Almost there...

Friday, July 30, 2004

Save me from the stinky pitties!

Okay, so summer is great, and I myself don't wear anti-perspirant, so occasionally I get stinky. To mitigate that, I shower every night, shave my pits, and carry a pump with witch hazel spray to kill off any stinky bacteria when I do get a little sweaty. It works most of the time. Other folks don't seem to be as conscious of this little detail, and it's ever so important in the summer.

A week or so ago, I was in the fitting room at Ross. Someone in there had body odor so bad that it stunk up the entire room, even with the A/C blasting to the point of goosebumps. Kinda made shopping less fun. A lot less fun.

And I don't know, I guess this year it's just bugging me a bit, but stinky pitties on dancers is a bad thing! Especially if it's early in the evening! I can understand it after an hour or two of dancing, but arriving stinky just sucks. It doesn't seem like too much to ask to not be overwhelmingly ripe at social events.

I understand dislike of anti-perspirants - all that aluminum blocking up your system and such - but that's not an excuse for not staying mostly clean. That stink - it's mostly caused by bacteria in your armpits. I don't want to smell your bacteria!

Ahem. Okay, I'm better now.

Social Monkey

The Hub
Category I - The Hub

You're a 'people person'. Networking runs in your
blood. Consequently, you can move through most
social circles with ease.


What Type of Social Entity are You?
brought to you by Quizilla

Hmm.

Wednesday, July 28, 2004

Focus

Sometimes you focus on the little things. Me, I want to paint the exterior of my new house. You know, do the one thing that really doesn't matter all that much.

So I made a bunch of mockups in Photoshop to illustrate  how potential colors would look on the house. Anybody have a favorite? Why? 

Here's what it looks like now:


Monday, July 26, 2004

Test Drive

I got done with my dentist's appointment earlier than I had originally guessed, so I took the extra few minutes to drive the remaining four miles to my house, and then marked the time, and drove back to campus. It took 28 minutes from driveway to parking spot in 10am traffic. 9am or 8am traffic won't be the same, but it probably won't add more than about 10 minutes, 15 on a bad day. I can live with that. It's 30 minutes to work from Mountain View on average. Even though the miles are further, the journey is much better.

House Update

Yes, we're really in escrow. I so could not sleep on Saturday morning.  Saturday night I had a total panic about having chosen the wrong place in the wrong neighborhood and it being too small and so on.

My dad arrived Sunday morning. For those of you who don't know, he's a building inspector for FEMA. He got started doing that during the '89 earthquake. I had told him about the foundation strapping and he said, "Oh, that's no problem. Rick and I can do that some weekend." I said, "Are you sure?" Then the funny thing he said was, "Well, I'm pretty sure. I wrote most of the regulations on foundation strapping back in '89, so I know how it's done. As long as the concrete is in good condition, it should be easy." Yes, that's right folks, he wrote the book on strapping your foundation to your house. I think he might know what he's doing. So we drove him around to a bunch of the places we've looked at to give him a sense of comparison, and then met the realtor at the house for a more thorough inspection. An hour later, I was feeling much more secure about buying this house. Dad says the strapping will cost around $500 - 700 and a weekend of belly crawling. We need to replace the water heater, which would be another $500. I need a refrigerator, which looks like $200-300 on Craig's List or $600-1000 new. There's a bunch of other little niggly fixes: the screen is missing on the under the house access, a hose bib needs replacement, a sump pump for the basement would be a good idea in the long run, and so on. But all in all, it's in really fabulous shape. Someday I'd like to add a second bathroom off the master bedroom. Someday I'd like to add an air conditioner. Someday I'd like to get a hot tub for the back deck. But for now, it's nice. And the next week is going to be a crazy sort of hectic, but once that is done, I think it will be mostly about packing and getting ready. I'm feeling much better about the place. Having the FEMA/Dad seal of approval really helped. And the place isn't too small. And the wood floors are beautiful. And I love the kitchen and the gas stove.

For those who are interested, moving will likely occur on Labor Day weekend. Many hands make light work, and all assistance is appreciated. More on that later. For now, I'm going to try go get a good night's sleep.

Friday, July 23, 2004

I'm in Escrow!!!

Woohoo! Now I just have to arrange financing in the next 10 days. And get a home inspection. And an appraisal. And a termite report. And all that stuff. But it's in progress. Little cutie house will be mine as of August 27th! Yay!

Okay, yes.

Decided to accept their terms. Now I just have to pray that no one else has beaten me to the punch while I was collecting data.

