April 1st, 2014

Say, this thing appears to still be on! Two years since my last post...

This seems like a good semi-public, semi-permanent place to record my latest prophetic dream.

As mentioned elsewhere, I occasionally see the future. Don't get excited, it's not terribly useful. In a nutshell, sometimes while daydreaming I will get a vision of a moment in my own future - a timeless slice, one that is generally visual but also full sensory (if other senses apply), and includes what is on my mind at that exact moment.

These visions have been uniformly useless - myself telling Jason A. about a burrito place that just opened (i.e. foreseeing myself doing so, months before said burrito place ever existed), scenes from movies, walking through an empty lecture hall, things like that.

How can I tell when a mental apparition is a prophecy, versus a normal daydream? The utter lack of context. When dreaming, stuff happens. I have regular daydreams all the time, had one this morning about stealing a truck. In contrast, these prophecies are still pictures, single slices, with no precursor nor consequence, unrelated to anything else I might be thinking or dreaming about. Invariably I find myself wondering "what was that?"

To the meat. Last Sunday, March 30, 2014, I had another one, one which was pretty clearly a prophecy. At Paul E.'s recommendation I am recording it here for later reference.

In it, I am looking at an image, related to a play, or possibly an opera. It's in the form of a poster, although it might be a web page, and it is wider than it is tall - somehow I know that it is definitely not a movie poster. I do not recall the text, although it has information in smaller font at the bottom, in the way of such posters.

The image is dominated by - in fact, consists entirely of - line art of a woman, seated on an elaborate chair, although it falls short of being a throne. She is in full profile, 90 degrees, looking toward the right; the position is reminiscent of Egyptian motifs. She has a strong, what I call 'aquiline' nose; note again that this is not a photograph. I think it is a drawing of the leading actress in the play/opera. The poster has a sort of border to it which is part of the art style. It seems art deco in style, although not so much that I would suspect it of being anything other than modern.

At the time, I am looking at the bottom of the poster for information - a date, perhaps? - that is transcribed there. I have a strange feeling that I can get access to additional information from the information on the poster, in a way strongly reminiscent of a hyperlink, so perhaps it's a web page, although for some reason I don't think so. Perhaps something one can do with a smartphone? Although to be honest it could be something like an interactive poster, on a theater wall, that I could touch to bring up other information. Note that I've never seen one of these interactive posters in real life, but hey, this is the future.

And that's it. Myself, looking for some somehow-interactive information from the minutiae of a theater poster, on which there is an art-deco inspired drawing of a woman seated on a throne, in profile.

Perhaps one day I'll have a vision of the Dow Jones average or something.

Fiat Stability

May 11th, 2012

I recently had the enjoyable experience of receiving a 1944 quarter in my change. It has been a long-standing habit of mine to always check my coinage for silver coins, but as the years pass finding any has become increasingly rare. Still, it does happen, and when it does it really brightens the day. Aside from being worth about $5 (the coin is pretty worn, "Good" in numismatic circles) and being 90% pure silver, it's just cool to have something minted in 1944 - in San Francisco, in this case.

Which led to the idle thought - in how many countries is money from 1944 still legal tender? Darn few, I suspect. Regime change, rampant inflation, or redenomination would make a 1944 coin, although possibly collectible, worthless for its face value in a great majority of nations. I would have guessed the UK might have old coins, but no, they "decimalized" in the 1970s and the oldest circulating coins now are from 1971. Euros are obviously out. The Swiss Franc has valid coins going back to 1879; Canadian coins appear to be valid for about the same time range as American and Swiss.

The Whistler

January 30th, 2012

I have sensitive hearing - I can sleep in a room with the lights on without issue, but any regular source of noise and no luck. The same goes for concentrating in general.

So today I am working at home, troubleshooting a lab, when I hear a high-pitched whine. Seems to be very nearby. And of course, once I hear it, I cannot stop hearing it - so I have to seek it out and put a stop to it.

I'm surrounded by at least three working computers, but upon aural inspection none of them seems to be the source of the whine. The ventilation system? No. I walk in and out of the room and around within and the whine is loudest at my desk.

Cell phone? No. iPod? No. What the heck...?

It's my Diet Pepsi. I had screwed the cap back on firmly enough to prevent spillage, but apparently not firmly enough to create an air-tight seal, and it's carbonated enough to force out a thin, reedy whine.

Which I dispose of with another firm twist. And back to work.

Flying in a B-17: Part 1

May 13th, 2011


Last weekend, my plan was to finish building the chicken coop. I got up earlyish on Saturday to borrow my father-in-law's van to pick up a sheet of roofing material. He came with me to look for fencing material.

Supplies purchased, we went to my house and worked on moving the roofless coop from where I was building it, near the garage, to the spot my wife selected, out in the back yard. We were just starting move it when I heard the rumble of big radial engines coming closer. DC-3? There are a couple of those in the area. But this was louder, something with more than two engines. Which doesn't leave many options, and all of them are enough to make me drop a chicken coop on my foot (nearly) to get a look. We have trees in and around our yard, so you have to be quick to see something flying overhead. And coming out past the palm trees was a big, silver B-17, flying straight over the yard and towards the northwest. I explained what it was to my father-in-law, and I that I had read a small notice in the local paper about a B-17 at Hayward. And that you could take a flight in one, but for a big chunk of cash. I was just hoping to drag the family out to take a tour of the old girl.

Anyway, we had a chicken coop to move. Then it was time to take the girls to gymnastics and get on with the day. My mother-in-law wanted to take the girls shopping, and when she picked up the girls she handed my wife an envelope "of some paperwork for Neal." Which turned out to be a small stack of large bills and a note to enjoy the flight. I stared at it, not understanding. My wife, possessed of far more sense than me, realized what it meant, while I was still trying to figure out where the guy wanted me to travel to, and for what possible reason. After she patiently explained it to me, I think I stared and babbled for a few minutes. Then we rushed home and I made some phone calls. Wait; I think we stopped for paint for the coop. I couldn't buy a ticket online or over the phone, and got the cellphone number of one of the guys traveling with the airplane. Which he didn't answer. I went to work on the coop, checking my phone every few minutes. When the girls returned from shopping, I dragged everyone to the airport. Cash was exchanged for a ticket on the Sunday morning flight, and we all got to walk through the bomber. I tried to explain to my kids everything that my dad had taught me, hoping to give them a feel for something that was already a couple of generations removed from me.

Dashboard Brother

April 28th, 2011

"TomTom admits to sending your routes and speed information to the police".

Well, if I'm ever in the market for a GPS, no way in Hell I'm buying from them. Sure it's a sensationalist headline, but the underlying information is that TomTom will hand out data about you to whomever they see fit. No thanks!