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Paperless instructions

Thursday, December 16, 2010

We had a big party at the TOPS meeting tonight. First a game with prizes, and then a bunch of treats that two ladies had made. We also got gifts from the Christmas party the people had made and brought along, even though I wasn't there, and some that were brand new made for everyone. I also got my wireless modem which I haven't had a chance to look at yet. With luck I will be on line with a secure hot spot throughout the house. This is something with the latest protocols and high power, so I hope it works when I download the software and try to set it up. I'm a little awed by the stuff that comes with no paperwork nowadays - it either comes over the internet or you're out of luck. At least they used to give you a floppy with the operating system, then a CD, then a few, and then a chance to write it on a couple of DVD's after you had the computer for a while. Now there's nothing but a website address.

I miss the good old days when I had some paper to look at.
Wish me luck.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

MRDPOLING 12/17/2010 9:06PM

    I rather go 100% paperless, Diskless, etc but I am thinking that isn't possible.

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S3XYDIVASMOM 12/17/2010 1:02PM

    Me, too. I was trying to figure out a new digital camera this morning and the information in the manual was sooo inadequate. I'm going to have to look at the CD or go online. Yuck.

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JENAANN3 12/16/2010 9:22PM

    I'm like you. I want to be able to touch and feel the paper and media. Even though I have a calendar on my Blackberry I still prefer to carry a paper calander in my purse. Call me old fashioned I guess.

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More Skin Cancer

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Last Thursday I went back to my dermatologists for a check-up, and he didn't do Mohs surgery this time - but he did find a scaly pre-cancerous patch, an actinic keratosis. He just froze the big scaly patch that showed up on my cheek lately. He offered to wait until after the holidays, but I didn't see any reason to put it off. I didn't think too much about it, and it only hurt a little, but by now I have a big dark area on the cheek and look like I have something that you definitely wouldn't want. Then I look at the picture on the blog, and realize that I've had two operations and a freeze-off in just a few months.

It worried me a little at the time, so I commented that it looked as if he had a reliable customer now, and he commented that that was true. When you have had enough ultra-violet that the skin cancers start to show up, they tend to just keep coming. That made me think if my brother-in-law, who commented at Thanksgiving that he had just had 22 skin cancers removed in one sitting. That brings his total up to 33, but I still think 22 at once is raising quite a crop.

The end result was that he offered me either four months or six months for another inspection, and I took the six months. I'll know in six months if this is going to be the story of my life from now on.

Other than that, I have just been doing a bunch of clean-up and chores to get ready for Annie and Jerzy, who we will pick up at the Tampa airport Saturday night. We have a freeze warning, but it is supposed to warm up by Friday, so maybe it won't be a disaster like last year, when we had a record cold winter.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

JENAANN3 12/16/2010 9:26PM

    Us Floridians are making our dermatologists rich. Our dermatologist told us she has lowered her parameters for bioposies lately. She is having more and more things come back as cancerous, thus she doesn't let much get past her without a biopsy. As for myself, I appreciate her policy. I'd rather be safe than sorry.

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MS.ELENI 12/15/2010 10:32PM

    Getting older is no fun. Bill has to go back in a few months for more stuff.That freezing is no fun

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S3XYDIVASMOM 12/15/2010 6:26PM

    Ain't aging great?! I'll bet that you never planned this sort of thing for your life. But, glory be, there it is.

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MRDPOLING 12/15/2010 6:10PM

    I agree with you... why wait until after the holidays for something this important?

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Unsatisfying Explanation

Sunday, December 12, 2010

We have two PBS stations here, channels 3 and 16. We like to watch Mystery or Masterpiece Theater Sunday evenings on channel 3, and the BW likes some shows on channel 16. She talked about not being able to get channel 16 in back, but I didn't pay too much attention to her until I finally tried myself. After straightening out the VCR/DVD player and TV so I could get to the outside world reliably, I found that she was right. All the other channels were there, but not channel 16. We get channel 16 just fine in front, through a converter, but not in back on the analog channels without a converter.

That was about a week ago, and tonight I got around to calling Brighthouse. I started out with program services, and went through two people there. The answer they kept giving me was that channel 16 changed its transition to digital. Of course I argued that all the other channels changed to digital too, and they were still there. After about three times around that loop, the second guy mentioned that Brighthouse were required to carry one PBS station, and channel 16 wanted to carry a lot of programs that channel 16 chose. He said that at least three times, which still didn't explain the problem to me.

Eventually I suggested a couple of times that they could carry 16 as an analog channel but didn't want to do it, but no one would admit that that was the case. Finally he offered me technical support, so I said sure, transfer mo over. He did say one time that they were required to carry one PBS channel.

The lady in technical support gave me the same run-around a couple of times, and finally said that channel 16 was a converter channel. You could get all the old channels up to 99 without a converter, but not channel 16. They did the same thing with the public access channel, moved it up into the hundreds so you needed a converter, but I hadn't seen anything about channel 16 in the paper.

