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2017-07-21 11:19 pm

Short Windycon Meeting

It was a short Windycon meeting tonight, which given that it's still July, was probably a good thing.

Next meeting is going to be a good bit more busy. :)
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2017-07-20 11:31 pm

Back In the Swim

I finally made it back to the pool with the rest of the family today after work, although I left home later than they did. Katie and Julie were interested in playing a variety of competitive racing games to retrieve thrown objects; Gretchen and I eventually convinced them to do something less competitive in the interest of sibling peace. :)
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2017-07-19 11:52 pm

Tired

Well, at least there's no scheduled phone call for work tonight. Maybe I should go to bed. :)
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2017-07-17 10:56 pm

Moss-Free

We are now through four chapters of Heinlein's The Rolling Stones. Katie is finding it greatly amusing, although she is occasionally annoyed at Heinlein "picking on" things like automobiles.

I am waiting until she finds out about the flat cats. :)
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2017-07-16 11:28 pm

That's All, Folks!

The spring / summer softball season is finally over. The girls lost their final game today to the second team that they beat on Saturday and finished a game short of the tournament finals. But given that they were a team that hadn't played together all season, had had two practices, and one scrimmage game against a short-handed opponent, plus were playing with a massively different set of rules than they'd played under all season -- and lost to two teams that have all of the characteristics of travel teams, as nearly as we can tell -- they did a magnificent job.

I am very proud of all of them.
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2017-07-15 11:31 pm

Today's Softball Action

The Des Plaines girls played today in the first day of a softball tournament over in Niles. It appears to be the first year that they're run this tournament and a great many things are being a mystery to us. :)

For some reason, there are five teams in the tourney and rather than scheduling things with a seeding round on day one, two of the teams got a bye so that they only had to play two games on the first day; the other three teams would need to play and win three games to advance to the finals. We were one of the other three teams, winning the first two games; then losing the third game to one of the teams with a bye which appears to be a tournament team rather than a team or all-star team from a house league.

But the girls played well overall. And by winning the first two games, we have postponed our first game tomorrow until 3:45. One win will put us into the finals, but then we will have to beat the team that beat us twice in order to win, this being a double elimination tournament, except when it isn't, because it's theoretically quite possible for a team with three losses to get to the finals if we've read the brackets correctly.

As I said, it's a mystery...
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2017-07-14 11:37 pm

Wrapping Things Up

We had a lovely end-of-season parent/daughter softball game tonight, followed by a party and trophy presentation. Then it was home and off toward bed, where I finished reading The Star Beast to Katie tonight.

Now I just need to figure out what book to read next. :)
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2017-07-13 11:22 pm

Practice Makes Perfect

We had a practice game against one of the other tournament teams today. It went well from out point of view, as our pitchers threw more strikes than theirs did. This whole "walking" thing will require some getting used to.

But Katie walked once and reached base on a hit twice, so we will definitely declare the New Bat Experiment to be a success. The first hit was a hustle hit down the first baseline; the second hit better struck on the fly and where the shortstop couldn't quite manage to get to it before it touched down.

And the team won, so there was much rejoicing. :)
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2017-07-12 10:44 pm

And Then It Rained

The hard rain started last night near the end of the All-Star Game, cutting off the DirecTV signal. It was about a minute later that I realized that I could actually stream the game on my phone using the DirecTV app. If I hadn't disconnected the Roku downstairs, I could have cast the screen to the TV. There was about a fifteen second delay relative to the broadcast, but since I wasn't getting the broadcast, that didn't seem to matter nearly so much as it might otherwise.

There was more hard rain early this morning. About 9 AM the message came in that we were most likely postponing the practice softball game today. I was horribly surprised. :)

And then there was some more hard rain while I was at breakfast. By the time I headed home, the right lane of northbound Elmhurst Rd. was not something you wanted to drive on.

It's stopped raining now. With any luck, we'll play that practice softball game tomorrow.

And try out the new gear Katie got yesterday. :)
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2017-07-11 11:33 pm

Softball Updating

We went out to Play It Again Sports to hunt for a new bat for Katie, since the one she's been using won't be in the same place she is for fall softball. An acceptable bat was found, along with a helmet that passes league regulations, a new and larger glove, and a bag to put all of this in.

We'll see how the bat and glove do tomorrow. And the helmet, although the helmet doesn't do much unless you get hit in the head...
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2017-07-10 11:01 pm

Julie's Tablet

Julie's tablet is misbehaving again. This is really annoying.

