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.


"So everything's settled with your apartment?"

"Theoretically, yes."


"I won't feel comfortable until my lease renewal is signed and delivered, and I haven't gotten it yet."



I'm not really sure what all transpired this weekend, but things now seem OK with the housing situation. In other words, no moving. My approach to living here will probably change somewhat, but I'm prepared for that.

And now back to our regularly scheduled programming.

 ) ) ) 

Two brief notes on this extended weekend: One, Saturday brought a dinner party over at Di's. It was marked by interesting conversation, bad parking and some very good Polish food. Two, A Mighty Wind is easily the funniest Christopher Guest movie I've seen1. I can't speak to the plot much, but it's nice to see that some people are still trying to make comedies that mock their characters without being mean to them.


[Entry deleted.]

 ) ) ) 

It was a crazy week. The housing situation is still up in the air, but I'm still working under the assumption I have to be out of my present place by August. Just about all planning of any significant nature—be it for a vacation, getting a new a new car, or some other large event—is on hold until I figure out where I'm going to be living and when I'm going to be moving there.

On the bright side, I saw an absolutely kick-ass apartment yesterday. It was on the fourth floor of an 1899 brownstone, shared a spacious porch with a neighbor, had an incredible view and was being offered for $150 less than I'm paying right now. The only drawback was it's only half the size of my present place, and I'm already experiencing space problems as it is. That said, I liked it enough that I'm considering renting a unit at some self-storage warehouse and putting items I don't use often there instead. That one move would clear up about 90% of my closet space, and would make that apartment more than doable.

Now, to qualify that last paragraph: I have showings set up at five other places (and one of those is with my old management company, an organization I was very satisfied with), so I'm in no great rush put in an application anywhere. Really.


Occassionally I'll have a week I want to hold onto, a week to file away in memories and photographs to recall on some distant day. Last week was not one of those weeks, but I suspect I'll be recalling it on a daily basis at least through July. Will I move? I'd be surprised if I didn't, so the only real questions left are where and when.

But, oh, I'm so sick of moving. I moved once last year. I moved once in 2000, too, and three times in '99. Would it be too much to stay in the same place for three or four years?

The new car, the one real piece of good news from last week, has fallen through as well. Apparently a previous owner didn't get a lien on the car completely settled before he sold it to its present (ahem) "owner," and that's a little technicality I'm not going to screw around with.

 ) ) ) 

So, the weekend. I pretty much set aside dealing with any pressing issues and tried to relax, although I did spend a few hours walking around looking at apartments. Friday I met some friends for dinner at Safari's. The food was okay, but the place was fairly dirty, so I doubt I'd visit again. Afterwards we went and grabbed desert at Cafe Latte, which pretty much redeemed the dining portion of the evening. I also go the opportunity to parallel-park a Ford Escort station wagon.

Saturday I caught The Matrix Reloaded at Block E with Di. The movie was okay, not as good as the first, but solid nonetheless. The special effects portions of the movie were overhyped and overrated. Sure, the fight scenes were cool, but you could tell when you were looking at CGI. The much anticipated chase scene was gratuitous and disappointing as well; chase scenes in Ronin, The Blues Brothers, The French Connection and many others far exceed it. That said, all the bitching about the movie having no plot was unfounded. (Warning, spoilers ahead.) People who dismissed the discussions with The Oracle, The Architect and Merovingian as hollow, pseudo-philosophical double-talk were missing the point. Sure, those characters' words were meaningless, but that was an intentional deception to keep Neo and the rest of the crew running around on what was effectively a wild goose chase. The only conversation that yielded anything of value was the one with The Architect, although the movie didn't make it clear if Neo completely realized that. While the matrix itself was all about deception, the war outside of it was all about social engineering. Everyone was getting played, especially Morpheus and Neo. In retrospect, the only human character in the movie that may really have had a clue what was going on was Councillor Hamann. (Of course, that's assuming we're not dealing with a matrix-within-a-matrix scenario, which was hinted at in the last few minutes of the film.) Hamann didn't look like he was in the triple-digits, but who knows. Maybe he was one of the founders of the current installment of Zion.

Whatever the case, I'm sure I'll see The Matrix Revolutions when it rolls out in a few months, although I couldn't say I'm breathlessly anticipating it. The hook at the end just wasn't that good.


The good news is I found a new car.

The bad news is... Well, I can't talk about that until my lawyer gives me the OK.


The photos from the last trip to New York are finally up. I'm still working on the Chicago photos. My backup drive ran out of space this weekend, so instead of finishing the photos I spent four hours deleting redundant archives and unused files in an effort to clear up some space. I'm going to be able to make it for another month or so now, but after that I'm going to have to get another hard drive.

