1408…

Saw 1408 tonight.

I didn’t think it was AMAZING, as some reviewers seem to suggest, but I thought it was good. It had some scary stuff, and I got the willies a few times, but nothing incredible.

Only now, it’s 1:05 AM and every little thing is kinda creepy. I think maaaaaaaaybe that’s a sign the movie was better than I thought.

“When I turn on the bathroom light, there will NOT be a freaky weirdo in there.”

ARE YOU SURE ABOUT THAT?

Something Websites Need

You see this at Amazon when reading reviews — the ability to rate the review as useful or not.

Blog posts are followed by comments, and far too many of them are inane. We have nice tools for filtering spam, but what about just plain useless comments? If you want to say something useful, and there are already 200 some comments, it’s about impossible to READ them all to see if what you want to say has already been said.

So, what would be great is a tool that would let you, as a reader, rate comments. If a comment is voted inane enough times, it disappears into the “inane comments” pool that is expandable UNDER the area where you’d leave your comment.

Alas, that means reading inane comments in order to rate them.

Maybe you only NEED to rate the comment before yours, before you’re allowed to post. Or you only NEED to rate 25% of the comments, or something.

Maybe the algorithm gets complex — if somebody is rating too much stuff as inane, their votes count for less. But if they have voted for a lot of stuff, and are within a standard deviation of what other folks are voting for, then their comment gets some bonus protection from being voted inane.

The problem is that a liberal voicing themselves on a conservative board, for example, is a likely target for unfair inanity votes. How do you protect against that? Maybe “dissenting opinions” mark themselves as such, and get bonus protection, too.  “I’m gonna disagree here — please shield me.”

*sigh* It’s looking complex. Maybe websites don’t need it at all. Maybe we just need to ignore juvenile posting areas, like on YouTube, and enjoy the more mature communities we can find elsewhere.

Segways!

So, at Thanksgiving Point — in some garden area waaaay far away from the freeway — you can rent a Segway for an hour for $15.  It’s… pretty dang nifty.  I thought I’d be able to hop right on and have no problem, but it really is very sensitive, and took some getting used to.

Rebecca and I cruised around the gorgeous gardens they have there, even cruising onto some gravel paths and through a narrow hedge maze.  It’s VERY nice to not have to hike up and down all the hills there.  I think I’ve mentioned in the past that physical activity is not my strong suit.  Add that to the heat from the sun beating down, and no amount of floral beauty can make the trip fun. 

But SEGWAYS, baby! Woo hoo! Now THAT’S how to stroll through a garden!

Pedestrians — and man, pedestrians sure seemed pedestrian when we zipped by on our hoverboards speederbikes Segways — didn’t seem to enthralled at our presence. Honestly, I wouldn’t be surprised if Thanksgiving Point abandoned the Segway rentals in less than a year. I think there will be complaints from people who have a hard time appreciating nature with zippy little pieces of technology nearby.

Then again, if the program makes money, who knows.

1 Segway = $5200
1 rental = $15/hr
Total (rented) hours to pay for the Segway, minus electriticy = 347
Total 8-hour days = 44

So after 44 days, plus some to pay for the electricity, you’re pure profit. Not bad.

My Joke Made Me Laugh

 David Brady says: Have you read “Crucial Conversations” ?
 Randy Tayler says: I haven’t.
 David Brady says: Okay, it’s farking awesome.
 David Brady says: It’s a book on how to confront people about the most difficult things–like deeply emotional things–and get through the conversation.
 Randy Tayler says: Is that the one where you each sit on a hot dog and rub it between your butt cheeks?
 Randy Tayler says: Or did I just make that up for myself?

Oh man. I don’t know why I said that, but man it’s funny to me.

TV Pilot! Woo hoo!

So Daryn finally got word from KJZZ, a local Utah station, that they’ve given our project the green light. YAY! Now I can talk about it.

Basically it’s a MST3K rip-off.

