January 4th

So, did I mention how little I like applying ice to my injuries? Argh, bah humbug, and all that. I'm off work today and tomorrow trying to heal up this painful muscle tear. Having to duct tape those blueice blocks on my calf is a damn nuisance, and soooooo not appropriate to the winter weather. Plus the first thing I woke up to this morning was the phone ringing from the Other Job with "...do you remember the milligrams of so-and-so's medication change a month ago?" And later I had the phone calls about "...how do we get a print-out on Chutney's printer..." [answer - use Chutney's PC]. I've been quickie'ing my shampoos lately so I took the time for an industrial strength shampoo and condition and shampoo and condition and by the time I'd used as much scalding hot water as I could stand... I then cruelly turned the water bitter cold, turned the shower massage to the 'brutal' setting, and moved it all over my sore calf for at least five minutes. Now - for those of you who wonder if I've ever been a masochist.......................

I spent the afternoon reviewing websites and switching ice packs on and off and on and off, waiting for Kevin to get home from work. I'd invited him over for Chinese carryout and a viewing of Tora Tora Tora, that I just got from Netflix. When this film arrived I knew he'd want to see it. I've never really talked about it much, but Kev is quite the military buff. Tonight he described the structure of the battleships that Japan converted to aircraft carriers, he names the more obscure planes destroyed on the ground at Hickam Field, the name of the first cruise commander of the USS Ward --- all this shit and more comes tripping off his tongue as readily as his wife's name. I had a fire going in the fireplace, the harsh overhead lights off and fifty scadzillion candles giving the room a softer look, and we settled in for a good show. We both dug into beef with oyster sauce, shimp egg foo yung, and prawns in lobster sauce and I hadn't ordered too much food. It was interesting to compare this 1970 film to the more recent Pearl Harbor, and I actually stopped him on a trivia piece when I pointed out Dorie Miller, portrayed but not identified in the 1970 film but the Cuba Gooding Jr role in the more recent one. When you get two trivia geeks together, you're guaranteed a good time. I'm really glad we had the time. A week or so ago we had a strain where we both said some things we regretted, and it's taken efforts on both of our parts to heal. This dinner and chowdown and trivia bumping and all helped. When he finally strolled on out into the dark to pick up rice pudding on his way home - his wife had called - I think we both felt a 1000% better about our friendship.

While composing this entry I've been watching Legally Blond - and yeah, it is a significant shift from Tora Tora Tora - and decided to throw my computer problem out to the assembled geek multitude who read my journal. A few weeks ago Chloe and Viktor and I bought a computer for me, and they have both helped with getting it grooved in. The old one had a set of problems, and now despite all their earnest efforts, the new one has had a series of ongoing new set of problems. I'm running Windows 98, on an AMD Athlon XP 1600+, 256MB RAM, 38.1GB primary drive and a 12.6GB secondary drive. My mouse is a cordless MouseMan Optical and the cordless keyboard came with the mouse as part of a matched set at CostCo. Now, performance in some ways is greatly improved, with this processor being about 4 times faster than my old clunker. I have not had the "C Drive is Full, Stupid" grey box once since the change. What I have had, constantly day in and day out is what I call 'Mouse Freeze'. It's worse than the sand that was grinding under the waistband of your swimsuit on the long drive home from the beach. Here's one day's worth of my Mouse Freeze Diary I kept for a few days trying to find a pattern:

12/20/01 1130am Worked when I left for the kitchen to stir soup; 4 minutes later I returned and mouse was frozen.

12/20/01 12noon Moved mouse over to a entry field on Amazon.com and it turned to an hourglass for a few seconds, then froze.

12/20/01 135pm On Outlook Express clicked on the scroll bar for a newsgroup item once and it moved. Moved the mouse right back to click a second time and before the click it hourglassed and then froze.

12/20/01 437pm Ran to the kitchen for max of 60 seconds, came back and tried to move the mouse across an IE page. It stopped, then hourglassed twice, then died.

12/20/01 415pm First screen I opened after reboot is IE, opened Yahoo, clicked on a news item, and when I tried to move the mouse over to the right vertical scroll bar it had frozen on me.

12/20/01 840pm Woke up from 3hr nap, tapped spacebar once to recover from blackscreen, mouse dead in the water.

12/20/01 1037pm Skimming items in Outlook Express newsgroups, froze moving from clicking on one to clicking on the next.

12/20/01 1042pm Highlighted a dozen files to delete from the set up of CD Maker. They deleted, then mousefreeze.

12/21/01 401am Had closed all applications except desktop when I went to bed and in the morning the blackscreen disappeared with one spacebar bump and the mouse was frozen

Mouse Freeze means that all of a sudden the mouse won't move and I have to manually close each window I have open and reboot. The poor folks who see me pop in and out of ICQ all day long shouldn't think I'm a prarie dog popping my head up - it's just the constant reboots. Now, my personal computer savvy pretty much ended about the time IBM moved up from the XT, and I've gotten by for years now by feeding my geek friends well when they visit to tweak. Viktor has done things involving words like BIOS and USB and Device Manager, and I'm certain the driver for the mouse has been installed more than once. I have had advice from some to upgrade from Win98 to XP or 2000, and I truly don't know the plusses or minuses on that. I am at sea here, and my friends who know this stuff have pretty well shot their wads. I'm open to any suggestions from any of my readers. I may or may not end up trying the advice, and I will run it through people like Catsy and Chloe and Viktor and Kevin who all know more than I do, but I do need more variety of suggestions. It's really sad to drop close to a grand in a new system and essentially trade for a new set of problems. Thanks in advance for anything y'all might be able to help with on this.

Another mouse freeze as I was proofreading this entry in Homesite, and the reboot hung up on the Windows 'Blue Sky' booting up screen. The reboot aborted once before I could get it to work. Double argh.

Saturday? More ice packs, more DVDs, and I'm gonna run out to pick up the two prints I kept for myself from Pornotopia. That's where I got a bunch of holiday presents this year. I picked out perfect pictures for each of a group of friends. What I didn't figure is that the cost of a good matting and a simple frame would be so much more than the original cost of the prints themselves. Argh. Sorry guys - I don't like to give gifts with built-in additional costs. I'll be paying off the balance tomorrow and picking up the two I just had to have. No real plans for the Saturday night party but I'm sure I'll at least schmooze some. That, and get ready for the Sunday night Bondage Party for which I do have plans. Life feels good.

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