Happy birthday to me!

I’m 32 years old.

My laptop is broken and we can’t afford to replace any parts. (So you’ll be seeing less of me online, unless I can figure out what’s wrong and find a free replacement part somewhere.) Oh well, we got it for free anyway. I just hate being the only person in the house who has to ask someone else for permission to use their computer instead of just using my own.

I’m selling my new digital camera and the lenses, tripod, etc. that go with it. It’s the best way to reduce debt and provide for GRE classes, college-visiting road trip, application fees, etc. Jodi says she’ll use her savings for moving expenses. I got an unexpected check in the mail, which helps. I’m still selling the camera, and I still need to sell the iPod nano, too. eBay fees are annoying, but I’m not sure I know of a better way to get the best value for this stuff.

Oh well, at least I look hot in my black dress shirt and the jeans I bought a month ago. Never hurts to know people are staring at my butt. ;)

I’m kinda sad about the financial situation we got ourselves into, but we’re dealing with it. It was just a bad idea to be living like a dual-income, upper-middle-class family. We aren’t.

And despite all that, I’m actually fairly happy today. Go figure.

Oh, if you’re a Babylon 5 fan, you might enjoy The End of the World, Babylon 5 Style, which I wrote yesterday.

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26 Comments

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26 responses to “Happy birthday to me!

  1. loucheroo

    Happy Birthday!! *hug*

  2. haemony

    birthday? *sniff sniff* birthday?

    Happy birthday!!!!!!!

  3. knobody

    happy birthday

  4. knobody

    oh, what kind of laptop do you have?

  5. meander112

    I’m sorry for the money troubles. Um, how much do you want for the nano? I *may* be interested.

  6. meander112

    Also, Happy Birthday! Whee!

  7. sylvar

    It’s a Gateway Solo 2550 (500MHz) with a missing T key. The problem seems to be hard-drive related but the root cause may be a fan; I heard odd fannish noises last time I tried booting. Safe Mode freezes after beginning to load an AGP driver, though, I think.

    I can always take it apart and see if I can identify the problem; I just haven’t had time recently. The next computer-related task at home is to set up Jodi’s old PC on the dining room table and use it to scp her old files onto her laptop. (It’s a Mac, so scp is a doddle.)

  8. sylvar

    Well, I got no takers at $149 including shipping (it’s a 1GB black nano, new in the box; that, plus tax, is the store price), so I guess I’ll ask $139 and see who says yes.

  9. sshaf1130

    Happy Birthday!!!

  10. heyharmony

    Happy Birthday!!!

    May you see many people dressed in birthday suits today!

  11. cardinalximinez

    Happy Birthday!

    If it’s any consolation, it sounds like you are where we were for the past four or five years until a few months ago when L got a job. The solution is simple: Jodi needs to get a job. ;) (Yes, yes, I know it’s not that simple – that’s why it’s funny.)

    It would probably be worth it to find the time to hack at the laptop – if you’ve written it off as already broken. Laptops are built much like desktops, just with much less breathing room, and more proprietary components. I’ve had some luck hacking on them before.

    In the meantime, set up Fast User Switching on one of the other computers, so that you can at least use them without farking up someone else’s work. Then get standing permission to use it whenever they’re not.

    Tell me more about the camera: simple, brief specs, and a ballpark price figure.

  12. sylvar

    It’s a Canon EOS Digital Rebel XT with the standard lens plus a 300mm zoom lens that’s fast enough to catch this without a flash (that’s fully zoomed in, from about 25 rows back). Both lenses have hoods, one of them has a haze filter. There’s a very fast 2GB CompactFlash card (see the whole series for an idea of how fast it can shoot and save) and two spare batteries. It also comes with a Speedlite 380EX external flash, which is crucial for avoiding red-eye. (Forget every “red eye reduction” feature you’ve ever seen. Point the flash at 60 degrees up, bounce the flash off the ceiling, and you’ll have no red-eye at all.) And I’ve got a kickass sturdy Bogen tripod with a quick-release mount for the camera.

    As for price, I’m not sure; I have to figure out what comparable gear costs new, and what this stuff has gotten on eBay. If I had to guess, I’d say around $1k for the lot, but I need to do some research.

  13. fizzgig_bites

    Not to piss you guys off but…

    Something that I have done several times in the past that you guys may want to think about. Take a break from school and tell Jodi to get a job. I know Jodi has dreams but you guys can’t keep this up. I am mad at her for the way she treats you. I know how much you love photography. Taking a break in school is good and healthy. She is at risk for burnout and she should take a break. You guys need the money. Maybe aim for next fall entrance and work till then. During the down time, study for the GRE. It’s what I did and it went just fine. Grad schools also look at work experience when people apply. She should seriously think about it.

    I think you guys should seriously think about the what-ifs if Jodi can’t get into grad schools of her choice. There are plenty of well-paying jobs out there for someone with any bachelor’s degree. Want is not enough to get into grad school. A rich blend of abilities, test scores, grades, and attributes get someone into grad school. She needs to flesh out her resume and bring in some money. If you guys are this bad off with undergrad, grad is going to be much worst.

  14. sylvar

    Why thank you! I think that’s an excellent idea!

  15. meander112

    Well, I just remembered that I’ll be trying to buy a Onyx Nintendo DS Lite next month. I’m afraid that I won’t be able to buy your Nano.

  16. heathrow

    Couldn’t agree more. :)

    Is there any way that Jodi could get a part time job to tide over while she’s preparing for the GRE?

  17. heathrow

    Les speaks the truth here.

  18. cardinalximinez

    Sounds nice. Don’t know if I’m willing to drop that much anytime soon, but keep me in the loop anyway.

  19. turtlebat23

    Happy Birthday!! I love you!

  20. tealfroglette

    HOppy Birthday!!!

  21. tealfroglette

    wtf are gre classes? a book to look at sure, but a class that costs money…. *rolls eyes* my personal opinion is if you can’t get a decent score on the gre w/o a class, then you can’t do the grad work required either.

    i took it after having to give cpr the day before and still got acceptable scores and took no prep classes, nor did my brother.

    i just don’t see the point… it’s like buying jello already made except worse because there’s a real life ‘test’ at the end, can you do the coursework.

  22. knobody

    sorry, no parts for a gateway. it was a long shot, but i figured marshall’s old toshiba is just sitting on a shelf waiting to be parted out. owel, it was worth a shot.

  23. glowing_fish

    Happy birthday!

    And, if you were in Portland, you could buy a computer from Free Geek for like $12.50

    But you aren’t, so you can’t.

  24. wedash

    Sorry this is a day late but Happy Birthday.

  25. danasdream

    Yes, happy birthday.

    Good luck with the financial stuff.

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