roblog - Official Blog of Rob Hurvitz

30 Apr 2002 - 5:02:32 PM
I finally used that "Free Coke Product" bottle top today. Opened up the new bottle and, lo and behold, it was another "Free Coke Product" winner. The addiction continues...
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29 Apr 2002 - 10:01:27 PM
The Smith trip went well. The weather turned out to be pretty nice, too. Two good days of climbing balanced out the long slog of a drive there and back. I mostly climbed on top-rope, but did do one lead each day (both bolted). Saturday's was "Easy Reader," a 5.6 I think I led 2.5 years ago, as well. Sunday's was "Helium Woman," a 5.9 with its crux moves in the beginning, but after the third bolt gets pretty easy and fun.

An interesting thing I noticed about Smith: there were lots of folks with Stick Clips wandering around. They're long poles with a pinchy thing at the end to hold a quickdraw. You clip the rope through the 'draw, hoist it up with the Stick Clip, and clip the other end of the 'draw into the first bolt. They're also known as "cheater sticks." I'd never seen them before at any climbing area, but there are a lot of high first bolts at Smith.

See? I told you reading about climbing minutiae is mind-numbingly boring. Puzzled by some of the lingo? Here's a climbing glossary.

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29 Apr 2002 - 1:19:29 PM
I need to stop rattling off the odd referrers for my pages. Now this page is starting to get hits from people searching for Bharati Mukherjee's "Orbiting" story (or analysis thereof) and foreign massage parlors. I feel like I'm caught in a horrible positive feedback loop.
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25 Apr 2002 - 11:54:13 PM
Okay, so I didn't write anything new about the climbing class. Sue me. It's just that I know from past experience that describing climbing minutiae is mind-numbingly boring to non-climbers. So trust me, I'm doing you a favor...

I went to Bill's house to help celebrate the 1000th subscriber to his and Gene's comic strip, Unshelved. Fruit cobbler and cookies and champagne. Mmmm.

Also had the ex-Ion book club meeting at the Belltown Pub. Pretty small turn out, but two folks were away on vacation or something like that. Next month's selection is Bruce Chatwin's In Patagonia, so it looks like I won't be quitting next month, either. Oh well. (And yeah, I'm a little behind in updating my bookself page...)

I'll be heading to Smith Rock with some friends this weekend, which should be fun. If the weather doesn't look good, though, we may end up going to Vantage or Leavenworth instead.

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24 Apr 2002 - 12:44:22 PM
What's up with this "bread causes cancer" news story? Is it some sort of late April Fools joke? It's just a matter of time, probably, before studies come out linking water and air to cancer.

I wonder how long it'll be before there are class-action lawsuits against the multi-national bread/potato chip/french fry conglomerates. Maybe they won't be allowed to advertise on TV anymore, or they'll be required to put warning labels on their packaging ("Consumption of this bread/potato product may cause cancer").


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24 Apr 2002 - 1:29:59 AM
I made chocolate chip cookies this afternoon. I followed the recipe (minus the nuts) on the back of the Ghirardelli Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chip bag. Good free recipe that didn't cost me $600. I brought them to the WAC climbing class (it was my week to bring a snack), and they disappeared in a matter of minutes. So I guess they came out okay.

I haven't written about the class in a while. Tomorrow. Yeah, I'll write something new about the class tomorrow.

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22 Apr 2002 - 7:52:20 PM
I think my luck's finally starting to turn around! There's a Coke promotion going on in the northwest in which you supposedly have a 25% chance to win a free Coke. Well, after umpteen bottles of Coke, I finally unscrewed a cap and read the happy words: "You win 20 oz. Coke product." Woo hoo! Maybe I should go buy a lotto ticket, as well.
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22 Apr 2002 - 1:05:16 PM
Caught the Robyn Hitchcock show last night at the Crocodile. Good show. He played a few Soft Boys songs, some Bob Dylan covers, a Psychedelic Furs cover ("The Ghost in You"), and the usual eclectic assortment of his solo/Egyptians songs. Picked up a copy of his new self-published album, Robyn Sings, a two disc set of Dylan covers.
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18 Apr 2002 - 11:03:22 PM
A couple weeks ago, I finally got around to developing a roll of film I'd had in my camera since last August. I was pleasantly surprised to find a pretty cool picture I'd taken of my friend Tom on his wedding day. He's sitting on the ferry taking us out to Angel Island, where the ceremony was held in an old military chapel. He looks like the perfect nervous groom. I'll have to send him a copy.

the nervous groom
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18 Apr 2002 - 12:03:07 AM
I found another good café for writing today, and they have kick ass handmade doughnuts, too. It's just a short walk north of me, Top Pot/Zeitgeist, and they have their own website, too, unlike Vivace Roasteria and Bauhaus, for which I have use out-of-date third party links. Another good café for writing is Victrola, up on 15th, which is, unfortunately, just a little too far for walking when there are these other great places much closer to me.
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16 Apr 2002 - 2:48:20 PM
I think the main thing I've learned from this blog is my life is fairly uninteresting. Maybe that's why a "true" weblog is usually just a list of links to interesting stuff elsewhere on the web.

