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Year: 2009

RIP, Font Thing

Have you ever found a program that does everything you need it to, and in a way that you love, and you become blind to any other software that does what this program that you love so dearly does? And then, have you updated your operating system only to find that your beloved piece of software no longer works?

I’m there, right now.

The Font Thing was such a great font management tool, and followed me from XP to Vista, and then attempted to follow me from Vista to Windows 7. Now, it shouldn’t come as a shock to me, but I can’t even install it; Windows says “nope! Not gonna happen!” I hadn’t realized that development on The Font Thing stopped 10 years ago. Holy cow.

So, I seem to be in the market for a new font management program. I’ve got over 1000 fonts that I need to organize and selectively install.  Does anybody have a good recommendation for a new font manager? I prefer free (ideally open source) where possible, but I’ll consider commercial options.

I’ll miss you, Font Thing!

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Pioneer Fishies

So, remember how I was talking about how I wanted a 10 gallon community tank in my living room? I did one better… we bought a 20 gallon tank. It’s so big, I love it!

Today we added the first few fish to it.

I’m working from the living room today so I can observe. They are obviously still in adaptation mode, but I need to make sure that nobody gets bullied. I did my homework and found a list of fish that can be (relatively) safely housed with a male betta, so I’m keeping an eye on them to make sure he doesn’t start picking on the other fish.

Their initial reaction was a bit different than I’d have expected. Here’s a photo of the tank before I put any fish in it:

Empty Fish Tank

(I totally love the tiki man bwahaha)

So, the betta immediately swam into the big tree decoration. He’s come out a couple of times, but mostly is camping out inside, in the dark, far away from the other 5 fish.

I got two mollies, a white molly and a dalmatian molly (mine is more black than white). The white one initially was hanging out near the surface, and ate most of the food I put in there. Now he’s exploring a little bit more, but still spending more time near the surface than anywhere else. The dalmatian one has been exploring pretty thoroughly and likes to follow the bottom feeder around. Now the two mollies are spending more time near each other.

The neon tetra was initially cowering behind the tall plants (literally, he looked like he was shaking) for a while but is now out and about.

The guppy seems the best adjusted so far, he’s been exploring the whole time and is now content to hang out with the tetra; they’re BFF’s hehe.

And, the cory catfish, in true bottom feeder fashion, is playing with the gravel at the bottom of the tank.

So far everybody looks happy but the betta; I prefer hiding in the dark to attacking other fish though, so we’ll see how he does when he’s done playing in the dark.

Once these fish are established, we’ll pick up a few more; either of similar types or more of what we’ve got.There’s a few other kinds that can co-exist with a betta as long as he’s not snarky. If he seems really docile, I might try some angel fish – they’re labeled as “use caution”, so they may or may not get along with the betta, depending on individual temperament.


Gas Stations

Or: Why I Can’t Take Jeffry Anywhere

So, Oregon has this state law that says we’re not allowed to pump our own gas, because apparently if we do, we will set ourselves on fire.

Today, Jeffry and I went up to Vancouver, WA to visit a friend of the family and some of my relatives that were in the area for a wedding. The gas light came on shortly after we left their house to come back home, so we stopped at a gas station. Two seconds later, he goes ,

“Awwwww crap.”
“What’s wrong dear?”
“It’s self serve!”
“… and?”
“… you seriously don’t know how to pump gas?!”

Ladies and gentlemen, my boyfriend doesn’t know how to pump gas.

So I got out and did it and proceeded to laugh at him for the next hour. Heehee


I Want An Aquarium

When I got my apartment, I pulled my little 1.5 gallon fish tank back out of it’s box and set it up next to my desk and stocked it with a red/white (he changed colors.. he was more blue/white when I bought him) betta named George. George is the most entertaining fish I’ve ever had. When I first put him in the tank, he was picking fights with his reflection in the tank. Once he got used to himself, he started picking fights with the gravel at the bottom of his tan, which was hilarious. Then when he got bored with that, he started playing with the currant from the water filter… he’d swim up to the top, relax his body, and let the flow send him “flying” across the tank. Super cute. He also likes to stare at me when he knows I’m watching him.

I noticed that George was really fond of laying on top of the little plactic plants that were in there but they didn’t seem to be treating his fins well, so I bought some live plants and a little cave to put in his tank. That triggered the need for an aqaurium.. his tiny tank seems so FULL now, and OMG I really want to do more aquascaping.

A few weeks ago, George got really sick. He turned grey, stopped eating, and spent all his time laying in the corner of his tank. After a few days, his breathing started looking really strained as well. I took in a sample of his water for testing to see if it was a problem with the ph balance or something but I was told that the tank water was nigh perfect. I started reading all about betta illnesses and stuff trying to figure out what was wrong with him. I was worried that I’d look over and find him belly up (and at one point he looked so bad that I almost hoped I would just so he wouldn’t be suffering anymore, cause it broke my heart how miserable he seemed to be) but George is a trooper. I took him in to the fish shop to see what they thought and they said “well, he looks pretty terrible but an antibiotic might help him. don’t get your hopes too high though.”

