Welcome to in transit, a lame attempt at a homepage by Mark Danielson. This site contains a regular journal, photography, rants and other miscellaneous stuff. However, it does not contain information about quantum nonlocality.

Now, if you're still here after that, if you can read this, you're either accessing the site through a device like a screen-reader, have a very old graphical browser or are using a text browser like Lynx (university physics geeks, you're the cause of that first paragraph). You may want to consider downloading a graphical browser that complies with Web standards, such as Mozilla, Netscape 7 or Internet Explorer 6. (Then you'll get to see what this page is supposed to look like.)

By the way, if you have any suggestions on how to make this site more accessible, please e-mail me at mrbula@nonlocality.com.


Rich's parents are selling their house, so it sounds like he expects to be here more than he has been lately. I'll probably be OK with that as long as I don't have to deal with him in the mornings. On a related note, it's one month and counting until Mark gets his own apartment. Anticipation, anticipation.

 ) ) ) 

[entry deleted]

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Long day. Six meetings. By the time I left work I was wandering around mumbling to myself.

 ) ) ) 

I finally started posting the daily photos. They'll have their own section as soon as I get around to it. (I'll be adding some other photos soon, but have to consult a few people on captions before I do so.)

And, for the record, I'm working under the assumption it's only a matter of time before someone informs me that I'm using the word "quotidian" incorrectly.

 ) ) ) 

I got an unexpected answer to a question I posed last year about Bernie Brewer's chalet. A fellow MetaFilter member who happens to reside in Milwaukee reports the chalet is living a happy, ant-free existence at a local brewery.


I was on the phone with Sarah, researching online airfares to Montreal and munching on cereal when Heather and Rich came through the door. There was some brief interruptive conversation, which I explained away as "Rich and Beth just walked in."

"That's Heather," said Rich. "You know, your roommate, the person you've shared a place with for two years." Oh, um, yeah. Well, Heather and Beth used to hang out together all the time and I occassionally mixed their names up then, too. And Rich dated Beth for the better part of a year. So really, when considering the number of places my mind was at the moment, it was sort of an easy mistake to make. Right? Hey, my mom always mixed my brother and I up, and I don't hold it against her...

OK, so I suck...

 ) ) ) 

I made a number of questionable decisions last night, not the least of which was to wander down to the store in the middle of a storm alternating between snow, sleet and rain. Other errors: Walking the mile to Lund's instead of the two blocks to Kowalski's (I've been boycotting Kowalski's, long story), buying more than I could carry in one bag, answering "paper" instead of "plastic," wearing shoes instead of hiking boots and taking tree-lined side streets instead of the relatively treeless Hennepin. You can probably figure out the rest. I passed only one other person the entire trip, a cute face peering out from an oversized hood. "Nice evening," she said.

"Yes, very," I replied. I continued on about ten steps only to get slammed by a slush bomb dropped from the tree above. What was left of the paper bag disintegrated, its contents plummeting to the puddle below. I muttered a mild expletive, leaned down to gather the groceries and decided this probably was payback for enjoying people getting snow-bombed a few days earlier. Once standing again I allowed myself a quick glance down the street. A fast walker, she was already at the end of the block.

 ) ) ) 

I love my digital camera, but the software Canon sent along with it sucks. I spent a lot of time working on photos this weekend, but, unfortunately, most of it was passed in a state of exasperation. I'm working off backups right now, so it'll probably be Tuesday or Wednesday before I start posting photos on a regular basis again.


Friday got off to an awkward start. Heather got up early, which means I got up early, awakened by the sounds of the shower three feet away. I buried my head under the pillow and tried to fall back asleep, but it didn't come easy. Random thoughts flew through my head, minor stuff--what I need to do at work, the cancellation notice for the apartment lease, what next for the Sim City game I'm working on, and so on. And then a strange, complicated memory hit me, one completely unrelated to anything I'd been thinking about:

I'm driving under a crumbling freeway overpass one cold, bright winter morning, my weary breath billowing dragon-like into the unwarmed interior of the car, the radio silent, the engine screeching and rumbling itself awake. The air has that stagnant, somewhat vulgar smell frigid winter mornings often bring, the one that seems to say you shouldn't be out here, the one that tells you to go back from where you came, back to where it's warm. I don't listen, of course. I sit at the stoplight and wait for the signal, a bit put-off about being the only one who seems to be up this Sunday, but still happy for the events that brought me here. I get the green and slowly merge onto the empty roadway. I used to deliver hundreds of newspapers a day in this weather, I say matter-of-factly to the empty passenger seats. And with that I head off to wherever it is I for some reason think I should be.

