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In the kitchen in Seattle.
December 15th, 1999

Floor, No More
Lessons in Humility, Chapter 32: Nuts. The physical print of the photograph above looks much better than the image displayed on the screen. The skin tones are red and blotchy in the graphic above while they're quite acceptable in the print itself. I normally shoot slides when I shoot color for my own use and I've had good luck with the color fidelity of slides when I've scanned them for the web. For parties I shoot print film because people want prints, thank you, and my luck so far with scanning print film negatives is miserable. I'm going to solve this problem. Honest. Starting this weekend. It can't be rocket science. (Can it?)

Today was our manager's birthday (actually, it was yesterday, but he took yesterday off to do some Christmas shopping and celebrate, which seems to me, um, vaguely masochistic) so we naturally used the opportunity to take him to a long lunch at the Dim Sum restaurant located in the Chinese Cultural Center. Other than being seated at the table farthest from the kitchen, it was quite nice. Dim Sum is brought around on carts that are loaded with every sort of tasty dish and you select the dishes you want, the waiter marking the number of dishes down on your tab which is then totalled at the end of the meal. (The problem with sitting far away from the kitchen is all the good stuff tends to get waylaid by the close in tables before it reaches you.) We use the long lunch business model this time of year. All those holiday pressures, all those people you have to keep happy at home, all those expectations you have to meet are ameliorated by long lunches in a warm place with good food. Keeps the background craziness at a reasonable level even if it kills the diet.

This is now being written on Thursday. I received a federal tax refund today, one that I Ornament at Oakland City Center wasn't expecting. I finished paying off a federal tax balance last summer, a sum that I'd been paying down for years by having money deducted from my paycheck. I'd been sending them a check every month and arranged to have my company payroll department deduct it directly and send it to the government. One thing about owing back taxes: Every time they gave me a balance, it was different (and always larger) than the last balance. This over a period of three years. When I realized according to their own calculations that I'd paid off my obligation, I tried to get my company to stop sending them money and learned that although I'd initiated the request for the deduction in the first place, only the feds could stop it. I did get them to stop deducting money from my paycheck, but only after a lot of effort and only after overpaying them by a fairly large amount. Quite honestly I was happy to have them off my back and never really expected to hear from them again (at least on this particular subject), let alone receive a refund. Today a refund. Weird. Just as my hard drive is beginning to report bad clusters. I wonder what I'm going to do with it?

I think I'm going to start feeding Wuss some of that wet no fish in it food at night and then feed him the vet prescribed stuff in the mornings. Two reasons: one, Wuss is too skinny. I can count his ribs when I pet him. I personally don't think I should be able to count the ribs of a long haired cat that is living under my roof. I'm not talking fat here, just some padding around the ribs so he doesn't pet like a washboard. Second, he hasn't stopped meowing since I've gotten home. He's eating the vet food, but just enough to be hungry all the time, just enough to be meowing from the chair and jumping up on the desk meowing and clawing at my record collection meowing and driving me nuts meowing. I'll feed him the vet food in the morning before I go to work and if he wants to meow, he can meow at the walls. When I get home at night, I'll feed him some turkey this or chicken that like the vet suggested and maybe he'll chill out. Sit on the desk, yes. Purr on the chair, fair. Meow on the floor, no more.

"On the floor, no more." You're going to change that, right?


You're not going rewrite that? You're going to just post that to the web for people to read?

It's been a long day. I've sunk so low I'm writing about the IRS. I need slack. I'm tired. It's Christmas. Besides, it isn't so bad. If I worked on it longer it could be good. "Chair, fair" is weak, of course, and "floor, no more" is worse, but, you know, it's Thursday. It's OK. I'm going with it.

You shouldn't post "floor, no more". It will make you look like an idiot.

I am an idiot.

Of course you're an idiot. You just don't want to look like an idiot. Idiot.

The banner photograph was taken at the family party in Seattle. The ornament was photographed on the tree in the Oakland City Center. Could have been better. I'll try shooting it again.