So we came home and started his antibiotic and stress reducing treatment. Within 3 days he was back to his old self again

But all the research made me realize how fascinating fish really are, and how they have personalities and all that. Pair this with the want to do more aquascaping and I seem to have a problem. I want a 10 gallon community tank for my living room. George is going to stay here by my desk so I can see him all day cause he rocks, but there’s a bunch of fish that you can (relatively) safely tank with one male betta. I saw one once; my friends dad had a large tank with about 9 fish and a male betta; he was HUGE. It was cool. I want a tank like that.

I might get one this month, which would be exciting. I’m researching what kinds of fish I can put together. Anybody have any suggestions?

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SLIMQUICK Cleanse: Final Review

I know I said I would document it daily for those playing The Home Game, but honestly, there was nothing to report most days. Every other entry would have looked much like Day 3, and wasn’t worth writing home about.

The final tally wound up being 5.6 pounds less than I started at, which isn’t bad at all. I still really think it was all water weight, and noticed the slowdown right at Day 4, which I assume is when I ran out of excess water to drop. Measurements are all about a half inch lower, except stomach which is a full inch lower. Not really a visible difference but not a bad start.

I don’t know that I can confidently say that the SLIMQUICK Cleanse had much, if anything to do with this though… I honestly think that drinking a lot of water (which I am notorious for not having done before starting this program) and eating reasonable food did it all. I’m going to hit all the points that The Cleanse says it helps:

1. Eliminate TOXINS: SLIMQUICK cleanse contains ingredients which help eliminate toxins from the digestive tract.  Toxin elimination is a key process in any cleansing or detoxifying regime.

It’s hard to comment on this specific point. What do toxins look like when they vacate the premises? How do you feel after? I don’t feel any cleaner… *shrug* No ideas on this one.

2. Increase METABOLISM: An increase in metabolic rate helps contribute towards weight loss by increasing calories burned throughout the day. SLIMQUICK cleanse contains clinically researched key ingredients to boost metabolism.

Another one that’s hard to comment on, as you can’t really *feel* your metabolism. Can’t really weigh the weight loss results against anything either as I drank more water and ate less calories while my metabolism was “faster” so there’s no way to measure this claim.

3. Improve functions of DIGESTIVE TRACT: SLIMQUICK cleanse contains ingredients to help with daily functioning of the digestive tract as well as ingredients to help promote a healthy intestinal flora.  Healthy intestinal flora is central to the functioning of the digestive tract.

My digestive tract did not seem improved. More on that in Point 5, which may be a bit TMI.

4. Increase ENERGY: Increased energy expenditure or calorie burning through physical activity is a key factor in any weight-loss program. SLIMQUICK cleanse contains ingredients shown to elevate one’s energy levels.  By increasing energy, women are able to get through their busy days and still have energy to undertake regular physical exercise and maintain an active lifestyle.

Not at all. I felt just as tired the whole time I was on the cleanse than I did before it… moreso on some days. I even cheated one day and had a cup of coffee in the morning and was still not more energized.

5. Cleanse the COLON: SLIMQUICK cleanse contains ingredients which have been shown to help increase one’s ability to achieve effective bowel functions by increasing the frequency of bowel movements and improving the efficiency of the colon.

NO. No, this did not happen at all. If anything, I pooped less than I usually do. I feel rather constipated and would love nothing more than to have an “effective bowel function” right about now. The only effect SLIMQUICK Cleanse had on my poop was making it softer (which wasn’t necessary, my poop was not rock hard thx), smaller and stinkier. I think I’m more backed up now than I was before.

6. Balance BLOOD SUGAR: SLIMQUICK cleanse is designed with ingredients to help balance blood sugar (glucose) and promote healthy blood glucose homeostasis. It is important to maintain blood glucose homeostasis for overall maintenance of bodyweight and good health.

This point, however, I am more than happy to give them. I am inclined to say that it did help stabilize my blood sugar, as I didn’t get dizzy when I got hungry, which happens to me often. My blood sugar has been known to tank with no warning, leaving me feeling horrible on top of being hungry. This did not seem to happen during my cleanse. I was, however, chronically hungry all week.

So, over all, it seems like many of these claims are not really measurable. I did lose 5 pounds during the week long cleanse and am very happy about that, but I just don’t know that I believe the Cleanse had anything to do with that. Drink plenty of water and eat reasonably, and I suspect those first 5 pounds will come off easily… if it works like I think it does you’ll simply pee them away. In a nutshell: I wouldn’t do it again.. at least, not without trying the water-and-healthy-food thing first, to have something to compare to.

I do have the SLIMQUICK Caplets, which I intend to try out starting tomorrow (I really need a break from swallowing ginormous things, ugh!) and will share my thoughts on as they come up. Stay tuned.

SLIMQUICK Cleanse series: Intro · Day 1 · Day 2 · Day 3 · Final Review