And I don't know how to describe it, but it wasn't the kind of thing I wanted to start my day with.

 ) ) ) 

I had a hamburger for lunch Friday. It was okay.


It's 11:36 in the evening, and you know what I want right now? A hamburger. A good quarter-pound in size, grilled medium on a coal fire with a little salt and pepper sprinkled on. The bun would have to be a hard roll, probably a Semmel, toasted on the grill with the excess bread hollowed out from the top half. Put on a little ketchup and a slice of lettuce, nothing too much to distract from the burger itself. Serve alongside a tasty beverage. Mmmmm, sounds good, doesn't it? Instead, I presently find myself dining on Cheerios and Batch No. 6 Green Apple Soda, which really isn't as bad of a combination as it may sound.

But I'd rather have a hamburger.

I haven't been eating much red meat lately, mostly because of recommendations from the doctor. There's been a lot of turkey and chicken, along with a fair amount of fish. Maybe once or twice a week I find myself going an entire day without any meat products, sometimes intentionally, but most of the time by accident. I've considered trying to drop red meat all together, but that would probably be boring. Besides, I like having options, especially when going out to eat.

 ) ) ) 

There have been times in the past when I've been accused of being a closet vegetarian, usually right after someone stumbled across a box of soy milk in my fridge or found me eating a veggie burger in the cafeteria, but there's no real chance of that happening. I like meat too much. Heck, I've been thinking about a completely hypothetical hamburger for almost a half hour now.

On second thought, forget the ketchup. Just keep the bun, the burger and that slice of lettuce.

 ) ) ) 

Today was "Take Your Child to Work Day." Although I hope to have kids some day, I have to restate that I reserve the right to be annoyed by other people's children until that time comes.

 ) ) ) 

"There are kids all over the place."

"Yeah, Mark, all we need to do now is get you some."

 ) ) ) 

Unnecessary production notes: Watch for photos over the weekend. Also, I've been ignoring the sidebar a lot lately, so I spent a little time freshening it up today. Anyway...


Funny how an open coat and high winds can make anyone feel like a superhero.

 ) ) ) 

Let's see, the deposit on the new apartment was $800, auto insurance is going to be $518 and the dental bill2 is going to be around $300. Tax return, we hardly knew ye.

 ) ) ) 

I've been thinking a lot lately. That's always an inherently dangerous proposition, but at least it's sort of necessary this time around. I've been drifting a lot over the past couple of months and really need to figure out what I want to accomplish over the next few years. I have long-term plans, of course, but the problem with long-term plans is one can always extend the length of the term. If you'd asked me three years ago where I wanted to be right now, I'd probably reply getting ready for returning to school in the fall. While I still want to go back sometime (although not this fall), it seems like a bigger challenge than it did a few years ago, partly because I'm older and more settled, partly because that interest in urban planning has grown almost as prominent as the interest in architecture.

I've spent a lot of time this evening pondering how things are going at work. It was a very interesting day today, although, since it was work, I'm not going to relate any of the details here. Suffice to say I frequently feel the need for a challenge, not just a few week-long projects (which I have), but some huge, monolithic beast of a problem that no one in their right mind would want to tackle. (I must admit I'm not entirely convinced I really want that, as it could mean giving up a lot of things I like about my job. Also, I'm fairly protective of the work I've done and would be hesitant about giving up control of the projects I've spent months and years on. But such is the nature of business, I guess.)

That said, the important question is why I'd want some huge project like that. Granted, I've always had a bent towards getting immersed in unreasonably-sized jobs or projects (lstc.org is a perfect non-work example), but I need to make sure that's really what this case is. I need to keep my eyes on what I want to do with my life. Of course, getting involved with large, long-term projects doesn't mean that I have to give up what I want, but it's still important that I remain diligent about not letting myself get distracted by what I do on a day-to-day basis.