For the pilot, we’ll take the movie Singles Ward, heckle it, record our heckles, and broadcast it.  Daryn was IN the movie, and I even have a shot of my face as an extra, so I guess I’m in it, too.

It’ll be nifty! I’ll be on TV! Not losing on a game show!

Sometimes the Snow Comes Down in June

Yes. Sometimes the snow DOES come down in June. Right in the middle of your SUMMER VACATION.

I guess that’s the risk you run with a mountain resort. Oh well. Didn’t affect the kids much, so I won’t complain.

I do have one complaint about Aspen Grove: it’s BORING.

There are lectures for adults, but it’d be nice to have LOTS of lectures to choose from, like a convention. And there are hikes you can go on, but man, I’ve had a hard enough time getting around CAMP. I don’t need to exert myself any more when I’m trying to relax.  And all the other activities are sports of one kind or another.  No horseback riding, which I could’ve gotten into.

I did the ropes course, and was pleased with how I did. Sorta redeemed myself from when I did the same course at age 18, and was much more slow than I thought I would be.  (It’s not much of a story.)

The other weird thing, besides June snowfall, was that the family of the camp directors was here this week. They all had staff positions when I worked here 14 years ago, and now we coincidentally ended up as guests the same week.  

Well, that’s not the really weird thing.  The really weird thing is that when I was here at 18, I was flirting very heavily with the directors’ 15-year old daughter.  We very nearly kissed — it was nothing short of a Herculean effort on my part to NOT kiss her, and I still count it as one of my successes resisting temptation, the temptation to just make out for the thrill regardless of the impossibility of any real relationship.

Well, so, she’s here, with her husband and kids, and it’s AWKWARD. Like, whew. She just seemed… I dunno. Not-wanting-to-talk-to-me. I think at first she didn’t recognize me, and I can hardly blame, cuz *I* don’t recognize myself in old photos. They were 50+ pounds ago, and 50,000 hairs.  So, yeah. 

I just want to ask her if there’s anything I should be apologizing for, but whatever. I think it’s just run-of-the-mill awkwardness.

Fourteen years. Holy schamoli. 

So, yeah. Our next family vacation will be someplace better suited to mine and Rebecca’s preferences.  We want to just go be entertained for a week. I think we might dig a convention of some sort, like ComicCon, if there wasn’t so much walking.  Maybe just a week in Vegas catching all the shows and living uber-posh.  

Mmmmm…. poshhhhh.

I so smart.

I’ve learned how to properly vacation. It involves almost excessive amounts of comfort. 

We’re in Aspen Grove Family Camp this week, nestled high above Sundance on the back side of Mount Timpanogos. It’s gorgeous, to say the least. The weather is great, Rebecca and the girls are loving it, and so far (we’re on hour 30 or so now) it’s been great.

It could’ve been a disaster.

Rebecca was not aware that we were set to be in cabins with a community bathroom. I’m not sure HOW she failed to catch that, but I think it has something to do with the fact that she never visited the website or read the brochure. She just sorta took my word that we were in for a fun week.

Well, as we were registering at the front desk yesterday, I overheard somebody saying something about upgrading your room to a hotel suite. 

“How much is that?” I asked the desk clerk.

[The answer was about  12.5 hours at my salary.]

So, for 2 days’ labor, we would go from staying in tiny A-frame cabins, probably 100 yards and at least 3 flights of stairs up and down the hillsides, to an air-conditioned room with our own bathroom, tub and all.

The kids helped make it a very easy decision. We plopped that money down faster than you can say “cabin ticks”.

I showed Rebecca the cabins we’d originally been set for. She was very grateful.

So here’s the realization: some folks are great with ‘roughing it’.  Me, I want my vacations to be treats. I want to indulge my lazy side, my gluttonous side, my wussy-let’s-get-inside-to-some-air-conditioning side.

Granted, I indulge those on a daily basis, but now I can do it without feeling guilty.

Don’t get me wrong; we’ll be enjoying the great outdoors. But it’s so much easier to enjoy it when you know you can come inside and wash it off once it gets uncomfortable.