And look, now there's a cute picture online!

Hmmm...

Just got word back on the 23rd street house. They're giving a $3k credit at closing because the foundation has not been strapped for earthquake protection yet. It's an estimated $3700 job. Also, it's in a 100 year flood zone, so flood insurance (est. $1200 a year) would be required.

Opinions?


Thursday, July 22, 2004

Housing update

Okay, so the owners of the little yellow house countered at $460k. For those who aren't especially fast at math, that's a full $25k over the initial asking price. Hoo-wah! So, we can't do that. Can't/won't/whatever. But last night we were in the area and found another darling house. This one doesn't have $8k in repairs needed. This one is freshly painted and has a new central heating system and a new deck on the back and new double pane windows and new cabinets in the kitchen . It's not quite as perfect for hosting a ceili, but it's still awfully nice. I like it. It feels homey. And we drove past last night and walked around and the owners were home and they came out and showed us around and hung out with us and gave us the full tour and told us all about the work they've done on it. It was really nice. We hung out for 45 minutes or so just shooting the breeze with them and scritching their 3 kitties.

So, I'm sold. Unless the little yellow house folks say nevermind on the extra 10k, then we're buying Graham and Parvinder's house, 'cause they're cool. We're making an offer tonight.

 

The Ceili That Wouldn't Die

So yesterday, Matt and Paul posted about the ceili on the plaza, and a storm of conversation started on Live Journal. I was convinced enough to right a quick email to the CEO of the Los Altos Village Association. It said:

"Dear Ted, et al.,

"For the past four months, I've been the organizer for a ceili at the St. Steven's Green Pub in Los Altos. It's been going really well. Every week, about 20-30 dancers come out to take lessons from 7-9 and then the musicians start up and there's open dancing to live music (led by Matt Mazurak) from 9-11. Or at least, there was.

"Last night we arrived at the pub a little before seven and found it closed. Permanently. I called the manager and he said they made the decision on Saturday and he was terribly sorry he'd forgotten to call me. With 16 people standing around, we made a snap decision to have a little farewell ceili on the plaza at State and Main until the police stopped by and told us to go home. Only, they never did that. We danced to live music until 9:30, and then danced a little more to CD recordings while the band packed up. The 16 mushroomed to 25  (even after calling the non-locals to say not to come out), plus we had several passers-by stop in and watch, some of them even joining in. We had a group of six foreign businessmen stop by and watch for a while. They'd been on their way to the pub, found it closed, and followed my post-it note. The guy from Hong Kong said, "Hey, that's Irish music. I know this song. It's Whiskey in the Jar." It was really neat. Cars driving past would stop in the street and watch until another car came up and honked at them.The Chinese place and Pepino's both got an end of the evening boost in business from hungry/thirsty dancers, and we had a really nice time.

"I figured that was that. I'd start looking for a new venue next week. But then everyone has been talking online today about how great it was and how it would be nice to continue doing that through the summer at least. I reckon just showing up and plugging in probably shouldn't be done without a permit, so someone pointed me at your website. What would be involved in getting this formally allowed? Would Los Altos be interested in having dancers dancing on the square on Tuesday nights?  Is there another venue that might be interested in having us? All we need is a little bit of empty floor, and we're clearly not picky about what kind of floor (carpet, wood, concrete - we'll dance anywhere). We just want to keep dancing."

So today, Ted writes back and says:
"Hi Ammy, 

"I think it would be great to have you in the Community Plaza on Tuesdays!  
We can work on finding you a 'winter home' as well. Let"s talk more about this. 

"Best regards, Ted Garrett"

Okie dokie.

 

Wednesday, July 21, 2004

I hate waiting

No, I haven't heard anything about the house yet. Harumph.

May you have an interesting life...

The gypsy's curse has me.

Our counter on the Stokes place was countered again, and we're considering it. I'm just not sure about that place. Meanwhile, we went and looked at the cutest little house ever this weekend. Okay, maybe not ever, but certainly the cutest little house in our price range. It's all kinds of cute and funky. It's a perfect analog to me. And I want it. So we put the Stokes folks on hold for 24 hours, and put in an offer on the 21st property. They're reviewing (multiple) offers on the place today at 2pm. I should know by 5. Making that all happen yesterday afternoon involved trying to track down Rick for his opinion, getting a hold of the mortgage broker to compare the monthly payments, and then rushing down to the realtor's office to fill out the offer paperwork.

