February 26, 2004

History Repeats: US Army Band needing guitar player
Posted by Jess in Day to Day

My dad was joking the other day how the US Army Band is looking for a classical guitarist to add to its ranks...

I had to take a peek for myself, and sure enough, there is a vacancy.

What the position-filler doesn't know, however, is that the position wouldn't exist at all had it not been for my father.

He was in the US Army Band in the 50's (for trumpet, I believe), and drafted along with him was then pop-star Steve Lawrence. Steve brought his own chorale pieces with him, and they all called for one thing: a classical guitarist. At that point, the band did not have an official "record" in the database for such a position.

In order to add a new field to the database of US Army Band Classical Guitarist, my dad and Steve made a field trip together up to the US Pentagon to appeal for a new position. They got it, and my father became the first ever classical guitarist in the most prestigious band in the armed forces.

You can read a little bit about the history of it here, including a picture of Steve L.

What strikes me as the most interesting is the ripple effect. It's not very often I get the chance to trace something like this back to the beginning.

February 20, 2004

Bandwith leeching.. anyone speak German?
Posted by Jess in Tech Talk

Someone at this site is leeching off an image Matt posted on his blog entry of Golden Boy:

The problem is that he is using it as a forum avatar, and is wreaking havoc on my bandwith limitations.

However, not being able to speak German, I can't write to this person and ask him politely to put the image on his own server. I can translate it with AltaVista, but there's no contact information for the guy (at least that I could figure out), and I can't post in the forum.

Cindy, does Nate speak it well enough that he could help me out? :-)

Now I realize that I could just change my image. I've got a great story of such shenanigans, I am just waiting to see if someone can scrape up the last image that was changed. It's just classic, and I can promise that the person will NEVER leech again.

However, I'm sure the user has no idea about images, and web servers, and bandwith, so I'd just like to be friendly and ask them to remove our link.


1st Anniversary of The Station fire
Posted by Jess in RI Stories

Today marks the first anniversary of The Station nightclub fire.

When I wrote about it the first time, I included a story to paint a picture of what life in Rhode Island is really like. I did it so others who don't live in our state could get a picture of how a tragic event like this could rip through the entire state.

It's only fitting I do the same a year later. However, this year, I am going to tell you about something that makes our state proud, in it's traditionally unique, quirky sort of way.

This is the Big Blue Bug. He's a representative of New England Pest Control, and you can see him travelling Rt. 95 through Providence, RI. Alternatively, you can see him in the movie Dumb and Dumber. He's also gone on tour, and appeared on the Oprah Winfrey show.


He's 58 feet long, and his name is Nibbles Woodaway, and like any state mascot/icon, he has his own website.

Throughout the year, he goes through several costume changes, including adorning antlers and a lighted red nose for the holidays.

During the summer, he dons a pair of stylin' sunglasses, and enjoys a nice cup of Del's famous frozen lemonade (another RI tradition). Here's the thing about THIS... local zoning laws deem that a corporate logo or trademark can't represent more than one product. Nibble's couldn't have his lemonade, because that would be confusing, as now he is representing both the Pest Control company and Del's.


What do you think they did about it?

Nibbles got his very own zoning variance from our old mayor, Buddy Cianci.

I do love this state. :-)

February 18, 2004

Desktop wallpaper: sometimes it's the little things.
Posted by Jess in Tech Talk

When I work on computers, a lot of times I notice that the desktop wallpaper hasn't been changed (Most noticeably, when it's still the "DELL" background). I guess I tend to assume that they don't know how to change it.

For some reason, I don't know why I do this, but I always change the background for them and based upon what I know about them, pick something I think they would like.

It's easy with XP because there are some good ones that come standard with the OS. I'll pick the dog if I know they have a dog, or I'll pick the field of tulips if their office is small with no windows because it's cheery. If they take an annual trip to somewhere warm, I'll set it to the beach scene.

It's always so fun to see them come back to their computer:
-"Oooh, I love it!"
-"I always wondered how or if I could change that."
-"My friend sent me a picture of my son, can I put that on my desktop?"

It's a quick and easy way to take an extra step while working on a computer... and it breaks the ice for them to ask other questions they didn't want to ask.

At least I can only hope they don't spend the rest of their work days on downloads.com finding new themes. :-D

February 16, 2004

Valentine's Day
Posted by Jess in

Saturday was Valentine's Day, for us, it came and went.

Matt and I don't do anything for Valentine's day. Why? We treat each other every day like it was Valentine's day anyway.

Not to sound hokey or anything, but we always extend courtesy and luxury to each other every day. Why would we do anything less?

If Matt wakes up before I do and he's home, I am *never* allowed to make my own coffee. I'm not even allowed to make my second cup.

If Matt's on the couch and he's all snuggled up under a blanket, why would I make him lose that comfiness if he wanted a drink? I can get my butt up and get it for him.

It's the little things that count. And it's the little things that are the most appreciated.

February 11, 2004

Happy Birthday to me...
Posted by Jess in Announcements

So here's my birthday on the 11th, and my best friend Cindy (who I refer to quite often here) had a birthday on the 8th.

Unbeknownst to the both of us, we had each gone to Hallmark.com and found the *perfect* e-card to send, and scheduled it for delivery on our birthdays.

Why am I not surprised that we both go to the same site and pick the same card?

We didn't write the same message, though. Because that would have crossed the boundaries of being cute into being very, very scary. :-)

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