Monthly Archives: May 2007

Syndication? Site Update

How do you know I changed my site if I don’t let you know? Well, you can visit it every 10 minutes, call me and ask if I’ve changed it every 10 minutes OR you can subscribe to the RSS feed. For the uninitiated; RSS (Really Simple Syndication) is like email but you have to subscribe. Someone pushes an email your way. You choose to pull an RSS feed. Got it? Just like you need a program to read your emails, you need a program to fetch your RSS feeds. I use Thunderbird & the one built into Firefox, but if you really don’t want to have to run another browser or email related program just to receive 1 or 2 feeds a week, there’s another way. Why not Email an RSS feed automatically?

There’s lots of services out there that will convert your Blog’s RSS Feeds into email but they all have down sides. I’ve implemented a way for folks to receive emails of this site’s changes without giant [Brought to you by {Service}] branding, Attached ads!, Risk of being sold to sp@mmers or Monetary requirement$. What I setup was actually intended for cross-publishing to other blogs, but works just fine for syndication. It simply emails the content of the posting. No frills. No fees. I control who gets it. Simple.

Wanna subscribe? Drop me a line or comment and you’ll get an email every time I update the page.

Email: My Email Address

Health Update Health/FitnessNews

I’m typing this from a room at the Hilton New Brunswick. I don’t mention this for any good reason except that it’s pretty cool that I don’t have to be on my home computer. That’s why I switched over to this new format – ease of use and mobility!

But I die-gress. I’m talking about health. I’ve been thinking about the past year and how much healthier I think that I feel now that I’ve left New York. I’ll write much more about that soon, but for now I’ll just mention that Back-Pack Back and New Jersey Transit Neck are feeling much better but not 100%…. so I’m going to a Chiropractor.

For those who haven’t… the process goes like this:

  1. Find a practitioner that accepts your insurance. This could be harder than it sounds.
  2. Visit said practitioner, fill out lots of paperwork & watch videos that use the word “Chiropractic” as a Noun.
  3. Go get X-Rays of affected area. You may have to fight to find a Radiology place that takes your insurance.
  4. Return to Chiropractic specialist with exposed X-Ray sensitive sheets in hand.
  5. Watch another video explaining terms associated with your suffering (like “degenerative” & “subluxation”)
  6. Chiropractor explains your condition using terms from above video.
  7. The honeymoon is over! Your joints will now be adjusted, turned, twisted & realigned & positioned as necessary.
  8. Your body rebels against the newly positioned joints and slide back into their wrong positions.
  9. You return to the expert practitioner for re-re-alignment.
  10. Repeat steps 7 through 9 until terms learned in step 5 no longer apply.

I’m stuck in the steps 7-9 loop at the moment but I can feel a difference. It’s been many years since I was able to fully turn my head to the side though I hadn’t realized it until just last week.

That’s about all for my quick health update. Oh, and to answer the question you’re thinking of asking… yeah it makes popping/cracking noises! That’s perfectly normal… its just pieces of your spine snapping off and entering your blood stream. Nothing to worry about at all!

Dictionary of Chiropractic Terms

NJ Tour de Cache Geocaching

County MapA few months ago I heard about the “Tour De Cache” challenge. If you can manage to find a cache in all 21 counties in NJ you get to log the final cache located actually quite near where we’re buying the house in central Jersey. You also get a nifty trophy coin, but that’s not the real reason to drive hundreds of miles just to find some tupperware in the woods. The real reason isn’t the finds… it’s the hunts. Journey… destination… you’ve heard it before.

Taking advice from other cachers along the way I’ve been finding some of most scenic / interesting / educational sites in the entire state and this past weekend summed it all up beautifully as I explored the Northern & Southern most NJ counties. I climbed 151 foot of light house, saw a WW1 era ship wreck, watched great herons fishing, climbed 1133 foot of mountain, visited 8 parks, 4 beaches & 2 veterans memorials, went shopping in downtown Cape May, explored a future fishing hole, walked along the historic Morris Canal & the worlds oldest boardwalk… all in just over 24 hours. All told I found 14 caches bringing my total to Eleventy One.

