roadrunnertwice: Vesta Tilley, Victorian drag king (THE SHITBOX WENT TITS UP)
Readers may remember that I have twice had to send in my MacBook for repair of a squirrelly hardware issue involving the sleep system. Said issue has now recurred for a third round of trouble. It's going back in for more repairs on the "loop" or "white glove" repair track.

Based on my experience, and on my conversations with the product specialists over at AppleCare, I cannot in good conscience recommend that anyone purchase a first generation -- i.e. "Core Duo" (not to be confused with "Core 2 Duo") -- Macbook in any condition. This issue has happened to more computers than just mine, and if it happens to your machine, it cannot be reasonably coped with unless the unit is still under full AppleCare coverage. And even with "free" repair service, the cost in time, effort, and aggravation is substantial. Purchasing one of these MacBooks used would be hardware roulette, and should only be attempted if you're being offered a really good deal. As in, good enough that you'll have got your money's worth within a few months.

EDIT: But I should point out that the people I've dealt with at AppleCare have been pretty cool. I generally loathe dealing with tech support, but the AC folk are mostly not clueless.
roadrunnertwice: Vesta Tilley, Victorian drag king (THE SHITBOX WENT TITS UP)
My MacBook is on the fritz! I can still do stuff with it, but something is very wrong. Specifically, this. (See also here.) It was very off and on for a while, but now it seems to be pretty much continuous. So, yeah, shitty. I am in touch with the Applecare dudes and dudettes, and they will hopefully make it all better without taking my computer away for too long.

Other news is that the siblings are here, and Chris brought his ladyfriend. The family is caught up in the holiday rush. Etc, whatever, you know.

I'm just gonna stay quiet for a while; I rarely have anything useful to say during yuletide.

Balls.

Mar. 29th, 2007 08:50 pm
roadrunnertwice: Vesta Tilley, Victorian drag king (Viva! La Revolution!)
Excluding the cost of the extra tools I had to buy (since I'd have needed them eventually anyhow), that comes to about $76 to get my bicycle back on the road. SO irritating. I don't even particularly like this bike anymore. Wheel-theives are such scum.

On the other hand, I now know how to remove/attach both a freewheel and a cassette. And I got to size myself on some bikes while I was puttering around at the shops. (On a road bike, I want a frame somewhere between 46 and 50 cm, probably on the higher end of that. I'm kind of little.)
roadrunnertwice: Vesta Tilley, Victorian drag king (Viva! La Revolution!)
Hey Nick, did you end up actually going to that Fort Wilson Riot show tonight?

Yes. I laugh at snow.

Good times?

Yup. And Ad Astra Per Aspera were pretty decent (that keyboard player had some nice licks), and Thunder in the Valley can raise a holy motherfucking racket. (Recommended particularly to BRMC fans.)

But no WAY were you able to escape some ridiculously implausible fly-in-the-ointment, right?

Right, so while I was standing outside the Triple Rock, someone in a truck shot me in the back with a glow-in-the-dark paintball while driving past.

It's not so much the "OMFG ASSHOLE" factor that gets to me. It's that these dudes were driving around in a snowstorm in search of someone to mildly injure/soak with oily fluorescent paint. I feel like I've encountered the Shithead Of The Future.
roadrunnertwice: Vesta Tilley, Victorian drag king (Viva! La Revolution!)
So check this out:

Odessa sans half its wheels

That's all I own of my bike, anymore. Go figure that'd happen on the one day this month I lock it outside overnight.

Anyway, the Greasepit is kaput as of late last year, so I'm trying to get in touch with the Mac Bike kids. Situation is developing.

Also, I was at the liquor store, and was wondering why the price of Summit suddenly went up like 30¢ per sixpack this month. As always, The Internet had the answer.

LIFE IS AWESOME, GUYS.
roadrunnertwice: Vesta Tilley, Victorian drag king (Reversal!)
Man, remember that business with my phone? Well, no one in the Minneapolis area can do anything, but Nokia can fix it! For a hundred damn bucks! (I paid eighty-including-shipping for it back when it was the hot shit new model.) Cingular is unwilling or unable to help, I can't be bothered to tell which. Point is, my otherwise perfectly functional phone is headed to the recyclers. This moment of waste has been brought to you by corporate avarice and the letter F.

On the other hand, it's an old enough model that they're going for 30 bucks unlocked on eBay these days. Hmm.
roadrunnertwice: Vesta Tilley, Victorian drag king (Vast and solemn spaces)
I'm sorry, did I say I was done for the night?

Habeas Corpus is gone from the United States, as of this afternoon. The prospects for the Court saving us are grim. One Republican absented himself from this travesty. 12 Democrats got on board with it. No real filibuster attempt was mounted.

I kinda just want to cry. Sleep well in your brand new country, everyone.
roadrunnertwice: Vesta Tilley, Victorian drag king (Viva! La Revolution!)
Via alicublog, I find, through a post on a local blog that just got overrun by that disingenuous coward Lileks's thuggish commenters, that the RNC has picked our dear Twin Cities for their 2008 convention. That's right: the party of torture has picked MY darling blue city for their quad-yearly orgy of fearmongering, lies, and 9/11 pornography.

I'm too angry to say much more about this. But believe me, you'll be hearing more anon.
roadrunnertwice: Vesta Tilley, Victorian drag king (Viva! La Revolution!)
Let's play a game of "God, that sucks!" Unless you don't want to, which would be PERFECTLY UNDERSTANDABLE BECAUSE I SURE DIDN'T. )

Long story short, I lose all around. A pissy postscript: )
roadrunnertwice: Vesta Tilley, Victorian drag king (Viva! La Revolution!)
What the fuck?!
Your GoPhone service will shut down in Sept. 06. You must move to a new plan by 9/30 to keep service and get a FREE phone. Call nnn-nnn-nnnn.

Fuck you, Cingular! My phone works fine! My plan works fine! What the hell?!
roadrunnertwice: Vesta Tilley, Victorian drag king (Viva! La Revolution!)
I just filed my taxes with "e-file," and it is probably the last time I will be doing so for the foreseeable future. It was that lame. Definitely a big step DOWN from Telefile in terms of usability.

1. I posit that typing in every number on all of your W2 forms is more of a pain in the ass than either a. punching in a select few of the numbers or b. just mailing the suckers in.
2. You do not e-file with the IRS. You e-file with one of a multitude of PRIVATE BUSINESSES who have contracted with the IRS to do the free-file program for people with less than 50 K of income to report. None of these companies is altruistic in the slightest, and they will try and trick, wheedle, and harass you into "upgrading" to their for-pay services. As a sweet bonus, your user experience and graphic design sensibilities are at the mercy of Corporate America, which is very eager to flash its hairy ass at you.
3. Of course you'll have to create an "account" with one of these private contractors in order to e-file. One more username and password to remember, and if you want to use a different contractor next time around, that's another one again.
4. I was using a printout of one of the paper 1040s (I think it was "a") as a worksheet to get my numbers right, and it took me all of half an hour. I spent two more hours sitting at the computer pointing and clicking. 'nuff said.

I'll be getting my refund a bit quicker, sure, but hell, if I was that eager I could have filed my taxes back in January.

In conclusion, Vive l'arbre mort.

(Also, Katie and Chris: You'll probably have to e-file anyhow, since all your forms are probably not with you right now. Talk to mom about it, and talk to her EARLY.)

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