 ) ) ) 
inside the shubert theatre

Diana and I went on a tour of local theatres presented by the Preservation Alliance of Minnesota yesterday. I'd been to the State and Orpheum theatres before, but never really thought about how incredibly different they are until visiting them back to back. While its interior is very ornate, the basic design of the State Theatre is actually quite simple. Meanwhile, the Orpheum seems complicated on a number of levels, and, while gorgeous, is oftentimes a very creepy building. (If someone was going to film a horror movie at one of the city's theatres, the Orpheum would definitely be the appropriate choice.) The recently restored Pantages is impressive and intimate, and the fact the two-story building surrounding it was originally designed to go 12 floors makes me wonder if Minneapolis will ever get a new "old" skyscraper. The highlight of the tour, though, was the recently moved Shubert Theatre. If it looks rough on the outside, the inside is nothing less than complete devestation. It won't be as much a restoration project as it'll be a brand new building. The Shubert was never a glamourous theatre to begin with, but the little ornamentation it has left is in very poor condition. Most of the walls are bare concrete, steps alternate between marble and wood, and the main floor is missing as a result of the move. (Yes, you read that correctly.) It'll be a lot of work to fix it up, but the fact that they're basically starting over makes the potential of the building seem all the more exciting. I hope it turns out well.

After the tour, we ate at Brit's Pub. Our server was a bit of a dork, but the food was okay.


There have been a couple of interesting polls published in the StarTribune over the past few days. I'm going to pass them on without comment:

  • Minnesotans back more than spending cuts to battle deficit:
    "Staring down the largest budget deficit in state history, four out of five Minnesotans say the state should go ahead and cut spending to help close the gap... But there appears to be little support for relying on budget cuts alone. Despite having recently elected a governor who ran on a no-tax-increase pledge, three-quarters of Minnesotans favor tax hikes."
  • Most approve of an Xcel bill with strings:
    "An overwhelming majority of Minnesotans say Xcel Energy should be required to invest in wind and other renewable energy sources as a condition of continuing to operate its Prairie Island nuclear power plant in Red Wing."


I love my car, but, regretfully, the new search has begun.

A British-sounding voice answered the phone. "Hello."

"Hi, I'm calling about the Saab you had advertised..."

"Oh, okay. You have any questions?"

"Yeah, a few if you don't mind. How many owners has it had?"

"I think I'm the third."

Scribble. "Has it been in any accidents?"

"No, not that I know of. I had it checked when I bought it."

"Okay." Scribble. "135,000 miles?"

"Yeah. You know, that's really not... You familiar with Saabs?"

"Yeah, I have one."

"Oh, so you know..."

"Yeah, that's okay. How are the engine mounts?"

"Just got them replaced. The brakes may need work in 5000 or so."

"Okay. And your reason for selling?"

"Well, see, I have four of them now and can't really afford them all..."


Orange and white lawn signs started dotting the neighborhood last week, each one proclaiming that the resident was "happy to pay for a better Minnesota." While I doubt many like-minded signs will be popping up in Eagan or Woodbury anytime soon, it's reassuring that there are other people like me willing to put up with reasonable tax increases to get the state past its budget problems. I agree with common sentiments that budget cuts have to be made, and I support much of the governor's budget, but in many cases I feel the Pawlenty administration is much too willing to cut muscle along with the fat. The cuts to Local Government Aid alone could completely trash the quality of life both within and outside the metro, and that's not even touching the cuts to individual state agencies.

More on this later.

 ) ) ) 

"So, anything else interesting happen?"

"Yeah, but you wouldn't understand."

"Oh, you'd be surprised."

"Beth and I got our asses kicked by God."

Pause. "Well, on that note..."

 ) ) ) 

I put in a number of additions to the photo album over the weekend. There aren't any photos from the last trips to Chicago or New York yet, but I hope to post those as the week progresses.

 ) ) ) 

I don't know why I always feel obligated to point this kind of stuff out, but using American notation we passed 05/04/03 02:01 early this morning.


Things I've seen in the company cafeteria that disturb me:

  • A woman walks up to the soda fountain with a styrofoam cup that's clearly seen a lot of use. She holds the cup high enough that when it fills the soda backs up into the fountain nozzle.
  • Using his bare hands, a man grabs lettuce, carrots and croutons from the salad bar.
  • Another man grabs ice for his tea from the ice machine's catch basin.
  • A man serving himself at the soup bar misses his bowl. Soup runs over his hand and falls back into the kettle.
  • Back at the salad bar, a woman succumbs to a sneezing fit. Her hands full, she turns to keep from aiming at the greens, but inadvertently directs her spray at the soup instead.
  • A man grabbing utensils slices himself on an improperly placed knife. He yanks his hand back, sucks on it and hurries away, leaving small smears of blood on the knives.

Unfortunately, this is only a partial list.


in transit—a lame attempt at a homepage since 1996—is a service of Mark Danielson and nonlocality.com.
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