 ) ) ) 

Reading that over again, so much of what I've said is so glaringly self-evident as to seem stupid in print. It's like pointing to the clouds before stating, proudly, "That is the sky." Well, duh, you idiot. What, you want a cookie?

So, anyway, that's enough navel-gazing for the evening.


"What do you have there?"

"Soup and a soda."

"That'll be $2.66."

I handed her three dollars. "The Coca-Cola still doesn't taste right."


"Yeah. I don't think it's getting mixed properly."

"I told them about that last week," she said, handing me my change. "I think it's those Spanish people during the day. They don't know the difference between regular and diet."

 ) ) ) 

"Hey, the Mozilla 1.0 release candidate is out."

"The what?"

"The Mozilla 1.0 release candidate."

"What's that?"

"It's basically the program Netscape 6 is based on."

"Netscape sucks."


I can now say I've spent a night in Thorp, Wisconsin.

 ) ) ) 

Well, Penny and Tinker are married. The service and reception were notably different from the last two weddings I've been to. The entire production--for lack of a better description--was very central Wisconsin. I know that may sound like a slam, but, believe me, it's not, and it was quite appropriate for the couple getting married. That said, the organ player may deserve a beating. Was that supposed to be Wagner? I couldn't tell. Although my first reaction was one of dismay--after all, Tink and Penny deserved better--I have to admit it was sort of funny. I did my best to keep from laughing, but failed as soon as I turned and saw the amused smile on Rich's face. I tried to disguise it as coughing, although in retrospect I don't know how successful that was. You know, now that I think about it, there was a lot of coughing going on right then.

Anyway, if it turns out the organ player was a friend of member of one of the families, I hereby rescind any statements I may have made about his performance and commend the initiative must have taken to get up and do something like that in front of those close to him.

In other news, my god were the people huge. I've never seen so many broad shoulders in my entire life. (Not surprisingly, Tink's family was especially notable in this area.) Here was a group of individuals that could take out half the the NFL, and I'm not talking kickers, either. I'm talking linebackers. Anyway, I shot 11 rolls of film, a somewhat modest number compared to the last two weddings I attended. As a significant amount of scanning would be required, photos may or may not be posted.

 ) ) ) 

It's April 21st, so what does the weather give us? Yup, a snowstorm. Driving home from central Wisconsin sort of sucked. I hit US 10 after heading back from Wisconsin Rapids (even though the wedding was in the Greenwood area, long story) not only to find an inch of accumulation, but a national highway reduced to a dirt road during reconstruction. As if the mud wasn't bad enough, there were all the dickless wonders flying around in their oversized SUVs and pickups, spraying mud and stones all over the place. On two separate occassions I had to pull over to let the windshield wipers take care of business after the car had been coated with mud.

Minneapolis was better. I've always been a sucker for snow-encrusted trees and today was definitely a day for that. There was a twist, though: Most of the trees had already started to bloom, so the wet, sticky snow was creating large, bulbous snow blossoms on the branches. From a practical standpoint, this meant the trees were dropping snowballs. Big ones. I didn't suffer any direct hits while walking down to drop off the wedding pictures, but I did get brushed by a couple of them. The splooshing sound of snowballs hitting the ground was rather gratifying, although not nearly as much as the hollow thunking from the ones landing on cars. Unfortunately, my fellow walkers didn't seem as amused by this delightful situation as I was. One woman, seemingly annoyed by a direct hit to the top of her head, whipped her hair around and scowled up at the branches. I had to bite my lip to repress laughter. Oh come on, I thought, it's Minnesota. Stuff like this can happen here, even in April. Don't get mad at it, embrace it.

Besides, it'll be 80 again soon.


Weddings. Sheesh. The present is wrapped, the backpack is, um, packed, the car is gassed and the camera is ready. The only thing left to figure out is how late I can get up tomorrow and still make the service. Yahoo! Maps says three and a half hours. I'm thinking it'll be more like two and a half. We'll see.