That done, I headed back to the office. Paul called and said he needed me to teach the intermediate class tonight. I called Rachel to make sure she was going to make it. She said Jeremy had called her and said the pub was closed. I arrived a few minutes later, and yes, it was closed. I called the Mountain View location, and they said that a decision had been made on Sunday to close it, and that Des had tried to contact me. Des called back a bit later and said that he'd forgotten to call and he was really sorry. I offered to take the party to Mountain View. He said he'd talk to the owners about doing that, but they weren't ready for us tonight. I franticly called around to the non-locals and told them not to make the drive. The sixteen of us assembled headed over to the square at State and Main. There was a power outlet, and Rachel offered her boombox and we danced for 3 hours. The band was the best it's ever been - Matt on rhythm guitar, Fritz on whistle, Jonah on marimba, Grahm on banjo, and Crystal on bass guitar. The weather was perfect. The location was fine. The passers-by were entertained (and even dove in and danced). And the cops never came by and told us not to do it. It was pretty cool. And just a little sad. Ultimately there were about 20 dancers and five musicians. At the end, I headed home and showered. My little dream is a little dead. Maybe it can be revived, but for right now, the South Bay Ceili is no more. It was a really fun four months.

But, if we get the little yellow house, the ceili will be revived - in my garage. Technically the building out back is a garage, but in reality, it's got a sliding glass door on it. Just add a little sheetrock, and a little wood flooring, and voila: my own dance studio. Here's hoping new dreams come true.

 

Tuesday, July 20, 2004

Tivo!

Okay, so I don't need another Tivo. But then they offered Series 2 40 hour refurb Tivos for $49. Now I know what I'm getting my mom for her birthday. Yay!

Monday, July 19, 2004

Moths! Ack!

So we had a little bit of drama last night. First, on the way home from seeing Stepford Wives (worth the $3 ticket, but not much more), we stopped for a Daqueri Ice cone at Baskin Robbins. Upon getting back in the car, I turned the key and heard the sickening "click click click" of a dead battery. Thankfully, Rick is very good at pushing cars. We push started and made it home. Gotta get a new battery. No biggie.
 
We'd noticed a few moths in the house. Turns out, moths really like granola. Really. They attacked the granola in the pantry and went crazy. We came home and started cleaning out the pantry, and realized just how spacious this pantry was. Lots of space. Lots of food. Lots of cleaning. Only sealed packages were salvaged. Everything else was moth-a-rific.
 
At 2am, I now had a new plan for my morning - restock the pantry with the salvaged food after wiping up the bug bomb remnants, then call AAA for a jump start and go get a new battery and an oil change.
 
It was a beautiful plan. Except for one tiny detail - I forgot a presentation at 10am. (Actually, the online calendaring system on campus forgot it for me, but that's a whole other kvetch.) My boss called at 8:50 to remind me. A tailspin ensued where I changed out of my pj's and rubber gloves, brushed hair and teeth, and sprinted to the Caltrain station. Okay, sprinted, walked panting, sprinted some more, more walking and panting, more sprinting. By 9:25, I made it to the station and thanked my stars that the train was running two minutes late. It gave me time to catch my breath. Harish picked me up at the train station, and we went to the presentation. I was all professional and did the demonstration, and then walked back to the office.
 
Since then it's been meetings a-go-go. Now that I'm back at my desk, I'm still frazzled, but feeling human again.
 
I don't really have anything against moths like other bugs. I mean, cockroaches are nasty, and I get a serious case of the creepies from ants due to an unfortunate childhood experience, and I'm not good with spiders either. But moths I never perceived as threatening before. Then there were 100 of them eating my food and they seemed much more threatening. Moths! Ack!

Friday, July 16, 2004

Stokes

Well, it's been a lot of hemming and hawing, but I'm going to make an offer on this place on Stokes tomorrow morning. It's a good little townhouse. It's in a good location. It's a comfortable space. It has a gas stove. It's not perfect, but it may well be made to be home.
 
We've looked at a bunch of properties this week. Only one leapt out as a better value, but that already had 3 offers, and coming in as the fourth just didn't feel worthwhile. After the last one last night, we went to have dinner and chat. In the long run, this property will be the better value than most things we've looked at, and in the meantime, we're in a nice central location that's a little far to work, but otherwise very near many things we love - Whole Foods Market, Cosentino's and Trader Joe's, the Pruneyard with Pizza My Heart and Camera 7, the Los Gatos Creek Trail, and so on.
 