Would I have found any of these places without the Tour Challenge? Probably not. I don’t like to drive and gas is overpriced, but I used rechargeable batteries, packed lunches & refilled bottles from water fountains so it made for a pretty cheap weekend away from home. Mostly what I spent this weekend was time. As anyone on the plus side of 21 or so will tell you, it’s a precious thing and I believe I’m making some good use of it. I cached around during the day and spent the evenings with my wife. Life can be pretty alright sometimes. 🙂

As you can see from the chart at the right I’m nearly done. I had originally set a goal of finishing the tour by my birthday but decided that I rather enjoy the trips individually rather than kill myself hitting several counties in a short span. I’d never remember the places I had visited and I plan on taking people back to see these sights with or without a GPS in hand. That’s kinda the point… if civilization crumbles and the satellites fall from the sky the mist will still swirl over lakes after a cool spring rain… the rocky outcrops atop Allamuchy will still stand tall… the sun will still set over the Delaware… and I’ll be there – my baby in my arms, a tear in my eye, a lump in my throat and joy in my heart knowing that, finally, I didn’t have to pay any parkway tolls to get here.

Update: 5/27/2007 – Essex has fallen! (South Mountain Reservation)
Update: 5/29/2007 – Union is no more thanks to the Wachung Reservation.
Update: 6/03/2007 – Passaic has been conquered. (High Mountain)
Update: 6/10/2007 – Cumberland has been assimilated. (Union Lake)
Update: 6/10/2007 – Gloucester has fallen into The Blue Hole.
Update: 6/12/200 7 – Ocean county has succumbed. (JFK Memorial Park)

Looking back over the list I hit 8 Vintage, 7 Hikes, 3 Historical Curiosities, 2 Incidentals & 1 Home away from Home.

Cat Poo! (A tale told in reverse) News

The cat pooped in her litter box last night! Heather scooped it and displayed it proudly singing “It’s Beautiful!”
Cat Poo
And it was.

But boy did it stink!

Last night I tossed out her medicine because I just couldn’t take The Poisoning any longer. You see, giving my cat medicine (by eye dropper) requires several steps which read much like the old “how to give a cat a pill” email. She thinks it is poison and she’s probably at least half right. Getting her to take the medicine wasn’t so bad the first day or two but by day 4 she wouldn’t come out of hiding. She just sat under the bed or coffee table and hated on me. This forced me to violate the safe haven of Underbed which I hate doing. Cats (especially those of the Fraidy variety) need a place they can feel safe and I took that from Smechy, forced her to down more horrible poison, then threw the bottle away and proceeded to hate on myself in case she got tired of doing it herself.

Four days ago, with many glove’d veterinarian hands all about her, the prospect of a second enema in 2 days scared the shit out of her. Literally. Right there on the table at the vet’s. I was so proud! The vet sent her home with me that day but told me that I should keep administering the medicine until she went pooper again and if she hadn’t made magic by Friday then it was time for a follow-up and probably time to make friends with more enemas. It’s no fun to be catstipated.

The day before Heather was kind enough to get up at 6 AM to make the 40 minute drive to the Animal Hospital to pick up our patient. Why so early? So folks can pick up their pets before work of course! Does it matter that this was a Saturday? Nope. Heather brought with her the mucousy medicinesque mess that our konstipated kitty loathed so – and so the dosings began thrice daily.

The night before, in the wee hours of the morning Heather & I devoted our Friday night to sitting with the poor timid kitty on the cold stone floor of the Animal Hospital. Smech hadn’t scratched out a fouler in nearly a week, was eating very little and had taken to hiding most of the day. Finally the good doctor returned with X-Rays of cat poo! Smech was impacted, but the Doc had seen worse. Smech would be spending the night, receiving treatment & released at 7 AM the next morning.

The moral of the story is… If your cat is constipated and might need a vet in the next few days go ahead and make the appointment. If she does some fine littering then you just cancel the appointment… otherwise you’re already set and don’t have to pay egregious emergency catastrophe fees.

Whew. That was a long way to go just to get to the beginning of the story…

But all the poo is worth it… in the end.

Out of AR! New HouseNews

The papers were emailed, signed by Heather & I and faxed back this afternoon. After an entire month (plus 3 days, but who’s counting?) we are out of Attorney Review and free to actually go ahead and try to buy the house we’ve been trying to buy for the past month and a half!

Where do we go from here? Well, as I understand it, the seller’s attorney will attempt to negotiate a “Short Sale” with the seller’s bank. This is necessary because the home was *this* close to foreclosure and it’s no longer in the hands of the people who were actually living there.

So, will the bank decided to cut their losses and sell it to us for less than the prior residents owe? That’s anyone’s guess. All I know is that it’ll be at least a month before we find out. In the mean time all we can do is sit back and watch the interest rates climb forever skyward. Every week they delay it costs us a grand. *sigh*

Buying a home sucks but we’re one step closer to owning.