 ) ) ) 

I sometimes wonder whether maintaining this site is really a good idea. Two separate conversations within the past 72 hours:

"So, I read that part on your site about your weather conversation at work."


"Evil. Self-congratulatory and evillll."

"I saw you had an incident in your alleyway last night."


"At least you weren't the only one to break up on the 18th."

Pause. "What did you just say?"


Sleep did not come easily last night. It started with Rich staying over. Usually that's not a problem, but last night he and Heather stayed up late, which means I stayed up late, listening to talking, laughing, flat-footed walking, dishes being dropped in the kitchen sink and lengthy periods of running water. (The access panel to the plumbing closet is about a foot away from my pillow. That was never an issue until I stopped being the last person to go to sleep.) Things briefly quieted down after they went to bed, but the silence was soon punctured by a soap opera playing out somewhere beyond my window:

Her: "We're supposed to be dating. How am I supposed to trust you now!?"

Him: "Mumble mumble mumble."

Her: "Gimme your fuckin' keys!"

It went on like that for a good 20 minutes, followed by the sounds of sobbing and a car driving off under heavy acceleration. Like a scene out of a bad movie, thunder began to echo in the distance, followed by the rumble of rain and clinking of hail. The storm eventually grew loud enough that I stumbled into the living room to stare out the front windows, occassionally squinting at the cars to see if the reflections on their roofs were still smooth and linear. I went back to bed after a couple of minutes, but the storm stayed strong for another half an hour, followed by winds and some incredibly annoying wind chimes.

If I had to guess when I finally fell asleep, I'd say 4:00.

 ) ) ) 

This weekend brings a wedding in central Wisconsin between two roommates1 I shared a house with back in River Falls. Of course, I still need to buy a present. Hmmm. I'm kind of tempted to just take a bunch of photos and make a book for them like I did for Ben and Lisa and Jason and Sarah, but I'm not going to be there as early as I was for either of those weddings, so that probably wouldn't work out as well.

 ) ) ) 

"Do you know where Penny and Tink registered?"


"Thank god."

 ) ) ) 

Speaking of photos, this week has been a lot busier than I expected, so no SXSW photos for now. Next week? Maybe. (I've been doing the photo-a-day thing, too, so it probably won't take long for me to see what the failure threshold for my photo-management ability is.)


Heather: "I could walk into the store without any shoes. 'Uh, miss, you can't be in here like that.'"

Me: "I'd be more worried about stepping in dog shit on the way down."

Heather (rolling eyes): "We're not walking."

Rich: "Do we walk anywhere?"

Me: "You're driving?"

Heather: "Yeah."

Me: "It's two blocks!"

Heather: "No it's not, it's four."

Me: "What are you talking about?"

Heather: "It's four blocks."

Me: "What? There's the first block, the block with the synagogue on it, and then there's the store."

Heather: "But you have to go past the coffee shop."

Me: "Why are you going down to Hennepin?"

Heather: "..."

Me (pulling out pen and paper): "You go down to 22nd, turn right, cut through the parking lot, and the store's on the next block."

Heather: "But you have to go by the coffee shop by the synagogue."

Me: "No you don't. It's quicker to go up a block."

Rich: "Oh, I see what you're saying..."

Heather: "Yeah, but you're missing the one-way street."

Me: "That's it right here." Pause. "OK, two and a half blocks."

Heather: "Three."

Rich: "I don't care."

 ) ) ) 

I spent a lot of time on the phone this evening.

"So we always leave too late and end up having to go someplace stupid like Bakers Square."

"You guys need to start eating out before you go eating in."

 ) ) ) 

I think I lost my ability to use drinking fountains earlier today. I'd walked over to one near my cube to fill up a bottle and found myself arriving just before some unknown coworker. Not wanting to make him wait the twenty-some seconds it would take to fill the bottle, I offered him first dibs the fountain. He thanked me and went ahead. Unfortunately, he must have been experiencing air-retention problems or something, as about a second into his drink he hacked and spewed water all over the place. A large glob of fluid traveled back down the stream of water, ending in a gelatinous explosion at the nozzle. "Thanks," he said, wiping his chin as he wandered off. I nodded and stood there for a few moments, pondering the situation. Less than a minute later I was at the Coke machine, feeding it a dollar to buy a bottle of water.