So we made this decision last night, and then this morning, the San Jose Mercury News puts an article on the front page about how the Google IPO will push housing prices even higher this fall. I don't know if I buy it, but I'm going forward tomorrow with one new piece of data. Hopefully the owner won't scoff at my offer (I'm thinking $410k)  and try to hold out for a Googler in a few months. Oy.

Thursday, July 15, 2004

Genetic Marker for Monogamy

It never ceases to amaze me how much of who we are is preinstalled in our genes. Watching Camryn and Ella from the very earliest months of life, it's clear that from the get-go, they are two very different people and will always be so. They both came preinstalled with a personality, and though they're being raised in much the same way by the same parents, they're two very different people.

Now researchers find that switching one gene in a vole will change it's behavior from promiscuous to monogamous. Can you imagine if that translates to humans? You go in for gene therapy and have a little modified virus injected and suddenly, you're days of polyamory are done, because there is a cure. It's a lot scary, and certainly the stuff of a good sci-fi novel. Are we that easily controlled by our biology? What are the long term effects of all the unintentionally acquired viruses on our genetic makeup? Curiouser and curiouser...

Wednesday, July 14, 2004

The Future of Democracy in America

Just got this flash presentation again. It's really well put together and tells a scary and compelling story. How bad does it have to get before people snap out of their apathy and start paying attention?

Forgetful

Okay, the funny thing is that I realized after I looked back at the previous posts that I'd forgotten to mention the whole forgetful thing. For the past two weeks, I've been unusually forgetful. It's really odd.

First, there was the first day that was so odd with forgetting my bag and glasses and all. Then the next day, I completely forgot a 9am meeting that I'd made at 4pm the day before. Then on Friday, I went to Friday Night Waltz, started to walk in, and realized I'd left my wallet in the car. Came back to the car and noticed I'd left my dance shoes too. Then I took money out of my wallet, grabbed my shoes, and headed upstairs. Upstairs I realized I'd managed to set my water bottle down in the car when I got the money out of my wallet, and forget that. So I went back downstairs and grabbed my water. Blarg. Anyway, so on the following Wednesday, I managed to forget another meeting entirely, and that was a standing meeting that we have every Wednesday at 10. This was when I thought maybe I was actually losing my marbles. Later that day, Harish mentioned a bulk load test meeting, and I panicked, thinking I'd forgotten something else. Turns out, I wasn't needed for that so hadn't been invited. Whew. Anyway, now I'm doubting myself, and seem to be having real trouble with object oriented memory. I've always been the kind of person to forget where I put my keys, but this is bigger.

So, I'm trying to scale back a bit. Potential culprits could be that my brain is busy thinking about shopping for a house. Word has it that's one of life's hugely stressful things. The other option is that I'm just not sleeping enough, but I feel alert most of the time and not overly exhausted, and certainly not more than normal. I'm going to work an hour earlier these days, but that one hour earlier five days a week shouldn't make that big a difference. I mean, I'm a night owl by nature, but I've worked early shifts before without feeling like I was going insane. Of course, it's been years, so maybe my brain just isn't aging well. I don't know. All I do know is that I'm spectacularly forgetful these days, so I'm going to have to be more vigilant about writing things down, completing one task before starting another, and generally slowing down a tad until it gets better or until I don't notice that I'm living at a slower pace anymore. It's spooky, and wholly disconcerting. I have always thought of myself as a sharp, on top of things kind of girl, and that just hasn't been working for the last two weeks. Here's hoping it gets better soon.

Dancebook loss

So I taught the beginning class tonight all by myself. It went okay, but probably would've gone better if my dance book hadn't gone missing in the first 20 minutes of the evening. I have no idea where it went. I was setting up various things, and then poof, it was gone when I needed it. I'm really terribly sad about this as it is irreplaceable. It was signed by Terry O'Neal. He's been gone a long time now, and that book was part of a long connection to him. He told me the week before he died that my footwork was really improved and that he liked watching me dance. Nothing ever made me happier. Now the book is gone and only the memory remains.

I searched the entire place. I announced to everyone that it was missing. Nothing turned up. So sad. Now I feel like a total heel for respecting the author's wishes and not making a copy. Drat.

ADDENDUM: Not lost! I found it. It was in the trunk after all. How it got there I have no clue, but must have been some fumbled headed thing between going back to the car 3 times for stuff (bag, other bag, boombox...) I looked in the trunk last night, but it wasn't til I moved the water this morning that I found it smashed behind the water. Again, how it got there, I have no idea. I'm SO relieved. Making copies today. This book is too important to me to leave the house. And, I will be really thankful if I ever get my mind back fully. Being this forgetful is really scary. I just don't trust myself anymore. I think I'm going to have to slow down my life pace a tad until I slip back in to sync. Being forgetful is really scary and I have a whole new appreciation for Alzheimer's sufferers. The worst part is knowing that you're off your game and never being able to trust yourself. But the book is found! Found! Found! So happy!

