Sunday afternoon and I’m done mowing both lawns before wunderground.com tells me the approaching clouds plan to loose their loads. Mowing with haste under the threat of grey skies makes a man sweat, warrants a shower before he heats up some leftover fajitas for lunch.
Anyway, I’ve decided that I’m gonna wake up and head into work early tomorrow, give myself a couple “bonus” hours on the day. I don’t like to do this, but the week ahead dictates it I’m afraid. I’d planned on working some tonight, getting that head start, but I have fundamental thing against using my weekend to do work. I know, if my issue is with work cutting into “my time,” the weekend or pre-8am are the same. I don’t think it’s that though, it’s more: work for five days, rest for two. Don’t work on those two, just don’t. So it ends up being that I don’t mind pulling longer hours during the “work week,” as long as I can sufficiently atrophy over the weekend.
Folks, I’ve decided what I’m going to do with the loot I’ll get from selling off my CDs (a shoddy, never-finished, out-of-date and incorrect webpage explaining this can be found here). Yup, that $1300 was calling all kinds of things out to me: HDTV, Keaton’s college education, downpayment on a new vehicle, etc. But, while showering Saturday morning it hit me: I’m going to use the money to get Lasik surgery. Last time I went to the optometrist, he casually mentioned that I’d be a great candidate for the newest Lasik procedure (apparently even less invasive, or something), and that piqued my interest. Plus, it seems that, within the past year, my eyes have grown less and less tolerant of contact lenses – I used to not even know they were in, and now I can’t stand them after ~12hrs.
Anyway, ever since the idea graced my brain, it’s been all I can think of. The thought of camping or hiking or going to a concert and not having my contacts dry out and bug me, not having to deal with my eyes tiring of them each evening – I’m so pumped. I think my vision plan will actually match a certain percentage up to an amount, and I plan on checking into it tomorrow (today, as you read this). I’m actually really excited, and would do this before I left for Germany if there was any way to… but I doubt it. As it is now, I really am going to try and get something scheduled as soon as I get back – this bug has really bitten me. I keep thinking how awesome it’ll be to be able to wake up and see again, no more worrying about fumbling for my glasses when that burglar breaks in before I can aim my gun and cap him.
This weekend, I set out to make my mp3 collection all the better. By normalizing the volume not just of individual files, but all my files relative to each other. Most MP3 normalizers just adjust individual mp3s to a peak level within each file, but not necessarily relative to other files in that album, or other files from other albums. This used to confuse the crap out of me, I’d normalize my files to 89dB thinking now I wouldn’t have to adjust the volume on the iPod when switching from the Moody Blues to Nine Inch Nails… but t wouldn’t work like I wanted it to – the Moody Blues were still half a spin of the knob quieter than Trent. Then, this weekend, I discovered the open-source MP3Gain, which allows you to normalize all your albums to an average 89dB while preserving each file’s relative album volume (i.e. it doesn’t just “amp” all the songs on an album to a certain volume). This little program is awesome, and it’s volume adjustments are not only lossless, they’re completely undo-able should they break something (MP3Gain stores some undo info in the mp3 tag itself). I also used Zortam to auto-import album cover art from Amazon for my entire collection. Took all weekend, but now I just have to completely empty the iPod and repopulate it with the volume-corrected albums… bummer, but worth it.
It’s nearing the end now, running out of steam. Let’s finish this off with a random bit I wrote Saturday.
I thought the local Tapei newpaper’s April Fool’s joke was pretty good. They pretended to “out” a top-secret government weapons program based on betel nut spit, or Operation Bin Lang Fen Nu. I’ve written about betel nut before, so just the fact that I “got” the joke made it funny for me. The device is described as “an aerosol-dispersal device to shower enemy positions with red betel-nut juice, leaving enemy personnel feeling slightly ill, while possessing them with an uncontrollable desire to sing at a KTV.”