"So I'm thinking about walking down to the central post office to photograph all the panicked people rushing to drop off their tax forms. You guys want to join me?"




 ) ) ) 

I'm not a big rain person, but I do appreciate a good thunderstorm now and then.


I haven't been happy with the quality of my photography lately. Sure, I still get lucky on occasion, but for the most part it's one crappy photo after another. Something needs to change, and so I've devised a plan: I'm going to try to take at least one photo a day, every day, indefinitely. The focus will be on doing something unique and different each time, with an emphasis on photos that require me to get to know my cameras better. To keep myself honest, I'll try to post the photos here on a regular basis, but, as some of the photos will be on film, in many cases there will be noticeable delays.

Speaking of film, my new apartment has a windowless back entry that could very easily be sealed off and used as a darkroom. I own an enlarger that I haven't used since high school, so if I can get my parents to lug it over here when they visit in May, it'll only take one moderately-priced trip to National Camera to get myself developing and making prints again. Heh, I can smell the fixer already...

 ) ) ) 

Well, it looks like it may be time to crack out the old air conditioner. Dammit. On a positive note, I interrupted a weather conversation at work today:

Her: "I hear we're breaking 90 today."

Him: "Yeah. We could be in the 80s tomorrow, too."

Her: "I can't wait to get out in it... Summer is finally here!"

Me: "Mid-50s and rain on Friday."


I suppose it should be sort of reassuring I'm not the only one who's lost interest in eating, nor the only one who's had problems sleeping. I actually slept OK last night (although that was 3:30 to noon stretch, which doesn't bode well for the work week) and managed to take down the better part of a steak sandwich while having dinner with Ben at Figlio's yesterday evening. The sandwich may have been a mistake, though, as I found myself dealing with an upset stomach for much of this morning, er, early afternoon. As far as today, well, I didn't eat too much.

Spent Saturday afternoon having coffee (or, in my case, chai tea) with Ben and Paul down at Pandora's Cup. We seemed to be the only non-goth, non-high-school people there, but that was to be expected. Conversation seemed to gravitate towards typical geek babble--phone hacking, the RIAA, should we try to resuscitate WebTag, why I'm stupid for doing everything in static HTML, etcetera--although we did hit various non-geek topics, such as Paul's pimpin' Ford Fairmont and why ducks eat gravel. Later on Ben and I hung out at the apartment and discussed transportation, The Real World, trust, whether American Photo is a legitimate photography magazine or just porn made suitable for the coffee table, and a bunch of other moderately serious topics. We talked late enough that by the time we headed over to the Loring for dinner the kitchen had closed, resulting in us visiting Figlio's instead.

 ) ) ) 

The photo album is slowly coming out of its slumber. So far I've only added the photos from Ben's visit on Friday, but the pictures from SXSW should be up this week, too. As far as the New York photos, well, those are still a ways off.


It's a little after 10:00 this rainy Saturday evening. Ben is in town this weekend and we're planning on grabbing dinner in an hour or so. It's good having him around: The last day and a half have been a pleasant ending to what has otherwise been a thoroughly forgettable week. (There were a couple 11+ hour workdays, a trip to the mechanic, a visit to the dentist, and, well, a bunch of other stuff.) There's plenty to write about, although for whatever reason I'm not really interested in recording any of it right now. I will say that my appetite is still fairly nonexistent, so it'll be interesting to see how dinner goes.

 ) ) ) 

Oh, one thing: The apartment search is over. I got the place next door. Yay.


Something rather strange happened Sunday morning: I lost all interest in eating. It wasn't just that I wasn't hungry (although that did happen to be the case), it was that the concept of eating bored me. Maybe it was the marathon Sim City run the night before (I was still awake at four in the morning), maybe it was the start of Daylight Saving Time. Who knows, but for the past few days I've had to force myself to eat. I'm usually a habitual grazer at work--there's free food and candy all over the place--but yesterday and today I walked by the bowls of candy without even pausing to see what was in them. I've lost weight, too. It's not much, but enough that I noticed it when I put my belt on this morning.

