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  Old Boards In The Basement 
  Originally uploaded by torrez.

Seeing these boards this weekend stirred up some memories. I have to dig out and scan my 'zines and photos from that period. You gotta see my hair, dude. Fucking ruled.

Totally gnarly.

A few went missing, broke, I sold or gave away. My favorite is still here though, the Corey O'Brien (link). I learned all sorts of kick-flips on that one. It was the second to last board I had before I quit and went to college. The final board I had was (not pictured) by Tom Knox.

Tom Knox was this kid who skated in Fresno/Tulare. He had a great style on street and would thrown in a 70's style turn in his runs of boneless airs and fancy kick flips.  I worshiped his style, and about the time I was quitting he had gone pro. I went down to the skate-shop and bought the board even though I barely ever skated. I still have that one in the closet somewhere.

That blue Caballero is signed by Steve Caballero, Lance Mountain, and Tony Hawk. Some skate jam in Fresno I think. My friend and I got up to go get his signature and he forgot his board where we were sitting, he ran back but it was gone. That was Damien, he died a few years later in a car accident. We were pretty good skating friends and used to take breaks and talk about our future and stuff. I still remember skating this parking block for 8 hours with him and learning how to do no-complies across this gap. Man that's hard to talk about, even now. I didn't even go to his funeral.

Notable Missing Boards:

--Original Powell & Peralta Rat Bones (gave it to Kevin Phillips who promptly sawed it into a hosoi copy)
--Hot Pink Tony Hawk, the one that was really narrow and had a lot of concave.
--Rob Roskopp #2
--Natas Kaupas - I just remember it being black. I'll have to find it online...
--John Lucero - It had an elephant on it. I loved that board but gave it away to some kid who ended up selling it.

Can someone help me identify that center Santa Cruz board? It had an "Enjoy Coke"-styled banner through the center.

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This past weekend I was in a spot, I needed a programming book that nobody near me carries, I didn't want to wait for Amazon to ship it and I didn't just want a reference, I wanted a real book to read cover to cover, so online searches weren't doing the job. Just before I gave up hope, I noticed a little link on the Amazon page that said, "Other Editions: Digital". Before you could say "SUCKER" I had the Adobe Reader EBX file on my desktop waiting for me to crack it open.

I knew what I was getting myself into, I knew it'd be a pain in the ass and I'd have to use some crappy reader. I saw on the download page that I couldn't print, or even copy and paste out of it. When I finally installed it, I got a few more finger waving warnings.

Now that I've used it for a couple of days (only on my Powerbook because Adobe wants me to sign up on their site so I can get permission to copy it to other computers—as if!) I am so annoyed with e-books that I don't think I'll buy another Adobe Reader formatted one again.

I did some searches on how to crack the thing. Not because I want to share it or sell it, but because I want to copy and paste code into the editor I'm working in. That's it, I want to copy some text so I don't have to type it all in by hand... Oh and don't get me started on searching in an e-book, since they want to keep the content in the document they don't seem to build an index of the data, so searching for a word means using a really bad pattern matching tool window.

Although I usually go to the Internet + Google to read up on languages and such, there's nothing like having a good book with an index at your finger tips for finding something out quickly. Very few sites that act as reference databases do a very good job at teaching the intricacies of the language.

I own every single one of Cory's books. Half of them were downloaded and read/sampled before purchased. Is anyone out there leading the charge with computer books like Cory is with SciFi? How can I be a criminal and crack my Adobe Reader? I suppose the nature of computer books (they expire) is probably why nobody wants to take up that challenge, though it seems like it would compel someone to keep updating and caring for their e-book if they knew they could sell it over and over again.

I did think of one idea: the book allows me to pipe the content to one of the OS X voices for accessibility reasons, and if I knew anything about the voice system on the Mac, I bet I could capture that data and redirect the text to a text file and reformat it, but that doesn't work so good for code like it would for paragraphs of text.

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I've been following Michael's frustration with that new Tom Wolfe book "I Am Charlotte Simmons". He finally finished it and threw it across the room anyway.

Something I decided long ago with books, movies, and video games is that there is just too much good stuff out there to not move on to something else. I used to slog through things that angered me, but now I just put them away, or send them back to Netflix or Gamefly.

This past weekend I tried my first GameFly game called "Geist", a game I had been tempted to buy because for some reason I think first person shooters would be fun on my Gamecube. (The GC controller being a favorite for two-stick movement.)

By the third boss I was so over the game. For the same reason a lot of games lose me, I can figure out what I'm supposed to do, but either the controls or the AI is so impossibly frustrating that I feel like I'm being punished. After 40 minutes of trying to get the perfect shot off, I gave up and sent the game back.

I just value my time too much now to put myself through some frustrating piece of media I'm supposed to be enjoying.

GameFly

I've been thinking a lot about the big three (books, movies, video games), about the pricing and value you get back. Video games, because of their price, always demanded a larger amount of patience.

Now that I've signed up for GameFly, and I don't have to drop $50 on something I'm going to be frustrated with, I feel a little empowered to just move on to the next game if I'm bothered by something. I think I might start enjoying games less because I'm not forcing myself to get past a particularly frustrating level.

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  Dinner! 
  Originally uploaded by boogah.

This is weird seeing my sister and her friends in my old house back in Long Beach.

Also, they're eating corn dogs, baked beans, and potato chips for dinner. That's kind of weird, too.

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I did something a few months ago that I just realized was having a positive effect on my day. I turned off the automatic checking of email in my client. Someone, probably Merlin, suggested this a few months ago, and I did it to try it out.

It just occurred to me that I have been working this way for a few months and I realized my interruption rate has fallen quite a bit. I'm one of those programmers who can either be programming or not programming, not both. If I'm doing some production or busy monkey work for they day, it's hard to step back into programming mode without a bit of jump-starting. Same for when I'm programming, getting sidetracked with minor items for the day tends to derail the project a bit.

Anyway, if you're feeling a little interrupted during your day, try it out.

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Link: Netflix: Tokyo Story.

When you rent this movie, be sure to watch it early in the day because when it's over you will want to call your parents and tell them you love them and ask them if they want to come visit you in Tokyo.

Amber and I watched this way too late last night and couldn't make our calls home. Don't make that mistake!

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