Uhh… what happened to my sidewalk?

Pedestrians attempting to walk past the house since Friday have had to deal with this:

Sidewalk Hole

Who tears up sidewalk on a Friday?

Despite the fact that Laura was home all day on Friday, no one came to the house to say, “Hey, I’m from [company], and I wanted to let you know that we’re going to be digging up a chunk of your sidewalk.”

I’m guessing it was Comcast, as I saw one of their trucks next to a similar hole about a half mile from the house. Still, it would have been nice to be notified that they’d be digging up my sidewalk and not repairing it for a few days. The hole (as evidenced by the picture above, which I took about 10 minutes ago) is still there today. If it’s still there tomorrow, I’m going to start making phone calls.

“Yo, yo, yo, where the courtesy at?”

I never remember to take the “Before” photo until I’m halfway to “After.”

Yesterday, I began the process of moving Laura’s stuff into my office and vice versa. The sheer amount of crap ((In days gone by, I would have objected most strenuously if my “stuff” were to be so classified, but I’m afraid it really is crap. In the best possible lighting, one might generously call it “junk.”)) I had in my office was daunting, to say the least. Nonetheless, I managed to clear out most of the stuff that wasn’t on a desk or bookshelf, vacuumed the floor and hauled in two filing cabinets. That’s in my (old) office. Apart from relocating a two-drawer filing cabinet, I haven’t even touched Laura’s (old) office.

In moving the smaller filing cabinet, I discovered that the underside had gotten wet at some point in the past and rusted, forming a nice, firm bond with the carpeting. I wrenched the filing cabinet out, cleaned it up, then sanded and painted the rusted spots. I also took a stab at cleaning the carpet, but I should really shampoo the whole office before I move all of my stuff. ((Not going to happen.))

Stuff I hauled into the garage until I can find a better place for it:

  • Books. Lots of ’em. MCSE and Network+ study guides, various Linux-related tomes, tons of Star Wars references, and altogether too many role-playing game manuals.
  • Two 15″ computer monitors.
  • One largely functional Linux PC.
  • A box of books on tape.
  • A SEGA Genesis with a handful of cartridges.
  • Two magazine racks full of magazines (Entertainment Weekly, Game Informer and WIRED).

Before I can start moving computers around, I need to actually clean off my (old) computer desk, which is actually an armoire. The biggest problem will be finding a place to put all the crap that I’ve accumulated over the past ten years. I’ve already thrown away much more than my nature would normally allow, yet I have the feeling that I’ll have to part with more if the desk is ever to be truly cleaned. Maybe I’ll take a picture of the desk in its current state before I clean it.

Batman Returns, more or less.

Batman and Robin - The Complete 1949 Movie Serial (DVD)I finished up the 1949 Batman and Robin serial over the weekend, and I must retract something I said about it in a previous post. See, I asserted that the 1949 version of Batman had no utility belt. Boy, was I wrong. He may not use any bat-gadgets in the first half-dozen or so installments, but when he finally does, it’s a doozy.

Minions of the fiendish Wizard lure The Dark Knight and The Boy Wonder into a trap, seal them in an airtight room and pump CO2 (that’s carbon dioxide, kids!) in through the vents. Robin, whose job description apparently reads “fall unconscious at the first hint of danger,” collapses in a heap on the floor. In classic cliffhanger fashion, the episode ends with Batman slumping to the floor as well. Is this the end of the Dynamic Duo?

Of course not. You only think you saw Batman fall face-down beside Robin last week. In reality, Batman knelt next to his sidekick and instructed Robin to breathe through a special device. A device he retrieved from his utility belt. Turns out that big old belt has both function and form. In fact, there’s a full-sized, fully functional acetylene torch on Batman’s hip, complete with ignitor and hoses that lead… well, let’s not think about that. Batman wasn’t really into miniaturization in those days, I guess. After cutting a hole in the door, Batman tucks the torch back into the ridiculously huge holster on his utility belt. How is it that I didn’t notice that thing before? It boggles the mind, really.

You know what? That’s why I love those old serials. The sheer audacity employed in getting the heroes out of one seemingly fatal scrape after another entertains me. I chuckle to imagine the audience going to the theatre week after week to find out how Batman and Robin (or Flash Gordon) managed to escape certain doom. Would there be any cries of “That’s impossible! They were both aboard the plane when it exploded last week!” or “They didn’t have time to get to the trapdoor!” or did the audience simply accept that they didn’t really see the Caped Crusader fall into the pit a week ago?

Even the revelation of the Wizard’s identity in Chapter 15 is a big cheat, but there’s no reason to spoil it for future viewers, is there? I don’t know what the official moratorium on spoilers is (probably less than fifty-six years), but I’m not telling you who the Wizard really is. You’ll just have to find out for yourself.