When I asked if I had to rent a converter for $8/month to see the channel she told me that they had a PEG converter for $1/month. No one would ever say that they moved it so they could collect more money, but the brush-off they all had memorized was enough to make you give up in frustration. There is a built-in illogic that they hope you won't notice, I guess. I notice and get irritated, and I suspect that everyone else would too.

Brighthouse has the highest customer satisfaction rating of any carriers in this area, but I think it would be even higher if they just would tell it like it is.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

PICKIE98 12/20/2010 3:05PM

    We have Charter here ,and I told them they should have ala carte menu for channels we like to watch,, that would be the best way, 110% customer satisfaction,, the obvious reason they do not do it is :they don't have to! $$ talks and b-----t walks...
I am like you, I would have camped out in their office until I was satisfied,, good for you!!

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TUDI4480 12/14/2010 12:25AM

    I like your persistence! I hope you do get Channel 16 even if you have to pay $1/month to do it. At least it's saving you the $7 extra bucks that others are probably paying.

emoticon emoticon emoticon

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ALEXTHEHUNN 12/13/2010 8:00AM

    Just tell the truth.

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MRDPOLING 12/13/2010 6:53AM


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S3XYDIVASMOM 12/12/2010 11:46PM

    Dream on. (Oops. My cynicism is showing.)

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Another Picture

Saturday, December 11, 2010

We used to drive along East 10th Street, past the fancy houses, at Christmastime back in the early 1960's because we wanted to be awed by the light displays. There would be a string of cars as far as anyone could see, moving very slowly because one or two people didn't want to hurry. The show was fantastic. In later years other areas of Indianapolis took the lead, but there was always an excellent show somewhere.

Down here there are a lot of fancy areas, but this immediate neighborhood isn't one of them. We always used to drive over to Safety Harbor to see the house decorated by the two artists who live in it. They would make the St. Pete Times, and I still have pictures that I took there, but nothing is like seeing it in the flesh. We have sort of fallen out of the habit anymore. We have been in this area during the winter intermittently since 1992, and every winter since 1999, but we didn't start looking at the Safety Harbor show until about 2002, and after a few years the crowds and difficulty parking took the pleasure away. The BW was having trouble walking very far, and it just slid away.

Up around 18th and Pennsylvania there are some fancy places, with wire reindeer forms covered with lights, and multiple inflated lighted figures as well as light displays that knock you socks off. On the way home from the grocery store the BW made me drive by them, and they were a great show at dusk. It was still light out, but the lights showed brightly, and I wished I had a camera with me to try to get a reasonable available light shot. Instead, by the time I had carried everything in and we put everything away it was dark, and I didn't feel like driving up there. Instead I took another shot of Kenny's house from across the street, bracing the camera on someone's mail box. One of the consequences of being in the unincorporated Pinellas County is that everyone has a mailbox on the street, not on the house, and they're at a convenient height to satisfy the USPS.

This is another picture of Kenny's house. Ours isn't worth showing.

It's a little better than yesterday's. I changed the batteries in the camera and forgot to set the date and time - it was taken this evening.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

ALEXTHEHUNN 12/12/2010 8:00AM

    I always loved the palm trees with lights! Your picture is very good.

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S3XYDIVASMOM 12/11/2010 10:04PM

    Pretty picture. You can thank the mailbox, I guess.

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MRDPOLING 12/11/2010 9:37PM

    I didn't realize you live next to the Griswolds. hehe

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TUBLADY 12/11/2010 9:01PM

    That is a lovely picture. I like to see the decorations at Xmas, I am just tired of doing all the decorating and putting it all away later.
When in Miami we always went over to the big lighted display.
But sometimes the crowds got the best of me and I had to leave.
I can't deal with packed crowds. A little phobia of mine.
I'm not putting up any lights or tree this year. I have a wreath on door, and poinsettia inside. A few other easy decorations, scented pine cones, which I love.
Jim has said we will have a tree on our Xmas vacation in Colorado. Not sure what he has planned, it's his show, I'm just along for the ride.
Enjoy all the holiday has to offer.

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Pictures? of the lights.

Friday, December 10, 2010

I'm not sure what happened to my tripod, but I don't do very well taking pictures at night with a hand-held camera. The first (top) one is the house across the street, the second one is Kenny's (on the right - the one on the left has just the house lights), and the last two sad ones are of our front porch, first hand held and then braced on our mailbox. I just plugged these two strings into the end on one of the ones on the patio, around the corner to the right. They're all pretty sad, but farther east there are a bunch of fancy lights. In the daytime you can't see much of anything.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

S3XYDIVASMOM 12/11/2010 11:30AM

    Thanks for the effort . I appreciate it all.

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MS.ELENI 12/10/2010 10:14PM

    I like your lights. I will wait a few more days and then drive around and look at lights.

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