Archive for May, 2008

Project?

Tuesday, May 13th, 2008

Okay – I know this is going to go nowhere, but I’ve been thinking about this for a couple days, and just want to get it down in case I forget.

What I would like to build:

An electric vehicle that you can “fly” around on.

Obviously, not literally – thus the quotes. But picture this – a very low-to-the-ground aluminum frame with four ~6″ wheels. The rear two are driven by motors from electric drills (or something similar). The driver lies down on the thing face-down – as though you were riding a sportbike, but instead of tucking your legs under you, you extend them straight out back. The driver’s arms sit in “cradles” that are hooked up via linkages to the front wheels. Instead of steering by turning a handle, you steer by leaning – redistributing the weight on your forearms. Braking would be handled by some bicycle disc brakes attached to the front wheels to complement the deceleration from letting off the electric motors.

It seems like it’d be relatively straightforward to prototype – you’d just need a couple high-powered electric drills you can take apart, some of that aluminum strut stuff you can quickly connect in a variety of ways, and some wheels. If that all works, suspension and the like come later. The question is, would it be fun? (I think yes). Would it be practical? Oh, hell no. Would it be usable on the street? Not technically, no, but I’m sure it’d be a blast to ride around the block.

Whee.

Sunday, May 11th, 2008

Reasonably productive weekend. Spent a good deal of time with friends (H’s b-day shindig Sat., E&J coming up for brunch Sun), did some cooking (made dinner (steak, hummus, sour cream wrap things), Korean snack thingies with Ei-Nyung Sun., made chocolate cupcake frosting Sat.), did some weeding (Sun.), played some games (finished Assault Heroes, some PGR4, some GTA4, some Advance Wars: Days of Ruin), took the dog out a couple times, changed the oil in the Metropolitan, bought some food for the week…

Pretty nice weekend.

We’ve been getting up earlier and taking Mobius on longer walks in the morning for exercise. It’s been good so far. I’ve been wanting to go swimming during lunch, but the problem is that the pool’s just far enough away that to walk there and back would mean I’d have basically no time to swim, and now that I carpool most days, walking’s the only choice I’ve got. I asked if I could take a bike there and store it somewhere, but there’s nowhere to keep it, and the company won’t let me keep it at my desk.

Been trying to do pushups and crunches regularly, but so far it’s been sporadic because I’ve overdone it and ended up too sore to do a reasonable set the next day (or day after) – gotta start slower and work my way up.

One of the weird things that’s been working at least a little is that for a really long time, my default response to something would be, “Yeah, sure…” but the reality of it would be, “Yeah… ‘sure.'” I’d keep the option open but almost never act on it. Now, the goal is to simply make the default answer “yes,” whenever possible. Dinner? Yes. Wanna go see a movie? Yes. Wanna watch Battlestar now? Yes. Weed? Yes. Exercise? Yes.

It’s been a good shift for me, because having the default be effectively “no” meant that I spent a lot of time *not* doing stuff, and I’d fill the time by surfing the same two dozen sites I visit regularly or watching TV I didn’t really care all that much about.

Oh – this week, one goal is to figure out how to replace the seat upholstery on the Metropolitan. The vinyl’s cracked and it needs to be patched because the unprotected foam gets wrecked really, really quickly. There’s a place on eBay that sells really nice three-piece stitched seat upholstery, but the original one’s just a single piece of pleather. If I can get a piece of suitable pleather for <$20, I'll make it myself, but if not, I'll get the one from eBay.

@#$%& You, You @(#*@*(@ing @(*(*.

Tuesday, May 6th, 2008

My doctor is a worthless piece of shit. It took a month to get an appointment, and due to a miscommunication with their scheduling people, I’d had the appointment recorded at a different time than they did. While I was 20 minutes late to their time, I was 30 minutes early to mine. They were utterly dismissive – the error must be my fault, no, you’ll have to wait until JUNE to rebook. Hayfever? Oh, well. JUNE.

Fuck you you piece of shit. I’m finding another doctor. One who isn’t a fucking asshole.

Weekend Update

Monday, May 5th, 2008

After a really whacked out sleep schedule freakout on Friday (Ei-Nyung went to sleep at 8:30 and I went to sleep at 2), we had a pretty reasonable evening. Cooked more Korean food, which is always nice, and I made a batch of Japanese curry for later in the week and a drop-off for the extended Team.

Sunday, we went to Klay & Nana’s for brunch per tradition and we caught a matinee screening of Iron Man. Holy crap, it was awesome. Best superhero movie next to Batman Begins, and honestly, if I saw it again, I could see changing my mind. Whoever did the mechanical design for the suit is a genius.

The movie is surprisingly character driven, to the point where it’s almost disappointing when it turns into a (still pretty damn good) action piece. After the movie, we came home – we’d bought stuff Saturday for some temaki sushi, so we cooked up the rice and turned a once-frozen slab o’ tuna from the Korean store ($10 for a pound of sushi-grade tuna!) into half spicy tuna (Japanese mayo, sriracha, sesame oil, green onion, and for laughs, a finely diced jalapeno) and half a randomly concocted poki-style thing (garlic, shallot, ginger, green onion, soy sauce, sesame oil). Some unagi, avocado, cucumber, takuan, ume, and home-grown shiso rounded out the mix, as well as some shrimp ceviche and (strangely) macaroni salad that Eric, Christy and their guest (whose name I can’t remember how to properly spell) brought over.

After that, as all our social gatherings seem to devolve into, Rock Band, which lasted about two hours. Good times.

Definitely need to catch Iron Man again when it’s at the Parkway.

What’s interesting about that movies is that when it’s all said and done, you *really* want to be in the suit. It’s sort of the perfect situation to have a good videogame adaptation, because it’s as close as you’d get to fulfilling that fantasy, short of (gasp) using your imagination. But it’s strange – obviously, flying around in the Iron Man suit would be incredibly awesome – but more, I think I just want to have a dream and pursue it with that sort of single-mindedness and have some hope of success. It’s not like that’s not possible – as always, the problem is with my inability to self-motivate in this regard – I feel like I stick to the status quo because it keeps the potential dream (of success) alive, instead of producing the potential reality of failure.

Seems like a really lame position to take, but there it is. I just need to convince myself that other options are possible too.