Sunday, July 11, 2004

Science is Cool

It never ceases to amaze me what science uncovers. fMRI shows that love really is blind. Specifically, the part of our brain that regulates social judgment switches off when we're dealing with someone we love or are in love with. We do get stupider around people we're in love with. Go figure.

Friday, July 09, 2004

Mai Tai!

I don't drink. Maybe once a year I'll have a half-pint of cider. If Forest is serving up midnight margaritas, I might have one, or I might have him make me a virgin one. Only once have I ever had enough to drink to be even remotely tipsy, and that was really not particularly tipsy, just slightly warm.

About a week ago I made a comment about Bill's Tiki cup in his office. This led to his expressing a genuine love and appreciation for things Tiki. As luck would have it, he'd never been to Trader Vic's. At that moment, a plan was hatched, friends were invited, and an outing to Trader Vic's was scheduled for Thursday.

So we gathered, ate appetizers, and I decided to try a Mai Tai. After all, Trader Vic's is the birthplace of the mai tai. Turns out, contrary to my experience with most alcohol, I actually liked the taste. It was a perfect blend of flavors with a lovely texture of slightly crushed ice. I liked it so much I drank two. Yes, me. The one who never drinks.

So, for the first time in my 30 years, I finally experienced something in the range of tipsy to drunk. Face warm, head heavy, unsure about navigating the stairs to the bathroom, it turns out, I'm a happy drunk. You'd have to ask others for further assessments - Paul, Karen, Rick, Lee, and Bill can all give you a report - but it was nice to finally have a real frame of reference for that feeling which I have so long avoided. It's not something I expect to experience again anytime soon, but all in all, it didn't suck.

So after drinks and calamari and roasted garlic on sourdough and crab rangoons, I ran off to Anne's clothing swap. I got the perfect Chinese jacket and a shirt that is so classically me that when I showed it to Rick, he was surprised I didn't own it before. And I'm all sober again, and well watered, and off to bed since I still have to work tomorrow. And go to the dentist to get a filling replaced. And go house hunting with the realtor. Y'know, I'm a crazy busy girl. Sleep now!

Thursday, July 08, 2004

Flags at Half Mast?

Well, I can't figure it out. Flags have been flying at half mast for something like a month now. Is this all still just for Reagan? If so, man, that's a long time. And how many of our boys have died in Iraq in the meantime? Reagan was an interesting president to be sure - flamboyant, controversial, gave us Reaganomics and all sorts of other bizarre legacies, but it seems odd to keep flags down for a month for the death of a president who wasn't in office at the time. If he'd been assasinated I could see it. But we've been expecting him to die for years. He had Alzheimer's Disease. His death wasn't a big shock.

Anyway, I'm just confused. I'm wondering if I'm missing something. And wondering how long this is planning to go on.

Tuesday, July 06, 2004

Got the Wanna Buy a House Blues

Well, we started over on the house hunting this weekend. With $420k to spend, what is really really out there?

I'm not going to buy unless we get three bedrooms. There's no sense in paying a great deal more a month to live somewhere we won't be comfortable. So, three bedrooms, or 2 plus a usable basement or something.

Nevertheless, we looked at a 2 bedroom this weekend, just to be sure. It was nice enough, but it's just a little sound wall separating us from 237 there. Actually, up on the second and third floors (where this unit is), there's not even a sound wall separating. Just lots of freeway noise. That's not really interesting.

So then we went on to look at some new condos done by KB. They're alright. They said they started in the "low $300's". Well, that's true, but a 3 bedroom is $478k. That's right out. And I can't really picture myself in a condo like that anyway.

So then we looked at a little house on Delmas. It's $432k. It's actually very nice inside, for the first half of the house. Then it sort of starts sloping. We walked down into the basement and pretty quickly figured out why. The back right corner of the foundation had a big crack. The back left corner was actually crumbling. Also, the place is sandwiched between 280 and the wrong side of the tracks. The upstairs had beautiful hard wood floors, and a gorgeous dining room with a fireplace and built in bookshelves. The kitchen was about ready to fall off the building. It's sad to say this was the most tempting property of the day.