This probably isn't healthy. I'll see where I am in a few days and go from there.

 ) ) ) 

"Burnsville," I replied. "If you picked up the Twin Cities and shook it, all the loose change would land down there." I know I'm damn near plagarizing someone, I just don't know who it is.

 ) ) ) 

It would be unlike me to ignore a technicality, wouldn't it? Regarding the "date Mark and be married within a year" coworker quote from yesterday, there's this from M:

So, um, anyway...

 ) ) ) 

Positive developments are occuring in the housing situation. I put in an application this evening for the apartment next door. I'm competing with three other applicants (all of whom viewed the place before I did), but, for various reasons, I still think I have a good chance of getting in. We'll see. Although it's arguably imprudent for me to do so, for the time being I'm going to hold off on looking at other apartments.


My day started with two coworkers, one of whom knows more about my history than she probably should, reading an e-mail over my shoulder. There was a brief note from M. She's engaged and will be getting married in May.

"That was sudden," said one.


"Is this... Wait, didn't this happen to you once before?"

Pause. "Yes."

"Date Mark and be married within a year... Just not to him."

 ) ) ) 

It's somewhat bittersweet, of course, but I'm still happy for her. I was grumpy this morning, but not for the reasons people suspected.

 ) ) ) 

Besides, I've been... Wait, I probably shouldn't talk about that.

 ) ) ) 

In other news, I finally have what may be a legitimate lead in the apartment search. It's a one bedroom unit available June 1st in what I know to be a nicely maintained, turn-of-the-century building. It's $800 a month, which is a bit steep, but the management people are friendly and the apartment has a sunroom. Oh, and it's next door. Heh. That's a nice change from the failed apartment visit earlier today: The two-level deck was in such bad shape they had to set up some "temporary" scaffolding to prevent it from sliding off the side of the building. "We're going through some renovations," he explained. Oh, thanks, I didn't notice.


Twice today I found myself mistaken for a member of the Metropolitan Airports Commission. I was down in Richfield, photographing homes, businesses and apartments that'll be demolished for MSP's new runway. While walking up and down blocks of modest, nondescript residences, I'd occassionally find myself being noticed by the natives, inevitably leading to them coming out and asking if I was with the MAC. Apparently they'd expected people from the city or the commission to drop by on Saturday and, for whatever reason, that hadn't happened. Views on the neighborhood disappearing were mixed: Two elderly neighbors weren't quite sure where they were going to go--apartment life was always an option--while a younger couple, children's toys strewn about their moderately trashed property, seemed happy to be getting a decent payout for their house. For a number of blocks one side of 18th Ave. S. had already been torn down save for one business/home combo who's owner is fighting the condemnation in court. Whatever the case, the vibe is clearly different from the one I picked up over at the Best Buy development last year. But, then again, the circumstances have little in common, so it's probably an unfair comparison.

 ) ) ) 

So, there we were on Friday, four coworkers sitting in the food court at the Mall of America, three of us AWOL from an after-work gathering, the fourth out shopping with her daughter. Conversation focused on nothing in particular.

"How old are you?"

"I'm 26."

"You're 26!" She laughed. "I knew you were young, but I didn't know you were that young."

26? Young? I wish I thought like that.

 ) ) ) 

Well, it looks like the snow is done with. All good things must pass, eh? Maybe it's time for me to revisit my to-do list and try to take care of that bike issue.


Day three of snow. Heh.

 ) ) ) 

And the apartment search continues. I had reason to be suspicious of the apartment at $725. It turned out to be a "converted" party room in the basement of the building. "Converted" gets the quotes-action as the only thing differentiating the "new" apartment from the party room it used to be is the number of people who have keys to it.

Slowly the streets fall away. Summit only offers efficiencies and studios, the place on Douglas is trashed and, tonight, the two places on Humboldt dropped off the list as well. There are a couple of places left to investigate on Emerson and one building on Irving, but, beyond that, not much. I like the neighborhood I'm in, but am starting to consider the downtown area as well. Whatever the case, I don't like not knowing where I'll be living in three months.

springtime in minneapolis

Day two of the snow. I love it, but I'm definitely in the minority: Snarky comments on how we're destined to get blizzards in June have been met with icy stares and, occassionally, threats on my life.

