Archive for September, 2005

Belated Fishing Story

Fishing
I was planning on holding a grand scale BBQ for anyone that wanted to come, but I had to be an ass and revoke my invitation 1 day after it was sent. This is why: my brother, Aryk, called me that day and asked if I would like to go salmon fishing on the west coast of Vancouver Island with him and his friend, Dave, for the weekend. After some rationalizing and healthy encouragement from my brother, I cancelled the BBQ and went. I felt bad, but I assure you, only for a moment. 🙂

Day 1 was awesome. We did tonnes of stuff! We left bright and early, and caught the tail end of a ferry we didn’t even know left at that hour. When we landed in Nanaimo, we had a nice casual drive interluded with a stop at Cathedral Park and a swim in a beautiful lake. We finally got to the cabin in West Bamfield, and even went fishing in the evening! I think we caught a wild sockeye, and threw him back.

Day 2 was a long day, but at least we each caught a fish. Both my brother and I caught the biggest fish of our lives! Mine was 16 lbs and Aryk’s was 23 lbs. Yeah, his was slightly bigger… >.< Dave also caught a 16 pounder, but he’s caught much bigger fish before. Anyways, we were out in the boat pretty much all day, and rested up in the hot tub after gorging on a massive meal. It was a good day because we each got a fish. We were content.

Day 3. From here on, it seemed something was out to get us. It started with spilt coffee… We had barely left the dock when Dave’s coffee took a swan dive off the dashboard. Dave really like his coffee in the morning. Dave wasn’t happy. After seeing that, I made sure to put my coffee in a one of the cup holders. Then a cloud decided to fall on us, and it started raining like crazy! In a mad rush for the little cover the boat provided and to put on the rain gear, my coffee was knocked off the low dive. Shit. Neither of us had even taken a sip. My brother doesn’t drink coffee, so he wasn’t really affected… and I was just disappointed: it was good coffee! Dave was definitely the most affected.

Anyways, we weren’t gonna let a little rain and a couple spilt coffees detour us; we were going fishing! We turned off the big motor, and had just started trolling with the little one. Nobody seemed to be catching any fish, so when Dave’s dad flew by us in his friend’s boat and telling us to follow them (it actually went something more like, “What are you fucking around here for? Let’s go fishing!”) we thought it sounded like a pretty good idea. Kill the little motor and start the big one! … *ahem* “start the big one!” …It wouldn’t start.

Lovely.

Gee, look at how foggy it’s getting… can’t even see the land, anymore.

Perfect.

So we putted around in the fog until we found Dave’s dad, and after a while got the big motor to start with a manual starter. I just watched this process, for the most part; didn’t want to get in the way. 🙂 We were determined to make something of the day, so we continued fishing, starting the big motor manually when it was necessary. However, the day did not get much better: there was zero fish action all around us. People were heading back wondering why we were still out there. We were wondering the same thing…. Finally, as we were on our last leg, I was reeling up my line to switch over to a halibut jig (a sure measure of our despair) and a salmon stuck my line. So that was the only fish we got all day, but thank god we got at least one fish!

Day 4. The next day was better. We still had our share of problems: lost down-riggers and down-rigger leads, having to do ad-hoc down-rigger surgery on the boat (again, I watched). The fishing was starting to pick up, and we caught 2 more salmon. Plus, we saw a whale! That was really cool, I’ve never seen a whale in the wild, before. Big. Whales. Unfortunately, I was holding a fishing rod at the time, and my brother doesn’t quite know how to use my camera, so the pictures aren’t nearly as awesome as what we saw.

So that was just a half-day. Things started getting good, then we left. 🙁 Bye bye, Bamfield. Dave’s dad gave us each an extra fish, so we each took home 3 salmon. On the way back to the ferry, we stopped for a swim in that lake (which I can’t remember the name of), once again. We also stopped in Port Alberni to put some air in the tires. Oh wait, things weren’t finished going wrong. Not only did we stop at an air station that said “Out of Service,” but the truck wouldn’t start again. I’m dead serious when I say it was really unbelievable!

So, I’m getting tired of writing this belated story… long night short: We had more starter troubles, this time with the truck! Dave tried various jerry-riggings, and we even got help from strangers, but we had to talk to a mechanic to get a part. No mechanics were open by that time, so we had to sleep in the truck. During the night, a bunch of drunk, punk kids decided to hang out in our parking lot and throw each other against our truck. Get lost. What a fucking night.