We looked at several other properties. The one on Drake is right next to 280 and it's all rentals on the street. The two on Julio are both in awful condition, one having two large holes in the exterior wall by the kitchen. That's the one they want $449k for. It's got a nice little picket fence out front. Somehow that doesn't make up for the holes.

Folks have mentioned that there must be "starter homes" in my area. Y'know, what I would perceive as a "starter home" (or what I would've perceived as a starter home back when I lived in Sacramento) just doesn't work. Ultimately, to afford a starter home here, you have to have a combined household income of at least $160k a year. That's for a small, old, 1200 square foot home, not in an especially good school district, not in an especially good area. Just happened to drive past this one the other day. Kinda puts things in perspective.

So, right now, in every area (including East Palo Alto, where I won't live, but where I can't actually afford anything anyway) within a 40 minute commute of the office, there are exactly 10 properties for $420k or less with 3 bedrooms. All of them have extraordinary down sides. Things like being in the ghetto, butting up against a major freeway, being directly in the take off flight path of the San Jose Airport, or having to buy the million dollar motel on the same piece of land in order to purchse the house. I'm discouraged.

I guess I'm not gonna buy a house right now. Sticking all my cash in a savings account earning 2% interest. Maybe the market will come to its senses soon, but I'm sure not counting on it since I've been saying that for 3 full years now.

Thursday, July 01, 2004

Okay. That's it. I call a do-over.

So far this week:
Fred has had to deal with nightmare scenarios with the INS (actually, the department formerly known as the INS) because he apparently needs his Green Card renewed even though it doesn't have an expiration date or any sort of statement saying so. Said nightmare scenario culminates with getting to the INS office at 3am to get a spot in line to get a temporary Green Card, where he waited til 7 to get a chip, then was told he was at the wrong office because he lived in Union City, then he managed to salvage it by producing a driver's license with his old San Jose address. Then he got to wait another five hours.

Kevin's grandmother has found out she had terminal cancer, and died.

Rachel has lost custody of Katie.

My ceili got preempted. And I apparently lost my mind.

Christyn had another blackout.

David's car got broken into and his radio and camera stolen.

Other smaller disasters have been numerous and have affected many, and yet have been marginalized by the huge roiling crisis points in the lives around them.

I don't know what's wrong with the world this week, but all of the forces of the universe seem to be conspiring to make sure everyone has a really crappy week. Again, I say MULLIGAN!

Beyond that, the emotional burden has been heavy. I feel sad for so many friends right now. Things just aren't going well. But next week will be better. Just got to get through tomorrow.

Meme of the Moment

Survey says:
You are an SRCL--Sober Rational Constructive Leader. This makes you an Ayn Rand ideal. Taggart? Roark? Galt? You are all of these. You were born to lead. You may not be particularly exciting, but you have a strange charisma--born of intellect and personal drive--that people begin to notice when they have been around you a while. You don't like to compromise, but you recognize when you have to.

You care absolutely nothing what other people think, and this somehow attracts people to you. Treat them well, use them wisely, and ascend to your rightful rank.

Hmm. Not especially far off.

Reclaiming My Day

So yesterday was kind of a drag. Then I went to a meeting with my financial analyst and a mortgage broker and we broke down EXACTLY what I could afford in the way of a house. Truly, with a fixed term mortgage, which is the only sane thing in my opinion at the moment, $420k is the absolute limit, and $400k would be much more comfortable. So, back to the drawing board. There were lots of things I could find for $400k 6 months ago. Now, not so much. Eh, such is life. So, I muddle forward, continue saving like a mad fool, make sure I hang on to the 10% down, and watch and wait. The other thing we went over were the various programs available to first time home buyers, and ultimately confirmed all of my suspicions - these are not for me. That's okay.

So then we resurrected the evening plans, having Rick check on if tickets were still available at the Century theater on Shoreline. In fact, we had our choice of a 7:30 or 8pm (or any later) show, so chose the 8pm, got great seats with no fuss and no waiting in line, and saw Spiderman. Sure, it wasn't with Kev and friends, but it was with Rick and it was still a good movie. The only nitpick I have about it is that the foley artist should've been fired. There were several incongruous sound effects, the worst of which was a sort of ~schwing~ sound when Harry picked up a still sheathed knife off it's stand. Foley is the art of making the right sounds at the right moment. The best foley artists are never ever noticed. I noticed this one on a number of occasions. Oh well. But overall, really fun movie, really well told story, and enough story to make it worthwhile.

And now - July!