 ) ) ) 

The apartment search continues. Tomorrow night I get to look at a building I've admired since I moved to the area. It's old, elegant and immaculately maintained, but, strangely enough, reasonably priced. Heck, at $725 a month it's not just reasonable for a one-bedroom, it's cheap. Of course, that makes me more than a little suspicious, so it'll be an interesting visit. You know, maybe there's a large network of nice, inexpensive apartments in the Twin Cities, it's just that they're saddled with some kind of strange requirement, like joining a cult, to get in:

"So, do you like the apartment?"

"Yes, and I guess I'd be interested in renting it."

"Do you own any pets?"


"Do you smoke?"


"Good. I see you like Nikes."

"Yes, very much."

"Good, good." Long pause. "Do the voices talk to you?"

"Every evening at 7:30."

"Excelllllent. Hey, Bill, grab the Hubbard E-Meter. I think we've got one!"

 ) ) ) 

Heather stayed over at Rich's last night, which would have been fine if her mother wasn't constantly calling to see where she was. The third time the number appeared on the caller ID I toyed with the idea of not answering, but then, figuring such behavior would only encourage more calls, went ahead and picked up the phone anyway. In retrospect, that was somewhat of a questionable move. After again stating that no, her daughter wasn't there, I ended up getting grilled for over 10 minutes: "So, what's going on with Heather?"

I was silent for a while before answering. I'd prepared escape routes for other potentially agitated individuals I thought could ask such a question, but hadn't prepared one for her mom. And so: "What do you mean?"

"I mean what's going on with Heather?"

Another long pause on my part, this one lengthy enough to drift from the awkward category over to amusing and then hilarious. Unfortunately, the silence then became painful. "You mean Heather and Rich?"

"Yeah. What's the deal with them?"

Pause. "Well, I know they're moving in together when our lease expires."

"Yeah, with his folks." This was obviously a sore point.

"Well, it doesn't really pay for them to get a place, as they're going to be moving down to Tennessee anyway..."

"But what for?"

Pause. "Well, Rich is used to just getting up and moving now and then..."

"All Rich has to do is pack up a couple of suitcases. Heather's not like that. She has things up here..."

"She always planned on leaving the Twin Cities. She's just doing it a little earlier than expected." Ah, that one felt good. The cobwebs were slowly coming off the old debating skills. But then I got hit by this: "Do they have any jobs down there?"

"Well, Rich can continue touring..."

"He can do that up here."

"True." Suddenly, I saw the light. "Hey, Heather told me you broke your leg." The diversionary tactic worked and I was off the phone about a minute later.

 ) ) ) 

Since it only costs five cents a click, I decided to advertise this site on Google. Heh.


Today's weather is a wonderful example of how a snowstorm should be: Big, foofy flakes drifting down; the skies a brilliant shade of gray; the temperature cool but comfortable enough to walk in; the snow wet, sticky and easy to pack. The only problem, of course, is that today's April 1st and--theoretically, at least--we're supposed to be a couple of weeks into Spring. I suppose this must be Mother Nature's idea of a practical joke, but, hey, two can play at that game: This morning I decided to prank myself and opted to take 35W to work. Dumbass. It ended up taking 45 minutes to go from downtown to the Crosstown. I idled all the way, never touching the gas but frequently riding the brake.

Speaking of events on this morally-questionable day, I've encountered a lot of good pranks, from Martha Stewart making the perfect glass of water on TV this morning, to the BBC reporting the new European Union anthem will be sung in German, to MetaFilter modeling itself after kuro5hin.org/. That said, the award for best April Fools Day joke still goes to the Middle-East Peace Process.

 ) ) ) 

Today is the one-year anniversary the relaunch of my online journal. Nonlocality.com has been around since early 1998 and in transit since September or October 1996, but it's only been one year since I started posting stuff regularly.

I'm starting to pull out of the weeks-long writing funk I've been in. We'll see how that goes.

in transit—a lame attempt at a homepage since 1996—is a service of Mark Danielson and nonlocality.com.
© 1996-2004 Mark Danielson. All rights reserved.