Anyway, you may recall my earlier entry about the various book clubs I've been involved with (woo hoo -- my first link to one of my own entries!). In it, I said I'd quit the ex-Ion book club next month (i.e. this month). Well, I didn't. One of the founding members did, instead, and so it seemed like an inappropriate time for me to quit as well. Plus, this month's book is Dashiell Hammett's The Thin Man, which is a book I'd like to read. So, maybe I'll quit next month. Breaking up is hard to do.

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14 Apr 2002 - 12:44:57 PM
I've been unemployed for over a year now. Maybe I should start looking for a new job. I'm starting to miss the little things about working, actually, like health insurance and paychecks. But then I see something like oddTodd, especially Laid Off: Help Wanted, and I feel okay again.
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11 Apr 2002 - 11:49:01 PM
My hat page got a hit today from someone searching for "funny pictures of Mexican construction workers." Weird. I'd make some kind of joke, but it'd probably sound insensitive...
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11 Apr 2002 - 4:34:05 PM
I finally checked out the LP Show exhibit at the EMP -- its run ends on Sunday. Pretty cool collection, even though they only had 1,500 album covers instead of the usual 2,500. In some of their print ads for the show, however, one of the covers displayed in the background was The Fall's Hex Enduction Hour, which was not actually in the EMP's version of the exhibit. They did have their Dragnet album cover, though. The big surprises for me were three records that I remember as a kid: Let's All Sing with the Chipmunks, Savage! -- Tihati's South Seas Spectacular, and If The Bomb Falls -- a recorded guide to survival. My parents had, um, interesting taste in vinyl.

I used to love listening to those old Chipmunks records way back when. I've had the line "Me, I want a hula hoop" running through my brain for the past day. The Savage! record was a souvenir from a Polynesian dance performance seen during our family trip to Hawaii. If The Bomb Falls I don't think I ever actually listened to, but I remember finding it hidden away in a cupboard, reading the lengthy text on the cover, and feeling scared.

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8 Apr 2002 - 11:53:45 PM
I found out today that my hat page has competition. Two guys have traveled around the world making balloon hats for people and taking pictures of them, and they're selling a 2002 calendar, a balloon hat how-to book, as well as individual prints. Huh. A calendar featuring my own Hat pictures would be fun to make...
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7 Apr 2002 - 2:09:26 PM
What to say? I'm back in Seattle. It's been a long, hectic week, but things are finally settling down. Today my goal is to relax.

I think I found the answer to my boring roblog design, a random color scheme generator. Implementing it would be easy, and it might even be funny for a few seconds.

Today's joke in the comic strip Unshelved, by my friend Bill Barnes and Gene Ambaum, is based on one I made for my "Latest News" blurb back in early February. Just thought I'd throw that out there.

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2 Apr 2002 - 12:53:12 AM
In Memoriam

Hanon Freed
October 16, 1909 - April 1, 2002

My grandfather ("Zady") was born in Poland, and he and his family emigrated to the US when he was five, six months before emigration stopped because of World War One. They spent several years in New York and on a farm in Canada before heading west to San Francisco. He grew up there, married my grandmother ("Bubby"), started a family, and eventually moved to Los Angeles, where he finally settled down for good. They were married for almost 63 years.

It's hard to say what I learned from Zady because I can't think of Zady by himself -- he and Bubby were always together -- they were a great couple, always joking with each other. From the two of them, I learned that with hard work, ingenuity, and a sense of humor, life can be rewarding and fun. I'll be going to LA for the funeral, and I think one of the hardest parts of it will be seeing Bubby by herself.

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1 Apr 2002 - 11:52:45 AM
Yesterday, Gary Turner propped the ten blogstickers I whipped up a couple weeks ago. Included is a link to my blog, and almost immediately my humble page experienced a huge traffic spike. Woo hoo! I'm famous!

Well, maybe not. I haven't actually had any referrers from there, yet. Does that count as an April Fool? Or does that make me one? As Mark Twain once wrote: "This is the day upon which we are reminded of what we are on the other three hundred and sixty-four."

Anyway, I stayed up way too late last night redoing the guts of this page. I made the previously ill-designed archives a bit less impractical and the archive links on the right much more complicated than they have any right to be. My motivation was to allow all my loyal readers who've been clamoring to be able to link directly to my pearls of wisdom the opportunity to share my posts with the world. And because I'm unemployed with time to kill.

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