minimum-stair route, or passing something up because it was too much walking, was just natural; we as a partnership did what we could do. But now, sometimes, I am aware of the release from those constraints, being able to climb stairs or walk up a hill without a second thought.

On the other hand, the absence of a partner shows up often. Whenever I notice some change in the neighborhood, or unusual garden item, I automatically think, must share that with… nope. That’s the the key thing about having a close partner: you validate your experiences by sharing them. Case in point: later today, driving on University Avenue, I notice a large, unusual sculpture in the front yard of a house. But there’s nobody to share this discovery with. Did I really see three, 8-foot tall crows, one perched on the garage roof? I think I did, but without anyone to tell it to, it isn’t quite real.

Did a couple of chores, including closing my YouTube channel. This is a task that has been moving from to-do list to to-do list for weeks. I have a modest channel where over the past two-plus years I’ve posted reviews of meal replacement products, Soylent, Huel, etc. Looking ahead, it just isn’t going to be practical to do this at C.H. But I feel a certain obligation to the 120 or so people who’ve subscribed to my channel. You subscribe to a channel in order to be notified when new content is posted. I won’t be posting any more, and I owe it to my tiny public to tell them so. So I recorded my 90-second farewell message and posted it. (Later in the day I got several “thanks and best wishes” comments on that video. Nice!)

Also paid a bill, and sent a form to the financial people.

About 10am I departed for Hunter’s Point in SF, for the Open Studios day. Over the next two hours I must have stepped into 75 or so studios and looked at, or at any rate glanced at, 300 images and objects. The studios are spread over several old administrative buildings for the former Naval Shipyard. I verified that I definitely prefer figurative art, although some of the abstract smooshes of color were pleasant to look at; and that I like whimsy.

I liked the work of Erik Joyner, whose thing is “robots and donuts” in every possible whimsical or satirical combination.

Unlike most of his work this one lacks donuts.

I almost bought a miniature of that print but couldn’t quite bring myself to spend $30.

Joyner is just for laughs, really, but one artist whose work I really, really liked is Carol Aust. Her studio was in a basement and I might not have gone down the stairs to it, except that this huge (5-foot wide) painting was hanging in the hallway above.

Carol Aust — “Eight Pelicans”

I really, really like that. To the point where the $4000 price tag does not seem impossible. After the house sells and I’m feeling flush again… and if I can find a suitable wall for a 5-foot painting… maybe…

Stopped at CH to check the mail and pick up a new garage fob (the first one quit working). Then came on home.




Day 131, more tidy, Chabot

Friday, 4/12/2019

Should have gone for a run but decided instead to do more — I need a word for, sorting through possessions, deciding what to keep, putting those bits in one place, the other bits in the trash or a different place — downsizing. I went through the sewing bits, collected a little kit that would handle buttons and simple repairs; put the rest in a nice basket to go in the sale. Stayed busy until 10am, time to leave for Oakland where I had a date with Darlene and Jessea. They’d invited me to go with them to Chabot space and science center, up top of the ridge above Oakland, for the planetarium show, and then lunch.

Chabot was rather busy with several busloads of kids. We checked out the exhibits, then watched the show, which was not a planetarium display but an iMax-style movie about the search for dark matter. Watching the kids boisterously bouncing around the displays, and watching the filmmakers trying to get across a fairly difficult concept, reminded me of how hard museum people work to produce relevant displays, and how often they fail, in my opinion. The software exhibit at the Computer History Museum is like that. They tried really hard, but it ended up more about the things people do with software, and conveys almost nothing about what it is, or the process, difficulty, fascination of trying to make it.

Nice lunch with two cheerful people. Got to talk about myself and my adventures, which is always enjoyable, so grateful for that.

Back at home I spent a couple of hours getting one our better images to print properly, and made something of a breakthrough controlling the printer. I think following images will be much easier to print with good color.

And only now I realize, I had a baseball game I could have gone to. Oh well.

Day 98, yet more Vegas

Met Harriet and Linda for tacos, and went into the arena. Oregon, a very powerful team this year (undefeated season, I think) had a lot of trouble with UCLA, and the game went to overtime. UCLA could have won it, almost did, but their coach Cory Close incurred a technical foul in the last minute, giving Oregon two free throws that turned the course of the game. At any rate, the Oregon players had a long and difficult game, which will hopefully slow them down for the championship game. Stanford had a somewhat easier time with UW, and Tara did a lot more substitutions than normal, presumably to keep her team fresh.

Sunday, 3/10/2019

Daylight savings started today. As a result I got to the terminal to print my Southwest boarding pass about 40 minutes after the 24-hour window opened. But still, boarding number A44, two positions better than the outbound trip, so other people must have slept in also.

I went to to set up a recording of tonight’s game, which I had neglected to do before leaving home. This used to be a snap, log in to directv, go to “Guide”, scroll the listing to the right channel, click record. Well, it still kind of works that way but since AT&T took over DirecTV, they have insisted on integrating the two websites, so now I have to navigate through layers of AT&T website to get to the same place. Despite being signed in with my AT&T login, it still cannot comprehend anything other than that I would want to buy a DirecTV subscription. Actually controlling or using my account… well, never mind. I got it done.

One benefit of the move to an ILF is that I will almost certainly not have AT&T as my internet provider, and not have DirecTV as my TV provider. Probably ComCast excuse me XFinity for both, I think that’s what C.H. has as the in-house system. I’ve been a DirecTV subscriber for … twenty years? Must be. Certainly since the 1990s sometime. XFinity will not be an improvement customer-service-wise, by all accounts, but I won’t have to deal with it directly.

I recall that while showing me around C.H. Craig mentioned that he was part of a resident committee that did tech support for other residents, and pretty clearly suggested I could be, too. Well, maybe so. Could be an aid in integrating to that community. I can start with figuring out the TV and internet for my own unit and go from there.

Harriet texts that she and Linda can meet me at noon. I’d suggested a visit to the Springs Reserve, so we’ll probably do that.

OK we spent a couple hours walking through this pleasant municipal thing, with its Butterfly experience, botanical garden with lots of cacti, etc. Then back to the hotel where I had a short nap and then it was game time.

Stanford started out well, taking a quick 6-point lead, and maintaining a lead of 6-10 points into the fourth quarter. Then Oregon caught up and the game was tied with 3 minutes to play, when Stanford got a couple of crucial baskets. In the final minute, Oregon had to start fouling; Stanford hit all their free throws, and the game ended with a Stanford win: champions of the PAC-12.

Had a late supper with Harriet and Linda then back to the room to get a good night’s sleep before an early departure tomorrow.