Saturday, June 19, 2010

Goodnight, sweet prince

From the moment I first got my iPod Touch, it changed my life. I woke up to its delicate alarm-clock tones, read books on it, Googled, donated karmas to good causes, played online Scrabble, checked work e-mail, kept a calendar... oh, and occasionally listened to music.

Last night there was a severe thunderstorm. I grabbed a cup of coffee and my iPod Touch off the kitchen table to get them out of the way of incoming rain before hurriedly closing the window. By the time I picked up the Touch, it had been soaking in a perfect slosh of coffee inside its protective rubber sleeve for several minutes. It gave off intense heat as the circuits quietly fried.

Well. No more pretty new toys for me!

R.I.P. iPod Touch, October '09 - June '10

I've already realized that I can't live without one, though, and it can be an older, less sexy version if it has to be... so I've started trolling eBay for used and refurbished iPod Touches. If I get cheap stuff, it won't matter when I break it...!

Update, several hours later:

There was brief jubilation when the iPod Touch seemed to respond well to drying out in the sun. It turned back on, overcame a brief confusion during which it thought the year was 1969, and then came fully back online. Everything worked. I was deliriously happy.

Then I plugged it in - and discovered it will no longer take a charge. I realized that the current battery charge was only at 10 percent, and when that was gone, it would be lights out, permanently.

So we spent that last 10 percent well: one last sync to my laptop, one last Scrabble move! And then  the screen just unceremoniously went black.

It's like seeing someone in a coma unexpectedly come out of it... just long enough to say goodbye!

Thursday, June 17, 2010

My new office (eventually)

I saw the blueprint and the sketch of my new office today. It'll be built in a month or two. I didn't really care about this new office business until I saw the picture, but now I'm all about it! Look at that - isn't it cute? There's a floor-to-ceiling window to the outside, and then there's a window out to the hallway so I don't feel as though I'm sitting in a lockbox. In my current office, there's not a windowpane to be seen.

The fact is, I will miss my current office. I will miss its location, closest to the people I interact with the most during my work day. I will miss my officemate - although he will in fact be in his own new office right next to mine. But now that I'm envisioning myself in that picture, I think I might not mind taking a walk to see my team or popping around the corner to visit my former officemate!

And see that thing under the desk? You know what that's called? A modesty panel! "So you can sit like a cowboy and nobody will care," explained the facilities manager. Ha!

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

The Face of Nordre Frihavnsgade

You're familiar with Google Street View? In Denmark, the primary map company, KRAK, provides similar street-level photos to go with their maps. Apparently, one fine day, as they took the definitive picture of my parents' street address (home of my teenage years!)... Dad decided at that moment to poke his head out of the window.

Bright red shirt. Can't miss him.

No one else, in all those windows, looking out at the street. Just Dad.

He is now the Face of Nordre Frihavnsgade 13A.

Isn't that extraordinary? What are the chances?

On the KRAK site, you can see it larger and in context: blocks of buildings, rows of windows, dwindling picturesquely way down Nordre Frihavnsgade, and Dad absolutely unmistakeable in the middle of it all.

You can even see him in the photo they took one frame earlier: 

Dad says he was looking across to see if the Brugsen grocery store was open. Which, he says, "if you click down the street, you can see that it was."

Wanna try it? Go to the KRAK site, click on the green tab marked "Kort" (Map) and type "Nordre Frihavnsgade 13A" in the "Hvor" (Where) field. Click "Søg" (Search) and click "Vis Gadefoto" (Show street photo) beneath that. There he is! You can even enlarge and angle the picture. It would be a good picture anyway - it was clearly a lovely day - but with Dad making a star appearance, it's even better!

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Congratulations, Germany!

Teenager Lena Meyer-Landrut, with her cute little German-Cockney accent, won the Eurovision Song Contest with the super-snappy Satellite. Click and listen. I dare you not to snap your fingers.

Last time Germany won (and I believe the only other time) was in 1982 (come to think of it, that was a teenage girl, too), and Stephanie and I were jumping around in excitement in her living room when it happened. We practically made a religion of the Eurovision Song Contest. We filled out score sheets and knew all kinds of facts about the songs and the singers. We sang along in fake Finnish or Greek. It was an event. And I have to admit: to me, it still is! I was thrilled to get an e-mail from Stephanie this weekend commenting on the winning and runner-up songs. It pleases me to think we were both watching, in 2010 as in 1982, even on opposite sides of the Atlantic.

Great stuff, Lena! I'll be watching the live stream from Germany next year!