Day 5. It wasn’t supposed to last 5 days, but the mechanic was finally available, the part was easy to get and install, and when all was done, we were glad to say goodbye to Port Alberni. The best thing about Port Alberni was, I would have to say, the pizza we ordered. That was damn good pizza.

No more terrible events happened and we got home later that day. Despite all the bad things, it was a good trip. =)

More Photos

Settling in at work

Had an interesting day at work, today. My current task involves using a web interface to rebuild pages for a test environment. This is extremely boring and repetitious work, and it will take a long time to complete. When my supervisor gave me the task, he told me to take my time.

Okay. I will. I’ll spend time to see if it’s feasible to write an agent to replace me. If not, then I’ve learned something in the process. Yay me.

What’s great is I actually wrote the following Java code, today:


public class Intern extends Robot {
...
}

Intern steve = new Intern();

In English: Interns are Robots, and my job is going to be done by one called, steve. C’mon, that’s funny! :mrgreen:

Oh yes, I finally got Lotus Notes working (a tech support guy came to my cubicle and set everything up for me), and I must say, I prefer life without Notes. That is an absolutely atrocious piece of software. It’s like running a second OS with an interface that was written by people who simply had no right. Just to give you an idea of its ugliness, URLs in the Mailer actually flash! On the ugly scale of ten, it scores at least an eleven.

However, now that I got Notes set up, I was able to check my email and discover the details of my proxy account! Internet, here I come! Did I mention I had administration issues? ^^

Gnome 2.12 is out. I probably won’t upgrade until after I’ve got my laptop back from getting fixed… which will take a month. *sigh* But, I did download the ClearLooks theme. I had a good custom theme before… I did. But ClearLooks is very very nice. go get it.

Wow. That was a geeky entry. I’ll make up for it with pictures from the fishing trip, soon… maybe.

woops! more geek.

Joining the colony

Well, I’ve been in the corporate working world since Tuesday. I’ve had a number of administrative “issues,” perhaps even more than when I was working in Japan, but they’re much more easily resolved. The first day, I was given massive design documents to look over and get myself acquainted with the overall scope of our project. I managed to scan through the first. The second day, I barely managed to scan through the second. Today, I spent most of the day doing documentation (kinda) for someone else in another group that is running short on time. Ah, the life of an intern. We are the bottom feeders of the office. But that does have the advantage of not as much responsibility (can be good and bad). But I have a pretty good feeling about this internship – I think I’ll learn quite a bit. I’ve already been refreshing my Java knowledge (on my own time)… and it feels good! 😀 But I’m so tired when I get back from work…. 🙁

And this normally wouldn’t bother me, but I’m gonna miss out on stuff at school! There’s an HCI reading group I’d be interested in, and there’s those free CS Buttons! I like free stuff. The button design really isn’t that bad, it’s just not my first choice. It is the best CS design I’ve seen, so far, but I think it could be made a lot better with some small changes. Anyways, I’m curious how it will look on a one-inch button. I expect pictures to be posted!

*cough* Shirley *cough*

Maybe I’ll go to the next vanlug.

NP: saucy Secret Agent   (stream)

UBC CS Button Results

It’s ironic: I spend days sorting and reducing the number of clothes I’ve accumulated over the years, but then just today I go out and spend $100 dollars – mostly on clothes. It’s not illogical, as I need these clothes for work, but it is ironic… and it makes me a little sad. I hope I don’t have to throw these out any time soon. I have a really hard time discarding things when nothing is really wrong with it… I’m a total pack rat. A cheap pack rat; the worst kind.

Anyways…

Ah, the last day of freedom. Take a deep breath and enjoy it while you still can. Many people will be going back to school tomorrow, and some, myself included, will be going to work. I’ve got a few things to catch up with, blog-wise. Here it goes…

UBC Button Design Results
I didn’t get first place or 2nd. Congratulations to Shirley who tied someone else in 2nd! The winning design is really well done, and it is clever, but it’s not something I would have chosen for a button or a logo. Apparently it was an overwhelming victory for this design. I would expect this design to be chosen by a group of adolescent boys… so I guess it makes sense that the general CS population favoured it. Perhaps I’m a little bitter. Anyways, it’s still better than anything I’ve seen for the CS department, before.

The old site with the 12 designs people had to choose from is gone due to a badly needed (and badly handled, it seems) site upgrade, but here are the 14 I originally submitted:

Hmm.. I’m tired. Looks like all other “updates” will have to wait. Had to write something, tonight, though.