Quick update

Many things are happening for me, and almost all of them are good.

I get the key to my new apartment tomorrow. I’m having a blast at work these first two weeks, and will soon have much to post with regards to C# .NET development with Visual Studio 2003. I’ve developed a very nice semi-addiction to Red Bull.

I haven’t posted anything about the hell week I had before leaving for Colorado, since I’m waiting to post this one particular picture I have on my linux machine in Raleigh.

I’ve had a few great runs over the past few weeks, and am looking forward to a 16-miler this Saturday in Raleigh. My dorkly Garmin is quite amazing.

I’m slowly listening to Rand’s The Fountainhead as I drive back and forth across North Carolina. I’ve never been much of a Rand fan with regard to ethics, but the book is, so far, mostly enjoyable.

More to come later. I hope to have sufficiently mastered Winforms programming by this afternoon.

News from frozen hell

In the latest “Hell freezes over” news:

  • new rumors of a two-button Apple mouse
  • I own a Playstation 2 (so tiny! how can I enjoy Gran Turismo so much, yet suck so bad?)
  • I now live in Charlotte, and I’ve found a great apartment directly across the street from work! Runs at lunchtime!

Second day, blue runs

So, my new equipment kicks ass. The Burton board and bindings I rented are a million times better than the crap I rode yesterday, and my new boots are worth every penny (and it was quite a few pennies, even with the end-of-season 20% off).

One the girls working the shop where I got my boots last night looked distractingly like Peach. Only a little shorter, and with a pierced nose. I didn’t let her in on how interesting this was.

On the slopes I followed Brent around all day, and after two warm-up runs on familiar greens we stuck with blues. Breck blues are an awesome workout, especially if you do full runs without stopping. I even survived a mogul-filled black stretch (“Sizzler”), which I don’t really care to repeat until I’m able to easily do 180º ollies and such. In hindsight, the “oh shit” moments are what makes all the difference.

One interesting observation was that at least half of the people on the blues today were significantly less skilled than me. I enjoy such boosts of confidence, since I still consider myself a total noob, but most of these people suck a dangerous amount. Luckily I was only cut off bad enough to bail once. Still, I’m convinced most of them were out to get me.

Lunch today was a decent, if unremarkable, Mexican place. Fresh spinach and mushroom enchiladas.

I really wish I could wash all my snow clothes each day.

First day on the mountain

Green runs in Breckenridge are quite a bit more fun than the few that I did in Vail (my few solo runs there were on the longish blue Born Free). However, the gear I rented today sucked pretty bad, so I opted not to ride to complete exhaustion. My feet were dying.

The snow was excellent today. Even before it picked up, the snow was much softer and forgiving than I’m used to. I only fell once all morning, which I thought was pretty unbelievable.

The snow did pick up, as you can see, and was glorious. You can see Brent on the chair behind me, living it up in the sun. Of trivial note, we ended up on separate chairs because we’re both uncoordinated morons, and my left calf is still killing me from getting smacked on that particular lift.

No more crappy gear for me; I invested in some Salomon Malamute boots, and rented a far sweeter board setup. Brad is a big fan of Flow bindings, but I’m trying some of the newer Burton ones early in the week.

In the mountains

I returned to Raleigh on Sunday night, just in time to pack a few things and sleep a few hours. Barely made my 6:30am flight, despite long security lines and being the winner of a random physical search. The Cincinnati terminal was surprisingly nice.

My noise-cancelling headphones were awesome on the planes. I whole-heartedly recommend them to anyone, provided you can get an outrageous discount.

Arrival in Denver by 10:00am; quick jump onto CME shuttle to Breckenridge.

While not brand new, the Beaver Run resort in Breckenridge is enormous, and directly adjacent to a lift up the mountain. The rooms don’t appear to be aging particularly well, but there is a pleasant utilitarianism to the entire resort.

Green curry, root beer and Red Bull were all excellent at My Thai on Main Street. The observation was made that this restaurant singlehandedly exceeded the ski hippie quotient of all of Vail. Indeed, other than a few sports bar types with a few Miller Lites at an adjacent table, we looked downright preppie. The instrumental funk was sweet; gotta find out who it was.

Pet owners, is this the kind of thing you often find in pet stores?

24″ LCD approaching affordability?

Oh man, I’m going to have to start saving up for one of these new 24″ Dell LCDs immediately. The resolution is 1920×1200 (the same as the glorious Apple 23″ Cinema display), but it cites a 12ms response time and 1000:1 contrast ratio. And a price of only about 60% (!!) of the competition. I don’t know who makes the panel for Dell (Samsung?), but this is a photo editor’s dream.

It’s a shame you can’t get a sweet replacement stainless steel bezel and stand for it. For a hundred bucks or so.

For those not needing quite the massive single-screen resolution, the Dell 20.1″ widescreen display (1680×1050) is under $600. The 20.1 normal aspect ratio model (1600×1200) is also the same price, but doesn’t cite contrast/response/brightness specs that are quite as good.

Should I get a PS2 or a PSP?

So, I packed up my Xbox, controllers, and games and traded them in for in-store cash at the local EBWorld. My intention was to get a mini PS2 simply to play Grand Turismo 4. However, all locations in town are out of PS2s, so I’ll have to wait (not a big deal at the moment, for obvious reasons).

I notice, however, that a new portable Playstation is coming, and will be under $300. Should I spend my $100 on a Grand Turismo machine, or put some money down for one of these new portable things (which should have a version of Grand Turismo)?