I've cleared the cache partition. Let's see if that helps...
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2017-07-09 11:27 pm

A Busy Day

We had a softball practice today for next weekend's tournament. Then we adjourned to the pool with Gretchen and Katie, resulting in a very late dinner of "what's in the refrigerator?" accompanied by a quick trip to the store for turkey and provolone for Katie. :)

I am really tired. Because the weekend is for resting up...
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2017-07-08 11:46 pm

All Stars

Katie's team (which included the girls from Des Plaines, Morton Grove, and Norwood Park) won today's Crosstown All-Star game 6-5. Everyone played well and had a good time.

Then came very late dinner and home to let Ruby out of her kennel. She didn't stay out long, as some damn fool was setting off late night fireworks. Ruby hates big bangs.
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2017-07-07 11:07 am

Cut the Police

The Cook County soda tax has been placed on hold by a local judge. The next act in our morality play is now proceeding as usual, as the Cook County government is now issuing dire warnings about the draconian cuts that will be required if this relatively small in the whole budgetary scheme amount of money isn't available.

This includes, of course, a fifteen percent cut in personnel for the Cook County Police, because the first thing that they always threaten to cut is the police. I'm sure they'd threaten to cut the fire department too, except that Cook County doesn't seem to have a fire department to cut, based on my brief Google search. That's all controlled by various municipalities and townships. Well, you threaten where you can...

In any case, I am old enough to remember Tom Lehrer. For those of you who don't, here's the original. And the altered lyrics follow:
Read more... )
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2017-07-06 11:07 pm

In and Out

Uncle Jeff came by to visit again today before he departs back to Arizona tomorrow. Katie and Julie (and Gretchen and I, for that matter) enjoyed the chance to see him.

So did Ruby the Dog who is always interested in someone new to throw the ball for her. :)
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2017-07-05 11:07 pm

Always BOOM tomorrow. Never BOOM today.

A friend of mine posted on Facebook that an alert had gone out that there was a pre-supernova event that had been detected coming from the direction of Betelgeuse. Sadly, it turns out that it was a false alarm. A test message had been generated that shouldn't have been sent out to the whole list.

No big bright supernova today.

Ah, well.
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2017-07-04 09:53 pm

Wandering About

I walked with Katie and the girls from Des Plaines Girls Softball in the Independence Day parade today in Des Plaines. I'd say "marched", because that's what one traditionally does in a parade, but it would be very difficult to describe this as marching. :) Ambling would be more accurate. Everyone had a good time and Uncle Jeff was able to come out and join Gretchen and Julie watching the parade. Much candy was thrown into the crowd.

Later in the day, we went to the local pool where they had planned many child-friendly activities for the holiday.

Ruby the Dog continues to really not like fireworks. The good news is that it should be mostly over soon and taper down to naught in the next few days.
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2017-07-03 10:07 pm

Day Off

Like most of the people in the U.S. who had the option, I took today as a vacation day. Not a lot got done, although most of the bills are now paid.

And Uncle Jeff arrived in town this afternoon for a visit, which is always a good thing.

Tomorrow, the girls march with the softball team in the Des Plaines Independence Day parade. So sleep would be a good idea.
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2017-07-02 10:04 pm

Change of Plans

I had planned to take the family down to the Lisle Eyes to the Skies festival today for the carnival, music, and fireworks. It turned out that this plan was going to result in more unhappiness than happiness.

Having promised Katie a few weeks ago that I would take her to a carnival, we ended up going to the carnival over in Mt. Prospect where the girls had an excellent time using the unlimited ride bracelets that I bought them. They were able to do much more riding than they would have down in Lisle.

Then we headed home, while I stopped at Mariano's on the way to pick up groceries. We have now had a lovely dinner of sandwiches, chips, sweet corn, and salad -- Gretchen was good enough to put together a Reuben for me -- and a very relaxed evening. Well, other than the fireworks that are terrorizing Ruby.

Apparently, someone needs some more exposure to things that go boom before being a hunting dog. Since I wasn't planning on going hunting, we should be just fine...
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2017-07-01 11:33 pm

Guests

Steven Joel and France have stopped here tonight on their way to Winnipeg. It has been an absolutely charming evening, but everyone is now officially exhausted, so it's time to go to bed. :)